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Playstation 4

There were a lot of awesome games that came to the PlayStation 4 this year. Take a look at the games we recommend for Holiday gifts this year!

Horizon: Zero Dawn

Arguably the best game of 2017 for young adult gamers. Horizon: Zero Dawn is a story of life and struggle over the remnants of a future civilization. Robotic animal creatures roam a landscape filled with the remnants of a fallen civilization.  Players experience the story of Aloy, a young woman trying to survive and understand the great tragedy of her land.

I linked the Complete Edition above. It will be coming out on December 5th and will include the DLC pack that is launching in November.


Star Wars Battlefront II

Star Wars is on everyone’s mind right now. How can it not be with Episode 8 looming this holiday season?

Star Wars fans will want to take a look at Star Wars Battlefront II this holiday. It isn’t available for purchase yet as of the time that I published our gift guide, but most early indications from a public beta have been positive. There have been some concerns raised by critics about the micro-transactions that are available in the game, but we don’t have all of the details from the final version of the game yet. We’ll need to wait and see if they end up being a true problem.


Everybody’s Golf

Everybody’s Golf is a casual golf game that the whole family can play. You create goofy characters and play on relatively wild courses. The action is simple enough that just about anyone can play with a little practice. The $40 price tag doesn’t hurt either.


Destiny 2

Destiny 2 is an amazing multiplayer shooter experience set in a cool sci-fi universe. It is also a great compromise for parents looking to find a shooter for their kids to play that isn’t as grim as Call of Duty: WW2 or Battlefield 1.


Crash Bandicoot Collection

Crash Bandicoot was Sony’s attempt to compete with Super Mario. He never quite succeeded in supplanting him, but there are a lot of people who look back on his games fondly. The N-Sane Trilogy is a collection of the first three Crash Bandicoot games that have each been lovingly remade from the ground up and made available in a $40 collection.

Kingdom Hearts HD 1.5 + 2.5 ReMIX

Kingdom Hearts 3 is coming soon. (They say its coming next year, but I’ll believe that when I see it.) Players need to get ready for it and this is a collection of every meaningful game in the series so far.

Final Fantasy XII The Zodiac Age

A sprawling tale about the never ending cycle of war and intrigue. FF12 is the last game in the series from the PS2 era and was recently re-released for PS4 with an HD upgrade. Zodiac Age is the smooth update and rebalancing of an already great game. It even includes some features that never made it to the States on its initial debut.


I know I sound like a broken record, but Minecraft should be on top of everyone’s shopping list. It may be one of the best selling games of all time, but there are plenty of kids who don’t have it.

Be sure to check out the rest of our holiday gift guides for 2017!

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The Holidays are a great time for families to get new home consoles. They make great gifts for the whole family and can be responsible for a lot of great memories. Take a look below for our recommendations for home consoles this year.

Nintendo Switch

The Nintendo Switch launched in March of this year and has been a wild success for Nintendo. It is, without question, the best console for families on the market right now and it isn’t close. The console/tablet hybrid has just passed its 6 month anniversary and it is already home a better lineup of family games that either of its main competitors.

The main attraction for the Nintendo Switch is that it serves two purposes. It is both a home console that you can play on the family TV and a handheld console that you can take on the go. This can be a godsend for families that have multiple siblings because you can use it in “tabletop mode” to play multiplayer games like Mario Kart 8 Deluxe Edition anywhere!

Looking for some Switch games to give? Heres our list of Switch Games!

Sony PlayStation 4

The PlayStation 4 is another great console option. It doesn’t have the strongest lineup of exclusive games, but it is home to all of the major third party games like Destiny 2. You shouldn’t have any problems finding games to play with your family here. The catalog is already full of great games already and the future is bright since Spider Man will come out next year.

The biggest decision that new PlayStation owners will have to make when shopping for a PS4 is whether to purchase a base model or to spend a little bit extra for a PS4 Pro. The main difference between those two systems is going to be the graphics performance. Both of them will play the same games, but the PS4 Pro will make them look better if your family owns a 4k television.

Looking for some PS4 games to give? Here’s our list of PS4 games for this holiday!

Microsoft Xbox One

2017 has been a challenging year for Xbox fans. The exclusives have been in short supply and several high profile games have been delayed or cancelled.

There is a ray of hope though. The Xbox One X has been announced and it looks like a great console for families looking for a powerful console to help show off their new 4k television.

Looking for some Xbox One games to give? Here’s our list of Xbox One games for this holiday!

Last Generation Consoles

Families that aren’t interested in standing on the bleeding edge of console gaming technology still have plenty of reasons to pick up older consoles like the PS3, Xbox 360, and, to a lesser extent, the Wii U. These consoles should be relatively easy to find used from places like GameStop and have huge catalogs of games just waiting to be plucked from bargain bins.

In the worst case scenario a uses Xbox 360 will be a serviceable Minecraft machine for families that want to let their children play, but don’t want them using the family PC or laptop.

3DS Family of Hardware

The Nintendo Switch is the most exciting thing that Nintendo has on the market right now, but the 3DS handheld systems are still useful. They will be great purchases for families that want to introduce gaming to their children, but want something sturdier. The handheld may be entering the sunset of its life, but it has a library with hundreds of games that your children will love.

The only real problem with the 3DS family of systems is that there are so many versions that it can be hard to keep track of them. Fortunately, EFG published a handy guide to help sort all those details! You can read it here.

SNES Classic

The SNES Classic isn’t a traditional console, but it is such a big deal that I had to include it somewhere. It is a bite-sized console that includes twenty of the best games ever made. Its going to be in high demand though, so keep that in mind if you are adding it to your shopping lists.

Thats it for the consoles, but make sure to check out the rest of our 2017 Holiday Gift Guide!

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Square Enix has announced a complete remake of the Secret of Mana. It is scheduled to be released on February 15, 2018 for the PlayStation 4, the PSVita, and PC. They aren’t kidding when they say it is a complete remake either. Square is giving the game an overhaul with 3D graphics, bright colors, and voice acting!
Secret of Mana is one of the most beloved RPGs of all time. Its claim to fame, at least in my heart, is being the first action RPG to include two player, simultaneous, cooperative play. It was one of the first opportunities my brother and I had to play a game like this together. It actually supported three players, but we were never able to make that happen. We will get that chance again when the remake comes out. 
Square Enix is giving Secret of Mana a full makeover. They are using a bright and colorful art style that will be a sight to behold. It’s interesting that Square Enix waited this long to remake this one, but I am hoping that this will become a trend. They have a huge catalog of games that are worthy of remakes like this.
I know that we’re picking this one up the minute it comes out. What about your family? Sound off in the comments!
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Fe was first announced back at E3 2016 and has been silent since. EA revealed more about the game during their GamesCom press event. It is being developed by Zoink Games and follows the story of a fox cub as learns to use his voice to help heal the forest of light.

We haven’t been able to get our hands on the game yet, but everything we have been shown so far is looking great! Fe appears to be a 3D platformer (like Super Mario 64, Yooka-Laylee, and other similar titles). Players will control a magical fox cub as he or she explores a forest and learns to use various songs to help befriend different animals. These animals will help unlock new areas for further exploration. The gameplay itself doesn’t really strike me as particularly new or interesting, but I am captivated by the sound design and the visuals. The heavy use of black in the background and the foreground really make everything stand out. It is tough to tell whether or not the art style will get confusing during combat or platforming sections, but we’ll obviously know more about that we get closer to launch.

EA will be publishing Fe in early 2018 on the PS4, Xbox One, PC, and Switch. The trailer is linked below. Take a look and let us know what you think in the comments.

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Final Fantasy XV released last year. It was one of my favorite games of the year in spite of its flaws. Square Enix has been working since its release to update the game with continuous improvements. There have been consistent DLC releases that have included Power Ranger style exo-suits and individual story modes for two of the Noctis’s best friends.

Square isn’t done with Final Fantasy XV yet, though, not by a long shot. They’ve made several announcements since the beginning of GamesCom in Cologne, Germany that will expand the Final Fantasy XV Universe and give fans plenty to look forward to.

Final Fantasy XV Comes to PC

There were some who had given up hope that a PC release for FFXV would never come, but those days are numbered. The Final Fantasy Windows Edition will launch in early 2018 and will include NVidia Gameworks technology to improve the game’s visuals. The technologies that will be included are:

  • NVIDIA Flow – creates vivid, combustible fluid, fire and smoke.
  • NVIDIA HairWorks – creates dynamic, life-like hair and fur for characters, animals, and monsters that inhabit the game.
  • NVIDIA ShadowWorks – enables characters to cast shadows on themselves.
  • NVIDIA Turf Effects – creates life-like grass and vegetation in the game environment.
  • NVIDIA VXAO – adds depth and realism based on the physics principles shadows and light.

There is also support for both GeForce® Experience™ capture and share tools:

  •  NVIDIA Ansel™, an in-game photography tool that allows gamers to compose shots from any position, adjust with post-process filters, capture HDR images in high fidelity formats, and share screenshots in 360 via a smartphone, PC or VR headset.
  • NVIDIA ShadowPlay™ Highlights automatically captures the player’s greatest gaming achievements in video and screenshot, enabling seamless sharing through social channels.

Final Fantasy XV Pocket Edition

Final Fantasy XV is a very beautiful game. Its so beautiful, in fact, that porting the game to anything but PC would be almost impossible. The team at Square Enix figured out a workaround though. They have created a game that maintains the same story and 10 chapter structure but replaces the realistic visuals from the original game with a low polygon chibi style. It sounds silly, but it definitely works. Take a look at the trailer and see for yourself.

The simplified graphics make it to the Pocket edition with will be right at home on older phones and tablets, but it also leads me to wonder if it also means that there is potential for a Switch port of the Pocket Edition. Only time will tell, but one would think that Square would want to capitalize on the console’s success in any way they can.

Episode Ignis

We have already gotten two other individual episodes, one for Gladiolus and another for Prompto. Ignis will get his turn during holiday 2017. We don’t really have any idea what the game will be like, but I would make a serious bet that it is more of a stealth game just like Prompto’s episode was more of a shooter.

“Comrades” DLC

One of the most surprising announcements to come from the Final Fantasy XV Universe (and that is saying something) is the comrades DLC. This is a multiplayer mode that allows players to create their own avatars and play through a unique story with different locations. I don’t know who out there asked for a multiplayer Final Fantasy game, but here we are.

Monsters of the Deep VR Experience

Square Enix teased a Final Fantasy VR game built around Prompto last year. This has since been scrapped in favor of a fishing mini game set in VR. I saw this played at E3 and freaked out about it on one of our E3 2017 podcasts. Square Enix has announced that the game will be released on 11/21/2017.

Do any of these things look interesting to you? Sound off in the comments!


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The Dragon Quest Summer festival took place this past weekend. Square Enix announced a sequel to the surprise hit Dragon Quest Builders. The game is tentatively titled Dragon Quest Builders 2.

We don’t have a release date, but Square Enix did tease several new gameplay elements. The first game combined Dragon Quest RPG elements with Minecraft building. The sequel doubles down on that and adds additional features like:

  • Underwater diving
  • Up to four player cooperative play
  • a huge increase in the number of blocks that can be stacked
  • a Breath of the Wild style glider to help with traversal

The biggest news, however, to come out of the announcement is that it will be coming to both the PS4 and the Nintendo Switch. Its a perfect system for a game like this. Dragon Quest Builders is a game that encourages lots of small trip out into the wilds looking for materials. The hybrid console will give players plenty of opportunities for that. I can absolutely imagine playing DQ Builders on my Switch in handheld mode while watching football or something similar.

You can watch the gameplay demo that was livestreamed at the event below.

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By: Uncle Badger

Destiny fans, rejoice!

Destiny 2, the sequel to Bungie’s wildly popular shared world shooter, is finally launching this fall (September 6). If you’re like me, a massive fan of Destiny 1, you’re most likely losing your mind. But, if you’ve somehow missed out on the original Destiny, here’s a quick primer:

Destiny is an online multiplayer first person shooting game. While it shares many similarities to MMOs (for example, players inhabit a shared world and are required to be online at all times), developers describe it as a “shared world shooter”. It’s a distinction that, at first blush, seems not to describe something entirely different, but after a couple hours in the Destiny universe, it becomes clear that the game has really carved out a unique space that warrants the distinction.

In the world of Destiny set far into the future, an extraterrestrial traveler has empowered human beings with extraordinary powers which we then use to defend ourselves and this traveler against “the darkness” aka evil aliens. Players can select one of three character classes; Hunter, Titan, or Warlock – and employ a vast array of weapons and armors in various quests and adventures to keep the planets safe from various enemy hordes. Destiny made a name for itself not only with fantastic gunplay upon which the game is centered, but also with a deep and expansive lore. Additionally, the game is highly social, particularly when it comes to endgame content like raids or special in-game events.

Still with me? Great.

The original Destiny didn’t quite feel like an MMO but didn’t exactly feel like a pure FPS either and, overtime, “Shared World Shooter” became less of an in-house descriptor and more of a legitimate genre. By all accounts, Destiny 2 is looking to build on that new genre with improved gunplay, more expansive shared play spaces, and, of course, TONS OF LOOT!

In terms of story, Destiny 2 couldn’t be more compelling. Set one year after the events of Destiny: Rise of Iron, the Red Legion faction of the Cabal, led by their emperor, Dominus Ghaul, attack The Last City. Ghaul, believing that he deserves the power of the Light, succeeds in stripping the Guardians of their powers and destroying the Tower. Scattered and powerless, the Guardians must acquire new powers to face Ghaul and the Red Legion.

Unlike the original game which had its lore hidden apart from the game in online ”Grimoire Cards” players had to access through a separate website (yikes), Destiny 2 promises much needed story improvements. At launch, the game will be boasting over 50 cut scenes which is slightly more than Destiny 1 even including all its expansions. Additionally, Bungie has confirmed that those loathsome Grimoire Cards are no more – 100% of the story will be told in the game itself. Huzzah!
Destiny 2 brings back all three characters classes from the original game, but with new skills and abilities. Specifically, each of the subclasses for the Titan, Warlock, and Hunter classes have been overhauled.

The Titan

The Titan’s defender subclass known primarily for its defensive bubble has been reworked considerably. The “bubble” is still an option, but now alongside that is the option to run a defender with a throwable, slammable void shield – think Captain America. The Striker subclass super ability has been changed as well from a single powerful slam to a roaming series of slams, each leaving behind a damaging field of arc energy.

The nova bomb from the warlock’s subclass has been enlarged considerably and now splits into smaller projectiles upon impact. The much beloved Sunsinger subclass has ditched the self-resurrection ability in favor of a new super called Dawn Blade. It functions very much like the Titan’s Hammers from Destiny 1.

Lastly, the hunter’s Golden Gun has been nerfed a bit, no longer guaranteeing a kill with each shot. To balance this, the length of the super has been extended, offering more shots per super. And the hunter arc subclass has an entirely new super – Arc Strider – think Blade Dancer from Destiny one but a bit more agile and with a polearm instead of daggers.

Each of the character classes will launch with two subclass instead of the three you might be used to from Destiny 1. And while Bungie has played coy when asked if all three classes will be returning, it’s safe to say that they’ll all be making a comeback at some point after launch.

Overall, gunplay seems relatively unchanged from Destiny 1, and that’s a good thing. Nevertheless, the small improvements are noticeable as the gunplay feels as if it’s grown up a bit. The way Destiny 2 is setting up weapons is somewhat confusing. There are still three slots, but the first two are now “Kinetic” and “Energy.” Gone are the primary, secondary, and heavy weapon designations. This means that weapons like sidearms are now primaries and can be either elemental (energy) or non-elemental (kinetic), and old favorites like snipers, shotguns, and fusion rifles are now classed with rocket launchers.
Like I said, it’s a little confusing. I’m sure we’ll get used to it.

Overall, Destiny 2 is looking to build on the success of its predecessor by doubling down on excellent gameplay and expanding the already rich mythos of the Destiny universe. And, of course, there will be a ton of loot!

Destiny 2 launches worldwide on September 6, 2017, for the PlayStation 4 and the Xbox One. The PC version is set to launch later on October 24.

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Sony has announced the lineup of free games being released as part of the PlayStation Plus program for August 2017. The list includes six games: two for the PS4, 2 for the PS3, and 2 for the PSVita. It is worth mentioning though that a lot of the PSVita games are “crossbuy” which means that you can also download then on the PS4.

This month’s lineup of games isn’t terribly good for families. The biggest game on the list is Just Cause 3. It’s a good game, but it is an action game where you explore, destroy a Mediterranean island. That, generally, places it in the “after bedtime” category for most families.

Take a look below for the list of upcoming games!

PlayStation 4

  • Just Cause 3 – M for Mature
  • Assassin’s Creed: Freedom Cry – M for Mature

PlayStation 3

  • Super Motherload – E 10+
  • Snakeball – E for Everyone


  • Downwell (crossbuy with PS4) – E for Everyone
  • Level 22, PS Vita – E 10+


What do you think of this lineup? Sound off in the comments!

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Tokyo RPG Factory has announced the release date for Lost Sphear, the follow-up to I Am Setsuna. It was only announced a handful of months ago, but it appears that development on the game  progressed very quickly.

Lost Sphear will be released on PS4, Switch, and PC on January 23, 2018.

Tokyo RPG Factory’s first game, I Am Setsuna, was given a luke-warm reception last year. Though it was highly anticipated, it ended up being a disappointment to many because it was too heavily focused on nostalgia.

Lost Sphear is a game that, by all appearances, looks like it is being made in the same mold as its older sibling. It is being developed in a deliberately retro way hoping to evoke fond memories of the golden age of RPGs.

With all that said, I can’t help but be optimistic when I look at the trailers for the game. Take a look for yourself!

The story revolves around a boy whose village disappears right around him. He then embarks on a quest to help restore the missing pieces of the world. Even if Lost Sphear struggles the same way I am Setsuna did, I think it offers many interesting gameplay possibilities. Fortunately, I don’t have to wait long to find out as the game comes out less than 6 months from now!

What do you think? Sound off in the comments!


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Guest Writer: James Pisano
Battle Chasers: Nightwar, a beautiful single player RPG that started out as a very successful Kickstarter project and developed by Airship Syndicate and Published by Nordic Games, is based on one of the most popular American Comic Series in the 90s, by Joe Madureira.  Joe Madureira is the Creative and Animation Director on the game, so the “flavor” of that world remains intact.  The beautiful artwork, the rich and immersive environments, and the strategic depth are all high points that I know will have me coming back for more and more this October when the world will be able to enter the arcane punk wonderland of Battle Chasers: Nightwar.
In the time I had my hands on this game at E32017, it was clear to me that the developers thought through things like deep party synergy without falling prey to trite conventions.  The party they had setup for the demo was made up of Calibretto – and Ancient War Golem, Gully – A young girl on a quest to find her father, and Knolan, a sage-like Wizard who packs much more power than one might think.  Calibretto looks like he -should- be the tank, but he’s really a healer who can also deal some AOE damage in a pinch.  Gully has the look of an elfish rogue, but is actual rather tanky and handy with crowd control abilities and taunts.  And Knowlen is mostly arcane DPS with a sprinkling of heals available for support.  Each party member can be cycled to be the party’s representative on the overworld, and is able to use their unique abilities to damage enemies before actually entering the encounter screen, which adds another layer of strategy and engagement that makes this game all the more appealing for me.
As far as the level design, we were told by the company’s PR rep that the dungeons are procedurally generated, which adds a TON of re-playability and depth.  The environments looked complex and cohesive enough that I was surprised to hear that they were constructed this way, especially given the beautiful art style.  And if you’re one for deep lore from a team that really cares, this is your kind of game.  So come October 3rd, gather the family around and fall in love with this sure-to-be-epic RPG on your platform of choice.  Yes, it’s being released on PC (Steam & GOG), Xbox One, PS4, and Nintendo Switch.
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