Bioshock

Your first glimpse of the underwater metropolis of Rapture, a land of broken dreams and twisted nightmares.

Bioshock reveals what happens when a society places greater emphasis on scientific progress and pleasure than on morals. The underwater city of Rapture is one man’s dream of a utopia, a “paradise” with no rules or limitations. The scientific advancements far surpass where we are at today, but the city and it’s inhabitants have slid into entropy and decay.

After your plane crashes over the mid-Atlantic, you swim to the only dry land you can find: the entrance to Rapture. As you make your way into the unique city, you come in contact with someone over your radio who supposedly can help you escape, but he wants you to rescue his family from this “god forsaken place” while you make your way to safety. Guided by this voice over the radio, “Now, would you kindly…”, you make your way from section to section of Rapture.

The hopelessly ruined city of Rapture, Andrew Ryan’s failed experiment, is the real star of the game. Advertisements are adorned to nearly every wall and space for some product that is guaranteed to make you bigger, faster, stronger, or sexier, even if it means reconstructing your DNA to do so. Hulking big daddies, giant robots in suits with a deadly drill for an arm and yellow, glowing eyes lumber throughout the decrepit hallways, ever protective guardians of the sinister little sisters. And various people with different philosophies and ideals are at constant war with each other.

Perhaps Bioshock’s greatest achievement is it forces you to think about real life, real-world dilemmas, and because of this the game seems more real. It’s almost like a philosophy class. You want to say that one person or idea is bad and should be stopped, but the more you think about it, the less black and white the situation becomes. Oh, and the game has the whole “a fish doesn’t know it’s in water” theme going as well. You don’t realize the forces in effect until it is dire-

Scientific progress for the sake of easy-to-obtain beauty.

ctly pointed out to you.

Bioshock creates a fantasy world, but it’s not a totally unfathomable existence. And that is why it should be considered a work of art. The game gets you to think about the world and the human race in different, but plausible ways. It’s a reflection of what could happen if we lose sight of morality.

Brochure

Here is a printable brochure detailing the artistic value of video games and their contribution to our culture. Be sure to pass it out to any of your friends who are skeptical about video games’ status as artwork!

Why video games deserve to be art

The Importance of New IP

IP stands for intellectual property, and it essentially means a brand-new series, not a continuation of an existing series.

In order for the video game industry to grow and advance, it is vital designers regularly create new characters and develop new game play styles to push gamers’ imaginations and blow their expectations. We are all familiar with the rap sequels get in the film business (which is they are rarely as good as the first movie), and the same trend transfers over to video games. Sequels have this reputation because the developers want to match the level of success they attained with the original and they are hesitant to make significant changes for fear of making players angry that it was too dissimilar to the game they loved. As a result, the experience doesn’t feel as new or imaginative, and players feel they have done most of what the game offers before.

But it doesn’t have to be this way. What if developers More

Phoenix Wright Ace Attorney

Few games, or anything, for that matter, will make you laugh as hard or as often as Phoenix Wright Ace Attorney. You play as young Phoenix Wright, an inexperienced defense attorney with aspirations to make it big. Almost every time, Phoenix ends up defending unusual clients with incredible odds stacked against them, and goes up against a colorful cast of characters, to say the least.

The sassy and promiscuous April May proves to be a formidable antagonist. “I’ll get to this lady’s bottom…er, you know what I mean!”

The humor is prevalent throughout the game, from people’s names such as April May, Lotta Hart, and Frank Sahwit (saw it), to the characters’ ridiculous personalities, to the hilarious script. Take this excerpt from the game as an example:

Detective Dick Gumshoe is a good-intentioned detective, but he is incompetent in many ways and doesn’t present himself too well. He usually ends up being taken advantage of, unbeknownst to him. He is talking to Phoenix and messes up on his name, to which Phoenix replies, “Um, no, my name isn’t Butz, it’s Phoenix Wright. You’re Gumshoe, right? Dick Gumshoe.”

Gumshoe: “Hey, it’s just Gumshoe to you, pal. Don’t call me Dick.”

Some other police officer from off screen: “Hey, Dick, come over here!”

The distinctive cast and smart dialogue make the game enjoyable and memorable, but beneath all of the funny business More

The Many Forms of Video Games

Please check out my new video,  The Many Forms of Video Games.


The video shows some of the different types of games that are available to play. Hopefully one of these types of experiences interest you.

Video

Metroid Prime

After a narrow escape from an alien base set to self destruct, your spacecraft plummets through asteroids and other space debris towards a lone planet, isolated in the far reaches of space. After a shaky descent, you emerge in a land that is simultaneously breathtaking and ominous.

The steady fall of rain drops splatter against your visor, and feed the many streams cutting through the decrepit, yet strangely alive landscape. Moss clings to the damp rock walls in random

This tree, the source of most of the planet’s life, provides a hearty platforming challenge for players.

formation, a tree towers high into the cloudy sky, casting a looming shadow over the land, and indigenous and unique life forms scuttle across the ground with a single-minded determination.

What you notice most as you trek through the various locales, ranging from dry deserts to a frosty tundra to a molten core, of the strange planet, named Tallon IV, is a pervasive sense of loneliness. Writing etched into stone walls scattered throughout the world tell of a once prosperous civilization and race, known as the Chozo, inhabiting the ground you now stand upon. But a terrible and unidentifiable menace slowly tore their home into ruin, and now not a soul remains on the round sphere save for yourself…and maybe, just maybe, whatever it was that heartlessly wiped the Chozo out.

It’s a heart wrenching and gripping tale that you piece together More

Pokemon Gold/Silver Version

In 1998, Pokemon Red and Blue versions released for the Game Boy Color, and created a massive fan community. Kids could capture and battle with their favorite Pokemon from the cards, square off against their favorite characters from the cartoon show, and even connect with their friend’s version and trade and battle with them. Few things were as addicting as trying to catch ‘em all and becoming a true Pokemon master. Then, towards the end of the year 2000, the next installment of the series, Gold and Silver versions, shipped to store shelves.

The fascinating Goldenrod City, the shopping metropolis of all of Johto! At night, all of the department stores, casinos and beauty salons are aglow with flashing neon lights.

Gold and Silver starred a new hero, beginning his quest to be the best in a whole new land, called the Johto region. Gold and Silver added so many new features to the series, including breeding Pokemon in order to hatch baby versions of the parents, a full day/night and week schedule, which was synced perfectly with the real time and date, two new types of Pokemon, More

The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim

The land of Skyrim is one of the most detailed, vast, and rich fantasy worlds ever imagined, on par with even Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings universe; the Shire, Mordor, Mount Doom, the Misty Mountains, and all. You’ll travel to a medieval town that is engulfed in the shadow of a magnificent castle, you’ll traverse a winding staircase composed of 7,000 steps up the side of a

The pristine beauty of the untouched Eldergleam Santuary is matched by few other places in all of Skyrim.

beautiful mountain as snow falls serenely and collects on the granite, and stumble across a scarred hamlet, ravished by a fire and a terrible murder. Thus is the beauty of The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim. You could be traversing the vast wilderness towards a specific destination, but along the way an unusual structure catches your interest, and now you are changing course. You never know what marvel or quirky character you’ll happen upon next, and that makes for an endless sense of discovery and wonder.

In addition to the dizzying amount of locales spread across the massive landscape of Skyrim, More

Super Mario Galaxy

If I had to describe Super Mario Galaxy in one word, it would be charming. From the adorable Lumas, to the colorful stardust sparkling all over the place, to the independent galaxies with their unique atmospheres, Super Mario Galaxy manages to make you feel good and happy whenever you play it.

Bowser, an evil king, has kidnapped Princess Peach, and Mariosets off on an adventure across the universe in search of power stars, which are the key to catching up with Bowser.  During his

Mario lands on the frozen exterior of the FreezeFlame Galaxy.

journey, Mario will explore galaxies consisting entirely of water, a planet with a frozen exterior but a molten core, and a world built entirely of desserts, and many more levels of creative varieties.  Each of these galaxies has six power stars hidden within it, requiring Mario to search every corner of them to locate the power stars.

Every aspect of Super Mario Galaxy is sweet and endearing.

The visuals are very crisp, vibrant and colorful. Meadows blossom More

Chrono Trigger

Fireworks crackle in the air. An ancient and symbolic bell rings out across the land. Townsfolk bustle from every direction to congregate in one location. The year is 1000 A.D., and the kingdom of Guardia is celebrating its 1000-year anniversary. As you make your way through the Millennial Fair, amidst the colorful circus shows and games of all varieties, you accidentally run into a spirited young woman. And so begins the tale of Chrono, a courageous young man from the kingdom of Guardia, who will travel throughout time, to lands whose histories have long since been recorded, to the future filled with uncertainties.

Chrono and his friends journey to the ancient past, filled with volcanoes and dinosaurs, to find the root of the future’s troubles.

For, you see, shortly after Chrono and Marle cross paths, the two are separated when an experimental teleport machine, developed by Chrono’s inventor friend, Lucca, goes awry, and Marle vanishes, leaving only the pendant that was draped around her neck as a reminder she was there. Chrono picks up the jewel, and via the teleport device, pursues Marle, uncertain as to where he will end up. He winds up in a land very similar to where he came from, and upon conversing with the villagers discovers that he is indeed in Guardia. However, he also is informed the year is 600 A.D., and the Kingdom is at war against More

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