Opinion
27 Comments

Cooperatives: Ryse Son of Rome

The Cooperatives head to ancient Rome to slice some fools. This week on The Cooperatives, the boys are checking out the Xbox One-exclusive launch title, Ryse: Son of Rome. Does it encourage Roman-on-Roman violence? Does it feature truly next-gen butts? All valid questions that we hope to answer in the coming episode.
Opinion
63 Comments

Xbox One vs. PS4 deathmatch: A Cooperatives Black Friday spectacular

YOU THINK YOU KNOW VIDEO GAMES?PROVE IT. TELL US WHICH CONSOLE WILL WIN THE MOST HISTORIC HEAD-TO-HEAD BATTLE SINCE CAIN KILLED ABEL. WHAT A POINDEXTER! IS THE BEST CONSOLE PLAYSTATION 4, WITH ITS LAUNCH-DAY LIVESTREAMING CAPABILITIES AND NO-NONSENSE, GAMES-FIRST USER INTERFACE? KNACK-ATTACK! IS IT XBOX ONE AND ITS LAUNDRY LIST OF ENTERTAINMENT APPS, COMPLEMENTED BY KINECT AND THE POWER OF VOICE CONTROLS? XBOX, TURN ON ... AND KICK BUTT! IS IT WII U AND A NEW MARIO GAME? IT'S THE YEAR OF LUIGI! ONLY ONE SYSTEM CAN WIN — EVEN THOUGH MANY CONSOLES HAVE EXISTED IN HARMONY FOR DECADES BUT FORGET HISTORY, HISTORY IS WRITTEN BY THE NERDS!
Opinion
34 Comments

Cooperatives: Super Mario 3D World

I called it.At the beginning of review season, I made the bold prediction that Nintendo would have the best slate of fall releases. Today, I'm proven correct. Between the new Zelda and the new Mario, Nintendo's on a streak. Er, kind of. I'm not sure how much new software means if the company can't push more hardware. Anyway, the new Mario is an absolute delight. In fact, it might be one of my favorites. Which Mario is your favorite? I'm not limiting this query to the main line of Mario games. Mario Golf for the GameBoy Color is a perfectly fine answer. It's Mario Golf, isn't it? I knew it. That's so you.
25 Comments

Cooperatives: Pokemon X and Y

I want to thank young me.After finishing Pokemon Red in 1998, twelve-year-old me decided to never again play a Pokemon game. The choice was probably based on some sad perception of what was and wasn't cool at the time, but I appreciate the results nonetheless. By missing out on a decade and a half of Pokemon culture, I came to Pokemon X and Y with low expectations and minimal context. Oh the surprises I found: The new Pokemon is in color! And has 3D graphics! And there are like seven times as many Pokemon! And I get a new starter Pokemon and also my old starter Pokemon from 1998! Every minute of the game overflowed with discovery, because what's old hat to fans was brand new to me. So snobby twelve-year-old me, thanks. You're desperate need to fit in brought joy to this Pokemon...
43 Comments

Cooperatives: The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD

I am the target audience for The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD.I grew up with a Nintendo console in the house and have fond memories of the Zelda series. I did not however play Wind Waker when it was originally released in 2003. I can't remember why. I assume the release conflicted with one of those periods where something else in my life took priority over video games — probably high school theater. Any who, now I have an opportunity to play Wind Waker on my high definition television or my low definition Wii U GamePad. Nintendo has made playing Wind Waker a convenient and improved experience, far easier and more appealing than eBaying a dusty GameCube. And that, oddly, is what I find the most fascinating thing about the game. Not to say the game itself isn't a jewel of an...
29 Comments

Cooperatives: Grand Theft Auto 5

The trifecta is complete. We follow-up our Grand Theft Auto 5 video review and Today I Played with a special episode of Cooperatives in which Frushtick mistakes everything for a spoiler. Grand Theft Auto 5 is that rare blockbuster game that includes so much interesting stuff — things to do, places to see, social satire to criticize — that you can pick at it for weeks. This is the final opinion video for the week, but I invite you wonderful readers to share your thoughts on YouTube or in the comments. Now that the game is available, tell us what you think!
31 Comments

Cooperatives: Rayman Legends

Remember that episode of The Simpsons?You know, the one where Bart has to live in France and ends up learning French just because he's immersed in it? Well, it seems Rayman Legends has a similar effect. This week we explore Ubisoft's adorable platformer and try to imagine just what the hell a Rayman is. Does he even exist? God, we hope so. The alternative is just too terrifying.
34 Comments

Cooperatives: Splinter Cell: Blacklist

Splinter Cell: Blacklist feels like a greatest hits album, a compilation of the best modes and play styles from previous iterations of the franchise.Frushtick, a longtime fan of Splinter Cell, appreciates the various ways to complete a mission, along with the inclusion of Spies vs. Mercs. He understands the evolution of the series, from stealth to action to the current genre mishmash. But I'm relatively new to Splinter Cell. For whatever reason, the mere mention of Tom Clancy kept me away from the series until now. So to me, it feels like a well-made, if not slightly generic, stealth game, more competent than its rivals, but less creative than say Dishonored. I find it interesting how your history with a franchise, especially one as long-running as Splinter Cell, can shape your...
36 Comments

Cooperatives: Saints Row 4

You've played Saints Row 4 by now, right? At Polygon HQ, the game is like an inescapable vortex of joy and fun that exists at the center of most conversations. We have spoken and written a good deal about Saints Row 4, and for good reason. With its unique depictions of violence, humor and gender, the game deserves a thorough critical dissection. I think we've given it that. So, rather than spill any more words, I will direct you to the best of our coverage. The Saints Row 4 Review The Saints Row 4 Today I Played Let's Talk About: Saints Row 4 The Saints Row 4 episode of The Besties And there's plenty more.
36 Comments

Cooperatives: Spelunky

This week we talk about my favorite game of last year, Spelunky.If you haven't played Spelunky, you should read our review. Actually, you should just play the game. Last year, Spelunky was exclusive to Xbox 360, but this month it was released on Windows PC and next week you'll be able to download it on PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Vita. If you're an obsessive loon like me, you'll wind up owning it on a console, a PC and a mobile device. We dig deep about what makes the game special, so I'll leave that discussion to the video (and the comments). But before I leave you with this week's episode, I want to prepare you for our first (and probably last) celebrity guest. Brace yourself.
58 Comments

Cooperatives: EarthBound

Is EarthBound the best game, my favorite game or both?For the past few years, I've had an ongoing argument with my friend, the film critic and reporter Matt Patches. When he isn't evangelizing The Legend of Korra, Patches enjoys rapping about why and how we become so passionate about our favorite media. He believes that when we say a movie (or video game or television show or subway line) is our favorite, we are also saying it is the best. In his words: We're taught to think that there are objective standards for art. A movie earns points for its technical, dramatic and critical achievements. But in the end, the movie we love the most works to that effect because it's running on all the cylinders a great piece of art should. Best is an objective term that has no place in the...
68 Comments

Cooperatives: TowerFall

You are not playing the best game of 2013.That is, unless you happen to be one of the 2,000 people whom bought TowerFall for Ouya. The local multiplayer arrow-fighting game has been hyperbolically praised by critics (like this guy) since this year's Game Developers Conference. It plays like a cross between Joust and the Super Smash Bros. series, and has become the default multiplayer game for the NYC Vox Media office. Maybe you think it's obvious that a bunch of game writers would go gaga for a semi-obscure 2D indie game. But when I say it's the game of the office, I mean the entire office. Writers for The Verge and SB Nation, members of the sales team, developers, producers: everyone loves TowerFall. For awhile, I found the notion of this game's middling sales on a troubled platform...
Opinion
34 Comments

Cooperatives: The Last of Us

Stay calm: This episode is spoiler-free.The Last of Us is brilliant. Too often filming Cooperatives can feel like sucking marrow from a bone. Few games have a lot to say, and fewer still say something as concisely, eloquently and intelligently as The Last of Us. Our conversation barely breaks skin on a game that warrants a full autopsy. How did Naughty Dog do it? How did the animators make Ellie's characterizations so believable? How did the designers create a world so sprawling and twisted and not need to include a mini-map? How did the writers stick the ending? The more I think about the game, the more it feels like a series of technical sleight of hands, gracefully guiding the player from the prologue to the climax. So, this won't be the last time we discuss The Last of...
74 Comments

Cooperatives: Animal Crossing

Welcome to Season 2 of Cooperatives, the only video game show on the internet about two dudes stuck in an infinite white space that may or may not exist on a parallel plane in an alternate dimension. This week, the dopey duo decipher the capitalistic subtext of a child's game.Animal Crossing: New Leaf is a drug that provides its user an inflated sense of confidence and accomplishment. As the mayor of a small town, you may put in 15-30 minutes a day and feel that you have not only improved your life, home and career, but the lives, homes and careers of a small village. Of course, a good Animal Crosser is simply collecting, consuming, buying, selling and reselling anything and everything. All day. Every day. Animal Crossing: New Leaf operates, at its core, on one bizarre principle: the...
79 Comments

A secret sneak peek at Polygon's next video series

We are happy to finally announce one of Polygon's summer video series.We've heard your requests. We've crunched the numbers. We've consumed countless gallons of iced coffee. This is the result. We'll be bringing you more video content all summer, so stay tuned to Polygon.
36 Comments

Cooperatives: Kentucky Route Zero

Sometimes adventure games need less game.Kentucky Route Zero, a throwback to the point-and-click adventure games of yore, does away with the needless and confusing puzzles that made that genre a chore. Free from challenge, the result is an interactive story that washes over the player like a good album or book. Kentucky Route Zero is short and weird and calls to mind David Lynch and this children's book I imagine half of America has read. Like its adventure game cousin The Walking Dead, Kentucky Route Zero is broken into acts, each released via a separate download over the course of a few months. So, the story has just begun. And that's all I'll say. We dance around spoilers in this week's Cooperatives, because the game — like a good ghost story — is best experienced without much...
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