Saturday, July 31, 2010

Singularity's Metroid Reference

I'm thoroughly forcing myself to enjoy Singularity, and while perusing the achievement list, I notice one called, "Mother My Brain Hurts"

I can only imagine where this goes.

After obtaining the Dethex Launcher aboard the ship you "revive" out of the water, I notice a Weapon Tech through the glass panel of a door that I can't open, as well as a hole in the grating where I picked it up. I took note of the secondary fire of the gun, and I discovered I could control the ball, very similar to the Morph Ball from Metroid Prime.

This is where shit gets fun.

After entering the grate with the Morph Ball Controllable Explosive, I'm jumping up through the grating, as if I were playing Metroid for a hot second. I work my way through the grating, under the door, let go of [LT], which serves as the secondary fire purpose, and the door blows open. An ominous space track plays as I enter, which, to me, reminding me of the Space Frigate from Prime 1.

Anyways, I walk in, and I see a Chrono-Note up on the wall, a dead body on a couch curled up with a note. The Chrono-Note says, "Mother My Brain Hurts!". I filter out "Mother Brain" and the Metroid nerd in me is raging. However, nothing more screams Metroid than the note, plus the doo-dad I found after I read it.

Read past the break for the note.

Friday, July 30, 2010

Halo: Reach Achievements Get the Full Reveal

We had a list of the Achievement's icons for Halo: Reach, but now, Bungie has detailed how you get them (sans GamerScore).

There are 23 achievements related to the Campaign, 6 under "Any," 4 Multiplayer, 7 for Firefight and 9 for "Player Experience" for a total of 49 Achievements.

The "Any" achievements seemed to be related to specific actions you need to do, be it in the Campaign, Multiplayer or Firefight, hence the grouping name. The Multiplayer specific ones are few, but damn, does one of them sound difficult: "Won a game of Invasion in the 1st phase." Plus, the oft-rumored "Legendary by Yourself" Achievement is confirmed at #4 in the list, with the crossed swords and human skull.

It pretty intense to see the Achievements for the game when it's not due out for anther month and a half - plus the first TV spot for the game was just aired on my TV...creepy - and it's gives those some insight on the story.

Catch the rest after the break, but be warned: SPOILERS exist beyond the break.

[Via Bungie]

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Assassin's Creed's Comic Details Are Here

Yes, I'm using this image again. Fuck off.

So sue me, I'm a week late. But I just got word on the comic for Assassin's Creed.

Set in the early 20th century (read: 1900's), you take on the adventure of one, Nikolai Orelov. The whole teaser video was talking about the Tunguska tragedy - you know, that huge, monster ass explosion in Siberia in 1908 - and the narrator apparently knows how it happened because he was there.

For the juicy bits, Nikolai's descendant is not series-staple Desmond Miles, but Daniel Cross, a recovering drug addict. As Cameron Stewart put it: "We start with [Orelov] when he is a very young man, a novice, and as the story goes on he gets older, and we see the changes and effect that being in the [Assassin's] Order has on his life." The reason for introducing a new Assassin and an equally new modern day newbie is because of the canon put in place by the first game: Desmond wasn't the only test subject. He was number 17, and the guy before lost his fucking mind (which, his invisible scribbles are what are alluding to future locals to romp in).

They promise to weave in other important aspects of the series - the Animus, the Assassin's guild, and the Templars - including the whole "re-write history" bit. Key elements throughout Russia's history will be tied into the game, but not too much, as they feel that oversaturation would kill the experience for the reader (Rasputin has already been confirmed to not be in the story, despite existing during this time). A lot of research is being put into the comic, too. Both Cameron and Karl ventured out to St. Petersberg for a week, and returned to the States just days prior to Comic-Con.

There is good news who find the aspect of a comic book for a highly successful - and incredibly fun - series a bit wonky, is that the Daniel/Nikolai combo are being treated as a very important addition to the lore, and that they may be intertwined into future Assassin's Creed...things. A video game isn't out of the question. As IGN puts it:

And while [Cameron] Stewart and [Karl] Kerschl have the entire life of this Russian assassin mapped out, Ubisoft does intend for Orelov to become a permanent part of Assassin's Creed lore. His life is not being considered a side project and will not be forgotten, even having the potential to be developed into games in the future (though to what capacity is uncertain). Ubisoft made it clear to us that it sees Orelov and Cross as important as Ezio, Altair or Desmond, and their language and approach certainly seem to bear that out. 

The 3-part comic is due out later this year. I'm expecting it around AC: Brotherhood's release on November 16.

[Via IGN]

Start Saving: Nintendo to Unveil 3DS Pricing/Release Date on September 29

As if you didn't need further convincing to be completely stoked for the 3DS, Nintendo has let out that they will release the pricing and release date details on September 29; exactly two months time. Think of this as Nintendo adopting Square's strategy, where they announce the date of an announcement.
They also said that the pricing for the 3DS will "fit" with the current DS lineage. The DS lite was $130, the DSi is $170, and the XL is $190. A lot of rumors have the 3DS pegging at $250, but they'd be absolutely stupid to do that.

I mean, the last time a handheld went for $250, things didn't go so well...

[Via Destructoid]

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Modern War Gear Solid is back

Oh yes, here we go!

Part 2 of the series, entitled "Sun Burn," has more fun, more fighting, more shirtless men and more jokes about Snake than you can dream of in your comic strips. Oh, and the boss' name is revealed. It's as obvious as you think it is.

Part 3 won't be out for a while, "months" even, but apparently, there are some deleted scenes coming our way pretty soon. Taken from the YouTube description:

Due to your amazing responses, we're going to make Part 3 as epic as possible! I don't know how long it will take to finish - it might take a few months - but we'll make it worth the wait. We'll keep you updated on our blog and facebook page with teasers and extras.

I hope it's as epic as I think it is.

[Via BeatDownBoogie]

Monday, July 26, 2010

You'll Have More Master Chief, Don't Worry

At a panel discussion at Comic-Con, Bungie's Frank O'Connor said that Master Chief's story will continue beyond the massive cliffhanger at the end of Halo 3, because just letting him and Cortana drift around in space near a planet that apparently looks like Onyx (from, you know, the "Ghosts of Onyx" novel) would be completely dickish of you.

Or "asshole," as he put it:

"At the end of Halo 3, and cover your ears if you haven't played it, Master Chief is in cryosleep. Cortana has sent a rescue signal, and they are orbiting a strange world. We'd have to be the world's biggest assholes to not follow through on his story."

So yea, with 343 Industries thriving alongside Bungie, I hope to see Marathon finally get tied in to the Halo story, cause, you know, it's there.

[Via Destructoid]

Friday, July 23, 2010

Touchable Holograms Made Available by Wii Remotes

Leave it to Japan! Researchers at Tokyo University have created the first touchable holograms. That's right, touchable. Your wild dreams of fondling Princess Leia's hologram are now coming true.

What makes it pretty astounding is that the researchers are using a pair of Wii Remotes to get this thing off the ground, which are tracking your hand movements. Using ultrasonic waves in junction with the Wiimotes, the waves give a sense of force feedback, which create the pressure necessary to imitate the sense of touch with whatever objects you so desire to touch.

So far, it's only been successful with smaller objects (think ping-pong balls), but the developers have bigger things in mind. Hospitals are the big draw, as they can eliminate the need of the patient-doctor interactions (or, as the report calls it, "touch contamination"...I'm just as weirded out as you are). Other uses see it in as a replacement for books (so long, iPad!), or the end to product refreshes, as the interface can be changed with a simple firmware update.

Color me intrigued, but it doesn't seem like touchable holograms could replace every bit of physical tech around us. It does seem to give Apple a run for their money as they have a hell of a time trying to get you buy new products once something like this hits. Well, they could try selling you new hologram projectors once every year, but good luck with that, guys.

[Via YouTube via New Tang Dynasty Television]

Thursday, July 22, 2010

[UPDATED] Halo: Reach Themed Xbox 360 Slim Coming Your Way

[UPDATED] Major Nelson just confirmed on his blog that the bundle is real, and everything from the product description page is real. Also unveiled is that the controller will be available separately, plus a wireless headset featuring similar, silvery-styled art and coloring. The controller and headset are both going to sell for $60 and $50 respectively ($60 for the controller?), plus be available near the back end of next month (read: before Halo: Reach's launch). Everything is available for pre-ordering starting today, plus Bungie has posted an unboxing of the unit that's available to download at and viewable on Halo Waypoint.

Image has been updated. Check after the break for more images.

[ORIGINAL STORY] So, this guy, the Ars Mole, has told Ars Technica (whom the mole does his...mole-ing for) has come out and said a Halo: Reach-themed Xbox 360 Slim (plus controller) is going to launch alongside it's respective game day-and-date with it, September 14.

Ars Mole has a hell of a knack for getting things right (or just getting word and reporting them), as he's foretold the PS3 Slim, the FFXIII and Splinter Cell 360 bundles, plus various other spot-on things.

The controller, which you see above, is silver and sports various lines of lineitude, with the a "Property of the UNSC" and other Halo-related insignias. You can tell that this is a mock-up, as the Ring of Light around the Guide button is peculiarly small, while the face buttons seem...flat.

This goes hand-in-hand with a screenshot that's been going around of a leaked product page on that shows the "Xbox 360 Halo: Reach Limited Edition Bundle," which shows a 360 Slim, inspired with the same paint job as the controller, goes for $400 and is expected to be a 250GB model (considering, well, all "limited edition" hardware bundles have always utilized the largest capacity hard drive at the time). It comes with 2 controllers (like the above) and a copy of Halo: Reach. Thank god it's not Baby-Shit Green like Halo 3's 360 was.

We've got the Slim Arcade coming out in just under two weeks with 4GB of storage, then we've got this doozy of a bundle, then finally, we get the Slim Arcade w/ Kinect bundle later this year. Not sure about you, but my wallet is fucking hating me right now.

Filter on through the Ars Technica link at the bottom to get a look - albeit a small one - at the Reach-inspired 360 Slim.

[Via Joystiq via Ars Technica]

Dead Rising: CASE ZERO hits August 31 for $5

Oh yea, I'm liking that price.

After many months of saying "oh, it'll be out before Dead Rising 2," Capcom has finally told us when we can expect CASE ZERO. To fill the void that used to be filled by Dead Rising 2, CASE ZERO fills us up on August 31. This is also two weeks after Summer of Arcade ends with five $15 priced games.

With a game that has as much gameplay as it does, and it sells for $5 (400 points), I'm sure a lot of people - myself, including - are retracting their "Higher Quality Games = More Money That I'll Gladly Pay" statements.

[Via Kotaku]

Skyward Sword Predates Ocarina of Time

There goes the high hopes theory that Skyward Sword is a Majora's Mask sequel.

In the newest issue of UK's Official Nintendo Magazine, Eiji Aonuma, in an interview, states that Skyward Sword takes place before the betrothed Ocarina of Time. Since Majora's Mask is a direct sequel to Ocarina, then Skyward Sword cannot be a Majora's Mask sequel.

Take from GoNintendo:

“Yes there is a master timeline but its confidential document! The only people to have access to that document are myself, Mr. Miyamoto and the director of the title. We cant share it with anyone else! I have already talked to Mr. Miyamoto about this so I am comfortable in releasing this information – this title [Skyward Sword] takes place before Ocarina of Time. if I said that a certain title was ‘the first Zelda game’, then that means that we cant ever make a title that takes place before that! So for us to add titles to the series, we have to have a way of putting the titles before or after each other.” - Eiji Aonuma

Well, shit. If Skyward Sword is before OoT, and most put OoT at the beginning of the timeline, could Skyward Sword actually bring into view another conflict? OoT took place immediately after the Hyrulian Civil War (which Link's mother escaped into the Kokiri Forest from) and the Imprisoning War takes place in the 7 years that Link was in the Sacred Realm. The Imprisoning War was talked about during ALttP, while the Hyrulian Civil War was created for OoT (the Deku Tree Sprout told Link about it after you beat the Forest Temple), then SS might even bring into light a new conflict.

For even juicier tidbits, a while back, it was stated that Skyward Sword actually shows the creation of the Master Sword, which was originally known as the, you gottit, the Skyward Sword (which transforms into the thing you see in the original artwork). Taking that plus the "SS is before OoT," then we've got ourselves one hell of a Zelda title coming.

[Via GoNintendo]

[ANALYSIS] Microsoft Prices Out "Cost of Ownership" For Motion Gaming

You've gotta love this one. After Major Nelson posted the official pricing for Kinect, gamers began criticizing Microsoft's expensive approach. Well, Microsoft was quick with the Reggie-style graphs, and cranked out these lovely beauties (originally spotted on Kotaku):

First, we see Microsoft trying to justify the price of Kinect. They say that Kinect is cheaper for a new system owner across all three systems. They undercut Nintendo by $60, and Sony by a whopping $210. That's not all.

Here, they take on existing system owners, which I fall into (for all three). Kinect is just $10 shy of Nintendo, where as Sony is a full next-gen game above Microsoft. Let's delve past through the corporate bullshit and get some rectifying done.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

[REVIEW] LEGO Harry Potter: Years 1-4

[NOTE: You'll have to forgive my ignorance on many of the names in the Harry Potter universe. Expecto Patronum is, pretty much, the only spell that I remember off of the the top of my head, and I can only remember a handful of the characters names. Forgive me, but I'm sure you can play a bit of Mad-Lib here and get it done.]

"Another LEGO game?"

That was the first question that I asked myself when LEGO Harry Potter: Years 1-4 (LHP) was announced. Star Wars (LSW) was awesome. Indiana Jones (LIJ) was pushing it. Batman (LBM) was, well, bat-shit crazy. However, they all worked, and were respectable entries in their own franchise's game library. They took what worked in the universe, LEGO-fied it, and made it enjoyable by anyone. You could say LEGO games (by that, I mean of the aforementioned Star Wars/Indy/Batman games) are the Pixar movies of the gaming industry: 5 minutes in, and you love it, no matter what.

The reason this one works is that it harks back to the LEGO Star Wars games with the magic. Using Wingardium Leviosa (purple spell; 3-o'clock) is Harry's version of the Force, and it works even better than the Force. Rather than a pile of LEGO pieces turn into their desired form instantly, you watch them being whisked away into a tornado of awesome, while the pieces take their turn creating whatever it is they're supposed to be in the eye of the storm you've created. The Force is what makes this game magical, and it speaks to me in that it reminds me of the good LEGO games (both Indy games were for shit, and Batman was...well...).

[REVIEW] Alan Wake

 Something about Alan Wake was a bit perplexing. Since Remedy worked on this game - and they're responsible for the original Max Payne games, not the balding, fat sack-o-shit version we're getting in the third game - I had high expectations; you could say that I walked away from this considering it the spiritual Max Payne 3. Seeing as they finished MP2, took a small break them immediately started working on this, a bit of Max's soul seeped into Alan Wake. I don't know if that's a good thing or a bad thing. Yet.

Alan Wake is a deviation from what I'm used to playing lately, so it was a nice refresher. I finished up 3D Dot Game Heroes prior to indulging myself on this, so I may have been easily swayed. But, I have to say, I am a big Max Payne fan (I honestly felt the movie wasn't too terrible, but the Ludacris/Jim Brown fiasco was a bit ignorant, IMO), so I felt right at home with this game; it's been seven years since the painkiller-popping cop was in front of me (which, by the way Remedy, nice homage to your roots late in the game with the flashback). The "psychological" part of this game wasn't much of a psychological thing, considering that everything going on was real, effecting everyone and everything around Alan. He wasn't psychotic. He was screwed.

Kinect, 4GB Xbox 360 Slim Gets Pricing Details, Almost Immediately Loses Interest

4GB Xbox 360 Slim with Kinect/Kinect Adventures bundle

Major Nelson just updated his blog with information about Kinect's pricing, and boy, let me tell you something...

Kinect will launch on November 4 for the oft-rumored $150 (bundled with Kinect Adventures), while Kinect games are going for $50 a pop. Putting that in contrast with Move, the controllers run $50/$30, depending on your flavor, plus the PlayStation Eye that's $40 that you'll need. One set of controllers plus the Eye puts you at $120. Move's games are priced at $40 each.

Now for something jucier: the Xbox 360 Slim is getting a 4GB version (internal memory) on August 3 for $200, replacing the Arcade unit that's out right now. And yes, there is built-in Wi-Fi on this model.

Even better: the Holiday bundle that Microsoft offers every year is the 4GB model with the aforementioned Kinect bundle (pictured above). This is going to sell for $300 when Kinect launches.

Now, as many have stated before, $150 is "too much." I'm not the first to say it, but I'll be damned if I try to justify it after this point: if games are $50, and the Kinect bundle comes with one, then Kinect is effectively $100, and Microsoft is pulling a Nintendo here with the pricing (bundle a game in, add $50, say it's a "deal").

Sorry, but unless the 250GB Xbox 360 Slim doesn't have a bundle, then I'm not buying Kinect. Sorry.

[Via Major Nelson]

"Modern War Gear Solid" is Exactly What You Think It Is

Oh the delicious, sweet fruit that is the 1st Amendment a parody.

This fan-made video mashes up the worlds of Modern Warfare and Metal Gear Solid into the titled name, which stars Ghost and Solid Snake, respectively. The Snake you see does nothing but lampoons the real Snake, while the Ghost is actually taken seriously...somewhat.

Battling Activistsun, which has acquired Outer Haven, Ghost and Snake end up teaming together, all the while staring at Naomi's chest.

The first of many Acts to some, I hope.

Catch the video after the break.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Assassin's Creed II DLC on sale for Xbox Live

If you don't subscribe to Major Nelson's blog, then you haven't heard the news yet: the Assassin's Creed II DLC - Bonfire of the Vanities and Battle of Forli - is the hot new shit for Xbox Live's Deal of the Week.

Both Sequences are down from 320 points ($4) to 240 points ($3), while the "combo" is now 400 points ($5) rather than the usual 560 ($7). There's a couple of Avatar things discounted pretty steeply, but this good news for those who don't even have ACII yet, as GameStop has dropped the price down to $20. You get a broken game for $25 rather than $68 like most of us payed who bought the game when it came out and each DLC separately upon it's arrival.

Now would be a great time to get in on the DLC, as my own recommendation was to pass on it until it was on sale, like a DotW. Sure, it's only 25-30% off (depending on your flavor), but it's a nice little discount to DLC that should have been free.

It must feel good to be a cheap bastard, bastard.

[Via Major Nelson's blog]

Saturday, July 17, 2010

[GTFO] That $35,000 NES on eBay? Dude got $50

Not $50 as in fifty dollars. No, this sumbitch got fifty thousand for it.

There was absolutely nothing special about this thing. It was a standard fair NES with 42 games, a Nintendo branded carrying bag, 2 controllers, a Zapper, an original Game Genie and bunch of other stuff. He originally wanted $35,000 to "pay bills," but he walked away with $15,000 more than what he hoped for.

My physical NES collection stands at 5 deep (4 if you don't count the Ninja Gaiden that doesn't work). I had plans on rebuilding my catalog up after getting rid of them all those years ago, but seeing how Guy got $1,190 for each game if you don't factor in the NES itself (which has a "Keepin' it Old Skool" Nintendo sticker on it), I should just buy a bunch of NES games, package them together and say I need "food".

Check after the break to see the ridiculously low-key games he sold with it.

[Via Destructoid via eBay]

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Dead Rising 2 Gets US-Exclusive "Zombrex Edition", Motion Picture Release Details

We may all know how much I despise country-exclusive limited editions, but hey, this one is US only! Despite the irony in this, Dead Rising 2 is Canadian made, Japanese published, yet US gets the collector's edition. Strange how this works, right?

This special edition, dubbed as the Zombrex Edition, runs you $80, and both the PS3 and 360 gets you this:

  • Two-Disc Steelbook case   
  • Dead Rising 2 game disc 
  • Zombrex “Syringe” pen
  • Zombrex “Prescription” notepad (25 pages)
  • Zombrex “Safety” card 
  • Zombrex “Prospectus” Sales Brochure (16 pages)
  • Dead Rising 2 Hardback Artbook (48 pages)

The PS3 version scores you a voucher for an XMB Dynamic Theme and a "Blu-Ray Disc featuring a High-Definition 24 minute “Making of” featurette".

The 360 version gets a "high-def version" of the above 24-minute "Making of" featurette plus the 83-minute “Zombrex Dead Rising Sun” motion picture, made by Keiji Inafune himself.

Assassin's Creed Goes to...Russia?

Oh yea, I'm loving that logo.

This isn't a game, but a 3-part graphic novel series that is set to debut at Comic Con during a panel hosted by Morgan Webb called "Assassin's Creed: Behind and Beyond the Brotherhood" on July 22 (next Friday). Cameron Stewart and Karl Kerschl are the minds behind this, and Karl will be with Morgan at the panel. It's here where we'll learn more about this, but it's not the first time where someone from the Creed isn't Arabian or Italian.

Nothing more is know, other than a teaser trailer featuring black and white film footage of guys digging in the dirt with a stereotypical, threatening Russian-accented man talking about stuff.

The teaser ends with "Coming soon to your comic book store".

I don't know about you, but this seems to be what the femme-fatale in the early 1900's project that was alluded to back in October of last year turned into. That is, if the lead character is female.

[Via Newsarama]

[JAPAN ONLY] No More Heroes 2 Gets Collector's Edition

Fuck you, Japan.

I'm sorry, I can't stay mad at you. I love you, Japan. I love sushi. I love your women (I've been suffering from Yellow Fever for many years now). I love your games. Sadly, they get to taunt us with things like this: the No More Heroes 2: Desperate Struggle Hopper's Edition. You get:

  • A movie made by Suda51 called No More Heroes 1.5 
  • The soundtrack on CD
  • A "fan book"
Not sure what the fan book would be, but if you pre-order, you also get an erotica comic book. It goes for ¥8,980 ($101). It's out on October 21, same day as the "Black Box" edition, which is just the game for $81.

This isn't the first time an entry in the NMH franchise that got something awesome.

[Via Siliconera]

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

[WTF] Destination: Arcade only available during Summer of Arcade

Yes, you are reading this right. Major Nelson has updated his blog post about the one-week delay of Destination Arcade to let us know that it will only be available during the Summer of Arcade run. For those not keeping count, that's July 21 through August 18, just a few days shy of a full month.

The purpose? Well, right now, there is none. But seriously, what the shit, Microsoft?

As one commenter pointed out, this could be a nonchalant open beta, and Microsoft would make it fully available alongside Kinect later this year. If that's not the case, then it's absolutely backasswards.

3DS Getting a Redesign Before Launch? Notsomuch.

When it was unveiled, Nintendo said the 3DS's design wasn't final and would change prior before it's launch, similar to the original DS. Well, that was more of gamers bitching up and down Main Street about it's godawful design, so Nintendo changed it to the much more appealing - yet archaic by today's standards - design that we see today.

Now, Nintendo went back on their word and said the 3DS's design will remain mostly unchanged, saying "You can take this as the final shape".

They could do minor tweaks here and there, but what you see is pretty much what you'll get when the thing comes out. Whenever that is.

[Via Kotaku]

Monday, July 12, 2010

Killzone 3 Has New Control Style, More "Run-n-Gun"

Image originally from GOONL!NE

If you've been keeping track of me, I hated Killzone 2. With a passion. Now, a thread in the Official PlayStation Community has popped up, whose author got ahold of July's issue of the Official PlayStation Magazine, where it's being reported that Killzone 3's controls won't be as "heavy" as KZ2's controls. I say "thank god," because the controls killed it for me for the game. I haven't beaten the game, solely because of the controls. It can't be done. My FPS skills were honed by Halo and Call of Duty, so I'm used to arcade-y style controls.

From the excerpt, this is what we get:

And the controls definitely feel different. They're faster and punchier, although [Managing Director of Guerrilla Games, Herman] Hulst won't comment on any specific changes that may have been made: "I'm confident that when Killzone 3 comes out we're going to have a set of controls that will really appeal to the vast majority of audiences. The heavy sensation of KZ2 is absolutely gone; instead, this feels much closer to standard run-and-gun responsiveness. Oh, and there's a constant temptation to get close enough to use the new...

Sorry, but the GOONL!NE thing covers up a particularly crucial word. Or not. I'm not sure.

[Via GOONL!NE...or is it "Go Online!"?]

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Enslaved, Vanquish Get Early October Release Dates

Good news, everyone! A Good DragonBall Z Game Enslaved: Odyssey to the West and Vanquish get North American release dates. Bad news, they're two weeks apart.

Enslaved hits on the fif, while Vanquish is two weeks later on the 19. Even worse news: Enslaved hits the same day as classic-gameplay inspired Final Fantasy: The 4 Heroes of Light for the DS.

It's not that big of a deal, because what's the chance of a gamer with just a 360 or PS3 having a DS? Not so much for you, but for this guy, I'm screwed.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Celebrate Bungie Day '10!


Every year on the encumbered July 7 - or 'Bungie Day' - Bungie releases unto it's fans something magical. What that magic is this year is a well endowed treat: a five-minute long video, courtesty of Red vs Blue.

This year, the video goes a little above and beyond with the news, so I shan't say anything quite yet. If you wanna know without watching the video - and really, why the hell would you - tread beyond the break (or, you know, go to Bungie's site to fully celebrate Bungie Day).

Happy Bungie Day!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

[MY GAME] Narrowing Down a Game Engine [UPDATED]

UPDATED: Ok, so perhaps I was a bit over my head when it came to Cocos2D. I forgot about Game Maker (I "remembered" about it after perusing the Metroid 2 remake website), so I downloaded it from YoYo's site. Hopefully this will get me further.

ORIGINAL: For those who don't know, I started this blog to help aid me in my quest to make a game. Well, I've narrowed it down to Cocos2D, but I'm still weighing options. I was pointed in the direction of Unity, a trial-based 3D engine by a family friend of mine, Peyton Duncan, currently the Art Director at EA Tiburon (you can check out his website here for his own artwork). The only bad thing about Unity is the hefty price tag: $1,500 for Unity Pro, $400 for Unity iPhone (before their discounts kick in for pre-ordering 3.0, which hacks a few hundred dollars off; $1,200 and $300, respectively). I'm on a budget (a non-existing budget), so the free-er, the better.

That free one would be Cocos2D, something that is heavily used on the App Store (according to their site, 550 games use the Cocos2D engine). I'll be going through it here whenever the 2.1GB download finishes, so hopefully Cocos2D is something that I can actually work with and get something tangible out the door.

Monday, July 5, 2010

[THOUGHT] Letters in Super Mario Galaxy 2

THOUGHT is a new kind of post entry that I'm going to be trying out. We all come across random bits in the games we play that have us scratching our heads from time to time. I take these thoughts and try to give them answers, as well as you closure.

I've been playing a fair share of Super Mario Galaxy 2 lately (close to 60 stars, World 6) and I always check with the Mail Toad to get whatever 1-ups I can before I head out, purely because the decision to reduce your Lives back to 3 when you start up your file again is fucking backwards.

The Thought: How in bloody hell can Peach, in the custody of Bowser, be able to send letters to Mario on the Spaceship with 1-ups packaged with them? I've gotten 11 at one time. Eleven. The Toad goes so far to say how Peach is "thoughtful" in her time of dismay and misfortune.

The Response: Well, it goes hand-in-hand with my belief on video games, death and lives. The ease of acquiring multiple lives in a game is directly proportional to how easy it is to die; the more often you come across earning lives, the easier it is to die in that game. In my first play of SMG2, I logged about 6 hours, collected upwards of fifty 1-ups, and probably died about 15 times.

Sadly, it's just backwards game design. In both SMG games, your lives reset once the game was turned off; you started each play session with 5 lives. No matter how many 1-ups you earned, you always started off with 5 at the beginning of a session. I didn't get very far in SMG1, so you'll have to forgive my ignorance on the game's certain aspects. But, in SMG2, you get the aforementioned letters from Peach at the beginning of your session before you head out to replenish your lost stock of lives.

If you're handing out free lives at the beginning of each session (in the double-digits, no less), why bother resetting the life counter?

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Club Nintendo's Yearly Goodies Announced, Influenced by Halo?

I got the email today, letting me know I can score my Club Nintendo reward for giving them enough money over the past year. Last year, we were treated with a calendar for Gold status members (yay?), while Elite members could choose between either a Mario hat replica or the Doc Louis' Punch-Out trainer, exclusive DLC only for Club Nintendo members. I opted for the Mario hat, which I've given to my NVG-wearing Master Chief helmet replica.

This year, Gold members still get a shitty calendar (with "exclusive artwork," mind you!), but Elite members get a Mario figurine/statue set:

The info for the item, taken from it's product description page on Club Nintendo:

This collectible figurine features beloved characters from Super Mario games. It measures approx. 3.9 inches in height and 4.6 inches in diameter, and comes enclosed in decorative packaging.

Seem familiar? At least in the tiny bit? For a refresher, check past the break.