Category Archives: Editorial

A Brief History of Yoshi


Since there’s no real European news to speak of this week I though I’d do something a bit different this week and give you a brief history of one of my all time favourite Nintendo characters, T. Yoshisaur Munchakoopas.

Yoshi first appeared in one of my all time favourite games. The 1990 game Super Mario World which came out on the SNES. He was created by Shigefumi Hino who’s first game was also Super Mario World and who has since worked on games like Mario 64, Yoshi’s Story, the Pikmin series and the New Super Mario Bros. series. Continue reading A Brief History of Yoshi

Tony’s Time: Reaction To Nintendo’s 2015 E3 Digital Event

It’s been around 24 hours now since the Nintendo Digital Event. I’ve had time to process all the information they released in that 50ish minute video. I’ve watched some additional demos of many of the games that they had on display and I wanted to get my thoughts about what was shown (and maybe not shown) during the first day of E3 for Nintendo. Nintendo was focusing on transformation during the event. It did feel like things were changing for the company, but I wasn’t sure all the changes that they were making were going to be positive. I’m going to be focusing specifically on the stuff shown off during the Digital Event. There is still plenty more for Nintendo outside of that to talk about, though.

My initial reaction to the event overall was disappointment. It didn’t feel like there was really anything new that was going to wow us. With the loss of Zelda at the event and the game not coming out until next year at the earliest I felt, personally, that Nintendo needed to pull something out of their belt to get people excited. My first thought for that was a new Metroid game. We got one, but not one that fans were expecting. Metroid Prime Federation Force is a four player co-op multiplayer arena shooter. You and three friends can play together locally, or online, in what appear to be simple objective based scenarios. Then when you’ve finished all those missions you can play 3v3 Blast Ball, a futuristic version of soccer.

This feels to me like a slap in the face to Metroid fans. I’m not a Metroid guy, but I do like the series. I was one of the few people that thought Metroid: Other M was a really good Metroid game that actually made the character of Samus more believable and closer to how she is portrayed in the official Metroid manga series. She is flawed and vulnerable at times, but ultimately ready to take on whatever the galaxy has to throw at her. I was hoping that we’d get a new, proper Metroid game, but instead we’re getting something that feels like it would be a mini-game or a small part of an overall bigger game.

Continue reading Tony’s Time: Reaction To Nintendo’s 2015 E3 Digital Event

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.

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