I would love to have
posted more last week. I would have loved to have something worth
saying, but life's been less than friendly lately. I have been
working more hours in a week that a person should unless they are
holding down a second job to pay the bills. It's one thing to have
nearly 60 hours of work in a week, but it's another to have nearly
60 hours and have no overtime pay and no chance for a day off in the
middle of all of that. Yes, Memorial Day was free from work, but
that was it for the last two weeks...and it continues this week
until Friday afternoon rolls around.
I have sneaked in a tiny
bit of time with Psychonauts lately and am loving the game. But when
you're exhausted, this is not the game I'd pick. I mean the writing
is far to witty to waste on a sleepy brain. It would be like
watching a David Fincher movie when tired. You might have some fun,
but you will miss the best parts as they fly past your inattentive
I aim to return to
Psychonauts soon. Until then, I have gotten some time with Android.
When you're alone at work on a Saturday and a Sunday, it is nice to
avoid reality for a few small breaks with some portable gaming.
That's why I'm glad for Kemco, since they make some amazing RPGs
that can let one escape reality while also being able to be played
in tiny doses. Do you only have five minutes? You can at least
battle a few mobs.
However, being recently
initiated to Ice Cream Sandwich, I can say that Android is not my
best friend right now. I mean ICS is a nice update for many features
(it feels far smoother than Gingerbread did). However, with Kemco's
RPGs, it feels like memory is now at a premium. I mean playing
Symphony of Eternity, I actually would have to use task manager to
shut down "contacts", "Gmail", and other tiny footprint apps just to
squeeze out enough RAM to keep Symphony of Eternity from dropping to
3-5 FPS from time to time.
I also have to say being
forced to buy a $2-$3 app is lame, but ICS does force that. I like
to know when I get a text or a message of some other form, but I
don't want it announced to every corner of the world. At bed time,
this is especially important (very low volume messages and
notifications). However, I always want my ringtone to be loud, since
if I get a call at 2AM, it might be an emergency. Let a call wake
me, but not me getting a new email from Amazon saying that they are
stalking me ("We noticed you looking at batteries for your phone.
Here are some you might like, despite how you did buy one off our
site just a month ago") at 2AM. Well, ICS ties ring and notification
volume, leaving you with either too low of ring volume, or being
waken up with every damned email you receive. To fix this, there are
some nice apps that adjust the ringtone volume after it has been set
low for nearly silent notifications. Still, having to pay $2 or $3
is a shame when ICS should have not limited functionality in the
first place. However, I happily do support the people who make these
needed apps and was happy to pay them for help...I just don't see
why I have to support a solution to a problem that shouldn't be.
How many times do we
have to hear it? I've heard it ever since the Gamecube came along.
It was heard, once again, when the Wii was being announced. You
should know the deal from Nintendo by now; will have games for mature audiences. This has been said
ever since the N-64 failed to have anything to grab the
so-called-serious gamers. I mean the N-64 failed to generate a mass
market appeal, so it was always said that Nintendo is too kiddy.
Then the Gamecube came along with talk of games like Eternal
Darkness and Resident Evil 4. So, when the Gamecube failed to find
mass market appeal, the Wii was announced with talk of how games
would be darker, including Metroid Prime 3, and ports of some
supposedly mature titles that were on the PS2 and Xbox for the
previous two years.
Now the next round
of Nintendo trying too hard is upon us.
The Wii-U will be filled with mature games for serious gamers!
Really? Ok, the Wii-U is getting Batman Arkham City (only a little
over a year late, at best), Mass Effect 3 (only about 10 months
late, at best), and Assassins Creed 3 (maybe not late to the party).
However, while trying to bring about these so-called-serious titles,
Nintendo highlights their goofy social interface, the retention of
the Miis, no real word on if they will finally kill the damned
friend codes (do you really want to see this system continued any
longer?), and almost no real word on exclusive serious elements.
Yes, ZombieU will probably be exclusive, but it will probably be
something made by a group of development staff who are B-team at
It just feels like
Nintendo cannot learn a lesson. They are like a dog that pees on the
rug, gets scolded, and goes right back to the same spot to mess on
the rug again. If any company needs a solid rethinking of strategy,
I think it has to be Nintendo. They have lost a step...and that's
after the numerous steps they have already lost. The only
intelligent idea they seem to have going for them right now is they
have seen that the DS was a good device. So, no 3D in sight, no
Wiimotes being shoved in our faces, and a controller with a DS style
touch screen (making the Wii-U a lot like a DS by having two
screens, counting the TV). Of course, they still have a controller
getting 3-5 hours of battery life, another lesson not learned when
the dog took a piss on the 3DS carpet.
I can assure you,
at the end of the Wii-U generation, Nintendo will once again be in
last place for console sales at the end of the generation when
compared to Sony and Microsoft. I can also assure you that the total
number of non-shovelware, exclusive "mature" titles for the Wii-U
will be easily counted on my fingers. I also can assure you that any
crossplatform titles that fits in as "mature", like Assassin's Creed
3, will be best reviewed on the competitors' consoles. I just get
too damned tired of seeing Nintendo do the same thing every
generation without any thought of how pathetic it is to see the
cycle that will always repeat...at least until Nintendo finally just
kills off their business and goes the way of Sega (first putting
Nintendo franchises on Playstations and XBoxes, and then eventually
forcing horrible attempted games of their mascots on whatever
console will take them in, and then just being a joke...I miss
Sonic...). Give them ten to fifteen years and you will see astounded
faces if you mention, "did you know Nintendo used to make consoles?"
I don't mean to make it
sound like the only thing I can say about what I've read and heard
from E3 is how much I loathe Nintendo...but...well, it's more of a
fact that Nintendo has announced something at E3 and Microsoft and
Sony just aren't doing anything revolutionary or innovative. I mean
Microsoft has smart glass or whatever, but until anything is really
presented on it, it's just another gadget. Sony...well...there are
games coming and no real explanation on why anyone should care about
the Vita (getting original Playstation games is too low on the news
radar to even be on the news radar).
they are not giving anything really new, since Wii-U has been known,
the controller hasn't really changed (a slight redesign is nothing
unexpected when a system is still in the pre-release stages), and
they are giving the same talk they give every time a new console is
getting ready for launch ("we'll have mature games, we'll
revolutionize gaming, we will be where all the cool kids are at, we
will...blah, blah, blah"). However, they sure do bring the comedy in
how hard they try and just seem to fail at the concepts of why they
are failing pretty badly for the last few generations.
No matter what
Nintendo claims, they are failing to get "mature" games to their
consoles. Ever since the N-64 came along (when Nintendo decided to
become far more family friendly), they created a great divide
between the bulk of gamers and the casual hobbyist style gamers. The
bulk of gamers don't want mature games, or sports games, or any
other single style of genre. The bulk of gamers want games in
quantity and quality. Nintendo has tried to bring "mature" with the
Gamecube (Eternal Darkness) and with the Wii (Red Steel) and that
was about it. Yes, the games were mature in content, but they were
not really all that great and they were representing the system
launch and not much else. Where were the mature games after the
launch window? I can't answer that because they mainly disappeared.
However, where were the other styles of gaming that were not party
games and family friendly games? Where were RPGs? Where were sports
(besides Madden with so many issues due to Nintendo being the only
company who understands their hardware enough to make good use of
it)? Where were the weird games? Where were the action games? Where
were the games in general?
The large problem
Nintendo has put upon themselves has really tied in to just failing
to give a console that developers want to work on. The Wii was
interesting, in theory, but no early game developers knew how to
handle the motion and pointing aspects of the wiimote. So, original
broken shovelware was made, or poorly attempted franchises came
along that failed compared to the alternate versions on the PS3 and
360. On top of that, Nintendo always kept things too simple with no
HD on the Wii, no real disk format on the Gamecube, and a cartridge
based N-64 when the rest of the world had moved on to larger and
cheaper optical disks (CD/DVD).
True, it sounds
like the Wii-U is at least trying to avoid being entirely backwards
in technology when it finally launches, but it still will be weird
to developers. At least the DS has given a decent template of how to
utilize the Wii-U. However, after failing to entertain developers
and gamers for three entire console generations, it is hard to bring
the trust back in house. While some developers seem interested in
jumping on board, I've yet to see enough games to really show that
gamers will follow. I mean when you have no word of the big hitters,
like Call of Duty, coming aboard, it looks bad.
When you instead
offer a year old Batman game and try to hype it, it looks very
bad. Just because the Wii-U will supposedly offer exciting new ways
to play Arkham City, it doesn't mean anyone will come back for
another round of a game like this. It's been a year, the game is
somewhat long, and if you went for Riddler trophies, then you
probably never want to touch the game again. You had your fill and
are ready for the next game, not the previous game. In an age when
new games come along every month, and all games are equally fighting
for your money and for space on a shelf, we as gamers just don't
have a reason to pay full price for something old.
Of course, this is
pretty close to the typical Nintendo launch style. Talk about how
the gamers will come back, how the developers will stick with the
console for the entire generation, and how you will now fix the
mistakes (without calling them mistakes) of the past. Instead, the
cycle just repeats.
If I sound bitter,
I don't think I am. It's just a little annoying to see that this can
keep happening. Yes, I can look away. In fact, that is what I aim to
do. Ever since I had buying power (read: once I started to get an
allowance as a kid), I have bought every single major (no to crap
like Game.com or N-Gage) console I could (not counting
portables...although I only missed on the Vita on that, so far). I
missed the Sega Mastersystem. I also missed the 32X. Sometimes I'm
late to the party (only got my PS3 after LittleBigPlanet came out).
Besides that, I have them all and continue to acquire them all. I
honestly get excited, even when lame ducks are getting released. I
didn't think the Wii would be all that good (and I was right), but I
had one right after launch. I didn't think the DS would be good (I
can also be wrong) but I had it at launch. The reality of the Wii-U
is simple; it will be the first Nintendo console I actively just put
out of mind and never look back at.
If not for
portable systems, I would honestly just look away from Nintendo
forever more. I already stopped looking at Zelda (didn't get Spirit
Tracks and didn't get Skyward Sword, and I don't think I will ever
play either of these). I really am starting to wish Nintendo would
just go away so I can stop feeling so torn up inside about missing a
console (my passion) but also missing a failure (my greatest source
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