Like any community in the world, people who play video games have collaboratively created their own language and slang. Many of these words are international, but different languages have different ways of talking about play.
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If you've been a die-hard Apple fan since you first put your fingers to a keyboard, there's a chance you've never experienced the thrill of Minesweeper -- one of the two classic games that used to be found on Microsoft's Windows operating system. If that's true, or if you just miss the thrill of losing game, after game, after game of Minesweeper, worry not: It's time to Macsweep.
Our guests this week are video game designer and Seth Scott, creator of Membrane for the Nintendo Switch, and YouTuber Brian Lewis, creator of the Magic: The Gathering advice channel Tolarian Community College. We discuss how to use party games and card games as icebreakers, channels for creativity, and full-blown hobbies.
There are plenty of accounts from dismayed parents about how they're losing their kids to Fortnite, the wildly popular video game that's consuming kids' days, destroying some schools and spawning neighbourhood support groups. Less hyperbolic, but just as concerning, are the the reports from mums and dads who are losing actual cash because their young players made in-game purchases without them knowing.
Microsoft Windows can get messy. It's not (always) the operating system's fault. You download tons of apps and files, and create new content stuff of your own, until your "Downloads" directory looks like a landfill for old content. Your desktop is so full of icons, you can't see your pretty wallpaper. Your Start Menu looks like an app buffet. In short, your operating system is a mess, but it's not unfixable.
If you ever tried to get into tabletop role-playing games - the kind where you sit around with character sheets, describing your actions and rolling dice - it was probably through Dungeons & Dragons. And if you're sick of medieval fantasy, or you don't care about fighting monsters, or you hate looking up stats on different charts, you might have walked away thinking "I guess I don't like RPGs." Which is a shame, because there are thousands of other RPGs out there.
If you've been gaming on Valve's Steam service for a decent amount of time, you've probably heard of Steam Mover. It's a great tool for transferring your multi-gigabyte Steam games to different hard drives on your system, in case your primary hard drive is running out of space (or bursting at the seams).
Apple journalist John Gruber recently lamented that there just aren't any Tetris games for macOS. And he wasn't suggesting that there aren't any good games. According to Gruber, there aren't any Tetris games, period. He couldn't find a single official Tetris game on the Mac App Store, nor any Tetris clone, to satisfy his gaming nostalgia.
Valve has done a lot of work on Steam, its digital storefront for games, to make it easier to find titles that match your tastes. Unfortunately, because Steam prioritises copies sold over user ratings, it's terrible for uncovering "hidden gems". Enter Steam 250, a website that uses only review scores to pick out quality games getting limited exposure.
Multiplayer video games can get toxic fast, especially when you're stuck with a team of overranked LOSERS and you are the ONLY ONE guarding the last capture point while Trash6Boner9 just DICKS AROUND. You complain to your friend or your partner, and they ask why you even play this game if it pisses you off so much. And then you feel utterly alone in the world.
Don't you feel like all the recent pop culture fervour of the last decade has been strongly zombie-related? The fact that The Walking Dead is in its eighth season tells you all you need to know, but there was also World War Z and all sorts of zombie-related video games.
Sure, we've had Pirates of the Caribbean but, where's all the great pirate stuff?
I'll tell you where! It's stuffed in Sea of Thieves.
I learned how to play the piano the old-fashioned way -- by being dragged by my mother to weekly lessons taught by an elderly woman in the neighbourhood, and yawning at the sheet music as my kid-fingers played a clunky rendition of Für Elise. Since then, music instruction has evolved. There has been a crop of video game apps that introduce children to instruments such as the piano, guitar, drums and ukulele and through fun challenges, get them to practice -- willingly.
Ready to relive some retro games directly in your web browser? If you're bored at work and your mind suddenly drifts to those hours you spent punching a Nintendo Power Pad as a child, don't worry. You can warp back to your youth without ever having to leave your desk. Check out some of these amazing web sites that let you play all the classics right in your browser - no emulator apps or ROMs needed.
After putting up with what my roommates and I like to joke is the "first Roku ever made" for the past few years, I recently decided to do all my video watching through my PlayStation 4 instead. The experience has been a million times better (no more lag, random crashes, or app designs that haven't been updated in years), but it also got me thinking about whether I could use a virtual private network (VPN) on my gaming console to improve things even more.
"You don't look like a Magic player," a familiar comment to women in the Magic: The Gathering gaming community, is also the title of a Metafilter post (by user Fizz) compiling six pieces on gender and sexism among the game's players and creators. The quoted pieces address issues of in-person sexism, gender and identity representation, and the gender gap in fantasy art.
There are literally millions of Android apps to choose from, but if you're looking to go beyond what Google Play has to offer then you're in luck. Thanks to a recent update, you can run Windows 7 apps on Android using a program called Wine 3.0.