Posts Tagged "console-gaming"

E3 2010

Published on June 18, 2010

This year’s E3 has come and gone, and I thought I’d post a few thoughts on various things introduced at the event. To make things easy, I’ll organize things by platform.

PC Gaming

Portal 2
This may be the game I’m most excited about. Whereas the first Portal was an “experiment” of sorts, this second title looks to be a full-fledged game. The puzzles sound much more insidious (physics paint!), and the new milieu of the game looks incredible. Portions of the trailer I watched are very funny, as can be expected. And hey, it’s Valve we’re talking about here. This will definitely be a winner.
Rage
id Software’s new intellectual property looks incredible. Part racer, part first-person shooter, this game looks like a boat load of fun. It’s pretty, too, as expected with titles from id (humans still look a little too fake, however; they need to drop the ‘bloated’ look). I’ll probably pick this one up when it’s released.
Deus Ex: Human Revolution
If this game is as fun (and as deep) as the first one was, I’ll definitely buy in. If it’s as lame as the second one was reported to be, I’ll skip it. Nevertheless, the trailer looks great.

Nintendo Wii

Lost in Shadow
This upcoming adventure game looks really impressive. You play as the shadow of a young boy, separated from him at the beginning of the game. The ultimate goal is to reach the top of a tower, where the boy is being held. But the twist here is that, as a shadow, you can only use other object’s shadows as platforms. Manipulating light in the environment looks like a large part of the puzzle mechanic. This is another very inventive title that looks promising.
Zelda: Skyward Sword
What’s not to like about a new Zelda title?
Kirby’s Epic Yarn
Kirby’s Epic Yarn has an incredibly unique art design. This time around, Kirby is an outline of yarn, and moves through a similarly designed environment. I’ve seen plenty of comments around the web poking fun at the seemingly “gay” presentation of the trailer; but this looks like an inventive, fun game to me.
Donkey Kong Country Returns
I was a big fan of the Donkey Kong Country games back on the SNES, so I’m really looking forward to this one. Some of the older games were ridiculously difficult; hopefully some of that difficulty will be ported over. The graphics in this one look fantastic.
Epic Mickey
Mickey Mouse goes on an epic adventure, using various paints and paint thinners to modify and navigate the world. The fact that this game includes a Steamboat Willie level, complete with the old artwork style, is epic in itself.

Nintendo DS

Nintendo 3DS
The next iteration of Nintendo’s hand-held looks interesting. I’d have to see the 3D effect in person to get a good feel for it, but all the press I’ve read has sounded promising. There are some neat sounding titles coming for this new platform and, if they’re fun enough, I may just have to upgrade.

XBox 360

Kinect (AKA Project Natal)
I’m not exactly sure what to think about this. I’ve read in several places that Microsoft really butchered the unveiling of this tech, opting for ‘family-friendly’ titles similar to what’s already on the Wii. That being said, Child of Eden looks like a phenomenal title that makes terrific use of the new technology. Only time will tell how this stuff works out. I think it’s funny, however, that Sony and Microsoft are just now trying to catch up to Nintendo in motion control. Nintendo gets a lot of hate from the hard-core gaming community (a small portion of which is justified), but they’re obviously doing something right; otherwise these companies wouldn’t be entering this space.

I’m sure there are a few items I’ve missed in this rundown, but these are the ones that really caught my eye. For those of you who followed this year’s event, what are you looking forward to?

Nintendo as a Pioneer

Published on June 2, 2009

Hate on the Nintendo Wii all you want, but it has clearly made Sony and Microsoft nervous (especially since the Wii has made money since day one, while the 360 and PS3 are still losing money on each sale). This week, Sony announced a PS3 motion controller, and Microsoft announced the Project Natal motion controller. For those not already in the know, the Nintendo Wii has had this capability for over 2 years now (though, granted, the Microsoft approach is a new twist).

I agree that the Nintendo Wii has, at some levels, been a relatively ‘weak’ platform compared to the others. It lacks HD support, has a fairly thin library of games, and has clunky online support. As a result, the Wii has been given the cold-shoulder by the “hard-core gaming community.” The two recently announced, upcoming Mario titles (Super Mario Galaxy 2 and The New Super Mario Bros.) probably aren’t enough to improve its reputation.

All that aside, it looks like the “big boys” are playing catch-up to Nintendo’s “little engine that could.” Maybe Nintendo knows the future more than we think they do…

Where to Buy a Wii?

Published on January 4, 2009

It’s incredible to me that over 2 years after the debut of the Nintendo Wii, you still can’t buy one. Several of the “in stock finders” online indicate that everyone is out of stock. I’d like to get one, but I can’t find them anywhere. Does anyone know of a place that might actually have one in stock at some point?

A Hand Held SNES

Published on November 29, 2008

Chrono Trigger, for the Nintendo DS, was just recently released and I am so excited! This game, originally released on the Super Nintendo platform, is incredibly hard to find as a SNES cartridge. I recall trolling eBay years ago trying to find it, only to see it get sold for hundreds of dollars, putting it well beyond my price range for a game. I am undoubtedly one of the few folks remaining who owned an original SNES system but failed to play this title. The Metacritic reviews are, so far, very positive.

It’s great to see old titles (especially ones I never played) getting some loving attention by means of a port to the Nintendo DS. Hopefully Secret of Mana and EarthBound will get the same treatment! If so, I’d have a lot of gaming goodness to be thankful for.

Professor Layton Review

Published on March 6, 2008
Professor Layton Screenshot Number 1

Never before I have felt so connected to a Penny Arcade comic. I recently picked up Professor Layton and the Curious Village, a puzzle-adventure game for the Nintendo DS. After roughly 10 hours of game play, I’ve completed the game, so I thought I’d post some thoughts on it. Before we get to that, however, I’d like to explain how this game works.

Professor Layton is one of those hybrid titles like Puzzle Quest. It is neither an adventure game, nor is it a puzzle game; it’s somewhere right in the middle. Layton himself is a private detective of sorts who is hired to figure out a puzzling will left behind by the late Baron Reinhold. Along with his assistant Luke, Layton quickly finds himself in an ever-increasing mysterious situation. There are twists and turns all over the place, and plenty of mysteries to be solved in the process.

Each person you meet will give you clues to the ever increasing list of mysteries you encounter, but only if you solve a puzzle for them. And by puzzle, I mostly mean ‘brain teaser.’ The puzzle difficulties are all over the place in this game. Some puzzles are easy to solve, while others will have you banging your head against a hard surface in frustration. There’s a hint system in the game that offers you three hints per puzzle, which is often enough to help you figure things out, but sometimes the hints are themselves quite cryptic. Getting a hint costs you a ‘hint coin,’ of which there are a limited amount (though plenty are hidden throughout the game world). When you solve a puzzle successfully, you are awarded a number of ‘picarats’ (essentially points). Each puzzle is worth so many of these picarats, with harder puzzles being worth more. Answer incorrectly and the value awarded goes down. I’m not sure what this point system is good for. At one point you learn that if you get enough of these picarats, something special happens. I never saw anything happen as a result of my score, so I must not have gotten enough. But enough about these details. Let’s jump into my review.

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Quick Review of Metroid Prime 3

Published on February 3, 2008

Last weekend I finally finished Metroid Prime 3. Here are some quick thoughts I had on the game:

What I Liked

  • The “Morph Ball” mode is incredibly fun. In essence, you become a pinball and get to roll through a number of tracks. There were plenty of puzzles that used this gameplay, and it ended up being my favorite part of the game.
  • The Wii-mote and Nunchuck controls work surprisingly well. This is the first FPS experience I’ve had with the Wii, and I was quite pleased.
  • Backtracking is well used in the game. There are plenty of areas that are inaccessible until you get certain powerups, forcing you to really explore every nook and cranny of every map.

What I Didn’t Like

  • Loading times aren’t what they should be. Levels are loaded in an on-demand fashion, and there are some times when the delay gets in the way.
  • The game feels a little too easy. Firefights end up being “how fast can you pull the trigger.” Weapon powerups are obtained in a few places, but they never feel more powerful.

All in all, I highly recommend this game; it’s a strong A in my book.

Hacking the Wii

Published on December 31, 2007

A couple of guys have figured out a way to hack the Nintendo Wii, opening the door for better home-brew software for the platform. The way they figured this stuff out is pretty cool, and it should be interesting to see what kind of new software is developed now that the “Keys to the Kingdom” are available.

My dad and I both agree that it seems to be in Nintendo’s best interest to open up their hardware. Why they don’t do it, however, is beyond what we can figure. Maybe they’re scared of the game publishers having to compete against “open source” (i.e. free) games? It seems to me that having lots of great third-party, home-brewed software could only help your platform in the long run. Not to mention that it would open up the hardware to great uses as assistive devices (which would be great for kids with disabilities).

Nintendo’s Hardware Exploits

Published on December 28, 2007

One of the things I got for Christmas this year was The Legend of Zelda: Phantom Hourglass for the Nintendo DS. I’ve played the game for several hours now, and I wanted to discuss Nintendo’s usage of the DS hardware in the game. Never before have I seen a video game make such good use of the hardware it has access to. Link is controlled entirely through the use of the touch screen (the D-pad and buttons are hardly, if ever, used), which isn’t entirely a new idea; see Kirby: Canvas Curse for a previous touch-screen-only title.

What really blew me away (almost literally) was the usage of the microphone in the game. There are a number of places where the player has to take some action: call out to a character trapped behind a steel door, blow out a few candles, etc. The neat thing is that all of these actions require you to physically do something. When you are told to cry out, you have to literally cry out. When you are asked to blow out the candles, you have to literally blow onto your DS! Is this a genius idea or what? I know that Donkey Konga for the Gamecube used a microphone (where the player clapped their hands), but this is the first game I’ve personally played that makes use of this kind of hardware.

The game also uses one other hardware feature that helps to advance the storyline (I’ll do my best to avoid any spoilers here). At one point, you are asked to perform a specific task to help locate a hidden item in the game world. In order to do this, you literally have to close the lid of the DS, and open it back up. What?!? Unfortunately, the game didn’t give me enough hints to figure this out on my own (or I was too dense to make sense of the clues it was giving me). As a result, I got stuck at this particular point and ended up reading about how to advance forward (and I hate having to do that kind of thing). But this hardware hack really impressed me! It will be interesting to see if any other games make use of this technology; here’s hoping that they will!

4Q Gaming Outlook

Published on October 4, 2007

My birthday was earlier this week, and I got The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess for our Nintendo Wii. So far it’s been a great game, and I’ve only just started the story line (even though I’m only over 4 hours in). There are lots of great games coming in the fourth quarter of this year, and I’m so excited! Here’s what I’m looking forward to:

  • Metroid Prime: Corruption (Nintendo Wii, Available Now!)
  • The Legend of Zelda: The Phantom Hourglass (Nintendo DS, Available Now!)
  • Half-Life 2: Episode 2 (PC, October 9)
  • Portal (PC, October 9)
  • Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock (Nintendo Wii, October 28)
  • Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare (PC, November 5)
  • Gears of War (PC, November 6)
  • Unreal Tournament 3 (PC, November 9)
  • Super Mario Galaxy (Nintendo Wii, November 12)
  • Geometry Wars: Galaxies (Nintendo DS & Wii, November 13)
  • Crysis (PC, November 16)

So many games, so little time! What games are you looking forward to?

P.S. – This is post #400 at Year of the Code Monkey. Pretty cool!

Five Improvements for Wii Sports

Published on August 3, 2007

Wii Sports is the only game that my family currently owns for use with our Nintendo Wii. As such, it gets a fair amount of play time around our house. Although it’s a fun game, there are a number of areas that Nintendo could have greatly improved upon. Here’s a short list of improvements that I’ve thought up for the game:

  1. Video Replays: When an exciting event takes place in the game, I’d like to be able to save a video snippet of what happened (a “play of the day” if you will). For example, I have hit two holes-in-one in golf over the past several weeks (a pretty exciting event, both times). Having a video replay would allow me to relive that exciting moment, and share it with others.
  2. Larger Golf Course: I really enjoy the golf game, but nine holes is just not enough. Why can’t we have 36 holes, or better yet, 72? I can’t believe the courses take up that much space, and I would guess that they are pretty easy to develop (given the basic building blocks).
  3. Bowling Tournaments: It would be fun to have some sort of bowling ladder available, where you could compete against either another individual or another team (either computer controlled or human). A handicapping system could even be provided, to allow weaker bowlers to challenge the seasoned pros.
  4. Improved User Settings: Every time one switches users during a game, Wii Sports asks you which handedness you prefer (right or left handed). Shouldn’t I only set this once?
  5. Fix the Baseball Bug: When playing against the computer in baseball, the “home” team (the player) starts first (top of the inning), while the computer starts second (bottom of the inning). If the “home” team is ahead at the beginning of the last inning, the game ends via the mercy rule. I’m no baseball expert, but I know that the mercy rule only applies to the bottom of the inning! This should clearly be fixed.

If you own Wii Sports, what do you think? Are there other improvements that could be made?

Nintendo’s Gamble

Published on July 23, 2007

Nintendo announced a new peripheral at this year’s E3: the Wii Fit. It’s an interesting concept, but one that has sharply divided the gaming community. I’ve read a number of comments saying that Nintendo is further alienating the “hard-core” gaming community; catering to the “soccer-moms” of America isn’t what gamers are looking for, so how could Nintendo sell out like that?

Other comments have praised the device, saying that kids clearly need to get exercise, and this is one more step in encouraging such behavior. I tend to agree with this latter group; the Wii Fit is a great idea, though the ‘games’ they’ve shown for the device seem bland. As far as alienating the hard-core gaming community is concerned, I don’t think Nintendo is doing that at all. It’s simply a matter of broadening their horizons. While Microsoft and Sony are locked in the never ending battle of “bigger, faster, better,” Nintendo is quietly expanding their horizons, gobbling up market share that no one has claimed. And they are making a profit the entire time. Microsoft is losing money like crazy with the 360 (especially after the recent “recall” announcement), as is Sony. Nintendo has made a profit since day 1, and continues to do so.

In the end, I think Nintendo will come out on top. The Wii may not have the flashiest graphics around, but it’s got creativity, something the other guys don’t. What do you think of the Wii Fit? Will it be a success, or a flop?

Castlevania: Dawn of Sorrow Review

Published on July 20, 2007
Castlevania: Dawn of Sorrow Screenshot

Castlevania: Dawn of Sorrow is the latest Nintendo DS game that I’ve been playing over the past few weeks. I just beat it last night, so I thought I’d share a few thoughts on the game.

This is the first Castlevania game that I’ve ever played, though the series dates all the way back to the original NES title. For those not familiar with the series, you play as a crusader set out to destroy the evil that has taken up residence in Dracula’s castle. It’s a classic 2D side-scrolling game, and is an incredible blast to play.

Your character has two ways to attack the various monsters throughout the castle: either with a number of weapons or via special abilities which come through harvesting the monster’s souls. Each soul you collect gives you a different ability. Some abilities cost mana to use, while others act as “enchantments” and are active all the time. You can equip three souls at any time (one “bullet” soul, one “guardian” soul, and one “enchantment” soul). There are also a few ability souls collected through the game, which are always active. This specific aspect of the game is quite enjoyable. Collecting all of the souls is much more difficult than you might think. I’ve been playing off and on for several weeks and only have about 75% of the souls collected.

Interestingly enough, there are only two real “levels” to the game: Dracula’s castle and an area (presumably of Hell) called simply “The Abyss.” The castle “level” has a number of stages, and is incredibly large. It took a long time to explore the entire level, and I have undoubtedly missed some hidden rooms.

When your character dies, the game is over. There are no “extra mans” to be had, so you have to be very careful. Thankfully, you can save the game any time at a number of save points throughout the castle. Make sure to save often; I lost a number of hard to get souls last night because I got overconfident.

I highly recommend this game. I’ve had a ton of fun playing it, and I’ve already started the next game (Castlevania: Portrait of Ruin). This is excellent proof that 2D games are not dead (and shouldn’t be). My final rating: A+

Puzzle Quest Review

Published on May 29, 2007

The latest addition to my Nintendo DS gaming library is Puzzle Quest: Challenge of the Warlords. Although the name is a little hokey, the game is incredibly addictive.

Built around the Bejeweled game play premise, Puzzle Quest is a puzzle / role-playing game combination (one of the first of its kind, to my knowledge). You build a character using one of four character classes (Wizard, Knight, Druid, or Warrior), and travel around the game’s world taking on quests. The game purely makes use of the stylus, and it does a remarkable job in the process (though I might argue that the stylus controls aren’t quite as finely tuned as I would have liked).

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Rocket Slime Review

Published on April 5, 2007

Several weeks ago, I purchased Dragon Quest Heroes: Rocket Slime, a role-playing game for the Nintendo DS. Though I have yet to finish it, I feel like I have a good enough grasp to give a short review.

I’ve never played any of the Dragon Quest games, but the protagonist in Rocket Slime is apparently one of the characters from that series. The story line should be familiar to every gamer in the world: an evil group invades a peaceful land, captures its inhabitants, and only the brave hero can save the day and restore order. Although formulaic, the story does have some charm. The writing is witty; puns are scattered all over the place.

There are two phases to game play: dungeon crawls and tank battles. The dungeon crawls are reminiscent of the classic Zelda games: top-down affairs where you run around battling bad guys and collecting items. Tank battles are somewhat different. Each team (yours and a member of the evil Plob) has a tank with a certain amount of hit points. Both tanks have two cannons, one which shoots straight out and one that shoots in an arc. Ammunition randomly spawns at a number of spots in your tank, and you must ferry it to the cannons to be shot at the enemy. The early battles are fairly easy, but the later ones (where I’m at now in the game) are very difficult. As such, this part of the game can get a bit frustrating. Every item you find throughout the game can be used as ammunition, and each one deals a differing amount of damage. The amount of strategy to be used in the tank battles is more than meets the eye; I have yet to master this part of the game. As the game progresses, you can even direct up to three other slimes in the tank battles, assigning them to various roles.

I can only think of two down sides to the game. First, the action gets a little repetitive, especially in regards to the tank battles. Second, the music isn’t nearly as varied as it should be, nor is it as catchy as the music in similar games (such as Zelda).

I could expand further on Rocket Slime, but there are plenty of other sites out there that have done that already. Overall I’d definitely recommend this game to all Nintendo DS owners. My final rating: B+

Yoshi’s Island DS and Meteos Reviews

Published on January 7, 2007

Over the holidays I had the chance to finally beat Yoshi’s Island DS. I also got Meteos for Christmas, and have had a substantial amount of time with it. As such, here are my two short reviews of both games.

Yoshi’s Island DS (A-)
This ‘sequel’ to Yoshi’s Island for the Super Nintendo is faithful to the original, while adding enough new features to feel fresh. Introducing multiple babies for Yoshi to carry around (subsequently giving him new abilities) was an interesting idea that works well. My only real problem with this game was that a number of the later levels are ridiculously difficult. I don’t recall the original Yoshi’s Island being so tough, but I played it a long time ago, so I only have the vaguest recollection. I had to play through several levels 20 or 30 times to get past them. Needless to say, this quickly got frustrating. Sounds, graphics, and gameplay are all top-notch, however, so this gripe pales in comparison. Overall a great game, and worth your time. I only wish one could trade their extra lives for red coins, stars, or flowers in each level; getting 100% in some of the levels is nearly impossible!

Meteos (A-)
This puzzle game is reminiscent of Tetris (as are most puzzle games), but it’s use of the stylus is incredible. In fact, I consider this a ‘stylus-only’ game, even though you can play with the D-pad and buttons. The goal of the game is to launch falling Meteos back into space by lining them up in groups of three, either vertically or horizontally. Each planet that you play through has different gravity and so varying strategies must be employed to succeed. For example, some planets require that you create secondary ignitions of launched Meteos by lining up another set of three or more in the air. This game is fast paced, fun, and highly addictive. For a few days after I got it, I actually spent time thinking about ways I could line up items in the real world in groups of three or more. It’s been a long time since a game has affected me in such a way, which should be a testament to how addicting this game is.

Does anyone have any recommendations for games I should get next? Dragon Quest Heroes: Rocket Slime is currently on my list. What else should I get?

Nintendo DS Lite Review

Published on November 22, 2006

For my birthday this year, I got a Nintendo DS Lite. Now that I’ve had some time to play with it, I’d like to give you my thoughts on the system, along with the various games that I have picked up so far. I’ve given each a letter grade, for whatever that’s worth.

The DS Lite System (A+)
What first wowed me with the DS Lite was the screen brightness. Having never seen an original DS, I can’t make a comparison between the two generations. However, I can say that my Gameboy Advance SP doesn’t touch the DS Lite brightness levels. It’s literally like night and day. However, the brighter you run the screen, the faster the battery drains. I use brightness level 2 (out of 4, if I remember correctly, where 4 is the brightest). I have been very pleased with the battery life at this level; I charge the system after several hours of play (I haven’t timed it, but I’m guessing somewhere between 6 to 10 hours between charges). And the sound in the DS Lite is incredible. I don’t know how they packed such awesome speakers into a tiny package, but they are really crisp. The added bonus that there are two speakers, and that they utilize stereo to great effect, is even better!

The touch screen is a novel idea and works well, though I find it a little hard to use the stylus in a game that also uses the buttons. And while I’m on that topic, let me say that I am glad that Nintendo included the X and Y buttons. The lack of X and Y on the Gameboy Advance SP really hurt the SNES game ports. Hopefully the DS will help fill that gap. It’s also nice that Gameboy Advance games can be played in the DS (though the X and Y buttons still aren’t useful for those older games). It’s nice to only carry one system around but have support for games from multiple platforms.

Since I’m the only one I know with a DS Lite, I haven’t tried the multiplayer stuff (with built-in wireless). I hear it works pretty well, but I can’t comment since I haven’t used that aspect of it.

There isn’t much negative to say about the DS Lite. Each time you start it up, you get a weird “Health and Safety Warning” that requires a tap of the touch screen to bypass. I find this odd, and a minor annoyance, but I guess Nintendo is trying to get people to be mindful of what they do. Also, the shiny casing is nice, but it shows fingerprints very easily (at least on my black model).

Overall, I nothing but good things to say. I highly recommend the DS Lite as a gaming platform.

The New Super Mario Bros. (B)
This being my first game, I was highly excited about it initially. It evokes classic gaming memories from the NES days, and the game’s action is as fun as ever. But, sadly, Mario’s adventure is a little short. The levels are surprisingly small, and are rather easy (to say the least). New power-ups help ease that pain a little; the giant mushroom and tiny mushrooms are a blast to use. I dislike how worlds 4 and 7 are completely optional (and a little difficult to access; they are only available through secret boss-level exits). The included mini-games are cute, but they don’t draw me back to them again and again. Final verdict? This is a fun game, and a must have for Mario fans, even if it is indeed a short endeavor.

Tetris DS (B)
Six game types are available in Tetris DS, and most of them are decent enough. The only two game types that don’t really excite me are the catch mode and mission mode. The other four (touch, push, puzzle, and standard) are really fun, and I would imagine are a blast with multiple players.

Kirby Canvas Curse (A)
I’ve never played a Kirby game before this one, but I must say that this one is highly entertaining. It uses the touch screen and stylus entirely; you never make use of the game pad buttons. By drawing “rainbow bridges” for Kirby to roll on, you must defeat an evil witch who has turned the world into a painting. Artwork in the game is phenomenal, and the action is pretty intense in some places. The stylus is used to great effect, and was a great twist on gaming. I highly recommend this title.

Yoshi’s Island DS (???)
I haven’t assigned this game a grade yet, because I only yesterday received it from Amazon. The original Yoshi’s Island for the Super Nintendo was a blast, and this one looks like it will follow in its predecessor’s footsteps. It uses both screens to show the game world, which is mildly annoying; there is a physical gap between the screens on the DS Lite, and so there’s a “gap” in what the game shows you at any one time. Hopefully this “feature” won’t be too much of a burden as I go forward. Time will tell.

It appears that I have written a lot on the subject, but hopefully you’ll find this information to be of use. I’ll be taking time off from my posting duties over the holiday weekend so until then, Happy Thanksgiving!

Code Names Are Bad

Published on April 28, 2006

So, apparently, the Nintendo Revolution has been renamed to Nintendo Wii. Let the jokes commence.

This is the primary problem with using “code names” in the wild. When an official name comes along, replacing said code name, early adopters are thrown for a loop. It happened with the Firefox web browser not too long ago. Early builds of Firefox were known as Phoenix and later Firebird. I actually happen to prefer the Firebird name; it keeps some semblance of continuity with their Thunderbird product (plus, it just sounds cool). At first, the Firefox name seemed really stupid. But as time has passed, it has become ingrained in our culture, and has lost that silly feel to it.

Can Nintendo’s new console do the same? I don’t really think so. The name they’ve chosen is so incredibly stupid, that it will be an uphill battle to win back the respect they had earned. We’ll see how they fare in the long run with this decision. I have a bad feeling that they won’t do as well.

It Was Twenty Years Ago Today

Published on February 21, 2006

Today happens to be the 20th birthday of what may be the greatest game of all time: The Legend of Zelda. It appears that there are several special features taking a look back at this incredible game. I’ll never forget saving all of my money when I was a young kid, and going to the store (a Sears as I recall) to buy the game. The sales clerk was quite surprised when I dumped a mountain of change on the counter, along with a few paper bills. When I got home and opened the package, and saw that the cartridge was golden, well … I nearly went berserk. Words are not sufficient to describe my joy in playing that one game. I’ve never been the same since.

In other gaming news, it appears that Half-Life 2 will have a second expansion pack, amazingly entitled Episode 2. What do they think this is, Star Wars? I hope this isn’t a sign of bad things to come. It seems as if Episode 1 will only be 4 to 6 hours long, not nearly sufficient for my taste. I want a good 15 hours of gameplay … any less just feels cheap.

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