Oh Hey, Looks Like the 3DS is Breaking Records or Something

Sorry I haven’t been posting recently! Real life has been getting all up in my business in ways that I promise you don’t care about. Apologies all around.

But you know what? I hardly have to write anything anymore because it turns out that (as with my last entry) someone is already out there doing it much better. Here’s a great piece from Tiny Cartridge about how the 3DS is wrecking shit and how, five months ago, every single news outlet covering video games was run by gibbering retards. Toldja so. Please enjoy.

Several Months Later… – Tiny Cartridge

P.S.: Rhythm Heaven Fever is the Game of the Year and that’s all there is to it. Xenoblade has its work cut out for it.

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Something Awful Sums Up Mass Effect 3 and BioWare’s Problems Pretty Succinctly

I’ve come to realize that Dennis Farrell’s bi-weekly “Video Game Article” on Something Awful is actually one of the more reliable gaming columns out there. Not only is really, really funny most of the time, but his “One-Sentence Reviews” are generally spot-on and less predictable than you might think.

This week, he discusses recent Mass Effect 3 developments and hypothesizes about how this horrifying train wreck could get even more grisly. He’s better at it than I am.

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Mass Effect stalwarts, I’m sorry to just slap you across the face with that picture, there, but I really don’t know how to preface it effectively. The part on the right is courtesy of the official Mass Effect 3 art book, from which some wonderful tidbits have just started creeping out onto the web.

So, yeah. Even the SHIP’S COMPUTER is getting all sexed up in this stupid game. I always thought her ‘mouth’ was a tad suggestive in ME2 but I guess I should have been commending them for their subtlety and restraint. How in the HELL are they going to justify giving her a body, let alone one that looks like that? My God, every SINGLE piece of news that comes out about this game is so, so insulting.

Just read that blurb there. “EDI’s body needed to be sexy, chrome, and robotic…”

STOP. STOP. STOP. You guys, seriously. Get a grip.

Also, are you really comparing yourselves to Metropolis?

And just in case you thought that was the only retarded new squad member…

Oh hai Shepard

What? Who’s that? New alien race?

No, that’s a Prothean, apparently. Remember what they looked like in ME1? Because it seems like BioWare doesn’t! Also, how could they possibly explain that a member of an omniscient race that has been extinct for 50,000 years is ready to suit up in some Demon’s Souls armor and run around playing guns with you? When the previous games implied that their forms, motives and technology were beyond human comprehension?

I know this is all super nerdy quibbling-about-the-lore or whatever, and God knows I don’t want to do that, but come on. Every DAY there is a new story about some leaked plot detail or new game option or choice from the previous game that actually isn’t going to matter after all…the bad decisions are just piling up so high.

They sold the original game to us as the first part of a sprawling, dynamic story that would pay off for sticking with it. Every time they pull some shady retcon or hugely alter the gameplay mechanics between entries or sex up old characters for no reason besides pandering, it feels like such a CHEAT to me.

Mass Effect was an outstanding, slightly flawed, but ultimately fresh and rewarding experience. Mass Effect 2 was a prompt about-face-and-then-flying-leap in the opposite direction. Right now, Mass Effect 3 looks to be boarding a Concorde Jet for a non-stop flight along that same, errant vector with the final destination in a goddamn black hole of bullshit.

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Today’s Sign of the Apocalypse: There’s a Rumor About the New Xbox Locking Out Used Games

You may have noticed that, despite the title of this blog, I seem to enjoy enough new video games to write positive things about them on a regular basis. I think about it a lot. Over the last couple of months especially, I’ve found myself looking at the name up at the top there (or my mission statement page) and bristling at the negativity of it. My understanding of the industry has matured in the couple of years since I started this, and there are days when I feel like a change to the tone here is warranted.

That change may yet come, but it certainly won’t be today. Read this piece at Wired’s Game|Life if–like me–you need a good renewing of your hatred for the console landscape.

P.S.: Obviously, this is just a rumor right now (and a fairly far-fetched one), but I want to put it out there–here and now–that I will never purchase nor play by choice any console designed with this feature. I know that that doesn’t matter to anyone out there besides me, but I’m just making it a matter of public record. I have a Herzogian steadfastness to keeping my word about shit like this.

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Tactics Ogre Has Good Art



Someday I’ll talk a little more about how Tactics Ogre: Let Us Cling Together is the best game of 2011, but for now I just wanted to share this image with you. For some reason, the art from this game is really tough to find on the Internet. This is a comparison of the original character art, their accompanying sprites in the SNES/PSX version, and the updated PSP remake. I don’t remember where I got this picture, unfortunately, so I can’t credit the person who compiled it all. Props to them, though.

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Strange Journey Has Good Music

Not much else to say about it. Again, I’m a newbie to these here ShinMegaTen things, but my understanding is that series composer Shoji Meguro is well-loved, and there’s a good reason they keep bringing him back. I’m starting to understand why.

It seems like his usual style for these games is mainly J-Rock, but he’s not afraid to dabble in other genres as well. Recently, he’s been on a classical kick, starting with Strange Journey‘s score, which is all orchestral pomp and unnerving chants, befitting the story. This tangent seems to have evolved in Catherine, where he remixed well known classical compositions from the big names like Chopin, Beethoven and Bach–a fusion well suited to that game’s more cerebral, puzzle-heavy gameplay. Should be interesting to see what’s next for him.

Here’s a couple tracks from Strange Journey. Unusual, but very effective, I think.

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Kotaku – Making You Ashamed to be a Gamer Since 2003

Earlier today, deplorable games industry gossip rag Kotaku introduced plans (this is where a link would usually go, but no dice on this one) to roll out a new service, entitled ‘Kotaku Core’. Newly crowned Yellow-Journalist-in-Chief Stephen Totilo explains (somewhat defensively) that people commonly complain that the site, in its continuing quest to live up to its moniker as “The Gamer’s Guide”, sometimes runs afoul of conventional definitions of ‘news’ or ‘what people want to read’ or whatever. Kotaku Core aims to placate these ridiculous cretins by offering a version of the site that compiles just the hard news items, presumably editing out all the good stuff you’d usually see, like 20 solid pages of posts about cake or hundreds of pictures of Brian Crecente grinning at himself.

But why stop there? I would ask. Here’s some other versions they could do.

“Kotaku Spoilers”
“Kotaku Borderline Hentai” (or “Kotaku Bashcraft”)
“Kotaku Banning Commentors for Constructive Criticism”
“Kotaku Misleading Headlines”
“Kotaku Celebrities Seen With or Mentioning Games in Passing”
“Kotaku No Research”
“Kotaku Plummeting Pageviews”

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