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Five Best Videogames of Comic-Con 2011

As the movie, videogame and comic book industries invaded the San Diego Convention Center last week, Comic-Con 2011 dominated media coverage. Fans mobbed the Convention Center, too, looking for the  latest in cutting-edge entertainment. This year’s show is now history and for our gamers out there, we’ve rounded up for you the best five videogames of the show:

MASS EFFECT 3 (BioWare/Electronic Arts)
Platforms: Xbox 360, PlayStation 3
Release Date: March 6, 2012


BioWare’s Mass Effect 3 is easily one of the most anticipated games of 2012.

The long-awaited sequel to the make-your-own adventure, Mass Effect 3 was playable for gamers at Comic-Con. We saw this game at E3 but Comic-Con gave us a chance to spend more time with it. What did we like best about it? BioWare enhanced the third-person shooter aspect and RPG elements of the game and gave gamers the option to play as a female Shepard.

For the uninitiated, Mass Effect mixes sci-fi themes with elements of action RPG gaming. As the new game begins, Commander Shepard is being put on trial for what happened in ME 2. However during the trial, Earth is besieged by Reapers. Shepard uses the opportunity to make a quick exit and goes off to summon help from other alien civilizations. While Shepard is recruiting help, he encounters resistance from former allies, the Cerberus, and the space opera plays out from there. For players that worked hard on those previous game saves, you’ll be happy to know your progress will pick up where you left off with ME 3.

Expect multiple versions of ME 3 to be available — such as a collector’s edition and a digital deluxe edition. And get this: The special editions are set to include exclusive weapons found in the N7 Arsenal Pack. We’re totally buying that.

SPIDER-MAN: EDGE OF TIME (Beenox/Activision)
Platforms: Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, PC, Nintendo Wii, DS & 3DS
Release Date: October 4, 2011


“Excuse me, do you have the time?”  Spider-Man: Edge of Time floats between two time zones — the year 2099 and 2011. 

Spider-Man is everywhere these days — including a new movie and even a Broadway musical. Not to be left out, he makes his latest videogame appearance in Spider-Man: Edge of Time. In a videogame that can be best described as Spider-Man meets Inception, there are actually two Spider-Men – one from the present (whose alter ego is Peter Parker) and one from the future (alias Miguel O’Hara) who rose to fame in the comic series Spider-Man 2099. Gamers play in either time period, but the game’s “Quantum Causality” feature, causes the actions you make in one era to have an effect in the other (like the cause-and-effect logic in Inception). If that isn’t enough to make your head spin, toss in the villainous antics of The Black Cat and Anti-Venom – and it’s really “game on.”

The present and the future link up in Edge of Time, with the 2099 version of Spider-Man working overtime to protect the original web-slinger from harm…and save the future from being devoured by an ultra-greedy corporation called Alchemax.

STREET FIGHTER x TEKKEN (Capcom/Capcom)
Platforms: PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, PlayStation Vita
Release Date: March 2, 2012


Two of the greatest fighting games franchises in videogame history come together for the ultimate smack-down in Street Fighter x Tekken.

In a grudge match that could only be described as videogame nirvana, Namco and Capcom are pitting their toughest fighters against each other for the first time in the HD era. Fighters from the Tekken and Street Fighter series  face off together for what gamers are hoping will be the fighting game to end all fighting games. Street Fighter x Tekken (which Capcom translates as “Street Fighter cross Tekken”) pulls in all your favorite characters from Street Fighter (Ryu, Guile, Abel, Chun-Li, Poison, Dhalsim and more) and throws them in Tekken greats (such as Kazuya Mishima, King, Steve Fox and Yoshimitsu). And although this isn’t exactly the first time these two powerhouse rival companies have united to do battle (that honor goes to 2005’s Namco vs. Capcom), it’s the first time that gamers outside of Japan will be able to enjoy the mayhem.

THE LEGEND OF ZELDA: SKYWARD SWORD (Nintendo EAD/Nintendo)
Platforms: Nintendo Wii
Release Date: Fall 2011


Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword is actually a prequel to Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time.

In the latest installment of Nintendo’s legendary Legend of Zelda action/adventure series, The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword, the game FINALLY gets the high-definition treatment and a pick-me-up from the addition of Wii Motion Control Plus technology – which gives Link’s movements (such as shooting an arrow) new precision and power. Swordplay, in particular, is also given special attention, with this game paying attention to details such as how Link’s sword is angled before it cuts something (or somebody).

Nintendo gave additional depth to the environments between dungeons, too. And while the locations may be familiar, Nintendo has slipped in new gameplay surprises. Plus, as we mentioned, this will be the first time Link will be in HD glory.

CAPTAIN AMERICA: SUPER SOLDIER (Next Level Games/Sega)
Platforms: PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, Wii, Nintendo 3DS, Nintendo DS
Release Date: July 19, 2011

Cap’s come a long way — originally debuting in Timely Comics (which evolved into Marvel Comics); Captain America is now starring in his own hit movie.

Captain America is an original superhero; he first appeared in comic books in 1941. But don’t count him out because of his age; his recent live-action feature (Captain America: The First Avenger) had enough muscle to knock the latest “Harry Potter” flick out of the top slot at the Box Office.

Captain America: Super Soldier is almost a companion piece to the movie, and follows the film’s general plot and action. As the Star-Spangled Avenger, Captain America sets out to explore a huge castle that’s been turned into a rogue military installation. Aside from using his own spectacular acrobatics and trusty fists to make his way through this third-person action game, Cap is equipped with his trusty shield, which he can hurl at enemies, protect himself from gunfire, and even scale walls when the need arises. It’s an action game through and through but captures the feeling of the film pretty well.

Get Into Games
Are video games your favorite form of entertainment? Have you ever imagined making your own game? Make your own game ideas come to life by learning video game design or 3D animation. Or explore your passion creating comics. Who knows? In a few years, they could be showcasing your creations at Comic-Con 2020!

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posted by Phill Powell in News Blog,Video Game Design and have No Comments

DMA Instructor Marcus Duvoisin: Only Spiderman Has More Web Experience

Courses: Graphic Design, Beginning & Advanced Photoshop, 2D & 3D Video Game Creation

DMA Instructor: Marcus Duvoisin

Education: San Francisco State University; San Francisco, CA (Marketing Major, focus on New Media Design)

Professional Portrait: Web designer. Marcus started early – learning web design while still in middle school. By the time he was in high school, he already had a huge slate of professional clients Marcus owns his own web design firm, Genuine Web Design and provides design services for a variety of different companies, including www.extremenewzealand.net. A skilled and in-demand instructor, he teaches Adobe Dreamweaver, Flash, Photoshop, HTML and CSS.

DMA Campus: Stanford University

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Spinning Webs Since Childhood
Every artist has a favorite medium for their style and talent. For DMA Instructor Marcus Duvoisin, his canvas is a web page. He’s been building his own web sites since he was fourteen years old. Marcus and his friends designed web sites related to their hobbies and interests at the time, which included skateboarding, music and video games. Back then, programming and designing software were less intuitive than today. And there were no computer camps to guide budding web designers.

“We coded in HTML/CSS and used applications like Adobe Dreamweaver, Photoshop and Flash,” he remembers. “It was hard to learn on our own and we spent a lot of long nights troubleshooting. Having a teacher by our side would have definitely helped! But technology camps like Digital Media Academy didn’t really exist back then…so we had to spend the extra hours trying to figure out solutions on our own.”

At that time, creative teens with an interest in web design often had to make their own way. Luckily, Marcus didn’t have to look any further than his own father, a technologically advanced dad who had mastered the fundamentals of online design around the same time. “My dad taught me web design basics and with constant practice, I have developed a strong base of skills.” Marcus has also developed his professional skills by working side-by-side with professional experienced designers.


Kids love Marcus’ energy and excitement.

Marcus continued learning and building sites. By the time he was in high school, a local start-up company asked him to design a simple company web site.

Taking it to The Next Level
“I remember being really nervous about whether or not I could accomplish the task,” he says, “It turned out it wasn’t all that different than designing web sites with my friends.” The site he designed was a huge hit with the company and the client then recommended Marcus to other businesses. Soon he was designing enough web sites to pay his way through college, and he credits the experience for opening up career opportunities.

Now Marcus is running his own company – Genuine Web Design, which includes a roster of great clients that count on his expertise to establish their online presence. Marcus also maintains those web sites, refreshes the content and provide periodic redesign. In 2010 Marcus was selected to work with Google to help improve Google rankings for his client Demandforce. “This experience provided me with many tools and techniques for expanding my knowledge about Internet marketing.”

In addition to his successful career in web design, Marcus also teaches for Digital Media Academy during the summer at DMA’s Stanford University campus location. This year he’ll be teaching Graphic Design & Arts, as well as 2D & 3D Video Game Creation.


“DMA’s hands-on training provides the building blocks for a career in technology.”

“I enjoy everything about DMA’s summer camp experience: the kids, the fun, the cafeteria cuisine, and (especially) teaching kids design skills that they show their parents at the end of the program. If I could make DMA summer camp my full-time job for the rest of my life, I would.”

Marcus also teaches 2D & 3D Video Game Creation. Like all DMA instructors Marcus’s has professional credentials and real-world experience. To learn more about DMA’s programs and instructors visit Digital Media Academy.

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posted by Phill Powell in Featured,News Blog,Web Design and have No Comments

Film Camp for Teens. Watch a Movie made this year at DMA's Summer Camp.

Teens get the full film camp experience at Digital Media Academy summer camps and week-long courses.

Watch a movie created by teens in the Filmmaking course at University of Pennsylvania DMA camp this past summer. All teen students in the class played a part in writing the movie script, storyboard the movie scenes, acting in various shots around campus, filming with high quality cameras, directing the scenes, editing music for the video, and editing the video in Final Cut Pro on their own Apple computer.

This video is just one example of the creative movies that are created by teens at Digital Media Academy’s summer film camps. Enjoy the suspense-filled movie a group of DMA film students made entitled… “Re-Encountered”

All summer camp courses for teens

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posted by Philip Harding in News Blog and have Comment (1)