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Sony Punked Nintendo: Nintendo Goes From Bully To Coward

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Nintendo, its time to knuckle up and fight back!! 

Let me start off by saying this first. I am, always have been, and probably always will be a huge fan and supporter of Nintendo as a company. I believe they are the reason gaming exists today and I have always applauded Nintendo on their family focused efforts in a world and industry were violence and sex sell. I believe that Nintendo brings a fresh and innovative approach to gaming that Sony and Microsoft could only dream of. With that said, Nintendo is NOT without their faults and I’m going to point out the major ones as I see them, so be warned. This article isn’t to bash Nintendo but I will not pull my punches. If you are a fan boy then stop reading now. If you are level headed gamer that loves Nintendo or just loves gaming in general, then I hope that you can appreciate what I’m trying to say in this article. Once again my intention is not to bash Nintendo but to try expose what I see as Nintendo’s biggest flaw at the moment. That huge flaw is the fact that they are cowards.

Nintendo Has Cowered Long Enough

Why does it seem as if Nintendo has become a shell of their former selves? Why does it seem as if Nintendo no longer has the desire to fight? Nintendo is fully capable of competing and they have done so since the early 80′s. Granted there wasn’t much competition then, but if you look at how they battled Sega and the Genesis you can see that Nintendo is a company that can go toe to toe with any company in the business. Remember when Nintendo was the bully on the block? Throughout the 80′s and 90′s, third parties had no other choice but to create games for Nintendo platforms especially if they wanted to remain relevant. See back then, Nintendo was top dog. Remember when Hiroshi Yamauchi would make third parties kneel before him in fear as they presented their latest piece of software? The gaming industry was Nintendo’s yard and everyone else was just playing in it. That is until Sony came along.

The truth is, Sony Punked Nintendo and now Nintendo acts less like the gaming giant we all know and love and more like cowards. When Nintendo backed out of the deal with Sony that would have resulted in hybrid gaming console between the two Japanese giants, that lit a fire under Sony’s butt. Ever since that day, Sony and its mighty Playstation brand has dominated gaming. Financial losses aside, the Playstation brand carries more weight the Nintendo today. What does Nintendo have to say about it…

“…Nintendo is not good at competing so we always have to challenge [the status quo] by making something new, rather than competing in an existing market.”

This is a statement that was made by Nintendo President Iwata back in late 2013. I find it to be a cowardly statement from Nintendo and an excuse on their part to not meet their competition face to face on the battlefield of gaming. I honestly feel that Sony scared them off with their original Playstation. They showed Nintendo that they are not the only game in town and that third parties in fact do NOT need them. Instead of responding with more aggression, they became more and more passive. Its a shame to watch. This is NOT behavior befitting the greatest gaming company of all time. Yes, I called them the greatest gaming company of all time but that title is slowly slipping away. It will be all but gone if they don not turn the ship around and head in the direction of the cannon fire. Nintendo can NOT be afraid of a good fight.

Get In Or Get Out

Now I’ll admit that Nintendo still had a bit of that fighting spirit left in them when it came to the Gamecube. I believe that most of the problems then were do to Nintendo not embracing popular trends and that problem still exists today. The real problem began when Nintendo just simply gave up fighting. Last generation Nintendo Introduced the Wii to the gaming world. It had an interesting motion control mechanic that got millions of non-gamers to board the hype train. It was a huge success and the second best selling home console of all time. So what’s the problem? Simply put, the console sucked! Outside of Mario Galaxy and maybe a few others, the Nintendo Wii pushed coer gaming aside in favor of the casual experience. While fun at first, it quickly wore thin for most. Nintendo called it their new “Blue Ocean” strategy which in theory makes sense. It simply means that Nintendo strives to find an avenue to explore that no one else has done before or is doing so currently making them the only ones to explore this unique space. This is all fine but when you get so insulated that you forget what is going on around you then you become unaware of your weaknesses because you have nothing to compare yourself to. With the Wii, Nintendo got lazy and weak. They bet on the casual crowd and in the end they bet on the wrong horse so to speak.

This was done so that Nintendo did not have to compete in the same space as Sony. Iwata has no confidence that Nintendo can win a fight when competing in the same weight class as the Playstation and I think he is being a coward for running the company in such a way. Why am I using such a harsh word like “coward”? A coward is someone who looks at a situation that may seem bigger than what they can handle and gives up without trying even though they have all of the necessary skills and tools to handle what is ahead of them. They choose not to push forward because they are too afraid to take up the challenge. That to me is a coward. Iwata is being a coward.

I’ll end with this. Nintendo has better software than Sony hands down. Nintendo’s ip’s are more popular and far more profitable. Nintendo has better developers at their disposal. Now don’t get me wrong, Naughty Dog is a beast but they only make one type of game. Nintendo has what fanboys refer to as a “war chest” of money that Iwata probably spends his time diving into like Scrooge Mcduck. The idea that Nintendo cant afford to spend money on a high end gaming console is nuts! Nintendo has been in business for more than one hundred years and has been in gaming for more than 30 years so they definitely have the expertise and the knowledge. It’s time that Nintendo changed their thinking and started viewing themselves as the great gaming company they are. They have the capability to rule the gaming industry but to do so they must first face their greatest rival. The Sony Playstation. Nintendo needs to look Sony in the eye and commit to a good fight on equal ground. No gimmicks, no smoke and mirrors. Just a good ol’ fashioned console war fought with cutting edge hardware, advanced online capabilities, and outstanding software. Nintendo can do it. I know they can.

That’s All Folks

My hope is that through all of my harsh criticism of Nintendo that you can see my passion for them to succeed. Lets get something straight, though. Nintendo wont succeed as long as they are being coddled by fanboys. Nintendo needs tough love and a kick in the butt. This only comes if you hurt their wallet. You mess with a companies money and they are bound to make changes. I won’t go into that now because I’m saving that topic for another day. Oh, and just in case you were wondering why I didn’t mention Microsoft its because I don’t feel they are any threat to Nintendo simply because MS carries no weight in Japan. Well there you have it folks. I hope you enjoyed reading. See you next time.


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Does The Gaming Industry Need A Reboot? Yes

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We Need This!

Why The Industry Needs A Reboot

First off, I’m not advocating for an industry crash. The massive loss of jobs would be overwhelming and that’s something I would not wish on anyone in any situation. With that said, the gaming industry does need a reboot. Its become bloated, greed fulled, and stagnant. The large gaming corporations are more concerned with taking over your living room by offering you yet another way to watch Netflix by plugging your consoles cables directly into your anus. Ok, not really but when did the hype surrounding a new console become more about the apps than the games? I applaud Microsoft for trying to expand their home console into new territories by offering a new why to approach live tv and letting users Skype while gaming but we buy consoles for one thing. Games.

Speaking of games, why are we now spending 60 dollars on a title just to be told we have to spend hundreds more in microtransactions? Forza 5, Ryse, and GT 6 all make use of this cheap, lazy, and borderline criminal feature. It’s cheap because it allows someone to pay to get ahead in a game while I’m grinding my arse off. Lazy because the developers clearly haven’t put enough time and effort to make their game interesting enough to play through in such a way that gamers wouldn’t even dare consider paying to win. This approach is borderline criminal because how dare a developer charge full price for a game and then expect to nickle and dime me, forcing me to pay for content that should be free. It’s on the disc, right? Then let me unlock it the old fashioned way by grinding.

Speaking of the old fashioned way. One of the reasons why I believe that devs are beginning to nickle and dime us gamers is because they spend so much money putting together overly bloated teams to create a 4 hour experience that is more cutscene and spectacle than gameplay. The problem with this is that when the game doesn’t sell up to expectations, developers doors begin to close. Your waiting for the reference I made to “old fashioned” to pay off, I know. It’s coming, bare with me. So, the object is to release a spectacle disguised as a game with the hopes of making that GTA/COD dollar. Such a compromise diminishes game quality. Example…Resident Evil. Capcom publicly stated that they wanted COD fans to play Resident Evil. The result was Resident Evil 6. Yes…that garbage of a game was the result of a respected developer wanting to chase after the success of the COD fad. So here it is…Old fashioned gaming, or the oldschool days of gaming would see no such blasphemy come about. It was about gameplay and the experience of beating a game. You got what you paid for, for better or worse. In the end it wasn’t about hype, metacritic scores, or exclusive DLC packs. It was about sitting down in front of your tv with controller in your hand and enjoying the wide diversity of experience gaming had to offer.

Speaking of diversity, why is everything a shooter? Are gamers that obsessed with blowing off someones head? Are guns really that cool? I mean I’d rather be able to eat a mushroom and grow several stories tall over shooting off rounds from an AK-whatever any day of the week. Don’t get me wrong I’m not saying shooters are bad. I’m saying that every since COD and Years of Boring…sorry, Gears of War blew up the gaming spot, everyone saw their success and wanted to make shooters. That would be ok if there were some originality thrown in but how many shooters can you name that truly do something remarkably new? What happened to pushing the platforming genre? Outside of Mario and Rayman who is doing that? I’m glad fighting games made a huge comeback but I want to see more JRPG’s. Don’t even give me that “Japanese developers are years behind the west” crap!!

Cream Rises To The Top

Iv’e said it before…Indie devs are the future. An industry reboot would force the big guys to re-think their stupid development strategies and put gameplay first. Look at all of the indie developers coming out. They are everywhere thanks to public funding and awesome platforms like Steam. Nintendo and Sony are doing a good job of courting indie devs to their platforms and Microsoft is is Microsoft. Take that how ever you like. Lets be honest, if the industry has any hopes of surviving 20 more years then it cant rely on the likes of EA, Activision, Microsoft Sony or any other big name company. Why? Because their greed and short sighted mindset if left unchecked will run this industry into the ground. They don’t focus on what is important. Gamers! If they did, we would be forced to buy into the hype of these so-called “Next-Gen” all in one electronic device that cooks your meals while wiping your butt, too expensive and comes with a bunch of crap we don’t need or care about gaming consoles! For everything that Nintendo gets wrong, they constantly and consistently get one thing right. Games. They know how to make them and NO ONE does it better. They get it. This is why the Wii U is so inviting to indie devs. Games are why we love this industry and if the indie scene cant breath originality into it then IT WILL die. Sony, Microsoft and Nintendo would be fools to not court as many indie developers as humanly possible throughout this new generation of gaming.

An Industry Crash?

Like I said, I don’t want to see it happen but by the way things are going I’m not too optimistic about our industries future. Screw microtransactions! Screw day one DLC! Screw voice commands, Skype, and uploading crap to Youtube. Hell, screw online multiplayer at the cost of a good single player experience! These are the type of things killing gaming. The industry is slowly suffocating and choking on its own mistakes. Lets get back to what made this industry so awesome and thats games. No filler. No hype. No BS! I’ll take Super Mario 3d world or yes, Knack, any day over Killdrone and Call of Booty. Not that kind of booty, son. I’m a gamer and if you claim to be one too then quit buying into the hype and supporting the nonsense. Tell Microsoft to stick Kinect back up the hole it was crapped from! Tell Sony not to be afraid to put money into Jack and Dexter and Sly Cooper. Mario doesn’t have to be the only platformer in town. Tell Nintendo to kill anything that has Mii, or party in the name. Remind them that casuals don’t care about there product like us gamers who have supported them since the NES. Speak up. Let Capcom know that if they take Resident Evil back to its roots that everything will be ok with the franchise. Or stay quiet and just wait for the eminent “reboot” headed towards the gaming industry. Its coming. If nothing changes, its coming. Peace out. Image

Will History Repeat Itself? I Hope Not


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Gamers Need To Grow Up: Not Nintendo

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So many gamers these days are criticizing Nintendo for not being more mature. They try and make the argument that Nintendo hasn’t grown up with them but instead insist on making “kiddie” games. Gamers want more mature experiences not found in games like Mario or Zelda. Gamers have supposedly outgrown Nintendo because they are now adults. Well my response to that is if your so grown up, why are you still playing videogames? Could it be that your not as “all grown up” and as mature as you think you are? Yes. That is it. What else could it be?

A Gamers Definition Of Mature

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A gamers definition of mature can’t possibly carry any weight behind it. How can a toddler lecture an adult about the facts of life when that child can barely wipe his/her own butt. Gamers are too busy burying their heads beneath the swearing, violence and perversion to understand what real maturity is. From a gamers perspective maturity is gritty, bloody, dark and full of swearing and dismemberment. Subdued colors, explosions and guns make up the bulk of what today’s gamer thinks of as mature. Its a sad truth, but the truth no less. Its as if gameplay no longer factors in anymore so long as there is competitive multiplayer matches where prepubescent brats can scream and curse at one another over their choice of online service provided by Microsoft and Sony. How long can this obstructed view of gaming maturity hold up? If the last generation was just a sign of what is to come then the gaming industry is in trouble. In its current form its becoming a joke. A shell of its former self in the sense that gamers are loosing sight of what has made gaming what it is since the beginning. It has been, should be, and should forever more be about having fun.

Let Me Guess, Should Mario Smoke Crack Too?

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You see the image above? Do you think that looks cool? Do you think it would be a great idea if the Super Mario games went all GTA and let gamers shoot Kooplings and bang Toadetts? If you do then your not alone and your also what’s wrong with gaming today. I remember when I visited a local Gamestop and one of the employees said to me that he thought it was time for Mario to grow up and go “GTA”. He actually thought it would be a good idea to make Mario more mature in the sense that he would now curse, kill and steal from the friendly citizens of the Mushroom kingdom. As humorous as watching Mario go Kart jacking would be, it would be the dumbest move Nintendo ever made allowing their famous mascot to be apart of a GTA style world. Why do people think Nintendo should make Mario mature or any other franchise for that matter? Should Mario sell crack too? How about smoke it? Clearly the people bashing Nintendo for its family friendly image are smoking it.

Nintendo Is Like Disney. Family Comes First

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Would anyone be taken seriously if they actually suggested that Disney make a Mickey Mouse Penthouse cartoon in which Mickey sexes Minnie, mouse style? How about a Disney Pixar film in which the protagonist is kills people and uses profanity? Would Mickey ever be seen smoking a cigar? The answer is HELL NO! Disney is a family company. They have been around since the 20′s and have catered to the young and old ever since. How come no one criticizes Disney for being too kiddie? Where are all the adults who grew up on Disney demanding that Donald pimp out Daisy? You know why you don’t get that from Disney fans? Its because they understand what family entertainment is. They understand the value of leaving something positive for the next generation after them. The gaming industry is the most childish and immature of them all. How dare you demand that Nintendo forget about what made its company in the first place. Do you know what the name of Nintendo’s fist console was? The Famicom. What does Famicom mean, you ask? FAMILY COMPUTER. Emphasis on the word FAMILY. Simply put, Nintendo provides entertainment for families. Yes I understand that Nintendo’s core audience as of right now are made up of gamers in their late 20′s and early 30′s but lets not act like the gameplay experiences that Nintendo provides isn’t as good or in most cases better than anything out there. Name one action adventure game that does what The Legend Of Zelda does as well or better. Name a better platformer than Mario. How about a better mash up fighter than Smash Brothers? Cant? Didn’t think so. So when gamers sit there and say they can’t enjoy Nintendo games anymore because they are too kiddie, what are you really saying? Your saying that you don’t care about gameplay. You want state of the art graphics and you want to watch crap blow up. Oh, and you want to shoot, stab and kill things. Be honest. What is the top game mechanic used this entire last generation? Shooting. Doesn’t matter if it was a 3rd person shooter or a 3rd person shooter, just shooting.

My point is that Nintendo thinks about how to best serve the family. Not everyone gets off by shooting people in the head or cutting their throat in a videogame. There are still those of us who just want to save the princess and that’s ok. Nintendo’s titles may look kiddie at times but if you know anything about gaming you understand that their games often represent the pinnacle of gameplay and best represent what is good in this industry. Sure, they don’t give you everything you may want on a technical level, things such as blood and sweat dripping off a character model but just look at how beautiful Super Mario 3d World looks. Its like a Pixar film. Immediately Pixar films appeal to children do to their colorful nature but behind it all is a deep and rich story in which all adults can enjoy. That is Nintendo. Simple yet complex.

Look, I’m not saying that liking games that feature explosions and shooting is wrong. What I am saying is that if you feel that EVERY game should be similar to that and anything that is geared towards family is somehow inferior, then you are just plain dumb. I understand that most people who play games today are adults but how can you expect a family company to forget about its most important customer…the family? Nintendo will always cater to its core fans with titles like Mario and Zelda but they can not deny the younger audience who will one day take our place as Nintendo’s core fan base. Think about the experience today’s kids would be getting from gaming if all they hat to play was GTA and Gears of War? Is that fair? No. We all grew up on Mario and it turned us into the core gamer we are today and it even turned some of us into developers. There is little substance in today’s gaming. You aim and shoot. Little more. With Nintendo they do their best to preserve the legacy of what gaming is all about. Fun gameplay. You shouldn’t be able to separate the too.

A Little Mario In All Of Us

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Lets stop being critical of what Nintendo is doing in the industry and start being more supportive. I hate when people make the statement that they “used to be big Nintendo fans” until they got older. Nintendo’s emphasis on gameplay is the same its been since the 80′s. If you were a Nintendo fan all those years ago, why should you stop now? Sony and Microsoft can often behave like Zombies. They rarely innovate, they just feed. On your wallet of course. The regurgitate the same ideas over and over again except that each time they just add more. More power, more power, more money you have to spend. Nintendo thinks about how they can deliver the consumer a fun experience that won’t violate their bank account. Listen we need all three console makers to survive and do well so that this industry can do well. When you route for Nintendo to fail, you route for the industry to fail. Period. Grow up.


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Top Tuesdays: Top 5 Games Of The Current Generation

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Who Will Be Number 1?

Here We Go again Folks. I’m back with another Top Tuesday edition. This time I’ll be focusing on the best games of this generation. Keep in mind that these are my favorite games of the current generation so with that in mind, enjoy.

5. Metal Gear Solid 4

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Snaaaaaaaaaake!

This game is the main reason why I bought a PS3 in the first place. Metal Gear Solid 4 kept me hooked from the first moment I booted up the game, with its impressive visuals and Kojima-style storytelling. MGS4 is the definitive stealth game.

4. Uncharted 2

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Naughty Dog are kings of story telling

What can I say about the Uncharted series? The game is a masterpiece in cinematic storytelling and action. I loved the first Uncharted game but the second one blew me away. The characters were very interesting, the story was engaging, and the action was fun and addictive. I can see why many regard Uncharted 2 as the best in the series. 

3. Red Dead Redemption

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Probably The Only Rockstar Game I’ll Ever Play

I’m not a huge fan of Rockstar’s other game offerings but I loved me some Red Dead Redemption. What I loved so much about this game was that it made me feel like I was actually in the wild west. The world felt so alive to me that I would hardly try any of the missions, instead I would just hop on my horse and see what situations I could find myself in. With so much variety in the world of Red Dead, I was able to squeeze many hours of playtime out of the game before I decided to actually play the missions and finish the main story. I can’t wait for a sequel. 

2. Batman Arkham City

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Two Heads Are Better Than One!

This franchise isn’t considered the greatest among the super hero genre for nothing. I spent countless hours gliding around Arkham City beating the crap out of the inmates. Simply put, this game is outstanding. This game is as close to perfect as a game can get and a step forward for the super hero genre of gaming. Too bad no other super hero game has been able to match its quality yet, but oh well, there is another Arkham game on the way in Arkham Origins. If you have not played Arhkam City and you claim your a fan of the caped crusader, slap yo’self. Here’s a little incentive. I bought the game on Steam for 7.49 cents. Yup. 

1. The Walking Dead

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Story Telling Perfection

I had no interest in trying The Walking Dead simply because it is a point an click adventure game and those always seemed pretty lame to me. So I skipped it. One day I saw a Steam sale that had The Walking Dead season one at around 6 bucks or so and I said to my self “what the heck, I’ll try it”. Best decision I’ve made in long time concerning videogame purchases. 

The Walking Dead is the best game I’ve played this current generation by far. No other game had been able to keep me as involved in the story as this game did. I don’t remember playing another game where I cared about the characters as much as I cared about Lee and Clementine. Th scenarios that played out were excellently crafted and overall this game is a testament that you don’t need over the top action and explosions to make an impact in gaming. I recommend this game to anyone who loves good storytelling. The Walking Dead will keep you on the edge of your seat at all times. I can’t wait for season 2. 

 

 


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Indie Developers Are The Future

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The Future Of AAA Is Right Here

The indie game scene is exploding with more and more great content at a rapid pace. With the help of crowd funding sources such as Kick Starter, indie game developers can do what may have seemed impossible just a few short years ago and that is to get their game idea off the ground, funded, and on to a major home console. I sincerely believe that in order for the game industry to survive the next 10 years it is going to need the help of independent game developers. The industry needs their originality, their creativity and their raw passion. Without it the industry will remain stagnant and eventually find itself becoming irrelevant.

The Originality

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What is the biggest genre in gaming? Shooters. What are the biggest games in the industry year in and year out? Shooters. The gaming industry is in a season where over-hyped “Dude-Bro” shooters sit atop the alter to be worshiped by the masses. They capture the attention of millions and generate billions, but popularity isn’t exclusive to good game design. Gaming is in dire need of originality from the major publishers but they care more about their bottom line than integrity of the industry. For them its more about large set pieces, explosions and profanity because lets face it, this is what sells units. Fortunately originality isn’t something that is lacking in the indie gaming industry. Indie developers can afford take risks on gameplay ideas that would otherwise go untouched by the so-called “Triple A” developers.

In 2009 programmer Markus Persson, better known as “Notch”, developed a little game called Mincraft and released it on PC. Mincraft is an open world game with no specific goals for the player to achieve, just a large procedurally generated world for them to play in and re-create to their hearts desire. Seems simple, right? Simple yet very deep. This sort of game is almost sure to never have seen the light of day had it been pitched to a large development team yet Minecraft went on to sell over 33 million copies across all platforms. How many “Triple A” titles sell that much? The mighty Call of Duty sure hasn’t.

The Creativity

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One Of The Best Games Of Last Gen

Indies are free to explore new gameplay ideas without the fear of someone looking over their shoulder, worried if their design decisions will be attractive enough to the global market. Luckily indie games tend not to attract the prepubescent, loud-mouthed, obnoxious crowd that loves to just shoot stuff in the face. Gamers who enjoy the majority of indie titles seem to have an appreciation for one thing .Gameplay. Unique an interesting new types of gameplay mechanics may not be exclusive to indie games but it’s where it seems to stem from the most these days.

Take the game Journey for instance. Journey is a PS3 exclusive that is the complete opposite of what current gaming trends demand. You play as a mostly silent character who’s main goal is to get to the peak of a distant mountain top. Gameplay mechanics include the ability to interact with cloth, forming your characters scarf that allows the player to defy gravity to reach new areas. That’s it. No shooting, no upgrades, no perks, no real enemies and no real combat. There is one thing Journey has in common with its “Triple A” big brothers. Journey can be played online but not like your used to. Every now and then another player will enter your game and they only way you can communicate with each other is by having the character make sounds to alert a near by player. You can help each other progress or completely ignore one another. Very simple yet very effective. So much so that there have been many mentions and references towards Journey for having made the industry re-think how we see online gaming. Because the crew at That Game Company, the folks behind the development of Journey, we now understand that online play doesn’t have to be intrusive, and plagued with foul mouth idiots. Once again, an indie game leads the way.

The Passion

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Say What You Will About Kick Starter, It Opens Doors That Are Otherwise Shut To Small Devs

Their are a wealth of indie devs that have a passion for games. Most of them don’t have the means to create and publish their own games on the various platforms available. That’s where Kick Starter comes in. Crowd funding is responsible for giving many indie devs their time in the sun. Young men and women who have a deep passion to create exciting game worlds for us to play in can now continue to dream big knowing that they have every opportunity to be successful.  Passionate developers no longer have to go to big publishers and potentially sell out their creations just so their games can see the light of day. They can interact directly with their audience who are as equally passionate to play these games as the devs are to make them. All of the hard work and dedication that indie devs put into making their game can be appreciated by all. The only thing that can hold them back is themselves.

Mighty NO. 9 is probably the biggest example of this. Created by famous Mega Man co creator Keiji Inafune, Mighty NO. 9 is a direct result of what the passion to create can produce. No just the passion of a developer but of the fans eager to get their hands on something they understand will probably never be made by the likes of EA or CAPCOM. Many well known developers choose to go down this same development path as well. It’s not about Kick Starter or any other crowd funding source, its about developers knowing that true creativity and freedom cannot properly be nurtured and cultivated at a large development house but only in an environment where creativity wont be stifled by the need to create the next blockbuster.

The Future

Independent developers are the future of the gaming industry. Sony, Microsoft and Nintendo know this all too well. Nintendo has done and excellent job at inviting indie devs to make games on their platform even going so far as to waive the costs of dev kits. Sony has been hard at work courting indie devs for their Playstation 4 platform and Microsoft has made sure indies will be able to create for the Xbox One by making every Xbox One console an actual dev unit. The industry needs to continue to support indie developers and gamers need to support them with their wallets. Who knows, the next indie game you purchase on  XBLA, PSN, and Nintendo’s eShop or support on Kick Starter could be made by the industries future Naughty Dog. Think about it. Indies are the future.

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http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/mightyno9/mighty-no-9?ref=live


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SHOULD NINTENDO RETIRE?

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Time To Hang Up The Gloves, Nintendo?

FORMER GLORY

I will keep this one short and sweet. Nintendo is not who they used to be. The Nintendo we all grew up with has changed from being the gaming industries prize fighter to an old legend desperately trying to hold on to glory. All is not lost. This former champ definitely has what it takes to step back in the ring with the competition and regain the title. It won’t be easy. Nintendo’s training regiment needs an overhaul. They must get stronger. They must get faster and hit harder and above all, they must find the heart to once again compete with Microsoft and Sony. It feels as if Nintendo has already given up on that fight but if things continue to go the way that they are going then Nintendo may have to consider retirement.

NINTENDO = BOXING

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Once The Greatest

Like boxing is to combat sports, Nintendo is to the world of gaming. Boxing is known as the “sweet science”. Nintendo is known as the “innovator”. As a fan of boxing, i can appreciate  this beautiful art and as someone who has strapped on the gloves a numerous times i can also appreciate the skill involved as well. Nintendo is just like the great sport of Boxing in that they are the oldest gaming company around and have accumulated much respect over their long life. Millions have lined up to buy Nintendo’s consoles much like millions at home watched the great fights of the sport of Boxing. At one point in time, Mario was even more recognizable than Disney’s famous rodent, Mickey Mouse. At one point in time the mere mention of the name Nintendo sparked excitement among gamer’s. Just as with Boxing, though,  some things never stay the same.

Like Boxing, Nintendo is loosing fans rapidly. Sure, the most hardcore fans remain (The smart ones i might add) but like Boxing, the excitement seems to have died down. Less and less fight fans talk about the Sport of Boxing like they used to. Equally less and less gamer’s talk about Nintendo like they used to. It would seem as if the gamer’s who grew up with Nintendo are the ones displaying unwavering loyalty much like  older fight fans are with Boxing. It would also seem that as with the sport of Boxing, the younger generations could care less. And by younger i mean tweens and young adults in their twenties. So what do they care about these days?

SONY/MICROSOFT = MMA

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This Is How Sony And Microsoft Battle It Out!

Mixed Martial Arts. Or MMA to the uninitiated. MMA is one of the fastest growing sports and like MMA, Sony and Microsoft have a hold on the 20 something year old demographic. When you ask people why they prefer MMA to Boxing you pretty much get a unanimous sentiment. “Boxing is boring”. “MMA fighters are more complete”. MMA is more exciting”. Although i think its complete BS, must people may agree. In fact when you look at why most gamer’s today choose Xbox and Playstation over Nintendo you also see a similar sentiment. People say that Nintendo is stuck in the past and they don’t innovate anymore. People don’t seem to want the familiar experiences from Nintendo even though they have brought them joy in the past.  Boxers stick to punching and Nintendo sticks to Mareio, Zeldo and Metroid etc. On the other hand MMA brings knees to the face, takedowns, ground and pounds and chokes. This is very exciting to newcomers who watch the fight game. To Some, MMA brings advancements to the fight game that the sport of Boxing can’t match.  Likewise with Sony and Microsofts machines you get exciting new advancements in tech  capable of rendering visuals that Nintendo’s last and current console clearly can’t match. Like it or not visuals are what attract people to games just like the violent blood shed of a cage fight attracts younger fight fans today.

Simply put, people want more. There was a time when using your fists was enough to entertain the fight audiences around the world  just like good solid gameplay used to be enough to entertain gamer’s. Now fight fans want blood and brutal knockouts. Gamer’s want over the top set pieces with explosions and head shots. They want cutting edge visuals complete with realistic army dogs. The old ways are not enough anymore. People are moving on. Boxing and Nintendo are being forgotten.

NOT OUT OF THE GAME YET

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The Oldest Fighter To Ever Win A World Title

Boxing can still draw an enormous crowd and generate revenue that MMA wished it could duplicate. MMA has no fighter with the draw power of Mayweather or Paquio and old fight fans still come out in droves to support what i call the greatest combat sport on the planet. Similarly, neither Sony or Microsoft have an IP with the selling power of Mario or Zelda. Gaming fans of the 80′s and older still turn up to support the greatest software company in gaming and like Bernard Hopkins they are not out of it yet. Nintendo just needs to adjust its fight strategy. They need to be more aggressive. Here are my keys to success for Nintendo going forward

  1. BE AGGRESSIVE. FORCE MICROSOFT AND SONY TO FIGHT NINTENDO’S FIGHT. (SOFTWARE QUALITY AND INNOVATION)
  2. ADVERTISE. SHOW THE WORLD NINTENDO STILL HAS WHAT IT TAKES TO BE A CHAMP AND REGAIN THE TITLE.
  3. INVEST MORE IN INDIE DEVELOPERS. THEY ARE THE FUTURE OF THIS INDUSTRY
  4. INVEST MORE IN 2ND PARTY PARTNERSHIPS. NINTENDO NEEDS MORE COLLABORATIONS LIKE WHAT THEY HAVE WITH PLATINUM GAMES.
  5. DONT MAKE ANYMORE GAMES WITH THE NAME WII IN THE TITLE. NO WII FIT, NO WII SPORTS. ETC. THAT BATTLE IS OVER
  6. FOCUS ON THE CORE GAMER’S THAT GOT YOU TO THE TOP
  7. IF THE WII U IS GOING TO BE JUST A NINTENDO DELIVERY SYSTEM THEN MAKE IT THE BEST ONE NINTENDO FANS HAVE EVER SEEN. TOP OCARINA OF TIME AND MARIO GALAXY. AND BRING BACK DORMANT FRANCHISES

I believe that if Nintendo can do these things than they can have a comeback story like Bernard Hopkins and regain their title. Nintendo may in fact need new leadership since it seems Iwata spends most of his time apologizing for mistakes (which is a good thing, don’t get me wrong) and we have yet to see him really improve on any of them. Nintendo’s reputation is hurting. I don’t even know if i will ever purchase another Nintendo console day one again because of how they handled the Wii U. Nintendo’s only saving grace is to make this console the best damn first party machine they have ever created. They can salvage this mess but they have to do a hell of a lot more than what they are currently doing. Boxing needs to change the way it’s perceived. They need to make sure that people know they are still relevant. Nintendo needs to do the same.

So, as always…What makes WII U MAD?


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PS4: I’m Not Impressed (Update) I’m Somewhat Impressed

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Its the Dual Shock 4, Slash Wiiu/ vita !

PS4: No backwards compatibility. None of my PSN games or save data can be transferred to it. It will likely cost between 400-550 dollars. Sony , you must be outside of your damn mind if you think  i’m buying an expensive-ass console which the only advantages over the current PS3 are better graphics and a damn share button. The arrogance of Sony begins NOW!

No Backwards Compatibility

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Hold On To Your PS3 If You Ever Want To Play Your Games In The Future

Ok, so according to a report by http://www.gameinformer.com , Engadget has spoken to Sony’s Worldwide Studios president, Shuhei Yoshida, who stated that neither PSN nor PS3 game saves will be able to make the jump to the new console. David Perry, who works for Gaikai stated that Sony would like to bring multiple generations of Playstaion games to the PS4 via the cloud at some point in the PS4′s lifecycle. Looks like you better keep your PS3 if you want to play all of those games that you spent 60 dollars a piece on. What a joke.

http://www.gameinformer.com/b/news/archive/2013/02/21/report_3a00_-psn-games-and-other-data-won_2700_t-transfer-to-ps4.aspx

Better Graphics

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Looks Good. Now What?

Don’t Get me wrong, if what was shown at the Sony press conference was actual in-game footage and not CGI or just a bunch of tech demos then the PS4 is a graphical beast. One game in particular stood out as the best thing iv’e seen in a video game ever. That game (or tech demo) was Capcoms Down Under. It featured a Knight fighting a dragon and believe me when i say there has never been anything like it before. The lighting and animation were beyond anything the current gen consoles could ever produce and that counts for the Wii U as well. Will this come at a high price? I believe so since Sony did not even touch on pricing. Prepare to empty your wallets. Not me though.

Sony’s (wrong) Answer To Nintendo’s Gamepad

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Uhhhhh….

Don’t act like you think this is an amazing idea. A touch pad and a share button, hmm were have i seen something like this before? Ok, it is pretty cool that you can actually capture and share in-game footage of you paying a game and send it to a friend. You can even allow a friend to magically take over your game if you want. Pretty cool. Game changer? Hell no!

That’s All Folks!

I have a brother who swears by Sony and thinks the PS4 will be the worlds greatest thing since Moses leading the Children of Israel out of Egypt. I beg to differ. Look i owned a PS3 and loved it but Sony lost me when it decided that backwards compatibility wasn’t important for my on-disc games or my PSN content. To make me re-buy them again in some fashion is not ok. Your probably thinking, “what about Nintendo making you re-buy classic NES titles via virtual console”? You do realize those games are like 25 years old, right? The point is that every console should be compatible with at least the previous generation to some degree. Making you start fresh feels unfair. The PS4 will definitely be a graphical powerhouse but i’m not convinced it will come cheap. I’m not ready to spend another 500 dollars on a game machine, are you?

As always let me know your thoughts on the subject and tell me what makes Wii U Mad?


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3 Sony Playstation 4 Predictions

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Will It Be Announced?

Sony is holding a press event later this afternoon where it is expected for them to announce the Playstation 4. Provided that actually does happen here are my 3 predictions regarding the announcement of Sony’s new hardware, What else could Sony talk about? Vita?

1. Playstation 4 will feature an all new PSN along with new features and services

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New And Improved

I believe this will be one of the main focuses of the PS4. Sony recently bought Gaikai-a streaming service which would allow Sony to make their entire back catalog of games available for the PS4. This would be important for Sony to include in the PS4 since it would significantly add more value to the console as you would instantly have a plethora of games to choose from.

A more advanced PSN is probably a given. As good as the Playstation Network was, it was by no means perfect. Many gamers cried about the lack of cross game chat so it should be a sure thing that this feature would make it in to Sony’s new console. With Playstation Plus, Sony gave gamers plenty of value for 50 dollars a month and i would expect this to continue. Sony might even go as far as taking a few notes from Valves Steam network and allow developers to set their own prices and determine when their games would go on sale and for how long. An addition of this magnitude would give PSN a huge advantage over XBL and would undoubtedly attract more indie support which can only be a good thing for gamers.

Remember how many times you turned on your PS3 and found that their was a mandatory firmware update? No? Of course you don’t remember because there were way too many updates to even keep track of. Sony has no doubt remedied this with the PS4 and at the very least they would allow you to install these updates in the background and not have you sit there and stare at a progress bar for 15 minutes when all you want to do is play a game.

2. Cool Tech Demos But The PS4 Wont Blow You Away Like You Expect It To In Terms Of Visual Fidelity 

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Great But Where Is It?

Now this could be a bit of a stretch. I personally do not believe the PS4 or Xbox “720″ will be s significant leap ahead of the Wii U in terms of graphical power. Why? Cost. We are already hearing rumors that Sony will have multiple consoles with a 400 dollar and 500 dollar price tag attached to them. Who can afford that in this economy? With the way everyone is addicted social media interaction and streaming apps and such, it would seem as if functionality would take the front seat over pure graphical horse power this time around. If you watch the Game Trailers Show called the Bonus Round, they had recently been discussing all things Sony and speculating on what the PS4 might offer. One thing that was interesting to me was a comment from one of the guests by the name of Brian Crecente who works at Polygon. He Said that the company that will win the next gen wont do it with games but by what other things the console can do such as sharing videos with other users . I’m sorry but that sounds like a load of crap but its interesting to hear industry insiders discuss this view of what they believe the next gen will be. Will Sony focus more on functionality over flash? Maybe both. My money will be on a console with less of a focus on high end graphics. I could be wrong, though.

3. Vita integration: The Vita’s Last Stand

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Could This Feature Be Better Suited For The PS4?

Sony tried integrating the PS3 and Vita in some interesting ways. Allowing you to buy a game on PS3 and Vita and share save data between the two titles and even cross platform play were very good ideas. Sony even claimed that the two could work together in ways that are better than what the Wii U could do with its Gamepad. Nice try Sony. One thing we could see happen is PS4 could be integrated with Vita from the go. Sony could push developers to add Vita functionality to every PS4 game making the experience much closer to that of Nintendo’s Wii U. What? Don’t act like Sony doesn’t copy Nintendo as often as they inhale air. Anyways, dare i say Sony could pack a Vita in with every PS4? Probably not but i think a massive Vita price drop could be in order to get more gamers to sign on to Sony’s handheld. If the PS4 and Vita can unite in ways Sony only dreamed with the PS3 it would add so much more value to the console and make spending 400-500 dollars that much more understandable although i don’t feel any game console is worth that much money. Just saying.

Honorable Mentions 

If in fact the PS4 is a power house for visuals than i believe it will be expensive. Seeing as Sony will want to wow the media and gamers at this event and no doubt steal some of Nintendo’s already fading thunder, i doubt a price will be revealed. Imagine hearing about all of the cool features of the PS4 and then seeing some truly amazing visuals only to have the hype sucked right back out of you by a price tag that requires that you pay with your soul. Not cool.

A Holiday 2013 release would not be that surprising. In fact i don’t think Sony could wait another year to release the PS4. Nintendo will no doubt gain some steam going further into the year and by the holiday we will see the release of the Zelda HD remake. Sony can’t afford to let Nintedo go a full year untested. Especially allowing then to launch a huge title around the holidays without any competition. A holiday release for the PS4 would be good for Sony since it would fall under shopping season. Lets just hope the PS4 has some games when it arrives.

I expect quite a few testimonials from 3rd party developers and publishers. Unlike the support Nintendo had from 3rd parties, i don’t expect their support for Sony to magically fade away in a years time. I think some big guns could show up today. Square could finally do something worthwhile and show off Final Fantasy Versus 13 complete with a brand new title that doesn’t sound completely ridiculous. How about a special edition of  GTA 5? I think every Sony fan would blow their lid if Naughty Dog shows up with a Uncharted 4 teaser. Sony has always had strong support from developers so i expect that to continue with the PS4.

Last but not least Sony will have to address the issue of backwards compatibility. If the rumors are true about Sony using new architecture for the PS4 then it would seem that it won’t be playing PS3 discs. What about all those PS3 games you own? This is a question Sony will have to answer.

So that’s it. My predictions for the PS4 during today’s Sony press conference provided Sony does announce a new console. What do you think? If you want to watch the press conference it starts at 6pm eastern. Gametrailers will have coverage starting at 2pm west coast time and i believe IGN will have coverage as well. Lets see how many of my predictions will come true or prove to be false. As always let me know what makes Wii U Mad? Until next time.

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