Posts by Chris Morris
- Chris Morris at Plugged In11 hrs ago
As cancer began taking its toll on Roberta Firstenberg, it started stealing things she had long loved and taken for granted. Chief among those was the ability to take a simple walk around her yard.
Granddaughter (and game artist) Priscilla Firstenberg, though, managed to outwit the disease and give Roberta a few final strolls using an Oculus Rift headset.
"You think you're all prepared for it and it's like dropping straight into a mirage, like dropping straight down into a bubble of new life. It's beautiful," Roberta said after seeing the demo for the first time.
Priscilla is a game artist with Camouflaj, makers of the iOS stealth game République. The idea to re-introduce her grandmother to the world through VR came as she and coworkers debated the merits of next-generation systems. She decided to reach out to Oculus.
She explained the situation and the fact that her grandmother was only expected to have another month or two left to live, but said that still she wasn't expecting to hear back from the company.
- Chris Morris at Plugged In1 day ago
Gamers may not be buying a ton of games these days, but they're sure gobbling up game systems.
Sales of video game hardware in March were up a massive 78 percent in March as compared to a year ago, according to The NPD Group. Console sales more than doubled as demand continues for the Xbox One and PlayStation 4. That surge in hardware sales led to a 3 percent climb in overall sales versus March 2013.
While NPD does not specifically break out sales numbers by system, the company's analyst Liam Callahan noted that PS4 sales once again outpaced the Xbox One.
“In March 2014, Sony’s PS4 led hardware sales for the third month in a row,” he said.
That's bound to be a disappointment to Microsoft, which bundled EA's critically-acclaimedgiant mech shooter Titanfall with the Xbox One to promote sales of the system. Many retailers offered discounts of $50 on top of that bundle.
- Chris Morris at Plugged In2 days ago
The breakout star of Call of Duty: Ghosts was the dog. Could the breakout star of the game's downloadable content be the Doggy Dogg?
Call of Duty: Ghosts, which has been getting stranger with each recent DLC release, has amped up the weirdness with a new ‘voice pack’ featuring none other than the rapper/actor/weed enthusiast.
The new content will let Snoop narrate multiplayer matches. As you traverse the battlefield, he'll describe weapons and point you to waypoints in his own inimitable style.
"What interests me the most about the project is that my voice can be connected with a game that's so hip and so hood," he says. "It says a lot that it's associated with greatness."
Snoop Dogg has long been a fan of gaming and has professed his love of Call of Duty several times before, so you can't blame Activision for seeing a good PR opportunity here. And, certainly, hearing "Snoopisms" as you battle other online players adds some levity to the game.
- Chris Morris at Plugged In3 days ago
You may think you're a dedicated player of your free-to-play game of choice. But no matter how often you go on raids in Boom Beach or send help requests to Facebook friends in Candy Crush Saga, you won't come close to Uli Kilian's dedication.
Kilian, a 3D production director, loves Jurassic Park Builder. But like most free-to-play games, it requires players to check in regularly and tap on a dinosaur to earn in-game currency. The alternative, of course, is to pay real world money, but who wants to do that?
Certainly not Kilian, who developed a ridiculous plan to keep his expenses low: he built a robotic arm using a LEGO Technic set to do the tapping for him at night.
"It's a really nice game with nice graphics," Kilian tells Wired. "But I thought you could easily automate the tapping."
- Chris Morris at Plugged In4 days ago
Nobody pinches a penny like John Salter.
The Oakland, Ohio man has set a new arcade record, coaxing an astonishing 85 hours out of a single quarter.
The game was 1980's Armor Attack -- maybe not the most famous arcade classic around, but a valid one nonetheless. Over the course of his 85 hours and 16 minutes, Salter racked up a score of 2,211,990, breaking the old Armor Attack high score dating back to 1982.
But more impressive was the sheer duration of his game. The quarter Salter dropped on Wednesday morning didn’t end until well into Saturday, a feat that topped previous record-holder George Leutz, who last year set the standard at 84 hours 48 minutes on a game of Q*Bert, by a mere 12 minutes.
- Chris Morris at Plugged In7 days ago
Some collectors have paid more than $10,000 to be able to play Nintendo World Championships. Now you can do it for next to nothing. Sort of.
What's considered one of the rarest game to ever appear on a Nintendo system -- if not the entire video game world -- is about to become more widely available, though in a slightly different format.
NES Remix, a downloadable title for the Wii U that features short, arcade versions of classic games, will release its second volume on April 25. If you own the first -- and buy the second – you’ll unlock Championship Mode, which will let you experience elements of the ultra-rare Nintendo World Championships.
Let's back up a bit. First, the reason Nintendo World Championships is so rare is that it was never really a game to begin with. It was a compilation of three games that made up a 1990 competition that took place across 29 cities, based on the revered Fred Savage video game film, “The Wizard.”
- Chris Morris at Plugged In8 days ago
For more than 20 years, rumors have flourished: Buried in a New Mexico landfill are millions of unsold copies of E.T.: The Extraterrestrial for the Atari 2600.
Last year, a pair of documentary filmmakers claimed to have finally found the location. On April 26, they'll start the search -- and they're inviting the general public to come watch.
Will it be an archeological find on par with the discovery of King Tut’s tomb? Or will it be aGeraldo Rivera at Al Capone's vault gaffe? Either way, it sounds like a can't miss affair if you happen to live near Alamogordo, New Mexico.
The dig will start on Saturday, April 26 at 9:30am and could run as late as 7:30pm that evening. It will take place at the Alamogordo landfill at 4276 Highway 54 S (about a 3-and-1/2 hour drive south of Albuquerque).
If you're unable to make the trip, the results will be documented by Canadian film production company Fuel Entertainment, which has spearheaded the hunt, and shown on Xbox Live later this year.
- Chris Morris at Plugged In9 days ago
If you've spent any time with recent release Dark Souls II, you've doubtlessly asked why, exactly, you’re putting yourself through the game’s particular brand of torture.
It's big, it's beautiful, and it's controller-throwingly difficult. To call it challenging is akin to calling this past winter “a bit nippy.” If someone new to gaming were to spend five minutes with it, they'd walk away and never look back.
And that’s exactly how it was designed.
Dark Souls II is an undeniably hard game, and it isn’t alone. Games are getting harder. From Donkey Kong Country Returns: Tropical Freeze to downloadable motorbike nightmare Trials to, yes, that pesky Flappy Bird, video games are going back to their roots, when a good challenge was greatly appreciated.
- Chris Morris at Plugged In9 days ago
The game many people consider to be the best to ever grace the PlayStation 3 is coming to the PlayStation 4.
A 'remastered’ version of Naughty Dog's critical and commercial smash The Last of Us goes next-gen this summer for $60.
The updated version of the game will run in 1080p, letting the developer increase the resolution on Ellie and Joel -- as well as those damned Clickers -- and upgrade the shadows and lighting in the game.
It will also come with a commentary track during the in-game cinematics, with Creative Director and Writer Neil Druckmann and voice actors Troy Baker and Ashley Johnson chiming in. And, as you'd expect, it will also come with all of the single- and multi-player expansion packs that have been released for the original game.
Remastered games from the late stages of the last generation have already proven to be a big success with the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One. Square Enix's update of Tomb Raider helped push that game's sales into the 6 million range.
- Chris Morris at Plugged In10 days ago
Ever yell at a game because it was too hard or nod off because it was too easy? What if the game could change based on your feelings while playing it?
Researchers at Stanford may have just solved that particular Holy Grail. A team in the electrical engineering lab has created an Xbox 360 controller that gauges your brain activity as you play -- and alters the game to react accordingly.
The controller, which is a lab prototype and is not destined for retail release, measures things like your heart rate, skin temperature, and respiration through a series of plates on the bottom of the controller's two grips. The controller's accelerometers measure how frantically you're shaking it.
Using reverse engineering, the scientists are able to figure out what's going on in the player's brain and then use that info to adjust gameplay.