NostalGeek

Don’t Hate the Game, Hate the Player

E3 2009: Nintendo Press Conference

e32009_073500x375I don’t know what it is. Is it my skewed view? Is it that we have loved Big N for so long that we expect nothing short of perfect from him? Is it that we are being too harsh? or Is it that the Nintendo Press Conference was really disappointing?

Whatever the case may be the conference left me with mixed feelings. I was mostly boring and there were some announcements that can only be seen as a joke (I’ll get to that). But there were also some good and a few great announcements no matter how jaded we may have become.

Mantra: Everyone’s Game

NB: Keep in my mind that I will add/update links as HD videos pop up on the web.

A bulk of the conference was spent crunching numbers and explaining why Wii is #1 and such. It was boring to a fault. MicroSoft got it right with there “Showing Not Telling” philosophy.
Nintendo talked a lot about there Wii Motion Plus with some more gameplay from Wii Sports Resort (Archery and Basketball) and while we are all excited about this addon (aside from the attached rubber case) the way Reggie Fils-Aime talked about it made me cringe. He said “you cannot SEE the difference” and quickly queued in a trailer which seemed ironic to me… He said “every mistake you would make in the real world will reflect in the game” but then how is this a game… and is Motion Plus really that precise??
I know and understand I am really nitpicking here but that’s what I’ve come to these past 2 years with Nintendo.
And for all my criticism I’m convinced that Wii Sports Resorts will be very fun to play! It is just there delivery that annoyed me. Cammie Dunaway I guess felt annoyed that everyone last year made fun of her lame jokes and so this year she was all business. And she looked it too. Not a smile and every sentenced delivered as if we were rebellious teenager who need to hear the truth but so sick of telling it that you’d rather walk away.
Again I may be over-analyzing but I really felt this way.

Anyway enough of this. There wasn’t any really big new hardware or partnership announcement (aside from the fact that pictures taken with your DSi can now be uploaded to Facebook) so let’s get on with the games.

  • New Super Mario Bros.Wii. Fairly exciting looks very similar to the DS game playable with 4 players. Coming Holiday 2009. Here’s the trailer.
  • Wii Fit Plus. It’s Wii Fit with new activities….YAWN! Cammie actually said “It’s Brain Age for your backside” and “it’s the game that will help the Wii stay at the top of mind“. Sad. It’s coming Fall 2009.
  • Mario & Luigi: Bowser’s Inside Story. A new game in the RPG series looks really cool with a trailer to boot. The game will come out on DS in Fall 2009.
  • Super Mario Galaxy 2. Should be the biggest announcement of the day but it looks exactly like the original except you can play with Yoshi. Still it’s Mario and a nice trailer to go with it.
  • Golden Sun. A new Golden Sun for the DS!!! This is all that’s know for now. Check out the nice trailer.
  • Metroid: Other M. A new Metroid for the Wii!!!! Looks like a 3D platformer. Great trailer.
  • Dead Space: Extraction. Nice trailer with great ambiance except for the sound glitch. Looks promising.
  • Resident Evil: The Darkside Chronicles. Likewise looks promising. Nice trailer with some gameplay.
  • The Conduit. The graphics look nice in the trailer but that’s about it. Nothing new.
  • Final Fantasy: The Crystal Bearers. Not much is revealed in the trailer but it looks like there is some aiming/targeting involved.
  • Kingdom Hearts: 358/2 Days. Showed a nice trailer and will be released on September 29.
  • Wii Vitality Sensor. The daily joke. Iwata unveiled this new ‘game’ in the Brain Age, Wii Fit series. It looks ridiculous, it attaches to your finger and………reads your pulse. That’s it. Pathetic.
  • Style Savvy. An import of Girl’s Mode in Japan. It’s a dress up game for teen girls. At least the music in the trailer is cool.
  • Women’s Murder Club: Games of Passion. Based on the James Patterson novels the trailer shows the game which seems to be a mix between interactive novel and adventure game. It could turn out pretty fun.
  • C.O.P.: The Recruit. Oh well, the trailer started out really nicely but then the game looks very average so wait and see.
  • Mario Vs Donkey Kong: Minis March Again. It will be available only through download on DSi Ware next week. Here’s the trailer.

June 2, 2009 Posted by | DS News, Industry News, Video Game News, Wii News | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Love Letter to Video Game Magazines

Some of you may have heard of Retroware TV, an amazing website filled with quality content on older games. You may also know that I do the RetroBeats show on there which focuses on game soundtracks.

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But that’s not what we’re here to talk about. The new RWTV episode was released today and focuses on video game magazines from the past and also present. The video is a heartfelt look at something that touched us all before the Internet was born. Browsing through the pages and an old Nintendo Power gives to many the same feeling as plugging in our NES to play our favorite childhood games.

I won’t go on for pages but do yourself a favor and check out this video. You will most likely thank me.

March 18, 2009 Posted by | Random Musings, retrobeats | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Nintendo Wii Sells 800,000 in One Week!

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One has to wonder when it’s going to stop…
I bought my Wii last year right after Mario Galaxy launched and I had to go on a hunt worthy of Samus Aran and Lara Croft put together to find one.
A year later not much has changed, the console is still very hard to come by and over the Thanksgiving week end and Black Friday it has sold 800,000 units!

Analysts predict the unit will sell as much as 1.4 Million units in november adding up to about 37 Million units sold worldwide.

December 9, 2008 Posted by | Industry News, Wii News | , , , , | Leave a comment

Nike Air Classic BW – Nintendo!!!

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Look at this beauty (I just bought it). Nike released a nice pair of Nike Air sneakers with the colors of the original NES and it looks smoking!
Notice the details of the digital pad in the dark grey area and also the ‘start’ and ‘select’ on the sides of the shoe at the ankle.
For those interested I bought mine on www.pickyourshoes.com

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November 11, 2008 Posted by | Video Game News | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Nintendo DSi Instantly Sold Out

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The DS has already been through two versions and one would think the last version holds few incentive to buy, especially considering the loss of Game Boy Advance cartridge slot and the amount of devices that can already do what the DSi is offering.

In any case two things are for certain, The Japanese people know how to stand in line on launch dates and Nintendo knows how to sell handhelds (the DS is now the biggest selling portable sytem ever). As a result the DSi launched on November 1st in Japan and sold 170,779 units within 48 hours.

Nintendo is of course already shipping 100,000 more units to store while we wait for a date for North American and European releases.

November 5, 2008 Posted by | DS News, Video Game News | , , , , | Leave a comment

Monday August 4, 2008

SquareEnix Continues to Make Noise

They already made the biggest announcement of this year’s E3 revealing that Final Fantasy XIII would be released on the Xbox 360 but today they said something that is sure to annoy a lot of PS3 anew.
Apparently development of the game on the Microsoft console hasn’t even started since they haven’t received the dev kits yet. This should be good news for Sony fans no? Well not at all. While the Playstation will have a timed exclusivity in Japan, SquareEnix has announced that the game would be released on both consoles simultaneously in the U.S.. This means that even if the PS3 version is finished, users may have to wait months for the 360 version to come out before they can play the game.
As Will Smith used to say in Bad Boys : “I’d be….pissed!”

Call of Duty 6 Developed by Infinity Ward?

Activision is set to try and release a CoD game every year but in order to achieve this they need to have 2 studios working at the same time on different games. Currently Treyarch is working on Call of Duty 5: World at War so when Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick confirmed that another CoD title was planned for 2009 it set ablaze rumors that Infinity Ward, who developed the hit Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare, was working on the title.
It hasn’t been confirmed yet but the studio said they were working on a new title for Activison so it looks like it is a strong possibility.

American McGee Is Back!!!!!!

After the amazing American McGee’s Alice, which is one of my all-time favorite games and holds one of my top 10 favorite soundtracks ever thanks to Chris Vrenna, and the very sad cancellation of American McGee’s Oz (please please please! make it!), the infamous guy went underground for a while. But now he is back with a gritty adaptation of the Brother’s Grimm tales.
The game will be released in 24 episodes available through Gametap and it’s all free so you have no excuse. The first episode was released last Thursday, the 31.

I haven’t tried the game yet but I intend to soon and will try to make a quick review.

Nintendo and the Rumor Mill

A bunch of rumors went through the web today after some fans saw RSS feeds mentioning the Wii 2 and Shigeru Miyamoto‘s ‘last’ project. The whole thing emerged from a Wall Street Journal talking about the company trying to keep its momentum.
In the end it turns out it’s just some very basic info that was overblown. Nintendo is indeed working on the Wii 2….since the Wii launched. Just as Sony has been working on the PS4 and Microsoft has been working on the Xbox 720.
As far as Miyamoto’s last project, they simply meant “the last project that he had in mind when they launched the Wii (almost 2 years ago). So he is now brainstorming hard to find new original and exciting (hopefuly more so then Wii Music) for our pleasure.

In the end, nothing to write home about.

August 4, 2008 Posted by | 360 News, Industry News, PC News, PS3 News, Tech News, Video Game News, Wii News | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Friday July 18, 2008

In gaming news today and as the E3 is drawing to a close we can finally start to sit back and relax (a little).

Guitar Hero: World Tour to Feature 3 Jimi Hendrix Songs

Activision stroke back with a vengeance today when they announced that the new Guitar Hero would feature not one, not two but three! songs from Jimi Hendrix. And not the least known ones either: Purple Haze, Foxy Lady and Little Wings. During the Microsoft conference at E3 2008 Harmonix announced that they would finally feature AC/DC in Rock Band 2, but they are only featuring one single song, Let There Be Rock, which gives Guitar Hero a sudden edge. The music game battle rages on!


Knights of the Old Republic Online is finally confirmed!

Portfolio.com got the story today form the horse’s mouth, Electronic Arts chief executive John Riccitiello, that EA is indeed working on the next KotOR project and that “yes”” it is an MMO. No release date or any other details have been announced yet but it seems the name might be “The Old Republic”.

Alan Wake to Be Shown at TGS

A Vista promotional page hints at the fact that the game will finally be shown at this year’s Tokyo Game Show. The game was strongly missing for E3 2008 and one can wonder about the validity of showing a PC game in Japan which is a very console oriented market.

Wii Sales Above 360 in the U.S. for the First Time

As of June, according to numbers released by the NDP, the Wii has sold 10.9 million units whereas the 360 has sold 10.4 million, officially beating the Microsoft console for the first time in the U.S. It is worth noting that worldwide the Wii has been above the 360 for some time selling close to 25 million units as opposed to 19 million for the latter.

July 18, 2008 Posted by | 360 News, Industry News, PC News, PS3 News, Video Game News, Wii News | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

E3 2008 – Nintendo Press Conference Summary

E3 2008

E3 2008

This morning Nintendo held their press conference and amongst all the smiles there were several interesting tidbits.

  • Animal Crossing: City Folks was confirmed for the Wii with the Wii Speak feature announced. It will allow you to gather and chat with your friends in game while you partake in activities like fishing. The features sounds fun and the game looks really nice.
  • One of the big announcements at the conference was the Wii Motion Plus, which is a somewhat small square piece of hardware that you plug in the back of your Wiimote and enhances the sensitivity of the sensors. It looks quite promising but we’ll have the wait for more tests to be sure.
  • The release date of November 2 2008 for Pokemon Ranger on DS was announced and GTA Chinatown Wars was announced also for the DS (but no release date).
  • Wii Sports Resort was announced as well as Wii Music. Sports looks like an extension of the original so nothing special. Wii Music on the other hand looks interesting. In Miyamoto fashion it seems very intuitive and you basically just press buttons any way you want to produce seemingly pre-recorded music. While it looks fun and easy to use, the novelty effect might wear off quickly if the music database is lacking so we’ll wait for more details.

All in all, I thought the Nintendo conference was a bit underwhelming. No big announcement (where is Kid Icarus??). There were a few forced joked which fell flat and a few uneasy silent after “big” announcements (like in the Microsoft Conference). Hopefully the Wiimote extension, Animal Crossing and Wii Music will deliver.

You can watch the full coverage of the conference here.

July 15, 2008 Posted by | DS News, Tech News, Video Game News, Wii News | , , , , , , | Leave a comment