The PAL Gaming Network (PALGN) was an Australian-based video game news and reviews website that focused on the videogame industry and culture in PAL territories, particularly Australia and the UK. It was launched in 2003 by a group of PAL forum members on the IGN message boards who were disenfranchised by the American site's move to subscription based boards. In August 2003, The Sydney Morning Herald said the upstart website's "dedication to console gaming in PAL markets is admirable."
PALGN had grown to be one of the largest independent video game websites in Australia, garnering over a million hits from over 300,000 unique users each month.
As of July 2014, the website is now defunct.
|PAL Gaming Network|
Type of site
|Videogame Industry & Culture|
|Created by||James Peter|
PALGN's main page had links to the latest news, reviews and previews for all major videogame platforms, including Xbox 360, PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, PlayStation Portable, Nintendo DS, Wii and PC. Reviews and previews were usually timed to coincide with the launches of the game in PAL territories, and feature and editorial content usually dealt with the local and greater PAL videogame scene. However, the nature of the global industry meant most articles were suitable for international audiences as well.
PALGN covered every major videogame release on every platform, and the site's review archive was over 1,600 games strong. PALGN was recognised as a major source of critical review by metascore sites Metacritic and GameRankings and scores given by PALGN were used to determine the average rating a game receives on those sites.
One of the most popular features of PALGN had been the comprehensive Australian release list which had been published until 2014. The release list was based on the same data used by retailers and publishers, was updated in real-time, and allowed users to see the scheduled date for a game's release, the status of that date (rumored, tentative, confirmed), the retail price, and even the rating given by the OFLC.
Users could also select to view release dates by individual platform, and a click on a title would link to all PALGN coverage of the game.
After a few intermittent podcasts, PALGN finally launched an ongoing podcast in 2007, co-hosted by Evan Stubbs and Daniel Golding. It has featured industry guests such as Joseph Hewitt, Senior Designer at Auran studios, Tom Crago, Head of the GDAA, and Greg Tannahill, Democrats Candidate for the ACT. The format went weekly in 2008, and has been running for over a year. The format was recently updated into the 'Palcast' hosted by Anthony Capone, Jahanzeb Khan and Jarrod Mawson. A special series of four podcasts recorded live from Los Angeles at E3 2010 were recorded and hosted by editors Adam Ghiggino and Jeremy Jastrzab.
In October 2007 PALGN launched GamerKids, a version of the site designed for younger readers and their parents. Some PALGN content is shared with GamerKids, and there is also unique content specifically designed for the youth market. Popular gaming blog Kotaku described GamerKids' design as "a little crazy on the eyes." Due to the new design, the GamerKids website eventually linked to PALGN itself.
PALGN began as a forum, and maintained a lively community of Australian and UK gamers until 2014. The forum had boards for discussion of videogame related matters for every platform, as well as boards for general chat and entertainment industry discussion.
In 2006 PALGN launched a Game Exchange forum. Thousands of successful transactions had taken place since then by over 300 users.
On 8 July 2008, a new look PALGN was created from a survey earlier in the year. The website update included comments from the Forum at the bottom of a Feature or News item, and an improved navigation system. It also integrated GamerKids into PALGN's main content.
Crazy Taxi is an open world racing video game developed by Kenji Kanno and his team at Hitmaker and published by Sega. It is the first game in the Crazy Taxi series. The game was first released in arcades in 1999 and then was ported to the Dreamcast in 2000. Gameplay is based on picking up taxi customers, and driving to their destination as quickly as possible. Reception to Crazy Taxi has been mostly positive. It was ported to other platforms numerous times, including the PlayStation 2 and Nintendo GameCube by Acclaim in 2001, and then Microsoft Windows in 2002. The game has also been re-released for the PlayStation Network, Xbox Live Arcade, iOS, and is featured on the Dreamcast Collection. It became one of the few Sega All Stars on the Dreamcast, and also earned Greatest Hits and Player's Choice status on PlayStation 2 and GameCube respectively. Sega followed up on the success of Crazy Taxi with numerous sequels, the first being Crazy Taxi 2 for the Dreamcast, which included several gameplay changes.Dragon Ball Z 3 Original Soundtrack
Dragon Ball Z 3: Original Soundtrack (ドラゴンボールZ3 オリジナルサウンドトラック, Doragon Bōru Zetto Surī Orizinaru Saundotorakku) is the official licensed soundtrack of the video games for the PS2 by the same name (Known as Dragon Ball Z: Budokai 3 in English-speaking countries). It was released by Team Entertainment on March 2, 2005 in Japan only.Duke Nukem (character)
Duke Nukem is a fictional character and protagonist of the Duke Nukem series of video games; the character is unrelated to the character of the same name from the TV series Captain Planet and the Planeteers, which was created a year prior. The character first appeared in the 1991 video game Duke Nukem, developed by Apogee Software. He has since starred in multiple sequels developed by 3D Realms. Most recently, he starred in Duke Nukem Forever, released by Gearbox Software, which now owns the rights and intellectual property.
The character was created by Todd Replogle, Jim Norwood, George Broussard, and Scott Miller of Apogee Software. Duke Nukem was redesigned as the present tough guy incarnation by George Broussard and Allen Blum for the 1996 game Duke Nukem 3D. A sequel to Duke Nukem 3D, Duke Nukem Forever, was released in 2011, after remaining in development since 1997.Dynasty Warriors 5
Dynasty Warriors 5 (真・三國無双4, Shin Sangokumusō 4, Shin Sangokumusou 4 in Japan) is a hack and slash video game set in China and the fifth installment in the Dynasty Warriors series, developed by Omega Force and published by Koei. The game was released on the PlayStation 2 and Xbox. It is based on the Chinese novel Romance of the Three Kingdoms by Luo Guanzhong.Jade Empire
Jade Empire is an action role-playing game developed by BioWare, originally published by Microsoft Game Studios in 2005 as an Xbox exclusive. It was later ported to Microsoft Windows personal computers (PC) and published by 2K Games in 2007. Later ports to macOS (2008) and mobile platforms (2016) were handled respectively by TransGaming and Aspyr. Set in a world based on Chinese mythology, players control the last surviving Spirit Monk on a quest to save their tutor Master Li and defeat the forces of corrupt emperor Sun Hai. The Spirit Monk is guided through a linear narrative, completing quests and engaging in action-based combat. With morality-based dialogue choices during conversations, the player can impact both story and gameplay progression in various ways.
Development of Jade Empire began in 2001 as a dream project for company co-founders Ray Muzyka and Greg Zeschuk, who acted as the game's executive producers. Their first original role-playing intellectual property, the game reused the morality system from Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic, but switched to a real-time combat system. The game's many elements such as its combat system, the world and script, the constructed language created for the game, and the musical score by Jack Wall drew influence from Chinese history, culture and folklore. Upon release, it received widespread critical acclaim. Its success led to the creation of the PC version, which provided the basis for future ports and itself met with positive reviews.List of Fire Emblem video games
Fire Emblem is a series of tactical role-playing video games developed by Intelligent Systems and published by Nintendo. Its first game released in Japan in 1990, and is credited with both originating and popularizing its genre. Counting original mainline games, remakes and spin-off titles, fifteen titles have been released as of 2016. Since the release of the seventh game in the series, Nintendo has localized all but one Fire Emblem title for the West. Traditionally a hardcore series, incorporating permanent character death for units who fall in battle, the series has trended towards opening up to casual gamers beginning with Fire Emblem Awakening in 2012.Pac-Man Pinball Advance
Pac-Man Pinball Advance is a pinball video game developed by Hungarian studio Human Soft and published by Namco for the Game Boy Advance. It was released in North America on May 2, 2005. It is part of the Pac-Man video game franchise.
The game switches from normal Pac-Man gameplay to a pinball-style video game. Pac-Man Pinball Advance received negative reviews from critics, who felt that its gameplay was limited.Ratatouille (video game)
Ratatouille is a platform game based on the Pixar film of the same name. It was developed at Heavy Iron Studios and released by THQ, on June 26, 2007. Ratatouille was released on thirteen platforms: the Wii, the Nintendo DS, the PlayStation 3, the PlayStation 2, the PlayStation Portable, the Xbox 360, the Xbox, the GameCube, the Game Boy Advance, Microsoft Windows, OS X, Java Platform, Micro Edition, and mobile phones.Ridge Racer (2004 video game)
Ridge Racer, released in Japan as Ridge Racers (リッジレーサーズ, Rijji Rēsāzu), is an arcade racing video game developed by Namco for the PlayStation Portable. It is named after the eponymous Ridge Racer video game series to which it belongs. The game was released in Japan on 12 December 2004, in North America on 22 March 2005, and in Europe on 1 September 2005 as a launch title. Available in the game is a fully playable version of the Namco arcade game New Rally-X.
Ridge Racer has been described as a 'compilation' of the series, featuring tracks, cars and remixed soundtrack from previous titles in the 1990s. Ridge Racer was very well received by critics and was praised for its visuals, gameplay and soundtrack. It was re-released in 2005/2006 as a platinum title. A sequel titled Ridge Racer 2 has also been released for the PSP.Silent Storm engine
The Silent Storm engine is a turn-based tactics game engine developed by Nival Interactive for their video game Silent Storm. The engine was reused for Silent Storm: Sentinels, Night Watch, Hammer & Sickle and Day Watch. A modified version of this engine was used for Heroes of Might and Magic V.SingStar
SingStar is a competitive music video game series for PlayStation consoles, developed by London Studio and published by Sony Computer Entertainment. Dozens of installments were released for the PlayStation 2, and several more for the PlayStation 3. It is also available on the PlayStation 4 as a free app download, with users paying for the songs as individual or bundle downloads. The games have also undergone a number of non-English releases in various European countries.
SingStar games on disc for PlayStation 2 and PlayStation 3 are distributed either as the software alone, or bundled with a pair of USB microphones – one red, one blue; wireless microphones are also available. The games are compatible with the EyeToy, PlayStation Eye and PlayStation 4 cameras, allowing players to see and record themselves singing.SingStar Queen
SingStar Queen is a competitive karaoke video game for the PlayStation 3 and PlayStation 2, developed by London Studio and published by Sony Computer Entertainment Europe. The game features the music of rock band Queen.The Eye of Judgment
The Eye of Judgment is a turn-based card battle video game for the PlayStation 3 platform, which utilizes the PlayStation Eye camera peripheral. It is the first game to use the peripheral, with which it was available in a bundle in Japan, Europe, the Middle East, and North America. Once planned for release close to the PlayStation 3 launch in November 2006, the game was eventually released on October 25, 2007 as Set 1 in Japan.
Two expansion packs have been released for the game. Set 2 was released on PlayStation Network on March 27, 2008 in Europe and Japan (April 24, 2008 in North America), with additional enhancements such as improved graphic displays, a new ability and honor ranking system, an in-game encyclopedia, and special matches. Japan, United States and Europe have seen the release of Set 3 on PlayStation Network on October 16, 2008 with Canada expected to follow on November 10, 2008.
Trophies have also made their way to the game. 37 trophies are available for unlocking.
A "complete disc" of The Eye of Judgment with Sets 1–3 was also planned for release in stores in 2008, but was later canceled.In 2010, a PSP spinoff called The Eye of Judgment: Legends was released. It does not use the physical cards and play mat style of the original.Vaan
Vaan (ヴァン, Van) is a fictional character in the Final Fantasy series from Square Enix. Created by Yasumi Matsuno and designed by Akihiko Yoshida, he first appeared in Itadaki Street Special and then appeared in Final Fantasy XII as the protagonist. Final Fantasy XII establishes Vaan as an orphaned teenager from Rabanastre who dreams of becoming a sky pirate. He and his best friend Penelo join Dalmasca Princess Ashe in her fight against the tyranny of the Archadian Empire. Vaan also takes a more active role in the sequel Final Fantasy XII: Revenant Wings and has also been featured in few Final Fantasy crossover games.
Vaan was conceptualized as the main character for Final Fantasy XII in order to contrast the older hero from Square's previous title Vagrant Story as a result of negative feedback received by fans. Critical reception to Vaan's character has been mixed as a result of his lack of involvement with the Final Fantasy XII's plot although various video game publications still found him likable.