The Skylanders franchise has taken a slightly different route to rival Lego in the toys-to-life genre, with Imaginators’ new character-creation tool allowing children to design their own playable heroes. This adds a fresh incentive to the familiar combat action with new character parts to find and collect.
The starter pack comes with everything needed to complete the game and one “creation crystal” with which to make a Skylander, but of course there is a range of ways to expand the experience further – new toys and digital purchases. More here
In Short: The increased role-playing elements add another interesting angle to an already accomplished franchise, but the cynical attempts to fleece parents’ wallets are hard to defend.
Pros: The family-friendly combat and loot-farming is a lot of fun, with one of the best character creators ever. Well-designed characters and toys, and the Crash Bandicoot stuff is great.
Cons: The inability to delete or overwrite crystals is a shamefully cynically move, and the loot microtransactions aren’t much better. Less inventive level design than SuperChargers. From Metro
Formats: PlayStation 4 (reviewed), Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, Wii U, and Xbox One Price: £39.99 Publisher: Activision Developer: Toys for Bob Release Date: 14th October 2016
In the end it’s not called the PlayStation Neo, PS4K, or PS4.5, but instead the long-rumoured upgrade of the PlayStation 4 will be named the PS4 Pro. And it’ll be out before Christmas.
What all this power is used for is largely up to the developer making the game, or creating a patch for a title that already exists. However, the three things which Sony emphasised were 4K resolution, HDR gaming, and virtual reality.
One of the most unexpected announcements was that next week Sony will release a free update that will grant HDR compatibly to every PlayStation 4. As they pointed out, HDR is not reliant on processing power – which is why the Xbox One S also supports it, despite not being any more powerful than the standard Xbox One.
Although VR was listed as one of the three main beneficiaries of the console’s new power it was barely mentioned beyond that. Which is odd as before today many assumed that improving the VR experience was one of the main reasons the PS4 Pro had been created.
One of the key points Sony kept making is that the PS4 Pro will be running the same games as on the standard PlayStation 4, using the same discs and downloads, but with added enhancements on top. This ‘forward compatibility’ is dependent on the publisher making the effort to take advantage of PS4 Pro, but it doesn’t have to be just limited to 4K and HDR.
Also announced at the event was the already thoroughly leaked PS4 Slim, although Sony never referred to it as that and stated that it would simply be the standard model moving forward. Apart from being a bit smaller it doesn’t do anything substantially different to the existing model, and is instead aimed at people that just haven’t got round to buying a PlayStation 4 yet.
Playing online video games can “apply and sharpen” skills learnt in school and help children to achieve higher grades, new research has shown.
The study, which was conducted by the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology (RMIT) in Australia, found that children who play video games perform better in school, as the games require the player to solve a series of puzzles before moving on to the next level.
In contrast, children that regularly use social media or chat sites are much more likely to fall behind in subjects such as maths, reading and science.
Author of the report associate professor Alberto Posso, from RMIT’s School of Economics, Finance and Marketing, said: “Students who play online games almost every day score 15 points above the average in maths and 17 points above the average in science.
“When you play online games you’re solving puzzles to move to the next level, and that involves using some of the general knowledge and skills in maths, reading and science that you’ve been taught during the day.
“Teachers should consider incorporating popular video games into teaching – so long as they’re not violent ones.”
He went on to conclude within his research that the use of the internet for homework tasks can prove to be beneficial, but that social media can often become a distraction.
Instead, he suggested that social platforms such as Facebook could be integrated into classroom learning, so that it is less of a procrastination tool.
On the off chance that you have affectionate recollections of engaging King Koopa or tossing barrels as Donkey Kong, you can remember them with another “work of art” Nintendo Entertainment System console.
The NES Classic version comes complete with 30 built in games , including each of the three Super Mario Bros diversions, Donkey Kong, The Legend of Zelda and Punch-Out.
‘Each title is sure to bring back fond memories and produce plenty of new ones,’ the firm says.
‘Players can even enjoy playing many of these games together by attaching a second Nintendo Classic Mini: NES Controller.’
‘We wanted to give fans of all ages the opportunity to revisit Nintendo’s original system and rediscover why they fell in love with Nintendo in the first place,’ said Nintendo of America President and COO Reggie Fils-Aime.
‘The Nintendo Entertainment System: NES Classic Edition is ideal for anyone who remembers playing the NES, or who wants to pass on those nostalgic memories to the next generation of gamers.‘
Strengthening skills through play is a proven strategy to help kids learn. For kids with special needs, video games can offer opportunities to practice everything from communication skills to organization — even social interactions — in a comfortable environment where players set the pace. While games designed specifically for kids with special needs can address certain issues, many mainstream titles can support your kid’s learning. Mainstream games can boost a sense of independence and confidence in kids with special needs, provide the ability to ask for help, and let them challenge themselves. Try these games to help kids with special needs in these five areas: Read More
After a long cold winter and rainy spring, Mother Nature has found her bearings. The sun is finally out here in Ottawa, which means summer party planning is in full swing.
Marking every year of your child’s life has so much significance. There’s nothing more fun than hosting a big party at your home, with all your child’s friends gathered ’round for cake and present unwrapping. But let’s face it, they do expect to be entertained and doing so can be stressful.
Parties are fun but organizing them can be hard work especially when you don’t know where to start. Luckily, these days there are so many party ideas which are readily available everywhere. But one top them all.
GamesOnTruck Video Game Party is my favorite summer birthday party idea for kids.
Why video game party in summer?
No Hassle – Video game party makes life easier on parents. No hassle no much planning involve. The day of the party there is no hassle of having to pack all of the party up and going to another destination. GamesOntruck trailer pulls right up to your location of choice.
Fun – Video Game Parties are fun. The ability to play with up to 16 friends inside the game truck, and also try out the latest games.
Safe – What better place to have a party than in your front yard? GamesOntruck pulls up right in front of your house. The kids will be inside the trailer playing games. There is no strange place for you kids to get lost in.
Why not make your child’s summer birthday party extra-special, and host a birthday party everybody will remember for long time?
The next Mario game might be a little bit different.
Speaking to IGN, Nintendo’s Shigeru Miyamoto said we could see a new type of Mario game in a couple of years.
“We’re always challenging ourselves to create something new, so hopefully you’ll see a new kind of Mario in about a year or two,” he told IGN.
He added that Nintendo will ‘maybe’ be able to share something as soon as next E3.
He further commented on the difficulty to implement massive changes to the franchise: “It’s kind of difficult with Mario because some of the more important conventions of Mario are based on the approachability and accessibility of those games.”
Miyamoto also mentioned how new staff at Nintendo allowed the platform holder to look at Mario ‘with fresh eyes’.