Non-Flash Links At Bottom Of Page

Malik (9/6/05)  

I don't know if this stuff is true or not, since it's a little unusual looking to me, but it seems that next week will end the game drought of the summer.  On IGN, there's an updated release calendar for the PS2, and it looks like next Tuesday will be one hell of a good day.  I still have to feel a bit uneasy about this schedule, since it was only last week that everyone was saying to expect We Love Katamari around the 30th, Burnout Revenge around the 16th (which seemed like a suspect day, as well, since it's not a usual Tuesday), but...if this is real, it'll definitely be appreciated.  It's just too bad that Burnout Revenge (one of the biggest and heaviest hitters of the season) will be coming out when an underdog like WLK is being released.

I just feel a bit annoyed, still, with how Burnout Revenge, which will probably do much like Burnout 3 did last year (in other words, it will be the ultimate game of the season, but with a less rabid fan base than it deserves), won't be on the 360 until so late.  For those who haven't heard, Burnout Revenge will hit the 360 sometime in in, it will hit the 360 about 4 months after the game is released on the other consoles, and about 2 months after the 360 is released.  Personally, I would imagine that EA would want this game out as soon as possible, because it will serve much like Madden this holiday season; it will be a solid cash cow.  Also, I'd imagine they would want to take advantage of a new system by giving one of the few games that will have been proven as worthwhile on the new system.

Also, speaking of new games, Konami has announced that a real Suikoden V is in the works.  By real, I mean this is not just that lame direct sequel of the less than stellar (but still better than most games from other series and franchises) Suikoden 4.  This will be the next full game in the series, and it sounds like...well, from the vague details, it sounds pretty lame.  I think Konami is starting to run a little low on concepts and ideas about now.  When the best teaser info that Konami can give us amounts to you playing a very feminine prince in a kingdom dominated (in terms of political power) by women.  It's not that this is a bad setting for a game, but it is a sad sign if this is the big teaser for the game.    If you can't hype the game with a short blurb that sounds freakin' awesome, then there's a problem.  Hell, Konami could have at least just had a blurb along the lines of "It's freakin' Suikoden 5!11!!!11!!!".  That would sound better.  Oh well...this series has been going slowly downhill, so it's not too much of a surprise that the series may be reaching the end of it's viability.  Either way, new info will be rolling down the presses in about 10 days when the Tokyo Game Show begins.

Anyway, the news this week is starting off about like it did for the last few months.  It's slow and unappealing.  Also, with the current limit of good games (just one more week...just one more...), I just have nothing to talk about.  I have played some Morrowind lately, but with a game that old and that well known...what's the point.  Anyway, I guess this is where I trudge off to hopefully find some entertainment on my extended weekend.


Malik (9/7/05)  

It's hard to think of anything to keep my mind entertained. On one hand, there's nothing I want to play right now, with the small exception of Morrowind. On the other hand, it's less than a week until Burnout officially ends the summer drought. It's so close I can taste it...and it tastes like a loss of boredom. 

Of course, things always have a way of either being too much or too little something. The summer was filled with too little to do and too many things not worth doing. Meanwhile, next week is going to be filled with too many games to play (Burnout, We Love Katamari, etc) and far too little time to enjoy it. Next week, I may be a little less active on posting and all of that good stuff, not because of games to play...there's some personal/family stuff coming up next Tuesday that will keep my mind on several places at once (including my mother having some rather major surgery). So, if I seem less than attentive, you now know why. 

As for news, the two main game stores are one step closer to being joined. I still have so many fond memories of being a child and having countless options for getting my gaming fix. Not counting Software Etc (which would become one part of the Gamestop family), and EB, there were Funco Land (still holds a very special place in my heart from before it became a Gamestop store), Super Software (which is not part of Gamestop), Toy R Us (before they became only a mediocre outlet for games), KayBToys (before they pulled the same as Toys R Us), and a few dozen Ma' and Pa' type of game outlets. Now, not counting the soon to be giant EB mega-family, there will only be Fry's and, in theory, Best Buy (the more expensive Fry's). 

I go off about this for a good reason. When competition dwindles, it's the customer that suffers. For example, EB and Software Etc. used to have nice competitions in keeping their customers happy. First one store would have a special (trade in X games and get Y dollars bonus), and then the other would try to outcompete them (trade in X-1 games for Y dollars bonus). However, when all the stores are essentially the same company, this leads to less competitions, and thus we get fewer bonuses. Considering how a game trade-in can net you only a few dollars at EB, despite how they will sell that game for $20 used, competition is what keeps used games on the streets and off the Internet. I guess the next battle won't be in the malls, but a battle of physical versus metaphysical (or Internet). It would be an interesting proposition...but that would be assuming that Internet sales could be as convenient (i.e. no ID theft, instant gratification for console games, and no shipping charges for console games). 

Sorry, I'm having one of those "in my day..." moments. I sometimes have to do that since games have changed a little too much since the golden days of when a geek was not part of popular culture...when MTV would never had been a forum for a console's launch. True, games were more expensive in those days ($99 for Phantasy Star IV at launch), but there were a lot of good things to counter those high prices...and some good fun to see what happens when a company gouges their customers (like Nintendo did when they forced an overpriced NES on the world). 

Ok...enough with the "fond memories" and all of that stuff. I have some Morrowind to play and exploit (and exploit I shall do). 


Malik (9/8/05)  

So, there's some good and bad news about Take-Two today. On the bad side, there's some financial stuff about lost profits, which have caused the spaz-tastic response of a stock plummet. However, considering that the M rated GTA:SA is due out next week, and that Liberty City Stories is still on schedule to be released before the end of October, this financial stuff will clear up soon enough. Plus, there's the fact that Take-Two will be responsible for five 360 launch titles, including my favorite prospective launch title; Oblivion. 

Beyond that, there's some random rumor-like mentioning from Take-Two about an expansion of the GTA license next year. This means one of two things. Either we will soon see a new GTA game, probably on a next-gen console, which seems most likely...or we will see a new game that will f$#% up everything we have learned about GTA. Let's face it...GTA is a truly amazing series. If you don't like it, that's fine, but the quality of this genre is something that needs to be appreciated. This series redefined a genre, rejuvenated the game industry, has set massive sales records, and have pushed an unknown developer (Rockstar) into the spotlight for the last half decade. To mess with the formula that worked so well would be nothing short of insanity. 

I just hope, if Rockstar is pumping out a new GTA game, that they are smart enough to do away with or work around the deal they had with Sony to keep new games on the PS2 before they are released on other platforms. After all, I would hate the idea of waiting for it to come to the 360 and knowing the game will not reach it's peak with the PS3...I mean, if the PS3 is as expensive as Sony has hinted it will be, and as glitchy as it's being rumored to be (there are some nice rumors of how one could disable the Blu-Ray DVD technology, once it's, Sony is the master of the DRE), the PS3 will be far slower to reach dominance than the PS2. 

So, if a new GTA comes out next year, and it's doubtful that it would be for an old generation of console, then it will be either PS3 or 360. If they remain with Sony, who could always go ahead and push back the PS3 to 2007 (they would make more money this way), then Rockstar would be in serious trouble. Also, if the PS3 does come out in 2006, it will probably not be until at least a few months into 2006. This would mean GTA would have fewer potential customers than if they went with the console that already had a holiday season (the 360) to boost it's audience. Plus, with the 360 having a more PS2 styled button layout on the controllers, it is now perfect for GTA playing. Also, I should say that I, as an avid video game console collector (and a true technophile), am still not even sure of when I'll break down and get a PS3. I don't say this as "I don't know if I'll get one", as much as I'm saying I'll only get one when the price is nothing as ridiculous as what we saw in the 1990's with the 3DO. 

Anyway, to change topics, I'm trying to get as much Morrowind time in as possible before next Tuesday. I figure that once I have Burnout Revenge, I'll probably not play much of anything else for a few weeks, so it's Morrowind time now or never. Also, I'm determined to have taken leadership of at least two organizations (probably the mage and thief guilds) before I stop playing. At least I'm close on the Mage's guild, and over half way with the Thieves guild. Well, all of that, and I feel like robbing every possible house blind before I quit, so I can at least go down with a lot of money...which is the true mark of accomplishment for my character's thief-like ways. I just hope I don't pull anymore blunders, like stealing story or side-quest related items and then selling them. I've done that a few too many times and would have to blow a few hours, a few days later, to try to track down which shop I sold the item(s) to. The saddest part is that I don't even need to steal things as minor as books (with over 65K gold, 200 gold is not that important), but it just feels so fun being able to take down some stupid peasant who decided to talk crap about me... 


Malik (9/9/05)  

New is pretty limited right now. Well, I should specify, it's geek news that's limited. With so many games getting ready to launch, the only news (as minor as it is) is that there are plenty of websites, demos, pre-order bonuses, and videos for the soon to be released games...such as Burnout Revenge, Burnout Legends (PSP owners will want to take note, since this could fill the void that Death Jr. caused when it's crapy camera angles ruined any chance for a good action based game), We Love Katamari (the English language version...and if it's the same game as the Japanese version, which it should be...hehehe), GTA:SA (M rated version), etc. 

It's like the drought of summer is finally coming to an end with the launches of next Tuesday through the end of the year. I would be a little more excited, but there's still no news. I enjoy knowing that good games are coming soon, but that only satisfies me to a small amount. To keep me fulfilled until the games are actually in my most deserving and critical of hands, I need something to keep my excitement levels high. The best about something big and breathtaking...not news about what's coming next week or about what should be coming in a few weeks but has been delayed for many months (Zelda, I'm looking at you). 

In simple's all still a little too quiet on the gaming front. I could keep writing about enjoying Morrowind (like how my current play through involves teh-uber character and I think I've found the perfect custom character class...), about waiting for Burnout Revenge (which will kick some major ass), about...well, you should get the point. All of this stuff is either too old (I admit it...when I get bored, like I was recently, I play old games that no one cares about anymore) or just too small (how much can we hype the soon to be released without just boring everyone to tears?). So, I'm really at a loss of words. 

There isn't even anything non-game but geek to talk about. There are no good movies to go off about until Serenity comes out at the end of the month. There are no good TV shows (and there probably won't be for a long time...until reality TV finally dies, as it should have about a year after this trendy bull shit started). I can't even dig deep and go off about music. There is nothing to be overly hyped about right now...beyond saying next week will be good for gaming...which has been so overly hyped during the long and boring summer months, and is now just old and unimportant news. 

I guess that makes my posting either very easy or very hard. Either I can post next to nothing, which is easy...too easy. The other option is to try to find stuff to talk about, since I like to take advantage of having this voice on the site. Blah. 

Ok, here's my only real thought or glimpse of news. For those who never caught on to fansubs, Naruto is coming to Cartoon Network this weekend. It'll be on Saturday from 9-10PM with a repeat immediately after ( It'll also probably be the butchering of another awesome anime. Anime brought to America usually has the problem of severe abuse by the hands of major companies that have lost touch with their true potential audiences. For example, Naruto is an awesome show, has amazing opening and closing music (which will probably be turned into the same lame hip-hop format that plagues all other Americanized anime and plagued 1980's fast-food commercials...), has a pretty full and developed world, and has some interesting plot twists (although some are quite transparent, and some happen for no reason or build-up)...however, how has this show been treated so far? Well, Cartoon Network has given it some lame catch phrase that is something like (I forget the exact words), "There can only be one who can rule the school!!!!1111!!!!111!!!11". I, as well as any Naruto fan, after hearing this, could only think something along the lines of; WTF?!? 

So, anyway...if you're a fan of badly done Americanized anime, or if you want to see another anime get abused and sodomized while in the national spotlight, then there's good news for you. I could be wrong, but I doubt it (look at One Piece). If you're a Naruto fan...well, you'll probably want to look away while saying a silent prayer that the show doesn't last long enough for Rock Lee to get that treatment. 

For Those Who Don't Have Flash Plug-Ins...

News    Reviews    Videos    Features    Forums    Archives    Search This Site    Links    Contact Us    The Car    Disclaimer