Monday, September 26, 2005
Kamalot has many many photos of the long overnight line to meet Shigeru Miyamoto at the Nintendo World Store in NYC.
Saturday, September 24, 2005
Transformers headed for Next-Gen systems
Reports coming out of Botcon say there is a Transformers game in development to go with the movie, which is due July 4, 2007. Since this is well past the launch of the 360, PS3, or Rev, its safe to assume we're looking at a next-gen title. Hasbro isn't ready to announce who is working on it, only that they are working on it. The bad news is that it won't be done by melbourne house, who did an excellent job with Transformers on PS2 last May. The good news is, its unlikely we'll get a repeat of the abomination Transformers Tatakai, which only came on in Japan. And for the un-initiated, the new movie IS based on the original Generation One characters. But if you dodged Transformers on PS2 because it features the Armada cast, you're missing a hell of a shooter.
$20 Game of the week: SIlent Hill 2 (xbox and PS2)
One of the all time greats of the survival horror genre. No evil corporation here, just strict psychological terror. The good thing about the plot is that it leaves so much to the gamer, spawning dozens of fan sites and plot analyses on gamefaqs.com. Complete with one of the most f'ed up plot twists of all time, ths game remains a benchmark for the genre along with Eternal Darkness and Resident Evil 4.
Wednesday, September 21, 2005
The Online Video Game Atlas has a lot of fine maps based on screengrabs directly from the games. Some time ago I downloaded Zebes from the NES Metroid. Why mention this now? because my apple g5 comes to a screeching hault every time it loads up on my wallpaper (which rotates a new image from my picture folder every 5 minutes). A lot of these maps make excellent desktop images for your computer, and serve as pixel-accurate references for anyone playing these games. Reminds me of my old Nintendo Power player's guides...
Tuesday, September 20, 2005
Halo 2 Glitch Montage
Special thanks to Ephrum from Xbox Live and Geezer Gamers for these glitch videos. He's got more on the way, but any serious or amatuer Halo 2 players looking to expand into some of the crazier exploration methods in multiplayer maps (and wondering how friends and enemies end up in odd places) should watch these.
Sunday, September 18, 2005
9/16 Madden 06 roster update taken down because...
Saturday, September 17, 2005
$20 game of the week: Eternal Darkness (gamecube)
I have yet to throw a gamecube game on here, so here goes an excellent one. In a genere cluttered with rip offs, here is an original survival horror game, for of all systems, gamecube. Silicon Knights has certainly outdid themselves thanks to the deep storyline, hallucinating effects, and the innovative "create-a-spell" system. Gamecube owners looking for a more "adult" experience will do well to pick this up.
Revolution Controller Blowout!
IGN has the video presentation. thoughts from nintendo power writer Steve Thomason and of course, The Powet forum While the world is still collectively reeling from this and everyone has blogged their opinion, I'll toss in mine as well. It is quite obvious to me that Nintendo has given up the battle with Sony and Microsoft. They cannot win playing by the rules that they themselves established 20 years ago. They went back to the drawing board and released the DS, which is literally a drawing board. It took some time to take off and start to find its niche, and it looks like great and inventive games are out or coming out soon for the DS. They're truly making the PSP look like just a portable video player or just a portable playstation. So now theres their new console, which they're losing ground to the imperially established Sony and the increasingly aggressive Microsoft. They took a look at the competition and realized that if they couldn't beat them they could at least shake up their own future enough so that they don't even appear to be in competition anymore. And thats whats happened. Nintendo is out of the race and in a class by themselves now. Third Party support for the gamecube was dwindling because the cube wasn't capable of anything the PS2 or Xbox was. So now they have a console and a portable that make direct ports to other systems impossible! And, any game ported over from another system will have to be heavily reworked to make use of unique control schemes. This is it! Back to the days of the NES and Gameboy where the entire lineup is exclusive. Weird control configurations are now standard in Arcades now. Sure, Tekken 5 is munching quarters without having anything original in control (hell you can plug a PS2 controller into the cabinet to use instead of the stick!), but the rest of the arcade is sit down racers, gun games, and dance games. And skee ball. But all of those offer control and experience unavailable on a home system (home racing wheels and guns are never as good anyway, and standard dance mats are considered a joke). Its that "I can't play this at home" thing that keeps arcades open now, and Nintendo is going for an audience that will quickly realize that "hey, this game is not possible on Xbox 360 or PS3!" Of course we still haven't seen a Revolution game. I'd be lying if I said I wasn't disappointed this controller wasn't premeired with a new Mario or something. And thats the only thing that can prove the concept. Possibilities are endless, but I remember how Mario 64 proved the analog stick to be a great idea. Revolution still has a chance to prove to the haters who say Nintendo has lost their minds as well as satisfy those who have been smoking the company dope for years. And if Nintendo has their way, they'll also get people who've never gone into gaming before.
Wednesday, September 14, 2005
Saturday, September 10, 2005
$20 game of the week: Deus Ex invisible war (Xbox & PC)
This is very old, but it's still a slept on classic. The multiple endings, ability to go about the missions however you wish, "Knights of the old republic-like" plot and the customizable ablities are nice, but Most of this game's appeal has to do with it's physics system. Throwing trash at people, tossing around dead bodies, and beating up people can provide hours of fun. It's more than an FPS, and its on par with some of the best RPGs.
Friday, September 09, 2005
Wednesday, September 07, 2005
The price jump from $50 to $60 is big news with the Next Generation. I'm confident gamers will vote with the dollars as they've done so in the past. Frankly, for all the hours I've logged on games like Halo 2 and Mario Kart, I'd have gladly paid $70 or $80. I'd pay double for a game I know is going to keep me entertained for this long. 10 months later and I'm itching to try Halo 2's playlist update! Thats saying something. Conversely, I hope this opens the door to budget gaming more in the next round. More under-$30 games could mean a stronger focus on innovation with shorter games. Katamari Damacy is a prime example of a low-budget high-concept title. At $50 it would have a hard time moving, but on a budget gamer's plate its fair game. and I have a feeling by the time they hit the third game in the series they'll have no trouble asking for and getting premium dollar. Splinter Cell, Madden, Halo, Zelda, Metal Gear... they can all name their price now because the fans of these series HAVE to have the latest and know they'll get their money's worth. But the big franchises of the future should be aiming lower for the budget gamers. Advent Rising had some big buzz which was killed by mediocre reviews. I'd bet Majesco would've done much better if they'd gone right to $30 and risked a bigger loss. Now its in doubt whether the 2 planned sequels will still make it out and I'm sure Advent's fans can't be pleased. Majesco should think about pushing a lower price on the next release if it comes to that. Ditto for Psychonauts which is getting great reviews but losing on sales because Xbox heads won't drop premium cash on a single player platform action game! I don't mind dropping a few dollars on a potentially bad/potentially good game. Astro Boy taught me that a good game can in fact come out of no-where. But when I'm going to spend more on a game than a week of groceries, I better see the value and know what I'm getting!
By the way, if you don't read Wil Wheaton'sGames Of Our Lives, get off your ass. The Onion AV club has been running a games column for a couple months, and while you can expect the same sardonic wit applied to current game release reviews ("Frustration sets in when: Your Nintendog stubbornly refuses to fight space aliens, punch hookers, or perform other expected video-game feats"), but Wheaton's look into gaming's history covers dismal arcade and console failures that don't get mentioned when people talk about how great gaming used to be. Note to kids only aware of games fromn the early 80's via compilations by Activision, Namco, and Midway: This represents all the good games from that time. The rest were garbage. So its nice to have someone remembering that game sucked ass before Superman 64.
Tuesday, September 06, 2005
Saturday, September 03, 2005
$20 game of the week: ESPN NFL 2k5
Yeah, it's over a year old, but it's still the best football game of the past 5 years. WIth EA sports in full control of the NFL, Sega's sports classic is the only place to go for non-EA football action. WHile hucka bucka EA sports fanboys fondle over DNA, hotdog prices, and retarded QB vision, you can set your teams practice regime, customize stadium music (Xbox only), and even buy accessories for your home. In short, it's football nirvana on the cheap.
Friday, September 02, 2005
Fight the Flood! Bungie is offered a new T-shirt for sale with all profits going directly to the Red Cross. Its a pretty cool shirt too. I'll keep looking around and see if theres any other developers or sites raising money with promo items. Otherwise, it can't hurt to just give the Red Cross straight cash, folks.