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Insert Credit: “Brink”

Insert Credit: “Brink” (photo)

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Insert Credit endeavors to suss out where you should be allotting your video game allowance, sifting out a single title from many and crowning it as The One Game You Need to Get This Week. Don’t consider these reviews, gentle reader. Rather, think of Insert Credit as a mix of hands-on time, informed opinion and intuition.

For the week of May 11, 2011, you should insert credit into: “Brink”.

Most video games put a premium on a certain kind of pretty. Square-jawed heroes with smooth skin and full heads of hair prowl pristine virtual worlds. Even when the textures on things are supposed to look dirty, there can be a lack of weight.

“Brink”–the new first-person shooter developed by the UK-based Splash Damage studio–doesn’t suffer that problem. It lets you construct an avatar that looks beaten-up and lived-in, with surgical staples, tattered clothes and receding hairlines all among the options for customization. And you take that wrinkly, pockmarked character into a massive seafaring vessel called the Ark, which began as a floating city eco-experiment but decayed into chaos. A near-future ecological disaster causes seal levels to rise and brings a flood of refugees to the Ark. Decades of dwindling resources and increasing demand make the Ark a powderkeg which explodes into the battles Brink throws you into.

Brink Launch Trailer
– Watch more Videos at Vodpod.

You can either play as the Resistance, the underclass fed up with the Ark’s elites secreted away in the spires of the arc, or as the Security, the cops on the massive seaborne community. Resistance warriors want to escape the Ark, while Security try to establish order out of the tense chaos.

As commentary-driven as “Brink” is, uts gameplay design is what’s most worth checking out. Splash Damage set out to quiet the angry chatter that accompanies so many online games by creating systems that always make you feel directed and helpful. You can change your combat role at any time and then get prompts as to how best to help your team’s efforts. So, if you’re a Medic, you needn’t hear some dude yelling about how he needs health. Voice and text prompts from the game point you to where you can help.

The result leaves you feeling like you’ve accessed the best part of your gamer nature. You’re building defenses, hacking into networks, buffing teammate’ health or keeping them flush with ammo. Sure, there’s shooting aplenty but it doesn’t feel as nihilistic as other FPS experiences.

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The Best Of The Last

Portlandia Goes Out With A Bang

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The end is near. In mere days Portlandia wraps up its final season, and oh what a season it’s been. Lucky for you, you can watch the entire season right now right here and on the IFC app, including this free episode courtesy of Subaru.

But now, let’s take a moment to look back at some of the new classics Fred and Carrie have so thoughtfully bestowed upon us. (We’ll be looking back through tear-blurred eyes, but you do you.)

Couples Dinner

It’s not that being single sucks, it’s that you suck if you’re single.

Cancel it!

A sketch for anyone who has cancelled more appointments than they’ve kept. Which is everyone.

Forgotten America

This one’s a “Serial” killer…everything both right and wrong about true crime podcasts.

Wedding Planners

The only bad wedding is a boring wedding.

Disaster Hut

It’s only the end of the world if your doomsday kit doesn’t include rosé.

Catch up on Portlandia’s final episodes on demand and at

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Your Portlandia Personality Test

The New Portlandia Webseries Is Going Your Way

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Carrie and Fred understand that although we have so much in common, we’re each so beautifully unique and different. To help us navigate those differences, Portlandia has found an easy and honest way to embrace our special selves in the form of a progressive new traffic system: a specific lane for every kind of driver. It’s all in honor of the show’s 8th and final season, and it’s all presented by Subaru.

Ready to find out who you really are? Match your personality to a lane and hop on the expressway to self-understanding.

Lane 10: Trucks Piled With Junk

Your junk is falling out of your trunk. Shake a tail light, people — this lane is for you.

Lane 33: Twins

You’re like a Gemini, but waaaay more pedestrian. Maybe you and a friend just wear the same outfits a lot. Who cares, it’s just twinning enough to make you feel special.

Lane 27: Broken Windows

Bad luck follows you around and everyone knows it. Your proverbial seat is always damp from proverbial rain. Is this the universe telling you to swallow your pride? Yes.

Lane 69: Filthy Cars

You’re all about convenience. Getting your car washed while you drive is a no-brainer.

Lane 43: Newly Divorced Singles

It’s been a while since you’ve driven alone, and you don’t know the rules of the road anymore. What’s too fast? What’s too slow? Are you sending the right signals? Don’t worry, the breakdown lane is nearby if you need it.

Still can’t find a lane to match your personality? Check out all the videos here. And see the final season of Portlandia this spring on IFC.

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Last-Minute Holiday Gift Guide

Hits from the '80s are on repeat all Christmas Eve and Day on IFC.

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GIFs via Giphy, Photos via The Everett Collection

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