The King is Back!

October 23rd, 2014 by
mewtwo-smash-bros-wiiu Nintendo blew the lid off of many of the new features coming for Smash Bros on the Wii U today, but the greatest news of all is that Mewtwo is returning to beat the pants off of Lucario's cloned butt. Other highlights include 8-Player Smash, Ridley as an interactive stage boss (proponents of him being playable can finally shut their mouths), the return of custom stages, and Smash Tour that combines many of the funky custom rules matches with board/party game elements.  You can see the full awesome press release after the jump!
REDMOND, Wash.--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- Today Nintendo unleashed a deluge of information about its upcoming Super Smash Bros. for Wii U game, including an eight-player mode, the ability to build and share custom stages and an exclusive soundtrack offer. Nintendo revealed these and many more details in a live-streamed video announcement. To view the video in its entirety, visit http://www.nintendo.com/nintendo-direct. “Super Smash Bros. fans got a full look today at the unbelievable variety of options and surprises that await them in the Wii U version of the game,” said Scott Moffitt, Nintendo of America’s executive vice president of Sales & Marketing. “Millions of fans around the world already can’t get enough of the Nintendo 3DS game, and we want the Wii U version to build on that momentum.” Some of the topics covered in the video include: 8-Player Smash: In a major first for the franchise, a special mode lets eight players fight simultaneously in local multiplayer. This option appears only in the Wii U version, and lets players compete on even larger stages to accommodate all the characters. amiibo Figures: When a player touches an amiibo figure to the Wii U GamePad, the character joins as a “figure player.” The amiibo figures can gain levels to become stronger and add equipment as they gain experience through battling. Players can have amiibo fight one another, and amiibo will bring you presents from the battles they fight in. Custom Stage Creation: The touch screen of the Wii U GamePad makes it easier than ever for players to build their own stages and eventually share them with friends and other players around the world using broadband Internet access. Controls: Players who own the Nintendo 3DS version of the game can use their Nintendo 3DS systems to control the action on the TV screen, in addition to the many other control options available. Importing Fighters: Fans of the Nintendo 3DS version of the game can immediately benefit from the fruits of their smashing labors. Players can import custom Nintendo 3DS fighters to the Wii U game, along with their customized equipment, costumes and hats. Special Soundtrack Offer: Everyone who buys both the Nintendo 3DS and the Wii U versions of Super Smash Bros. and registers both games on Club Nintendo by Jan. 13 will receive a two-disc soundtrack of music from the games. Mewtwo: Like the soundtrack, this series veteran fighter will be made available as free downloadable content in spring of 2015 for anyone who buys both versions of the game. Modes: The Wii U version of the game offers many new modes and different ways to play that keep players coming back for more: Smash Tour: World Smash is a fighting party game that looks like a board game. Players use items, spin a wheel and advance around the map. Up to four players can compete at once as they navigate the board and gain fighters and power-ups they can use in a final battle. Special Smash Mode: Players can customize battles with unique parameters. Coin Battles: Players compete to collect coins from other players. Stamina Matches: Players fight until their hit points reach zero. Classic Mode: One or two players fight through a series of battles and advance as long as they survive. Many random events can shake things up, and players can adjust the intensity settings. The more difficult the game, the greater the rewards. All-Star Mode: Like in the Nintendo 3DS version, opponents appear in chronological order. Only this time, the newest fighters appear before the older ones, and two players can battle through this mode together. Event Mode: One or two players take on set character- and theme-based battles. Clearing stages helps players see the way forward. Masterpieces: This menu gives players a peek into the past lives of some of the Super Smash Bros. characters. Players can play cut-down versions of the characters’ greatest games. Stages: The Wii U game offers more stages than any game in the series. The expanded Big Battlefield makes its debut in addition to the traditional Battlefield Stage. The Great Cave Offensive, based on the underground labyrinth found in Kirby games, challenges players to avoid potentially lethal danger zones – or throw their opponents into them. The Jungle Hijinxs stage, based on Donkey Kong Country Returns, lets players fight in the foreground and background. Blast barrels shoot players from front to back and vice versa. Tunes: The game includes hundreds of music tracks, songs and jingles that players can listen to and settings to customize what music plays during game play. Players add songs to their library by collecting CDs that appear while smashing or after completing challenges. Movies: When players clear Classic or All-Star modes, they’ll be treated to a brief movie featuring whichever fighter they used. Every fighter has a movie, so it’ll be a challenge to view them all. Ridley. Yes, Ridley: Fans have been clamoring for Ridley to appear in a Super Smash Bros. game for a while, and now they’re getting their wish. But true to form, Ridley appears in an unexpected way. Players will find him in the Metroid series-inspired Pyrosphere stage, but he does more than just hassle players. If one player attacks Ridley enough, Ridley will join that fighter’s side and attack others. Players (including the one on Ridley’s side) can KO Ridley to earn a point toward the match result total. And if Ridley consumes enough energy, he will become Meta Ridley and all the more vicious. Characters: The Wii U version offers 40 characters and the use of Mii characters from the start. Each character’s moves match those found in Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS, so players who hone their skills in the portable game will have an edge over opponents in the console version of the game.
And here's an unedited image of the Wii U Mewtwo model for good measure: mewtwo Welcome back, friend.  Now if only we could manage to use your magic to bring back the dearly departed Ice Climbers...

Like Bioshock? Back The Black Glove Kickstarter!

October 21st, 2014 by
theblackglove01 Some of the developers of the likes of Bioshock and BioShock Infinite are trying to get a very impressive story-driven game called The Black Glove kickstarted.  We pledged $215 dollars and invite you to make a contribution of whatever size you can manage to make sure this team's new game gets to see the light of day. You can see more details here: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/theblackglove/the-black-glove With only 17 days left and a good ways to go, we all need to spread the word or risk losing out on a unique and intriguing game experience.

Loot Crate October 2014 – Game Usagi Opens

October 21st, 2014 by
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pgCNPj_HElg Game Usagi Opens the October 2014 "Fear" Loot Crate using a new video camera. Custom t-shirts are back and this month's is as awesome as ever. If you'd like to get a Loot Crate of your own, you can go here: http://mbsy.co/lootcrate/5202985 and even use the code SAVE10 to knock 10% off of your order.

Best of Green Light Bundle – Game Usagi Plays

October 9th, 2014 by
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dlOnnipFsxs&index=5&list=PL3a1xDhyKHTdpk4VHI-VNHLuJyDvn40JV We recently played through the six cool indie games that are included in the Best of Green Light Bundle.  Even though we had some technical difficulties with our recording software we had a great time.  Definitely check out Logan's character voices for the 8-bit action game Oniken. If you want to like/comment/subscribe or watch the videos directly on YouTube you can check out our playlist here: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL3a1xDhyKHTdpk4VHI-VNHLuJyDvn40JV A review copy of the Best of Green Light Bundle was provided to us by http://www.thegreenlightbundle.com/

Super Smash Bros. for 3DS Review

October 5th, 2014 by
smash-bros-3ds Developer: Sora Ltd. Publisher: Nintendo Genre: Fighting Players: 1-4 locally (multi-card), 1-4 online Console: Nintendo 3DS Hours Played: ~30 hours Progress: Unlocked all characters and stages, played Smash Run a few times, played about an hour of online multiplayer matches, finished about 3/4 of the second page of challenges Super Smash Brothers is hands-down my favourite series of video games. Excellent, approachable mechanics and just the right blend of skill, fun and competition are hallmarks of each game in the series. The sound foundation of its gameplay coupled with the mind-blowing awesomeness of having all of your favourite Nintendo characters together in a single game make each new game release an unparalleled event in the worldwide video gaming community. The prospect of being able to take the latest version of Smash Bros. around with you was equal parts exciting and terrifying when the 3DS/Wii U version pair was announced -- you'd be able to take one of the very best party games on the go with you, but would the proposed character parity between the versions hold the Wii U back from reaching its full potential? It turns out that both of these feelings were justified to some degree, so does the first portable Smash Bros. game live up to its series illustrious reputation or does it tarnish Smash Bros.' once pristine name and foreshadow problems with this year's Wii U release? Read on to find out how smashing our time with the game has been. Since there are probably specific aspects you're wondering about in Smash Bros. 3DS I've separated the review into convenient segments: Graphics Smash Bros 3DS is easily one of the best-looking and best-performing 3DS games made to date. The sheer amount of action that can occur on screen at once without dropping a single frame is an astounding achievement by the development team. Non-essential elements like Assist Trophy and Pokeball item characters run at 30 fps as opposed to the rest of the game's unwavering 60 fps, but in the heat of the action you rarely notice it. Strong art direction make up for the 3DS' lack of power in comparison to the Wii U by maintaining the essence of cross platform stages even when they need to have their appearance somewhat simplified. While impressive on almost all fronts, the 3DS line's screen sizes and resolution prevent the game from reaching its true graphical potential. First, I'm well aware that this is not going to improve any time soon, but the 3DS' sub-watch resolution of 400px x 240px really doesn't cut it in the modern age of HiDPI -- this lack of resolution is particularly egregious when you're trying to see what's going on during a heated Smash Bros. battle on a regular 3DS. The 3DSXL, while increasing the pixellation issue twofold, offers the superior portable Smash Bros. experience just by nature of its physically larger screens. Sound Sound is unfortunately the place where Smash Bros. has suffered the worst because of its transition to portability.  While there are some really nice new compositional takes on many of the game series' most popular tracks, they were all mercilessly compressed to bring down the game's file size. Coming from the aural revolution that was Smash Bros. Brawl to the tinny and anemic sound on the 3DS is bound to disappoint many fans -- especially those playing with headphones. The announcer, character voices, and general sound effects seem to have emerged generally unscathed, but if anything this serves to further highlight the music's over compression. I think most people would have accepted a larger download size for the game in exchange for better quality sound. Controls Controls were at the very top of most people's concerns lists when Smash Bros. 3DS was first announced. A 3DS does not really look like a GameCube controller after all, so how could it possibly control Smash Bros. properly? The unfortunate answer is that it does only just barely passably. For movement, the Circle Pad performs just fine, but mashing it around for Smash attacks is very unreliable and this not only holds the gamer back in regular Vs. battles, but also makes the minigames like the Home Run Challenge and Target Blast nightmarish with many characters. Much of this could have been alleviated by supporting the Circle Pad Pro (and may yet be alleviated by the new 3DS/3DS XL units whenever they decide to come out in North America), but Nintendo had to shut down every non-essential feature in the 3DS just to get the game running at its current (admittedly great) speed and they say they couldn't spare the extra 5% processing overhead needed to run them via the IR port. The answer to this would of course be immediately apparent to anyone who has even seen electronic devices -- plug the blasted thing directly into the system or use a proper wireless connection. Why Nintendo felt the need to make a peripheral that connects using a decades old obsolete method that even slows the system down is beyond me, but the fact remains that that peripheral could have made a big difference for early Smash Bros. 3DS players. Game Modes There are quite a decent amount of things to do in Smash Bros. 3DS aside from the standard battles. Between Classic, All-Star, Multi-Man Smash, Target Blast, Home-Run Contest, Trophy Rush, Smash Run, and the StreetPass Enabled sumo-like StreetSmash, you definitely get your money's worth for playability. Standout modes include the Classic mode that branches like Find Mii between battles and All-Star mode where you battle sets of characters in chronological order of their initial release. Smash Run, which is exclusive to the 3DS version and the de facto replacement for Brawl's Subspace Emissary story mode, does fall pretty flat overall, though.  While the concept of navigating a huge map battling enemies from all of the various game series is an excellent idea, most of them are far too resilient and instead of blasting through them you usually spend your time being pummeled into the ground watching notices about how the CPU players are curing cancer and exponentially bulking up their stats.  A couple more maps and much weaker enemies would do Smash Run a world of good, but in its present state it's not likely to become your new favourite. Of note are also the hundreds of collectibles and customizations that can be applied to characters to not only alter their Attack/Defense/Speed stats, but also change out their special moves. The character customization in Smash Bros. 3DS is unprecedented and between the custom parts and trophies you can acquire you'll be playing for weeks before you even start to approach a full collection. Character Selection With so many excellent characters and enemies over the years to choose from, no one is ever going to be fully satisfied with Smash Bros.' roster. Two out of three of my most wanted characters (Mega Man and Pac-Man) managed to make it and even though my poor Bomberman whose inclusion I root for every year is still waiting in the wings, it's hard to complain too badly about the diverse and expansive roster in Smash Bros. for 3DS. Some fairly egregious clone characters like Dr. Mario and Dark Pit did still manage to make the cut, even at the expense of fan favourite characters like MewTwo and the sadly retired Ice Climbers, but with lovely surprises like Duck Hunt and Bowser Jr./Koopalings in its pocket Smash Bros. 3DS still manages to edge ever closer to having the ultimate Smash roster. You may well cry over the loss of Wolf or Lucas if you had questionable clone-y tastes in main characters, but with so many other new options you'll likely be distracted away from your grief soon enough. Online Multiplayer While the previous installment of Smash Bros. did technically feature online play, it was usually too laggy and too hard to get into to even merit a second thought.  Smash Bros. 3DS' online gameplay, at least in our experience, was certainly on another level.  While not quite as rock solid as the online featured in Mario Kart 8, Smash Bros. 3DS performs admirably online by putting you into matches, loading super quickly, and steering clear of the worst of lag unless you're in a heated battle with people across the world on crappy connections. My pre-release online battles were with Japanese players and the worst I ever got was about a 0.75s delay between my input and my character movement, the vast majority of them went without a hitch, which is a very impressive feat for such a small machine with relatively dated Internet capabilities. [taq_review] A review copy of the game was provided to us by its publisher.

Disney Infinity 2.0 (Wii U) – Game Usagi Opens

October 2nd, 2014 by
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g4NWeIfJ4no Game Usagi Opens the Disney Infinity 2.0 Super Heroes pack for Wii U that Disney sent us.  The new viewing angle for unboxings is promising, but the hippo still apologizes for the framing.

Loot Crate September 2014 – Game Usagi Opens

September 21st, 2014 by
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zPyMo11UVh0 Game Usagi Opens the September 2014 "Sci-Fi" Loot Crate with an armed guard (just in case). You'll be happy if you're a Star Trek fan, but if you're a Firefly buff you might need to get your torches ready. If you'd like to get a Loot Crate of your own, you can go here: http://mbsy.co/lootcrate/5202985 and even use the code SAVE10 to knock 10% off of your order.

Nintendo of America HQ Visit 2014

September 6th, 2014 by
P1040272 Our other stop on our 1200+ kilometre trip to Redmond, WA was of course Nintendo of America HQ.  Unlike Microsoft, Nintendo doesn't except casual visitors of any kind on their property.  We were able to catch a few rare pictures when we showed up and no one was home on Labor Day, but when we went back to try to talk our way into the company store to buy some rare swag we were (fairly politely) told to get the crap out of there because they have a "closed campus".  All we managed to snag was one of the business cards they have at their reception desk.  We can only hope that Nintendo rethinks their current PR policy at their headquarters some day and once again lets people in to buy cool rare Nintendo stuff.   [gallery link="file" ids="3921,3922,3923,3924,3925,3926,3927,3928,3929,3930,3931,3932,3933,3934,3935,3936,3937,3938,3939,3940,3941,3942,3943,3944,3945,3946,3947"]