Article The 10 Most Miserable Creatures in the Pokemon World

By Andrew Bridgman / February 20, 2013
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The life of a Pokemon is not a good one: they wander aimlessly in the grass, the desert, and the sea, attacking literally anything that comes by. Inevitably, they will be brutally beaten and captured by a trainer, who will keep them in a tiny ball or trapped in some PC ("Bill's PC", or "Whatever PC" in later vesions). Then, if they're lucky enough to escape their Tron-esque digital nightmare world, they will occasionally be trotted out to battle other Pokemon – where they will be burnt, frozen, paralyzed, poisoned, and a million other horrible things – all so some loser trainer can win some badges. But, even among Pokemon, some are far more miserable than the others. They actually have lives that are significantly worse. Here are the 10 most miserable creatures in Pokemon.

10. Igglybuff

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"It has a soft and bouncy body. Once it starts bouncing, it becomes impossible to stop." (Pokemon Diamond)

Igglybuff looks like the happiest, most joy-filled Pokemon creature ever. And it very well might be! For the precious few moments of its life when it's still, that is. Because the second it bounces, that's it – it bounces forever. It's entire life is constant, perpetual motion – in total defiance of Newton's laws – that is wholly unstoppable, like some terrible amusement park ride that never ends. Plus, its name is Igglybuff and it's a weaker version of Jigglypuff. It doesn't get much worse than that.

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10 Awesome Facts About Nintendo

Video 10 Awesome Facts About Nintendo

December 07, 2012

11. Your mom still calls every videogame "Nintendo."

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Article 8 Things From Videogames We Wish Existed In Real Life

By Jon Wolf / June 13, 2012

1. No Traffic

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The best thing about open-world driving games (think Burnout Paradise) is not the turbo, nor the ability to walk away from a horrible-yet-badass crash: It's the fact that there are barely any cars on the road. Sure, there might be some other vehicles, and in some games there are actually working stoplights, but it's hard to imagine a game where there is bumper-to-bumper traffic trying to get off the highway.

And with good reason. Traffic is miserable. If human motorists drove like their NPC counterparts – calmly, methodically, programmed to drive at the same pace and leave a safe following distance between cars, not only would road rage decline, but so would the majority of traffic collisions. Except for ones caused by turbo strips, of course.

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Article 10 Nerd Dreams That Will Never Come True

By Andrew Bridgman / April 13, 2012

10) Star Wars Post-Quels (Episodes 7/8/9)

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This has long been a big dream for nerds, even if the prospect has faded considerably as of late: a new trilogy of films that would pick up where Return of the Jedi left off: the Empire has fallen, the New Republic has risen from the ashes, and Luke is about to restore the Jedi Order. The exciting thing about actual sequels (as opposed to the prequels) is that we wouldn't already know what happens (unless they used the many post-original trilogy books as inspiration, which they probably wouldn't). The reasons this dream is dead are:

  • No one wants to see George Lucas create three more mildly underwhelming (I'm trying to keep it civil, okay?) Star Wars entries.
  • George Lucas did not like the reception the prequels got, and has been quoted as saying he was done making Star Wars movies because he didn't want to go through that again.
  • George Lucas is not going to let anyone but him create canonical, live action films. For a while, it looked like Spielberg might direct one of the prequels - George squashed the idea quickly, refusing to let one of the best directors of our generation and his good friend even touch the series.

So maybe it's a blessing in disguise: we don't have to watch the internet get crazily worked up over new Star Wars films that would never live up to expectations no matter how good they were and we can always let "what happens next?" live in our imagination, which is probably better than whatever the reality would be. Plus, can you imagine Harrison Ford as a cranky, elderly Han Solo? I don't think anyone wants to see that. Then again, Mark Hamill could probably use the work.

UPDATE: We were wrong. We were so wrong.

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Article The 15 Most Frustrating Situations in Videogames

By Staff / January 26, 2012
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There is a new king in the land of broken controllers! After receiving almost 1.3 million votes, the most rage-inducing moment has finally been crowned. I'd like to thank the gaming community for the huge turnout, but in reality, it was probably just a couple guys voting a few hundred thousand times each. So this one's for you, Paul and Mike. You guys really hit it out of the park.

15. Not realizing you're fighting enemies that will respawn indefinitely and wasting all your health and ammo trying to finish them all off

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You weren't supposed to win, you were supposed to run away. Unfortunately, the game decided to let you figure this out on your own. Since you're a total fake badass and NEVER back down from a fake fight, you didn't figure it out until you'd already unloaded clip after clip into the unending army of minions. Now you're off to the next section of the game barely clinging to life. Annnnnnd it just auto-saved. Beautiful.

14. Running out of inventory slots

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Gamers are hoarders by nature. We are obsessive collectors. Even useless items somehow find their way into our inventories, because hey, those can be sold for gold and we like collecting gold; even when we've already got all the best items in the game. Thus, a full inventory is our sworn enemy: You're suddenly faced with the realization that you can't keep all that phat loot you've been picking up along the way. Some particularly cruel games won't even let you drop items, meaning you've got to run back to your item box any time you fill up. I'm looking at you, Resident Evil.

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Article 6 Reasons Why Mario is King

By Lev Novak / January 12, 2012

6. Variety

Ryu doesn't have an RPG. Samus doesn't race karts. And Link has never played Sonic in the Winter Olympics. What am I saying? I'm saying that whatever you're looking for, Mario has it.

Okay, he doesn't have a gritty shooter – yet – but zombie survival is coming to Mushroom Kingdom no earlier than 2014. For the most part, what you want, Mario has. And whether you prefer your games in 2D or 3D, Mario's got both. Hell, thanks to Paper Mario, Mario can come as close to 1D as any game since Pong.

So next time you're praising a franchise, ask yourself: would this protagonist take the time to teach me typing? If it's not Mario, the answer's a no.

5. Depth

The Mario series isn't just about variety; it's how deep it goes. There isn't just one good Mario RPG and there isn't just one cool Mario sports game. No, the series has done the near impossible. It has made great franchises within a great franchise: Franchise-ception.

There are no fewer than three good games in every franchise within the Mario universe. For RPGs, there's Super Mario RPG and three Paper Marios. There are more Mario Parties than any man could play, enough Mario Karts to give you blue-shell-trauma, and even three Smash Bros. games to cover your fighting game fix.

And before you call Smash Bros. anything but a Mario production, ask yourself: what other Bros, outside the Mario bros, are doing the smashing? Exactly.

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Article The Nine Greatest Nerd Fears Today

By Andrew Bridgman / December 6, 2011

9. George R.R. Martin Dying Before Completing the Song of Ice and Fire Series

If I had to describe George RR Martin, I would say something like "HIV-Positive Santa Claus" or "Gandalf After Getting Kicked Off 'The Biggest Loser' For Trying To Eat His Own Beard." Neither of those things are sterling pictures of good health exactly, but they do more or less accurately describe the overweight, rapidly-aging fantasy author who still has two books left to complete his epic A Song of Ice and Fire saga. Not that he's going to die tomorrow or anything, but time is not on George's side here – and that's the one thing he really needs. Maybe if he didn't take 5 years apiece to write the previous two books in the series, we could be a little more optimistic. But since the series has expanded from a trilogy to a heptalogy (seven book series), who knows how much more George could stretch it out? He even recently announced he's not going to even START writing the sixth entry – The Winds of Winter – until January 2012. George RR Martin is 63 years old – if he takes 5 years per book, that would put him at 73 by the end of the series. I don't want to bring up statistics about the median lifespan of males, but…let's just say Winter is coming, George. The way things are looking, he may only have time to write "And then everyone died." for the last book. Hopefully from at least 6 perspectives.

8. Our Kids Seeing the Prequel Star Wars Before the Original Trilogy

Parents, generally, want the best for their children. They want them to have all of the best experiences possible while minimizing the amount of negative ones. Unfortunately, George Lucas has created a tough world for any prospective nerd parent. On the one hand, he's given us some of the greatest films of all time – films that captured the imagination of nearly every child who saw them. Who wouldn't want their kids to have that same experience?

Well, there was another group of films George Lucas made – these were wholly lacking in imagination, any sense of adventure, and – instead of being set off by a ruthless empire trying to quash a fledgling rebellion of scrappy fighters – was set off by a tariff dispute. This is not the thing that will inspire the hearts and minds of children everywhere. This is the kind of empty spectacle that will bore the sh*t out of a kid and make him or her never want to see another Star Wars again. You can't control every aspect of your kid's life – they could see the prequel trilogy first. Maybe a friend (with cruel, ungodly parents) have the movies sitting out. Maybe it's on TV one day and you're not around to slap the remote out of your child's hands. And then it'll be too late – Star Wars will never be that amazing, perfect trilogy. It'll be a mediocre sci-fi franchise.

If the first Star Wars film you saw was The Phantom Menace, you probably wouldn't be quite so psyched for 5 more installments, right? Plus, the prequel trilogy completely ruins one of the greatest reveals in cinematic history: that Anakin Skywalker is Darth Vader! Also, he built C-3PO. Can't spoil that for the kiddies.

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Article The Top 25 N64 Games of All Time

By Staff / November 23, 2011

Last week, Dorkly users voted to elect the greatest N64 game of all time. The competition was tough. Palms were decimated by frantic joystick spinning, countless Capri-Suns were consumed, and Glover was left with only three fingers. Alas, the time has come to announce the games you picked as the console's best. Out of a pool of 118 titles, here are the top 25.

25. Mortal Kombat Trilogy

It had everything you'd want in a Mortal Kombat and then some. Mortal Kombat Trilogy boasted the biggest roster of any MK game up to that point, including every character from the previous games and a whole slew of new ones. This meant ninjas, demon ninjas, purple ninjas, and robot ninjas that used to be regular ninjas. MK Trilogy let you play as virtually anyone you could ever want to play as — secret characters, bosses, classic characters — and introduced a myriad of new moves and stages. If you didn't love Mortal Kombat Trilogy, then you didn't love Mortal Kombat.

24. Bomberman 64

Sure, you could play Super Bomberman with four players, but only with a multi-tap and two extra controllers. And, honestly, who had enough allowance to spend on such an extravagance? For most people, Bomberman 64 was their first foray into four player Bomberman, and it was glorious. Whereas most games in the series require power-ups to perform any kind of special move, Bomberman 64 allowed players to pick-up, kick, throw, and pump up bombs right out of the gate. Couple the awesome multi-player with a solid single-player platforming experience and you've got arguably the best Bomberman game of all time.

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Article The Dorklyst: 7 Of The Cheapest Boss Fights In Video Game History

By Sophie Prell / September 14, 2011

Many of us gamers bemoan the lack of challenging battles in today's games. It seems that the controller-chuckingly stressful boss fights of yesteryear have been largely replaced by streamlined QTEs, cutscenes, and a significant drop in difficulty in order to appeal to a broader audience. Well, prepare to retrospectively grind your teeth in agony, because this is a tribute to seven of the cheapest boss fights in video game history. Not including SNK bosses; those gloryhounds already got the very concept of cheap bosses named after them.

7. Death Egg (Sonic The Hedgehog 2)

Once you actually learned things like "timing" and "spatial awareness," this fight wasn't all that hard. But Sonic The Hedgehog 2 came out in 1992, meaning you were probably just barely old enough to understand simple concepts like "Robotnik bad," "Must beat Robotnik," and "Jump at bad things." Couple this with the panic of running ring-less through the Death Egg Zone, taking on two bosses, and you have a recipe for hedgehog stew. Even the immortal Tails couldn't help on this final level!

Oh, and keep in mind that Genesis games like Sonic 2 didn't have a save system. If you failed enough times at this fight, you had to start the game completely over. It's a level and fight that neither I nor my grandmother's busted television will ever forget.

6. Anima (Final Fantasy X)

Oh sure, you could go in prepared for this fight, all knowing what to do and sh*t, and not break a sweat. Or you could play casually and find yourself facing an impossible battle with a fell beast torn from the world of Hellraiser. Seriously, Final Fantasy X is 99 percent rainbows, sparkling quetzalcoatls, and underwater soccer-playing Jamaicans who take hairstyle tips from There's Something About Mary. And then this unholy abomination gets dragged up from Hell with a grappling anchor.

Anima has only two attacks, both of which are magical in nature, and as you can imagine, they've got cheery names: Pain and Oblivion. Without proper spell resistance, Pain is an instant kill and Oblivion can typically deal 99,999 to 1,599,984 damage depending on your version of the game. What a nice lady to fight. Huh? You didn't know that? Oh yeah. That's totally a chick. And thus, there most assuredly must be pornography of it somewhere. Isn't the Internet fun?

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Article The Dorklyst: 8 Terrible Levels in Great Games

By Daniel Abromowitz / August 24, 2011

One awful level doesn't make for a terrible game. In fact, it's often quite the opposite. Many classics include at least one conniption-inducing section, presumably to level out the sheer awesomeness that is the rest of the game. Here's our tribute to 8 levels that almost made us give up on our favorites.

8. Turbo Tunnel (Battletoads)

Battletoads' infamous hoverbike run is the level even your older brother couldn't beat for you. Let's get something straight first, Battletoads ain't easy. Where other brawlers were content to let you spam the throw button, Battletoads demanded tight combos and well-placed huge-fisted punches. The game would never let you get comfortable, either, changing up game mechanics faster than most people change something that people change quickly. But there's hard, and then there's hard. And then there's Turbo Tunnel, a level designed with the sole purpose of getting controllers from one side of the room to the other at speeds upwards of 90 MPH.

Even if you somehow had the stones to make it to level 3 with all of your lives intact, all of that could be stripped away in twenty seconds by a few wrong twitches. Turbo Tunnel reminds gamers of the harsh reality that life just isn't fair, a truth most people use video games to escape from. Sure, there are YouTube videos of people playing it perfectly in one go, but there are YouTube videos of monkeys drinking their own pee, too. I don't know what point I'm trying to make. F**k the hoverbike level.

7. Meat Circus (Psychonauts)

(SPOILERS) Indie sleeper hit Psychonauts did a lot of things right: It was laugh-out-loud funny and endearingly weird, had some of the most original and mindbending level design in gaming, and featured a level inside the mind of a gigantic mutated lungfish named Linda. As a platformer, though, it left a little to be desired; the controls were just a little too clunky, the camera a little too imprecise. Nowhere was this more apparent than in the Meat Circus, a psychic amalgam of the minds of protagonist Razputin (raised in a carnival) and antagonist Coach Oleander (raised by a butcher).

The Meat Circus somehow makes meat, one of nature's best things, into an object of revulsion. Tasked with defending Oleander's inner child against mutated rabbit creatures, you're forced to endure repeatedly failing at platforming while listening to the little fat kid whine (Hearing "Ow!" and "That hurts!" bring my blood to a boil almost as quickly as "Hey, listen!"). Somehow, the Meat Circus managed to combine all of the most frustrating elements of video games: escort missions, rising water, relentless, high pitched voice overs, and endless boss battles. Plus, even the name is terrible: Meat Circus sounds like the name of a dirty magazine that I definitely don't own a few copies of.

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