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Tuesday, May 31, 2005

Fire Emblem: The Sacred Stones Reviewed! --Graphics

TethysI managed to scare up the money to buy Fire Emblem on my vacation and was impressed. I haven't finished it yet, but I've played enough to do a decent review on it. This will be a six-part series of posts, hopefully one per night. Graphics, Sound, Gameplay, Multiplayer, Replayability, and Plot. The final one may take a while to show up, so don't fret if I haven't come up with it by then. Also, if you're worried about spoliers on the plot one, I will make it as an expandable post, so you don't have to read that one if you don't want to.

Graphics
Excellent in most aspects. This game has some wonderful character sprites for the dialogues, and excellent backgrounds too. In the dialogues, the heads move around in just the right way that you know more or less exactly what is happening at all times.

The strategic view, or rather the overview of the battlefield, is done with nice, simple graphics than actually please the eye. Nothing too complicated, but still enough for you to be able to tell exactly what it is (which is more than can be said with many Gameboy games).

The battle animations are fluid, with some nice flashy effects. The battling character sprites are nicely detailed, but still simple enough that you can tell exactly what just happened. The only complaint about this area is that many of the battle animations were copied directly from the other Fire Emblem. However, there are so many new types of units, so that makes up for it.

Strangely, the graphics in general are nicely anti-aliased, to the point where I could have sworn some of the edges were dead smooth. How they managed to pull this off on the highly pixeled Gameboy is beyond me.

Overall, the graphics are wonderful. They managed to pull off a truely beautiful game out of the pixelized bucket of bolts that is the Gameboy Advanced. I bought it for the graphics, now I'll see if the other aspects were worth it.

+ 5 for new character sprites
+ 5 for new maps
- 1 for reusing the same sprites for battle
9 /10 in Graphics

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Nintendo World Kicks Butt

Nintendo WorldOh, did I forget to tell you guys about this place? Sorry, yeah. It opened a few weeks ago.

Anyway, RedAssedBaboon has a nice post about their tour of the newly opened place. It sounds nice, and has nearly 30 nice pictures to go along with it.

RedAssedBaboon's post [Read/View]

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Thursday, May 26, 2005

Vacation

I'm going to be gone for a trip, so don't expect any posts. Can't say who, what, where, how, or why. I can say when: Friday through Monday afternoon. I'll try to recap on everything that happened over the weekend either Monday evening, or Tuesday.

See you then.

Note: this is the first post without a picture! Aren't you proud of me?
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Update:I find it so depressing and extremely ironic that I recieved 1/2 of my total hits for the month in the 4 days that I went on vacation. Fate is so cruel to me!! :(
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Tuesday, May 24, 2005

Post E3 Mess and Xbox 360 High Resolution Movies

Xbox 360 ControllerNow we go from the week of E3, where there is a huge amount of information to the weeks after E3, where nothing happens. Sometimes I wish they would spread it out more, but the public seems to like an overload of information all at once. After all, the average attention span for an adult is 20 minutes, and for a child, it's much less.

Anyway, Major Nelson has uncovered some wonderful high resolution videos of Xbox 360 games. Of course, I wouldn't know how high the resolution is, because my internet connection isn't that good. The Quake 4 one is huge.

High-Resolution Videos (Windows Media Player) [View]

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Monday, May 23, 2005

Fire Emblem Released!

Fire Emblem: the Sacred StonesThe second Fire Emblem in the US has been released! From how I understand it, in this game, you have slightly more control over the game. You can chose what they level up into, you can revisit old areas, and fight in Tower of Valni to gain loads of experience. There are only a few reviews so far, but they look good.

Official Website [View]
Metacritic Roundup (so far) [Read]

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Xbox360.com

Joanna DarkThe Xbox 360.com website that I was talking about has been almost completely revamped. It still has everything that it had before, but now there are more wallpapers and more high-resolution pictures, including a hot picture of Joanna from Perfect Dark. Check it out, it's cool.

Xbox360.com [View]

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Sunday, May 22, 2005

Logo Indecision and Technorati

Previous LogoI'm having indecision about the logo at the top. I almost like the previous logo I had more than the logo I have now. Click the picture at the left to view the previous one, and tell me which one you guys like more in the comments.

Also, you may notice the Technorati tags on the bottom. I'm working to implement them into previous posts, so this blog may be iffy for a while.
Update: That's enough. If I go any furthur back, those poor people that look at Technorati tags will get stuff that isn't recent.

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Wednesday, May 18, 2005

E3 - Xbox 360

Xbox 360The Xbox 360 at E3. Yeah, I know I'm late. It was Monday night, and I haven't gotten around to it until today. Anyway, the Xbox 360 showing was more of a commercial than anything else, but there were some cool bits of info.

For starters it will be backwards compatible!!! (for the most popular games though) That means that you could play all the Halo games on a single system. That's about it. I must be missing something with this fact, because it doesn't seem that big.

Also, it will come with a basic free version of Xbox Live! out of the box. This is big. Especially since there are a lot of features with this one alone. Also, HDTV support with all games.

Actually, they didn't talk all that much about the Xbox 360 itself, but more on the games.

Oh well.

Joystiq.com [Read]
IGN [Read]
E3 Insider Movie [Read]

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Zelda

Zelda: Twilight PrincessThe new Zelda game looks sweet. While it will be much more detailed than Windwaker, it isn't so hyper-realistic that it can't have it's own art style. It will be a darker game, and I think it justly deserves to be. The werewolf thing is a bit weird, though. After all, after Link turns into a werewolk, some little pet-thing rides on him and you fight from that view.

From the movie, Link seems to have three distict stages. First, he has some strange forest garb that really creeps me out. It seems to be a type of training stage. Then there is the 'Link' that everyone has come to recognize, with his tunic and funny cap. Then there is the werewolf stage, but who knows what that's all about?

Anyway, the game is looking really sweet. I might buy it without even renting it first.

Zelda Trailer (Quicktime) [Read]

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Tuesday, May 17, 2005

E3 - Gameboy Micro

Game Boy MicroThere was in fact another Game Boy coming out. There were rumors, but I dismissed them without a thought. "Just another internet rumor," said I, "They can't have another Gameboy, they have the DS." How wrong I was. The Game Boy Micro will play all Game Boy games, but no DS ones. It will have the brightest screen they've made yet, and is could, literally, be held with one hand.

To paraphrase everyone, this is just a designer thing. If you're too cool to have a Game Boy, or, heaven forbid, a DS, just get this. Pretend it's your second cell phone.

Joystiq [Read] and [Read]
IGN [Read]

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E3 - Revolution

The Revolution!The Revolution is here! As Satoru Iwata, the President of Nintendo said, "the Revolution is by far the smallest console we have manufactured. In its final form, it will be even smaller than this, about the size of 3 DVD cases stacked together. It will play either horizontally or vertically.” There will be wireless controllers (which they said they would go into more detail later), and the ability to play both DVDs and GCN games. Everyone is jumping on the wireless bandwagon. Also, some wifi support, as touched on at GDC.

Also, very suprisingly, they announced that the Revolution will allow gamers to play any games from any Nintendo system. The details of how, however, remain absent. But being able to play all of the Metroid games, (or Zelda games or Mario games or...) would be cool. You would be able to play each one in a series, and live the story line, game by game (But that would also be over-rated. There generally isn't much inter-game storyline.).

Also, a bunch of games were shown, including the upcoming Link game, "The Legend of Zelda, Twilight Princess." Bit of a weird title, eh?

Joystiq Coverage [Read] and [Read]
IGN Coverage [Read], [Read] and [Read]

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Sunday, May 15, 2005

E3!!

E3!!E3 is this week!! Presumably, all of the next generation systems will be revealed here (or, in the case of the Xbox 360, more info will be given). I, being too poor, will not be going there, but other sites will be, so I'll just give commentaries based on their stories. So stay tuned and check often!

E3 will be covered live by G4, which I am too poor to see, and covered by gaming blogs around the web (any of the links on the right will do). Speaking of G4, check out their commercial for E3. It's hilarious.

G4 E3 Commercial (Couldn't resist) [Watch]

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Xbox 360 Official Web Page

Xbox 360The Xbox 360 web page is a sleek java applet. However, the real beauty of it is the pictures of the console and the controller. Zoom, rotate, do whatever, and see the next generation up close.

Xbox360.com [View]

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Xbox 360 and Nintendo Revolution

MTV's Unveiling of the Xbox 360 has come and gone. Why didn't I report on it? 1. I was too lazy. 2. Everyone else did it better. Go check those out and ignore my humble blog (I would recommend the Video Game Ombudsman article for a laugh).

Nintedo Revolution logo?gamesblog.it and Joystiq.com are reporting on leaked Nintendo Revolution logos. While Joystiq likes it, I don't. It's a bit retro. Why someone would have a retro logo for a system nicknamed the 'Revolution' is beyond me (but then again, this is Nintendo we're talking about). Don't get me wrong, it's not ugly, but I don't think I could look at it for month after month for a few years. I seriously doubt the picture on the second page will pass any focus groups.

Joystiq Reports!! [Read]
gamesblog.it photos! [View]

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Tuesday, May 10, 2005

MTV Special Taped

MTVThe big MTV special has been taped, so all the big time stars and celebs have now seen it, while us little average consumers have to wait until Thursday. I have intentionally decided not to report on anything that concerns the next-gen Xbox until the special is shown, because they will probably discuss the answers then.

By the way, it is being shown on Thursday, May 12, 2005 at 9:30 EST. That's just under two days away! If you don't live on the east coast, find out when its being shown here.

Xbox.com News--MTV Unveiling [Read]
Xbox.com News--On the Scene [Read]

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Saturday, May 07, 2005

Xbox 360

Xbox 360Engadget has managed to uncover a picture of the actual Xbox 360. I've got to say, it looks hideous (but that's probably the white). It definitely fits the picture and the description. There even seems to be a hard drive attached to the top and an eye toy-like thing next to it.

Engadget Post [Read]

Pardon for the mass of links, but the picture corroborates so well with the rumors that have been reported that I felt the need to show all the gossip that this pictures supports.

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Tuesday, May 03, 2005

Bill Gate's Interview

Windows XP Media Center Edition 2005Bill Gates has revealed that the Xbox Live! feature for the next-generation Xbox will have many more features than the current Xbox Live! For starters, you will have the ability to view your buddy list, listen to music, look a photos, watch TV (huh?), etc. I am really hoping that you aren't forced to only use stuff provided by Microsoft. I really shouldn't fret too much, as someone will always find a way around it, be it legal or not.

He also, rather irrelevantly, joked about how the bloggers were making it "more difficult than ever to provide a single company message to the public given the number of Microsoft employees who are now blogging publicly." To end it, he made a horrible joke against Macs. Guess I should have known he was a bad conversationalist, aside from being the richest nerd (and person) in the world.

Also, a reminder-The MTV special of the unveiling of the next-gen Xbox is May 12 at 9:30 PM EST. [Read More]
Xbox 365 article about Gates [Read]

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Monday, May 02, 2005

How Nice of IGN...

IGN GuidesIGN has unlocked a crudload of guides for viewing by the public for every gaming system. Many of them aren't the greatest games, but some are actually pretty good. For instance, Fire Emblem (GBA) rocks, and Metroid Fusion (also GBA) rocks. I don't really recognize the rest.

For some reason the list only goes to 'N,' but I'm hoping that it's intentional, rather than technical. Also, it might look like I'm linking you to the Gamecube list, but it actually has all the newly free guides from all the systems on it.

IGN Guides list [Read]

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Half-Life 2 for Xbox

Half-Life 2Value is currently making a port of one of the best games of 2004 from the PC to Xbox. This seems to be following the trend of Doom 3, but who's complaining?

IGN has taken a sneak peek at the game, and they are impressed. The graphics are as good, if not better, than what is was on the PC. It is set to releases in late August 2005, but with single-player mode only. IGN also gave it a big thumbs-up on how Value handled the transition from the keyboard to a controller. This could be a major hit, and will furthur set Half-Life 2 in stone as one of the greatest games ever created.

IGN Hands-On [Read]

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