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Joystiq presents

Exchanging friend codes made easier

Nintendo DSHow long before the act of exchanging friend codes becomes geeky sexual innuendo? Probably not long at all, now that the full power of the internet can be used to spread your unique set of DS numbers to the world. We now know of two websites that can ease the pain of reciting a bunch of numbers into your friend's ear, a process which has to be repeated for each different game you play. Oh, if only someone could have thought up a centralized network populated with universal "Gamertags"...oh well, maybe someday.

First up, we have a site called DS-Play. They allow you to sign on and create a little virtual business card for yourself, proudly displaying your screen identity and your frighteningly complex friend code. It's a place where you can log on "any time of day or night and always find REAL people to play against or trade items and facts with." Good, because I just hate losing to those damn synthetic humans all the time. Them and their mad nanoskillz.

Another site that does more or less the same thing but promises to keep account info more private (though this protects the identities of filthy synthetic humans), is DSconnect. It'll send you an e-mail whenever your friends are going online with a specific game and the site's creator was even nice enough to add a team page for Joystiq readers, accessible after you sign in.

So, which site should you use? We'd tell you, but our feelings towards synthetic humans would cloud our judgment and so we'll just wait for you guys to try both out and deliver a shocking verdict.

[Via Joystiq. Thanks Kyle!]

Metacritic's best games of 2005

Metacritic Screen Grab
Everyone's a critic, right? Well, we know you are, since you just voted Mario Kart DS as the best DS game on the planet, and the beings of Polymutania IX would be hard pressed to disagree as their planet only got Burnout Legends as an alternative. It really does suck to be them.

It is Metacritic's goal to gather the reviews from all the critics in the universe and provide a single point for you to view them and decide whether or not a game is worth your time. Using the information they've managed to gather this year, Metacritic has unleashed their list of the best video games of 2005. Here are the completely unsurprising DS winners:

Game of the Year: Mario Kart DS
Dud of the Year: Marvel Nemesis: Rise of the Imperfects
Best Action Adventure: Castlevania: Dawn of Sorrow
Best Fighting: Jump Superstars (According to those who imported it, anyway)
Best Platformer: Kirby Canvas Curse
Best Adventure: Animal Crossing: Wild World
Best Racing / Driving: Mario Kart DS
Best Puzzle / Rhythm: Meteos
Best RPG: Mario & Luigi: Partners in Time
Best Sports (Traditional): Fifa Soccer '06
Best Sports (Alternative / Extreme): Tony Hawk's American Sk8land
Best Strategy: Advance Wars: Dual Strike
Best Simulation: Nintendogs

Agree? Disagree? Apathetic? Frightened?

[via Joystiq]

DS soars online but games aren't coming

The Nintendo DS handheld currently has three games that utilize the free wi-fi service: Mario Kart DS, Tony Hawk's American Sk8land, and Animal Crossing: Wild World. The next game set to use the network is Metroid Prime Hunters due in late March of 2006.

From the article: "Outside of Nintendo's in-house games, though, there's little to keep DS owners online. Activision has scored a hit with Tony Hawk's American Sk8land, but apart from that there are no confirmed third-party games from that let DS owners go online."

With such recent success of the free service, why would developers outside of Nintendo be hesitant to use the connection?

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