I Played Twelve Hours of Mario Party 10 - My Final Impressions (Hint: I Like Mario Party)

So Mario Party.....

I have never played a game developed by Square Enix, Blizzard, nor Atlus . I have never played a game directed by Hideo Kojima. Instead I have accomplished a different gaming feat worthy of a mighty prize indeed:

I have played every single Mario Party game ever made…yes even the handheld editions.

This year Mario Party 10 was released and in order to maintain this gaming feat of mine I recently invited a friend of mine to bring their Wii U. Over the course of three solid weeks I have now played approximately twelve hours of the game, and as any purveyor of video game websites I have decided to encapsulate my potentially polarizing opinions about the game for your own visceral and visual entertainment.

Rule Changes to Standard Ass Mario Party

Much to the chagrin of fans of the series like myself Mario Party 10 maintains all of the rule changes from Mario Party 9. For those that are unaware of what those changes are here’s the gist of it:

  • Players do not collect stars and coins and instead collect Mini Stars, ala Super Mario Galaxy, and work on increasing a running total of mini stars. There are ztars that negatively impact this total.
  • Players move collectively and on a single vehicle.
  • Items and the item shop have been removed completely. In their stead there are different types of dice. These dice are the only possible "items" in the game:
    1. Dice Block - Your standard 1-6 die.
    2. Slow Dice Block - Slows the dice block so you can easily pick your number.
    3. 0-1 Dice Block - Changes the dice block to feature only the numbers 0 and 1.
    4. 1-2-3 Dice Block - Changes the dice block to feature only the numbers 1, 2, and 3.
    5. Slow 1-2-3 Dice Block - Slow the 1-2-3 dice to where you can easily pick a number.
    6. 4-5-6 Dice Block - Changes the dice block to feature only the numbers 4, 5, and 6.
    7. Double Dice Block – You get two die. Woo-hoo!
  • Minigames are not played at the end of a turn and instead are only played if you land on a minigame space. Sometimes you will land on spaces that engage a minigame despite not being a minigame space. It's secretly the game realizing that you have not played enough minigames at a certain point, which we will discuss later.
  • Boards are not circular, and instead are linear with a Point A and Point B. The game ends when you reach the end of the board.
  • There are five total bonus stars but only two of those bonus stars are put into play to boost the star totals of players. Possible bonus stars range from “Most spaces moved forward,” to the atypical “most minigames won.”
  • Matches take at most thirty minutes, and there are no “turns.” You finish your game when you reach the end of the map.
  • Bowser Spaces do not exist until players roll a “full house.” He roars at you via the Wii U gamepad to remind you when you are getting closer to unlocking him.
  • Each board has a mid-boss as well as a final boss at the end.

Playing Standard Ass Mario Party

So yes, there are no “stars” nor items in this Mario Party game, and a lot of bellyaching has been made about that point as well as the decision to group players onto the same vehicle. In practice both of these changes address one of the biggest and most pressing issue facing the Mario Party franchise: it’s just too freaking long to complete one game. The linear maps also assist in this regard as matches realistically cannot possibly last more than thirty to forty minutes.

Vinny's Rule 1-1 Applies to Mario Party 10

The collective movement gives Mario Party 10 the added benefit of being…the least annoying edition to the series in a long time. The collective movement means that there are fewer surprises in this version. Event/Happening Spaces are also less annoying. When you land on event spaces rather than screwing up players that happen to be in a specific area, events usually just deduct mini-stars from the player that landed on the space. Now, there are still plenty surprises, and Bowser will fuck you up if you land on him or unlock him in this edition. There are also an increase in the number of board specific “Special Events” in this edition, and these more so than in nine can be game ending. THAT SAID the decision to randomize the bonus stars that are awarded at the end, and also limit that number to two, is a genius design decision. The linear maps also have the added benefit of preventing user confusion about where to go next on the map, as many of you may have seen during the Mario Party 4 stream on Giant Bomb.

However, where does that leave Mario Party 10 for people who actually like playing Mario Party games? Well conflicted to say the least. All of the changes that I have mentioned addressed one problem to Mario Party, but have worsened or created all new ones as a result. The biggest of which is related to the number of minigames that you will play for the duration of a match. It is very much possible for you to only play maybe three or four minigames total during a single session; in fact it happened to my party twice.

I should also add that there are only five boards in this outing. Now I know what you are thinking, and yes most of Mario Party games do only have five maps. However, with all of these rule changes five maps is simply not enough content. By converting the format of the boards you essentially see everything there is to see on the maps in one thirty minute session meaning that boards lack any longevity after one play-through. In the standard format there were plenty of cases where after playing a fifty turn match I still felt like there was more to see on maps. I should also mention that one of the maps is Bowser’s Castle which you will only want to play once meaning the actual total is four. Much has been said about the fabled “Price to Game Hours” ratio, but I am just going to go on record and say that five maps at maybe thirty five minutes each…is not exactly worth fifty to forty dollars. Which then places a great deal of the burden of justifying purchasing this entry on the other modes and additional features..which we will get to.

The minigames…still repeat the same minigames within the same match, and have become increasingly reliant on counting and memory games. Given that they are experienced at a limited basis this is completely baffling. Worse yet is how once the party reaches the middle point of the map the player in last place gets to pick, from a selection of three, which minigames are played. Now to many this may sound like a good change. However, for me this meant that my drunken friends kept picking the same games over and over again because they felt more comfortable playing something “safe,” rather than something new. That said with each entry it seems as if the emphasis on the minigames grows weaker and weaker. Also, my criticism of the minigames being too reliant on counting and memory games is moot as every entry seems to zero in on one style or flavors of minigame the most. For example let's not forget the "Mash A to win" nature of Mario Party 4.

Playing the Amiibo Boards

In theory this mode was envisioned to be the “alternative mode” for people who want to play more traditional Mario Party. In execution this mode is completely worthless. While this mode tasks players with collecting coins, playing minigames at the end of a turns, and using coins to purchase stars a couple of design decisions spoil this mode. Firstly the boards are all exactly the same shit over and over again.

Are you thinking that I’m being hyperbolic? Here’s the board that you play on if you play the Mario Amiibo:

That's a Fucking Square!!!

Now here’s the map that you play on if you utilize the Peach Amiibo:

That is..Another Fucking Square!!!

Yoshi Amiibo:

WELL SHIT SON!

YUUUUUUUUUUUP all of the maps are just squares. Each board has one map specific feature that lets the player collect more coins, most of the time from other players, but they are still boring ass squares. Like I said this mode is worthless, and as such I only really played it twice.

Playing Bowser Party

This is Some Tense Some Right Here!

Now here’s where actual fun can be had in regards to Mario Party 10. There are two distinct “flavors” Bowser Party, and both are actually fun. The first is perfect if you have that one person in your party that enjoys being a troll. In that mode you have two to four players on “Team Mario,” and another player playing as Bowser using the Wii U pad. If you play in Team Mario each player takes a turn and works towards trying to get the team as far away from the Bowser player as possible with the goal being able to reach the end of the map. Bowser on the other hand has to gobble up all of the members of Team Mario by depleting their hearts during minigames or board based events. The other version has all of the players on Team Mario and working together to get to the end of the board and away from an A.I. controlled Bowser.

I really enjoyed this mode as it takes the luck based aspect of Mario Party and finally embraces it, as well as tame it. Now that players work as a group if one player rolls poorly you can then rely on the next team member to bail you out. Also with special die blocks being shared there is a sense of collective strategy. Bowser on the other hand works to ruin the fun of the other players, and plays off of the trollish undertones of Mario Party’s luck based nature. More importantly players are participants in all parts of Mario Party’s shenanigans. If you are Bowser you are actively trying to ruin people’s fun, and for everyone else you are trying to frustrate that one person that wants to ruin the fun for everyone.

In this one mode it appears, very briefly, a viable alternative to the standard Mario Party playstyle. There were plenty of times when someone was playing as Bowser and completely fucked up team Mario in one minigame, and in this mode that is all in good fun. Bowser Party also puts stakes on the minigames as each hit from Bowser removes your heart, thus finally integrating the minigames with the actual game. Sure the minigames are all cheap parlor tricks meant to waste away hearts but it is a nice inversion of the standard format. The issue is that of the five boards, only three can play this mode.

Final Assessment

Despite my best efforts, and every bone in my body telling me to be a Mario Party apologist…I can’t...I just cannot recommend Mario Party 10 with a straight face. There are still people that will get some semblance of joy out of this game, but those are crazy people like me that enjoy playing a game as mindless and trollish as this. I mean I had fun…with one third of the game. Which might I add I enjoyed the Hell out of that one third, but that is not a great reason to purchase this game.

To be honest this is all dancing around the big elephant in the room. We live in a post WarioWare and Fortune Street world. Yet Mario Party has consistently failed to borrow any of the good ideas from either of these game franchises when trying to reform and tame its inherent flaws. Why the Mario Party developers don’t just borrow the style of minigames from WarioWare is just downright stupid. Also the board format of Mario Party definitely could learn something from Fortune Street, especially regarding how to utilize luck in an engaging and fun way. Yet how it stands now is that the general party mode of Mario Party 10 is a disappointment to fans of the series, and too much of the same for people that have never enjoyed Mario Party in the first place.

BUUUUUUUUT…that is my recommendation to most of you. I’m still playing Mario Party 10…and most likely will continue to do so for the next couple of months. So what’s the deal? Mario Party is still one of the few games where I can honestly invite any person I know to play, and regardless of video game experience they will be able to play it and be able to win. It is for that reason that I continue to play it under very specific circumstances, and will continue to do so.

P.S. I also played Super Smash Bros. on the Wii U, but that is a stupid game lacking any form of finesse and discourages skill based play. It is the Mario Party of fighting games.

38 Comments

The Community Spotlight - (03/20/2015)

@fobwashed is the Person to Thank for This Animated .gif

Hello and welcome to the latest edition of the Giant Bomb Community Spotlight, and I am honored to be your host as always! How about this week we all agree to recognize as the guns a blazin' type rather than the "silent but deadly" type.

State of the Site

Do you miss listening to podcasts featuring the voice of Vinny? Well you are in luck as the site's number one Italian made a guest appearance on CNET's 404 Podcast with the topics ranging from the death of Internet Explorer to Mortal Kombat X. For users that are still having issues with the URL system, please understand that the engineers are working on a solution to the problem. The Giant ROM project hosted by @havochq now has SEVEN user created, Giant Bomb inspired, fan games!. Check out the domain and enjoy the wonderful creations that members of this community have made. Finally, Dave Snider and his wife welcomed a new child into their lives this year. Please welcome "DUKE SNIDER"

Clip of the Week

@theburlaplemur is BACK with a new edition of his Bitesize Bomb video series. For those that are unfamiliar with this series TheBurlapLemur seeks to find the funniest moments of EVERY Quick Look on Giant Bomb. A daunting but continually rewarding folly as you can see here:

Awesome Artwork

@dalai is the one to thank for the giant Dave Lang head that you may have seen during any PAX East live streams last week. @aurahack calls on YOU to join him in taking a stand against RUN GFB by cancelling your PAXW Network subscription. JohnMcFarland on Twitter has created an AWESOME pencil sketch of Dirty Dan Ryckert. @fobwashed brings clarity to Dan's love for all things Waluigi. Finally the giantbombquotes Tumblr has created a welcome banner for the state of Kansas using a pull quote from Dan.

Community Activities

  • Sign Up for the Giant Bomb Community Endurance Run MTG FNM and Royal Rumble - Help the Effort to Raise Money for Charity By Heading OVER HERE!
  • Donation Incentives for thatpinguino's FFIX Speed Run for the Giant BomB Community Endurance Run - Help Him Figure Out How to Better Raise Money for Charity HERE!

Wonderful Wikis

Final Fantasy Type-0 recently had its console HD version released in the West this week, but if you want to learn more about the game then feel free to check out our wiki page for the original game. Cities: Skylines has been getting a lot of buzz with the Giant Bomb community and you can learn more about that and Ziggurat on our nicely detail wiki pages for those games. Also you concept page of the week is "Mid-Game Haircut."

Best of Blogs

As mentioned on the Art Showcase Dalai is the madman behind the massive Dave Lang head that many of you saw during the PAXAMAINIA stream. Read all about that plus his other adventures during PAX East 2015. With Final Fantasy Type-0 HD making the rounds kyle_is_1derful decided to go back to and play FFVII: Crisis Core, and shares his comprehensive thoughts on the game. Speaking of Final Fantasy GrantHeaslip continues his retrospective of FFXIII with a look at the games' introduction of Snow. To continue the trend of Final Fantasy blogs on the showcase thatpinguino treated the community with another speedrun guide for FFIX, and this week examined the hardest parts of disc one. thatpinguino also talks about his personal relationship with the Magic the Gathering card game. Tarfuin extrapolates on why he thinks Hotline Miami 2 built upon what he disliked about the original game on his latest blog, whereas JBG4 talks about why he is completely fine with the difficulty spike in Hotline Miami 2. Yummylee details exactly why The Evil Within's latest batch of DLC, The Assignment, is DLC done right. Meanwhile andylonn shares his hatred of all things fishing related in video games. MooseyMcMan had fun with Helldiver, but less so with cloud saving, and finally FLStyle has the play by play for Final Round 18 this week.

Fantastic Forums

As already mentioned Dave Snider and his wife recently welcomed their new son, Duke Snider into the world! If you could please join the rest of the community in wishing the Snider household the best. Moving onto game we have two threads for Cities: Skylines players. The first thread welcomes you to post screencaps of your cities, and the other gives you the opportunity to share any tips or tricks that you have about the game for newcomers. Hotline Miami 2 still has the community in a buzz and this week you are welcomed to discuss your favorite and most hated levels, as well as your experiences with the games' Hard Mode. We have a discussion thread for the Final Fantasy XV demo, as well as a spoiler-riffic ending discussion thread for Ori and the Blind Forest. Finally share the last time that the visuals to a game had an awe inspiring impact on you.

Lovable Lists

FreezyFrog has started his own "Gaming Hall of Fame." So check out that list and think of what games you might want to send to Canton. ATD88 on the other hand decided rank all of the main Final Fantasy games from best to worst.

Useful User Reviews

11 Comments

The Community Spotlight - (03/13/2015)

Hello and welcome to the latest edition of the Giant Bomb Community Spotlight, and I am honored to be your host as always! This week let's all agree to not rely on RUN GFB for alliances or getting jobs done. I wouldn't even trust the motley crew with yard work.

State of the Site

With the insanity of PAX East finally concluded we can now return to normalcy on Giant Bomb. For those that missed them you can catch the archive for PAXAMANIA over here, and the 404ing It (Featuring Vinny) over here. The Giant Bomb Community Eve Online Corporation, Kite Co., has started selling their own t-shirts! Check out the design that they selected over here. Finally as always remember that the The Giant Bomb Community Endurance is still all set for April 12th, and you can volunteer to help the effort over here. Wit that let's get on with the latest edition of the Giant Bomb community Spotlight!

Clip of the Week

Well...I am not exactly excited at the promo image that @turboman selected for the latest edition of his "Best of Giant Bomb" video series, but I guess well all just have to deal with it.

Awesome Artwork

A very hearty thanks is in store for @electrickumquat for creating an awesome set of Unplugged themed D&D figurines. @datarez is on a roll with the iRacing car designs with and Alt+F1 and a Tested.com design this week. Finally cosmic-bacon on Tumblr has created some AWESOME Dirty Dan and Dr. Tracksuit artwork.

Community Activities

  • Sebring 12 Hours 2015 iRacing.com Tournament - Set for March 28th - Sign Up Here!
  • Helldivers PSN ID Trading Thread - Find a Co-Op Partner Over Here!

Wonderful Wikis

Code Name: S.T.E.A.M. has a MASSIVE wiki page largely thanks to the hard work of DeF. Hotline Miami 2 also has the community in a buzz and you can learn more about the game on our wiki page as well.

Best of Blogs

Sarumarine found Hotline Miami 2 to be a completely brutal, but overall enjoyable experience this week. kyle_is_1derful on the other hand has done a fantastic job of translating and explaining what in the world Hissatsu Shigotonin, a Japanese only game, is all about. thatpinguino dabbled with the Khans of Tarkir card set in Magic the Gathering, as well as continuing his speed running theorization of bosses from Final Fantasy IX. MajorMitch details the science and logic of the games that graced his top fifty games of all time list. MooseyMcMan finally had the pleasure of going to PAX East for the first time this year and shares what the experience was like. ArbitraryWater takes a stab at trying to explain the appeal of Monster Hunter games as someone who played over 100 hours of Monster Hunter 4. Abyss Odyssey is an oddity that was mostly overlooked by the press and gaming community and Ford_Dent has a blog pleading everyone to give it a shot. noahtheboa999 recently fell down the Starcraft 2 rabbit hole...again, and he details why he has no regrets. Similarly VincentAvatar decide to go back to Titanfall and shares how the community in that game has been doing. JBG4 questions Microsoft's decision to create a Master Chief Collection Xbox One bundle, and finally Marino welcomes you to join him in trying to summarize PAX East in 100 words.

Fantastic Forums

As the artwork showcase shows electrickumquat has done a bang up job with his D&D figurines inspired by the most recent Unplugged video series. So please join the rest of the community telling him that he has done a job well done. Hotline Miami 2 is the recent release that has the forums in a buzz, and you can feel free to discuss the story or soundtrack. Kaysauce has created some hilarious Terminator 2 inspired posters. thatpinguino wants you to help him in planning the format for the upcoming Giant Bomb Community Endurance Run charity stream. The Evil Within got new DLC and the JRPG sub-community wants to see if you bought Atelier Shallie. Finally please join the rest of the Giant Bomb community in paying our respects to the late great Sir Terry Pratchett.

Lovable Lists

To follow up his blog about what it takes for a game to appear on his all time favorites list, MajorMitch has updated his list to include some recent releases. Similarly brodehouse has gone back to the games of 2000 and re-examined what he thinks are the best games of that year.

Useful User Reviews

11 Comments

The Community Spotlight - (03/06/2015)

Hello and welcome to the latest edition of the Giant Bomb Community Spotlight, and I am honored to be your host as always. As you all hopefully know it is the weekend of PAX East 2015! If you are attending the event drop a yelp on our Roll Call thread and see if you can hook up with some other users in person during the event. Otherwise stay safe and please have fun at the event.

State of the Site

Are you having issues with hyperlinking on the site? Well there's been an odd problem with the backslash on the HTTP code that has been messing up our system. If you paste a link without a backslash go ahead and add one in at the end of your link. If you already have a backslash and are getting an error try deleting it and trying to submit the link. How about those PAXAMANIA videos that Jeff, Alex, and Dan posted? If you have not yet seen them here are the links to all of them:

Clip of the Week

So what do you do when you are a well known user like @turboman and you get invited to join the staff during an online co-operative Quick Look for Helldivers? Why you deploy right on top of Drew instantly killing him is what you do, and @quaglartheiv has the video to prove it! Also @rapid would like for all of you to check out what the community Warframe clan did for the Phoenix Intercept event!

Awesome Artwork

We have another shot of @datarez's AMAZING Giant Bomb East iRacing skin, and also fanart from lcomart that crosses Waluigi and Peach to create...Wa-peach.

Community Activities

  • Sebring 12 hours 2015 - Hosted By the Giant Bomb iRacing Community & Set For March 28th - Join Over Here!
  • OlliOlli 2 PSN ID Sharing Thread - Fill Your Leaderboard With Giant Bomb Users By Heading Here!
  • Helldivers PSN ID Sharing Thread - Hook Up With Other Users Online By Heading Over Here!

Wonderful Wikis

I'm just going to use the weekly wiki showcase this time around to provide some extra promotion for fellow moderator @mento's effort to rejuvenate the wiki pages for a smattering of TurboGrafx-CD games. These are just a few of the games that he has attempted to improve recently.

Best of Blogs

Let's give a big hearty round of applause for Mento for putting in the effort to not complete Metal Gear Solid 3 this week but to also put in a ton of tender loving care into the Giant Bomb Wiki. Speaking of the Giant Bomb Wiki bobafettjm is back with his Wiki Update blog series where he welcomes you to join him in discussing what wonderful work you have all been doing on the wiki. Similarly JBG4 also wishes to welcome you with a weekly update on what he accomplished in terms of gaming last week. Shivoa wrote an introspective look at the status of reviews as a source of accurate consumer information. GrantHeaslip is continuing to write his retrospective of Final Fantasy XIII and this week discusses why he enjoys the games' introduction and cast of characters. Meanwhile thatpinguino is talking about a different Final Fantasy game in the form of a Deep Look and speedrun advice blog pertaining to Final Fantasy IX. thatpinguino is also up to his old tricks with a blog discussing card combat, but this week blogs about Triple Triad. theacidskull recently read Halo: Fall of Reach and heartily recommends it to anyone with an interest in science fiction. A new month means that BlackLagoon has a blog annotating all of the games coming out for the PlayStation Vita. Ford_Dent enjoyed Aliens: Isolation, but extrapolates on why its use of throwaway characters hurt the games' immersion. Finally MajorMitch and shindig have monthly updates on what they accomplished in the last month in terms of gaming.

Fantastic Forums

So how has Helldivers been treating you? Join the rest of the community in discussing your online experience, both good and bad, on our community discussion thread. We also have a Dragonball Z Xenoverse discussion thread where you too can share your experiences with the illustrious Pinto Bean. Also, community favorite Super Hot finally released in the form of an alpha and if you got your hands on that please feel free to discuss your early impressions of how the game is looking. FINALLY, the Big Live Live Show is BACK and is all set for April 28th! Mark your calendars and talk about what you are most hoping to see during the event.

Lovable Lists

HDetective games are a rare breed nowadays and Kewlsnake took the time to look back on some of the Noir and Detective games that he has the fondest memories for.

Useful User Reviews

14 Comments

The Community Spotlight - (02/27/2015)

The End is NIGH! (Thank you @humanity for this Banner!)

State of the Site/Housekeeping

Hello and welcome to the latest edition of the Giant Bomb Community Spotlight! I am your honored host as always, and for those wondering yes this was released super late! The reason is that this week marked the first week in about two years where I "lost" a Spotlight. But enough of my problems let's discuss the notable news and site happenings this week.

There are TWO new t-shirt designs available on the Giant Bomb store. The first design is a Metal Gear Scanlon themed t-shirt, and the second is the 2015 Members t-shirt. Be quick as some sizes have already sold out! Also in a bit of surprising news did you know that the Happy Hour intro song had lyrics to it originally? Well check out this post from Vinny on Tumblr, and have your mind blown. With that let's get on with the latest edition of the Giant Bomb Community Spotlight!

Clip(s) of the Week

As listeners of the Bombcast may recall there was a recent joke about the crew forming their own band and calling the band "Guns N Roses II." Well @jgray went ahead and created a T.V. advertisement for the would be musical ensemble. The second video comes from Dan and...I don't know wrestling is happening at PAX East this year again.

Awesome Artwork

@monkeyman04 has created a new logo for Giant Bomb East using the New York F.C. emblem. @metalliccookies on the other hand created codex hub pictures for Dan and Drew in lieu of the start of Metal Gear Scanlon 3. Finally @ltsquigs "discovered" Dave Lang's wonderful acting career.

Community Activities

  • The Next Annual Giant Bomb Community Endurance Run is All Set for April 12th!!! Sign up to Help or Host a Livestream on the Official Thread Over HERE!
  • Giant Bomb Community Game Jam!!! - Help @havochq Potentially Organize a Giant Bomb themed Game Jam By Heading Over Here!
  • Giant Bomb Under Nigh In-Birth Exe-Late Community Hub - Hook-up with Other Users Playing This Game Online Over HERE!

Wonderful Wikis

Resident Evil and DragonBall are the big new releases this week and they both have wiki pages that are worth checking out. Anime fighter Under Night In-Birth finally was released in the United States which means that if you have not heard of the game you should check out our wiki page for it.

Best of Blogs

JJWeatherman has written a massive blog detailing the first twenty hours that he played in Monster Hunter IV Ultimate and tries to "demystify" why he enjoys the game. JBG4 joins him, but is a newcomer to the franchise with Monster Hunter IV being his first experience with the franchise. JBG4 also provided a weekly update on what he played, similarly mooseymcman shares his thoughts on The Last of Us' Left Behind DLC as well as The Fall, Giant Bomb's "Best Story" of 2014 GOTY recipient. GrantHeaslip has written a massive blog detailing exactly why he has warmed up to Final Fantasy XIII, whereas N7 details why he is flummoxed with the first episode of Resident Evil: Revelations 2. Some may call demoskinos a crazy person as he spent $93 on Dead or Alive 5 Last Round, but he stands up for his purchasing decision on his latest blog. The science of basketball and the world and atmosphere of Grim Fandango where the subjects of two blogs from thatpinguino. Mento has the special distinction of having written four blogs this week. However, Mento is also struggling to get comments on his blogs so please give them a check and drop a comment on them. ArbitraryWater is back to his old tricks and is playing old games of questionable quality and this week he played Bound By Flame. VincentAvatar admits that the Resident Evil re-remake is a cash grab, but it's a cash grab that he can get behind. Finally morecowbell24 discusses the difficulty and art of making a balanced game, and joe423 has started a retrospective blog series for Okami.

Fantastic Forums

As already mentioned jgray has created an AMAZING mock T.V. commercial worth seeing. metalliccookies has created the first piece of Metal Gear Scanlon 3 fanart on the site with Codex Pictures for Dan and Drew. The Final Fantasy XIV and Guild Wars communities welcome you to read all about the updates to their games. On a more somber note you are also welcomed to share your experiences with losing save data as well as the cancelled games you are most disappointed never were released. Finally...wrestling stuff is going to happen soon. Something about a P-A-X from what I hear.

Lovable Lists

TechnoSyndrome is working on a list of the coolest video game main characters, and if you have any ideas for additions on his list drop a comment on it. CottoneUD on the other hand completed his Endurance Run of Persona 4 Golden and lists out all of the games he played and potentially completed while he worked on Persona 4 Golden a day at a time.

Useful User Reviews

12 Comments

The Community Spotlight - (02/20/2015)

Hello and welcome to the latest edition of the Giant Bomb Community Spotlight! As always I am honored to be your belated hostess with the mostest!

State of the Site/Housekeeping

@rorie has recently indicated that if all things go according to plan he hopes to host a "Box Office Winner's League" once a week, so if you missed the competition last week just wait for the new one this week. Are you still confused about Premium versions of the podcast disappearing from your podcast feed? Well relax, Jeff has an answer for you over here. Some users have been reporting that their user avatar has not been appearing properly during live streams. If that is the case please file a bug report over here. With that we should be done withe the site news, so lets get on with the Community Spotlight!

Clip of the Week

Animated Bombcasts are back with our first clip, and our second clip features what the Guilty Gear Weekly Tournament was up to last week. You can join the fun by heading over here.

Awesome Artwork

Everyone should check @havochq Dan Ryckert TNG game in the blogs section NOW! The Giant Bomb Blurb Tumblr is back as always. Finally...Dan has located some nightmare fuel staff related fan art from NeoGAF.

Community Activities

  • PAX Guide 2015: East Edition - If You Plan on Going to PAX East Check Out Marino's Guide in Order to Improve Your Enjoyment of the Event HERE!
  • Frozen Cortex Giant Bomb Friendly League - With the Full Release Share your Information to Play with Other Users Over HERE!

Wonderful Wikis

Our wiki page for DoA 5 Last Round tries its darndest to make sense of its insane amount of DLC. RRDDD is finally out and it has a neon drenched wiki filled with text. Finally, check out our wiki page for Kirby and the Rainbow Curse.

Best of Blogs

As already mentioned HavocHQ has created an AWESOME browser based game that lets you pilot a Federation spaceship from the perspective of our very own Dan Ryckert. TwoLines has written a massive epic related to Final Fantasy IX which discusses in great detail the themes and characters of the game. On a similar note thatpinguino extrapolates on the dangers of nostalgia, and how he has fallen victim to it on a couple of occasions. Aurahack lays out his plans for distributing his Puyo Puyo Tetris x Giant Bomb cards during PAX East. FLStyle has the event itinerary for Winter Brawl 9 plus some interesting Fighting Game Community related news. For those interested in going back to old Bombcast episodes give Matthew's blog a look as he breaks down a fantastic Bombcast from 2008 on his latest blog. Ford_Dent details his adventures with Darkest Dungeon, whereas VincentAvatar shares how Sword Coast Legends surprised him in regards to how much he enjoyed it. N7 made the leap to the next generation after getting some wonderful help from another Giant Bomb user, and JBG4 graced us this week with a trifecta of blogs all worth reading.

Fantastic Forums

Fobwashed is the user to thank for the awesome animated .gif banner this week so please thank him for an awesome work of art. FLStyle wants YOU to join him in discussing the lineup and your hopes for the upcoming Capcom Pro Tour. Weapons were oddly enough a fixation of the Giant Bomb community this week with a discussion about the best weapon in Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate as well as a thread debating the best video game shotguns. Finally Majora's Mask has been a bit of a...prickly issue on the Bombcast, so why not share your opinion on the game?

Lovable Lists

Brodehouse is continuing with his effort to create comprehensive lists compiling the biggest and best games of every year that video games have existed in. This week 2006 and 1993 are his targets. arkid on the other hand has a problem, he keeps buying games that he never plays, and shares his list of shame.

Useful User Reviews

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The Community Spotlight - (02/13/2015)

Many Thanks to @aurahack for Creating This Wonderful Art!

Hello and welcome to the latest edition of the Giant Bomb Community Spotlight, and I am honored to be your host as always. This week let's all enjoy a box of Good and Plenty together!

State of the Site and Housekeeping

As hinted in the link provided above fellow moderator @sparky_buzzsaw is being a big fat poopy head. After I shared my personal love for Good and Plenty he went ahead and used a forum thread to try and mock me. That is why my fellow Giant Bomb users I ask that you join me in voting up Good and Plenty on his travesty of a poll. Even if you dislike the taste of "true" licorice, join the forces of good and dispel this bully. Also worth noting is that @rorie is hosting another edition of his always fantastic "Box Office Winner's League!" Head on over to the thread and try to win some wonderful prizes! Finally, @krullban noticed that a recent Teens React video used Giant Bomb as a source of information.

Clip of the Week

On the YouTube side of things Brenton Bagley has given a shot at creating the Giant Bomb team in #IDARB. Check out his effort and feel free to pause the video to capture his QR codes.

Awesome Artwork

Once again special thanks go to @aurahack for the Puyo Puyo Tetris themed artwork. @bbalpert is the user to thank for the WWE themed Valentine's Day Cards inspired by The Powerbombcast. arlenpringle created a cool Dr. Tracksuit Japanese inspired t-shirt design. Humanity has a poster reminding you that PAX East, and the return of Dr. Tracksuit, is nigh. spacedongle envisioned Jeff as a character in Persona 5. vintagespiffy has Jeff and Brad dressed as their respective Mario Party compatriots. Finally the Giant Bomb Blur account reminds you of Alex referencing Haze during the Gravity Ghost Quick Look.

Community Activities

  • Evolve Online Gamertag, Steam ID, and PSN ID Exchange - Hookup with Other Users Over Here!
  • Giant Bomb MH4U Hunters Guild - Hunt With Other Users By Heading Over Here!

Wonderful Wikis

Evolve and Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate are the recent releases that have attracted the most amount of attention from the wiki editing community this week. Also worth noting is that last week marked the 25th anniversary of the U.S. release of Super Mario Bros. 3.

Best of Blogs

Please join the rest of the community in thanking aurahack and BBAlpert for the artwork that they have provided this week. DevourerOfTime continues to countdown the big 2015 games that he is interested in. Colorwind asks some pointed questions about Capcom's game design and future. Mento is back with dueling blogs this week. The first provides a more in-depth examination of Harvester, whereas the second plots out his wiki plans for a handful of TurboGrafx-16 games. Speaking of dueling blogs thatpinguino has a Deep Look about FFX's use of blitzball to depict sports culture, and his thoughts on Grim Fandango as a newcomer to the game. JBG4 has a new weekly gaming update, and this episode discusses his thoughts on a smattering of horror games. Also worth noting is that JBG4 is starting a weekly blog series examining the weekly offerings from the WWE. MooseyMcMan reminisces about the tough as nails difficulty of Link to the Past. Shindig and nophilip both have belated, but still awesome summaries of their gaming last month. Finally nophilip went to a concert that played a setlist of Final Fantasy themed music and shares his thoughts on the experience.

Fantastic Forums

For those of you that have played and completed Dying Light, what are thoughts about the game's ending? If you have thoughts share them on our ending discussion thread for the game. We also have an impressions thread for IDARB, as well as the upcoming movie adaptation of the Hitman franchise. Can you think of the best story in an open world game, or how about the ethnicities of Waluigi and Wario? Finally AlisterCat is hosting his own edition of "Ask Me Anything" for the new 3DS XL.

Lovable Lists

LisaTiffany is and always will be a console gamer, but a handful of PC games have caught her attention lately as seen on her latest list. Brodehouse looks back upon 2002 and lists off the biggest and best games of that year. Finally Zapbrader introduces himself to the community with a list of his favorite games of all time.

Useful User Reviews

16 Comments

The Community Spotlight - (02/06/2015)

Special Thanks Go to @saik0u for the Artwork This Week!

Hello and welcome to the latest edition of the Giant Bomb Community Spotlight, and I am honored to be your host as always. Let's enjoy our very own Mario party this week!

State of the Site and Housekeeping

Unfortunately there appear to be a handful of issues on the site worth mentioning. Firstly, if your premium subscription has mysterious disappeared the staff are asking that you contact support@giantbomb.com. If you have received a "The CSRF token is invalid," message on the site please let out a yelp over here. Finally the engineers are working on getting the notification system back to where it needs to be. With all of that noted let's get on with the latest episode of the Giant Bomb Community Spotlight!

Clip of the Week

Special thanks go to @turboman for yet another awesome episode of his "Best of Giant Bomb" video series. Also...Oxyrain on YouTube added all of the Giant Bomb staff to his Tomodachi Life game plus Dave Lang and recorded a cafe conversation they had...for twenty minutes straight.

Awesome Artwork

A big THANK YOU goes out to @lcom for making an awesome batch of Dave Lang themed Valentine's Day Cards which allow you and your partner to enter the "Lang Zone" during the aforementioned February holiday. Paul Ryckert discovered how to use Photoshop. The Giant Blurb Tumblr account is still hitting it out of the park. spacedongle made a work of art featuring Drew wearing the Crocodile Hat from Metal Gear Solid 3. @humanity created an awesome banner for Dan's new "Danswers" feature, and @kirlia is the one to thank for the animated shouting/angry Drew this week.

Community Activities

  • Giant Bomb Magic the Gathering Group - thatpinguino is Trying to Start a Community Online Group Over Here!

  • Giant Bomb Warframe Clan - Read All About the NEW UPDATES for the Clan Over Here!

Wonderful Wikis

Our wiki for #IDARB is here to tell you what all of the hashbombs in the game are. It's still winter so you know what that means! Yup it's another HD Remaster Hyper Edition that exploits your nostalgia for financial gain! This week it's Majora's Mask and Grim Fandango!

Best of Blogs

Saik0u is the user to thank for the banner this week, whereas LCom made the awesome Dave Lang Valentine's Cards! BlazeHedgehog has a video and blog post sharing his review of Sonic Boom and the last year in games. Gruebacca questions the purpose and point of Far Cry 4's story considering how little care was put into it. Mento wrapped up his blog series pertaining to Lightning Returns and shares his final impressions on the game. DevourerOfTime blogs about the games getting released during 2015 that he is most looking forward to. JBG4 not only provides a weekly update on his gaming, but he also shares his thoughts on the status of WWE's RAW brand. Mario Galaxy and Geometry Wars 3 absorbed MooseyMcMan's last week, and he is joined by TonicBH who spent his week with Counter Strike, Borderlands 2, and many other games. thatpinguino is still tinkering around with his Magic the Gathering deck, but he also has a new "Deep Look" about why his play style for Dark Souls 2 is so wrong, but so "right." Ford_Dent explains why he thinks the themes of lose and decline are what really set apart Kentucky Route Zero from any other games he has experienced. Finally a new month means that MajorMitch is here to give a monthly gaming update, and BlackLagoon has a list of all the games coming out for the PS Vita.

Fantastic Forums

Feel free to join the Giant Bomb Community's intense discussion about the latest Persona 5 trailer...it's almost as if there are a lot of Persona fans on Giant Bomb. If spoilers are something you are interested in exposing yourself to you might want to check out Game of Thrones or Apotheon discussion threads. Finally share your impressions of the end of the Club Nintendo Rewards club, as well as your last video game themed dream or nightmare.

Lovable Lists

LisaTiffany has a problem, LisaTiffany has a bunch of untouched PS3 games that have never been played, and you can read all about it. chilibean_3 on the other hand has taken the time to list his favorite games of all time.

Useful User Reviews

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The Community Spotlight - 01/30/2015 (MARIO PARTY EDITION)

Special Thanks to @bboymaestro and @aurahack for the Banner THis Week!

Hello and welcome to the latest edition of the Giant Bomb Community Spotlight, and I am honored to be your host as always. Let's enjoy our very own Mario party this week!

State of the Site and Housekeeping

A lot of users have been reporting issues in regards to the Giant Bomb chat and live stream systems. If you have been having issues site engineer @jslack would like for you to click a link that he has to try and locate/determine the source of the issue. @rorie wants for all users that were not able to purchase a premium account during at any point last week to send him a yelp at support at giantbomb.com. Finally, friend of the site Pat Baer has posted the video recording of his 404ing It panel during PAX South which features Jeff, Samantha Kalman, and Trin Garritano.

Awesome Artwork

This week we once again have a slew of emblems from the Giant Bomb Warframe Clan, but this time they are asking for YOUR INPUT on which emblem they should use. @saik0u has created a banner for the Mario Party 3 stream, whereas @fobwashed gives Dan the victory he secretly wants in his wrestling inspired artwork. jackelzxa has an idea of what Dan's two favorite things are in a pencil sketch. jrdizon went to PAX South and took pictures of himself with the GB staff and the Dr. Tracksuit alpaca toy he made. Finally arcanesylph is on a roll with great artwork about the staff and their feelings about another Mario Party stream.

Community Activities

  • Giant Bomb Guild Thread Mk. III - Lincoln Force Has Been REBOOTED - Check out the New Guild Thread Here!

Wonderful Wikis

Mario Party 3 is a good game, and I enjoy playing Mario Party. There I said it. So if you have a heart and a soul check out our awesome Mario Party 3 page as well as our well done Waluigi page. Also, good work has recently been done to our Teslagrad page.

Best of Blogs

It is all about the artwork this week, and as you can see one of the big highlights comes from @aurahack and @bboymaestro. Mento and thatpinguino both have the distinction of creating multiple blogs this week. Mento spent the week pontificating upon Lightning Returns, whereas thatpinguino shared his thoughts on Magic the Gathering and his progress as a blogger and a writer about video games. Yummylee has written the MOST COMPREHENSIVE breakdown about the good and bad of the recent Resident Evil HD Remaster. JBG4 once again welcomes you with a weekly update on what he played in the last week, in the meantime FLStyle welcomes you to discuss the latest Fighting Game Community event. armaan8014 finally completed Assassin's Creed: Unity and details his final thoughts on the game, and why he disliked it overall. el_tajij admits to being a League of Legends fan, and from that perspective writes about his thoughts on his time with Heart of the Storm. Finally, Ford_Dent has the second part to his blog series about visiting a modern arcade and the sorry state of them.

Fantastic Forums

Do you think we will ever see a Mario Party 4 stream? Join the degenerate bet thread below. On top of that Resident Evil expert Yummylee wants to see which save room theme you think is the best in the series. Did you pick up any of the PS+ games for February, or have any of you had any luck running Dying Light on PC with reasonable settings? If none of those threads tickle your fancy we also have discussion arenas for Life is Strange, the Indigo Prophecy re-master, and the latest expansion for Guild Wars 2.

Lovable Lists

Well I'm pretty sure that I said that I was going to put the kabosh on more 2014 GOTY list, but here we are and I still have some to share! Please check out joe423's and Karkarov's lists as they are worth reading over.

Useful User Reviews

19 Comments

The Community Spotlight - 01/23/2015

Someone Held an Air Force Gator Sign During a WWE Smackdown Event....

State of the Site and Housekeeping

Hello and welcome to the latest edition of the Giant Bomb Community Spotlight, and I am honored to be your host as always! Firstly most of the staff were away to attend PAX South, and unfortunately the Giant Bomb panel was not available to be livestreamed. However, if you are interested in a different "type" of archive Jeff has recently re-uploaded every episode of his NintenDownload X-press Podcast to his SoundCloud Account. Also the results to the Giant Bomb Community Anime of 2014 are in...and I just want to say that you all have terrible tastes. With that lets get on with the Community Spotlight!

Clip(s) of the Week

Both of our clips come from @rapid as he shares two events hosted by our Warframe PC Clan, which you can join over here.

Awesome Artwork

@humanity is the user to thank for all of the Heavy Industry banner art for the community Warframe clan. @rokkankitten listened to a recent Bombcast and created the Mario fanart as a result, and the GiantBombBlurb Tumblr account has another hilarious quote publishers could use on their boxart.

Community Activities

  • Giant Bomb Call of Duty: Advance Warfighter Community Clan - The Clan Recently Tied For First Play in the Recent Clan War & Unlocked the Centurion Exo! See What Else They have Planned Here!

Wonderful Wikis

Special thanks go to @bdhurkett for dumping 900+ wiki points into our SCRAM game page, which he admits is a "mediocre nuclear power plant simulator." In other news you can also learn more about the new releases Grey Goo, Citizens of Earth, and...well...HuniePop. The people who made that game need Jesus.

Best of Blogs

Brewmaster_Andy is really going to hit it out of the park for PAX Prime in 2015 by brewing a beer catering to Dan's tastes, and you can read all about it on his latest blog. Sparky_Buzzsaw on the other hand got a bit off topic and discussed his thoughts on Z Nation, and why he really enjoys the program. MooseyMcMan AND JBG4 both gave the Evolve beta a shot and share their detailed thoughts about what they enjoyed and disliked about it. Are you in the mood for some of the best Final Fantasy based puns in blogging history? Then you should give Mento's blog a read! GrantHeaslip is still having a romp of a time in FFXIV Online, and talks about making the transition to the PS4 version of the game. DarthOrange got a bit nostalgic by re-examining his favorite gaming moments on the PS-One, and he is joined by Ford_Dent who had the "displeasure" of visiting an actual modern day arcade recently. thatpinguino has fallen down the Magic the Gathering rabbit hole again, and extrapolates upon the Wisperwood Elemental deck. tiathyme is calling all Might and Magic fans, and wants your help in figuring out why he's bored playing Might and Magic VI. Resident Resident Evil aficionado, Yummylee, used the re-release of the Resident Evil remake to discuss how a proper remake for Resident Evil 2 can be done. Farkas has a compilation of the title cards for the Dream Card 101, and roomrunner has what I hope is the last GOTY blog until December.

Fantastic Forums

The true highlight of the week comes from tbk who has created the most comprehensive FAQ for anyone interested in playing Warframe. If fighting games are more your speed then you should go ahead and share your thoughts about the lineup for EVO 2015. Can you think of the most recent game that you added to your "Top Ten Games" list? If so then discuss the game on our thread about recent favorite games. Finally we have discussion threads for Grey Goo and Borderlands: The Handsome Collection.

Lovable Lists

brodehouse decided to go ahead and list what he thinks are the best games released during 1991, which is considered by some to be the best year for games. Kindpixel was also a bit nostalgic this week and went and listed the games that he is confident he will never forget.

Useful User Reviews

This Animated .gif Features Every Single Intro Screen to the UPFs of 2014

17 Comments