FireFall Hands-on - PAX 2011

Wednesday, August 31, 2011 at 5:00 pm
At PAX 2010, FireFall had a modest booth in the center of the expo hall and generally positive buzz. The game was announced on the show floor and promised a free to play, open world experience similar to Borderlands. I covered it, and found that it showed a lot of promise.

At last week's PAX 2011, no attendee could turn around and not see FireFall's logo (which looks confusingly like the StarCraft logo. Jus' saying). This independant company is self publishing their game, but where did they get the kind of money to put window decalls on the bathroom and their name branded on every PAX sign?

After a few questions, I learned a surprisingly simple answer. I also played the game. Check both out after the jump.
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Tags: Firefall

Top Ten Mustaches at PAX 2011

Wednesday, August 31, 2011 at 4:00 pm
This man wasn't at PAX, but look at that fine thing!
PAX is a community event. It's all about gamers of any age, race, and creed getting together and talking about how excited they are for the next year of bountiful ludic experiences. 

Sometimes, the community comes together in other ways. For example, members of the Penny Arcade forum trade buttons with each other during the convention. Other people, however grow mustaches.

We aren't sure if this mustache craze was planned, but there were countless staches at PAX this year. I mean, there was even a company selling mustache monocles for those feeling left out! We've compiled a list of the ten best mustaches at the Penny Arcade Expo.
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Nintendo 3DS Ambassador Games Now Available

Wednesday, August 31, 2011 at 3:00 pm
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Are you an official Nintendo 3DS Ambassador? If so you've probably been anxiously anticipating the first batch of ten free NES games Nintendo is offering you to compensate for that abrupt 3DS price drop. The games were supposed to come out tomorrow, Thursday September 1, but they're actually available now through the Nintendo eShop. 

Accessing the games is a little tricky at the moment, so after the jump we'll walk you through the process.

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Trials Evolution Gameplay Video From PAX Prime 2011 Is Here

Wednesday, August 31, 2011 at 2:00 pm
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I had a long discussion with a friend at PAX Prime 2011, over beers and calamari, concerning the games that really revolutionized and championed the popularization of Xbox Live Arcade. Shadow Complex was a definite first to come up. Trials HD was a quick second. The game was fuckin' hard and fabulously entertaining, and turned eyes toward the oft-neglected portion of the Xbox Live interface.

I loved it. And I love that, unlike many of those similar titles, the Trials crew is bringing us a second iteration. This time, we get an even more lush and magnificent world to explore, with tougher obstacles and courses to navigate. You know the drill -- hit it!

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Hawken Appears To Be The First Dope Mech Game In Ages

Wednesday, August 31, 2011 at 1:00 pm
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The more I think about it, the more I realize that I've never actually ever played a mech game to completion. I recall always thinking that they look cool, but that they never deliver on the promises of their premises, or the seemingly infinite ceiling of a genre sporting mechanical entities.

But Hawken has burrowed down to my core, and that's not just because its title is almost my last name (though it helps, for sure). It's a small, pretty downloadable title that just happens to also be a badass mech shooter. We've seen bits of it in the past, and been amazed by its digital sculpting, but never have we seen so much of it, or in such incredible detail. Click the link for more.

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Twister Mania Breaking Backs on Kinect this November

Wednesday, August 31, 2011 at 12:00 pm
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Prepare to pull a few muscles
What's better than Twister? We mean other than naked Twister, of course.


The answer is Twister Mania, the latest Kinect title announced for the holiday release window.


Twister Mania is a collection of mini-games (surprise!) themed after the popular household bend-a-thon that's responsible for approximately 47.5 million injuries in 37 countries. But thanks to the naked variation, it's also responsible for 35,362 love connections.

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Why El Shaddai: Ascension of the Metatron Is the Most Memorable Game of the Year

Wednesday, August 31, 2011 at 11:00 am
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​I play games to feel what I can't feel anywhere else. To experience what I otherwise could not experience. To immerse myself in a dizzying panoply of stimuli that can't be matched by non-interactive media, or even real life itself. I want games to show me what I've never been shown before, to challenge not just my manual dexterity or reflexes but the idea of what a game can be and be about. I want every game to make an impression as immediate and indelible as the first time I ever picked up a Nintendo controller and explored the Mushroom Kingdom. It rarely happens, but I felt that bewildering excitement again last week while playing El Shaddai: Ascension of the Metatron.

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Borderlands 2 Is Spruced-Up And Spiffy - PAX 2011 Impressions

Wednesday, August 31, 2011 at 10:00 am
This is the Gunzerker. He has guns and he 'zerks.
Despite some rather glaring flaws in its structure, Gearbox's Borderlands was pretty great. It garnered a heavy cult following, had a vibrant visual style, and kind of expanded the dungeon-crawler/RPG genre into the world of first-person shooters. But those glaring wrinkles didn't smooth out because of popularity -- the cooperative interface and execution faltered in many places, while a quickly-plateauing narrative made the excitement grow thin in the waning hours of play. They marred what could've been a holistically fantastic experience.

The producers and development staff at Gearbox Studios are keen to this. In a tightly packed room at PAX Prime 2011, circled by an hours-long line, a few key members of the team showed off the upcoming Borderlands 2. And it was punctuated with fresh tune-ups and a glazed, candied aesthetic. In a word it was slick.

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Kevin Butler Launches project LLP for PlayStation 3

Wednesday, August 31, 2011 at 9:00 am
Long live play, baby
The world was first introduced to Kevin Butler, the vice president of just about everything, two years ago as Sony unveiled its "It only does everything" campaign for the PlayStation 3.


Dozens of commercials and an E3 visit later and Mr. Butler retired from the world of PlayStation to take up a new position of President at his brother's flooring company. That only lasted four days.


As Sony's new ad campaign launches, Butler is back in action to help spread the word of "Long live play."


Check out the first commercial for Sony's new motto following the break.

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Super Mario With Portals Might Actually Exist One Day

Wednesday, August 31, 2011 at 8:30 am
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Thank you Mario! But our portal is in another castle!
​You know that dream you've had literally all your life since 2007? The one where Mario packs a portal gun? Well, a couple of guys from Germany and Slovenia hope to make that dream a reality. is a canny operation. They understand what people like. Just as importantly, they understand what will get every games blog and website in the world to write about them, even if that attention inevitably brings them a few strongly-worded letters from various high-priced law firms. They realize that Mari0, the Super Mario Bros / Portal mash-up that they're developing for Windows, OSx, and "various Linux systems", will quickly permeate the Internet faster than a video of an autotuned horse. We're doing our part here at Joystick Division. 

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