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Star Wars: The Force Unleashed - Tatooine DLC

Just completed the new Tatooine DLC for Star Wars: The Force Unleashed on Xbox 360. As my co-podcaster Tim Spaeth so eloquently put it, it's another piece of "stealth DLC" arriving with no forewarning or fanfare, much like Mass Effect's Pinnacle Station. However, unlike Pinnacle Station, this add-on is pretty sweet.

Starting out, the mission assumes that the player became the Emperor's new disciple at the end of The Force Unleashed proper. (This was only one of two possible endings.) Seeing main character Starkiller as a desiccated metallic husk consumed by the dark side was a bit of a shock, but still pretty cool, regardless.

Women aren't vending machines: How video games perpetuate the commodity model of sex

Women aren't vending machines: how video games perpetuate the commodity model of sex

Or: Why I am dreading Alpha Protocol.

...some video games allow the player character to have sex with NPCs; even more allow the player to have romantic relationships with NPCs. What the vast majority of these games inevitably do is present relationship mechanics that distill the commodity model down to its essence—you talk to the NPC enough, and give them enough presents, and then they have sex with/marry you. This design approach is extremely simplistic and perpetuates the commodity model of sex—the player wants sex, they go through certain motions, and they are "rewarded" with what they wanted (like a vending machine).

Bayonetta includes one-switch mode for disabled gamers

As Gus Mastrapa writes in GameLife, Platinum Games's upcoming brawler Bayonetta will feature a mode which allows gamers to play through the entire game using a single button. The title, which will be released for the XBox 360 and the PS3, is, essentially, a mainstream one-switch game.

Pinnacle Station: No sizzle, no steak

Mass Effect Screenshot

So, out of my ten-year career reviewing games professionally, I've only awarded two perfect "10" scores. I'm no math whiz, but if you average that out, I'm pretty sure that's one for every five years. My gist? I don't hand them out lightly.

One of the games to which I gave top marks was BioWare's Mass Effect. Encapsulating basically everything I love about videogames, action, and sci-fi all in one complete package, I blew through the game and devoured every last tasty morsel. Couldn't get enough. Although it's true all good things come to an end, thanks to the implementation of DLC, good things can keep going for a little longer. More Mass Effect? Yes, please.

Terminator Salvation Review

Dystopic... but not in a fun way.

Terminator Salvation Screenshot 

HIGH I finally got to see what one of those T-600s with the rubber faces looks like.

LOW It's two hours long. And most of that is spent ducking behind cars waiting for AI to do its job.

WTF This is a Terminator future-war game. Where are the lasers?

The Horror Geek presents: New Dante's Inferno teaser trailer emerges from the depths of Hell

Another teaser trailer—this time for a game instead of a movie.

This brand new clip for Electronic Arts' forthcoming "re-imagining" of Dante's Inferno debuted at Gamescom this week. I know most people only seem marginally excited for this game (which looks like a God of War clone and not nearly as spectacular as God of War III), but I'm still holding out hope. Maybe this new glimpse into what the game has in store for you will change some opinions.

Prepare to "go to Hell" on February 10th of next year.

NyxQuest, Dragon Age Limited, and too-early DLC

Started NyxQuest: Kindred Spirits on WiiWare yesterday. I only had time to get two or three levels into it, but I was really liking what I saw. The art style is very minimal and clean, and the mechanics are immediately accessible.

Basically, you take control of a winged girl and navigate puzzle-ish levels on a 2D plane. The jumping/flapping/gliding works well, and the formula is enriched by using the Wiimote to manipulate certain objects in the environment. In certain sections, you're controlling the girl with the left stick and a button, and moving stone blocks with the Wiimote pointer and a trigger. It's a little like the old "rub your stomach and pat your head" routine, but in a good way.

I look forward to spending more time with it.

The Horror Geek presents: BioShock lands a director

bioshock

I think we were all pretty excited by the idea of Gore Verbinski directing the cinematic adaptation of 2K Games' BioShock. Unfortunately, though, the global economy and other issues killed that dream and cast the future of the project into doubt—at least it did until last night.

Variety is reporting that director Juan Carlos Fresnadillo is currently in negotiations to take over the project.

While Fresnadillo isn't a household name, he did direct 28 Weeks Later—which was nice piece of apocalyptic zombie cinema. The style he displayed behind the camera in that film certainly gives me hope for BioShock.

This isn't official yet, but I'll keep you posted as details emerge.

Will the new $299 PlayStation 3 price entice you to buy?

Yes.
31% (99 votes)
No.
27% (86 votes)
Maybe.
17% (54 votes)
Already own a PS3.
24% (77 votes)
Total votes: 316

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