Hey all,

Want to show your support for Bears Be Gaming and look sexy while doing it? Well here’s the chance, for a limited time we’re offering a T-Shirt campaign! This campaign is contigent on selling 150 T-Shirts by October 20th to make this all happen. Buy one for your friend or boyfriend(s), get your grandpa to buy one, tell everyone you can! Let’s make this happen! Click this link or the picture to reserve yours!

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If you didn’t happen to hear the news, Sunday marked Nintendo’s 30th anniversary for the beloved Super Mario Bros. series. Google didn’t miss a beat in taking the opportunity to celebrate has decided to honor this occasion in an interesting way. Want to see how? If you go on Google and perform a search for “Super Mario Bros.”, you’ll find a nice surprise! (hint: look for the coin block!)

It’s also worth mentioning that this isn’t Google’s first time to incorporate video game related easter eggs. Try searching out “do a barrel roll” or “zerg rush”!

Well played, Google.

Splatoon: Review

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“I have better things to do with my time than watching paint dry“, is what I first said about Splatoon. At the time, I thought it was a clever pun. However, I am man enough to admit that I had the wrong impression of this Wii U juggernaut. On the outside looking in, the game looks like a hot mess. What are those characters? Are they squids? Are they kids? Are they weird elf looking creatures that change their hair color more then a teenager with self esteem issues? To be honest, I still don’t know. Nor do I think I ever will. But those cute little ink slingers stole my heart in a big way, and this has become my favorite title on the Wii U. That’s right Mario Kart 8. You’ve been replaced.

For those of you floored by my previous statement, let me explain. While Splatoon may not seem like anything new to you, it is a huge change up for Nintendo all together. Shooters are not your typical Nintendo franchise. Not since Goldeneye on the N64 has Nintendo made a successful multiplayer and “brought it” with an exclusive shooter title. When asked about multiplayer on a Nintendo platform, the average gamer thinks of Mario Kart, Super Smash Brothers, or Pokemon. If you asked them what shooter they liked playing online with Nintendo, they would probably stare at you with a blank face. Much like Call of Duty, if you dug down to the core of Splatoon to find what makes it so entertaining, it would be their online multiplayer.
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With revolving maps that change several times a day, multiple play modes that allow you to decide what you’re in the mood for, and a smorgasbord of gear to upgrade and change at your discretion; Splatoon multiplayer has elements that speak to every type of game. You like sports games? Get into ranked battles and use your combination of strategy and skill to dominate your opponents. You like RPG’s? Select and level up gear that suits each type of gun you have to optimize your multiplayer potential.  You like to stealth play? Utilize the swim under the ink to creep up on your enemies for surprise kills. You like to go all “Leroy Jenkins?” ……..I respect this game play and say kudos to you good sir.

My favorite thing about the game is its variety. Even though the game is run by two drag queens who have the worst sense of fashion, I love opening up the game and hear them telling me what arena’s are open at the moment. This allows me to choose what gun, gear and strategy I am going to use. Shall I use the Splattergun or Roller, well this depends on what arena. Tip for new players: know that you should build your gear around your gun. By the way, if you are playing Port Mackerl or Morray Towers and you keep getting killed by a guy name MacNCheese using a Kraken Roller, I would like to apologize now. I go a little crazy on those maps.
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There are some negatives to Splatoon. Even though this is my favorite Wii U title, I feel it would be extremely biased to not mention some of it’s lacking qualities. For example: the campaign is lacking engagement. I didn’t care for the story, nor did I enjoy playing it that much. The only reason I played through it was to get some better gear to lay some smack down in multiplayer. Another miss for Splatoon is the use of Amiibos. All they do is unlock a few pieces of gear that are mediocre at best. While using the Amiibos, I was hoping for an exclusive level or gear that would melt peoples faces off. Thankfully, I borrowed the Amiibos from a buddy to unlock the gear that I wanted. That’s teamwork. The team that inks together, stays together.
k2-_bc6f558b-8630-42d5-a9b6-5089ee13a9d1.v1 I would also like to share a cautionary tale for the first time players. If you are playing multiplayer, and the clock strikes 12am (Eastern Standard Time), my advice is to make like Cinderella and leave the ball. This is when the servers get flooded with all the kids getting home from school in Asia, and those little suckers are not messing around. They mean business. My first day playing I thought I was developing some pretty mad skills, until midnight hit, and it was like I just fed a mogwai and everything fell apart. My friends and I have even started making memes about it, because it is just that ridiculous. I have lost many a lives on the ink fields to names I couldn’t even recognize because they were not letters found in the English alphabet. So, heed this tale of caution. If you are looking to sharpen your skills, this is the best time for you to play. If you are looking for casual fun, 4pm (EST) is your window of opportunity. But when you start seeing a lot of names that you can’t understand, let alone read. . . It might already be too late for you.

I will be the first to admit that I had the wrong impression of Splatoon. It’s not your typical kids game that some company produced and marketed to kids whose mom’s won’t let them play Call of Duty. It’s fun colorful graphics are pleasing to the eye. It’s quick pace matching in multiplayer allows for you to never feel bored. It’s gear building and wide array of guns allows you to change up your game play if you’re in the mood for something different. At the end of the day, it’s just down right fun, unless of course it is 12am (EST), then it’s put up or shut up time.

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The latest and greatest from Ubisoft in the Assassin’s Creed family is Assassin’s Creed: Syndicate. Syndicate is set in London, during the Industrial Revolution. You are playing as the Frye twins. The hot-headed fighter Jacob, or the sensible political sister, Evie. Your goal is to unite the warring gangs into one formidable group, the Rooks. In speaking with the Ubisoft representative, she noted that you will play some missions as Jacob, and some missions as Evie, as this furthers the story and development of the Rooks. When you are playing in free mode, you have the option to choose either twin that is suitable to your style of game play. My time with the demo was limited, but these ideas are very intriguing and could add a much needed dynamic boost to the series.

My demo playtime was a simple mission. I had to take out 10 members of a local gang so that I can have the remaining members join me in the Rooks. This was not a political move, but more of a show of force, so as Jacob I began to get physical. Using the brass knuckles, I beat some of them into a pulp. One guy gave me a good beating, so out came my pistol and I ended him. Hallucinogen darts were useful as I let two members fight it out and over took the victor. After all was said and done, I added new members to the Rooks and began amassing my people’s army.

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In playing the demo, I found it to be very stylish and beautiful. The scenery is that of London boroughs where poverty is dominant and the rich continue to feed off of the poor laborers. You work your way on rooftops with clouds of smoke billowing from factories, down to streets where people lay homeless and hungry. You can hear the roar of a steam engine arriving in the distance, or hear the hooves of horses pulling a carriage in the street next to you. The game is very impressive in its attention to its auditory and visual details.

The one item that was both fun and difficult at the same time was the grappling hook. It’s a lot of fun to use, but its targeting is tricky and a bit haphazard. You might be in the middle of a fight and all of a sudden find yourself being propelled to the roof. I admit that it could have just been my clumsy hands, or perhaps the controls just need to be learned a bit more, but be weary. I found myself on the roof tops more often than not when I should have been on the street thanks to that grappling hook.

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When all is said and done, I left impressed with what I played. I enjoy the Assassin’s Creed franchise, and do get concerned that every new game is just a stylish version of an old one. Assassin’s Creed Syndicate feels like an Assassin’s Creed game. My personal observation is that as the game’s advance in their timelines, I feel they advance in their difficulty levels. Weapons and tools become more advanced requiring more controller combos. I believe this is a good thing as it keeps the game fresh and complex. I’m looking forward to the full and complete version when it hits stores on 10/23/2015. (To be totally honest, I already ordered my collector’s edition.)

Is the amiibo Craze Over?

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Today North America sees the release of Nintendo’s new wave of collectible amiibos, Wave (5B). With a cast full of colorful gaming characters that you’ve come to know and love in collectible form, what could go wrong? Let’s be honest though, each of these waves have been bittersweet, you know the battle that awaits you on release day. For any seasoned and battle worn amiibo collector, you know the hunt isn’t easy. Part of this hunt usually involves dealing with long lines, the character’s you want being out of stock, and lastly but surely not least encountering unscrupulous scalpers. With this being said, I went into Wave 5B with hesitation and wondered, “do I really want to go through another one of these hellish waves?”

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Today the game changed and the climate was considerably different. I went into today’s amiibo hunting spree with a devil may care attitude, I will show up 10 minutes before Toys R’ Us opens and let the chips fall where they may. If I didn’t find a character I wanted then so be it. Upon arriving I saw a line that was a fraction of the size that I’m used to. Could this really be it? Did no one else receive the memo that today was the release of Wave (5B)? Into the line I went with the other amiibo’heads to receive my Nintendo crack. An employee came outside to hand out vouchers for all of the characters they have and I expected to receive whatever leftovers they still had in stock. Much to my surprise, the employee gave me a voucher for every character in Wave (5B). I really found myself baffled, this isn’t what I’m used to. Later on in the day I spoke with a friend and apparently he went into a local GameStop and was greeted with a full inventory, so I don’t think my experience was entirely out of the ordinary.

So what’s going on here? Is Nintendo America dealing with the distribution of amiibos in a more efficient way? Are the scalpers tired of going through the hunt only to have Nintendo reprint those rare collectibles for the masses? Or is the intensity of the amiibo craze finally dying down? This is a question I’ve been been thinking of today and I’m still not sure of the answer. Either way, at the end of the day all I know is I’m glad I was able to finally get a wave without going through hell and back to get it. Also, that new 8-Bit Mario is pretty damn sweet, isn’t it? What was your experience like?

Until Dawn

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I love a good scare. Whether it be in the form of a prank or a horror movie, I enjoy the tension of finding out what happens when you open the door you know you shouldn’t. My heart races when someone is alone in the dark, with limited vision, and all they can hear is the sounds around them signifying that danger is getting closer. I am a fan of the Silent Hill series and enjoy playing a good horror survival game. So naturally, when Until Dawn was close to release, I was getting excited. After playing it I can honestly say that Supermassive games has done what only one other game before it has done. Until Dawn has scared the living crap out of me.

Until Dawn takes place a year after a tragic event, where a large group of friends meet in a secluded wooden cabin to party and reminisce over said previous event. A standard horror movie formula. You play as multiple characters throughout the game. Sometimes you play solo, and sometimes you have a companion that interacts with you. Each character adds their own feel, their own perspective, and their own personality. I found myself hating some and really liking others. As you play these people and they interact with each other, you develop a simple relationship to each of them that pulls you further into the game. You become part of the entourage and you are trapped with these people. I believe this is paramount to the feel of the game because these relationships are fostered by choices you make and then you must deal with the outcomes of said choices. Until Dawn nailed this interactive element down very well. After all, what is the point of investing in characters and whether they live or die if you don’t really care about any of them to begin with?

With the initial set up over and the story begins to unfold, here is where Supermassive succeeds yet again. They create an environment that brings all of the nightmarish elements together perfectly, and when the gloves come flying off, you’re catapulted into a world of terror. The game is played at night, and an excellent use of darkness and shadow add to an already tumultuous environment. Remember, your in a mountain top cabin, in a snowstorm, at night, with only a flashlight. You only have limited light at points and you find yourself constantly adjusting your flashlight in a “what was that” or “is that something in the trees” paranoia. Not only visually does it call your senses into question, but the audio track is fantastic as well. The game knows when to be silent to add to the drama. The games use of the howling winds of the snowstorm play multiple tricks on years ears, making you questions if you heard a tree branch, or was it a swinging rope.

Now with any horror movie or horror survival game, we always look for the jump factors. Those moments where the killer is waiting behind the door, or the rat jumps out from the basement stairs. These can be general in nature and are usually high on the cheese factor. Again here is where Supermassive did their homework. These moments are in the game. There are a few of them. The victory here is when you are actively controlling a character that you enjoy playing, in the exceptional environments created within the game, with your auditory senses being tested, while trying to be ready for anything to happen, they get to you, and they scare you good. I found myself jumping and yelling quite a few times. One time I even screamed a bit and dropped my controller. Bravo guys, bravo.

Supermassive, in my opinion, has succeeded in creating an immensely satisfying horror survival game in Until Dawn. The development teams really did their homework and utilized all the solid elements of a fright fest and made a scary, fun to play, intriguing survival horror game. If you have a PS4 (sorry guys, it’s a console exclusive), and are not afraid of the dark, I recommend you get this game. If you want an even more terrifying experience, play it at night, in the dark, with your surround sound on. You just might be playing it “until dawn” because you are too afraid to sleep.

BBG Now Online!

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Attention all bears & friends, welcome to the new official website for Bears Be Gaming! Today is a monumental occasion in our group’s history. We’ve come quite a long way from our humble beginnings. When I founded BBG, it started out with a handful of close friends who gamed together daily. As time has progressed our community has grown into something larger than any of us could originally imagine. We aren’t the typical gay gamer group; our focus has always been on games first, we just happened to be gay! Along the way we’ve even had straight allies, supporters, and people from all walks of life join our side.

With this site we want to be able to provide a forum to bring together our community, providing options such as:

  • LFG Chat
  • Gaming News
  • Reviews
  • Social Media
  • Forums
  • Contests, & More!

It’s awesome to see how much our community has evolved. We would like to take this moment to thank all of you because the community is the lifeblood of our group and what makes this all possible. Looking to the future, who knows what else is in store for us. Are you ready? So what’re you waiting for? Sign up right now to interact, create new and old connections within our community! Feel free to hit that share button below to spread the word to your friends!

On part of the Bears Be Gaming staff, we love you all!

Chad Lansdell (Founder)

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bearsbegaming@gmail.com

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