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GameCola's new website has launched! [09 Jan 2010|05:28pm]

paulmeetsworld
[ mood | ecstatic ]

Greetings, loyal LiveJournal fans,

It's been six long months, but GameCola's new website has finally launched. 

We've completely overhauled our format---instead of being a monthly newsletter, with monthly issues, and new content only once a month, we've become a live-updating website, meaning that, at any minute, a new review, column, podcast, comic, or whatever can go up. AT ANY MINUTE. Look! Right there! You just missed one.

To visit the new site, please visit http://www.gamecola.net. The address hasn't changed, but everything else has.

Thanks for being fans,

Paul Franzen
editor in chief
GameCola.net

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Classic 'Cola (6-9) [26 Sep 2007|07:52pm]

paulmeetsworld
To make up for a total lack of writers that weren't me, I spent a lot of time in GameCola's early months writing one-shot, special feature-type articles. As of late, their sort have fallen by the wayside in favor of regular, monthly columns; so I thought it'd be fun to highlight one of 'em and show you how it used to be.

There's a few particular reasons in particular that I chose to highlight this particular article:

1) I think the point it makes is still totally valid. Toad was clearly the best character in Super Mario Bros. 2, and it's an absolute scandal that he hasn't had his own game—or even been playable in a non-Mario sports title—since it came out.

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... of the Month (6-9) [25 Sep 2007|08:05pm]

paulmeetsworld
by Matt Gardner

Motivation Proclamation of the Month:
What Keeps You Writing for GameCola?

With the recent loss of Steve Hamner, coupled with the fact that I haven’t received a paycheck in the five years I've been here, I’ve been wondering: Why do our writers stay with us, here at GameCola? It’s completely voluntary (in most cases), and there is no monetary compensation for the work put in. Also, we save very few lives. so you can’t really even feel like a better human for having worked here (or can you?).

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The Ten Reasons (6-10) [24 Sep 2007|07:53pm]

paulmeetsworld
By Michael Gray

Last month's column was such a success that I'm doing it again! Well, actually, it wasn't that much of a success, but no one noticed that this column is basically the same as Super Thumbs, except that I write about only one game. And, since no one complained about this column being the same as Super Thumbs, that means I get to do it again!

Captain Michael says... Thumbs up!

But wait! I write about ten things, while Eric only writes about five. That means I do twice as much work as him!

Captain Michael says... Thumbs down.

Right, so, this month I'm going to talk about Donkey Kong 64.

Captain Michael says... Thumbs up! Let's see the ten reasons.

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Inside the Guide (6-9) [21 Sep 2007|09:29pm]

paulmeetsworld
By Michael Gray

OK, before I start this article, take a look at the background image for this article: http://gamecola.net/backguide.jpg

I did not come up with this picture, so I have to wonder what the heck is going on here. It looks like Mario is jumping out of the head of a squirrel which was, as far as I can guess, reading an article from the Catholic Encyclopedia.

Now, I happen to be Catholic myself, in case you couldn't tell by the way I helped Steve out with his Bible quotations last year. Personally, I think GameCola could be a little more friendly to the religiously-inclined, especially since Zack Huffman ripped on Christianity in his reviews of Spiritual Warfare, Super 3D Noah's Ark, and King of Kings*. But isn't there a better place to put religious references than in a picture with a squirrel and Mario?

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The Gates of Life (6-9) [17 Sep 2007|08:24pm]

paulmeetsworld
Chapter Forty-Nine
Let's Not Be Too Hasty

Narrator: The yellow light hit Rivers square in his big snout, and then, nothing happened.

Narrator: Until the TGoL AllStars all realized how slowly Rivers was now moving.

Render Girl: Slow movement effects aside for the moment, I want to know why Jonathan has three horns all of a sudden.

Jonathan: Have I not always had three horns?

Render Girl: Not that I can remember. Narrator?

Narrator: But before Narrator could answer the question, the true power of the yellow beam from the third horn of the minotaur made itself known.

True Third Power: Muahahahahaha! Despair, ye mortals! For I have been awakened!

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Top of the Heap (6-9) [16 Sep 2007|11:14am]

paulmeetsworld
by Christian Porter

This month’s heap: Atari's Naughty Side - A Top of the Heap Special Report

When it comes to sex, there are two types of people. The first group is those who demand that their coitus be special. They light the fireplace, put on some soft music—set the mood. Their night may include rose petals, sensual massage oils, and the re-enactment of various pages of the Kama Sutra.

The other group will fuck an inert pile of modeling clay if part of it is vaguely shaped like a tit. The following Atari 2600 games cater to the latter group of people.

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testgame.exe: Making the Adventure (6-9) [13 Sep 2007|07:20pm]

paulmeetsworld
by Elizabeth "Lizo" Medina-Gray

Before I get started with this month’s edition of testgame.exe: Making the Adventure, I would like to explain my newfound philosophy. The way I see it, if I do a lot of work over the course of the month on the game, then I shouldn’t have to write a lengthy article! More creativity in the game means that less creativity is needed in my writing (most months it’s the other way around, so I can feel like I’m making up for my usual lack of progress). This makes perfect sense to me.

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Review of Mario Strikers Charged (6-9) [12 Sep 2007|08:40pm]

paulmeetsworld
Guest Review by: Sprite Monkey, of Secret of Mana Theater

Soccer fans are hard to come by here in the States, but it's a different story worldwide. Therefore, it should be no surprise that Next Level Games and Nintendo created a follow-up to the moderately successful GameCube title Super Mario Strikers. Follow-up titles can be tricky. Sometimes developers take the best parts of the first title, throw them all out, and then elaborate on the crap that is left behind, which results in a steaming pile of...well, you get the idea. Fortunately, such is not the case for Mario Strikers Charged (called Mario Strikers Charged Football in the Europes).

Before I break it down, let me say that I am not what you would call a "sports person." I do not watch football or baseball or any of those other sports that end in "ball," and the same goes for soccer, of which I have little-to-no understanding. I am always willing to give a Mario title a try, though, and I was pleasantly surprised to learn that you do not need to know what an "inside forward" does or is to play this game. The players have been culled down from ten outfield players (thanks, Wikipedia) to four to make things more simplistic. However, with 12 captains and eight sidekicks to choose from—each with their own special moves—things get interesting real quick. Add to that some challenge modes for unlockables, and you have a solid foundation.

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Review of Faxanadu (6-9) [09 Sep 2007|04:50pm]

paulmeetsworld
Review by: Alex Jedraszczak

You know, for all the stupid games I liked as a child, this was one that I expected to enjoy and never did. It’s somewhat surprising to me, since I liked a lot of similar games, and it’s not like the terrible translation had much of an effect back when I could barely read. What made this game so bad? Let’s review!

When you first start up Faxanadu, the developers trick you. They took all the effort that didn’t go into the rest of the game, and they put it into this title screen. The title theme is probably the best song in the game (which isn’t saying much), and, while the picture may be a bit bland, it comes off as such in sort of an artistic manner. When you start a new game, you’re treated to what could be considered a cutscene—a rarity back in the days before SquareSoft discovered this terrible weapon. All in all, the start of the game is pretty sweet.

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Versus Mode (6-9) [07 Sep 2007|10:31pm]

paulmeetsworld
Welcome, one and all, BACK to Versus Mode—the column that calls upon GameCola writers as well as denizens of the videogame world at large to talk about what's up in gaming.

This month in Versus Mode we've got:


Christian Porter vs. Paul Franzen!

Christian Porter is a current GameCola staff writer known his reviews as well as for Top of the Heap, a monthly column that looks at uncommon threads among varied videogames. This is Christian's third appearance in Versus Mode, having written previously with Danielle Symonds-Yemm and Michael Gray.

Paul Franzen is the editor in chief of GameCola. In addition to editing every word you see here and running just about every facet of this 'zine, Paul writes reviews as well as The Gates of Life , a choose-your-own-adventure-esque fantasy adventure thriller (every other month); Digital Championship Wrestling, which pits videogame character versus videogame character in pro-wrestling bouts; Classic 'Cola, which examines and republishes some of GameCola's best and most milestonish works; and Dear Readers. This is Paul's third appearance in Versus Mode, having written previously with Casey Levine and Neal Iannone.

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Dear Readers (6-9) [06 Sep 2007|08:52pm]

paulmeetsworld
Dear Readers,

Hello world, and welcome to GameCola—live, from just outside Trenton, NJ, from myself and Miss Cola's new apartment. Which is why the issue's a few days late this week—moving, as it turns out, takes a bit of time.

But, in the meanwhile, I have had the most brilliant idea in the history of hit counters.

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...of the Month (6-8) [04 Sep 2007|10:26pm]

paulmeetsworld
Like I told you in last month's edition of Classic 'Cola: this month we're featuring the very first edition of Matt Gardner's column, ...of the Month. Few people realize this, but ...of the Month is actually the longest-running column in GameCola history, as it's been there since day one and has appeared in almost every issue since. In its current mold, ...of the Month features something of a free-form structure, as Matt's given free rein to talk about whatever he wants so long as it's:

A) Somehow videogame-related, and
B) Somehow entertaining.

But this wasn't always the case! Oh no. Originally, the column wasn't meant to take a free-form structure at all; originally, it wasn't even called ...of the Month; it was actually called "Webpage of the Bimonth," and it was—stay with me—going to talk about a different Webpage (or, as the current GameCola Stylebook dictates, "Web site") every issue.

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...of the Month (6-8) [04 Sep 2007|10:26pm]

paulmeetsworld
by Matt Gardner

Bad Way to Owe a Furry of the Month:
I'm Not Giving You Any Money, Gina

As if you are the first person to make a YouTube video and call me out for owing you money. Psh. BUT, this isn't about money, is it? No, this is about GameCola's number one menace: Furries.

First, let me get this out of the way: Furry sex, plushie sex, hot fur-on-fur action, sex with stuffed animals, sex with fur, furry women and sex, sex in animal costume, sex with animals.

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The Ten Reasons (6-8) [04 Sep 2007|10:25pm]

paulmeetsworld
By Michael Gray

Hey, folks! This is a brand new column that I'm trying out this month! It's called "The Ten Reasons." The basic idea is that I'll play a game and then list ten reasons why I like or dislike it. Sounds good, right? I figured I'd start things off with MC Kids.

MC Kids is a game for the NES that everyone pretty much ignored because it was produced by McDonalds. I thought the game was kind of cool, though, so I played it a lot as a kid. So here are the Ten Reasons:

Reasons I Like MC Kids

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Low-Rent Adventures in Japan (6-8) [29 Aug 2007|10:28pm]

paulmeetsworld
OK, so, this month, the depths of my procrastination and lack of inspiration have driven me to do something I really don't have the money to do. I'm going to order you a Japanese pizza.

And what's more, I'll do it in video form, in a multimedia extravaganza! With text, sound, and moving video, it's like THREE medias!

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Inside the Guide (6-8) [25 Aug 2007|09:22pm]

paulmeetsworld
By Michael Gray

Hello everyone, and welcome to Inside the Guide, the article that gives you a behind-the-scenes look at writing guides for videogames. This month I'm going to be more serious than joking when I discuss Super Mario Bros. 2, as released in Japan. So if you don't like serious stuff, just look at the pictures and move on to the next article.

Now, if you're like me, you played Super Mario Bros. 2 on your NES a couple dozen times, mainly because it was loads better than Super Mario Bros. I couldn't beat Super Mario Bros., even with a Game Genie. But I could beat Super Mario Bros. 2, so I played that more often.

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Digital Championship Wrestling (6-8) [24 Aug 2007|07:28am]

paulmeetsworld
By Paul Franzen and Eric Regan

Paul: Oh my GAWD! Gamefans! Fanzens! Tonight, this very night, in this very ring, we are bringing you what could be the greatest match EVER in the history of videogame wrestling!

Eric: Could be? Oh, it WILL be the greatest. I GUARANTEE.

Paul: Hello everyone, and welcome YET AGAIN to Digital Championship Wrestling! At ringside I'm Paul Franzen, alongside "Captain" Eric Regan.

Paul: It'll be hard to top last month's epic brawl among the heroes of Gauntlet...but BY GAWD!

Paul: We've got an arch-villain from a classic videogame versus a man who's coming out of retirement PURELY for this match!

Eric: An ARCH-VILLAIN you say? Damn, that's some pretty heavy duty stuff.

Paul: You talk Super Mario Bros. 2, and there's only one baddie that comes to mind.

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The Gates of Life (6-8) [23 Aug 2007|07:16am]

paulmeetsworld
When we last left our heroes, Singing Sea Bear Rivers had mauled—but not to death—everyone who's currently important to the story. Everyone, that is, except for Necrostreeb, Streebless, and QM Boy, who were about to leave the rest of the party to die. Render Girl, however, convinced them to stay and form an alliance to battle the new threat that is Rivers and his Horde of Sea Bears.

Before they could plan their next move, however, Rivers and the bears were back and ready to take a pre-emptive strike. But then an old friend returned. And that's where you, the readers, came in! Who was set to return and aid in this battle? Who's side would this person be on? What outcome will the battle have? Will Rivers be a bear forever? And how many goddamn times are our heroes going to fight singing sea bears, anyway? You may find out the answers to these questions and more in this month's episode of The Gates of Life!

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Top of the Heap (6-8) [20 Aug 2007|10:33pm]

paulmeetsworld
by Christian Porter

This month’s heap: Games Nobody Remembers Based on Licenses Nobody Remembers (Part 2 in a Recurring Series)

Game studios like shoehorning popular licenses into crappy new games about as much as writers like re-using old article topics—and for the same reasons. You don’t have to think of anything new, and you can work off of something that people already like. Here are a few of those quick and dirty games that have long since gone the way of the Dodo.

Monster In My Pocket (NES)

No, I’m not talking about those hi falootin’ new Pokeymans and, no, this isn’t a hentai dating sim. Monster in my Pocket was basically a marketing ploy to sell comics, toys, videogames and trading cards based on a few hundred different monsters and creatures from various mythos. Yes, I’m SURE I’m not talking about Pokémon.

The gameplay couldn’t be more basic. Choose between a vampire or Frankenstein’s monster, walk around and punch enemies. That’s seriously it.

The game’s a bit better than most of the affronts to God and Man that you’re used to seeing here at Top of the Heap, but it’s certainly not Konami’s most prized gem.

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