Category Archives: Editorial

Recent Kickstarters and What We Can Learn From Them

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There are three recent Kickstarter campaigns that I’ve looked at that should give the video game industry something to think about. At the same time there’s one long running developer that continues to be successful without seeing mass exoduses of its employees. All of these things are something that can be used to learn what I think makes for a good development environment. Neither scenario is completely perfect, but neither should they be ignored. There’s a nice balance between the old and the new that can be established and there are some companies that I think should take these lessons to heart.

The three Kickstarter campaigns we’re talking about have been hugely successful. Two of them are still currently active so we can’t get a gauge on just how successful they’re going to be in terms of funding. The other one, Mighty No. 9, according to its Kickstarter page finished its initial funding round with $3.85 million in funding from 67,226 backers. After the Yooka-Laylee Kickstarter launched they made their goal of $270,000 in 40 minutes. They are, at this moment, sitting at over $2.3 million. Igarashi’s Kickstarter for Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night made its goal of $500,000 in just less than four hours. In the first 24 hours they raised over $1 million.

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The Original Zelda’s Incredible Game Design

Zelda Title ScreenI’ve played every game released in the Zelda franchise with the exception of the CD-I games. I’m a huge fan of the series. I love the exploration aspects. The feeling of being a hero. The story. The depth of the world. It’s always had all the recipes of a game franchise that if you’ve played it you’re probably going to remember it for a long time. There are, of course, people that don’t particularly care for the series, but every game has those. My favorite game in the franchise has always been The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past. The Super Nintendo era was one of the best that we’ve ever seen in gaming and that game stands tall, at least in my mind, above everything else during that time. It was then that the franchise really took off for me.

I remember playing the original Legend of Zelda on the NES after my 10th birthday. March of 1990 was when I got my original NES and I got a copy of the game sometime around the next January. I vividly remember being allowed to stay home from my parent’s weekly bowling night and I spent the entire time playing the game. It’s also memorable in that I skipped watching the Super Bowl that night because I was playing the game and I never missed a Super Bowl. It was the first of the Buffalo Bills four consecutive Super Bowl losses, but I didn’t care. I was in Hyrule.

The original Legend of Zelda game, more than any other game in the series encourages exploration above just about everything else. Mr. Miyamoto has talked about being inspired by walks in the woods near his house. The game drops you into the world and just lets you do whatever you want. You’re the explorer. You make the decisions. Yes, there is an overall progression to the game. Yes, there are some things you can’t do before reaching a certain point. Most of the game is just left up to you to figure out. There are secrets everywhere. It rewards people who think outside of the box. You don’t even know how to get to the first dungeon in the game. You have to figure that out by exploring.

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Pokemon Rumble World: A Great Mechanic Wasted On A Not So Great Game

Pokemon Rumble World LogoI’m not going to do an actual review on it, because I’m not going to play much more of it, but I have to talk about Pokemon Rumble World. I’ve been utterly disappointed with the experience so far. I really enjoyed the first Pokemon Rumble game on Wii. I really liked Pokemon Rumble Blast on 3DS. Pokemon Rumble U was enjoyable, but had already started to descend the franchise into a place where I wasn’t having as much fun. It was getting easier and easier to beat the games as we went along. Despite that fact I was interested in picking up this new game on 3DS, especially as it has transitioned the franchise into the free to play world.

While there is one thing I really like about Pokemon Rumble World, which I’ll talk about later, I can’t help but feel disappointed at this game as a whole. Why; because it’s gotten even easier than ever to “beat” the game. I booted it up the first time and went through the early game spiel. They set up the world, introduced you to some of the supporting characters and gave you a pokemon of your own to go out and battle with. That’s part’s all fine and good. It does a passible job at setting up the reason that you’re playing the game.

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DS Games On Wii U Are Weird

DS Yoshis Island DSWhile I was putting together all the news from yesterday’s Nintendo Direct I came across something Kristian had written in one of his news stories that I’d completely missed. Yoshi’s Island DS was available to download right then from the Wii U eShop. I don’t know how that detail got past me, but it did. I immediately rushed over to the Wii U to download it, because I love the Yoshi’s Island games. Yes, all of them.

I was also curious as to how exactly DS games were going to work on Wii U. I can tell you that they’re kind of weird. There are numerous screen options that you can try out to find one to your liking. Here’s a brief overview of some of them.

You have an option where the TV acts as the DS top screen and the Wii U Game Pad works as the DS bottom screen. It’s just like having a HUGE DS in your hands. You have another option where you can display a virtual DS (and it’s a DS Phat) on your TV and the Game Pad. Much like how you have a Game Boy displayed on the 3DS when playing old Game Boy games. You have an option that puts the focus on the top screen. It displays both of the DS screens side by side. The top screen takes up more than half your TV (or Game Pad screen). The bottom screen is much smaller and sits to the right of the top screen. You have one that focuses on the bottom screen. Just like the previous one only the bottom DS screen is bigger than the top screen. There is one that puts both the screens on the Game Pad, but they’re rotated horizontally. This one is used for DS games that focus on the stylus as the main input. There’s another one that lets you best display games that are done in book style.

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Tony’s Time: My Dream April Fools’ Day Scenario

Mega ManReporting anything April 1st each year is a nightmare. Companies try to one up each other by coming up with the craziest possible things to announce. Sometimes those jokes get turned into real games. Other times you just get angry at all the fake junk coming out. Well, here’s my dream scenario for what happens tomorrow and it involves Capcom. This is fake. 150% fake. It’s absolutely untrue. Let’s get that out of the way right now, but wouldn’t it be great if it happened?

Capcom puts out a press release tomorrow. It looks something like this.

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Sega Announces Game Freak’s New Game, Not Coming To Wii U

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Mini rant incoming.This is my gut reaction to the announcement of Game Freak’s new game. 

Sega wins the worst PR excuse in the history of the world award with their reason why Game Freak’s new game, Tembo the Bad@$$ Elephant isn’t coming to Wii U.

“When I was writing the presentation documents for this game, I drew a mockup poster, and I put the Steam, PlayStation, and Xbox logos at the bottom. It seemed to fit, and it happened to stick that way. We thought about other hardware during development, but our hands were pretty full with those three platforms!”

The director of the game said this. In public. It basically boils down to, “I was too lazy to draw the Wii U logo on some promotional artwork and didn’t want to fix the mistake so the game’s not coming to Wii U.” This is not a reason you say to people you’re talking to that might be interested in your game. It’s coming to PS4, Xbox One and PC.

The game itself actually looks interesting. It’s a sidescrolling action game that I’ve heard compared to the Rambi levels of Donkey Kong Country. The art style is interesting. The name, while I would never tell my kids what I’m playing, is clever. I’m just not sure I’m going to pick this one up at this point. Bad PR to start your promotional campaign doesn’t make me interested in what you’re selling. It’s part of the reason I chose a PS4 over an Xbox One. Sorry Sega. As interested as I might be, this just might be a game I skip.

This is my opinion and my opinion alone. It does not necessarily reflect the opinion of Nintendo Okie as a whole.

Jumping On Monsters Is Satisfying

MH4U LogoI really dig Monster Hunter. It’s a series that I’ve grown to really enjoy over the last couple of years. Most of my time has been spent in Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate. You can see some of Ethan and my exploits over on the Youtube channel. I’ve been following Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate now since the game was first announced for Japan. I wasn’t completely sure it was going to come to America as they series isn’t nearly as popular here as it is in Japan. However, I was at least more than hopeful that it would and it is. We’re just about 10 days from the release of the game here in North America and I’ve had a chance to mess around with the full game for a little while now. There are plenty of changes to the game that I think long-time fans of the series are going to like. One in particular is the ability to jump on monsters and ride them around for a bit.

Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate take the game to a new dimension. Not just because the game is on 3DS, the previous game was too. This time around, though, the maps are more expansive and dynamic. You have the ability to change levels and use higher terrain to your advantage. One of the things this now allows is the ability to jump on top of a monster while attacking it. When you do this you enter a little mini game with a meter at the bottom of the screen. It’s a small blue line with a monster head at one end. The whole point of the game is to fill the meter before the monster makes it to the other end. To do this you wail away on the attack button while the monster’s head is green. Doing this fills up the blue part of the meter. When the monsters head turns red you stop and hold the R button to keep from being thrown of the monster and the monster head on the meter moves to the right. If you manage to fill up the blue part of the meter before the monster makes it to the end you instantly knock it down and do a significant amount of damage to it.

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