Justin Williams Park City Utah
Justin C. Williams

Justin C. Williams of Park City Utah Talks About Understanding Artificial Intelligence in Online Gaming

We hear so much about artificial intelligence, but what exactly does it mean? “When I think of artificial intelligence,” Justin C. Williams of Park City Utah says, “I can’t help but think of the cartoon show I watched as a child every Saturday morning called The Jetsons*.” The Jetsons was a fictional portrayal of a family living thousands of years from now who used fascinating futuristic inventions, often with hilarious outcomes. The show featured artificial intelligence in several ways, with the most memorable one being, Judy, their robot maid who interacted with the family as just another family member.

“That’s what I always thought artificial intelligence was,” Justin C. Williams of Park City Utah says. He says he had always thought of it as an idea, task, or routine, broken down into its most basic steps, and then replicated via machine or other automation.

He’s not far from the truth. An article* in Investopedia about artificial intelligence defines it as “the simulation of human intelligence in machines that are programmed to think like humans and mimic their actions.” The article says AI is based on “the principle that human intelligence can be defined in a way that a machine can easily mimic it and execute tasks, from the most simple to those that are even more complex.”

“AI is big in gaming, but it’s not just for gaming,” Justin C. Williams of Park Utah explains. It’s evolving and shaping the futures of other industries like healthcare, he says, where automated drug dosing has become the norm and in operating suites where robots are programmed to replicate minute surgical procedures previously done by hand. It’s a part of self-driving cars, he says, where sophisticated computers anticipate and prepare for any sudden moves with automated programmed maneuvers. AI is found in the banking industry, Justin C. Williams says, and helps with security and detecting fraudulent activity. “It’s also big in online trading,” he says, “and makes complex transactions much less complicated.”

Even with all this progress, Justin C. Williams of Park City Utah says AI is not without drawbacks. There’s ongoing debate about the usefulness of machines that could eventually be hacked and the potential of computers that learn so quickly that they could eventually turn against humans. Another drawback he explains, is that robots will end up replacing a high proportion of humans in jobs that currently only humans can do. “Personally, I think AI is a good thing, as long as we can monitor it carefully,” Justin C. Williams adds. “I believe so much more will be developed in the next 50 years, but I also have faith in humans to adapt in ways we’re just beginning to explore,” he says.

The Jetsons* – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Jetsons
article* – https://www.investopedia.com/terms/a/artificial-intelligence-ai.asp

Justin C. Williams Park City Utah

Justin C. Williams of Park City Utah Takes On Fighting Games

Justin C. Williams of Park City, Utah details a basic history of fighting games and what makes them so popular.

 

In the realm of competitive video games—arena shooters aside—there is no genre that has a skill ceiling quite as high as fighting games. Fighting games follow the ancient philosophy set forth by games like chess and Tetris: easy to pick up and play, extremely difficult to master. Because the skill ceiling in fighting games is so high, Justin C. Williams of Park City points out, watching a fighting game tournament can be an extremely high-tension experience.

Fighting games pit one player against another, usually on a two-dimensional plane and usually in a two to three-round structure. Characters fight each other until either the timer runs out or one person’s health bar is depleted. Most of the time, fighting games contain special commands that can be input to perform special moves. Fighting games have been compared to chess (albeit a faster-paced, real-time version of chess). Justin C. Williams of Park City, Utah explains that this is because fighting games are about “reading” your opponents, attempting to figure out what their next moves are going to be, and putting yourself in a position to counter them.

Fighting games have a roster of characters to choose from, each with their own unique move lists, pros, and cons. Because of this, most people who play competitively choose one or two “mains” they focus on learning, so they can better understand and execute their characters. Depending on who their opponent is, Justin C. Williams of Park City explains, the way a character is played may change entirely. Most fighting games utilize “rock-paper-scissors” rules, wherein certain moves take priority over others depending on the type of move and the height of the attack being performed.

Of course, Justin C. Williams of Park City, Utah points out, every fighting game has its own unique rules and quirks, not to mention a unique roster of characters. Street Fighter II, released in 1991, is credited with solidifying the basic rules of fighting games as outlined above. In the nature of first-person shooters originally being titles as “DOOM clones”, for a long time, fighting games were also referred to as “Sreet Fighter II clones”.

Mortal Kombat, infamous for its controversial depictions of violence at the time of its release, is notable for its unique graphical style, in which digitally altered photographs of real-life actors were inserted into the game as sprites. Justin C. Williams notes that even as fighting games began transitioning to 3D, the basic gameplay remained the same: even though the full range of three-dimension movement was now possible, this is usually limited to side-stepping into or out of the fore or background, and the classic side view of the players is retained in major fighting games to this day.

There are an insane amount of choices when it comes to choosing a fighting game to dive into, and it can be fairly overwhelming to choose one to begin with—Justin C. Williams of Park City, Utah suggests finding one that appeals most to you, figuring out which mechanics appeal to you most, and going from there. The number one rule of learning a fighting game: don’t get discouraged!

Justin C. Williams

Justin C. Williams of Park City Utah Explores Cinematic Games

Justin C. Williams of Park City, Utah looks at games that make you feel like you’re controlling the movie.

 

Video games have come a long, long way from the days of Pong and Space Invaders. While cutting edge graphics are undoubtedly one of the easiest ways to judge the lengths to which video games have evolved as an art form, perhaps a more accurate method of judgment, Justin C. Williams of Park City, Utah suggests, is by taking note of how games have evolved to be able to tell stories on par with some of the greatest examples of cinema.

The medium developed as a worthy method of story-telling earlier than you might think, Justin C. Williams points out. Space Invaders was released in 1978 and featured only a solid block of enemies to shoot down, with the main and only goals being survival and reaching a new hi-score. A scant five years later, and Dragon’s Lair was released. Dragon’s Lair told the story of a knight braving a castle to save his princess from a dragon and was fully animated.

The animation was praised as being extremely high-quality, especially when compared to other arcade games at the time. Don Bluth, an ex-Disney animator, was responsible for the game’s (at the time) mind-blowing graphics. There was a trade-off, however: the gameplay was extremely simple, by necessity. Akin to a choose-your-own-adventure book, players would simply hope they were making the right choices and input them on time to avoid dying.

For a while in the early 2010s, Telltale games were considered close to the gold standard for cinematic games. Their games, usually based on classic film and television franchises like Jurassic Park, The Walking Dead, Back to the Future, and more, blended puzzle-solving and dialogue-heavy decisions to make players feel involved. What’s more, Justin C. Williams of Park City points out, the choices players make in these games would carry heavy impacts for later in the game or future installments, thereby making the player feel even more immersed in the world. Unfortunately, Telltale did little to update their gameplay over time, and it was soon considered stale.

Quantic Dream is a developer that has been producing games since 1999’s The Nomad Soul (Justin C. Williams points out this game is notable for featuring ten original songs produced by David Bowie solely for the game) but didn’t gain wide critical acclaim until 2010’s Heavy Rain. Heavy Rain’s game script is an incredible 2,000 pages and thrusts players into a mature, dramatic story of high quality that generally isn’t found in video games.

Quantic Dreams’ followup, Beyond: Two Souls upped the ante with similar gameplay, starring actress Ellen Page and Willem Dafoe with full-body motion capture and voice-acting. Justin C. Williams of Park City, Utah makes note of the fact that despite being a video game, Beyond: Two Souls actually debuted at the 2013 Tribeca Film Festival.

Justin C. Williams

Justin C. Williams of Park City, Utah talks About the Evolution of Modern Gaming

They say studying the past will help us to learn and anticipate the future. Here, Justin C. Williams of Park City, Utah talks about one of the most profitable entertainment industries in the world, online gaming, how it came to be, and where it’s going from here.

The playing of games is an ancient pastime, and scientists have documented games as far back as 5,000 years ago using bones and painted stones, Justin C. Williams says. This represents a huge leap in human culture and technology when compared to the online games we play nowadays. “Who could have guessed that we would have evolved our game playing from old sticks, bones, and stones to the sophistication of what we have today in the online gaming world?” he says.

It’s no secret that the invention of the computer and video games has turned gaming into a multi-billion dollar industry. Statistica reports the worth of the worldwide PC online industry alone will be worth 45.5 billion as of 2021. But, as we’d expect, it didn’t start out that way.

Justin C. Williams of Park City, Utah explains the beginning of the industry is somewhat undecided, as some scholars debate who invented the first video game. Some say it was invented by Dr. Edward Uhler Condon at the New York World’s Fair in 1940 and based on the mathematical game of Nim. This game was crude and elementary but garnered a lot of attention during the fair as it was the first of its kind ever seen.

Others say the first commercial video game ever recorded was created by a physicist, William Higinbotham of the Brookhaven National Laboratory, in 1958. It was an elementary tennis game created specifically for a science fair that used a tiny 5-inch screen. This game performed very similar to the later version of the tennis game named Pong that came out in the 1970s. However, it set the bar for more complicated and efficient computer programming to come.

Still, others claim it was the Brown Box created by Ralph Baer and his team in 1967, in which users could play ping pong, checkers, and four types of sports games. (This was later sold to Magnavox which released it in 1972 and changed the name to Magnavox Odyssey.)

In 1972, Atari came on the scene with a solution for the large and growing gaming community with their creation of their gaming console. Justin C. Williams of Park City, Utah says this started the demand for the whole multi-player craze, and soon, video games began popping up in nearly every movie hall, bowling alley, and arcade.

The first multi-player video game with players playing on separate screens was a game for up to 8 players introduced in 1972 called Empire. This led to the addition of more players and 3D with the shooting game of Spasim released in 1973. Justin C. Williams of Park City, Utah explains this increase in technology paved the way for even more advanced technology even though the cost of computers at that time was still prohibitively too high for most. But with the invention of the microprocessor in the 80s, home computing became a reality, and with the addition of LAN networks and the internet, the gaming industry exploded.

Once personal computers hit the market with Commodore 64 and Apple, this made it affordable for nearly everyone to play video games. Justin C. Williams explains many of the basic codes were shared publicly between developers, making it even easier to obtain different games and expand on them.

Justin C. Williams of Park City, Utah says since the early 2000s, the online gaming industry has expanded exponentially due to increasingly complex technology, increasing speeds of both the games themselves and the internet. He says, as of 2015, mobile applications of online games finally exceeded console-based gaming for the first time in history to the point where it’s estimated that today, 4 out of 5 households have some kind of gaming console or video game available.

So what’s next with the gaming industry that hasn’t already been invented? Justin C. Williams believes virtual reality gaming appears to be the next big thing, and artificial intelligence (AI) is just getting started. “As these are combined with multi-player gaming and ever-increasing speed and technology, there is virtually no limit to what can be created next,” he says. “Whatever it is, it’s going to be exciting.”

Justin Williams Park City Utah

Justin Williams of Park City Utah: Best Video Game Sequels

Justin Williams of Park City Utah examines some of the best follow-ups to classics.

 

While some might view remaking an old game as nothing more than a lazy cash grab, in a lot of instances, this point of view couldn’t be further from the truth. Justin Williams Laser points out a lot of these remakes are made with a healthy helping of love and respect for the original, and it shows. There is something to be said for producing an updated version of a critically well-accepted game for a new, modern audience, giving those who didn’t have the chance to experience it the first time around the opportunity to play a classic.

 

It’s worth understanding, Justin Williams Laser notes, that a remake is different from a remaster. A remaster typically upgrades the graphics of an old game to higher fidelity, allowing it to take full advantage of higher resolution displays. In many cases, remasters also run smoother than the original versions. 

 

Remakes, on the other hand, are built from the ground up. Remakes generally go in one of either two directions: faithful remakes, or those that heavily alter the original’s direction, artwork, and even gameplay. Usually, Justin Williams Laser says, when a game is remade with new mechanics and reworked gameplay, it’s because the original may seem outdated or clunky to a modern audience. 

 

One example of this is the Resident Evil series. Resident Evil 2 (and soon, Resident Evil 3) has been remade entirely from scratch, with a new behind-the-shoulder camera viewpoint and a completely redone game map.  Generally praised by critics and having won several “game of the year” awards, it’s no surprise to see how Capcom is eager to release another remake of the next game in the series as soon as possible. 

 

An example of a faithful remake would be the recently released Crash Bandicoot Trilogy. Based on the original trilogy of games released across the 1990s for the original PlayStation, the new remake retains the exact level layouts and gameplay of the originals, all built on top of an updated game engine with modernized graphics and new voice acting. This has helped an entirely new generation experience what some consider to be among the greatest platformer games, standing with the likes of Mario. Justin Williams Laser explains that besides just being released again, the games’ availability has literally tripled from its original release, being available for purchase on PlayStation, Xbox, and PC this time around.

 

Spyro the Dragon got very much the same treatment as Crash Bandicoot: following the success of the Crash Bandicoot Trilogy, the Spyro trilogy was released to similar fanfare.

Justin Williams Laser brings up an example of how not to do a remake—Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater HD, while hotly anticipated, ended up being a huge flop. The game purported to update the classic for modern-day, but instead was so poorly put together that basic gameplay functions were broken due to shoddy physics, and was otherwise missing a lot of what made the originals so special.

Justin Williams Park City Utah

Justin Williams Park City Utah Observes the Worst Video Game Sequels

Justin Williams Park City Utah goes over some of the worst continuations of all time.

 

A good sequel is hard to pull off; even if the second or third outing of a franchise is technically good on its own merits, it will invariably be compared to the original. Justin Williams Park City Utah wants to take a look at some sequels where its hard to know what the developers were thinking. Some suffered from problems in development, while others were doomed from the initial brainstorming sessions. All share one thing in common: none of them lived up to the standards set by their predecessors. 

 

Justin Williams Park City Utah begins with a sequel that most don’t even know exists: Pac-Man 2: The New Adventures. This sequel, released in 1994 for the Sega Genesis and Super Nintendo Entertainment System, eschewed the classic arcade game’s gameplay loop of guiding Pac-Man through a maze of pellets while avoiding ghosts. Instead, the sequel adopts a much more detailed, less esoteric art style, putting the titular character against a 2D side-view backdrop. The player guides Pac-Man through the levels by slingshotting pellets at the screen to interact with items, draw Pac-Man’s attention to things, and feed him “power pellets”. 

 

Not surprisingly, Justin Williams Park City Utah points out, the game was not as received as well as the easy-to-learn, hard-to-master classic the original was.

 

Another more recent disappointing sequel according to Justin Williams Park City Utah was Dead Space 3. The original Dead Space was lauded for its sci-fi horror sensibilities, and the sequel, Dead Space 2, was given even more praise. Parallels were drawn by many to the Alien series of movies: while the first was a straight-up horror, the second expanded upon the original by injecting more action into the mix without losing the original’s terrifying atmosphere. 

 

Unfortunately, Justin Williams Park City Utah says, the parallels didn’t end there: much like Alien 3, Dead Space 3 can be described in one word: bad. By introducing even more over-the-top action, the game lost its horror roots and became yet another generic space alien shooter game. 

 

Speaking of sequels that missed the mark when it comes to realizing the series’ core tenants, Justin Williams Park City Utah wants us to know there are few failures as egregious as Metal Gear Survive. The Metal Gear series, created by Hideo Kojima (who has been referred to as “the David Lynch of video games”) has always been an incredibly complicated, wacky, script-heavy series focused on the horrors of war and the nature of mankind. Metal Gear Survive, the first (and hopefully, only) game in the series produced by Konami after their separation from Kojima, reduces the game into an already well-trodden zombie survival game.

 

Rounding out the list, Justin Williams Park City Utah brings up another strange follow-up to a classic series: Bomberman: Act Zero. Bomberman classically has been a cutesy, cartoony multiplayer game, where players have a top-down view of the game map. Players set bombs to try to take out competitors, and the final one standing is the winner. 

 

Bomberman: Act Zero doesn’t stray far from the established game mechanics, but it makes a few bad choices: for one, the art style, which had gone through minimal changes since the series debuted in the late 80s, underwent a dramatic shift to a more “gritty, dark” art style. The character designs became extremely generic, and the darkness of the style made it hard to discern the playing field. Insanely, the game also got rid of its multiplayer mode, which was the series’ main draw. Justin Williams Park City Utah thinks you would be hardpressed to find a more tone-deaf sequel than this.

 

There will always be sequels that let down fans of classic series—but, at least we can still gain entertainment by making fun of how bad they are.

Justin Williams Park City Utah Explores Game-Only Sequels to Movies

Justin Williams Park City Utah looks at movies that had their stories continued in the virtual world.

Video games based on movies generally have a shaky track record, with very few of them offering any legitimately good value as a game. Justin Williams Park City Utah explains that in a lot of situations, this can be because the movie’s storyline doesn’t exactly lend itself to compelling gameplay (Little Nicky, the Game Boy Color game is one of many shining examples of this). 

However, some games go above and beyond, instead of simply adapting a film’s plot, they provide a full-blown continuation of the story. Sometimes they benefit from the input of those who worked on the original and end up being worthy successors to their progenitors, as in the case of the Ghostbusters game. Sometimes, Justin Williams Park City Utah shares, the games are only tangentially related to the originals, such as in the case of Jaws Unleashed, wherein instead of being a tense horror, you control the shark and try to eat as many people as possible.

 One of the best examples of a continuation of the original movie’s plot is 2005’s The Warriors. A sequel to the 1979 classic of the same name, The Warriors follows a New York gang as they battle their way across the city, facing down other gangs along the way. Besides being a legitimately fun game, The Warriors also expanded on characters from the original movie and provided a healthy sense of nostalgia for any fans of the movie. Created by Rockstar Games, the creators of the Grand Theft Auto series, it’s no wonder this one was a sleeper hit. 

Scarface, on the other hand, could have done without a sequel, video game or otherwise, in Justin Williams Park City Utah’s opinion. Whereas The Warriors lends itself perfectly to expansion of its plot, Scarface seems like a pretty cut and dry warning about the dangers of power and greed.

Justin Williams Park City Utah explains the Scarface sequel game (titled Scarface: The World is Yours) supposes Tony Montana did not, in fact, die at the end of the original, but goes on to take revenge. While this is a complete 180 concerning the morals and message of the original, the gameplay itself was a hit and garnered positive reviews from most major outlets.

Another fantastic example of the video game movie sequel, Justin Williams Park City Utah says, is the Back to the Future series produces by Telltale Games. The Back to the Future series of games acts as a direct sequel to the original trilogy of classic films and takes a heavily story-based approach to its gameplay. Critics generally agreed that Telltale’s adventure game style was well suited to the cinematic nature of the Back to the Future movies, but some thought the puzzle-solving elements of the game were too easy.

Justin Williams Park City Utah

Justin Williams of Park City Utah Explores the Strangest Gaming Peripherals

Justin Williams of Park City Utah takes a look at some of the weirdest controllers, add-ons, and more.

AUSTIN, TX / ACCESSWIRE / January 9, 2020 / While many companies are content with sticking to tried-and-true marketing strategies by rehashing the same basic formula year after year-Justin Williams of Park City Utah points out the Call of Duty franchise and yearly sports game releases as examples-there are others that push the envelope, creating daring new experiences for brave consumers who are willing to take a risk on something new.

Perhaps the most daring, Justin Williams of Park City Utah suggests, are those who release strange peripherals, controllers, or add-ons. These add-ons are usually expensive, with some costing as much as or more than the console they were intended for, and very niche, being usable with only specific games (or even just one game).

Justin Williams of Park City Utah begins by taking a look back at the Sega Genesis, and a controller that was a couple of decades ahead of its time: the Sega Activator. Billed as a “motion-sensing” controller, the Activator was a far cry from the motion-sensing controllers of today, like the Microsoft Kinect or Nintendo Switch controllers. Instead of using a camera or gyroscope to track movement, the Activator requires the user to stand in the center of an octagonal ring. Players would then break IR lasers that shot up from the sides of the ring by waving their hands over them, which would trigger the inputs of a standard controller.

On the subject of strange controllers, Justin Williams of Park City Utah directs our attention to the 2002 Xbox release of Steel Battalion. The game, which cost $200, came packaged with a controller fully simulating the cockpit of a giant mech-suit, or “vertical tank”. The controller included three-foot pedals, a gear shift, two joysticks, and a multitude of buttons, even including windshield wipers and and “eject” button under a glass cover. If the player doesn’t eject after losing, their character dies and the game data is deleted, forcing players to begin their game from the beginning. Altogether, the controller consists of 44 points of input.

Justin Williams of Park City Utah would be remiss not to bring up the Power Glove. This controller for the original NES was worn like a bulky glove and utilized some advanced sensor technology for the time. Despite this, it was derided by critics as being extremely hard to control, and only two games were ever made specifically for the glove. It was famously featured in the movie The Wizard (1989) starring a young Fred Savage. In the film, a character states, “I love the power glove. It’s so bad”. While the line, as written, was meant to display how cool the Power Glove supposedly was, Justin Williams of Park City Utah thinks it’s obvious why the line became a modern-day meme.

Justin Williams Park City Utah Reviews Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order

Justin Williams Park City Utah takes a look at EA’s newest offering from a galaxy far, far away.

Justin Williams Park City Utah, like many others, grew up with Star Wars. It’s hard to deny just how much of a cultural phenomenon the Star Wars franchise has become: its longevity and timeless charm have been captivating audiences since 1977. The recent Disney acquisition of the franchise from Lucasfilms has breathed new life into it with a new trilogy of movies, a live-action television show, and more. However, when it comes to Star Wars video games, which historically have been developed and produced by numerous third-party companies, some big changes have been implemented under the Disney regime. Shortly after the acquisition, it was announced that EA would be solely responsible for the future production of Star Wars licensed video games. According to Justin Williams Park City Utah, reaction to this announcement was not taken kindly by the fanbase at first.

True fans of the series should fear not, Justin Williams Park City Utah reassures us. Not only is the latest EA-produced game worthy of the Star Wars name, but it may also even be one of the greatest that’s ever been released. This is a bold claim, as there have been over 140 Star Wars games released over the decades—but Justin Williams Park City Utah tells us there are many good points to back this opinion up.

For one, the cinematic sensibilities of the game are unmistakable. From the gorgeous outer space backdrops to the soaring, majestic soundtrack and professionally acted characters, every inch of this game comes closer than ever to making you feel as though you’re in direct control of a Star Wars Movie. This is also the first Star Wars game to make use of full motion capture and voice acting from actual actors. Cameron Monaghan, best known for his roles on Gotham and Shameless, plays the main character, Cal Kestis. He is joined by Debra Wilson, Liam McIntyre, and Forest Whitaker—a truly star-studded cast. 

A game isn’t good because it looks and sounds like a movie, however. Justin Williams Park City Utah clarifies that Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order is a legitimately fun game. It makes you feel like a powerful Jedi, backflipping through groups of enemies while pushing them over a cliff by using the Force is a common occurrence and just one of the many ways the game allows you to show off your skills.

That doesn’t mean the game doesn’t present a challenge, Justin Williams Park City warns. In fact, the core gameplay loop is based on Dark Souls, one of the most notoriously difficult games of the decade. While the game never quite reaches Dark Souls levels of difficulty, it would be hard to argue that the game is a breeze even on the easiest difficulty setting. 

From start to finish, Justin Williams Park City Utah puts forth that Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order hits all the marks: it provides a fun challenge in the world of Star Wars with a fantastically written and acted story and includes lots of surprises and easter eggs for hardcore fans every step of the way.

Justin Williams Park City Utah Explores the Weirdest Video Games

Some games, while classic in their own right and undeniably fun, could be described as being “generic”-Justin Williams Park City Utah points to the Call of Duty series. Few would call them bad games, but they’re not exactly “out there”. They follow established gaming conventions and don’t rock the boat too hard when it comes to introducing new concepts to its genre.

The following games, Justin Williams Park City Utah, are not anywhere near generic. Sometimes a developer throws caution to the wind and seems to not care one bit about how their game will be received by either critics or the general public. In many cases, this strategy pays off: in an industry where there’s so much pandering to the common customer, a weird game with distinct, unique direction every once in a while is like a breath of fresh air.

Justin Williams Park City Utah begins by bringing up Coffee Stain Sudio’s Goat Simulator. Goat Simulator places you in the role of a goat (of course), and tasks you with almost absolutely nothing. It’s far from a boring game, though: you can flip off trampolines onto a waterslide while taking a screaming person hostage, landing in slow motion on top of a bus as you shoot tennis balls off a machine strapped to your back, and that’s just one small example of one small area of the game. The game is extremely insane, very broken (the developers have promised they will never fix any bugs), and very fun.

Justin Williams Park City Utah next points to Katamari Damacy. Probably the most highly-revered game on this list, Katamari Damacy puts the player in the role of 5-centimeter tall Prince of the Universe and tasks them with rolling up enough junk to make new stars. The player achieves this by starting small, rolling up things like paper clips and pencil sharpeners, and eventually graduates to rolling up entire skyscrapers and cities. The game, which was originally released in 2004 for the PlayStation 2, became a massive success and spawned numerous sequels for a bevy of platforms.

Next, a game that may not have been as popular, but is certainly at least as weird: Seaman, first released for the Dreamcast in Japan in 1999. Seaman is less of a “game” than the other entries on this list, in that you don’t directly control the titular character. Instead, Justin Williams Park City Utah continues, you start and end each play session by speaking directly to your “Seaman”, a strange pet with the body of a fish and the face of a human, using the packaged Dreamcast microphone.

This game goes against the grain in a bunch of ways-instead of trying to keep you on the hook and playing for as long as possible, the game actually forces you to stop playing after a certain amount of time, requiring you to come back the following day to continue your game and help your Seaman evolve. Your digital pet asks you surprisingly personal questions and understands a surprising amount of pop culture references (limited to about the year 2000, of course). Also, the narrator is Leonard Nimoy (Spock on Star Trek).

This is just a sampling of games that attempt to break the mold, there are way more strange releases out there to discover. Justin Williams Park City Utah suggests taking the dive and trying something new next time you see something that piques your interest.