After the long-awaited arrival of last week’s video podcast, many of you expressed your wishes that we not wait so long before the release of the next one. Well, for the first time in my life, I’m afraid I won’t be disappointing all of you – here’s a brand new podcast, fully of shiny gaming stories, GamerSushi memes and all kinds of other wonders.
This podcast brought us the monumental task of trying to recap an entire season’s worth of games, ranging from Bastion all the way to Skyrim. We used this as an excuse to try out a new game, Lightning Round, and I think all of you are going to be happy with the results. It was a nice way to run down a staggering list of games in a way that didn’t take 87 podcasts and two years of our blabbering to cover.
In addition, we played a game of Buy or Sell with a number of industry topics. Like we do. Listen up and enjoy, friends.
This post was actually written by Eddy, posted by Nick. Just to clear up any confusion.
Wow. Uh, hi dudes. I know it hasn’t been a long time since we’ve chatted, but it’s certainly been a long time since we’ve chatted in this format – you know, the format where I’m bringing you a brand new podcast. So that’s pretty cool, right? Especially considering the fact that this isn’t a normal podcast, but a special video podcast!
Yes, this is the long-rumored video podcast from GamerSushi Weekend, AKA PAX South, where the GamerSushi dudes convened for a weekend of hanging out, video gaming, drinking and yes, podcasting. I know it’s pretty ridiculous that it’s just now coming out almost six months later, but sometimes life happens and bearded dudes have to go to California to work. And yeah, that gets in the way every now and then.
Having worked my way through most of 2011′s big ticket titles over the Winter break, I’ve finally made my way to Skyward Sword and have been playing it for a few hours. While I do appreciate the art style and the Wii Motion Plus controls work better than I thought they would, the game has some serious pacing issues, specifically in the first few hours.
Skyward Sword starts much like any other Zelda game with the protagonist (Link traditionally, but “Butts” in my game) awakening from a deep slumber filled with dreams of a distant threat. From there you have to do the whole rigmarole of learning how to Z-target, autojump and all those other Zelda actions that are so familiar to us from the past thirteen years of this formula. I get that all these concepts might be new for people who didn’t grow up with the Ocarina style of Zelda games, but for us veterans this kind of stuff can be boring.
The same thing happened to me at the start of Modern Warfare 2 where the game teaches you how to use the basic controls and even runs you through a near carbon copy of the freighter mock-up from Call of Duty 4. Given just how many people bought CoD 4, I would have assumed that people know how to use the controls, but I guess some developers feel the need to be safe rather than sorry.
Getting people used to the way a game functions is essential, but Zelda handles it so, so slowly that it verges on tedious. Once you get past those segments and finally get your Loftwing everything opens up, but getting there is a chore. Additionally, whoever thought that giving Link a stamina bar was a good idea should be fired.
I do enjoy Skyward Sword, don’t get me wrong, but I really would have appreciated a “Yes, I’ve played Zelda” option somewhere along the way so I could just get into the game. This might just be me, but I think they way the tutorial was done was pretty shoddy. What do you guys think? Did Skyward Sword drag a little bit in the beginning? What other games have done this for you?
We’re at the end of the road for the inaugural edition of GamerSushi Votes and I think it’s gone rather well. We’ve talked the highs and the lows, but now it’s time to put all of our chips on the table and declare once and for all what our favorite game of 2011 is.
There’s no cheating here by saying 2011 didn’t have a Game of the Year, no sir. Each individual vote shall be inscribed upon the great Tablet of GamerSushi with chisel and hammer by Anthony, borne up the Mountain of Souls by Eddy, passed through the Cauldron of the Blaze by myself, given to Jeff and his eagle mount to soar high into the clouds to the Sky Palace of the Beard for Nick’s final approval. Yeah. It’s that important.
Now that you know what fate rests upon your mortal souls, vote! What was your Game of the Year for 2011?
Let’s face it: this generation has been one of a kind. Some of the best quality games we have ever seen. And some of the worst service and disasters we have ever seen. As consoles have become more complex, there is a lot more room for errors and I don’t think any opportunities for screw-ups have been missed. But…the games, man! They are so good! But are they enough to overcome the PSN Hack, the Red Ring of Death, the terrible DLC debacles, the DRM nightmares, constant patches due to broken games on release day and the countless other crap we suddenly have to deal with now?
I mean, Uncharted, Gears of War, Bioshock, Call of Duty, Assassin’s Creed, Mass Effect, Dragon Age, Portal and the Arkham series, just to name a few, are all amazing new franchises that stand with some of the best all time. But is the high quality of the product enough to call this the best generation? Or is the terrible state of things for us consumers too much for these stellar games to overcome? Hit the poll and then hit the comments!
Ah, the VGAs. The time of year when game enthusiasts far and wide go through the tumultuous turns and dives of the hype train. Bandied about by double speak and cryptic front man Geoff Keighley, we willingly jump into that nexus of marketing, full of fake celebrities, very few awards and some lame jokes – and all for what? For glimpses of what we can expect out of the next year from our favorite past time.
For all of the complaints that people throw against the VGAs, I do have to say that I enjoy the outcome – actually having something to look forward to for the following year. Last year, we got excited about Skyrim, Mass Effect 3, Uncharted 3 and then some. I’m not saying they’re perfect. But they do what they’re designed to do – hype games.
Anyway, soapbox aside, one of the other purposes of the VGAs is to do just that – hand out video game awards. This year, a number of great games and studios took home the awards. They even honored Miyamoto as the first inductee into the Video Game Hall of Fame. I thought I’d paste all the goings-down here so you could voice your quibbles and rants. Full list of winners after the jump!
SPIKE TV’s annual half-celebration half-”see I told you this is what them video games is like” Video Game Awards show airs tomorrow and in-between all of the trailers for upcoming games there’s a chance for developers and individual games to walk away with trophies.
2011 has been an exceptional year for games and the VGAs are chock full of titles that I’d be hard pressed to choose over one another. Some are obvious winners for me (like picking Battlefield 3 as the best multiplayer game over Modern Warfare 3 and Gears of War 3), but a few I had a hard time deciding on. Do I really like Skyrim better than Batman? That may seem like an obvious choice at first, but then I start thinking about it and maybe I break out into sweat. Who’s to say?
It’s been kind of quiet here at GamerSushi for the past week, but can you really blame us? Skyrim is like some sort of vampire, but instead of sucking blood, it absorbs your very life force. That said, it’s rocketed itself to my Game of the Year just like every single other triple-A release before it. It’s been a really good year, guys. Before I get off on a tangent, I found this video of an orchestra re-recording the Legend of Zelda theme for the 25th Anniversary CD which is being bundled with Skyward Sword, hitting this Sunday. If you don’t get nerd chills, then you might not have a soul. Just saying.
So who thought that was awesome? Who’s getting Skyward Sword this weekend?
Wow. I think out of all the days that could have decked us in the Fall, it was today that I was most worried about. As Mitch has lovingly dubbed it, Doomsday Tuesday happened today, and with it came a veritable salvo of gaming entertainment. Or horrors, if you’re concerned about what this means for your wallet.
While I’m no doubt going to leave somebody out, the big games that dropped today include Saint’s Row: The Third, Halo: CE Anniversary and Assassin’s Creed: Revelations. So, yeah. Lots of stuff to play, I guess.
Rather than doing a slew of posts roll call-ing for each of these gems, I thought I’d put it all together in one post and just ask you straight up: which of these are you getting today? Are you getting any of them at all? As for me, I received Halo: CE Anniversary in the mail, and hope to add Saint’s Row: The Third and Assassin’s Creed: Revelations over time. But for now, Skyrim rules all.
So what about you dudes? Time to weight in on the roll call. Go!
Oh, Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword. You look like a fairly interesting take on the Zelda universe, complete with a sky diving Link, imaginative monsters and some of that fancy Nintendo art design that has made your series famous. But you seem to have some confusion regarding your control scheme.
I guess it’s kind of rude of me to keep having this conversation with a video game while ignoring my fellow Sushi-ans, so I’ll clue you in. As you guys all know, Skyward Sword is a game slated for release on the Nintendo Wii, and as such, requires playing the game with a Wii-mote. Unfortunately for southpaws, though, there is no left-handed control scheme, despite earlier reports that it would end up in the game.
Now, I’m not going to bash Nintendo for this, even though it seems like a drastic oversight. Plenty of game companies don’t allow for control schemes that work for everyone. In fact, it’s often a big deal now when video games come packaged with options for handicapped players, like what Modern Warfare 3 is doing.
I guess my big question is why more developers aren’t allowing for these kinds of options in games? One of the biggest advantages to PC gaming in my mind is that you can customize your keyboard to play the game however you want to play it, and it doesn’t make any difference to anybody. I get that there needs to be some kind of standardized way to play, but would it hurt games to have a more customizable experience in that regard?
What do you guys think of this? Fair/foul on Nintendo? Should more games allow for changing the controls as you see fit? Go!
Nintendo’s been in a bit of a pickle lately. If it’s not the drastically falling sales of the Wii, it’s the unfortunately handled launch of the Nintendo 3DS. In addition to cutting the launch price by almost half, Nintendo has also been forced to announce a peripheral that appears to complete the hardware functionality of the handheld. As can be expected, their investors haven’t taken too kindly to this, and stocks are falling.
There could be any number of reasons cited for the 3DS woes. One might easily point to the system’s price and the marginal upgrade of the DS hardware, the lackluster lineup of launch games or an interest in 3D gaming. However, as we’ve talked about before, some are citing the competition from smartphone gaming as one of the direct causes. While I don’t think that tells the entire story, it does raise a good point: people expect more from handhelds these days and Nintendo could stand to change their formula on either the hardware or software side.
But what does Nintendo think about the idea of developing for smartphones? Here’s what president Iwata says:
This is absolutely not under consideration. If we did this, Nintendo would cease to be Nintendo. Having a hardware development team in-house is a major strength. It’s the duty of management to make use of those strengths. It’s probably the correct decision in the sense that the moment we started to release games on smartphones we’d make profits. However, I believe my responsibility is not to short term profits, but to Nintendo’s mid and long term competitive strength.
While I agree that this would be a fundamental change for Nintendo, it seems like Iwata might be a bit too resistant to change. It’s odd that after the company touted the Wii as a change in the way we play games, they’re so hesitant to embrace the idea of smartphone applications. Wouldn’t a Pokemon or Zelda app perform really well?
What do you guys think about their stance? Would it ruin them or would it serve them? Go!
A new challenger arrives: Episode 34 of the podcast, in which we repeat the phrase, “To Be Fair” quite a bit, even though we are usually anything but fair in these raucous casts which we pod. Also, sorry for Anthony’s robot voice. These things happen over the tubes.
As per usual, we bounce around along various topics, including but not quite limited to Team Bondi, Valve, GameFly’s PC rentals and a throwback to Metroid Prime. After that, we launch into a game of Fill in the Blank, where we vocabitate about next gen consoles, The Old Republic’s expected sales numbers and Bethesda claiming the word Scrolls.
We recorded this guy the day before Counter-Strike: GO was announced, so sadly there’s none of that on there. But next week! Oh, next week there will be counters struck, you guys.
Look at that, two weeks in a row. My, we are on something of a streak. In fact, you might even say that we are streaking. Just throwing that out there.
In this edition of the podcast, Jeff and Anthony acted like divas and stormed off the set, leaving myself, Nick and Mitch to discuss things all by our lonesome. We basically used this time to talk about all the things we can’t normally talk about with those two bozos around, which really means we spend a good chunk of time talking about StarCraft 2. It gets… fairly in depth at a couple of points, so hopefully you like that kind of thing. I know I do.
We also took the three-man opportunity to play a game we’ve never been able to play before on the podcast – a real-time edition of GameCop Versus LameCop, with each of us swapping roles as we see fit. I think the results are particularly entertaining, and hopefully you do, too. You will either love it or turn the podcast off and throw it from your window.
The most epic week of the gaming year has passed us by, and there’s certainly enough news to keep everyone buzzing for the rest of 2011. That’s why we fast tracked this week’s podcast, in order to get it out the day after E3 ended. The result is a super-sized podcast that’s fit for one of Skyrim’s mammoth-herding giants.
In it, you’ll hear our thoughts on everything from the ridiculously confusing Wii U announcements to fighting dragons, buildings forts and rips in space-time. After all of that, we embark on a hilarious rendition of Grades, where we evaluate each of the “Big 3″ conferences in turn.
Alright, you know what comes next, fools. Listen + Rate + Enjoy.
Nintendo came late to the party this year, holding their press conference this morning as opposed to following tradition and doing it on Monday. With rumors abound about Project Cafe and lots of buzz around the 3DS, Nintendo was poised this year to once again steal the E3 crown. Did they succeed?
We here at GamerSushi have spent the last few episodes of our podcast, The GamerSushi Show, pontificating on the E3 2011 showings of the ‘Big Three’, mostly concerning Sony’s recent troubles and Nintendo’s Project Cafe. While Microsoft is reportedly bringing a bunch of hardcore themed games for Kinect, they’ve been rather quiet on this front so they’ll either slip into a respectable second place or bring the thunder and steal first.
There’s also a slim chance that all the major contenders might flop this year, leaving the playing field wide open for the publishers. EA is certainly coming to E3 2011 with a lot of big name titles that we’re all looking forward to such as Mass Effect 3, Battlefield 3 and Star Wars: The Old Republic
Since we’ve shared our thoughts on this before, I cooked up a nice little poll for you guys to give your input on. Who’s going to come out ahead at E3 2011? Will it be the manufacturers, or the publishers? If you have any thoughts in the comments, please let us know!
I’m a little late in posting this, so my apologies to Nick, who edited it, and all of you that are no doubt going into the shakes from desperation. Like you do. I know that’s how much you like hearing us chat about games and acting the fool.
We recorded this episode back in Star Wars week, so the big portion of the beginning is all about that fair series, and what games we loved that came out of the beloved Star Wars universe. We have a pretty lively discussion about it, and I’m sure you’ll enjoy the nerdery.
Other topics of the podcast include the Mass Effect 3 delay, Assassin’s Creed 3 and more. Nick drops in with a game of grades, where we rate some of the goings-on around the industry. So yeah. Typical podcast stuff.
It’s a sad thing, but sometimes we lose our precious gaming hardware through the cruel machinations of an uncaring universe. I know the pain of lending a GameBoy to a friend only to have it returned minus an intact screen and case, or felt the sting of seeing all my game discs laid out bare in the hot afternoon soon, or resting upon the heat dispersal vent for the Xbox 360.
I’ve never had anything really truly horrible happen to me aside from the aforementioned GameBoy incident, but I do know of a computer that has melted not once, but twice. The first time my friend booted up his PC only to be greeted with an unfamiliar beeping noise was a harrowing experience, and when it happened again recently, we knew the device was toast. In both cases, it had been the video cards that had melted; they were originally in a RAID configuration, but over the six years of that computer’s life span, they both bit the dust.
As is so often the case here on GamerSushi, I bring this topic up because I was wondering if any of you have a similar story, or perhaps worse. Ever throw your Wiimote into the TV, or cracked a controller in a fit of rage? Let us know in the comments, you crazy kids.
Another week, another podcast. This week’s cast covers the big happenings from last week: namely, the rumors of Nintendo’s new console, as well as the massive-but-actually-less-massive-than-everyone-first-though Portal 2 ARG. We actually kick things off a little differently in this episode, starting first with the game of percentages.
After all of that riveting discussion (and my consequent victory), we dive into a lengthy conversation about our video game level bucket lists, and the levels we think everyone should play before they keel over. I’m curious to see if you guys like the format of the game first, or if you like it the way it’s been. Let us know!
No podcast will be out next week, since it’s a holiday weekend and all. Which saddens me, as it means we’ll have to wait that much longer before giving our Portal 2 impressions.
Here’s Episode 25 of the podcast. Sadly, it was recorded a week ago, which means it doesn’t have any of the juicy discussion about Nintendo’s rumored new console or Valve’s ARG. But do not fret! Those issues are in next week’s podcast.
However, we do cover a host of wonderful topics in this week’s edition of the GamerSushi Show, including our most inspirational games, Sony versus Anonymous and sex in video games. Steamy.
Also, we tried to get through this podcast without making a “nice” joke – so I hope that makes SOME OF YOU happy.