Westworld Showrunners to Adapt ‘Fallout’ Games for TV

Fallout TV Amazon Prime
(Bethesda)

Westworld was a big deal.

When the HBO series about theme park robots who slowly realized they were theme park robots premiered, it was to huge fanfare. The show had a big budget, a big cast that included Oscar winner Anthony Hopkins, and a high concept that had it primed to take over from Game of Thrones as HBO’s flagship series.

Unfortunately, the story of the show never quite lived up to the initial premise. Despite HBO’s announcement of a fourth season, which may be even more sprawling and include a dragon-infested medieval setting, the show never caught on with the public the way they’d hoped.

Season 4 is rumored to be show’s last, and now the duo behind Westworld, Jonathan Nolan and Lisa Joy, have a new project in the works. And it’s just as promising as Westworld once was.

Screenrant, they’ll be tackling another adaptation of existing science-fiction material, the popular video game series Fallout, for Amazon Prime.

The Fallout series, which includes sequel and spinoffs that add up to more than 50 hours of gameplay, is set in the United States in the late 21st century after a nuclear war has changed everything.

Amazing describes the Fallout world as “one where the future envisioned by Americans in the late 1940s explodes upon itself through a nuclear war in 2077. The magic of the ‘Fallout’ world is the harshness of the wasteland set against the previous generation’s utopian idea of a better world through nuclear energy.”

The games each focus on a different region of the country and feature robots, radioactive monsters, and a sprawling cast of characters. There is a lot for Nola and Joy to work with, as they acknowledged, saying “each chapter of this insanely imaginative story has cost us countless hours we could have spent with family and friends.”

They refer to Fallout as one of the greatest games of all time, a sentiment no doubt shares but its many fans, who’ve been waiting a long time for it to be adapted. There have been some false starts, but it seems like it’s finally going to happen, and that it could be on the air for quite a while, thanks to the trove of material there is to work with.

Let’s hope Nolan and Joy have better luck with this futuristic world than they had with their last one!

Fortnite Is Hosting ‘Inception’ Watch Party Inside the Game

(Epic Games / Warner Bros)

Fornite is constantly pushing the boundaries of what’s possible inside a video game.

Back in April, players of the massively popular battle royale game were treated to an exclusive concert from Travis Scott.

(YouTube / IGN)

Then in May, players were invited to gather ’round a big screen for the debut of the new trailer for Christopher Nolan’s Tenet.

(YouTube / Theslayer360)

Now Fortnite is bringing back the big screen, announcing today that on Friday, June 26th, you’ll be able to watch one of three Christopher Nolan movies in its entirety.

According to a blog post on Epic Games, the Nolan movie you get will be determined by the region you’re watching in.

PLAYERS IN THE UNITED STATES:

Your movie is Inception! You can watch this engrossing, star-studded mindfuck at 8am, 8pm, and 11:55pm (EST)!

PLAYERS IN THE UK AND CANADA:

Your movie is The Prestige! One of the most engrossing dramas ever made. Easily Nolan’s most under-appreciated film. You can watch it at noon (EST)!

PLAYERS IN BRAZIL, CHILE, AND INDIA:

Your movie is Batman Begins! Yeah yeah, it’s no Dark Knight, but still a really solid origin story. You can catch it at 4am (EST)!

We commend Epic Games for their unwavering commitment to break ground in video games, and hope everyone who participates has a wonderful Movie Nite!

Click here for more info and a complete listing of showtimes!

 

The 10 Best Sega Genesis Video Games of All Time

The 10 Best Sega Genesis Games
(Sega)

The Sega Genesis was one of the definitive video game consoles of the ’90s and primary competition to the powerhouse that was Nintendo. At the time of its American release in 1989, it boasted incredible performance over the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) and wowed gamers with eye-popping colors and giant detailed sprites. Even after Nintendo released the Super Nintendo Entertainment System (SNES) in 1991, Sega went on an absolute advertising offensive, bragging that “Sega does what Nintendon’t.”

With hundreds of games in its library, there were plenty of amazing titles to choose from – some standalone stars and others that built game franchises still popular today. So we’re diving into our nostalgia-ridden minds to reminisce about the best games Sega had to offer in this 16-bit era and highlight the absolute cream of the crop. Even when considering only Genesis exclusives (sorry, Mortal Kombat 2, and NBA Jam), it’s painful to narrow the list down to a mere 10, but dammit, we’re going to do it.

First things first though, you’ll probably need a console. You can grab one on eBay, they’ve got a great selection here.

So here it is. The Dad’s Top 10 Games on the Sega Genesis (in no particular order):

Earthworm Jim

Throwing an earthworm into a super-suit to create a superhero might sound ludicrous when compared to modern-day every-actor-has-a-six-pack Marvel movies, but this is 1994 we’re talking about – weird stuff just worked. Earthworm Jim is one of many 2D platformers from the Genesis era, but it had a number of characteristics that really set it apart as something special. Sure, Jim was armed with a gun like other action heroes, but it wasn’t until players watched him grab his own head out of his suit to attack enemies like a whip or navigate around and hang from hooks that we realized this was something different.

The art direction in this game is truly stunning with animations and cartoony graphics offering incredible detail and fluidity that few others can match. The only area where Jim really struggles is in the actual gameplay department. The animations, while beautiful, make Jim’s movement and combat feel imprecise at times. Enemy hitboxes and platform edges can be frustratingly hard to pinpoint, which distracts the game’s amazing humor and art style at times, but that still didn’t stop this one from becoming one of the most iconic and easily recognizable games from the Genesis era.

Buy it here.

Shinobi III: Return of the Ninja Master

10 Best Sega Genesis Games

You don’t really need a lot of context for a good ninja game. Just give me some cool moves, sharp weapons, and a bunch of “evil” ninjas to fight and I’m a happy camper. Shinobi III: Return of the Ninja Master does all three of these things just about perfectly on top of silky-smooth gameplay overall. The move set and weapon arsenal for this game are pretty standard when it comes to stereotypical ninja-ing (e.g., shurikens, a sword, flips, and kicks) but it’s when you see them chained together that you really feel like a high-flying ninja badass. Taking things a little outside the realm of reality, players also have a handful of fancy ninjitsu techniques that do serious damage to anyone on the receiving end – the most powerful arguably being a self-sacrificing explosion move that literally involves detonating your entire frickin’ body at the cost of one of your reserve lives. Hell yes, please.

On top of the great combat, Shinobi III breaks the monotony of its standard side-scrolling levels with alternate playstyle sequences like surfing and fighting on horseback, which actually work surprisingly well instead of feeling gimmicky or tacked on. Plus, the game features one of the best soundtracks on the Genesis, if not in all of gaming. It’s a masterful title that provides that full ninja experience without being too punishing (looking at you, Ninja Gaiden).

Buy it here.

Comix Zone

10 Best Sega Genesis Games

A 2D side-scroller developed by Sega in 1995, Comix Zone puts players in the shoes of a starving artist (appropriately named Sketch Turner) who gets thrown into the pages of his own comic book by one of his own villainous creations. Armed with his fists, glorious ponytail, and extremely ’90s wardrobe, Sketch battles his way through an army of illustrated baddies while flipping through the panels and pages of an actual comic book. Yup, if you ever got in trouble for doodling in school, this is the game for you.

Even though the idea of seeing your drawings come to life is inherently fun as hell, Comix Zone can be brutally difficult at times. Barring a few rare occasions, there are no extra lives or 1-ups in this game. If you mistime a jump and fall into a pit or your health bar drains to zero, it’s game over. Title screen. Oh, and on top of it all, your health constantly depletes as you progress through the game. Yup, since Sketch is comprised of paper, doing damage to enemies and the environment (who also live on said paper) results in taking damage yourself. Not the most enjoyable game mechanic, but it doesn’t stop Comix Zone from being one of the most unique and visually appealing titles on the platform.

Buy it here.

Vectorman

10 Best Sega Genesis Games

Released in October 1995, Vectorman was an attempt to extend the lifespan and relevance of the Genesis, and thanks to its stunning visuals and non-stop explosive action, it worked. Like Donkey Kong Country a year prior on the SNES, Vectorman featured revolutionary graphics for its time. The titular hero alone is comprised of 23 individual sprites moving in tandem, which are also individually affected by nearby light sources – really cool, even by today’s standards. The stunning visuals are achieved largely in part to some clever design fakery rather than some previously hidden horsepower under the Genesis hood, but the results are still undeniable.

As for gameplay, it’s a novel game but there are probably better run-and-gun titles. The enemies are a bit generic and not the most exciting to fight and bosses tend to be big, boring bullet sponges. Also, while Vectorman is fun to look at, his movement feels a little slippery and may take some getting used to. Once you get over the initial hump, though, you’ll be running, gunning, and rocket boost jumping all over the place. Vectorman is not an easy title, though. Sure, you can tone down the difficulty settings or use cheat codes to give yourself a handicap, but the game makes sure you don’t forget it by either restricting the true ending of the game or, even worse, calling you “lame.” Harsh.

Buy it here.

Strider

10 Best Sega Genesis Games

One of the earliest hits for Genesis, Strider was released in the pre-Sonic days when a huge selling point of the console was its ability to house perfect ports of arcade games. It was the title that made your NES-owning friends green with envy, and for good reason. With its explosive colors and character animations, the game looks fantastic even when compared to games that came out years later. Sure, the NES had its own version of Strider, but it was a completely different title – only loosely based on the coin-operated version in the arcade and nothing close to this beauty on Genesis.

The game follows the exploits of Strider Hiryu as he flips and slashes his way through a futuristic version of Soviet Russia (not quite as topical nowadays, but this is 1989 we’re talking about). Hiryu is armed only with a sword that can be upgraded via power-up and, occasionally, a tiny drone that takes potshots at enemies from a distance. What really sets Hiryu apart, though, are his acrobatics. He can perform mid-air flips, cling to the sides of walls, and slash at enemies in any direction. While other games from this era might give you a single attack button, Strider offers a bevy of different ways to dispatch baddies, like hanging from a ledge until an enemy turns around and then hopping up to give him a quick slash in the back. It’s all very exciting and satisfying – I just wish there was more of it. With only five levels, players can easily beat the game in less than an hour, while vets have been known to breeze through it in under 15 minutes.

Buy it here.

Sonic the Hedgehog 2

10 Best Sega Genesis Games

A good sequel keeps the aspects that worked for its predecessor and then builds on top of it to offer up a fresh new experience that still remains somewhat familiar. Sonic 2 is a near-perfect example of such a formula. It takes the characters, gameplay, and overall aesthetic of the original 1991 hit and then ramps them up into something truly special. I mean, the special stages that throw Sonic into a 3D half-pipe to find chaos emeralds were enough to completely blow my childhood mind at the time.

The game remains a fast-paced side-scroller with rolling hills and colorful surroundings, but instead of a solo mission, Sonic is now accompanied by his twin-tailed fox sidekick: Miles “Tails” Prower (a total dad-level pun based on “miles per hour,” if you didn’t catch it). Sonic 2 also introduces the Blue Blur’s iconic “spin dash” for the first time, allowing players to charge up speed in place rather than needing a long runway to accelerate. These additions—along with split-screen multiplayer—made this sequel an instant hit and even more proper than its predecessor.

Buy it here.

Phantasy Star IV: The End of the Millennium

10 Best Sega Genesis Games

The SNES might have been a powerhouse when it came to RPGs with stellar titles like Chrono Trigger, Secret of Mana, and Final Fantasy IV and VI, but they were missing a huge game in the all-star RPG lineup: Phantasy Star IV: The End of the Millennium, only available on the Genesis. The universe created in the Phantasy Star series—an area of space dubbed the “Algo star system”—is rife with humans, aliens, and cyborgs, each with their own unique cultures that have been carefully developed over the course of four games and come to a satisfying climax in this fourth installment.

In true JRPG fashion, the game introduces players to new characters, teachers the general mechanics of the game, and then casually tosses in a mega-powerful villain bent on eradicating all life… pretty standard fare. The combat, while not revolutionary, includes intuitive and streamlined mechanics, like the inclusion of macros. This means you can set up systems for your entire party to execute each turn. Simply want everyone to attack? There’s a macro for that. Want one character to boost your team’s stats, three characters to attack, and then the last character to heal? That’s another macro. Where Phantasy Star IV truly shines, though, is its narrative. The game doesn’t talk down to players—characters in your party can definitely be killed permanently—and it neatly ties up loose ends from the previous games, crafting a sci-fi JRPG experience that’s truly special.

Buy it here.

Streets of Rage 2

10 Best Sega Genesis Games

What do you do when your pal gets kidnapped by a criminal mastermind? You go on a vigilante justice spree; punching, kicking and pipe-swinging your way through droves of henchmen to get him back, that’s what. Beat ’em up style games were a dime-a-dozen in the days of the Genesis, but Streets of Rage 2 stood out as one of the absolute best. On top of improved gameplay from the original SoR, the sequel also looked fantastic with colorful sprites the popped off the screen when contrasted against the grimy urban environment.

After choosing from a cast of four different characters, each with their own set of moves and combat styles, players bludgeoned their way through their crime-infested city to rescue their captured pal. And when things get tough, the adrenaline-pumping soundtrack full of killer house music will fuel you to keep fighting, just like the occasional rotisserie chicken dropped by defeated baddies. SoR2 remains not only one of the best beat ’em up titles on the Genesis, but of all time.

Buy it here.

Sonic 3 & Knuckles

10 Best Sega Genesis Games

If you don’t know any better, you might think that Sonic 3 & Knuckles is a typo, but the awkward title is actually a result of being one of the most unique games in the world. You see, Sega was so eager to get Sonic 3 on store shelves that they shipped it out only half-finished. Thankfully, they didn’t just call it a day, but rather finished the rest of the intended game, polished it up, and released it as an add-on cartridge: Sonic & Knuckles. The new “lock-on” cartridge included the standalone Sonic & Knuckles game, but if you inserted Sonic 3 into the top of Sonic & Knuckles cart, gamers had access to Sonic 3 & Knuckles – separate storylines, game options, and access to Knuckles as a playable character in all the levels from Sonic 3. Basically, a physical version of DLC.

As for gameplay, the addition of Knuckles gives the game even more depth than its predecessors. Opposed to the Blue Blur, the red Echidna can soar through the sky with his glide technique and scale walls with this signature claws. Sure, he’s fast and can keep up with Sonic as they speed through stages, but the differences are significant enough that it feels like a relatively fresh experience. This is a game where story and gameplay are both handled superbly and it’s all wrapped up in one wonderfully polished package… well, as long as you have all of the necessary cartridges.

Buy it here.

Gunstar Heroes

10 Best Sega Genesis Games

By 1993, many Genesis owners had thought they’d seen everything there was to see regarding the run-and-gun genre made popular by games like Contra and Mercs, but Gunstar Heroes unapologetically shook things up with its high octane action and stunning visual style. The cartoonish art direction is similar to that of Metal Slug and both games share a love for intense, over-the-top boss battles that conclude each level. Oh, and speaking of the Gunstar Heroes’ levels, they vary constantly, keeping players guessing and preventing the game from ever really feeling stale (something that can’t be said for many other games in this genre).

The weapon load-outs are diverse and fun to use, including a rapid-fire machine gun, a flamethrower, and a homing shot. Plus, these weapons can be mixed-and-matched to create powerful weapon combos that would usually feel overpowered if it wasn’t for the hoards of enemies constantly filling your screen. Plus, when you get tired of fighting evil robots and beefy henchmen by yourself, you can boot up co-op mode with a friend. Gunstar Heroes truly pulls out all the stops and remains one of the most creative run-and-guns you’ll ever find.

Buy it here.

Although we only recommend picks we really love, we may earn a commission on purchases made through links from our site.

FDA Allows Doctors to Prescribe a Video Game as Medicine

EndeavorRX
(YouTube/Sean Hollister)

Parents are conditioned to think that screen time is a bad thing for kids. There are benefits, i.e., it keeps our kids busy and quiet for hours so we can have a break and actually get something done for once, and there are even some aspects of gaming that are good for kids. But most parents consider it a leisure activity and try to limit how much time kids spend playing.

Not anymore!

For the first time, a video game has actually been classified as medicinal!

In a landmark decision, the Food and Drug Administration is authorizing doctors to prescribe a video game for children with ADHD.

EndeavorRX, formerly Project EVO, is an iPhone/iPad game from Akili Interactive that is officially the first video game that can legally be marketed as medicine, after having spent 7 years undergoing clinical trials with over 600 children. The game involves dodging obstacles and collecting targets, and kids in the clinical trials played the game 25 minutes a day, five days a week for a month. According to a study shared on the company’s website, a third of those kids “no longer had a measurable attention deficit on at least one measure of objective attention…Improvements in ADHD impairments following a month of treatment with EndeavorRx were maintained for up to a month.”

Sounds good to me! Although, like many medicines, there are some side-effects, including frustration and headache, which is pretty much to be expected from any video game, medicinal or not!

Check out the trailer:

Trailer for Madden 21 Showcases Lamar Jackson, New Gameplay

Madden 21 Trailer
(YouTube/EAMADDENNFL)

Last Christmas, my son got a PlayStation. This was before the quarantine hit, so I had no idea how much he’d be playing it, but I was excited to finally be able to play Madden again. I hadn’t so much as touched a controller or taken a computerized snap since Marshall Faulk was on the cover. Turns out the game has gotten a lot more realistic, both graphically and in terms of gameplay. You practically have to be a football coach to be able to call the right play!

A few months ago, we got the official announcement that the Baltimore Ravens’ young QB Lamar Jackson, reigning NFL MVP and two-time playoff flame-out, was getting the controversial, but coveted, spot on the cover. Some people think the game’s cover-boy is cursed to get injured during the season, but Lamar isn’t worried.

Maybe because he knew things were about to change?

EA Sports released Madden 21’s trailer today, and even I, someone who has barely played the game in over a decade, can tell something new is afoot. There are a bunch of changes to gameplay, as EA attempts to make it more customizable than ever.

SportingNews breaks down all the changes and new features, and you can see some of them for yourself in the trailer:

Madden 21 gets released on August 25, 2020. But if you have EA Access, Origin Access, or Origin Access Premier, then you can play three days earlier on August 22, 2020. The trailer also says if you preorder Madden, you’ll also be able to play three days earlier.

Star Wars: Squadrons Stays on Target with First-Person Space Battles

Star Wars: Squadrons Trailer
(Twitter/starwars)

The Skywalker saga may have not have wrapped up neatly in last year’s The Rise of Skywalker, but there’s plenty of Star Wars content out there, and there will continue to be.

Not only are two seasons of The Mandalorian on their way, featuring characters like Boba Fett and Ahsoka Tango, but Kevin Feige, the man behind the Marvel Cinematic Universe, is prepping a Star Wars movie of his own, along with various other movies that are in the works. Star Wars isn’t leaving its galaxy far far away anytime soon.

But soon you’ll be able to head there yourself at lightspeed! No, I don’t mean you can visit Galaxy’s Edge theme park, although once the quarantine is over you certainly can. I’m referring to the newly-announced Star Wars game from EA sports, which focusing on flying the many different spaceships in the Lucasfilm universe.

On Monday, EA released the trailer for their forthcoming game Star Wars: Squadron. It hits stores on October 2, for the Playstation, Xbox, and PC for $39.99, and judging by the trailer, it will be worth it.

The gameplay is all about first-person space battles, allowing players to fly all sorts of Star Wars ships, including the X-Wing, A-Wing, Y-Wing, U-Wing, TIE Fighter, TIE Interceptor, TIE Bomber, and TIE Reaper fighters.

Check it out:

Sony Hypes Impressive PlayStation 5 but it Still Gets Roasted

PS5 Gets Roasted
(Twitter/Zannzabar)

Video game fans have seen the future of gaming as Sony unveiled the much-anticipated design of the PlayStation 5. And it looks kinda cool! Fans had been waiting for the PS5 reveal for a long time, but we now know what we’re working with.

So we know what it looks like, but we are still lacking a few other critical areas of information. First, what’s it cost? (probably a lot!). Second, when is it coming out?? Holiday season 2020 is the best we have to go off of, but we do have a little more content from the reveal, as they did unveil a slate of games that will be available on the new platform.

Marvel fans were pretty psyched to see Miles Morales Spiderman coming to the system.

There will be two versions of the system, one that plays discs and a digital version, with the gameplay similar for both. Grand Theft Auto V is another big release planned for the PS5.

The design did get roasted pretty hard on Twitter (like anything else).

Gamers will have to lock into their next system choice this holiday season as the Xbox Series X is also slated for a late 2020 release.

Senior Online Gaming Friends Meet IRL in Granddaughter’s Film ‘Game of Life’

Grandfather Meets Online Gaming Friend IRL in Granddaughter’s New Film
The whole crew on their trip to California. (SUPPLIED)

Family is everything. When someone you love is in a tough spot, most of us jump at the opportunity to help. Dads will often do anything to help their children overcome adversity, like the dad who helped his son with cerebral palsy score his very first touchdown. As we know all too well, life throws endless curveballs, and sometimes dads are the ones who need their children to step up. Tallulah Self, a filmmaker from England, proved that love and support know no generational bounds when she set out to help her grandfather rediscover his zest for life.

Tallulah and Grandfather
Tallulah and her grandfather exploring the video game aisle (SUPPLIED)

Tallulah has always been close to her grandfather, Garry Bowhill-Mann. As a child, she spent every Saturday night with her grandparents, whom she loved dearly. Self’s grandfather is a veteran of the RAF, but in recent years, his life has slowed down significantly. Bowhill-Mann’s days mainly consist of caring for his wife, who has MS. Amidst the stress of daily life, Bowhill-Mann found a bit of respite in an unlikely place. Every day, sometimes for hours on end, you can find him playing games. More specifically, online role-playing games like Division II.

Gaming Granddad
The Gaming Granddad himself (SUPPLIED)

For over two decades, Bowhill-Mann has found joy in the thrill and camaraderie of the online gaming world. So much so, that he met one of his good friends, Mike Nolan, through gaming. “They play together everyday”, Self told The Dad. Nolan and Bowhill-Mann are close in age, and their friendship had been entirely based in the gaming world. That is until Tallulah noticed a change in her beloved grandfather.

“He’s just gradually gotten quieter as he’s gotten older”, explained Self. Her formerly enthusiastic grandfather seemed to have lost his zest for life, and Self wanted to help him get it back.

Tallulah devised a plan. Since playing games brought Bowhill-Mann so much joy, why not bring a piece of the game to life? That all-important piece was Mike Nolan, her grandfather’s online gaming friend, who lived all the way in California. So Tallulah booked the tickets, and off they went.

Filmmakers
(SUPPLIED)

Leanne Rogers (left) and Tallulah Self (right) during filming

Along with her friend, fellow filmmaker Leanne Rogers, the squad traveled halfway around the world so that Bowhill-Mann could finally meet his friend face-to-face. Even better, they filmed a documentary called Game of Life to chronicle the entire journey and you can check out a sneak peek below and then watch it here.

“The whole trip was just brilliant,” Tallulah recounted to The Dad. “Spending proper time with him felt really precious and rare. Definitely created memories that I’ll cherish forever. We had lots of emotional and honest chats and I learnt a lot about him and his past.”

Today, Tallulah explains, Bowhill-Mann is back in Norfolk. “Lockdown is difficult for him as him and my nan are isolated. But he’s playing his games every day and enjoying that!”

Thanks to his incredibly loving granddaughter, Bowhill-Mann got to experience quite possibly his most successful mission to date.

The Top 10 Nintendo 64 Video Games of All Time

Top 10 Nintendo 64 Games
(Nintendo)

Ok, look. I hate to be the one that has to tell you this… but the Nintendo 64 came out 24 years ago. I know. Take a deep breath. Everything is going to be alright.

Yes, this ancient piece of gaming technology might be considered an antique by some, but just like the Sega Genesis – the N64 was host to a slew of incredible games that are still worth revisiting today. (Please make this pocket-sized version a reality asap!) Even if you only consider system exclusives—sorry, Tony Hawk Pro Skater—we’re left with a bevy of top-tier titles that are difficult to contain in a Top 10 – but that doesn’t mean we didn’t try.

First things first though, you’ll probably need a console. You can grab one on eBay, they’ve got a great selection here.

Here’s our list of the Top N64 games of all time (in no particular order because, damn, they’re all just so damn good).

Star Fox 64

Top 10 Nintendo 64 Games
(Nintendo)

Star Fox on the SNES might have made a name for itself as a decent third-person rail shooter but Star Fox 64 truly perfected the formula and made the franchise a household name. The game felt epic, allowing players to navigate their Arwing throughout the Lylat solar system to battle it out on fully realized planets and in massive space encounters. Each level consisted of dizzying corridors or arenas full of enemy ships only for players to be tossed into an intense climactic battle against a colorful new boss character.

Despite numerous titles in the franchise that have since been released, Star Fox 64 remains the crowning jewel to which all subsequent games are seemingly compared. Sure, it’s a little short and not the most difficult gaming experience, but the incredible charm and arcade-style scoring system have kept us coming back to battle Andross’s forces (and perform “barrel rolls”) again and again.

Buy it here.

Paper Mario

Top 10 Nintendo 64 Games
(Nintendo)

The N64 definitely wasn’t known for its RPGs but when they touted a spiritual successor to the ever-popular Super Mario RPG, it was big news. Paper Mario ditched the top-down, 3D aesthetic of its predecessor for an adorable 2D cutout version of the Mushroom Kingdom and the results are stunning. Plus, our favorite Italian plumber utilizes new paper-related abilities that remain unique to this series alone.

In true RPG fashion, Paper Mario focused just as much on its characters and environment as its combat. It brings the Mushroom Kingdom to life as a vibrant community rather than just a side-scrolling world full of Bowser’s minions and features tons of witty dialogue and a brilliant soundtrack by Yuka Tsujiyoko (of Fire Emblem fame). While not your typical Mario game, it was the perfect swansong for the N64 in 2001.

Buy it here.

Banjo-Kazooie

Top 10 Nintendo 64 Games
(Nintendo)

Describing Banjo-Kazooie to someone who’s never heard of it will make you sound like you need to be institutionalized. Yes, you’re an anthropomorphic bear. Yes, you’re also a giant bird that resides in the aforementioned bear’s backpack. Yes, you’re on a mission to take down an evil witch that literally just wants to be as hot as the bear’s sister.

Of course, as anyone who’s played it can attest, Rare’s N64 action platformer has the perfect amount of charm, humor, and floating objects to collect to make it an unforgettable treat. With a bevy of moves to learn from a large cast of memorable characters and a wide variety of expansive levels, Banjo-Kazooie not only earned a sequel that was equally as impressive but it rooted a special place in our childlike hearts forever.

Buy it here.

1080 Snowboarding

Top 10 Nintendo 64 Games
(Nintendo)

Combine a solid racing formula with the late-90s obsession with extreme sports and you get 1080 Snowboarding. It’s arguably the best sports title on the N64 (though, NFL Blitz 2000 definitely gave it a run for its money) and paved the way for every snowboarding video game you’ve ever played since.

It featured incredible graphics and physics for its time and blended racing and tricks in a natural way, not unlike the SSX series, which released a year later. Sadly, the 1080 games came to an end after a rather mediocre Gamecube sequel, but the entry title—with its bumping soundtrack and genre-defining gameplay—was anything but forgettable.

Buy it here.

Super Smash Bros

Top 10 Nintendo 64 Games
(Nintendo)

Super Smash Bros. truly came out of nowhere with Nintendo announcing the game only three months before its Japanese release, but looking back, it’s crazy that nothing like it had happened before. The game adopted a zoomed-out third-person perspective more in-line with platforming titles than traditional fighting games and forced 12 of Nintendo’s most iconic mascots to launch each other off of a stage rather than tick away at a health bar.

Critics complained that the game lacked depth and balance, disqualifying it from being considered a true fighting title, but any SSB fan knows its chaotic nature is what truly sets it apart as something special. Now, the franchise has grown into a pillar of the competitive gaming community, but there’s no way the series would be where it is today without this quirky and ridiculously fun initial title.

Buy it here.

Star Wars: Rogue Squadron

Top 10 Nintendo 64 Games
(Nintendo)

PC gamers had been familiar with high-intensity, laser-filled dog fights for a while thanks to the X-Wing and TIE Fighter flight sim series, but Rogue Squadron finally introduced console players to Star Wars aerial combat in all its glory. Sure, you could make the argument that Shadows of the Empire introduced the Star Wars piloting experience two years prior with its opening mission on Hoth, but Rogue Squadron provided the polish and depth that we craved after being teased with that initial (somewhat janky) snow level.

With 15 regular missions, each taking place on a new planet, Rogue Squadron truly gave players the experience of battling the might of the Empire from the cockpit of just about every Rebel Alliance starfighter. Add a medal system for each mission and opportunities to replay levels with different spacecraft and you’ve got one hell of a flight combat simulator. The only thing we’re really bummed about is the lack of a multiplayer mode, which would have fit into this one perfectly.

Buy it here.

Mario Kart 64

Top 10 Nintendo 64 Games
(Nintendo)

It might not have been the first Mario Kart game but Mario Kart 64 was the first to incorporate 4-player split-screen for ultimate multiplayer mayhem. The single-player experience was admittedly a little shallow but it only took one Grand Prix run or high-intensity round of battle mode with four of your buddies to make you realize that this game was truly one for the ages.

The mix polygons and sprites give the game a genuinely cartoony feel that seemed perfect for the series and the addition of the blue shell, while controversial, is noteworthy if only for the number of friendships it has ruined. It probably isn’t the best Mario Kart entry in the franchise but there’s a good chance it’s the one that holds the fondest memories.

Buy it here.

GoldenEye 007

Top 10 Nintendo 64 Games
(Nintendo)

Arguably THE multiplayer experience, GoldenEye 007 was the game responsible for the severing of friendships, broken controllers, and completely dominating our lives… and we loved it. Sure, it’s technically based on a James Bond film of the same name, but the vast majority of players remember it predominantly for its frantic and addictive split-screen multiplayer.

While PC players had been playing first-person shooters for years, GoldenEye became the definitive FPS for console gamers, and it has held a sort of legendary status ever since. The single-joystick control scheme might feel a bit wonky and dated compared to the dual-sticks of modern console shooters, but games like Halo and Call of Duty definitely wouldn’t be where they are today if GoldenEye 007 hadn’t paved the way. You could also make the argument that Rare’s Perfect Dark improved upon the mechanics and gameplay of GoldenEye, but which game gave you more memories with proximity mines? Yeah, that’s what I thought.

Buy it here.

Super Mario 64

Top 10 Nintendo 64 Games
(Nintendo)

Few games, if any, made a splash in the video game community like Super Mario 64. It was the first game to feature Nintendo’s jumping mustachioed plumber in a fully 3D environment, but you’d never know it given the smooth-as-hell platforming gameplay, wide array of new jumping abilities, and diverse level designs. It was truly the perfect translation from two dimensions to three, and Shigeru Miyamoto and his team did it in one try!

There was so much to do in this game—not only in the levels themselves but in the castle overworld, too—that it’s easy to lose sight of the overarching goal (sorry, Princess). Sure, the camera can be a little finicky and graphical glitches are an occasional annoyance, but this N64 launch title is a brilliant entry in Mario’s fabled franchise and still a must-play to this day.

Buy it here.

Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time

Top 10 Nintendo 64 Games
(Nintendo)

Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time wasn’t even close to the first game in the fabled franchise but it was the first time Nintendo allowed us to take control of Link in a fully 3D rendered world, and, boy, oh boy, did they nail it. Boasting an astounding (at the time) 40 hours of gameplay across vast fields, mountains, and lakes, Ocarina of Time felt enormous and truly epic as you watched Link grow from child to adulthood, battle incredible bosses, learn magical new abilities, and time travel to finally defeat Ganon.

From the music and sound design to gameplay and cutscenes, everything in this game was top-notch and completely immersed players in its version of Hyrule. Plus, the monumental conclusion is canonically responsible for splintering the franchise into its multiple timelines, so not only is Ocarina of Time a crucial installment in the world of video games but possibly the most important entry in the entire Zelda franchise.

Buy it here.

Although we only recommend picks we really love, we may earn a commission on purchases made through links from our site.

The Sonic Redesign Must Have Worked Because He’s Getting a Sequel

Sonic Sequel
(Paramount Pictures)

Ben Schwartz is a busy dude.

His Space Force just debuted on Netflix, before the quarantine he was performing improv on tour with Thomas Middleditch (you can see those three specials on Netflix too), he reprised his legendary role as Jean-Ralphio for the Parks and Rec virtual reunion, and he starred in last year’s Sonic the Hedgehog movie as the voice of Sonic himself.

Now, according to Variety – and Schwartz’s own Instagram account – he’ll be back to reprise that role too, in a sequel to the surprisingly successful movie.

 

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✌️

A post shared by Ben Schwartz (@rejectedjokes) on

Variety doesn’t have many details, but Schwartz will obviously be back as the speedy critter from another world who struck up a friendship with James Marsden’s small-town cop. Together the pair evaded the evil Dr. Robotnik, portrayed with scenery-chewing glee – and a scene-stealing mustache – by Jim Carrey, who ended the first movie stranded on a mushroom planet.

No idea yet if he or Marsden will be back, but based on the movie’s end-credit scene, Sonic’s little friend Tails will be joining the adventure, no matter what form it takes.

The movie’s success was a bit of a surprise, especially after Sonic himself underwent a total redesign after fans objected to his look in the first trailer. Apparently fans were happy with the new version, as the movie grossed $58 million in its opening weekend, which was the biggest opening for a movie based on a video game character.

Hopefully, the studio won’t have to re-engineer Tails for his debut in the sequel!

90-Yr-Old Gaming Grandma Holds World Record for Oldest YouTube Gamer

90yr Gamer
(Guinness World Records)

Last time we checked in on the Guinness Book of World Records they were celebrating a hero for his massive video game collection. Well, Guinness is still keeping score of the extraordinary, and the newest addition to their esteemed book series is Hamako Mori, a.k.a.

GAMER GRANDMA.

(Guinness Book of World Records)

The 90-year-old Hamako’s YouTube channel has amassed over 274,000 subscribers, making her the site’s oldest gamer.


Hamako’s love of video games started 39 years ago when her curiosity piqued at the sight of some boisterous children playing one. “It looked so much fun,” she told Guinness. “I thought it’s not fair if only children played it.”

Her first console was a Cassette Vision, which was essentially the Japanese version of an Atari 2600. This beast:

(Wikimedia Commons / Evan Amos)

She now specializes in Playstation 4, noting that action games have become “visually spectacular” in recent years. “They often use actors for characters,” she obsessed. “So I’m really obsessed with it now.”

Her current favorite game? Grand Theft Auto V. That’s right. This sweet old lady’s “knitting” is simulated vehicular mayhem.

(Guinness World Records)

Hardcore.

But at the end of the day, she says it’s all for the fans.

“I receive a lot of comments saying don’t work too hard. Everyone is so kind. Their comment leave a strong impression on me, and makes me want to make more videos that people enjoy. I still look forward to everyone’s comments.

They also say watching my video gives them hope for the future. I feel so happy. That’s why I want to create lots and lots of videos. That’s my dream.”

Aw. So wholesome and good. You can subscribe to Hamako’s channel right here, and watch her jack an armored truck in GTA V right here:

Epic Games Shows off Demo of PlayStation 5’s Next-Level Graphics

PlayStation 5s Next Level Graphics
(Vimeo/Unreal Engine)

When I was a kid playing Beamrider and Hero on my Coleco, or Legend of Zelda and Bionic Commando on my Nintendo, I often dreamed of a video game that was totally immersive (like Double Dragon times 1000!) and had photorealistic graphics.

I never got it. But as things progressed, and I stopped playing games, the technology kept improving by leaps and bounds, giving my kids an opportunity to explore the mind-blowingly immersive world of Hyrule with almost nothing reining them in. And it’s allowed me to play a version of Madden that, if you didn’t know any better, you might think were an actual football game being broadcast on television.

Video games leveled up multiple times, including the advent of virtual reality that looks a lot better than the worlds Pierce Brosnan was messing with in The Lawnmower Man, and it looks like things are about to level up again.

This winter promises the release of the PlayStation 5 console, the next generation of one of the most popular video game systems of the past 30 years, and based on the early glimpse we just got, my childhood dreams may just be realized. Epic Games just released a demo its next-generation game engine, Unreal Engine 5, that uses two new core technologies (Nanite virtualized micropolygon geometry that “frees artists to create as much geometric detail as the eye can see” and Lumen, “a fully dynamic global illumination solution”). It looks insane.

From the Unreal Engine blog:

“We’ve just released a first look at Unreal Engine 5. One of our goals in this next generation is to achieve photorealism on par with movie CG and real life, and put it within practical reach of development teams of all sizes through highly productive tools and content libraries.”

It looks like they’ve achieved their goal!

Epic Founder and CEO Tim Sweeney spoke to IGN about this leap forward. “I think, first of all, Sony has a massive, massive increase in graphics performance compared to previous generations. But you know, I guess we get that every generation?” he kidded. “But Sony’s made another breakthrough that in many ways is more fundamental, which is a multi-order magnitude increase in storage bandwidth and reduction in storage latency.”

How this compares to the XBox’s next console, which is also set to release this coming winter, is yet to be seen, but if it looks anywhere near as good as this, my kids are going to be thrilled.

Take a broader look at a full video released by Unreal Engine:

Tony Hawk Pro Skater 1 and 2 Coming To PlayStation, Xbox, and PC on September 4

Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 1 2
(PlayStation)

What were you up to 20 years ago? My memory is a little hazy but if I had to guess I was slamming Bagel Bites, listening to Eminem, and playing Tony Hawk Pro Skater… all while putting off studying for my AP Calc exam. On September 4 I may just take a trip down memory lane (sans the AP Calc), since Tony Hawk Pro Skater 1 and 2 are being remastered and re-released for PlayStation 4, PS4 Pro, Xbox One, Xbox One X, and PC via the Epic Games Store.

The Birdman (who also happens to be a fan of The Dad) himself dropped the news on his Instagram.

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Happy birthday to me! #THPS 🎮🛹

A post shared by Tony Hawk (@tonyhawk) on

Returning for this hotly anticipated remaster is everything you loved about the original games. The S-K-A-T-E challenges:

(Activision)

All your favorite signature tricks, from Kareem Campbell’s Casper Slide to Bucky Lasek’s Fingerflip Airwalk to Tony Hawk’s elusive 900:

Despite a few licensing issues, a “vast majority” of history’s greatest video game soundtracks will be back for your kickflipping pleasure. As long as “Cyco Vision” by Suicidal Tendencies and Primus’ “Jerry Was A Race Car Driver” made the cut, we’re good. Also, “Superman” by Goldfinger. Chances are you remember every word to that and don’t even realize it.


And for the first time ever, THPS 1 & 2 will feature online capabilities, including various multiplayer modes and the option to share and download custom skate parks. It’s a dream come true for anyone who knew the sense of gratification that came with unlocking Roswell.

(Activision)

And if that wasn’t enough, today is Tony Hawk’s birthday! A very happy 52nd to the world’s oldest kid. To celebrate, enjoy this video of him driving around and commanding teen skaters to perform kickflips.

Did you know The Dad has a gaming community with leagues, events, and tournaments in 9 different games? It’s true. Pick up the sticks, squad up, and join the gaming club.