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editorial | 03/11/06 | Matt James
We felt so bad for Matt having to lug that big mailbag all the way up to the GF! Offices that we moved his desk into the basement where the mail drops directly. Then we forgot about him. As it turns out, Matt's been down there the whole time, trapped under a crate of old Atari Age magazines and sandwiched between a box of old toys and a broken Wizard of Wor machine. Aaron found Matt when he went down to fetch a couple old floppy disks we needed to shimmy up an uneven leg on our new company massage table. It was too late for Matt, but he was clutching this latest edition of the GF! Mailbag in one hand, and had used Legos to spell out something about how Jeremy still can't beat his Gamerscore. Click here for what may very well be Matt's last Mailbag ever (unless we're totally lying to you, which is also possible).
game: Xbox Live
editorial | 03/05/06 | Shawn Rider
Xbox Live is an excellent gaming service, and by all accounts the best thing going for ease of use and consistent reliability. It's the only online game in town so far when it comes to the home console, too. But that is about to change: With Nintendo and Sony both rolling out competing online gaming services this year, Xbox Live needs to be at the top of its game. So far it has been doing well, but we thought we'd help out by offering up a few ideas we have for improving the Xbox Live service. Check out Shawn's editorial here.
game: Outpost Kaloki X
review | 03/04/06 | Tristan Mayshark
Xbox Live Arcade has put some cool games on the Xbox 360, and has very much helped 360 owners cope with the rather slow trickle of 360 titles to hit the market. Some of these XBLA games are original, some are greatest hits, and some are games that had made an impression on PC gamers as an indy release and now find a second audience on the Xbox. A great example of the last type of game is Outpost Kaloki X. Outpost Kaloki X is a mid-depth strategy experience that XBox 360 owners can try for free and own for a low price. If you're looking for decent strategy and a clever sense of humor in your lemonade stand games, then Kaloki could be just the thing. Get Tristan's full review right here.
game: Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion
news | 03/02/06 | Shawn Rider
Word comes today from 2K Games that The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion, the highly anticipated Xbox 360 RPG, will finally release on March 20, 2006. Gamers have been waiting for the sequel to Morrowind almost since the release of the original title, and many were disappointed when the game was pushed from the Xbox 360 launch lineup. Oblivion will also release for PC on the same day. More details are in the article.
feature | 02/20/06 | RJ Brooks
They are one of the often unsung heroes of the game development industry. But the consistently high quality of titles has proven numerous times why Treasure is one of the best game development houses in existence. With such fan classics as Gunstar Heroes and Astro Boy in their library, Treasure's games have created a rabid fanbase of twitch gamers and import junkies. Our man, Robert Brooks, has a retrospective of Treasure's games along with five classic retro reviews, each going live over the next week. Check it out here.
game: Marble Blast Ultra
review | 02/13/06 | Tristan Mayshark
Marble Blast Ulra is one of the first games developed for the new XBox Live Arcade on the XBox 360, and brings to mind nearly everything that was great about the golden era of shareware games, from try before you buy downloadable distribution models (which we like very much) to fun, simple gameplay based on equal parts thought and reflex. Bask in the future-past gaming enjoyment that is Marble Blast Ultra. Tristan has the review right here.
game: Xbox 360
news | 02/13/06 | Shawn Rider
Jake Ludington from MediaBlab sent word of his recent posting, which details how to segment your wireless network to optimize Xbox Live performance. The tutorial focuses on Xbox 360 optimization, but we imagine it will work just as well for improving online gaming on any Xbox. And you could apply the network segmentation approach to virtually any computer on your wireless network to optimize performance. The instructions are good and the advice is sound. Check it out.
podcast | 02/11/06 | Val Townsend
Val brings us another episode of the GamesFirst! Weekly Wrap-Up, packed full of all the best stuff going on in the gaming world. This week, we take a look at two books out now about hacking the PSP: One is great, and the other is not. We also test the Altec Lansing AHS302i headphones, which are well-priced even if not so well-fitting. Finally, we get to the games with a review of Legion Arena for the PC and a preview of the Final Fantasy XI Beta for Xbox 360. Download the latest episode of the GF! Weekly Wrap-Up right here.
game: Ghost Recon: Advanced Warfighter
news | 02/07/06 | Aaron Stanton
It's been a little while since the release of the Xbox 360 in November of last year, and some of us are starting to feel a little thirsty for new games. Ubisoft decided to remind us what we're all waiting for by releasing screenshots of their upcoming Ghost Recon: Advanced Warfighter. This tactical shooter for both the Xbox and the Xbox 360 is looking to be - potentially - one of the best releases of the year. Of course, this wouldn't be the first Tom Clancy based game to look good, and then play poorly. Time will tell, but it doesn't hurt to salivate a little.
game: Battlefield 2: Modern Combat
news | 01/29/06 | Shawn Rider
Electronic Arts is set to make Battlefield 2: Modern Combat into a "cyberathletic" quality title on the Xbox 360. Not only will all of the qualities gamers expect from the Battlefield franchise be there in spades, but complete Xbox Live support will enable robust player community features including built-in clan support, rankings, and deep stats tracking. EA dropped some brand new screens for us this weekend, so get the full overview of the game and some new eyecandy right here.
podcast | 01/27/06 | Val Townsend
The Atomic Goddess is back, and this week Val spends some quality time with Dead or Alive 4 on the Xbox 360 and The Movies, out now for PC. Val also takes a peek at Shadow Hearts 3: From the New World for PlayStation 2. And, of course, there's a roundup of the biggest news of the past little bit. It's eight minutes of high-quality podcasting goodness, so dig in, gamers!
news | 01/27/06 | Shawn Rider
Sega is unloading on the Xbox 360 with both Full Auto and Chromehounds coming out in the coming weeks. Chromehounds is based on an alternate Cold War history that places you in charge of a big, destructive robot fighting for one of three factions. Developed by Armored Core veterans, From Software, Chromehounds has the pedigree to be a very good game. The screens look gorgeous, and we are excited to get our hands on a playable version of this one. Get the details here.
game: Full Auto
news | 01/27/06 | Shawn Rider
Sega sends word that Full Auto has officially gone gold. This announcement coincides with the release of a bunch of new screens, which we're featuring here, and an Xbox Live demo, which we've downloaded and raged through. The verdict is still out on this one-- the demo is a bit skimpy, and we haven't gotten a lot of time with it yet. In the meantime, check out these new screens and get the details on this chaotic action racer in our recent preview. All of which lies behind this link.
news | 01/26/06 | Aaron Stanton
Though we haven't seen much of the Star Trek franchise in the game industry since the release of Elite Force II a little while back, that doesn't mean that the series isn't still destined for further greatness. Bethesda Softworks, makers of Elder Scrolls and one of the most talented developers in the industry today, has purchased the right to make games based on the Star Trek franchise. They've announced two games, including one title for the Xbox 360, and another for both the Nintendo DS and the PSP. Though they haven't announced anything, they've also purchased the rights to create games for the PC based on the Star Trek IP.
game: Final Fantasy XI
preview | 01/25/06 | Matt James
Final Fantasy has been a holdout series, maintaining its PlayStation 2 exclusivity for the larger part of this previous generation. (Square Enix did give in and release some Final Fantasy games for Gamecube and GBA in the past few years.) The Xbox 360 will break down those walls. Not only is Final Fantasy creator Hironobu Sakaguchi bringing a series of exclusive games to Xbox 360 with his new company, but Final Fantasy XI will arrive on the platform, too. The latest copy of Xbox Magazine features a Final Fantasy XI beta test disc for Xbox 360 owners. If you're a fan of FF, then you'll want to check this out. Our man, Matt James, has the rundown on the beta test experience.
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