Profile picture of Billy

stories by Billy Guinigundo

Can I Dual Wield the Nerd Canon?

Which do you remember more fondly: Adventure or The Adventure of Link?  Packed with nerd cultural references from the 80's, Ernest Cline's Ready Player One highlights a more distant and distinct gaming past that feels more historic than nostalgic.  Despite the gaming generational gap, I found the novel remarkably fresh and surprisingly meaningful.

1200 MS: Money Well-Spent

I'm not sure why I flung myself headlong into Trenched, but I'm glad that I did.  Maybe it was the positive reviews, the promise of multiplayer goodness, the mishmash of genres.  I'm sure it was some combination of all.  What actually pushed me over the edge, despite the fact that it proved to be barrier to some, was the 1200 MS threshold.

Better With Kinect Sensor?: Child of Eden’s Unfulfilled Promise

I had high hopes for Child of Eden, perhaps unreasonably high.  I wanted it to be THE Kinect showpiece.  While I have been impressed with the technology, I waited for the game that used the Kinect to provide a natural, yet innovative, experience impossible without it.  Think Elite Beat Agents and its use of the DS's touch screen.  We're not quite there yet.

Strategy games: The cure for the shooter doldrums

I discovered that I like something about the slow pace and build up of titles like Halo Wars and Pokémon. I mean, what's the allure of a two-year-old game whose development studio has since disbanded and stats tracking faced offline discontinuation until saved by a rabid community uprising? Why the addiction to collecting them all despite the fact that the basic gameplay of subsequent versions has remained largely intact? One word: strategy.

Kinect: The Future of Gaming?

If you were on Xbox Live this past weekend, you witnessed firsthand the transformation of BW, Colonel Grade 3, to The Spectator — seen but not heard.  I played no Halo: Reach on Sunday and Monday, but I earned 300 G between Kinect Adventures and Dance Central.  That's not to say I am hanging up my controller, of course, but at whatever core, Microsoft must be thrilled with its device's success.

Hard to Get: The Zune Marketplace’s Reluctance to Accept My Money

The way I see it, Microsoft owes me.  I'm not saying they owe me a lot.  For the most part, I do not really regret the purchase of the HD-DVD player that has gone the way of the Betamax.  No, the least Microsoft can do is give me the chance to spend the money I want on the things that I want.  So why does Zune Marketplace not offer the newest movies for HD purchase?

The Spectator, Iss. 1

I haven't quite gotten around to reviewing Tom Bissell's Extra Lives: Why Video Games Matter, but [spoiler alert] I don't want to believe it's just because they're addicitve like cocaine.  Yesterday, I fired up Forza Motorsport 3 for the first time in a long time.  It's usually a pretty telling sign when you have to download a title update though that may be in part due to the updated dashboard as well.  All the Gran Turismo 5 talk and reviews made me want to revisit the Xbox's answer to the Playstation's popular racing series.

Five Years and Four Consoles Ago: A Bittersweet Celebration on the 360’s Fifth Anniversary

On November 21, 2005, I took a half-day at work.  I arrived at Best Buy just before 12:45 p.m. and would spend the next twenty hours or so waiting in the Ohio autumnal cold for my chance to be the first to experience the next generation of console gaming.  Fast forward five years and 37,000 G and I find myself wondering what type of celebration should be held for the 360.

Armor Lock: L337 or Weak?

Bungie kicked off Season 3 of Team Arena this month with a new “pro” game type.  The standard arsenal consists of DMR/Magnum and two frags.  The motion sensor is gone and the loadout options have been reduced to three: sprint, armor lock and hologram.  The idea was to create an MLG-appropriate option, a balanced playing field testing player skills, asymmetrical maps notwithstanding.

In the Midnight Hour

Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 sold some 4.7 million copies on its first day of release.  That $310 million dollar first-day gross was just the beginning of a run that saw the game bring in over a billion dollars within two months.  At midnight tonight, I am sure many retailers are hoping to see similar sales when Call of Duty: Black Ops becomes officially available.  Me?  I suspect I will be on Xbox Live, playing Halo: Reach, and working on my Colonel ranking and gold visor helmet purchase.