Lara Croft: Product of sexism?

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You KNEW this image was going to be used again.

I’m making good on my promise from my review of 2013’s Tomb Raider: I’m finally going to give my opinions on why I believe Lara Croft is an excellent female video game character. With so much social justice and feminism hullabaloo suddenly surrounding video games (WHY?! They’re supposed to be fun), it’s hard to look at any female character in a video game without analyzing her as not only a character, but as a representative of an entire gender.

This doesn’t apply to male characters because any “harmful” image of a man in video games is obviously a fantasy that only serves to empower men. With such few female characters present in games, let alone playable in games, game creators will continue to be criticized for the way in which they portray this gender.

Lara Croft was one of the first great female characters who could take on any of her male counterparts in a variety of areas. Even now, she still is. She’s smart, independent, agile, adept at combat, curious, and much more. She isn’t merely a male character in a female body. She’s actually her own person.

So that should be enough to not upset women who both play and analyze video games, right?  Don’t be too sure about that…

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I’m not dead (at least I don’t think so)

kids-having-fun

This is essentially what I did last week and what I’m doing this week.

I’m still around, don’t worry. I’ve just been very busy and am still busy this week. I’ve been working a lot, which I suppose isn’t fun at all. But then I also went to Saskatchewan for my grandmother’s birthday party and I’m heading to the Glengarry Highland Games this weekend. Pretty stoked to eat haggis and wear a kilt and all that jazz.

I should have a regular blog post up next Tuesday. It’ll finally look into my thoughts on Lara Croft over the years and I’ll touch a bit upon the so-called “sexism” found in video games. After that, who knows what’s next? All I know is I plan on doing regular Tuesday updates starting next Tuesday. Hope to still see some of you guys around then!

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A reboot is born: Tomb Raider review (Xbox 360)

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Lara Croft is reflecting upon how much she’s changed since 1996.

The Tomb Raider franchise had a promising beginning: the first few games delivered on their promises of exploration, careful jumping, fighting dangerous enemies, and unbelievable cup sizes. The games slowly became less successful and soon enough the best Tomb Raider games were called Uncharted. There was an attempt to reboot the franchise in 2006 with Tomb Raider: Legend, which was quite successful, but its sequel, Tomb Raider: Underworld, slowed any momentum the franchised had regained.

Then 2013 happened and Crystal Dynamics, the company responsible for the franchise since Legend, decided to reboot the series yet again. This time, they brought Lara into the modern world and rewrote all of her established history. While still considered a reboot, Legend only changed Lara’s background and still fit into the overall canon. 2013’s Tomb Raider is a brand new start.

This fresh start was necessary for the once-legendary franchise, but will it pave the way to greater adventures or will it seal its own tomb?

I’d like to find out

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Award and housekeeping (lol vague)

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It’s time to get very serious. No jokes allowed. At least for a few paragraphs.

Hey everyone. This is an unexpected blog update. This would normally be on Saturday, when I do the not-so-beloved New of the Week segment. That won’t be happening tomorrow. Actually, it may not be happening anymore. Unless you want it to continue. I find people simply aren’t interested in my preschool presentation style and the cheesy jokes (but not the “Oh that’s so cheesy it’s actually funny” kind). I don’t get many views at all on Saturdays and people rarely comment or Tweet me their answers to the weekly question. A few have, however, and I really appreciate it.

So, effective immediately, I won’t bother putting together a soundslide News of the Week show anymore. If you guys want me to continue, or prefer a different format other than video (I still need to get some video editing software and re-learn the basics, unfortunately), let me know. Otherwise I’ll keep to the Tuesday article each week.

Also, speaking of the Tuesday article, I’ll be doing something a bit newer: I’ll finally do a review. I recently purchased and completed the Tomb Raider reboot, and even though the game is a few months old now, I’m sure people may still be on the fence about whether to buy, rent, or skip this one. Hopefully I can do more reviews soon as I play through more games. Enough with the serious stuff

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I’m not mad, just disappointed…

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I actually cry for those who got so hyped on this game. I can’t imagine actually experiencing disappointment so devastating.

We’ve all been there: a new game is announced and all the trailers and gameplay videos make it look amazing. A playable demo comes out a few weeks before the game is released and you still think the game is going to be awesome. You buy it and begin playing it, but something isn’t right. You’re not sure what it is so you continue playing it. You beat the game and you feel… regret? Regret for purchasing it? But how can this be? It looked so good!

Yep, that’s the crushing feeling of disappointment. Whether it was industry hype or friends’ excitement, whether it was cool trailers or a fun playable demo, you can’t help but feel the game didn’t live up to expectations. Maybe it just wasn’t for you. Maybe the game was a success overall and you were one of the few who didn’t like it. That’s fine, people have different taste. But maybe everyone felt disappointed after playing the game and it became one of the few, the proud: The Most Disappointing Games Ever. SporeDaikatanaEnter the Matrix… There are so many games on this list.

I’m not here to regurgitate that list, however. I’m here to share with you the top five games that disappointed me the most and why they did. Maybe most people will agree with me, saying, “Yeah, that game was pretty trash.” Others might disagree, saying, “No, you’re pretty trash.” That’s fine. If I insult your favourite game, I apologize. In fact, if I do insult your favourite game, I would love to hear why you like it in the comments section below. I want to see if there’s any way I can give the game a second chance and enjoy it.

I’ve done enough lead-in to the topic. Here are five games that really disappointed me. You know you want to read more

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News of the Week – July 6, 2013

News of the Week

Click the above picture to check out this week’s show.

This week’s top stories include the departure of an important Microsoft employee for, troubles at Double Fine Productions, and a much-needed possible update for SimCity. All that and more in the News of the Week.

Question of the Week: What are your thoughts on the zombie genre (in games, movies, TV, etc.)? Comment below or Tweet me your answers.

Music used in this week’s presentation is “Battle for New York” by Brian Tyler from the Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 soundtrack.

If the link to the show doesn’t work, please let me know by Tweeting me or commenting below. Same goes for any previous shows if you happen to check them out. I want to make sure everything works. Thank you!

 

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That’ll teach you to not pirate games!

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You blew your cover, Spyro! She knows you didn’t buy your own game!

Have you ever played a pirated game? No, don’t answer that. Someone might be listening and then you’ll get charged. Because piracy is the exact same thing as stealing an item despite the fact you’re merely making a copy of something. Yep. Of course.

If you ever have played a pirated game, you may have encountered a few problems right away. Sometimes the game asks you for a keycode which generally only comes with legitimate copies. Other times you may have to enter a specific word or phrase found only in the manual. Smart people with illegal copies have found ways around these anti-piracy features while unlucky people with legally purchased copies may be screwed over. If you bought a used game from a friend or retailer and it didn’t include the manual, you may be out of luck.

For years, most game developers relied on those methods to keep people busy, whether it was at work making money to buy the game or at home devising ways to get pirated copies to work. Some game developers didn’t want to settle with the tried-and-true tactics, however. Some developers were so crazy they came up with the most diabolical, most entertaining, and most elaborate forms of anti-piracy known to gamers. And their games became famous for screwing over pirates in the greatest ways possible.

These are some of those games. Now you’re intrigued, aren’t you?

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