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Home Entertainment, Game On Leave It Alone

Leave It Alone

Upon playing Atari's new horror/puzzle game Alone in the Dark — the newest and most hyped in the increasingly limp franchise — you immediately realize there are far more terrifying experiences out there than this astonishing failure. Such as actually…
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Home Entertainment, Game On Blast Happy

Blast Happy

The words "user-generated content" usually mean you're about to encounter one of two things: an irritating Super Bowl commercial made by 16-year-olds, or another dramatic chipmunk. Still, people love this stuff. So it's no surprise that video-game developers are catering…
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Home Entertainment, Game On Ninja Gaiden II for Xbox goes heavy on the gore and glitches

Ninja Gaiden II for Xbox goes heavy on the gore and glitches

It's probably a good thing Game On wasn't around to review Ninja Gaiden when it hit Xbox in 2004 — we probably would've written "an awesome, brutal, majestic action masterpiece," then filled the rest of the space with crude crayon…
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Home Entertainment, Game On Guitar Hero and Rock Band give new meaning to "rock and roll excess"

Guitar Hero and Rock Band give new meaning to "rock and roll excess"

I am absolutely dreading the arrival of Guitar Hero: World Tour. Can't even enjoy the summer. It might sound like insanity, given that the fourth installment in the Guitar Hero franchise could end up being the most successful game of…
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Home Entertainment, Game On Castle of Shikigami III tests the bounds of Wii loyalty

Castle of Shikigami III tests the bounds of Wii loyalty

John Edwards might see two Americas, but this simpleminded little game enthusiast is more preoccupied with America's two Wii owners. One is the Nintendo fan: the cat who bought a GameCube, Nintendo 64, every incarnation of the Game Boy —…
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Home Entertainment, Game On Nintendo's Wii Fit ignites yet another fitness fad

Nintendo's Wii Fit ignites yet another fitness fad

Somebody forgot to tell Nintendo that "strenuous indoor exercise" does not top anyone's summer fun list. This, of course, does not explain why poor suckers everywhere are lining up for Wii Fit, an exhausting personal trainer disguised as a video…
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Home Entertainment, Game On Steven Spielberg goes direct-to-video-game with Boom Blox for the Wii.

Steven Spielberg goes direct-to-video-game with Boom Blox for the Wii.

Steven Spielberg may rule Hollywood, but in the video-game biz — the more profitable of the two industries, becoming more so with each passing year — he's a bikini-clad babe in Jaws-infested waters. Perhaps that's why in 2005, Spielberg, an…
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Home Entertainment, Game On Niko Bellic and Grand Theft Auto IV are great, but is that enough anymore?

Niko Bellic and Grand Theft Auto IV are great, but is that enough anymore?

If you read reviews the way I do, you've already started by checking out the score, and now you're back here to see what the hell my problem is. Peace, brother. Grand Theft Auto IV is a fine game, with…
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Home Entertainment, Game On There's more of the same in Mario Kart Wii, and that just might be plenty.

There's more of the same in Mario Kart Wii, and that just might be plenty.

This year marks the 16th birthday of Mario Kart, the landmark Nintendo franchise that consists of eight identical racing games and legions of fans who buy every one of them. And 16 years later, nobody really has a problem with…
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Home Entertainment, Game On When Less Is Less

When Less Is Less

When the trailer for Star Wars: Episode I first hit theaters, some fans bought tickets for the movie it was presented with, watched the trailer, and then walked out — essentially paying full price for a fraction of the final…
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Home Entertainment, Game On Baroquen Spirit

Baroquen Spirit

First of all: God bless Atlus. As a publisher devoted to bringing obscure Japanese gaming gems to the West — basically, the much-needed heir apparent of Working Designs — Atlus is the only hope for gamers who crave oddball, strange,…
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Home Entertainment, Game On Undead on Arrival

Undead on Arrival

If you don't remember a game called The Typing of the Dead, you're not alone. Released on the failed Sega Dreamcast system, this gory, hilariously titled arcade-style shooter was in many ways exactly like its popular counterpart, The House of…
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Home Entertainment, Game On Just Shy of Seaworthy

Just Shy of Seaworthy

It's nice when a game comes along that pleasantly surprises you. I admit, I judged Viking: Battle for Asgard by the screenshots, writing it off as yet another one of those grimy, violent games so plentiful that they're almost their…
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Home Entertainment, Game On Paging Freaks

Paging Freaks

Guinness writes the book on gaming, but doesn't shatter any records. As a kid, I spent countless hours thumbing through a dog-eared copy of The Guinness Book of World Records, determined to find just the right stupid human trick to…
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Home Entertainment, Game On Online Turnoff

Online Turnoff

Developers seem to believe that their first-person games are required to include online modes. Blame it on the few narrow-minded gamers (and critics) who constantly hammer away with that boneheaded message. At best, it's a strange logic of inheritance: Since…
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Home Entertainment, Game On Fuzzy Fights

Fuzzy Fights

Sometimes it's the terrible ideas — say, a TV show about nothing, or stirring corn into your mashed potatoes — that turn out to be genius. Super Smash Bros. landed on the Nintendo 64 nearly 10 years ago, kicking off…
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Home Entertainment, Game On Pounding Headache

Pounding Headache

You'll know in the first few minutes exactly what Patapon has going for it. There's the goofy premise, which casts you as the tribal god Patapon, lord of a band of creatures called, imaginatively enough, Patapons — little savages that…
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Home Entertainment, DVDish Three the Hard Way

Three the Hard Way

No Country for Old Men (Paramount) "A horror comedy chase" is how a grinning Tommy Lee Jones describes No Country for Old Men in the making-of — meanwhile, his fellow actors add to the list such adjectives as "a very…
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Home Entertainment, What Else Is New?

Our top DVD picks scheduled for release this week:

. . . And Justice for All: Special Edition (Sony) Appleseed Ex Machina (Warner Bros.) August Rush (Warner Bros.) Bee Movie (DreamWorks) Black Widow (Fox) Dan in Real Life (Buena Vista) Def Comedy Jam: D.L. Hughley (HBO) Fantastic Four: World's…
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Home Entertainment, Game On Thinning Crowds

Thinning Crowds

To all the gun-toting video-game bad guys out there: Please stop standing next to exploding barrels. Seriously now. Of the hundreds of places you could squat and shoot, you and your henchman pals always camp beside the neon-orange canister with…
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