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Welcome to G4's Knuckle Up, where we bring you a byte-sized view of our five favorite mobile games every week. The phone and tablet space is filled with incredible games that will keep you busy for minutes, hours, or even days -- we'll let you know what we're playing and why we're playing it. This week, we’re taking time to preview the mobile games at E3 2012 that look killer:

E3 MOBILE GAMES TOP 5 PREVIEW

INFINITY BLADE: DUNGEONS

iOS (2012)

Infinity Blade: Dungeons looks to deliver a compelling, crazy gorgeous top-down dungeon crawler for our iPads, and we couldn’t be more excited about it. If you’re currently addicted to Diablo 3, you’ll likely fall in love with Dungeons, as it feels like a mobile cousin of Blizzard’s newest blockbuster. We’ve seen what Epic Games can do with the latest and greatest hardware in mobile via Infinity Blade and its sequel, and now we’re being treated to an entirely different experience (albeit one we’re just as eagerly anticipating).

Dungeons takes place thousands of years before the Infinity Blade games happen. You’re the apprentice to the Master of the Forge, and you’ll be tasked with creating the most epic weapon ever (we’re pretty sure you can guess which one that is). You’ll wander through stunning environments, fighting Deathless as you go. It’s pretty apparent this will be yet another winning title from Epic, making Infinity Blade: Dungeons one of our most-anticipated mobile titles of E3.

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Tomb Raider

Gamers with a Xbox 360 will get their hands on the new Tomb Raider DLC before anyone else.

String up your bow and get ready to take on the wilderness yet again before anyone else when the new Tomb Raider content hits the 360. While the content still remains under wraps for now, this relaunch of the Lara Coft story has a much younger version of the classic hero taking on dogs, guys with guns, and the bare elements with little more than her wits to save her.

To find out what turns a person into a hero, you'll need an Xbox to get the DLC first. Make sure that you check out the gameplay trailer right now.

Tags: E3 2012, Features

Halo 4

At the start of the Microsoft Press Conference 2012, we finally get a taste of some of the new light weapons and our first hint at what's in store for us when we face an ancient threat, the Forerunners in Halo 4.

With the ship filled with survivors crashing into the jungle wasteland, Master Chief makes his way through the alien world to face an old threat, the Covenant. After dispatching a few grunts, the last unit of the band gets dematerialized into a puff of orange light. Like the lights scanning the ship and the orb coming from out of nowhere, these orange lights mean danger in the new Halo. As Cortana points out, these new enemies are non-organic and work together as a single unit, helping each other while cordinating attacks. These are the Forerunners of old; the makers of the Halo Array, the ark, and the new threat on the planet.

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Tags: E3 2012, Features

God of War Ascension

Last year, the Sony Press Conference brought out the big guns with their PlayStation Vita reveal, the Dust 514 exclusive, and something called “Transfarring.” We look to this year with hope for more exclusives and hints at what the next console cycle may have in store for us.

As I eagerly clutch my Move controller in my sweaty hand, I turn to the greatest gaming minds at G4 to find out you can expect when Sony takes to the stage this E3 2012.

Jake Gaskill

I’ve been saying it for years, but this will be the one where we finally get a release date for The Last Guardian (Ducks from incoming tomatoes). I know. I know. But I just really want/need to know it’s a real thing and not just some widely publicized dream. Is that so wrong?! Sony might also finally offer an official apology for the PlayStation Move.

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Screenside -- eSports: A History

What we see of eSport competitors doesn’t always reflect the reality behind the scenes.

Imagine this: a crowded show floor, lights, and cameras pinioned to your every movement. Tens of thousands of people riveted by each of your keystrokes. Your every kill arouses a cheer, your every death a chorus of disappointment. If you win this match, you and your team will go on to receive the kind of money normally reserved for those blessed with incredible business acumen or an inhuman grasp of general knowledge. Today, however, the prize goes to the men with the highest actions-per-minute.

For many, this is eSports: glamorous, lucrative and paved with afterparties.

Like the video game industry itself, eSports is growing. In Korea, professional gamers are idolized in a way the Western world usually reserves for football prodigies. Barcrafts - the practice of watching Starcraft II in tandem with the communal consumption of alcohol - are springing up everywhere in the world. TV channels dedicated to competitive video games are no longer an idle dream. Last year, Gamescom played host to the 'The International', a DotA 2 tournament that rewarded the triumphant team with a million USD.

But is the reality as alluring as we think it to be?

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Tags: eSports, Features
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The Officially Licensed Major League Gaming Pro Circuit Controller for Xbox 360 was designed with customization in mind. Just in time for MLG Anaheim, this episode of Tech Junkies goes in-depth with this innovative controller and find that it's perfect for competitive gamers on the go.

Mad Catz MLG Pro Circuit Controller Review »


Within a few quick seconds, you can switch the controller to one of three styles, thanks to the controller's ProModule system. With it, you can freely move the D-Pad and analog sticks to make your own layout, or stick with a classic Xbox 360 or PS3 layout. You can also buy additional ProModule kits in different colors, tensions, lengths, and textures.

The Pro Circuit Controller also has easily swappable, magnetic top and side plates for even more individualism. Remember that since this controller is for tournaments, teams can use these customization options to emblazon their controllers with a logo. 

For more information about the Officially Licensed Major League Gaming Pro Circuit Controller from MadCatz check after the break.

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Resistance Burning Skies

Resistance: Burning Skies is arguably the most keenly anticipated Vita game to date. The big deal with Vita’s second analogue stick is a lot to do with the PSP wanting to showcase the kinds of game coming out on PS3, but struggling to with just one stick. In Burning Skies, the Vita has the ultimate test of that additional analogue stick: a first-person shooter.

But Burning Skies isn’t just about the Vita and FPS games. It’s also the fifth game in the nearly 6-years-old Resistance franchise. Sony’s PlayStation-exclusive series first burst on to our screens with Fall of Man, but now, one trilogy and millions sold worldwide later, the flame that developer Insomniac Games once held has not been passed on. Who will take it up next? Will anyone?

There’s a chance that Burning Skies will be the final game in what’s been one of the biggest PlayStation franchises of this generation. So if Burning Skies is the last we’ll see of the Chimera and their scary, scary teeth, it would seem high time that we paid some retrospective dues to a series that taught us just how much fun a grenade with spikes attached to it could be.

Here’s our game-by-game retrospective of the Resistance series.

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Even if you can’t make it to E3, you can still experience all of the awe and wonder with half of the deafening crowd by checking out some of the best indie games around. Forget about waiting in lines for hours just to get your hands on controllers touched by the hundred people in front of you.

Indie E3 never fails to disappoint with creativity, imagination, and you don’t have to wade through the triple-A hype to get to your favorite game. Some of the future learders of the industry as well as those of the past are turning their eye towards smaller teams and downloadable titles that won't break your wallet in order to play.

Let's start Indie E3 right with a trailer.

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Mass Effect 3 Screenshots -- Prepare For Lens Flare

Games are increasingly becoming a popular way to tell stories -- there is no doubt about this. Narrative is becoming a mechanic, with the strength of said narrative retaining the power to make or break a game. A weak story can sap the enjoyment from an action-adventure title; an overly-complex plot will settle a cloak of tedium over an RPG.

A step beyond film due to their immersive and reciprocal nature, looking to games for thoughtful and entertaining experiences means that responsibility rests not only on designers and programmers but writers as well. If last March’s skirmish regarding Mass Effect 3 has proven anything, it’s that video games are beginning to face more demanding challenges as an interactive storytelling medium.

As the way we play games evolves, so does our definition of what makes a game “good.” New frameworks and fancy add-ins can cloud over a game’s soul if they complicate an already cluttered plot. Games created for the purpose of showing off new modes of gameplay should be built into the story they attempt to tell, not the other way around – if the game calls for a story, that is.

Games can and do exist without narrative – but once a plot or character development is introduced, the simple problem-solving foundation is bricked over. A complex story needs time and resources to properly tell itself. Mismanagement of these resources – poor character development or shallow characters, overly-involved backstory, lack of appropriate presentation for important climaxes and details ---results in the game’s total failure to captivate beyond shiny graphics and racking up bonuses.

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Call of Duty Modern Warfare

At the same time you were grilling hamburgers and hotdogs over Memorial Day, Activision and the Call of Duty creators were taking the weekend to prepare to grill each other ahead of this Friday’s Call of Duty lawsuit in Los Angeles State Superior Court. That’s where a jury will begin to hear the biggest video game lawsuit to reach trial, with parties seeking $1 billion in damages. Former Infinity Ward heads Vince Zampella and Jason West as well as dozens of ex-Infinity Ward employees are suing Activision for owed royalties, wrongful termination and the rights to the Modern Warfare franchise. Countersuing the pair is Activision. The top video game publisher alleges insubordination and breaches of contract on the parts of Zampella and West.

There’s a lot of information and legal jargon to take in, and between MW3's Collection 2 DLC and all of the Black Ops 2 news, you may not have read every post in G4’s lengthy Fall of Duty series. To bring you up to speed on the soap opera of Soap’s creator’s, here is a quick time guide to the Call of Duty lawsuit.

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LucasArts Actively Working With Platform Holders To Get Games Everywhere

Let's look back at the success and vision that kept LucasArts 30 years young this month.

Full Throttle. Day of the Tentacle. The Secret of Monkey Island. Grim Fandango. If you've played and enjoyed any of these fantastic games, then you've witnessed the magic of LucasArts, brought to fruition by George Lucas (yes, that George Lucas) in 1982. Though the company saw most of its colossal successes in the mid-'90s, it's been a mainstay in both the eyes of consumers and other prominent figures in the industry.

Miraculously, LucasArts is still alive and well, now thirty years after its inception, as a renowned developer and publisher -- an illustrious feat in an age of abrupt restructuring, dissemination, and departures of key company employees. From point-and-click adventure games to best-selling third-person action spectaculars, LucasArts has a varied background when it comes to making gaming history.

For 30 years of providing us with memorable characters, oddball stories, and plenty of incidental laughs along the way, we celebrate LucasArts: the games, the legacy, and the facts: it's absolutely remarkable we can celebrate a milestone such as this, and we think many kudos are in order.

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Nersourcing finds you the best crowd sourcing projects from Kickstater, Indiegogo, and other such sites and brings them straight to your wallet. Give, help spread the word, or just find out what’s going to be the hot new thing in the future; nerdsourcing is there to help support the dreamers out there looking to make the impossible a reality or those looking for the next big thing an edge on the competition. Time is limited to fund these projects so don’t wait to long.

Zombie Playground

Remember when you were a kid and used to run around with toys defending your home from imaginary monsters? Zombie Playground is just that. With a friend, players defend their turf using everyday objects that kids would have access to, like squirt guns and wooden swords. It’s every child’s fantasy to have their imagination become reality and now that it has, they must defend it!

Zombie Playground is a third-person action game with online co-op for at least two players -- this number might change depending on how much funding they get. The beautiful concept art can’t help but remind me of the british monster movie Attack The Block -- it has a great sense of tone. Everything seems to be in the planning stage right now, but one things for sure, Zombie Playground isn’t for kids. It’s violent in the best way possible.

Rewards: The game is all your’s if you pledge $15, but another $15 nabs you a digital soundtrack as well.

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We’ve talked about gaming’s urban legends before here on G4, but there’s plenty left to explore. That still baffle gamers today and leave them wondering whether they could change their most influential childhood gaming moment -- when Aeris died. Or that time that their friend swore they saw Bigfoot in the woods of San Andreas. We’ve got you covered.

Bigfoot

Finding Bigfoot in Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas

With a vast terrain, Rockstar had plenty of space to leave in some tasty secrets for gamers to dig up while exploring their worlds. There’s been a few in every Rockstar game, but almost all of them have been found and proven -- except for one. There’s talk of monsters roaming the hills of San Andreas, but not just any monsters: Bigfoot and Leatherface specifically.

This is probably one of the biggest urban legends in gaming, that a creature could roam around a world map that players can dissect, yet it somehow manages to escape capture for proof, just like in real life. It’s a bit silly to think that this could happen, but at the time, the proof was somewhat convincing. The legend was originally propagated through blurry photos showing up on message boards. These showed distorted glimpses of the beasts.

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In honor of Men in Black III's theatrical release this Friday, we've got the top five alien races who want to kill us. It seems as though the human race (and Earth itself) is constantly under assault by malevolent alien races – at least, if movies and video games are to be believed. We'll admit to having done some particularly heinous things as a race, but just once it seems we should get a break from all these aliens looking to put us in the ground! At least we can look for the aid of organizations like the Men in Black when it comes to these very sticky situations...in the movies, anyway.

Get ready to paint some targets on these suckers for total annihilation.

Witness Titanic-Esque Finale Of Halo: Reach

5. The Covenant

Throughout the Halo trilogy (soon to include Halo 4) there's a veritable menagerie of alien goons out to clear us out – with ulterior motives, of course. All because they've deemed the whole of humanity offensive to their gods. The Covenant isn't an alien race itself, but a militaristic alliance of several species all united under a religious pretense – the Forerunner “ringworlds,” Halos as we know them, will supposedly lead them all to salvation. But humanity's completely in the way. The Covenant consists of several races: Elites (Sangheili), Jackals (Kig-Yar), Grunts (Unggoy) and others, all of whom aren't above slicing through Marines with energy swords, or slapping a grenade on your person for a messy finish. Oh, and they've got guns. The Covenant as a collective is dangerous, so we should thank our lucky stars Chief and the rest of the crew are on our side. And we didn't even mention the Flood!

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Tags: Features

Welcome to G4's Knuckle Up, where we bring you a byte-sized view of our five favorite mobile games every week. The phone and tablet space is filled with incredible games that will keep you busy for minutes, hours, or even days -- we'll let you know what we're playing and why we're playing it. Here are our top five games this week:

GAME OF THE WEEK

SLINGSHOT RACING

iOS

There’s a lot to love about Slingshot Racing, easily launching it to the top of the list of games this week. Some of my favorite games on mobile are simple, fun, and addicting racing titles like DrawRace 2,so it’s nice to see a game that not only enters the genre with aplomb, but also has the gameplay and gorgeous visuals to back that bravado up.

What makes Slingshot Racing something special within the genre is the game’s namesake: the slingshot functionality used to whip your racer around corners. You’ll tap the screen to cause little towers to grab hold of your car and sling it around each turn. You have the option of playing Career Mode, but the real fun begins when you find a couple friends and fire up the Multiplayer. Each corner of your iPad can be used as one player’s control, and there’s something really amazing about playing against a friend in person. It’s something online multiplayer can’t really match in terms of experience, and it’s worth the price of admission alone.

Overall, Slingshot Racing is an incredibly good racer with some really cool mechanics in it, and Snowbolt Interactive should be proud of the excellent game they’ve created. This one’s a must-buy, especially if you have an iPad.

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