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Gaming

Zuri Sparks Speaks On Being Multitalented, ‘Roller Champions,’ and More

It’s been amazing to see the advancement of diversity when it comes to the types of streamers featured on Twitch nowadays. There’s such a wide range of genders and races that have migrated to the platform to put their love for gaming, cooking, music, and other hobbies on full display for their loyal followers to see. Zuri Sparks is one of those entertaining individuals that has established herself as a game streamer worth paying attention to. As a variety streamer, she gets her kicks in by playing a wide variety of titles. And as she describes it, her gaming motto is as follows: “I pretty much play any game that stresses me out.” Zuri took some time to chop it up ONE37pm’s very own Aaron “Don” Dukes to have a lively chat about anything and everything geeky and non-geeky.

Aaron “Don” Dukes: You’re not just a streamer and content creator like you mentioned earlier. And an intern and stuff like that. How are you balancing all of that?

Zuri Sparks: I mean, it’s tough. At first, I was like going to school, working at the grocery store, working for my school, and then also doing this thing called “Shipped.” They deliver groceries. I was trying to do all of that and streaming all at the same time. And it seemed like those things were not adding up. Now that I’ve taken to where it’s like, one job and not three, I have more freedom. I’m able to work, set up some time to stream, and then that’s pretty much good. I just have to fill in the other part where it’s like, you know, have the time to be creative. That’s another thing – I’m also starting to do like some commission work for people. Whether it be just emotes, graphics, and whatnot. Because I’m trying to put myself out there.

Aaron: Talking about games, I’ve been seeing you play MultiVersus and I’ve been seeing you play Roller Champions. Like, how would your rate Roller Champions? Is it good?

Zuri: Okay so personally, I love Roller Champions. I played it a couple years back when it had the beta. So for me like, I’m going to keep it a buck – I would say I love it a lot. I’m going to give it an eight out of 10. Just because it’s Ubisoft and you know, everyone thinks of Ubisoft and they’re like “oh, bugs!” And it’s that, you know. Literally, a lot of bugs. But it’s like, I enjoy it a lot – I feel like it has a ton of potential. But the bugs, man! I play it on PS4 and honestly, I play it sometimes when I’m streaming and I literally can’t invite my friend. I be trying to get my friend “Cosmic” in there to play and I feel like Roller Champions honestly hears me talking. Like, c’mon – send me an invite. As soon as I say “send me an invite,” I can no longer invite any of my friends for like 10 minutes.

Aaron: Would you do that in real life? (Play Roller Champions the game in a realistic setting)

Zuri: I WOULD TRY! I’m not a big skater. Like someone was saying to me – “would you do this in real life? I see you playing Roller Champions and I want you to come out and do Roller Derby for a day and whatnot.” I would try it, but be like “please don’t knock me out! Can you do like the two-hands tackle?”

Be sure to check out the rest of Aaron’s chat with Zuri Sparks at the following link to hear her speak on amazing video game soundtracks, what she currently goes to school for, and so much more.

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Gaming

The Biggest Games Releasing in July 2022

How’s everybody enjoying the summer thus far? It sure must feel good to be able to hit the boardwalk with your fam again and also have the opportunity to leave your house without a hoodie on. Once you’re done basking in the sun and enjoying all the warm weather, feel free to step back into full gamer mode so you can enjoy this lineup of July 2022 video game releases. This month, you guys and gals can look forward to two major JRPG releases for the Switch, a remastered collection of two classic Bandai Namco platformers, the latest annual foray into F1 simulation racing, and so much more.

July 2022 Video Game Releases
Nintendo

‘F1 22’ – July 1 (PS5, Xbox Series X|S, PS4, Xbox One, PC – Steam)

Developer Codemasters has earned a reputation for crafting the finest racing games on the planet. And for the 15th entry in the long-running F1 simulation series, the studio is looking to maintain its high standard for the genre. F1 2022 is going above and beyond for its car models and physics engine by improving them to an even higher degree. The breakneck pace of the races themselves will stay intact for this sequel as players will get to race across updated track layouts on legacy circuits. F1 diehards can very much look forward to speeding across the newly added Miami International Autodrome as well. Along with adaptive AI racers and the presence of the Formula One Sprint competition, F1 2022 sounds like it’ll be the ultimate playable representation of the popular motorsport.

‘Arcadegeddon’ – July 5 (PS5, Xbox Series X|S, PS4, Xbox One, PC – Epic Games)

The premise behind Arcadeggedon is such a mind trip. So you and your buddies seek to aid the lovable owner of a local arcade, who’s just had his super game hacked and injected with a debilitating virus by a mega-corporation. In order to accomplish that commendable mission, you and your crew will need to venture through various game-themed biomes, play varied minigames, discover hidden treasure, and eliminate all sorts of baddies & big bosses. Arcadegeddon may just morph into your latest multiplayer addiction since it combines co-op, PVE, and PVP elements to keep you entertained all the while.

‘Klonoa Phantasy Reverie Series’ – July 8 (PS5, Xbox Series X|S, PS4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, PC – Steam)

Bandai Namco’s floppy-eared platforming hero has kept a low profile for far too long now. 2022 marks his welcome resurgence as he’s set to appear in a remastered compilation of his first two adventures. Klonoa Phantasy Reverie Series will feature updated renditions of the 2008 remake for Klonoa: Door to Phantomile and the PS2 release of Klonoa 2: Lunatea’s Veil. Both games will now run in 60 fps, include 4K resolution on certain consoles, feature an adjustable difficulty option, and debut a two-player co-op mode. Platformer fans who want to relive the good old days of all those whimsical hop and bops starring anthropomorphic heroes will surely love this collection.

‘Stray’ – July 19 (PS5, PS4, PC – Steam)

Publisher Annapurna Interactive always goes out of its way to release projects that are different from the norm of what gamers expect. The publisher is keeping up with that signature trend by putting out the feline-focused adventure game called Stray, which comes from the development studio known as BlueTwelve Studio. So what will you be doing in this open-world experience? Well, you’ll explore the game’s robot-populated world and try to seek out your family as a cute little stray cat. All the while, you’ll be accompanied by a drone named B12. You can look forward to venturing through varied locales, solving puzzles, fending off the evil “Zurks,” and interacting with all those aforementioned bots as your done buddy translates their many sayings.

‘Live A Live’ – July 22 (Nintendo Switch)

True JRPG aficionados have probably already taken the original 1994 version of Live A Live for a spin. For those of you just hearing about it, you’ll be happy to know that it’s getting an “HD-2D” remake that’ll bring it up to the current standards of Square Enix’s latest retro-stylized JRPGs. Live A Live features a really cool premise where you’ll get to play through the lives of seven main characters that exist within different time periods. So in one case, you’ll be adventuring through the prehistoric era as a caveman. Later on, you’ll find yourself playing as a gunslinger during the wild west era. Expect plenty of wild story twists and action-packed turn-based combat from this out-of-nowhere JRPG remake.

‘Capcom Arcade 2nd Stadium’ – July 22 (PS4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, PC – Steam)

Capcom has done an amazing job as of late when it comes to bringing its classic arcade games back within modern-day compilations. If you copped the Street Fighter 30th Anniversary Collection, the Capcom Fighting Collection, and the first Capcom Arcade Stadium, then you’re most likely going to pick up this collection as well. Capcom Arcade 2nd Stadium comes with all the nifty features that were present in its predecessor. You’ll be treated to another fine selection of classic Capcom arcade hits, such as Saturday Night Slam Masters, Knights of the Round, Mega Man: The Power Battle, and a whole lot more. SonSon will come as a free download for this games compilation, while Three Wonders will be offered as a gift for early purchasers/pre-order recipients of the Capcom Fighting Collection.

‘Azure Striker Gunvolt 3’ – July 28 (Nintendo Switch)

This might be hard to fathom, but the last mainline entry in the Azure Striker Gunvolt series came out in 2016. Now in 2022, Azure Striker Gunvolt 3 is giving series fans and Mega Man X diehards something great to look forward to. Once again, series frontman Gunvolt comes back to blast through all types of mechanical enemies. In this much-anticipated sequel, he’ll be joined by a new female heroine named Kirin. Her flashy move set consists of ranged and melee attacks that are powered by her trusty sword & enchanted talismans. Prepare yourself for some immensely gratifying side-scrolling, run-n-gun (and slash!) action.

‘Digimon Survive’ – July 29 (PS4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, PC – Steam)

Digimon Survive was announced in July 2018. How fitting is it that this brand new game starring the world’s most lovable digital monsters is dropping that same month in 2022? This often delayed project is finally coming out and it’s set to offer a clever mixture of visual novel, survival, and strategy RPG mechanics to set itself apart from its rival in the Pokémon series. You’ll find yourself within the digital world that’s home to numerous Digimon creatures and engage in tactical combat with your favorite monsters by your side. Digimon Survive will make you want to see all of its many outcomes as its story segments produce different outcomes and even different Digivolutions based on the choices you make.

‘Xenoblade Chronicles 3’ – July 29 (Nintendo Switch)

Switch owners are getting the most marquee release of July as Xenoblade Chronicles 3 is dropping a lot sooner than originally expected. Developer Monolith Soft is heading back into the action RPG realm once again here with a new storyline that follows two members of opposing nations named Noah and Mio. Both protagonists and four other main party members will join forces to explore the massive open-world world known as “Aionios,” which is in a constant state of war. The action RPG mechanics featured in the last two mainline Xenoblade Chronicles games make their return, plus this sequel will debut the “Interlinking” system. By pairing two specific characters together, you’ll be able to bring hulking mechs called “Ouroboros” onto the battlefield. Xenoblade Chronicles 3 is certainly the most major when it comes to July 2022 video game releases.

Console Ports

‘Gamedec’ – July 1 (Nintendo Switch)

‘Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney Trilogy’ – July 1 (iOS, Android)

‘F.I.S.T.: Forged In Shadow Torch’ – July 12 (Nintendo Switch)

‘Rune Factory 5’ – July 13 (PC – Steam)

‘Azure Striker Gunvolt 2’ – July 14 (Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One)

‘DreadOut 2’ – July 15 (Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One), July 20 (PS5, PS4)

‘Severed Steel’ – July 22 (Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One)

‘Story of Seasons: Pioneers of Olive Town’ – July 26 (PS4)

‘Train Valley Console Edition’ – July 27 (PS5, Xbox Series X|S, PS4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch)

‘Lost Epic’ – July 28 (PS5, PS4, Nintendo Switch)

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Gaming

‘DNF Duel’ Review

One of the longest-running multiplayer games is Neople’s beat ’em up/action RPG, Dungeon Fighter Online (DFO). Since its birth in Korea circa 2005, fans far and wide have made it a daily mission of theirs to log in and hand out some severe beatdowns with their chosen class of warriors. Anyone who’s poured countless hours into the game or simply sat down to watch an extensive combo video knows every character available has access to the coolest powers imaginable. A fighting game based around those same combatants seems like a no-brainer, right? Arc System Works must have had the same thought and sought to make that dream project an actual thing. I’m happy to say that the Japanese developer’s fighting game prowess was put to great use here once again. Here is my DNF Duel review.

‘DNF Duel’ Review
Nexon

To the surprise of no one, DNF Duel looks dazzling in motion. Arc System Works has mastered the art of making playable anime and that strong suit is definitely accounted for here. Everything from the menus to the characters themselves does an amazing job of presenting one of the most visually striking fighting games released in recent memory. The game’s impressive art style really pops off the screen during each character’s cinematic ultimate “Awakening Skill.” Watching my latest victim get blown to bits by a supersized mine or smashed into boulders repeatedly satisfied me every time I watched it happen.

Even the Story Mode visual novel sequences offer some nice bits of eye candy – the main characters get the finest treatment thanks to their outstanding moving models, plus there are beautiful cutscenes littered throughout each playthrough. DNF Duel’s visuals are simply arresting. I also have to commend DNF Duel’s soundtrack, which mainly consists of the usual rock & roll fare that Arc System Works’ fighters stick close to. The tracks that are featured here are about as catchy as I expected them to be – the themes for the “Moonlight Tavern,” “Saint Horn,” and “Zelva” arenas stick out as my chosen faves. Another strong point on the game’s audio front is its reliance on Korean voice acting, which is fitting based on DFO’s origins. All in all, everything looks and sounds great in this game.

Nexon

Like Granblue Fantasy: Versus, DNF Duel lowers the barrier of entry for casual outsiders by incorporating easy inputs for special moves. One button is dedicated to the regular version of those moves, while another button produces the souped-up version of those same abilities. All you’re required to do is hold a direction at the same time as one of those buttons in order to pull off some of the flashiest special moves I’ve ever laid eyes on in an anime fighter. For those who consider themselves true connoisseurs of the genre, there’s no need to worry about this game “dumbing itself down” too much to appeal to non-consumers of fighting games.

The combo potential for expert players is extra high – most of my fun with this game was derived from figuring out my own combos and trying out the ones contained with each character’s combo trials. The use of an MP gauge keeps the repeated usage of those special moves in check, so you can’t just spam the same moves over and over without any sort of punishment coming from that sort of behavior. Proper meter usage and combo setups are present here, which is a necessity for fighting games to prosper these days. The game’s complexity deepens even more as you’re able to rely on a mechanic that extends combos by sacrificing a portion of your HP (think of it like Tatsunoko vs. Capcom’s “Baroque Combo”). Casual and hardcore fighting game players alike will find a deep well of fun to engage in here.

Nexon

DNF Duel provides a decent suite of modes to stay busy with. The online component works like a dream – the implementation of rollback netcode works to near perfection as it provides a smooth experience throughout the majority of players’ ranked/casual sessions. The offline offerings come in the form of Free Battle, Survival Mode, Arcade Mode, and Story Mode. I have to hand out some props to this game for adding an extra wrinkle to the Survival and Arcade portions – Survival offers post-match stat-boosting items that you can buy with the points you’ve accumulated after a win, while Arcade challenges players to make their way through an entire ladder of foes without dying in order to amass a high accumulative score.

Story Mode is pretty decent in its own right – I actually cared about the conversations going down between each battle and was so thankful that there were actual fights to enjoy (unlike Guilty Gear Strive, which offers nothing more than a full anime you have 0 active interaction with). I am a bit disappointed by the lack of an RPG adventure mode that’s similar to the one featured in Granblue Fantasy: VersusDNF Duel’s source material is tailor-made for such an addition, but it’s sadly missing here. Choosing to omit that additional mode is a clear oversight by Arc System Works, in my opinion.

Nexon

Even with that missing dream mode of mine not being an actual thing, I was left more than satisfied with everything DNF Duel has to offer. It’s easy to learn, hard to master mechanics will definitely keep me enthralled for years to come. Plus its gorgeous visual presentation, rocking OST, and flawless online are extra strong points that make it an addictive fighter I have a hard time putting down. I’m super excited about the widened potential of this game as it receives further updates and new characters over time. And that my friends is my stirring DNF Duel review.

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Gaming

Elton’s ‘Capcom Fighting Collection’ 2 Wishlist

ALL HAIL THE CAPCOM GODS! To see my favorite gaming publisher/developer rise out of the doldrums of the “Crapcom” days and reemerge as one of the premier gaming giants in the industry has been remarkable. Smash hits, such as Resident Evil 7: Biohazard, Monster Hunter: World, and Devil May Cry 5, have reassured major Capcom fans that it still has what it takes to create high-quality games. And on the fighting game front, the initial reveal for Street Fighter 6 and the release of the Capcom Fighting Collection has breathed new life into the company’s most reliable genre. Speaking of that collection, I love the fact that I can now play 10 classic 2D fighting games online with amazing rollback netcode supporting them all. Even still, there are still a bunch of old-school Capcom fighters that I’d love to see get the very same treatment. Which is why I’ve put together this list for my own personal Capcom Fighting Collection 2 wishlist.

‘Capcom Fighting Collection’ 2 Wishlist
Capcom

1. ‘Street Fighter Alpha 2 Gold’

While I appreciate what Capcom was going for with the Street Fighter 30th Anniversary Collection, it was certainly lacking in some key areas. It only has the vanilla arcade release of Street Fighter Alpha 2, plus you couldn’t even play it online. I hope to see Capcom remedy those errors by making the following Capcom Fighting Collection 2 wishlist of mine’s a reality – make sure Street Fighter Alpha 2 Gold is included so I can take my pocket Cammy and Evil Ryu online for some intense sets. I’ve always preferred Street Fighter Alpha 2 Gold over its follow-up, so I’d pay good money to have this one included within a modern-day Capcom fighting game package.

2. ‘Street Fighter Alpha 3 MAX’

Okay so let’s get back to something else that irked me about the Street Fighter 30th Anniversary Collection – it featured the base arcade release of Street Fighter Alpha 3, which is severely lacking when it comes to its roster in comparison to the home ports. Across its PlayStation, Sega Saturn, Sega Dreamcast, and Game Boy Advance renditions, the game expanded the roster by including OG “World Warriors” and even some familiar faces from the “New Generation.” The version I’d love to play the most on modern consoles with rollback netcode is the one that’s still stuck on the PlayStation Portable handheld, Street Fighter Alpha 3 MAX. That’s the one that has 39 characters to choose from and that’s the one that I need in my life all over again.

3. ‘Rival Schools: United By Fate’

Now let’s talk about Capcom’s foray unto full 3D fighters! I still sing the praises of Rival Schools, even when the conversation has nothing to do with it. The whole concept centering around rival high school trios going into battle is still one of the most creative ideas I’ve ever seen for a fighting game. Packing the game’s roster full of sports jocks, seasoned teachers, surly punks, and all types of other high school stereotypes gave way to me finding some of my favorite fighting game characters of all times. Now’s the time to bring Rival Schools back in a future Capcom compilation. I’m just dying to hop online and put in work with Batsu and Roy!

4. ‘Project Justice’

The Dreamcast will always get my respect for being a treasure trove of amazing fighting games. And most of those games came from the king of the genre at the time, Capcom. Rival Schools got a noteworthy sequel on Sega’s final console and it was a vast improvement over what came before it. The roster increased to feature some cool new series entrants and legacy character variations (Burning Batsu is godlike!). Now you could build teams of three instead of two, which led to some deeper pre-match strategies that players implemented when it came to what “Team-Up” and “Party-Up” attacks they wanted to use. I want Project Justice on modern consoles, Capcom! Make my dream come true here.

5. ‘Star Gladiator’

I was pretty adept at all those 3D weapons-based fighters during the 32-bit era of consoles. Battle Arena Toshinden, Soul Blade, and Bushido Blade definitely stood out as my faves. I also got in plenty of time with Capcom’s foray into the sub-genre, Star Gladiator. If you’ve never played it, allow me to make you want to give it a shot after hearing this description – anime Star Wars! The main character has a lightsaber, the final boss is a straight rip of Darth Vader, and there’s a girl equipped with plasma hoops that rocks Princess Leia’s signature hoops hairstyle. If all of that sounds cool to you, you now realize why I hold this game in such high regard. I think I can still pull off Hayato and June’s “Plasma Combos” – I’d love to test that theory online at some point.

6. ‘Plasma Sword: Nightmare of Bilstein’

Bilstein comes back with a vengeance in this sequel to Star Gladiator that originally launched on the Dreamcast. Plasma Sword: Nightmare of Bilstein changed things up by ditching the Plasma Combo System and going for a more traditional fighting game meter mechanic called the “Plasma Strike System.” Now each character gained the ability to build meter and pull off snazzy super moves called “Plasma Strikes.” The visuals got even better here, plus the combat moved at a faster pace. I’d be very open to seeing Capcom port Plasma Sword over to today’s consoles and attach rollback netcode to it so I put in work with my Claire, Rain, and Blood.

7. ‘Power Stone’

If you still own a Dreamcast or PSP, be happy that you can still enjoy Capcom’s arena fighter on either console. Power Stone fans still sing its praises and so do I. This one one-on-one fighter feels like Capcom attempting to craft its very own version of Super Smash Bros. And to many, that attempt came off as a major success. You can enjoy some casual fighting game fun here as it lets you pick up weapons and fling all sorts of hazards at your opponents. And once you collect all three “Power Stones,” your character can transform into a super-powered version of themselves and pull off two incredible super moves. I’m pretty sure a lot of Capcom fans would be overjoyed at the announcement of this game getting re-released with rollback netcode attached to it!

8. ‘Power Stone 2’

Power Stone 2 went above and beyond to offer a refreshed experience for series followers. While it brought back the 1v1 battle component, it increased the default player count to four so that you and three other buddies could go crazy just wailing on each other. The stages got even wilder as they featured random occurrences that force you to run away from a raging boulder, fight on top of rival submarines, and even fall through the sky while everyone fights to grab an umbrella to float downward with. The four-player mayhem of Power Stone 2 needs to make its grand return in rollback netcode form. Falcon, Wang Tang, and Accel are most certainly worthy of a comeback! This party fighter is pretty much the perfect inclusion on my Capcom Fighting Collection 2 wihslist.

9. ‘Tech Romancer’

It’s pretty clear that some of the older developers at Capcom loved all those classic Japanese mech-focused anime and TV shows. All you have to do is take a look at Tech Romancer to see why that statement has total validity to it. Studio Nue was tapped to create the towering fighting robots featured in this game, which all look amazing in motion. This mech-battler is all about landing big melee combos, setting off massive explosions with ranged attacks, and filling the screen with nothing but pure hype via super attacks & a “Final Attack.” Tech Romancer’s one of those obscure Capcom fighters that deserves a second lease on life via inclusion in a new fighting game compilation.

10. ‘Final Fight Revenge’

Now I’ll be honest – I haven’t heard a lot of good things about this Final Fight-focused 3D brawler. And from the looks of all the footage I’ve seen of it, I can see why it doesn’t get a whole lot of love. Even still, I just want to be able to have it in my possession since it only launched as a Japan-exclusive for the Sega Saturn back in 2000. And that’s because I just want to hop online and cheese with Cody, Haggar, and Sodom. If you haven’t already, look up Cody’s total Fist of the North Star-inspired super and Edi E’s super that lets him chase his foe around in a damn cop car! Final Fight Revenge is such a wonky fighting game that I’d still gladly accept it as a part of a new Capcom fighting game gathering.

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Gaming

The 41 Best GameCube Games of All Time

Nintendo’s medium-sized purple box of gaming bliss will always be looked upon as one of the company’s greatest achievements. Once it was released on November 18, 2001, gamers young and old flocked to the stores to get themselves one and strut around the neighborhood holding it like a lunchbox thanks to its signature top handle. Before being discontinued in 2007, the Nintendo GameCube put forth a software library jam-packed with some of the greatest first- and third-party games ever released on a Nintendo console. Not only were most of Nintendo’s homegrown franchises given a GameCube series entry, but a wealth of experimental titles debuted on the console and pushed certain IPs forward for the better. With all that being said, let’s take a look at the 41 best GameCube games of all time.

Best GameCube Games
Nintendo

1. ‘Super Mario Sunshine’

It was quite the shocker when it was revealed that there wouldn’t be a new Super Mario game at launch for the GameCube. But at least the long wait for a 3D adventure starring the mustachioed runner/jumper was well worth it. Super Mario Sunshine features a sunnyside open world that’s ripe with plenty of secrets, platforming challenges, and clever boss encounters for those who wanted something on par with Super Mario 64. The water-powered F.L.U.D.D. tool added a new layer of fun to the proceedings as Mario used it to clean all the gunk off his new home island and boost himself forward/upward. This one’s a certified Nintendo classic.

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2. ‘Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door’

It took far too long to get a sequel to the SNES gem that threw Mario and his friends into a turn-based RPG. Once that follow-up finally arrived, it threw everyone off guard thanks to its paper machete aesthetics. But after spending some time with it for a while, you couldn’t help but fall in love with the quirky visual makeup of this hilarious RPG adventure. Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door keeps players involved at all times thanks to an active action combat system that incorporates timed button presses and a hyperactive audience that either congratulates or berates Mario’s on-stage performances. This turn-based take on the Mario formula is arguably the best in this spinoff franchise.

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3. ‘Luigi’s Mansion’

Mario’s taller, slinkier, and quirkier sibling got to enjoy some time in the launch library spotlight once the GameCube hit retail stores everywhere. For his second go-around as the lead character in a game, Luigi set out to find his brother within the confines of a spooky old mansion. And to see that overwhelming mission through to full completion, players have to rely on their trusty high-powered vacuum cleaner, flashlight, and “Game Boy Horror” device to get rid of the mansion’s ghost problem. Becoming a ghostbuster in suspenders is so much fun still as you get to suck up all sorts of mischievous spirits. Luigi’s Mansion definitely holds up to this very day.

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4. ‘Animal Crossing’

Who knew this game would lead to the rise of one of the most successful Nintendo IPs of all time? This simple life simulator dug its claws into everyone that gave it a shot and those same players realized they were playing something more special than they could have ever imagined. Animal Crossing is a neverending experience that’s all about living out one’s life in a peaceful realm filled with anthropomorphic neighbors. Paying off your debt to Toom Nook, attaining a bigger house, and fraternizing with everyone on special holidays are just some of the whimsical tasks associated with this rewarding social sim. The first Animal Crossing marks the beginning of a phenomenon that’s still going strong.

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5. ‘Star Wars Rogue Squadron II: Rogue Leader’

During the US launch of the console that’s being showered with love on this list, it was mandatory that its new owners get their hands on Star Wars Rogue Squadron II: Rogue Leader. This quality space shooter sports gorgeous visuals (THEY STILL LOOK AMAZING, BTW!) that looked that much closer to the early Star Wars films, which helped immerse players into all the laser-blasting action even more than previous games of its ilk. The ability to send out commands to your nearby wingmen added an extra layer of strategy to the proceedings and made you truly feel like a trustworthy leader. Taking down Galactic Empire ships feels and looks oh so good in this GameCube classic.

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6. ‘Super Smash Bros. Melee’

We’re guessing Super Smash Bros. series creator Masahiro Sakurai had no idea that this sequel would endure long after its 2001 debut on the Nintendo GameCube. Because of its simple yet deceptively complex combat tools, Super Smash Bros. Melee still gets plenty of playtime from a very dedicated group of eSports competitors. There’s so much to love about this platform party fighter besides its addictive gameplay, though – its roster full of Nintendo icons, an abundance of single-player modes, and high fun factor among the casual crowd adds to Melee’s legendary status. As far as content-rich fighting games go, Super Smash Bros. Melee is the gift that just keeps on giving.

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7. ‘Mario Kart: Double Dash!!’

The Mario Kart series has always put forth some of the greatest party games of all time. Get a room full of non-gamers together, hand ’em all controllers, and they’ll quickly get caught up in all the on-road mayhem Nintendo’s mascot racer entails. Mario Kart: Double Dash!! is the sole GameCube entry in the series and it sits near the top when it comes to the greatest in the franchise. The “two characters tied to one vehicle” setup is a cool gimmick that added an extra strategic layer to all the lively races. And giving each character their very own signature item provided this game with another cool aspect worth celebrating. We’ll never get tired of hopping into this classic racer for a quick go-round on Daisy Cruiser and Waluigi Stadium.

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8. ‘The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker’

You should have been there when diehard Legend of Zelda fans first locked eyes with this game’s cartoony art style. The internet gaming community at large was up in arms over The Wind Waker’s sharp departure in visual style/tone. But once all those haters got to finally experience it, they came to appreciate what ended up being one of the best adventures Link has ever been on. The incorporation of boat sailing segments made exploring a fun endeavor, plus the abundance of side quests gave players less serious duties to fulfill. Taking pictures will always be a blast in this game. But solving all those traditional Zelda puzzles and cutting foes down with Link’s sword always provides a reliable good time.

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9. ‘The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess’

Near the end of the GameCube lifecycle, the Nintendo Wii was preparing to launch with a brand new Legend of Zelda game. Thankfully, GameCube owners still got to bask in all the familiar dungeon-crawling Link is known for getting caught up in. As a final farewell to Nintendo’s purple box, The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess emerged as one of the best GameCube games thanks to a darker tone, newly added wolf transformation, and wild adventures experienced with little miss Midna by Link’s side. Link’s traditional sword and shield combat shine here, per usual. But it’s the Twilight Realm portions of his trek that we still adore the most.

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https://amzn.to/3zROCyR
10. ‘The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords Adventures’

Man…the steps needed to get a whole party of Link’s together to play this game will drive anyone mad. But it’s all worth the trouble because this throwback take on the Legend of Zelda formula is one of the best GameCube games and one of its most memorable multiplayer experiences. The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords Adventures offers a rewarding multiplayer co-op journey worth undertaking (“Hyrulean Adventure”) and even a better-than-expected battle mode that still holds up (“Shadow Battle”). This one feels like such a great love letter to the SNES era of Link, which is a blessing to have on this console.

Buy Now, $129.98
https://amzn.to/3Nf8RcC
11. ‘Metroid Prime’

Retro Studios really pushed the Metroid series forward by switching it from a side-scrolling adventure to a first-person shooter that still stuck close to what worked before. Metroid Prime succeeds thanks to the combination of a deeply absorbing atmosphere and one of the most fulfilling adventures Samus Aran has ever been on. It’s still crazy to us how the GameCube controller’s strange control scheme for this game works so well. Blasting alien lifeforms with plasma shots and missiles works so much better than we expected it to back in the day. Scanning everything in sight is so addictive in this game!

Buy Now, $98.98
https://amzn.to/3NcctME
12. ‘Metroid Prime 2: Echoes’

We’d be insane for not mentioning the sequel, right? Exactly! Metroid Prime 2: Echoes offers a stronger focus on presenting a more absorbing plot, which involved the presence of the super-cool villain known as Dark Samus. And now that you could explore parallel dimensions, the sense of discovery put in place here kept us playing for hours on end. The four-player multiplayer mode kept this game in our GameCube long after we got through the main campaign, by the way. This sequel will always get its respect and adoration as one of the best GameCube games.

Buy Now, $126.70
https://amzn.to/3OpAMZ6
13. ‘Resident Evil’

Capcom’s original Resident Evil installment is survival horror royalty. But the Nintendo GameCube remake that’s been given a well-deserving HD remaster is the best way to play out the horrifying mansion mission Chris Redfield and Jill Valentine had to endure. The graphics are a million times more impressive, the lighting evokes even more fear than ever before, and the music is way more haunting. The addition of an extra creepy bio-weapon (Lisa Trevor still haunts our nightmares!), plus the presence of all the previous frights from the original version must be seen (and shot repeatedly!) to be believed.

Buy Now, $38.46
https://amzn.to/3OhHjF6
14. ‘Resident Evil 4’

Resident Evil 4 truly revolutionized the third-person shooting genre as a whole. Similar games that came after it knowingly adopted its camera viewpoint and aiming/shooting mechanics because it works so well. Besides its genre-forwarding elements, Resident Evil 4 deserves kudos for giving fans a more mature and battle-hardened version of Leon S. Kennedy. Taking control of him was a blast as you were forced to fend off crazed villagers and a whole assortment of bio-weapon threats. Escorting Ashley to safety is an annoying endeavor, sure. But that part of the game is still not enough to dull the shine of this prominent Resident Evil series installment.

Buy Now, $169.97
https://amzn.to/3OGq68a
15. ‘Eternal Darkness: Sanity’s Requiem’

This Nintendo GameCube classic always gets the respect it deserves from the survival-horror-loving crowd. And for good reason! It tried something experimental that worked way better than anyone could have ever expected – a wealth of onscreen tricks were implemented in order to cause players to question their own sanity. You haven’t experienced true fear until you’ve seen this game pop up with a “full memory card data deletion” notification message on your TV screen! Eternal Darkness: Sanity’s Requiem also earns a spot on this list thanks to its limb-targeting combat system, time-hopping plotline, and unnerving atmosphere. You’ll reach dangerous levels of paranoia as you experience the madness of one of the best GameCube games ever made with this one.

Buy Now, $179.97
https://amzn.to/3xQoD8r
16. ‘Metal Gear Solid: The Twin Snakes’

The original Metal Gear Solid is pure gaming perfection when the best PlayStation games come to mind. It’s even better in remake form as the GameCube exclusive, Metal Gear Solid: The Twin Snakes. The visuals get a major overhaul here that makes all the espionage action Solid Snake engages in look and feel even more impactful. Alongside those improved graphics, this stealth-focused classic updates the gameplay mechanics by adding the ability to shoot from a first-person viewpoint (which is lifted straight from Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty). This remake provides some welcome touchups to one of the greatest games ever made.

Buy Now, $143.62
https://amzn.to/3A1NgBw
17. ‘TimeSplitters 2’

There’s going to come a day when we finally get a brand new TimeSplitters. But for the time being, we’re going to keep choosing monkeys, killer clowns, and all sorts of weird characters for some multiplayer mayhem in TimeSplitters 2 (BagTag is GOATED!). But besides all the four-player gunfights this game rests its hat on, TimeSplitters 2 also happens to feature one of the funniest and most enjoyable single-player campaigns in FPS history. Sergeant Cortez and his lovely bald head will never leave our memory banks. As far as the best GameCube games go, this bombastic FPS is top-of-the-line material.

Buy Now, $79.75
https://amzn.to/3bvn7kB
18. ‘Pikmin’

Pikmin provided the GameCube with an entirely new IP that provides real-time strategy/puzzle fanatics with something to keep them busy. And thanks to the game’s cute exterior and bubbly atmosphere, it ended up attracting casual onlookers who wanted to build up their own army of helpful alien creatures. It still feels so good to help Captain Olimar navigate around a mysterious world while commanding different Pikmin types to aid him on his planetary trek. Getting those little tykes into fights with the game’s larger specimen and inspiring them to lift heavy objects never gets old.

Buy Now, $108.74
https://amzn.to/3OoSfAA
19. ‘Pikmin 2’

If there’s one thing that irked us about the first Pikmin, it was the fact that you had to complete all of your tasks under a strict deadline. Pikmin 2 did away with that annoying feature and added a second spaceman to all its proceedings to ratchet up the fun factor a ton. The fact that you can spend as much time as you’d like picking up treasure and dividing all the collecting duties between two characters makes playing this game way less stressful. We still have a ton of love for the Purple and White Pikmin that debuted in this one.

Buy Now, $149.95
https://amzn.to/3OmgYWm
20. ‘SoulCalibur II’

There was such an abundance of great fighting games to stay busy with during the height of the PS2, GameCube, and original Xbox. The 3D fighting game sub-genre produced plenty of quality battlers – Soulcalibur II is a shining example of that memorable trend. The tightly tuned weapons clashes still feel like a dream, the overabundance of single-player content on offer here is amazing, and the unlimited hours of fun you can get from local multiplayer matches are forever rewarding. The main attraction here (as everyone knows) is the special guest addition of The Legend of Zelda’s Link. Swinging around that Master Sword against Soulcalibur II’s iconic roster makes the game’s GameCube version stand out as the best.

Buy Now, $59.85
https://amzn.to/3A0O0XN
21. ‘Viewtiful Joe’

“HENSHIN-A-GO-GO-BABY” That rousing statement comes from the beat ’em up superhero that Capcom introduced in 2003. As a part of the Capcom Five, Viewtiful Joe gained plenty of goodwill thanks to its clever implementation of video effects into all the action. Players can beat down their foes at regular speed, pull off slick moves in slow motion, and even assault multiple foes with the “Mach Speed” VFX power. The game’s cel-shaded art style makes everything pop off the screen, plus the music features enough catchy bops that’ll keep you humming while you save your girlfriend from the colorful realm of “Movieland.” Viewtiful Joe is easily one of the best GameCube games and one of the finest beat ’em ups of all time.

Buy Now, $54.77
https://amzn.to/3NnMIcq
22. ‘Viewtiful Joe 2’

Viewtiful Joe 2 arrived in 2004 and kept up the good vibes that came with its predecessor. The main attraction of this sequel is the arrival of Viewtiful Joe’s girlfriend as a playable heroine named “Sexy Silvia.” The series’ signature VFX Powers come back into the fray as you can use them to aid you during combat and puzzles once again. Silvia’s “Replay” ability produced lots of hype moments since you use it to record and repeat her actions in quick succession. The innovative gameplay of the first Viewtiful Joe got even more appealing thanks to all the new mechanics that came with this sequel.

Buy Now, Price Varies
https://amzn.to/3NlVCai
23. ‘Sonic Adventure 2: Battle’

Sonic Adventure 2 came out near the end of the Sega Dreamcast’s lifecycle and thankfully ended things on a very strong note. Once Sega switched from first-party to third-party software development, it did the unthinkable by developing games for non-Sega consoles. One of its greatest ports is definitely this one, which is an updated version of Sonic Adventure 2 that throws in multiplayer modes that increase its fun factor overall. As the first official Sonic game to come to a Nintendo console, this release did well thanks to its wealth of extra characters and stages for the PVP component.

Buy Now, $124.80
https://amzn.to/3HQJddj
24. ‘Billy Hatcher and the Giant Egg’

Sega’s prowess is legendary when it comes to the platforming genre. Sonic Team stepped away from its iconic blue hedgehog for a sec to create something a bit more quirky. Billy Hatcher and the Giant Egg is all about rolling eggs around at a fast speed and using it to smash your foes and snap up all sorts of fruit. As your egg grows in size, it’ll eventually get high enough to hatch and possibly give you a new animal ally to rely on. That signature Sonic Team charm is all here and accounted for – Billy Hatcher and the Giant Egg’s endearing main protagonist, cutesy in-game world, and jolly gameplay are all proof of that.

Buy Now, $109.99
https://amzn.to/3tZGU20
25. ‘F-Zero GX’

Not only is F-Zero GX one of the best GameCube games out there, but it’s also one of the most challenging racers on the console. You truly have to have nerves of steel and insanely fast reflexes to stay in one piece during this game’s hazardous races. Zipping through tubes, flying through the air during tricky leaps, and dodging random objects on certain tracks will make you feel like a gaming god once you’ve mastered all those actions. The game’s huge roster of space racers and their trademark plasma-powered vehicles give this game an identity of its own that’s hard to pass up.

Buy Now, $176.61
https://amzn.to/3nj9Pu4
26. ‘Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time’

Ubisoft realized that The Prince of Persia IP had laid dormant for far too long, which is it decided to completely reboot it. And that new take on the series resulted in a third-person action/adventure game that breathed some life right back into the franchise. Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time was and still is a worthwhile experience thanks to its free-flowing swordplay and cool usage of time-based powers that played a part in navigating puzzles & parkour. This game feels like an Indiana Jones-like trek through fantastical locales filled with wild enemies to slash and tricky platforming segments to complete.

Buy Now, $34.95
https://amzn.to/3OG4B79
27. ‘Beyond Good & Evil’

Joining the resistance with the fearless Jade against an alien conspiracy enraptured most gamers that gave Beyond Good & Evil a shot. Even though this game didn’t move the needle on a financial level for Ubisoft back in the day, it still gained a cult following thanks to fans like us that recognized its many positives. Beyond Good & Evil presents an excellent romp through an alien planet that’s full of intrigue, a lovable anthropomorphic pig ally, staff-based martial arts, photography-focused side missions, and a whole lot more. Jade’s struggle against otherworldly threats is strong from start to finish – it deserves its flowers as one of Ubisoft’s very best releases.

Buy Now, $106.87
https://amzn.to/3btkpvM
28. ‘Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 4’

Tony Hawk’s superstar status in the world of gaming is due in part to the skateboarding titles that bear his name. And the one we hold up as the most significant is the fourth mainline series entry. Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 4 will always get a ton of love from us for giving everyone way more freedom and unlimited time to enjoy the many stages/missions tied to its Career Mode. The simple act of “skitching” added even more to the combo strings you could pull off to really rack up your final score. Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 4 definitely made us fall in love with Star Wars‘ Jango Fett as an extreme sports pro, too.

Buy Now, $23.38
https://amzn.to/3brrkph
29. ‘SSX 3’

Another extreme sports game that belongs on this list of the best GameCube games is this snowboarding masterpiece. The EA Sports Big label signifies excellence and SSX 3 made sure to maintain that high level of quality. Instead of picking tracks to shred the snow on, this super-sized sequel threw everyone into an open world that allows you to go wherever you please and tackle all types of fun objectives. Making your way from the very top of the mountain all the way to the bottom is one of the most rewarding experiences in the entire series. SSX 3 is just pure snowboarding bliss.

Buy Now, $30.94
https://amzn.to/3nf869b
30. ‘WWE Day of Reckoning 2’

Wrestling fans associate developer Yuke’s with top-of-the-line gameplay when it comes to WWF/E and WCW simulators. The GameCube didn’t get any of the SmackDown vs. Raw games, but it didn’t need to. And that’s because the WrestleMania and Day of Reckoning games held down the fort just fine. WWE Day of Reckoning 2 is our fave of the bunch – it features the most refined grappling mechanics of the series, one of the best storylines in the wrestling game genre, and a who’s who of playable legends. Plus the new and improved submission system did a whole lot to deepen the already strong gameplay this WWE sim is remembered fondly for.

Buy Now, $122.98
https://amzn.to/3A2pFkk
31. ‘Ultimate Muscle: Legends vs. New Generation’

One of the best GameCube games in this case also happens to be one of the most underrated. Based on the cartoon series that 4Kids Entertainment put American kids onto back in the day, Ultimate Muscle: Legends vs. New Generation is an arcadey in-ring brawler that’s a must-play. And we say that thanks to the outlandish slams and strikes you can pull off with the game’s colorful cast of characters. Kevin Mask will always be our number one guy, but we also got a kick out of taking our custom wrestler into some multi-man battle royals. You haven’t lived until you’ve seen someone get planted with Kid’s Muscle’s “Muscle Millennium.”

Buy Now, $349.99
https://amzn.to/3u7FEtx
32. ‘Super Mario Strikers’

Next Level Games, which is the development team behind NHL Hitz Pro, got the OK from Nintendo to take Mario and his friends onto the soccer field for one of the best arcade sports experiences ever made. Super Mario Strikers throws the Mushroom Kingdom’s best characters onto the field for some fiery 5v5 action that takes your typical soccer matches and turns them into a fun Super Mario Kart take on the formula. Being able to utilize power-ups and pull off guaranteed scorers with “Super Strike” super moves are part of the reason why Super Mario Strikers even entertains non-soccer fans.

Buy Now, $149.95
https://amzn.to/3AbRNBL
33. ‘Mario Golf: Toadstool Tour’

Mario Golf: Toadstool Tour is one of the best GameCube games we have to recommend here simply based on the fact that it improves upon everything introduced in the Nintendo 64 Mario Golf. All of the courses that come into play here (especially “Peach’s Castle Grounds!”) all present infinitely amusing rounds of golf. And it doesn’t matter if you play the game of golf via traditional stroke and match play – all that regular approaches to golf play are just as fun as the more lighthearted modes of play. “Coin Attack” and “Ring Attack” are definitely our go-to’s.

Buy Now, $49.89
https://amzn.to/3A68jmt
34. ‘Tales of Symphonia’

The GameCube actually has a nice catalog of RPGs worth returning to. And of the most prodigious examples of that is the fifth mainline entry in the Tales franchise. That classic JRPG we’re choosing to mention here is Tales of Symphonia. Lloyd Irving and his crew of world saviors go on an epic trek that produces a bunch of memorable twists and turns via its unforgettable plot. A lot of the fun is derived from Tales of Symphonia’s “Multi-Line Linear Motion Battle System,” which offers a top-class real-time battle system. And those cel-shaded graphics? They’re still gorgeous.

Buy Now, $54.99
https://amzn.to/3HSXgyW
35. ‘Skies of Arcadia Legends’

Another one of the best GameCube games and must-play RPGs in the console’s entire library is this updated rendition of a Sega Dreamcast classic. The air pirate adventures of Vyse, Aika, and Fina got expanded here with a bunch of content that wasn’t present in the Dreamcast version. This version of the game offers a “Wanted List” mode that puts you on the hunt for high-value targets, even more intriguing locales to discover, and the debut of an all-new character named Pistol. Skies of Arcadia Legends is one of the best pirate JRPGs we’ve ever played.

Buy Now, $253.10
https://amzn.to/3u3yzKu
36. ‘Baten Kaitos: Eternal Wings and the Lost Ocean’

Do you know which development team is responsible for giving us this slept-on GameCube gem? Monolith Soft, which happens to be the geniuses behind the Xenoblade Chronicles series. So it’s easy to see why that studio’s RPG pedigree is noticeable here as well. Baten Kaitos: Eternal Wings and the Lost Ocean grabbed our attention due to the fact that its turn-based battles focus on a clever collectible card game system that makes it super unique. The striking art style also did a lot to make all the mystical destinations you explore stand out. We still trip out over the game’s characters asking us questions directly! Baten Kaitos deserves its placing here among the very best GameCube games.

Buy Now, $128.39
https://amzn.to/3by0Xy8
37. ‘Super Monkey Ball 2’

The first Super Monkey Ball introduced a bunch of Nintendo gamers to a deceptively cute and incredibly difficult platform party game. In our eyes, the second entry in the series is the one we adore the most. Super Monkey Ball 2 throws in a fanciful storyline that gives players even more of a reason to push through all the tough stage formations that’ll challenge you. speaking of challenges, the game’s multiplayer Challenge Mode also provides even more crazy levels to navigate through. And last but not least, the Party Games still provided endless oodles of fun – Monkey Baseball, Monkey Dogfight, and Monkey Fight are goated!

Buy Now, Price Varies
https://amzn.to/3ypHb0s
38. ‘Burnout 2: Point of Impact’

Burnout 2: Point of Impact is a clear-cut winner when it comes to best entries in the car crashing franchise. The racing is pretty dammed exciting as expected. But the main attraction here is “Crash Mode,” which is all about hopping into your favorite ride and trying to pull in the highest score possible by smashing other vehicles on the road. There’s such an undeniable joy that comes from causing onroad mayhem in the most destructive manner possible. We got the same amount of satisfaction from wrecking cars in “Pursuit Mode,” too!

Buy Now, $68.67
https://amzn.to/3a3pbzE
39. ‘Star Fox Adventures’

What was originally supposed to be a game titled Dinosaur Planet soon morphed into a Fox McCloud action/adventure romp called Star Fox Adventures. This game sticks to the classic Rare open-world formula we fell in love with back on the N64 – there are plenty of colorful expansive biomes to run around in, useful items to find that aid you during combat/puzzle-solving, and some great sidekicks that are just as lovable as Fox. Being able to take flight in the Arwing during certain sections did an awesome job of switching up the action to bring that old Star Fox feeling back. Side note – Krystal will always be one of our favorite characters from this game!

Buy Now, $69.98
https://amzn.to/3OHFJfo
40. ‘Battalion Wars’

This 3D spinoff of the Advance Wars series ended up delivering one of the best GameCube games in the real-time strategy genre. Battalion Wars takes the action from a top-down view to a third-person viewpoint that gets players even closer to all the madness that unfolds between two military superpowers. Becoming a military commander that’s responsible for choosing the right units to go out on the battlefield is an infinitely rewarding experience here. The game’s cartoony aesthetic gave it that signature Nintendo style everyone recognizes and its tactics-based warfare pushed it to superstar status when it comes to great first-party Nintendo GameCube games.

Buy Now, $148.99
https://amzn.to/3QNPURs
41. ‘WarioWare, Inc.: Mega Party Games!’

This is where it all began. This is where Mario’s evil doppelganger got to have some fun in an entirely different way compared to his platforming adventures. This remake of the Game Boy Advance original ratchets up the fun factor thanks to the addition of four-player participation in certain “microgames.” It’s even more hilarious to engage in some outlandish minigames with your friends in close proximity. Peeling a banana, engaging in a seconds-long boss battle from the original Metroid, and trying to bowl over a single pin are just some of the zany occurrences that you’ll come across in this party game.

Buy Now, $134.99
https://amzn.to/3nivDpN
Categories
Gaming

Call of Duty League: Major 4 Tournament Preview

The Call of Duty pro scene is going to play a major part in getting fans all caught up in some furious skirmishes between the best players/teams this summer. And from June 24 to July 17, the world’s most popular first-person shooter franchise will demand everyone’s attention as the Call of Duty League: Major 4 Tournament unfolds. To make sure you don’t miss any of the furious Call of Duty: Vanguard action, we’ve decided to bring you up to speed on everything you need to know about this summer FPS esports series.

Major 4 Qualifiers

The Qualifiers portion of the Call of Duty League: Major 4 Tournament will take place over three weeks: June 24-June 26, July 1-July 3, and July 8-July 10. All of these matches will be played online, five matches will be conducted per team, the action will unfold in a Best of Five series, and all teams will qualify for the offline bracket stage. You can refer to the weekly qualifying matches below for the days, times (EST), and YouTube links to watch everything go down via live-streamed competitions:

Week 1 Qualifiers

June 24 – Watch It Here!

3 pm: Florida Mutineers vs. New York Subliners ($10K Bounty Match)

4:30 pm: OpTic Texas vs. Boston Breach

6 pm: Toronto Ultra vs. Los Angeles Guerrillas

June 25 – Watch It Here!

3 pm: Toronto Ultra vs. London Royal Ravens

4:30 pm: New York Subliners vs. Los Angeles Guerrillas

6 pm: OpTic Texas vs. Minnesota RØKKR

7:30 pm: Los Angeles Thieves vs. Boston Breach ($10K Bounty Match)

June 26 – Watch It Here!

3 pm: Seattle Surge vs. Paris Legion

4:30 pm: Florida Mutineers vs. Minnesota RØKKR

6 pm: Los Angeles Thieves vs. Atlanta FaZe

Week 2 Qualifiers

July 1 – Watch It Here!

3 pm: Atlanta FaZe vs. Toronto Ultra

4:30 pm: Minnesota RØKKR vs. London Royal Ravens

6 pm: Seattle Surge vs. Boston Breach

July 2 – Watch It Here!

3 pm: Florida Mutineers vs. London Royal Ravens

4:30 pm: OpTic Texas vs. Paris Legion

6 pm: Seattle Surge vs. New York Subliners

7:30 pm: Atlanta FaZe vs. Los Angeles Guerrillas

July 3 – Watch It Here!

3 pm: Boston Breach vs. Los Angeles Guerrillas

4:30 pm: Los Angeles Thieves vs. Paris Legion

6 pm: OpTic Texas vs. New York Subliners

Week 3 Qualifiers

July 8 – YouTube Link Coming Soon…

3 pm: Atlanta FaZe vs. London Royal Ravens

4:30 pm: Florida Mutineers vs. Paris Legion

6 pm: Seattle Surge vs. Minnesota RØKKR

July 9 – YouTube Link Coming Soon…

3 pm: Paris Legion vs. Minnesota RØKKR ($10K Bounty Match)

4:30 pm: Boston Breach vs. Toronto Ultra

6 pm: Los Angeles Thieves vs. Florida Mutineers

7:30 pm: Seattle Surge vs. Atlanta FaZe ($10K Bounty Match)

July 10 – YouTube Link Coming Soon…

3 pm: Los Angeles Guerrillas vs. London Royal Ravens ($10K Bounty Match)

4:30 pm: OpTic Texas vs. Toronto Ultra ($10K Bounty Match)

6 pm: Los Angeles Thieves vs. New York Subliners

Tournament Weekend

The Tournament Weekend portion of the Call of Duty: Major 4 tournament will take place from July 14-July 17 and emanate from Kings Theatre in New York. All twelve teams that participate here will compete in a double-elimination bracket to determine the Major 4 champions. The seeding for these games will be determined by the Qualifiers. Matches will be conducted under a Best of Five Series until the Grand Final will raise the stakes and be conducted under a Best of Nine Series. Once the matches, times, and live-streaming links become available, we’ll be sure to list them all here.

Categories
Gaming

SteelSeries Arctis Nova Pro Wireless (Xbox) Review

SteelSeries is often associated with top-of-the-line gaming peripherals for consoles and PC. And on the headset front, gamers can get their hands on some of the finest wired and wireless models money can buy. A new lineup of headsets has been unveiled by SteelSeries for gamers looking to acquire the strongest audio experience for all their gaming devices and it’s called the Arctis Nova Pro Series. Luckily, I got to delve into all the features the Xbox-themed model offers and came away highly impressed. Now without further ado, here is my SteelSeries Arctis Nova Pro Wireless review.

On the physical design front, the SteelSeries Arctis Nova Pro looks extra sleek thanks to its black color scheme. I’m a huge fan of anything gaming-related that adopts dark color outlines, so I’m hugely satisfied with what SteelSeries has created here. While the headset itself may look heavy at first glance, putting it around your head quickly relieves those fears. Everything feels just right as soon as you put this model on and that feeling stays that way during the entirety of whatever you’re doing with it. The flexible tension headband is a godsend in the comfortability department, I must say. As for this headset’s battery life, it’s damn near unlimited – you can choose to swap out one of its batteries for charging purposes while the additional battery encased within it keeps it running without interruption. The default 22-hour run time of the headset will definitely come through in the clutch for all your gaming needs.

SteelSeries

This wireless headset offers amazing acoustic feedback thanks to its 360-degree spatial audio, pro-grade parametric EQ feature that lets you control different sound frequencies, and active noise cancellation that goes hand in hand with its attached microphone. Speaking of control, the Arctis Nova Pro Wireless comes with a special base station that allows you to minimize/maximize your volume levels. And along with that, you can also tap into the base station’s multi-system connect feature and use your headset with non-Xbox devices.

If you’re looking for a singular headset that can be used across your gaming hardware, PC, and mobile devices, choosing this SteelSeries model is the best way to go. The quality audio experience stays the same no matter what device you’re using it with, plus there’s no need to switch wires when doing so. All you need to do is hook up the base itself to your Xbox console and follow all the easy directions needed to make your headset usable with everything else contained within your gaming space. The free SteelSeries Sonar Audio Suite software that you can download eases that whole process.

SteelSeries

This new SteelSeries headset model is definitely worth taking the plunge on. It fetches a high asking price ($349.99), but the fact that you can turn it into the center of your gaming haven means it’s a worthy investment. If my SteelSeries Arctis Nova Pro Wireless review convinces you to make that investment, then my job is done. Enjoy one of the best high-end wireless gaming headsets on the market today.

Categories
Gaming

Community Effort Orlando (CEO) 2022 Preview

If you consider yourself a member of the FGC (Fighting Game Community) or just an esports tournament onlooker, then you most likely have a clue about what CEO (Community Effort Orlando) is all about. In 2021, the wrestling-themed fighting game tourney made its return to an in-person event after being canceled the year prior. Instead of taking place in December like the 2021 installment, CEO 2022 is set to take place in the summer like it traditionally has in years past. CEO Gaming’s President and founder Alex Jebailey, the entirety of the staff put in place to make things run smoothly, and the professional players who make the trek there to emerge victorious are set to return for this year’s live-streamed festivities. Before it kicks off, allow us to offer you the most important details about CEO 2022.

So What is CEO All About?

It’s definitely worth watching this extensive documentary about the legacy of CEO, which has been produced by the good folks at Hold Back to Block.

When and Where is CEO 2022 Taking Place?

CEO 2022 is going down on June 24-26 and will be emanating from Daytona Beach, FL in the Ocean Center & Hilton Daytona Beach Oceanfront Resort. 2,000+ players are said to be attending this year.

What Games are Being Played at CEO 2022?
Community Effort Orlando

The full gamut of games that’ll be featured at this year’s CEO include:

Super Smash Bros. Melee

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate

Street Fighter V: Championship Edition

Mortal Kombat 11

Tekken 7

Dragon Ball FighterZ

Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3

Guilty Gear Strive

Soulcalibur VI

Capcom vs. SNK 2: Mark of the Millennium 2001

BlazBlue Cross Tag Battle

Def Jam: Fight for NY

BlazBlue: Central Fiction

Granblue Fantasy: Versus

The King of Fighters XV

Melty Blood: Type Lumina

Street Fighter III: 3rd Strike

Super Street Fighter II Turbo

In regards to both Super Smash Bros. games being played here, the competition being played here marks the beginning of the Panda Cup. This tournament circuit for the franchise as a whole is being put together thanks to a partnership between Panda Global and Nintendo. The top three players that emerge from both games during CEO 2022 will qualify for the Panda Cup Finale.

As for Tekken 7, the Tekken World Tour 2022’s global kickoff will take place at this year’s CEO. 16 regions will be included in this grand tournament – players from each region will be eligible to participate in local Dojo events and international Master events in order to compete on a leaderboard and guarantee themselves an invite to the global finals of the entire competition.

How Can I Watch CEO 2022 and What’s the Streaming Schedule?
Community Effort Orlando

If you’re looking to watch CEO 2022, refer to the live streaming schedule above for the dates and times for your preferred games. And check out the links posted below to see all the Twitch channels that’ll go live for the event across all three days:

CEOGaming

TEKKEN

pandacup

pandacup2

TampaNeverSleeps

DATAFGC

JuicyGameNight

tenomedia

And here are the official days and start times (EST) for the top eight competition portion of each game’s tournament:

June 24

8 pm: BlazBlue Cross Tag Battle on DATAFGC

June 25

11 am: Granblue Fantasy: Versus on CEOGaming

2 pm: Dragon Ball FighterZ on CEOGaming

4 pm: Street Fighter III: 3rd Strike on tenomedia

6 pm: The King of Fighters XV on CEOGaming

8 pm: Super Street Fighter II Turbo on tenomedia

June 26

10 am: Melty Blood: Type Lumina on CEOGaming

11 am: Soulcalibur VI on JuicyGameNight

11 am: Capcom vs. SNK 2 on DATAFGC

12 pm: Super Smash Bros. Melee on pandacup

1 pm: Tekken 7 on TEKKEN

1 pm: Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3 on TampaNeverSleeps

2 pm: Mortal Kombat 11 on JuicyGameNight

2 pm: BlazBlue: Central Fiction on DATAFGC

4 pm: Super Smash Bros. Ultimate on pandacup

4 pm: Street Fighter V on CEOGaming

7 pm: Guilty Gear Strive on CEOGaming

And finally, you can watch these two Community Events on June 24:

2 pm: Street Fighter Alpha 3 on texasshottakers

6 pm: Street Fighter Alpha 2 on texasshottakers

Categories
Gaming

‘Capcom Fighting Collection’ Review

My name is Elton Jones and I’m a self-admitted Capcom Stan. My earliest years as a gamer mainly consisted of me wandering into random arcades to spend my allowance on constant replays of Street Fighter II, X-Men Children of the Atom, Marvel vs. Capcom 2, and a host of other classic 2D fighters. And as I matured into the seasoned gamer I am today, I finally wrapped my head around the special move and super move inputs contained within Capcom’s long line of 2D & 3D fighters. With all that info on the table, you can imagine my excitement at the announcement of the Capcom Fighting Collection. To have a compilation within my grasp that compiles several of those classic Capcom coin-ops and be able to play them online via rollback netcode is simply a dream come true. Now’s the time to speak on all those great aspects within my Capcom Fighting Collection review.

‘Capcom Fighting Collection’ Review

The Capcom Fighting Collection features the following games: Darkstalkers: The Night Warriors, Night Warriors: Darkstalkers’ Revenge, Vampire Savior: The Lord of Vampire, Vampire Hunter 2: Darkstalkers’ Revenge, Vampire Savior 2: The Lord of Vampire, Hyper Street Fighter II: The Anniversary Edition, Super Puzzle Fighter II Turbo, Super Gem Fighter Mini Mix, Cyberbots: Full Metal Madness, and Red Earth.

Now I must admit – throwing five Darkstalkers games onto this compilation is certainly a bit much. And that’s coming from someone that never gets tired of Morrigan’s cameos in Capcom’s “Vs.” games series! I honestly feel the first Darkstalkers, Night Warriors: Darkstalkers’ Revenge, and Darkstalkers 3 (Vampire Savior: The Lord of Vampire) would have worked just fine as the series releases included here. Even still, those two extra updates to the third game are no longer Japanese exclusives and that’s admirable at least. But I would have been much happier if Street Fighter Alpha 2 Gold and Street Fighter Alpha 3 MAX were included in place of those games. The rest of the games included in this assemblage are definitely worth hopping into, though!

Capcom

Hyper Street Fighter II: The Anniversary Edition, which is the definitive version of arguably the greatest fighting game of all time, is finally playable on modern consoles. The same sentiment applies to Super Puzzle Fighter II Turbo, Super Gem Fighter Mini Mix, Cyberbots: Full Metal Madness, and especially Red Earth. In regards to that last selection, it’s incredible that that game is finally not trapped in its original arcade home anymore. Red Earth stands out the most here as it offers a fun RPG format that pretty much acts as a boss rush mode. And the fact that you can use either of the four main characters in online battles is something I didn’t even know I wanted until now.

Running through the arcade modes for each game in this collection is a warm reminder of my childhood days, which is a major factor in my overall enjoyment of it. The added visual overlays, EX Settings, and assorted Fighter Awards offered by each title also give players even more reason to return over and over again. For first-time players of each game, it’s cool that one-button special/super moves and button configurations that instantly activate certain characters’ moves are accessible if you’re looking to have some casual fun.

Capcom

Now the main draw of the Capcom Fighting Collection is its implementation of online rollback netcode for every game included here. And thankfully, it runs as smoothly as I hoped it would be. The online options at play here include Casual Match, Ranked Match, and Custom Match. Plus you have the ability to play either the American/Japanese versions of each game, enable cross-region matchmaking if you’d like to compete against all those killers in Japan, and turn on/off one-button special moves (make sure it’s off at all times, people!). You’ll get a ton of mileage out of being able to play most of these games online via consoles and also have the chance to play these games for the first time ever in a local/online setting on said consoles.

Capcom

Another reason why the Capcom Fighting Collection is worthy of adding to your retro troupe is its Museum mode. Now the Gallery’s inclusion of beautiful art for every game is cool and all. But it’s the brand new music compilations composed by prominent producers that lend the Museum so much more value. Knxwledge’s tracks stand out the most (I’m clearly biased towards him since he’s one of my favorite producers), but the rest of the original beats provided by the featured producers are just as good. And of course, you can jam to every game’s OST by default.

Capcom Fighting Collection is clearly a love letter to the good old days of the Japanese publisher/developer’s fighting game dominance. Finally being able to take Super Gem Fighter Mini Mix, Cyberbots: Full Metal Madness, and Red Earth online via consoles is such a blessing. And having the convenience of playing all the other games on modern console hardware leaves me with the exact same sentiment. Having five Darkstalkers games take up the majority of this collection is my main complaint here. But it’s not enough to keep me from recommending this compilation as a whole. Here’s hoping my Capcom Fighting Collection review convinces you to hop into some furious online battles within the 2D kings of the genre.

Categories
Gaming

Higround x PRIX Workshop Link Up for Gaming and Fashion

It’s always dope to see two brands that seek to push their cultures forward join forces to approach that mission as a unit. That exact scenario has come to fruition for a company that deals in “the expression of elevated gaming culture” and a lifestyle & fashion label. This newfound partnership has resulted in a super-clean-looking gaming peripheral that pays homage to the transparent PlayStation and Xbox consoles that were prevalent back in the day. Say hello to the Higround x PRIX Workshop translucent PC gaming keyboard.

Higround / PRIX Workshop

For those not in the know, Higround is a product design studio that mainly produces gaming-centric keyboards, keycaps, accessories, and apparel. The company came to light after being founded by gamers Kha Lu and Rustin Sotoodeh in 2020. Higround’s recognizability has risen considerably in the years since – its product drops are known to sell out in mere minutes, plus the studio as a whole was acquired by 100 Thieves in 2021. Higround’s previous collaborations include non-gaming entities, such as Beats by Dre, StockX, and Attack on Titan.

As for PRIX Workshop, this fashion brand was founded in 2018 in New Zealand and has captured the attention of celebrities far and wide (names like Hailey Bieber, Alicia Keys, Ariana Grande, and Hailey Bieber, Alicia Keys, and Ariana Grande immediately come to mind). PRIX’s creation is due in part to Esther NG, whose previous work includes her time spent with her father at his auto shop, her university work that saw her tinker with computer hardware, and her time spent working as COO OF YEEZY.

In celebration of this newfound partnership, both Higrounds’ Rustin Sotoodeh and Esther NG spoke of their excitement now that they’re both working in unison. “This is the perfect time to show our dimensionality, as a product design studio beyond graphics,” Sotoodeh noted. “I’ve always been intrigued by computer hardware and the interconnectedness of it all, for as long as I’ve been building PCs I’ve wondered what it’d be like to see everything working in its raw beauty while also being protected and as practical as possible – I thought it was a shame that most companies conceal these elements to achieve mass market appeal,” NG stated. “Higround has given me the opportunity to share that thought with everyone with this new keyboard.”

Higround / PRIX Workshop

ONE37pm also managed to get some more comments on this brand connection from Sotoodeh, which you can read below:

ONE37PM: So how did this partnership between Higround and PRIX Workshop come to be?

Sotodeh: About a month after we got acquired by 100 Thieves, we met 100T NeekoLul and she connected Esther and me because we had so many similar interests. When I met Esther, I learned more about Prix and realized how unique of a story and audience she had. She’s a fashionable gamer building a sleek lifestyle label inspired by her love of cars, gaming, and anime and loved by many more like her. Esther and Prix challenge preconceived notions of femininity and we wanted to shine a light on her pioneering viewpoint. Gaming companies generally don’t understand or appeal to the tastes of female gamers. At Higround we want to upend those negative stereotypes so working with Esther to create something focusing on her worldview felt natural. 

ONE37PM: What was the biggest inspiration behind the visual design of the hardware that came from this crossover project?

Sotodeh: We wanted to create something appealing to women that wasn’t your stereotypical hot pink that you’d see from mainstream gaming brands. 

ONE37PM: The translucent keyboard both companies came up with looks amazing! Can we expect to see any other gaming peripherals get the very same treatment from Higround x PRIX Workshop?

Sotodeh: Possibly, I know that whatever I say here will be used against me by the Higround fans in our Discord hahaha.

ONE37PM: What are some dream collaborations you’d love to see Higround be a part of next?

Sotodeh: Murakami!

Higround / PRIX Workshop

The Higround x PRIX Workshop keyboard will be available for purchase on Friday, June 24th, and 12 pm PST and 3 pm EST at higround.co.