E3 2016 in Retrospect

Well another E3 has passed and it’s unsettling to think how fast this one has come and gone. It seems not long ago I was sitting down to watch the reveal of Fallout 4, and now it’s been nearly a year since it’s release. I’m not here to talk about what was and wasn’t at E3 or what the games are like in terms of features, gameplay, story etc. That’s all already been covered by press insiders and the likes, as always I’m here to give my opinion on the last couple of days while I sip on a freshly made brew.

I always look forward to E3, the build up before the conferences can only be compared to the sleepless nights as a child on the eve of Christmas Day. I become very excited and giddy to see what the next year holds for the gaming industry as a whole. As many of you know I’m a PlayStation and Nintendo gamer at heart, but that’s not to say I don’t like to dabble in what Xbox and the other third parties are up too.

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Gears of War 4 is looking absolutely incredible, a big miss for PlayStation fans.

Xbox seemed to have a very strong conference this year, far improved to what was shown the year previous. Every year there’s always a game from their conference that I wish would be coming to PlayStation, this year it was Gears of War 4. I’ve only ever played the first two from the series and although enjoyable I’ve failed to work through the whole series, but the latest instalment looks incredible and is sure to be making a lot of GOW fans very happy.Project Scorpio was also revealed, something to get very excited about, as of now I’m a little wary about the whole concept. I’d like to see how developers will provide the better game for the newer consoles when they will always need to cater

Project Scorpio was also revealed, something to get very excited about. As of now I’m a little wary about the whole concept. I’d like to see how developers will provide the better game for the newer consoles when they will always need to cater for the lowest denominator. However, they could take the approach of a PC mentality, where the game is able to run at low, medium and high settings. Allowing Scorpio to take advantage of the high end and the original consoles run on the low end. Still no confirmation has been made although I’m very eager to hear more.

When voicing my opinion I try to avoid the negativity surrounding games and focus on the more positive aspects of the industry, but I really can’t fathom the words to describe the EA conference in a positive way. I feel like EA is kind of going through an identity crisis at the moment, in terms of where they stand or who they really appeal to. Their conference and genre of games seem too diverse in relation to the audience in a way that their showcase is never going to appeal to everyone. Once again the word on Twitter was that there was far too much talk about sports games, with FIFA and Madden taking up most of the show. I would’ve loved to have seen more of Mass Effect personally, as well as the Star Wars game from Visceral, sadly that wasn’t the case as it appears that both titles are too far away to devote any solid time to either one.

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Dishonored II’s setting is definitely remincient of the Bioshock series.

Without fail E3 always causes me to face off against my backlog of broken dreams, all those games I pictured finishing but just never got round to. In this case, it was Dishonored. As the second instalment began to unfold on stage it reminded me that I really needed to get back to the first game. The showcase of Dishonored II was glorious. Drawing me straight into that living, breathing world. The setting, atmosphere and culture of Karnaca, known as “the jewel of the south” in game, seems to absolutely thrive. It reminds me of the Bioshock series, which holds, in my opinion, the most unforgettable setting in a video game to date.

The conference I most look forward too is Sony’s. Mainly due to Nintendo not holding a traditional conference and PlayStation being my go to console ever since I was young. Last year’s conference was described as the “Year of Dreams” due to how well-received it was. They had a lot of competition this year from Microsoft and I thought that Xbox may steal this year’s event. That was until PlayStation came out firing on all cylinders, the conference kicked off with the reveal of five PlayStation exclusives off the belt, all revealed alongside a live symphony orchestra that was playing the score along to each trailer.

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God of War made it’s triumphant return and is looking as beautiful as ever.

It was great to see God of War return, many have said that it’s a little too close to the Last of Us, yet I’d disagree. Kratos, the main protagonist of the series, has never been a character that I’ve cared much about. The God of War games always had a fantastic concept in terms of reference to Greek Gods and Norse Mythology, yet Kratos was just an angry ball of fury and the games just seemed to be a tech demo for each console. However that changed with the reveal of this new title, Kratos seemed to convey more emotion in that one trailer than all three games previous. The game looked stunning and I can’t wait to see more of it and who can deny Kratos’ new epic beard.

I was also blown away by how great Horizon: Zero Dawn looked too, the animations when taking down the mechs were incredible. The fights seemed to convey the protagonist in the form of a dancing duel with the walker while using whatever she had in her arsenal to take it down. it’s so great to see the folks at Guerrilla, who’s portfolio consists of nearly nothing but the Killzone series, excelling on every level in order to create a fantastic looking game with a truly unique concept.

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In terms of sheer beauty, Horizon definitely took the show for me. The game is shaping up to be one of the best I’ve seen.

The pacing of the Sony show was total perfection and every game they revealed was something that genuinely interested or intrigued me. The surprise of the show was definitely the Crash Bandicoot remastered collection, I never thought the Bandicoot would see the light of day again, but as promised the three greatest crash titles will be remastered from the ground up. A highlight was seeing Hideo Kojima unveil his new game while uttering the words “I’m Back” with a smile beaming across his face, it was certainly a special moment for the fans. A truly magnificent way to round off another great year of games for Sony.

Last but not least was Nintendo, although they were showing the least amount of games I was fully aware that Pokemon Sun and Moon and The Legend of Zelda were the only ones being shown. It was great to see new additions to generation 7 of the Pokemon franchise, although I do feel as though more could have been shown, especially the next evolution line of the starter Pokemon.

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It was brilliant to finally get an in depth look at The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, and what an incredible one at that. 

The Legend of Zelda was finally given its title, Breath of the Wild. I have a lot more to speak out on about the title, which will be coming in my next post, mainly to talk about my biggest gripe with the game. However, the game looks beautiful. The art style is right up my street and the general design aesthetic in terms of monsters, clothing, weapons and architecture is just stunning, going as far as to exceed Windwaker on a visual level, in my opinion.

All in all, it has been a fantastic E3, There’s so much to look forward to in the next year. Not only are all these great games coming out in the next year and onwards, but we have the reveal of the NX to look forward to along with VR and the 0.5 releases of PlayStation and Xbox. Certainly a lot to look forward too.

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My Top 10 Games of E3 2015

It was over in a blink of an eye it seemed and E3 is now behind us for another year, I wanted to take a look back at what my personal favourites of the show were. It all kicked off with a tremendous bang as Bethesda revealed the games behind the curtain of their first showcase.

I literally never slept a wink afterwards, staying up to watch the live on twitch and Youtube. I was blown away by the Fallout 4 reveal, it’s safe to say that Fallout was the game I was looking forward to most before the event, as most of you may have guessed already. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a reveal like it! Announcement after announcement, revealing all of those amazing features that would take place in the upcoming title. It was incredible!

Going into the rest of the week it seemed the majority of the companies had learnt a lot from last years conferences. Sports games weren’t the highlight this time round, VR was barely mentioned when looking at all conferences combined and there was very little filler in between, especially from Sony; who’s press conference just featured heavy hitters one after the other – they really did come out swinging. Xbox also had a really solid press conference and it was probably the best they’ve had in years, in my opinion.

It was great to see the return of the Nintendo championships. I thought it was a fantastic way for Nintendo to not only provide some thrilling entertainment, in the form of some old fashioned competitive gameplay, but it was also a brilliant way for them to showcase their previous classics and upcoming titles, especially Super Mario Maker.

E3 2015 certainly was a one for games, no doubt. Especially compared to last years Expo, there was barely any mention of the phrase ‘media centre’. After the conferences had ended I thought to myself “hmm, it seemed a little average this year” that was until I sat down to create this post, realising just how hard it was to compose a list of my ten favourite games of the show.

It’s literally took me a week, chopping and changing my mind, reading into these upcoming titles so I could develop a further understanding for them. As hard as it was I was finally able to separate them into a list, ranking them in order, number one being my game of the show.

Now don’t get me wrong, all these games are so close to number one I easily could have listed them all joint top, but that wouldn’t have been much fun. It was so hard to decide what would feature in my list as the contenders this year have been phenomenal, so without further ado, here’s MY personal top ten of E3 2015.

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#10 DOOM


DOOM was a game that was never on my radar, I’ve played the first one when I went through a phase of revisiting old classics, but this latest instalment has come along way since its predecessors. The game just looked outright fun and seemed a right blast from what we were shown. I thought the introduction to SnapMap, the map/level creation system, was a brilliant addition, making it even easier for fans of the series to create their own maps and what looked to be game modes. It’s assured to be a hit with fans of the series, I can’t wait to see what the community brings to the table in that aspect of the game.

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#9  Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End


Although the demo started with a few hiccups (Drake must have froze once he saw the Sony crowd) the game just looked stunning, what else would you expect from a Naughty Dog game? Although many people may greatly compare the Uncharted series with that of The Last of Us in terms of gameplay, both couldn’t be further apart in terms of storytelling and atmosphere.

The Uncharted series always managed to make you crack a smile with its humorous cast and over the top, fast paced action as opposed to its counter part, The Last of Us, which tells a more darker tale. I can’t wait to see the potential of this next instalment and if your new to PlayStation I strongly advise picking up the Uncharted collection, coming later this year, before you dive into U4. The game’s looking fantastic and just had to feature in my list.

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#8  The Last Guardian


Ahh, The Last Guardian, a game who’s demo has not only graced this generation with its presence, but also last gen too. I remember seeing this way back at E3 2009, I was blown away, finally a new IP from Team ICO, the studio who brought us Shadow of the Colossus, it was just what I had been waiting for.. but I didn’t expect I’d be waiting nearly a decade for it though.

Since its showing at E3 2009, The last guardian has been through 8 years of development hell, as the game was being worked on since 2007, so it was with great surprise that it made it’s return, back and better than ever, on PS4.

Troubles aside though the game looks stunning and seems like it may take us on an even more emotional journey than Shadow of the Colossus did. I’m curious to see more of this game and was surprised that it wasn’t coming this autumn, instead we’ll not see this until 2016. Let’s up that it stays on track this time.

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#7 Tom Clancy’s The Division


The Division returned with a pre-scripted gameplay video showcasing the sheer gluttony and greed you may come across when playing against your fellow team mates, especially from players who aren’t willing to share their Black Friday deals as the grim, isolated holiday season approaches.

The reason The Division doesn’t feature higher up my list is because I’m still curious to see how they handle the survival element of the game. It seems all we’ve seen is a lot of pre-scripted events and nothing that gets into the true grit of what the game is all about. From what I’ve seen so far it still takes the number seven spot with ease.

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#6 No Man’s Sky


It was a shame that we only got to see a very brief video of No Man’s Sky, again showing us a lot of what we’ve already seen. The game is HUGE! I really don’t understand how Hello Games are able to pull off such an ambitious project. Sean Murray, again, seemed very apprehensive to define what the game is as a whole.

Although this frustrates a lot of people, I ‘m not to worried about it at the minute, just look at Minecraft, no one had a clue what that was when it first released, or what you done in the game for that matter and look how that turned out.

I’m very intrigued though and can’t wait to get my hands on it. Hopefully that becomes a reality at EGX 2015. I’m not fussed about knowing every little detail about the game before it releases and I wrote an article detailing that further; which can be read here. I have a lot of faith in the team but would certainly like to see a release date soon.

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#5 Horizon Zero Dawn


I was extremely pleased to see Guerrilla Games’ new IP – Horizon Zero Dawn. From the company that brought us the PlayStation Exclusive Killzone series, they now take on a completely different game. Horizon Zero Dawn is a combination of modern, futuristic, dinosaur like mechs battling against an ancient civilisation whom harness technology from these gigantic machines. The game is essentially a highly tactical open world game that will feature RPG elements.

It was hands down my favourite of Sony’s show. I can’t wait to delve deeper into this title, plus it’ll be great to see how Guerrilla Games handle their first open world game, or at least a game that isn’t part of the Killzone series. It’s certainly a one to keep an eye on and one that’ll only be available on PlayStation 4.

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#4 Cuphead


This game was probably my favourite surprise of the show, this wasn’t the first time the game had been announced but somehow I’d managed to miss it whenever it had been previously mentioned. Cuphead is basically a classic run and gun action game that focuses heavily on boss battles. As soon as I saw the game I instantly fell in love with the visual art style, which draws great inspiration from 1930’s cartoons.

Once I investigated into this further I found out that the visuals and audio are all painstakingly created using the same techniques of that era, i.e. traditional cel animations, all hand drawn and hand inked, water colour backgrounds and original jazz recordings featured throughout, The Studio really has seemed to go the whole nine yards when creating Cuphead and Mugman.

If you saw screenshots form this game in the 1930’s I don’t think you’d bat an eye lid, it looks as though it has been plucked straight out of that decade. I was devastated that it wasn’t coming to PlayStation 4, as the game takes the deserved fourth spot in my list. Thankfully this will be available on Steam and also for you lucky Xbox One players.

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#3 Firewatch


It was great to see more light shed on this upcoming game from Campo Santo. If you’ve never heard of it then I suggest you read a post I put up back in January when I first caught a glimpse of what Firewatch was all about. It truly is visually stunning, the art style is beautiful – which is always going to be the case when it involves Olly Moss. The story is so intriguing and compelling and everytime I see the game I’m just left wanting more.

I wrote in my last article that I was going radio silent until the game released. I didn’t want to hear anything more of it or have anything spoilt until I was able to play it for myself, I was already sold on the concept months ago but to hear that the game was finally coming to PS4! Man, I literally jumped with joy.

I was all for getting it on PC but I much prefer my console over my Desktop, mainly due to sitting at a Mac all day as part of my day job, it’s nice to just come in and crash on the Couch. Now being able to do that while playing Firewatch will be even sweeter. I’m sure It’ll be a fantastic addition to the PS4 library and will be a day one purchase for me, without a doubt.

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#2 Star Wars: Battlefront


Although EA Games had a shocking press conference, in my opinion it was somewhat saved by the Battlefront gameplay trailer we finally got to see towards the end. I had high expectations and it’s safe to say I wasn’t let down.

The gameplay was beautiful but what blew me away the most was just the sheer sense of scale – looking at the rebels scurrying through the trenches while the AT-AT’s and AT-ST’s rained laser fire down upon them, that historic sound, the chaotic gunfights and then finally that epic dual between Luke and his father, Darth Vader.. It was brilliant.

I was so worried that the gameplay just wouldn’t live up to the sheer beauty of the reveal trailer, which I’ve watched countless times times now. That just wasn’t the case and it’s such a relief to say that. I can’t wait to see what else is in store come mid November.

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#1 Fallout 4


Now this game needs no introduction. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a game reveal as mind blowing as this one. From start to finish it was just one thing after the other. Reveal, after reveal, after reveal. I couldn’t believe how much we were shown. Being able to customise your own base and shacks and eventually turning them into your very own settlements was an absolute highlight for me. I’ve always wanted a game of Fallout’s caliber that offers a feature like this, but never thought this would be the one to do it.

The fact that survival and scavenging is going to mean so much more in this game, especially compared to previous games in the series, it makes me drool just thinking about it. Todd Howard is an absolute god and I for one could have kissed the man that night. Fallout Shelter was a great addition for the time being, more to come on that one later though. But Fallout 4 hands down won the show for me, November is going to be one hell of a month. Guess I can say goodbye to anything but my PS4 once the fall comes round. If you want to read more on what I thought about the Fallout 4 showcase follow this link.


There were so many games that didn’t make my Top 10 that looked fantastic – For Honor, Super Mario Maker, Just Cause 3, Ghost Recon: Wildlands, KH3, FFVII and many more. It was so hard to choose what deserved a place in the list above and what didn’t. Hopefully the majority of these will be playable at EGX 2015, which I for one cannot wait for. I’d love to hear what your Top 10 of the show were, so comment below and let me know!

/ CR

E3 is Coming

It’s that time of year again, what feels like Christmas for us gamers. The anticipation builds up as we eagerly await to see what all contenders have in store for us. The console wars flare up once again and fanboys rear their ugly heads. Thousands of those involved in the industry flock to the event from all parts of the globe, as if to make somewhat of a gaming pilgrimage, only letting the most elite through it’s doors, while the general public huddle around computers and TV’s, sat in the ambient glow of their screens. Many of us living overseas from the event become nocturnal creatures for the week just to catch the latest news as it happens. Just for one week of the year. E3 is coming.

As every year begins, E3 is the one event I mark down in my calendar each time. It’s an event I just get so giddy about. I really am like a kid at Christmas, apart from this holiday lasts three to four days as opposed to just one day. Each year I make sure I take the week of E3 off work, and this is the first year I have a blog in place and can give you my impressions of the event first hand. Thankfully my week’s holiday has been approved and I have already organised to watch a few of the events with my brother – meaning pizza, booze and a boatload of hopes and predictions lies in store.

Getting to try out some of the newest and latest games, weeks or months before anyone else would be a fantastic experience.

This E3 really is shaping up to be one of the best there’s ever been, for me personally. With so many great games already announced I can’t wait to see what else is in store. I wouldn’t call myself a fan boy, but I really did love seeing Sony wipe the floor with Microsoft at last years event, considering they’d been getting it in the neck from Xbox for the last few years, previously. I’m always one to welcome competition between all parties, if all are fighting to win our attention then each need to improve to keep that. I’d love to see Nintendo blow both out of the water, although I can’t really see that happening, seeing as though they’ve mentioned NX won’t be shown or talked about.

I’ve already been spoilt with games I’ve been waiting on for years. Fallout 4 is probably my most eagerly anticipated at the moment with Star Wars: Battlefront and Metal Gear Solid V sharing that top spot – I’d be happy with just those alone to be honest. Knowing there’s a lot more to be unveiled, especially unheard of projects, leaves me feeling elated even before the event has began.

Crowds of people gather to play the latest games from all of the biggest companies (and some of the smallest) in the industry.

Of course I’m looking forward to Sony’s conference the most, but apart from that Bethesda is the one I’m most excited for. I think everyone knew that Fallout 4 was a given as soon as they revealed they were having a press conference. It’ll also be great to see how DOOM is shaping up and I think we’re sure to see another instalment of Dishonoured. A brand new IP from Bethesda would be fantastic too and as much as I’d like to see a new Elder Scrolls game to follow up Skyrim, I really don’t think we’ll be that lucky.

There’s tons of other unannounced games I’d like to see made, such as Modnation Racers 2 for the PS4. I sunk so many hours into the first game and currently still stand in the top three of the leaderboards, worldwide, for Mod creations. Check out CreativeRhino on that game if you’d like to see some of my custom made creations. 

Sony and Microsoft finally seem to be stepping away from last gen, which couldn’t be a better step to take in my eyes. It’s time we allowed developers to harness the potential of the new machines, rather than being held back by the previous ones.  It’ll be great to finally see what next gen is made of, as these consoles are over two years into their life span now and games only get better on a technical level as the life of the console progresses.

It is a dream of mine to one day attend E3. With only those that are involved in the industry being granted access this may be a harder task than normal. But hopefully one day that dream will become a reality for me.

But for the sake of us all, I hope all platforms concentrate mostly on the games they have on offer. I don’t want to hear anything about media centres or streaming services, I didn’t buy a games console to watch TV. I’m happy to hear about VR projects but god forbid they exceed the twenty minute mark. Music platforms can be kept to a minimum, again I don’t use my console as a spotify hub.

All I want to see and hear is the stuff that matters most – Video Games. This is the reason so many of us tune in every year. I want to be left in awe from what the future of games has to offer, not the latest films added to Netflix.

I want my mind to be blown and to go into the next E3 with an even bigger grin on my face. So let the commotion of the next week commence as we await the first conference, as our frenzy of excitement fails to sustain itself. But going into this weekend, remember  #E3isComing.

/ CR

The Evolution of Video Games at ‘Game On 2.0’

Last week I was given the opportunity to attend the opening night of the ‘Game On 2.0’ exhibition at the Life Centre, Newcastle. This exhibition showcases the biggest collection of playable computer games in the world and I was delighted to be attending, courtesy of Komodo – my place of work. 2015-05-22 17.05.58

The entrance to the Life Centre, Newcastle welcomed by Super Mario and the Game On 2.0 event.

This major international exhibition appeals to all ages. The place was stacked full of playable games, some from before my time; with classics such as Pong, Asteroids and Space Invaders dating all the way to the modern titles we see today, such as Minecraft, Smash Bros and VR titles. The event catered for everyone – literally. We were greeted with lots of waiters dressed head to toe in Super Mario attire, they served a variety of food and drinks, which I happily took advantage of – It was a shame not to see Luigi anywhere though.

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Complimentary food and drinks were served at the event. You can’t go wrong with Fish & Chips and a good beer.

Although the event started at 5pm, we waited in the main foyer of the life centre where there were a few smaller exhibitions unrelated to the event. We weren’t able to attend the event right away and were instead subjected to an array of quite lengthy talks and speeches from those who had hosted the night.

Which was fair enough, but considering mostly everyone was waiting to get in and play some games, I felt as though these could have been kept brief, as opposed to the 40+ minutes they went on for. The night it’s self only ran for 2 hours and most of that was held up by talks. Coming from a gamer and probably speaking for many others, all I wanted to do was jump in!

Once we finally got through the doors we were greeted by a game that many would say started it all – PONG. Although the original cabinet wasn’t playable, we were linked up with original controls and a playable game on the big screen. My competitive nature was straight away revealed and I challenged one of my colleagues, Paul, for a game.

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PONG was one of the games I really wanted to play – having never played it before. It was a barrel of laughs and I can see how it become beloved among many.

The controls were very unresponsive and hard to get used to, as they were basically just dials, which resulted in the paddle on screen moving when you turned it. But what else would you expect from a game that was released in 1972. As soon as the game kicked off the pixels started to increase speed from either side of the screen. I was already in a fit of laughs at how competitive me and my opponent became.

I instantly forget about how old it was, the controls, lacklustre graphics and instead became engrossed in the competitive game play. It was a very close game, with the score going back and forth throughout, resembling the game play itself. In the end I came back from an 8 point gap to win the game (which I was delighted about and proceeded to make sure Paul knew about it).

I can see how a lot of people found so much fun in such a simple form of entertainment. It’s not really about how good the game looks or plays, but how people react to it and what they get out of it.

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A few arcades from around the early 70’s.

From the pong machine there were various other consoles from around that same generation, some which weren’t playable, such as a look into what those from the 70s thought what arcades might look like in the future.

As I looked along the horizon of flashing neon lights coming from the arcade cabinets my eyes caught one in particular – Space Invaders, which had an Asteroids cab sat parallel to it. I was definitely up for both and had never played the games in their original cabinets before. It was certainly an experience and I would love one for home use.

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Standing in line to play the original Space Invaders cabinet. Absolutely love this game.

The next bout between Paul and I was on Mario Kart 64. I’d like to think of myself to be quite the veteran Mario Kart player, having played everyone bar this one. As we both struggled with controls we didn’t get off to the best start, but Paul was soon eating my dust and I took an easy point to make the tally 2-0.

Looks like Paul was going to have to step his game up. I then went on to view a series of older consoles, playing the likes of Castlevania as well as Pitfall on the Atari 2600. It was amazing to get a feel for some of the consoles that basically built the foundations of what we have today.

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There were tons of old consoles and game I’d never experienced before.

Paul eyed Dead or Alive on the original Xbox and we were quick to get it underway. I’d never played a DOA game and had never owned the original Xbox, so I was the underdog for this battle. Paul quickly made sure of that and before I could even get a punch in he’d made it 2-1. As soon as we’d played that I had to find a fighting game In which I’d be able to match or beat him. I spotted Street Fighter 2 and the challenge began.

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Street Fighter 2 – It was a shame they never had an original cabinet. But still great to play this after so many years.

I took the first game to make it 3-1, by using Honda, the match was extremely close. I like to think I fair as quite a good Street Fighter player but just couldn’t seem to deal with the pressure of the competition. I used Ken and folded almost instantly, bad idea. I couldn’t even execute the simplest of Hadoken’s (I blame the fight stick) I was trashed by Blanka and Paul drew a point back – 3-2.

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I’d love to add the Atari 2600 to my console collection. All of the consoles were displayed extremely well throughout the exhibition. 

It was a great idea to show off museum type collections of all consoles past and present. I particularly enjoyed the handheld console section that has been displayed. I’d started my handheld gaming on the original Gameboy, which held a lot of good memories for me, playing the likes of Super Mario, The Legend of Zelda and Pokemon.

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A showcase of different handheld consoles from throughout the ages.

There was also a section that showcased Artwork and Concepts Art from classics such as Jak & Daxter, Lara Croft and Uncharted. This was accompanied with memorabilia from these games, some pieces being very rare.

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Concept Art was featured throughout the exhibition and it was great to see what characters looked like before the ones we know and love today.

There was also a children’s section, it was great to see the younger generation being able to experience games that I played when I was their age. With games such as Animal Crossing, which is probably one of the best games for a child to start on. I have many fond memories sinking countless hours into that series, something that I still often do on the 3DS.

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It was great to see newcomers interacting with classics new and hold.

I then eyed a gamecube, four controllers were laid upon the table, the game running was Super Smash Bros. The amount of hours I’ve played Smash as Kirby is no ones business. I was quick to challenge Paul and a few other colleagues of mine to a game. With five stocks each I was tactfully watching, waiting for the right moment to pounce.

I love how fast and intense Smash is. It’s a right laugh and if you’ve never played the game before I highly recommend it. The fight was chaotic, hectic, like any other smash game. It’s amazing to see how well the Gamecube version still holds up.

Four stocks quickly turned into two and I had the advantage over Paul with one stock up on him. I bided my time, struck at the right moment and made it 4-2 with ease. By this stage Paul new he was beaten, seeing as as though the as the night was closing to an end. Poor Paul.

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Super StarDust HD in 3D on the PS4.

We still had time for a few other games. As I’d never played a game in 3D before, it was great to get to experience that with a Super Stardust 3D on the PS4. This game was a brilliant example of how 3D can work in certain games. It added to the experience, with asteroids shooting out towards me and explosions taking on a whole new dimension.

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There was a fantastic selection of Arcade cabinets on offer.

I was so pleased to see the Oculus Rift at the event. I first experienced this in 2014 at EGX. I was blown away once again, I’m usually not one for “gimmicks”, I like my old school ways – Couch, controller and TV. To me though VR is not a gimmick, if you ever have a chance to experience Virtual Reality as part of the Oculus Rift then please do – you won’t be disappointed.

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Donkey Kong was definitely one of favourites I played throughout the night.

As the night was quickly approaching 7:00pm the doors were about to close, what better way to end the night than to play an arcade cabinet that I can only dream of owning – Donkey Kong. It was brilliant to experience this game for the first time. The colours just looked fantastic and the game play was totally addictive. I can see why this machine swallowed up countless amounts of loose change back in its day.

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Destroying the Death Star. A great way to end the night.

With five minutes to kill I played a game I’d never seen before, this was a Star Wars cabinet. With the bright, green, neon lines flashing about on screen, I piloted an X-wing through space, destroying TIE Fighters – before descending onto the Death Star to give that final last shot.

With my team of colleagues stood behind me, giving off that true arcade atmosphere and on the clock before the exhibition closed, what better way to end the night than to destroy the Death Star!

All round I had an absolute blast. Sure the pictures aren’t the best, Hopefully an investment in a camera isn’t far off, but I can’t recommend the event enough, especially if you live in, or are travelling to the area soon. The event is open to the public now and runs until 1st November 2015. For more information – Visit Life Centre, Newcastle Game On 2.0 Exhibition.

/ CR

A new year, a new chapter, a new saved game.

I suppose I best introduce myself, I go by the name ‘CreativeRhino’ and this is the start of my new blog. So, another place where someone talks about video games. Just like the thousands of others that do it. So why should you use your precious time to sift through my blog posts? why am I the special one? The truth in the matter is, I’m not someone who thinks they are. Here at ‘WhatRhinoSaid’ isn’t somewhere that will spurt out the same old rubbish you may see everywhere else.

You won’t be seeing the 2,449,254th rendition of ‘Minecraft: Lets play part one’. No.. This blog is for myself, it’s views, points and opinions are of my own. I’m not here to do what every other tom, dick and harry is doing. Because what would be the point in that?

I love video games as much as the next man.. woman.. or thumb wielding, nocturnal, pixel junkie. I want somewhere to share my experiences, something to look back on in years to come and think wow I remember those times. Like a virtual diary of gaming nostalgia. I want it to be somewhere to talk about these points with people who may share similar views, whether they agree or not.

I want to use it as a pedestal to lavish the games I love.. and those I don’t. I want to share my view on the industry, my nostalgic throwbacks to the old days and what the future may hold for video games and throughout it all I want you to listen, experience and share it all with me.

So here’s how I want to start. The new year is here, 2015 is already upon us and a week of it has gone already. I have a lot of big plans for this year and one of them is to game my rear end off. The dexterity within my thumbs and fingers has not been taken advantage of as much as I’d of liked it to have been and my mind lacks the wondrous adventures it so desires.

The last year was a great one for me, I got the job I’d always wanted, lost weight, built up a portfolio of work through it all I’ve had such a supportive family, friends and girlfriend by my side but throughout the last year I’ve not found as much time as I would of liked for gaming due to this busy schedule.

We’ve seen a few big game delays in 2014 meaning the year ahead proves to be an even greater one for Video games. So this year I’d like to list a few game related resolutions I’d like to stick too, hoping by the time 2016 comes I’ve stuck to or completed all of them. Firstly..

Complete more games: I tend to pick up a lot of games at once and depending on how much I’m into them I’ll play continuously for days on end and then after a few days/weeks, depending on what life is throwing at me or if Ive picked up a new game, the old ones tends to get left in the past and I usually don’t get round to going back to them. This annoys me personally. I look at my shelf full of games stacked with titles I’ve barely even touched upon and think why do I bother buying new games without first completeing the old ones . Completing those games is something that needs to start this year, Which brings me to my next point.

Stop buying games I don’t need: I have a seriously bad habit of buying games and then just not playing them, due to either already having to many im already working on or not enough time to play them all now i don’t mean not playing as in; do a few missions, spend a few hours completeing various tasks in the game then never going back to it. No, I mean not playing them at all – the bloody shrink wrap doesn’t even come off! As of now i have thirteen games sat on my shelf which still remain in that shiny cellophane.. Thirteen!! And I’ve not touched them since I walked out the shop with them. Hopefully 2015 will put a stop to that.

Focus on my Most wanted List: Now this in a way contradicts my last two points. If I’m to keep up with the latest games, but have to stop buying them how will I experience them? Now I usually make the mistake of buying so many games in one go I just play bits of each and can’t keep up with them all. Other games come out, news releases hereand there and I just fall behind in the whirlwind of those virtual worlds and never get to finish any. So this year I want to just focus on my most wanted titles which will be covered in another post.

Clear my Backlog: probably one of the most dreaded words for any gamer to hear… Just glimpsing at the backlog I have in front of me sends shivers down my spine. So many games, so little time. Sometimes I feel like creating a cut off point, turning my back on all of it and starting afresh. But something makes me stick at those that already remain in my collection. Don’t get me wrong this may sound like I’m making it out to be a chore rather than something that’s fun. It’s not, but when you know that all the games will take hours and hours to complete, taking up time you could spend catching up with current releases it makes me quiver.

Stop becoming so hung up on Trophies: Ahh trophies, those virtual dings we hear when completing various tasks throughout a game, those shiny pieces of pixlated silverware that I long for along like so many others. Some may not care, others obsess over them. Well now If a game has a trophy list that may seem off putting, who cares. The time is hear to stop worrying about these sometimes mundane tasks and to start enjoying the game for what it is.

So there it is, a little intro to myself and some motive to continue into the new year itself. Hope everyone has had a great start and here’s to making 2015 a great one!

/ CR