Chris Littlechild Website

Chris is a dedicated gamer and writer who is always looking to improve his skills in both areas. Having failed miserably to pick a major, his degree from the University of Hertfordshire combines English Literature, Creative Writing and History. (Oddly, it doesn’t even end there.) He lives in St Albans, but knows few people would ever have heard of such a place, so the nearby London is always a better answer. From the 'London'-based marshland nest he calls home, he writes gaming/humour/gaming humour articles and the occasional horror story, and benevolently attempts to befriend passing insects. As yet, none of them have been interested. He even offered a range of homemade baked confections to them once, to no avail.

CoinOpTV Returns With the Essential Games of February 2015

Games of February 2015

The last few months have been a little sparse for gametastic. There have been highlights, true enough, but otherwise pickings have been slim. Fear not though, because February’s primed to hit us with both barrels of badassery.

Who better to guide us than CoinOpTV’s Robert Welkner? Each month, he and his slightly questionable beard present the best of the upcoming four weeks’ releases. Dates, formats and all that sort of business, all streamlined and brought to us in an attention span friendly manner. It’s worth four minutes of anyone’s time.

As it turns out, February’s looking pretty damn good. The round-up offers such heavily hyped hard hitters as Evolve, Game of Thrones: The Lost Lords, Resident Evil: Revelations 2 (episode one) and The Order 1886. There are also new installments of classic franchises to be had, in Total War: Attila and Oddworld: New and Tasty.

And who –just who the effing hell– could forget American Truck Simulator and the Spongebob Squarepants game?

Us gamers can be a picky bunch, there’s no doubt about that. But when everyone from Attila the Hun to Spongebob Squarepants is represented, you know you’ve got a varied crop indeed. Check out the rundown below, and make your choices.

Forget Call of Duty, Real Men Need the Retro Love: Silent Hill

Silent Hill 1

Spare undercrackers at the ready, gentlemen. Silent Hill is coming at you.

The late nineties was a great time for the survival horror genre. It was, y’know, the time it began to damn well exist, with the advent of Resident Evil. Sure, purists consider the decrepit likes of Alone in the Dark as the true birth of the genre, but screw it. That was 1992. I’ve already typed late nineties, and I’m going to keep that original sentence intact like the stubborn bastard I am.

Besides, there’s no doubt that Capcom’s classic popularised the genre, and the idea itself. It’s the defining game, the face of survival horror. And as far as runners up go, many of us in the gametastic world would go for Silent Hill.

This was Konami/Team Silent’s first foray into the genre, hitting the PlayStation in 1999. It was a whole new kind of horror game. It was the artsy, Guillermo Del Torro-flavored lingering creeptastic to Resident Evil’s straight-up shuffling zombies and in-your-face chewing of… your face. Psychological horror over cheap entrail-leaky slasher. Let’s take a look.

This whole business begins with Harry Mason, a regular guy taking his daughter Cheryl to the town of Silent Hill on vacation. As their car approaches the place, they encounter a mysterious girl (demonic, natch), causing them to lose control and crash. Mason awakes in a hospital in Silent Hill to find his daughter gone, all kinds of creepy-ass characters talking about darkness enveloping everything, and goddamn monsters everywhere.

All in all, it’s a bad time, and reminds us why we shouldn’t just go for the cheapest vacation deals we can find on the Internet. It’s like Hostel, but even shittier.

Silent Hill 2

The key here is atmosphere. Of course, the Spencer Mansion has a foreboding spirit of its own, but this is something else. The unnatural snowfall and fog over the town is creepy enough to make all the hairs on your scrote stand on end. Handily, it also helps to hide the piss-poor limitations of nineties 3D.

The whole ‘survival’ thing comes in with the main character himself. Our ol’ buddy Harry isn’t a special ops commando armed to the ass. He’s a regular Joe, vulnerable, low on stamina and scavenging for equipment to make it past the monsters. This was the mistake that recent Resident Evils made, making us such unstoppable badasses that they felt more like TPS ghastly-ass mutant shooting galleries. But these monsters, you don’t want to eff with.

Silent Hill was a success, I’d say, because it effectively melded the old and the new. There was no HUD to distract from the atmosphere, leaving you to do a lot of menu-wangling to check your health, inventory, maps and such. In that, and the general key-findin’, bizarre-puzzle-solvin’ action, it’s so very Evil. But the nightmarish and supernatural quality of it all set this one apart. Zombies are all well and good, but Silent Hill has brought us a decade and a half of mystery, symbolism and all-round WTF.

What does Pyramid Head truly represent? Let’s not get started on that one.

Conan O’Brien Has His Own Little Super Bowl, ‘Mortal Kombat X’ Style

Clueless Gamer- Mortal Kombat X

You may not have noticed, but a little thing called the Super Bowl took place last night. I’d never heard of it either, but I’m told it’s some kind of minor sporting event. Darts or beach volleyball or something like that.

The Patriots and Seahawks may have gotten their football on yesterday, but that was just for show. The real victor had already been decided, courtesy of Mortal Kombat X. The latest episode of Conan’s Clueless Gamer featured Marshawn Lynch and Rob Gronkowski, bringing thrice the Clueless and a whole lot of celebratory gonad-grabbing to the segment.

Now, this is the mothereffin’ Gronk right here. Gronk and Beast Mode. These are pretty big, studly guys. You’d expect them to be down with some of Mortal Kombat’s patented goretastic. You would not expect them to gurn like a disapproving grandma, curl up in the fetal position and/or leave the room in disgust. You’d be wrong there, buddy boy.

“That’s nasty, man. I ain’t here to see that. Ya’ll trippin’!”

Watch Lynch take on Gronkowski in the upcoming fighter after the jump. You’ve never seen Conan so thrilled at cutting off another man’s face.
Read more… »

‘Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance 2’ Possibly in the Works; Mysterious Number 2 Spotted (and Poor Turd Pun Made)

Metal Gear Rising Sequel Perhaps

You remember Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance, right? Of course you do. It was the kind of balls-out extravganza of pure madness that you don’t forget in a hurry.

If you do need a refresher, it was a 2013 hack and slash evisceration-a-thon brought to us by Platinum Games. These guys were also the creators of Vanquish and Bayonetta, so they certainly know their shit in this area. This little slice of Metal Gear starred Raiden of Sons of Liberty fame, a cyborg ninja taking on the private military company Desperado Enforcement like the lone robo-badass he is.

It was a hell of a series curveball, with its focus on pure actiontastic combat and thumping soundtrack-ery. But it did pretty damn well, so this kinda sorta possible sequel announcement shouldn’t be much of a surprise.

That spangly digit up there is all we have to go on. It flashed briefly on screen during a clip shown at the Tapai Game Show, Kotaku reports. Irrefutable evidence, this is not, but that’s a match for the Revengeance font if ever I’ve seen one. And as the report also states, series bossman Hideo Kojima did pay a visit to Platinum Games late last year. It’s looking likely, whatever naysayer Geoff Keighley may Tweet.

Gaming’s Whacked Out Week: Modder Returns ‘Resident Evil’ to its Craptastic, Jill Sandwich Origins

 photo Whacked- Resident Evil Voice Acting.png

Last week, the umpteenth Resident Evil re-release hit consoles and PC. It’s a spangly new HD-ified edition of the legendary GameCube remake, and yet another slice of Capcom’s cash cowing.

But it’s also another slice of Resident Evil, and that’s hard to resist. Almost twenty years later, the 1996 classic has an iron, nostalgic grip on the ‘nads of gamers everywhere. Tank-tastic controls, Jill sandwiches, masters of unlocking… this is the stuff that childhood memories are made from.

Now, the first thing the original changed (the original remake, that is, not the original original, try to keep up) was the ball-achingly bad voice acting. It was terrible, after all, and is the source of much of the game’s camp b-movie value. But for one man, that shit is worth saving.

This week, Kotaku brought us Resident Evil modder ‘Bunny,’ and his project to splice the old voice acting onto REmake’s cutscenes. The results are beautifully nostalgic, completely hilarious and horrific in all the wrong ways. The scene after the jump (“It’s not just a poisonous snake… it’s a MONSTER!”) is particularly priceless.
Read more… »

Et tu, Ermac? Another Veteran Returns to the Fray to Flay in ‘Mortal Kombat X’

 photo Mortal Kombat X Ermac.jpg

With new installments in fighting game franchises, you probably want to stick to the returning characters first. New fighters are all well and good, of course, but if a fan hears their favorite didn’t make the cut? You can imagine the nerdly whining on the Internet. There’d probably be a real-life Fatality or two.

Earlier this week we saw the return of everyone’s favorite caustic kombatant, Reptile. There were claws and acid-snot projectiles and face-melty fatalities, and a good time was had by all. But that, as they’d probably say on Mean Girls given half a chance, was like so two days ago. It’s time to move on and check out the latest addition to Mortal Kombat X.

So, welcome back, Ermac. Pull up a chair, or… y’know, pull off someone’s asscheek and eat it, or whatever you crazy bastards of Mortal Kombat like to do.

This guy’s a real oddity, beginning life as an urban legend/rumored glitch before becoming an official kombatant in his own right (first playable in Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3). Since then, he’s been using his psychokinetic powers to serve Shao Khan and generally wreck shit as only a demented soul-conglomeration can.

Both of which he’s sure to be doing with style when Mortal Kombat X arrives on April 14. In the meantime, check him out in action against fellow fan favorite Sub-Zero below.

The Weekly WTF: How ‘Surf Champ’ Invented the Most Craptastic Sport of All Time

 photo Surf Champ 1.jpg

Nope, that guy’s playing a different game. But don’t worry, this one will make you look like even more of a dick.

Piss-poor plastic peripherals will always have their place in video games. In the Wii era, Nintendo brought us all kinds of horrible, horrible controllers. The Mario Kart wheel thing. The Wii Fit Balance board. Those half-assed tennis racquet/golf club attachments that had absolutely no effect on the game at all. They were all bollocks, and none of them even had the decency to be biodegradeable. The environment will be blighted by this crap for years to come.

We haven’t forgotten about the Virtual Boy either, Nintendo. What the hell was up with that?

But screw it, this is just the sort of thing that happens when you innovate for the sake of innovation. It’s all bound to get a little whack. But Surf Champ’s weeny little keyboard-mounted surfboard controller? There is no excuse for that. At all. Ever.

Surf Champ, for those of us who aren’t decrepit old dudes, hit the Commodore 64 and ZX Spectrum way back in 1984. Even if you were around back then, you’re unlikely to have ever heard of it. This one’s obscure as hell. Even on the Internet, it’s a sight as rare as the Loch Ness Monster. Or unicorns. Or a celebrity lady who can resist snapping photos of her ladyparts on her cellphone, then proceeding to bitch about it when some intrepit hacker shares them with the world.

 photo Surf Champ 2.jpg

See this, R.O.B? Something worse than you does exist.

Still, sabotagetimes knows their stuff. They know that this craptastic surfing game used ‘a haddock sized plastic surfboard which you slapped on top of your keyboard and used your finger to control, as if they were the stubby legs of a surfer.’ And if that sounds freaking horrendous to use, it’s because I’m assured that it was.

After all, there’s a reason PC games mostly conform to the good ol’ fashioned mouse, arrows and WASD approach. Primarily because it actually damn well works, and isn’t as counter-intuitive as getting pregnant by thrusting your wang in a bacon slicer. But screw it, Surf Champ has no time for that sort of logic. It’s finger-surfboard or nothing ‘round here, buddy boy.

But then the developers took a step further, into true crazy-ass territory. ‘They believed the game was so realistic that it would be used by professional surfers for indoor competitions during the off-season,’ the report continues. This resulted in the creation of the World Computer Surfing Championship, intended as an annual event. Unsurprisingly, somebody quickly noticed that, hey, this is a pretty mothereffin’ stupid idea, right here, and it happened just once in 1985.

Surf Champ was, by all accounts, a terrible ballache. But it sucked in style, so that’s… something.