Friday, 27 April 2012

Playstation All Stars: Battle Royale

Sony, I can understand wanting to rip off Smash Bros. It's a big, successful, fun thingamajig that takes advantage of decades of franchises and characters.

But don't you need, like... franchises and characters first? I mean, let's count what you guys have to work with here:
  • Ratchet & Clank
  • Nathan Drake
  • Sweet Tooth
  • Kratos
  • Uh...
  • That redhead chick from that game no one bought?
  • Flower??
  • ...
  • ...
  • That burlap muppet thing from Little Big Planet?
The first Smash Bros. had 12 characters. Street Fighter II had 8 playable characters, and 4 boss characters. They had Donkey Kong and Blanka. You guys have Dane Cook in Tomb Raider.

I'm not saying this was a bad idea at any time. But it's either too early or way too late to be doing this. You haven't got enough exclusive franchises to build on yet, but it's also too late to go back and throw in Crash Bandicoot or Spyro the Dragon.

A very strange and desperate turn of events... Which I know is par for the course with you guys, but still.



Friday, 20 April 2012

Mass Effect 3: "Insanity"

I REALLY need something to focus on right now that isn't Mass Effect 3. I'm going to lose my mind if I keep this up. Days and days of nonstop playing the game, writing about the game, drawing stuff for the game, talking about the game, analyzing and joking about the game. Still so much to do, but I need some relief from this. I need closure, but I need a break.

This isn't like when I get the sudden urge to draw cast mugshots for a zombie story. I seriously think I'm starting to go insane here. It just won't escape my thoughts. I'm having a hard time accomplishing even basic rotary functions human beings do every day around the house, because Jennifer Hale is squatting in my brain like a hobo.

Monday, 16 April 2012

EB Games

There is nothing a publisher like EA hates more than used game sales. It means they don't get a penny for when they release rushed, idiotic, childish, pandering bullshit. It means they resort to backhanded business practices(usually by chopping up a game's content and selling it back to you, like a ransom note that comes with your son's finger). And most of all, it means John Riccitiello has to wait a little while before buying another solid-gold yacht he paid for by closing a development studio.

Because of this, I no longer see used-game sales as the industry-destroying problem it's made out to be. As Chris Kohler pointed out, it seems more like a scape-goat for business execs who don't want to try very hard. There's only so long you can release garbage for ridiculous prices, in a recession, before people start going to pawn-shops. If publishers aren't willing to make games for less(or at least just not waste millions of dollars into rendering James Vega's ass-cheeks), and as long as they keep trying to lock out customers who aren't Scrooge McDuck, places like EB Games are just going to keep eating into their profits. They have no one but themselves to blame for not properly adapting to the demands of their customers.

One would think the best way to combat this would be to not buy anymore EA products. Or Activision, or Capcom, Square-Enix, BioWare, etc. Any corporation that handles customer relations the way Jodie Foster was handled on that pinball machine in "The Accused".

But I think I have a better idea. It's just in the testing phase right now, but tell me if you think this makes sense:

For companies I like, I'll buy games new. 
For companies I don't like, I'll buy games used.

Friday, 6 April 2012

Digimon Xros Wars: "Hunters"

Man, that new Digimon season is fucking awful. But at least it's contained. Like an epidemic. It hasn't been localized. When I think of more successful rebirths in television, like Dr. Who, it makes me sad to see the people behind this franchise aiming so low. But at least they're sticking to ruining their own characters. Like when Marge baked a separate cake on Maggie's birthday for Homer to ruin.

Fortunately they haven't done anything stupid like, in a desperate attempt to win respect from fans tired of Namco/Bandai's bullshit, parade out older characters we actually did like. It has to be obvious to them by now that nobody has genuinely liked the cast for this show since about 2001. By now they're just relying on the same tired spikey-haired leader, token female and mysterious tall loner bishi trifecta every other anime goes with.

And even though the show has always been a toy commercial, lately it's a lot more transparent about it. Hollow, even, seemingly assembled piecemeal out of the carcasses of a dozen anime programs. Not to tell a story, not to be educational or endearing, but just to hawk some products on people in the most obnoxious and undermining way possible.

But at least the "Classic" characters have been spared this fate, right?