A couple of years back, we did a feature about the Gaming Fortune Teller, in which we interviewed Gamestradamus, who sees into the beyond when it comes to the future of gaming. He is blessed with a unique ability to see gaming events before they happen. Rumor has it that he ran into Bobby Kotick when Bobby was but a wee lad, and saw the dollar signs in his eyes even then.
Unsurprisingly, Gamestradamus was accurate in most of the predictions he made two years ago about motion control and Bungie, so we thought we’d pay him another visit this week. Specifically, we wanted to get some insight into his knowledge about the Nintendo 3DS, Nintendo’s new 3D handheld with unprecedented 3rd party support and a huge offering of classic games we know and love.
Ever since last year’s Microsoft press conference at E3 2009, people around the gaming industry have been wondering about what their new motion control system, codenamed Natal, was eventually going to end up being named. We saw a similar thing several years ago, when the Nintendo “Revolution” wound up with the then-strange-but-now-household moniker: “Wii”. Well, news has finally dropped tonight. Natal’s final title will be the Xbox “Kinect”.
While the name certainly isn’t everything, and I see the idea they’re going for, I actually thought Natal was kind of catchy in the same sense that “Wii” was, because it represented something new that we hadn’t seen before. With no controllers, Kinect is certainly going to be an interesting evolution of the motion control platform. By all accounts, this makes Sony’s Move seem like a stroke of genius in comparison.
In addition to that piece of news, there are also reports of the long-rumored “slim” XBox 360 finally making its debut at E3 this week, along with pictures of the new model. Supposedly, the only difference between this new model and the old ones is that the HDD is 250 GB and it also has built-in Wi Fi. To me, this design seems like a step back, especially compared to the PS3 slim, which was such a well done re-design of a system. This rumored model is sharp and angular. If this ends up being real, they might as well call it the XBox 360 Orthanc, after Saruman’s tower in Lord of the Rings.
Anyway, there has also been a short list of Kinect’s launch games, which include a dance game as well as a Wii Sports ripoff. So what do you guys think of all of these developments? Do you like the name Kinect?
Ever since Nintendo dropped trou on the video game industry with its motion control system, and then consequently made a metric crapload of money, it was only a matter of time before the other boys followed suit. We all knew that Project Natal from Microsoft was worming its way into our homes sometime soon, but there had been little development from Sony’s side of the ring.
Well, the gloves are now off. It seems that Sony has officially announced PlayStation Move, its new motion control device that is totally not a Wii-mote, as indicated by that strange blue ball on the end. Anyway, VG247 has a list of all the PS Move news you could shake a stick at, so I’d recommend checking that out if you want in on all the dirty details. The more interesting pieces of information include the fact that 20 first party titles are going to support PS Move when it launches this holiday, and that the device will be bundled with the EyeToy for a measly $100 bones.
A few months ago, I wrote a feature about the things that are wrong with the gaming industry on the whole. Some of that had to do with the games themselves, some of it had to with the journalists that covered and reviewed them, and some of it had to do with the gamers that played them. In terms of gamers that are hurting gaming and its culture unknowingly, console and even PC fanboys rank right at the top.
What is a fanboy? A fanboy used to be someone that just played and loved their system or machine exclusively. I think we’ve all done this at some point in our lives. I remember loving the Sega Genesis and the Nintendo 64 and being just fine with not owning the rival systems.
Motion control. Everybody’s doing it, I’m told. For months, some of us have bemoaned the coming tidal wave of motion control and what it could mean for the gaming industry and games as a whole. On the positive, it could bring more casual folk into gaming and on the negative, it could just dumb down games as we know it.
GamesRadar has written a particularly convincing argument against motion control after their time with the PS3 and 360′s new motion hardware at E3. They pretty much assert that the demos at E3 have proven that motion control can’t work for hardcore gaming, and this is why the Wii is so full of minigame collections. When you think about it, even the hardcore games on the Wii just use the motion controls as kind of a bonus, while relying on traditional movement with the nunchuck and buttons. Typically, the only way to really eliminate the pain of movement with motion control is to stick the game on rails (a la Wii Sports). Here’s a tidbit from the article about our traditional analog sticks and face buttons:
As much as Molyneux and Iwata might bemoan the evils of the button fascia and dual analogue set-up, both elements evolved into the cultural landscape of gaming for a reason. They seriously bloody work for controlling modern games.
So what do you guys think? Can motion control work for hardcore games? Or will they inhibit the movement we’ve come to enjoy from our normal controllers?
Well, get your rumor counters going, because they’re going to be running wild for the next day or so. Since the first E3 press conference is tomorrow (Microsoft), things are going to be flying off the Inter-tubes left and right.
Some fresh news just broke from Japan as a news service printed that a new Mario game is scheduled to be shown by Nintendo this week at E3, and will release in Japan as soon as the end of this year. Let’s hope it’s a proper Mario game and not a new Mario Party or something like that. Considering Mario Galaxies was such a hit with the Mario alumni out there, this is definitely some exciting news. Now I’m just holding on to my hopes that a new Zelda game will be shown as well, since it’s been even longer since the last one of those.
I know we’ve already had a topic similar to this in the past, but now that E3 is just a few days away, I couldn’t resist. Rumors are starting to fall on video game sites about possible hardware releases (such as an upgraded PSP), and firm dates on games like Splinter Cell: Conviction and so on. There are even rumors surrounding an announcement of a new Mario/Zelda game for the Wii, with Nintendo’s promise that this year’s presser will be focused on games.
While E3 wasn’t a big deal last year, this year, they’re going to kick it up a notch. I figured that in light of this awesome event, we’d place some bets on things that we think are going to happen, and we’ll try to keep score of who got the most right.
So, put down 7 predictions for E3, and we’ll see who comes out on top. The more specific, the better!
I know, harping on Nintendo for not making many hardcore games lately is a little old hat, but they just make it so darn easy to pick on them sometimes. Especially when they say ludicrous things. Take these recent comments from an interview with Denise Kaigler, Nintendo’s VP of Corporate Affairs, which insinuate that Nintendo is totally fine with the teasing relationship they’ve created with their disgruntled fanbase.
But absolutely, I will give you that hardcore gamers have an insatiable appetite for everything Nintendo, and we love that! We love that. When we get to a point where core gamers say, “OK, Nintendo, enough! We don’t need any more games from you guys….” None of us wants to be put in that position, right?
Oh, certainly not Nintendo. I know I hate being bombarded with lots of great gaming options to choose from. Hit the jump for the rest of the ridiculousness.
GameCop vs. LameCop is a feature where Anthony and I argue about video game issues, playing the role of either the GameCop or the LameCop as we do so. We switch roles each time. The GameCop has your best interests as gamers at heart, while the LameCop is just what he sounds like: a total loser.
This week, we tackle several issues including multiplayer in single player games, Nintendo’s lackluster GTA: Chinatown Wars sales and E3 predictions.
Ok, I kid, maybe I want one or two, but even that might be stretching it. Nintendo recently unveiled a whole ton of games coming out this year with release dates, and put them all together for us to see and ogle. Problem is, I’m just not that interested in anything that they have listed, giving more credence to the selling of my Wii.
The only two games that I have even the slightest desire to play are probably the new Punch Out game as well as the exclusive Indiana Jones title, but beyond that, I feel very much “meh” about it. I’ve said before that while I don’t and have never hated Nintendo, they’re just baffling me this generation, and I’ve been severely disappointed in their complete lack of games. So what are they? Check the list out after the jump.
With Nintendo currently dominating the console (and video game) market as a whole, it becomes no surprise that others, namely Microsoft and Sony, would want to follow suit. I mean, who’s not interested in making money hand over fist the way Nintendo is?
Apparently, Microsoft is interested in buying an Israeli VR firm 3DV. The technology specifically has to do with using your hands in front of a camera to manipulate objects in 3D space. So yes, it’s a form of motion control, and Microsoft has got their “do want” hats on as the two companies are now in talks.
So does this confirm it? Will the other consoles be moving towards motion controls? Is this a good thing or bad? Go!
Yikes. We all know that the Nintendo Wii and DS are literally just shredding the competition. To pieces. Dominating all challengers. Nintendo, were it a man, would be kicking other companies, were they men, in their nuts, if they had them. And then there would be tears, and possibly gloating.
So, what else can Nintendo tack to its 2008 accomplishments to contribute to the “don’t-mess-with-us-bitch-we-are-Nintendo” swagger? Well, possibly this: Nintendo games made up almost half of all software sales last year. Forty-nine percent of all game sales.
Yes, really. I guess people love that Wii more than that PS Triple and XBox 360 after all. Basically, they sold 132 million games, with 70 million being Wii games.
All I have to say is this: Damn, that’s a lot of games.
Seriously. Kick me right in the nuts, because I must be dreaming. I’m not really sure how this hasn’t gathered more attention recently, but it’s true- Wii Sports is the best-selling game of all time, now at over 40 million copies sold, putting it past Super Mario Bros., the previous title holder.
Granted, these numbers are a bit skewed, as both of these games were bundled titles with their systems (a PS2 bundled game would have sold 100 million plus copies), but it’s still significant, as no game has ever sold more than the original SMB until now. And it’s Wii. Freaking. Sports.
Curious about the other top 10 best-selling games of all time?
Wow, starting the new year off with a bang, eh kids? Already we’ve got a pretty epic fail/wtf-inducing moment to talk about. And this one just takes many a cake.
Apparently, a poster over at NeoGAF has informed the gaming community this his neighbor broke her Wii by putting a credit card in it. The defense? She was trying to buy VC games and she took “put in your credit card” a bit too literally. Now her Wii is broken.
Funny thing is, there are just as many games to play on it… Ok, I kid. I bash on the Wii too much, but let’s transfer that negative energy into making fun of this silly lady. How’s that for an epic fail? View some pics of the ordeal here.
It’s no secret around these interwebz that while I respect the Wii’s bone-crushing grip on the marketplace this generation, I have a strong disdain for its gaming lineup and its gimmicky system. I will admit that it has served up a couple of titles that moved some small part of me to want to play, but overall, I have been a disappointed heap of a person.
Seeing Wired’s Top 5 Wii Games of 2008 only confirms these feelings of bitterness. I mean, besides Super Smash Bros. Brawl, this list has virtually no substance. This is not me disagreeing with the list. This is me completely agreeing that these are the 5 best games that Nintendo had to offer, and being horribly saddened by that realization.
What do you guys think? Will Nintendo redeem itself in 2009?
Ah, Thanksgiving. When we eat and stuff our faces like we might never taste food again. It’s the time of year where we get to play extra video games, and where we long for Christmas to get the last few that we haven’t bought. In light of this holiday, I thought I’d leave you guys a short feature before departing on my great Turkey adventure tomorrow.
In honor of these great birds on which we feast upon, I wanted to discuss gaming’s biggest turkeys. What do I mean by turkeys? Basically, anything that flopped or completely fell under your expectations. Anything that you devoted your time to that turned out extremely disappointing. That game that broke your heart and that you wanted to be good, but sadly, it just sat there like a lame duck. Er, turkey.
So Nintendo has taken the time to put together a big mega list of every Nintendo game being released in 2009. This list includes both Wii and DS titles from first, second, third and every party in between. There are a surprising amount of games on there, so it’s definitely worth a look.
Now, how many of these games will be good and how many am I looking forward to? Umm… that part is a little harder to quantify. In a season where we’ve seen so many great releases and Nintendo has offered nothing, it’s hard to get excited about an Animal Crossing title in 2009 or a Dead Rising port.
But then again, I’m cynical. I do want Sin and Punishment and Super Punch Out, though.
What about you guys? Anything on the list you’d like to get your hands on for next year?
In an act of total fanboy service, Nintendo has stuck the original NES into Wii Music’s broad and eclectic repertoire of instruments. While I kind of made fun of this game, and still am inclined to, some of the game-related sounds coming out of this seem like they’d be a lot of fun to do stuff with. Plus, I’m a dork for all things related tot he original Famicom.
I enjoyed the first Rayman Raving Rabbids for the Wii alright. It was a good time, I had fun with some of the mini-games, but let’s get real- the rabbids were the best part of the darn game. And even better than the game, the promotions and commercials they appeared in always made me chuckle.
This newest commercial even pulls a spoof on the new season of Heroes, poking fun at the Level 5 business we’ve been seeing on all the teasers. Fun stuff. Any of you dudes into Heroes, or does your heart pull favorably towards some other show? Me, I’ve lost some faith in Heroes recently…
After the recent “dog” demonstration from Nintendo, I had to say that my hopes for Wii Music were all but dashed upon the rocks of my sanity. There’s no way on the lord’s green earth that you would catch me playing a dog instrument.
However, the new Harpsichord demonstration definitely looks promising. Beyond just waggling and dongling, the player looks to be totally engaging with the instrument in a realistic way, without paying $200 for a box full of goofy plastic peripherals. Cool stuff. Maybe I can play the wicked riff from “In My Life” by the Beatles.