Words Worth Knowing

Words Worth Knowing: Table-Top Gaming

One of the most challenging aspects of video-games culture for a newcomer, especially for a busy parent, is trying to learn and understand the many, many acronyms and specialised terms. GameHub HQ entries are jargon-free, so you can get the information you need as easily and painlessly as possible, but there are still some words worth knowing. Every Monday, we break down one Word Worth Knowing from the world of gaming.

What is a Table-Top Game what do you need to know and why do you need to care?

What It Is: Table-Top = Board Games

What It Means: Table-Top gaming simply refers to board or card games played on a flat surface in the real world, as opposed to video-games/computer games played by looking at a screen. In the modern world, however, the lines are often blurred, with some table-top games having digital elements added to them.

Why You Care: Table-Top gaming shares some similarities with video-gaming. People who enjoy one form of gaming may enjoy the other, or alternatively may have no interest whatsoever! The two should be treated as separate hobbies, rather than as a comparison of old vs new, physical vs digital, social vs anti-social etc, as all games are different and no hard and a fast rule can be applies to all. Table-top gaming is an alive and thriving sector of the overall gaming market, with dedicated and enthusiastic players, it’s own culture, cliques, cliches and communities, just like video-gaming, or indeed any hobby.

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Words Worth Knowing

Words Worth Knowing: Reticule

One of the most challenging aspects of video-games culture for a newcomer, especially for a busy parent, is trying to learn and understand the many, many acronyms and specialised terms. GameHub HQ entries are jargon-free, so you can get the information you need as easily and painlessly as possible, but there are still some words worth knowing. Every Monday, we break down one Word Worth Knowing from the world of gaming.

What is a Reticule, what do you need to know and why do you need to care?

What It Is: Reticule = In video-gaming terms a reticule is simply another word for cross-hair, or any fixed orientating mark imposed onto the centre of the player’s view. (Also spelled as “Reticle.”)

What It Means: The reticule provides a central focus point for the player’s view on the screen. This helps with targeting and keeping the player steadily oriented when moving at speed.

Why You Care: The reticule provides the player with a small reference point as to the location of the centre of their view. For many players this helps immensely with targeting and navigation. Other players find use of reticules to be immersion-breaking or visually cluttered, so many games give players the option to toggle reticules on or off. Some games allow players to customise their reticule into a different style, such as the traditional cross-hair, a simple dot, or something more fancy such as an arrangement of chevrons. In many games, the reticule will change shape in order to indicate to the player that a special action can be performed when interacting with certain in-game objects.  For example, it is common for a reticule to turn red when over enemy characters and go green when targeted over allied characters, helping players avoid friendly-fire in the heat of battle.

Words Worth Knowing

Words Worth Knowing: Mana, Magik, Magicka, MP and Magic.

One of the most challenging aspects of video-games culture for a newcomer, especially for a busy parent, is trying to learn and understand the many, many acronyms and specialised terms. GameHub HQ entries are jargon-free, so you can get the information you need as easily and painlessly as possible, but there are still some words worth knowing. Every Monday, we break down a Word Worth Knowing from the world of gaming.

Mana

What is Mana what do you need to know and why do you need to care?

What It Is: Mana = A measure of the player-character’s store of magical power. Common alternative names: Magic, Magick, Magicka, Manna, Mana, MP (Mana Points) etc.

What It Means: Along with HP (Health/Hit Points,) MP is the other core measure of a character’s vitality and capability in many games. Whilst HP measures the character’s remaining life force, MP is often used as a measure of their ability to attack and defend, with “moves” or “actions” costing points to perform. More powerful actions cost proportionally more MP. If the player uses up all their MP by casting spells, many games permit them to refill the meter/bar by getting their character to drink a Mana potion to replenish their MP bar.  Mana is traditionally sky blue and Health blood red, as in the image below.

Why You Care: Mana is a precious resource and vital aspect of gameplay in many games. The RPG (role-playing game genre) is generally anchored by the three core bars of HP, XP, and MP, each rising and falling in response to the player’s skill, progress and actions.

Health&Mana
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Words Worth Knowing

Words Worth Knowing: HP

One of the most challenging aspects of video-games culture for a newcomer, especially for a busy parent, is trying to learn and understand the many, many acronyms and specialised terms. GameHub HQ entries are jargon-free, so you can get the information you need as easily and painlessly as possible, but there are still some words worth knowing. Every Monday, we break down one Word Worth Knowing from the world of gaming. 

What are HP, what do you need to know and why do you need to care?

What It Is: HP = Health Points or Hit Points

What It Means: In many games, players and characters are assigned HP (health points or hit points) which function as a measure of how “alive” that character is. Attacking the character will deplete their HP until they “die.”

Why You Care: HP is a widely used video-games term and one you will hear and see used regularly. It’s simply a mathematical way of representing a character’s remaining life force. Harder to kill enemies will have very high levels of HP which the player must constantly whittle away, whilst low level enemies may have HP levels lower than the attacking power of the player, enabling “one-hit kills.”

Enemy X has HP of 100

Player One has three moves:

  • Standard depletes 25 HP.
  • Power depletes 50 HP.
  • Special depletes 125 HP.

Using the Special ability will kill the enemy in one hit, as 125>100.

Some enemy types may have regenerating HP, or blocks of protected HP which can only be depleted when certain parameters have been met, eg use of a special sword or combination of attacking moves. HP is nearly always represented as a bar with a number at the end representing the current remaining total, or as a colour graduated ring, with green representing good health and red representing near-death. The Diablo 3 game represented health of the player by use of an orb filled with blood which drained away as their life force faded, whilst enemies and attacking monsters retained the traditional “health bar.” Adding health bars to games that do not display them by default is a common mod request.

healthorb

Need a video-game term translating into plain English? We can help. Drop us a line:

Words Worth Knowing

Words Worth Knowing: WoW

One of the most challenging aspects of video-games culture for a newcomer, especially for a busy parent, is trying to learn and understand the many, many acronyms and specialised terms. GameHub HQ entries are jargon-free, so you can get the information you need as easily and painlessly as possible, but there are still some words worth knowing. Every Monday, we break down one Word Worth Knowing from the world of gaming.
Just a short one today, as it’s a Bank Holiday Monday and it might not be raining where you are, so get outside and have fun! Today, we are asking what is WoW, what do you need to know and why do you need to care?

What It Is: WoW = World of Warcraft 

What It Means: WoW is the abbreviated form of the game title “World Of Warcraft”.
Why You Care: World of Warcraft is one of the most recognisable brands in online multiplayer gaming. Originally released in 2014, World of Warcraft tends to be one of the first titles people shout out when faced with the challenge of naming some games, along with Call of Duty and the Lara Croft:Tomb Raider serieses. World of Warcraft is set in a vast fantasy land, where two main factions, the Alliance and the Horde, battle endlessly in quests, challenges and wars. Players engage in social, competitive and collaborative play, often working together to defeat challenging high level enemies which require tight teamwork in order to bring down successfully.

Words Worth Knowing

Words Worth Knowing: Screenshot

One of the most challenging aspects of video-games culture for a newcomer, especially for a busy parent, is trying to learn and understand the many, many acronyms and specialised terms. GameHub HQ entries are jargon-free, so you can get the information you need as easily and painlessly as possible, but there are still some words worth knowing. Every Monday, we break down one Word Worth Knowing from the world of gaming.

What is a screenshot, what do you need to know and why do you need to care?

What It Is: Screenshot = A “photo” of the images on the screen

What It Means: A nice easy one this week, and a term you are probably already familiar without from computer programs outside of games. Sometimes called a screencap(ture,) a screenshot is simply capturing the image on the screen as a still digital picture.

Why You Care: Screenshots provide a really useful way to see into the content of a game, without having to do any additional reading or researching. Players will screenshot their favourite in-game moments, from winning goals to funny glitches to beautiful landscapes, to share with their friends. As screenshots taken by marketing departments are often digitally retouched to enhance the image, we take all our own screenshots, so you can get a more accurate representation of what is in a game visually. Go to GameHubHQ.com,  click a game, and then cycle through the images in it’s screenshot gallery in order to get a sample of what’s being show in-game.

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Words Worth Knowing

Words Worth Knowing: D-pad

One of the most challenging aspects of video-games culture for a newcomer, especially for a busy parent, is trying to learn and understand the many, many acronyms and specialised terms. GameHub HQ entries are jargon-free, so you can get the information you need as easily and painlessly as possible, but there are still some words worth knowing. Every Monday, we break down one Word Worth Knowing from the world of gaming.

What is  the D-pad, what do you need to know and why do you need to care?

What It Is: D-pad = Directional Pad

What It Means: D-Pad, short for Directional Pad, is a thumb-operated four-directional button seen on most standard console games controllers.

Why You Care: The D-pad, sometimes Dpad, or D Pad,  is the multi-way button on a games controller. The button usually controls character movement direction, and placing the options so close to one another, under the plastic of the same button, allows maximum control with minimal movement by the user. This is both more efficient for play and more ergonomic, working to combat finger strain.

D-pad on an Xbox 360 controller.
D-pad on an Xbox 360 controller.

 

Words Worth Knowing

Words Worth Knowing: MVP

It’s Monday, and Words Worth Knowing is back! One of the most challenging aspects of video-games culture for a newcomer, especially for a busy parent, is trying to learn and understand the many, many acronyms and specialised terms. GameHub HQ entries are jargon-free, so you can get the information you need as easily and painlessly as possible, but there are still some words worth knowing. Every Monday, we break down one Word Worth Knowing from the world of gaming.

What is  an MVP? What do you need to know and why do you need to care?

What It Is: Most Valued Player = MVP

What It Means: MVP is a term used in online collaborative multiplayer gaming, as well as in offline sports such as football or rugby. It can be bestowed based on any number of statisical measures, or simply as a compliment. It is a measure of which human player contributed the most to an overall team effort.

Why You Care:  MVP is a coverted status, like any award of trophy, and occurs in recognition of an outstanding individual contribution to an overall team effort. It might be a simple count of Most Kills, Most Goals, Most Loot Collected or some other numerical measure, or it can be much more ephemerous  – the  player who spoke up to another about unreasonable behaviour, the player who solved a puzzle that was out-smarting the others, the player who gave a pep-talk to a dejected team, or volunteered to train and mentor a newbie. MVP is a status indicator, showing that the player works well with others as well as being skilful in their own right. MVP status usually lasts a single match, round or tournament, recognising good play “on the night.”

 

Words Worth Knowing

Words Worth Knowing: Early Access

One of the most challenging aspects of video-games culture for a newcomer, especially for a busy parent, is trying to learn and understand the many, many acronyms and specialised terms. GameHub HQ entries are jargon-free, so you can get the information you need as easily and painlessly as possible, but there are still some words worth knowing. Every Monday, we break down one Word Worth Knowing from the world of gaming.

It’s out last Words Worth Knowing post of 2015! December is a crazy, crazy time, especially when you have little ones (and not so little ones) so we are winding this column down in order to bring you more Christmas and Holidays themed content. Don’t worry, Words Worth Knowing will be back in 2016! But for now, for the last time, we ask what is Early Access, what do you need to know and why do you need to care?

What It Is: Early Access = Games released in an unfinished format, so players can see the game being completed around them as they play.

What It Means: Early Access games are games that are released for sale in an unfinished BETA or even ALPHA  state. Players are usually invited to contribute feedback to the game as it is finished and in return receive regular content updates as the game is built.  Due to their ever-changing nature, we cannot include Early-Access titles in the GameHub HQ database at this time.

Why You Care: Opinions on whether early access is a good thing, a bad thing or simply a scam are both varied and fervently held. Early Access is a new business model, and not without its critics, who point out that the players are paying for an unfinished product, that they then BETA test for free for the creators, essentially acting as unsalaried employees. Those in favour of the system argue that it provides a wage for content creators by allowing them to generate sales prior to launch and, by fostering collaboration between creators and consumers, a much larger scope and quality of game can be made than under traditional development systems.