Morality in gaming is nothing new. We've all played RPG and action games that have different story lines and endings based on how good or evil you play, but some games like The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim give you moral choices that don't affect the outcome. Such is the topic of this week's Soapbox. Adam ponders if these murky moral choices give a window into the mentality of the player and if the open sandbox allows for gamers to experiment with their dark side.
Nintendo head Shigeru Miyamoto said in an interview with Wired that he is interested in retiring from his current position and stepping into another role at Nintendo. Nintendo, on the other hand, says everything for old Shiggy will be staying pretty much the same. So who should you believe? As always, you should believe Adam Sessler.
In this special, collectors edition of Sessler's Soapbox, Adam discusses this whole "retirement" thing and the culture of Nintendo. Click it, won't you?
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Platformers are not as common today as they were ten years ago thanks to the advance of gaming technology. However, there's something to be said about an enjoyable, brightly colored, solidly animated platformer. Rayman Origins fills that roll perfectly, and Adam Sessler can't get enough of it. In this week's Soapbox the Sess will break down exactly why Rayman Origins is such a fantastic game and why you should be playing it right this very second.
Over the Thanksgiving break Adam Sessler went up to San Francisco to visit his family and got to spend some time at a few museums. After looking at all the pretty pictures, video games kept popping into his head and he couldn't figure out why. After studying a few works by the Venetian Masters it dawned on him that these painting techniques were the height of technology at the time, and could be compared to the gaming technology of today. When talented people use the newest methods of expression to present their idea, we all win in the end. So watch this week's Soapbox and soak up some culture.
As gamers, we've been really busy recently. Between Batman: Arkham City, The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, Saints Row The Third, and Assassin's Creed: Revelations there's no shortage of gaming to get through. In fact, it might be too much. Such is the subject of this week's Soapbox. Adam wonders if the "open world" genre has changed so much that it's not really a type of game any longer and questions publishers' motives behind releasing all these content-rich games around the same time. Have you had time to finish them all?
By now you already know that Skyrim is an incredible game. Whether you're playing it for yourself or reading about it on every video game news outlet that exists, this game's impressive showing is impossible to avoid. So who could take on a subject as epic as this? Why, Adam Sessler of course! In this week's Soapbox, The Sess will explain what makes this game so incredible in his mind and how you can avoid things like dehydration, loss of your significant other, and poor personal hygiene. Happy Skrimin'!
You may have already read about Ubisoft's unprecedented deal with Sony Pictures to make the Assassin's Creed movie. The news of this arrangement sent shockwaves not only through Hollywood, but through the gaming industry as well. Such is the topic of this week's Sessler's Soapbox. Do game companies need to have this much control over their intellectual properties to make sure they're not ruined by the movie making process? Or is this just an example of an incredibly successful publisher using their enormous amounts of cash to transition into producing another form of media?
Battlefield 3 is a fantastic multiplayer game, but the single player campaign has received some negative criticism. Adam Sessler had similar feelings, so he decided to turn that subject into this week's Soapbox. Can a beautiful, incredibly designed game rest on its multiplayer alone? Or do you need an epic war campaign to whet your appetite for destruction?
Yesterday Adam Sessler's review of Uncharted 3 went up. He gave it a 4 out of 5, and many of you were not pleased with that score. But did you read his written review? If you had, you might understand that he enjoyed the game a lot, but had only a handful of problems with it that resulted in its final score. Such is the topic of this week's Soapbox. Adam hates trying to apply a numerical value to the quality of a creative work, and would much rather you read a written review to understand the context and nuance of the reviewer's opinion.
This week everyone's playing Batman: Arkham City, and if you're not... well you better have a damn good reason. While playing through the game, Adam Sessler was struck with a thought; Is "Open World" still a genre of video games? In this week's Soapbox the Sess will explain why he thinks the industry has developed the open world to a point where it no longer defines the game, but is a tool that adds to the player's immersion in its setting. Now if you'll excuse me, I have some citizens to save!
With the leak and then official announcement of Cable Channels coming to the Xbox 360, no one's quite sure what to think of it. Will this create a new market, putting a dent in income of cable providers? Or is this just another gimmick to try and sell video game consoles to non-gamer households? Such is the topic of this week's Soapbox. Adam Sessler will look into his crystal ball and talk about the potential he sees in a one-stop-media-shop living inside your Xbox.
If you picked up Rage today you already know the game is incredibly beautiful with amazing combat and fantastic AI. What you may not know is, according to Adam Sessler, the game really drops the ball towards the end. That got The Sess thinking about how important it is to stay consistent during the entire gaming experience. On this week's Soapbox Adam discusses how an incredible experience like Rage fell short in the last few hours and why games need to be able to maintain a steady pace with not only the story, but the gameplay, combat, and world design.
Cheats and Walkthroughs
With all the "Classic Collections" and "HD Remixes" coming out these days, we've been spending a lot of time playing games we lost years ago. Most of the time nostalgia takes over and we enjoy reliving the emotions we had the first time we played through them, but sometimes gameplay mechanics of a bygone era get in the way of our experience. Such is the topic of this week's Soapbox, where Adam talks about how amazing the ICO/Shadow of the Colossus Collection is, but explains how much harder it can be to play through today because of how gaming has changed over the years.
By now you probably know that a little game called Gears of War 3 came out today. When a game with that much expectation comes out, people often wonder if it lives up to the hype. Well no need to look any further, because The Sess is about to tell you exactly why Gears 3 is not only the best game in the franchise, but also one of the better games he's played in recent memory. Now hurry up and watch this week's Soapbox so we can get back online and continue to curb stomp each other into tiny gooey bits.
If there's one question Adam Sessler gets asked a lot, it's "How did you/do I get into the games industry?" If there are two questions The Sess has to answer often, the second would probably involve his whereabouts during the armed robbery of his local liquor store, but that's a topic for a different Soapbox. This week Adam will tell you how to break into game journalism, and how to be taken seriously as a writer and media critic. Consider this week's Sessler's Soapbox a free vocational consultation from a very animated guidance counselor.
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