Tag Archives: digital hippos

Digital Hippos ‘About Us’ Page

This is the ‘About Us’ page I wrote for Digital Hippos. I’m re-posting it here for portfolio purposes. I also wrote the ‘Contact Us’ page!

Digital Hippos is a menu for all all the fun things that distract you from the crushing existential singularity that is real life, written by a super-sexy guerilla think-tank of unpaid scribes/misunderstood geniuses/actual humans who are in no way cyborgs. That means film, television, video games and music; that means news, previews, reviews, critical discourse, podcasts, videos, blogs. Most importantly, that means you. Yes, you! Love it? Live it? Just got something to say? Then share it! We want to know, so make your voice heard in our comments, blogs and forums.

What Digital Hippos is not, and will never be, is an aggressive hive-mind of super-powered cyborgs conspiring to conquer the Earth-world using human slaves whose minds we control through their computer screens. No, sir-or-madame, that’s not at all what we are.

So, what are you waiting for? Be assimilated—I mean—why don’t you join us?

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Rumor (But Probably Confirmed): STALKER Developer GSC Shut Down

This was a news item/mini-editorial originally posted at Digital Hippos. I’m re-posting it here for portfolio purposes.

GSC dead. Yes? No? Maybe. Probably.

As reported by Rock, Paper, Shotgun via UkraNews, the developer of the much-loved to play (by some… what we call a “niche” or “cult” or, dare I say, “PC gamer”) but much-loathed to type (by everyone) S.T.A.L.K.E.R. series has been shut down by owner Sergei Grigorovich. (Whom I’m pretty sure is a Metal Gear Solid villain. Or maybe it’s just the ethnocentrism of the ‘80s and early ‘90s American movies and video games that raised me that make me think that… yeah, that’s probably more likely.) Continue reading

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Weekly Giveaway: Level Up by Scott Rogers

This is an old giveaway entry originally posted at Digital Hippos. I’m re-posting it here for portfolio purposes. This is an old contest; please do not enter!

It may be Thursday to the rest of the world, but at Digital Hippos World Headquarters, it’s WEEKLY GIVEAWAY DAY!

This time, we’re giving away something for all the aspiring Shigeru Miyamotos and Will Wrights out there.

But first, it’s time to announce our winner of last week’s giveaway: bramb600 from Ontario, Canada! We’ll be in touch shortly to get your shipping info, and then your Junk Food X-Men tee will be off, like the Blackbird in the night!

As for this week’s contest, we have something for all of you next-big-thing game designers out there: Level Up!: The Guide to Great Video Game Design. Penned by game designer Scott Rogers (Pac Man World, God of War, Darksiders), Level Up! is a comprehensive guide to the making of video games, from conception to creation, covering such topics as how to come up with a marketable idea, creating a world, the fundamentals of mechanics, level design, and oh-so-much more.

The rules, as always, are simple:

  1. Register for a Digital Hippos account (if you don’t already have one). It’s free!
  2. ‘Like’ us on Facebook and/or follow us on Twitter. (Not a member of one of these two bustling social networks? That’s fine, just stick with the one you use. But we do need it to be at least one of these two.)
  3. Share this link on Facebook and/or Twitter along with: Digital Hippos is giving away a free copy of Level Up!: The Guide to Great Video Game Design by Scott Rogers!
  4. Copy your shared link from Facebook/Twitter and paste it into the comments section below.
  5. Bam! Done. Just that easy.

It’s so simple! A winner will be chosen and announced in next Thursday’s contest article, and quicker than David Jaffe tweets something inflammatory, your copy of Level Up! will be cast away into your arms. And just like that, you could be on your way to becoming the next Peter Molyneux!

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Cities in Motion and Magicka Paying Tribute to Japan!

This is a news item originally posted on Digital Hippos. I’m re-posting it here for portfolio purposes.

The news-cycle may have moved on to more immediate concerns, but Japan is still reeling from the effects of the recent earthquakes and tsunami. The good news is that the game industry is still standing behind the land that made us.

Paradox Interactive today announced Cities in Motion: Tokyo and Magicka: Nippon.

Cities in Motion: Tokyo is a new expansion to the public-transportation sim that introduces Tokyo as a new setting for wanna-be public transit administrators to oversee, building Tokyo’s public transportation system over the course of four decades, beginning in the 1970s.

Magicka: Nippon is a new Japan-themed DLC pack for the innovative co-op action game, featuring a new kimono robe, katana sword and bamboo staff for Eastern-themed wizards to enjoy.

Best of all, between May 31 and June 3, 50% of revenue for each product goes straight to Japan’s tsunami/earthquake relief. Buy a game and donate to a good cause at the same time — what more could you want?

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Long Live the King (or Queen) — Majesty 2 Collection Released

This is an old news item/preview originally posted at Digital Hippos. I’m re-posting it here for portfolio purposes.

Majesty 2 Collection, the (as the name states rather plainly) retail collection of Majesty 2 and its numerous expansion packs, is available today for a mere 20 moolahs. Continue reading

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Have You Heard of AMY?

This is an old news item originally posted at Digital Hippos, now included here for the purposes of portfolio building. AMY has since been released and seemingly disappointed everyone. Too bad.

I opened my inbox this morning to find some screenshots for AMY, a new survival-horror game coming to PSN in June. Why am I reporting this? Why should you care? Fans of niche survival-horror titles that revel in creating fear through disempowering the player might want to read on…. Continue reading

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For the Love of the Games: Three Reasons you Should Play Majin and the Forsaken Kingdom

Well, here we are again. I’m relaxing in front of the hearth, enjoying a glass of brandy with my ever faithful manservant, Theodore Skeffingtonson, and my only temporarily faithful canine, Santos.

And if I’m drinking brandy with my dog and butler/chauffeur/housekeeper/dog-walker/tailor/cobbler in front of a roaring fire, then that can only mean one thing: it’s time for another For the Love of the Games, the monthly column in which I BEG you ON MY HANDS AND KNEES to play a certain obscure, mediocre-but-full-of-great-ideas, or just plain bad game.


Literacy, my dear Skeffingtonson!

This week we’re not talking bad games. We’re not even talking kinda, sorta bad games. We’re not even talking old games — in fact, you may remember hearing of this game in the last couple years. This week we’re talking a game that I love, a game that didn’t get much play, a game that was marked down from $60 to $40 on the day it released, a game that was sent to die amid the bigger, beefier Q4 releases of 2010. This week we’re talkin’…

Majin and the Forsaken Kingdom!

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My Top 5 Games of 2011

There’s no denying that 2011 was a big year in games. Every year’s holiday season seems to be better than the last, and 2011 was no exception. Unfortunately, that also means there were a ton of games I couldn’t get to. Bastion, The Witcher 2, Anno 2070, Uncharted 3, Too the Moon — these and so many others are games that would have probably been strong contenders for this list. Alas, I either never got to them or I’m just getting to them now (as is the case with Bastion, which is a fucking delight).

So with that small caveat out of the way, here are my Top Five Games of 2011. Continue reading

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For the Love of the Games: Three Reasons you Should Play Vampire: The Masquerade – Bloodlines

There once was a developer called Troika. Created from the spirit of old Interplay by three prominent Fallout designers (Tim Cain, Leonard Boyarsky and Jason Anderson), they went on to make three of the most technically troubled but brilliantly designed RPGs of the early ‘00s: Arcanum: Of Steamworks and Magick Obscura, The Temple of Elemental Evil and Vampire: The Masquerade – Bloodlines.

And also they were SOVIET SUPERMEN!

Seeing as we’re just on the heels of the release of a certain major Vampire-themed romance movie/Mormon propaganda piece, I think it’s only fitting we discuss the latter of those three games in this month’s For the Love of the Games, the monthly column in which I advise — nay — implore you to play a certain overlooked, forgotten, or (on occasion, as is my wont) just plain bad game.

But first, some (more) history: Vampire: The Masquerade – Bloodlines is a PC RPG set in White Wolf’s World of Darkness, an old-timey analog (aka pen-and-paper) RPG system wherein vampires, werewolves, spirits and other monsters vie for power. As a freshly-sired vampire of your making, you have to navigate the murky waters of LA’s vampire underworld as various factions compete for possession of a recently unearthed sarcophagus that may spell doom for vampire kind. Really serious stuff.

You also do the day-to-day stuff, which is way interesting when you’re a vampire.

Bloodlines is notable for being one half stellar RPG following the tragically discarded Deus Ex formula, and one half boring, punishing hack-and-slasher bristling with glitches and pacing issues. And those would be the first and second halves of the game, respectively. Hey, at least the good half is first, so you could just play that and look up the multiple endings on YouTube if you really want.

But I’m not here to tell you why not to play the game. (Or, in this case, how to play some of the game and avoid the rest of it….) Just the opposite, in fact. Let’s begin with something any nerd born after 1990 probably doesn’t remember. Continue reading

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Review: Spelunker HD

The brave spelunker, the Red Guy, descends into the bowels of the deep seeking adventure and fortune. He leaps from the lift and plummets about six feet to his death.

The brave spelunker, the Red Guy, descends into the bowels of the deep seeking adventure and fortune. He brings the lift lower this time and leaps to the nearby ledge, where treasures await. He narrowly dodges the jets of flame firing from the ceiling of the tunnel, sets a bomb to clear a rock blocking his path, steps back several feet and still dies in the blast, flesh singed from his bones (even though he was clearly outside of the bomb’s visible blast radius). Continue reading

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