Archive for May, 2014


I was reading something on Sonic Stadium, and I won’t post the link as they do not need anymore hits for a tacky article. But it was one of those “Top lists” that people usually make in order to generate views for the sake of gaining notoriety.  It was a listing about the “most overrated Sonic games of all time”.

My only thought was “Sonic games are overrated? I thought they were over-hated“. And shit like this convinces me that Stadium’s idiocy could prove detrimental to interest in the series (if Japan didn’t completely destroy interest themselves). I think it’s clear that no one knows how to get the games back on track for there to be any real interest anymore, but a start would be going to the games that people actually enjoy in the series. And wouldn’t you know it, it’s the very games this listing attacks.

As of late, there’s been streams of defamation against the original genesis trilogy which is no doubt brought up as some sort of counter balance against the praise they get (oddly done by adventure fans). The intent being to prove that they “aren’t that good“. The problem with this line of thinking if that it goes overboard. People tend to accentuate the negative to the point that people feel that there is NOTHING good about said item (yes, I’m guilty of this shit too). And we never stop to ask ourselves if these horrible flaws are enough to deter us from enjoying this game?

The result of this conundrum is some bizarre shit like a person who enjoys 2 different things going at it with the person who also enjoys those 2 different things. For example… um… one person likes both Dynasty Warriors and Samurai Warriors, but places Dynasty Warriors higher for so and so reasoning. Then we have the other person who enjoys the same 2 games, but places Samurai Warriors higher for so and so reasoning. Their reasons for placing one lower than the other becomes… a source of conflictYou cannot put these 2 in the same room because more than likely, they’re going to kill each other anyway. And both are going to end up hating their lower choices because they now remind them of “that asshole” who dared to think highly of their preferred choices. “I used to like Samurai Warriors, but now fuck it, it sucks monkey balls!!”

Welcome to Sonic/Pokemon fandom in a nutshell. And the existence of this list.

When it comes to Sonic, some games need to be “overrated”. If people were to ask why Sonic the Hedgehog is considered a video game icon if people hate the series, you would need some reference points. How do you have an icon when all of it’s games are considered shit? It makes no sense. Having all of these attacks on the most praised games in the series is a disservice.

Of course, the article in question tries to mitigate this by saying “all games are good, but still flawed” the same effect is in place. You knock the games down a peg so they’re not praised for being “good enough” to satisfy tastes. Afterall, the writer claims that those games are undeserving of their praise, so why bother trying to tell us they’re good anyway? As high strung as Sonic fans are, all they’re convincing them is that even the “best games in the series” are shit for one or 2 incredibly minor reasons. Afterall, if people can say the story in Sonic is bad because of one plot hole regarding the moon still being intact, this article is dangerous. Since CGS is so rampant, pointing out the flaws in any game is going to make that game automatically shit in their eyes.

Furthermore, do people really need to know why certain games “aren’t that good”? Don’t answer that, Crystalize.

I wonder why Sonic 3 wasn’t included, though. 😛

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28 dollars!? Them’s Jewish prices for these cheap ass toys!

Nintendo actually catering to their fans for once? I thought it was impossible! Certainly, everyone uses the Gamecube controller for Brawl (well… if mine still worked, at least.) so making people use akward controllers for newer installments would be alienating enough. Course, they could do like Sony and NOT CHANGE THE FUCKING CONTROLLER EVERY NEW CONSOLE THEY RELEASE! That way, people can be eased into the shit without needing to readjust for every sequel that comes out.

Isn’t it funny that Nintendo is a company that forces innovation on their consumers via games… but the one franchise that is used for advertising Nintendo’s history and vanity… is using a somewhat practical controller? It’s essentially them admitting that some games don’t need that Black Magic BS they do with their games. It won’t stop them from trying in the future, but for now, it’s one of the few things good about Smash 4 (probably the only thing). It’s as though they have little faith in the game itself to sell people on it now that they specifically make a controller suited to everyone’s Smash tastes. And someone kick me if I use “Smash tastes” ever again.

Certainly, if they had enough capacity to moderately fuck up Kirby in Triple Deluxe, they can fuck up Smash Brothers on a level that is once believed to be astronomical. So how is it that Smash Bros. can escape this conundrum (for now?)

Even more… what are they gonna do about the 3DS version? That shitty nub ain’t gonna cut it.

 

That even sounds like Marine. Alternate universe, says retarded shit all the time, and is a nut. And the best name they could come up with is fucking “Sticks”?

Were they seriously trying to convince us that they didn’t put Marine in this game? All the speculation about Marine being in the game must’ve pissed them off that they probably went “Ok, everyone figured it out. Lets change her clothes from green to some brown caveman drag … and make her a little smarter so that we can prove the fans wrong!”

It seems BRB has about the same level of hostility towards their fans as Capcom, only in the passive-aggressive sense. I mean if they have Mike Pollock going around implying Sonic fans are not familiar with their vocabulary, they must be pissed off.

And they managed to make Sonic and Knuckles look even more idiotic (they should never have changed the designs in the first place). It looks like they just photoshopped some beta Sonic Adventure model onto Sonic’s head.

(random thoughts: I didn’t think Nintendo could ruin Kirby as they’ve done in Triple Deluxe.)

I recently had the chance to play Pokemon Y. (I’ll kick the fan shtick at 30) So far, I’m liking it. It’ kinda hard to decide on a team considering all the new w/e’s look ugly as hell beyond Talonflame and maybe the frog ninja who’s name is preposterously difficult to remember. I get to this city in the “coastal” region, and I can’t progress beyond a certain point because some random chick in a bikini stops me and says “I dropped a fossil, please wait until I find it”. At that moment, my opinion of the game quickly dropped. “This is their excuse of holding me back? Really?”

Never mind that you should have the ability to swim around the stupid bitch, but that needs an HM as well as for some reason, your character can’t swim. Oh he can skate and do grinds but the water isn’t deep enough for you to not take a slight dive. GameFreak has never been good with arbitrary barriers that halt your progress until you’ve completed some task in the games to unlock new paths. The most they can do is put up literal road blocks and say “the road is under construction, please wait until later”. Later never comes until you do something about it. Obviously. But often times I think… “where’s the fun in that?”. Pokemon games have worlds that constrain players by the most arbitrary of barriers that GameFreak seems ever so content on continuing. Ledges you can’t jump over even if they’re 1 foot high (but have to jump over from the other side), trees you can’t simply squeeze by without activating an HM cutscene that takes at least 10 seconds (and Amma forbid if you have plenty of trees to cut down!), Pokemon games can’t seem to shake off the bullshit since day 1.

A while back, I had the prescriptive thoughts behind the meaning of RPG. More specifically the… “Role Playing Game”. Typically, it means you play the role of characters you choose in board games with the most retarded looking dice out there. But going deeper, what does it really mean to “Role Play”? What is a Role? A role is basically a part you play. In What? A movie, an operation, an activity, a process… basically a “job” you perform in an attempt to “contribute” to a team or just people in general. A role is that in which you work.

In an RPG, the role of Archer is back up support. He stays out of the way and picks off people from afar. The mage makes it easier to kill things and can bring people back to life if need be, and the knight is the blunt damage dealer. They all serve roles. This is the party in which everyone is like a giant clock. And the clock only works when all the cogs spin in cohesion with each other. If you play the role right, you will be rewarded. If you perform well in your job, you will be rewarded. Doing your part is rewarding.

Given that, it isn’t difficult to see why no one likes them 😛 . No one enjoys being constrained by… anything really. What is an RPG, it’s a game of constraints, you see. I can see why Yamauichi implied that it is a genre that attracts the depressed. Depressed people are usually the ones who feel constrained. To be constrained is to be revoked of your power. Power to do what? Power to make your own decisions. Power to change the course of your journey. Power to do anything other than serve the roles that you are assigned.

An RPG is a genre that denies power. It demands that you submit to it’s will. To flow with the currents of it’s own choosing. You are merely a willing participant.

So of course… the obvious answer would be to avoid the RPG. Of course… that isn’t possible. Like gays, RPGs are being pushed into every facet of gaming (if it wasn’t obvious already with the amount of stats you have to keep track of, even in a goddamn racing game like…. Sega Racing Transformed?). But… this isn’t about RPG’s. The same philosophy that drives RPGs… can be found in games without stats, even. All the games that feel like hollywood with their scripted nonsense, with their pointless padding, these PC Adventure games which aren’t at all adventures but rather a pair of wood with strings attached to you. Every game you see now feels like a job. A role to play by another’s hand.

For a while, I’ve been trying to bang my head around why Sonic games simply aren’t fun anymore and have rendered the series as irrelevant. Early on, I had commented on the appearance of the homing attack in 2D Sonic, an abnormal addition that was necessary in 3D Sonic for the sake of making combat a non-headache. And one commenter stated that it is to maintain game flow. What is “flow“? Flow is essentially your ability to perform a job well without hindrance. At the same time, flow requires that the person be in full “enjoyment” of the process. There are very few people enjoying Sonic games today. That could be contributed to the fact that the games feel like tasks, one in which a flow must be maintained by the player. Flow is really a mental state that must be maintained to perform a task without hindrance. That means Modern Sonic games are fucking work!

When describing Sonic in terms of a game, it’s a faster “platformer” heavily steeped in pinball physics. But described in terms of a Role Playing Game, you play the role of a super fast hedgehog who is constantly “in the zone“. In truth, playing the role isn’t very fun. But dictating the role is.

That’s why in a lot of ways… people can’t quit Nintendo. See, Nintendo’s games didn’t innovate anything other than giving you power. What kind of power? Why… the mortal sin of allowing you to walk a different path!

Nintendo games gave the players what? Freedom in how to progress. Freedom is Power. To be without hindrance.

As it turns out, some of the best selling games and franchises of all time… are also the games that give you the most power. Grand Theft Auto, Minecraft, the Pokemon Series, the earlier Mega Man games, and even the earlier Sonic games. There are many reasons people continue to herald most post-2K video games, not simply as some sort of “nostalgia”, but a sense that these games gave players power. And it was one of the many attractions of Nintendo games. Super Mario Brothers with their Warp Zones and Warp Flutes, short cut cannons, and even Lakatu clouds. Pokemon will forever remain fun so as long as you have the power to assign roles to specific pokemon. You can have one to deal damage or to absorb damage, or to cause status ailments and be used as mere hunting dogs. You have to power to create humble workers who are loyal to their strong general. Nintendo games weren’t great because of an esteemed amount of quality (it’s involved, but not the secret ingredient!) Nintendo games were great because they put you in a position of power.

This is the benefit of video game entertainment. The Fun Factor of interactive entertainment is to grant the user power. The power to be free of constraints. After all, people considered these games to be “escapism”. You wouldn’t need to escape if you didn’t feel constrained, of course.

And when Nintendo went away from their origins of granting the user power? The results speak for themselves. They become like everyone else. Their games self-destructing their save files if you break a particular sequence… is a constraint. Everything Aonuma Zelda… is a constraint. Sakamoto Metroid… is a constraint (an INSULT at that). Playing their recent installment in Kirby feels most definitely like a constraint.

It always seems to be the case… in every sector of life. The more people evolve, whether they age or develop better skills, there seem to be more laws in place to constrain them. As a baby, you have too much freedom because you don’t know a damn thing, and you’re basically the boss of your parents. You can make demands that they will never understand because you need it. But as soon as you learn to walk and talk… there are ground rules in place. Now you can be spanked!

And you betta believe yo mama could wield a weapon of ass destruction.

 

You get older, you go to school, you find more laws in place. You don’t do well, you don’t get luxuries, or you get held back a grade (or that’s how it used to be, thanks NCLB). And when you reach 18, there’s a shit load of laws. You have bills to pay or you get arrested, you have speed limits to follow, you have juries to attend (With a $15 compensation and a thousand dollar consequence, ain’t that a B?) you have selective services, you need health insurance just to avoid a higher tax, you need licenses to get married. To grow food. And please, hold your explanations for why these laws exist, that ain’t the damn point. And I damn sure ain’t in the mood to read all about it. 😀

The more people grow, the more constraints come into place. The more technology grows, the more constraints come into place. With that, it is easy to see how constrictive gaming has become. Used games were nearly wiped out, even. Why is it so that evolution begets constraints? A hindrance of power? It can’t be the excuse of how dangerous humanity “just is”. Who creates the constraints? Those who are already in power. Those in power wish to maintain power. By hindering those without power, they have nothing to fear. To be withheld of power and to be told that power is something dangerous to have… you have a more complacent and more compliant people. You notice how most people who love these powerless games… always seem to adhere to the principle of “what’s good for the developer” instead of “what’s good for me”?

It is because they have been denied power… and have taught themselves that power is not a necessity… and may even be a bad thing. Notice how the games that give you the most power (most Arcade Centric titles and GTA) are often times the games that get attacked by the hardcore? It might be inherent or something of a hivemind, but deep down, game developers know… that giving the players a taste of power in their games… creates demands and expectations. The player will actually want certain things in games. The player will want the return of warp zones and alternate paths in video games. The layer would want more options with equal consequences. The bottom line is the players will want better of the power they had before. The developer, however, wishes to have the power alone. Creating a game of hindrances (Aonuma Zelda) and trying to convince people that this is how the games have always been! It is a devious.. yet often repeated… strategy of maintaining power. If you can convince people that they were never meant to have power… then they will not seek it. They will often demand their own subjugation. And that makes it easier to control them.

The hardcore couldn’t be better slaves to the current gaming environment. Powerless games create powerless customers. And yet, there is growing disinterest in games every day. Why is that? Because people realize that they don’t “need” gaming for entertainment. But people do need to feel “powerful”. If they can’t go to video games for a typical power fantasy, then where can they go? There’s no other outlet for feeling powerful, nothing in the civilian environment is created to make powerless people feel powerful, that’s too dangerous for those in power. And if a video game is not made to make the people feel powerful, then what good is a video game?

I call it “junk entertainment” for a reason. Junk is undesirable, don’t you think?

Can anyone tell me what the fuck these Fairy types are weak to?! These pink bastards are whoopin my ass.

 

BIG ASS TITTIES!

But for real, this is probably the only Nintendo game that has my interest. And I’m not sayin that because I actually like the “Warriors” games, but as a Zelda title, it’s legitimately interesting for once.

Link has a scarf. He didn’t look “Adventurous” enough.

 

I’m gonna blow your ass straight off the map! Goodbye!

THERE CAN ONLY BE ONE!

Did someone order some Bleach!?

Does every game have the Laido Sword Style now?

Cool villains

And Magic Peep shows

People were turned off by the mere mention of the game having the gameplay of Dynasty Warriors because Dynasty Warriors…. is repetitive. I’ll admit, if you gotta grind for any kind of special shit, it gets old after about 50 fights or so, but there’s just something appealing about using incredibly powerful characters against thousands of mooks and completely destroying fields of enemies. In the context of Zelda, it’s orgasmic to think about all the wild shit you could do.

I’m kinda hoping they make it more like “Mystic Heroes” where you can use special moves at anytime and not be chained to a combo string, and having actual “levels” rather than just fields of enemies with random missions to complete.

And for the record, this game was the shit.

If they do, Hyrule Warriors would turn out like a modern Zelda 1 or 2! Just not as hard and… having enemies from Skyward Sword. W/e the case, the series needs to branch away from the Aonuma trash that has plagued the series since the late 90s. Hell, since Link’s Awakening. The series desperately needs less puzzle crap and more action, and the Warriors series delivers on action.

My concerns are, of course, if the game turns into a grind fest. ALL Warriors games have this problem, whether it’s the Gundam games or the Chinese people or the Samurais, or even the Chibi’s, Koei cannot break free of the Grind methods for “replay value”. Zelda has never been a Grind up until Skyward Sword, and wasn’t fun even with that.

But yes. This is a step in the right direction. In terms of not making Zelda a long drawn out bore, that is.

(random thoughts: 

SS IMPA IS BLEACHED!!!!

Over the course of this past week, I got stuck baby sitting this kid who shall be referred to as “Runt”. Why? Because he thinks it’s cool for some reason. Hey, he’s 6, sue him. To my amazement, he’s so damn well behaved. Either that or taking him to see Godzilla scared the piss out of him.

Anywho, his mother had bought him a game for his DSlite. Unfortunately, the game isn’t for the original DS.

Runt just wanted a Sonic game, and this was the only one she could find in stores atm the moment. And even more unfortunate, since I bought I a 2DS….. yeah. He wouldn’t shut up about “Lemme play on your game! Lemme play, lemme play!”. I just bought this thing and now I fear it will get broken. And then he got the nerve to be talkin shit. “Haha, your game doesn’t close!”. You tell him it’s to save money, “why are you so cheap?”.

*sigh* So I let him play. He gets stuck on Zone 3 of Wind Valley cause the purple fuck kept throwing balls at him, and he can’t dodge worth shit. So now I gotta play this mug. You have to deal with this bitch 3 times in one stage. It’s not difficult, but it is repetitive.

I can tell you that the game controls like piss. The moves that Sonic performs are far too confusing. Like his “lolparkour” shit where half the time it’s automatic, and you have no real control over it.

I really hate how you need to hold down those painful shoulders just to run at a decent speed, but at least you just press Y to spindash, but Dimps managed to fuck that up too. You have to charge the spindash to max to get high speed and not stop midway after about 7 feet. The fuck kind of shit is that!?

And the “charged homing attack” makes no sense either. You have to hold back from attacking anything until you get a full, yellow circle around the enemies in order to do more than just tickle the bitches into submission. That also includes targeting multiple enemies in one setting where it feels like Sonic does this autonomously.

It feels like the game was taking control away from me with how automatic everything is. Think Metroid Other M’s “dodge” function where pressing anything makes Samus dodge moves.

But after that, I managed to get enough rings to go into the special stages. I figure what the hell. But… ugh, you would not believe the shit you have to put up with in this game. For the special stages, you have to stand up…. and turn around like a retard… just to steer Sonic in the game! I tried to give it to Runt, but he said “it looks hard”. I forced his ass to get it away from me after a while, my shoulders were in PAIN! He was so confused by it. He couldn’t steer and collect all the blue balls in time, and we missed the Chaos Emerald. The Runt was really frustrated. I could see the “pissed off” in his face! 😀

Honestly, you have to lift the 2DS above your fucking head… just to fly upward! I thought Skyward Sword was obnoxious, but this is both stupid and completely uncomfortable to your arms. I was really sore, I’m like “this game is dangerous!” So, I let him have it, he figures out the little homing attack charge shit and whoops Zazz’s ass in the boss fight. “That was easy” he says. This coming from a kid who had trouble fighting the first boss in Sonic 3.

In the next zone, it’s a desert that’s mostly straight forward, seems like a fun level until he gets to these twisters that’s blocking his path. He quickly passes it back asking for help. So I see like a small opening to the side, but there’s an invisible wall that forces me back into the twister.

We were stuck there for a good 4 minutes until I found that…. wisp or something. It lets me suck shit in. So I find it, and he’s all like “COOL!”. what a joy. The only thing he likes so far is one wisp. THAT’S what you need to break through the twister.

So I learn right off the back…. that Wisps are actually forced in this game. Colors is starting to look like a million bucks. In those games, Wisps were practically optional despite it’s few levels that everyone seems intent on reminding you about. But in this game? You NEED to use Wisps. You have NO CHOICE.

So after getting past the twister, he snatches the damn thing out of my hand… and dies 😀 . Lots of bottomless pits, and he lost the wisp. After a while of running around, we come to some worms that have to be killed in the most esoteric way imaginable. Of course, he gives it back and… shit, I don’t know how to kill him either! Just then, we learn about the little “Sonic Boom” or whatever, you jump and then press your attack button in the air. It just dazes him and he exposes his weak point… and you repeat this process until he’s dead. “Why do you have to do all that?” he says.

So after getting past the level, we get to the next and…. switch puzzles. Great. For a Sonic game, it sure is intent on slowing you down deliberately. It seemed, at this point, that Sega was confused at the complaints the games got, like “Oh, Sonic isn’t about Speed!” so they put so much WORK in this game that you have no choice but to take everything slow. Sega doesn’t seem to understand. Sonic games allowed you to move at your own pace. People complaining about how the recent games were “all about speed” doesn’t = put so many roadblocks in my path that I HAVE to slow down anyway. This game was starting to get repetitive as the entire level is filled with switch puzzles where you have to trick these living balls into running into switches. Runt didn’t even want to play the level.

I had to play the rest of the world, act 3 was some sort of Sand maze where you have to find a million switches. Yes, Lost Mind LOVES switches! And Fat fuck was piss easy.

So, onward to Zone 3. Damn this is a Mario level.  Even Runt thought it looked like Mario. So, Act 1 he played through, died a million times due to the stupidity of how the game seems to warp it’s own gravity (it’s too easy to get lost in water stages, but if you use the drill wisp and stop, the world might spin around, disorientating you. This shows how poor the level design is. The game expects you to run through it normally so it will rotate itself, but if you have drill wisp, it doesn’t rotate, the camera remains stationary. This is the most disorientating level in Sonic history).

After that, we get to the most embarrassing level in Sonic History. Where Sonic has to make Apple Juice to progress. This level shows how repetitive this game is as you must repeat the same bullshit a good 4 times in a row. Top picture shows that you need to roll apples into ditches for…some reason, and bottom shows you need to grind apples to raise water…. “Apple Juice” high enough to reach a warp gate. By this point, Runt thinks the game is stupid. “Why do you have to make pee? Can’t we just use the flying power?” Hehe, “pee“.

So the next level is one where I gave up on. This level depends on your proficiency of using the Dill Wisp. Fuck this level. Fuck it in the Ass. I have died 13 times on this one level. It is beyond stupid. Firstly, controlling the Drill Wisp in 3D is a pain in the ass, it’s very sensitive, moving up and down is a nightmare, and if you bump into any walls, forget it. You will fucking die. Runt was beyond pissed off with this level. “I WANNA USE THE FLYING POWER!”

He started asking the one question you NEVER want your audiences to ask. “Why do I have to do this!?”

We took a break after this piece of shit. After a while, we went back to it because for some reason he wants to see more of the game. After more blood, sweat, and tears, we FINALLY got passed it, and went on to fight Zik.

This fight was pretty tedious, but what tickled me was when Runt was going on about “Why does the old guy use fruit? I thought he was a ninja!” That he got from the low quality cutscenes they managed to shove into the handheld version. Blurrier than a youtube video.

So after the most HELLISH world, we get to Frozen Factory. Now Act 1 Runt actually liked. It was straight forward, mildly challenging… oh who am I kidding, he just liked the lightening wisp.

“WOW!!!” He’s all excited and shit, and doesn’t even know how to use it.

Act 2 was no different. Runt literally says “the game FINALLY fun!” Where is your “is” boy?

And then Act 3 kills his enthusiasm. Once again, we’re dealing with switches and a snowball that follows you around. This level was tedious to the core, but not at all as bad as Tropical Coast. Runt kept trying to do homing attacks, but he kept getting frozen. He’s all pissed off now “HOW DO YOU KILL THIS MONSTER!?” I’m tellin him “you remember the Sonic Boom? Jump in the air, press Y?”

Well, it didn’t kill him, kinda dazed him, then he jumps at him again and he becomes a stump? Anywho, he can’t die and while Runt tries to push Snowballs, the Snowman keeps coming back and crushes the snowballs he was pushing. At this point, he’s furious, cause the snowman kept destroying the balls and freezing him. “STOP DOING THAT!” After a while, he sound like he’s about to cry, so I yank the damn thing away from him before he starts breakin shit. It’s kinda scary, you got this well manner child about to go into a piss fit over this game. “I paid good money for this, you ain’t about to tear it up”. “No you didn’t, you’re cheap!”.

He a smart ass little boy… how does he even know what “cheap” is?

So he fights Zeena after I dealt with the Snowman (that is one tedious fuckin level). And he has no clue of how to hit her. It’s not really easy to describe, but for the most part, you need to use “Thunder Wisp” to even damage her. Great. Forced wisps in boss fights. So after what seemed like an eternity, he beats her and we move on.

The first damn Zone in Silent Forest… forced wisps. You get some boulder thing where you have to tilt the whole DS just to steer. He quickly gave this one to me. “Oh, make me do all the boring stages”. “Yep!”. *sigh* anywho, this level is so boring. “How do you know where you’re going?” That was a good question… cause I didn’t! Everything you did here took place on globes of some sort, so your surroundings were more or less obscured. But after a good 10 minutes, I give it back to him and he goes through the only Act with some damn good music.

No matter what Sonic game it is, there is bound to be at least one good song you’ll like. Runt was jammin to this shit.

The next Act, he handed over to me as he kept dying and getting lost. I breeze it, taunting him as I do so. Honestly, compared to the previous levels, this thing was cake.

Now… this boss fight… through out the whole game, we’ve been avoiding special stages for the sake of our arms… but this shit here? See, now you have to use the Gyro functions again. The game makes you “search” for Zor’s real owl machine. The same shit you did in special stages, you do here, find the right one and smash him. Runt could not discern anything because “they all look the same to me!”. I ended up having to do it. From this boss fight alone, it felt like Eiji Aonuma had input. And that wasn’t a good sign.

Onward to Sky Road. What was strange about this level was that it looked like the Casino portion of Frozen Factory… but it’s in Sky Road instead. Ah well. First 2 Acts were all Runt’s. He loved the return of the “Flying power”, but got lost. He didn’t know where to go or what to jump onto while using the “flying power”. Eventually, he gets passed it, but he no longer liked the flying power afterward.

I think it was more so what he was doing since now, you had to use it and jump to platforms that aren’t readily visible. But the biggest insult was how freaking short this level is. I mean… I ain’t complaining, the levels in this game can take as long as 19 minutes tops, but really? Dimps just got lazy on this part.

Act 3 (as you see in the shots above) is the real problem. Right at the beginning, you have to use the Gyro function to steer rockets. Nevermind that needing to rotate the screen messes up your ability to readily see what’s going on, especially later on when the game demands you make sharp turns and then Sonic unexpectidly jumps off the rockets. Runt was beyond the threshold of pisstivity. “STOP JUMPING OFF!” Took it off his hands, got pissed myself, tried to give it back, he says “No! You do it!” Ugh… I died more than him on this fucking level! First the rockets, and then these sections where you have to make some of the trickiest wall jumps ever. Because Parkour is so badly implemented and has terrible controls, this whole became a nightmare as you have to master wall Parkour’s JUST to progress. This level is bullshit wrapped in Bacon Fat.

It ain’t nothing compared to this boss fight, though. I might as well be playing Mega Man X2! I couldn’t beat this son of a bitch if I tried. Runt takes it and kicks his ass. O_O

“Hurray for me!” “Yeah w/e” “You just suck!”. Shouldn’t be using that language at yo age anyway, ya lucky bastid.

Took a break after this point.

Zone 7 is nothing more than a boss rush. Each act has 2 retread bosses each, supposedly harder than ever before. I couldn’t tell, they were just longer. Funny enough, when it came to Zavok, Runt was getting rammed while I took over and kicked his ass.

“You were sayin, little man?” “Leave me alone

So we get to the final boss, Runt rapes Robotnik like nobodies business, and the game is finished.

This game took us exactly 1 day to finish. Despite how tedious it was, it’s over with after a good 2 hours or so. “That’s it?!” Runt says with a shocked expression.

I asked him what he thought of it.

“Um… I don’t really like it. I like the Thunder Power and the skate boarding level-”

“Snowboard level”

“No, the Skateboard level in the snow”

*sigh*

“But it’s kinda dumb. The magic fruit man, you make pee to-”

It’s Apple Juice! They’re friggin apples!”

“Can we play that other Sonic?”

“What “other” Sonic?!”

“The one where you go “VOOOM””

*sigh* That doesn’t even make sense, they ALL go “VOOOM”.

Overall, I think the verdict is clear. Lost Mind alienates children. At least the handheld version does. I mean… goddamn, I think this game is easily worse than Black Knight. No, worse than Advance 3. No Sonic game should be loaded with puzzles, period. But combined with all the other shit the game puts you through, pushing snowballs while snowmen come and crush you… it’s a mess. Naw, it’s a tragedy. This is one game that makes you really ponder what in the fresh hell Sega and Nintendo were thinking. This is the Skyward Sword of Sonic games. It has some of the most wretchedly obnoxious “challenges” out there, the difficulty is not balanced (the later levels happen to be easier than the early ones for no reason) and the random spikes in difficulty make no sense either. Sure, make a challenging game, but don’t bullshit the kids either. You should’ve seen the look on Runt’s face when he was trying to push those snowballs.

I couldn’t see how this game would be a fun experience for anyone that doesn’t crave italian sausage. And that fucking water level with the drill wisp. I wonder how many people will go on record to proclaim the superiority of the Pii U version.

“Thanks for letting me play on your game!”

“Naw, you need to thank yo mama for savin that receipt! You need to take this torturous little chip back to the store!”

And for the record, he thinks Sonic Colors is for girls.

Fuck me.

Why was it decided that Lost Swords would be singleplayer only?

The reason that we went singleplayer…well, originally, we were thinking about having a multiplayer option, but because we’re going with a pay-to-win model, we were worried that by having online multiplayer, for all the new users that would be coming in experiencing the game for the first time, they might be immediately deterred by fighting against opponents who had superior equipment and gear—and we didn’t want to have that kind of negative impact on new players.

In the singleplayer experience, having a pay-to-win structure won’t impede the player’s experience with the game.

What’s sad is that they’re blatantly calling it a Pay-To-Win model. And are aware that no one likes this business model. Yet they’re going along with it anyway, confident that it will succeed.

A fighting game necessitates multiplayer. It is the purest form of competitive multiplayer. Removing the multiplayer, more or less, removes the main reason people play fighting games.

The problem of Soul Calibur since Soul Blade was that the games treated themselves more like RPGs than actual fighting games. Players would find themselves customizing their characters/weapons/what not more so than actually fighting. Soul Calibur 4 became more about stats and equipment rather than skill and execution, mainly because the fighting in Soul Calibur isn’t really good. Even then, it’s still fun to bash your opponents in brutal ways.

Namco’s proposition to exclude multiplayer from a fighting game is insane for a multitude of reasons, but their stated proposal is to not alienate anyone from their desired business model. Pay-to-Win is unpopular for good reason. Having to purchase digital items with real money to gain a statistical advantage in a video game causes divides and balance issues. Cutting out the multiplayer only masks the problem. That you are banking on the players to be addicted enough to pay money to get further and further into the game. But who wants to play a single player fighting game? One that you have to “Pay to Win” against an AI opponent? Fighting the AI is simply not fun. Artificial opponents are, no matter what the programming, prone to one-dimensional patterns where they perform the same moves over and over and might lose or win too much depending on the programming. Essentially, this would admit that Namco’s AI programming is terrible and that Soul Calibur can’t be a game measured by it’s fighting mechanics, but more so it’s RPG elements.

This is beyond the threshold of insanity. But what is most concerning is how comfortable they are with calling it what it is. As though they don’t fear losing money off of Lost Swords. It really shows just how confident Japanese developers are in digital considering almost all of the big J devs profits are coming from digital releases. After all, Tekken Revolution was clearly getting more users than Tag 2 was.

With SoulCalibur: Lost Swords, who are you trying to target? Traditional SoulCalibur fans or brand new players?

It might be a little bit of a cop-out answer, but we are trying to target everyone—old fans and new players alike. We definitely value our player base and we want to maintain the quality of the SoulCalibur franchise, but at the same time, this game is definitely catered towards an audience who will experience the franchise for the first time.

He says this while acknowledging the existence of an installment that killed the series and removed fan favorites and changed move inputs for no good reason, rushing production so that the game would not have to compete with Tekken Tag Tournament 2, and just being more animu than it needed to be.

No need to elaborate on how hollow his words are. But it’s worth noting that Namco wishes for audience substitution, much like many Japanese developers today. It seems to be incredibly widespread across the country. Yeah sure, it’s been a good 20 years, but geez.

Can you talk about the difference between western and eastern free-to-play or mobile markets?

In regards to moving to free-to-play, in regards to the user base, the Japanese audience is very cooperative, and we’re very happy about that. The reason for going free-to-play wasn’t so much about the business model itself, but the idea that we wanted to expand the market to the more casual user, and we thought that the free-to-play mold would fit that model better.

This is a telling statement that really shows Namco’s contempt for people who do not agree to their way, and seems to paint a nasty picture of Japanese developers in general, namely Sega. But what’s more is that if Japanese audiences are easily lapping it up, that doesn’t bode well for the rest of world. We don’t like everything the Japanese is accepting of, but if Japanese developers are gonna keep assuming that w/e works in Japan will work everywhere else, they’re going to be globally irrelevant as the years go on. They might be already considering all the games they desire to produce now is exclusively appealing to the Japanese. There’s nothing coming out of Japan that has global appeal anymore.

*sigh*, it’s like reading news about mad men who came up with a new scheme to get money that no one likes, but they’re so sure of it because 5 year olds fall for it. I guess I’ll put Soul Calibur in the “dead franchise” category. It’s been butchered for the last 3 entires thanks to the Tekken whores and the unnecessary changes have ruined the games for the worst. And now this!?

I think I just threw up a little bit in my mouth. F2P and the causualization of games is ruining my hobby.

This is F2P done horribly wrong. An online model like League of Legends would have been much better, where you are just buying characters and skins. I’m sure this game forces you to grind for “gold” to buy necessary items if you don’t pay money.

This makes free players bored/mad because they have to grind, and it makes paying players mad because they are being nickeled and dimed so they can match the artificially increasing difficult ramp.

Fantastic. I hope they come out with a new Samurai Shodown. Probably not.

This game is ASS…

KICKIN that is! 😀 Yo, for real though, this shit is off the hook! This was worth the cramped hands. Bar none, Shinobi Bread Slice is the real deal.

You can tell this game was produced by Stephen Frost. How else was he gonna convince the whole world that Joe Musashi was a Japanese Ninja? You got an art style remeniscent of Okami’s Japanese cel shading, you have a generic soundtrack complete with fuedal Japanese flutes blasting off at every chance, and to top it all off, the narrator speaks completely in haiku. At the expense of even explaining the plot.

Once you’ve heard one…

Dull presentation aside, this game is a prequel (fucking…) to the original Shinobi (if the ACTUAL Joe being based on the very first game is anything to go by. Instead, you are playing Joe’s ancestor/father named “Jiro Musashi”. Now why this game is a prequel is beyond me as nothing in the game is elaborated on, you just have a bunch of references to the Super Shinobi games on the Genesis. I suppose Sega is doing one of Nintendo’s numbers and is shoving as much cute shit into their games as possible. Golden Axe Beast Rider with the gnomes and original coin insert sound effect, everything about Sonic’s Lost Mind, and in this game, take as many enemies from Shinobi 3 as possible and put them in.

It’s not really a big deal. Though having no choice to do research of what the fuck was going on, Jiro starts off in a fairly cliche “battle against a rival ninja clan” as Zeed (enemies of the Super Shinobi games on Genesis) attacks the Oboro Clan village. But for no reason whatsoever, he is sent 800 years into the future where Zeed is in complete control of everything, and Jiro must join a resistance group (not this shit again!) to stop them. Good thing they have no exposition, I would’ve been turned off big time!

That’s enough of the content, the gameplay is tight. Why so? It’s so well designed, it damn near replicates Shinobi 3 in all of it’s essence. Perhaps… A little too much. Right at the very beginning of the game, you have to make some tricky jumps while moving down a large wooden… tower? W/e it was, while it isn’t at all difficult (the double jump isn’t a pain in the ass to pull off anymore), but it was a warning sign that… the game is merely intimidating. A lot of the “tricky shit” you do in this game is piss easy. The real challenge come from the enemies, which is a good thing. Tricky jumps do nothing but piss people off anyway, and the Shinobi series was filled to the brim with lots of trick jumps. This game isn’t an exception, but they are much more forgiving this time around. Mostly due to the Chain Hook which only shoots upward. I could literally cheat the game!

Having a separate buttons for melee and kunai is a welcome addition, but they had to go and use the modernized “3 hit combo” bullshit that does nothing but delay your recovery, making you vulnerable to attacks in midframe. Eh, it goes along with the Ninja themes used in games (every action has a consequence, that kind of shit) so I can’t complain too much. That’s the funny thing, I haven’t really found anything wrong with the gameplay… sans the lack of a dash function. Jiro is probably the slowest Ninja to date, and only having the ability to move faster via a score multiplayer is the silliest thing out there. The game is very demanding of perfection…. just like a Shinobi game.

You can tell these guys are big Shinobi fans just by level design alone, holy shit. Strategically placed enemy… placement, no shit. You really need to think about how you approach each and every one of them. Unless you’re dealing with those homing rockets, then you have no other means than to rush them as fast as possible, or try the really fucked up parry maneuver which seems to work only when it wants to. Sometimes, I could deflect a million kunais, other times I eat bullets. There’s some strict timing to be had with parries. I wouldn’t bother and would focus on trying to dodge attacks… which doesn’t seem to be a very viable option. A lot of times, you be attacked by enemies off screen without warning, so hitting that parry button would be the normal reaction, although with it’s strict timing, you’ll be getting your ass kicked plenty of times.

I’ve not been a fan of modern boss battles, so this game manages to do even those well enough, that just figuring out their patterns and beating whole sale ass on them feels satisfying. Except that laser mine… thingy with the shark… in mother fucking lava. Fuck those guys infinitely.

This game is probably worth a Bread Slice alone. I’d say get it if you can find a copy. Lucky me, I found one for only 15 bucks.

Not too uncomfortable to hold, but still sucks design wise.

I’ve recently bought the 2DS. …..Hey, it was on sale, and I didn’t want to wait any longer to get Shinobi. I have to say, I really hate how the thing feels to hold. It doesn’t feel like I can break the thing as I previously thought, but the shoulder buttons feel so awkwardly positioned. It’s like they put them at the very corners of the device. Not to mention it’s pretty fuckin wide. There’s no chance of it being a “portable” device. I also hate the “3D Pad”. It feels like a more comfortable PSP nub, for sure, but it also feels fragile as all hell. Like I can easily break it after a few hours of playing. Plus…. the Dpad. I sincerely hope the majority of games on this console won’t be 2D AND require the L button, because I can’t imagine having to strain my finger trying to press the damn thing. The positioning of the Dpad is so fucked up, man.

It’s like this thing was designed to piss me off! I feel like this is Nintendo literally saying “fuck you for not worshipping 3D!”. The thing constantly prompts me saying I can take 3D pictures but the thing 2DS can’t use 3D (like it really fucking matters). I’ll say one thing though, that AR reader is some neat shit. Pain in the ass to use, you can’t bend a damn card or else it can’t read it… period. Not even a slight “hump” bend. And the battery is shit!

Nintendo… Nintendo… Nintendo, I…. honestly, it’s not bad if you’re a 3D whore, but it really feels strange to hold if you want to use the Dpad. At least Phantasy Star Zero is easier to play :P. Overall, I can’t help but feel this thing was intentionally designed horribly. The battery life issue was not rectified, the crappy shoulder buttons, and you better have some fat ass pockets or even a purse. It’s… impractical.

This is a problem Nintendo has had since the dawn of the N64. The creation of controllers that have no practicality in regards to basic input.

Feels unnatural to hold a controller from the center. And the stick hurts like hell.

Don’t even think about fighting games on this bitch.

I wish playing Metroid Prime didn’t give me arthritis!

I think the biggest problem is that Nintendo only designs controllers to suit the games THEY wish to make, and makes nothing dynamic enough to fit all kinds of genres, and it really pisses me off when I try to play Primal Fury and after being used to the Dpad, I feel like shit trying to use these busted ass sticks. Cause the Dpad is in a crappy place. So I have to use some kind of Wii-to-Gamecube adapters to try and play this bitch, but the inputs have too much delay now! It’s either GCN or bust! And unfortunately there is no future for the series for me to care about better controls.

Other situations is playing the Conduit 2 on Wii, and I still firmly believe that this is probably the best way to play first person shooters…. until you realize you need to aim well, and doing that requires you put a lot of strain on your wrist. See, the Wiimote isn’t at all designed to be held like a gun, so what happens is that you bend your wrist further downward just to point at the screen, and holding your wrist in that position for long hours is going to fuck you up big time. Logically, you’d find a light gun attachment, but the dipshits at Sega or high voltage w/e the fuck you wanna call em, have controls mapped all over the Wiimote’s face. A button to Jump, Plus to ASE, just a whole lotta shit you’d have to reconfigure just so you won’t kill your wrist. Or position your body Yoga style so as to avoid strain anyway.

Lucky Bastard

Guess I’ll have to use Twin Sticks again…

Just using the 2DS (Maybe I’ll call it Bread Slice for the sake of having a good acronym) feels like the games designed for it won’t feel comfortable. Nintendo is not designing controllers to be dynamic. If not for the Wii having attachable controllers, it would be completely flawed.

Nintendo simply doesn’t think about these factors anymore. If you want 3rd parties, you need to design a console to be accommodating to their games as well as your own. You can’t design a console’s controller to simply show off hardware features and capabilities, and I am most certain Nintendo thinks of nothing else but showing off games that can “only be done with their controllers”. Is that why they’re so half-assed these days? I’m surprised the fucking classic controller exists!

Might as well be the Sega Pico

As you may well know, Nintendo has announced that they… now will be developing games specifically designed to show what games can only be done with the Pii U in order to show it’s value to customers. As many have already expressed, this is probably the dumbest idea they can think of. As one person put it…

Nintendo still trying to salvage the controller’s reputation rather than making quality software.

They aren’t thinking about the big picture here, they can’t seem to see beyond their own game design, and it’s been hurting their titles since the N64. And it’s going to be get much worse as showing off the functions of the Gamepad will inevitably mean showing off the touch screen… which is archaic at this point. Again, the company has had years to prove it’s viability, and they failed in that department. To give you a run down of just how horrible touch screen gaming is, consider the following.

Metroid Prime Hunters. An FPS on a handheld device is a bad idea for good reason. Visual awareness is borked on a tiny ass screen. But aside from that, FPS controls have evolved from Doom 2 where you now have the ability to look up and side step. These additions alone made FPS’s more complicated to play and kinda mandated the need of 2 different control sticks. Metroid Prime Hunters had no business showing up on a handheld in the first place. But ATI or whoever figured they could use the touch screen to substitute for the lack of analogs in that you use the stylus to look around and aim, while using the Dpad to move/sidestep and the L button to fire. It sounds bad in theory, and plays like ass in practice. It is dreadfully uncomfortable to play, and the need to use the same screen to select weapons, missiles, and morph ball would require you look away from the top screen and peek at the bottom to see what you can choose. Because you can’t “feel” any of the different options on a touch screen. You need to be aware of where your functions are at all times. This is why Iphone games can get away with this touch bullshit and Nintendo cannot. Eye contact with the screen needs to be maintained, but having to focus between 2 screens for options and combat is a pain in the ass. And even aiming is much worse in this game.

Did I mention this shit cramps!? The DS(lite) is simply too small to have games like this on it, and you’re playing one-handed with the stylus in the other, so you’re using more muscle and energy to hold and balance the DS in the air (because fuck playing this game on a table). It doesn’t take long for the position to start being incredibly uncomfortable. Imagine playing MPH on that big ass Gamepad one-handed.

But hey! What about IPADS!?

How many Ipads have buttons you need to press in tandem with touch screen controls on their games?

Nothing says “trying too hard” like Eiji Aonuma’s design team. In their misguided half-assed quest to prove the viability of the DS’s touch controls, they’ve revoked you the ability to use buttons. Instead, you have to use the stylus for everything. Just to make Link follow a fairy, scratching the screen to simply attack, use weapons yadda yadda. Who’s bright idea was it to make it so you couldn’t move without pointing to something on the screen? Not only does it make it difficult to move around obstacles and enemies, it also means you have to be very  precise so as to not accidentally swipe the screen too fast or else you’d make Link attack. Why should you care? Well, lets say there’s this temple you have to run through a million times… and there’s these Knights that are not to be fucked with. If you waste any time stopping, they will catch your ass and you will be very sad.

Even beyond the realistically limited controls, most of your time will be spent sailing by drawing lines and using tedious touch controls to contend with enemies and redraw your routes just to turn the hell around. For all of Wind Waker’s faults, it didn’t have busted ass controls in how you get to sail the crappy seas. Having to draw a line, watch as the ship moves, stop, redraw a line, and wait for this slow ass boat to turn around is impractical, especially if you’re trying to avoid being hit by enemy attacks or being invaded. Why? Because the idiots were on a mission to prove the viability of the touch screen, and instead made a game that is more uncomfortable to play than usual.

Best of E3 my ass

Castlevania Dawn of Sorrow. A game that could’ve been good. Could’ve surpassed AOS in many ways…. but fucked up completely. Not because of the touch screen, mind you (though it is involved), but they essentially made the same game, only with more grinding and worse boss fights. How so?

This damned thing here!

When you kill a boss I mean reduced to the very pit of death, you have a little minigame here. See that damn circle? Guess what? When you kill the first boss, you have to draw a V. Right? Right. See, you need to draw a near perfect V. If you fuck the V up, the boss regains health and you gotta fight him all over again, and then try to draw the same V. This is their “Magic Seal” system.

Some of these bosses don’t fuck around. Most of all that puppet master that could kill you in one hit. You are going to be seriously tired after dealing with just a few bosses, and your resources will probably be depleted (health potions, MP recharges), but you will be doomed if you do not draw these symbols perfectly, and they become way too complicated as you progress through the game. So the harder the bosses, the more likely you will want to be done with them. But the Magic Circle system is the biggest fuck you in Castlevania history. If you screw up just one inch of a perfect line, you have to keep fighting these bosses over and over again until you get it right. It’s made worse by the fact that you have to quickly get out your stylus and draw the symbol as fast as possible. If you fail, put it away quickly and re-orientate your thumbs to fight some more.

These are all absolutely moronic control schemes and gimmicks that have done more harm than they ever have done good. After a while, developers stopped trying to make the touch screen work and went back to making normal games. Touch screen controls simply are not practical.

I dread what kind of shit Nintendo is concocting because based off these experiences, I know for a fact that they will make very horrid control schemes in some vain attempt to “prove it’s worth”. They’re a lost cause.

Again, how does a video game benefit you? By entertaining you. How does the game entertain you? By being “fun” first and foremost. The shit I described is not fun. Why? The controls are not practical for playing a game. If the controls are not comfortable or practical, they create an artificial barrier to entry. People can’t enjoy a game if they don’t like to “play” it.

When the Wii was first announced with that controller, everyone was dumbfounded. We imagined how it would be feasible trying to use a tv remote to play any game on the Wii, especially that of Super Smash Bros. It wasn’t until after the attachments were revealed that people stopped worrying to death. You remember the PS3’s boomerang?

Doesn’t at all look comfortable to hold.

Sony changes the design back to the Dual Shock models almost immediately. Why can’t Nintendo do some sort of recall back to the drawing board?

As much as we’d like to believe so, they’re not idiots. Most hardware revisions, they take consideration into improving their devices in every area. 2DS still has terrible battery life. They don’t give a fuck. Nintendo has forgone the ideals of benefitting their customers, and their announcement of making games to prove the capabilities of the gamepad is pure proof of it. Doesn’t matter if the controls won’t be practical, Nintendo doesn’t care about practical controls. It’s the number one most frustrating thing about this company when they’re not jerking you over with USB ports you can’t use over some shit about “piracy” even though people can easily pirate the Wii with SD Cards anyway.

So uh… are the AR cards useful for anything else besides little virtual… figurine thingies?