Okay, come on Nintendo, you really have to work with me here. I try to defend you, I really do. I try to convince people that your decision to pull out of E3 makes sense, and that you do maintain a genuine concern for gamers. But…you’re really not making this easy for me, are you? Okay, well, lets take a look at what they’ve done now. You see, in a recent move, Nintendo has opted to crack down on Youtube content creators who are making use of Nintendo owned assets. So yes, that includes all videos of any Nintendo title. And who is going to bear the brunt of this offensive? The producers of Let’s Play videos.
Oh, don’t worry, its not all bad. Nintendo isn’t forcing creators to take down their work. They’ve simply imposed a content-ID match, simply meaning that they are entitled to all revenue from said videos. That’s better, right?……right?
Well, I guess I have little choice but to grab my torch and pitchfork with the rest of the internet…
It’s a rare thing for a game to truly capture the essence of exploration. The sense of adventure that comes with a new and untapped frontier. Questioning what might be out there, and asking why no one has gone out to look. Dismissing those who say its impossible, those who say it’s too dangerous, those who say there’s no point. Knowing that somehow, outside of logic or reason, that discovery alone is a goal worth striving for. That is the essence of exploration.
Now tell me, when was the last time a game made you feel like that?
Coming hot on the heels of the announcement that LucasArts would be shutting its doors, an announcement was recently made revealing that EA, lovingly known as the worst company in America, has acquired an exclusive license to produce Star Wars titles for the foreseeable future. With the mountain of poor business decisions and unremarkable games, my gut reaction was probably similar to many: A healthy mixture of disappointment, rage and concern.
But after tempering that feeling and getting down to think about it, there may just be hope yet.
In a recent announcement, Nintendo of America President Satoru Iwata revealed that there will not be the traditional Nintendo Press Conference at this years E3, instead they will be focusing on several smaller events directed towards the software they are unveiling in America.
Okay, so maybe E3 won’t exactly be Nintendoless, but it sounded good, didn’t it?
But all shamelessly attention-grabbing titles aside, this move raises a great deal of questions while providing very few answers. Clearly this is a big deal for Nintendo. E3, while having lost some prominence in the recent past, is still regarded as one of the largest venues for hardware manufacturers to pump up their consoles to the public and press alike. So what exactly does Nintendo pulling out spell for the company?
There’s no denying that games are becoming more and more expensive to produce. What with the building full of developers it takes just to handle a top-tier graphics engine, not to mention the producers, sound designers, artists, writers, the butchers, the bakers and the candlestick makers that go into the creation of a single game. Tack on infrastructure, overhead, dev kits and licensing costs, and you’ve got one hefty price tag for a AAA title.
But when a game can sell over three million copies and be declared a commercial failure, perhaps we’re taking it a bit far.
Nothing quite beats the theater for a moviegoing experience, does it? Provided there isn’t some sugar-tripping eight year old delightfully kicking your chair, the theater can provide a thoroughly immersive experience, allowing you to lose yourself in the fields of sights and sounds. The sound you get in a theater is simply in a league of its own, giving you an a sense of distance and direction for everything happening onscreen. Good sound design can make you feel like you’re in the experience, rather than just watching it.
So my question is, why aren’t we using this kind of sound in video games?
Well, rumors are still flying regarding Microsoft’s latest offering to the ongoing Console Wars, but if some of details are true, then the newest addition to the XBOX lineup may be kneecapped before it even begins.
According to some recent rumours, Microsoft’s console will require a persistent internet connection to operate at all, becoming inactive if the internet connection is dropped for more than three minutes. Needless to say, I imagine gamers are going to be none-too-pleased about this requirement. The idea that this several hundred dollar hardware investment will become a glowing, LED covered paperweight if our internet drops out is bordering on offensive.
But a problem such as this requires a full array of trouncing examination, so lets take a deep breath, close our eyes, and see just how far the rabbit hole goes…
If there’s one game mechanic that is practically guaranteed to split the room down the middle, it’s health systems. That’s assuming you’re in a room full of people willing to have this debate in the first place…but I digress. The argument generally boils down to two opposing sides: Regenerating Health vs. Health Bars. The regeneration system, where a short time of hiding in cover will allow your solider/adventurer/space marine to recover to full health, is most often criticized for being unrealistic and removing the threat and challenge from action sequences. I won’t deny, regenerating health certainly has its fair share of faults and issues as a mechanic.
But for all its faults, I actually believe it’s the more elegant of the two systems.
The rumor mill never stops in the days before a console release, with everyone after specs and details for the latest and greatest consoles. Most recently, a wide range of details have been leaked(on slightly questionable authority) regarding Microsoft’s latest project, codenamed ‘Durango’. Truth be told, I’m having a hard time taking that codename seriously, as family friends of years past owned an SUV called a Durango. So now I can only wonder if the newest XBOX will be large, clunky and inefficient….
Right! On topic! Lets take a look at the latest rumors the internet has to offer on the newest XBOX, and see what all of them mean.