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neurological dryer lint

dirty deeds... and the dunderchief

 

i'm a little glowing friend

my inner fanboy is eroding away, sadly, as nintendo's showing at e3 was a stunning disappointment. they showed the four titles i'm planning to pick up this year - smash brothers, mario galaxy, metroid prime 3 and zelda: phantom hourglass - but i already knew about those, and honestly i expected to have two of them in my hands already (prime3 and galaxy). ooh, mario kart - online multiplayer might make this game worth getting for the fifth time.

what i'm starting to realize is that as good as these series' have been over the years, and i wasn't sure i would ever feel this way, i doubt i will be very interested in a fourth metroid prime or mario universe or whatever. and it doesn't seem that they're going to go down a different path, with a unique, imaginative, brand-new series anytime soon. while twilight princess was stunningly good, looking back i don't think another zelda using the same formula is going to do much for me.

contrast that to the PS3 which has started looking a lot more compelling... besides the pile of games that i'm dying to play - unreal tournament 3, metal gear solid 4, uncharted: drake's fortune, burnout paradise, heavenly sword, rachet and clank, warhawk, killzone2, god of war 3, star wars: the force unleashed, and resident evil 5 - i'm one of the folks that's very interested in the media center + psp functionality... and the recent price drop is just the icing. so in a year or two when i'm ready to pick one of these up, i'm hoping the price will have dropped even more.

 

for this post

 
Blogger Artie Kuhn Says:

Hold your horses. What was the last Nintendo title you didn't like? I even liked Sunshine.

 
 
Blogger Justin Hall Says:

you know me - i burn out on things rather quickly. so for example - while there are a few movies i can watch a million times, the vast majority of movies i own i have no desire to watch again after the fifth or sixth time.

compare that to, say, the zelda series: i've played through zelda 1, 2, link to the past, link's awakening, ocarina of time, majora's mask, wind waker, minish cap, and twilight princess. each one tells the same story, with the same puzzles, weapons, pacing, and ending. they evolve well - it's done better each time, so i still enjoy playing through them, but after you've done it ten times it starts to get old, no matter how great the game is. replace zelda with metroid, castlevania, mario (which occasionally manages to be slightly innovative between iterations), mario kart, etc...

for crying out loud - they have Shigeru Miyamoto, the greatest game designer in history, on their payroll. they can churn out more than just new, shinier versions of the same games. the guy is a creative genius - apply some of that to a new franchise that both the hardcore gamer and the casual can enjoy... i know he's capable of it.

 
 
Blogger Darren Says:

This comment has been removed by the author.

 
 
Blogger Darren Says:

How did you learn about Shigeru Miyamoto? Wired? I'm more amazed at your extensive gaming knowledge everyday.

 
 
Anonymous Artie Says:

I hear you. However, two things.

1) Creating a game has gotten so expensive and time consuming that only the extremely daring are willing to invest in creating a new property, making the game good (long, innovative, tweaked and balanced, etc.) and risk it not selling well. Sad but true. Same w/ every other form of entertainment. Innovation springs not from having the resources, but being forced to make a hail-Mary pass. Lost came out when ABC had no other choice but to innovate or die. Only orgs w/ extremely forward-thinking execs are able to pull off innovation after innovation (Apple for instance).

2) Honestly, coming from someone who works as a creative every day, it's more rewarding creatively to revisit and rework something you've already created than start from scratch. One of my fav. design quotes from Eames, a famous designer:
"Here is one of the few effective keys to the design problem, the ability of the designer to recognize as many of the constraints as possible, his willingness and enthusiasm for working within these constraints. Constraints of price, of size, of strength, of balance, of surface, of time and so forth."
- Charles Eames

Working w/ something you've already created is a pretty big constraint.

I'm not saying a krazy new property would be a bad thing, but I am saying that not having a krazy new property isn't a bad thing.

 
 
Blogger Justin Hall Says:

that's all very true. i would group nintendo into the same arena as Apple in the innovation game...

... and maybe they are - their big announcement was a fitness game. no one's done anything like this really before, besides them with the Power Pad in the 80's... it's a pretty impressive leap and a bold move when every other platform is going down a totally different path.

sadly, that's not the path i want to follow as a gamer... and those aren't the games i want to play... while it may be very satisfying for their designers to do whatever, it's not very satisfying for me as a gamer to play the same thing over and over again. so once again i feel the urge to move away from nintendo, who has been providing me with the same (good!) games for 20 years; and towards sony for (albeit a little) more innovation and titles that match what i want to play now.

so in that, maybe nintendo isn't doing anything wrong - just not what i'm looking for, not what i expected when they sold me on a Wii. and maybe they will lure me back in a few years like they did with the DS... and no, i'm not selling my Wii just yet...

 
 
Blogger Justin Hall Says:

good discussion on this topic on slashdot. a lot of people make some interesting points:

- others agree that the tenth time you play basically the same zelda game it might get old, but that not everyone out there has played every zelda...
- nintendo has found success in marketing to the broad audience more than to the 'hardcore'. who can fault them for wanting to make money and be successful? that's miyamoto's vision, after all, to capture the non-gamer.
- the games are still fun. i won't argue that. just not as fun as something new. guitar hero is a perfect example of a new angle on gaming that i'm shocked nintendo didn't think of first.

 
 
Blogger ryanham Says:

Dude, Darren..he has a t-shirt with Miyamoto's face on it. You have no idea the breadth of Justin's fanboi-ishness.

And yes, I made up a word.

 
 
Blogger Artie Kuhn Says:

Don't give up on 'em yet. We just got Donkey Konga and hooked up the drums to the Wii. Pretty fun and innovative... and it's a few years old. When you think about it, they've been building towards the type of innovative interface of the Wii since the flop of the GameCube.

Also, wasn't the phrase "Wii 360" pretty common a year ago. Wasn't this what gamers were expecting? They'd play 360 for the hardcore "serious" games and the Wii for the "just" fun games.

Don't go PS3. It's Sony.

 
 
Blogger Justin Hall Says:

see there's the disconnect. donkey konga... not my type of game.

i love my psp and my ps2 - sony has done me no wrong in the gaming arena :)

 
 
Blogger Artie Kuhn Says:

You know, I'd never think I'd like a druming rhythm game (you know me, I can't clap and sing @ the same time), but it's pretty fun. Esp. since you control a monkey.

 

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