Welcome to The Video Game Librarian

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The Video Game Librarian is a site for librarians that offers tips and resources on how games can be integrated into your library. You’ve come to the right place if you’ve ever wondered how the ESRB works, wanted help building a core collection, or need to know how to put on a game tournament.

The Video Game Librarian will also host a weekly roundup of news about the latest game releases, as well as information on what other librarians are doing with games, and a catalog of game-related books to help your patrons dive deeper into the history of games. Continue reading

Nintendo Will Publish an Official NES History Book This November

playingwithpowerAre you hoping to find an NES Classic Edition under the Christmas tree this December? If so, you might also want to ask Santa for Playing With Power: Nintendo NES Classics, an official guide to the NES published by Prima Games and created in collaboration with Nintendo.

Playing With Power: Nintendo NES Classics will be released on November 18, and it’s packed with a ton of retro-tastic touches for patrons interested in the history of video games:

  • Exclusive embossed slipcase holds this hardcover tome in a clever package that resembles a classic NES Game Pak!
  • A fascinating retrospective on 17 NES classics… including Super Mario Bros. 3, Donkey Kong, and The Legend of Zelda!
  • Interviews and commentary from Nintendo visionaries who pioneered this era of gaming.
  • A showcase of vintage advertising and priceless excerpts from Nintendo Power magazine back issues!
  • Plus hand-drawn maps, character and game environment art, and much more!

How-To Guide for Hosting a Hearthstone Tournament @ International Games Day Blog

hearthstoneHearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft is a very popular Online Collectible Card Game (CCG) that’s based on Blizzard’s equally popular MMORPG, World of Warcraft. Like Magic: The Gathering, another popular CCG, Hearthstone is built for tournament play and it’s actually very easy to set up a local tournament in your library.

How easy is it? The ALA’s International Games Day @ Your Library blog recently posted a How-To Guide to help any librarians who are interested in setting up their own tournaments:

Hearthstone is a free-to-play digital collectible card game based on the popular game “World of Warcraft”. The game itself is fairly simple to play but has a lot of strategic depth which has made it quite popular as a competitive game. Running a tournament for Hearthstone may at first seem like a daunting challenge but is actually rather accessible for even the least experienced of tournament organizers and can be done for little to no cost at all.

Tumblestone: The VGL Review

tumblestoneTumblestone, which I recently reviewed for Warp Zoned, is the best puzzle game to hit consoles and the PC in years. If your patrons are puzzle fans, consider it a must have for your collection.

And with an intense four-player battle mode, Tumblestone is also great fit for open gaming programs:

Developed by the Quantum Astrophysicists Guild, Tumblestone’s closest cousin in the puzzle genre is probably Bust-A-Move, a Bubble Bobble spinoff that rose to fame in the 90s. Like Bust-A-Move, Tumblestone players will run back and forth along the bottom of the well while rows of blocks loom above. But instead of connecting three similarly-colored circles, Tumblestone players will attempt to clear the board by shooting three matching blocks in a row.

Tumblestone is now available to download for the PC, Wii U, and Xbox One. If you own an Xbox One, and you’re an Xbox Gold subscriber, it’s also available as a free download through August 15.

Tumblestone will also be available to download for the PS3, PS4, and Vita later this month, and a disc version will be released for the PS4 and Wii U in August.

This Week’s New Releases + Game News: July 18, 2016

vgl-pickThe Video Game Librarian Pick of the Week is Monster Hunter Generations, a monster hunting game for the 3DS from Capcom.

The Monster Hunter franchise got its more than a decade ago, and since then, its built a small, but loyal, following among gamers. The latest entry in the series, Monster Hunter Generations, will add new customization options and a new crop of monstrous bosses.

A few other new releases should also be on your radar this week. That includes Songs of the Deep (PC, PS4, Xbox One), a side-scrolling “MetroidVania” from Insomniac Games and exclusively available at GameStop, that follows a young girl who goes under the sea to rescue her missing father. Also of note is Resident Evil 5, a PS4/Xbox One re-release of the popular co-op title; and Ghostbusters (PC, PS4, Xbox One), a tie-in game partly based on the new movie.


All Links in “This Week’s New Releases + Game News” are Provided by Warp Zoned.

New Release Round-Up

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How to Make Your Library a PokeStop in Pokemon Go

pokemongoWhile many libraries are listed as PokeStops or Gyms in Pokemon Go, not every one is. However, if you want to add your library to the game, developer Niantic has set up a simple procedure to make the request…

1. Go to the Pokemon Go Support page on Niantic’s website.

2. Select “How do I create a new PokeStop or Gym” under the “Submit a Request” drop-down.

3. Fill out the rest of the form with your library’s information.

Due to the overwhelming number of requests that Niantic receives from this form, the option to add a PokeStop or Gym won’t always be available on the Pokemon Go Support page. But keep checking back and eventually you’ll get your chance.

If you want to remove your library as a PokeStop or Gym from the game, or there’s a problem with a PokeStop or Gym near your library, Niantic has set up a separate form on the Pokemon Go Support page.

More Pokemon Go Resources
Pokemon Go and Your Library

Pokemon Go: An Overview + Safety Issues to Consider @ School Library Journal

Pokemon Go: An Overview + Safety Issues to Consider @ School Library Journal

pokemongo

More librarians have discovered the joys of Pokemon Go, including Alanna Graves of School Library Journal’s Teen Librarian Toolbox. She put together a great how-to for the app that covers how it works, safety issues to consider, and links to strategies a few libraries are using to lure in Pokemon Go players:

This weekend my timeline flooded with posts about Pokemon Go. Then on Sunday afternoon, The Teen came home from a friend’s house declaring they had walked 3 miles trying to catch Pokemons. So I decided I needed to figure out what this Pokemon Go is because my teens are definitely in to it.

More Pokemon Go Resources
Pokemon Go and Your Library

How to Make Your Library a PokeStop in Pokemon Go

Pokemon Go and Your Library

Unlike a traditional Pokemon game, Pokemon Go asks players to use the GPS function on their smartphone (iOS or Android) to find Pokemon out in the real world. In addition to searching for Pokemon that appear randomly on the map, players can also use Pokemon Go to find “PokeStops” and “Pokemon Gyms” in their quest to become an accomplished Trainer. It’s easy to think of Pokemon Go as an app that’s very similar to geocaching with a virtual prize at the end, but this gameplay description from The Pokemon Company is very helpful… Continue reading

This Week’s New Releases + Game News: July 11, 2016

vgl-pickThe Video Game Librarian Pick of the Week is Rocket League, a multiplayer sports game that mixes soccer with car combat.

Originally released as a downloadable title for the PS4 and PC last Fall, Rocket League eventually made its way to the Xbox One earlier this year. Since then, it’s won multiple “Game of the Year” awards and become a smash hit with players who love multiplayer-focused games and stylized futuristic sports.

Now it’s available in a retail-exclusive Collector’s Edition for the PS4 and Xbox One, and you should add it to your circulating game collection right away. It has an incredibly broad appeal and Rocket League’s local multiplayer options also make it a good choice for “Game Night” programs.


All Links in “This Week’s New Releases + Game News” are Provided by Warp Zoned.

New Release Round-Up

Continue reading