Rainy Day Ideas
The Ontario Science Centre

By Jorge Figueiredo - June 16th, 2013

The Virtusphere.

Sometimes, on a rainy day, it’s nice to step away from the couch for a change and try something new. If you live in the Greater Toronto Area (or if you don’t mind travelling really far), you can go check out the Ontario Science Centre. Smallest Thumb and I have been there a few times together, and we always enjoy ourselves. So when we were invited this past weekend to check out the new IMAX Dome film, Flight of the Butterflies, we gave the ol’ thumbs up and headed over there on Saturday morning.

This trip also allowed me to properly investigate the Virtusphere, a feature of Game On 2.0 that I wasn’t able to check out the last time that we went!

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Of Interest
Will Pwn 4 Food

By Jorge Figueiredo - May 14th, 2013


Every once in a while, something flies into the airspace of our attention span that causes us to raise an eyebrow. Of course, during these times there is the potential for disagreement among the Thumbs – but healthy discourse is always good to flesh out potential videogaming goodness. Will Pwn 4 Food is one of those topics that polarized opinions within our shop. What is Will Pwn 4 Food? Well, it’s a startup that removes the inconvenience of travelling around with your computer to compete in tournaments by presenting you with a portal with which to log in and play games! What’s interesting about it (and what has caused a bit of a stir in our shop) is the fact that Will Pwn 4 Food lets gamers compete for actual cash and prizes around the clock – seven days a week.

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X-Summit 2012
X-Summing It Up
Storytelling – Part 2

By Jorge Figueiredo - April 22nd, 2013


In the previous installment, I wrote a little bit about what I discovered about the importance of storytelling. In this article, I’d like to address how technology fits into all of this. This article is based on an X-Summit 2012 talk by Ryan Fitzgerald (Community Manager and Content Creator at Celtx), who discussed Serving the Story: Technology vs. Relevance.

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Of Aliens and Texts

By Rituro - March 13th, 2013

“Hey, big nasty! What has two thumbs, carries a laser shotgun and can outflank your glowing alien butt? This guy!”

If you’ll recall my Best of 2012 article, one of the biggest surprises was that XCOM: Enemy Unknown only finished at #2. Those of you who know me surely know of my undying love for the original X-COM: UFO Defense, a game that consumed no small number of my college hours1 and, as a result, ensured a permanent place in my elite pantheon of “Best Games Ever”. So, why did XCOM finish behind Faster Than Light? Was I consumed with rose-tinted nostalgia for the original2? No; honestly, FTL deserved the nod. When an indie game brings as much to the table as FTL did for a palatable price point and delivers a solid, enjoyable experience play-through after play-through, I am obliged to pay the appropriate amount of respect. Plus, you get to slice through alien ships with a big honkin’ laser beam. That’s a can of fun all to itself right there.

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Microsoft Advertising Xbox Challenge

By Jorge Figueiredo - March 10th, 2013


Dx3 has come and gone, and Toronto Thumbs managed to sneak in for an afternoon to witness the awesomeness that was the Microsoft Advertising Xbox Challenge. A number of Canada’s top digital agencies competed against one another to create a Movember campaign using Microsoft media platforms. The catch? They only had about 24 hours to get this stuff done. The prizes were pretty amazing; but what I really enjoyed was the creativity and the inclusion of a console platform – something that is getting more and more traction practically every day.

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March Break Ideas
LEGOLAND Discovery Centre Toronto

By Jorge Figueiredo - March 6th, 2013


If you are like me, walking into a LEGO store can be a dangerous thing. To misquote Boromir from Lord of the Rings1: “One does not simply walk into a LEGO store…” Indeed; chances are good that I will walk out with more than what I went in for (which is usually nothing). Now imagine a 34,000 square-foot indoor attraction holding more than 3 million LEGO bricks – complete with interactive attractions, play areas, a 4D cinema and LEGO rides! If you have kids and this does not interest you, well, I have no idea what to tell you other than: you are dead to me.

LEGOLAND Discovery Centre Toronto is located at Vaughan Mills, at the North end of Toronto. Geared towards children ages 3-10 and their families (you cannot gain admittance without children), the facility is a LEGO lover’s dream come true. Admission starts at around $18 (kids under 3 get in free) and the layout is pretty spectacular. Smallest Thumb and I have not yet had the opportunity to visit the site in person2, but their website is thorough and helpful. If you’re looking for a reason to support a staycation, just click the link and enjoy!

1 – Did you know that you can buy LOTR sets at LEGO stores? Oh yes, my precious…
2 – Not yet, anyway.

X-Summit 2012
X-Summing It Up
Storytelling – Part 1

By Jorge Figueiredo - February 3rd, 2013


Since X-Summit 2012 occurred at the beginning of November, we have posted one article about it (an interview with Troy Morrissey). To be clear, there is always a lot to say about this annual event – and 2012 was no exception. However, the challenge lies in delivering something that our readers will enjoy.

X-Summit is a meeting of the minds; a cross-media haven where the exchange of ideas incubates. It is a place that allows people to get some assistance from other professionals on projects that they are working on. At X-Summit, one can find out what help the Government can offer – and what help IO can offer in the realization of goals. Is there posturing? Of course; but, it’s not unjustified – there are some heavy hitters at this event. What makes it refreshing is the gaggle of young blood that makes up a good portion of the audience.

So what did we learn from X-Summit this year?

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