Tag Archives: DLC

#474 My Amiibo Wish

Christmas came this year and I am glad to write that the day was full of gifts, good spirits, holiday foods and of course a viewing of Lord of the Rings. Out of everything that Santa brought Amiibos versions of my brother and my main, Pikachu for me, Yoshi for one of my brother, and Kirby for my other brother.

Jump > Down+ B for days

Jump > Down+ B for days

I wrote about the Amiibo products before (Be MOP #459), and during that time o writing I was tempted to buy a one or two and I am glad I did not. Upon opening and inspecting, the figurine are quite impressive and stand alone statues, with a nice weight to it and and you could just was easily to use it just as a desk decoration but the Smash integration and customization is still the ‘system sell’ of these collectibles.

Smash my be the reason for the Amiibo’s creation, but I hope that this is the kickoff the renaissance of some of some of the other great Nintendo Intellectual Properties. Nintendo has announced that there will be an Amiibo for all the Smash characters, from Rosalina to Mega Man and Duck Hunt and more importantly Nintendo has also started making plans to integrate these Amiibos into other Nintendo games, beyond Smash.

As of right now we just have Mario Kart 8, Zelda Hyrule Warriors, and Smash as the three Wii U games that utilize the RFID feature. But these Amiibo’s still have a lot of potential for their future confirmed products, with the Open World main Zelda title, next proper Star Fox game, and the Wii U Kirby game.

Want.

Want.

Now With the commitment Nintendo has placed in creating, shipping and selling these Amiibo figures I hope this hints at a long term plan from Nintendo to bring back more of their other, non-confirmed, I.P like Metroid, F-Zero, Kid Icarus the Fire Emblem crew to the Wii U for their own games.

But more importantly I wish to see all future Amiibo supported games give full support to all 40+ characters,because while we all know that Mario, Link, and Kirby Amiibos will be used on all of the future Nintendo games, I want confirmation that in the future, if I ever buy the less popular Nintendo Amiibos characters, that I will be able to use them just as much as the Mario and Link amiibos and get just as much in-game value from it.

I understand that the third party characters (Mega Man and Pac-Man) might have some legal hassle for using their image in other Nintendo games, but that's no excuse for Nintendo's other First party characters 

I understand that the third party characters (Mega Man and Pac-Man) might have some legal hassle for using their image in other Nintendo games, but that’s no excuse for Nintendo’s other First party characters


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#467 Proper ORAS Impressions

I finished my copy of ORAS early on Friday Morning, at around 3:30 am, since then I spent this week exploring the post game with all that, I believe I have enough to give, not a review but an more proper impression of the game. This post might be a month or two late for the internet, but this is my blog and I want to talk about it now.

All the images from this post is from other websites because the 3DS still wont let me take screenshots of in game activities

All the images from this post is from other websites because the 3DS still wont let me take screenshots of in game activities

In the base game, it is the same ten year old story about a 10 year old leaving his/her home to tackle the world of eight gym leaders and the four members of the elite four to claim the title of Pokemon Champion, a staple plot for all the Pokemon world. As everyone else has proclaimed the game has a beautiful graphical upgrade, from the XY engine being used on the assets of the GBA world, with improved cities and gyms layouts to the 3D character models and battles.

Almost everything is the same, except for some reason in the remake Game freak decided to cut the Volcanic ash trials from Route 113, the animation for the Ninja trainers to jump out of their hiding spots, and the HM Waterfall animation as well.

Its a little gripe, but it was a cool feature. picture from Bulbapedia

Its a little gripe, but it was a cool feature in the original.
picture from Bulbapedia

Out of everything in the remake I did appreciate the rebalancing of the first few batch of low level wild Pokemons you meet at the start of your adventure, but only if you seek up on a Pokemon. For example there is required event where you sneak up on a wild Pokemon and if you catch it you are rewarded with a low level Poochyena with Thunder Fang. That Poochyena helped me through the beginning game, and it stayed on his move sets all the way up to the E4.

As I was playing through the story campaign I noticed the weird contrast of the new generation hand-holding with the old school game design.  With one hand ORAS offers you the revised exp share item, colored text and camera pans and the option for fast travel to get you where to go next to advance the plot but in the other hand ORAS gives you the caves and dungeons in the original setting, which requires you to leave a space in your team for a HM slave to get past the bolder puzzles or to cross a river, something Gamefreak moved away from since the Black and White games.

My only other complaint is with the game’s pacing. With the original game I did not notice this problem but with the graphical update and the addition of cut scenes, I did get the feeling that the game reached it’s best moment before the story ended. In the game you, personally, get to witness the birth of an ancient monster, see it run rampant, race it towards civilization and down the halls of origins. You go toe to toe with this beast, defeating it thus saving the world.

Then after all of that you are asked to take down one more gym leader and prove your worth, again, at the Elite Four. I saved the world, the game should let me get that Pokemon Champion title just for that, it does not help that you are given the Eon flute after the Groudon/Kyogre fight that will literally take you anywhere else in the world than the 8th gym leader’s city.

It feels like being pulled down to a regular adventure after being the ultimate hero

It feels like being pulled down to a regular adventure after being the ultimate hero. Pic from Bulbapedia

But one of my favorite thing about the original RSE games is the added things besides the basic story line, the Beauty Contests, the Trick Base on Route 110, side quests, and the end game Battle island this game follows through in spades, with all of the above and the addition of hunting for megastones, searching for the old generation legendaries with the Soar feature, the now traditional Looker mini quest and the highly advertised Emerald Delta episode.

As a side note, It is nice to see the Secret Bases went to their next logical conclusion with the addition of the Streetpass feature to share your base and team with anyone near by and a QR code to share with anyone around the world, and as soon as I finish decorating my base I’ll share my QR code with everyone here and on Twitter.

All I can say now is, “Sinnoh Remake When?”


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#459 My Swaying Stance on Buying Amiibos

This is a big day for Nintendo, for today marks the release of the long awaited Pokemon Hoenn remake, the latest installment of the Super Smash Bros series and their newest product line, Amiibos, hints the store shelves as well.

Amiibos has been the latest addition to what I am reluctant to say the newest trend in videogames market, physical collectible toys that also have an unlockable character or gameplay for a game, basically physical DLC. Skylanders were the trailblazers with this trend, Disney Infinity followed up next and now it is time for Nintendo to shine.

I will have some choice words about how some amiibos are sold at certain exclusive stores. Put that for a later time

I will have some choice words about how some amiibos are sold at certain exclusive stores. But that’s for another time

When I first saw Nintendo’s introduction video of Amiibos, I was against it scorned by the horror stories of the other games in the trend. Both Skylander and Disney Infinity does the terrible act of gating playable characters behind a paywall, which takes the form of toys. Say what you will about ARTS/MOBA games but at least you can earn every champion, with the option to buy the champion in question if you do want to go through the grind.

50$ start up and <$10 per champion for on disk content. No thank you.

50$ start up and <$10 per champion for on disk content. No thank you.

 

But after watching some of the newest Nintendo Direct and their plans for current and future Amiibo support, I have moved back onto the fence. The big push is with Super Smash bros, having the Amiibos act as customizable and upgradable friendly NPC fighters, in Mario Kart Amiibos unlocks special Mii racing outfits that your Miis can wear on the race tracks with the promise of Amiibos support for future games like, Hyrule Warriors, Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker, and Mario Party 10.

Comparing SKylanders to Amiibos, Nintendo offers a better investment than Disney or Skylander because those two only works with one game, and Amiibos has the promise/potential to work with  every big Nintendo game for the rest of the Wii U life cycle. It also might hint of more of Nintendo IP crossovers like we have seen with Smash and Mario Kart 8 DLC and this would also provide some incentive for Nintendo to start producing more Wii U games of older Intellectual properties, like Metroid and F-zero for example.

And nobody's objecting to getting another F-zero game.

And nobody’s objecting to getting another F-zero game.

 

Personally I am waiting for more Nintendo games to come out with full Amiibo compatibility before I buy any, making sure it is not just a One trick pony. If I do commit to a purchase I am probably going to just limit myself to buying one, and only one and stick with it for *Hopefully* all of the future Nintendo games. I probability buy my Amiibo version of my Smash main, once I finally figure out what is my new Smash main or possibly my old school favorite, Pikachu or Mario.


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#458 Pokemon The Trading Card game mini-review

Nintendo is continuing the attack on my Wallet with not only the launch of Mario Kart 8 DLC pack 1 with another eshop drop. With a 3DS port of Pokemon The Trading Card game for the GameBoy color with their Virtual Console series.

I have said it before, but I do not know if it is Nintendo and Pokemon have started putting proper effort in their marketing with this console generation or if it is just because I am old enough now to start paying attention and picking up in the companies tricks.

I doubt that it was a coincidence that this Virtual Console port was announced only a few days after the Mario Kart 8 DLC went live and a week before the next major Pokemon title gets released. As of right now the only way to buy the DLC is to purchase eShop gift cards in stores or added set amounts through the online store. So naturally instead of buying the ten dollar increment gift card to just cover the price of the MK8 dlc cost, I bought the 20$ gift card for both the DLC and this game.

Those evil, evil people at Nintendo

Those evil, evil people at Nintendo

I knew this was going to happen eventually, with Nintendo’s habit to re-release older games for their newer platform, it was eventually going to happen that I would see, and buy a virtual console game based purely on nostalgia. I remember playing the digital version of the Pokemon trading card game on my GameBoy Color but the kicker is that I could not remember if it was any good. I remember playing it and I remember an overall net positive experience but I could not tell you if it was because of the gameplay or because it had Pokemon in it.

I have only clocked in an hour or two of game play between buying the game and writing but I feel I have experienced enough to confidently write a mini-review on the game.

Upon replaying the game the entire experience feels a tad off from the usual Pokemon games and Pokemon spin offs. This Pokemon game takes place in Generation I, with no mention of Dark, Steel, or Fairy types in the game, and the plot is almost comical. The plot has the same overall plot of the classic pokemon game, you are a nameless kid that sets out to “ be the very best//Like no one ever was” by going around and challenging the eight club masters (gym leaders) to prove your worth. But something is lost when you are trying to be the best at a card game, after the main game had you do battle with ‘real’ monsters.

Insert Yugioh abridged children’s card game joke here

Besides that complaint the only other minor one I have is that the over world runs like a poor man’s Pokemon ROM hack, using the same assets but not quite getting everything right. I have no screenshots from my game but you can see from the official eShop trailer with the camera panning and how all the enemies that you still have to challenge constantly runs in place.

Although, for a GameBoy Color game, it is still impressive that they were able to cram the entire card game rules and mechanics into the game cartridge, while still adding the cards I used to have in my physical deck when played ages ago. After all these years I still remembered how to play the card game without the introduction tutorial  and the game was overall still fun, even if I was smacked by the RNG in a few matches even when I was fighting against the gyms when I was suppose to have a type advantage.

If you have the money it is a nice buy to bind you over for the lead up of Pokemon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire’ release later this week. For now I, and I assume many other Pokemon fans, will have to settle for this fourteen year old edition of digital trading card game until Android users have the option to download and play Hearthstone, the more recent version of the Pokemon card game, or any other Pokemon games currently on the Apple app market.


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#450 My Growing Concerns with Nintendo’s DLC

Lately I have been watching and rewatching the recent Nintendo Direct Super Smash Bros. 50-Fact Extravaganza reliving the bombshells and more general hype excitement facts about the new standard features of the game and why it is the next best installment to the series.

The only thing I could once they got to "Fact 11: Ridley" was to laugh

The only thing I could once they got to “Fact 11: Ridley” was to laugh

Out of all of the 50+ facts two announcements caught me off guard: the announcement of a physical copy of the 2 CD -pack of some of the music tracks from both 3DS and Wii U games and the my favorite melee fighter, Mewtwo, will be returning as DLC. Both of which will be free to everyone people who buys and register both copies of Super Smash Bros. for the Wii U the 3DS.

This announcement does answer mine and everyone else’s question about Super Smash Bros. DLC and how Nintendo will handle the potential cannibalism of Smash sales when the company decided to make Smash cross-platform.
That business move is a success because I was not planning on buying the 3DS version of Smash until now, but the question I have hovering over my head is, is the move for locking rewards behind a the people who have bought both copies as an act of evil?

Currently it is an incredible value to be had if you buy both games, as of right now you get a free Mewtwo character, two CDs of music, the ability to transfer your data from one copy of the game to another, and with the game cartridge in your 3DS you can use your handheld as an extra controller for the Wii U. But something still feels off, if you were cynical you could easily call it holding off content for those who bought the deluxe edition of the game.

This gaming generation has marked a big chapter in Nintendo’s life, with the introduction of the 3DS and Wii U we have seen the introduction of free game demos, the growth of indie games on their platform, a big push for digital distribution and the birth of their own gaming forum, the Mii-verse which I am incredibly thankful for.

even if I do not post anything on Mii-verse I do find some entertainment scrolling through the one line posts and very creative drawings

even if I do not post anything on Mii-verse I do find some entertainment scrolling through the one line posts and very creative drawings

With all those beneficial features we also have seen the admittance of DLC on behalf of Nintendo with later content being added in New Super Mario Wii U, Mario Kart 8, Pokemon Mystery dungeon, and now Smash. If they did not already stress that Mewtwo is still in development I would be joining everyone else in saying that this is content hiding behind a paywall, it still might be the case depending on how necessary Mewtwo will be to online and competitive world.

With Mario Kart 8 we even seen in game advertisements DLC along with the option to place a preorder on both DLC packs and receive cosmetic bonuses for Yoshi and Shyguy.

2637198-wiiu_mk8_yoshiall_sm
I just do not know how feel about this, for right now I am going to say the same thing about Nintendo when I last talked about their dabble with DLC:

DLC is a very fickle and corruptible force. DLC can be used for good, adding new levels and characters that would not be able to be made before the developer deadline, but it can also be a power for the selfish purposes for the sake of the company’s bottom line rather than for the consumer, like hacking off content from a full price game or filling the DLC shop page full of superfluous content or skins. It is not that I do not trust Nintendo or worst, rooting for them to fail, but making DLC in this age requires a lot of self control on behalf of the company.

To all of the people online that would say not the worry about DLC because it is Nintendo, remember that we once thought that George Lucas could do no wrong with his movies. (Be MOP #423)

Right now, for New Super Mario Wii U, Mario Kart, and even Smash, the value of the DLC is a net positive towards the side of the players, but Nintendo is walking a very thin line and if they mess up with future DLC pack they could lose a potential DLC customer for life.


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#428 The Return of the Pokemon DLC

Good news Pokemon fans! The Pokemon Company just announced two new DLC for everyone with a copy of Pokemon XY for the over the course of two weeks in October and November, presumably to build suspense and hype for the release of Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire slated for November. 

The first DLC will given away between October 13th and October 26th, and it is a Level 25 shiny Gengar, holding a mega stone that will allow it to transform into the one of the coolest mega forms I have ever seen. The other DLC will distributed between October 26th and November 16th and this is one of the blocked off legendary Pokemon, Diancie, to celebrate the release of the 14th Pokemon movie, Diancie & The Cocoon of Destruction. Both DLC will be given out via special code for free -currently for US players only- at participating Gamestop.

 

As much as I want to say I am above being subjected to Marketing techniques, because of the news and other things, I am currently powering through the XY Pokemon show to prepare for the upcoming movie.

As much as I want to say I am above being subjected to Marketing techniques, because of the news and other things, I am currently powering through the XY Pokemon show to prepare for the upcoming movie. 

 

As I wrote in the last time I wrote about Pokemon DLC (Be MOP #414), it is still nice to receive continuous support for this game with the best type of DLC with content that are not connected to the main story or plot all while being free,and not to sound like I am biting the hand that feeds me but I do not like how Nintendo of America is tying themselves to Gamestop AGAIN. 

The 3DS and Wii U were the herald that brought Nintendo in the new era of constant and easy internet connection for all of their devices with the ability to download any games and patches, friend lists, and the introduction of the Mii forums. Both Nintendo and the Pokemon company has proven they have the ability to distribute DLC and free games on the global scale directly to the comfort of our own WiFi enabled homes. So why is the American branch of Pokemon resorted to local connections and printing and handing out unique codes especially since Gamestop already had their promotional stunt with Pokemon just a few weeks ago.

 In the official Pokemon release they even highly suggested that while you were at Gamestop, picking up your code for the bug mega stones.

In the official Pokemon release they even highly suggested that while you were at Gamestop, picking up your code for the Heracross/Pinsir mega stones, you should preorder ORAS.

 

I could see why Pokemon Company would decide to give away Diancie, and in Japan Darkrai, in the specific movie theaters since it could act as a marketing tool to push more tickets and it would serve as a great way to meet and trade with strangers who are also interested in Pokemon, like what I did at Pax East. But tell me why would I go to videogame store when the American version of the Pokemon Movie will be either be broadcast on Cartoon Network as a special TV event or streamed online?

 


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#423 Mario Kart 8, Binding of Isaac, and the future of DLC with Nintendo

This Tuesday Nintendo dropped a bombshell out of left field that Mario Kart 8 will be receiving two paid DLC pack, planned for release in November 2014 and May of next year. 

The packs are reasonably sized, each DLC pack comes with four new tracks, a handful of new vehicles and the addition of three new characters in each with the main advertising draw coming from the addition of Link and the Villager from the Zelda and Animal Crossing games respectively. 

This also sets a precedent for Smash and every future major Nintendo game

This also sets a precedent for Smash and every future major Nintendo game

 

While I am excited I am also very hesitant about this announcement of DLC from Nintendo, a company known to be a bastion of hope in the terrible themes of modern videogame industry with their slow adoption mentality look at this Nintendo gen’s addition of digital only games and how constant they have kept the Mario/Pokemon/Zelda franchises.

I do not quite have a committed to a stance on DLC, despite talking about the problem with the current trend of terrible DLC in other games multiple times, see my rants on platform exclusive DLC for multiplatform games in Be MOP #355 and my adventures with Bat DLC in Be MOP #287.

Because of my play style and preferences I do not play many games with DLC, or more accurately play many games to the point where DLC starts kicking in, when I do I can not get excited enough to enter a battle arena challenges. 

Unlike preorders where all preorders are the same, buying a game ahead of time when you do not quite know what is in it or how good it is going to be. For every example of bad DLC I am constantly reminded of how amazing Binding of Isaac’s DLC was. 

Wrath of the Lamb was pretty much the next best thing to a new game. It added new items, the addition of trinkets in the game, new bosses and a slew of new levels and challenges. and the re-release/remastering of the game has promised to add even more items, characters and content on top of the original game

Wrath of the Lamb was pretty much the next best thing to a new game. It added new items, the addition of trinkets in the game, new bosses and a slew of new levels and challenges. and the re-release/remastering of the game has promised to add even more items, characters and content on top of the original game

 

The content in both Mario Kart 8 and Binding of Isaac’s DLC seems to be well worth the asking price which means I will be eventually buying both of the Mario Kart 8 DLC and the Binding of Isaac Rebirth edition. Truth be told I have been looking for a reason to play with my Wii U since it has just been patiently sitting in my TV room for the past few weeks. 

But I am worried about what the acceptance of DLC could mean for Nintendo and where this could lead, we already have preorder bonuses for these packs and Hyrule Warriors. 

Those preorder bonuses are NOT coming anywhere near my Wii U. There is literally no reason to place a preorder on a digital product, not when the DLC can be created an infinite amount of times on Day One. That goes the same for Binding of Isaac, but that’s a rant for another day.

Those preorder bonuses are NOT coming anywhere near my Wii U. There is literally no reason to place a preorder on a digital product, not when the DLC can be created an infinite amount of times on Day One. That goes the same for Binding of Isaac, but that’s a rant for another day.

 

DLC is a very fickle and corruptible force. DLC can be used for good, adding new levels and characters that would not be able to be made before the developer deadline, but it can also be a power for the selfish purposes for the sake of the company’s bottom line rather than for the consumer, like hacking off content from a full price game or filling the DLC shop page full of superfluous content or skins. It is not that I do not trust Nintendo or worst, rooting for them to fail, but making DLC in this age requires a lot of self control on behalf of the company.

To all of the people online that would say not the worry about DLC because it is Nintendo, remember that we once thought that George Lucas could do no wrong with his movies.

 

Oh man, I have not used this image since....399 blog posts ago (Be MOP #24)

Oh man, I have not used this image since….399 blog posts ago (Be MOP #24)

 

 

 


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