Archive for November, 2013

In recent years, the highest grossing films are often adaptations of best-selling books. When there’s a lack of good story to tell in Hollywood, they resort to literature for ideas. The Hunger Games: Catching Fire is currently raking in the big dough by the minute. And who can forget two of the biggest film franchises ever: Harry Potter and Twilight? For the delight of science fiction junkies, Ender’s Game finally takes on the big screen this year, after decades of movie adaptation rumors.

If Hollywood needs more ideas on which books or series to bring to the theaters, they can take note of the following:

Vampire Academy (series) by Rachelle Mead
Please don’t relate it to Twilight, because Mead’s take on the vampire phenomenon is fresh, exciting and full of interesting characters. Teen vampires and half-humans take center stage in this series, and to make it even more interesting, an academy is the setting of this harrowing series.

American Gods by Neil Gaiman
This is a Tim Burton film waiting to happen. Gaiman has always crafted rich worlds for his characters, and American Gods probably has the most diverse number of engaging characters. Where are the gods in this modern times? What are their roles in society? It’s an interesting look at mythology, and it will definitely make for an engaging and visually-stunning movie.

House of Leaves by Mark Z. Danielewski
There’s no more creative book than House of Leaves. A horror story that will make you turn your book upside-down and tilt your head every which way, Danielewski’s novel tells the plight of a family who moved into a house that’s bigger on the inside than the outside. Through the jumble of differently formatted pages, House of Leaves creates an eerie tale that can echo screams of terrors in cinemas worldwide.

The Stand by Stephen King
Regarded as King’s best novel, it’s surprising that a movie adaptation of The Stand hasn’t materialized yet. The unapologetically thick novel covers a wide array of genre from post-apocalyptic to horror to fantasy. For years, there are reports of movie deals but nothing came after. Producers should make up their minds because they have the best sci-fi movie in their hands.

Looking For Alaska by John Green
It’s surprising how Green’s other novel Fault in Our Stars got to be adapted into a movie first. Looking For Alaska is another of Green’s famous works. Miles enters a preparatory school for his junior year and meets Alaska, the beautiful mess. No other character in young adult fiction has characterized the beautiful mess as well as Alaska, and I demand that we see it on the big screen soon.

About the author: Kylie Prescott is a Journalism student who watches too many movies to kill time. You can contact her on Google+ or via www.essayontime.com

What are the greatest creatures that have ever ruled the world? Dinosaurs of course! Not only because of their strength and volume of the roar, but also because they survived here for over 160 million of years, even if it was extremely cold or hot, or meteorites were falling down on the earth, they survived.

20th Century Fox brings us a movie that is going to blow up your minds. Walking with Dinosaurs is a new animated film, based on the massively successful series with the same name, which is supposed to make you feel like you are next to the dinosaurs. A movie centered on a young Pachyrhinosaurus, named Patchi, that seems small, weak and inexperienced, who is going to live the adventure of his life. The Walking with Dinosaurs trailer gives us a little look at the aggressive and high roaring fight of a Gorgosaurus and a Pachyrhinosaurus. Gorgon is a representative of the Gorgosaurus type, he is the rapscallion of the movie, being fast and terrifying, he is always awaiting the next kill. Patchi’s father was killed by a dinosaur of this kind, so the presence of Gorgon is very pungent for our hero. Also the Walking with Dinosaurs trailer intrigues you with awesome graphics that make it all look authentic and full of life.

There are so many things we still do not know about dinosaurs and at the same time there are many discoveries made every year that push us closer to them. It is an interesting subject not only for the fan base, that was established years ago and keeps growing but also for people who do not know a thing about periods or types of dinosaurs. The movie characters connect somehow to humans, because of their behavior and thoughts that are largely seen in it.

Don’t miss the chance to watch the utmost movie about dinosaurs, because it will give you really cool knowledge of those amazing creatures, it will connect you with the prehistoric times and it will surely entertain you and your family.

Posted on November 30th, 2013 by MHD | Leave a Comment (1)
Filed Under Entertainment

A great amount of video games is protected by patents. As a rule, video games develop much faster than any other entertainment industry and each game invention has the author. Respectively, the author’s ideas are accepted in order to be protected by patents from competitors or at least to make good money (in case the idea is really successful). Among these patents sometimes can be found very unusual and funny. In Part 1 we will present 5 examples of such inventions.

NES Controller

Crossings on Gamepad

Invention of: Nintendo
Excerpt from the patent:Multi switch which can be mechanically activated in different directions by the operator’s finger tip pressure. It has the shape of the cross.
Significance: A crossing, or so called D-pad is presented on all console types of gamepad, including NES. But if you look closely, you will notice that the shape of a cross was taken only on controllers of Nintendo. Sega and Microsoft framed the “arrows” with a plastic circle and Sony preferred to separate all directional buttons. These creative solutions are the result of the patent obtained by Nintendo in 1983. It describes in detail the device of cross which could not be copied by the Japanese contenders. Nearer to the forbidden territory came Sega in 1998 when D-pad gamepad Dreamcast had the shape of a cross, but was significantly different of both look and mechanics of the work. The patent had been invalidated only in 2005, but the consequences of its departure we see just now: D-pad controller of Xbox One looks like a classic “cross”.

Crazy Taxi

Directional Arrow

Invention of: Sega
Excerpt from the patent:A method of displaying the direction for the object that is moving in the virtual space to a destination.
Significance: The directional arrow for the first time appeared in the arcade racing Crazy Taxi. When a passenger was getting in your car, a green arrow displayed at the top of the screen that shows you where to go. This is a very simple and intuitive method of orientation, so Sega had arrogated it and even successfully sued the developers of The Simpsons: Road Rage (they decided that the replacement of the arrow with the index finger will not be a breach). However, this ban has given life to new solutions: GTA 3 introduced to the players a much more friendly minimap, so, the arrow is no longer needed.

Fallout

Dialog Wheel

Invention of: Electronic Arts
Excerpt from the patent:A graphical interface is displayed during operation of the program that provides a choice indicator, wherein the choice indicator has a plurality of selectable slots, each associated with a dialog class. The graphical interface is consistent as to the position of dialog classes throughout at least a segment of the program.
Significance: Dialogues in role-playing games had been giving for a long time an accurate representation of the consequences that would trigger this or that phrase in conversation. Thus, the half of the fun of Fallout I was the augury whether you get shot after another replica or not. Mass Effect previously explained the meaning of each phrase: the good answers are always located at the top right of the dialog wheels, the hostile ones are at the bottom right, and so on. Such a system has become a part of a series’ patented element. Other role-playing games still use simple lists of available responses.

Sonic-Sega

Running in Spiral

Invention of: Sega
Excerpt from the patent:A method is provided for controlling the appearance of a video game character, as the character traverses a path displayed on a display screen; wherein the method is used in a video game system which includes a graphics controller, digital memory and a display screen, the method comprises the steps of: displaying a banked path segment in which the game character is displayed upright at least one location on the banked path and is displayed upside down at at least one other location on this banked path…
Significance: The complicated formulation of the patent conceals a simple idea. Do you remember blue Sonic the hedgehog who ran through the corkscrew loops? At that moment we have seen him upside down and at angles. Sega could not patent the idea of the loops, but completely does the method of displaying two-dimensional character that falls into them.

EA-Logo

Gaming Console of EA

Invention of: Electronic Arts
Excerpt from the patent:An electronic game system includes a game console, which accepts a game cartridge and runs the games stored therein, and a wireless controller for controlling actions in the game. The wireless controller includes a radio frequency transmitter for sending control signals to the console, and the console includes a receiver for receiving the control signals from the controller. Because the controller uses radio frequency signals instead of infrared signals to send information to the console, the controller may be operated at a large distance from the console. Thus, the game system of the invention may be used in long range applications wherein the console and the controller need to be separated by a relatively large distance.
Significance: In early 1994, Electronic Arts applied for a patent of their own gaming console. It has been almost two decades and the patent will soon be over, but in reality such a controller does not exist yet. And, what makes things worse for EA, the company could not even sue anybody. Nintendo 64, released in 1996, had only wired gamepads. Though, the subsequent generation of consoles switched to wireless controllers, but they decisively abandoned cartridges at the same time. Fail.

In Part 2 we’ll be talking about 4 more Patented Game Inventions That Might Amaze You.

About the author: Paul Smith is a professional writer who composes articles about health, lifestyle, self-development, social media, and business. His hobbies are dancing and traveling. Paul can be contacted at Google+ and custom essay writer.

 

This post is brought to you by Car Games World.

CarGamesWorld

One of the best parts of the Internet is how many games are available to play for free. If you don’t have a lot of funds and are not able to pay for very expensive next generation consoles and the equally as expensive games that go with them, you are not out of luck. There is no shortage of creative websites that have put together very cool games. Car Games World is one of these such places.

Car Games World has seven different categories with more than fifty games. One of the categories is Parking Games, which includes such games as Parking Space, Parking Master, Violet Park, Docking Perfection, and parking game. A second category is Truck Games, with games including Police Truck, Rocky Monster, Space Hummer, truck mania part 2, Trucksformers 2. My favorite of the seven categories is Racing Games, with such titles as Offroaders 2, Age of Speed 1 and 2, Spy Car, and Smash Palace. Lets take a look at a few of the games that are available to play online for free.

Age of Speed 2

Age of Speed 2. From Silent Bay Studios, this free game is a racing game that takes the user to the future and challenges you to master tracks with huge jumps and a fast pace. The gameplay and controls are basic. You use a combination of the arrow keys to steer, accelerate, and brake and the x key for using power-ups.

FBI Chase 2

FBI Chase 2. From Car Games 9, FBI Chase 2 reminds me of the classic Nintendo game Spy Hunter. You are racing down the road trying to find criminal cars and run them off the road.

Space Drifting

Space Drifting. From 101 Car Games, Space Drifting combines two awesome things; racing and space. You face off against other racers in a future like setting where you earn points from “drifting” around corners and in circles. You need to hit minimum point sets in races to move on.

If you like one or another game, there is most likely something on Car Games World that will help you kill many many hours. The above are only a very small sampling of the variety of games the website hosts. Head over there and come back and leave us a comment with what games you play and which is your favorite.

Posted on November 18th, 2013 by ThePit | Leave a Comment (2)
Filed Under Entertainment

Batman Arkham Origins

Batman: Arkham Origins is a prequel to the hugely successful and critically acclaimed Batman: Arkham Asylum and Batman: Arkham City from developers Rocksteady. This is the first title in the series from new developers Warner Bros. Games Montreal.

The difference is not a big deal, but I’m afraid Origins feels like a copy and paste of Arkham City with very little added in terms of gameplay. The Bat-gadgets aren’t exactly an upgrade and no new combat has been added. The script is pretty decent, especially when you consider that Batman expert Paul Dini didn’t have any input on it. The voice acting is top notch with Troy Baker and Roger Craig Smith making more than worthy successors for Kevin Conroy and Mark Hamill.

Batman Arkham Origins Penguin

As for other characters, Black Mask is severely and disappointingly underused. I liked some of the re-imaging of characters, such as Nolan North’s Cockney Penguin, who is a joy to behold. The new female Copperhead stands out as well.

I really did enjoy the game, but I felt it was too short. I completed the main story mode in under a week and when I came to load to do side missions I found the main story mode only makes up 30 per cent of the overall 100 per cent completion. Call me crazy, but I find that criminal. Games should be made to last, not just for online value as well as side missions. Like I said, Batman: Arkham Origins was enjoyable, but I couldn’t just shake the feeling that I’d been here and done it before. So I’d give it a…

***½

Posted on November 11th, 2013 by Kris Greet | Leave a Comment (2)
Filed Under Entertainment

Despite the meteoric rise of video games, board games are still going strong, as increased sales prove. Families have the opportunity to enjoy both video games and board games together, taking the advantages of each and widening the options for family game night.

The Entertainment Software Association found that 59 percent of parents surveyed felt that video games produced a cohesive family environment, and 71 percent of parents believed that video games could provide mental stimulation. While these numbers are definitely encouraging to any young gamer who wants to spend more time on the console, they may also signal a cultural shift in the way game night happens.

Advantages of playing board games

Historically, board games brought people together. Board games are far from dead, indicated by their climbing sales every year for the last decade. They offer distinct advantages over video games that serious gamers can appreciate. Board games are much more in line with the game developer’s idea of the game than video games, which rely on programmers to translate the game developer’s idea into a digital format. The lengthy video game development process creates more room for duds, which can make it challenging for a gamer to select a new, quality game. Quintin Smith of Kotaku recommends several board games that video gamers would enjoy, including Catacombs, The Resistance, Fury of Dracula, Descent: The Road to Legend, Cyclades and Risk Legacy.

Board games are also much cheaper than video games, which have a higher retail cost and offer expansion packs and extras for additional fees.

While many video games have a narrative sequence that is the same every time, board games have scenarios that differ each time you play. There are exceptions here, as video games have adopted the idea of in-game consequences where what you do or how you act has game-changing consequences. An example of this type of game is the Battlefield series, a shooter game with a dynamic environment.

Advantages of video games

Video games have their own advantages for adults as well as for children. They can improve early literacy skills, help folks learn to delegate responsibility, participate on a team, improve hand-eye coordination and get better at multitasking — all skills that translate directly to the workplace. Wii or Kinect games offer physical benefits for gamers and can be a fun way for the whole family to be active together. While your family cannot play a board game across state lines, members can collaborate on a video game using online gaming platforms.

When parents take the time to play video games with their children, Arizona State University researcher Elizabeth Hayes notes, they can insert teaching moments into the fun time and may be better able to maintain open lines of communication with tweens and teens, who may be trying to assert independence. While first person shooter games have earned a negative reputation, there are lots of fun and family-friendly games on the market for families to play.

This guest post was written by Grant Weaver, a writer from Detroit.

Posted on November 2nd, 2013 by admin | Leave a Comment
Filed Under Entertainment