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10-20-2016 5:29 pm
fuzmeister: The Glorious Demise of the Wii Brand
Earlier today, Nintendo announced a new video game console to be released next year. While I have my own collection of thoughts specifically on that, one of the highlights of today was the realization that the poisonous Wii brand is finally dead and Nintendo can finally be released from the shackles of the past.

When the Wii came out ten years ago (!!!), it was a hot item for months and months. It encouraged non-gamers and casual bystanders to pick one up with its prospect of motion-gaming and a "new level of interactivity." Unfortunately, after the hype-dust settled, Nintendo's core audience was alienated by a system plagued by loads of shovelware and missing the ever-crucial support of third-party developers.

When the successor Wii U was eventually announced, Nintendo's attachment to the Wii brand and lack of aggressive marketing caused the console to stagger right out of the gate. Many who had played the Wii were confused about what the Wii U exactly was. While third-party support started out very promising, low sales eventually caused key players to pull their support of the console. I personally love the games I have for Wii U, but let's be real - the majority of classic titles made for the Wii U have been first-party Nintendo games. No doubt.

Now in late 2016, the Nintendo Switch has been revealed. I don't want to comment too much on the system or its potential at this point, but the first press release makes it a point to list FORTY-EIGHT third-party companies (most developers) that will support their new console. I want to remain optimistic they will be able to move past the last decade which started off so much more promising than it ended. Ditching the Wii branding was a great first step in potentially doing so.

Mood: Optimistic
Music: The Rolling Stones - It's All Over Now

Tags (beta): video games, nintendo

Comments (2)

10-10-2015 4:07 pm
fuzmeister: The Days Have Shortened
As the seasons transition, Kate and I are transitioning as well. We've finally relocated to a new home; I was happy to have this happen before the cold bleakness of another Western Pennsylvania winter sets in too.

Kate found me a Wii U secondhand from a local guy before we moved. The price was half of what the bundle is going for new and it was barely used.

I have to say that, while Nintendo has made some horrible mistakes in the past decade, I am enjoying the Wii U so far. The tablet controller kind of sucks, but it's got some potential in terms of changing how games are played. Super Mario Maker proves that most people can't design a good level if their lives depended on it and, unfortunately, most of the top content are levels that play themselves (which is cool really only the first time you see it)...

Also, I think my PC can run Fallout 4, so dodged a bullet there as well... looks like I'm PC/Wii U this gen... until X-Station 5U is announced - I'm all over that.

Mood: Eh
Music: TV On The Radio - Happy Idiot

Tags (beta): video games, real life

Comments (2)

6-03-2014 2:58 pm
fuzmeister: Symphony of The Night Holds Up
So I recently re-played Castlevania Symphony of the Night on my PSP. I was concerned that the game wouldn't hold up since the last time I played it (2003).

I was actually pleasantly surprised that the game still holds up pretty well despite being 17 years old. Some of the soundtrack comes off as a little dated, but even some of the now-primitive 3D graphics worked alright in the context of a 2D adventure.

For whatever reason, it seems these quality 2D games hold up much better than the first generation 3D stuff on PS1, N64, and Saturn... don't get me started on stuff that used the SuperFX chip on SNES; those games haven't aged well at all.

Mood: Pleased

Tags (beta): video games

Comments (1)

3-27-2014 3:15 pm
fuzmeister: Sonic Dash & The New Model
I'm willing to pay for Sega's Sonic Dash on Android. I'd be willing to pay maybe $5 for it. A lot of folks would say that's a lot for a mobile game. The problem is there is NO paid version for it. The only version available is ad-supported. It's even started giving me notifications about playing the game.

Want an easy way to ruin an otherwise great game? Throw in micro-transactions and mandatory advertising. Seriously, this is probably the most fun I've had with a Sonic game in the past 15 years and its totally botched by the fact that I'm forced to watch videos after every game. I understand this is the "new model" for video games, but if this mentality fully leeches from the casual to core market, there's going to be all kinds of abundant crumminess.

Mood: Old Geezer-ish
Music: Metallica - ...and Justice for All

Tags (beta): when i was your age, video games, android

Comments (1)

11-26-2013 2:39 pm
fuzmeister: The Era of Poorly Named Video Game Consoles
DISCLAIMER: I do not believe the name of any object can determine the overall quality of said object. With that being said, I was considering how poorly-named the new generation of video game consoles is the other day.

Xbox One is meant to convey a sense of unity on a single device through its name. Xbox Unity might have actually worked better considering I have known people to refer to the original xbox as xbox one for several years regardless of that title being incorrect. We live in a world where numerics indicate iteration, not functionality. Imagine if the Nintendo DS was called the Nintendo Two because it had two screens...

Secondly, we have the Wii U. Technically, this is a current generation console even though it's really kind of shoved between this generation and last's due to some under-powered hardware. That's a different post for a different day though. The Wii U sounds a lot like a college where Wiis graduate too after they've received enough credits playing Wii Sports. To be honest, I'm not exactly sure I understand the naming convention of Wii U at all. Is it supposed to be a system all about U? Unfortunately, the name rhymes with P.U. which is exactly what we'll all be saying in two years when Nintendo's system can't keep up with any current third party software.

Lastly, we have the Playstation 4. The Playstation 4 gets the award for best naming between the three major home consoles. However, I think it's a tad lazy on Sony's part to keep simple appending numbers onto the end of each Playstation. I understand that there is significant brand recognition with the Playstation name, but there's also significant brand recognition with the name Sony. Why not use an arbitrary word after Playstation instead of a number? Playstation Blade. Playstation Onyx. Playstation Entertainment System. These are all legitimate options. Again, I think Sony has the best system name of the three major consoles.

Honorable mention goes to the Ouya console which I don't rank in the same league as the other three. What the hell were they thinking with this name? All I can hear in my head every time I read it is Macho Man Randy Savage saying "Ohhhh YEAH."

Mood: Moderately Amused

Tags (beta): video games

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