Thursday, April 25, 2013

3 Reasons Why Nintendo Not Holding A Big E3 Conference This Year Is A Good Thing.

Nintendo fans had woken up today with rather unfortunate news that the Big N won't be holding a big  conference for this year's E3, but would opt instead to host two smaller events to announce new software. Unsurprisingly, this has set off a disappointed outcry from the fanbase as if they were entitled from birth to get every Nintendo announcement in one day, because dammit, if Nintendo doesn't host a conference how the hell will we know if Mother 4 is announced?!

"I'm already half-dead, Nintendo, what more do you want from me?" 

But cry, rant, or say Nintendo has gone poor, because when you consider in the others factors, Nintendo not hosting a big conference this year is actually better for the gamers. You shouldn't complain, because: 

3. Big E3 Conferences Aren't For the Gamers. 

Reality check quiz: why doesn't E3 allow your average Joe to walk into the convention? Ding, Ding, time's up! If you didn't answer that question within ten seconds and/or your brain was genetically infused with a sloth at birth, you seriously are out of the loop. You either have to be an investor in the game's industry, are a part in the industry, or know a cousin's cousin who happens to be a game developer and invited you to E3 in order to set foot in the convention- and I might be stretching it there with that last one. E3 is not open to the public. The demos on the showroom floor are solely for the persons I mentioned above and are only there because if you're going to invest or be inspired in something it's better to actually see the fangled thing with your own eyes. E3 is only live-streamed to the public because you will be the one's that will be voicing your input about which hard/software is better, thus giving investors a somewhat clearer picture of what to invest in- and it's not even the biggest factor in their decisions. It's like watching the bigger kids ride a roller coaster and then having them asking you how the experience was.

"But lo!" you hark, "Don't the gamers matter more than that? WE buy the games, for crying out loud!" And that's the thing: if you did matter more E3 would be open for the public. Your pleas for another F-Zero are muffled out, because conferences are 45 minute bore trains to show how their new consoles can play movies on the internet while allowing you to simultaneously post dick jokes on your friend's FaceBook pages. By the time they get to the actual game(s) the whole f***ing process repeats again as we're informed how you can live feed your entire gaming chat adventures to other players like it's the gopdamn future of video games, and implying you poor sad sack of a human being will even have friends after you post "GAIS IS THER A CODE TO MAKE LARA CROFT NAK3D PLES I N33D THAT CODE?!?!!?!" for the tenth time in under three minutes. It is a tech show in soul, and your gut spilling reaction to last year's Microsoft conference is not going to change anything anytime soon.  

"Thanks, Microsoft, this is just what I f***king wanted." 

Saying E3's main concern is the gamers is like saying G4 was totally about video games and not game shows about vomiting (also, I totally killed two birds with one stone with that last picture). Nintendo says they'll focus on games for the show and instead focuses on Miiverse like they invented social media, because that's unfortunately what you have to do when you host at E3. "But woooooooooooooe!" you insist on whining in my ear, "E3 gives us something to look forward to at least!" Yeah, and that's another problem, because:

2. The Pre-E3 Hype Is Awful. 

Don't get me wrong; I'm not dissing on the hype train photoshops (I mean, look at that), but sometimes I have to throw my arms in the air whenever I read lists (Yes, lists) of games people are expecting from E3 and just say, "WOW". I don't know if it's in spite of pessimism or a bad act of trolling, but it puts a dampers the whole E3 experience for everyone. We live in an age where someone can take a joke like Sonic appearing in Mario Galaxy 2, twist into a rumor, allowing everyone to grab hold of it until the facehugging rumor pandemic automatically becomes Biblical fact. E3 is the festering abysmal hole of tears and unanswered dreams, and we jump off the crazy cliff like figurative suicidal lemmings every year, believing this garbage, and the rest us are submitted to hearing disappointed fans complain how the new Zelda looks too childish or (do I dare say it?), mother of God, Nintendo revealed a casual game at the show. Gasp! Welp, time to return our Mario fanclub badges, guys, Reggie still hasn't broken his fanboy tear addiction.  

"Did someone say fanboy tears?! I hope they're grape flavored!"

First of all, you don't have a Mario fanclub badge, you sad sack, and stop lying- we can smell your fear. And secondly, Nintendo can release whatever they want, okay? You rubbing your lucky ball (or actual balls) to the melody of California Girls played backwards is going to get you F-Zero as much as flaming Nintendo's e-mail page with hatemail- because that Zelda game was too bright, dammit, are you trying to blind me?! You're as much as a psychic as I am, and I hate to break it to you, but no amount of holy optimism that makes you believe that you'll get everything you want from one show is going to make your dreams come true.  

Sure, we're finally getting Earthbound after so many years, you may point out, but not because we wished for it but because we repeatedly asked for it. We didn't make Operation Rainfall work by just hoping, we had to beg for those games to get localized. It's not entirely the same philosophy for games that don't even exist yet, and I'm not trying to tell you to not have a little faith, but Nintendo is a game company that sells games, and only releases games that they know people will buy, not some wild figment of your imagination. If you want a game to be released, form a vocal community; if you're just predicting what will be shown don't act surprised afterwards that Mario Sport Mix 2 was revealed instead of Mother 4, because Nintendo doesn't have a freaking sixth sense. 

 "We have no idea how to make you all you f***ing happy; here's a game where you stare at our logo. F*** you if you don't like it, we're rich." 

Granted, everything fuels some kind of hype, but when we expect something big like E3 how are we supposed to act? The wait period is brutal as it is, and it's bad enough that we end up watching a Miiverse TVii conference when E3 does happen. That's why there's a better alternative:

1. Directs Are A Better Way To Announce Big Titles.

 A years ago, a Nintendo Direct wasn't something to get extremely excited about. They were merely appetizers, there to make us hungry, but not enough to write home about. Non-Specific Action Figure skit was good, but something to look forward to as opposed to an E3 conference? Not happening. But then something did happened. Nintendo set off the year with a bang in January by announcing a new generation Pokemon game(s) out of nowhere. In February they surprise our butts off with a Wind Waker HD remake, a Megami Tensei X Fire Emblem crossover and a Xenoblade-style sequel for Wii U, while promising more games to come this coming E3 confer- (oh yeah). In came March and yet another amazing show revealing a new Mario & Luigi RPG and Donkey Kong Country Returns 3DS port among other things. And as if they were planning they're absence from E3 from the very beginning, they hosted a Direct this month again melting our faces off with A Link to the Past sequel, because gosh darnit, if you're going to melt fanboys' faces off always tease them with a Zelda game.

What makes Directs better than the biggest video game show ever is that you have no idea when Nintendo is going to announce one. There is no time for hype or speculation. Nintendo can host their own show on their own timeline without having to vigorously impress the media, in exchange allowing smaller game companies an opportunity to show their own games. It's a show especially for Nintendo gamers and the people that want to support them, and that's just awesome.

Did I mention they showed A Link To the Past sequel? Because they totally did. 

If E3 is out of the picture, we'll no doubt get more information about big game releases via monthly Directs. Everyone gets their big releases EVERY MONTH, and Nintendo can run a show without filler: everyone wins.

Nintendo's big absence doesn't mark the end of E3, but I sure hope it begins Nintendo's new line of independence from all that hooplah in the future. And I will be anticipating that future.



Saturday, April 20, 2013

Last Wednesday's Nintendo Direct Impressions.

Iwata and pals showed up once more to deliver juicy reveals about the incoming stuff for the Nintendo 3DS, and... my GOD. Somehow I think this one might have found the receipe to keep the attention of both old Nintendo attenders and new gamers. For me, this surely helps out planning how to properly stab my wallet waiting until the next E3's venture, with loads of stuff that people waited for a pretty long time. The whole Direct presentation can be seen here:

But enough texting! Here's how I sorted the stuff revealed yesterday:


All in all you're just / another Link in the wall...

Sequel Fever: A new Yoshi's Island for Nintendo 3DS is in the works. The next portable Legend of Zelda adventure has been revealed for 3DS and it's scened in Link to the Past's world. WHERE'S THAT GODDAMMIT PIGGY BANK WHEN I NEED IT

More Year of the Luigi: Aside from the hilarity ensued by the Mario and Luigi costumes, all the stuff previously announced on the Valentine Direct for Mario's green twin brother has been featured again with new video footage, release dates (we'll discuss of this later) and the introduction of a new Mario Party game.  I think this will be enough to let people finally forget Mario is Missing. Am I right? *runs*

Nintendo 3DS/Wii Direct: From the beginning, Nintendo has labeled this Direct as a 3DS edition about the handheld's gaming panorama, but the Wii U stuff also had its fair share of spotlight, with more details about the next system update (which will be live next week), the New Super Luigi Bros. U DLC adventure, Virtual Console's return and the introduction of a new type of Pikmin for the namesake franchise's third game, coming up this summer. Nice to see some Wii U manna after some relatively-deserted months for the console.


...WHY only Japan can have this?!?

Release Dates: Another jolly parade of release dates for the next 4-5 months! It doesn't matter if you live in Japan or you are waiting the localization of your 1st-party 3DS game; lots of games now have their launch dates (and boxart, most of the cases) as bright as the sun's light. Plus, it will be possible to buy those titles as bundled in a customized 3DS XL as well!

Fan Service (Not the One with Lots of Perviness): It's nice to see that the pleas of many Nintendo players have been listened by Nintendo, as Earthbound and the two twin Legend of Zelda GB Color games (Oracle of Seasons and Oracle of Ages) will be part of European/American Wii U's eShop service somewhere in 2013, as well as the localization of the Square Enix RPG Bravely Default: Flying Fairy. What an upbeat streak for RPG fans!

DKC Returns + : Another nice thing to see is that the 3DS reharsh of Retro Studios's Donkey Kong Country Returns for Nintendo Wii will feature more than a simple "3D" sticker on the cover. An easier game mode for more casual playing -the New Mode- and a whole new world after the main adventure is over can be worth of a shot even for who already has played the game on Wii.


C'mon, spot the differences! It's a fun game for the family.

Retrospective... a bit Retro: Sadly, what I told to you in the Good section is only the abridged version of the reveal's build-up, which consisted in... speaking again about the core of the game. For a good 1-2 minutes. Since this is a remake of a videogame we already know from about 3 years, why to waste time by telling us things we already know from the past game? The new stuff they wanted to say today is still here, but we had to wait for a good chunk of filler moments before it.

No mention of (some) major titles: Directs have been a good vehicle so far for advertising other companies's games as well, like for Level-5's future 3DS eShop games and the final Professor Layton game's release outside Japan. However, some other games are still silent in the NA/EU fronts, like the Professor Layton x Phoenix Wright crossover videogame, always from Level-5. We users don't threat the companies for more details in merit at any cost, but at least state if these games will have a chance to reach other countries as well! It's better than the 'gaming limbo' we experience in similar situations...



Nitpicking aside, this has been a great Nintendo Direct for me, as it not only continued the job of the past "episodes" but also proved that they tend to listen to the people's requests for the consoles in order to have fun even more than now. Only two months are between us and the next E3 event, but I'm already sky high towards the future with this additional lineup refresh.

Lokamp out.


Friday, April 12, 2013

My 5 Wishes for the Next Mario Kart.

During my usual gaming rounds of playing Taiko Drum Master and Xenoblade nonstop for several hours (I' not addicted, I CAN QUIT WHENEVER I WA- ooh a side-quest!) another game series has always shared a special place in my heart (in exchange for at least 3 years of my life), Mario Kart. I've been with the series since Double Dash!!! and have played every game in the franchise, save for Super Mario Kart, in one form or the other. I've seen the highs and lows, and if I were to make the next Mario Kart game(s) this is how I'd do it:

5. Release Mario Kart GP on consoles (In America/Europe too).

Once upon a time, Namco and Nintendo thought it was damn well time they mixed chocolate with peanut butter, and thus, a Mario Kart/Pac-Man hybrid (Mario Kart GP) was born. Sequels featured a Taiko drum and a Tomagachi as playable characters as well tracks inspired by the former character. It's appearance in America is literally shrouded in obscurity for it only appeared in select arcades, and the Nintendo World Store in New York City wasn't one of them, strangely enough. Why these games have never took off outside of Japan is a baffling mystery to me. Sure, the game featured a ridiculous "take-your-picture-and-have-it-look-like-Donkey-Kong" gimmick, and a ludicrous amount of items, but other than that the games are pretty sane for non-Japanese audiences. Everyone knows who Pac-Man and Blinky are, and that's the only selling point you need. Tune up the gameplay for normal play, make more courses, and port it to the Wii U, Nintendo. Don't make me use a Basin on your head! (Yes, the items are really weird)

4. Do a Crossover with SASASR.

If Mario Kart inspired anything it would have to be copycats. Sega and Sonic All-Stars Racing was one such copycat that actually took a slightly altered path and varied itself from the Mario Kart formula by featuring different items and short cuts every new lap. Now combine that experience with the Mario Kart fanfare. Whatever the result would look like this crossover would be PERFECT. Retro tracks could be combinations from both series (akin to Mario & Sonic: Olympic Games- and also, if we can get that game we can get any M&S crossover), and what the heck, why limit the Nintendo roster with just the Mario universe? Bring in the whole Nintendo gang! I want to race as Captain Falcon on a Mario Galaxy/Sonic Colors inspired course, and by the love of Robert Downy Jr, I'll be disappointed if it doesn't happen this generation.

3. Bring back Special Items.

          Ooh yes, you know you want to use this bad boy again. 

Double Dash!! was the only Mario Kart game to feature special items, because Nintendo apparently said "pffflthphtffft, we don't need those any more!" and they were completely from the next game, Mario Kart DS. Which was a terrible idea, because the special items were a blast to use. With only one character per kart in today's Mario Kart games, it might seem redundant to go back to limiting bombs to Wario or triple shells to Koopa, but to bypass this ordeal we only need to make new items or return past items (give Toad the Megashroom as a special item for example). But who wants to use those characters when you can throw giant spiny shells with Bowser? Okay, forget everything I said about bringing back special items, let's just bring back that item and we're good. 

2. Add Characters we would actually use. 


One negative factor from Mario Kart 7 is it's ridiculous unlockable characters. Queen Bee and Lakitu were humorous additions, but Metal Mario has to be the most laziest clone character since Dr.Mario appeared in Smash Bros. Melee (See, this is where special items would've been a good niche to have but nooooooo). Mario Kart Wii was no different, having no fewer than FOUR baby characters not counting Bowser Jr. As much as, like?...playing as Wiggler and Baby Daisy it's time give more Mario characters their spotlight. To name a few: Mallow from Mario RPG, Goombella from Paper Mario: TYD (if you want to go obscure), Fawful from SuperStar saga, and if anything else, please add MC Ballyboo from Mario Party 8. Make a Metal Block an item and ditch Metal Mario ASAP. The Character Select screen is getting as bad as Mortal Kombat. 

1. 200cc!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 

Forever have I been racing behind the wheel, and never once have I felt the blur of insanity that is to go over 150cc. That has to end. I want a speed limit in Mario Kart to match that of F-Zero- no. No limitations; just speed. We've got none of that. All we have is Mirror Mode, which is a lame joke to make you believe that turning left instead of right counts as a harder difficulty option. 

"Holy s***, this is harder than Lost Levels!" -said no one ever. 
This isn't making the game harder, it's just giving you the same exact courses as filler content. I hunger more. Give me SPEED. Give me a challenge. Give me a new challenge around every corner, every lap, every drift, and a reason to keep going when I get knocked back to 5th place because ArseMcCloud7 from New Jersey used a Lightning Bolt when I was in a mid-jump for the third straight time.  
Don't get me wrong; I'll still buy any and every Mario Kart game that Nintendo makes, but to keep me occupied longer, the series needs at least a few tweaks to keep my engines running. Now if you'll excuse me I have a revenge match to attend to with Mr.Arse.


Monday, April 1, 2013

Top 5 Best Waluigi Games Of All Time

No Nintendo character gets as much love as Waluigi. Not only did he get a starring role on every Nintendo console to date, but his popularity spawned many spin-offs and crossovers. And who can deny that stache'?

There was lot of great Waluigi games, and since Nintendo is dubbing this year the "Year of Waluigi" we decided it seemed fitting to sit down and discuss once and for all which of his games were the best. After a week of discussing it over (ergo; slap fighting) we have come to conclude that the following 5 are the best games the lovable purple plumber has starred in: 

5. New Super Waluigi Bros. 3 (Wii) 
While both previous NSWB games were good fun, they pale in comparison to the third game in the series. Actually adding "New" to the rebooted franchise, NSWB3 pits our four heroes (Waluigi, Wario, Dry Bones, and Birdo) against the evil king Wart yet again, but this time they have to collect radishes- lots of radishes. While some can argue that the radish collecting was a dumb gimmick, it at least proved to offered a fun challenge to beat each others' high score on Radish Rush Levels (though, it unfortunately capped at 30,000 radishes). On top of the already extensive content the game offers, new DLC packs will deliver more Waluigi radish-collecting action in the months ahead, so there's plenty to do in an already awesome game. Can't wait for the sequels! 

4. Wario is Missing! Starring Mickey Mouse (NES)
Considered by some to be the greatest educational piece of software in existence, Wario is Missing is Waluigi's fourth starring role in a video game, and is Nintendo's first major collaboration project with Disney (let's try to forget their later attempts with Disney Wii Sports Bowling) When Wario is taken away by evil Pete's henchmen for not paying his taxes, it's up to Waluigi and Mickey Mouse to save him by solving algorithm problems, learning about tax refunds, and answering pop culture questions about Madonna's new hit singles. Difficulty settings from Pre-school to college to "know-it-all" assure that everyone can enjoy the game and boost their I.Q. by 40 points. A thought-provoking storyline will keep you engrossed until the last tearful ending (I dare you to find a more perfect ending in a video game), while accompanied by some of the most epic music in video game history. Wario is Missing! should be part of everyone's childhood (if it isn't, stop playing video games right now, your childhood sucked). 

3. Waluigi Pinball (DS) 
Regarded as the best DS game of all time, Waluigi Pinball offered one pinball table (one was all you needed) of pure unadulterated fun. Unfazed by Mario's previous pinball adventure, Waluigi steps it up a generation later by cramming himself into a ball and delivering the most essential DS game you could ever own on the console. This game made Metroid Prime Pinball look like sh*t in comparison. In fact, it made all DS games look like sh*t. Do we really need all those Pokemon games? Throw that crap out, brother; the DS has only one cartridge slot after all. 

2. LEGO Waluigi Bros. Vs. Capcom (Gamecube)
Know why this game is on the list? YOU WANT TO KNOW WHY?! Where else can you pit LEGO Waluigi and Birdo against Ryu and Amaterasu?! NO WHERE, B*TCH. Think Contra made you a man, you punk hipster?!?!?!?! This game gives you more balls than Pokemon!!! The Water Level alone takes FIVE YEARS to beat, you momma's boy!!! Melee got sh*t to this game!!! Third-parties might as well stop developing Horzes 3D pock-sh*t and just start making HD ports to this game!!! If this game isn't part of your daily EVERY WAKING MOMENT routine stop playing video games right NOW and go back to your momma's uterus, because your brain needs more time to develop and appreciate ART when it's staring in your stupid face!!!! 

1. Super Final Waluigi Fantasy RPG DX (SNES) 
You know what went wrong with SQUARE ENIX? The moment they decided this game didn't need a sequel. That's like declining chocolate cake, because your dumbarse brain registered a Portal meme joke. YOU STUPID. Final Fantasy has gone to the dogs as soon as Waluigi stepped out of the picture. I hope you're happy playing All The Bravest and looking up Lightning's skirt you apologetic scorn sons of a !@#$%$ #$%#@ %$#$ and perpetual feces slinging #$%& #$@% because the FF you know is a lie to appease you fickle fats. You never played Super Final Waluigi Fantasy RPG DX because you're all too emo and your Macs don't support the emulator! You don't know how REAL RPGs should play like. You pay $15 for an iOS Rom dump you can play on auto you sad sack of sh*t. Super Final Waluigi Fantasy RPG DX has you starting at Level -40 and level grinding makes your level go DOWN!! Super Waluigi Fantasy RPG DX has NOT ONE stupid CGI cut scene- because the graphics couldn't render it, you uncultured stupid-y stupid's stupid!!! Crono Trigger has got nothing to this game!!!! Go back to playing Kingdom Hearts you #$%&@- your kind doesn't deserve to even look upon the godly pedestal this game is situated on for your stupid face would melt off like that Nazi from Indiana Jones!!!! 
Honorable Mentions: Waluigi's Mansion, Waluigi's Woods (A-Rated title),  Waluigi Time, Waluigi Touch and Go! (also an A-Rated Title), and Waluigi 2: Wario's Adventure. 
Happy Year of Waluigi, everyone!