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Video Game Brain Trust

Before we start the countdown of our 25 favorite video games of all time you should be introduced to the individuals that will be participating! This group will be know as our Video Game Brain Trust and will in time provide our readers with more countdowns and other content pertaining to video games (and other nerdy stuff!). On the surface there may not appear to be a great amount of diversity in the members, but everyone is very opinionated and the lists will reflect just how different we are. So, in no particular order, here is a introduction to the Hungry & Fit Video Game Brain Trust.

Kai Powell – The oldest in the group, Kai favors playing games on his computers that he builds himself. While he currently does not own or play any consoles regularly, Kai has plenty of experience with them, especially GameCube. He also has experience in the video game industry, having worked on the Transformers game for the first live-action movie release and X-Men Legends. (We all want to thank him for the latter.) Kai has extensive experience on the PC having played many MMORPGs in depth, including WoW, ToR and ESO. His list might reflect his love for the computer but it will certainly show his decades of high level gaming. It will also reflect his great level of intelligence, patience and composure. Expect to see some games with high levels of thought process on his list.

Scott Polhemus – “Po is not one to deny his Nintendo fanboy ways. He suckled on the mustached teet of Mario, due in large part to his older brother’s playing of Super Mario World on the Super Nintendo in the early 90’s. But, that was only the beginning. Over the years, he’s played (and owned) Nintendo, Sega Genesis, Nintendo’s entire handheld family (except for the 3DS), Nintendo 64, Playstation, Dreamcast, Playstation 2, Gamecube, Xbox, Wii, Xbox 360, and PS3. Po spent a semester abroad in Tokyo and managed to play a great deal of arcade and Japanese games as well. He admits his tastes are big on RPG and action/adventure…so, basically he’s big on story and plot. He’s limited his list to Console gaming. And frankly, these aren’t the 25 best games of all-time, but they’re the 25 games that expanded his mind and made his heart roar…so, naturally, they’re very dear to him.” (This bio was provided directly by Po.)

Andrew Tucci – Andrew boasts both an extensive collection of games and an insane amount of hours played. When Andrew beats a game, he beats it multiple times, on every difficulty rating, until he unlocks every achievement possible. He has spent time on virtually every console since the release of the NES but he also has a great deal of experience in both the arcade and on the PC. His current collection of systems include Wii, Xbox 360, Xbox, PC/Mac, N64, Gamecube and more. If there is a lack of anything, it’s clearly Sony, but he most likely has more hours logged on Microsoft consoles then every other member of the brain trust combined. He is extremely opinionated and has no problem disagreeing with Metacritic and other experts. If he thinks a classic is garbage, he will let you know. If he thinks a piece of trash is pure gold, you will hear about it. His decades of experience, ability to replay games until the discs no longer work, and his strong views make Andrew a wild card in this group. I have an idea what to expect from him but he can be highly unpredictable. 

Alana Powell – Like her older brother, Alana is an avid PC gamer, being so bold as to claim the superiority of the PC over consoles. While she has been exposed to more consoles lately, the frustrations of the different controllers brings her heart back to the mouse and keyboard of a PC. Alana favors games that give the player control over their character and world, so expect to see some BioWare games on her list. She also has been playing Elder Scrolls games for as long as she can remember, so those may also make an appearance. Nevertheless, Alana has been playing for years so her list will reflect PC games that are both new and old. She does not think a game needs to have been out for decades to be consider great, so newer and less known games might slip onto her list. It will be interesting to see if any console games even crack her top 25!

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Chris Tucci – Soundtracks. Epic stories. Character development. All aspects that heavily influence how Chris feels about a game. Like Po, Chris favors JRPGs and action-adventure games, however, he has weaker feelings for Nintendo and that will dictate the major differences in those two lists. Chris admits his favorite systems of all time are NES and PS2 but after having owned nearly every console until the release of the newest generation, it is hard to predict what his list will exactly include. There will most likely be a mix of every console, Nintendo handhelds, 1990s arcade games, and PC games around the Millenium. Don’t be surprised to find a lot of games from a few key companies and one game that highlights an entire franchise.

Well, there you have it. A short introduction about what to expect. I am sure the members of the brain trust are most interested to find out what their fellow members release throughout the countdown. You can start to see what lists will be the most similar, but will anyone pick the same games the same week? The suspense continues to build and next week you will find out what games crack the top 25 countdown! And as always…stay hungry and fit!

Wreck-It Ralph and Skyfall: Double Feature

Ideally, Alana and I would go to the movies every time a new movie came out that we were even remotely interested in if we had the time and money.  We’re not quite there but we’re close enough to be able to see the movies we really want to at a discounted rate on Sunday mornings before we both go into work for some late shifts. Although our checklist is backing up, it includes: Cloud Atlas, Argo, Chasing Mavericks, Man with the Iron Fists, Lincoln, Silent Hill Revelations, and Flight. You could probably figure out which ones we each want to see. Rise of the Guardians comes out nest Wednesday and that’s on there because we love Dreamworks but there are tons of upcoming movies that we want to see: namely The Hobbit and Les Miserables. But back to the point of this post, a review of this trip and those two movies.

As for the trip, we were excited to see that Hobbit promotions were everywhere and we even took some pictures with them. There was also a stand up of Georges St Pierre for his upcoming match against Carlos Condit. I want to see it but Alana doesn’t, but it’s not a big deal. So we brought our usual stash of goodies including popcorn, drinks, and candy and prepared for the double. First up…

In theater 4, Wreck it Ralph. This was a good Disney movie, plain and simple. Great voice acting, a good comedic and clever script, nostalgia for gamers, and a cute story line with great characters. It was entertaining, kept our attention, and was full of great lessons. The soundtrack was solid and the animation was top notch, going from pixelated throw back moments to smooth and beautiful modern day technology. In terms of a score, let’s just say it was a really good movie. 8 maybe seems fair. Nothing lower but there was nothing exceptional to make it higher.

No time to break, the previews here last for so long that we had to go to the bathroom and rush to the next one.

In theater 11, the movie I have been waiting for the past four years, Ian Fleming presents Daniel Craig as 007 James Bond. My dad raised me on James Bond movies and although him and my brother love Roger Moore, I am a little bit more open to the other Bonds. I always liked Sean Connery, and even Pierce Brosnan, and even Timothy Dalton, but Daniel Craig has done an exceptional job in the role. He is much more callous and introverted than past Bonds but maintains the confidence and debonair manner. I don’t want to give any spoilers but I was initially disappointed in the story. With that being said, I enjoyed the movie and was grinning the whole time. They kept regular Bond quirks but took some new turns and chances, such as with their “choice” of Bond “girl.” Javier Bardem was so amazingly creepy. It was great acting, beautiful sets and landscapes, dark and mysterious, but overall amazing. Maybe 8.5 but it’s hard to put a number to it.

And then we bought a 6 dollar fountain drink to win a trip to New Zealand for 4 and the set of the Hobbit. We lost and won a track from the movie soundtrack. That is one expensive song.

See these movies and wait to read our next reviews.