How to Start Streaming Your Video Games

How to Successfully Start Streaming Your Video Games

Video game streaming has blown up in popularity recently. More and more gamers are not only watching streamers online, but becoming video game streamers themselves! Video game streaming is a great way to connect with other gamers and the gaming community and you can even make money streaming your playing! People are quick to judge gamers, saying there’s no way to make money by playing video games. Recently, that’s been completely turned on its head. Streaming is a massive industry, with thousands and thousands of viewers and streamers alike! If you’ve been wondering how to successfully start streaming your video games, this guide is for you.

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What is video game streaming?

Before we start the guide, you need to understand the ins and outs of video game streaming. Before the 2010s, video game streaming was a foreign concept. In the mid-2010s, sites like Twitch and YouTube blew up as more video game streamers took over the stage. Now, Twitch alone has more traffic than other popular movie and TV services, demonstrating just how powerful the video game community can be.

Video game streaming is what it sounds like. Streaming your playing and your commentary over a streaming website or service. From there, these popular streamers can gain popularity as other users follow them. It’s easy to get started, and you don’t have to be a particularly great player as long as you have enough personality (or good looks!) to make up for it!

What do you need to get started streaming?

Getting started video game streaming is easier than ever. First, you need a strong and reliable internet connection. If you’re streaming your game play in real-time, you can’t have your equipment faulting out because of a failed internet connection. From there, you need a gaming system. Popular systems like XBox and Playstation come equipped with streaming software and recording capability so you can easily capture your gaming experience.

If you’ll be recording yourself playing in addition to the on-screen action, you’ll need a camera. Your computer likely comes with a decent camera, but if you’re serious about streaming you’ll need to invest in a HD webcam. Similarly, you need a great microphone. Your computer or even your gaming headset will likely include built-in audio recording technology, but you’ll need to pay attention to the quality of your audio output.

If you’re using a PC or gaming computer, you need a capture card. A capture card is hardware that is able to convert any digital signals like your livestream into easily recorded data which you can quickly post online. Click here to find the perfect capture card for your live streaming device.

It might seem like there’s a lot of set up equipment needed to get started live streaming your video games. That being said, if you expect to make money streaming, you need to put in some money. Nobody wants to sit through poorly recorded video and audio, and that defeats the purpose of streaming your play. If you’re a serious gamer, you probably already have a lot of this equipment around your house!

How do you make money streaming?

Your next big question might be how you actually start making money by video game streaming. While new video game streamers probably don’t make much money, the larger personalities with a big following can make a startling amount of cash! Because game streaming is so popular, there are a lot of advertisers looking to take advantage of this exposure. Websites like YouTube and Twitch feature advertiser content and streamers get a bit of this cash themselves depending on how many viewers they have.

Twitch also lets followers donate to their favorite streamers, and if you have a big following this can translate into a large amount of income! You can even offer different subscription options to followers if you have enough followers, and this is a steady source of income.

The top video game streamers have a lot of flexibility when it comes to building income. They often launch successful products or merchandise that they can sell to their followers. They can even host brand sponsorships or larger advertising deals. It all comes down to building a strong audience!

How do you get noticed as a streamer?

Once you’ve decided to start streaming, you might realize it’s harder than you thought to get noticed. With so many video game streamers out there, it’s easy to get lost in the chaos of the big platforms. You need to learn how to market yourself!

First, hone your craft. Nobody wants to watch a boring video game stream. They want to see a performance, and they want to see your personality. This shouldn’t be your average game play! Make things exciting for viewers and they’ll eagerly come back for more. Connect with your audience and interact with viewers whenever possible. If people are taking the time to comment on your stream or follow you, be considerate and build a rapport that keeps them coming back!

If you’re struggling to build an audience, you might need to choose a specific niche. Is there an audience you connect to more than another? What kind of persona are you trying to create? Really discover your internet personality and decide what it is that makes you different from other game streamers!

Don’t forget about the power of social media! Encourage your viewers to follow you on your social media channels and stay present so they get to know you as a person. Don’t feel like you can’t spread out your account to multiple platforms. You can and should use both Twitch and YouTube to reach a larger audience. You’ll be monetizing your account in no time!

Become a successful video game streamer!

If you’ve got the right tools and you’re willing to put in the work, you can start making good money playing video games in no time! You don’t have to be a great video game player, but you do need to be a smart cookie. Knowing how to market yourself as a gamer is almost more important than knowing how to play the game yourself! Most of all, stick with it! Popular players don’t get that popular overnight! Put in the time to build your audience from the ground up, and you’ll create a strong community you love to be a part of.

How to Start Streaming Your Video Games was originally published on GeekySweetie.com – Geeky & Kawaii Anime, Tech, Toys, & Game Reviews & News

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The Best Upcoming & New Release 2018 PC Games for Girls

Back in the 90s I barely played PC Games, because so few existed that appealed to my tastes. There were exceptions of course, Torment, Fallout 1 and 2, Baulder’s Gate, Icewind Dale, King’s Quest (and other Sierra titles), Ever 17 (and anything else by Hirameki International), Petz, Black and White, Creatures, Graduation 95, and a handful of other gems that weren’t available on my consoles.

But largely, console gaming was the highlight of my childhood. That’s where all the anime games or JRPGs or story rich games were, especially in the 16 and 32 bit eras, which still remain my favorite gaming period of all time. Genesis, Sega CD, SNES, Saturn, PS1, PS2, and Dreamcast, the majority of my favorite games, still to this day, lived on one of those great consoles.

But nowadays, I barely play console games anymore. Occasionally there may be an exclusive that catches my eye, such as Persona 5 on PS4, or Tokyo Mirage Sessions on the Wii U. I even bought a Wii U just for that game in fact.

But now, so many games are cross platform, and so many people like me, who grew up in the 16 and 32 bit eras are making their own indie games now such as To the Moon, Always Sometimes Monsters, Rakuten, Undertale, etc. This completely changes the gaming landscape. Now PC is by and far my preferred gaming “platform” of choice.

And where once, JRPGs reigned on Consoles, they now thrive on the PC or even on mobile devices, and in the past 5 years we’ve seen a huge explosion of visual novels and Otome games as well on both PC and mobile – and barely any of those have been released (at least in English) on consoles.

Where once the PC had almost no games that appealed to my tastes, now suddenly, more and more each year, I find the PC to offer so many games I want to play that I don’t have the time, nor money, to possibly play them all! I have over 700 steam games already (and a handful on Origin, and about 50 more on GOG, and then of course my old CDs from the 90s which have yet to get released digitally.) And that’s not taking into account the PC’s ability to emulate the console games I own (probably around 300+ games there too). And emulation is perfectly legal as long as you own the original games, which I still do.

This puts the number of games I can play on my PC right now today, without buying a single thing, at well over 1,000 games! — How many of those games I’ve actually played, is probably around 25%, and how many I’ve beaten to completion / all endings etc, is probably like 5%. lol. But the point is, there has never been a better time to play girl games on your PC. If you’re a girl, there’s plenty of games that you should check out on PC. This wasn’t the case 20 years ago; my how the landscape has changed!

Here is a list of games due out in 2018 that are on my radar! I’ve selected these games for one of the following reasons: Decisions Matter, Branching Plot, Multiple Endings, Cute/Kawaii Graphics, Excellent Story, Innovating (or at least really fun) Gameplay, and Customization. If you look for the same qualities in your games, check out the list below. Warning, it’s long.

This list is not in any order – largely it’s sorted by release date, because that’s how I was browsing the games while researching this post.


Sea Dogs

Our first recommendation reminds me of Horizons New Dawn, one of my all time favorite super nintendo games.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/764670/


Sorcery Jokers

This visual Novel Has Some Beautiful Graphics

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/703730/


Til the Dawn, Waiting

This looks sad, and also features animals, a powerful combination to tug at any heart strings

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/761760/


Franky the Bumwalker

Super cute and colorful adventure game that probably doesn’t take itself too seriously.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/761310/


Dragon Cliff

This indie RPG features an extesnive crafting system and city building aspects as well as cute retro graphics.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/758190/


Stunt Corgi VR

If you’re lucky enough to have a VR headset you might like this title that lets you create obstacle courses and watch a cute corgi try to navigate the courses you create.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/665080/


Project Bits

If you like rhythm games, you might like this one with cute anime artwork. Plus it’s free to play.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/581150/


The Mind Hero

An anime visual novel where you help 8 different characters overcome their trauma. It aims to teach psychology inside a video game. It’s also free and features a comic book style.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/502050/


Katyusha

This looks to be a very emotionally engaging and beautiful pixel retro style RPG. The developers have said that the game uses real-life world war 2 letters that were written by soldiers to their families.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/749160/


Battletech

The ability to customize everything about your mechs and the appeal of mecha genres from decades of anime such as macross, robotech, go lion, voltron, evangelion, gundamn, etc, make this appeal to me, despite the more dark realistic graphics. The gameplay looks fantastic. And who doesn’t love giant robots?

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/637090/


In The Valley of Gods

Explore pyramids in this narrative adventure.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/687440/


Villages

This game aims to balance the skills and economy of its players so that they are forced to work together. Sounds promising. Let’s see how that works once the game releases.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/749820/


Grow Bot

This just looks so utterly adorable!

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/661680/


Boyfriend Dungeon

With a name like Boyfriend Dungeon, how could this not make our list? It’s an otome dating sim and hack n slash RPG adventure, where the boys are weapons.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/674930/


The Iron Oath

I am beyond excited for this game! True, it doesn’t have the visual aesthetic that I like, but nearly everything about the gameplay appeals to me greatly! Decisions matter, the guild management sounds fun, every character has a back story. Characters die / perma death, you recruit new characters, I’m ready to play this awesome looking tactical RPG.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/699330/


Living the Deal

Business Management and Life Simulation Game. This one is high on my wishlist (despite how hideously ugly the characters look lol).

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/647550/


Wolf Gang

Play as cute wolves chasing cute sheep in a game which promises unlockable content and character customization.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/761040/


Freedom Planet 2

Furrie fans and fans of old school Sonic games still love the original Freedom Planet, and soon the wait is over for the much anticipated sequel.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/595500/


The Forgettable Dungeon

Co-op Action RPG that you can play with up to 15 friends.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/375810/


Next Up Hero

This MMORPG has some unique gameplay features, such as no healing, except for when you die. When you die, you come back as an “avenger” and can heal other players, until you decide to take over one of their corpses and rejoin the fray. When you die, someone can also take over your character. So don’t get too attached.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/613280/


Leilani’s Island

This super colorful platformer looks like a lot of fun and has a great brightly colored retro style.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/664640/


Sentou Gakuen: Revival

This is an MMORPG Visual Novel. All of the characters in the novel are other players just like you. Not sure how that will work out, but it’s innovative and different – that’s for sure. And that alone makes me curious enough to want to play this one.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/405680/


Dungeon of Zaar

Dungeon of Zaar has a great style, and some fun looking gameplay mechanics including pvp and local multiplayer.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/613590/


Wytchwood

Wytchwood looks absolutely beautiful and the crafting and exploration gameplay mechanics really appeal to me as well.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/729000/


Pillars of Eternity II: Deadfire

They promise that choices will truly matter in this RPG inspired by D&D and featuring pirates on the high seas.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/560130/


Cyberdimension Neptunia 4

A new Neptunia game, because why not? I love the cute graphics and silly nonsense storylines of these games.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/632350/


Jenny LeClue

I love the handdrawn artstyle here. But what I love even more is that decisions and choices matter and “permanently” influence other “characters” (by that I think the Devs mean in sequels or episodic content that will be created.) The Devs also say that “The goal is for everything to be interactive, to reward players who poke and prod at every last item and object with insight, secrets, and humor.” Which fits my playstyle anyways. Exploration is often my favorite part of gameplay.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/319870/


Tunic

They don’t have much information available. But you play as a fox in a colorful world.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/553420/


Transference

This is a VR game although it’s not listed as requiring a VR headset to play so that remains to be seen. If I’m able to play without a VR Headset (because I don’t own one yet), I’m going to be all over this game. It has a deep “psychological” story. Your choices matter. The Devs say “The choices you make from every angle ripple through time and space, as you learn their story.” – I’m extremely interested in this game – maybe even enough to break down and buy a VR headset if it requires one.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/647570/


Skull & Bones

This must be the year of pirate games. This is the 3rd such game to make my list. You start out very low, and then recruit your own gang of pirates and customize everything about your ship, as you grow your infamousy and riches. You can play alone or with up to 5 players.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/370010/


Donut Country

This somehow reminds me of Katamari, except instead of rolling things up, you’re a hole and you swallow things, and the more things you swallow the bigger your hole gets, allowing you to swallow even larger things. I love Katamari, so I suspect I’ll love this game too. The cute colorful graphics also appeal to me.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/702670/


Wattam

Speaking of Katamari, here is a new game from Katamari’s creator. In this game you explode everywhere. The bigger your explosion, the more friends who come to play. The graphics are super cute, things like frying pans, bacons, eggs, poo, etc all with cute little anime faces drawn on. It’s very colorful. And there’s nothing else like it.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/702680/


Darksiders III

If you’re a fan of the first 2 Darksiders games, the 3rd installment is due out in 2018.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/606280/


Lost in Harmony

They’re hailing this as the first musical runner – but I don’t think it is, because I distinctly remember a game on PC a few years ago that let you run to any MP3 on your PC. But well regardless of if it’s first or not, it looks fun. You can create your own levels, as well as customize your characters.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/509400/


Just Us

Animal breeding, farming, crafting, fishing, foraging, and probably a pretty deep philosophical story about a couple questioning if they’re the only people left in the world after a catastrophic event.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/612660/


Lost in Bardo

Pretty looking pixel game with a philosophical story and puzzle solving gameplay.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/741730/


Jengo

A gorgeous looking point n click adventure paying hommage to many 90s retro games.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/671430/


Chiffa 2

Play as a cute little fox trying to save his best friend, a chicken, from a big bad wolf.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/563600/


OSM Old School Musical

The crazy looking chaotic gameplay and colorful retro graphics make this rhythm game stand out from the rest

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/398030/


Orcish Inn

Very cute survival game in which you farm, build, and manage a tavern.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/533800/


College Days

Visual Novel with some very pretty artwork.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/467700/


Astrologaster

Interesting concept for a game, you cast and interpret astrology charts as a doctor to answer your patient’s questions. I’m kinda interested in astrology (especially numerology (not necessarily related to this game just as an aside)) so my interest in this title is piqued by sheer curiosity. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a game about astrology before.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/742520/


Village Monsters

Animal Crossing clone, looks cute, fun, and relaxing.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/679830/


Where Cards Fall

This looks fun, and seems to have a fairly decent story about childhood memories shaping our perspectives as adults.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/589450/


Alone Without Her

A story where your choices matter about a man who survives while his wife dies in an experiment that would freeze them for 1,000 years. The concept sounds similar to Passengers, which I saw last year and rather liked, so I’ll probably enjoy this story too.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/527560/


Miracle Mia

This game looks very colorful and cute.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/608670/


Cursed Lands

For the first time in any Winter Wolves game you can sleep with more than one love interest. The devs say – However, they also caution you to be ready to deal with the consequences of that decision. You can bluff and intimidate enemies in this RPG / Dating sim hybrid.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/758320/


Fault Silence the Pendant

Takes place 5 years before the events in Fault Milestone One

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/487500/


Xaiga Wars

Visual Novel with Very Cute Graphics

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/727960/


A Near Dawn

A Psychological Visual Novel / Point n Click adventure with full voice acting and multiple endings.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/728170/


Unto The End

This game looks both beautiful and challenging, and it also features choices and consequences that change the story of the game.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/600080/


Once Upon a Coma

I love the art style of this game. I’m betting the truth at the end of the story is also pretty sad.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/733210/


Broken Reality

Colorful Adventure Game which is set in a parody world based on the 1990s internet. Cut ads with your katana, collect likes to upgrade your social media accounts to reach new worlds, purchase upgrades, and make new friends. The Devs promise a game with no violence as well.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/757480/


We the Revolution

Fun looking political simulator based on the French revolution.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/736850/


Dodgeball Rising

Cute looking anime style multiplayer dogeball game

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/687580/


Riverbond

Gorgeous looking little voxel game with lots to explore and collect

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/459370/


Kitten Super Adventure

I actually promoted this game awhile back I’m excited because it looks to combine Spyro with Adorable kittens.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/347530/


Mineko’s Night Market

Play as a cute girl, in a cute Japanese inspired world, full of cats! Extensive crafting system, fun mini games, and a market where you can sell anything you make or find. I’m definitely picking this game up!

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/762940/


Indivisible

From the dev team that brought you Skullgirls comes a new 2D adventure, with music provided by the composer of Secret of Mana.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/421170/


The Eldritch Zookeeper

Raise horrible monsters in this simulation game inspired by Themepark World and Dungeon Keeper

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/654960/


Battle of the Bands

Another visual novel game. This one doesn’t look terribly good to me, but I will play it before passing judgement.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/467710/


Spoxel

Looks quite similar to Terraria. I love Terraria… but I wonder what this game has that will differ enough from Terraria to make me want to purchase yet another minecraft clone.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/746880/


Jimmy and the Pulsating Mass

Colorful little RPG with an Adult Story

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/706560/


The Gardens Between

Beautiful puzzle game with time travel and nostalgia.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/600990/


Knights and Bikes

This charming adventure game is full of nostalgia and looks fun, especially in multiplayer. It’s from the creator of Little Big Planet and Tearaway Unfolded which I loved both of those games, so I have pretty high hopes for this one as well.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/592480/


Rainswept

Love, Relationships, and unresolved trauma? Sign me up for that. 🙂 This looks to have a fairly deep and depressing story.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/772290/


Booth

I have a feeling this game will play like Papers Please or Beholder. You work in a food inspection booth, how you react to NPCs determines your fate and changes the story and endings.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/761350/


Futurust

A hand-drawn point n click adventure game about robots.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/745980/


My Girlfriend

A visual novel in a highschool setting with cute girls.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/467690/


Ciel Fledge

Basically Princess Maker – Which I have reviewed here. I need more Princess Maker in my life, so heck yeah, I’ll be buying this.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/738270/


The Luckless Seven

Visual Novel that differentiates itself from the rest with an innovative card game system.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/433370/


The Last Night

Absolutely beautiful looking scifi game.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/612400/


Echo Tokyo

Dark Visual Novel set in a dystopian Tokyo

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/506640/


Tiny Thor

Colorful looking retro platformer where you throw Thor’s hammer to attack your foes.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/541310/


City Game Studio

Manage your own gaming company

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/726840/


Prehistoric Kingdom

Jurassic Park simulator anyone?

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/666150/


The Adventure Pals

Cute Comical and Colorful little platformer

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/396710/


Deiland

Anime sandbox game with farming and quest mechanics similar to Stardew Valley and Harvest Moon

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/760620/


Warped Reality

Cyberpunk Visual Novel with truly lovely anime inspired artwork

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/604030/


Ooblets

OMG I almost forgot about this game. I remember when it was first announced, and now, the wait is almost over, as it will launch some time in 2018

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/593150/


Reality Raiders

Perhaps inspired by Secret of Evermore and Chrono Trigger, this little indie RPG lets you travel through different periods in the past to understand your present and shape your future.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/671770/


Mystic Destinies Echoes

This visual novel has a somewhat realistic painterly style and takes place in Atlantis.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/721550/


Snares of Ruin

6 Romanceable Ladies. You can form platonic or romantic relationships. How you interact with them determines the flow of the story.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/766940/


Detective Case and Clown Bot: The Express Killer

This point n click has cartoon-network or simpsons esque animation. It probably doesn’t take itself too seriously either.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/711920/


Beavers Be Damned

Cute 2 player Co-Op game where you play as cute beavers avoiding crazy obstacles as you try to build your dam.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/764570/


GNOG

Adorable colorful puzzle game that takes place inside monsters’ heads. Seems to have an emphasis on exploration and puzzle solving. My only concern is it may be quite short as it only has 9 levels.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/290510/


I Saw Her Standing There

Colorful kinda abstract looking action/puzzle game with over 300 levels to explore. The devs say that their game is “about love, death, and pancakes”.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/453910/


Wonder Wickets

Colorful and Cute Miniature Golf game.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/598640/


Dab on Em Haters

Celebrity Vlogger Simulation with cute pixel graphics – Caution this one has explicit insults and hate speech, but that’s kinda the point of the game. Pick which topics to vlog about, then respond to your comments. The goal is to like positive comments while “dabbing” negative comments. (Do you know how old this game makes me feel? I thought dabbing was a thing kids do with their arms for selfie pics, that some football player started. Since when did Dabbing become a negative word? lol. I’m too old for this game. lol.)

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/769060/


CasinoRPG

I actually mentioned this game in a roundup of Casino Simulation Games – It used to be a web browser based game, and now it’s coming to Steam. I don’t know what if any improvements or changes have been made between versions. It’s a city building simulation that lets you build, run, and play in your own casino.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/658970/


Midnight Quest

Very cute looking point n click adventure game.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/698450/


Heroes of Arzar

Cute, free anime collectible card game

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/628190/


Meanwhile

Well, I had never heard of this comic or the author, Jason Shiga, until just now. The art style kinda reminds me of the Oatmeal. Apparently this comic creator incorporates puzzles and choose your own adventure elements into his comic books (maybe similar to the goosebump novels I read as a kid back in the 90s? lol). I’m curious to check this game, and some of his comics, out now.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/714980/


Love Story: The Beach Cottage

I usually don’t play hidden object games – I know a lot of girls love them, it’s just never been my cup of tea. But this one sounds intrigueing because of the sad story. A woman very late in her life (50+) returns to a beach home to execute her deceased father’s final will. She hasn’t been back in this house for over 40 years, and she will relive memories of her first lost love and become stronger in the process.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/770880/


Survived By

This is an MMO Bullet Hell Game with Permadeath. After you die, you come back a little bit stronger as one of your descendants. It says there are different descendants to collect. Might be interesting, although probably also very frustrating too.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/606140/


I Love My Brother

While many readers will be put off by the nature of this story being such a taboo subject, I’ve included it in the list anyways for a few different reasons. 1.) It’s a visual novel. 2.) You play as Beth (a girl) 3.) This makes it an Otome Game. 4.) It’s a game told by reading entries in Beth’s Journal 5.) The journal is full of cute colorful stickers, beautiful handwriting, and other charming graphics. 6.) The story doesn’t bother me that much. Some of my favorite Korean Dramas have that incest component, such as 90 Days Time to Love and Autumn in my Heart. 7.) Little Sister Kana is one of the greatest visual novels of all time. 8.) If the game handles the story tastefully, and doesn’t make it just a raunchy taboo fantasy, there’s potential here for a very sweet and sad love story (such as in the games and Kdramas I’ve mentioned above). 9.) For all of those reasons I will give this game a shot.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/769210/


Sister’s Love

I can’t tell if this game is the same as the one above or not. It also is about a brother and sister in love. Different names though. It’s also told through a journal, although the stickers and graphics in the journal look different. In this one they have a more mature/romantic look, and in the other a more bright colorful cheery innocent look. Anyways it’s included for the same reasons as the above.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/771520/


Maze of Adventures

The retro style colorful graphics in this puzzle game look quite cute.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/766740/


Lunch Truck Tycoon 2

Open World Simulation Game that lets you manage a food truck. I want some street tacos now lol.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/660120/


Nantucket

I don’t really approve of hunting whales and dolphins (IRL), but the game sounds fun anyways. Loosely based on Moby Dick, this game allows you to customize your ship and crew as you sail around the world to hunt Moby Dick, in what they call a whaling strategy game.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/621220/


Ascendant Hearts

Humorous Parody Visual Novel with some lovely graphics that pokes fun at itself as well as the genre.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/595730/


Dude, Stop

I don’t really know if there’s any point to this game lol. People seem to think it’s funny. At least the developer thinks he is funny. Maybe it is, maybe it’s not. But it’s strange, and dares to be different, so it earned a spot on our list anyways. The point of the game is to do the opposite of whatever the developer (narrator) tells you to do, or not, it’s up to you. His narration changes as you play depending on your choices. Make him angry and he will yell at you.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/574560/


Cicadas

I really love the artwork in this visual novel. Cicadas are annoying though. I distinctly remember hating that sound effect in other visual novels (I think Tsukihime used them? I can’t recall which novel it was now, but it talked about it being hot in the summer and the cicadas hissing. And it had this horrible cicada sound effect and no background music at this part, and it drove me crazy.) — Anyways here’s another visual novel with probably more equally annoying cicada buzzing sound effects. PS: I always thought Cicadas were a Japanese thing – until last summer when I heard them in real life, here in Western Pennsylvania. They apparently only come up from their burrows once every 17 years – Thank god because they are annoying AF. And I have a phobia about insects. — I’ll still play this beautiful visual novel, despite my fear and loathing of Cicadas (or insects in general lol).

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/710840/


My Big Sister

I kinda feel like this game is trying too hard to be dark and edgy and “cool”. The character you play as is a 12 year old girl (although the devs can’t seem to decide if she’s 8 or 12 as they make reference to her being 8 as well). She tries to rescue her 19 year old sister after they are both kidnapped. The graphics are cute, but the writing looks like trash. How many 12 year olds cuss like sailors? They say she has a sarcastic playful attitude and that she’s not as scared as her big sister – but still, that seems too much. This game’s script looks terrible and that’s just from the screenshots and trailer. Random explicit words for no reason at all do not make your game more “adult” or “dark” or “edgy” or “cool”. In fact, it kinda makes your game the opposite of those things. Of course, occasionally well timed explicit words can add to the feelings/emotions of a story. But when there’s 3 or 4 expletives used within a 6 sentence paragraph, that’s way too many. Which is a shame, because the graphics and actual gameplay look very nice.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/733300/


Spring Breeze

Chinese Visual Novel (with English subtitles) where you date twin sisters and experience university life in China. I feel this translation and writing may be subpar, but the graphics are really pretty, so depending on the price, it may still be worth checking out. Sounds short. 10 scenes, and only 2 endings.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/692790/


Tale of Toast

Very cute looking free-to-play MMORPG. It promises to not be pay-to-win as the only micro-transactional items will be things like transferring to another server or buying cosmetic only items such as pets and costumes (that do not grant stat bonuses). It has optional PVP and procedurely generated dungeons. It uses a classless system and includes crafting and exploration.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/640150/


FEN: Prologue

Survival game that has you dumpster diving for resources. Cute pixel graphics and a procedurely generated world.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/736830/

As an aside, there’s another game, simply called FEN that will release at the end of the month as well.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/771170/


Foxus

Beautiful game where you play as a fox, doing things foxes do, hunting rabbits, exploring the forests, etc. It reminds me a lot of Shelter 1 and 2 (dunno if it’s by the same dev team, or just inspired by such games though).

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/644130/


Skelattack

Play as an adorable skeleton and his best friend, a cute little bat in this rogue like, where monsters in the dungeons are friendly and human invaders are the enemy.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/605800/


Talk to Saki

An idle visual novel game, where time passes in real time. You type questions to Saki using keywords, and check in on her every day. New conversations happen each day.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/771100/

(as an aside, there’s also a game called Talk to Aya that came out about 2 months ago and is $1.99 on steam. Aya is more “my type” because she reminds me of myself. While Saki is very athletic and outdoorsy, Aya is an indoors type who loves manga.)

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/731930/


The Pirate’s Fate

Over 300 choices that matter with 45 different romances in this gorgeously animated furrie game.
http://store.steampowered.com/widget/553480/


Stage Fright

This game meshes together 2 very different genres, rhythm and horror game. The better you play, the harder the game tries to scare you and the more difficult the game becomes.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/771470/


MatchyGotchy

Adorable Colorful Virtual Pet Game

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/772700/


The Red Strings Club

Interact with customers as a bartender with a story presenting moral dilemmas and decisions about happiness and the means to obtain it.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/589780/


The Scent of Summer

Virtual Reality Game (VR Headset Required) where you walk home with a cute anime girl.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/778260/


Iconoclasts

Cute platformer with a heart wrenching story.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/393520/


Staxel

Adorable anime voxel farming game, similar to Harvest Moon and Stardew Valley

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/405710/


Lost Sphear

From the creators of I am Setsuna

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/525240/


OK K.O.! Let’s Play Heroes

Super cute and colorful game based on the cartoon network show of the same name.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/680700/


My Time at Portia

Seems to pay hommage to Rune Factory, Harvest Moon, Stardew Valley, Atelier, Mana Khemia, and other similar gaming series

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/666140/


Wildlife Park Remastered Gold

Includes remastered versions of Wildlife Park and Wildlife Creatures. You can train, breed, research, and catch various animal species.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/664120/


Zweii The Arges Adventure

Beautiful looking humorous JRPG from XSEED with tons of minigames and a leveling system that involves eating or hoarding and trading food for better food.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/427680/


Legrand Legacy: Tale of the Fatebounds

This beautiful looking indie RPG pays homage to many great 90s and early 2k RPGs. It includes minigames, crafting, and city building aspects as well as traditional turn based RPG combat.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/556740/


Luvocious

3 games in one. The first is a dating sim/visual novel. The second is more of a traditional JRPG/Dungeon Crawler. The final one is a scifi setting with gun based gameplay. Each with an anime and retro feeling.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/714730/


Dead in Vinland

I’m already sold just by this feature right here “Build your community of up to 14 playable characters. Meaningful choices will alter the relationships in your team and the story. Expect romances, hatred and betrayals!” – But in addition to that, it has a huge world with over 150 maps to explore and more than 150 items to craft as well.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/573120/


Onmyoji

Very colorful and beautiful strategy game set around the characters and stories within Japanese folklore.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/551170/


Dust and Salt

Decisions matter in this narrative adventure game

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/766630/


Egypt Old Kingdom

City Building and Political Simulation in Ancient Egypt.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/646500/


Celeste

Beautiful little platformer with plenty of secrets and mysteries to unravel.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/504230/


Grisaia Phantom Trigger 4

The story that began with Fruit of Grisaia continues in this new installment

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/761670/


Timber Tennis

Cute and colorful pixelart in an online or local multiplayer tennis game.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/321160/


My Life as a Maiden

Cute looking visual novel where you play as the only boy (disguised as a girl) at an all girl’s school. (This theme is done to death in these games, but the nice artwork may be enough to make this one worth picking up as well.)

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/754840/


Melancholy Republic

Decisions matter as you take the role of a young heroine trying to run the country after her father’s assassination in this JRPG inspired indie game with an excellent soundtrack performed by a live orchestra.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/436240/


Ultimate Arena: Showdown

The graphics look a bit crude, but the game seems wacky and different, and fun, and does feature large amounts of character customization.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/757160/


Clumsy Knights

Very cute little indie RPG with an extensive crafting system

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/765360/


YumeCore

This looks cute and colorful, although a bit nonsensical and crazy.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/771240/


Make Sail

Build Sailboats, sail to other islands to gather materials to make better sailboats, and rinse and repeat.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/417200/


Slave Story

Cute anime style game where you play an indie game maker and interact with a cute anime girl.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/736520/


Where the Water Tastes Like Wine

A collection of short stories from authors all over North America

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/447120/


Minotaur

Point n click game with nice anime style artwork and dark story.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/680590/


Soul Saga

Gorgeous looking indie game inspired by classic JRPGs

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/251590/


Mhakna Gramura and Fairy Bells

This is by the same author as Fault Milestone One and apparently, at one point, these visual novels were all books? Hundreds of years ago? Like in real life? I was not aware of that. This is a kinetic novel meaning there are no choices, no branching plots, and only 1 ending. However it is beautiful and part of a very popular series of visual novels. The story is mentioned in several of the games, but only recently has the full text been discovered because the book is hundreds of years old. This makes it kind of an interesting way to preserve history.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/753220/


Fatal Twelve

Another very beautiful looking visual novel with female protagonist.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/620210/


Bacon May Die

Very colorful brawler game with cute little pigs. Customize your pig and fight off hoards of bacon hungry zombies. It looks cute and has a good sense of humor as well.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/646240/


Serment – Contract with a devil

Indie tactical RPG and Dating Sim hybrid with lots of cute anime girls.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/632900/


Final Fantasy 12 Zodiac Age

A remake of FFXII with a few new gameplay mechanics.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/595520/


Foto Flash

This may be similar to Sonicomi which I reviewed here.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/778610/


CHUCHEL

Cute funny little puzzle adventure game with adorable characters.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/711660/


Startup Freak

This game lets you simulate many aspects of building a startup conmpany, from designing your office, hiring team members, researching and developing new products

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/722660/


Into the Breach

Interesting looking strategy/simulation game with mechs and time travel.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/590380/


Mulaka

Action RPG with gameplay similar to Zelda and based on ancient Mexican lore.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/623640/


Scythe

Boardgame with strong focus on faction choice and strategy.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/718560/


RPG in a Box

If you’re looking to create your own games, RPG in a Box may be an alternative to the popular RPG Maker series.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/498310/


Guardians of Arcadia

A very cute anime indie game inspired by classic JRPGs

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/456140/


Shots Fired

Explore with your cellphone, take photos for buzzfeed (fuzzbeed), and avenge your wife and daughter (and reclaim your tv) in this pixel based action adventure game.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/650120/


Episicava

Anime styled episodic visual novel

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/618430/


Toe Jam & Earl: Back in the Groove

The original games on Sega Genesis are some of my favorite childhood memories. Days and weeks on end spent playing with my best friend.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/516110/


Griftlands

It seems decisions matter quite a bit in this cartoon style indie RPG

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/601840/


Omina Mortis

I like the concept of this game, which is basically a visual novel in story book format; however, it is clear English is not their first language. Their steam store description needs help, and if that’s any indication as to the quality of the writing within the actual game, this game may be nearly unplayable. For example the description says: “In Omnia Mortis you will be confused by a tangle on the edge of mystic and action detective that will be fully solved only after multiple passing the game.” – I’m already confused just by reading this description LOL. I get that they meant to indicate it has multiple endings, or “only after passing the game multiple times” or “only after multiple play throughs” but “only after multiple passing the game” sounds really awkward and incorrect as a native English speaker… and I’m still not sure what they’re trying to say with “on the edge of mystic and action detective” – What does that even mean? — Concept seems good – but they really need to hire some English language play testers and proofreaders. Hopefully with enough proofreading and playtesting, this will end up to be a nice game.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/644340/


A Song in the Void

This seems far too short, clocking in around 6 hours of gameplay, but it seems innovative by the fact that every aspect found within the game reacts and grows with the music.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/746900/


Earthlock

Inspired by Retro RPGs of the late 90s, Earthlock looks like a great upcoming indie game. You can also grow trees to bring kittens into the world which sounds pretty cute.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/761030/


Moonlighter

Cute pixel RPG with procedurely generated dungeons and shop keeping elements

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/606150/


Rain or Shine

Very cute looking VR game that requires a VR headset

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/714610/


DragonFangz

A challenging rogue-like dungeon crawler with adorable anime graphics

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/749850/


Love Bites

Visual novel about vampires. Appears to have 2 playable characters (1 male and 1 female) and 4 romance options (2 male and 2 female)

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/617970/


Into Oblivion

A drinking simulator where you mix and drink virtual drinks with other players and bet who will get sick first to earn coins to get new items from the shops to customize your characters.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/618990/


Prisma and the Masquerade

Absolutely gorgeous looking platformer with a female protagonist and orchestra soundtrack.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/544470/


Long Gone Days

Awesome looking visual novel with shooter elements and gorgeous anime artwork.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/510540/


Samurai Forge

A collectible card game with an interactive story that changes according to players’ decisions

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/617350/


Swordart Online Fatal Bullet

A Multiplayer game based on the famous Swordart Online anime.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/626690/


Marie’s Room

Seems to have an interesting story about childhood friendship, perhaps with a few twists and some drama. A bit of mystery too.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/648390/


Movie Studio Tycoon

Select a genre, choose your script, hire and train directors and actors, compete with other studios to win awards.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/630440/


Orwell Ignorance is Strength

This political thriller aims to warn us about how we give and how others use our private and personal information and how such information can be misinterpreted and to what lengths people or our governments will go to to protect us from perceived threats within this information.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/633060/


Parkasaurus

Colorful Cute Dinosaur “Jurrasic Park” Simulation game where you travel back in time to collect dinosaur eggs, and switch to first person to handle dinosaur rampages.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/591460/


The Swords of Ditto

I love the graphical style of this cute little indie Co-op RPG.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/619780/


One Helluva Day

Another interactive fiction game where English is clearly not their native language. Hopefully the game will be proofread and play tested sufficiently because judging from the steam description, the creators struggle with English grammar. Aside from questionable writing and formating, the concept of the game looks promising. You play as a business owner trying to save his failing company, as well as trying to save the world. There are multiple endings, and you can either work together to help other characters, or take advantage of them to achieve your goals. How you work with others, determines which endings you receive.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/603680/


Monmusu

Adorable anime graphics in this free to play game.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/533540/


Secret of Mana

Remake of one of the best SNES games of my childhood.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/637670/


Detective Gallo

Humorous point n click adventure game with a cartoon duck as the hero.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/556060/


Austen Translation

This solo or multiplayer rogue like marriage simulation borrows heavily from various visual novel mechanics

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/706880/


Speed Dating for Ghosts

Cute looking dating simulator by a former Bioware developer.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/746400/


Roguemance

A roguelike pixel game that pokes fun at relationship drama

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/742530/


Kingdom Come: Deliverance

Story heavy open world historical RPG with player choices and consequences.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/379430/


The Longest Five Minutes

Humorous pixel RPG where the main character has amnesia right before the final boss fight.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/504110/


Wandersong

Colorful cute indie game where you play as a traveling bard.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/530320/


Crossing Souls

Colorful retro inspired game set in 1980s California

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/331690/


The Seven Districts of Sin

Short cute visual novel with some nice anime artwork and 9 different endings to discover.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/782190/


A Case of Distrust

Play as a female detective in this 1920s visual novel.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/717610/


Catmaze

Cute indie anime pixel sidescrolling adventure game.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/620220/


Monster Garden

Cute, very short (1 hour per play through) game with multiple paths and multiple endings with over 15 monsters to meet. You can’t meet them all on a single play through which adds some replay value, despite still being a short experience.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/719660/


The Painter’s Playground

Create or collect 2D artwork and trade it in an online marketplace with other players

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/722330/


Card Crawl

Dungeon Crawler played with a deck of cards. Solitaire like gameplay with deckbuilding mechanics.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/745000/


Opus Rocket of Whispers

Indie hand-drawn painterly styled game with an emotional post-apocalyptic storyline.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/742250/


Feudal Alloy

Cute looking indie action RPG with robots.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/699670/


The Forbidden Arts

Anime style action platform adventure game.

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/735060/


We Were Here Too

Emotionally charged Co-Op adventure game

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/677160/


Minion Forest

Adorable monster raising game

http://store.steampowered.com/widget/767340/


The Best Upcoming & New Release 2018 PC Games for Girls was originally published on GeekySweetie.com – Geeky & Kawaii Anime, Tech, Toys, & Game Reviews & News

How DDoS Attacks Impact Gamers

Ever since the infamous DDoS Attack on Sony’s Playstation Network back in 2011, the gaming industry has seen a sharp increase in DDoS Attacks including but not limited to attacks on Warcraft, League of Legends, Xbox, Nintendo, Microsoft, and many more. Game servers need to give special consideration when it comes to implementing DDoS protection.

A DDoS Attack or Distributed Denial of Service Attack, is a strategy which attempts to shut down a network by flooding it with traffic. The traffic often comes from a group of systems which has been infected with a virus or trojan. These attacks typically happen due to the gaming server having outdated, misconfigured, or conflicting security settings which the hackers can then exploit to execute their attacks.

Everyday more than 150 million people around the world play online games; online gaming has soared into a multi-billion dollar industry with players from North America, Asia, Europe, and all around the globe logging in and connecting simultaneously. The game servers are usually tested to withstand a certain threshold of activity, and new servers added or closed as the game ages and audience and traffic changes. However, a gaming server can easily be over taxed by sudden spikes in traffic, making it a juicy target for DDoS attackers.

Often times, single player or competitive teams are also targeted by DDoS attacks when it comes to online gaming tournaments. Some players use these attacks to get an unfair advantage, while others use it as a ransomware attack where in the player must pay money to remove the threat. We even see these types of attacks on Twitch and similar streaming services where a group will flood a user’s twitch stream to interrupt their gameplay and live stream. Since many people are “professional gamers” and earn a livelihood by streaming or competing in gaming tournaments, these attacks cause lost of wages as well as frustration.

Gaming is a prime target for DDoS attacks because so many games require online connectivity, and so many gamers have an emotional connection to their favorite games which increases frustration and havoc when the attack hits. Gaming servers are also easy to disrupt, because you do not need to fully take a server offline to render it unplayable. Attackers can simply disrupt the server to the point where lag renders the controls unresponsive and interferes with gameplay.

In the case of Sony, gamers took the company to court and won a class action lawsuit costing Sony millions of dollars. This proves that Gaming networks are liable and responsible for delivering uninterrupted service and taking appropriate precautions to help mitigate such attacks.

Also, as Sony has proven, it’s not just PC games which come under DDoS attack. Console games and even mobile games are also at risk.

Gaming servers often require special consideration when it comes to implementing security measures to help mitigate these attacks. Since many DDoS bots are becoming more sophisticated and mimicking human player behavior, many gaming companies are forced to decide between stricter security measures which could trigger false positives and block access to the game for many legitimate players, or to lower their defenses and make the game widely accessible to players all over the world, but at the risk of also being accessed by bots and attackers.

There are three basic types of DDoS attacks:

Volumetric Attacks are the most common type of DDoS attack. They work by throttling the bandwidth causing the servers to shut down by flooding them with high volumes of constant traffic.

Protocol Attacks target the infrastructure and resources of a server, such as the firewall and load balancers.

Application Layer Attacks target security vulnerabilities in Apache, Windows, and OpenBSD. These attacks mimic human behavior and perform a slow and steady string of seemingly innocent requests that overtime will cripple the server.

How Can You Protect Your Server from DDoS Attacks?

You can help protect your gaming servers from DDoS attacks by implementing additional security software or services such as those offered by KODDoS. KODDoS protects you from DDoS attacks by detecting and blocking the attack in less than milliseconds ensuring that your servers remain online and without interruption of service. You also have access to a team of DDoS experts 24/7 who work to monitor incoming attacks and implement solutions in real time or on demand giving you around the clock DDoS protection.

KODDoS works to protect against all types of DDoS attacks by using many layers of filtration to mitigate the attacks. They have a large 400Gbps network, which once the traffic hits their network, they apply ACL rules to block malicious traffic at the edge of the network.

The traffic then reaches a scrubbing center and is filtered based on different signatures and predefined traffic patterns. Each packet is analyzed to ensure no malicious traffic reaches the client’s servers. These methods work to protect against layer 3/4 attacks as well as layer 7 attacks which are harder to detect and which target applications and web servers using only a small amount of bandwidth.

They have a full range of DDoS solutions ranging from plans for web hosts, VPS networks, remote servers, or enterprise dedicated servers. With pricing starting at just $39.99 a month.

You can also contact them for a free consultation to help decide which of their services are the best fit for you.

Check them out at https://koddos.net/

How DDoS Attacks Impact Gamers was originally published on GeekySweetie.com – Geeky & Kawaii Anime, Tech, Toys, & Game Reviews & News

ASUS ROG Strix – Asus – ROG GL502VT 15.6″ Laptop – My New Gaming Laptop and My Recent Experience at Best Buy

Please Note: This is not a sponsored post. I am not being compensated by Best Buy to write this. I did receive an email from Best Buy wanting me to complete a survey (for a chance to win a gift card) regarding my recent purchase. But then I thought, the comments I made in the survey, might make for a good Blog Post for my readers here, especially if supplemented with some info about the Laptop itself.

It’s tax refund time. Like most Americans, instead of saving, investing, or putting this money to good use, it’s time to go have FUN! (yes, I know, not smart or responsible of me lol.) My last laptop was purchased at Sam’s Club for around $750 back in 2013. It was just a “mid-range” “budget” laptop. In no way was it a “gaming” laptop, except that I researched and selected a model with a dedicated graphic card and enough RAM to play most games at the time back then on “medium” settings.

Prior to that laptop, I did in fact have an Alienware and it did last 7 or 8 years, compared to 3 to 4 years, being able to play newly released games on medium settings. However, I paid over $2000 for said Alienware. So then it occurred to me, that I could just buy “throw away” laptops, for less than half the cost, and just upgrade (to another “throw away” or “mid-tier” laptop every few years as needed.).

So when I got my tax refund, I set out to find just such a laptop. a mid-tier “throw away after 3 years” “gaming” laptop. My goal was to stay below $800. I was not expecting much in this price range. I was not looking for a “true gaming laptop”, just something that could “play without crashing” on medium settings.

What I got for under $800 is so much more than a “throw away” laptop. It’s actually a legit Gaming Laptop!! Not only can this system play a 2016/2017 AAA gaming title on “medium settings” without crashing; it can even play them on high settings.

I purchased this item as an open box (former store display) from my local Best Buy. Here is the same model available online – and where you can check to see if it’s available as an Open Box either online or at your local Best Buy. http://www.bestbuy.com/site/asus-rog-gl502vt-15-6-laptop-intel-core-i7-12gb-memory-1tb-hard-drive-black/5090905.p?skuId=5090905

I would say, keep an eye on Best Buy’s pricing even if you do purchase this item and after bringing it home. Here’s my little Best Buy story. I purchased the Asus ROG Strix on 3/28/2017. At that time, the price on the “Satisfactory” Open Box model at my local Best Buy store was listed at $806. When I went to checkout, the associate working at Best Buy told me that the price was actually $899 (still before taxes, etc. After taxes it was actually $960 (which yes, was over my expected budget.)

I still thought $899 was a good buy for a $1200 gaming laptop with great reviews all over the internet (some of which reviews I will share with you later in this article). So I didn’t give too much push back on that price and just accepted it as is.

The associate had tried to tell me it was the same computer / same model / everything, but that they had 2 or 3 in the store and had sold the one listed at that price. But my receipt still said “Satisfactory Open Box”, and that’s what the pricing on the website supposedly reflected – for my specific store location even. I felt somewhat jaded but still happy to save $300.

The next day, I was once again reading the reviews about the laptop on Best Buy’s website and I discovered the item was on sale now, and as such, the price on all models, new, or open box, had been lowered.

I called and asked if they would be willing to price match the newer pricing. I was told “yes” but I was still skeptical because they wouldn’t even honor the original supposed price on the website (it was not a website price; it was for my local store “In-store only” price for an open box model available at my store marked as being in the same condition as the one I purchased.)

It is a 45 minute drive to my nearest Best Buy, so after work, I made the journey back to my Best Buy. This was yesterday, on the 29th of March 2017, with hopes that they would in fact honor the new lower pricing. It did take a bit for them to lookup whatever they needed to in their computers, and I could sense some resistance, but overall, both the manager and cashier at customer service were polite and professional. And I walked out of it feeling respected and valued as a customer, and with a refund of $201.69 to match the new lower pricing.

Now today when I view the item, it’s up to $765 instead of $711.

So that’s why I’m saying, keep an eye out for this. I guess their prices change every day??? It’s strange to me, and kinda shady, but you can’t deny the awesome savings you get by shopping at Best Buy.

If you print out the website pricing for your local store, as well as show them your order history on their own website/app on your mobile phone, there’s little they can do to argue (IE they can’t tell you it’s a different model or part number, because it’s right in your order history on your phone, etc).

Overall, I would shop at Best Buy again, especially for Open Box products. I also was in a few months ago and snagged a Sony HDTV open box model for under $120 and have been very happy with that purchase.

One thing I absolutely love about Best Buy is their return policy. They let you take home any product in their store for 15 days, try it out as much as you’d like, and return it for a full refund within 15 days (or 14 days for cellphones). This is amazing when buying a gaming PC, because you can actually make sure your games are going to run the way you expect!

Per Best Buy’s description this model features the following gaming specifications:

Nvidia Geforce 970m Graphics Card

6th Gen Intel® Core™ i7-6700HQ mobile processor

12GB RAM

1TB Hard Drive to store all your games

And best of all, it weighs less than 5 lbs!

I know this laptop is NOT “future proof” — The Nvidia 970m graphics card now ranks at number 11 overall according to http://laptopmedia.com/top-laptop-graphics-ranking/ — making it well on its way already to becoming a “mid-tier” gaming rig. But for the price I got the open box Asus ROG Strix for, at just $711, it still blows anything else in that price range out of the water.

Nvidia Laptop Graphic Cards April 2017 http://laptopmedia.com/top-laptop-graphics-ranking/
Nvidia Laptop Graphic Cards April 2017 http://laptopmedia.com/top-laptop-graphics-ranking/

Here is a look at the Nvidia 970m performance when comparing to the newer Nvidia 10xx cards. This information is from http://www.videocardbenchmark.net/compare.php?cmp%5B%5D=2981&cmp%5B%5D=3595&cmp%5B%5D=3548

Nvidia 970m vs Nvidia 10xx
Nvidia 970m vs Nvidia 10xx Comparison from http://www.videocardbenchmark.net/compare.php?cmp%5B%5D=2981&cmp%5B%5D=3595&cmp%5B%5D=3548

And according to Notebookcheck.net which I always heavily rely on when looking at new laptops, the 970m is still considered to be a “high-end” Graphics card. – So while it is in no way as powerful as the Nvidia 10xx cards, it can still hold its own on nearly any game out there right now. Interestingly enough, the benchmarks on Notebookcheck.net show the 970m performing on nearly equal footing with the Nvidia 1050 Ti.

Nvidia 970m Benchmarks
Nvidia 970m Benchmarks from Notebookcheck.net

Notebookcheck.net also lists the FPS (frames per second) for popular 2016 and 2017 games for the Nvidia 970m in the following chart. This chart shows that Nvidia 970m can play many 2017 games on high or even ultra graphic settings while achieving 40+FPS.

Notice on some games, you’ll want to lower the graphic settings to medium to achieve 40FPS. While on other games, you can play in high or ultra and attain 60+FPS. It’s subjective as to the type of game. Not all games “need” 60FPS.

For example, if you play a lot of First Person Shooters or Action games, especially ones with PVP against other players online, you will want higher Frames Per Second so you can out perform your competition. But, if you mostly play RPGs – which I assume is true for my readers here, 40FPS is a perfectly acceptable frame rate without any lag or choppiness. Anything below 30FPS will be noticeably laggy and possibly unplayable.

Nvidia 970m 2017 Review
Nvidia 970m 2017 Review

We all know that processors are not the main thing to consider when shopping for a Gaming PC. Intel is getting ready to launch their 8th generation of Intel Processors, deemed Coffee Lake later in 2017. This follows up Kaby Lake which was released last year. However, my ASUS ROG Strix has a chip from 2015 called Sky Lake. But according to Networkworld.com, “Intel’s new Kaby Lake processors: No performance gains The new chips are pretty much even with the last generation.”Source: networkworld.com http://www.networkworld.com/article/3155403/computers/intels-new-kaby-lake-processors-no-performance-gains.html

Still my ASUS came with the Intel I7 Quad Core, compared to the similarly priced Dell XPS that I was considering which had less RAM and only an I5 Processor (but a slightly better graphics card): http://www.bestbuy.com/site/dell-inspiron-15-6-laptop-intel-core-i5-8gb-memory-nvidia-geforce-gtx-1050-1tb-8gb-hybrid-hard-drive-black/5709801.p?skuId=5709801 

I actually would have bought this Dell instead of my ASUS, if it had more RAM. That said, the important thing to consider when buying a gaming laptop, is the graphic card. So I would’ve taken the I5 with the Nvidia 1050 over the I7 with the 970m.

I also really love Dell. I have had very positive experiences with their customer service — which began as a negative experience, but was made more than right for me, years ago when one of the first XPS came out, I had the highest level of protection/warranty, and after weeks of frustration, (and venting on blogs/social media), I was contacted by a customer advocate who worked at Dell and was upgraded to a newer iteration of the XPS. (This was probably 10-12 years ago now) But that experience stuck with me and made me very loyal to Dell for a number of years.

For the price point, or for those tech savvy enough to upgrade their own RAM this laptop at just $799 for a brand new (not Open Box like my Asus) gaming laptop is a great buy! I went into Best Buy with the intention that if my Open Box ASUS was already sold out, that I would be bringing this Dell XPS home instead. And both machines have great reviews!

According to this discussion over on Gamespot’s forums, there is absolutely no benefit (for gaming) of buying an Intel I7 over an Intel I5! https://www.gamespot.com/forums/pc-mac-linux-society-1000004/what-are-the-gaming-benefits-of-an-i7-over-an-i5-31603230/

However, the extra processing power is useful for video editing and other things that many games may be interested in (such as for editing youtube Let’s Plays, and so on.)

When it comes to deciding how much RAM you need in a gaming PC, most laptops in the “under $800 range” feature 8GB of RAM (such as the Dell XPS indicated above); and this may very well be enough for your gaming needs, as many popular titles from 2016/2017 list 8GB as the minimum required RAM that a laptop needs.

But my ASUS came with 16GB, and like I said, the RAM ultimately was the Tie-Breaker deal for me when it came to deciding between the Dell or the ASUS laptops.

PCGamer recently did a blog post about “How much RAM do you really need for gaming?”. They say 16GB is the “Sweet Spot” for PC Gaming right now. (Article published February 2017).

We consider 16GB to be a nice sweet spot for a solid gaming system. It should be more than enough to run your games and multitask as needed. You’ll also want at least 16GB if livestreaming is a priority for you. The ability to run and stream a game on one monitor while responding to chat questions, playing music, and doing whatever else in another is definitely the kind of task list that would benefit from an extra bit of RAM headroom.” – Source: PCGamer http://www.pcgamer.com/how-much-ram-do-you-really-need-for-gaming/

Some, but not many, games are also now starting to launch while recommending more than the “standard” 8GB of RAM. For example Quantum Break (recommends 16GB), Batman Arkham Knight (recommends 12GB), and Star Citizen (recommends 16GB). These certainly won’t be the last games to recommend an increased amount of RAM. So if you don’t know how, or just don’t want to, install more RAM yourself later, you may want to consider opting for 16GB now to help “future-proof” your laptop.

Having the laptop now for the past 2 days, and trying some of my own games in high settings, I am very happy with my purchase, especially at just $711 (almost 50% off the retail suggested price of $1159.)

I did a lot of research prior to, and after, purchasing my ASUS ROG Strix 15.6 Inch Gaming Laptop. Here are some interesting reviews. Please note some of these reviews reference different configurations than the one I reference in my own review. It is important to consider all of the above options: Graphics Card, RAM, and Processors when buying a gaming laptop. The most important thing to consider is the Graphics Card.

Asus ROG Strix Reviews

Best Buy’s reviews consistently mention “washed out” colors or “back light bleed” on the screen. In my opinion this is not true. To me, the colors look very vivid, bright, rich, and clear. There also a lot of reviews complaining about lack of an SSD (solid slate drive). I don’t mind waiting a few minutes for my PC to start, so I dunno if I’d really care whether it has an SSD or not. — On the other hand, Bestbuy’s reviews consistantly praise the performance, price, and gaming capabilities of this laptop. It currently has a 4.4 star rating out of more than 300 reviews. http://www.bestbuy.com/site/asus-rog-gl502vt-15-6-laptop-intel-core-i7-12gb-memory-1tb-hard-drive-black/5090905.p?skuId=5090905 

Tech Radar’s review praises the “vibrant” screen (a direct contrast to the above Best Buy complaints), Full HD Gaming Capabilities, and Speakers. Tech Radar says the Asus ROG Strix GL502 “strikes the perfect balance between portability and power”.  http://www.techradar.com/reviews/pc-mac/laptops-portable-pcs/laptops-and-netbooks/asus-rog-strix-gl502-1326519/review

Amazon User Reviews show 3.9 Stars out of over 400 Reviews once again complementing its powerful gaming performance. https://www.amazon.com/15-6-inch-GL502VM-GeForce…

Here is a Youtube User’s Review of the Asus ROG Strix:

PC Authority also praised the Asus Rog Strix, stating that “it’s hard not to recommend a gaming laptop that won’t break your wallet or your back.”  https://www.pcauthority.com.au/Review/431060,review-asus-rog-strix-gl502-gaming-laptop.aspx

Gadget Review has a nice in depth review of the Asus ROG Strix as well. The only things they critized were the “okay” speakers, and large bezels around the screen. (I do agree, it seems as if this laptop could actually fit a 17 inch screen in the amount of plastic used around the actual 15.6 inch one. Reducing this “edge” would make the laptop even more portable and lighter and less bulky. and it does seem like a poor design choice when many other competitors are offering edge to edge screens now.  http://www.gadgetreview.com/asus-rog-strix-gl502vt-gaming-laptop-review

LaptopMag.com Refers to the Asus ROG Strix as a “mini Behemoth” and praises almost every aspect of this laptop in a very detailed review at http://www.laptopmag.com/reviews/laptops/asus-rog-strix-gl502vt-ds74 

Shack News calls the Asus ROG 502 “Premium in Every Sense” http://www.shacknews.com/article/95859/asus-rog-gl502vt-ds71-review-premium-in-every-sense

You can also check out the product information for the GL502VT from Asus’ website here: https://www.asus.com/us/ROG-Republic-Of-Gamers/ROG-GL502VT/ 

Sticky Trigger gives the Asus ROG an 8 out of 10. http://www.stickytrigger.com/tech/review-asus-rog-gl502/ 

ASUS ROG Strix – Asus – ROG GL502VT 15.6″ Laptop – My New Gaming Laptop and My Recent Experience at Best Buy was originally published on GeekySweetie.com – Geeky & Kawaii Anime, Tech, Toys, & Game Reviews & News

Best Laptops for PC Gamers That Won’t Drain Your Bank Account!

Editor’s Note: Today’s Guest Post comes from one of our readers, Marie Miguel, who shares with us some awesome prices for “gaming” laptops. Not all of the laptops on her list are suitable for “Core” gamers because some of them have intel integrated graphics cards – however, quite a few on her list do have Nvidia or AMD dedicated graphic cards – and all of them on the list would be suitable for casual gamers who enjoy indie or retro games. Check out her suggestions below, and leave a comment about your gaming rig – or about other great deals for affordable gaming laptops – in our comments section below.

If you’re a PC gamer like I am, you want the highest quality computer you can find. If you’re also poor like I am, that $2,700 laptop that you’ve been dreaming of is most likely not going to happen. Well, there’s still hope! Here are some great laptops that won’t break the bank and are still great for gaming! With these laptops, you’ll have no problems playing LoL, or sitting back and enjoying Cat President.

  1. Dell Inspiron 5000 Series

Personally, I am a little biased since this is the laptop I have, but it is still a fantastic computer! This computer come with up to 8GB of RAM, and 1TB of storage space. Along with the 6th Gen Intel Core Processor (which makes everything load so much quicker) it also comes with AMD graphics, so playing a game or editing a video isn’t going to slow it down at all! The best part? You can buy this laptop at Walmart for around $400, which isn’t bad considering all the features that come with it!

  1. ASUS X551MA

This laptop is not only great for gaming, but it is also on the list for GadgetReview’s Best Laptops For College Students. The X551MA comes with 4GB of RAM and 500GB of internal storage space. You’ll also have no problem seeing with the 15.6” screen that it has. The X551MA is also incredibly cheap, and can generally be found on Amazon or Ebay in the $300- $350 range.

  1. HP 15-ay011nr

The HP ay-011nr is the perfect laptop for casual gamers. This laptop has an 8GB of RAM (which can be upgraded to 12GB or 16GB) and a 1TB of storage space. This laptop’s best feature is the high-quality HD graphics that are installed. This laptop can generally be found for under $500, which is a great price! You can learn much more about the HP 15-ay011nr, as well as other laptops here.

  1. Acer Aspire E 15 E5-575G-53VG

This Acer Laptop has amazing graphics and a long- lasting battery life. It comes installed with a NVIDIA GeForce 940MX graphics card for better graphics and a performance increase of up to 20 percent! Though it is a very plain design it does come with 8GB of RAM, and a 15.6” screen so everything can be seen. This laptop is priced a little under $600, which isn’t a bad considering how quality- made it is.

  1. MSI GL72 6QD-001

This MSI laptop was designed specifically for gaming. Though a little more expensive than others on this list, it’s still decently priced at around $850. It comes with 8GB of RAM and 1TB of internal storage. Passionate gamers will love the Intel 6th Generation i7 Core processors. Not only that, but the Matrix Display technology allows you to multitask, so you can stream music while you play!

All of these laptops have their benefits. Be it their amazing graphics or their lasting battery life. The most important benefits that all of them have in common is that they are all within a decent price range. So, if you’re looking for a new laptop that can handle your World of Tanks habit, any of these laptops would be perfect for you!

Best Laptops for PC Gamers That Won’t Drain Your Bank Account! was originally published on

Best Buy Begins Black Friday Online with 16 Tech Deals on 11/10/2016

Best Buy’s ad has been released for Black Friday; and not only that, they are letting you shop early online by taking advantage of some of the ads in their flyer. These deals span a wide range of tech offerings from HDTVs to appliances, smartphones, movies, games, accessories, peripherals, even laptops and PCs. Check out Best Buy’s Black Friday Presale below:

http://www.bestbuy.com/site/electronics/black-friday/...

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Best Buy Begins Black Friday Online with 16 Tech Deals on 11/10/2016 was originally published on

Humble Bundle Birthday Sale = Free or Heavily Discounted Games for You!

Humble Bundle just kicked off their annual birthday celebration which will run for the next 11 days featuring hundreds of discounted digital PC games from both AAA studios and indie developers. Some of the savings are up to 75 or even 90% off. In fact, they’re even giving you a free game just for visiting the website and registering or logging into your account.

Continue reading

Countdown to Black Friday with New Deals Every Day on Amazon

Amazon just launched their Black Friday Pre-sale event. You can check back every day for new items at http://amazon.com/Black-Friday/…

Already they are offering up some pretty sweet deals for geeks and gamers. I recommend bookmarking and checking back as often as possible. I’m hoping for a PS4 Bundle or Console to go on sale. I have enough already to purchase, but since it is that time of year, saving some money never hurts, and I’ve waited this long already to get myself the newest consoles, so might as well hang in there a few more weeks and see what happens!

Last year, amazon had amazing black friday and cyber monday exclusive gaming bundles for all three major game systems including Xbone, PS4, and WiiU. This year the savings should be even greater since the technology continues to age and the market gets even more competitive with new consoles such as the Xbox Scorpio, PS4 Pro, and (soon to be released) Nintendo Switch, which means the standard Xbox One, PS4 Slim, and possibly Wii U will need to discount their inventory to see a strong finish this year.

PC Gamers are not to be forgotten, RIGHT NOW amazon has awesome Black Friday deals on headsets, lightup keyboards, game controllers, gaming mice, and more. There are some great deals such as headsets for 65% off, hot new release games for both console and pc at up to 75% off and many more.

Amazon even has a page set up specifically for gaming deals here: http://amzn.to/2evLcYi

or a general one for Electronics here: http://amzn.to/2evMYZH

I’m also needing a new gaming laptop, and Amazon has a page for PC and Laptop deals here: http://amzn.to/2elLmON

Video Games not your thing? Maybe you want some boardgames, legos, cute plushies, dolls, or figures? If so amazon also has a page for you here: http://amzn.to/2fp9ssJ

And the sales will continue into cyber monday as well and Cyber Monday has it’s own page for deals which will be located at http://amzn.to/2fk9JB3 once it goes live later this month.

 

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Per Amazon’s site:

“Black Friday Deals–The Party Is Just Getting Started!

Black Friday 2016 will be here soon, but we didn’t want you to wait until the day after Thanksgiving to save on Black Friday deals, so we are counting down to Black Friday 2016 with exciting deals today, and tomorrow, and the next day, and the next day, and…you get the picture. Stop by each day through November 24 for early Black Friday deals, including sales on electronics, low prices on DVDs, magazine subscription specials, toy bargains, and fashionable deals for women, men, kids & baby, and more. You’ll find our best Black Friday deals, and Deal of the Day bargains you won’t want to resist for holiday gifts.

Something else to be excited about–at Amazon, Black Friday 2016 isn’t just a day to us–it’s a whole week! We’ll kick off Black Friday Deals Week early with Black Friday deals and sales all day every day that week, including Black Friday, with those big after-Thanksgiving sales you’ve been waiting for. Trust us, if you love a good deal, you won’t want to miss it!

To continue the excitement, we have made Cyber Monday 2016 a whole week too! We’ll be kicking off Cyber Monday with a week’s worth of cyber deals, just in time for you to get back to work after Thanksgiving … and shop online. Shhh … we won’t tell your boss! You’ll find more great deals every day during Cyber Monday Deals Week.
So stop by any day, or better yet, every day. We’ll be here with great deals!”

 

Countdown to Black Friday with New Deals Every Day on Amazon was originally published on

Newegg Announces their Black Friday Plans – Black Friday 2016 Starts Now

More Black Friday deals and news keeps rolling in. Newegg has a whole month of deals planned, with the best deals reserved for November 25th and 26th. However, I’m especially interested in the gaming sale which will take place next week. Here is the full lineup:

  • November 1-7: Black November kick-off sale
  • November 8-14: Black November gaming sale
  • November 11th: Early Black Friday Deals
  • November 15-21: Pre-Black Friday sale
  • November 18th: Early Black Friday Deals
  • November 21-26: Newegg’s Black Friday Week – Deepest discounts reserved for November 25 & 26
  • November 27-30: Cyber Monday four-day event, w/ hundreds of deals unlocked November 27 & 28 – extended sale November 29 & 30

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Newegg Announces their Black Friday Plans – Black Friday 2016 Starts Now was originally published on

Black Friday 24 Hour Flash Sale Now Live at Dell | Black Friday Computers | Black Friday Laptops | Black Friday 2016

It’s beginning to look a lot like … Black Friday? I know stores get more aggressive each year with their Black Friday sales and offerings, but this seems a little premature? It’s only the 1st of the month but already Dell has some huge sales going on!

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There’s laptops and desktops on sale for the next 24 hours only.

My pick for all of you gamers is the Inspiron 15 7000 Touch which comes with a 6th Generation Intel® Core™ i5 Processor, 8GB Memory, and NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX 960M with 4GB GDDR5 for just $799.99 which is $200 off Dell’s regular price. It also has thermal cooling and benchmarks pretty well on the latest games on high and ultra graphic settings. All this power in just a tiny 6 pound package. The touch screen is nice too especially if you enjoy casual games – My current laptop (which is now about 4 years old and in need of an upgrade) has a touch screen, and it really comes in handy for a lot of games and graphic art programs.

Check out all of the great deals and get your Christmas shopping done early, or buy something for yourself 🙂

Black Friday 24 Hour Flash Sale Now Live at Dell | Black Friday Computers | Black Friday Laptops | Black Friday 2016 was originally published on