Ok, so E3 has been a pretty big deal this year with 2 new systems being shown off and everyone’s bashing Microsoft and arguing which system they’re gonna get, Xbox or Playstation. Well screw all that. Nintendo wins E3 as far as I’m concerned. Simple mathematical formula: Smash Bros. + Mega Man = Win. There it is, it’s science. All other arguments are invalid. I can almost, ALMOST, forgive Capcom for cancelling Mega Man Legends III….almost….
I know this isn’t the biggest typo in the world and not nearly as huge as Resident Evil: Revelaitons or Nartuo, but I still enjoy pointing out when people screw up. On the back of the PS3 version of Bioshock Infinite, you will notice that “forced to” has been combined into one word. It’s weird that it it only happened on the PS3 version but the other version on 360 and PC are typo free. Hey, why doesn’t someone hire me to be the editor?
So the PSVITA released in Japan this past December to less than even good sales. It’s underselling anything Nintendo has out and even the older PSP is still selling better. Not even a full month after launch and the price has dropped by as much as 20% by Japanese retailers for the 3G version of the Vita.
In America, the Vita will launch on 2/22 with a wifi version retailing at $249.99, and a wifi/3G version at $299.99. Considering that the PSP has NEVER had good sales figures in America, and their game support for the system has been terrible, and add now that the price has already dropped in Japan, I’d say wait to get the Vita. Pre-orders for the system are far below what the 3DS had and Nintendo dropped the price of their hand held by $80 within the year of its release. Logically we’ll see a rather rapid price drop in the Vita after it’s American release as well.
On top of that, I’d wait to see what other options their 3G service might have to offer. As it stands right now, AT&T has secured exclusive rights to manage their 3G network. And it appears they’ll have data plans that run just like their iphone plans – $14.99 a month for 250MB and $24.99 a month for 2GB. Personally I don’t see the need for having 3G on a gaming device. Where are you going to be playing that doesn’t have wifi? Seriously.
Lastly, their only reasonable launch title is Uncharted and they KNOW it’s the only game they’ve got going for them because it’s the only one with an MSRP of $49.99, all the others are $39.99 or lower. So unless you MUST have the new Uncharted game, wait to get the Vita.
I’ve heard of some homebrew and emulators working on the Vita already and that’s probably the main reason I would eventually end up getting one, but I’m not going to spend 250 bucks to play games from 20 years ago.
I would like to take this moment, before you dive into this post at length, to warn you that this is a post of unbridled anger. I’m not reviewing anything or giving my opinion on anything. Call this social outrage if you will, but I am one who believes America is getting dumber. Being what this blog is about though, I’m staying clear of politics and economics, budgets, and what have you, it’ll simply be about business as usual: video games.
Deus Ex: Human Revolution was just released this Tuesday and it’s fueled the burning hatred inside me that’s been building for years. Oh, no, I have no problem at all with Deus Ex. I think it’s a great game. It’s the rape of language that’s related to the title that I have a problem with. There seems to be a mysterious collective group out there that promotes the mispronunciation of various video game related terms. I’ve heard the same mispronunciation from many people in various different parts of the country, so this is far from an isolated event, which leads me to believe that this is an insidious intentional spreading of incorrectitude. Now is incorrectitude a real word? No. But I made it up and I can do that. Making up words in fine, at least I’m not butchering the pronunciation of a word that already exists.
Let’s take a quick look at some of the culprits comparing their correct and incorrect pronunciations, starting with the most recent.
How I’ve been hearing it: Deuce. And if you can’t pronounce that either, it sounds like GOOSE but with a D. It’s not deuce, that’s a slang term for pooping, which also means number 2.
Correct way: Day-us. Which is Latin for, God or Deity. As in, “Thank Deus that the game isn’t called “Deus Ex Machina” because then we’d have everyone calling it “Deuce Ex Masheena”
Now this one I haven’t heard in a while but every now and then it creeps into my world and it causes me to regurgitate in my mouth a little bit. It’s mostly parents to blame for this one and I just don’t understand what their problem is. Kids will say it the right way right in front of their parents and then the parents still say it wrong. This is why I said earlier that these are intentional. Someone is purposely spreading these verbal crimes. I hear this one pronounced po-ke-MAN. Man?! Where is there an ‘A’ anywhere in that word? Granted it’s a foreign made up word, but we can’t just go injected and omitting letters as we see fit. New England, you are the worst perpetrators of this crime. You know what I’m talking about….
At its worst, I’ve heard this one called La Noyer. Sometimes it’s half right and someone will know enough to at least realize there are periods after the ‘L’ and the ‘A’. But then I also get, L.A. No-ire. Noire i’m willing to forgive to an extent. It’s a a french word which means black. Most specific to the game, it would refer to the genre of film called, film noir, which is what the theme of the game is supposed to be. If you don’t understand, think of the movie, L.A. Confidential. It’s a film noir style movie. Hence the game, L.A. Noire. Now you understand the meaning behind the title. Now let’s say it correctly. L.A. should be easy enough to figure out. Noire can be tough, I admit, because we really don’t have this exact sound in our dialect. Don’t think of is as a monosyllabic word like noise, where the ‘O’ and ‘I’ flow into the rest of the word, think of it more like two syllables. It should almost sound like “new-are” but slurred together.
Grand Theft Auto IV
This is simple and quick. This is not Grand Theft Auto Eye Vee. IV is the roman numeral for the number 4. So this is Grand Theft Auto 4. You would hope only young kids would get this wrong, but no. Adults are just as at fault here as well. If you feel your roman numerals are a bit spotty, you can check out Nova Roma‘s website.
In this instance I’m referring specifically to the Wii Nunchuk. Nothing is more like nails on a chalkboard than this one. I hate hearing people call this a NUMBchuck. There’s no ‘M’ or ‘B’ in this word. Even after hearing the correct pronunciation and seeing the word spelled on packaging, people still refuse to say it the right way. Ignorance at its finest. Maybe I’m spoiled because I grew up with the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Michelangelo wielded the nunchaku. Which leads me to another point. Maybe I shouldn’t be so annoyed by this. I mean it’s officially nunchaku anyway and not nunchuk, though both are accepted. The nunchaku come originally from Okinawa, and I don’t know exactly how it went from that to nunchuk so maybe we made that up and it doesn’t matter anyway. No! You know what, it’s spelled Nunchuk right there on the box. So they can say it that way.
That’s enough anger for now. If anyone else has got some they’d like to share, please feel free.
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Thanks for reading!
This review was written by request for Kimberly Amato of Pac-Man & the Hot One. That was fine with me because Earth Defense Force: Insect Armageddon is just too good. And if you disagree, you’re just wrong.
The review is being hosted on her site. I definitely think you need to check this game out but if you want to see everything I had to say about it check out MY REVIEW OF EARTH DEFENSE FORCE: INSECT ARMAGEDDON
Kill Team is not an indie game by any stretch of the term; it’s published by THQ and GamesWorkshop is the kingpin of war gaming. However it is no secret that I am a huge fan of 40k, (who else has a tattoo of an orc on their arm?) so I had to say a little something about it just out of sheer excitement.
Picking up from my short comments the other day, Kill Team controls like Smash TV, but plays more like the Marvel Ultimate Alliance games. It’s a run and gun, frag fest where one stick controls movement and the other controls firing. And that would be enough, but to round out the game a bit, they threw in some light customization options. Not quite as many as MUA, but enough to keep it from getting bland. There’s also co-op, and a survival mode with online leaderboards.
There are 4 different characters to choose from and 2 basic styles of play. The Librarian and Vanguard Veteran focus on melee combat, while the Sternguard Veteran and Techmarine have more powerful ranged weaponry. Better weapons and perks for your marine can be unlocked through gameplay to further suit your character to your style. Enhanced melee damage, more health, longer power ups, to name a few. Also, each class has a specific special attack that will quickly dispatch a large chunk of the green horde. Librarians unleash a psychic shockwave, sending everything surrounding them flying. Vanguard Veterans tear ass around with their jump pack, finally landing and blasting away a cluster of greenskins. Techmarines quickly construct a twin-linked heavy bolter turret to help fend off foes from multiple directions. Finally, my favorite, the Sternguard Veteran has the focus fire ability which really amps up your rate of fire, allowing you a lay down a deadly hail of heavy bolter rounds, laying waste to all in your sights.
There are a few minor details that irk me. Being a 40k fan, I feel they could have made the weapon load outs more accurate. I admit the only people that are really going to notice this are 40k fans, and this may be nitpicking, but I don’t see anyone buying this game if they aren’t a 40k fan anyway. The Vanguard Veteran is ranked the highest for melee, but he is armed with a chainsword and plasma pistol. The Librarian has stronger ranged attacks, but weaker melee yet he is armed with a power sword and a bolt pistol. It seems to me they should give the Vanguard the bolt pistol and the Librarian the plasma pistol as a more accurate representation of their stats. Their swords get upgraded anyway, so only their default weapons need retooling, maybe just start them both with chainswords. And as for the Techmarine, the servo arm should be way more powerful. This is no way affects my overall enjoyment of the game, it’s just a minor detail and I do not consider it a strike against them.
However, I do have 2 small complaints that ARE somewhat bothersome. It is too easy to get all the unlockables and they are not character specific as you get them. Allow me to explain. Playing through as the Sternguard let’s say, I can can get every unlock for every character. I should only be unlocking upgrades to ranged weaponry. Not only is this less of a challenge, but subsequent playthroughs with other characters will feel less rewarding because now I have nothing new to achieve. My other big complaint is the self inflicted death rate is too high. These types of games always have copious amounts of exploding barrels littered about, which I should have expected, and within 5 minutes of my first game session, I was KIA; death by barrel blast. Whatever. That was my own stupidity, but with the unending rain of gunfire, it just means you need to more careful about stray rounds. The other method of self inflicted death is far more insidious and aggravating. It is too easy to fall. This isn’t a platforming game and I never have to jump. I shouldn’t even have the option to fall off any ledges. Maybe some of you will never come across this issue, but I am an insane completionist and I must find every little secret. Fall to death ratio – about 50%. Getting cut down from a rampaging mob of Orks is to be expected. Not searching behind a large pipe only to fall of the world.
Despite the fact that I’m very good at singling out things that bother me, I’ve had much fun with Kill Team so far. I assure you, those are the only negative aspects I’ve come across and they really are quite minor. It’s really easy to pick up and play without getting bogged down by endless menus, but customizable enough to where is doesn’t feel too simple. With each stage coming in at around 20-45 minutes play time, you don’t have to devote an entire day to it either. And the survival mode is good for a quick fix if you have even less time than that. Regardless of how much time you have, it’s total nonstop action the whole way through alone or with a friend. All said and done, definitely worth the 10 bucks you’ll spend on either the PSN or XBLA and it only makes me more anxious for Space Marine to come out in September.
Yeah uh… Thanks for reading!
Just finished downloading and playing Warhammer 40k: Kill Team. It was only 800 microsoft points on XBLA. Simple, straightforward, fun gameplay. Smash TV style controls with some RPG elements thrown in such as added power-ups and perks.
I’ve been waiting for this since I played it briefly at E3. It will tide me over until Space Marine comes out in September. Added incentive to download, they give you a power sword in Space Marine for playing Kill Team.
Mike, this is for you more than anyone else. Download this immediately!
Analysis so far: AWESOME
More to come!
Being that this is my first official posting, allow me to explain what the intended purpose of this blog is going to be.
At the very least, a weekly (hopefully) posting of indie games from wherever I can find them, though they will primarily come from XBLA (xbox live arcade).
Sure most of you that are gamers on the 360 have at least checked out a few games from XBLA, but have you ever checked out the indie games tab? I find most of my friends, or just anyone I’ve talked to about it for that matter, don’t bother, and since they’re indie, there really isn’t any advertising for them. Aside from word of mouth, knowledge of these games really doesn’t get out there. And maybe this is going to be a redundant blog, and I’m sure other people could probably do it better, but I haven’t seen more than a handful of blogs out there honoring these works of passion. Probably because there’s no money to be had in it. And sure indie means that there’s really not much of a budget to speak of, but lack of budget doesn’t mean lack of quality. Yeah, a lot of them are complete stinkpiles, but there quite a few gems out there. So that’s my plan, get some groundswell going for these unknown and potentially rockin’ indie games. Oh yeah, best of all, most of the indie games you find are less than 5 bucks!
Also you may have noticed I started with issue #0. And if not, then you did now. So yeah, that’s how I’m gonna do this. I like comics and I’m going to number my blogs as if they were comic book issues. Games and comics seem to go well together. The nerd communities generally intermingle and are often one in the same anyway, usually some Magic the Gathering thrown in there as well, but we’ll be leaving that out of these posts as much as possible. (evil, deadly, addition….) I have no intention of actually reviewing an indie game in this inaugural post. It’s really just more of a prequel and info-packet if you will. So that’s mostly why I decided to label is issue #0, kind of like how comics get an issue #0 just to showcase some art or some such.
And now for the showcase! So I just got back from E3. One of my lifelong goals has finally been achieved. You can’t imagine how many points I feel I’ve just unlocked. This industry only event has been just out of my reach for years and I’ve always wanted to go ever since I first remember reading about it in the early days of Game Informer. It was more amazing than my fondest memories of Disney World as a child, though waiting in the lines seems about the same. Everyone’s been asking me how it was and what I thought of all the upcoming splendor we shall see this holiday season and early next year. Well here are my thoughts as organized as I can get them, but in no particular order.
Holy dicks. Nintendo… WHAT ARE YOU DOING?! Look, we all love Nintendo, and I’m sure they will continue to produce absolutely amazing 1st party content, but Nintendo, you are making it really, really difficult to appreciate your direction. Nintendo is pretty much shitting all over my fondest childhood memories. Ok, so maybe this is a little hyperbolic, but there are a million better ideas that were probably floating around the Nintendo offices and this was the best they could come up with?! First off, the name. Wii U? Out of what I’m sure were a plethora of other splendid console names gathered during extensive brainstorming sessions, someone at corporate Nintendo actually decided that Wii U was the best choice. What happened to the Nintendo HD? That was a fine title. It’s straight to the point and lets us know EXACTLY what they intend out of the system. Even the revolution (the codename the Wii had before it’s release) would have been a better choice. Hell, even the Dolphin! Didn’t anyone else heart break when they heard Nintendo announce their new system? From a strictly retail point, customers had a hard enough time asking for and pronouncing the Wii accurately for the first few years it was out. I wonder what kind of verbal abortions will be imagined this turn around.
The controller: I don’t know entirely how I feel about this. I’m torn at the moment. My limited engagement with the device left me intrigued, yet highly concerned. For starters, this could easily be another gimmick and there have already been far too many gimmicky games for the Wii. I do like the idea of a touch screen on my controller, but I don’t like the idea of a tablet-like device. It’s about the size of an iPad and I think the iPad and iTouch, and all that other apple crap is terrible for gaming. Yes there are tons of games you can get from iTunes and tons of people play them, but they’re mostly garbage. People that play games on an iPad aren’t gamers. The iPad makes a poor gaming device and would be an even worse gaming controller. The first game I ran to when I got my chance to play the new Wii U after my nearly 3 hour wait in line, was Ghost Recon Online. I was more excited about the controller than anything considering it’s the only part of the system that I would really consider new hardware. The size itself isn’t a problem; I was a fan of the original Xbox controllers after all. The problem is that it’s not contour friendly to hands and it’s analog sticks are terrible. It’s nice and lightweight and there is a ledge (for lack of a better word) on the back that rests on your fingers so you don’t feel like you’re holding it up, but it’s a square. They may have worked 25 years ago with the original NES, but the controller then was a fraction of the size. Some contoured grips on the side would have been nice. As far as the analog sticks, they feel like the analog sticks on the PSP or 3Ds. They don’t move as smoothly as as a PS3, 360, or even an N64 controller. If they were going for the flat look, then they got it, but if they were going for dual analog sticks that felt natural, then they fell flat on their asses and failed. There are many things I like about this controller, but the crappy analog sticks make it worthless for real gaming. Lastly, turning to retail again; how much is this thing gonna cost? Seriously, a Wii remote/nunchuck combo it 70 bucks. I can’t see this thing costing under 100. And how’s that gonna fly with parents? And obviously kids are gonna break this thing. I can see an irate parents face already when they have to replace one of these because of a cracked screen.
I think they revealed the Wii U too soon. I don’t think they had enough to show and they shot their wad before it was time. On display were 2 separate tech demos, one of which had an exciting looking Link vs. a giant spider fight scene. But that’s all it was for: looking. The best piece of eye candy they had and all you could do was move the camera around. They had this absolute rubbish game called Measure Up, which could have easily been on the DS since all it was was drawing lines and shapes more accurately than your opponent. The best things they had to show were another Mario Bros. game, Battle Mii, and Chase Mii. The Mario game would have been great, but it’s really nothing different so far. I’m not even sure if it was any different than the one from Wii, but maybe with some new features. I dunno, I really didn’t pay attention to that one. Battle Mii and Chase Mii were the best they had to show, but they were both mini games! It’s a slap in the face. If Nintendo really wanted to excite people about their new system, after much of the gaming community has already completely turned their backs to the Wii, they shouldn’t have shown up with a couple of mini games! Granted they were really fun, but when Nintendo posed the question to themselves, “What would we like for people to take away with them after playing the Wii U?” The answer shouldn’t have been a couple of mini games! In Chase Mii one person plays are Mario using the tablet where the screen displays the location of all the players on the map and the other 4 players use the regular remotes to find and chase him down; basically it’s a glorified version of hide and seek. Battle Mii had a little bit more merit. One person pilots Samus’ ship while the others are on the ground and from then on its pretty much a standard death match. No new concepts really except the cross-style gameplay, yet still not enough to showcase a new console. Bottom line Nintendo, with a release date and pricepoint both still TBA and no discernible line-up yet, the announcement of this console should have waited.
All right, the Wii U has got me a little agitated right now. I’ve got more to say about E3 and I’m sure maybe 3 or 4 of you are interested, but you’ll have to wait. More to come tomorrow.
Thanks for reading!