<![CDATA[Ranker: Recent Video Games Lists]]> http://www.ranker.com/lists//video-games?source=rss http://www.ranker.com/img/skin2/logo.gif Most Viewed Lists on Ranker http://www.ranker.com/lists//video-games?source=rss <![CDATA[9 Fan-Made Pokemon Games That Are Actually Really Good]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/best-fan-made-pokemon-games/robert-carnevale?source=rss

You've probably played your fair share of Pokémon games. Heck, maybe you've played 'em all. But if you think the official games constitute a complete collection of the Pokémon experience, you're sadly mistaken. Lurking in the pocket monster fandom's deepest trenches is a treasure trove full of mystery and, more importantly, fan games. Specifically, ROM hacks. Lots of ROM hacks.

While some Pokémon fan games are horrifying and others are brilliant, all of them are completely unforgettable. Read on to find out about some games that take inspiration from one of the best franchises ever developed. 


9 Fan-Made Pokemon Games That Are Actually Really Good, video games, games, anime, pokemon,

Pokémon Fusion Generation

Curious as to what the lovechild of Charizard and Squirtle might look like? No? Well, this game still exists to satisfy someone else's curiosity about the subject. The premise is simple: imagine fighting the fusion of your favorite Pokémon with hybrid monsters of your own. Cool, right? Well, the good news is the game executes its core concept successfully, delivering on the promise of jovial, good-natured Pokémon DNA experimentation... until it's revealed at the end of the story that there's a basement full of failed fusion Pokémon begging to be put out of their misery.


Pokémon Snakewood

In the darkest corners of the Pokéverse, rumors existed of a fan-made ROM derived from both Pokémon Blue and Red. Its name was Pokémon Black, and it enabled the player to slaughter trainers with their very own homicidal Pokémon. Though its existence has never been proven, Pokémon Snakewood was created to substitute for the legend, featuring an apocalypse-riddled narrative, a unique disease-type line of Pokémon, and the ability to fight trainers to the death. In addition, Snakewood actually has a pretty solid sense of dark humor about the whole situation. 


Pokémon Quartz

At first, you might wonder what makes Quartz so special - after all, the sprites aren't great and the translations leave a lot to be desired. But for all the superficial shortcomings present in Quartz, one thing sets it apart from the rest of the fan-made ROMs: every single Pokémon in the game is an original character. Not one Pikachu or Bulbasaur is to be found here - just OCs all the way to the finish line. It's an impressive love letter to a series that can inspire this level of creativity in its fandom. 


Pokémon Ash Gray

For people who loved the original Pokémon animated series, this fan-made ROM is perfect. Ash Gray allows you to play through the entire first season of the show's story. You can relive all your favorite moments firsthand as Ash Ketchum. From Ash's encounter with the Squirtle Squad to his resurrection by Pikachu's tears (from the first animated movie), all your favorite plot beats are included. 


Pokémon Prism

Pokémon Prism is an ambitious ROM hack of Pokémon Gold for the Game Boy Color, a rarity given the ROM hacking scene's primarily Game Boy Advance-centric focus. Prism amasses Pokémon from eras stretching up to the Nintendo DS iterations of the franchise, meaning monsters old and new get the Pokémon Gold treatment whether they existed at the time or not. 


Pokémon Advanced Adventure

Knowing the official developers would never produce the Hunger Games-themed Pokémon title he so craved, ROM hack author dbzmay took it upon himself to infuse a dark narrative into Pokémon Leaf Green and turn an otherwise child-friendly game into a dystopian quest for righteousness. Playing as an impoverished protagonist who comes from a poor family, you must survive childhood by eating dirt for nutrients before growing up to take on Gary, the oppressive and bloodthirsty tyrant who rules the world. 


Pocket Monsters - Crystal Version

A ROM hack that, to this very day, can still be thoroughly enjoyed for its memes, Pocket Monsters - Crystal Version is a bootleg Vietnamese version of Pokémon Crystal. Sold in the back alleys of Hanoi's market district, a lucky tourist might stumble across it and bear witness to one of the most poorly translated games of all time, featuring English so broken that the game's dialogue interactions are legitimately unplayable. And yet, the real Pokémon Crystal never made anyone laugh as hard as its bootleg brother, so Pocket Monsters remains a worthy hack in its own right.


Meomon Fire Red

Ever wanted to play Pokémon Fire Red without the, err, Pokémon? And if so, did you think about swapping out all the monsters with scantily clad, exotically outfitted pixel women? If so, then this is the (one and only) ROM hack for you. It's got all the 8-bit Dead or Alive-meets-Pokémon action anyone in their right mind could handle. Probably more.


Pokémon Adventure

Pokémon Adventure is a doozy, by virtue of the fact that its source material is not a Pokémon game. No, it's a ROM hack of another ROM hack titled Sonic Adventure 7, which pretty tidily explains why Pikachu runs and spin-dashes through bootleg 2D platforming levels just like Sonic the Hedgehog in this one-of-a-kind experience. 



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Mon, 12 Jun 2017 12:31:36 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/best-fan-made-pokemon-games/robert-carnevale
<![CDATA[The Best Lego Video Games]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/best-lego-video-games/tamara-jude?source=rss

The Lego brand got its start creating building block games and sets for kids across the physical world. But as the Lego brand came back and moved into the digital world, it began creating video games with LEGO characters. Back in 1995, Lego started releasing games based on their famous blocks and sets, though the company hit its stride further down the line. The best Lego video games based themselves around popular movies and franchises. In 2005, the world received its first licensed Lego game: Lego Star Wars: The Video Game. As Lego began adding film dialogue and audio to their games, fans discovered new ways to experience and relive their favorite stories through a controller and the child-like appearance of Legos.

Using only building blocks, Legos constructed an empire that still stands tall today through it's video games. When considering the greatest Lego video games ever, one must factor in both gameplay and authenticity. Does Lego Harry Potter stack up better than Lego Batman? It's up to you to decide.


The Best Lego Video Games,

Lego Indiana Jones: The Original Adventures

Lego Star Wars: The Complete Saga

Lego Harry Potter: Years 1–4

Lego Pirates of the Caribbean: The Video Game

Lego The Lord of the Rings

Lego Marvel Super Heroes

Lego Batman 3: Beyond Gotham

Lego Star Wars: The Force Awakens

Lego Jurassic World

LEGO Dimensions


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Thu, 20 Apr 2017 10:43:25 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/best-lego-video-games/tamara-jude
<![CDATA[Every Single Keyblade From Kingdom Hearts (And Where You Can Find Them)]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/all-the-keyblades-from-kingdom-hearts/crystal-brackett?source=rss

Without a doubt, Kingdom Hearts is a beloved and magical franchise. It's pure genius to mash up Square Enix's Final Fantasy and The World Ends with You with the treasured icons of Disney's animated classics such as Peter Pan and The Lion King in one charming franchise. The Kingdom Hearts games have remained a must-play series for any avid gamer for almost 20 years.

If you've gotten your hands on the series, then you're probably familiar with your main weapon, the Keyblade. Upon conquering an epic quest or completing a daunting favor for someone, you can unlock an entourage of Keyblades, all with their own unique abilities. But have you ever stopped to wonder how many Keyblades are in Kingdom Hearts and how many you've missed?

You can satisfy your Keyblade curiosity by looking no further than this fine collection of all the Kingdom Hearts Keyblades! From PlayStation smash-hits to mobile platform classics, every single Keyblade from Kingdom Hearts is here, alongside each game you can find them in. Vote up your favorite blades!


Every Single Keyblade From Kingdom Hearts (And Where You Can Find Them),

Sleeping Lion

Kingdom Hearts II, Kingdom Hearts Union χ


Pumpkinhead

Kingdom Hearts, Kingdom Hearts Re:Chain of Memories


Bond Of Flame

Kingdom Hearts Re:Chain of Memories, Kingdom Hearts II


Ultima Weapon

Kingdom Hearts, Kingdom Hearts Re:Chain of Memories, Kingdom Hearts II, Kingdom Hearts Re:coded, Kingdom Hearts Birth by Sleep


Oathkeeper & Oblivion

Kingdom Hearts 358/2 Days


Oblivion

Kingdom Hearts, Kingdom Hearts Re:Chain of Memories, Kingdom Hearts II, Kingdom Hearts Re:coded


Oathkeeper

Kingdom Hearts, Kingdom Hearts Re:Chain of Memories, Kingdom Hearts II, Kingdom Hearts 358/2 Days, Kingdom Hearts Re:coded


Kingdom Key

Kingdom Hearts, Kingdom Hearts Re:Chain of Memories, Kingdom Hearts II, Kingdom Hearts 358/2 Days, Kingdom Hearts Re:coded, Kingdom Hearts 3D: Dream Drop Distance


Way To The Dawn

Kingdom Hearts II


Two Become One

Kingdom Hearts Re:Chain of Memories, Kingdom Hearts II, Kingdom Hearts 358/2 Days



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Mon, 22 May 2017 09:34:48 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/all-the-keyblades-from-kingdom-hearts/crystal-brackett
<![CDATA[Video Games You Need To Play If You're Tired Of Basic, Mainstream Trash]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/better-versions-of-basic-video-games/nathan-gibson?source=rss

As with other forms of entertainment, there are some vastly underrated video games most people will never play. See, the vast majority of people will stick to the blockbuster video game titles they were introduced to when they first picked up a controller. These tried and tested titles continue to find success because players know exactly what they'll get.

The truth is, though, many of these AAA titles are average at best. There is a whole world of next level video games you need to play. Whether they are indie releases made by small teams, or a bigger budget titles people just overlooked, there are plenty of better versions of popular video games. They move on from the basic stuff you would normally see, and introduce some truly wonderful ideas and innovative, genre-bending concepts. So, if you're tired of playing the same old games over and over again, check out some of these titles.


Video Games You Need To Play If You're Tired Of Basic, Mainstream Trash,

Brothers in Arms: Road to Hill 30

Before games like Call of Duty: Modern Warfare pushed the first-person shooter genre into modern times, the most popular setting was World War II. Although most players have experienced the likes of Medal of Honor, Gearbox Software’s Brothers In Arms: Road To Hill 30 really moved the genre forward.

It included more historically accurate settings, a mature and emotional plot, and a reasonably realistic approach to warfare. The game also included new elements of tactics and strategy not previously seen in this type of shooter, adding more layers of gameplay as you commanded troops around the battlefield.


Super Meat Boy

It’s fair to say the Super Mario Bros. franchise is one of the most influential and important in the history of gaming. However, the latest entries in the 2D platformer series are, at best, mediocre. One 2D entry that did drive the genre forward, however, was the indie title Super Meat Boy.

Comprised of a staggering 300 levels, with mod support for hundreds of additional custom made maps, the game has impeccable design, an addictive soundtrack, and some of the best controls in any platformer. Not only that, but Super Meat Boy was also a supremely challenging experience. It could keep players occupied for months before they were able to complete the title 100%.


Endless Space

While the Civilization series has become the dominant force in the 4X strategy genre, there are a number of games made by less well-known studios that more than match up to the franchise. One of these is Endless Space, a game that tasks players with conquering the galaxy.

Endless Space stands out from the likes of Civilization 6, because of its deep systems that allow for seemingly infinite variety when it comes to galaxy dominating methods. Another major advantage: players can choose from more interesting civilizations. Each race has their own set of unique traits and abilities, engendering genuinely different playthroughs, thus providing much more replay value. The visuals are also profoundly striking in Endless Space, providing a singular spin on the 4X genre.


Xenoblade Chronicles X

With the controversy surrounding Mass Effect: Andromeda, it is perhaps time players looked to other avenues to satisfy their sci-fi role-playing itch. Unlike BioWare’s addition to the Mass Effect franchise, critics praised Xenoblade for its deep story and massive open world, which puts many other RPGs to shame. 

The game also features a more customizable and thoughtful upgrade system, giving players the chance to truly change the way they play the game, in contrast to the set options available in Andromeda. Lacking the insanely clunky dialogue present in Mass Effect, Xenoblade carries some actual emotional impact.


Subnautica Is A Better Exploration Game Than No Man’s Sky

Subnautica and No Man’s Sky might not look alike superficially, but both games are essentially all about exploration. While No Man’s Sky had a big budget and huge marketing campaign behind it, it left players largely unimpressed. Subnautica, on the other hand, is a more engaging game that is far less repetitive.

Since areas and creatures are not procedurally generated, actual care has been taken with where things go and how they work. Ultimately, the underwater title lets you leave a genuine mark on the world with your actions, while you just seem to be a galactic passerby in No Man’s Sky.


Life Is Strange Is A Far Greater Adventure Game Than The Walking Dead

Although Telltale Games has dominated the graphic adventure genre for the past decade or so, other developers are now beginning to create their own entries for the genre. Life is Strange took what was good about Telltale games, such as The Walking Dead, and improved upon almost every aspect.

The game contains none of the clunky camera movement or bugs its competitors are famous for, and introduced a much more vibrant world to explore. Here, characters are also more emotional and relatable, giving them a greater impact on the story. Topped off with incredible, immersive visuals and a far more sophisticated musical score, Life is Strange simply outperforms The Walking Dead in every meaningful way.


Sheltered Is Far More In-Depth Than Fallout Shelter

Sheltered is a better game than Fallout Shelter, both because of the level of complexity and the choice available to players. Unlike the free-to-play title from Bethesda, Sheltered puts you in charge of just a few inhabitants, rather than an entire vault. This provides an opportunity to have a more meaningful relationships with both the characters you play as and come across in the wild.

The management of your shelter is also a much more in-depth system, with everything from waste management to the cleanliness of the underground dwelling coming into play. Whereas Fallout Shelter is a game you might play for a few brief moments a day, Sheltered engages your full attention when playing, and will keep you occupied for hours.


Overcooked Is Much More Fun That Cooking Mama

Although Cooking Mama was a unique game when it first released, the franchise has done little to move the genre forward in the intervening years. Overcooked took the elements the earlier series did well, and combined them with new ideas and mechanics to create a game that's just straight-up more fun.

This largely comes down to the faster-paced gameplay and the chaotic, but undoubtedly enjoyable, co-operative multiplayer experience it offers to players. Unlike Cooking Mama, which only focuses on recipes, Overcooked manages to incorporate the hectic nature of preparing food and working with others to get it out into the restaurant.


Cities: Skylines Is A Much Deeper Experience Than SimCity

SimCity has always been the standard-bearer of the city simulation genre, but the 2013 offering hit a few sour notes with longtime fans. One game filled the void, despite the fact it is still relatively unknown: Cities: Skylines. It isn’t just that the game looks and runs much better than its EA counterpart, Cities: Skylines is without a doubt a much deeper and more complicated simulation.

Each inhabitant of a city has their own life to lead, including a family and a schedule. Cities only evolve and grow through meticulous planning, requiring the player to actually think about what they are doing. The interesting mechanics behind traffic management mean that you can come up with thousands of solutions to a problem by creating new roads, while extensive modding capabilities give players the option of changing up the experience. Add to that a tremendous map, and Cities: Skylines is essentially everything that SimCity should have been for half the price.


Salt And Sanctuary Shows Up Lords Of The Fallen

After the success of Dark Souls, developers and publishers looked to piggyback on that franchise's popularity. One example was Lords of the Fallen from Namco Bandai, a reasonably successful imitation. In terms of quality, however, Fallen failed miserably in comparison to a smaller title called Salt and Sanctuary.

The 2D indie title got a lot more right in its implementation. With better and more diverse customization options (both in terms of abilities and items), the combat in Salt and Sanctuary is more engaging and varied. Not only can players string together combos, but fighting enemies feels much more fluid and natural than it does in Lords of the Fallen. This provides for a better and more satiating experience as you battle bosses.



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Thu, 11 May 2017 03:34:57 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/better-versions-of-basic-video-games/nathan-gibson
<![CDATA[Great Gifts For Gamer Dads]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/best-gifts-for-gamer-dads/brandon-michaels?source=rss

Ahh, summertime. The warmth of the sun shining down on your face. The feel of the breeze through your hair. The smell of the barbeque grills and lake water. Could Father's Day get any better than a day at the lake, grilling steaks, and cracking open a cold one with the boys? Yes. Absolutely. Crank up the AC, stock up on Mt. Dew, and boot up the LAN; this Father's Day is going to be lit.

Ask any father and they'll tell you they're tired of getting a boring tie or coffee mug for Father's Day. Father's Day can be a difficult occasion to shop for, but gamer dad gifts are a breeze. Gifts for gamer dads can be collectible memorabilia, nerdy summer gear, or even an awesome tie or hilarious coffee mug! Don't sweat Father's Day this year - this list has several gift ideas of what to buy for a dad who is into gaming. Or, if you're a father yourself, share this list with your loved ones to let them know what you might want. *coughNintendoSwitchcough* Vote up the best gifts that gaming fathers would love. 


Great Gifts For Gamer Dads,

Super Mario Golf Club Cover

8-Bit Retro Gaming Table

Mechs Vs Minions Board Game From Riot

Achievement Unlocked (Fatherhood) T-Shirt

Pacman Pint Glass That Changes Colors With Cold Beer

DOOM Floppy Disk Pen Holder

Power Glove Oven Mitt

Fallout-Themed Drink Coasters

Legend Of Zelda Tie Clip

Chocolate Controller


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Tue, 30 May 2017 09:20:50 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/best-gifts-for-gamer-dads/brandon-michaels
<![CDATA[All The Overwatch Characters, Ranked By How Annoying They Are]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/annoying-overwatch-characters/melissa-brinks?source=rss

The characters of Blizzard's Overwatch are some of the most interesting ones you'll find in a MOBA FPS. They have unique designs, compelling backstories, and cool skill sets. But that diversity of abilities also lends itself to easily being spammed. Certain Overwatch characters quickly become the most vexing ones to run into.  

While there are definitely various types of annoying Overwatch players, the heroes themselves can be pretty exasperating to fight. Naturally, characters ranked by annoyance is pretty subjective. Genji mains are likely to find somebody else bothersome, while Tracer players are likely to rank McCree high on their list. But players across the board can agree that some characters are more frustrating to fight against than others. 


All The Overwatch Characters, Ranked By How Annoying They Are,

Torbjorn

Pharah

Symmetra

Mei

Genji

Hanzo

Tracer

Zarya

Roadhog

Bastion


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Thu, 25 May 2017 08:11:21 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/annoying-overwatch-characters/melissa-brinks
<![CDATA[17 Video Games Where You Actually Get To Play As The Villain]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/video-games-where-you-are-the-villain/collin-flatt?source=rss

Most video games put the player in the central role as the hero of the story. Whether you're saving the princess or trying to stop a nuclear holocaust, it's usually your job to make everything better as the main character. Nowadays, adventure games feature complicated branching storylines, bringing about a whole slew of video games where you get to be as evil as you want. However, beyond even the best action RPGs that like to test your moral compass lies an even darker place: video games where you are the villain. 

It may not be right to slam on the gas while driving your car over the citizens of Liberty City, and it might be terribly cruel to remove the bathroom door in the humble abode where your Sims live, but it sure is fun. There's just something enticing about video games where you play the bad guy. Some of them are silly and over the top, like Jaws Unleashed, but others are pretty gritty and disturbing, like the co-op shooter, Kane & Lynch. If you're looking for a game that's not all rainbows and butterflies, check out the list below of video games where you play the bad guy and vote up the best ones. 


17 Video Games Where You Actually Get To Play As The Villain,

God of War

God of War came along at just the right time for the PS2, breathing life back into the console brawler genre that was nearly dead. Kratos, the main character, is sold to players as the anti-hero in a narrative based on pseudo-Greek mythology, but he seems pretty damn villainous no matter which way you slice it. The God of War franchise squeezed out a bunch of sequels and spin-off games, and PS4 owners are waiting for the new God of War with bated breath. Gamers just can't enough of the visceral joy Kratos provides with all the disemboweling, eye gouging, and decapitating. 


Grand Theft Auto III

The entire Grand Theft Auto franchise is centered around pulling off professional hits, robbing stores, and being kind of an asshole. The central characters in the fourth and fifth installment aren't completely bad dudes and are often left with difficult choices. But in Grand Theft Auto III, they didn't fill out the protagonist, Claude, so much as let you write his story. He doesn't speak or make too many noises outside of a wayward grunt here and there whenever he gets run over.

There are specific mission objectives and milestones you need to hit for the game to progress, but every terrible decision you make is your own. You don't need to use a rocket launcher on the car full of innocent bystanders that just happened to get in your way, but you pull the trigger anyway. And you laugh while the flaming bodies hit the ground. 


Mafia II

The whole Mafia series leans into being a bad guy, but Vito Scaletta, the protagonist of Mafia II is a fully developed villain. The cutscenes and cinematics are the best in the series, and the storytelling is as vibrant as it gets. Sure, Scaletta's backstory is full of familiar mob movie tropes, but the action is tight and the cover system combat is really rewarding. If you've ever wanted to spray lead from a Tommy Gun at dozens of innocent people in the hopes of trying to kill one guy during a sloppy hit, then this is the game for you. 


Shadow of the Colossus

Shadow of the Colossus is often considered a prime example of "video games as art" because of its visual style and intense atmospheric ambiance. You play Wander, a boy on a mission to save the love of his life, Mono. Dormin, the evil spirit, tells Wander that he can save Mono if he defeats the 16 Colossi. As the game progresses and each Colossus is destroyed, the game becomes more and more somber in tone and ambiance. Players never know the true role of each character in the game, but it appears that Wander slaughtered 16 innocent creatures and was responsible for the release of Dormin's evil spirit because he was too busy trying to resurrect a person who already has a "cursed fate." Sorry, Wander, but you're actually the villain.


Rampage

Rampage is an arcade classic. The concept is simple: You're a giant monkey, lizard, or wolf and your job is to climb buildings and beat them to rubble. Flying helicopters and planes attack you a la King Kong, and the only way to regain strength is to eat humans. Yes, after crushing cop cars into dust and playing ping pong with a commuter train, the only way to keep your path of destruction going is to eat helpless citizens of this terrifying world. Rampage is a lot darker than you remember it, but it's so much damn fun.


Postal

The term "going postal" was a favorite in the 1990s, referring to the frequent occurrences of active or formal postal workers going berserk and murdering innocent people. Developer Running With Scissors thought making a "murder simulator" would be a hit with the public, and they were right. You play a schizophrenic who was evicted from his home and believes that the local Air Force base is trying to poison the population. There's a disturbing school shooting sequence, but, luckily your weapons don't work and you wake up in a mental institution. Believe it or not, they made a sequel to this insanity, and Uwe Boll crapped out a terribly forgettable B-movie using the same license.


Overlord

Overlord is a third-person action adventure where you play a resurrected warrior called the Overlord (obviously). You are tasked with destroying the seven corrupt ruling powers, the very same people who were responsible for your mentor's death. Along with your axe and sword-swinging abilities, you have a large group of minions to do your bidding. And while you are sold as an anti-hero, you also have something called a "corruption meter" that rates your extra-curricular evil-doing. Depending on how bad you are, different abilities and spells unlock, and it can even change the narrative and outcome of the game ending.


Prototype

Developer Radical released the open-world action adventure game Prototype in 2009, thinking that a cannibalistic scientist made for a good hero. But, any angry nerd that consumes humans and then shapeshifts into other people like a silly rip-off of John Carpenter's The Thing isn't so much a hero as someone you'd like to stay far away from. Ultimately, the developers recognized the evil leanings and so Protoype protagonist Alex Mercer played the villain in Prototype 2, by basically acting the exact same way.


Braid

Braid is one of the most brilliant puzzle platformer games you'll ever play. It really set the whole indie game scene ablaze when it was released in 2008. Underneath the charming art style and confounding time-shifting mechanics lies a pretty dark story about Tim, the protagonist of the game. What appears to be a simple case of a hero trying to save a princess quickly evolves into a monster tale where you're the villain, and your long lost love can't run away from you fast enough.

There's also a fan theory kicking around where the princess represents the atomic bomb and Tim represents Oppenheimer, the theoretical physicist responsible for giving the world the Manhattan Project.


Party Hard

Party Hard is considered a stealth action game, but it's really all about quietly murdering people at a party and getting away with it. Pinokl Games created a simple, yet challenging concept, and while the critics were lukewarm on the game as a whole, it has a great sense of humor and is worth the few short hours it takes to complete. Besides tossing bodies into freezers and dumpsters, you also get sweet weapon power ups and disguises to help throw the cops off the scent. The best part of the game is getting to live out your favorite Scream fantasy, only maybe with a little less Skeet Ulrich. 



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Tue, 09 May 2017 09:13:14 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/video-games-where-you-are-the-villain/collin-flatt
<![CDATA[Inside Nintendo's Staggeringly Shady And Twisted Price Fixing Scandal]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/breakdown-of-the-nintendo-price-fixing-scandal/jacob-shelton?source=rss

For some gamers, the Nintendo price fixing scandal may seem like a distant dream. But it’s likely most people reading about this strange moment in time don’t even realize that from 1989 to well into the 2000s, Nintendo attempted to skirt around claims they were strong-arming retailers into selling their products for high prices. They also made stores jettison anything made by their competitors. But what happened during the Nintendo price fixing scandal? How did Nintendo deal with being called out for mob-like tactics? And what was their penalty? What follows is an explanation of the Nintendo price-fixing scandal that attempts to explain exactly how a fan-favorite gaming company could bilk players out of millions and continue to stay on top.

In 1989, Nintendo hadn’t yet cemented their status as one of the most beloved game manufacturers in the world. They were still about a decade away from Tri-Force tattoos and Super Smash Bros. parties. In the '80s, they were just a global corporation of up-and-comers, trying to claw their way to the top of a growing pack of gaming companies. Their plan to fix prices made them the company they are today, but it also exposed the seedy underbelly of a business that made its bones off of being fan friendly. Let's take an in-depth look at the Nintendo price-fixing scandal and the ramifications of the company’s attempt to be the king of the mountain at any cost.


Inside Nintendo's Staggeringly Shady And Twisted Price Fixing Scandal,

Nintendo May Have Killed The Sega Master System

SEGA, one of Nintendo's biggest competitors, was obviously not happy about the whole price fixing thing. To this day, they insist Nintendo's strong arming of the retailers is the primary reason the Master System never hit. Even though the Master System was supposedly a better console, SEGA thinks Nintendo had a deal that kept their system off the shelves at some of the country's biggest retailers. 


Nintendo's Scheme Turned Small Businesses Against One Another

When Nintendo started their price fixing scheme, they didn't just overcharge customers, they turned independent retailers against one another over minute amounts of money. From Game Over by David Sheff: "Stores tried to discount the NES and the games, but Nintendo pressured them to stop. One chain reportedly lowered the price of the NES by a matter of cents and advertised it in Sunday newspapers, and a competitor called Nintendo, which immediately froze shipments to the company offering the lowered prices.”


Nintendo Didn't Do This Alone

The price fixing scandal wasn't just something Nintendo did all by their lonesome. Especially in Europe, they had some help. John Menzies of Edinburgh, a distributor of Nintendo products, allegedly helped lay out a plan for maintaining price differences for consoles in Britain and other European countries. For his part in the scandal, Menzies was fined $8.5 million for trying "to mislead the commission with regard to the real scope of the infringement.''

 

 


What Were Nintendo's Tactics?

So how did Nintendo force retailers to sell their products for top dollar? Did they physically twist arms? Close. Author David Sheff says Nintendo began shorting retailers in 1988, and referring to it as "inventory management."

Nintendo believed that by "limiting the amount of product available, Nintendo could keep the demand for the product high." They began comparing themselves to Godiva chocolates, and while enacting inventory management Nintendo "kept half or more of its library of games inactive and unavailable. In 1988, for instance, 33 million NES cartridges were sold, but market surveys indicated that upwards of 45 million could have been sold."

One retailer, Child World, refused to bow to Nintendo's techniques. Nintendo responded by cutting them off. Sheff says that by 1989, Child World was "experiencing severe financial difficulties due to the loss of 20% of their sales through video games." When they came back to Nintendo, they claimed they were met with "open hostility" and had to pay for their products a year in advance. 


What Is Price Fixing And How Was Nintendo Doing This?

To put it simply, price fixing is the maintenance of prices at a certain level through an agreement between competing sellers. In Nintendo's case, they weren't actually working with sellers, or even their direct competition to keep prices regulated.

Instead, they allegedly threatened to cut off shipments of games and consoles to retailers if they didn't meet their terms. Nintendo was accused of threatening to cut off shipments of the NES to retailers who didn't sell the system for their established price of $99.99.


How Did The FTC Find Out About The Price Fixing?

It turns out Nintendo's price fixing plan worked out better than they thought it would. So well, in fact, people were starting to take notice of how great they were doing. David Sheff, author of Game Over, the definitive history of Nintendo's take over of the gaming industry, writes: 

“[T]he Nintendo Entertainment System, in just five short years, was brought into more than a third of the households in the United States and Japan... Sega tried to compete with Nintendo, but in spite of investments in the hundreds of millions of dollars, they shared less than 10 to 15 percent of the market through 1991.”

It's ridiculous to think those kinds of numbers aren't going to make people take a long, hard look at your business practices. 


How Much Monet Did Nintendo Make From Price Fixing?

This subject is up for debate because the numbers aren't exact, but all parties agree Nintendp made a lot of money with its plan. New York Atty. Gen. Robert Abrams said that by 1989, Super Mario Brothers was in nearly one in four U.S. households. During 1989, it's believed sales of Nintendo game machines and software accounted for more than 80% of all home video game products, with total sales reaching $2.7 billion. That's a lot of rupees. 


Was This Just A Problem In The United States?

As ridiculous as it sounds, the Nintendo price fixing scandal was a lengthy ruse with worldwide implications. In 2002, the European Commission fined Nintendo $147 million for colluding with seven European distributors to fix prices similarly to how they did in the states. The E.C. said from 1991 to 1998, the company forced retailers to keep prices for its games and consoles artificially high while agreeing not to sell products to buyers from other European countries.

The commission found that price variations from country to country were massive, and by 1996 allegedly Nintendo consoles cost about three times as much in Spain as they did in Britain, Germany, or the Netherlands. Mario Monti, the European Commissioner for Competition, said, ''European families have the right to buy the games and consoles at the lowest price the market can possibly offer, and we will not tolerate collusive behavior intended to keep prices artificially high.''


Their European Fine Was Massive

While Nintendo may have gotten off somewhat easily in America, Europe handled the company with a heavier hand. In 2002, the European Commission dropped a 168 million euro (or about $262 million) fine on Nintendo for colluding with businesses to keep prices high.

The company noted that it was "one of the biggest single fines in EU competition law." Xavier Lewis, a lawyer for the commission, countered, "The fine was not of a capricious nature, or based on wild estimates. This fine was for an infringement that was considered very serious."


Nintendo Doesn't Think They Did Anything Wrong

As you might be able to guess, Nintendo doesn't see what the big deal was about the whole price fixing thing. After the ruling, Howard Lincoln – the company's senior vice president –released a statement saying, "We decided to enter into this comprehensive and nationwide settlement in order to maintain the good will our company enjoys with millions of consumers who play Nintendo games."

He continued, essentially saying they just paid out the rebates the company was forced to give to customers because they wanted to get over the whole thing, and go back to making cold hard cash. "Rather than risk our company's good will while engaging in costly litigation over a complicated legal issue which could drag on for years, we opted to get this behind the company immediately."



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Tue, 16 May 2017 03:44:23 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/breakdown-of-the-nintendo-price-fixing-scandal/jacob-shelton
<![CDATA[25 Of The Funniest First Person Shooter Memes On The Internet]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/funny-first-person-shooter-memes/brandon-michaels?source=rss

It's no surprise that first-person shooter memes are all over the Internet. FPS games have been around since the '70s, starting with Jet Rocket, a coin-operated arcade game from Sega. And with the widespread popularity of the best FPS video games since the turn of the century, like Bioshock, CS:GO, and Overwatch, comes some of the most hiliarious first-person shooter memes. 

The memes here can only be understood by gamers. Like Call of Duty memes, they require knowledge of certain video game weapon mechanics, along with experience of playing fast-paced action shooters. Here are some of the funniest memes that only true FPS fans will understand. 


25 Of The Funniest First Person Shooter Memes On The Internet,

Nice Shot!

Getting Kills Or Getting Killed

Robbed

Boom! Boom!

Eyes On You

Pretty Sneaky...

Throwing A Fit With No Plans To Quit

Dibs!

Running With A Knife

Reasons For Death


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Mon, 01 May 2017 10:57:10 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/funny-first-person-shooter-memes/brandon-michaels
<![CDATA[16 Video Game Characters We Should Have Known Are Modeled After Famous People]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/video-game-characters-based-on-celebrities/crystal-brackett?source=rss

As you grind away at the levels of a video game, you may find that some of the characters look incredibly familiar. It's not uncommon for a studio to sculpt video game characters that look like celebrities, especially in this day and age when motion capture technology makes the 3D animation process a whole lot easier. Yet it may surprise you that even before the turn of the century, photos of the famous people were being used in concept art to inspire the look and attitude of characters.

Whether you're farming for experience or simply causing mayhem, seeing a familiar face in a video game is totally cool. These side-by-side comparisons of celebrities and their digital counterparts will point out similarities and differences you might not have ever noticed before. Vote up the video game characters that are brilliant facsimiles of the celebrity they are based upon. 


16 Video Game Characters We Should Have Known Are Modeled After Famous People,

Vaas Montenegro From Far Cry 3 Is Based On Michael Mando

Jonathan Irons In Call Of Duty: Advanced Warfare Is Based On Kevin Spacey

Jodie Holmes From Beyond: Two Souls Is Based On Ellen Page

Dr. Eggman From Sonic The Hedgehog Is Based On Teddy Roosevelt

Solid Snake From Metal Gear Solid Is Based On Christopher Walken

Balrog From Street Fighter Is Based On Mike Tyson

Nathan Drake From Uncharted Is Based On Johnny Knoxville

Zoey In Left 4 Dead Is Based On Alesia Glidewell

Sheva Alomar In Resident Evil 5 Is Based On Michelle Van Der Water

King Bohan From Heavenly Sword Is Based On Andy Serkis


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Tue, 16 May 2017 02:57:18 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/video-game-characters-based-on-celebrities/crystal-brackett
<![CDATA[25 Hilariously Devastating Insults Only Gamers Understand]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/funny-gaming-insults/brandon-michaels?source=rss

Gamers are an interesting group of people because they share a language that evolves with the meta. Like gamer jokes, insults in the gaming community require insider knowledge to know just how bad the burn is. And got forbid if you don't get it - that just makes it so much worse. Most online gamers that spew insults do so in fits of rage when something doesn't go their way. They suddenly devolve into a racist 12 year-old-boy who fires off round after round of insults while making comments about your mother. 

If you become the victim of severe gaming burns, be sure to apply ice magic to the affected area and use a sleep spell to get some rest. If irritation or butt-hurt lasts for more than either hours, it's recommended that you see a specialist and git gud, scrub. Compiled below are some of the best insults that only gamers will understand. Vote up the ones that rub the most salt into the wound! 


25 Hilariously Devastating Insults Only Gamers Understand,

Catch That Nicki Minaj!

Minecraft Players Think They Got Swag

Mac Gamers Be Like

Clearly An Insult

Why Don't YOU, Nintendo?

People Who Think They're Gamers

Hanzo Main

Protecting Your Virginity

Our Yasuo

Salty Much?


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Mon, 22 May 2017 08:19:47 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/funny-gaming-insults/brandon-michaels
<![CDATA[14 Best-Selling Video Games That Were Almost Totally Different]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/different-original-versions-of-famous-video-games/nathan-gibson?source=rss

Video game development is not a simple process. Designers and programmers often spend years on a single project, and thus there is plenty of opportunity for games to shift focus dramatically as they make progress. Of course, this can lead to some rather strange origins of popular video games, where the end product is something very different than the original concept.

While a certain amount of change is to be expected with any title, some famous examples have gone through such extensive alteration, they are almost completely unrecognizable compared to what the developers initially intended. There are many examples of video games that changed design partway through, with the creators having to scrap work and practically start over from scratch.

This can happen for a variety of reasons. Sometimes the art style might clash with the gameplay, or new mechanics might be introduced partway through development that developes like more. It’s even possible for a studio to build a game with certain characters in mind only for a license deal to fall through, causing the team to have to go in a new direction with a new cast. Even some of the most famous video game titles in history started out much differently from what hit store shelves.


14 Best-Selling Video Games That Were Almost Totally Different,

BioShock

One of the most memorable elements from the first BioShock game was its underwater setting of Rapture. Despite this, early demos of the game actually took place in a futuristic space station. Here, the player battled genetic mutants as a cult de-programmer called Carlos Cuello, in a standard sci-fi setting.

Finding the environment and story to be uninspiring, and a departure from the game they had intended to make, Irrational Games switched their focus and landed on the BioShock players came to love.


Doom

If the general premise of Doom seemed familiar to players when it released, that might be because the game was initially developed as an adaptation of James Cameron’s Aliens movie. The developer, id Software, were in talks with 20th Century Fox to acquire the license for a video game based on the film, but the negotiations broke down.

Not wanting to throw away the work they already did, id Software simply decided to alter the premise slightly, so that the player was battling demons rather than aliens.


GoldenEye 007

Even though GoldenEye 007 went on to become one of the most popular games for the Nintendo 64, and a launch pad for console first-person shooters, the game started as a much more limited rail shooter. Just a few designers from Rare were able to work on the title, and several of those had never worked in game development before. This meant the scope of GoldenEye 007 was squeezed, to give it the best chance of releasing in a workable form.

Nintendo of America executive Ken Lobb was eventually able to persuade the team to move the project from a rail shooter to one where the player could control movement, and go where they wanted. He worked closely with the developers to implement the four-person multiplayer, despite the restricted development time and resources.


Halo: Combat Evolved

Halo is one of the biggest franchises in gaming history. The first-person shooter is Microsoft’s flagship series, and millions of people play the various installments of the series. However, Bungie drastically altered the fate of Halo in a short space of time, after Microsoft purchased the developer so the game could launch alongside its new console, the Xbox. The original title was intended to be a real-time strategy game, that saw players take control of soldiers on a large battlefield.

Before the focus was switched to first-person shooter, the studio revealed how much work they had put in by announcing Halo at Macworld. Steve Jobs even introduced the game to the world on stage. The switch evolved naturally, when the developers saw they were focusing more and more on the Spartan super soldiers. They decided to put the emphasis entirely on Master Chief, to create a better story and a more emotional experience.


The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess

Although The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker received a mixed reception upon its announcement thanks to its visual style, fans eventually came round to the idea. In fact, Wind Waker was such a success Nintendo began working on a sequel almost immediately. This project eventually morphed into Twilight Princess when the team realized how strongly players wanted to return to an Ocarina of Time-type experience.

The final nail in the coffin came about when developers realized the more cartoony Link was unable to ride a horse in a believable manner. The character model was simply too short, and the team felt creating an adult version of this Link was inappropriate, forcing them to abandon the graphics in favor of the grittier look of Twilight Princess.


Donkey Kong

Nintendo’s first foray into the American market with their arcade cabinets proved to be incredibly unsuccessful. With 2,000 spare units sitting unused, they tasked newcomer Shigeru Miyamoto with creating a game that would work on the arcade machines, so that they could avoid financial ruin.

The legendary developer quickly came up with the idea of a comic-strip inspired game featuring Popeye, Bluto, and Olive Oyl. Nintendo was unable to secure the rights to those characters, forcing Miyamoto to switch to a different love triangle inspired by King Kong. So, a licensing issue led to the creation of Donkey Kong, Mario, and Pauline. All of them, of course, are equally relevant today.  


Grand Theft Auto

Although Grand Theft Auto seems inseperable from the idea of the criminal underworld battling against the police today, the original game started off with a completely different tone. The initial concept was for the title to be a multiplayer racer, with players having to make their way around the streets of the city.

That was the plan, anyway, until a bug in the game’s code led to the police trying to ram the user controlled cars off the road. The developers realized this was more fun than the racing, and so began restructuring the game to incorporate the criminal elements to give the police a reason to chase after you.


Quake Looked Like It Was Going To Be An Action RPG

After working on several successful shooters, most notably in the form of Doom and its sequels, developer id Software were looking to move into new genres with their next game. This led to the concept of Quake.

The studio took inspiration from the likes of Dungeons & Dragons to create a 3D action RPG in a fantasy world. While development reached a late stage, conflict among members of the team led to a split in design philosophy. Eventually, John Romero settled on re-imagining the title with Doom-like gameplay, and Quake was born.


Splinter Cell Could Have Been A Sci-Fi James Bond Game

Work on what would become Splinter Cell began before Ubisoft acquired developer Red Storm, and the rights to the Tom Clancy license. The game was a futuristic shooter that saw players take on the role of a protagonist traveling across floating cities. Known as The Drift, the game had a number of interesting mechanical elements, such as the ability to fire cameras and grapple up buildings.

As the project stalled, it was pitched as a James Bond game to the license holders, but it ultimately failed to make an impression. When the publisher acquired the ability to make the games based on Tom Clancy’s novels, the team began to inject more espionage mechanics, and soon realized the stealth gameplay was better than what they had previously worked on. With the mandate to “make a Metal Gear Solid 2 killer,” the studio created Splinter Cell.


Super Smash Bros. Didn’t Include Nintendo Characters In The Beginning

Super Smash Bros. went through a difficult development. There were only three people working on the game throughout much of the early phase, and the small team had no plans on incorporating established Nintendo characters until very late into the project. The concept for the four-player brawler was simply to create a distinctive fighting game.

The idea of using the likes of Mario, Link, and Samus came when they wanted to find a way to interest players, and market the game abroad. Nintendo initially shot down the idea, so the developers secretly went ahead and included the characters anyway. Fortunately, executives liked the end product and gave the designers permission to include them in the game.



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Fri, 21 Apr 2017 04:53:12 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/different-original-versions-of-famous-video-games/nathan-gibson
<![CDATA[24 Gaming Worlds Based On Real-Life Places]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/gaming-worlds-based-on-real-locations/crystal-brackett?source=rss

You may not know it, but if you're a gamer, you've probably been to several virtual renditions of real places all over the world. From historic monuments scattered across the Americas to the elegant crevasses of Kathmandu and Istanbul, video game developers took real locations to fill virtual spaces. For example, the fifth title of the Grand Theft Auto games is famously a loose, digital reproduction of the city of Los Angeles. If you've ever played Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood, you've virtually visited the Colosseum in Rome. 

So, if you can't seem to gather the time or funds for your grand vacation just yet, check out these video game titles with gorgeous settings based on actual places. Explore different parts of the world from the comfort of your couch. Care to take a tour? Check out the list below and vote up the ones that provide the best virtual tour of a real-life location!


24 Gaming Worlds Based On Real-Life Places,

Persona 5's Yongen-Jaya Backstreets Are Japan's Alleys Sangen-Jaya

Anor Londo's Magnificent Castle In Dark Souls Is In Milan, Italy

Kamurocho District In Yakuza Is Actually In Tokyo's Shinjuku

The Cathedral In Final Fantasy XV's Altissia Exists In Venice

The Colosseum In Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood Is In Rome

 

 

 


Far Cry 4's Kyrat Reflects The Gorgeous Himalayas

The Jan Mayen Island In Tomb Raider Underworld Are The Shores Of Phang Nga Bay In Thailand

The Manchester Cathedral In Resistance: Fall of Man Is A Real Cathedral In England

Uncharted 2: Among Thieves Depicts The Streets Of Kathmandu

Grand Theft Auto V's Del Perro Pier Rebuilds Santa Monica Pier


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Fri, 12 May 2017 10:24:29 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/gaming-worlds-based-on-real-locations/crystal-brackett
<![CDATA[The Best Cyberpunk Video Games You Need To Play Right Now]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/best-cyberpunks-videogames/aaron-edwards?source=rss

There's nothing quite like a good cyberpunk story. Between the corporate dystopian futures and the neon cities that always seem to be rained out, uncovering a resistance movement that seeks to overthrow those in power is enthralling. Ever since one of the best dystopian moviesBlade Runner, pretty much invented the cyberpunk genre, many stories have been following in its cybernetic footsteps. Video games are no exception - the industry has taken advantage of the storytelling and gameplay possibilities since the genre's inception.

Collected below are the best cyberpunk titles of all time. If you think there's a classic on this list that's been under-appreciated, give it a vote up so others can experience the grimy future that inspired you. Or, if you're looking for a good cyberpunk game recommendation, you've come to the right place. 


The Best Cyberpunk Video Games You Need To Play Right Now,

Assassin's Creed

Deus Ex

Deus Ex: Human Revolution

Perfect Dark Zero

System Shock

System Shock 2

Blade Runner

Shadowrun Returns

Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon

Perfect Dark


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Thu, 01 Jun 2017 07:58:38 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/best-cyberpunks-videogames/aaron-edwards
<![CDATA[24 Gorgeous Cosplays That Put The Fire In Fire Emblem]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/best-fire-emblem-cosplay/crystal-brackett?source=rss

The beautiful and detailed array of warriors that you're about to witness is an epic display of video gaming hotness! From Camilla to Lucina, these Fire Emblem cosplayers don't cut any corners when it comes to crafting and creating real-life versions of beloved characters from one of the best RPG games of all time. What better way to pay tribute to the amazing franchise than by bringing it to life with fiery 3D costumes? 

All the Fire Emblem games that Nintendo has published offer a deep and colorful universe for gaming fanatics. The character designs are very intricate and ornate, pushing cosplayers to bring their A game. Think you can stand the heat? Vote up the most stunning Fire Emblem cosplay photos that are simply blazing. 


24 Gorgeous Cosplays That Put The Fire In Fire Emblem,

Tharja

GarnetTilAlexandros strikes a pose as the lovely Tharja from Awakening


Lucina And Emmeryn

This Lucina and Emmeryn by cosplay by YamaCos is brilliantly shot by whitespecsphoto.


Azura

PinkCatCosplay beautifully plays Azura from Fates in this spectacular photo from Asaria Photography


Velouria

Kazeplay brings a cute Velouria from Fates. Photo captured by Novii Photography


Sumia

Calsarra portrays an amazing Sumia from Awakening, complete with a "pegasus!" (They didn't attach wings, out of concern for the pony). Captured wonderfully by Midgard1612


Reina

This stunning cosplay was made and worn by Sirena, featuring Reina from Fates. 


Camilla

Paper-Cube caught this perfect photograph of Yaya Han as Camilla from Fates.


Marth

Valtica captured Kura-Kitsune's Marth cosplay from Shadow Dragon with explosive talent.


Olivia

Kohairi poses as the beautiful Olivia from Awakening!


Tharja

Beke is the beautiful Tharja from Awakening, shot stunningly by beethy.



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Thu, 11 May 2017 05:41:19 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/best-fire-emblem-cosplay/crystal-brackett
<![CDATA[The Dark Realities Of Pro Gaming]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/what-its-like-to-be-a-pro-gamer/zack-howe?source=rss

Geeks everywhere want to know what it's like to be a pro gamer, harboring their own dreams of killing Zerg for a living. But the realities of pro gaming would dampen anyone’s drive to pursue such a career. The lifestyle of professional gamers might seem appealing, until you know what exactly that entails: a minimum of 10 hours a day playing a single game, every day, with no guarantee of making any money from it.

There’s a huge difference between being a casual gamer and a professional gamer. The life of an e-athlete is not cushy by any stretch of the imagination. In fact, it can be downright grueling. Lack of sleep, drug abuse, sexual harassment — there are a lot of messed up things about playing video games professionally that just come with the territory. Let’s take a deep dive into the dark lives of pro gamers, and put to bed this notion of gaming as a cushy dream job.


The Dark Realities Of Pro Gaming,

Seoul Has Addiction Treatment Centers... For Gamers

Seoul, South Korea is considered by many to be the hub of e-sports. In Seoul, pro gamers are so prevalent government intervention became necessary. Gaming addiction is a real thing. To become a professional gamer takes relentless practice, and it often results in video game addiction.

There's no guarantee you'll make it as a pro (in fact, it's ludicrously unlikely), but there's a good chance you'll become addicted. The South Korean government actually funds treatment centers for gaming addictions, and it recognizes that numerous deaths have occurred as a result of intense gaming.


Pro Gamers Are Often Crammed Into Over-Capacity Living Situations

One pro gamer recounts living in an apartment with over 10 people. There didn't even enough beds; some people were sleeping on the floor. The living room was bursting with 10 computers, and there was barely enough room anywhere in the apartment to sit down and eat. The bathroom must have looked like the aftermath of a Terran invasion of a Zerg encampment. The stuff of nightmares. 


It's A Short Career

Unlike more traditional professional athletes, pro gamers must enjoy long careers, right? After all, it's not like it matters if their body deteriorates. They're mostly playing with their minds.

In reality, pro gamers have extremely short careers. The average pro gamer retires in their mid-20s, because their reflexes and dexterity have diminished so much by that point they can't keep up with the young'ns. As of 2014, League of Legends had 27 million players and only 40 made the North American pro team. So the likelihood of success is infinitesimal and, if you make it, you're out shortly thereafter. It's not exactly a long-term career plan. 


Drug Abuse Is Rampant

ADHD medications like Adderall or Ritalin are commonly abused to increase focus in the pro gaming community, and a lot of players dabble in more obscure drugs as well. Propranolol, for example, is a beta-blocker that helps players remain calm by negating the effects of adrenaline.

Then there's the even crazier abuse of a drug that treats actual Parkinson's disease called Selegiline, which improves mood and motivation. It would be bad enough if players were abusing jsut one of these drugs, but they often consume a combination of all of them as a cocktail, with a sh*tload of caffeine to top it off. It's a miracle there aren't more drug-related deaths, frankly. 


The Travel Is Hell

Pro gaming is an international phenomenon and, as such, players have to travel the globe to compete in tournaments. In an interview with Red Bull (because of course it was with Red Bull) DotA player Mircale- spoke of the grueling travel: "Nothing is good about it — at least not to me." Considering that players also have to find time to practice 12+ hours per day, international travel seems incredibly detrimental to their already grueling schedule.


There's Gambling That Makes Pete Rose Look Innocent

Gambling on e-sports is especially weird when you realize that many of the participants are teenagers, but there have been numerous cases of match-fixing as well. A Counter-Strike: Global Offensive match between two North American teams was thrown in 2014, and all bets were voided after the scandal was uncovered. Basically, members of one team secretly bet against themselves, then lost deliberately. 

One Korean player even attempted suicide after his match-fixing scandal was uncovered. It's also fairly common for sharks to attempt bribe players to throw matches as well. It's just an all-around unhealthy situation.


Sexual Harassment Is The Industry Standard

As with so many industries, thanks to good ol' sexism, there are far fewer female professional gamers than male. And for those select few, sexual harassment just comes with the territory. During one match, a female Street Fighter X Tekken player was asked her bra size and told by her opponent that he wanted to watch her in the bathroom.

Afterward, that piece of walking garbage said, "Sexual harassment is part of a culture, and if you remove that from the fighting game community, it's not the fighting game community." Polls have him leading the 2020 American Presidential race.


There Are Financial Risks Abound

Anyone who wants to be a pro gamer has to dedicate well over 10 hours every day to the craft, just to build up the necessary skills to attempt a professional-level competition. Obviously, this leaves little time for earning money to live on.

Even players with contracts are sometimes forced to break said agreements by giving lessons on the side just to make ends meet. And then there's the possibility you might get completely boned by your team, or that you don't see play at all. The CEO of the team Quantic Gaming didn't pay his players' salaries for months, and then vanished, allegedly owing over $40k. The youth and lack of real-world experience most pro gamers posses is often exploited, and they're left high and dry. The very best players in the world cap out at around a six-figure annual salary, which seems like a lot until you remember that they usually only get a few short years of professional competition before they have to retire. 


There Are Myriad Health Issues

The inescapable drug abuse in pro gaming is bad enough, but even if you manage to compete professionally without popping pills, you're still likely to experience health problems

There are eye problems from staring at screens for hours on end, back problems from prolonged sitting, and numerous finger and wrist injuries, including carpal tunnel and tennis elbow. At least the myth of pro gamers often being obese is false. Still, there are a slew of other health problems that plague professional gamers.


Say Goodbye To A Social Life... And Sleep

Professional gamers eat, sleep, and breathe gaming. Almost literally. It's not uncommon for pro gamers to play 14 hours per day. In fact, that's on the low side. Many are playing as much as 18, and a South Korean gentleman who goes by the name of MarineKing admitted to playing around 20 hours a day.

Look, gaming's great, but 20 hours a day? That would be exhausting to do once. To do so regularly would probably kill most people. The training is so intense, some players posit that doing anything sociable, like getting a girlfriend, can actually dramatically decrease your skill level and earning potential.  



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Tue, 09 May 2017 08:09:50 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/what-its-like-to-be-a-pro-gamer/zack-howe
<![CDATA[Video Game Series That Deserve A Comeback]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/video-game-series-that-should-come-back/nathan-gibson?source=rss

The video game industry is full of franchises that have been abandoned. After all, there are thousands of games released every year and it takes a special kind of franchise to be able to weather the test of time while releasing new titles. Only a few examples exist that have continued to remain successful, such as Mario, Final Fantasy, and The Legend of Zelda. These series represent some of the best video game franchises and have managed to evolve with the industry and adapt to the tastes of modern players.

However, that isn’t to say that all dormant video game franchises are failures. In fact, there are multiple series that were put aside due to unfortunate circumstances, such as suboptimal market times for a specific genre or a studio's desire to go in a different direction for a while. Regardless, there are certain series that deserve a remake or release for the latest gaming platforms. Check out the games below and vote up the dead video game series you would resurrect for an epic comeback. 


Video Game Series That Deserve A Comeback,

Chrono Trigger

Despite the fact that only two games were ever released in the Chrono series, the franchise is arguably one of the greatest role-playing games of all time. Having launched on the SNES in 1995, Chrono Trigger received near universal critical acclaim and went on to sell millions of copies. In particular, praise centered on its evolution of the genre after the success of Final Fantasy and The Secret of Mana, improving graphics, battle systems, and the cast of characters. It also showcased an amazing open-world exploration, alternate endings, and an interesting skill/combo system. 

It was so successful that it spawned a PlayStation sequel in the form of Chrono Cross, which functioned as a terrible sequel, but was a great game regardless. Unfortunately, Square Enix has concentrated on its other properties in the intervening years, only releasing the original games on new platforms rather than developing any new entries.


Dino Crisis

Dino Crisis 3, which released in 2003, was the last entry in the series that became something of a cult hit. Created by the team behind the original Resident Evil, the franchise was one of the surprisingly few that incorporated dinosaurs directly into gameplay - something that seems odd, considering the popularity of dinosaurs in other forms of media.

While the first two installments were successful, the third game saw the series get axed after an unwise decision to change the setting to space. Players found it too ridiculous to be fighting dinosaurs beyond the parameters of earth. With next generation consoles offering much more potential in terms of graphics and AI for the dinosaurs, it could be the perfect time to bring back the Dino Crisis franchise.


EarthBound

Known as Mother 2 in Japan, Earthbound was one of Nintendo’s first successful role-playing games that managed to bridge the gap between Japanese and American audiences. It contained experimental game mechanics that have become the norm in RPGs, plenty of satirical humor, and an emotional and interesting plot. Since its arrival in 1994, Earthbound has gone on to become one of the most praised titles in history and it considered a pioneer in role-playing games. Unfortunately, neither the sequel or Earthbound’s predecessor ever saw official releases outside of Japan, effectively depriving fans from North American and Europe from being able to enjoy more of the series.


Final Fantasy Tactics

Although the Final Fantasy series is best known for its role-playing entries, there are also some other spin-offs that have proved successful. One of these was the PlayStation release of Final Fantasy Tactics in 1997. Differing from other installments in the franchise, FFT had a much deeper combat system that included a three-dimensional isometric field for players to move through as they battled their enemies. However, Square Enix has left the series behind to concentrate on the other Final Fantasy titles in recent times. 

It is interesting to note that in 2003, Square Enix did try to use a similar formula in the Game Boy Advance title Final Fantasy Tactics Advanced. While the game is not a direct sequel, it did use many of the same mechanics and elements. However, while it was successful, fans criticized it for a weaker story and cast of characters. 


Golden Sun

Released in 2001 for the Game Boy Advance, Golden Sun is a fantasy role-playing game. After hitting store shelves, critics immediately heaped acclaim upon it, drawing attention to its high quality graphics, fun gameplay, and varied settings. It was even compared to the hugely successful Pokemon franchise and with the lack of quality RPGs on handheld consoles, a new Golden Sun game would definitely be welcomed. The third and latest release in the franchise came in 2010 with Golden Sun: Dark Dawn.


The Secret of Monkey Island

Back in the early '90s, graphic adventure games were all the rage and LucasArts could well be considered the best developer of this genre. Out of a string of high quality hits, perhaps the best and most popular is The Secret of Monkey Island and its sequels. Filled with difficult puzzles and genuinely funny humor, the series became iconic in the industry. However, there was a fall in popularity of the entire genre as gaming moved to 3D titles centered around first person shooters and action games. 

Recent offerings from the likes of Telltale Games have shown that the graphic adventure genre still has some appeal. Creator Ron Gilbert has expressed interest in concluding the story, making a comeback a real possibility. 


TimeSplitters

TimeSplitters is one of the most beloved and distinctive first person shooter series in the entire industry. Created by many of the people who worked on both GoldenEye 007 and Perfect Dark at Rare, it saw players traveling through time as they battled enemies with elaborate characters and weapons. Known for its irreverent humor and parody of other popular gaming franchises, each game also featured a number of mini games or odd gametypes that helped the titles stand out from other FPS franchises. With the last release coming in 2005 in the form of TimeSplitters: Future Perfect, work has continually stalled on a fourth game after the developer behind the series, Free Radical Design, went into administration.


Half-Life

No list looking at gaming series that need to make a comeback would be complete without considering Half-Life 3. The third title in the franchise has become synonymous with vaporware as it has seemingly been in development since the release of Half-Life 2: Episode 2 in 2007. During that time, Valve has kept quiet about the possible sequel and it is not even known whether the company is actively working on the game. With no announcements to suggest otherwise, it looks like players will have to wait a lot longer to see the conclusion of Gordon Freeman’s story. 


Breath of Fire

Capcom’s most well known RPG, 1993’s Breath of Fire, saw players take on the role of Ryu as he tries to track down his sister. While the game received praise all around, the exploration mechanic was particularly highlighted because it made the game much less linear than other RPGs.

Breath of Fire 6 was released in Japan in 2016, though an English translation has not been announced and is not in development. This leaves Western audiences without the chance to continue the series, with the last worldwide release in 2003 with Breath of Fire: Dragon Quarter.


Road Rash

From its debut in 1991, Road Rash has done its very best to set itself apart from most other racing games. Not only did it feature motorcycles, but it also introduced the ability to fight with the other racers. Add into the mix a police system whereby officers would attempt to chase you down, and you've got the perfect recipe for an action-packed racer. In total, there were six installments across a variety of platforms, ending with 2002’s Road Rash: Jailbreak. Since then, a number of developers, including Burnout studio Criterion Games, have looked into reviving the brand, but none have taken the mantle. 



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Thu, 30 Mar 2017 07:51:29 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/video-game-series-that-should-come-back/nathan-gibson
<![CDATA[26 League Of Legends Cosplay That Are In A League Of Their Own]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/league-of-legends-cosplay/crystal-brackett?source=rss

Get a glimpse of these seriously stunning League of Legends cosplays that put their digital counterparts to shame! League of Legends cosplayers and their plethora of unique and dazzling skins make for a spectacle any video game or cosplay enthusiast can appreciate. The multiplayer online battle arena pits teams of players against each other in head-to-head combat, capturing the hearts of millions of players across the globe with its fantastic gameplay and memorable characters.

As it turns out, some players know how to play this game IRL with their professional League of Legends cosplay. Because, you know, sometimes just playing a character isn't enough; you have to become the character to hone your fighting skills! Designers, photographers, makeup artists, and all-around creative fans show their dedication to the game, displaying some of the best League of Legends cosplays the Internet ever laid eyes on!


26 League Of Legends Cosplay That Are In A League Of Their Own,

Dark Elementalist Lux

Kinpatsu-Cosplay kills her cosplay of Dark Elementalist Lux!


Pirate Miss Fortune

Beauty abounds in this photo of the stunning Miss Fortune by eX-Dreamer.


Samsung White Twitch

Just Ok Cosplay makes a marvelous Samsung White Twitch! Shot by Colin Young-Wolff Photography.


Jinx

This Jinx is a true powerhouse of creativity! Shot, modeled, and created by Its-Raining-Neon.


Firecracker Jinx

Firecracker Jinx from GeazakiCosplay is a majestic display of beauty and power! Awesome shot from Eiki Photography.


Female Teemo

LauraCraftCosplay is a fantastic female Teemo! Captured perfectly by Rojano Photo.


Cinematic Ahri

Alexandre embodies this beautiful cosplay of Cinematic Ahri in a wonderful shot by Ahston Rose Cormier


Arcade Ahri

SammBAM slays as this beautiful cosplay of Arcade Ahri, captured by Colin Young-Wolff Photography.


Champion Pool Party

This epic League of Legends pool party features awesome summer skin cosplay of Annie (ValeryDls Cosplay), Ahri (Freya Devochka), Riven (Reiko Ai Cosplay), Sona (Sweety Kinomoto), Graves (Ozzman69), and Ezreal, shot fantastically by JohnnyOz Photography.

 

 


Pool Party Miss Fortune

This lovely Pool Party Miss Fortune is none other than xxDeiChAnXDD.



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Fri, 05 May 2017 04:04:34 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/league-of-legends-cosplay/crystal-brackett
<![CDATA[17 Hilarious Wronchi Animation Video Game Parodies]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/best-wronchi-animation-video-game-parodies/brandon-michaels?source=rss

Wronchi is awesome - if you haven't heard of them, you're missing out. They make funny video game parodies, but with hundreds of episodes in their channel, it's tough to know where to start. After all, Wronchi has been posting hilarious parodies on YouTube since 2011. So, for your pleasure, compiled here are the best Wronchi videos. 

From games like Dota 2Hearthstone, and The Legend of Zelda to Overwatch, Wronchi has parodied some of the most popular games across every platform. They have multiple ongoing series, like the Dota 2 Reporter, which focus on jokes within a particular game's community, with several one-offs of other video games sprinkled in between. With over 435,000 subscribers and 64 million views, Wronchi is obviously doing something right. Check out the internet's favorite Wronchi Animation parody videos and vote up the most hilarious ones!


17 Hilarious Wronchi Animation Video Game Parodies,

Jaina Vs Gul'dan

Pudge (DOTA2) Vs Viper

Welcome To Hanamura

Move The Payload!

Malfurion Vs Valeera

The DOTA 2 Reporter Episode 21: More Idiots

The DOTA2 Reporter Episode 7: Global Meltdown

Anduin Vs Garrosh

Move The Payload 2

Thrall Vs Rexxar


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Tue, 16 May 2017 03:11:51 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/best-wronchi-animation-video-game-parodies/brandon-michaels
<![CDATA[19 PS4 Games That Are Pretty Good, Not Great, But Pretty Good]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/pretty-good-ps4-games/brandon-michaels?source=rss

The very best games for PS4 have been covered to death already. Everyone knows that GTA V and The Last of Us were awesome. But have you checked out these pretty good games on PS4? There are a ton of decent PS4 titles that go un-played simply because they don't get a 10/10 from every gaming critic. Try widening your game selection for the PS4 with some lesser known games! 

Are you into survival horror games and cheesy teen slasher films? Then you should check out Until Dawn! Did you like Shadow of the Colossus and Ico? Then try The Last Guardian, though it's not as good. Or maybe you just live under a rock and you haven't heard about all the cool new game series that came out for PS4, like Rocket League.

Regardless, not all games can be winners, right? If you've got $35 bucks and you're looking for a solid gaming experience, these pretty good games for the PS4 are a great way to pass the time. Vote up the PS4 titles you've played that turned out to be decent. 


19 PS4 Games That Are Pretty Good, Not Great, But Pretty Good,

Until Dawn

What It's About: It's basically a playable horror movie where eight teenagers get slaughtered in a cabin in the woods.

Why You Should Play It: You're secretly a serial killer.


Infamous: Second Son

What It's About: The third title in the Infamous series, it's basically Grand Theft Auto, except you can't drive or shoot a gun, but you shoot lightening from your hands.

Why You Should Play It: Beating hookers with a baseball bat in GTA kind of loses its fun after a while.


Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag

What It's About: Assassin's Creed, but with pirates! 

Why You Should Play It: You liked the other ones, and this one's newer. Not necessarily better, but at least it's newer. 


Batman: Arkham Knight

What It's About: Batman. The Dark Knight. Also, Batman.

Why You Should Play It: Did you know it's got Batman? Seriously though, if you liked the other Arkham titles, this is just a newer, slightly not-as-good version of the first two games in the series. 


Mortal Kombat X

What It's About: Fatalities! You can cut a dude's face off!

Why You Should Play It: You feel like putting your button-mashing little brother in his place. 


Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare

What It's About: You've heard of Call of Duty before, right? Well this time, it's in the future. 

Why You Should Play It: You like first person shooters and being berated by teenagers online.


Injustice 2

What It's About: Plain and simple? Superheroes from the DC universe beating the sh*t out of each other.

Why You Should Play It: Either you're not any good at Mortal Kombat or you really like Batman, but you've already played all of the Arkham games.


Dishonored 2

What It's About: Part puzzle game, part stealth game. Play as a masked protagonist in Dishonored 2, sneaking around to look for ways to manipulate both environment and enemies to avoid detection.

Why You Should Play It: You're not having fun playing Overwatch and you want to try something a little less fast-paced. Plus, it's not like there's a new Bioshock or anything.


Rocket League

What It's About: Soccer, but with RC cars.

Why You Should Play It: Because it's soccer, but with RC cars. What's not to love?


Watch Dogs 2

What It's About: Basically Grand Theft Auto, but with no guns and more cell phone usage.

Why You Should Play It: You're really, really into Mr. Robot.



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Tue, 09 May 2017 08:28:07 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/pretty-good-ps4-games/brandon-michaels
<![CDATA[19 Games You Need To Play If You Liked The Last Of Us]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/games-like-the-last-of-us/aaron-edwards?source=rss

The Last of Us is simply one of the finest video game experiences ever crafted, giving rise to insane fan theories, cosplays, and fan art. When it was released in 2013, Naughty Dog's post-apocalyptic masterpiece captured the hearts of every gamer who played it. But what video games do you play after you finish The Last of Us? It's a tough act to follow, to be sure, but there are several survival horror games that have similar qualities as Joel and Ellie's (voiced by Troy Baker and Ashley Johnson, respectively) dystopian road trip.

You may have loved The Last of Us' emphasis on character writing, excellent acting, great stealth mechanics, and desperate gunplay. Well, lucky for you, there are many experiences with the same engaging elements, whether it be from Naughty Dog, Bioware, Telltale, Capcom, or a host of other beloved companies that have turned out classic games. So, if you're looking to fill in the hole in your heart with great games similar to The Last of Us, check out the list below!


19 Games You Need To Play If You Liked The Last Of Us,

Heavy Rain

For those of you who like the dour atmosphere and deep character exploration of The Last of Us, Heavy Rain might scratch the itch for more. You play as a detective, reporter, private eye, and father investigating the kidnapping of a young boy. There's lots of rain (if it wasn't obvious), lots of dark, character-driven stories, and plenty of moments that will have you squirming in horror. It's more focused on the narrative than gameplay, so don't expect many gunfights. But if you're all about being told a story, Heavy Rain might be right for you.


Red Dead Redemption

The post-apocalyptic genre is essentially the new western, which The Last of Us embraces with the road trip story structure and acoustic guitar melodies. If those parts of the game appeal to you, check out Red Dead Redemption. You play a rough-and-tumble former outlaw trying (and failing) to escape his past. The game has an open world structure that developer Rockstar is known for, but it cuts out the political satire that defines so much of the Grand Theft Auto games. 


Tomb Raider

When Crystal Dynamics decided to reboot the adventures of Lara Croft, they definitely took inspiration from Naughty Dog. Lara's new adventure is gritty, dangerous, and full of personal stakes. There's no sunglasses or shorts here - only a desperate need for survival at any cost. Sound familiar?


Uncharted 2: Among Thieves

Still considered by many to be the best Uncharted game, Uncharted 2 was when The Last Of Us writer's Neil Druckmann was really starting to have a commanding creative influence on Naughty Dog's games. Following Nathan Drake as he searches for the lost city of Shambhala, Uncharted 2 features the introduction of a fan-favorite character named Chloe. It also has some amazing set pieces, from a train sequence in the Himalayas to a collapsing building in Nepal. The character stories and dialogue have also made the game a classic that's very near and dear to many gamers' hearts.


BioShock Infinite

If you loved a game about Troy Baker looking after a young woman who is the key to saving a dystopian society, you're going to love this game about Troy Baker looking after a young woman who is the key to saving a dystopian society. Yes, you read that right.

In BioShock Infinite, the story takes place in the floating city of Colombia in an alternate 1912. You (a character named Joel, voiced by, you guessed it, Troy Baker) and mysterious Elizabeth (who has totally awesome dimension-hopping powers) are trying to escape the city before the bad guys can get their hands on her for their own evil purposes. It's a bit more run-and-gun than The Last of Us, but the story hits many similar emotional notes.


Dishonored

You play as Corvo, a deadly supernatural assassin who serves a noble royal family who rules over an alternate colonial-steampunk fantasy world powered by whale oil. When the royal family is killed and the young princess is kidnapped, you go on a one-man suicide mission to uncover the conspiracy behind the regicide and get the princess back. While the game has some spectacular stealth-based gameplay, the real heart of the experience is Corvo's relationship to the princess. It's another tough-guy-saves-little-girl story, but it does it in a fresh setting.


The Walking Dead

The Walking Dead's Season 1 tells a remarkably similar story to The Last of Us, but that doesn't mean it should be considered a rip-off by any means. Based off the popular Walking Dead comics (not the show), you play as Lee, a man convicted of murder who most protect a girl during the zombie apocalypse. If that sounds too familiar, don't worry. There are plenty of amazing twists and turns in the story as you play through its five-episode season. It's an experience that's similar, but also completely different, from The Last of Us.


The Mass Effect Trilogy

If third-person shooters with deep stories are your thing after The Last of Us, look no further than Bioware's beloved Mass Effect trilogy. It may not be post-apocalyptic, but this game puts emphasis on character relationships just as much as Naughty Dog's masterpiece. Much of the story has a very different flavor from dystopian fiction, but this game's character nuances changed the RPG genre forever. So, if you loved The Last of Us' characters, give the Mass Effect games a try.


Tales From The Borderlands

This is a pretty unorthodox choice, but The Last of Us and Tales From The Borderlands have two huge points in common. The first is the legendary actor, Troy Baker. Baker stars in both and turns in performances that elevate the games into the stratosphere. The second point is that both games emphasize family. The protagonists in Borderlands become a very dysfunctional and entertaining family, much in the same way Joel and Ellie come together as a surrogate father and daughter. 


Fallout 4

Another Fallout means another wasteland to explore. In this installment, you're a parent searching for your lost son. You may not have a surrogate child with you on the journey, but if you want to play as a scorned parent looking to fill a hole in their heart, this game will fit the bill. One thing this game has over The Last of Us is a portable nuclear bomb launcher, which automatically makes it better than pretty much everything else out there.



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Tue, 16 May 2017 03:34:39 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/games-like-the-last-of-us/aaron-edwards
<![CDATA[12 Amazing Ways Video Games Have Actually Helped People]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/video-games-that-helped-people/nathan-gibson?source=rss

Video game companies create one of the biggest forms of entertainment in the world, directly competing with movies, television, and music for people's attention. While games are well-known for their ability to entertain and amaze, there are proven health benefits of video games and other positive effects. In fact, there are plenty of real life skills learned from video games that people have utilized in reality to great effect.

Games have the capability to put players into all kinds of different scenarios and events that they might not otherwise ever get to experience in the real world. Although not every title is a realistic simulator that directly correlates to real life, there are certain skills, abilities, and life lessons that have been useful. Read on to discover how video games have had a sincere, positive effect on people and have even served as a platform to help save lives. 


12 Amazing Ways Video Games Have Actually Helped People,

World of Warcraft

When Hans Jorgen Olsen and his sister found themselves facing an attack from a moose, the 12-year-old used a skill he had learned in World of Warcraft to get out of trouble. Having distracted the animal enough so that it would come for him, allowing his sister to escape, he immediately pretended to be dead. He had learned of this idea after reaching level 30 as a hunter in the game, as they acquire an ability called “feign death” to trick enemies into ignoring them. The ploy worked and the young Norwegian kids both escaped the ordeal completely unharmed.


Pokemon Go Has Helped Lots Of Animals Get Rescued

Pokemon Go became a huge phenomenon almost the instant it was released in 2016, prompting millions of people to go outside in search of the virtual creatures. Other than the obvious benefits that came with getting some exercise and fresh air, the augmented reality game also led to a whole collection of animals being rescued. It turned out that the explorative nature of the app meant that people went to areas that they might not otherwise ever go near, allowing them to come across abandoned pets.

In one instance, a Reddit user was able to save a cat that had become stuck behind a junction box in the street. The rescue involved the fire and police department, as well as workers from the utility company responsible for the box. Other cases involved a young puppy being found in Texas and nursed back to health by a veterinary clinic and a group of 20 hamsters and seven mice that were found left in a cage in the middle of a park.


Minecraft Is Being Used To Teach Kids About Math, Architecture, And Design

Minecraft has become a juggernaut of the gaming industry since its release in 2011. It has sold more than 100 million copies and is now being used in schools around the world to teach kids a variety of lessons. In fact, the instructive potential of the title led Microsoft to create a special educational version specifically for use in the classroom. Teachers have used the game in all sorts of interesting ways.

Some methods include learning about architecture and town planning by building cities, modeling water flow in dams, and even discovering how the Great Fire of London was able to spread across a huge area so quickly. 


A Young Boy Recognized The Danger Of A Live Grenade Thanks To Counter-Strike

The first-person shooter Counter-Strike might not seem like it could have a positive impact in the real world, but that is exactly what the video game did in 2013. While a group of friends were out playing in the Philippine city of Mandaue, they discovered several unassuming objects. The youngsters began to play with the round items, unaware that they were actually incredibly dangerous.

Fortunately, 12-year-old Jose Darwin Garciano realized that they were actually grenades as he recognized the shape from the game. He quickly warned his friends to put them down, which allowed police to come and safely diffuse them. 


America’s Army Helped A North Carolina Man Provide Vital First Aid

After witnessing an SUV flip over on a highway in North Carolina, Paxton Galvanek was able to provide life-saving first aid using knowledge he had learned from a video game. Writing to the title’s developers, he explained how he was able to pull the victims out of a vehicle and then stop profuse bleeding thanks to techniques learned in a medical section of America’s Army - a video game developed to be used specifically by the US Army.

"I have received no prior medical training and can honestly say that because of the training and presentations within America’s Army, I was able to help and possibly save the injured men," Galvanek said.


A Disabled Man Was Saved From A House Fire By Other Online Players

A fire in the home of Robert Chambers could have proved fatal if not for the fact that he was playing an online game against other players through Facebook. Unable to reach his phone to call for help due to a disability, he instead reached out for assistance from the other online players in his game. They promptly responded by phoning emergency services and he was rescued by firefighters before any damage could be done. Without the help of the other online users, the 51-year-old would have likely died due to his muscular dystrophy severely limiting his mobility.


Young Boy Brought An Out-Of-Control Car To A Safe Stop Using Driving Skills Learned From Mario Kart

Gryffin Sanders, a 10-year-old boy from Colorado, managed to save the life of his elderly grandmother and his younger brother. The grandparent lost control of the vehicle after suffering a mild heart attack, but the car didn't stop - it kept cruising down the busy road at 60 miles per hour without anyone steering it. Using driving skills he had learned from playing Mario Kart, Gryffin took over the wheel and managed to direct the car into a ditch of mud away from the oncoming traffic. His heroic actions meant that there were no injuries to anyone in the vehicle.


Quick Reflexes, Bolstered By Video Games, Helped A Canadian Driver Avoid A Fatal Accident

Out of all of the skills and abilities that video games have been known to improve, perhaps the most researched and documented are a person’s reflexes. Canadian Matthew Krizsan certainly believes that years of playing games helped him when he had to quickly take evasive action to avoid a crash while driving on a highway in Ontario. With a truck crashing through the central barrier into his direction, Krizsan was able avoid it and other vehicles. He later explained to news reporters that he believed the instant reactions were a result of years of playing video games.


Dance Dance Revolution Was Instrumental In Rebuilding A Broken Leg

Luke McKinney was a regular Dance Dance Revolution player when he was involved in an incident in 2000. A cave collapse led to the student being crushed under rocks for six hours before he was rescued. The injury to his leg was so severe that he was unable to walk for months after the event - even now, he still has to wear a leg brace to help support the limb. One thing that did help him build back strength in his leg was DDR. He played it at arcades on the way to the hospital visits, which had a positive impact his rehabilitation. 


Wii Sports Helps The Elderly To Exercise And Remain Social

Out of all the games that Nintendo has released for the Wii, the most famous and popular among older gamers was almost certainly Wii Sports. Even those who had never experienced video games became enamored with it, especially the elderly. It proved to be incredibly beneficial as well, as various studies showed how the title had a large positive effect on those in nursing homes or retirement homes. Not only did it provide senior citizens with valuable exercise and activity, but it also provided a way for them to remain social as they could compete against others and take part in tournaments. 



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Thu, 30 Mar 2017 11:03:07 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/video-games-that-helped-people/nathan-gibson
<![CDATA[16 Obscure PC Games You've Probably Never Played Before]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/fun-obscure-pc-games/inigo-gonzalez?source=rss

There are tons of truly amazing PC games out there, more than enough to satisfy entire lifetimes. It makes sense, since PC gaming has been around for decades. The bench is super deep. Sure, there are some really good AAA games out there, but there are way more PC games no one knows about. Often, they can be more entertaining than the bigger titles.

Fun indie PC games have to be, well, really fun simply because they don't have the budget to render super-shiny graphics. In other words, they actually work super hard on the gameplay, character development, and story. That makes their titles shine. Check out these little-known PC games; hopefully you'll pick up a few and play 'em!


16 Obscure PC Games You've Probably Never Played Before,

Evil Genius

Evil Genius features base building and invader repulsion, similar to Dungeon Keeper, except with a '70s veneer. What more could you want? This game is a bit like tower defense, before tower defense became a thing.

Because this title has more strategic depth, it's far more engaging than simply "keep invaders out," especially because of all the superspy hijinks. Beware James Bond John Steele, one of the super agents who breaks into your lair. He wrecks bases like nobody’s business. Seriously, take him out no matter the cost. 


Prison Architect

You get to build prisons. Boom. Sold. 

Prison Architect is a game that requires a sarcastic or cynical player. It has a ton of social commentary bubbling just underneath the surface. While you might begin the game wanting to give your prisoners a decent life, it isn't long until you start calculating just how... cozy you can make their cells, just so you can cram in more prisoners. The game is all about making more money at the expense of human misery, and it might make you learn something about yourself in the process. 


Warmachine Tactics

Based on the tabletop war game Warmachine by Privateer Press, Warmachine Tactics is a deeply loyal adaptation. Armies are led by Warcasters, who have command of deadly Warjacks and powerful magics. You get to play as a journeyman Warcaster aligned with Cygnar, the most technologically advanced of all the factions. 

Though its single player campaign is incredibly fun, multiplayer is the shining jewel of the series. Nothing beats having your heavy Warjack wreck the steam right out of your friends' 'jacks. It's incredibly addictive, and it encourages only the most excellent smack talk. 


StarCrawlers

Have you ever played oldschool first person dungeon crawlers? There are some seriously amazing ones out there: Stonekeep, Arx Fatalis, and Legend of Grimrock, just to name a few. Almost all of them are fantasy, which is of course fantastic, but where are all the sci-fi dungeon crawlers? You know, stuff with pulse rifles, power armor, mecha fighters, and a dystopian, oppressive feel. Well, you can count all of 'em on one hand. You can count the good ones with a single finger. And that's StarCrawlers

In StarCrawlers, you play as a galactic mercenary, and it's exactly as awesome as it sounds. With innovative graphics, classic gameplay mechanics, and an engaging story rife with corporate intrigue, this relatively obscure game is well worth your time. 


Oh... Sir! The Insult Simulator

This game is truly, deeply amazing. Basically, you and a friend get together to hurl insults at each other. For points! Depending on the words you have access to, it’s possible to string together a gigantic phrase that one-shots whoever you’re dueling with. 

Play with your bestie, or your family, or some random stranger. Whatever. Just insult them to your heart’s content. What are you waiting for, you one-eyed badger who smells like your fathers socks? Get to it!


UnReal World

This isn’t a shooter made from the unreal engine, but rather a survival roguelike set in Iron Age Finland. While most roguelikes are typically hack and slash, this one is different. UnReal World takes far more patience and careful planning than most other roguelikes out there. You see, there are plenty of ways to die, from predatory animals to pirates and more, but winter is the real killer. If you hit winter unprepared, you'll end up starving or freezing to death. This is a game for people who want a little more depth in their RPGs.  


Guild Of Dungeoneering

Alright, so this one is a bit of a mouthful. The game is a turn-based dungeon crawler, with hints of base-building and CCG mechanics thrown in for good measure. Basically, you use cards to build the dungeon around you, from the hallways to the monsters to the loot. 

Your deck also has combat cards, which better allow you to combat the monsters you place in said dungeon. Then, you kill the monsters you play and explore the dungeon in order to gain levels and loot. It's simple, ridiculous fun.


NEO Scavenger

Look, survival roguelikes are an amazing experience. In NEO Scavenger, you wake up in an unfamiliar land that’s been devastated by... something. You'll have to play the game to find out. Anyway, the land is filled with empty cities and homes, all begging to be scavenged (which you need to do to survive). Despite the engaging fantasy, the game is also grounded in a kind of stark pragmatism. The most valuable item? A high-quality Pearson "Yukon" Canvas backpack.


Curious Expedition

In Curious Expedition, you play as a historically-significant scientist or explorer (such as Charles Darwin or Marie Curie), and go forth on exciting expeditions. But these adventures are fraught with danger, from starvation to killer tigers to volcanic eruptions. To win the game, you have to finish your expedition before the others do AND bring back as many artifacts and items as you can carry. 

Sure, you could totally bring that sacrificial mask back with you to gain vast fame and fortune, but it means leaving your rations behind. You should make it back to the ship before you starve. Break a leg!


Big Pharma

This game is super addictive. In essence, you head up a pharmaceutical company making life-saving medicine for huge amounts of profit. You'll research technologies, discover ingredients, and then build assembly lines to create your cure. There’s a huge business component as well.

Because the market is finite – there are only so many people with colds – it means your competitors can outmaneuver you simply by filling the market’s need for a particular cure and cut you out completely. You have to be unapologetically cut-throat in an industry that's supposed to be about healing people, and there's something delightfully evil about that.



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Tue, 09 May 2017 07:40:59 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/fun-obscure-pc-games/inigo-gonzalez
<![CDATA[23 Upsetting Behind-The-Scenes Secrets Of GameStop]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/game-stop-employee-tell-all/brandon-michaels?source=rss

Much like the games GameStop stocks, GameStop employee stories range from hilarious to terrifying. Tales of trashy GameStop customers litter message boards across the Interweb, but some of the best gossip comes from employees who know the company's quirks and secrets. Anyone who's worked a retail job knows it's exhausting, but GameStop actually cracked the list of Top 10 Worst Places to Work, so it's no surprise some less than stellar stuff occurs behind those glass doors. Employees are overworked and underpaid, drained of the manna they try so hard to sell. They're constantly pushed to hit sales marks, move product, and get pre-orders, often with no bathroom breaks. 

Even if it's run by people more apathetic and detached than the Master Hand, GameStop still provides some perks for its employees and customers to take advantage of. Geeks like GameStop too, for some reasons more obvious than others. Where else can you sell back old Rock Band drum kits and copies of Madden 2004? So here's the GameStop scoop, from the good to the bad to the acne-covered. 


23 Upsetting Behind-The-Scenes Secrets Of GameStop,

You've Got Two Opportunities A Year To Get Hired

From gamestop_ama:

"The best times to drop off your application are in September for holiday hiring, or in about May for the summer. Due to the fact that the company gives us no payroll to work with, there is not really too much of a chance of being hired any other time in the year."


Even The Customers Are Rude To Female Employees

From GameStopGirl:

"Customers definitely treat the male and female employees differently. Lots of people did not want to speak to female employees, either because they were nervous or because they felt like as girls, we wouldn't assist them as well as a male employee. I also usually had to push good games a lot harder to convince people they were actually good."


It's Not All Bad

From FalselyNamed:

"Although time rarely permits, my favorite part of the job is to just have candid conversations about games with people who enjoy them. It's also always nice to see people walk out with a game they didn't even know existed, but are pumped to get home and start."


They Treat Their Employees Like Cattle

From gamestop_ama:

"Everyone thinks it's like the Discovery Zone of jobs where all you do is talk about and play games all day, but in reality it's just another retail job.

If you (as a 16-year-old) were hired, you would be a Game Advisor. A GA is a dime a dozen; if you aren't meeting expectations, you could be let go and ten minutes later have someone else fill your spot.

Your job as a GA is ringing people up and getting reservations on new games and signing people up for Power Up cards. Oh, and alphabetizing the walls. Please, God, make sure you know how to read."


If You Don't Get Pre-Orders, You Don't Get Hours

From gamestop_ama

"I did witness some employees being dishonest about pre-orders in order to secure one. We had to be extremely pushy to get them (contrary to what district managers and other higher-ups who have never worked in the store thought) because, if we didn't, your hours got cut."


They Force The Staff To Push Pre-orders

From gamestop_ama:

"Reserves were the death of me! The expectation went from 15% to 20% to 30% to some obscene unattainable percentage that Jesus himself couldn't reach."


Management Is Living Below The Poverty Line

From GS_Ex_employee:

"I started at 28K-a-year. I was located in the southeast. It was at 33K when I quit.

(I worked) Anywhere between the required 44 to 60 a week. You try not to do the math and see where you are hourly; it will only hurt your soul."


They Don't Care About Gamers, They Care About Numbers

From GS_Ex_employee:

"You could be the most knowledgeable, charismatic, prompt employee... but if your numbers weren't up to snuff, you would be encouraged to set goals and cut hours until you quit or got better. Early on management sincerely wanted people to succeed. The new management would try and convince me otherwise."


They Treat Women Like A Commodity

From GS_Ex_employee:

"Women get better performance numbers. Simple as that. I hired based on what I thought a good employee was; sure enough I had a great mix of all races, ages, and both genders.

Of the two females I had, one was a true gamer and a bit socially awkward. The other, a really hard worker when it came to task-work but not the most knowledgeable. Not saying the gamer was less attractive than the other, but the other knew how to use it to produce numbers.

Management constantly wanted me to move the gamer out."


They Suck The Will To Live From It's Employees

From formated4tv

"The longer you're there, the more I think the general public just annoys the f*ck out of you and breaks you as a human being.

There were two groups of regulars: some that were really nice and would reserve five-to-six games at a time (young rich kids, one eventually got hired so he would buy more stuff from work), and some people stunk like sh*t and wouldn't shut the f*ck up about WoW or some other ridiculous game.

One guy would come in daily and tell me about his sweet boots in Oblivion or some other nonsense piece of clothing on his character."



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Wed, 26 Apr 2017 06:56:05 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/game-stop-employee-tell-all/brandon-michaels
<![CDATA[22 Skyrim Mods That Will Make You Seriously Crack Up]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/funniest-skyrim-mods/justin-andress?source=rss

If one thing can interrupt the monotony of Skyrim's hundreds (and hundreds) of hours of gameplay, it's a funny Skyrim mod, guaranteed to add some laughs to your quest. Sometimes it feels like Sheogorath is the only one actually having a good time tromping through the Nords’ homeland. While there’s plenty of bloodlust, where are lulz when you're searching for Skyrim's Easter eggs? Fortunately, in the five years since the game’s release, modders have taken it upon themselves to dream up the best Skyrim mods, many of which are more for humor than help. 

Designed to elicit a good chuckle from players submerged in the hours-long adventure, these clever mods introduce elements ranging from Sonic the Hedgehog to Futurama to a game about slaying a time-traveling dragon. Gotta love a good crossover. The mods for Skyrim featured here rank among the funniest and most useful additions to the game, sure to spice up your next run-in with a flying, fire-breathing lizard.


22 Skyrim Mods That Will Make You Seriously Crack Up,

Pony. Pony Pony. PONY!

Behold The Cheese Explosion

Let ‘Skyrim’ Tell You Exactly How Funny It Is

As If The Trolls Weren’t Already Big Enough Dicks

Oh, You Got An Arrow In The Knee? How About A Lightning Bolt In The Ass?

Snap Into The Most Macho Dragon Of All Time

The Legacy Of Brhuce Hammar

The Mod That Lets Bears Wail On The Lute

Sonic v. Dragons

Because No Goat Would Take A Dragon Shout Lying Down


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Fri, 16 Dec 2016 07:22:10 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/funniest-skyrim-mods/justin-andress
<![CDATA[Arcade Ports That Just Didn't Work Out]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/worst-arcade-video-game-ports/collin-flatt?source=rss

The video game landscape dramatically changed once home console technology caught up to, and surpassed, the beastly coin-op arcade machines. Lots of gamers have fond memories of jamming quarters into the best classic arcade games like Galaga and Gauntlet. Neighborhood arcades exploded in popularity during the '80s, even though they were often dark, dirty, and in some cases, unsafe. Console developers like Atari, Sega, and Nintendo saw huge potential in developing arcade ports, and despite the limitations of home hardware, decided to take up the challenge. 

Early days of the Atari 2600 saw some fantastic console versions of Atari arcade classics, such as Berzerk! and Ms. Pac Man. Sega's legendary Space Harrier looked and played great on the 8-bit Master System. Taito's Bubble Bobble and Capcom's Contra were faithfully added to the list of all NES games, and are considered two of the greatest games of their era. Tekken 3 squeezed every ounce of 3D power out of the PSX, and Street Fighter: Alpha 2 was a nearly perfect translation on the Sega Saturn. 

However, not all of the arcade video game ports looked and played as well as those classics, and some were absolute garbage on home consoles. Compiled below is a list of the biggest failures - vote up the coin-op arcade ports that bring back horrifying memories. 


Arcade Ports That Just Didn't Work Out,

Double Dragon

Double Dragon introduced the co-op brawler genre to the world, and is considered one of the greatest arcade games of all time. Players had a bevy of punches, kicks, and grabs to use on enemies - some of whom were armed with weapons that you could take and use. Most importantly, you could team up with a buddy at the arcade cabinet and wipe out some street trash together.

The NES version wasn't terrible, but it didn't offer co-op play, which really takes the "double" out of Double Dragon. Worse yet, the Sega-developed version of Double Dragon for the Master System was superior in every way and even included co-op gameplay.


Dragon's Lair

The original Dragon's Lair was groundbreaking for its use of the LaserDisc format and for featuring an interactive cartoon illustrated by the legendary Don Bluth. Ultimately, it wasn't much more than a series of button-and-joystick command QTEs, but no one had seen anything like it ever before. 

The NES port didn't play like, or even resemble, the arcade version whatsoever. The hardware and software limitations of the console meant that the innovative animated arcade adventure was translated into a slow and lifeless side-scrolling platformer. 


Hard Drivin'

Here's another case of a greedy publisher trying to cram a great coin-op game into a home console with limited specs. What made Hard Drivin' such a popular racing game was the groundbreaking 3D technology that allowed for realistic physics and awesome crash cam replays. 

The Sega Genesis wasn't meant to churn out 3D graphics, but that didn't stop Tengen from trying to make it happen. Hard Drivin' runs at about 10 fps on the 16-bit console, and the graphics are so blocky that the cow in front of the barn looked more like blocky sign. But it "mooed" when you ran it over, so that was pretty cool.


Karate Champ

NES fans love Karate Champ and wax nostalgic about this terribly clunky fighting game. Those people have most likely never experienced the original arcade version, which looked and played great, utilizing a unique two-joystick control scheme that rewarded patience and strategy over button mashing.

The NES version had fat sprites that were disproportionate and missing way too many frames of animation. The hit detection was horrendous - you could score points on a jump kick that didn't strike anywhere near your opponent. In addition, the AI was so terrible, it was kind of funny. The attempted port was admirable, but Data East just couldn't translate the spirit of Karate Champ to the weaker home console market properly. 


Pac-Man

Pac-Man was a cultural touchstone in the '80s and its popularity in arcades almost guaranteed Atari a huge hit when they decided to port it to the 2600. A shortened development schedule dashed those dreams when this nearly unrecognizable version of the Namco classic hit the market in 1982.

The maze itself was stretched out of proportion, with the secret tunnels placed along the top and bottom of the screen instead of at the sides. All of that might have been tolerable if you could see each and every ghost on the screen at the same time, which you couldn't. Yet Atari still chose to release it in this deplorably unplayable condition. 


Pit-Fighter

Pit-Fighter was the first arcade title to use digitized actors in a fighting game, paving the way for mega-franchises like Mortal Kombat and NBA Jam. The action was fast and allowed players to interact with the crowd. You could even grab weapons and trash cans to use on opponents during fights.

While the SNES console had arguably better specs than the Genesis, the THQ-developed version of Pit-Fighter was much worse than its Sega counterpart, which was ported by the talented team at Tengen. The character sprites were very small, which made the fighting space way too large, and the colors were muddy and muted like tomato soup. You can't interact with the crowd and the action is notably slower than both the arcade and the Genesis versions. This steamy pile should be avoided at all costs.


Street Fighter II

Genesis fans were pissed when Capcom ported Street Fighter II to the SNES, but left their console out. Almost a year later, Sega fans got their wish, and spent money on a crappy port that was so much worse than the nearly-perfect SNES version. The graphics were somewhat comparable and the sound was passable. The big issue was the Genesis controller - which only has three buttons - that required players to hit the start button to switch between punches and kicks. In a fighting game.

This meant fast reflexes and combo timing won games. If you wanted to play it properly, you needed to buy a six-button gamepad, which Sega just happened to have ready for release when the game came out. 


Virtua Fighter 2

Virtua Fighter was the first 3D fighting game ever released and set the table for legendary franchises like Tekken and Soul Calibur. Virtua Fighter 2 refined the fighting engine from the original, and ran at a smooth, buttery 60 fps. Virtua Fighter 2 was also one of the very first 3D games to use mo-cap animation.

The Genesis couldn't handle any true 3D graphics, so it made no sense that they would release Virtua Fighter for Sega's 16-bit console. Yet that's exactly what they did. Virtua Fighter 2, known for groundbreaking graphics, was left to rot as a middling 2D brawler on the dying Sega Genesis. 


Donkey Kong

Donkey Kong, like Pac-Man, is one of the all-time arcade greats. And Donkey Kong, like Pac-Man, got an absolute turd of a port on the Atari 2600. Coleco ported a great version of the game for their newfangled ColecoVision, and then developed this unmitigated disaster for the competing Atari console. The barrels looked like Ritz crackers, Donkey Kong looked like Jabba the Hutt, and the hammer looked like a miniature version of the Cross. 


Mortal Kombat

Mortal Kombat wasn't a very good fighting game, but it was bloody and allowed players to dismember their opponents. The fighting engine was almost non-existent, but it had somewhat real-looking players players and a visceral uppercut that felt good every single time you landed it.

The Genesis version didn't come with the blood and gore turned on by default, but a simple code entered at the title screen (A, B, A, C, A, B, B) activated it. Too bad the SNES version didn't have any blood at all - it was replaced by sweat and they threw out the signature fatalities altogether. Talk about disappointing. 



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Fri, 07 Apr 2017 04:07:54 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/worst-arcade-video-game-ports/collin-flatt
<![CDATA[The 14 Biggest Flops In Video Game History]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/biggest-video-game-flops-of-all-time/brandon-michaels?source=rss

The video game industry is one of the most profitable fields in the world, with franchises like all the Mario games and Grand Theft Auto. But even the best farms tend to yield bad crops once in a while, and the game industry is no exception. Now, these aren't just video games with terrible endings - these are the games that were devastatingly disastrous from the get-go.

Some titles on this list cost developers and publishers hundreds of thousands of dollars (only to sell a handful of copies), while others had excessive hype that gave way to piss-poor reviews. Even worse, a few of these games came out so glitchy and technically flawed that they should never have left the public beta stage. This list of video games contains the worst failures the industry has seen, including one that was such a debacle it resulted in destroying a console manufacturer. Check out the biggest video game flops of all time. 


The 14 Biggest Flops In Video Game History,

Daikatana

John Romero was kind of a big deal in the '90s. He was the head of id Software and designer of Wolfenstein 3D, Doom, and Quake. So when he announced Daikatana, people were understandably very excited. But then, things took a bad turn when an ad campaign launched, stating, "John Romero's About to Make You His B*tch." The horizon looked even bleaker when the developing studio, Ion Storm, tried (and failed) to quickly switch engines before the scheduled 1999 release. 

Thus, not only were the fans mad about the ads, but the game was released late and had terrible gameplay mechanics. Ion Storm's parent company, Eidos, dumped nearly $40 million into the game before deciding to call time of death. 


Duke Nukem Forever

Duke Nukem Forever was the long awaited sequel to the incomparable Duke Nukem. It was supposed to be released in 1998, but was inexplicably delayed time and time again until 2006. Since the game development started in the '90s, it had some pretty outdated graphics. Add the fact that the developers and publishers were fighting over funding and licensing rights, and you've got the end-result of a heavily criticized flop. 


Grim Fandango

Grim Fandango is a bit of a cult classic from LucasArts. Released in 1998, the game received a lot of awards, recognized for its amazing soundtrack and adventure game mechanics. Oddly enough, despite the high critical acclaim, the game didn't sell more than 500,000 copies even several years after its release. 


Tomb Raider: The Angel of Darkness

Tomb Raider was a massive franchise in the '90s - one which game publisher Eidos tried to cash in during 2003. Unfortunately, their title Angel of Darkness went through two different development teams and countless delays. Instead of the incredible, innovative product they promised, gamers were greeted with an incomplete, glitchy game riddled with controller issues.

The game was such a flop that it almost brought about the end of the Lara Croft franchise. Thankfully, the series was saved when it was rebooted under new developers years later. 


Shenmue

Shenmue was released on the Sega Dreamcast in 1997. With a $47 million budget and an excellent dev team determined to outshine PC games, Shenmue was sure to be a hit. Lead director Suzuki introduced cutting-edge features like an open world, a day/night cycle, and early concepts of the RPG genre that would influence the video game industry for years. Unfortunately, the game was too far ahead of its time to be a huge success. 

The game was riddled with technical issues upon its release. Worse, development costs had run so high that it actually contributed to putting Sega's whole Dreamcast console out of business


E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial

E.T. was all the rage in the '80s. Atari spent around $21 million for the licensing rights alone and paid $200,000 (along with an all-expenses-paid vacation to Hawaii) to secure the right developer. The E.T. video game was highly anticipated at its release in 1982, becoming a popular sought-after Christmas gift. Stores over-ordered in anticipation, only to be met with disappointment because the title flopped due to mediocre gameplay. 

It eventually sold 1.5 million units, and is still one of the best-selling Atari 2600 titles. However, over 3 million cartridges went unsold, resulting in a huge commercial loss. Atari buried these millions of copies of E.T. in a landfill in New Mexico, which were later unearthed in 2014. The total money lost after all was said and done? $536 million


Okami

Ōkami is one of those strange flops that left many scratching their heads in confusion. While the game was highly rated for great gameplay, it sold only 270,000 copies in North America during its first year of release in 2006. Clover Studios, the developers, was dissolved shortly after. By 2009, Ōkami had sold a total of 900,000 copies, for which it won the Guinness World Record for "least commercially successful winner of a Game of the Year Award." 


Pac-Man

Pac-Man first came to fruition in 1972 as an arcade game. However, in 1983, the video game industry hit an all-time low. In an effort to increase sales, Atari decided to purchase the exclusive rights to the yellow man from Namco, and released a poorer quality version of Pac-Man for the Atari 2600 console. Initial sales were a success, but Atari ambitiously produced 12 million copies, nearly half of which were never sold. 

Oddly enough, this sub-par port of the arcade cabinet original holds the title of "best selling game" for the Atari 2600, with over 7 million units sold. 


Superman

Video games saw a surge of superhero games in the late '90s and early 2000s. Unfortunately, many of the titles were shameless money-grabs that were churned out as quickly as possible. Superman was no exception. In addition to production delays and basic control problems, the game suffered from serious technical issues. Most notably, this title is often referred to as the worst game of all time.


No Man's Sky

Hello Games, the developers for No Man's Sky, caught a lot of flack for "falsely advertising" their game. Steam featured ads for the game that displayed "a different type of combat, unique buildings, 'ship flying behavior' and [different] creature sizes." They were also criticized for displaying ads for the game with higher quality graphics than can be attained in-game.

Complaints were so drastic that the Advertising Standards Authority started an investigation into the advertising campaign of the game (which ultimately concluded that the devs didn't mislead customers). Although the game was a massive critical flop, it was a financial success, raking in an estimated $43 million. They sold over 800,000 copies of the game in the first year of its release, despite losing over 90% of their fan base within two weeks time. 



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Thu, 23 Mar 2017 10:19:14 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/biggest-video-game-flops-of-all-time/brandon-michaels
<![CDATA[The 10 Most Unsatisfying Game Endings In History]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/unsatisfying-video-game-endings/amanda-lynn?source=rss

For gamers, one of the worst feelings in the world is when, after you've logged hundreds of hours into a video game and finally cut down some of the most difficult bosses, your screen abruptly goes black and the credits start rolling. No explanations, no accolades, no fanfare, and no closure. The game just leaves unanswered questions lying around like dirty laundry. Or, worse yet, the ending is filled with clichés, confusion, and is a setup for what is sure to be an awful sequel (looking at you, Final Fantasy).

If you've played the titles below to completion, you might have thrown a controller at your TV or your handheld down the nearest flight of stairs. You're not alone - plenty of gamers have also experienced that WTF moment. After all, for every video game with the most amazing storylines, there are ten equally frustrating and disappointing ones. Vote up the games in this list with the most unsatisfying game endings that left you feeling betrayed. 


The 10 Most Unsatisfying Game Endings In History,

Borderlands

Distilling the vast experience of Borderlands into a single goal isn't too hard: find the vault. As such, you would think that the discovery of the vault at the end of your perilous journey would be the most epic moment in gaming history. But, uh, that's simply not the case. Says designer Paul Helquist, "The ending of the game, for better or worse, didn't paint us into any corners." It also didn't satisfy any player expectations, unless the Borderland devs have some way of pushing updates for a 200-year-long cliffhanger. 


Dance Dance Revolution Extreme

There are a few ways to "beat" DDR, such as scoring AAA on every song on the hardest difficult or out-dancing your friends (assuming your DDR expertise doesn't repel all other human beings). Let's say you're a purist and you consider scoring AAA on every song the pinnacle of one's arrow-stomping achievements. Know how the game rewards you for reaching that goal? With a high score and an announcer proclaiming your dance to be so great, he's "crying buckets of tears!" Uh... Cool, thanks? Well, at least it's not the South Park version of scoring a million points on Guitar Hero, right? 


Fable II

In a game where choices matter, you would think the choices would be a little more rooted in reality. With Fable II, you get the dubious honor of making decisions with flat-out ridiculous consequences. This, as you might imagine, does little to make the ending satisfying for players. 


Fallout 3

If you're developing an open world game, it's tough to give it an ending - after all, you want players to keep consuming content. Games like Fallout 3 are meant for replay, but not if you give the game an ending that renders it impossible to play in the world you've spent so much time crafting with your choices. The critical reception of Fallout 3's ending created a lot of pressure for devs to beef up Fallout 4 (but that's another story of mismanaged narrative potential).


Final Fantasy X

The Final Fantasy franchise may have some great storytelling, but some of their game endings leave much room for improvement. Final Fantasy X is a prime example of an unsatisfying ending. In fact, the whole was-it-a-dream-or-was-it-death ending was so confusing to players, Final Fantasy X-2 had to come out to clarify things. And yet, FFX-2 didn't shed any light and just further ruined everything. 


The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening

Granted, the title was a huge hint, but the it-was-all-a-dream trope is strong with this one. Critically acclaimed as one of the most influential handheld games of the '90s, Link's Awakening takes you on a grand adventure, only to cop out in the final stage with an unsatisfying ending. 


Batman: Arkham Asylum

Fans freaked out at the ending of Batman: Arkham Asylum, where the Joker was behaving so out-of-character that players could not wrap their collective head around the size of the ball dropped by Arkham writers. Staying true to a beloved cultural icon isn't easy when expanding that character's canon, but the ending was too far a stretch for fans to get on board with the failed "twist."


Mass Effect 3

The narrative-driven action series Mass Effect teaches you that choices matter... Until they don't. In Mass Effect 3, every choice a player makes before the final decision is ultimately rendered meaningless when they're presented with three conclusive scenarios - none of which answered fan questions or even seemed to relate to the storyline that players spent some 40+ hours tailoring.


Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor

You are Talion, a ranger of Gondor with wraith-like abilities on a dark quest to avenge the murder of your family. Against impossible odds, you hound the Black Hand of Sauron and finally get to the tower for that epic boss battle, only to be met with a mediocre fight and a confusingly short ending. Talk about disappointing. 


Life Is Strange

The narrative game Life is Strange puts you in the shoes of Max, a high school photography student who one day attains the ability to manipulate time. Over the course of five episodes, you're tasked with fitting into a new school, reuniting with an old friend, uncovering who is behind a series of sexual assaults on campus, and saving the town from total destruction.

Choices matter in this game, leading ultimately to two possible endings. Unfortunately, both endings leave a lot to be desired, especially so when one of the endings is about as plain and flavorless as it gets. Driving off into the sunset? Really? 



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Mon, 24 Oct 2016 09:15:38 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/unsatisfying-video-game-endings/amanda-lynn
<![CDATA[12 Criminally Underrated Nintendo 64 Games That Deserve More Credit]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/best-underrated-nintendo-64-games/stephen-reyes?source=rss

We all spent hundreds of hours playing the best N64 fighting games like Super Smash Bros. and Mortal Kombat, but this list seeks to highlight the underrated N64 games that just never got enough credit. If you were lucky enough to spend any time with these hidden N64 gems, you'll understand why others should give them a try. The list below of underrated titles come from a pool of all Nintendo 64 games include shooters, RPGs, and even sandbox games that were way ahead of their time. Vote in saluting these classic, overlooked N64 games.


12 Criminally Underrated Nintendo 64 Games That Deserve More Credit,

Blast Corps

Blast Corps is simplicity perfected. A nuclear missile carrier is out of control and your job is to clear a path for it by destroying everything in its way. Failure to do so results in a nuclear cataclysm. Senseless destruction is one of the most wonderful things about video games (GTA, anyone?) and publisher Rare gave players just about all they could handle. Throw in awesome vehicles, non-stop action, and challenging puzzles, and you've got a recipe for a true classic.


Goemon's Great Adventure

Goemon's Great Adventure is considered by many to be the best side-scroller ever released for the Nintendo 64. The game is a co-op quest through a surreal version of Japan's historic Edo period. Goemon, the main character, idolizes screen-legend James Dean as the "ultimate ninja," which is a highlight of the game's bizarre humor. The game also features clear influences from the Castlevania franchise, with Goemon battling monsters while the game repeatedly transitions from day to night. You might not understand all the Japanese humor and references, but the gameplay is stellar. 


Mischief Makers

Mischief Makers was released in 1997 at a time when most games were going all-in on 3D graphics. The game's 2.5D graphics give it an extremely unique aesthetic that, sadly, may have harmed its sales, which is a shame because whatever effort was saved on the graphics was put directly into the gameplay. Robo-maid Marina battles her away across Planet Clancer by shaking pretty much everything in sight. Shaking items and enemies often causes them to drop power-ups and allows you to use the item or enemy as a projectile. The level design is top notch, using the grab-and-shake mechanic to send you careening around the levels like a parkour expert. It's a very underrated platformer.


Quest 64

Quest 64 was the first RPG released for the Nintendo 64. One of the most interesting aspects of the game is the leveling system. In most RPGs, you simply gain XP by defeating enemies or completing tasks, but Quest 64 actually awards you XP based on how you specifically did in a particular battle. For example, if you took a lot of damage in a fight, that XP goes straight to your defense. This made the game great for younger gamers who might be trying out an RPG for the very first time, and is very suitable for those already familiar with role-playing games.


Snowboard Kids

Snowboard Kids is one of those perfect party games. It is relatively easy to pick up and play, but has its own little wrinkles that separate it from the other Mario Kart clones of the day. Items and weapons must be purchased with gold, which is scattered along the course, but you can also get gold by performing totally radical tricks while speeding downhill. Any game that rewards you with cash for stylin' out on the slopes is a game worth playing.


WinBack

If you're a fan of third-person shooters, you likely owe some props to WinBack. Where games like Metal Gear Solid concentrated on using cover for stealth, WinBack decided to make it part of the combat. The game was also one of the first to give your gun a laser sight, which is now pretty standard. Playing as the awesomely named Jean-Luc Cougar, you've got to stop a devastating laser satellite from being used by terrorists. While GoldenEye 007 covered the N64 first-person shooter, Winback handled the third-person just as well.


Ogre Battle 64: Person of Lordly Caliber

Ogre Battle 64: Person of Lordly Caliber not only has a hell of a title, but is also a great game. The game is a real-time strategy RPG that covers some heavy topics, including civil war, morality, and classism, amongst others. You play as Magnus Gallant, a captain in the military who can command battalions of up to 50 troops at a time. The storyline is sweepingly epic, featuring political intrigue, revolutions, and hordes of the Netherworld. It is currently available on Nintendo's Virtual Console, so get yourself a copy and become a person of lordly caliber.


Vigilante 8

Vigilante 8 is an incredibly fun vehicular combat game that gives the Twisted Metal franchise a complete run for its money. Set in an alternate universe in 1975 where an oil crisis has the United States on the brink of an apocalypse, you play as a band of vigilantes keeping order in the now-lawless world while battling with an evil oil consortium. The game is just downright fun and many of the levels feature special weapons and wrinkles, such as the ability to launch ballistic missiles and military aircrafts. It's over-the-top mayhem and Mad Max-style action at its finest.


Jet Force Gemini

Jet Force Gemini takes all the great elements of '70s and '80s sci-fi movies and blends them together in an incredible third-person shooter package. Created by the same developers as Blast Corps, it incorporates the swarm and formation mechanics of '80s arcade space shooters like Galaga to reward players for taking out large swaths of enemies at a time. Boasting 15 non-linear worlds, Jet Force Gemini is a deep game that hidden gem-hunters will really appreciate. 


Space Station Silicon Valley

What makes Space Station Silicon Valley truly stand out is its "animal-possession" gameplay mechanic. You play as Evo, a badly damaged robot who, in order to survive, must stun mutated animals and take over their bodies, using their various abilities to solve puzzles and defeat other enemies. Along the way, you are slowly able to repair your robotic body. The game possesses a very wry British sense of humor as it was developed by DMA Design, the creators of Grand Theft Auto. It did not sell many copies during its original release despite critical acclaim, which ensured its hidden gem status.



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Mon, 10 Apr 2017 05:20:04 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/best-underrated-nintendo-64-games/stephen-reyes
<![CDATA[21 Pretty Good (But Not Great) Horror Games]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/pretty-good-horror-games/crystal-brackett?source=rss

If you're looking for horror video games that aren't too overwhelmingly terrifying that you'll wet the bed, game devs have definitely made some titles that fit the bill. There are plenty of good horror video games out there that are as creepy and scary as they are underwhelming. These aren't titles known for being the best psychological horror or survival horror games, but they'll definitely keep you on the edge of your seat. 

For your casual frightful gaming pleasure, studios of all sorts have come together to bring you a collection of scary video games that are good, but not great. They're not Silent Hill, they're no Five Nights at Freddy's, and they're certainly nowhere near Eternal Darkness or Amnesia: Dark Descent, but they're still pretty decent horror games that will give you a thrill to pass the time. Vote up the games that you find pleasantly entertaining with a good enough scare. 


21 Pretty Good (But Not Great) Horror Games,

Fatal Frame

What it's about: Search an abandoned Japanese mansion and fight ghosts with your antique camera.

When you should play it: Real haunted houses are too scary for you and Luigi's Mansion isn't scary enough. 


The Suffering

What it's about: Action-oriented third-person shooter where you must fight through waves of monsters in a bloody battle to unlock your forgotten past.

When you should play it: Your favorite game is House of the Dead but you don't want to go out and spend money on arcade tokens.


Siren

What it's about: Make your way through unmapped terrain in this survival stealth game where you pinpoint the location of zombie-creatures by tapping into their senses.

When you should play it: When a time-consuming game where you have to sneak everywhere in some run-of-the-mill graphics sounds great to you.


Theresia

What it's about: A visual novel combined with a psychological horror story that takes you on an adventure filled with twisted tales.

When you should play it: You're in the mood for a ghost story, but don't actually want to go through the effort of engaging in full-on gameplay.


The Path

What it's about: Folklore-themed horror game that's super artsy and inspired by various tales of Little Red Riding Hood.

When you should play it: You want to play a game with no winning path and you're down to just explore some unsettling, fairy-tale-themed environments.


Among The Sleep

What it's about: You're a two-year-old who has to hide from their mom and other scary random household things in first-person view.

When you should play it: You want to feel like a big baby and you also want a Five Nights at Freddy's game with a twist.


Layers Of Fear

What it's about: Navigate a horrific and psychedelic labyrinth of your own art.

When you should play it: You're not really into a deep storyline, but you know that jump scares will get you. Every. Single. Time.


FEAR: First Encounter Assault Recon

What it's about: Fight paranormal threats as a member of the US government's special ops unit. 

When you should play it: You want a game that's just as mindless as Call of Duty but also scary.


NightCry

What it's about: You thought you would enjoy a really cool cruise but some creepy entity is murdering all of the guests and crew members.

When you should play it: Your trip to the Queen Mary wasn't the haunted adventure you thought it would be.


Slender: The Arrival

What it's about: Essentially the original Slender: The Eight Pages plot but with better graphics and more mechanics and now, apparently, both you and Slender Man are in the same house. 

When you should play it: You've played the previously released titles featuring Slender Man so many times they're not scary anymore.



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Fri, 24 Mar 2017 07:27:58 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/pretty-good-horror-games/crystal-brackett
<![CDATA[14 Hidden Backstories You Never Knew About Your Favorite Games]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/video-games-with-deep-backstories/nathan-gibson?source=rss

CAUTION: This list contains plot spoilers for various video games. 

Video games are arguably the most diverse type of media and while lots of titles avoid storytelling, there are plenty of games that incorporate compelling storylines. While most backstories are associated with the RPG genre, a surprising amount of different games also boast rich narratives. Sure, not every type of genre needs an interesting or intriguing plot to make it fun to play, but providing a narrative solidifies the purpose for why a player is going out on their adventure and justifies the events that are taking place.

Although most games that want to include a story will do so in a rather obvious way, such as straightforward objectives issued by an NPC in a single-player campaign, there are some titles that hide an elaborate backstory. The narrative is purposefully difficult to uncover, with bits of information spread out here and there like a delectable bread crumb trail. Other times, the story is just hidden due to technical limitations preventing a studio from including everything they want in the game. In some cases, publishers opt to sell extra content to fans in the form of DLCs.

Whatever the case, it's clear that the most popular games in the world have hidden backstories that are as bizarre as they are interesting. Check out the list below for crazy storylines behind familiar games and vote up the ones that shocked you. 


14 Hidden Backstories You Never Knew About Your Favorite Games,

Earthworm Jim

Sega released Earthworm Jim for the SNES in 1994. It's a run-and-gun platformer where you play as an earthworm—Can you guess its name?—that fights enemies and wears a special suit that gives it human-like abilities. It's all a bit vague and amorphous. Like, have you ever wondered how Jim got that suit? 

The answer, as it turns out, is pretty disappointing: it just fell on top of him out of the clear blue sky. And those enemies he's fighting? They want the suit for themselves. Really. That's it. 


Fallout 3

Many players of the Fallout series may be unaware that the vaults that kept everyone safe during nuclear war were not just safe havens. In fact, they were all used for experimentation, with the inhabitants tested as lab rats in a variety of different conditions and circumstances in each individual vault. This includes having vaults with only members of a certain sex, vaults with only children, vaults where the dwellers had to sacrifice a person every year, and even a vault that pumped psychedelic drugs into all its inhabitants. While the scientific trials run by Vault-Tec don’t play a big part in the overall plot in each of the games, there is a surprisingly detailed history of the experiments.


Halo: Combat Evolved

Throughout the Halo series, players control super soldiers known as Spartans to battle the Covenant and the Flood. These armored combatants aren’t simply normal men and women placed inside special suits. The real backstory behind their creation is far more depressing: a fictional military known as the UNSC kidnapped the Spartans when they were young children and put them through years of extensive training to become the best soldiers. They then underwent a series of surgical augmentations and genetic enhancements that killed half of those involved before being sent into battle in the iconic suits.


Portal

Valve games are often teeming with complex and intriguing backstories, though in most cases, such rich details are presented in the form of hidden extras or additional media (like DLCs or comics). That's the case in Portal concerning Aperture Science, the fictional science organization credited with birthing GLaDOS. According to official sources, Aperture Science started life as a developer of shower curtains, with the portal technology created to assist in the production of shower curtain technology.

The company founder began to lose his mind as he became ill and set about creating a three-step R&D plan including the Heimlich Counter-Maneuver (a technique to counter the Heimlich Maneuver) and the Take-A-Wish Foundation (to take wishes away from terminally ill children and give them to healthy adults). As for the third, he stated, "Some kind of rip in the fabric of space… that would… well, it’d be like, I don’t know, something that would help with the shower curtains I guess." 


Super Mario Bros.

Almost every Mario game in existence follows the same basic premise: Bowser steals away with Princess Peach and it’s up to the Italian plumber to rescue her. However, Super Mario Bros. (1985) was slightly more gruesome. As it turns out, everyone in the Mushroom Kingdom had been turned into bricks and stones, so you were actually murdering innocent citizens when you ran through each level smashing blocks to collect coins and power-ups.

The instruction manual for the original game confirms this, saying: “One day the kingdom of the peaceful mushroom people was invaded by the Koopa, a tribe of turtles famous for their black magic. The quiet, peace-loving Mushroom People were turned into mere stones, bricks and even field horsehair plants, and the Mushroom Kingdom fell into ruin.”


The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask

From the moment he was introduced in The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask, Tingle became one of Nintendo’s weirdest characters. In his role as a map seller in the game, he floats around on a balloon to survey the lands and create his maps.

"But as soon as we got that far in the process," said Zelda producer Eiji Aonouma, "we realized anybody that would fly through the air making a map has got to be a really weird person. So at that point we decided, okay, we'll go with this and make him a really weird guy."

Thus, this small cartographer was given a very strange backstory. To make him weirder, Tingle's defining trait became an obsession with the forest fairies that Link grew up with. In fact, he's so crazy about the fairies that he even dresses up like the creatures and is attempting to transform himself into one. 


Centipede

When Centipede was first released in 1980 by Atari, many people assumed that the top-down shooter was about a spaceship fighting giant alien insects. After all, many other arcade games of this type featured science fiction scenarios and the limited graphics of the time meant it was difficult to render detailed sprites. However, future games and an entire comic series revealed that the backstory to the game was entirely different. The main character is in fact an elf named Oliver who is battling an army of forest creatures that have been turned against him by an evil wizard. 


Donkey Kong

Mario is arguably the most famous video game character in the world and is universally seen as a heroic protagonist. However, that was not always the case. The backstory for the original arcade version of Donkey Kong reveals that Mario was not exactly the most likeable person in his younger days. While the game establishes that Mario is attempting to rescue his girlfriend Pauline from the ape who has kidnapped her, extra material for the title explains why Donkey Kong stole her away in the first place. It turns out that the gorilla was actually Mario’s pet and that he had been cruelly mistreated at the hands of his owner, prompting his act of revenge.


Destiny

One of the main criticisms of Destiny when it initially launched was that it seemed to be incredibly short on story. Fortunately, with subsequent releases of downloadable content and updates, more information was provided about the game’s villains and races. These details are still kept separately from the game in the form of Grimoire cards, which reveal the origin story of the Taken King’s main bad guy, Oryx.

It turns out that the alien king was born as a female named Aurash, who was one of three daughters to the Osmium King. After journeying into the core of a gas giant, the three sisters eventually found an evil force known only as the Worms and agreed to morph with them to become more powerful. Aurash took on the king morph, taking the name Oryx to become the patriarch of the Hive. 


Winston From Overwatch Escaped An Ape Uprising On The Moon

Overwatch is a multiplayer team-based FPS developed and published by Blizzard Entertainment. Being Blizzard's first original IP in nearly two decades didn't stop developers from coming up with some fascinating stories about their cast of characters. Perhaps the strangest is the gorilla, Winston. He was the result of gene therapy manipulation by human scientists who wanted to experiment on long-term exposure of living creatures on the moon. The highly intelligent ape lived for years under the tutelage of Dr. Harold Winston until the other gorillas on the moon colony rebelled and overtook their human masters, prompting the Overwatch character to escape back to earth. 



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Fri, 10 Mar 2017 04:09:18 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/video-games-with-deep-backstories/nathan-gibson
<![CDATA[12 Forgotten Video Game Mascots That Need To Make A Comeback]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/forgotten-video-game-mascots-that-need-to-comeback/stephen-reyes?source=rss

The '90s was a time when every video game company on Earth was trying to give us the next big gaming mascot that could compete with Mario. Sonic was the first mascot to truly give the Italian plumber a run for his money, and eventually characters like Crash found a foothold in the gaming market as well. However, the oversaturation of video game mascots meant that many sadly fell to the wayside, left to rot in mascot hell never to be seen again. For this list we rank the greatest forgotten video game mascots that desperately need to make a comeback, including '90s video game mascots and 2000s characters that didn't get the respect they deserved in the long run.


12 Forgotten Video Game Mascots That Need To Make A Comeback,

Conker the Squirrel

Who didn't love Conker's Bad Fur Day on Nintendo 64? The game was way ahead of its time, with its ironic, mature content wrapped up in a colorful, seemingly kid-friendly package. Conker drank, partied, and killed his way across the Fairy Panther Kingdom in a quest to rescue his girlfriend Berri (and make some cash on the side.) In many ways, Conker is extremely similar to the Marvel Comics character Deadpool, as they are both crude and love breaking the 4th wall. Do we smell a crossover? In any case, a brand new Conker adventure in 2017 could be just what Rare needs to put themselves back on the map in a big way.


Earthworm Jim

If you grew up playing video games in the '90s, you're probably very familiar with Earthworm Jim. Released as a Sega exclusive in 1994 before being ported to other consoles, Earthwom Jim was a 2D side-scrolling platformer that saw a regular earthworm in a "super suit" gunning his way through levels with unique designs and enemies who were often very funny or bizarre. A sequel was released a year later in 1995, and although the game was praised by critics, there has never been a true sequel in the series since then. An HD remake of the original was released in 2010, but think of how great a brand new Earthworm Jim would be in present day. Jim is probably one of the most famous video game mascots of all time, and could easily see success on this generation of consoles as a $20 virtual title.


Captain Commando

Captain Commando is the type of insane idea that could only come out of the '90s, as he was conceived to be a corporate mascot for the video game company Capcom (CAPtain COMmando, get it?). Released as an arcade game before being ported to SNES, Captain Commando is a beat 'em up that takes place in the futuristic Metro City. Commando's partners (and playable characters) include an alien mummy named Mack the Knife, a high-tech ninja named Ginzu, and a super-intelligent infant mech pilot named Baby Head. We don't know about the rest of you, but frankly we're sold on a reboot, especially since the original was so fun and original. Get this guy a new game, stat, and while you're at it, somebody start writing that screenplay.


Viewtiful Joe

The Viewtiful Joe franchise took the fantasy of every sci-fi geek and made it a reality. Obsessive movie watcher Joe is sucked into one of his favorite films and must become a superhero to save his girlfriend, Sylvia. The highly acclaimed games featured gorgeous cel-shaded animation and awesome beat 'em up gameplay with time travel mechanics to create an extremely memorable experience. Joe has since appeared in the popular fighting game Marvel Vs. Capcom 3, but VJ hardcores all agree that a brand new stand-alone game is long overdue.


Banjo-Kazooie

We're giving you two characters for the price of one here with honey bear Banjo and his breegull pal, Kazooie. Banjo-Kazooie seemed to pick up the baton where Super Mario 64 left off, bringing us a challenging platformer with greatly expanded worlds, a catchy soundtrack, and brand new abilities, all wrapped in a very vibrant and obviously Disney-inspired package. There was something immensely satisfying about majestically soaring through the air collecting musical notes, and the overworld theme was to die for. Although the spiritual successor to the Banjo games, Yooka Laylee, is being released in 2017 for multiple platforms, Nintendo 64 fans are dying to see Banjo and Kazooie back in action one more time. For the love of God, at least include them in the next Smash Bros. game!


Glover

Glover was a game that tried really hard to do something different and innovative. You play as a sentient right-handed glove and are required to maneuver a ball to the end of the stage to advance to the next level. Your life is directly tied to the ball, so if you lose it or it is destroyed, so are you. Despite this unique gameplay, the limits of consoles at the time made Glover a lot more difficult than it had to be. Given the rise of interactive gaming devices like the Xbox Kinect and Playstation Camera, Glover could easily make a comeback with much smoother controls, taking cues from the Katamari franchise or Super Monkey Ball.


Ecco

Any Sega Genesis player worth their salt remembers Ecco the Dolphin. Released in 1992, the original game was an instant best-seller and is still notorious decades later for its merciless difficulty. The game was heavily inspired by metaphysics, Pink Floyd, and psychedelic substances. Featuring time travel, oceanography, the myth of Atlantis, and an alien invasion, Ecco never lacked adventure and excitement if you were skilled enough to advance through the game. It's been about 17 years since the last Ecco game was released, but the nature of time travel means that Ecco could show up again at any time. We hope it happens soon.


Croc

Easily the cutest character on our list, Croc was originally developed as a Yoshi-centric Mario spinoff game that was intended to be released exlusively on Nintendo 64. The influence is clear with the floating camera angles, intense platforming sections, and ridiculously colorful and vibrant world, but Croc ultimately found his home on the original Playstation. There's something undeniably sweet about the wide-eyed Crocodile and his quest to rescue his furry surrogate family, the Gabbos. With all the grim and gritty games that currently flood the marketplace, a Croc reboot might be a welcome escape into the nostalgic world of '90s platformers.


Bubsy

Bubsy is kind of the red-headed stepchild of the video game mascot universe, and we're not just saying that due to the color of his fur. Because Bubsy appeared on both the Sega Genesis and Super Nintendo, he was never quite associated with either system more than the other. Still, what Bubsy lacked in fandom, he made up for with ambition. Bubsy fought everything from living museum exhibits to fairy tale characters, and even went into outer space to take on aliens. In retrospect, the Bubsy games were really not all that great, but that's why we want to see a new entry in the franchise. After all, everyone loves a good comeback story.


Gex

Gex is one video game mascot that almost anyone can identify with. His entire goal in the original game is simply to get home, sit on his butt, and watch TV. To do this, he has to battle his way across various channels and defeat the evil Emperor Rez. Most of the game's levels were themed off TV and movie genres, so just imagine what Gex could do now that we're in the modern age of television and content streaming. We'd love to see Gex taking on reality TV, cooking crystal meth in the desert, or fighting White Walkers. Honestly, the possibilities are endless, which is why Gex needs to make a comeback ASAP.



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Tue, 20 Sep 2016 04:18:51 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/forgotten-video-game-mascots-that-need-to-comeback/stephen-reyes
<![CDATA[15 Video Game Character Designs With Strange And Hilarious Origin Stories]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/video-game-character-design-origins/nathan-gibson?source=rss

One of the most important aspects of any game is the design of its characters. While a title may have brilliant gameplay and an engaging story, players are unlikely to engage with it unless there is an eye-catching protagonist or villain who can initially draw them into the world. Most famous video game characters go through an extensive process of evolution and alteration, with artists constantly changing their creation to come up with the best iteration that they can.

While this is usually a very deliberate method, sometimes other factors can play a huge role in deciding on video game character design. The answer as to why particular characters look the way they do can often come down to a collection of bizarre reasons. Whether it is a strange inspiration for a particular protagonist, an accident that led to the creation of popular villain, or even technical limitations causing certain elements to be introduced to a character, designers occasionally just sort of stumble upon the ideal appearance for their creation. Here, then, are some of the strangest reasons behind video game character design. 


15 Video Game Character Designs With Strange And Hilarious Origin Stories,

Kazooie

Many platformers feature some sort of double jump or glide that lets the player reach areas that would otherwise be inaccessible. When Rare were first developing Banjo-Kazooie, they wanted to have a similar system. This flutter jump was integral to the gameplay, but they couldn’t think of a logical reason for the bear to be able to jump again in the air.

After toying with the idea of adding folding wings into a backpack, they eventually settled on the idea of adding a secondary bird character that could help Banjo on his adventure.


Kirby

The pink blob that is Kirby was originally created by Japanese developer Masahiro Sakurai in the early 1990s. However, the character’s final design was initially only intended to be a placeholder sprite so that the team could work on gameplay while a better design was drawn.

As development progressed, Sakurai became more and more fond of the placeholder graphics, and felt the simplistic ball-like appearance served the character and game well. In the end, it was decided that the design would stay in the final version of the game.


Lara Croft

It could be argued that Lara Croft was the first real sex symbol in video games. The Tomb Raider star became infamous for her notoriously large breast size. While you may think this was a design choice from the very beginning, the character only got her huge boobs as a result of an accident by artist Toby Gard.

When he tried to increase the size of Croft's breasts by 50%, he accidentally enlarged them by a whopping 150%. By the time he had realized his mistake, other members of the team had already seen the model and decided it should stay as is. Thus, an enduring nerd fantasy was born. 


Mario

Although he is arguably gaming’s most famous and popular character, Mario was designed fairly quickly. In fact, certain elements of the character were chosen to allow Shigeru Miyamoto and other developers to quickly render the plumber into the game with relative ease.

For example, Mario wears a hat because Miyamoto didn't liking drawing hair. The hat also saved designers from having to animate the character's hair. Mario was also given a mustache, as his original sprite was too small to include a detailed mouth.


Samus Aran

Metroid is one of Nintendo’s biggest franchises, and its initial release in 1986 gave fans a twist ending when it was revealed that the character they had been controlling, Samus Aran, was in fact a woman. This design change in the character only came about midway through development, however.

The creators wanted to include a female protagonist not only due to their love of the movie Alien, but also because the reveal would act as a surprising reward for fans. The fact she appears at the end in a bikini was the result of technical limitations, as the sprite couldn’t be too detailed, so beach wear was the easiest way to show Samus was a woman.


Pac-Man

In case you have never noticed before, Pac-Man somewhat resembles a pizza that is missing a slice. This is no mere coincidence, as the creator of the character, Toru Iwatani, explained that he came up with the design while trying to think of something that could be associated with eating – a concept he believed would appeal to everyone. Ironically, this design was suggested to him while he was eating a pizza, noticing the simple appearance of the food when a slice had been removed.

"While thinking about the word 'eat' when taking a piece of pizza, I saw that the rest of pizza looked like a character, and that’s how Pac-Man’s iconic shape was created," says Iwatani. "I realized that although keywords such as 'fashion' and 'love' would appeal more to women, my opinion is that the word 'eat' is universally appealing and would attract their attention as well. That’s why I went with this idea." What a revealing, if weirdly sexist, look behind the curtain. 


Rayman

The titular hero from Rayman is best known not for his fighting ability or heroic deeds, but rather his lack of limbs. This lack of arms and legs haven’t stopped him from going on to become an important figure in gaming, with his distinctive design doing some heavy lifting to make him an instantly unique character.

Interestingly, the appearance of Rayman was never intended to lack limbs. The truth is that developers were having difficulty in animating his limbs in proportion to the rest of his body. While experimenting with a lack of arms and legs, they stumbled upon the idea of limblessness allowing Rayman to throw his fists much further. They decided to keep the new design in place for the final product.


Bayonetta

One of the most striking things about Bayonetta is that the main character from the series is unabashedly sexy. The designers set out from the very beginning to create an attractive witch character, rather than try to disguise their true intentions.

One of the elements of Bayonetta’s design, though, resulted from the fact that the protagonist needed to be taller than most other women who appear in action games (due to game mechanics and design restrictions at the time). This forced Mari Shimazaki to alter Bayonetta's proportions, so her arms and legs are much longer than they would normally be.


Crash Bandicoot

When creators Andy Gavin and Jason Rubin were trying to come up with a new character to compete with the likes of Mario and Sonic in the platform genre, they initially settled on either a wombat or a bandicoot. After going through various different designs, and hiring professional cartoonists from Hollywood, they eventually settled on the design we know today.

They chose the orange color simply due to a process of elimination, as it was the only one not being used by another major video game character that also wouldn’t clash with the levels they had created (or look bad on televisions at the time).


The Creepers In Minecraft Were The Result Of A Coding Error

Out of all of the characters and creatures in the hugely popular Minecraft, perhaps the most dreaded and familiar to players is the Creeper. While they have a very distinctive look, their appearance was largely the result of a coding error by game creator Notch. When trying to insert a pig into the world, he typed in the dimensions incorrectly and that led to the model being disfigured. Liking the look of the new creature, he simply changed the coloring of it and turned it into the Creeper we know today.

"The creepers were a mistake" he said in a documentary. "I don’t have any modeling programs to do the models, I just write them in code. And I accidently made them (the creepers) tall instead of long, so it was like a tall thing with four little feet. And that became the Creeper. As opposed to a pig."



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Thu, 23 Feb 2017 05:17:58 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/video-game-character-design-origins/nathan-gibson
<![CDATA[Edutainment Games From Your Childhood You Totally Forgot About]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/best-90s-edutainment-games/justin-andress?source=rss

Back in the dark ages of the late '80s and early '90s, home computers were fairly rare. In those days, gamers were forced to take their gaming opportunities where they could. Outside the shelter of an arcade, that meant the edutainment computer games that came pre-loaded on the blocky Macs which lined the walls of your school’s computer lab.

While the other kids were actually memorizing the home keys or boning up on their spreadsheet skills, educational computer games were helping a fledgling generation of gamers kill the time until the bell.

Even if you didn’t grow up to terrorize people in Call of Duty or wander the historical streets of an Assassin’s Creed game, the odds are solid you played one of these '80s and '90s edutainment games while silently praying that the teacher didn’t come by to check your work.


Edutainment Games From Your Childhood You Totally Forgot About,

Lemmings

Ultimately, Lemmings actually proved so popular that it crossed out of the computer lab and into the homes of lots of PC early adopters. Playing on the old (and patently false) notion that lemmings will walk ever-forward following the leader, the game handed players a weird assortment of tools and then demanded they guide a whole bunch of aggressively stupid lemmings safely past a series of life-ending hazards. Frustrating, creative, and brilliant, Lemmings was the beginning of a popular series of early video games.


Math Blaster: Episode 1

In its purest form, Math Blaster! is an educational version of Asteroids. Players are presented with a math problem and then barraged with a series of possible answers. Their job is to aim the cannon at the correct answer and blow it out of the sky. It was simple, addictive, and fun.


Number Munchers

The Number Munchers series of games had something to entertain both math kids and word kids... and just those kids. Players guided a weird, square creature around a grid while avoiding monsters and chomping down on the answers to various equations and word games. Being tricked into doing math was never this much fun.


Odell Lake

There were few better ways for children to learn about ecosystems, the food chain, and the natural world than by playing as a hungry little fish in Odell Lake. Figuring out what to eat while avoiding hungry predators like otters and fisherman proved enchanting to children who accidentally found themselves with a much larger working knowledge of freshwater marine life.


Reader Rabbit

Only the earliest Mac aficionados will remember Reader Rabbit, a series of games released from the '80s onwards that tried to teach kids the value of language arts skills. The bright, primary colors and energetic characters of the game entertained children as young as preschoolers while also teaching them how to read.  


SimCity

First released in 1989, SimCity slipped past most computer teachers for several years before they realized that the classic asset management title was simply too much fun for students. Before that time, students stumbled upon this gorgeous juggling act on their school’s Macs and promptly forgot all about the actual teaching going on around them.

SimCity was unlike anything gamers had seen before. You couldn't really win or lose. There was no violence. You simply tried to create a world that could run under its own steam. Maybe that entirely novel format was how creator Will Wright’s ambitious little title went on to spawn its own genre of video games.


Treasure Mountain!

Though the protagonist of Treasure Mountain!, the vaunted Super Seeker, was the star of a lot of games in the series, this 1990 entry is the one most people remember. Were you able to traverse Treasure Mountain and recover all of the priceless treasures that were stolen? The innovative puzzle-solving and matching gameplay never failed to entertain (at least until the bell rang).


The Oregon Trail

Who among us hasn't watched in dismay as the members of our wagon train slowly succumbed to the hardships of dysentery? Well, virtually, anyway. There was probably something to learn in Oregon Trail, but for most people the game was just a frantic side scroller with intermittent bouts of sweet 3D-hunting. Or rather, what passed for 3D in 1990.


Where in the World Is Carmen Sandiego?

In the decade between 1985 and 1995, geography and culture educational video game Where in the World Is Carmen Sandiego? sold more than 4 million copies, spawned two sequels, and was adapted game show. Even for kids who didn’t care about foreign cultures or geography (see: average children living in the United States during the '90s), Carmen Sandiego was a big hit thanks to its mystery-style delivery and clever wordplay.

An entire generation of kids learned to appreciate puns thanks to the master thief Carmen Sandiego and her band of shady accomplices.


The Treehouse

In the totality of educational video games, music appreciation is one of the rarest focuses of gameplay. Thankfully for '90s kids, there was The Treehouse, an interactive music appreciation game that taught composition while entertaining kids with an interactive music maze, as well as a variety of other distractions.



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Fri, 10 Mar 2017 08:05:47 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/best-90s-edutainment-games/justin-andress
<![CDATA[10 Video Games That Are The Black Sheep Of Their Franchise]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/strangest-video-game-sequels/mark-austin?source=rss

Great games can spawn great or lousy sequels but, sometimes, we get strange video game sequels. Of course, the safest sequel is a basically a carbon copy of the original. On the other hand, later iterations or “reboots” of beloved video games can veer off the beaten path in unexpected directions. You've got games that switch genres, styles, objectives - the games on this list prove that sometimes, everything you think you know about a franchise can be thrown out the window at a moment's notice. These sequels to great video games embraced the weirdness, in more ways than one - some succeeded, some crashed and burned. 


10 Video Games That Are The Black Sheep Of Their Franchise,

Banjo-Kazooie: Nuts & Bolts

You’d think after the runaway success of the first two Banjo-Kazooie games, Rare would have this formula down pat. Another globe-trotting adventure for the wisecracking duo? More co-op platforming, more gorgeous expansive environments, more insane collectible quests?

Hmm, not quite. Hey, kids! Let’s all get jobs at the junkyard! Nuts & Bolts (2008) for Xbox 360 was all about… building vehicles out of scraps.

To defeat the evil witch this time, you have to construct cars, boats, motorcycles, and planes to complete stunt challenges. While there's some platforming involved, most of the time, you’re designing blueprints for new vehicles in your lab or piloting them around various courses.

Having a virtual erector set and making your own wacky contraptions was certainly a blast, but it’s a jarring departure from the wide-ranging journeys of a bird and a bear from the previous two installments.


Bomberman: Act Zero

There’s not much you can do with character development for Bomberman. He’s a pixelated little guy who’s been around since 1983 and his entire existence is running around in mazes and dropping bombs. There’s some kind of plot if you’re into Bomberman lore (he’s an intergalactic policeman or something), but that’s hardly relevant.

Bomberman: Act Zero (2006), one of the first Xbox 360 titles, transformed the loveable blockhead into a ruthless cyborg warrior battling for survival in a dystopian future hellscape. The highly touted “First-Person Battle” mode (it was actually third-person) got universally panned. Everything about this game was terrible. In fact, it’s often regarded as one of the worst games of all time.


Driv3r

The first two Driver games were well-received open-world adventures where you raced cool, authentic cars in various cities around the world. 2004's DRIV3R (ugh, that spelling) was a flawed and controversial third entry. You can just imagine the developers brainstorming this one. “You know what the new Driver game needs? Less driving.”

Yes, D3 featured lengthy missions where you ran around on foot, awkwardly lurching and stumbling and trying to shoot people. On top of that, the actual driving was brutally difficult and missions took hours to complete. On the plus side, the voice acting was top-notch, if you’re a Michael Madsen fan.

When a few sites gave the game stellar ratings despite generally poor reviews, allegations of bribery and review fixing arose. The “DRIV3Rgate” controversy raged for a while in the gaming media, eventually devolving into accusations and recriminations and entire forum threads disappearing and everyone denying everything. In other words, business as usual in the game industry!


Mega Man Legends

Poor Mega Man. He was one of the original badasses of the 8-bit era. The early Mega Man games were not just wickedly difficult but also hella fun. Plus, he had his own mythology! Who can forget Dr. Wily or Dr. Light? But when the Blue Bomber stumbled into the blocky 3D age with Mega Man Legends, he never found his footing.

Launched on PlayStation in 1997, the first game got a chilly reception from hardcore fans, and sales were dismal. The sequel got a tepid response as well and, despite the activism of hardcore fans, the third iteration was eventually canceled. An unfortunate ending for one of the most recognizable characters in game history.


Pokémon Snap

The Pokémon franchise made the jump from GameBoy to N64 with 1999's Pokémon Snap, a relaxing 3D first-person rail photography sim, based on a top-down turn-based RPG about capturing and training cute animals to fight in pits of death. Not a whole lot of overlap in those Venn diagrams, one might say.

In the game, you travel around in a little golf cart and take photos of Pokémon. Then you do it again. And again. There are no battles, no capturing, no leveling up. It’s rather Zen and quite relaxing in its serenity, actually. You really have to think about and plan the composition of your photos. You're an artist, dammit! Plus, it’s always fun to use a Pester Ball to annoy the local wildlife.


Star Fox Adventures

Star Fox (1993) showcased Nintendo’s shiny new Super FX chip, which delivered some revolutionary 3D graphics to a home console. Fox McCloud was a gruff furry who zoomed through the galaxy in his cool spaceship blasting evil aliens with a whole squadron of fighters. Star Fox 64 (1997) delivered much of the same fun plot and innovative graphics. So what did Nintendo do for a sequel?

Five years later, Star Fox Adventures (2002) was released for the GameCube. Again, it featured Fox, but he was missing his coolest accessory - his spaceship! Instead, he was running around on a primitive world alone, killing enemies with a stick or something.

The game was originally developed by Rare as Dinosaur Planet, and it was essentially a Zelda clone. While a fun game in its own right, Star Fox Adventures was like tossing Captain Kirk down to the Gorn planet for a full season.


Super Mario Bros. 2

Until Wii Sports came along, the original Super Mario Bros. was the best-selling Nintendo title in history. A pack-in game that was included with virtually every NES console package, SMB defined platform gaming for decades. So how did Nintendo follow up on one of the most beloved games in history?

The Japanese sequel to Super Mario Bros. (later released as The Lost Levels for NES) was almost identical to its predecessor. It was also more difficult, which didn’t sit well with American audiences. So, the Mario developers decided on a different route.

Based on a Japanese vertical-scrolling prototype called Doki Doki Panic, Super Mario Bros. 2 (1988) was a bizarre, hallucinatory experience straight out of a tale from Arabian Nights that was probably just a mushroom dream to begin with. Mario now shared the stage with Luigi, Toad, and Princess Peach. Instead of fireballs, Mario flung beets at enemies and chased Shyguys around. The main antagonist? A cross-dressing dinosaur. Nonetheless, Birdo became a cult favorite and SMB2 was a huge hit.  


Super Mario World 2: Yoshi's Island

For some reason, Nintendo was in no hurry to capitalize on the huge success of their 1990 flagship game for the Super NES. The first Super Mario World was a typical Shigeru Miyamoto tour-de-force, a blockbuster that redefined platform gaming and introduced conventions that are still widely used today. Any other company would have had SMW2 out a year later, but Nintendo always follows their own drumbeat.

Almost six years later - near the twilight of the Super NES life cycle - Yoshi’s Island comes out, a cartoonish, goofy riff on platforming the likes of which had never been seen before.

The hand-drawn aesthetic is not unusual nowadays, but it was revolutionary and eye-catching back then. Supposedly, Miyamoto chose the exaggerated crayon-drawn animation style as a rebuke to the computer-rendered sprite graphics from games like Donkey Kong Country that were prevalent at the time.

It was an awesome game, but not every entertainment powerhouse would sign off on depicting their beloved corporate mascot as a diaper-clad mewling infant clinging to the back of a homicidal dinosaur that poops out weird eggs.


Turok: Evolution

Turok: Dinosaur Hunter was a surprise hit, a first-person shooter that was Acclaim’s initial entry for Nintendo’s ambitious new N64 console in 1997. Based on a Valiant Comics series, it combined elements of Doom and Tomb Raider in a lush prehistoric setting. Turok was a huge blockbuster that earned critical accolades and sold millions of copies.

With the 2002 follow-up Turok: Evolution, Acclaim went back to the dinosaur well for the third time, and things did not go nearly so swimmingly. The storyline was a mess, with a time portal between the Old West and a “Land of the Lost” dinosaur jungle. As if the multiple graphic bugs, poor AI, and tedious gameplay weren’t bad enough, Evolution has also earned its own special honor.

You’d assume they couldn’t screw up an evil cyborg riding a dinosaur, but you’d be wrong. More than a decade later, Electronic Gaming Monthly’s annual award for worst video game villain of the year is still known as the Tobias Bruckner Award, named after the main cyborg baddie in Turok: Evolution.


Syndicate

The original Syndicate is a true classic, a real-time tactical shooter with an overhead isometric view. It was released in 1993 by Bullfrog Productions, who were really hitting their stride after games like Populous and Powermonger. In a dystopian future, corporations take over the world and battle each other for control of addictive microchips.

Starbreeze Studios rebooted the beloved series nearly 20 years later with Syndicate (2012), a first-person blast-em-all set in a cyberpunk future. Fans of the first game with fond memories of the ground-breaking strategic gameplay were slow to embrace it. A generic but unremarkable shooter, it had its moments, but nothing in common with the original.



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Wed, 29 Mar 2017 02:44:21 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/strangest-video-game-sequels/mark-austin
<![CDATA[Weirdly Dirty Sega Ads You Won't Believe Actually Ran In The '90s]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/weird-90s-sega-magazine-ads/mick-jacobs?source=rss

As one of the first gaming systems available, the Sega Genesis took many risks to promote itself, including some weirdly mature advertisements from the 1990s. These dirty and sexual Sega ads from the 1990s may appear outlandish, but they actually reflect the trends of gaming advertisements at the time. Feces, fetishes, and a sleazy Sonic the Hedgehog all come together to sell the Sega Genesis in wildly inappropriate ways. You will never look at your Sega in the same way after viewing these dirty and weirdly sexual '90s video game ads that would definitely not fly anymore


Weirdly Dirty Sega Ads You Won't Believe Actually Ran In The '90s,

Fun In The Bedroom

Get Whipped Into Sega

A Heinous Little Hedgehog

Simulate And Stimulate

Very Ballsy

Dropping A Deuce

Let Sega Satisfy You

Quite A Pair

Sega Goes Hard

Getting Handsy


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Mon, 20 Mar 2017 08:39:04 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/weird-90s-sega-magazine-ads/mick-jacobs
<![CDATA[14 Video Games That Cranked Your Emotions Up To 11]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/emotional-video-games/collin-flatt?source=rss

Pong brought video games into the mainstream, and with it came a whole lot of frustration and elation. The early technology was crude and expensive, but interacting with your TV was an exciting new frontier. Nowadays, developers look to extract emotion through epic storytelling, relatable characters, and intense difficulty. In between exasperation from frustrating mechanics and modern psychological manipulation lives a gaggle of video games that cause extreme reactions.

There are emotional video games that make you sad and introspective, like Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons, and there are scary video games that freak you out like Outlast. Whether you're an everyday gamer or a part-time mobile enthusiast, there's plenty out there to push your buttons.

SPOILER ALERT: There are a few startling plot twists and dramatic deaths in this list, so don't be surprised to find some spoilers here and there. You've been warned.


14 Video Games That Cranked Your Emotions Up To 11,

Final Fantasy VII

Final Fantasy is one of the greatest RPG franchises of all time, and most consider FFVII to be the pinnacle of the series. In this entry, our brave hero saves flower seller Aerith Gainsborough from a gang called The Turks, and she joins the crew on their adventure. Beyond being a love interest for the protagonist, Aerith is also the key to saving the Planet, Gaia.

One night, she inexplicably heads out into the Forgotten City alone. Cloud and the crew find her kneeling at an altar just in time to watch Sephiroth turn Aerith into a freaking kebab. Cloud carries her body to a lake in the Forgotten City and releases her energy back to the Planet.

There will be no second life; there will be no resurrection. If you didn't cry during this scene, you should probably seek immediate medical attention. 


Heavy Rain

From the outset, Heavy Rain was developed to mess with your emotions. Developer Quantic Dream even marketed the game as an "interactive drama" so there would be no confusion. The game forces you to make terribly macabre decisions throughout the story, like if you should cut off your own finger, or deciding whether or not to kill the drug dealer begging for his life.

All of that is secondary to the opening sequence of the game, however, which tasks the player with controlling protagonist Ethan Mars in an attempt to find his lost son at the mall, only to watch him be hit by a car and killed. Oh, and Ethan's other son is kidnapped, setting the events of the game in motion. Mr. Mars probably shouldn't be allowed to raise any more children.


Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater

Hideo Kojima really loves to toy with gamers' emotions. He followed the rage-inducing MGS 2: Sons of the Patriots with a soul-crushing and very personal tale in Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater

This entry in the series finds our hero Solid (Naked) Snake working for the CIA in the Russian jungle circa 1964, tasked with stopping the development of a nuclear weapon. The bad guys in MGS3 are called The Cobra Unit, and have names like: The Pain, The Sorrow, The Fear, and The Fury. They're led by a soldier called The Boss, who just happens to be the woman that mentored and trained you from age 15, and subsequently became a mother-figure to Snake.

The final battle places you one-on-one against The Boss in a gorgeous field of white lilies, and ends with you shooting her in the head with her own weapon. In effect, the game makes you kill your own mother. 


Red Dead Redemption

Many people believe that Red Dead Redemption is one of the greatest games ever made. Rockstar Games applied the brilliant open-world gameplay they perfected in Grand Theft Auto to the Wild West and came up with this masterpiece.

Set in the Texas-Mexico border circa 1910, you play John Marston, a reformed outlaw on a mission to take down the members of his old gang. The FBI promised Marston amnesty if he completes his dangerous task, allowing him to return home to his wife and family.

After gunning down the final boss, you return home to your ranch and loved ones, but the game isn't over. The last few missions task you with tending to your animals, bonding with your son, and falling in love with your wife all over again. Then the Feds show up and murder you in cold blood. It's honestly one of the most heartbreaking experiences in all of gaming. 


Resident Evil

Resident Evil defined survival horror when it was released for the PlayStation in 1996, and continues to be the most successful franchise in the genre. Despite the legion entries in the series, people still love to shoot infected-zombie-farmer things. The narrative, characters, and even basic gameplay have taken crazy twists and turns over the years, but the fear remains.

Many fans believe you can trace the entire success of the franchise to one scary moment: The Dog. Never before did a video game elicit such visceral fear in gamers. Game directors Shinji Mikami and Tokuro Fujiwara played audiences perfectly, balancing quiet moments against loud ones, and used the element of surprise with restraint.

The pacing lulls you into a false sense of security after hours of killing slow-moving and sporadically-placed zombies. Then, a Hunter appears out of nowhere and decapitates you with one quick swipe of its massive claws. Check out the above clip if you think you can handle it. 


Shadow of the Colossus

What starts out as a tale of love and adventure ends up bleak and dark in Sony's brilliant Shadow of the Colossus. You play Wander, a young man trying to revive Mono, a maiden with a cursed future (or something). Little information is given at the start of your adventure, but as the story progresses, you realize you're killing innocent beings - the Colossi - at the behest of the main "antagonist," Dormin.

Dormin inhabits Wander's body at the end, and even though you play as the all-powerful demon, your death is inevitable. Ultimately, you slowly transform back into Wander and are sucked into a vortex, never to be free again. That is, until Mono wakes up and finds a baby with horns, which ends up being you. So now the love of your life will become your adoptive mother, and neither of you will have any idea what happened. That's some bone-chillingly evil stuff.


Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2

Call of Duty isn't known for its emotional punch, but that wasn't always the case. Developer Infinity Ward perfected the mechanics and balance of their FPS with the release of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare, but really hit their stride regarding narrative in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2.

In the chapter "No Russian," you play an undercover CIA agent who has successfully infiltrated a Russian terrorist cell. To prove loyalty to the organization, your character joins the group in carrying out a mass shooting in an airport, reflecting the terrible reality we live with every day. That's right, for the next 15 minutes, you methodically pace around the building shooting innocent people that are running for their lives and screaming bloody murder. It's a legitimately harrowing experience.

Interestingly enough, your character is killed at the end of the level whether you pull the trigger or not. When you realize that active participation was arbitrary, it becomes difficult to get rid of the pit in your stomach.


The Last of Us

The Last of Us is a beautifully told drama set in an action-packed, post-apocalyptic infected wasteland. Developer Naughty Dog got famous with Crash Bandicoot and the Uncharted series, but really turned up the manipulation factor with this one.

You play as Joel, a smuggler tasked with accompanying a young girl, Ellie, who is believed to be the key to a cure for the outbreak. Along the way, you encounter wave after wave of infected enemies that vary in difficulty to kill and gross-out factor. The most unnerving of them all are the Clickers, named for the horrific nightmare-inducing sound they make as they stumble blindly about the environment. That sound still triggers an intense anxiety in many, many gamers.

All of those feelings of stress are window dressing around the emotional devastation at the core of The Last of Us. The game opens with Joel and Sarah having a compelling father-daughter moment as the world begins to fall apart around them. By the end of the chapter, Sarah gets shot and Joel carries her dead body around in his arms. And that's just for starters. 


BioShock Infinite

While all of the BioShock games like to tug on the feels, the big reveals and plot twists in BioShock Infinite leave the most lasting impression. You play Booker DeWitt, a man who is trying to wipe out his gambling debts by rescuing a young girl, Elizabeth, from the clutches of the evil "Father" Comstock.

The narrative gets very complicated, but the game ends with you figuring out that Elizabeth is your daughter, and you traded her away to Comstock in an alternate timeline when she was a baby. Oh, and she has the power to alter time and space. In the end, Elizabeth (and her alternate timeline duplicates) drown you in a lake to stop the continuous loop of her life and your life, destroying the entire fabric of your combined existence. It's like an infinite expression of suicide and patricide. 


The Walking Dead

Nobody asked for an '80s-style point-and-click adventure set in Robert Kirkman's popular comic universe of The Walking Dead. Thankfully, Telltale Games made one anyway. The game mechanics are nearly non-existent, adding up to not much more than a digital Choose Your Own Adventure book. But the characters, story, and difficult choices that make up the narrative are surprisingly compelling considering the now well-worn territory.

You play Lee, a former university professor and convicted felon, guilty of killing your wife's lover. On the way to prison, the zombie outbreak happens and all hell breaks loose. You find yourself a "free" man, and come across the 8-year-old Clementine who joins you on your journey. Along the way, you're confronted with tough life-and-death choices that significantly influence how the story plays out. No matter what happens, though, Lee gets bitten and Clementine has to decide how to let him die: watch him suffer while turning into an undead ghoul, or put a bullet in his brain. Good times.



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Tue, 14 Mar 2017 10:23:18 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/emotional-video-games/collin-flatt
<![CDATA[The Very First Easter Egg In Video Game History]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/first-video-game-easter-egg-atari-2600-adventure/melissa-brinks?source=rss

What was the first video game Easter egg? That honor belongs in part to Adventure, a graphic adaptation of the classic text game Colossal Cave Adventure for the Atari 2600. This early video game set the stage for fantasy and action-adventure games, and inspired a long history of video game Easter eggs that continues today.

Warren Robinett, developer of Adventure, included the Easter egg as a personal stamp in a time when developers and programmers weren't often credited. Using a hidden pixel, he hid his name inside the game to ensure his contribution lived on even after the game's release.

By creating a means to credit himself, Robinett created the first discovered Easter egg in a video game. Discovering this secret in the larger game made players seek out more hidden content. Inspired, other developers started including secrets in their own games, which also encouraged other media to do so as well—in fact, the Easter egg in Atari Adventure is actually believed to have coined the term as we know it today.


The Very First Easter Egg In Video Game History,

Warren Robinett Developed Adventure In Secret

In 1978, developer Warren Robinett's boss at Atari caught wind of a project he was working on. It was a video game version of the text adventure Colossal Cave Adventure. His boss actually forbade Robinett from working on the game, called Adventure, because he believed the adaptation would be too difficult. Colossal Cave Adventure required hundreds of kilobytes of memory, which he believed would be impossible to adapt to the Atari 2600's meager four kilobytes. But, instead of abandoning the project, Robinett continued developing the prototype in secret.

After he developed a working prototype, he presented it to the marketing department at Atari, and the employees were impressed. They told him to continue working on it, despite the resistance he faced. The prototype was used to develop 1979's Superman, one of the first licensed video games in history. Meanwhile, Robinett continued to work on Adventure.


The Excitement Of Finding Hidden Content Led Steve Wright To Coin The Term "Easter Egg"

Upper management at Atari might have been mad about Robinett's hidden text, but Steve Wright loved it. Wright coined the term "Easter egg" as a means to describe the delight of finding secret content by comparing it to an Easter egg hunt. He also pushed for later games to include similar Easter eggs to entice players. Most of that content was developers' names or initials, leading to more recognition for the hard work of the people who put the games together. Before video game end credits as we know them today, these Easter eggs were typically the only ways that developers got recognized for their work.


A Teenage Game Player First Alerted Atari About The Existence Of The Easter Egg

Adam Clayton, a 15-year-old boy living in Salt Lake City, eventually discovered Robinett's secret chamber. Though it's impossible to know for sure if he was actually the first person to discover the Easter egg, he was definitely the first person to tell Atari about it. In a letter to the company, Clayton requested brochures and other literature on the company's technology, and finished with hand-drawn maps and a comprehensive guide on how to find the room. Reportedly, Clayton went on to become a programmer himself, perhaps in part thanks to an early interest in exploring the hidden secrets of his favorite game.


Robinett Views The Creation Of Adventure As A David And Goliath Story

In the Bible, Goliath is a giant Philistine warrior, an intimidating foe whom no one in their right mind would challenge. But when Goliath declares he is willing to end the Philistine war with the Israelites pending the outcome of a winner-take-all single combat duel, a challenger steps up. David, an Israelite of average stature, takes on Goliath with no armor and only a sling and five stones as his weapon. Despite his disadvantages, David fells Goliath. 

Speaking at the annual Game Developers Conference in 2015, Robinett said, "I think it's kind of a David and Goliath story because the big money guys from New York didn't succeed in controlling us 2600 programmers very well. They treated us so bad that everybody quit and started competing companies. And I did get public credit for my game. Perhaps I wouldn't be here if I hadn't done this sneaky little trick."


Removing The Easter Egg Would Have Cost Atari $10,000

When Atari found out about the Easter egg, they were livid. Steve Wright, then-manager of the home video game department at Atari, remembers, “[Adam Clayton] wrote into marketing and said, ‘Hey, I found this really cool thing—Warren Robinett’s initials in the game.’ Management went ballistic."

Since Robinett had left the company by then, Atari made some of their designers track down the offending code. When designer Brad Stewart found it, he balked at the idea of removing it. If asked to, he said, he'd just replace the text with, "Fixed by Brad Stewart."

At that time, creating a new ROM (read-only memory) mask of the game would have cost the company around $10,000. Because of the high cost, it was in the company's best interest to leave it alone. Rather than fighting it, Atari left the Easter egg intact.


Backmasking In Beatles Songs Inspired Robinett's Easter Egg

Robinett's Easter egg, which he called his signature, was inspired in part by The Beatles. "My model was the hidden messages that were supposedly present in Beatles records played backwards back in the late 1960’s [sic]. Messages like ‘I buried Paul,'" he told Paste Magazine


Robinett Kept The Easter Egg A Closely Guarded Secret

Keeping the Easter egg a secret was all part of the plan for Robinett. He didn't tell anybody about it; instead, he allowed Atari to produce mass amounts of game cartridges with his self-made credit intact. The chamber wasn't included in the manual, either, meaning players had to discover it through experimentation, exploration, and detecting the screen flicker that occurs when too many sprites are in one room. Robinett also left the company in 1979, shortly after turning in the final code for the game. Because the secret was mostly for his own satisfaction and a sort-of thumb in the eye for Atari, he let the public figure it out on their own rather than divulge its existence. Thankfully, it took less than a year for players to catch on.


Finding The Hidden Chamber Required Experimentation

Finding Robinett's signature requires players to really investigate the game and experiment with moving objects places where they don't belong. That's why it took players a few months to find it—you had to try things that didn't move the gameplay forward in a time when gamers weren't actively thinking about hidden content. Specifically, this Easter egg requires you to take a bridge into a black castle, forcing the screen to flicker and reveal a secret room. From there, you use the bridge to enter the room, pick up a gray dot, and carry it back to the main hallway.

Manipulating the Atari's limitations in this way allowed Robinett to hide the content in such a way that it was possible to find but not obvious it was there. Carrying that dot to the main hallway opens up a passage to another chamber which contains the text "CREATED BY WARREN ROBINETT." Robinett coded the text to flash in different colors the same way that the magic chalice did, setting it apart from the rest of the game's graphics.


Robinett Included The Easter Egg To Receive Credit For His Work

Ray Kassar accepted a job as the president of Atari in February 1978. By November 1978, he was promoted to CEO. Kassar had something of a disdainful attitude toward the expertise and artistry required by developers. Programmer David Crane recalls,

“He told us, ‘You’re no more important to those projects than the person on the assembly line who put them together. Without them, your games wouldn’t have sold anything. He was trying to create this corporate line that it was all of us working together that make games happen. But these were creative works, these were authorships, and he didn’t ­get ­it...He said, ‘I’ve dealt with your kind before. You’re a dime a dozen. You’re not unique. Anybody can do ­a ­cartridge.’”

Because of this attitude, game boxes credited the publisher, Atari, instead of individual developers. That's why Warren Robinett decided to include a secret chamber in Adventure which credited himself. If Atari wouldn't credit its contributors, Robinett would cement his own part in gaming history. Developers also made no royalties from the titles they worked on, meaning that when Atari sold 1,000,000 copies of a game like Adventure, Robinett didn't see any of that profit. As he told Wired, "I got a $22K a year salary, no royalties, and they never even forwarded any fan mail to me.”


Adventure's Easter Egg Was Not Actually The First One Made - But It Was The First Discovered

While Adventure is often hailed as the first game to contain an Easter egg, that's not quite accurate. Developers as early as 1977 hid messages in their games, many of them unlockable through obscure key combinations or other interactions. Video Whizball also included an Easter egg one year before Adventure's release, in a similar fashion—when activated, the game would display the name of programmer Brad Reid-Selth. Even if Adventure wasn't chronologically the first to appear, it was the first to be publicly well known—Video Whizball's secret wasn't discovered until 2004. Starship 1's hidden message—simple text that reads "Hi Ron!"—wasn't discovered until 2017. With 100 or more arcade games existing prior to Starship 1, it's possible that there are even earlier Easter eggs out there just waiting to be discovered.



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Mon, 06 Mar 2017 03:55:46 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/first-video-game-easter-egg-atari-2600-adventure/melissa-brinks
<![CDATA[The Best Nintendo Switch Shooter Games]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/best-nintendo-switch-shooter-games/ranker-games?source=rss

If you're looking for shooter games to play on your Nintendo Switch, the pickings are slim. There are a few shoot 'em up games for Switch that you can play now, but outside of those games, there aren't many shooter games for Switch. The few shoot 'em up games for Switch that are currently available include Metal Slug 3 and NAM-1975, both of which are old school shooters dating back to the '90s.

The biggest Nintendo Switch shooter game is undoubtedly going to be Splatoon 2, which drops Summer 2017. Splatoon is perhaps the biggest Nintendo original franchise to come out in the modern era, and the sequel has a lot of people excited.

Vote up the best Nintendo Switch shooters on this list, regardless of whether they're currently released, or are upcoming titles.


The Best Nintendo Switch Shooter Games,

NAM-1975

Splatoon 2

Rogue Trooper Redux

Graceful Explosion Machine

Space Dave!

Metal Slug 3

Shock Troopers


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Wed, 01 Mar 2017 00:50:05 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/best-nintendo-switch-shooter-games/ranker-games
<![CDATA[The Best Nintendo Switch Action Games]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/best-nintendo-switch-action-games/ranker-games?source=rss

If you're looking for Nintendo Switch action games, look no further. This list ranks the best action games for Switch, as voted on by Nintendo fans like you. Nintendo consoles aren't usually known for their action titles, but there are some good action games for Switch that are definitely worth playing.

As far as Nintendo Switch action games are concerned, don't sleep on Shovel Knight. If this game has alluded you up to this point, do yourself a favor and buy Shovel Knight: Treasure Trove. It includes the core game, as well as the two expansions, Specter of Torment and Plague of Shadows. Each game features unique playable characters with different fighting mechanics, as well as diverse level designs, bosses, and upgrades. If you've already played the core game and its first expansion, you can also buy Specter of Torment as a standalone game.

Another fun action game for Nintendo Switch is Super Bomberman R, although you might want to wait until the price drops on this one since it's a full-priced game at the moment of writing this.

Vote up the current and upcoming Nintendo Switch action games that you either love or are dying to play.


The Best Nintendo Switch Action Games,

Portal Knights

Snake Pass

Huntdown

Shovel Knight: Specter of Torment

NeuroVoider

Unbox: Newbie's Adventure

Oceanhorn: Monster of Uncharted Seas

Shovel Knight: Treasure Trove

Towerfall: Ascension

Skylanders: Imaginators


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Wed, 01 Mar 2017 00:50:07 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/best-nintendo-switch-action-games/ranker-games
<![CDATA[The Best Nintendo Switch Adventure Games]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/best-nintendo-switch-adventure-games/ranker-games?source=rss

So you've bought a Switch and want to play some adventure games, but what are your choices? Luckily for you, we're ranking the best Nintendo Switch adventure games, both current and upcoming. There's one obvious choice for the best Switch adventure game, and fortunately for all of us, that game was a launch title.

There is absolutely no denying that The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild is the best adventure game on Nintendo Switch. This is the game that made buying a Switch on launch day worth it, as there are hundreds of hours of gameplay inside of this little cartridge.

Outside of BoTW, though, what are the best adventure games for Nintendo Switch? Upcoming Switch adventure games include Oceanhorn, Seasons of Heaven, and RiME.


The Best Nintendo Switch Adventure Games,

Lego City Undercover

Terraria

Rime

Syberia 3

Oceanhorn: Monster of Uncharted Seas

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild

Troll and I

Minecraft: Story Mode - The Complete Adventure

Wonder Boy: The Dragon's Trap

ToeJam & Earl: Back in the Groove


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Wed, 01 Mar 2017 00:50:06 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/best-nintendo-switch-adventure-games/ranker-games
<![CDATA[The Best Nintendo Switch Indie Games]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/best-nintendo-switch-indie-games/ranker-games?source=rss

If there's one thing that Nintendo Switch is doing right, it's indie games. For this list we're ranking the best indie games on Nintendo Switch, as well as upcoming Nintendo Switch indie games that we're really looking forward to playing. The console may not get the third-party support that its competitors get, but the indie titles make Switch well worth buying, especially since you can play them on the go.

So what are the best Nintendo Switch indie games? Snipperclips is obviously the game everyone has been talking about since launch day, as it's exclusively on the Switch. The combination of the puzzles and lighthearted atmosphere make for the perfect indie game that anyone can enjoy.

Upcoming Switch indie games include Yooka-Laylee, SteamWorld Dig 2, and Oceanhorn, the Zelda-like game that impersonates the Nintendo franchise in all the right ways.

Vote for your favorite indie games for Switch, both current and upcoming. If a game isn't out yet, you can still vote it up based on how much you want to play it.


The Best Nintendo Switch Indie Games,

Rime

Sunu Ikkibu

Snake Pass

Shovel Knight: Specter of Torment

Seasons of Heaven

SteamWorld Dig 2

Yooka-Laylee

Snipperclips

Fast RMX

Syberia 3


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Wed, 01 Mar 2017 00:50:06 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/best-nintendo-switch-indie-games/ranker-games
<![CDATA[The 13 Most Bizarre Crossovers In Gaming History]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/bizarre-video-game-crossovers/nathan-gibson?source=rss

Video game crossovers, much like crossovers in other forms of media, are not particularly rare. Companies have realized that by combining their brands with other well-known characters and franchises, they can vastly improve the popularity of both products. After all, fans love to see their favorite heroes and villains go to new worlds in whatever capacity they can. 

This thinking, though, has led to some very weird video game mashups where the universes of two or more well-known series have been flung together haphazardly. It can feel like they were thought up by an 11 year old who just had way too much sugar.

Sometimes, these bizarre crossover video games are created as cheap marketing ploys that attempt to take advantage of hardcore fans, but others are just straight-up odd mixtures that you would never have expected to see.


The 13 Most Bizarre Crossovers In Gaming History,

Kingdom Hearts

Considering how protective Disney is over their properties, the concept of an action role-playing game featuring an array of Disney characters alongside an original cast (and characters from Final Fantasy) seems too far-fetched to ever happen.

However, a chance meeting in an elevator between the game’s director and a Disney executive allowed the idea to be pitched directly to the company. The result was Kingdom Hearts, a game where players team up with Goofy and Donald Duck as they progress through a variety of worlds based on famous Disney movies, such as Aladdin and The Lion King. It proved incredibly successful and there have been more than a dozen sequels and spin-offs since.


Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games

There are many things that make Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games profoundly bizarre. Nintendo and Sega had long been enemies, and the two titular characters had often been pitted against one another for market dominance. Furthermore, Sonic had seen a dramatic drop in popularity after starring in a slew of bad games, while Mario was more successful than ever.

The Japanese companies agreed to work together after Sega adopted the IOC’s mission to promote a sporting spirit and to interest young people in the Olympics. The game was so financially successful that a further two installments, for the 2010 Winter Olympics and 2012 Summer Olympics, were also created.


Lego Rock Band

While LEGO has teamed up with a variety of different brands and franchises in past with their action-adventure games, the brick company also had one rather... strange collaboration. In addition to working with the likes of Star Wars and Indiana Jones, they also had a crossover with the Rock Band series by Harmonix.

This resulted in LEGO Rock Band – a game that's functionally the exact same thing as Rock Band, with the addition of LEGO characters and items. Since LEGO is not traditionally associated with music and Rock Band had previously only worked with... bands, it was an unusual move. Regardless, it proved rather successful.


Pokémon Conquest

What's the weirdest videogame franchise crossover you can imagine? Doesn't matter, Pokémon mashed together with Nobunaga’s Ambition series is much, much stranger. There is obvious appeal in featuring creatures from Pokémon in a variety of different games and media, due to their popularity, but combining it with a turn-based strategy game set in feudal Japan was not something that most people expected. Mature, adult themes set Pokémon Conquest apart as players attempt to conquer various warlords and unite the land.


Nicktoons MLB

There are very few baseball games that receive critical acclaim or become commercially successful. This has led to developers attempting to bring new elements to their games in an attempt to increase their popularity.

One studio, for example, generated a crossover between Major League Baseball and Nickelodeon, with the title featuring cartoon characters from a number of Nicktoon shows, such as Spongebob Square Pants, Ren & Stimpy, and Invader Zim. The game, Nicktoons MLB, was a huge flop and another game in the series has not been considered.


Project X Zone

Project X Zone is about as crazy as crossovers get in the gaming industry. It combined fighters from games such as Street Fighter, Tekken, and Devil May Cry together for the first time. Not only was Namco Bandai able to convince Sega and Capcom to allow their characters to appear, but they put them in a tactical role-playing game rather than a traditional fighting title, confusing gamers even more.

Despite all of this, it turned out to be a hit with fans and sold many more copies than initially expected, leading to the release of a sequel several years later.


Hyrule Warriors

Although Nintendo has never been afraid of making spin-offs or crossing over their franchises into new worlds and genres, Hyrule Warriors was still a very unexpected title when it was first announced.

After all, The Legend of Zelda series has always been more about adventuring and solving puzzles rather than combat, and this crossover between the franchise and Dynasty Warriors focused entirely on fighting hordes of enemies. Despite some misgivings from longtime fans, Hyrule Warriors proved to be a hit and drew acclaim for its engaging fighting system and its implementation of classic Zelda elements, such as the ability to open chests on the battlefield.


Sonic Lost World

The Sonic brand has not always done well for Sega. Apart from a successful collaboration with Nintendo in the form of Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games, there has been very little to get fans of the blue hedgehog excited.

That might be why Sega teamed up with Nintendo again when it released Sonic: Lost World to create a piece of free, downloadable content that outlandishly saw the hedgehog enter the world of Hyrule. The Legend of Zelda Zone DLC saw Sonic don the famous green tunic and go on an adventure filled with chickens, heart containers, and everything else you would expect from a Zelda game.


Poker Night At The Inventory

When gamers think of Telltale Games, the first games to come to mind are likely the super popular The Walking Dead or The Wolf Among Us, rather than a poker simulator. Still though, it would be a shame to forget one amazingly weird title in particular. In 2010, Telltale released Poker Night at the Inventory, a game that featured crossover characters from a variety of seemingly random locations.

The players included Tycho from Penny Arcade, the Heavy from Team Fortress 2, Max from Sam & Max, and Strong Bad from Homestar Runner. Each character had their own backstory and in-depth dialogue, something which proved to be incredibly well-received. The game was so successful that a sequel featuring characters from Portal, Borderlands, and The Evil Dead was created in 2013.


King Games

The King Games were a collection of three titles that were created in a collaboration between Burger King, Microsoft, and Blitz Games. Executives from the fast food restaurant and Microsoft had met at Cannes while they were picking up awards for their advertisement campaigns and they immediately began discussions about a crossover that would combine the Xbox and Xbox 360 consoles with the Burger King brand.

The result was PocketBike Racer, Big Bumpin’, and Sneak King. They proved to be a huge commercial success, even though they were not well received by critics, and became some of the biggest selling titles of 2006, boosting sales of Burger King significantly. No matter what you think, the system works. 



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Thu, 29 Dec 2016 09:08:29 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/bizarre-video-game-crossovers/nathan-gibson
<![CDATA[15 Video Game Classics That Were Almost Never Made]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/video-games-that-were-almost-never-made/nathan-gibson?source=rss

Video games are unique in terms of media because of the sheer scale of their development. Often, blockbuster titles will require years of work and hundreds of individuals to get to completion, making them incredibly susceptible to delays and problems that might even lead to cancellation. Even the biggest games are not immune from this and there are plenty of examples of successful video games that almost weren’t made.

Considering the sheer amount of time and effort that is required to get any title out of development and onto store shelves, it should not come as a surprise that a huge variety of problems can arise. Games with development issues might see their team reduced or funding cut by a publisher who no longer wants to take a huge risk - even when the work is nearly complete. Fortunately for players, many developers manage to overcome these issues and persevere to release their product despite the problems that almost led to them never being made.


15 Video Game Classics That Were Almost Never Made,

Fallout 3

Originally, Black Isle Studios was developing Fallout 3. Black Isle was the original studio behind Fallout and Fallout 2, but the new game was set to move to more modern hardware and feature 3D graphics and models. Publisher Interplay Entertainment went bankrupt and the project faced a real threat of cancellation until Bethesda stepped in and bought the rights to the franchise.

Later, several members of Black Isle Studios left the company to form Obsidian Entertainment. Obsidian later developed a spin-off to the franchise known as Fallout: New Vegas.


GoldenEye 007

The entire development of GoldenEye 007, one of the most famous and important video games of all time, was a protracted affair that presented numerous problems. Out of the 10 people working on the title, only eight had ever worked on a game before, while the 32 months spent working on it meant that it was released two years after the movie was in cinemas. Even more remarkably, the multiplayer component was completed almost singlehandedly by one person in secret and was only added to the final game as an afterthought.


Madden NFL

Although Madden NFL has become one of the most popular sports video game franchises in the world, the initial game was almost canceled when John Madden threatened to pull out of endorsing it in 1984. The issue arose when it became clear that the developer could only simulate a football game on then-current hardware with seven players on each side.

"That was a deal breaker," Madden recalled. "If it was going to be me and going to be pro football, it had to have 22 guys on the screen. If we couldn't have that, we couldn't have a game."

The potential loss of the Madden name and exposure they would lose from not having him endorse the game led the studio to go back and rework the game so that it could fully support 11 v. 11 gameplay.


Pokémon Red and Blue

The original Pokemon games were made by a relatively small team over a long development time - six years, to be exact. This protracted timescale meant it faced numerous issues before it was completed, including computers that constantly overheated and died, which put all the development progress at risk.

"I sure am glad I fixed those computers back then," said the Pokemon programmer Junichi Masuda. "If I hadn't, the original Red and Green [the Japanese title for Pokemon Red and Blue] games might never have come out. That's a scary thought!”

Luckily, technicians were able to fix the computers, meaning that no significant progress was lost.


X-COM

X-COM: UFO Defense was the catalyst for popularizing turn-based strategy games as well as the launch pad for the entire XCOM franchise. Publisher MicroProse was very enthusiastic about the game, but that excitement was short-lived. Financial difficulties meant the developer almost went bankrupt, while Spectrum HoloByte purchased a controlling stake in MicroProse. They were less impressed with the title and ordered its cancellation. However, bosses at the MicroProse chose to ignore the order and didn’t tell the developers, allowing the game to be completed.


Harvest Moon

Harvest Moon went through a difficult development. The idea of a farming simulator was a brand new concept in the mid-90s, meaning that the studio working on the game had no real reference points. The title was delayed constantly but the issues came to a head six months after a playable build was first put together. The studio went bankrupt, the president of the company vanished, and the various teams within the organization split up. Creator Yasuhiro Wada seriously considered throwing away all the work and finding a new job but continued working on Harvest Moon when two colleagues convinced him to not quit.


Grand Theft Auto

Grand Theft Auto is now one of the most established franchises in the gaming industry, with each installment selling tens of millions of copies all around the world. However, the series came from very humble beginnings and almost never saw the light of day. The first game was delayed significantly when writers and designers kept butting heads about direction Grand Theft Auto should take. This, in turn, led to the US-based publisher wanting to kill the game as development milestones were missed. Work on the title only continued as the studio was able to vigorously argue their case during weekly meetings.


The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings

CD Projekt has become one of the premier developers of the modern video game age, but the studio almost went out of business before it had the chance to release The Witcher 2 and its eventual sequels. The primary concern was the cost of paying Widescreen Games to port The Witcher 2 to consoles, with funding continually rising as the external developer ran into problems. Although CD Projekt eventually canceled the project and cut ties with Widescreen, the damage had been done. Combined with the economic downturn that occurred months later, the entire company almost went out of business, forcing the studio to cancel future projects and cut content from The Witcher 2.


The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds

The original idea for The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds was first suggested by Hiromasa Shikata after development had wrapped up on The Legend of Zelda: Spirit Tracks. Legendary designer Shigeru Miyamoto liked the idea of Link being able to merge into walls and gave the team permission to move forward with the concept. After just a few weeks of production, though, most of the team was moved onto new projects that needed extra development in the run-up to the release of the new Wii U console. Producer Eiji Aonuma came back to the concept around 18 months later and began developing it into a full game.


Battlefield 1

When EA first announced Battlefield 1 in 2016, it took many people by surprise. After all, most first-person shooters were being set in modern or futuristic sci-fi environments rather than harking back to the past. Electronic Arts executive VP Patrick Söderlund felt exactly the same when DICE, the production studio, initially pitched the idea of Battlefield 1. He believed that a World War I setting could not be fun and would fail to attract fans who were used to more futuristic games. He only greenlit the project when the developer was able to convince him that fans were eager for a change with a fresh setting.



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Thu, 29 Dec 2016 08:53:58 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/video-games-that-were-almost-never-made/nathan-gibson
<![CDATA[Every Overwatch Victory Pose, Ranked]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/best-overwatch-victory-poses/brandon-michaels?source=rss

Rock stars, athletes, an international task force of superhuman heroes: what do they all have in common? The victory pose, a celebratory stance designed to let players and characters bask in the glory of a job well done. Whether you just shredded a killer riff, make an incredible catch, or pwned some n00b with a headshot, you must make the moment count.

In Overwatch, there are over 125 unique victory poses spread across the 23 (currently) playable characters, but who has the coolest victory poses? No stock poses here -  these are the Overwatch victory poses with panache! What best fits your playing style and attitude? Does it match the way you play? Ultimately, a victory pose should let the other players, on both teams, know that you are not one to be trifled with.


Every Overwatch Victory Pose, Ranked,

Reaper - R.I.P.

Mercy - Mistletoe

Mei - Medal

Junkrat - Bad For Your Health

Genji - Sword Stance

Hanzo - Over The Shoulder

Bastion - Firework

D.Va - Festive

Tracer - Over The Shoulder

Ana - R.I.P.


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Wed, 08 Mar 2017 08:37:56 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/best-overwatch-victory-poses/brandon-michaels
<![CDATA[18 Super Messed Up Decisions Video Games Have Forced You To Make]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/moral-dilemmas-in-video-games/jason-robbins?source=rss

Moral choices in video games are all the rage these days. There used to be a time when nobody gave a rat's patoot about the death of an anthropomorphic turtle beneath Mario's stomping boots, or the potential to cause a blood-soaked 5-lane pileup by making an inordinately large frog jump into traffic. That's because those horrors were just a bunch of pixels. They still are, and, granted, some games still let you do horrific things with no consequences, but with the introduction of photorealistic models, deep characterization, and real-world values into video game narratives, guilt has been born of the prospect of mowing down NPCs with an uzi.

Talented game writers use this guilt to entertain the player with interesting and complex moral quandaries during the course of gameplay. This is entertainment value that can only be mined by the game industry, as no other medium gives control of a character's decisions to the consumer in quite the same way. No other medium can make the consumer feel the weight of a character's decisions quite so heavily.

For your consideration is a list of some of the video game moral dilemmas that most made players tear their hair out, wavering back and forth while staring at a 'Pause' screen. Now it is up to you to upvote the ones you feel most strongly about. You can handle it.


18 Super Messed Up Decisions Video Games Have Forced You To Make,

BioShock

While the Little Sisters of Bioshock are some ugly little buggers who spend all day harvesting ADAM from dead bodies, they're still just helpless little girls once you take down their giant protectors. So what do you do with them? In a show of true devilish manipulation, the game rewards you with twice the amount of ADAM if you kill them. But, if you do the right thing and save the sisters from the hold of their sea slugs, Tenenbaum will reward you with gifts, and you'll get the extra happy ending of escaping rapture with all of them. You also get to, you know, NOT kill a little girl! What's wrong with you??


Fallout 3

During the player's travels across the wasteland, he might stumble upon a beautiful patch of green amidst the ruin, called Oasis. Grass, trees, water - this place has it all! Turns out, an old mutant friend from the original Fallout games named Harold is responsible. The sapling growing out of his head (Bob) eventually overwhelmed him, rooted him in place, and grew this tiny paradise. Of course, Harold is bored as hell and wants you to end his life painlessly. Other folks, however, have different plans, one being to keep him alive and contained in Oasis, and the other being to make Harold blossom and turn the whole wasteland into a hippie commune. You can choose any of these options, or if you're a real evil sucker, you can burn the frightened Harold up alive. You had a rough childhood, didn't you?


Heavy Rain

Heavy Rain is deeper and darker than many Hollywood film noirs, and as such, it is loaded with moral quandaries. For instance, the Origami Killer, the game's antagonist and kidnapper of the protagonist's son, offers the player a clue to his son's whereabouts if he's willing to off a drug dealer. A tough thing to do, no doubt, but for a father, it's kind of a no-brainer. However, before the player can pull the trigger, said drug dealer pulls out a picture of his two little girls and pleads for his life. This is a decision no one should ever have to make. Video games are fun!


Mass Effect

After defeating Matriarch Benezia on Noveria, the Rachni Queen, a giant telepathic bug, is left to be dealt with. She asks for mercy from Shepard, insinuates that the violence inflicted by her species was caused by outside forces, and claims her only intention is to rebuild her species peacefully. The player can then allow her to go free, saving the Rachni species from total obliteration, or splatter that bug like it just met the windshield of a speeding semi. Can you live with the extermination of an entire sentient (albeit disgusting) species?


Mass Effect 3

In Mass Effect, the Krogans are a particularly nasty and durable species known for decimating planets and reproducing at a whopping 1000-offspring-per-female-per-year rate. This all adds up to a race that could easily conquer and occupy every planet in the known universe. In fact, that's just what the Krogans started doing before the Salarians deployed the Genophage, a biological weapon that reduced Krogan birth survival to 1 out of every 1000. In Mass Effect 3, Shepard has a chance to cure the Genophage (and potentially make way for another Krogan Rebellion) or be complicit in sabotaging the cure, which also requires you to gun down your good buddy Mordin in cold blood. Moralists will say the choice is clear, but moralists might sing a different tune once they're turned out as sex slaves in the Krogan dictatorship.


Game of Thrones

When you play the game of Game of Thrones, some of your playable characters are going to die. In the final episode, you'll have to make a choice between the two Forrester brothers: Asher and Roderick. One must sacrifice himself to save the other. Did you think there'd be a happy ending? Dude, it's Game of Thrones.


The Walking Dead: Survival Instinct

After an already less-than-ideal journey through post-apocalyptic America, life kicks the hero, Lee Everett in the crotch one last time. It turns out he's turning (into a zombie), whether or not he hacked off his own bite-infected arm earlier. So he must decide whether to join the walking dead or have little Clem put a bullet in his brain. It's a harrowing task for a little girl to undertake, but it's also a valuable parting lesson for her - to survive in this world, these are the things we now must do.


Fallout: 4

It's a long, convoluted story, but the protagonist of Fallout 4 eventually reunites with his long-lost son, who is now older than he is (again, long story) and the leader of an arguably evil faction of synths and their makers. The player can then go the sentimental route and join up with junior or lead another faction against him, burning all that his son has worked for to the ground. Or he can just bust a cap in the kid's head. Whatever happens, his son dies anyway because he has incurable cancer, which is pretty messed up in and of itself.


Saving Either Ashley or Josh from the Sawblade Trap in Before Dawn

During your spooky stay-over on Blackwood Mountain, both Ashley and Josh are (as far as you know) captured and secured to a Saw movie-style killing device. A moving buzzsaw is set to kill one of them, and you must quickly decide who would be less of a pain in the ass to de-friend on Facebook. Josh is one of your closest pals and not a sociopathic revenge-bent a-hole, for sure. Ashley could be your future sweetie if you can climb your weak ass out of the friend zone. Decisions, decisions...


Sacrificing Chloe to Save the Town in Life is Strange

After spending five episodes amongst the good people of Arcadia Bay, making emotional connections and using your unique gifts to help solve their problems, you're forced to choose whether or not to save the town from peril. To do so would mean going back in time and un-doing the incredibly brave and awesome rescue of your BFF from the hands of a killer you performed at the beginning of the game! What should you do? A wise Vulcan once said, "The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few." Meh, screw Spock - you know he'd never sacrifice his precious Kirk to save a bunch of Oregon townies.



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Fri, 23 Sep 2016 09:16:47 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/moral-dilemmas-in-video-games/jason-robbins
<![CDATA[Master Chief Fantasy Casting]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/master-chief-fantasy-casting/brandon-michaels?source=rss

Master Chief, the protagonist of Bungie's fictional Halo universe, is a man of few words - the Master Chief prefers to be a man of action. His real name is John-117, and he's a "Spartan-II" commando of the UNSC Naval Special Warfare Unit who fought during the Human-Covenant war. He also delivers all his deadpan one-liners right after doing something epic, like sending the Covenant their bomb back, solidifying his status as a badass.

There have been countless talks of creating a live-action Halo film, finally bringing Master Chief to the silver screen, but they've all gone bust. Who are the best actors to play a live-action Master Chief, qualified enough to fill the role of a 6'10", 290-pound space marine from the future? Should it be someone dark and mysterious, or someone young and charming? Feel free to add any actors that aren't listed here who would rock a battle rifle. It's a big suit to fill, so they better be up to Cortana's standards.


Master Chief Fantasy Casting,

Chris Evans

Chris Pratt

Jason Statham

John DiMaggio

Mike Colter

Nolan North

Will Smith

Hugh Jackman

Marrese Crump

Theo James


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Wed, 08 Mar 2017 07:49:47 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/master-chief-fantasy-casting/brandon-michaels
<![CDATA[18 Games That Let You Do Horrible Things With No Consequences]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/games-where-you-can-act-on-your-worst-instincts/jacob-shelton?source=rss

In every gamer’s life, there comes a time when they grow weary of playing by the rules, when the very idea of following through on the gameplay that’s been laid out before you seems like a hideous chore, and that’s where the video games that make you a god come into play. Sometimes you don’t want to save the princess or level up so you can live a long and happy life as an honest member of society. There are days where you just want to play some video games where you can commit crimes and watch your digital world burn. Whether they’re giving you a chance to throw penguins to their deaths like you’ve always wanted to or see what would happen if you shot some unlicensed nuclear accelerators at the walls of an expensive hotel instead of chasing ghosts, what they’re really doing is allowing you to relax.

Video games where you can be evil aren’t a new invention. Creators of some of the most classic games have been normalizing insane behavior from the time they told you it was okay for a plumber to beat a gorilla to death with a hammer, it’s just that you’re finally getting hip to what they’re laying down. How do you feel about playing God via video games? Do you love it? Or are you bored and looking to expand you power to the realm of the corporeal? Vote up the games that make you the most gleeful as you commit atrocities, then leave us a comment about the worst thing you’ve ever done in real life.


18 Games That Let You Do Horrible Things With No Consequences,

Fallout

You know who plays Fallout 4 straight through like they're playing a normal game? Squares, that's who. In the most ridiculous version of the Fallout series, you can nuke stuff, build stuff, do whatever the f*ck you want - even play the game, if you're a nerd. 


Rampage World Tour

If you ever need to work off some steam, then boot up a nice game of Rampage and watch as a facsimile of King Kong smashes buildings while fighting a facsimile of Godzilla. Unlike in real life, the more you smash, the better off you are. 


Super Mario 64

Prior to Super Mario 64, the world's favorite plumber was already stomping on goombas and smashing bricks willy-nilly, but then he graduated to throwing penguins off a glacier. What's you're deal, Mario?


The Legend of Zelda

Throughout the Legend of Zelda games, you spend your days blowing up the walls of ancient ruins, smashing pots, beating up chickens, and being a complete d*ck. And you get away with it because you're saving Hyrule from an ancient evil or something like that. 


The Simpsons Hit & Run

No list of havoc-wreaking games is complete without The Simpsons: Hit & Run, a very underrated GameCube/Xbox/PS2 classic. Think Grand Theft Auto, but everyone's yellow and there are EVEN FEWER consequences. 


The Sims

What terrible stuff can't you do in The Sims? This is the game where you're asked to literally play god in order to win or whatever it is you get out of forcing digital people to starve to death or have increasingly ugly children. 


Minecraft

Do you ever just want to build something in the shape of a giant AK-47? Or like, make a bunch of lava burn some stuff? 


The Last of Us

To be fair, you have to survive the apocalypse somehow, so it's kind of okay that you're essentially tasked with killing all the stuff, whacking cannibals, and being a general tough guy to get your young ward Ellie to Salt Lake City so she can help save the human race. Be honest, is there anything as satisfying and beating someone to death with a pipe? 


Grand Theft Auto V

You could make a case for all the Grand Theft Auto games being the perfect way to let off your worst steam. As a player, you can pull people out of cars, beat up prostitutes, rob strangers, you know, go nuts. But Grand Theft Auto V expands the world to its natural apex, and with that world-building comes an unending amount of trouble in which to find yourself. 


Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag

Aside from the mortal sin that is parkour (which does no one any good ever) Assassin's Creed IV allows you to pretty much act like a giant douche without any consequences. You can rob sunken ships and no one cares! That's not your stuff! Put it back!



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Thu, 23 Feb 2017 05:13:16 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/games-where-you-can-act-on-your-worst-instincts/jacob-shelton
<![CDATA[14 Outrageous Video Game Urban Legends That You Probably Believed]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/video-game-urban-legends/nathan-gibson?source=rss

Myths have always been part of human society, but the Internet has allowed stories to be spread much more quickly and efficiently than ever before. In particular, video game rumors have become incredibly popular source material, as players try to find secret items or unlock hidden rooms. Inevitably, video game urban legends run rampant. 

While some of the gaming urban legends that fill forums online turn out to be true, there are countless others that are completely and utterly fictional. Some are instantly debunked by gamers, but others are able to fool huge swathes of the community. Sometimes, they become so engrained in the public consciousness that they are simply accepted as the truth – even when there is no evidence to support them.


14 Outrageous Video Game Urban Legends That You Probably Believed,

The Original Diablo And Its Secret Cow Level

Not long after Diablo was released, rumors began to circulate that it was possible to reach a secret level filled with cattle. All the player had to do was click on a lone cow in the town of Tristram a certain number of times.

The myth spread quickly and became an incredibly popular subject within the community of the game. While there was no secret cow level hidden within Diablo, Blizzard did include such levels in the sequels in response to the urban legend.


There Was A "Haunted" Copy Of Majora’s Mask

A creepypasta that circulates about The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask posits that there was a "haunted" copy of the game. Apparently, it's a saved game on the cartridge called "Ben." According to the urban legend, the saved game couldn’t be deleted and the content of the game was changed so that NPCs all referred to Link as Ben, music would play backwards, and actions would not work as intended.

The story states that the spooky copy of the game does not have any promotional art and simply has the word “Majora” written on the front in black marker pen. While the videos show that the game exists in some form, it is likely the work of hackers who have altered the game’s code rather than supernatural spirits.


Fallout 3's Cryptic Radio Messages That Predict The Future

According to multiple sources, there are hidden radio messages in Fallout 3 that predict the future. The urban legend claims that a character known as Three Dog will read out numbers in a rather depressing voice and then play a series of Morse code messages over the airwaves.

These apparently relate to dates in the real world and predict things like the death of the Queen and the BP oil disaster.  While many believed the cryptic messages did exist, Bethesda has since stated they are not part of the game and the theory is simply not true.


The Lavender Town Music In Pokemon Red And Blue Caused Suicides

The Pokémon franchise has no shortage of creepy urban legends. One such legend was centered around claims that the music from a particular location in the game caused several young children in Japan to commit suicide.

The legend stated that the soundtrack in Lavender Town was so depressing it was driving people to kill themselves. This was possibly linked to the fact that the in-game town effectively acted as a cemetery for deceased Pokémon, planting the idea of death into the minds of players. However, the theme song didn’t cause suicidal thoughts. Because of course it didn't - it's just a game. 


The Triforce Being Available In Ocarina Of Time

The Triforce is the most powerful item in The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time. Effectively, it gives the wielder unlimited power and abilities. However, it is not an obtainable item within the game, even though there is an apparent space for it in the inventory screen.

This led many to believe the Triforce may be hidden within the title. In 1999, in fact, one gamer claimed they had found the Triforce. After posting vague hints about where to find it, the player eventually handed over screenshots that showed Link learning a new song and going to a new area before finally getting his hands on the secret item. Eagle-eyed fans were able to spot errors within the screenshots, though, and proved that they were fake.


Polybius Was A Government Controlled Arcade Game That Had Dangerous Side Effects

The legend of Polybius is so prominent that it was even featured in an episode of The Simpsons. According to stories, the arcade game was frequently visited by government officials who would record data from the machine.

The game itself was capable of inducing a variety of side effects, including insomnia, stress, night terrors, and amnesia. However, there is no actual evidence that the game even existed in the first place. Most experts believe the legend sprang from tales of the FBI raiding machines that were tampered with for gambling. 


Mew Was Hiding Under A Van In Pokemon Red And Blue

Pokemon Red & Blue became one of the biggest phenomena in gaming when it initially released, selling millions of copies worldwide and inspiring countless spin-offs and other media products. This obviously led to plenty of rumors and urban legends spreading about the game, the most infamous being that you could catch the rare Pokémon Mew by pushing a truck. The claim came from the fact the truck was in a strange place and didn’t seem to serve any other function, but it had no way of awarding a player with Mew.


There Was A Code To Make Lara Croft Naked In Tomb Raider

When Tomb Raider released on the PlayStation 1 back in 2001, the game became a huge hit. Its protagonist, Lara Croft, also became something of a sex symbol. Considering how a huge portion of the audience for the game was teenage boys, it should come as no surprise that rumors quickly began to spread that there was a cheat code that would make the buxom character appear naked.

This urban legend spread quickly via word of mouth, and before long almost everyone playing the game was looking for the code. The only problem was that it simply did not exist. The entire idea of a nude cheat had simply been an invention.


Blowing On Nintendo Cartridges Made Them Work

Every kid who grew up in the late 1980s or early 1990s knew that the best way to get a game cartridge to work properly was to blow on it. This would (apparently) remove any dirt or dust and make the title work perfectly again – even if it took a few tries. Well, blowing into the cartridges actually did not help at all, even though almost everybody did it.

The truth is that most times when a game did not load up, it was because the pins were not connected properly. Removing the cartridge to blow into it before reinserting it just gave the pins another chance to line up correctly. In fact, blowing into the games was actually harmful, damaging the pins and causing them to corrode.


Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas Contained A Bigfoot

Considering the popularity of the Grand Theft Auto series, it make sense that the franchise has inspired its fair share of urban legends. The most famous of these concerns a hidden Bigfoot (or Sasquatch, if you're nasty) who can allegedly be found in Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas.

Despite the fact that the developer has consistently said there is no Bigfoot in the game and no definitive proof has ever surfaced to confirm its existence, many people still hunt for the elusive creature in groups online.



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Thu, 29 Dec 2016 08:30:58 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/video-game-urban-legends/nathan-gibson
<![CDATA[17 Absurd Japanese Dating Sims That Actually Exist]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/weirdest-japanese-dating-sims-ever-made/jacob-shelton?source=rss

What are Japanese dating sims? Well, they’re kind of exactly what they sound like, except they’re totally weird in a million different, unimaginable ways. Dating sims are games where you play as a man, woman, or genderless person who is trying to win the love of something (human or otherwise) via text based commands. Like bizarre Japanese animal themed cafes or insane Japanese kid shows, the island nation took a simple idea and just sort of ran buckwild with it. 

These games have a lot in common with the early Final Fantasy games minus all of the magic, bloodshed, and floating pirate ships. Because there are myriad tastes in the world, there are a lot of different weird dating sims, and this list is going to try and parse what goes into some of the strangest dating sims that have ever been created.

Imagine a thing. No, for real, like just any ol' thing. Got it? Well, there’s a weird Japanese dating sim about whatever it is that’s on your mind. Do you want to date a bug? You can do that. Do you want to date a ukulele playing dinosaur? You can definitely do that. The far out Japanese dating sims that you’re about to discover range from the mostly wholesome to the straight-up creepy. Can you really say you’re surprised that a dating simulation would have unsettling undertones? If you’ve played any of these dating sims don’t be embarrassed, the games look fun – albeit incredibly tedious – and how many people can say that they’ve taken a bug-creature dressed like a Japanese school girl out on a date? 


17 Absurd Japanese Dating Sims That Actually Exist,

Aka No Prince ~Koi No Jintai Rensei~

Aka no Prince (Filth Prince) has one of the most insane concepts that's ever been used in a game. All you do in Filth Prince is raise a glob of sentient dirt and skin cells until it becomes a cat, and then a very handsome man whom you end up falling in love with.

Disgusting? Yes, but you don't get a filth prince without getting a little, you know, filthy. That being said, "Filth Prince" is an amazing black metal band name and you should start working on your illegible logo now. 


Tomak: Save The Earth Love Story

At their core, every dating sim is kind of creepy. They all make objects out of whomever the romantic interest is (usually a woman), but in this case your love interest is literally an object. More accurately, it's the disembodied head of a woman in a potted plant.

The plot of this story is a doozy, and it involves a love goddess coming to Earth to prove that love is real, except her body is still in heaven and she's stuck in a flower pot. Oh, and if you let your plant-goddess-girlfriend die the Devil blows up the planet. Or something? It's real weird.

 


Hatoful Boyfriend

You know how everytime you're out and about and you see a bunch of pigeons eating an old piece of bread and you're like, "YES, PLEASE!" Well there's a dating sim where you can work out those very specific tendencies.

In this game you're the only human attending a school for pigeons (duh) and you're trying to fit in as best your can while leveling up your character in order to be able to better date specific pigeons. It's not clear if there's a "best pigeon" to date, but just getting a date with any one of those sky-rats seems like a win.


Paca Plus

PacaPlus or My Girlfriend Is An Alpaca, finally answers the question of what would happen if your girlfriend turned into an alpaca. So way to go, humanity. We can all pack it in. Your dromedary lover is not just any alpaca, however, she's an alpaca that has all the memories and feelings of your girlfriend and wants to maintain your relationship.

This game is deeply unsettling, not only because you either have to learn how your girlfriend turned into a fuzzy llama-horse-thing so you can change her back, or continue loving her the way she is, but also because your alpaca girlfriend is wearing a school girl outfit and a lot of blush. It's genuinely hard to watch the game's walkthrough, let alone actually play it. 


Creature To Koi Shiyo! Kokonoe Kokoro

With a lot of Japanese dating sims you have to wait a few minutes to let the weirdness sink in, but not in Creature To Koi Shiyo! Kokonoe Kokoro (which kind of translates to Let’s Fall In Love With Creatures!) Yes, let's. 

The goal of the game is to date a giant cricket that's dressed like one of the gals from Sailor Moon. Oh, also she/it is one of your childhood friends. Keep in mind that there aren't any other giant cricket-things in the game. Did David Cronenberg secretly fund this game?


Gakuen Handsome

Human standards of beauty are weird enough as it is, but this game posits a world where how handsome you are depends on how sharp your chin is. This is insane and wonderful.

As crazy as it sounds, most of the gameplay involves going to class and putting up with the advances of your teacher who insists on introducing you as his fianceé on your first day of class. You know, regular school stuff.  


Jurassic Heart

First of all, Jurassic Heart is a great name. It's the kind of pun that makes you want to blow a kiss to the wind. But enough about the Jurassic Park puns, how's the gameplay? Well it's a pretty straightforward dating sim, except you're trying to win over a T-Rex that plays a ukulele.

If you play your cards right, you can learn that your bashful lizard suitor became afraid of showing off his skills on the ukulele because he was made fun of during a recital when he dropped his twee instrument in front of everyone. What a romantic story. 


Mr. Massagy

Mr. Massagy isn't just a dating sim, it's also a massage simulator! So if you want to bone up on your massage skills, or feel like you just want to find out how the other half lives (in this scenario, the other half are all masseuses) then you owe it to your yourself to try out Mr. Massagy.

The game play is as straight-forward as these things can get. First you open a dating app that looks similar to Tinder and then you go on a date. If the date goes well enough you get to massage someone and then you get points. So, pretty much exactly like real life. 

 

 


Uma No Prince-Sama

What are the two things all women love (if you're a sexist monster)? Horses and princes. So obviously the big money on bringing women into the mobile gaming market is to put those two things together into one very strange dating sim.

In Uma No Prince-Sama, you play a woman who has to woo a horse with a man's head by feeding him carrots and making him run on a treadmill. There's no winning this game because if you're dating a horse-prince you've already won. 


Brother Falls In Love!

Who hasn't wanted to date an affordable, reliable printer? They'll never leave you for a better job in a better city with more printers that are a safer bet to start a family with - sorry this got way too personal.

Anyway, in Brother Falls In Love! your only goal is to date the new guy in school, a printer whose favorite color ink is magenta. Also, this printer really loves to play soccer, so get ready to try to wrap your head around watching a printer jumping into the sun during an afternoon at the park. 



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Thu, 09 Feb 2017 09:36:14 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/weirdest-japanese-dating-sims-ever-made/jacob-shelton
<![CDATA[24 Video Game Titles That Sound Like Porn]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/video-game-titles-that-sound-dirty/jacob-shelton?source=rss

The extreme detail developers put into creating videos games is often skimped when it comes to marketing, which leads to some awkward moments in gaming advertising. When something like the title is overlooked, it can open the door to all sorts of dirty interpretations. While gaming itself has no problem presenting anything as sexy, the dirty-sounding video games on this list hold the most (likely) unintentionally porn-worthy titles in the history of gaming.

Dirty titles make their way into every genre, ranging from first-person shooters to educational games; at some point in the creation of the games, developers become lost in their work and don’t realize the double entendre they've created for millions of teenage boys to giggle about over Xbox Live. Have fun with these video game titles that sound an awful lot like porn. Maybe you could make a game out of figuring out whether or not the title you're reading is actually a porn or not – one of these titles has even crossed over. Enjoy your incognito Google searching!


24 Video Game Titles That Sound Like Porn,

BlowOut

Elevator Action

Pole Position

Super Smash Bros.

Five Nights at Freddy's

Top Hat Willy

Pump It Up

Mr. Driller

Super Munchers

Meat Boy


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Thu, 23 Feb 2017 05:22:36 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/video-game-titles-that-sound-dirty/jacob-shelton
<![CDATA[13 Reasons The Whole Damn Zelda Franchise Is Overrated]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/reasons-the-zelda-franchise-is-overrated/jacob-shelton?source=rss

Legend of Zelda sucks. The game defined an entire generation of gamers, and inspired a series of epic Zelda tattoos that let everyone know there are totally cool nerds now, Mom. But even the most die-hard fans are aware that there are some serious problems with the franchise. Seriously, people spend an inordinate amount of time on crazy Legend of Zelda fan theories just to rationalize some of the problems with the series. 

Despite releasing a bevy of ho-hum games, the Legend of Zelda is still considered to be one of the greatest gaming franchises ever, but why? How does a series of games achieve such a revered status in the hierarchy of gaming? Even hardcore fans admit that there are far more innovative games, and that when it comes to game play the series could use some vast improvements. But players still refuse to admit that the series as a whole is overrated. If you haven’t already flown into an uncontrollable berserker rage, continue reading to find out why the Legend of Zelda is overrated, and why it’s okay if you don’t care.

Is Zelda overrated? Yes. You’re lying to yourself if you can't admit that high scores on Metacritic and game of the year accolades are being given mostly out of nostalgia for the franchise. You may be clawing at your eyes from the very idea that every Legend of Zelda game isn’t amazing, but you need to realize that part of being a fan is acknowledging the imperfections in the thing you love. Zelda will always be an important piece of the history of gaming, but that doesn’t mean that it’s not wildly overrated.  


13 Reasons The Whole Damn Zelda Franchise Is Overrated,

The Games Are Built On An Intoxicating Foundation Of Nostalgia

Admit it, the reason you love the Legend of Zelda franchise is purely nostalgia-based. There's nothing else that can explain why you continue to play the same game wrapped in new trappings. It's okay to be nostalgic about something that meant the world to you when you were a kid. Maybe A Link to the Past was the first game you ever beat by yourself. 

Or maybe your family couldn't afford video games, but you played Ocarina of Time in the electronics aisle of Wal-Mart every time your mom went grocery shopping, and when you finally had your own money the first thing you bought was a Nintendo 64 and that exact same game. These games should be special to us, sometimes they can be our best friends. But just because you have soft spot for the games in your heart doesn't mean that they're above criticism. Once you come down from your Zelda high, you'll see how much of a dork you're being and realize the games are kind of overrated. 


There's Just So Much Filler

There are some legitimately cool moments in each Legend of Zelda game. The Helmasaur King, Dark Link, and the first time Link went to the underworld stick out as memorable moments, but everyone has their favorites.

However, in a game that takes an incredibly long time to beat, interesting things in the Zelda games are too few and far in between. Most of the games are spent running errands in hopes of earning a new hookshot, which doesn't exactly make for exciting gameplay. 


The Franchise Is Just An Annual Attempt To Squeeze You Dry

Let's do the math: there have been at least 20 Legend of Zelda games released since 1986, including console and handheld platforms (although don't forget the barn burner that wasn't Wand of Gamelon). How many of them have you actually enjoyed playing? Three? Four?

Even if you're going to front and say that you like all of the console games (which you don't) that's still not even half of the detritus that Nintendo throws out so you'll keep giving them money to prove you're a loyal fan. Do you know how little Nintendo respects you? They've released A Link to the Past three times in three different formats. Once as the original game, and twice as Four Swords.

Sure, Four Swords has that really fun multi-player rupee collecting game, but it's just A Link to the Past. To reiterate: the same game has been released three f*cking times. As much as you may enjoy A Link to the Past, it's not "buy it three times" good. 


It's Not Immediately Enjoyable

You may not know this, but you're going to die soon. Do you really have time to play a game for 10+ hours before it becomes fun? When you were 16 it was completely fine for you to be playing Majora's Mask all weekend and not make any headway, but now you don't have time to slog through hours of gameplay (what with your inevitable demise looming ever closer and all) before you lock in and start "enjoying" yourself. Either you need to stop playing Zelda games or Nintendo needs to start trying to make the games more fun from the beginning. 


The Fans Are Insufferable

You're so mad right now. You're seething as you read this because no one understands the Legend of Zelda the way you do. Your dreams take place in Hyrule, you've got a triforce on the back of your calf and the bumper of your Subaru, you've named your cat Sahasrahla, and you can't handle it when someone criticizes the games you love.

Angry fan boys are one of the main reasons that the Zelda series has become so exhausting. Rather than allow an open dialogue and free exchange of ideas on the subject, these nerds shut down anything that doesn't parrot the party line of "95% on Metacritic." 


How Many Times Is Ganon Going To Try To Destroy Hyrule?

Seriously, what's up with Ganon y'all? Why must he and Link be locked in a Sisyphean struggle against each other until the Earth explodes? After three decades, Link should be able to see other villains. It's really not fair to him, or to the players, to continue recycling the same relationship for the sake of familiarity.

And to be honest, fans would probably freak out if they got to the end of a game and didn't have to face off with the same bad guy they've been dealing with forever. It's an easy way to provoke some genuine emotion, Nintendo. Get your collective head out of the sand. 


Yikes, That Dialogue

This isn't a complaint about dialogue boxes that ends in a call for voice acting to take over the Zelda universe. Quite the opposite actually. The classic dialogue boxes that you have to scroll through are oddly comforting in a world full of games that feature legitimate voice actors.

But if Nintendo is going to continue to use those beautiful dialogue boxes, then they've got to write some better phrases for the main baddie. To wit: "Do you sleep still? Wait! Do not be so hasty, boy... I can see this girl's dreams... Oceans... Oceans... Oceans... Oceans... Oceans as far as the eye can see. They are vast seas... None can swim across them... They yield no fish to catch... What did the King of Hyrule say?... That the gods sealed Hyrule away?"  

Ugh. Was that Ganon or the rough draft of a Terry Brooks novel? It might be worth it to do away with dialogue boxes all together in favor of getting someone like Mickey Rourke to deliver that overflowing closet of a monologue. 


The Stories Are Never That Great

As much as you may enjoy the Legend of Zelda games, there's one aspect that everyone completely glosses over when they discuss the series: the complete lack of a story. There's always a catalyst for Link to go out and save Hyrule. He usually has to grab the Zelda sword, rescue some princesses from a series of crystals, or explain to them that they're actually sages or whatever, and then fight Ganon, probably. That's not a good story.

It's forgivable for that to be the plot of a game in 1986, but after over 30 years you would think that a developer would decide to do something interesting with the narrative rather than allowing it to play on a loop for all of eternity. 


If You've Played One Zelda Game You've Played Them All

Link leaves for a quest, gets a special sword, finds out that the quest he's on isn't the main quest, then goes on another, bigger quest. Quick, which Legend of Zelda game does that describe? All of them. The answer is all of them. Despite all of the innovative visuals, stylish weapon and equipment updates, and legitimately gorgeous music, each Zelda game is nothing more than a slight variation on the original Legend of Zelda.

The in-betweens are altered with every new release, but that's a necessity. How many times can you bother Zora for a pair of boots or whatever? But why are all the games the same? Evidence points to Zelda II: The Adventures of Link as being the catalyst behind such a homogenous series. Nintendo's side scrolling misstep is the one time that they branched out with their elven hero, and gamers are still ripping them for it to this day.  


The User Interface Is A Nightmare And You Know It

Is there anything more frustrating than unboxing the newest version of your favorite franchise and discovering that you have restructure how you hold your hands? Chances are you've spent hundreds of hours playing the previous version of Zelda, and your fingers have learned to effortlesly manipulate your controller across its buttons and track pad.

You no longer need to mash to get what you want, delicacy is something you can apply even in a final dungeon. But then you're stuck with an all-new interface and your confident hands have become cumbersome cudgels, unsure of where to move or how to do it. Would it kill Nintendo to keep everything the same for two games in a row? Is there some kind of witch's curse keeping them from making anything easy on their fans? 



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Thu, 23 Feb 2017 05:50:40 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/reasons-the-zelda-franchise-is-overrated/jacob-shelton
<![CDATA[22 Things You Only Understand If You Grew Up on Console Video Games]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/signs-you-grew-up-playing-console-video-games/stephanroget?source=rss

Video gaming and the culture surrounding it have gone mainstream. What used to be a niche hobby is now enjoyed by people of all ages, thanks to the advent of smartphones and tablets. But ask any longtime gamer, and they'll tell you: you just aren't a gamer if you didn't grow up with a console.

Growing up on console video games was a truly unique experience. Newbies don't understand what it's like to play console video games, and the specific triumphs and tragedies that come along with this type of equipment. From fighting with friends over Sega versus Nintendo or losing your instruction manual in the couch cushions, there were countless aspects to growing up on consoles that you had to experience for yourself to understand - preferably while sitting uncomfortably close to a television screen.

Read through this list of things you understand if you grew up on console video games, and vote your personal picks for most relatable up to the top.


22 Things You Only Understand If You Grew Up on Console Video Games,

Renting Games

Space For Notes At The End Of Instruction Booklets

Red, Yellow, And White A/V Plug-Ins

Sitting Way Too Close To The TV

Not Being Able To Save Your Progress

Blowing On Cartridges

Controller Cords Being Too Short

Not Having Enough Controllers

Having To Use The Reset Button Due To Freezing

Memory Cards


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Wed, 22 Feb 2017 03:06:33 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/signs-you-grew-up-playing-console-video-games/stephanroget
<![CDATA[The 20 Best DIY Nintendo Switches On The Internet]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/funny-nintendo-switch-memes-pictures/brandon-michaels?source=rss

Nintendo has remained in the hearts of gamers for decades - since fans first stepped foot into the Mushroom Kingdom in 1985. After years of innovation both good and bad, Nintendo begins an entirely new adventure with the Nintendo Switch!

The Nintendo Switch is a hybrid video game console, which means you can play it on-the-go like a Gameboy, or on your couch like a traditional console - the creators consider it "a home console that you can take with you on the go." The system is made up of the "Switch Console", "Switch Dock," and the "Joy-Con" controllers, which sounds suspiciously like a Wii U cut into pieces...

Since its unveiling in 2016, the Nintendo Switch morphed into a meme, and the hottest meme-theme is easily "people who got their Nintendo Switch early", where people cobble together old electronics, crazy mods, and a bunch of tape to create their own "Nintendo Switch." Check out these hilarious fake Nintendo Switch consoles! 


The 20 Best DIY Nintendo Switches On The Internet,

*Lightbulb

Paint FTW

So Sleek, So Elegant

You Spoiled Little Brat!

The Playswitch 2

Totally Legit

Switch It Up

Nintendosoft

What A System

Multi-generational


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Fri, 03 Mar 2017 12:49:09 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/funny-nintendo-switch-memes-pictures/brandon-michaels
<![CDATA[These Classics Need To Make A Comeback Right Now]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/video-game-rerelease-wishlist/joedonley?source=rss

If you were a kid with a gaming system that grew up in the late '90s to the mid-2000s, chances are you've played some genre-defining titles that made an impact on the industry, but were left behind by their developers after the fact. A lot of this is due to an industry-wide increase in microtransactions and the notion that bonus DLC is an acceptable replacement for a complete game. Other times, games are just too dated and need a total revamp - this is especially true for GameCube and Nintendo 64 titles. But wouldn't you love to see some of those classic old games rereleased? Check out this list of video games that should be rereleased or get an HD remake!


These Classics Need To Make A Comeback Right Now,

Burnout

The Burnout series is a great example of how you can incorporate one simple mechanic into a racing game and totally change the atmosphere: you can get points based on how much damage your car sustains. This game-changing system is what made this series so much fun for players that don't want to get lost in the competitive nature of the games and instead can take a break to cause as much chaos as possible. 

The last entry into the Burnout series was in 2008 with Burnout Paradise on the PS3, Xbox 360, and PC, and fans have been itching for the next installment in the series. Unfortunately, developer Criterion Games stated in 2013 that they wanted to move away from the racing genre, dashing hopes for a follow-up title anytime soon.


Chrono Trigger

Chrono Trigger was released in 1995 and is regarded as one of the best games of its genre, spawning fan campaigns for both official HD remakes and unofficial. One such fan remake, Chrono Resurrection, went so far as to release a playable version depicting fully rendered 3D models and characters from the original game. Square Enix quickly put a stop to this by filing a cease-and-desist order but hasn't really touched the property since.

Presently, the game is available on iOS and Android, but it's still in its SNES graphic glory, or lack thereof. For a game that has such a following behind it, this surely deserves to be looked at for a future HD rerelease.


Final Fantasy V

One of the most under-appreciated Final Fantasy titles, Final Fantasy V offers one of the most customizable job systems in the series and maybe in any RPG ever published. The closest thing FFV has gotten to a remake is Final Fantasy XI, which shares the main job/sub job system, but apart from that, FFV remains in the company of FFVI as the final two non-3D titles in the series.

Apart from being a great game combat-wise, the story is phenomenal and its classic JRPG mechanics garnered tons of fans. Square, at the time of the game's release (that's 1992 on the SNES), believed that FFV would be too difficult for American audiences and it wasn't released outside of Japan until 1999 on the PlayStation. More releases followed in 2006 on the Game Boy Advance and 2014 on Steam, iOS and Android. In spite of this, the game has never received the full HD treatment it deserves that lesser games in the series (FFIII and FFIV) have.


Golden Sun

Oh dear. Golden Sun and it's sequel, Golden Sun: The Lost Age, are so good. SO GOOD. After nearly a decade of waiting and complaining, Nintendo and Camelot released a third title in the series, Dark Dawn, which fell short of capturing the magic of its processors. There was no way it could have lived up to the expectations that fans of the series had, which is really a shame. That, combined with the fact that the title came out 7 years after The Lost Age, probably made it seem like the popularity of the series had passed.

This is a series that needs to be revisited and should honestly be played by everyone, everywhere. Unfortunately, Nintendo had the bright idea of restricting distribution of these two titles, originally released on the Gameboy Advance, to the Wii U Virtual Console. Like... what? Where's the logic in that? At this point, the only thing that might revive the franchise is a full reboot that ideally keeps the same difficulty curve or simply a re-release on the 3DS or NX.


.hack//INFECTION

A cult classic, the .hack// game series grew in popularity largely due to the interconnected universe Bandai Namco and CyberConnect created between all the titles under the .hack// umbrella. Because of this, the four-part game series (Infection, Mutation, Outbreak, and Quarantine) created this incredible niche of a simulated MMORPG experience that really hasn't been replicated since. This was the first game of its kind to incorporate "email" interactions with NPCs that offer massive character development, in addition to both physical and digital world building experiences.

Apart from their initial release on the PlayStation 2, none of the .hack// games have ever made it to the PlayStation Store, and given how MMORPGs are on the downswing, gamers might like the simulated experience combined with the hack and slash battle mechanics because dealing with random people on the Internet sucks.


Phantasy Star Universe

Phantasy Star Universe is a unique title that has three modes of play: a main story campaign that was an offline, single-player game with a pre-established character, a separate offline mode with a customizable character and accelerated leveling, and a separate online mode where you could access expansion content and play together with friends.

Because expansion content was restricted to online mode and the servers shut down in 2012, those storylines are now lost until the game is released again. This is obviously frustrating for players that spent money on said expansions and can no longer go back and play content they paid for. Apart from releasing this title again on principle alone, the game has an awesome battle system and some pretty killer graphics for the time.


Pokémon Snap

In perhaps the biggest missed opportunity in the history of the gaming industry, Nintendo, creator of the Wii U Controller with a built-in screen, only re-released a direct port of the original Pokemon Snap on the Wii U Virtual Console in Europe and Japan in August 2017. That's right - not even an HD remake. And there was a seven-month release delay for North America. Considering the lackluster sales of the Wii U, you'd think the gaming giant would try to salvage the wasted ingenuity by developing a remake of something that's effectively perfect for the platform.

Even an HD re-release on the 3DS would be an amazing addition to their gaming library. Nintendo has already made cash grabs with handheld versions of classic hits like Super Mario 64, Ocarina of Time 3D, and Starfox 64, and given the Pokemon Snap-like features of the Poke Finder in Pokemon Sun and Moon, it's hard to imagine what's stopping them.


Star Wars: Rogue Squadron

Since the Disney buyout of Lucasfilm in 2012 ushered in massive layoffs of developers at LucasArts and the multi-year license with EA Games went into effect, there really haven't been any fantastic Star Wars games of note. What we have seen is honestly kind of half-assed. A handful of Star Wars: The Old Republic expansions that effectively take place in the Legends timeline, and Star Wars Battlefront, which is graphically beautiful, but substantially hollow, falling victim to DLC syndrome.

Given the nature of Disney and Lucasfilm and their desire to keep the new Star Wars canon wrapped up in a tight little bow, a revival of the Rogue Squadron series would be the perfect solution. Single-player missions that strictly follow the canon timeline not only provide an immersive experience for canon junkies, but it acts as a gateway for casual players to explore the richness of the Star Wars universe while flying an X-Wing as Luke, Wedge, Poe, or even Wexley.


Super Mario Sunshine

A mainstay on every Nintendo device, Mario titles are almost always great, but Super Mario Sunshine is absolutely the best of the bunch. In it, you play as Mario, just trying to chill out on a tropical vacation when someone who looks just like you starts graffitiing the whole island. You get blamed and you have to clean the graffiti using a device called the FLUDD while also trying to track down your doppelganger. Released in 2002 for the GameCube, Sunshine has never seen a re-release on any console, likely due to the lack of sensitivity controls on newer controllers and handheld systems, which are critical for controlling the FLUDD's water pressure.

This iteration of Mario needs to be rereleased simply for the fact that it's an incredible game and new generations of gamers have no idea what they're missing.


The Oregon Trail

Yup. After the (amazing) tabletop version of the gameOregon Trail totally deserves a Skyrim-inspired action-adventure RPG where you get to die of dysentery in full 4k glory while dragging supplies back to your covered wagons.

How ridiculous would that be?

It will never, ever happen, but there's something to be said about the notion of having a game centered around exploration for the sake of survival in a massively open world while not having to worry about preventing a cataclysm from a big bad that just makes you feel warm and fuzzy.



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Mon, 24 Oct 2016 08:50:33 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/video-game-rerelease-wishlist/joedonley
<![CDATA[The 20+ Best Nintendo Switch Exclusives]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/best-nintendo-switch-exclusive-games/ranker-games?source=rss

Nintendo hardcores know that there's one reason you buy Nintendo consoles - the exclusive titles. For all those doubting the newest system, here are all the upcoming and current best Nintendo Switch exclusives, ranked by anticipation and quality. So far, the heavy hitter Switch exclusives are The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, Super Mario Odyssey, Splatoon 2, and Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, all of which will be available to play in 2017.

Some fans are depressed that more exclusives for Switch haven't been announced, asking where franchises like Metroid, F-Zero, and Donkey Kong Country are. However, with Zelda receiving a near perfect score from most gaming outlets, it's probably better than Nintendo is promoting quality over quantity for their newest console.

Rank this list of all Nintendo Switch exclusives by voting up the best games, and also the upcoming Switch exclusives that you are dying to play.


The 20+ Best Nintendo Switch Exclusives,

Splatoon 2

Release Date: Q2/Q3 2017


Fast RMX

Release Date: March 3, 2017


Xenoblade Chronicles 2

Release Date: TBD 2017


Super Mario Odyssey

Release Date: Holiday 2017


Mario Kart 8 Deluxe

Release Date: April 25, 2017


Fire Emblem Warriors

Release Date: Q3, 2017


Arms

Release Date: Q1/Q2 2017


Ultra Street Fighter II: The Final Challengers

Release Date: TBD 2017


Super Bomberman R

Release Date: March 3, 2017


Seasons of Heaven

Release Date: TBA



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Wed, 01 Mar 2017 00:50:05 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/best-nintendo-switch-exclusive-games/ranker-games
<![CDATA[The Best Nintendo Switch Platformers]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/best-nintendo-switch-platformer-games/ranker-games?source=rss

No one does platform games better than Nintendo, and now that Switch is here, it's exciting to know that we can take our favorites on the go. This list ranks the best platformers for Nintendo Switch, including 3D platform games for Switch, and side-scrolling platformers as well.

Aren't you just dying to play Super Mario Odyssey? It's easily the most anticipated 3D platform game for Nintendo Switch, but there are plenty of other titles coming out before it that look amazing. Sonic Mania, for example, is re-inventing 2D Sonic in an all new game that combines old school and new. there is also Yooka-Laylee coming out in 2017, the spiritual successor to Banjo Kazooie.

Vote up the best Switch platform games that you've played, or the unreleased games that you just can't wait to play.


The Best Nintendo Switch Platformers,

Cave Story

Release Date: TBA


Mutant Mudds

Release Date: TBA


De Mambo

Release Date: TBA


Battle Princess Madelyn

Release Date: TBA


Yooka-Laylee

Release Date: TBD 2017


2 Fast 4 Gnomz

Release Date: TBA


Super Mario Odyssey

Release Date: Holiday 2017


Sonic Mania

Release Date: Q1/Q2 2017


SteamWorld Dig 2

Release Date: Q2/Q3 2017


Rayman Legends: Definitive Edition

Release Date: TBD 2017



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Wed, 01 Mar 2017 00:50:05 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/best-nintendo-switch-platformer-games/ranker-games
<![CDATA[The 15+ Most Anticipated Nintendo Switch Games]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/nintendo-switch-anticipated-games/ranker-games?source=rss

What are the most anticipated Nintendo Switch games that have been announced so far? We're ranking the best games coming to Nintendo Switch in 2017 and 2018, so help us out by voting up the games you are most excited to play for Switch. It would be hard pressed to say that Super Mario Odyssey, an open world Mario game in the same vein as Mario 64 or Mario Sunshine, isn't the most anticipated Switch game for 2017. However, there are many more upcoming Switch games that fans are dying to play, such as Splatoon 2, ARMS, Sonic Mania, and a bunch of games with tentative titles that we don't know enough about yet (but desperately want to play.)

Vote up the upcoming Nintendo Switch games you are most excited to play, and downvote any titles you believe are all hype.

 


The 15+ Most Anticipated Nintendo Switch Games,

Dragon Quest X

Release Date: TBD


Fire Emblem (Tentative Title)

Release Date: TBD 2018


Sonic Mania

Release Date: Q2 2017


Fire Emblem Warriors

Release Date: Q3 2017


Ultra Street Fighter II: The Final Challengers

Release Date: May 26, 2017


ARMS

Release Date: Q2 2017


Super Mario Odyssey

Release Date: Holiday 2017


Mario Kart 8 Deluxe

Release Date: April 28, 2017


Splatoon 2

Release Date: Summer 2017


No More Heroes (Tentative Title)

Release Date: TBD 2018



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Wed, 01 Mar 2017 00:50:05 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/nintendo-switch-anticipated-games/ranker-games
<![CDATA[The Best Nintendo Switch Sports Games]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/best-nintendo-switch-sports-games/ranker-games?source=rss

Nintendo has never been known for its sports titles, but it usually has something to please the sports fanatics who also happen to love Nintendo. Here are the best Nintendo Switch sports games coming to the console, including NBA 2K18, which was featured in the original reveal video for the Switch. Perhaps the most important announcement from Nintendo was that FIFA 18 would be coming to Switch, a game that will undoubtedly be the most popular Nintendo Switch sports game in 2017.

If you haven't played the snowboarding game Steep, it's definitely a sports game for Switch you're going to want to check out. The surroundings are beautiful, the gameplay is slightly realistic, and it is overall just a great game. Vote up the sports games for Nintendo Switch you really want to play, and check back to see more games being added to the list as they are announced.


The Best Nintendo Switch Sports Games,

Old Time Hockey

Release Date: TBA


Steep

Release Date: TBD 2017


NBA 2K18

Release Date: September 2017


FIFA 18

Release Date: TBD 2017


Untitled Derby Stallion Game

Release Date: TBA



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Wed, 01 Mar 2017 00:50:06 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/best-nintendo-switch-sports-games/ranker-games
<![CDATA[The Best Nintendo Switch Party Games]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/best-nintendo-switch-party-games/ranker-games?source=rss

If there's one thing Nintendo does well, it's party games. This list ranks the best party games for Nintendo Switch, including current titles and upcoming releases. Which Nintendo Switch party games are you most looking forward to playing? Obviously 1-2 Switch is the game that everyone's talking about, since it takes you away from the TV and utilizes the brand new Joy-Con controllers.

Other fun party games for Switch include Just Dance 2017, Snipperclips, and Jackbox  Party Pack 3, which is releasing later in 2017. Obviously we want to see another Mario Party for Nintendo Switch, so let's keep our fingers crossed that it gets announced at E3 this summer.


The Best Nintendo Switch Party Games,

Just Dance 2017

Release Date: March 3, 2017


Snipperclips

Release Date: March 3rd, 2017


Overcooked: Special Edition

Release Date: TBA


Jackbox Party Pack 3

Release Date: TBD 2017


Mario Kart 8 Deluxe

Release Date: April 28, 2017


1-2 Switch

Release Date: March 3, 2017



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Wed, 01 Mar 2017 00:50:07 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/best-nintendo-switch-party-games/ranker-games
<![CDATA[The Best Nintendo Switch RPGs]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/best-nintendo-switch-rpgs/ranker-games?source=rss

With all the great Nintendo Switch RPGs that are slated to come out in the next two years, we wanted to get an early start on ranking the best and most exciting games. Which role-playing games for Switch are you most looking forward to? Nintendo fans were ecstatic to learn that Xenoblade Chronicles 2 was being released in 2017, but there are so many more great titles on the horizon than just that.

I Am Setsuna is a launch title that Nintendo fans will love if they haven't gotten a chance to play it yet. There are multiple Dragon Quest games coming out this year or next, and even Skyrim is getting the Switch treatment in Q3 of 2017. Will Nintendo Switch have the best RPGs out of the current gen consoles? Right now it's looking like a strong contender.

Vote up the RPGs for Nintendo Switch you love the most or are most looking forward to playing. Some of the titles below don't have names yet, but are definitely being developed for the console.


The Best Nintendo Switch RPGs,

The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim

Release Date: Q3 2017


Dragon Quest X

Release Date: TBA


The Sacred Hero

Release Date: TBD 2018


Untitled Shin Megami Tensei Game

Release Date: TBA


I Am Setsuna

Release Date: March 3, 2017


Project Octopath Traveler

Release Date: TBA


Dragon Quest XI

Release Date: TBA


Untitled Tales Game

Release Date: TBA


Xenoblade Chronicles 2

Release Date: TBD 2017



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Wed, 01 Mar 2017 00:50:06 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/best-nintendo-switch-rpgs/ranker-games
<![CDATA[The Best Nintendo Switch Racing Games]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/best-nintendo-switch-racing-games/ranker-games?source=rss

With Nintendo Switch releasing this year, it's time to rank the best Nintendo Switch racing games that are currently out, or are slated to release in the near future. Obviously Mario Kart 8 Deluxe is the Switch racing game everyone is waiting for, but there are a few sleeper titles that might just end up being more challenging and fun.

Take Fast RMX for example, a fast-paced racing game for Nintendo Switch that is already being compared to F-Zero (that doesn't mean we don't want a new F-Zero, Nintendo!) Other car racing games for Switch that are coming out are Redout, The Next Penelope, and Racing Apex.

Vote up your favorite racing game for Switch, or just the ones you're really looking forward to playing when they come out.


The Best Nintendo Switch Racing Games,

Redout

Release Date: Q2 2017


The Next Penelope

Release Date: TBA


Racing Apex

Release Date: TBA


Fast RMX

Release Date: March 3, 2017


Mario Kart 8 Deluxe

Release Date: April 28, 2017



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Wed, 01 Mar 2017 00:50:06 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/best-nintendo-switch-racing-games/ranker-games
<![CDATA[The Best Nintendo Switch Fighting Games]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/best-nintendo-switch-fighting-games/ranker-games?source=rss

At the time of writing this there aren't a ton of Nintendo Switch fighting games that have been announced, but there certainly are some solid titles in the works. This list will be updated with Switch fighting games as they are announced, so check back to see how new titles stack up against what's currently here.

Which fighting games for Nintendo Switch look good? Many fans are excited for Ultra Street Fighter II: The Final Challengers, especially since it's a Nintendo Switch exclusive with two new characters never seen before in a Street Fighter game. A lot of people are also really excited about Arms, the boxing-esque Nintendo original that has players moving the Joy-Cons to emulate a real fight.

Vote up the fighting games for Switch that you really like, or are really looking forward to playing. Hopefully there will be a Smash Brothers game for Switch we can add to the list real soon!


The Best Nintendo Switch Fighting Games,

Dragon Ball Xenoverse 2

Release Date: TBD 2017


Ultra Street Fighter II: The Final Challengers

Release Date: TBD 2017


Pocket Rumble

Release Date: March 2017


Arms

Release Date: Q1/Q2 2017


BlazBlue (Untitled)

Release Date: TBA



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Wed, 01 Mar 2017 00:50:07 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/best-nintendo-switch-fighting-games/ranker-games
<![CDATA[The Best Nintendo Switch Puzzle Games]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/best-nintendo-switch-puzzle-games/ranker-games?source=rss

Now that Nintendo Switch is here, it's time to get an early start on ranking the best Nintendo Switch puzzle games. Some of the puzzle games for Switch on this list are releasing on launch day, while others have tentative release dates or are slated to hit the console later in 2017.

So what are some good puzzle games for Nintendo Switch? Snipperclips, Puyo Puyo Tetris, and Project Mekuru are some of the most notable, but there are plenty of others to stimulate your brain as well. Snipperclips in particular is looking like not only one of the best puzzles games for Nintendo Switch, but one of the most fun games of the year period. Vote up the games on this list that you've played and love, or the ones that aren't out yet that you desperately want to play.


The Best Nintendo Switch Puzzle Games,

World of Goo

Release Date: March 3rd, 2017


Little Inferno

Release Date: March 3rd, 2017


Human Resource Machine

Release Date: March 3rd, 2017


Bit Boy! Arcade Deluxe

Release Date: TBD 2017


The Unlikely Legend of Rusty Pup

Release Date: TBA


Soldam: Blooming Declaration

Release Date: TBA


Snipperclips

Release Date: March 3rd, 2017


Puyo Puyo Tetris

Release Date: April 25th, 2017


Puzzle Box

Release Date: TBD 2017


Project Mekuru

Release Date: TBA



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Wed, 01 Mar 2017 00:50:06 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/best-nintendo-switch-puzzle-games/ranker-games
<![CDATA[32 Gorgeous Fan Art Interpretations Of Overwatch Heroes]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/best-overwatch-fan-art/brandon-michaels?source=rss

Overwatch is one of the most popular games on the planet. With a selectable cast of 23 characters, and a rich backstory that spans over 40 years, there's plenty of inspiration to draw from when creating fan art.

Thousands of images have been created, ranging from the cartoony to the hyper-realistic. Some are funny, some are sad, and some are downright disturbing.  Characters are re-imagined with crazy new skin concepts, mashed up with other franchises, and even gender-swapped in some truly awesome pieces. Some illustrators like to explore the lore of the game. They even flesh out stories we've heard but haven't seen, like the Battle of Anubis, or the showdown between Soldier:76 and Reaper.

And of course, as with every franchise on the planet, the Internet would be remiss without some sexy versions of our favorite characters, like D.Va as a Playboy bunny, Hanzo baring his chest in an open tuxedo, or basically any illustration of Witch Mercy.

So here they are, in all shapes and sizes. The good, the bad, and the ugly: here's the best Overwatch fan art on the Internet!


32 Gorgeous Fan Art Interpretations Of Overwatch Heroes,

Fear The Reaper

This menacing illustration from rossdraws perfectly captures Reaper's essence. "Die, die, DIE!"


Foxy Grandpa

Polkabun takes the whole "Dad:76" thing to a whole new level with this adorable illustration. D.va's Dorito-flavored cotton candy is too cute!


BAMF

This image from genzoman shows us how McCree earned his BAMF belt buckle. 


Let The Dragon Consume You

DeviantArt user Jiuge's hyper-realistic take on Hanzo is absolutely breathtaking.  


Lich Queen Mei

This haunting image from vanharmontt is a mash-up of Mei and Arthas Lich King from World of Warcraft.


Superior German Engineering

This comic-book style illustration of Reinhardt without his helmet comes from DeviantArt user nakanoart.


Everyone So Salty!

This comic from Tim Buckley and Ctrl+Alt+Del should be the default skin for Bastion.


Like, Where's Scoob?

This absolutely spot-on crossover of Overwatch and Scooby Doo by vashperado is almost perfect, but where's Scoob?


Morrison vs Reyes

This gorgeous illustration from jiuge depicts the battle between Commander Morrison and Reyes.


Sailor Reinhardt

You'll never be able to unsee this image of Reinhardt as one of the Sailor Moon crew from mango-cat-attack



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Wed, 22 Feb 2017 04:44:44 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/best-overwatch-fan-art/brandon-michaels
<![CDATA[The Best Disney Video Games Of All Time]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/best-disney-video-games/brandon-michaels?source=rss

Disney has been releasing video games on consoles, PC, and handheld or coin operated devices since the '80s. Many of their early titles followed the adventures of the beloved Mickey Mouse, but Disney soon began to expand their stories to include other characters.

They released video games with our other favorite Disney characters, from Donald Duck and the DuckTales crew, to Goofy and the gang from Goof Troop. They even had room for relative newcomers like Simba in The Lion King.

Disney eventually began to push the boundaries even further, releasing titles with characters we hadn't met before, like Sora from Kingdom Hearts, or titles that included all of our favorite characters, like Disney Infinity. Disney started releasing video games without any characters, like Dance Dance Revolution Disney Mix.

Disney has produced over 100 titles throughout the years, including some of the greatest games ever. They've given us countless hours of entertainment, and frustration (looking at you, Lion King). But most importantly, they constantly made us feel welcome in an incredible, fantastical, magical world.  

It's time to dig out your old NES and start blowing into the cartridges! Help rank the absolute best Disney video games of all time.


The Best Disney Video Games Of All Time,

Castle of Illusion Starring Mickey Mouse

Disney's Aladdin

Kingdom Hearts

Kingdom Hearts II

DuckTales

Chip 'n Dale Rescue Rangers

The Lion King

Epic Mickey

Toy Story

Disney Infinity


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Thu, 23 Feb 2017 05:55:54 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/best-disney-video-games/brandon-michaels
<![CDATA[10 Hidden Video Game Levels You Never Played]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/mysterious-hidden-levels-in-video-games/melissa-brinks?source=rss

Game developers have been hiding secrets in their games since 1979's Adventure. But the inclusion of secret levels in games is a bit more rare, as it means hiding away tons of content (which takes time and money to produce) where many players will never find it. These levels are often snapshots of abandoned or forgotten content, tantalizing players with mystery and sometimes downright creepy additions to a familiar world, or just Easter eggs meant to satisfy the secret-hungry player.

Hidden levels in video games exist outside the main content of a game, meaning you'll have to dig a little deeper to find them. Whether that means glitching through a wall, entering a particular button combo at the right time, or venturing far off the beaten path, you'll have to look hard to find what developers are hiding in your favorite games.

Whatever the reason behind their inclusion, players delight in finding entire new secret video game levels. From the hidden depths of Karazhan to psychedelic space adventures, these secret levels are some of the weirdest, creepiest, and most mysterious in gaming.


10 Hidden Video Game Levels You Never Played,

Explore The Intriguing, Creepy Painted World Of Dark Souls

Dark Souls is no stranger to esoteric levels - the game is often inscrutable, its story buried deep for only the most investigative players to find. The same is true of one of its most interesting stages, The Painted World of Ariamis.

To enter this stage, players must backtrack to the game's beginning to retrieve a doll that belongs to Priscilla, a dragon-human crossbreed. Clutching the doll in front of the large, snowy painting in Anor Londo teleports you to a world full of tricky enemies that's difficult to escape, much like the rest of Lordran, only harder to access by accident.


Diablo II Gets Gristly In The Hidden Cow Level

In the days of Diablo, rumors circulated that clicking a cow in Tristram a certain number of times would bring you to a secret cow level. Blizzard fueled the flames with the inclusion of a "there is no cow level" cheat in StarCraft, and finally made the level a reality in Diablo II for no other reason than that they could.

After completing Act V of the game, players can create a cow portal using the Horadric Cube, which teleports them to a new level filled with Hell Bovines, including the Cow King, which drops numerous magical items and stamina potions. The whole level is bizarre, in part because you're being attacked by cows and, in part, because it only exists thanks to passionate fans insisting that it already did.


Star Fox Ventures Out Of This Dimension

The Super Nintendo version Star Fox is often overshadowed by the Nintendo 64 version,  but anybody who accidentally ventured into Out of This Dimension, a secret level accessed by destroying an asteroid in the Level 3 Asteroid Belt and flying into a giant bird that appears later in the stage, likely remembers it well.

The level contains various paper plane enemies and a final boss fight with a giant slot machine. In the end, the words "THE END" appear on the screen and infinite enemies begin to appear as the player shoots them down. There's nothing else to do but die, making the entire level a pointless and somewhat psychedelic "Game Over" unlike any other.


The Heart Of Happiness Hides Inside Grand Theft Auto IV

Grand Theft Auto IV's huge open world is packed with content, but its looming Statue of Happiness holds a weird and somewhat creepy secret. Getting to the statue is a trial in itself, as the only way to get inside is to fly a helicopter nearby, bail, and land in the right spot.

Inside, beyond a sign that reads, "No Hidden Content This Way," you'll find a giant beating heart, the heart of Liberty City. While you can't do anything in this room other than appreciate the living epicenter of the city, it's an intriguing Easter egg.


World Of Warcraft's Grotesque Karazhan Crypts Captivate Players

World of Warcraft's Karazhan is spooky enough on its own, a leftover raid from the Burning Crusade era packed full of ghosts, banshees, wraiths, and all manner of other creepy monsters to slay. But it also holds a secret - a hidden crypt containing disturbing images, including a large water-filled room where the upside-down sinners, bloody bodies held in place by heavy chains, float.

To get there requires glitching, a potentially bannable offense. If you manage to do it anyway, you're greeted by a horrorshow of fiendish delights, including the aforementioned sinners, a giant pile of bones to break your fall, and numerous graves. It's an unnerving sight, especially because the game makes no use of it - it's just there, an eerie bit of trivia hidden just beyond reach.


Visit A Pop Culture Icon In Post-Apocalyptic Fallout 4

Fallout is a series rife with nostalgia, and Fallout 4's post-apocalyptic vision of Boston is no exception. Hidden in the wasteland is a faithful recreation of the bar from Cheers, the '80s sitcom about a place where everybody knows your name.

Except Fallout 4's vision of Cheers is a little less cheery. The bar's denizens are long dead, slumped over in their familiar spots, likely lost to the nuclear fallout. It's a pretty grim reference, one that probably inspires a fair bit of head-scratching among players who missed the show in its prime.


ToeJam And Earl Hides A Secret Luau

ToeJam and Earl's secret luau level is one of those Easter eggs that's nearly impossible to discover without the Internet. By acquiring rocket boots, Icarus Wings, an inner tube, or a lot of luck on Level 2, players can access a hidden Level 0 by falling off the bottom left corner of Level 1.

The level itself is mostly pointless - while you can get an extra life from the lemonade stand, it's otherwise just an excuse to hang out with some hula dancers and sit around in a hot tub. While it doesn't add much, its absurdity is precisely ToeJam and Earl's style.


A Mysterious Ghost Haunts Hitman 2

Hitman is well-loved for its open-level design, which allows players to craft their own approaches to each challenge. But Hitman: Contracts features a little something extra in one of its levels.

Discovering this hidden secret requires you to venture off the mission path a bit, but it's an interesting bit of environmental storytelling. Behind a locked door is a murder investigation, complete with a ghost haunting the premises who appears in front of the player and sometimes in mirrors scattered throughout the level. Spooky.


A Secret Cult Is Potentially Recruiting Players Through Kanye Quest's Hidden Level

Kanye Quest 3030 is a weird little JRPG in which you play as the infamous Kanye West on a journey through time - but that's only the beginning of the weirdness. Keen-eyed players discovered that entering the word ASCEND into a random dialog prompt in the game opens up an entirely new level.

This level requires you to input password after password, only to end in front of a terminal that instructs you to input your address and await further contact, with a note that the developers will "interact with you and your possessions." Players have speculated the mysterious level is part of a recruitment effort for a new-age cult, but the developer hasn't responded to repeated efforts to contact them.


Portal 2's Secret Chamber Predicts The Future

Part of Portal's lasting legacy (the cake is a lie!) is hidden in its secret Rat Man chambers, but Portal 2 takes that a step further. At one point, GLaDOS throws a bunch of garbage at the player, including a radio. Taking that radio into the secret office in the Rat Man den nearby causes the radio to play an awful screeching sound, likely driving most players to drop it.

But that's not all - the screeching sound, when decoded properly, reveals an image of a Companion Cube on the moon, hinting at the game's ending before it occurs. Is there a time-travel twist involved in the Portal storyline?



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Tue, 07 Feb 2017 03:12:31 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/mysterious-hidden-levels-in-video-games/melissa-brinks
<![CDATA[20 Overwatch Background Stories You Probably Missed]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/overwatch-background-stories/brandon-michaels?source=rss

Overwatch is one of the best games of 2016 and has a surprisingly rich backstory for a shooter. The Overwatch plot begins with the Omnic Crisis. In the game's universe, Earth made huge advancements in technology, medicine, and robotics. Life was great because everyone had sentient robots called Omnics to do stuff for them, but in 2046, they went rogue and started building an evil army.

The United Nations created an international task force called Overwatch to respond to the rogue army of sentient robots. They gathered soldiers, scientists, and engineers from all over the world to fight the Omnic threat. Eventually, Overwatch overcame the Omnic Crisis and continued to maintain order and peace for 20 years. Its members became globally celebrated heroes... for a time.

After years of operations, allegations of corruption and mismanagement and a series of failed missions led to scrutiny and a series of investigations by the UN. When the investigation ended, the Petras Act was passed, declaring that any actions done in the name of Overwatch would be considered a crime. Fast-forward to 2076, when Winston, a genetically engineered gorilla, rebuilds the Overwatch Communications Network and sends out a call "to the former agents of Overwatch..."

And that's just the beginning. Keep reading for more Overwatch backstories you had no idea about!


20 Overwatch Background Stories You Probably Missed,

Bastion Is Actually The Enemy

Bastions, or SST Laboratories Siege Automaton E54 Units, were replicated en mass during the Omnic Crisis and used to fight against humankind. Omnic Crisis ended, all the Bastions were destroyed - but one unit was overlooked, and it laid dormant in a forest in Eichenwalde for years.

Eventually, that Bastion awoke with a new attitude and a bird friend named Ganymede and set off towards the city...


D.Va Was A Professional StarCraft Player

Yup. D.Va was a professional StarCraft player until the South Korean government enlisted her into the "mobile exo-force of the Korean army" (WarGames much?). They needed people to pilot mechs to fight against the Omnic Crisis and, apparently, pro gamers seemed like a good place to look. So, before she was shouting "Nerf this," she was probably screaming "Zerg Rush!" Hopefully, she doesn't turn on the Terran...


Mercy Saved Genji's Life

Mercy's real name is Dr. Angela Ziegler and she was recruited from Switzerland as Overwatch's Head of Medical Research. Although she disagreed with their militaristic stance, she used their technology to make huge medical advances. One of those feats was saving Genji's life and turning him into an Omnic cyborg after he was fatally wounded in an assassination attempt.


Widowmaker Murdered Her Husband

Widowmaker's real name is Amelie Lacroix, wife of Gerard Lacroix. Gerard led an attack against the terrorist organization Talon and they hunted him in retaliation. Unable to assassinate Gerard, the organization kidnapped Amelie and reprogrammed her to kill her husband. She continues to work for Talon, assassinating high profile targets.


McCree Is Actually A Gangster

McCree may look like your average cowboy, but he's actually a total badass. He used to move illegal weapons through the American Southwest with the Deadlock Gang.

Eventually, Overwatch busted the Deadlock Gang and gave McCree an ultimatum - either fight for Overwatch or go to prison with the rest of the gang. McCree opted to join and worked for the covert Blackwatch team until Overwatch was disbanded. He's still kicking ass and taking names today, like the time he stopped a terrorist heist on a train like a true American badass.


Reaper Is Actually A Terrorist

After losing command of Overwatch to Morrison, Reyes parts ways with the team and takes up with Blackreach, a covert ops division of Overwatch. When Reyes mysteriously disappears after his falling-out with Morrison at the Overwatch Swiss HQ, the undead Reaper appears. It turns out Reaper works for Talon, a known terrorist organization, and hunts Overwatch members.


Roadhog Wears A Mask To Breathe In Post-Apocalyptic Australia

Roadhog's real name is Mako Rutledge and he lived in the Australian Outback until the Omnic Crisis. When the war began, Australia gifted their wild lands to the Omnics. This caused a civil rebellion and a rebel group called the Australian Liberation Front was born. After the AFL blew a fusion core at an Omnic factory, Australia became a post-apocalyptic wasteland, so Mako donned the iconic pig mask and changed his name to Roadhog.


Torbjorn May Have Helped Cause The Omnic Crisis

Torbjorn is another Overwatch OG, dating back to the original strike team. He joined Overwatch as a means of repenting - before the Omnic Crisis, Torbjorn worked as a freelance Omnic engineer for companies like Ironclad Guild. But, eventually, the machines he helped create turned on humanity.

Torbjorn joined Overwatch as their lead engineer and created tons of amazing gear for the team, like Reinhardt's crusader armor. After Overwatch disbanded, he continued working to right his wrongs by preventing his machines from being used for evil.

 


Genji Is A Half-Omnic Crime-Ninja

No, seriously. Genji is the youngest son of the leader of the criminal Shimada ninja clan in Hanamura. After parting ways with his family, the clan made an assassination attempt on him. Overwatch brought him back to life as an Omnic cyborg. Genji struggled with his Omnic half at first, but eventually found peace with the help of his mentor, Zenyatta.


Hanzo Killed His Brother, Genji

Hanzo is Genji's older brother. After the death of their father, Hanzo was forced to lead the clan and sent to assassinate Genji for parting ways with them. Blizzard released an animated short which beautifully tells the story of these two brothers.



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Thu, 26 Jan 2017 05:51:02 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/overwatch-background-stories/brandon-michaels
<![CDATA[11 Incredibly Creative Games That Are Great For Stress Relief]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/best-games-for-pacifists/paul-melio?source=rss

There's absolutely nothing wrong with a violent videogame, concerned PTA moms aside. There is no reason that you shouldn't be able to relax and unwind with some good ol' fashioned head exploding. However, there are some days you could go without the digital homicide. It's a good thing that there are some excellent peaceful videogames for pacifists.   

The world is full of different people and nuanced situations, so it's only fair that videogames as an art form reflect that fact. There are multiple situations in which you might not want your video fun flavored with blood and guts.  

So whether you want a game you can play with your kids, something to prove to your parents that not all videogames are brutal, or you just want to chill with a group of friends without slaughtering the innocent, these are the non-violent videogames for you! 


11 Incredibly Creative Games That Are Great For Stress Relief,

Portal

Originally packaged in The Orange Box, a game collection that also held Team Fortress 2 and Half Life 2 Episode 2, Portal is a bite-sized masterpiece in which the player completes puzzles by opening spatial rifts (or portals) between any two spots in a room. 

From the pitch-black humor as the player is taunted by GLaDOS (the A.I. testing and tormenting the player), to the seamless physics and puzzle design, Portal is frequently referred to as .a masterpiece. The numbers support this claim. The game sold over four million copies and spawned an equally popular sequel. 


Braid

Frequently regarded as the game that ignited the indie gaming craze, Braid is kind of like a  slightly more somber Super Mario Bros. Basically, you guide a lovesick hero on a quest to save his princess from a dastardly villain. In Braid, your character can manipulate time, shifting around painted maps and correcting mistakes while altering the environments. 

A full play through should only take a few hours, but the game leaves an indelible impression on even the most hardcore gamers. In the final level, the game uses its mechanics in a truly unique and novel fashion. The kind of creativity that Braid employs is sorely lacking in modern gaming, and overall it's really a breath of fresh air.  

 


Minecraft

For all the countless open-world games on the market, few (if any) can boast the level of freedom given by Minecraft. Tapping into the childhood joy of playing with an endless bucket of Legos, Minecraft allows you to truly build to your hearts content.

Boasting an impressive online community and a vast number of mods, the only limit to your creations is your imagination. Until Creepers blow it up, that is. 


Thomas Was Alone

A half-hour in to Thomas Was Alone, you’ll find that you’ve developed a strong emotional investment in the character arc of a red block. Shortly after, you'll wonder what on Earth is wrong with you. After that, you'll shut up and enjoy yourself. 

Thomas Was Alone succeeds at creating real emotional resonance using nothing but a pleasantly enthusiastic narrator and a dreampop score. Effectively, it's a particularly touching children’s book about friendship and community, told through a very well-crafted jumping puzzle. It may sound weird, but it's definitely worth your time. 


Journey

A game so utterly calming it should be distributed as a medication, Journey is a ninety-minute adventure where your sole goal is to reach the top of a mountain. Developed for the Playstation 3, Journey has achieved widespread critical acclaim, with reviewers frequently citing how powerful the non-verbal narrative is.

From the first time you effortlessly slide down a windswept dune to the glorious climax, Journey remains one of the finest examples of high quality minimalism in gaming. Plus, you never have to rip anyone's spine out through their throat. Not even once.  


Octodad: Dadliest Catch

You are an octopus trying to pass as a totally normal human dad. And that’s it. That’s the plot of the game. It's pretty amazing.

What makes this experience truly great is just how absurd it perform even the most mundane tasks. Wobbling around on your tentacles, you’ll be sure to smack your wife in the face with a hamburger, destroy grocery store displays, and cause sloppy mayhem as you hope people won’t become too suspicious that you are, in fact, just a Cephalopoda molluscs in a suit.


Splatoon

Nintendo first set out to make Splatoon in hopes of creating a highly enjoyable, kid-friendly alternative to squad based shooters. They succeeded.

Helmed by Nintendo veteran Shintaro Sato (known for his work on the charming Animal Crossing), the game puts you in the shows of an Inkling, a kid who attempts to cover the map in ink alongside his squad.  Then, well, you turn into a squid to swim through the ink. It's pretty trippy. The perfect balance between peculiar and delightful, Splatoon is a game anyone can play and everyone can enjoy. 


Mario Kart 8

If you can consider throwing bananas and turtle shells at your friends more whimsical fun than violence, then Mario Kart is one of the most widely enjoyed non-violent games of all time. The series has sold well over 100 million copies worldwide, and has been enjoyed by a huge fanbase for years.

With unique and delightful maps ranging from deep space to the inside of a pinball machine, this series takes world building more seriously than almost any other racing game. In addition, Mario Kart has also set the bar for splitscreen multiplayer at its most vibrant and chaotic. 


Hohokum

Hohokum is a game that's kind of hard to describe. It's really just about "being there." A zen inducing piece of visual eye candy, you play as a serpent who floats through magical worlds bringing joy to those around you.

There is no score. No enemies. No real objective except to explore the 17 unique worlds given to you as monkeys climb from your tail and people hop on you for a ride. It’s alternatively weird, relaxing, and confusing, but always stunning. There's also something to be said for a game that features a giant snake as a protagonist that doesn't feature it swallowing villagers whole.  


Tricky Towers

Essentially backwards Tetris (but with far more ruined friendships), Tricky Towers is equally whimsical and addicting. It's a splitscreen game wherein players race to stack their wobbly towers to the finish line, all while being able to sabotage their friends' towers.

While not overly ambitious, it’s a perfect dose of casual fun coupled with the mild malice. It really is wickedly delightful to watch your opponents tower fall.  



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Fri, 13 Jan 2017 07:07:28 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/best-games-for-pacifists/paul-melio
<![CDATA[13 Weirdly Graphic Video Game Sex Scenes That Came Out Of Nowhere]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/unexpected-graphic-video-game-sex-scenes/justin-andress?source=rss

When video games were in their infancy, the subject matter tended toward the G-rated (with, of course, the rare exception). You know, plumbers dodging barrels and such. As time moved forward, however, so did the medium. The stories got darker, the action got more violent, and sex started to pop up everywhere. And why shouldn’t it? Sex is awesome, video games are awesome, and sex scenes are a timeless part of storytelling across all media. So, sex in video games was only a matter of time.

Though video game sex scenes have improved in quality, they’re still super strange in pretty much any context. And, of course, game developers handle the writing, planning, and animating of these sex scenes with exactly the level of skill and sensitivity you might expect. You know, since they're video game developers. So while sex scenes in video games are awkward (and, frankly, not that sexy) the upshot is that they're are f*cking hilarious. These sex scenes are also at their funniest when they come out of nowhere.

Get it?


13 Weirdly Graphic Video Game Sex Scenes That Came Out Of Nowhere,

Dragon Age: Origins

WARNING: video above contains graphic content.

Getting down to some heavy petting is a fringe benefit of every BioWare series (pretty much), but in Dragon Age the quest for booty is kicked up to a whole new level. Not only are their tons of potential liaisons available at your fingertips, but you can get intimate with pretty much any one of your companions if you play your cards (and your gender and race) correctly.

When you’ve put in the time to woo one of your pals, they reward you with some good ol' fashioned bone time. Right in the camp site. In full view of everyone else on your team. Like, these people are supposed to be tight-knit but jeez. Surely you have to draw the line somewhere.  


Duke Nukem Forever

WARNING: video above contains graphic content.

If there’s one thing that Duke Nukem Forever was not, it was subtle. The first-person shooter righteously earned mediocre reviews, as well as a serious bout of social criticism. Maybe that’s because the game is filled with moments like the Alien Hive Level, in which Duke Nukem runs across the Mary and Kate Holsom (who we previously met just after getting down with Duke).

This time around, the Holsom twins (see? not subtle) have been strapped into an alien impregnation machine and repeatedly, well, does what its name suggests. What’s more disturbing is that when Duke finds them, he greets them by saying, “Looks like you’re f*cked.” Seriously, Duke? Bruh, it's the 21st century. 


Heavy Rain

WARNING: video above contains graphic content.

In Heavy Rain, you take on multiple personas searching for the truth behind the enigmatic Origami Killer. At one point, two of the characters (Ethan Mars and Madison Paige) get together for some steamy good time action. Through a series of player initiated button presses, you can actually direct the sexy stuff and put the moves on the photo journalist as a grieving widower. This is what they write romance novels about. 

Predictably, once everything is over and done, the player — as Ethan — can choose to sneak out into the night while Madison is sleeping. Ugh. Men. 


Leisure Suit Larry: Magna Cum Laude

WARNING: video above contains graphic content.

What’s weirder than a video game S&M with terrible object collision physics? How about all that, plus you’re dressed as a tree mascot for some reason. Enter the fever dream that is Leisure Suit Larry: Magna Cum Laude, an attempted reboot of one of the scummiest video game series ever invented.

You play a student at a community college who goes from sh*tty mini-game to sh*tty mini-game trying to nail sixteen different coeds. The goal, apparently, is to make your way onto some lame game show. Most of the “seductions” are pretty straightforward. Most. Then you wind up spanking some spiky-haired woman while dressed as a flaming log. Even with context, there's really no good way to explain that one.  


Silent Hill 2

WARNING: video above contains graphic content.

In Silent Hill 2, you play a man who’s watching his own mind unravel as embarks on a quixotic hunt for his dead wife. In other words, it’s a super sexy premise. Along the way, the main character (James Sunderland) is repeatedly terrorized by a psycho named Pyramid Head, who is legitimately terrifying despite his deeply silly name.

Throughout the game, he’ll pop up unexpectedly to mind f*ck Sunderland through repeated acts of bizarre emotional (and sometimes physical) torture. Case in point: there's a weird moment when James is walking down a hallway (at 1:10 in the video) only to find Pyramid Head pop out up out of nowhere, dry-humping some dead bodies plagued by ragdoll physics. It's... unsettling to say the least. And a little arousing? No. No. Just unsettling.  


Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas

WARNING: video above contains graphic content.

Upon release, GTA: San Andreas claimed the title of biggest open world video game ever. Characters could race, play basketball, hit the beach, lift weights, get fat, shop for clothes, hop on a Huffy, play blackjack, and a whole sh*t-load of other distractions that meant the player always had something new to do. Honestly, it's pretty surprising that your character couldn't play an older Grand Theft Auto game.  

With everything going on in the game, you think that players would be satisfied. But of course they weren't, because gamers. Thus the “Hot Coffee” mod was born. It’s a super shoddy mod (starts at 7:14) that allows players the opportunity to dry hump a lady in a variety of positions. If the player character, CJ, isn’t stone-faced, his mouth is hanging open like a snake about to swallow an entire wildebeest. It’s haunting. As this was a player-generated mod, the "sexy" action kind of comes out of nowhere. 


Alpha Protocol

WARNING: video above contains graphic content.

Of the many scantily clad ladies that super-spy Michael Thornton encounters on his quest to save the world in Alpha Protocol, the German operative SIE is easily the most standout. She’s one tough cookie, which she adeptly proves after she mounts and rapes the hero while he’s bound to a laboratory table. Wait, what? Jesus, Obsidian Entertainment, who told you that was a thing people wanted to see?

At least you get a +1 reputation bonus with SIE as a result.


Ride to Hell: Retribution

WARNING: video above contains graphic content.

Just to give you an overall idea of the game’s quality, Ride to Hell: Retribution is currently sitting at a stately 19/100 on Metacritic. It’s not even one of those games that just kind of sucked but still retains a rabid cult following (like Alpha Protocol). No, Ride to Hell is just stone-cold awful. Of course, the series isn't helped by its bevy of weird and disturbing sex scenes. 

Take the game’s first, in which the main character beats the crap out of an abusive john. As soon as you put the guy down, the game immediately transitions to some '70s-esque porno music and some (clothed, inexplicably) doggy-style featuring two people who don’t appear to be enjoying themselves in the slightest. It kind of looks like what an alien or an eleven-year-old might guess sex is.   


Far Cry 3

WARNING: video above contains graphic content.

Throughout Far Cry 3, Jason Brody puts his very soul to the hazard in order to forge himself into the ultimate killing machine in order to save his captured friends. Along the way, terrible things happen to his buddies (including one being held as a sex slave by some sociopath), but at the end of the day their fate is in Jason’s hands.

Far Cry 3 is one of those pick-your-own-adventure games where the player's choices affect the story. If you choose to kill your crew and get down with the blood-happy Rakyat warriors, for example, then your avatar gets to have sex with their comely leader, Citra.

This one is more about the aftermath than the sex, though. Like a Black Widow spider or praying mantis, Ctira doesn't have much use for post-coital men. Once players have given her their seed, she returns the favor by stabbing them in the chest and leaving them for dead. Just like Prom all over again. 


The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt

WARNING: video above contains graphic content.

Anyone who’s played the Witcher series knows that the game’s main character, Geralt, is a total man-whore. Seriously, the guy will tap anything with legs and a heartbeat. As a result, the opportunity to talk your way into a lady’s complicated under-garments pop up at frequently and unexpectedly. One second you’re negotiating a reward, the next you’re climbing into the sack with a virtual stranger.

Far and away the weirdest sex scene in the series occurs during Wild Hunt. See, Geralt runs in to with his old flame Yennefer. Any guesses how the two former lovers decide to celebrate their reunion? By boning on a giant stuffed, pink unicorn of course. While the sex is perhaps predictable, the location really puts this one into what-the-actual-f*ck territory.  



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Fri, 06 Jan 2017 08:21:50 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/unexpected-graphic-video-game-sex-scenes/justin-andress
<![CDATA[22 Old-School Video Game Ads That Are Mind-Blowingly Sexist]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/dirty-sexist-video-game-ads/nathandavidson?source=rss

Video game advertising isn't what it used to be, and that's a good thing. Well, unless you're a depraved teenager or a dirty old man because if you are, you'll totally love these old school video game ads! This photo gallery is dedicated to dirty video game ads that are honestly pretty sexist video game ads from the '70s, '80s and '90s.

These are video game ads you'd never see today, but thanks to the Internet and its boundless nostalgia, you still can. Is it time to bring sexy video game ads back? Yeah, we're going to have to go ahead and say that's probably not a good idea.

 


22 Old-School Video Game Ads That Are Mind-Blowingly Sexist,

How Coy...

Boobs Vs Balls

Even Trouser Snakes Are Offended

Typical '80s Gamer

Locker-Room Talk

Games Before Dames

Out Of Control

When Advertising Meets Abduction

No Butts About It

C'est Magnifique!


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Tue, 17 Jan 2017 09:51:01 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/dirty-sexist-video-game-ads/nathandavidson
<![CDATA[The Worst Final Fantasy Characters Of All Time]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/worst-final-fantasy-characters/brandon-michaels?source=rss

Final Fantasy games are known for their rich lore, sprawling overworlds, and innovative combat systems, but their true legacy is creating at least one cringe-worthy character in every title.

The worst characters in Final Fantasy come in all shapes and sizes; the good the bad and the Quina (like, seriously what was the deal with that?).

Bad characters started appearing in the FF series as early as 1990 when then franchise launched (the protagonist didn't even have a name in the original Final Fantasy!), but ever since Square merged with Enix to form Square Enix, they've been trying to reinvent the wheel with every new release.

So what's it take to make the cut as one of the worst characters in FF history? Some are simply boring or poorly written, others are utterly useless in combat, and some are just so weird you have to wonder if developers just ran out of ideas.

So here they are, the worst characters from Final Fantasy games. Some are party members, some are NPCs, some are even leading characters, but they all have one thing in common - they're just the worst.

From The Guardians of Light to Noctis Lucis Caelum, who do you think are the worst Final Fantasy characters?


The Worst Final Fantasy Characters Of All Time,

Cait Sith

Edward Chris von Muir

Selphie Tilmitt

Seymour Guado

Snow Villiers

Vaan

Hope Estheim

Quina

Brother

Gau


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Thu, 26 Jan 2017 04:42:10 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/worst-final-fantasy-characters/brandon-michaels
<![CDATA[15 Classic Nintendo Games You Forgot You Loved]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/classic-nintendo-games-we-forgot-we-missed/tamara-jude?source=rss

Even with the mind-blowing video games of Xbox and PlayStation today, '80s kids still reminisce about the Nintendo games we forgot we loved. But not just the popular franchises like Super Mario Bros., The Legend of Zelda, Final Fantasy, or Mega Man. Don't get it twisted; those game are great. But it's more rewarding to replay those obscure Nintendo games that weren't as well-known but were certainly just as fun. They're the ones we can remember the gameplay of but completely forget the name. Must be old age.

With the release of the NES Classic Edition, '80s kids (and kids who just wish they were born in the '80s) were able to replay some forgotten Nintendo games from childhood. But there were so many other classics that just didn’t make the cut. Whether it was due to poor sales or clunky game play, the not-as-popular games are the ones we hold closest to our hearts. Here are some of the best obscure Nintendo games that we forgot we love.


15 Classic Nintendo Games You Forgot You Loved,

Blaster Master

What could be better than the heartfelt tale of a boy and his frog? After Fred the Frog mutates into a huge monster and disappears underground, it's your job to get your best friend back. Armed with a massive tank with a cannon, you are challenged to explore dungeons and destroy mutants along the way. Anything to get Fred back! If this game ever makes a comeback, it has to keep everything the same, including the awesome soundtrack. 


Contra

If the movie franchises Rambo and Alien were combined into a video game, they would produce Contra. The high-action adventure of the '80s is captured in this classic run-and-gun adventure game. Armed with a powerful gun with unlimited ammo, you and a friend can play as commandos Bill and Lance and take on aliens at every turn. Contra was the kick-alien-butt fighter that even Ripley would be proud of. 


Double Dragon

In this fighting game classic, you are Billy Lee on a mission to get back your girl, Marian, and you kick and punch your way past members of the Black Warriors gang throughout the city. Even with its very basic moves, Double Dragon became the blueprint for future fighting games. 


Dr. Mario

Expanding on Mario's domination of all things Nintendo, Dr. Mario made fighting viruses surprisingly fun. In this falling block puzzle game, you eliminate the colored germs by matching 3 of the same colored capsules. Stack too many capsules and block off the bottleneck and the game is over. Though made in the style of Tetris, Dr. Mario still stood out as an addictive puzzle video game. 


Metroid

Regarded as a favorite among NES players, Metroid was one of the first games to feature a female protagonist. As bounty hunter Samus Aran, you must stop the pirates that have stolen the alien known as Metroid. On your mission, you must work to improve your weapons and moves. You collect power-ups and better weapons to make Samus an unstoppable force. With its gradual player progression and kick-butt female lead, Metroid would be a welcomed addition to today's video game landscape. 

 


R.C. Pro-Am

R.C. Pro-Am wasn't your typical racecar-style game. Instead of fully rendered racing cars, you race against the computer in radio-controlled vehicles. To continue to the next racing track, you have to come in third place or better. Maximize your ability to win with high-powered engines, better tires, and specialized weapons that knock your opponent out of the running. Nothing like taking out the competition with a few bombs!


Paperboy

Who knew you could actually have fun on a paper route? As a paperboy in a suburban neighborhood, you deliver papers over a one week period. You succeed by completing the delivery route for your subscribers. Sounds easy enough, but you also have to avoid obstacles including pedestrians, traffic, and barking dogs. And the best part: you get to break the windows of anyone that is not a subscriber. Truth be told, smashing everyone's windows is the best part. 


Kung Fu

Kung Fu is another great martial-arts fighting game with challenging enemies and a memorable soundtrack. With more moves like jumping and crouching, Kung Fu expanded on the basic beat-em-up video game. This is another game with very challenging boss fights that took several tries to beat. You even come face-to-face with giant snakes and dragons. How could you not love that? 


Town & Country Surf Designs

This laid-back Hawaiian-themed video game offered surfing and skateboard fun. With characters like a cat in a suit, a skateboarder in a tiki mask, and even a gorilla in a flap cap, you maneuver through three modes of obstacles and challenges. And if you're truly up for a challenge, you can take on the surf and skateboard combo. As simple as it sounds, this was one of the more difficult games to master. Aloha T&C, we miss you!


Duck Tales

Based on the popular Disney cartoon of the same name, DuckTales brings the quacking good time to the NES. As Scrooge McDuck, you explore various lands searching for treasure. With your cane as your main weapon, you can hit enemies and objects. You can even jump with it and take your enemies by surprise! All the best enemies from the cartoon make it into the game. Even the soundtrack for this game is amazing. With the reboot of the cartoon coming out in 2017, this game should be re-released as well.   



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Tue, 17 Jan 2017 06:13:54 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/classic-nintendo-games-we-forgot-we-missed/tamara-jude
<![CDATA[22 Spot-On Sexy Overwatch Cosplays]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/sexy-overwatch-cosplay/crystal-brackett?source=rss

The world could always use more sexy heroes, and these sexy cosplays of Overwatch characters ensures we are never in short supply. On this list, you'll find mind-blowingly beautiful Overwatch cosplayers sure to make your head spin. Keep scrolling for the most sizzling cosplayers from Blizzard Entertainment's ultra-popular online phenomenon.

There's something for everyone on this list, from Tracers and Mercys in bunny outfits, to D.Vas and Meis in super-hot casual gear. There are no limits to the variants and versions of Overwatch characters you'll find on here! Some of these cosplayers even flipped the tables and transformed rugged male characters like Roadhog and Junkrat into powerfully sexy cosplays.


22 Spot-On Sexy Overwatch Cosplays,

Holiday Christmas D.Va

RinnieRiot looks fresh and festive as Holiday Christmas D.Va!


Doritos, Mountain Dew, And D.Va

Adami-Langley brings an all-new sexyness to Mountain Dew and Doritos through D.Va.


Sporty Mei

This sexy, athletic Mei, sporting less layers than usual, is Kitty-Honey! Shot wonderfully by Magic-Alex-Photo.


Female Roadhog

Kinpatsu-Cosplay transforms the burbling Roadhog into a super hot, chain-slinging beast!


Widowmaker

Kinpatsu-Cosplay shows off her super hot Widowmaker cosplay. Created, shot, and edited all done by her!


Bubblegum D.Va

Miyuki-Cosplay flaunts her fabulous D.Va hero pose! Photo taken by William Tan Photography.


Casual D.Va

JinxKittieCosplay is this super hot casual D.Va. Hey, even heroes have downtime. 


D.Va

Mio-Eleven captures the playful power of D.Va without her mech, shot by MengjieLuan


Tracer

SpcatsTasha makes a smoking Tracer! 


Bunny Tracer, D.Va, Widowmaker, And Pharah

The sexy cosplay group of SoftBells and friends, awesomely photographed by TheKaigan.



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Thu, 26 Jan 2017 05:26:52 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/sexy-overwatch-cosplay/crystal-brackett
<![CDATA[Things We All Do In RPGs That Would Be Insane IRL]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/weird-things-we-do-in-rpgs-vs-real-life/amanda-lynn?source=rss

If real life were an RPG, three things are certain: all pockets would suddenly expand with near-infinite spacial capacity, you wouldn't want to piss off chickens, and everyone would all behave like morally bankrupt cretins at one point or another in our play-through of life.

Most things in RPGs you would never do in real life, and for good reason. It's admittedly insane to stand in front of someone saying "A, A, A, A, A," over and over again until they stop talking. Not to mention the violence in RPG - making and looting corpses is generally frowned upon, yet it's an essential facet of most RPGs.

Weird things that seem normal in RPGs aren't always deadly. Some are just the death of social etiquette. Although there's something oddly compelling about being able to end boring small-talk with the press of a button at no offense to the talker, eh?


Things We All Do In RPGs That Would Be Insane IRL,

Looting The Dead

Hitting Trees Expecting Rewards

Breaking Every Vase You Encounter

Picking Every Door, Cage, Lock, Window, And Chest You Pass

Jumping Incessantly While Waiting For Someone To Stop Talking

Running Around As Naked As Possible

Entering Someone's Home And Stealing Their Stuff While They Stare At You

Riding Your Horse Up A Cliff Instead Of Just Using The Provided Road

Purposely Avoiding Saving The World To Go Fishing

Throwing Things On The Ground When They Prove Too Much To Carry


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Mon, 24 Oct 2016 09:45:33 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/weird-things-we-do-in-rpgs-vs-real-life/amanda-lynn
<![CDATA[Overwatch Characters Drawn As Pokemon]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/overwatch-characters-drawn-as-pokemon/crystal-brackett?source=rss

If you're a fan of both Overwatch and Pokémon, then this list is for you. Although the two games are extremely popular, that's probably the only thing they have in common. Despite these differences, these artists did everyone a favor and fused fan-favorite, memorable characters together, ending in a glorious Overwatch/Pokémon mash-up. This list is a collection of amazing digitally and traditionally drawn Overwatch fan art that reimagines these beloved characters in the form of your favorite Pokémon.

Since everyone knows that Blizzard and Nintendo probably won't be getting together anytime soon to put out some Pokémon/Overwatch monster-capturing game, at least you can dream... or in the case of these artists, draw!


Overwatch Characters Drawn As Pokemon,

Soldier: 76 As Blastoise

Seok-bum Han's mash-up of Soldier: 76 and Blastoise has got you in their sights.


Junkrat As Rattata And Roadhog As Embroar

Artist Namchu cleverly fused together Pokémon and Overwatch characters with their creation of Junkratatta and Roadroar, a fusion of Junkrat and Ratatta and Roadhog and Emboar.


Alakazam As Zenyatta

Alakazam gets a while new set of moves, and silverware, in itsmagichere's recreation of him as the Overwatch character, Zenyatta.


Roadhog As Snorlax

This Snorlax as Roadhog by itsmagichere makes the two characters seem like the perfect match for each other.


Widowmaker As Ariados

The Pokémon Ariados reimagined as Widowmaker by argol will give pause to anyone with arachnophobia.


Pikachu Plays Tracer

Super adorable Pikachu as Tracer by ckibe! The resemblance is almost uncanny.


Zenyatta As Mewtwo

People love fusing psychic Pokémon and Zenyatta, and alanprince's Mewtwo as Zenyatta makes for a mindful treat. 


Widowmaker As A Purrloin

Widowmaker and Purrloin are both stealthy strikers, and hiimmagz highlights this perfectly with their awesome art.


Genji (Greninja Skin)

This awesome digital drawing of Genji as Greninja is by st-alpha, and this Pokémon skin for this hero fits him almost better than the one's Blizzard gave him


Reaper As Cubone

Goinggohinggone's Reaper as Cubone is a perfect fit for the two skull-faced characters.



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Tue, 10 Jan 2017 06:04:21 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/overwatch-characters-drawn-as-pokemon/crystal-brackett
<![CDATA[Where Should the Next Grand Theft Auto Game Take Place?]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/best-locations-for-the-next-grand-theft-auto-game/l-zane-pinnock?source=rss

The Grand Theft Auto franchise continues to be the gold standard for sprawling, open-world, sandbox gameplay. Grand Theft Auto IV shattered longstanding records and Grand Theft Auto V has, to date, sold over thirty-three million copies and generated over two billion dollars in sales. One of the reasons for its juggernaut success is the highly detailed and dynamic Grand Theft Auto locations. With Liberty City painstakingly modeled after New York City and its surrounding areas and Vinewood capturing the essence of Los Angeles right down to the traffic snarls, the atmosphere in Grand Theft Auto games is every bit as important as gameplay, weapons, or even the characters themselves. Grand Theft Auto cities are living, breathing things that set the tone for the epic crime drama the player will then be taken through.

But let’s be honest. Another visitation to Liberty City or even the vastly larger Vinewood would probably be fatal to Rockstar Games’ record-crushing franchise. Simply put, the players have been there and done that. It’s time to shake things up. There are so many fantastic places that could be the setting for the next installment of GTA that another trip to Liberty City or Vinewood would actually be an insult to the fans. From exotic locations on the other side of the world to new North American cities, the options are limitless. Here are twenty iconic possible locations for the next Grand Theft Auto game.


Where Should the Next Grand Theft Auto Game Take Place?,

Amsterdam

Bangkok

Chicago

Detroit

Dublin

Hong Kong

Las Vegas

London

Moscow

Tokyo


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Wed, 04 Jan 2017 08:49:15 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/best-locations-for-the-next-grand-theft-auto-game/l-zane-pinnock
<![CDATA[The 25+ Most Anticipated Video Games of 2017]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/most-exciting-video-games-of-2017/justin-andress?source=rss

It’s going to be a good year for gamers of all stripes, folks. Whether you’re a traditional couch potato (represent!) or one of those newfangled motion gamers, the upcoming video games in 2017 have a lot of goodies in store. Even better, the hits are going to keep coming all year long, not just October through December. New video game releases are going to drop throughout the year.

Hell, 2017 might even be the year that VR becomes worth the considerable investment it requires. 

Whether you’re looking to tackle an uncharted region of space, beat the crap out of massive, pissed-off gods, or you’re simply hoping to take another trip through the Old West, 2017’s video games have you covered.

Yet, between all the first-person shooters, the upcoming fighting games, the VR experiments, and the brand new open worlds to explore, which of the upcoming titles are you most excited for? It’s already a pitched battle for year’s best and the choice isn’t going to get any easier between here and next December.

But isn’t that just a wonderful cross to bear?


The 25+ Most Anticipated Video Games of 2017,

The Legend Of Zelda: Breath Of The Wild

Injustice 2

Resident Evil 7: Biohazard

Horizon Zero Dawn

South Park: The Fractured But Whole

Mass Effect: Andromeda

Days Gone

The Last of Us Part 2

Red Dead Redemption 2

Ghost Recon: Wildlands


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Wed, 04 Jan 2017 09:10:31 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/most-exciting-video-games-of-2017/justin-andress
<![CDATA[10 Major Milestones from 2016 That Prove 2017 Will Be Huge for eSports]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/how-esports-have-changed-in-2016/taeyura?source=rss

By the end of 2016, it was clear that the eSports industry was bigger than ever and quickly working its way into mainstream pop culture. Gaming tournaments that used to take place in the back of hotel conference rooms or in local arcades now have an international spotlight and globally recognized television networks showing interest in the competitive gaming market. eSports saw a lot of changes in 2016 and those major milestones are proof that 2017 may be the biggest year competitive gaming has ever seen.


10 Major Milestones from 2016 That Prove 2017 Will Be Huge for eSports,

Twitch Grew Into an Internet Behemoth

While many people were shocked by Amazon’s $970 million purchase of Twitch, the streaming website’s current stats proves it was worth the investment. The live-streaming site dedicated to gaming content is outperforming YouTube in some key areas. While Twitch’s overall viewership is far smaller than YouTube's, its viewers consume more hours of content than the average YouTube user. 

According to Tech Crunch, Twitch viewers watch seven hours of content on average every month compared to YouTube’s five hours. Twitch also has better user engagement with its viewers being more active when it comes to posting chat messages and interacting with their favorite broadcasters. Since Twitch has become the go-to platform for viewing gaming tournaments as well as keeping up with popular gamers from across the globe, Twitch's growth can only mean good news for the eSports community. 


Major League Baseball Is Getting into eSports

League of Legends is easily one of the most popular games on the planet and it’s about to get even bigger. Riot Games signed a multi-year deal with a division of Major League Baseball’s parent company that will give MLB the rights to stream the League of Legends Championship Series. The deal means the overall quality of the stream is likely to see a huge boost and it marks yet another multi-million-dollar gaming deal in 2016. The deal is worth a whopping $300 million


The First eSports League with Regional Teams Is on the Way

eSoorts teams are nothing new, but thanks to the success of Blizzard’s Overwatch, a new type of eSports team is on the way. eSports teams have always been made up of players from all across the world, but in 2016, Blizzard announced that their Overwatch league would introduce regional eSports teams. In other words, it would be the first competitive gaming league with a structure that more closely reflects the structure of other professional sporting leagues. 


ELEAGUE Founded in Summer of 2016

Turner Broadcasting officially entered the competitive gaming scene with the launch of their very own league, called ELEAGUE, in the summer of 2016. ELEAGUE hosted two seasons of Counter-Strike: Global Offensive tournaments complete with on-air talent and a live audience. ELEAGUE also played host to the Overwatch Open and streamed the gaming action from all the tournaments live to TBS’ massive audience


Nintendo Is Finally Showing Interest in eSports

The competitive gaming scene has mostly been dominated by PC gamers, but both Xbox and PlayStation have always shown interest in catering to the competitive gaming community on consoles. The gaming giant so often missing from the equation, however, was Nintendo. Despite the fact that the Super Smash Bros. series has been huge for the fighting game community, Nintendo has never shown much interest in getting more involved with eSports. That changed in 2016 with the announcement of the Nintendo Switch. A commercial for the upcoming console showed two eSports teams battling it out in Splatoon and suggests that Nintendo will finally become more invested in the eSports business. 


The Industry Experienced a Massive Jump in Revenue Growth

eSports saw incredible revenue growth in 2016 with competitive gaming making more than $194 million in revenue, according to Newzoo. And that number is expected to more than double in 2017. It’s proof that eSports are growing in popularity and in profitability. In fact, it’s estimated that eSports will become a billion-dollar industry in just a few years. 


Several Professional Athletes Created eSports Teams

While professional athletes like Rick Fox had created their own eSports teams before 2016, last year certainly introduced a surprise surge in professional athletes getting into the competitive gaming scene. By the end of 2016, several sports stars, including Shaq and Rodger Saffold, were the proud owners of eSports teams. Other athletes like Kobe Bryant and Andy Miller have expressed interest in competitive gaming and have already made investments in the industry. 


A Competitive Fighting Game Tournament Was Broadcast on ESPN for the First Time

2016 marked a huge milestone for the fighting game community as the EVO Championship series was broadcast on ESPN for the first time ever. It was also only the second gaming tournament to be broadcast on the network after a Heroes of the Storm Tournament aired back in 2015. 


There's Been a Sudden Surge in Schools Offering eSports Scholarships

By the end of 2016, at least seven different universities and colleges were offering scholarships for competitive gaming. The list includes schools like Robert Morris University, University of Pikeville, Columbia College, and the University of California, Irvine. The University of California, Irvine, even announced plans to create a Korean-style PC cafe for all their students to have access to. 


eSports Is Getting Recognized in Mainstream Entertainment

eSports has been growing in popularity, but recently, it has even started gaining traction in the realm of mainstream entertainment. One of the biggest entertainment announcements related to eSports came when Legendary Pictures, Mosaic Films, and Gary Sanchez Entertainment announced Will Ferrell will be starring in an upcoming comedy film focused on the world of eSports. The movie will even call on the likes of actual professional gamers from eSports teams Evil Geniuses and Fnatic. 



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Thu, 08 Dec 2016 09:25:56 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/how-esports-have-changed-in-2016/taeyura
<![CDATA[22 Wonderfully Japanese AF Video Games]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/most-japanese-video-games/christopher-myers?source=rss

A lot of amazing video games (Super Mario Bros., The Legend of Zelda, Pokémon, Final Fantasy, Contra, Resident Evil, etc.) were made in Japan. While those games were very accessible to a Western audience, there are some games that are, let's say, uniquely Japanese. These video games are either deeply Japanese in their style and story or they simply don't really translate to other cultures. These are some super Japanese video games here, people.

The most Japanese video games represent a difference in aesthetic, taste, and mindset that reflects the idiosyncrasy of the weird island nation that we all love. Many of these video games find niches in Western markets simply because they are so "Japan." Others make it because, hey, they are really good games. Whatever the case may be, these are some Japanese video games that are well worth checking out.


22 Wonderfully Japanese AF Video Games,

Boong-Ga Boong-Ga

This is perhaps the only arcade game that utilizes a large, realistic human butt. In Boong-Ga Boong-Ga, the controller is shaped like a pointed finger, which the player jams into the giant rear. The objective is to punish characters which include a child molester, you mother-in-law, and ex-girlfriend. At the end, you receive a rating of your sexual proclivity, based on the vehemence of your finger thrust.  

The game itself is actually based on a popular Japanese prank called kancho. Kancho involves sticking two fingers into the anus of your target whilst they are distracted. This one definitely tops the "weird Japan stuff" meter.   


Incredible Crisis

This unique and distinctly Japanese game involves a family that, above all else, needs to get home on time in order to celebrate Grandma's birthday. Preventing you from achieving this noble goal are myriad agents of chaos, from a giant bear terrorizing the town to paramedics who make you answer trivia to test your cognitive abilities.

The PlayStation game is a one-player collection of mini-games, really, in which you must overcome these seemingly random obstacles. The icing on the cake? The absurdity is scored by a ska soundtrack. The only problem with Incredible Crisis is its brevity. A game this awesome and this Japanese needs to be longer!


Katamari Damacy

Words cannot fully describe that which is Katamari Damacy for PS2. As the son of the rainbow-vomiting King of the Cosmos, it is your sole duty in life to take a sticky ball called a Katamari and roll up every item in the world into it. Naturally, most things in said world are as absurd as you are. While it starts out the size of a thumbtack, you gradually roll your ever-expanding ball until it is large enough to consume entire cities!

As weirdly Japanese as the game is, it just works. It is a really fun game. There is something strangely comforting about it, just rolling everything up into the Katamari. The experience is very zen, despite the screams of children and old women as they are consumed by the ball.


Ōkami

Ōkami is as Japanese as enjoying a glass of nihonshu while you watch the cherry blossoms bloom on a warm spring day. Bursting with Shinto (a traditional Japanese religion) symbolism, you play as the honorable (Ō) god (kami) Amaterasu, embodied as a wolf. The "celestial brush" tool evokes shodō, and the entire game is styled like a beautiful ukiyo-e print.

Originally released for the PS2 and subsequently for the Wii and PS3, the game is as fun as it is beautiful. The gameplay is solid, and the story is enthralling. The dialogue is witty and engaging, really drawing the player in and giving personality and dimension to the characters. Simply put, this is a must-play.


Pocky & Rocky

A Shinto shrine maiden and her tanuki (an Asian raccoon dog) friend team up to fight a variety of traditional Japanese Yokai in this old-school, cooperative two-person shooter for the SNES. While the Japanese title actually translates to "Mysterious Ghost World: The Enigmatic Black Mantle," the anglicized title allows the cleverly named "Manuke the Tanuki" to become "Rocky the Raccoon." 

This is the first of the Kiki Kaikai series to be released outside of Japan. It is a top-down 2D game, but you can move at your own pace in all directions. The two-player arcade-style fun make this game widely regarded as the best in the Kiki Kaikai series. The game is difficult, but not so hard that it induces controller-throwing rage. Watch out for Kappa, though!


Total War: Shogun 2

While the Total War series is usually geared towards Western interests, this entry, in particular, is definitely Japanese. Becoming Shogun through decades of war is quintessential sixteenth century Japan. This is as much a history lesson as it is a strategy game. You play as one of the clans from the era and your goal is simple: become Shogun at all costs.

Gameplay combines a turn-based campaign map similar to Civilization with real-time battles. Strategy and tactics are balanced by the importance of diplomacy as you expand your influence across Japan. A variety of tactics can be employed, from sending out ninja assassins to laying siege to an enemy castle. The battle scenes are simply massive, giving an appropriate weight to a war that will determine the fate of the nation.


Yokai Watch

Yokai are traditional Japanese "monsters," for lack of a better term. They include creatures like the Kappa, a frog-like animal with a bowl of water on its head, demons like the Oni, a giant ogre with a club, and ghosts like the Yuki Ona, a snow-woman. According to Japanese Shinto superstition, they are everywhere, causing all sorts of maladies.

In Yokai Watch, you get to catch and battle them. The game is immensely popular in Japan and has managed to appeal to Western audiences as well. It is similar to Pokémon in many ways. Both series inspired anime based on the games, as well as toys and cards. Beneath the cross-media marketing, though, there is a solid game that is a lot of fun to play.


Super Table Flip!

For all those times you became so filled with blind fury that you had to just flip the table, Japan gave us Super Table Flip! Known in Japan as Cho Chabudai Gaeshi!, the object of the arcade game is to cause maximum damage with your display of rage. The giant table prop allows for a deeply satisfying sense of realism.

In one scenario you play a father who is just trying to enjoy a family meal while his wife and children rudely play video games and talk on their cell phones. Who wouldn't want to "flip out," as it were? Perfect in its simplicity, this game is sure to bring a smile to your face.


Hatoful Boyfriend

Hatoful Boyfriend is a pigeon dating simulator. You are a human girl who dates pigeons because a normal high school dating simulator wasn't enough... not for Japan. There are eight datable birds and multiple endings, good, bad, and weird. Seriously, WTF Japan?


Super Galdelic Hour

Certain things in Japan are so bright and colorful that it hurts to think about them. This is one of those things. Super Galdelic Hour involves four animals that are transformed into scantily clad, jiggly women in order to play mini-games for our amusement. The PS2 party game was never released outside of Japan, probably with good reason.

Featuring pie throwing, giant lollipops, and more, this game makes full use of the "super kawaii" style.



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Thu, 15 Sep 2016 01:34:42 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/most-japanese-video-games/christopher-myers
<![CDATA[The Most Underwhelming Video Games of 2016]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/disappointing-video-games-2016/crystal-brackett?source=rss

In 2016, there were a lot of really awesome video games, but there were also a lot of really terrible video games that didn't live up to the hype that came along with them. This list is made up of the most disappointing and underwhelming video games released this year, so vote up the games that weren't as exciting as you expected them to be and vote down the games that actually weren't so bad.

2016 has certainly seen its fair share of virtual disappointment from MOBAs, shooters, survival and role-playing games, among countless others. With all sorts of over-hyped promises and all-around issues including crashing servers, bad graphics, and repetitive gameplay, good games can have such bad problems that it pushes away the player base or just makes the game downright unenjoyable. Take all the server and login issues Pokemon GO had (and still has) and the downright unexciting gameplay No Man's Sky ended up having, for example. It certainly wasn't what anyone was expecting and ended up making the game more of a drag than hours of endless fun and games. Here are some of the most disappointing video games of 2016. 


The Most Underwhelming Video Games of 2016,

No Man's Sky

Many call No Man's Sky one of 2016's largest disappointments. People expected a lot more space-action, and a lot less crafting and juggling resources.


Mighty No. 9

Mighty No. 9 had a huge backing ($3.8 million from 62,000 Kickstarter backers) and promised to be the Mega Man sequel that Capcom was denying fans. Unfortunately, it was a long wait and a lot of hype for what ended up looking like a rejected PS2 game.


Homefront: The Revolution

Homefront: The Revolution is basically Battlefield meets Call of Duty. Not only is the gameplay a copy/paste of every first-person shooter you've ever played, the levels are repetitive and come included with loads of graphical bugs.


Tom Clancy's The Division

Ubisoft wanted Tom Clancy's The Division to be their Destiny so badly. Except it failed to do that because not only are the levels boring, but the end-game is bad.


Star Fox Zero

Although Star Fox Zero sounds fun at first, the bad motion control and boring missions totally take away from whatever was fun about Star Fox in the first place. Star Fox Zero is a seemingly open space adventure where not much critical development was put in after the tech demo.


Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare

Activision's yearly military-themed first-person shooter game, Call of Duty, left modern-day war and took place in the far future. The game struggled to successfully imitate the popular first-person shooters like Halo, Star Wars Battlefront, and Titanfall that it was trying so hard to copy.


Quantum Break

Quantum Break really had things going for it as the first big AAA Xbox One game of 2016. Unfortunately, it ended up lacking in performance and image quality, especially for PC players, and was also accompanied by a boring live-action TV show.


Mirror’s Edge Catalyst

While the original Mirror’s Edge was executed beautifully, the storyline for Mirror’s Edge Catalyst lacked interest and the "open world" is a total lie. The open world is being able to hop around on rooftops, and the bad level design doesn't even make this enjoyable.


Super Mario Maker 3DS

Super Mario Maker is really fun if you actually get to utilize all the features. While Super Mario Maker seems fun on the Wii U, not being able to share levels with other players really restricts the capabilities of Super Mario Maker and makes the port kind of pointless for the 3DS.


Pokemon GO

When Pokemon GO came out, we all thought we were going to be traveling across the land to become the very best... but constant server crashes upon launch, the lack of all 150 Pokemon, and all of the other account-erasing, Pokemon-deleting, phone-throwing issues that came along with it made it not worth the trouble.



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Wed, 14 Dec 2016 01:53:02 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/disappointing-video-games-2016/crystal-brackett
<![CDATA[24 Modern Games Reimagined as NES Covers]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/modern-games-with-nes-covers/nathandavidson?source=rss

Do you like modern video games, but long for a time when things were a bit more pixelated? Then never fear, because this gallery of classic NES covers for modern games will surely provide you with that nostalgia. These awesome fan mockups show what modern games would look like on NES, and they'll make you want to start immediately blowing on things for no apparent reason.

Whether it's a big daddy from Bioshock, awesomely pixelated Fallout 3 art, or a Metal Gear Solid cover that will make you yearn for Contra, you'll find awesome examples of modern games for the NES below. Some of these modern NES box art pictures are better than the originals, but that might be our nostalgia goggles blinding us.


24 Modern Games Reimagined as NES Covers,

Metal Gear Solid

The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim

Animal Crossing

Bioshock

Super Smash Bros.

Guitar Hero: World Tour

Dead Space

League of Legends

Dark Souls

Fallout 3


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Tue, 15 Nov 2016 02:00:27 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/modern-games-with-nes-covers/nathandavidson
<![CDATA[The 12 Most Annoying Twitch Streamers]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/most-annoying-twitch-streamers/abbey-grantham?source=rss

Many streaming superstars and entertainment channels have risen up out of the blue on Twitch.Tv, the largest video game streaming platform and community, since its inception in 2011. But with so many regular streamers on the popular site and over 45 million registered users, it's hard to tell which channels are going to be entertaining and which ones are just flat-out annoying. And there A LOT of annoying ones.

There are plenty of Twitch streamers who will scream for minutes (sometimes hours) at a time, insult people, sit around and do nothing, cry, or be rude, which makes watching the stream nearly impossible. And you best believe that if the channel host is super annoying, opinionated, or angry, their fanbase that joins in on the Twitch chat will probably be even worse. But hey, as an entertainer, you've got to do what you've got to do, even if what you're doing makes people want to pull their own hair out. Right?

This is a list of popular streamers on Twitch that people totally love, absolutely hate, or even love to hate. So vote up the most obnoxious streamers, and vote down the ones that you don't think are actually all that bad to watch.


The 12 Most Annoying Twitch Streamers,

Kacey Bee Cabinets (Kaceytron)

Kaceytron streams on Twitch, collecting cash donations from viewers while taking requests from people to read on her stream, seeming to make a career out of trolling and getting hated on. She aims the camera at her cleavage while she plays games like League of Legends... horribly. She also likes to talk about some really, really dumb stuff (like trying to find dates on Counter-Strike: Global Offensive), and rage-quits her games, so you're better off just skipping over this channel whenever you see it if you don't want to lose brain cells.


Toby Turner (Tobuscus)

If there was an award for "The Most Annoying Voice in the World," Tobuscus would win it. He's one of those streamers who prides himself on making terrible jokes (he tries so, so very hard to be funny. Godspeed, Mr. Turner...) and having very obnoxious streams. The combination of these things make his streams nearly unwatchable.


Pink_Sparkles

If Pink_Sparkles isn't just singing and dancing around, she might play a game of League of Legends or something. Maybe. But if she does she runs the risk of crying and quitting out of rage. 

Until then, she'll probably just tell her Twitch subscribers to ask her questions while she plays with her hair and continues to do nothing entertaining. Or get banned for twerking again. Or ignore people who give her thousands of dollars during a stream because she wants to scream and cry about a viewer advertising something in her chat. Maybe.


Felix Arvid Ulf Kjellberg (PewDiePie)

Not everyone is a Bro, ok? PewDiePie has been around for a while, but he has never NOT been loud and annoying. If you can tolerate one of his streams through the garbled ranting, bad jokes, and weird noises (or are those words? You can never tell anymore...) without turning the volume down or completely off, then you must have a will made of iron.


Adam Dahlberg (SkyDoesMinecraft)

Known for constantly screaming pointless things, SkyDoesMinecraft's Twitch channel is just as annoying as the Minecraft fan base that likes to join him. His streams are long and often completely underwhelming, while his jokes are immature and not at all funny. Also, it's called "Gold," not "BUDDER!!!!"


John Bain (TotalBiscuit)

TotalBiscuit is well known for being pretentious, over opinionated to the point it's offensive, and for attempting to boycott things, like Sega video games, over his streaming platforms. His reviews on games he plays are often seen as very surface-level and probably shouldn't be watched if you want a real review of a game.


Mohamad Assad (m0e_tv)

Not only did M0e get banned from Twitch once for openly cheating in Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, he came BACK, full force, just to yell and rage around again. And he kind of prides himself on being annoying and rage-y during streams (Just take a look at his YouTube channel). Not to mention his chat stream is filled with such garbage that not looking at it might actually save a life. Is he just following the trends of other overly aggro CS:GO players? Who knows, but please, make it stop.


Joe Vargas (AngryJoeShow)

If you haven't seen Angry Joe before, you can probably tell from his Twitch handle that he's overbearingly loud, often uncivil, yells a lot, and rages for seemingly every reason ever. Angry Joe's Twitch chat is just as erratic as he is... but worse. At least he's trying to be entertaining about it.


Kristen Valnicek (KittyPlays)

In between twerking, Kitty talks a lot, Kitty does random stuff around her house, Kitty gets money from people, and Kitty... wait, does KittyPlays ever actually play games? Oh yeah, she does, she's just very terrible at it, so maybe she just does a bunch of stuff in between to avoid doing the thing the service she streams on was actually invented to do.


Lea May (LegendaryLea)

LegendaryLea is probably best known for repetitively, and "accidentally," exposing various body parts that are a no-no on Twitch and even getting banned for it. The majority of her game streams are insulting quips (sometimes drunken insulting quips) and ramblings, and if she decides to game instead of rolling around on something or spinning around in her chair, you can watch her accept large donations from streamers. 



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Tue, 22 Nov 2016 08:19:06 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/most-annoying-twitch-streamers/abbey-grantham
<![CDATA[9 Reasons Why No Man's Sky Is Actually Just Way Too Smart for You]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/no-mans-sky-is-too-smart-for-you/justin-andress?source=rss

You don't want to hear it, but you need to. You're not going to like it, but here it is: No Man's Sky is smarter than you. 

That's right, No Man's Sky isn't actually bad. It's just that you've been playing No Man's Sky wrong. When the game was first announced, it became one of the most anticipated titles of 2016. Fans were incredibly excited to delve into Sean Murray’s procedurally-generated universe of 18,446,744,073,709,551,616 planets. They were hoping for the ultimate space-faring, open-world title, one that would allow them to trade and fight and talk their way across the universe. For a brief time, Sean Murray was seen as the herald of a new way to play video games.

Then, the title released. And though it was a genuinely new kind of video game, No Man’s Sky wasn’t the revolution everyone wanted, and gamers were righteously pissed off. They went to exhaustive lengths to castigate the developer they’d previously deified. But that's what everyone got wrong about No Man's Sky. The game is executed perfectly as is. In spite of all the bitching and the anger, and the endless number of burned Sean Murray effigies, No Man’s Sky is a gaming revolution.

You were just looking at it the wrong way.


9 Reasons Why No Man's Sky Is Actually Just Way Too Smart for You,

No Man’s Sky Is About the Journey

Rare is the game that’s truly about the time you spend inside it. When it comes right down to it, most major titles are about the endings. Even huge open-world games like Bethesda’s celebrated Elder Scrolls series - in which players can spend weeks of real-world time tromping through dungeons and fighting monsters - is still about getting to the end. Bethesda is just smart enough to provide lots of little endings to keep players moving forward: the end of the dungeon, the end of the quest, the end of the story, etc.

In No Man’s Sky, the end is but another beginning. The point of the experience is to travel, it’s to see the expanded universe and truly explore every nook and cranny. There aren’t any shiny baubles waiting for you, it’s exploration for exploration’s sake. If you’re going into No Man’s Sky looking for treasure, you came to the wrong game.


Solitude Is an Integral Part of the Journey

You have the option to share what you’d like to share, but if you want, No Man’s Sky can be a completely private experience. More private than any other title ever released. Because the universe is so huge, no one else who ever lives will ever play the game the same way as you do.

Huge is actually an understatement. It would take 585 million years to fully explore every single inch of No Man’s Sky. Even if someone wanted to mimic your footsteps, they couldn’t. The experience was built to foster a feeling that the individual sights and sounds you experience while playing are yours and yours alone.


Maybe You’re Just Not High Enough

If you’re a frequent redditor, you may have run across r/NoMansSkyTheGame. On a social media platform where all manner of dubious activity takes place (including a popular subreddit devoted to saying nice things about Donald Trump), r/NoMansSkyTheGame is one mean place. What began as a subreddit devoted to extolling the virtues of the game soon turned into a poisonous exercise in abusing Hello Games. Take for example, this post titled: “I'm curious, is there anyone still unclear that NMS was a massively successful cash-grab and little else?”

Things are so bad on the official subreddit that some players have had to retreat to corners of their own to talk about how much they genuinely enjoy No Man’s Sky. Easily one of the best is r/NoMansHigh, which - in the creator's words - is “a chill place to talk about the game and share our experiences of it. I'd noticed attitudes in the main sub had changed and it was bumming me out, that's it.”

As a result, r/NoMansHigh has become a place where people who enjoy the game can actually post pictures and ask questions and generally engage in the kind of community Sean Murray intended.


It’s Not Play How You Want to Play, It’s Proceed How You Want to Proceed

A few weeks before No Man’s Sky hit store shelves, Hello Games began to release a series of videos that highlighted the various gameplay aspects of No Man’s Sky. Released under the titles "Fight," "Explore," "Survive," and "Trade," these videos gave a hint at the various ways that people could proceed through the galaxy. A lot of gamers took these videos - quite understandably - as insight into how they’d play the game. To some extent that was true.

However, the various mechanics at the fringe of No Man’s Sky aren’t meant to fill up the entire gameplay experience. You can fight to earn the materials to further explore the galaxy or you can trade to earn them, but the core No Man's Sky experience always leads back to exploration. Sure, there are bells and whistles to break up traveling between planets, but these are just the means to continue your journey, not the point of the journey itself.


Remember, It’s an Indie Game (They Just Charged $60 Because You Were Willing to Pay $60)

In the run up to the release of No Man’s Sky, the amount of hype surrounding the game helped a lot of gamers forget the fact that Hello Games has less than twenty employees. It is, by its very definition, an indie studio. Though No Man’s Sky was billed as a Triple-A title, it was - in reality - a very ambitious indie game.

In other words, the expectations for the title should have been firmly set at “indie,” a field of the gaming industry that’s imminently more forgiving and open to experimentation. Instead, the hype train put No Man's Sky in the same class as titles like Call of Duty, where it did not belong.


If You’re Listening to the Hype, You’re Listening to a Bunch of Crazy People

If you’re somehow a gamer who has yet to pick up the title and you’re still on the fence about it, don’t base your opinion on the people who are still railing against the title. 

These guys are straight up fanatics, who began their time with No Man’s Sky by literally comparing Sean Murray to Jesus and now fill their days re-writing Eminem songs to capture their heartbreak. They’re a weird bunch, so you don’t want to go making big decisions based on their obsessions.


Drop Your Pre-Conceived Notions of an Online World

Initially, when Sean Murray explained that No Man’s Sky would all take place in the same, persistent Universe, people got excited. Even though Murray and Hello Games repeatedly told people not to expect a big multiplayer component to No Man’s Sky, players still began to wonder at the possibilities.

We should have listened, because No Man’s Sky isn’t World of Warcraft.

Days after the game released, two real world players actually did manage to find one another. The only catch was that they couldn’t see each other. The only way either player could confirm that they were occupying the same space was to chat outside the game.

Hanging out with other players wasn’t what Murray had in mind when he said “online” or “interaction among players.” Murray was building a universe for us to share with one another via our stories and pictures - our mementos. He wasn’t trying to put out yet another game where you can race your pal from Point A to Point B.


Of Course Hello Games Lied, All Game Developers Lie (Seriously, All of Them)

It’d be foolish to try and suggest that Hello Games didn’t get caught up in the hype train itself. At various times throughout the production of No Man’s Sky the developers at Hello Games touted gameplay features that didn’t show up in the final game. Things like different classes of ships, more varied planetary physics, and the importance of interacting with different factions were all promised, and then abandoned as the developers worked to hone the core experience.

Here’s the thing, though. All game developers everywhere lie. Remember when Destiny was supposed to have more in it than just grinding through dungeons? Remember when Watch Dogs was going to be unlike any other video game before it? 

Even hits like The Witcher 3 endure complaints from gamers who claim they lied about the final product. It’s rampant throughout the industry, people, so let’s not pretend that Hello Games invented exaggeration.


Murray’s Original Vision Was Achieved Spectacularly

Let’s start here, with a quote from Sean Murray back when he was still beloved. When No Man’s Sky was first announced, Murray explained that the tech behind the game was something really special. It was an entire universe all crafted from one immensely complicated algorithm. In Murray’s universe, players could explore billions and billions of procedurally-generated, uncharted planets teeming with bizarre, alien life. The universe was so big that even Murray and his team at Hello Games would be unable to see every one. 

Murray said at the time, “We wanted to create the feeling of landing on a planet and knowing that no one had ever been there before. That is the one thing that has been there since the very start of the game.” It’s the sensation of exploration that’s fueled the development of No Man’s Sky, folks, not sweet-ass space battles.



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Tue, 15 Nov 2016 09:44:40 PST http://www.ranker.com/list/no-mans-sky-is-too-smart-for-you/justin-andress
<![CDATA[15 Mario Kart Shortcuts & Exploits That Guarantee Glorious Victory]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/best-mariokart-shortcuts/cassie-muniz?source=rss

In Mario Kart, driving in reverse or into a body of water may not seem like the best tactic. But on certain courses, straying from the designated path might just be the best trick to securing a first-place finish.

From alternate pathways to unintended glitches, there are hundreds of potential shortcuts across the video game series. Some are easy to find and complete, while others require expert-level execution. By mastering these awesome Mario Kart shortcuts, you can shed anywhere from seconds to minutes off of your races and beat your friends every time.

You'll find that the best shortcuts in Mario Kart are often those that exploit design flaws, allowing you to jump through walls and skip entire laps. Despite being patched for online play, you can still exploit these glitches when you play offline. 

Keep reading below for the most helpful and exciting Mario Kart shortcuts you never knew existed.


15 Mario Kart Shortcuts & Exploits That Guarantee Glorious Victory,

Minecart Pathway - Wario's Gold Mine (Nintendo Wii)

Instead of following the arrows, take the left path at the fork, and avoid bumping into the carts of gold.   


Wall Jump Glitch - Wario Stadium (Nintendo 64)

After passing the finish line, use one of the dirt hills to hop over the left wall. Once you've made it over, you can take your shortcut to the extreme by immediately looping back around and jumping over the wall again. With this trick, you can complete a lap in less than 10 seconds.


Dock Jump - Delfino Square (Nintendo DS)

When you come out from the alleyways between buildings, make a quick left, then use a boost to jump over the water and onto the dock. Drive up the dock and back onto the designated track.


Jumping Off the Road - Rainbow Road (Nintendo 64)

At the beginning of the race, boost past the third yellow line and then jump over the left railing. The goal is to time it so that you land on (or at least touch) the road below, and thus skip a portion of the course. If you miss the landing completely, Lakitu will bring you back to the start. This is a classic high-risk, high-reward Mario Kart shortcut. 


Jumping to the Finish Line - Waluigi Stadium (GameCube)

After you pass the large piranha plants, drift up the left wall so that you gain enough air and fall forward toward the large ramp. If you succeed, Lakitu will think you've fallen in a pit, and he'll drop you off near the finish line.


Driving on the Rock - Grumble Volcano (Nintendo Wii)

Using a boost or a mushroom, this glitch allows you to drive onto the large volcanic rock to the left of the finish line. Once there, each lap driven around the rock counts as a lap in the overall race.


Prolonged Boost Glitch - All Courses (SNES)

As you approach a wall or barrier, use a mushroom and then hop into the wall. Your boost will now remain active for an extended period of time - so long as you don't bump into anything. This glitch can help you lead the race on all tracks. Your friends will hate you for it. 


Train Track Tricks - Kalimari Desert (Nintendo 64)

When the race begins, let some of the others take the lead so you can guarantee that you get a star. Drive left into the train tunnel until you're all the way in, then turn around and use the star. This glitch will bump you to your second lap.

Alternatively, if you have a red shell, drive all the way through the tunnel. Then, use the shell to knock yourself over the barrier and back onto the dirt path. You can use this shortcut on any lap. 

At the second train intersection, there is another possible shortcut: with a star on hand, turn left onto the tracks, then use the item right before entering the tunnel. You will move on to the next lap, despite not crossing the finish line. This shortcut will only work on the first two laps.


Sky Jump - Sky Garden (Game Boy Advance)

Shortly after the finish line, there is a yellow jump pad on the right side of the path. If you use a mushroom while driving over the jump, you should be able to make it across the large gap. This course has a couple of other jump pads that can be used to skip ahead, too.


Backwards Bounce - Mushroom Gorge (Nintendo Wii)

Before driving onto the wooden bridge, turn around and boost onto the giant mushroom. Perform a trick so that you reach the rock wall, and then wheelie along it until you land back on the track. When you cross the finish line, you'll be on your next lap. 



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Mon, 10 Oct 2016 07:14:29 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/best-mariokart-shortcuts/cassie-muniz
<![CDATA[14 Video Games That Let Players Take Drugs and Completely Trip Balls]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/ways-to-trip-balls-in-games/aaron-edwards?source=rss

While video games mostly focus on new and exciting ways to vanquish one's foes, some of the more interesting titles like to get trippy while they do it. There are plenty of ways to do drugs in video games, beginning with early games like Super Mario Bros. (someone pass the mushrooms!). OK, that one's a stretch, but Mario does get more powerful when he gobbles down a 'shroom and if you really think about it, that game is trippy as hell.

But this list isn't about implied drug use or plumbers. It's about ways to get high in video games. In modern games, drugs can be found all over the place. Sometimes it’s super explicit like in Max Payne, while at other times it’s a bit more cartoony like in Narc. Some games, like Far Cry 3, thrive on the drug trip as part of its style and others use them as genius pieces of world building - like in the Fallout series, where drug dependence is very real and can change your character's stat line.

Keep reading below to see 14 games where characters go way, way down the rabbit hole. 


14 Video Games That Let Players Take Drugs and Completely Trip Balls,

Max Payne

The story of Max Payne revolves around a designer drug called valkyr that has some pretty nasty side effects. Developed by the military for a black-ops program, it ended up causing hallucinations and insanity in its users. Obviously it ends up on the street. Later in the game, Max gets hit with a huge dose of the stuff, sending him into a trippy nightmare where he imagines himself in the panels of a graphic novel. 


The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind

The Elder Scrolls games give you the means to do just about anything in the worlds they create, and that includes getting really, really high. The name of the drug is skooma, a crystal that you can smoke to get a stat boost in some areas - but it also gives a massive drop in others. Most notably, your agility hits rock bottom which makes you as sluggish as a drunken dragon.  


Batman: Arkham Asylum

When the Scarecrow shows up in anything related to Batman, you can bet there will be some toxin-induced visions. This one is particularly brutal, with Batman getting drugged and entering his own private house of imagined horrors. While the section is repeated several times throughout the game and can become tiresome later, there is one notable moment where he relives the death of his parents. 


Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception

The third game in the Uncharted series decided to go the trippy direction in certain sequences. Dosed with a fear drug, Drake goes berserk in Yemen as he’s goaded by the disembodied voice of the game’s antagonist. After going nuts and falling asleep, he ends up right in her clutches. 


Far Cry 3

This game really played up the tribal iconography and stereotypes… which includes plenty of hallucinations. Not only do you get special hallucinogenic pills, but there’s also a mission where you burn down a field of marijuana. Breathing in the resulting smoke cloud makes the mission just a little bit more difficult to play. 


The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings

Witchers thrive on potion making in order to fight the worst monsters out there. In The Witcher 2, developer CD Projekt RED gives players the chance to try a little drink called the visionary’s potion. The potion supposedly gives the character a look into the future, but what it really does is give you a vision of an alternate world filled with phallic mushrooms and an absolutely massive chicken. 


Grand Theft Auto V

Rockstar has never been a company that creates tame video game experiences. Their games are all filled to the brim with profanity, gore, and a thin layer of mean-spirited social commentary for good measure. Grand Theft Auto V definitely pushes the envelope when it comes to drug use in the series. In one scene, Jimmy gives Michael a horse tranquilizer which leads to quite an experience. He gets abducted by aliens, thrown out of their ship, then he free falls all the way back to Los Santos in a technicolor haze.  


Watch Dogs

This game gives you an app to do just about anything, so why not get high? You have the ability to go on “digital trips,” which are exactly what they sound like. It’s all here: demons, robots, mechanical spider-tanks. Completing a trip unlocks a clothing item that players can add to the regular game. 


Fallout: 4

The makers of the original Fallout games - and the subsequent sequels - were meticulous when they built the world. There are drugs called "chems" all over the place that players can use for various stat boosts. Mentats buff intelligence, Psycho increases damage output, and Med-X gives more damage resistance. You must keep taking the drugs to get the boosts... but that means your character will get addicted quickly. There are a few ways to get rid of the addictions such as doctors and anti-addiction meds, and players also have access to the Party Boy/Girl perk, which gives them an immunity to addiction. 


Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain

At the start of the game, your character has awoken from a nine-year coma only to narrowly survive an assassination attempt. Your hospital buddy, Ishmael, gives you a little something called digoxin to get you back on your feet. But what the game doesn’t tell you is that digoxin can cause confusion and hallucinations, which explains some of the crazy fire ghosts and psychic masked children you see slaughtering everyone around you as you try to escape with your life. 



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Tue, 25 Oct 2016 10:36:14 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/ways-to-trip-balls-in-games/aaron-edwards
<![CDATA[The Dumbest Lines of Dialogue in Video Game History]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/dumb-video-game-dialogue/nathandavidson?source=rss

A long time ago, gamers accepted the fact that video game dialogue has been and probably always will be terrible. It's a gaming fact of life and, frankly, nobody's really complaining for one simple reason... video game dialogue is so terrible that it's actually pretty amazing. Below, you will witness the worst lines in video games and worst quotes in video games. These are arguably the dumbest video game lines ever, and in a strange way, a lot of them can be considered wise words to live by. So, before you embark on your mission of looking at the worst in-game quotes in video game history, make sure you've got a lot of built-up mental fortitude. You're going to need it.


The Dumbest Lines of Dialogue in Video Game History,

Lost in Translation

Just Poo It

Right in the Feels

Horrible Video Game Dialogue Achievement: Unlocked

Winner Go Home

Solid Life Advice

One Video Game Dialogue Fail to Rule Them All

Does Not Compute

What the Fork!

The Talking Dead


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Wed, 26 Oct 2016 08:42:24 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/dumb-video-game-dialogue/nathandavidson
<![CDATA[26 Celebrities Who Look Just Like Video Game Characters]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/celebrities-who-look-like-video-game-characters/nathandavidson?source=rss

Art constantly imitates life, and that is definitely the case when it comes to video game characters. These are celebrities who look like video game characters. Celebs who look like video game characters so much, in fact, it's possible they're actually the same entity. Come on, you don't think there's even a slight possibility that some video game characters are celebrities and vice versa? Take a look at these video game characters who look like celebrities below and judge for yourself. Just make sure you turn off your VR headset before you begin so you don't shatter the space-time continuum. 


26 Celebrities Who Look Just Like Video Game Characters,

Adam Sandler

Angelina Jolie

Arnold Schwarzenegger

Cameron Diaz

Conan O'Brien

David Bowie

Dennis Hopper

Josh Brolin

Leslie David Baker

Ron Perlman


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Tue, 01 Nov 2016 08:09:41 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/celebrities-who-look-like-video-game-characters/nathandavidson
<![CDATA[15 Interesting Overwatch Fan Theories That Are Actually Plausible]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/overwatch-fan-theories/taeyura?source=rss

Some theories about Overwatch characters seem to be taking on a life of their own. For many players of the popular Blizzard game, a significant part of the game's appeal comes from the origin stories and mysteries that accompany each and every character. This is exactly why theories about Sombra have been circulating practically since the game's release in May 2016 despite the fact that the character was not even announced until November 2016. 

Overwatch fans have been diligently following their thirst for knowledge and have uncovered some interesting and rather plausible theories about Sombra, Mercy, Reaper, and many more of Overwatch's heroes. Check out these Overwatch fan theories and vote up the ones you believe.

 


15 Interesting Overwatch Fan Theories That Are Actually Plausible,

The Next Doomfist Won't Be Human

This theory is perhaps one of the most simple and extremely plausible fan theories out there. In Numbani, three Doomfist banners can be found hanging inside one of the buildings. Two of the banners clearly depict former holders of the Doomfist title along with their names underneath. The third banner, however, is different than the rest. Instead of showing this Doomfist, players can only see a silhouette. Even more interesting is that the name on this banner is written in a language for the Omnics, which is enough to convince Overwatch players that the upcoming Doomfist will be an Omnic himself.


Mercy Is Responsible for What Happened to Reaper

Mercy's Rez attempts are a part of why fans are questioning if Overwatch's leading angel is playing for good or bad and no example seems to be more troubling than her attempt to rescue Reaper, according to Reddit user meta-sift. In-game conversations between Reaper and Mercy certainly suggests that there is something more to this pair's relationship. Mercy starts by asking Reaper, "What happened to you?" Reaper responds, "You tell me, Doc." Mercy's next line is where things get weird. "This is not what I intended for you, Reyes." Reaper then insists that Mercy "knew exactly what [she was] doing."

The conversation, along with Reaper's current condition, has Overwatch fans guessing one of two things must be true. "The explosion at the Swiss Overwatch facility involved [Mercy's] research and Reyes was heavily affected by it Bruce Banner style," meta-sift explains. The second option is that "Mercy brought him back to life but messed up in the process or maybe he was so far gone it was a side-effect of the extreme treatment she subjected him to." 


Hanzo's Two Dragons Say a Lot About Him

Hanzo and Genji are the Shimada brothers and the dragons of the North and the South. To some players, it seems odd that their ultimate abilities depict two different manifestations of a dragon. While Genji summons one dragon, Hanzo unleashes two. Some people believe this was merely a decision made to allow both characters to have two different ultimate abilities and add variety to gameplay. Others, however, think the Overwatch creators have paid too much attention to even the slightest details for the explanation to be that simple.

One theory is that Hanzo’s double dragons are a manifestation of an inner conflict. “One represents his actions which represented his duty to the Shimada clan, but the other dragon represents his own condemnation of his actions and his self-loathing for it,” Reddit user Mizuromo explains. “The two dragons are in conflict with each other (they are spinning around each other, which sort of looks like the two dragons at the beginning on the door who are chasing each other).”


Athena Can Take on the Form of an Omnic

Athena is a familiar name for most Overwatch players. The robotic female voice guides you through the game's tutorial and is also featured in the animated short "Recall." A popular theory, however, is that Athena will become a playable character and we have already seen her physical form. Athena's logo is very similar to the symbol seen on the Omnic standing behind Tracer and Winston in the image of the Overwatch team. It's been theorized that this Omnic is the physical form that Athena can take on if she needs to participate in combat. With clear signs of Athena having a sort of conscious and even the ability to express emotions, the theory has garnered a lot of support.


Mercy Is No Angel

So who is the real villain in Overwatch? Depending on who you ask, many would say it’s Overwatch’s own guardian angel. The theory behind why Mercy may not be as innocent as she makes herself out to be is detailed in this Reddit post. The highlights include her questionable intentions behind rescuing Reaper, the result of her rescue attempt with Genji and, as explained by Curse Entertainment, the interesting names of her armor and equipment, which seem to have a lot more to do with death than giving life.   


You’ve Already Seen Soundquake and Didn’t Know It

Overwatch fans never hesitate to look for new information about possible upcoming heroes. Another hero that fans have been keeping their eyes out for is a character by the name of Soundquake. We have heard the name mentioned by an excited young boy who is talking to another child who seems to be his older brother. “In that one battle they had Soundquake, remember, he has, like, chest missiles,” he tells the older child. While that might not be a lot of information, it’s enough to support the theory that the massive, red, tank-like character standing behind Lucio in the image of the Overwatch team is none other than Soundquake. Out of all the characters standing there, it certainly seems like this character would be the most likely choice to be able to shoot missiles out of his chest. 


Mercy Doesn't Age Because She's Already Dead

An in-game conversation between Mercy and Mei reveals that both women realized they have something in common - neither of them seem to have aged over the years. Mei's lack of aging has already been explained in her official Overwatch origin story but why Mercy hasn't aged seems to be a little more mysterious. Subtle hints throughout the game, however, have Overwatch fans convinced that Mercy is hiding quite the secret. One of Mercy's emotes shows her checking her own pulse before laughing and shaking her head. A theory that has grown rather popular is that "Dr. Angela Zeigler (Mercy) died a long time ago and is being kept alive by the technology that lets her seemingly raise the dead."  


Sombra Is Alejandra

Even after Sombra was announced at BlizzCon 2016, tons of mystery shrouded the character and her true identity is still unknown. Even the official Overwatch website makes a point to block out Sombra’s real name. Well, many avid Overwatch players believe they already know her real name - Alejandra. Fans believe the young girl Soldier: 76 rescued in the animated short “Hero” eventually grew up to be the powerful hacker known only as Sombra. It doesn’t seem far-fetched considering both characters share the same nationality and Sombra was revealed as Overwatch’s 23rd character. If you look closely during “Hero,” the number 23 is revealed on the wall after Alejandra snatches an Overwatch poster off a wall to show to her mother. 


Sombra Is the One Who Reactivated Bastion

Before Sombra was officially announced at BlizzCon 2016, Overwatch fans were keeping a close eye on a website called "A Moment in Crime." The website, which was made to appear like it was being hacked by Overwatch's very own Sombra, was slowly making its way towards the 100% completed mark. It was initially believed that the site's completion would finally reveal Sombra but, instead, the string of coding suggested something else had happened and that "something" had to do with Bastion. Bastion's specific unit name appeared in the coding and left some wondering if Sombra was the one who activated Bastion and sent the bird-loving robot on a forest-destroying rampage. The theory is explained in detail by Reddit user mrzablinx.


Junkrat’s Treasure Holds the Secret to the Omnic Crisis

A key part of the lore surrounding Junkrat is that “he came to notoriety when he discovered an extremely valuable secret in the bones of the omnium.” While it has never been confirmed what Junkrat found in the “bones of the omnium,” Overwatch fans can’t ignore the importance of the creators referring to Junkrat’s discovery as a “secret” rather than a mere item. In-game conversations between Hanzo and Junkrat create even more mystery around the topic; at one point, Hanzo states that Junkrat “surely cannot have the treasure on his body.”

One popular theory is that Junkrat actually possesses some sort of power source that is needed to create more Omnics. With Junkrat’s severe mistrust of Omnics, it seems likely that if he found the secret to their creation, he would keep it to himself despite his documented desire to make a profit off the things he steals. The theory is explained in detail by Reddit user GamingPhilosophe.



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Fri, 04 Nov 2016 06:52:43 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/overwatch-fan-theories/taeyura
<![CDATA[18 Video Games Turned Into Adorable Children's Book Covers]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/kids-storytime-versions-of-your-favorite-games/chris-abraham?source=rss

Who would have thought that video game characters would make perfect children's storybook covers? If you answered Los Angeles-based artist Jo3bot (Joey Spiotto), you would be correct. After showcasing some of his pop-culture/kid's book mashups in 2014 at Gallery 1988, Spiotto went viral. He decided to take his best drawings and turn them into two popular books, both of which can be purchased on his Kickstarter Page.

If you enjoyed the incredible pieces of art on this list, consider buying Joey's books! They are full color and contain information about each piece. Vote up your favorites on this list, and check out more of Jo3bot's work on his website.

 


18 Video Games Turned Into Adorable Children's Book Covers,

BioShock

Fallout 3

Metal Gear Solid

Metroid

Portal

Resident Evil

Super Mario Bros.

The Legend of Zelda

Mortal Kombat

The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim


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Fri, 04 Nov 2016 07:24:49 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/kids-storytime-versions-of-your-favorite-games/chris-abraham
<![CDATA[8 Obscure Mario Games You Definitely Haven't Played]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/obscure-mario-games-you-havent-played/chris-abraham?source=rss

He's the most recognized video game mascot in the world, but even the biggest Nintendo fans haven't played every single Mario game. Whether they're Japanese exclusives or dated educational games, there's a good chance you have not only never played the Mario games on this list, but never even heard of them either. We all love titles like Mario 64 and Super Mario World, but it's fascinating to learn about the lesser-known Mario games that only a select group have played. Some are so obscure there are barely any pictures of them on the Internet - take Mario Undoukai for example, a Japanese Mario arcade game that played like Dance Dance Revolution.

This list includes Mario educational games, Japanese Mario exclusives, Mario arcade games that were coin (or medal) operated, and much more. These are definitely deep cuts when it comes to the beloved Mario franchise, so hopefully you learn a thing or two about these weird games.


8 Obscure Mario Games You Definitely Haven't Played,

Hotel Mario

Widely considered one of the worst Mario titles ever made, Hotel Mario was published by Philips Interactive and Nintendo for the Phillips CD-i in 1994. The image above is from one of the many cut-scenes in the game, which were horrible quality and completely non-interactive. The object of the game was to close doors at one of seven hotels being ran by Bowser, all while avoiding enemies and not exceeding a given time limit. The gameplay from this terrible puzzle game looked like this:



Mario no Photopi

You probably played the heck out of Mario Paint for SNES, but the Japanese exclusive Mario no Photopi undoubtedly flew under your radar. Released in 1998 for the Nintendo 64, Mario no Photopi was a creativity game that allowed players to import their own images via SmartMedia cards that fit into the top of the game's cartridge. You could decorate your photos with Mario artwork, add different borders and fonts, and much more. It looks pretty cool, but did it have the Fly Swatting game? That's a deal breaker.


Mario Teaches Typing

I sure wish my elementary school had a copy of Mario Teaches Typing when I first learned to use a computer. Released for Microsoft Windows and certain Mac in 1991, Mario Teaches Typing was an educational typing game that taught players how to use a keyboard. Players would need to type sentences fast enough to get Mario or Peach past obstacles like pits of quicksand, Thwomps, and more. You can actually play this game online fairly easily, so take a trip to the past and see what educational games were like in the early '90s.


Mario the Juggler

Before Tiger Electronics made all those crappy handheld games in the early '90s, Nintendo was doing it with their Game & Watch units. Mario the Juggler was the final original Game & Watch unit, and was actually a conceptual remake of the first Game & Watch game ever produced, which was simply called Ball.

The object of Mario the Juggler was to juggle items for as long as possible, with the player controlling Mario's left and right hands with two corresponding buttons. Three misses and you got Game Over.


Super Mario Bros. & Friends: When I Grow Up

When it comes to bizarre Mario titles, this one might take the cake. Released in 1992 as a MS-DOS game, Super Mario Bros. & Friends: When I Grow Up was essentially an electronic coloring book (think Mario Paint but with way less options.) Each page featured a theme from common careers, including lawyer, pharmacist, traffic director, and more.


Wrecking Crew '98

Released in 1998 for Super Famicon, Wrecking Crew '98 was a direct sequel to the original Wrecking Crew, which was a launch title for the original NES. Wrecking Crew '98 took a more competitive approach to the concept of the original, pitting two players against each other with the goal of demolishing all their bricks before the other player did so. Although you can play as Mario and Luigi, characters that are unique to the game include Eggplant Man, Gotchawrench, and the nefarious Foreman Spike (who some believe was the inspiration for Wario.)


Mario Roulette

A rare Japanese medal (coin-operated) arcade game, Mario Roulette was developed and released by Nintendo in 1991, in partnership with Konami. Based on the Bonus Game from Super Mario World, the player would insert a coin, and then press the button on the machine to stop the 8 blocks from spinning. If the player successfully lined them up and ended up with Princess Peach in the center square, they would win.


Excitebike: Bun Bun Mario Battle Stadium

Many American NES owners had a copy of Excitebike in their library, but you've probably never even heard of Excitebike: Bun Bun Mario Battle Stadium. Before you laugh at the name too hard, you should know that "bun bun" is Japanese onomatopoeia for a buzzing noise that is sometimes associated with motorcycles.

Also known simply as Excitebike: Mario Battle Stadium, this was a title only available through Nintendo's Satellaview service, which allowed Super Famicom users to download games, magazine articles, and more from the Internet. The game was basically the same concept as the original Excitebike, but all the characters were replaced with Mario, Luigi, Wario, Peach, and more of your favorite Nintendo characters.



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Wed, 02 Nov 2016 04:42:00 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/obscure-mario-games-you-havent-played/chris-abraham
<![CDATA[The Best Video Games to Play When You're High]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/best-stoned-video-games/amanda-lynn?source=rss

Weed + Video Games = True Love. Whether you're sinking into the couch with an indica or blasting through synaptic hula hoops on a sweet sativa, video games are fun to play when you're high. 

The only problem? Choosing the best video games to play when you're high can be as much of an existential crisis as choosing the best snack: they're ALL good, man. Yet, there are some clear standouts. Rank your bake-n-play favorites! Vote up the best video games to play when you're stoned.


The Best Video Games to Play When You're High,

Mario Kart Wii

Stoned driving: not cool, unless it's Mario Kart. Drift and draft your way around colorful obstacles courses with your favorite Nintendo characters to an energetic race soundtrack; what's not to enjoy? Shh, we won't talk about Rainbow Road.


World of Warcraft

Playing World of Warcraft high is not unlike time travel: suddenly, it's 12 hours later and you have vague memories of taking down an enormous spider with the help of a panda. Blizzard's MMORPG continues to pump out premium content, so you're unlikely to run out of things to do (hence the marathon sessions). The character creator alone can be quicksand for the meticulous stoner.


Minecraft

What better way to while away a high than building your own world, block by block? Let your artistic side run wild with abstract creations, go full survivalist with an underground bunker guarded by spiders - whatever you want, Minecraft is your dominion. Make a point to hike to the highest spot in you world to watch the sunrise. Just don't piss off any Creepers along the way.


Portal 2

As funny as it is frustrating, Portal 2 makes good use of a hybrid high. Let the indica calm your turret- and laser-induced stress while the sativa helps you keep up with the witty dialogue and clever puzzles. Best of all, if you plan ahead for the munchies, the cake *won't* be a lie.


Fez

Get lost in FEZ, a meandering, atmospheric puzzle platformer featuring some absolutely beautiful pixel environments and music to match. Unlike most traditional 2D platformers, you can rotate the world of FEZ for a new twist (sorry) on platforming. The nicest thing about playing FEZ while high? Death is but a brief blip before you're respawned at the nearest ledge. Phew. Stress-free.


The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim

Load up your texture mods and let the good times roll with this beautiful, open world ARPG. Maybe your bong rips have put you in the mood for slaying some dragons; maybe you just want to harvest lavender for a few hours and enjoy the scenery. With over 300 hours of gameplay, Skyrim makes it pretty easy to find some quest or task to suit your buzz.


South Park: The Stick of Truth

Make like Towelie and grab your best giggly bud - as in the kind of weed that makes you giggle, but you could also grab your best giggly friend (or guy or pal). South Park: The Stick of Truth has all the bones of a classic RPG, topped with the hilarious trimmings of that infamous South Park humor. While you're good and high, take the time to read the item descriptions. Easter eggs, mmkay?


The Stanley Parable

With the right weed, a bout of The Stanley Parable can be the most hilarious thing ever. Brilliantly written and narrated, TSP invites you (Stanley) on a journey through your office to figure out why all of your coworkers have disappeared. The story sounds simple enough, but... well, you'll hear all about it from the narrator. Best paired with your favorite uplifting bud, as the hallway routes could spark claustrophobia for some stoned players.


Monument Valley

Talk about getting in the zone. The mobile puzzle platformer Monument Valley features stunning levels of impossible geometry alongside a dreamy soundtrack and minimalist art style. Equally minimalist in its story, the emphasis is on figuring out the clever puzzles of each monument dreamscape. Don't be surprised if you can't pull yourself away from your tablet and finish the game in one stoned sitting.


Zelda (Any Zelda, Let's Be Real)

From the original NES game to Skyward Sword and 25 years of games in between, Zelda is a timeless selection when you're good and baked. Ingenious dungeon design spans the series, more often than not accompanied by a stellar soundtrack. And some of the cleverest writing in games lives in Zelda's dialog boxes (the ones you're not button-stabbing your way through - looking at you, Kaepora Gaebora). The glorious symbiosis of Link and dank makes even Zelda II: The Adventure of Link tolerable! Weed wonders never cease.



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Mon, 10 Oct 2016 10:21:18 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/best-stoned-video-games/amanda-lynn
<![CDATA[10 Terrifying VR Horror Games That Will Scare the Crap Out of You]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/scary-vr-horror-games/crystal-brackett?source=rss

Virtual reality is the new frontier of video games, and horror lovers have definitely jumped on the bandwagon. With the recent launch of high-tech VR headsets such as the Oculus RiftHTC Vive, PlayStation VR, and the multitude of other headsets that have been made for mobile devices, the possibilities for gaming and 360-degree experiences are never ending, and you bet there's some scary virtual reality horror games out already. This list contains the most terrifying VR horror games, from bloody monster shooters to interactive murder mysteries, that really make you feel like you're stuck in a horrifying nightmare.

While alone in a virtual reality headset, things can get legitimately scary. Everything seems so real because it's happening from a first-person perspective... and there's no escape until the headset is taken off. When the environment is just creepy enough and a player can interact with that creepy environment, it's a recipe for fear. These scary VR games let you experience a whole new kind of horror.


10 Terrifying VR Horror Games That Will Scare the Crap Out of You,

Dreadhalls

Dreadhalls is a super-spooky classic dungeon crawler for Gear VR and Oculus Rift. As you search for a way out of the dark and desolate hallways from a first person perspective, the things lurking in the darkness will stalk and prey upon you, leading to tons of jump scares.


A Chair in a Room

Explore the surrounding environment and solve puzzles in this psychological horror game while discovering why you, a patient, have suddenly woken up in The Greenwater Institute with no memory of how you got there. This full-on room-scale VR game gives the already ominous environment an even more realistic feeling and leaves you with constant dread as you discover secrets and clues.


Nevermind

Live through this psychological horror game as a therapist digging their way through the trauma and fears that live inside the minds of your patients. Nevermind's experience is enhanced by using physiological feedback to change the environment, meaning that as the player becomes more frightened, the game will react and change the surroundings to match their fear levels. 


Albino Lullaby

The deranged and twisted path the player takes to make their way through Albino Lullaby doesn't need jump scares or bloody violence. As you try to escape from a land full of ever-increasing terrors, the psychedelic real-time visuals that accompany the narrative are surreal and nightmarish enough to have anyone shaking in their VR headset.


Monstrum

Monstrum is an indie horror game that can be played with or without a virtual reality headset, but survival horror is a million times more terrifying in VR. Especially when it involves running from flesh-eating monsters that won't hesitate to jump on faces.


The Brookhaven Experiment

Fight wave after wave of giant gory zombie creatures and try to survive the hordes for as long as possible in The Brookhaven Experiment. As the monsters multiply, they surround you in the center of a dark environment and gradually close in around you as they are left to fight for their life.


Dead Secret

Dead Secret is a murder mystery set in the very stereotypically creepy setting of rural Kansas in the 1960s. Find clues to uncover the truth behind what actually happened to a dead professor, because the killer is still close... very close.


Emily Wants to Play

In Emily Wants to Play, you're just trying to deliver a pizza when you get trapped inside a boarded-up house. Now, you have to frantically attempt to get out of the creepy horror house, and you certainly need to stay away from Emily and those terrifying dolls (and stay alive) in the process.


Until Dawn: Rush of Blood

This PlayStation VR exclusive is from the same minds behind Until Dawn and is perfectly horrific for anyone who's scared of clowns. You have to shoot your way through a creepy carnival - and try not to die at the hands of all the demonic carnies that lie within. Sounds fun, right?


Alone?

Embark on a cryptic quest to find your missing sister in Alone?. There are plenty of terrifying things that are just waiting to be found in the dark corners, but it takes a brave soul to search through all of them.



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Tue, 25 Oct 2016 03:42:29 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/scary-vr-horror-games/crystal-brackett
<![CDATA[10 Reasons Majora's Mask Is the Creepiest Zelda Game Ever Made]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/scariest-zelda-game-majoras-mask/chris-abraham?source=rss

If you're a big fan of the franchise, it's really hard to argue that Majora's Mask isn't the creepiest Zelda game ever made. Twilight Princess is dark, and Ocarina of Time has its moments as well, but with the moon falling from the sky and Link facing an impending doom, Majora's Mask simply doesn't have much competition when it comes to scary Zelda games. Between its soundtrack, creepy visuals, bizarre storytelling and overall mechanic of fighting against time, Majora's Mask is creepy in all the right ways. It's hard to even consider it a children's game, as its main theme seems to be the inevitability of death.

There are even theories about Majora's Mask that claim Link is actually dead the whole time, although this is not officially confirmed by Miyamoto himself. Here are 10 reasons why The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask is hands down the scariest Zelda game of all time.


10 Reasons Majora's Mask Is the Creepiest Zelda Game Ever Made,

Clock Town On the Final Day

Time is an essential mechanic in Majora's Mask, with the terrifying moon getting closer and closer to Termina as the final day approaches. The game's central area, Clock Town, does a beautiful job of capturing this impending doom in more than one way.

One of the subtle ways this is accomplished is with music that changes from day to day. The first day is cheerful and happy, the second day becomes a little more melancholy, and the final day has really dark undertones that make it very obvious that something is wrong. The final hours before the moon crashes has a completely different song altogether, which is somber and almost an acceptance that life as you know it is about to end. It's a great touch to the game that really makes you feel like you are living through this horrible event.

However, it's not just the music that gives off this creepy effect, but the behavior of the townspeople as well. If you visit Clock Town on the final day, you'll realize the town has been virtually deserted. Only a select few have stayed, including the construction foreman who calls everyone cowards for leaving, and the soldiers who guard the exits, visibly shaken and terrified by what is about to happen. With attention to detail like  this, it's no wonder why so many Zelda fans consider Majora's Mask to be the best entry in the series, and why so many others consider it to be the creepiest.


The Garo

"To die without leaving a corpse... That is the way of the Garo."

Once Link manages to make it to Ikana Kindom towards the end of the game, he is confronted by the Garo. These ghostly spirits were once enemies of the Ikana Kingdom, and although they perished long ago, they still haunt the kingdom and appear to Link if he dons the Garo's Mask. Although confused, they still understand that Link himself is not a Garo, remarking, "Master! You called!...!!!...What are you???"  The Garo will then form a ring of fire around themselves and the player, to keep Link trapped while they fight to the death.

The creepiest part comes later when you confront the Garo Master mini-boss in the Stone Temple Tower. After you've defeated him, he pulls out a bomb and literally kills himself right before your very eyes, leaving you with the departing words, "Die I shall, leaving no corpse. That is the law of the Garo." Suicide in a Nintendo title? Way to go Majora's Mask.

 


The Hand in the Toilet

If you check the restroom at the back of the Stock Pot Inn between the hours of midnight and 6am, you will encounter something mysteriously know as "???" in the toilet. When you interact with it, a creepy hand emerges from the toilet, simply saying, "Pa-pa-pa-paper, please!" Link can turn over any item made of paper to the hand, such as the Letter to Kafei or one of his title deeds. In doing so, "???" will reward Link with a piece of heart.

Says Shigeru Miyamoto of the hand: "There are some ghost stories in Japan where- when you are sitting in the bathroom in the traditional style of the Japanese toilet- a hand is actually starting to grab you from beneath. It's a very scary story."


The Happy Mask Salesman

"You've met with a terrible fate, haven't you?"

Although he made his debut in The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, the Happy Mask Salesman plays his most prominent role in Majora's Mask. Is there anything about this guy that isn't unnerving? The fixed look on his face when he's happy is strange enough, but anger him and he will sporadically lash out and begin to yell at you and even strangle you.

What's most mysterious about this man, though, is how little we actually know about him. Link first encounters the Happy Mask Salesman at the bottom of the Clock Tower, right after turning into a Deku Scrub. He appears out of nowhere, remarks that he's been following you, and somehow always knows what you've been up to, despite never leaving his post. Although he does teach you the Song of Healing, he loses his mind when Link tells him he was unable to recover Majora's Mask for him.

When the game is completed, the Happy Mask Salesman leaves you with these final, ominous words:

"Since I am in the midst of my travels… I must bid you farewell. Shouldn’t you be returning home? Whenever there’s a meeting a parting is sure to follow. However, that parting need not last forever… whether a parting be forever or merely for a short time… that is up to you.”


The Mask Transformations

In Majora's Mask, Link can put on three different masks that turn him into another creature (Deku Scrub, Goron, and Zora.) Pretty cool, right? Wrong. When Link puts these masks on, he is clearly in a great deal of pain during the transformations.

The mask takes hold of Link's face, and while a purple aura swirls behind him and he screams in pain, you can literally hear his bones breaking as he molds into whatever form he will be taking. You can skip these cut-scenes after you've transformed once, but the first time they occur you are forced to watch the suffering in its entirety. Pain. Suffering. Death. This is what Majora's Mask is all about.


Pamela's Father

At the top of Ikana Canyon, Link stumbles upon a music box house that has giant speakers attached to the top (although no music is playing.) When he first arrives and tries to open the door, he is denied by a voice on the other side, who tells him, "Keep away from our house! My father is not one of you!" However, once you've learned the Song of Storms and restore the water flow, the music box house will begin to play a creepy song, and the player hears the front door unlocking.

When you enter the house, you quickly learn there is nothing of interest on the main floor, leading you down to explore the basement. It is here that you see a lone closet at the end of the room, where a half-mummified man suddenly bursts out of and begins to approach you in an awkward, stumbling manner. His mouth agape, he is clearly in pain, and it's not until the little girl Pamela bursts into the room and tells you to stop that you realize this man is her father.

Pamela forces her father back into the closet, but once you play the Song of Healing for him, he is restored to his normal self. It is revealed that he went insane after venturing down into the well, where Link eventually must ascend himself. It's not often you get a happy ending in Majora's Mask, but even if this story ended up uniting a father and her daughter, it's still one of the creepiest segments of the game to play through.


The Creepy Moon That Will Inevitably Kill Everything

Seriously, remind me how this is a kid's game again? The feature game-mechanic of Majora's Mask involves constantly rewinding time, before 72 hours passes and the creepiest moon you've ever seen in your life crashes down to Termina and kills everything in sight. He smiles menacingly at you as he looms above and watches your every move; a grim reminder that if you aren't quick enough, you and everyone around you will be destroyed.

The game reminds you every 12 hours how much time you have left, even if you're in the middle of a dungeon. This adds a certain panic to your gameplay, as this timer is something not found in any other Zelda title. The terrifying moon is one of the many reasons why Majora's Mask is not only one of the most disturbing Zelda games ever made, but one of the most unique as well.


Elegy of Emptiness

"I grant you a solider who has no heart. One who will not falter in the darkness."

In Majora's Mask, the Elegy of Emptiness is a song that Link learns from the spirit Igos du Ikana, which allows him to create a hollow statue of himself. These statues are used for solving puzzles involving multiples switches that must be triggered at the same time, but unfortunately for the player, these statues are also complete nightmare fuel.

Just take a look at what this statue looks like in the picture above. WHY DO YOU DO THIS TO US NINTENDO? This hollow version of Link greets the player with dead eyes and a menacing smile, further proving that Miyamoto definitely wanted to scar children for life with Majora's Mask. In fact, the statue is so creepy that it spawned one of the scariest Creepypasta stories on the Internet, simply called "Ben Drowned." If you've never read this story, I highly recommend you don't read it before bed (unless you want to stay up all night staring at the ceiling.)


"Them"

"They... They come at night... every year when the carnival approaches... They come riding in a bright, shining ball. A whole lot of them come down... And then... they come to the barn..."

If this quote from Romani sounds terrifying to you, that's because it really is. In one of the side quests in Majora's Mask, you are tasked with defending Romani Ranch from...aliens?! That's right- as if this game weren't creepy enough, they had to throw an alien invasion into the mix.

Simply referred to as "Them," these aliens arrive at Romani Ranch two days before the Carnival of Time, with the intention of abducting cows. At exactly 2:30am, "They" will begin to appear at the ranch. Link's job is to fend off the aliens using his Hero's Bow, until 5:30am when the sun comes up and the invaders all disappear. If you fail in your task and "They" reach the barn, the cows, along with Romani, will be abducted into a bright ball of light. If this happens, Link can come back to the ranch on the Final Day, where Romani has had her memory erased and can't remember anything of the night she was abducted. Isn't this supposed to be a kid's game? 


Gomess

The Stone Temple Tower in Majora's Mask is one of the hardest Zelda dungeons ever made, and the terrifying mini-boss Gomess has a lot to do with that. This phantom-like shadow monster is covered in bats that Link must disperse before being able to strike him, and only appears once the temple has been inverted.

Gomess is creepy enough in appearance, but what really makes him spooky is that he seems to symbolize the Grim Reaper, further adding to the theory that Link is actually dead in Majora's Mask. In French, Gomess shares the name "Facuheur," which translates to "death sword." The French term for Grim Reaper is "la Faucheuse," and since Gomess is a cloaked figure who wields a scythe, it's impossible not to draw the comparison.



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Wed, 26 Oct 2016 05:45:00 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/scariest-zelda-game-majoras-mask/chris-abraham
<![CDATA[The 10 Hardest Legend of Zelda Dungeons in Franchise History]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/hardest-zelda-dungeons-of-all-time/chris-abraham?source=rss

The Legend of Zelda series can be described in a lot of ways, but easy is not always one of them. The bread and butter of the Zelda franchise is its intricate dungeons, but as this list proves, not all Zelda dungeons are created equal. The intricate puzzles and infuriating bosses make the hardest Zelda dungeons masterpieces of rage, so we decided to take a look at the 10 most difficult Zelda dungeons from the series so far. Specific phrases like “Great Palace” and “Stone Temple Palace” make almost every serious Zelda fan shudder, but there are plenty of other rage-inducing dungeons that deserve medals of frustration as well.

If you think the most frustrating Zelda dungeon isn't on this list, let us know what it is in the comments, and why you struggled with it. This list is obviously subjective, but the 10 on this list are all objectively difficult.


The 10 Hardest Legend of Zelda Dungeons in Franchise History,

Tower of Spirits (Spirit Tracks)

The Tower of Spirits is the central dungeon from The Legend of Zelda: Spirit Tracks. Just like the Temple of the Ocean King from Phantom Hourglass, you are forced to revisit it multiple times as you progress through the game. Although Tower of Spirits fixed the problem of having to replay the same parts of the dungeon each time in order to advance to new ones, the difficulty of this temple earns it a spot on this list.

The length of the dungeon is longer compared to other Zelda games, as it has a whopping thirty levels to it. The gimmick of this dungeon is that Link must possess the body of several different Phantom Knights, each with their own unique ability. If you direct one of these knights to the wrong location, you're going to have to start over, and by that time you've already forgotten what the hell you were doing in the first place.


Death Mountain (The Legend of Zelda)

Often referred to as Level 9, Death Mountain is the final dungeon in The Legend of Zelda for NES. Located in Spectacle Rock, Death Mountain is the longest dungeon in the game, with over fifty rooms to conquer. Link must overcome foes like Wizzrobes and Lanmoles before facing Ganon, the mentally taxing final boss. This was the original WTF Zelda dungeon that had players pulling their hair out, and it's difficulty still holds up almost 30 years later.


Great Bay Temple (Majora's Mask)

You might groan at two different water temples being included on this list, but many Zelda fans find the Great Bay Temple (including myself) to be really difficult. The third dungeon in The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask, the Great Bay Temple is similar to Ocarina's Water Temple in that it involves manipulating water in order to advance. This time, however, you're manipulating the current of the water and which way it flows, rather than draining like you did in the previous game.

Collecting all the stray fairies (if you choose to do so) is a pain in the butt, and the boss Gyorg is fairly tedious and annoying as well. Let's not forget, you are on a timer as you play through the temple, which adds extra pressure to complete it before your three days are up.


Great Palace (Zelda II: The Adventure of Link)

Many hardcore Zelda fans consider Great Palace from The Adventure of Link to be the most unrelenting Zelda dungeon of all time. The last dungeon in the game, the Great Palace is located in the Valley of Death, where the Triforce of Courage can found. Although the confusing map layout and unforgiving pits of lava are some of the challenges in this temple, the main reason it's on this list is because of how tedious it is.

In order to defeat the Thunderbird (which isn't even the temple's final boss,) you HAVE to have a thunder spell. Where do you get it? A random guy in town, who makes you collect 4 magic containers that are very well hidden before finally handing it over to you. Only then do you stand a chance of maybe defeating the Thunderbird, which again, isn't even the final boss. Let's not forget you can get a Game Over as well, forcing you to start from the BEGINNING of the game if you fail (which you probably will.) F*ck you Great Palace; you are legitimately awful.


Ice Palace (A Link to Past)

The fifth Dark World dungeon in The Legend of Zelda: A Link to Past, the Ice Palace is unique in that it is the first ice temple to appear in a Zelda game. With ice floors in almost every room, your walking traction is majorly reduced, making for very difficult maneuverability and frustrating combat with enemies (especially those damn green penguins.) The Ice Palace also involves a ton of backtracking, which is super annoying considering the map layout is confusing and you're slipping and sliding all over the place when you run. Kholdstare, the final boss, is fortunately not located on an ice floor, but is still pretty difficult nonetheless.


City in the Sky (Twilight Princess)

Before Skyward Sword took Link above the clouds to Skyloft, there was the City in the Sky dungeon in The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess. One of the final dungeons in the game, City in the Sky is difficult for several reasons. It features a very large and disorienting map, where you're traveling both vertically and horizontally using your clawshot and eventually double clawshot (which is a really fun aspect of the dungeon.) The City in the Sky features a ton of spinning obstacles that you need to attach yourself to, which can be disorienting and often times confusing for the player. It's definitely the grand finale of Twilight Princess; if you can make it out of here alive it's all smooth sailing from that point on.


Sand Ship (Skyward Sword)

Although it was one of the better-designed dungeons in Skyward Sword, the Sand Ship was still fairly challenging for a multitude of reasons. Using time shift stones, the player must switch between past and present to solve puzzles, which can get really confusing. Some of the enemies in this dungeon were frustrating to fight as well, considering Skyward Sword has the trickiest control schemes of any Zelda game. A room with three Beamos you fight at the same time? No thank you!


Water Temple (Ocarina of Time)

Considered the hardest temple in the game, the Water Temple from the Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time is notoriously difficult for first-time Zelda players. Hell, the Water Temple is practically an internet meme at this point, as even non-Zelda fans have probably heard about how harrowing it can be to complete.

Why is the Water Temple so difficult? The main gimmick of this dungeon involves raising the temple's water level up and down to solve puzzles, which gets confusing and involves a lot of experimenting and backtracking before you finally figure out what you're supposed to be doing. In the original version for N64, you also had to constantly equip and un-equip the iron boots, which was tedious and annoying (although they fixed this in the 3DS remake.) Add a mini-boss fight with Dark Link to the mix and you've got one difficult Zelda dungeon.


Stone Tower Temple (Majora's Mask)

Stone Tower Temple is fourth and final major dungeon in The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask, and boy is it a doozy. The Stone Tower Temple is the epitome of taking what you learned from a game up to that point and applying the logic to one final challenge, as all three mask transformations are required to get through this dungeon.

You'll need the Goron Mask to walk through lava, the Deku Mask to fly, and sometimes you don't even need a mask at all when you think you do. To top it off, not only are there two difficult mini-bosses to take down, but you must also flip the temple upside-down to complete a portion of it. With puzzles that are anything but straightforward and a wealth of knowledge required to complete it, the Stone Tower Temple just might be the hardest Zelda dungeon of all time.


Palace of Winds (The Minish Cap)

If you've never played The Legend of Zelda: The Minish Cap, you should! It's probably the most underrated Zelda game in the series, and can be downloaded for $7.99 on the Wii U virtual store. Once you get to the Palace of Winds, however, you might regret ever buying the game.

As the dungeon's name suggests, you will be dealing with a lot of wind that can knock you over the edge, causing you to fall to your death. Couple that with some difficult enemies and a weird cloning mechanic, and you've got a pretty frustrating dungeon that is not only difficult, but super long as well. Just wait until you're one blow away from finishing off the boss and fall of the edge- you might just break your controller.



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Tue, 20 Sep 2016 03:14:58 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/hardest-zelda-dungeons-of-all-time/chris-abraham
<![CDATA[31 Hilariously Honest Video Game Titles That Save Everybody Time]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/funny-honest-video-game-titles/nathandavidson?source=rss

They say honesty is the best policy, but this doesn't seem to be the video game industry's philosophy. From deceptive trailers to "Oh, by the way" expansion packs, there's not a lot of honesty in the gaming industry these days. Luckily, the Internet is here to solve that problem these funny honest video game titles.

Below are the best, most accurate examples of honest gaming titles that far more accurately convey what certain games are all about. If video game titles were honest, they'd go something like this...


31 Hilariously Honest Video Game Titles That Save Everybody Time,

Glitches Get Stitches

Who's Your Daddy Daycare?

What the Duck?

Senseless Murder Sims

Up, Up, Down, Down, Left, Right, Left, Right, B, A, Start

Grand Theft Mayhem

Botched Dogs

Well, It Is More Accurate

Stop Horsing Around, Rockstar

Keep Your Friends Close...


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Wed, 19 Oct 2016 08:52:05 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/funny-honest-video-game-titles/nathandavidson
<![CDATA[20+ Wildly Inappropriate Places to Play Nintendo Switch]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/places-to-play-nintendo-switch/jacob-shelton?source=rss

If you’ve seen Nintendo’s announcement about their new console, the Switch, or read our rundown of the most exciting features, then you know that you can play your favorite games wherever you want as long as you have battery life. But even if you have a console full of fresh batteries, there are definitely some inappropriate places to play Nintendo Switch. If you’re the kind of gamer who can’t stop playing even while your son is being born, and you love the idea of a console that can literally go anywhere, then you need to keep reading and study the places and times when you shouldn't play Nintendo Switch.

Maybe this puts us at odds with the fine folks over at Nintendo, but there are a handful of places where it’s not cool to play video games. Whether you’re at a wedding, a funeral, or trying to excavate the ruins of an ancient civilization, you have to know where not to play Nintendo Switch. If you find yourself in a situation where you’re unsure of whether or not you should be playing Mario Kart on the Switch, feel free to pull up this list and make sure you’re not doing anything inappropriate.

Vote up the funniest and most inappropriate places to play the Nintendo Switch when you’re on the go. 


20+ Wildly Inappropriate Places to Play Nintendo Switch,

In the Voting Booth

While Your Grandfather Speaks His Dying Words

While You Fight a Fire

At Your Presidential Inauguration

During Thanksgiving Dinner

During the SATs

During the National Anthem

The Room Where Your Son Is Born

Your Step-Brother's Military Funeral

At a Funeral


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Thu, 20 Oct 2016 04:08:01 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/places-to-play-nintendo-switch/jacob-shelton
<![CDATA[The Most Exciting Switch Features According to Nintendo]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/best-nintendo-switch-features/jacob-shelton?source=rss

Gamers waited a long time for news about Nintendo’s new console, Switch. Formerly code named the NX, the Switch is unusual. Is it a console? Is it handheld? Those questions actually play into the best things about Nintendo's Switch. While Nintendo hasn’t released a full list of features for the new console, there is a lot of really interesting information out there. Whether you’re a casual gamer, or are vry srs about getting your Zelda on, you’re going to want to learn about the most exciting Nintendo Switch features.

In spire of routinely being considered to be the runner up in the modern gaming platform wars, Nintendo always finds a way to take the idea of a console and turn it on its head. The best Nintendo Switch features take things that a lot of gamers wish they could do with their more bulky consoles and put them into direct action. You want to play a full RPG on a plane without killing your eyes? The Switch lets you do that. You want to play Mario Kart with your bros on a road trip? You can do that too. Nintendo’s Switch seems designed to make it easier than ever to play your favorite games, now keep reading and see what else you can do.


The Most Exciting Switch Features According to Nintendo,

A Brand New Mario Game

You Can Play a Whole New Console Zelda Game on an Airplane

Third Party Compatibility

It Eliminates the Need for a Both a Console and a Portable Device

There Are Over 40 Game Developers on Board

Those Detachable Mini-Controllers

It Supports Four Players Wirelessly

It Works with a Traditional Controller Too

An All New Zelda Game

All Those Multiplayer Options


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Thu, 20 Oct 2016 04:27:15 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/best-nintendo-switch-features/jacob-shelton
<![CDATA[The Best Walking Simulators of All Time]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/best-walking-simulators/jason-robbins?source=rss

What are the best walking simulator games? How about we start with, "What ARE walking simulators?" Over the last few years, a new genre of game has cropped up in which the main gameplay mechanic consists not of killing things or solving puzzles or even platforming. What's left? Walking. Yes, walking (or in some cases, swimming) around the environment and discovering things is the central conceit of these games.

Yes, many gamers balk at this lack of action or interaction. In fact, it's those same naysayers that coined the term "walking simulator" to highlight the boring activity that makes up the brunt of the game. But what these folks are missing out on is some of the best storytelling in games today.

That's right - what these games lack in traditional gameplay, they often make up for in rich and emotional narratives. After all, the creators of these games have a story they want to tell and they build the entire game world around it. They don't start with a shooting or puzzle mechanic and then fill in the blanks with some story beats, like other games often do. Here, with each discovered letter or picture or ruin, a small piece of the developer's vision falls into place, and it can be very rewarding to the patient player.

So, what are the greatest walking simulator video games today? You tell us! Check out our list of the best walking simulators and vote up the ones you'd actually play.


The Best Walking Simulators of All Time,

Dear Esther

Gone Home

The Stanley Parable

Journey

SOMA

Abzu

Firewatch

The Vanishing of Ethan Carter

Virginia

Everybody's Gone to the Rapture


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Fri, 30 Sep 2016 04:23:34 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/best-walking-simulators/jason-robbins
<![CDATA[27 Edgy Retro Video Game Ads You'd Never See Today]]> http://www.ranker.com/list/wtf-retro-video-game-ads/nathandavidson?source=rss

If you think all video game advertising is weird today, you have no idea how weird it used to be. Sure, every video game commercial is extremely cookie cutter these days, but they're better than these weird retro video game ads that just don't seem to make any sense at all. These are video game ad FAILs at their finest. Nothing but bad puns and sexual innuendo as far as the eye can see. Take a look at these funny old video games and their questionable advertisements and be thankful that you live in the era that you currently live in. 


27 Edgy Retro Video Game Ads You'd Never See Today,

Cheating on Your Hand

Invitation to the Pants Party

That's What SHE Said!

Blind Leading the Blind

Blind Justice

Stroke of Advertising Genius

Out of Control

Crunch and Munch

What the Sh*t!?

Hands-Off Approach


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Wed, 28 Sep 2016 08:47:02 PDT http://www.ranker.com/list/wtf-retro-video-game-ads/nathandavidson