Posts Tagged ‘Top Storitorial’

Top Storitorial – Are The Wii U & Nintendo Doomed As Analysts Say?

Hello everyone and welcome to the to return of the Top Storitorial! Tonight’s edition is going to discuss the recent article which implied that Nintendo is doomed and will discontinue the Wii U. Sam Mattera over at The Motley Fool made several factually incorrect statements. As I mentioned, Sega did not release 4 consoles between 1992 and 1999 as Mr. Mattera states. Heck, Sega only had 5 consoles altogether in their entire history of hardware development, 3 of which were released BEFORE 1990, let alone 1992. Other hardware produced by Sega were revisions of the Genesis, its add-ons, combinations of those things, and of course the Game Gear which was a handheld, not a console.

The statement saying Wii U sales are not likely to improve with competition increasing with Microsoft & Sony is more of an opinion than fact. True that could happen, but at the same time income sensitive people who may still want to purchase a new console would gravitate towards the lowest priced console, which the Wii U currently is.

When he talks about entertainment features of Xbox One compared to Wii U, that is misleading a bit. True Xbox One does feature a lot of non-gaming things, but Wii U features a lot of the same things as well and/or variations on them, such as Nintendo TVii (which is similar to what Xbox One will have with the NFL partnership and the like). He also states that these things will appeal to Nintendo’s core audience. Um, last I checked Nintendo’s core audience are people who are “hardcore” Nintendo fans. The “casual” audience that entered in the Wii era are not and have not ever been Nintendo’s core audience. They are part of the expanded audience. Saying that is like saying Call of Duty’s core audience is toddlers and senior citizens. That’s just not true and doesn’t make sense.

He goes on to discuss software sales for the Wii saying the best-selling titles were the motion series of games like Wii Sports Resort, Wii Play, and Wii Fit. This is also not factually correct. According to VGChartz, the top 10 for the Wii to date, globally are:

  1. Wii Sports
  2. Mario Kart Wii
  3. Wii Sports Resort
  4. Wii Play
  5. New Super Mario Bros. Wii
  6. Wii Fit
  7. Wii Fit Plus
  8. Super Smash Bros. Brawl
  9. Super Mario Galaxy
  10. Just Dance 3
So none of the 3 games he listed are in the top 2 spots and one isn’t even in the top 5. Now according to Nintendo’s own website, the top 9 are:
  1. Wii Sports
  2. Mario Kart Wii
  3. Wii Sports Resort
  4. Wii Play
  5. New Super Mario Bros. Wii
  6. Wii Fit
  7. Wii Fit Plus
  8. Super Mario Galaxy
  9. Super Smash Bros. Brawl
Which is almost identical to VGChartz and what I stated above applies here as well. This information is easily searchable using Google. It takes all of 5 minutes to find if that.
He goes to talk about Kinect and how it’s included with all Xbox One consoles, which is true (for now), but he implies that there will be more games that utilize Kinect which right now, we just don’t know that for sure. There might be, there might not be. The industry seems to be trending away from motion based gaming in general now, so I’m not sure how much of an influence Kinect will have. The latest trend is 2nd screen gameplay as seen with the Wii U Gamepad, Xbox SmartGlass, and Vita Remote Play.
And then he states Nintendo can’t support a failing console, which is just factually incorrect again. It’s well-known by most gamers that Nintendo is flush with cash (yes I know that link is from 2012, but it’s still valid as far as I know). They have billions just sitting there to spend on whatever they want and that’s not even counting their non-liquid assets and IPs. They could sell 0 systems from here on out for the next several console generations and still be in business. As far as I can recall, Nintendo has NEVER sold a console at loss until Wii U. That means they’ve been making profit nonstop for 30 years.
Mr. Mattera doesn’t bother to mention this, but the vast majority of “killer apps” for Wii U have not yet been released. Super Mario 3D World doesn’t come out until November 22nd. Mario Kart 8, Super Smash Bros. for Wii U, Zelda Wii U, etc. are all 2014 (or beyond) titles. All of those are system sellers and will most likely help to move consoles once they released (based on the history of those franchises selling hardware in previous generations). This would be like if we were to revisit this issue a year from now and PS4 was still waiting for Uncharted, God of War, SOCOM, LittleBigPlanet, Infamous, etc. Or if the Xbox One was still waiting for Halo, Gears of War, Fable, etc. Very few systems have had the majority of their “killer apps” released within the first year of the system’s existence.
That’s just my take on it. I’m sure Xbox One & PS4 will take away market share from Wii U, but the question is how much. We shall see.

Source: GameSaga Original

Top Storitorial – E3 2013 – "Day Zero" Thoughts

Microsoft Press Conference

Well Microsoft had some games to show finally which was nice. They talked way too much about media features at the Reveal Event last month so it was nice to see more in the way of games. I always find it funny when companies focus on multi-platform games in their conferences. Hey here’s this awesome game and it’s on our system! But um, isn’t on other systems? Oh yeah…I guess it is…but buy ours because it’s shinier or something? Doesn’t make a lot of sense to me. If you want people to buy your system you should focus on things they can only get on your system. Don’t get me wrong, every system needs 3rd party titles, but still…Anyways, MGS5 looks nice and all if you’re into those types of games. It’s MGS, you know what to expect.

Kinda surprised they made a new Xbox 360 model. That seems…pointless. Usually companies phase out old hardware when a new one is going to launch not make new versions of it. Of course Nintendo did the same thing with the Wii Mini. Not sure about the Xbox Gold/Xbox One free games deal. Do people really want free versions of old games? I doubt it. Give them free versions of current games if you want people to talk about it. World of Tanks is cool I guess if you like that sort of game. Lots of blowing up stuff.

Max: The Curse of Brotherhood was so brief I don’t even know what to say about it. Dark Souls II is another multi-platform game. Looks cool and all, but I haven’t even played the first one yet (I have a large backlog of games). Ryse looks cool, though I wonder if it will actually release seeing as how it as in development for Xbox 360 originally.

Then we had the biggest news of the Microsoft conference in my opinion…a new entry in the KILLER INSTINCT series!! The last game in the series game out 17 years ago…SEVENTEEN YEARS, kids who were 1 year old then are graduating high school this year, that’s how long it’s been since a new KI game was released. It’s unclear whether it’s Killer Instinct 3 or a reboot/remake of the first game. If Microsoft hadn’t shot themselves in the foot with all the used games, always on, and all of that nonsense, this would’ve been an even bigger point for them and possibly lead to them “winning” E3.

Sunset Overdrive didn’t really impress me that much, need to see more of it. Forza Motorsport 5 we already knew about. It looks pretty, but it’s a racing game, you either like them or you don’t. I’m not a big fan of racing games so it doesn’t really interest me. Minecraft for Xbox One is cool I guess, but it’s the same game as on PC basically from what I can tell. If you already have it for PC why would you buy a console version? Quantum Break is one of the few games that really interests me so far. Not sure if the footage shown was from cutscenes or actual gameplay, but it looks great visually and the concept is interesting and different. If the gameplay holds up it could be a hit (assuming Xbox One doesn’t choke due to Microsoft’s screw-the-consumer mentality).

Project Spark looks nice and all but doesn’t really interest me that much. It reminds me a bit of Spore and that was hyped up a lot like this and was pretty disappointing. We shall see if the same fate falls for Project Spark. The integration is a cool feature and will come in handy when/if I ever get an Xbox One as I could easily live stream from it. Crimson Dragon was hard to get a read on due to the lack of sound/music. Not really sure what the game is about other than dragons. Dead Rising 3 is more zombie killing madness. Survival horror is pretty much played out at this point in my opinion. There’s not much else than can be done with it. Though I do like the idea of combining everyday objects to create weapons.

Witcher 3 looks cool, but again, I haven’t played the first two games yet. I like to play games in a series like that in order whenever possible. Battlefield 4 doesn’t really interest me. I got my fill of first person shooters with Goldeneye and Perfect Dark. An MMO version of one doesn’t really appeal to me especially when you factor in that you likely have to have Gold membership for that. It looks nice visually though and the dynamic changes to the environment are cool, but again, the primary appeal for that game is multiplayer I’m pretty sure.

Below’s footage was so brief it was hard to get a read on it. Need to see more of it. Same with Black Tusk’s game. Halo Xbox One (possibly Halo 5) looks nice visually, but that was likely cutscene footage. And again, it’s Halo. Halo is Halo. First Person Shooters are getting pretty stale too. The genre is just over-saturated.

The price…wow…the price…$500 is too much. It should’ve been $350 at the most. I miss the days when consoles were $150-200. Heck I thought the Wii U was overpriced at $350. The November date isn’t shocking at all. Both their previous systems released in November, and it puts it right before the holiday season too.

Titanfall looks interesting. It appears to be a Third Person Shooter which aren’t as over-saturated as First Person Shooters are. The mech mechanic could be fun as well. Though supposedly the game will be multiplayer only….um…what?! That’s dumb. Why are you trying to force people to get Xbox Live Gold? Maybe I don’t want it? It should have single player too. Sigh.

EA Press Conference

Hmm Plants vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare, not sure what to make of it. The puzzle game was pretty fun, but not sure if it will translate well to an action game. We shall see. Peggle 2…yay? The first one was fun until you completed all the levels…and then what…? Games like that work much better in arcades because there’s more incentive to go for a high score. I guess we kinda have that now in consoles with leaderboards and the like, but even so. It’ll probably be released on PC and/or mobile devices as well. Star Wars: Battlefront was so brief I have no idea if it’s a sequel, a remake, a reboot or what. Never played any of the Battlefront games personally, so I don’t know what to expect, but I did like the Rogue Squadron games.

Need for Speed: Rivals we already knew about. The ability to play as the cops is neat, but I don’t think that and the helicopter control is enough to make this entry stand out from any of the others in the series. It’s NFS. This a a problem I’ve noticed a lot over the years. Sequels tend to be too similar to previous entries in the series. Sure you want to keep most of what made the original fun, but you shouldn’t copy 95% of it. You can still have a good game even if you redo most of the game, Zelda 2 is a good example of this. Don’t care about the NFS movie. If I wanted to watch stuff about a movie, I’d watch a movie event, not a video game one. And given that pretty much all video game movies suck, this one has its worked cut out for it.

Dragon Age: Inquisition we already knew about. Looks nice and all but I haven’t played any of the others yet, so I don’t know much about it. I don’t care about basketball some NBA Live 14 means nothing to me. Same with FIFA. Madden I like, but again, it’s pretty much the same game year after year. That’s kind of unavoidable given that it’s based on a real thing. It’d be like if you made yearly games about exploring the Eiffel Tower. Eventually you’d run out of ideas/things to do. There’s only so much you can do with a finite amount of content to base it on. I don’t follow UFC so I don’t care about that either.

I thought it was Mirror’s Edge 2 but I’ve heard some say it’s a remake/reboot. It’d be nice if companies would clarify these things in the trailers, right? I played the demo for the first one I think but that was about it. I know a lot of people are looking forward to this. I haven’t played the first one that much though, so I don’t really have an opinion on it.

Ubisoft Press Conference

I missed the first few minutes of this one because I was getting dinner, but when I came in they were talking about Splinter Cell: Blacklist. Again, it’s a Splinter Cell game, same basic premise/concept. They’re not bad games per se, just there doesn’t appear to be much to distinguish this from other games in the series. Rayman Legends should’ve been out already on Wii U. I’ve played the demo for that system and it was okay, but nothing groundbreaking or worth buying a system for in my opinion. I’m not a huge Rayman fan so I’m probably the wrong person to ask about those games. It looks nice graphically but that’s about all I can really say about it.

The Mighty Quest for Epic Loot sound fun, neat, and interesting. It appears to be like slapstick version of Diablo, which could be cool. South Park: The Stick of Truth was so brief there wasn’t much to talk about. It showed a clip which could’ve just easily been from the TV show as there wasn’t anything game like shown if I recall correctly. The Crew is too much like Need for Speed. If I were EA I’d consider sending out my legal team. Again, it is very similar to those games from what I could tell. Doesn’t really interest me much.

Now Watch_Dogs, I think this game has the potential to be a major hit if the gameplay holds up. It looks awesome, fun, innovative, and interesting. I’ll likely be buying this one when it comes out. Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag looks nice and the pirate theme is different and hasn’t been done a whole lot in gaming so it could be fun. I still haven’t finished the first one yet though so I’ve got a lot to catch up on for AC games. Trials Fusion & Trials Frontier didn’t really interest me. I had enough with trick point games with Stunt Race FX and the Tony Hawk series. Switching the vehicle doesn’t make it any more interesting to me.

Tom Clancy’s The Division looks cool, but I’m worried it will be another multiplayer only game. I’m not a fan of games which refuse to put in single player modes. The claim it’s an RPG, but I didn’t see any RPG elements that I recall, looks more like a Third Person Shooter. The story for the game is interesting and reminds me of some of the stories in the show 24.

Sony Press Conference

Sony got off to a rocky start with their conference. They started about 20 minutes late. I checked 3 different sources (including Sony’s own) and none of them were showing the stream at 9 pm Eastern like it was supposed to be. It didn’t start til almost 9:30 pm Eastern. Had some stream issues once it got going too. IGN’s crashed at one point, so I switched to GameSpot. Theirs crashed a little later so I switched back to IGN. Had a lot of stream lag with this too. Didn’t have this problem for the other ones.

They started off talking about PlayStation in general and the Vita. Talked about Vita games we already know about. None of which really interest me at all especially considering I don’t own a Vita. But even if I did they still wouldn’t interest me most likely.

They talked about apps/media briefly, but unlike Microsoft at the Xbox Reveal Event last month, Sony didn’t spend the entire conference talking about that. Though they did come back to it later and at that point I thought Sony did talk about it too long even so. Again, I buy video game systems for games, not for apps I can use on my PC, phone, or tablet. The Last of Us looks nice visually, but again it’s survival horror from my understanding. Admittedly though I haven’t followed the game that closely as I don’t own a PS3. I know a lot of people are looking forward to it. Puppeteer was too brief. Same with Rain. Why show clips if they’re only going to be 20-30 seconds? Seems pointless. Beyond: Two Souls might be interesting. Not entirely sure what type of game it is though. But Ellen Page plays the lead role and she’s awesome so maybe the game will be too.

Gran Turismo 6 looks nice but again it’s a racing game. You race cars and get to see how shiny they are and that’s about it in my admittedly limited experience with genre. Doesn’t really appeal to me. But I know the series has a lot of fans. Batman: Arkham Origins will probably be cool, but I still haven’t played Arkham City or Arkham Asylum. Grand Theft Auto V was just talked about, no footage was shown if I recall correctly. Thought that was odd since it is supposed to be out this Fall. I guess Rockstar figures it will sell itself. I haven’t finished IV yet.

They showed the actual PS4 console. It looks similar to the Xbox One somewhat but if you took a knife and cut diagonal corners out of the sides. Not sure why it’s 2-tone black instead of all one shade, but oh well. It’s part glossy, part matte, so maybe that’ll help with fingerprints, dust, and the like.

And then they spent way too much time talking about media features. I buy video game systems to play video games, not for music, movies, or TV shows. I get that some people enjoy this sort of thing, but it just doesn’t appeal to me much at all. I already have a PC, tablet, and phone that can do almost of all the same things and I don’t have to spend ~$400+ extra.

The Order 1886 looked interesting. Need to see more of it though. Not sure what type of game it is. Killzone: Shadow Fall doesn’t really interest me much. Killzone just appears to be the Sony version of Halo. It’s another First Person Shooter….yay? DriveClub, another racing game…yippee! Was GT not enough? Infamous: Second Son looks pretty cool. The character’s abilities remind me of shows like Heroes & Alphas. I haven’t played any of the other games in the series though. I did like the inclusion of Nirvana music in the trailer, that was cool.

Knack was too brief to get a read on. The Dark Sorcerer had a funny bit where it broke the 4th wall sort of. But it didn’t really provide a whole lot of insight into the game. Transistor was too brief same with all the other indie games. 10 second clips don’t tell me anything about the games. Final Fantasy Versus XIII or Final Fantasy XV, whichever it was looked nice graphically, but it was difficult to read the subtitles and write about it at the same time so I’m not really sure what the story is. Kingdom Hearts III should be cool, though I never finished the first one and never played any of the others. Like I said I have a huge backlog of games.

NBA 2K14 bored me. Like I said, basketball doesn’t interest me. The Elder Scrolls Online showed a lot of different things but it was switching scenes too quickly to get a grasp on anything. Basically I guess it’s going to be an MMO version of Oblivion/Skyrim. That’s cool I guess. Haven’t finished Oblivion yet. Mad Max was too brief, though it was funny when the dude begged to be shot and then was run over instead.

Sony is apparently doing the right thing and not limiting used games, trade-ins, resales, loans/borrowing, etc. They’re also not doing always-on/check-ins apparently. The ability to play while downloading the game is cool but I have a feeling that’s going to cause a lot of lag. The UStream feature sounds good like on Xbox One.

I got the impression that Sony is making multiplayer for their games available to PS Plus members only. If so, that is a jerk move and very Microsoft-like of them. I don’t think we should have to pay for multiplayer (on PS4, Xbox One, or any other platform). While Destiny is part First Person Shooter, it still looks interesting and appears to feature some Borderlands like elements to it. I think this game has the potential to be a major hit as well. The Public Events and dynamic on-the-fly multiplayer sound cool.

They announced the price for the PS4 as $399 which is a full $100 cheaper than Xbox One. I still think that’s too much. The most I think any console should ever be is $300. Anymore than that and you might as well just buy a PC. But at least they didn’t Neo Geo or 3DO it and make like $800 or something ridiculous like that. They didn’t give a release date beyond Holiday 2012, so it’s probably going to be November or December.

Overall Thoughts

I thought Sony had the best conference out of all of these. Ubisoft was in 2nd place for me, then Microsoft, then EA. Sony had a lot to prove given how far they had fallen from the PS1/PS2 days to now and they knocked it out of the park tonight. We’ll see if they keep the momentum. We still have the Nintendo Direct to go tomorrow which serves as a replacement for Nintendo’s press conference. We’ll be live blogging it as it happens here on GameSaga beginning around 10 AM Eastern

Source: GameSaga Original

Top Storitorial – Rayman Legends On PlayStation Vita Thoughts

So Ubisoft announced today that Rayman Legends would be appearing on the PlayStation Vita. This isn’t too terribly surprising considering they had decided a while back to make it multi-platform, but it still is not really fair to Wii U owners. Apparently they are going to add things which were supposed to be Wii U only features, like challenges & leaderboards.

Now I’m not a big Rayman fan personally, never really got into it. I have played the demo on Wii U for this game a few times though. It’s not a bad game per se, just never got super into it. I could probably get into it though if I had the full game. But I still think it’s pretty crappy of Ubisoft to do this to Wii U owners.

I get why they are doing it, they are a business and want to make as much money as possible, but it still seems like they are doing one thing and saying another. They keep saying oh yes we are going to support the Wii U big time and then they make this game which by the way was supposed to be a launch title originally I’m pretty sure and turn into a launch window game. Then a few weeks before it’s scheduled release date they said they are pushing it back until Fall because they want to make it multi-platform. They came up with a challenge mode & leaderboards for the Wii U eShop to sort of placate Wii U owners. People seemed somewhat satisfied with that, but then now with these features seemingly being added to the Vita version, why should Wii U owners bother with the game anymore? They tried to support it and Ubisoft said the heck with you guys basically. I know some people are super pissed about this and I don’t blame them one bit. I would be too if I were a big Rayman fan. Even Ubisoft employees like series creator Michel Ancel were pissed off about it. There were even rumors he was considering leaving the company over it.

I have a feeling this game is going to bomb sales-wise. Ubisoft has alienated pretty much all the Wii U owners who would’ve bought it at launch in November or even at the delayed release in February. And traditionally “kiddie” games don’t do well on Sony or Microsoft systems as the user base tends to consider themselves “above” that, in general terms anyways. I know there are people who own those systems who have no problem with games like Rayman and would enjoy them, just as there are those who own Nintendo systems and also enjoy “hardcore” games. I just think Ubisoft is shooting themselves in the foot with this game and are dooming it to failure.

And then you have the fact that Grand Theft Auto V is scheduled to release just 2 weeks after Rayman Legends and it’s just a recipe for disaster. If the game had released in February it would’ve had a lot more shelf space and eyeballs on it and potential for higher sales. With the delay it’s going to be a more crowded market and will probably wind up being ignored. If Ubisoft wanted to make the game multi-platform to begin with, then they should’ve said so from the beginning and committed to it from the beginning instead of saying it would be Wii U exclusive. I get that the Wii U is not selling as well as it could be, but making exclusives non-exclusive is not going to help the situation any.

I feel bad for the developers of the game and fans of the series because of what Ubisoft management has apparently decided to do with this game. I don’t agree with their decisions about it at all. But who knows, maybe I’m wrong? Maybe the game will sell millions upon millions and be one of their best-selling games of all time? I hope for their sake it does well, but I just don’t see it happening.

What do you all think? Were you going to pick up Rayman Legends originally? Are you still going to get it? Which system would you get it for if you do? Do you agree with Ubisoft’s decisions regarding the game?

Source: GameSaga Original

Top Storitorial – Xbox One Reveal Thoughts + Predictions Accuracy

The third entrant in the 8th console generation has been unveiled, the Xbox One. I thought the system sounds  like a cross between Xbox 360 & Wii U. It has a lot of the same stuff 360 does and adds in a spin on the Nintendo TVii features of Wii U along with SmartGlass which was a take on the Wii U GamePad. I’m surprised they went with Blu-Ray for the media. I didn’t think they would want to pay Sony royalties for that since they are the competition. I wanted them to show more games for the system as all we got to see was Call of Duty: Ghosts, Forza Motorsport 5, and Quantum Break (a new IP). They discussed some EA Sports titles, but no real footage other than a tiny bit in the Ignite Engine video. I guess they are waiting for E3 to show more games. They didn’t give us a specific launch date or price either, which doesn’t surprise me that much and it does makes sense because they’re probably saving that for E3 as well. I’m kinda surprised they showed both the controller and console at this event though. I thought maybe they would save one for E3.

Overall I wasn’t that impressed with it. Sure the graphics look great, especially Forza, but the games shown don’t interest me that much. I’ve never been into racing games a whole lot, nor have I gotten into Call of Duty. Quantum Break looks interesting, but I need to see more of it. With the EA Sports titles we know what to expect, nothing too shocking there. The NFL deal stuff sounds interesting and will be cool for me since I’m a NFL fan and enjoy fantasy football. But ESPN doesn’t really matter much to me because they don’t show much NFL, mainly other sports. The Halo TV series doesn’t interest me that much. Shows & movies based on games usually bomb, so the odds are not in its favor. But I’ll reserve final judgment for when it actually debuts.

They didn’t really clear up anything about always online or used games on the system during the event, though they tried to do so with a Q&A feature that was posted online. It’s still not 100% clear. It sounds like they’re going to make you pay a fee if you buy a used game and want to install it to the hard drive. Though again that is not all 100% confirmed/clear. Hopefully they will explain this in more detail in the near future.

Now as for my predictions? Well let’s recap what I predicted first. I predicted we would probably only see just the console or the controller. Instead Microsoft showed us both. So that was wrong. I was pretty much spot on with the release date (or lack thereof) as they just said “Later This Year,” which to me sounds like holiday season timing, which would make sense. Both the original Xbox and Xbox 360 launched in November, so it wouldn’t be shocking to see that happen with Xbox One as well.

They did mention that Forza was a launch title, so I was correct partially about that. I don’t recall if they said Call of Duty or Quantum Break would be launch titles, but they probably are. I didn’t think we get a real date or price and we didn’t so I was right about that.

I was was partially correct about the shape of the console. It is indeed rectangular like the Xbox & Xbox 360, but doesn’t feature that many angular features like the S model of the Xbox 360. The Xbox One is indeed using HDMI and has Wi-FI built in just as I predicted as well as an Ethernet out port. The system appears to have 2 USB ports on the back and possibly a 3rd one tucked away from the rest, though this could be a different connector of some sort, but it appears to look like a USB port. So I was right about that either way as I said it would have 2-4. It might have a flip panel or something like that on the front though, like the Xbox 360, so it could potentially have 5-6 depending on how many they put there if there are any at all. So I could have under estimated, but we don’t know that for sure yet. They did include a hard drive with the console, 500 GB, I didn’t predict a size, just a drive existing. It doesn’t appear to protrude like the Xbox 360 one does, so it must be fully internal, which means it could be a standard drive, but it could still be proprietary as well. We just don’t know yet. So I was half right on that so far. Side note: 500 GB is too small  still I think. Especially since they are wanting us to install ALL games to the drive. It should’ve been 2-4 TB at least. Oh well, maybe they will sell an upgraded drive or a newer model with an upgraded drive built in later on. I was completely wrong about my Blu-Ray prediction. I didn’t think they would use it. But they are going with that, so I guess Sony will get a cut of each sale of the console. I’m sure that doesn’t sit well with some people at Microsoft.

Nothing was really said about my Wii U eShop-like prediction for digital same-day releases of new games, so that’s up in the air still. But given how much they are pushing digital and cloud services, it wouldn’t be too surprising to see it happen. I was spot on with the Windows 8 themed UI. The Xbox One is using the Metro style tile interface as seen in Windows 8. Netflix, Hulu Plus, and YouTube were not mentioned but I’m sure they will be there eventually if not at launch. ESPN was mentioned and so I was right about that. The controllers appear to be wireless so it looks like I was right about that. Not sure about the battery prediction. They mentioned the compartment was smaller but didn’t say whether it was rechargeable or not I don’t believe, so that’s up in the air still.

I was right (so far) about there not being a Halo game mentioned, but they did reveal a Halo TV show, so I’ll count this as half right. I was right about Kinect being part of the system and given the apparent inclusion of it with every system sold, I was close with the built-in pseudo-prediction. So this will be half right. Given that Kinect is apparently going to be utilized in just about every game in some way, I was right about the launch title prediction for that. Fable 4 wasn’t mentioned, but I wasn’t 100% on that as I said it would likely not be a launch title and so far it’s not. Same with a new Gears of War game.

It appears I was right about Call of Duty: Ghosts being a launch title, though that wasn’t 100% confirmed I don’t believe. So I’ll count that as half right. FIFA 14 was mentioned but EA said their sports games were “within the next year,” so it could be a 2014 title. And that was all of the predictions. Overall I think I did a pretty good job with my predictions. I hit a lot of them dead on, though I did screw up big time by predicting no Blu-Ray, but hey you win some, you lose some.

Source: GameSaga Original

Top Storitorial – Final Next Xbox Thoughts Before The Reveal

Well we’ve been waiting a long time for this day and it’s finally upon us. Microsoft will reveal their third console, the so-called Next Xbox this afternoon. We already know some games that will be shown including Call of Duty: Ghosts and a next-gen FIFA, possibly FIFA 14. There’s also rumors that Respawn Entertainment’s title will make an appearance along with the recent rumor of a new Forza game. Microsoft has said that this event will focus mainly on hardware. They are planning to use E3 to discuss software apparently. But that doesn’t mean we won’t see any games.

I hope they will give us a date and price and maybe a few of the launch titles as well. I’d also like to see the controller and the console itself. I think we won’t get all of that, probably just the console or just the controller, and probably no date or price other than a vague Holiday 2013. I’m going to guess the system will release in early-mid November. No inside information there, just speculation on my part. Side note: I think the PS4 will release around the same time, possibly within 1-2 weeks of the Next Xbox.

I’m guessing the console will be rectangular shaped like the Xbox and Xbox 360 were, as that would make sense given Microsoft’s track record and the fact that Xbox’s are basically console versions of PCs. I wouldn’t be surprised to see some angular features like the S Model has. I expect HDMI to be the standard graphical output and for it to have built-in Wi-FI along with an Ethernet out port. It will probably have 2-4 USB ports as well. I’m assuming they will include a hard drive of some sort as well. Probably another proprietary style one, though one would assume they would allow USB drives as well given that they do that with the Xbox 360 now. It’s conceivable however, that this feature won’t be available at launch. I expect the Next Xbox to use a most likely proprietary high-density DVD, possibly quadruple or quintuple layer. I don’t expect them to use Blu-Ray given that that is Sony’s format and I’m sure they don’t want to pay the licensing costs. And of course HD-DVD flopped so that is out as well.

I also expect Microsoft to do something similar to what Nintendo does with the Wii U eShop in that I expect Microsoft will do same-day or close to it digital releases of their newest retail titles. Digital downloads are becoming a larger and larger segment of the console marketplace and Microsoft has shown they are not afraid to embrace Internet features in their consoles. Speaking of which, obviously Xbox Live will play a big role in the new system. I wouldn’t be surprised to see the layout being similar to Windows 8. I’m sure we’ll have Netflix, Hulu Plus, YouTube, ESPN, and all the other media features on the system as well. I expect the controllers will be wireless once again, probably using rechargeable proprietary batteries instead of AAs. I would hope they would include a charger in the box if that is the case.

I don’t think we’ll see a Halo game at launch. I think they will save that for Holiday 2014. Halo 4 just came out last holiday, so unless they were working on Halo 5 at the same time, it wouldn’t be ready in time more than likely. I think the system will feature Kinect integration of some sort, possibly built into the console itself.  As such I think they will have a selection of Kinect-enabled games as launch titles. I also believe Fable 4 is in development for the system and might possibly be a launch title, but more likely it won’t be due to Fable: The Journey releasing just last year. I wouldn’t be surprised if they’re discussing bringing a new Gears of War game to the system as well, but I don’t think we’ll see it until 2014, possibly not until 2015.

Launch titles I’m predicting so far are: Call of Duty: Ghosts, Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag, FIFA 14, Madden NFL 25, and Grand Theft Auto V. The only 2 of those that are essentially confirmed are Call of Duty: Ghosts and FIFA 14, but the others wouldn’t surprise me even though they are speculation on my part.  What good is a new system reveal if you don’t make predictions right?

Well that about wraps up my thoughts on the system leading into the final hours before the reveal event. Which of my predictions will come true? We’ll find out later today hopefully. Be sure to check back around 1 PM Eastern time for our live blog coverage of the event. What do you guys think will happen with the system? What are you wanting to see with it? Let us know in the comments.

Source: GameSaga Original

Top Storitorial – Nintendo/YouTube Situation Thoughts

In today’s Top Storitorial we’re discussing the Nintendo/YouTube situation. We posted an article on the site about it here. If you haven’t heard, basically Nintendo is claiming Let’s Play videos and the like as though they are their own content. They claim because the videos contain Nintendo game footage, that Nintendo holds the rights to the entire video including commentary. The most common examples are Let’s Play type videos, but others which feature lower amounts of gameplay have been flagged as well. This is called a “content ID match.” Basically what it means is Nintendo entered their details into YouTube’s database and YouTube’s automatic system flags things which match it, usually catching things that don’t need to be flagged as well. Supposedly sites like IGN and Machinima have been hit with this as well.

It varies depending on who’s reporting it, but most people are saying Nintendo is not doing full takedowns of videos that match, but rather just changing ads in ones which are marked for monetization. So if you’re a YouTuber and you have videos up which contain Nintendo gameplay or audio and those videos have been submitted to YouTube’s monetization program, YouTube’s system will auto-flag them (in theory) and redirect the money made off the advertising to Nintendo and/or put in a Nintendo ad at the beginning and end of the video. It’s not clear whether Nintendo gets all of the money or just part of it. Some are saying Nintendo has pulled down some of their videos, so it looks it like it could be inconsistent.

Nintendo is within their rights to do this one could argue. I’m not a copyright/trademark expert, but I can see why they think this is their footage, because the footage is of their IP. But on the other hand, Nintendo doesn’t own the copyright to audio commentary provided in Let’s Play type videos though, the creator of that commentary does. Then you have videos which feature more production with mainly the host(s) on-screen talking and/or acting in relation to the game and those have some footage in small parts, but Nintendo doesn’t own the rights to those discussions/acting scenes. Blanket moves for things like this are usually not a good idea in my experience and opinion. It catches everyone instead of just certain ones. Sure okay if it’s 100% Nintendo video and audio, then fine, that makes sense, but if there is even 1 minute of non-Nintendo audio/video, then it’s not 100% theirs and shouldn’t be claimed as such.

Let’s Play videos and the like serve as basically free advertising for Nintendo. They’re a company which is not known for strong/in-your-face type advertising. Their advertising is usually more subdued and few and far between. And given their struggles with the Wii U and the 3DS before it (before the price cut), Nintendo obviously needs all the help they can get to try to sell their hardware & software. Granted Nintendo products generally sell themselves to the Nintendo faithful, like myself, but videos of all kinds (Let’s Play, Reviews, First Looks, Previews, Impressions, Tips, etc.) are very helpful to people on the fence about buying a system or game. I myself wasn’t going to get a Wii U right away because there weren’t a whole lot of games for it that I was interested in available. But after watching videos (ironically on YouTube) and hearing podcasters talk about it, I decided to get one. Nintendo got that sale sooner (and probably at a higher price point) 100% because of videos and podcasters. Nintendo didn’t get that sale on their own merit. I was intent on not buying one until more games were available and I’ve been a Nintendo fan my whole life.

More after the jump.

So while it’s completely within their rights to do this sort of thing, they’re just shooting themselves in the foot in my opinion. The money Let’s Play videos and others like them make is most likely minimal compared to the revenue of a company like Nintendo. In case you’re not aware how Internet advertising works, basically it’s based around two factors, CPM and CTR. CPM is Cost Per Thousand Views/Impressions, CTR is Click Through Rate. Basically you get paid a certain amount for each click with CTR and for every 1,000 views/impressions with CPM. Generally these are no more than 10 cents – 1 dollar for CTR and much, much lower for CPM. Considering most people block ads these days, you don’t get anywhere near the impressions you did back in the early days of the Internet or before ad blocking became a thing.

So Nintendo is getting fractions of a cent basically for doing this sort of thing while at the same time pissing off the fans who want to do Let’s Play videos or other similar type videos and basically encouraging them to no longer use Nintendo products in their videos. They’ve decided they’d rather have fractions of a cent for ads than the $60/game from those who convince viewers to buy a game they wouldn’t have bought otherwise. That doesn’t sound like a smart business move to me. Free advertising is good advertising, especially when it’s positive. It gets your name and brand out there and recognized.

And what’s to say Nintendo won’t change their mind one day and decide to take down videos altogether? Why spend the time recording, editing, doing commentary, uploading, etc. if the videos may just be taken down? I mean this would be like one example I read online. What if when you were a kid and had a lemonade stand and the farmers who grew the lemons came to your stand and demanded all the money you made from it for using “their lemons.” Or what if you buy an old beat up car and completely restore it and sell it to someone else and GM, Ford, Chrysler, or whomever comes along and demands you give them the money from the sale? These kinds of things don’t happen, because it wouldn’t make sense. Why should video games be different? You can make the case that those are not IP, which is true, but what if we applied this logic to books? Those are IP as well. But it’s okay to review a book or provide commentary on a book. What if you film a video of you flipping through the book and provide commentary? That is the same kind of situation.

I think this situation should fall under fair use. Yes fair use does not usually apply to commercial undertakings (i.e. monetized videos), but for something like this fair use should apply. The person showing the footage is not selling a copy of the game. The game is not just audio and video. The programming is just as large a part of it as well. The programming of the game is not exposed in a video. There’s no way that I’m aware of to show closed source code for a game during a video. So unless people reverse-engineer it, there’s no way to make a 100% exact duplicate without the source code. Therefore it’s not a 100% copy of the game.

All that being said, I understand why Nintendo is doing this for the most part I think, but I don’t agree with it. I think they should have to split the ad revenue with the video creators. Even if it’s something like 90% Nintendo, 10% creator, that’d still be better than nothing.

We had some videos featuring Nintendo game footage on YouTube but took them down before this all went down for other reasons. We still have a Chrono Trigger video up which was the SNES version, so it’s on a Nintendo platform but this will likely be taken down soon. It’s not clear if this is for Nintendo developed games only, or if it includes Nintendo published games as well, or it includes every game on a Nintendo system.

With that in mind we will no longer be uploading any Nintendo related videos to our YouTube channel. We will still embed and link to other channels with Nintendo related videos including Nintendo’s own, but we will not post them on our own. We will look into finding alternate hosting services which do not have these same kinds of restrictions.

Here at GameSaga we embrace the ideals of the Internet that it should be open and you should be able to share whatever you want. That is why we allow our content to be copied word-for-word in whole or in part on other sites, publications, etc. We want people to share our stories, articles, reviews, etc. Why should we hide them from people who want help advertise for us? All that we ask is that you include a link back to either our homepage or the article’s/story’s/review’s page. This applies for GameSaga Original content, including audio & video. This does not apply to content provided by other websites and publications as those are not GameSaga Originals.

What do you all think of the Nintendo/YouTube situation?

Source: GameSaga Original

Top Storitorial – Looking At The Nvidia Shield

Well it looks like we officially have another entry in the Android “console” race. This one comes from Nvidia (of GeForce graphics cards fame) and it’s called the Nvidia Shield. We highlighted some of the important details from The Verge preview here on the site, so check out that article if you’re interested about specifics.

So far, it sounds pretty cool, though I’m personally skeptical of the PC game streaming ability. Having used PC streaming services like Splashtop before on my smartphone and tablet, it was very laggy and hard to control and virtually unplayable. Granted the Shield is being built as a dedicated gaming device first and as an Android “mini-tablet” second, but still. Even in The Verge’s article they mention that Nvidia is considering the streaming function to be only beta quality. That tells me that it doesn’t work very well.

As for the rest? Well Google has made significant strides with their Android OS and its slate of apps & games in recent years. Apple had a huge head start with both of those, but Android is on pace to hit 1 million apps/games before iOS does. So there’s definitely a large selection of games to play for a device like the Nvidia Shield. But are they any good? Well I guess that depends on what you think of mobile gaming in general. I think on smartphones it’s too difficult for me as most games use touch-based controls and that means your fingers/hand are covering part of or sometimes most of the viewing area. This makes it difficult to see what’s going on. This is why controllers are awesome. I have a Xbox 360 PC adapter and can pair it with my Android tablet and it works pretty well. I think the Shield could be successful for people who don’t already have a tablet and a wireless controller to pair with it. But even for those of us who do, the Shield can still be of value. Why? Because the controller is the device. On top of that, it appears like it will be a little bit smaller than a 7″ tablet, but that’s just speculation on my part.

My main problem with the device other than the streaming feature is the price. $350 is a bit steep for what is essentially a handheld video game system. I mean if you thought the 3DS was overpriced at $249 (like me), then this is just ridiculous. Mobile device prices are way too expensive in general in my opinion (if you buy them without a contract), but that’s a rant for another day. $200-250 would’ve been a much more reasonable price point for the Nvidia Shield. Now if it had cellular capabilities? Maybe that might be worth more money, but I don’t think it’d be worth $100 more. Especially since you’d likely have to have a contract to use the signal. Granted there’s tons of games available for Android and more added every day, but I still don’t think this worth more than $200-250. Might be cool to pick up later on down the road once the price comes down though or perhaps a used one through eBay or Amazon or the like.

What do you guys think of the Nvidia Shield? Do you want to get one? Why or why not?

Source: GameSaga Original, The Verge, & Digital Trends

Top Storitoral – Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Dual Destinies (3DS) – Western Release Thoughts

Well that was some cool news to hear about today, Capcom bringing Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Dual Destinies to the U.S. I really enjoyed the first one in the series, which originally didn’t release here, it was Japan-only on GBA. Then Capcom decided to port it to DS and we got a release here for that version. I haven’t played the others one yet as the first one is still in my backlog (I got stuck near the end), but I will eventually play them.

Anyways, I think it’s awesome that Capcom is still giving us these games. They’ve gotten a lot of heat from players the past few years over their treatment of the Mega Man franchise, but they do things like this which make up for it a little bit sometimes. I never got into Mega Man Legends personally, but I know lots of people love it and want the 3rd one that was promised. I hope they can restore Mega Man to his former glory. 9 and 10 were steps in the right direction, but I’d like to see a reboot of Mega Man X as well. Not necessarily 3D or anything, but just something with X and Zero, no Axl, or any of the other useless characters they added later on. And none of this Mega Man Zero and ZX stuff either. At the same time though I want them to try something new with the formula too. What that is, I don’t know, but I’m sure they can come up with something.

As for Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Dual Destinies, I wonder if the shadowy figure in the trailer is supposed to be Apollo Justice or someone else? I’m guessing it ties into the game’s title. I also wish they hadn’t killed off Mia, as I liked her and don’t think she got enough screen time in the first game even with her “spirit.” Hopefully this new girl Athena will be as good as Mia or better.

What do you guys think? Are you interested in this game or the series at all? Are you upset that it’s digital only?

Source: GameSaga Original

Top Storitorial – Dragon’s Crown Amazon Character Reveal & The Female Appearance In Games

So Atlus revealed another character for their upcoming Action RPG/Beat’em Up game Dragon’s Crown. This time it’s the Amazon. Like other female characters in this game she is highly sexualized, as they’ve chosen that type of asthetic I guess to appeal to the primarily male audicence video games usually attract. I personally don’t have a huge problem with it, but I can see why some people would. But to each their own I suppose. We’re all allowed to have opinions, just some seem to think theirs is the only right one. But getting back to the point here, is it good or bad to have female characters appear like this in video games?

On one hand you have the potential that impressionable females could see this and think that’s how they’re supposed to look, but if that’s the case they probably are either too young to know better or have additional problems besides their self-image. Some women seem to think that they have to look a certain way, well that’s not always the case. Having a larger chest doesn’t always make you more attractive, just as having a smaller doesn’t always make you unattractive.

On the other hand, developers and publishers obviously want their games to sell, because otherwise how would they stay in business? Perhaps the theory is if the game includes scantidly clad female characters then more people (males usually) will buy it. Me? I buy games for gameplay first, then story/fun-factor, then the rest of the stuff (graphics, sound/music, etc.). So it could be 8-bit sprites or Pong, it doesn’t matter to me as long as the game itself is fun and has a good story (for games which need it [i.e. RPGs and the like]).

What do you all think? Are you more or less likely to buy a game based on the physical appearance of female characters in it? Are you for/against having over-sexualized females in video games? Let us know in the comments, the forums, on Facebook or Twitter or via e-mail.

Source: GameSaga Original & Wikipedia

Top Storitorial – Pokémon X & Y Details Thoughts

For today’s Top Storitorial we’re going to briefly talk about Pokémon X & Y. CoroCoro Magazine revealed 4 new Pokémon for Pokémon X & Y today. I swear they keep getting weirder and weirder it seems. I guess there’s only so many animals you can base them on before you run out.  Elikiteru looks pretty odd. It’s part lizard/part dog apparently. The others are not that bad. My favorite of the  4 is definitely Gogoat, which is the antelope-looking one. Not sure why it’s Grass type though, other than the leaves on part of its body. If it were up to me I’d make a new type called Beast and this one would be a Beast/Grass type. They could make any new ones which closely resemble actual animals the Beast type.

I also think it would be interesting if they introduced triple or quadruple types. Of course this would require either a re-working of the rock-paper-scissors type system or adding a lot more new types to compensate for additional weaknesses. Maybe they expand on the Beast type idea I mentioned and make sub-types for it, like Rodent, Bear, Cat, Dog, etc. What new types would you all like to see?

Source: GameSaga Original