B-TEN’s Letter to Santa

by Gabe Carey

Dear Santa Claus,

In August 2012, I was merely a junior in highschool. At the time, I was still trying to figure things out, like most highschool students. I was going to a school full of kids that I felt relatively distant from. I was excluded. So, I’d spend most of my days alone, relying on tech news sites like Engadget to keep me entertained. Shortly after, I decided to start a blog, which I would entitle Bullogna Technology and Entertainment News, later abbreviated as B-TEN. The name derived from a substitute teacher I had at the time, who mentioned that her boyfriend — or husband, I can’t really remember — was full of bologna. From then on, I was fascinated by that euphemism. It was a way of saying bull– well, you know– without directly saying it.

Opinion- Steven’s Review of 2014 in Film

As we wrap up the year everyone is beginning to take a look back at everything they did and their favorite picks from the various media forms. Today when I was cleaning out my desk drawer I came across all the ticket stubs I had saved throughout the year. I went to the movie theater 23 times this year based off of my collection of movie tickets. That is actually only four tickets less than all the movie tickets I have from May 12, 2007 (Spider-Man 3) to June 22, 2013 (Monsters University). So I decided to list them all as a form of wrapping up 2014 in Film. Here’s a detailed breakdown of what I watched and what I thought on each.

Pokémon Memories Part II: Recognizing Nostalgic Setbacks

by Gabe Carey

Last October, I wrote an editorial about a very personal experience I had last year in Seattle, Washington when I discovered a Pokémon Center kiosk at a local mall. After writing Pokémon Memories Part 1, I had originally intended to roll out a follow-up within the following week or two. It has now been a year since the publication of that wistful article, celebrating the release of Pokémon X and Y versions of the game.

Why You Should Be Excited for Spectre

by Steven Santana

Director Sam Mendes revealed last Thursday that the twenty fourth Bond film would be titled Spectre. It’s no secret that I am a big fan of Skyfall, released in 2012 as a celebration of Bond’s 50 anniversary. And Spectre appears to be righting the only wrong I could find in Skyfall, which was abandoning the plot of Casino Royale and Quantum of Solace. So here are my arguments for why Spectre is going to be great and why you should care.

What Uncharted 4 Has Learned from Other Games in Its Genre

by Steven Santana

This past weekend at the PlayStation Experience we finally got a look at gameplay from Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End. It wowed the crowd present, myself included. The game looks gorgeous, like all the Uncharted games have. Not only that, the gameplay has been tweaked in various ways to make gameplay more engaging and allowing more options in how you approach enemy encounters. There are two major influences on these additions: Tomb Raider and The Last of Us.

Games Industry Figure Of The Year – Phil Spencer

by Patrick Toworfe

From the start, Phil Spencer had a tough job ahead of him. Not just because he was now representing Xbox and Microsoft, brand names with a lot of prestige and legacy, but also because he was spearheading the marketing for the Xbox One in the latest console war. The Xbox One had an incredibly rocky start due to the public outcry against the DRM policies, pre-packaged Kinect and lack of second-hand game support, but it cleaned up with time. The man responsible for how Xbox One fairs now is non other than Phil Spencer himself, who has taken great strides in making the console appeal to gamers in the same way that the Xbox 360 did. Essentially, Spencer put Xbox One back in the game after it seemed like PS4 had already won the championship series. Now, it’s a close fight raging on in 2014, leading up to the all-important holiday shopping season.

Fire is Catching: Hunger Games Mockingjay Review

by Lauren Baughman

Since its release, Hunger Games: Mockingjay part 1 has kept its place as number one in the box office and will probably stay there for quite some time, possibly until The Hobbit: Battle of Five Armies comes out. But does this actually mean anything? Is it worth watching? Absolutely!

The Cathartic Compulsion To Comment [On Things You Don’t Like]

by Patrick Toworfe

Have you ever wondered why people go out of their way to comment on things they don’t like? People who click on videos and links to things they’re not a fan of and moan about the content? I’ve never understood it much myself in the past; why someone would bother to concern themselves with something they don’t enjoy. Within gaming, I tend to pay attention to games and gaming culture that I like and anything that doesn’t fit my fancy simply gets ignored, and I know many others that do the same. So it came as a shock to me that people on the internet spend so much time ranting and raving about stuff when they don’t enjoy it. I didn’t get it back then, but it makes a lot more sense now. One simply explanation is catharsis.

Your Game Needs More Statistics

by Craig Borysowich

I’m definitely interested in reader opinions on this topic, but it seems that many gaming companies are missing out on the opportunity to include deeper game player statistics and big data functionality feature in their games. There have been some decent examples of stat reporting in games. I also admit that it isn’t every gamer that is interested in these features, but for those that are, it can create a deeper experience.

Cinderella: More Than a Pretty Film?

by Lauren Baughman

After a few months of teasers, one of which just focusing on a shoe, Disney released the full trailer for their live action Cinderella movie set to come out in March. If you haven’t seen it yet, check it out below. And if you have and interested in an unpopular opinion, keep reading.

B-TEN CO-LAB: Favourite Beat ‘Em Up Games

by James Daly

Welcome to the third installment of B-TEN CO-LAB! This series of articles represents the many voices that make up the hive mind of B-TEN.com, albeit a rather conflicted collective consciousness. After talking about the scariest video games we’ve ever played last time, we’ve decided to mask our fear with some macho violence and talk about our favourite beat ‘em up games. Otherwise known as “brawler” games, early beat ‘em ups were side-scrolling affairs that pitted the player(s) against seemingly unending hordes of villains, in contrast to the genre of fighting games where gameplay is based on mono e mono combat made famous by Street Fighter and so on. In essence they were almost exactly the same as shoot ‘em ups, but with an emphasis on hand-to-hand combat and largely catered for more multiplayer experiences.

My London MCM Comic Con Experience [Oct 2014]

by Patrick Toworfe

Another year, another big London MCM Comic Con event I had to attend. Years ago, it was known simply as ‘London Expo’ or ‘London MCM’, but since it has adopted the ‘Comic Con’ label it’s definitely grown in size. Considerably in-fact. Like every year I planned to attend the event, the nights leading up to it made me very anxious and I reminisced of my past experiences with the London MCM Expo. While the night before the recent convention wasn’t anywhere near as spectacular as it had been in the past, I still managed to have some fun on my own while I got ready for the next day.