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Posts Tagged ‘Video Games’

The Mysterious “Project Cafe”

Soon after the launch of Nintendo’s next and best gadget known as the 3DS, you’d think that the spotlight would start to fade away from their domain and start to come back to Microsoft and Sony a little.

Well, you’re wrong. Nintendo has brought the spotlight right back to them with “Project Cafe”

What is this mysterious project? It’s only just the codename for their next big home console.

“The Wii 2!?” you may ask. Yes, the Wii 2. Nintendo is ready to (hopefully) join the big boys in the true HD generation. Now, not much is known about this new console since Nintendo’s going to keep the details locked up until E3, however, there is one little tidbit of info. The controller for “Project Cafe” will mirror the Gamecube controller in terms of function, not form, it will have dual analog sticks, and the shocker: the controller will feature a 6 inch touch screen in the middle of it that you can use either as part of the game or to stream entire games to the controller.

I’m already hating this thing.

A bunch of people just threw down $250 for this bad boy and now you want us to buy another screen for our controllers? How many screens do we need?

Why on earth do I need a 6 inch screen in the center of my controller. If I want to play games on a small as screen, I’ll buy a DS/3DS, not a whole new home console. Adding this screen will make the controller so much heavier than it needs to be, and we all know that our hands get tired of holding a DS or PSP or whatever after a while. It’s going to be heavy. And this announcement is coming right after the release of the 3DS. Way to screw everyone over Nintendo. Release an expensive new handheld and then tell us the your new home console is going to feature a controller that can play full games on it. Granted, the 3DS and this controller thing have a lot of differences, but what other purpose would Nintendo have to put a screen into your controller and let you download games to it if they didn’t want you to use it as a handheld.

IGNs idea of what the "Project Cafes" controller will look like.

Now, according to IGN, the controller can stream games, not download them. So basically what your saying is that if we wanted to play games on just the controller, we couldn’t leave the range of the console? Now that is just dumb. Why would I want to stream games to my controller and play on a small screen on my couch when I can just play them on the big freaking TV that the console is connected to. If I want to play games on a small screen on my couch next to a big TV, I’ll just grab my DS and turn off the TV so I can at least conserve some energy while being stupid.

Another thing is that if it ends up being that you can download the games to your controller (and therefore leave the vacinity of your console), your controller is going to need a shit load of memory. And you know what that means? EXPENSIVE. If we think controllers are expensive now, just wait until they throw a 6 inch screen and memory into your controller. I could see the controllers running at $80+ per pair.

In general, I think this is the stupidest idea yet. My personal opinion would be that they just make a normal console and then somehow let you sync your DS/3DS to the console and let you use that as a controller….if you absolutely NEED a screen in your controller.

I think I can live without that. I guess we’ll just have to wait until E3 to see this new “Project Cafe”.

Why Motion Gaming Needs to Die

December 8, 2010 1 comment

We’ve all felt the magic when we first swung a Wiimote and bowled strikes repeatedly. Or when we played a tennis match to the likes of Roger Federer in our very own living room. At the time, casual and hardcore gamers rejoiced. That was in November of 2006, Playstation Move and Microsoft’s Kinect have since then arrived on the scene. So what is the post-mortem on this motion-based gaming trend?

Need some adjectives? Garbage. Lacking. Awful. Dreadful. Rubbish.

There’s plenty of talented developers out there with ambitious concepts, so why hasn’t there been a “must-have” killer app for any motion platform? It is because these concepts are JUST that; IDEAS! Ideas that may look or sound amazing on paper but end up being poorly implemented and turning out to be a clusterfuck in terms of functionality.

The initial wow factor goes out the window when you and your buddies end up playing Wii Bowling SITTING DOWN and simply curling the controller. This completely defeats the purpose of a “motion controller” when all I end up doing is sitting down and shaking a piece of plastic. It distances me from any notion of me being immersed in a game. I end up feeling like a grown man playing with a baby’s rattle toy.

(The only good motion gaming has done.)

Okay, perhaps I’m picking fights with the Wii’s casual game library a little much. So lets move on to first-person shooters. Hm… I’m out of ammo and I have to reload my gun because these Nazis, terrorists, space aliens, and/or zombies aren’t going to kill themselves. Time to shake the controller! Oh wow… my reticle moved off screen. Now I’m being horribly mauled, shot,
and raped. Yes, raped.

Even the genre of fighting games have been plagued by sloppy control schemes. Super Smash Brothers Brawl allowed you to use the Wiimote and nunchuck attachment. But… who cares? Legions of Smash Bros. enthusiasts picked themselves up off the floor after bellowing out in collective laughter and dusted off their GameCube controllers. Capcom had the right idea when they released Tatsunoko vs. Capcom by completely abandoning any form of movement. Give me d-pad/thumbstick (mouse & keyboard?) or give me death! Literally, this holds true in the world of gaming.


(Fuck’s sake… just give me these.)

I’m aware I’m picking on the Wii a lot, but Sony and Microsoft aren’t exactly out of the woods either. They have recently joined the foray of motion gaming in their own way. Sony’s Move controller is pretty much identical to the Wii’s controller. Of course there are technical differences like having 1:1 motion out of the box as oppose to buying a separate attachment. The Playstation Move’s design seems like it hasn’t even made it out of the prototype stages as it sports an odd anal-probe like glowing sphere at the tip of the controller. The collection of games supported thus far by Move is pretty weak too. It has the same cookie-cutter release titles that involve bowling, golf, tennis, and boxing. Except this boxing title features Danny Trejo! Right…

Microsoft’s Kinect is perhaps the only one able to distance itself from it’s ugly motion-related cousins. It has a specially designed wide-angle camera that features voice commands, gesture-based menu navigation, as well as the obligatory 1:1 motion capture technology. No controller involved at all. Although, the 360’s add-on is still cluttered with the usual assortment of sports games and faceless mini-game collections. It does, however, encourage (see: force) you to stand up and actually interact with games. Again the ideas are there, but it still doesn’t rescue it from the pitfalls of dancing games and virtual workout regimens. The Kinect’s only redeeming attribute thus far is navigating the dashboard menu and your Netflix que with hand gestures, even then it’s not as responsive as I don’t know… the d-pad. The d-pad allows for instant gratification. Swatting invisible flies to watch your movies does not.

My argument against motion based-gaming isn’t simply about the controls themselves; but what it does FOR or TO the gaming industry. I understand Sony’s and Microsoft’s need to follow Nintendo down their rabbit hole and cash in on the Japanese game maker’s 2006 gold rush. In a business sense, they want a piece of a very profitable pie; I understand that. However, it has been a good four years since the Wii emerged and I don’t think Nintendo themselves understand where motion gaming headed. The very people that have sparked this wildfire of a fad can’t even grasp what to do with it. They’re seemingly without direction.

The only upside is that it allows video games to be much more accessible to the consumer that doesn’t normally play games. Lets face it, this stuff sells. Undeniably. But as a hardcore gamer and not “Joe Schmo” consumer its hard not to get jaded. I’m tired of walking through a store and just navigating past a wall of shovelware and crappy plastic attachments. It’s all the same mini-game compilation, dancing, workout, arm-flailing, on-rails point & shoot software excrement. Just wall-to-wall of nothing but bullshit. It flusters the nerd within me.

(Remember this? Yeah….)

To be fair, Sony and Microsoft are new to the team and for obvious reasons they’re benefiting from beginner’s luck this holiday season . However, in 2011 they’ll be up to bat. Like any good baseball player they have to stew a bit and their true value will only reveal itself in time. Will the Move or Kinect end up being MVPs? Or are they just another washed up investment?

Deus Ex: Human Revolution First Gameplay Trailer

August 14, 2010 Leave a comment

The folks over at Eidos Montreal has released the first gameplay footage for their futuristic pseudo-cyberpunk shooter. Did I mentioned it looked amazing? How conversations unfold seem to have a striking resemblance to the Mass Effect series, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. The core shooting seems solid with the now seemingly mandatory “ADS” mechanic that’s so prevalent in shooters now. The camera also appears pull out to show some brutal CQC. It looks to be a mixed bag of wonderful gameplay mechanics. As a fan of the FIRST one (pretend Deus Ex 2 never happened), lets hope that it delivers on its promise when the game ships early 2010. Sorry, no solid release date yet.

Kirby’s Epic Chain is Straight Cash, Homey

August 10, 2010 Leave a comment

I know nothing about Chris Brown (besides the whole hitting Rihanna thing) but that is some sweet bling (do people still say bling?). I wouldn’t be caught dead in public wearing it but it is pretty to look at.

Price Check on Awesome, I Repeat, Price Check on Awesome

August 9, 2010 Leave a comment

Even if Soda and Video Games are making our kids obese, you have to admit that this is an amazing combination of the two.

via kotaku

I’ll say it loud and proud, I play sports video games

August 7, 2010 Leave a comment

My name is Joe and I’m a Madden-aholic.

It’s true, I play Madden and I love it. I don’t care that everyone says that real gamers don’t play sports game because it’s bascially the same product released every year with new names and the occasional new gimmick. I don’t care, I love play sports games. I’m so addicted to Madden that I spend the time before the game comes out building up draft rosters with all the college plays properly represent in NCAA Football. I have about 15 years worth of drafts ready to export into this years Madden. I love building up the Lions (Sorry Stafford) in Franchise Mode every year with QB  #3 Joe Nolan, drafted in the first round.

I also love playing MLB The Show, the NHL series and the Smackdown Vs. Raw series because of their incredibly deep single player career modes. Each game treats their respective sports like RPGs where they require the player to grind for experience so they can become good enough to level up and unlock new skill sets. I love playing sports game because it allows me to live out all my greatest dreams. I’ll never be 6-3, 230 pounds blessed with the ability to throw 100 mphs or shoot a puck at the speed of light, but in videos games I can. Video Game Joe Nolan is a Hall of Famer with 953 Career Home Runs, 84,658 career passing yards, 1,034 career goals and I’ve won every title in the WWE with my create-a-wrestler “Thunderous” Joe Hawkins.

When Madden 2011 comes out, I’ll be there bright and early to buy my copy and I don’t care what you say. I have Madden Fever and I’m no longer ashamed to say it.

Tekken X Street Fighter to debut at GamesCom

While the title of the game may seem familiar at first glance, it isn’t the “Street Fighter X Tekken” game that was announced last month at Comic-Con. Confused? Yeah… you and a lot of other people. “Tekken X Street Fighter” is Namco’s two cents in Namco and Capcom’s recently revealed crossover fighting series.

The title suggests that Street Fighter characters will be stepping into Tekken’s arena for this iteration. Tekken director Katsuhiro Harada is set to announce the brawler at German game convention GamesCom. The event runs from August 18th – 22nd. Unfortunately, we’ll be stuck here in the States. Frowny face 😦

We’re crossing our fingers that some gameplay footage will be shown. As of right now, no character roster or release date has been revealed.