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Messages - Uncle_Optimus

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Podcast Discussion / Re: Episode 397: RFNware Shop Channel
« on: September 08, 2014, 02:37:57 PM »
Wow, Dan Adelman...great guest get. I did not even know he had left Nintendo. Unfortunate for them, I am thinking.

BTW fellas, can ya add your delectable 'cast to TuneInRadio? I used to use the Apple podcast app but it has gotten terribaddily crash-happy. (And i am on a droid now anyway). TuneIn has been super useful a replacement...but they don't got my fave Nintendo show :(

PLEASE! Thank you.

Podcast Discussion / Re: Episode 350: Theme from the Bottom
« on: September 22, 2013, 07:48:27 AM »
First off, G, you were hilarious. Some of the best humour in the episodes since you joined occur when you are joking in your distinctive flat tone and the other guys have no idea until it hits them and everyone has to laugh (myself included). Very subtle sense of comedy, and cheers for doing the majority of the grunt work that brings us listeners a new RFN week after week. I think the show is rather consistently well-produced and I place you guys up there with other fave podcasts of mine like BS Report and Freakonomics.

Will the show last til 2020?
It probably depends on Nintendo the company itself. The Nintendo business model that has served so well for three decades is probably nearing the end of its run. I agree with Jonny that a convergence console/handheld can still offer enough value to keep it going another generation but I don't see how Nintendo consoles as we have known them can continue to serve the market at large when buying habits (something G alluded to in this episode) look to be transitioning in a different direction towards cheap-entry or service-based.

Financially today, the company is healthy, robust even, but the same could be said of other prominent companies just three years ago. How many were willing to bet Rim would be dashed on the rocks or Nokia as everyone has known it would cease to exist? Not that there is no way out...Nintendo is an entertainment company above all else and has that home-run ability to capture imaginations and forge new markets. People will pay for compelling new experiences so, through the continuing adventures of RFN, I look forward to tracking the company's efforts.
tldr; if Nintendo can forge the way ahead to remain relevant in a rapidly transforming market I am confident RFN will be there to keep callin the plays.

Lastly, on favorite episodes, I have enjoyed many (I really do miss Greg's level-headed classy British voice of reason but have never listened to the original cast with Evan). One of the greatest compliments I can pay you guys is that there are some epidodes that I find myself wanting to listen to over and over. The show is such that it is fun to go back and listen to old episodes and banter even if they are "behind the times" of the industry. One such fave is episode 84: Intervention. Buzzed Jonny (oh man that intro) waxing poetic on Magic the Gathering and the crew's reactions get me to chuckle Every-time. "I find myself wanting to play it in the middle of the night..." :D

TalkBack / Re: Nintendo's Free-to-Play Game Is Steel Diver
« on: June 19, 2013, 04:05:34 AM »
Well, I'm glad to see that Nintendo's jumping into the putrid Free-to-Play pool head-first with a game everyone will be dying to play.

Sarcasm or no, testing the waters with Steel Diver (prolly for the Wii U) makes a lot of sense. Smaller game, utilizes a dual-screen control setup, easy to pick up and play, encourages score-attack replays, built-in community to look for matches since its apparently multi-focused. Low risk since the primary structure of the game is long done anyway and you are not risking putting some taint on a valuable IP.
Hopefully with added time in the oven they could polish the title more and give it some more pizazz, maybe improve the narrative. And oh yes, DLC mushroom and arwing subs and whatnot. Super-curious to see how Ninty monetizes.

Anyways, a game like this that uses the touch screen itself as an engaging control interface is something I'd like to see more of. In this case the added complexity is itself key to the game experience. Next time, Nintendo, how about Mech piloting?

tldr; I Likes robotz.

Nintendo Gaming / Re: Is the Wii U underpowered?
« on: June 17, 2013, 04:03:35 AM »
A bunch of good ideas.

Yep to all of those bullets, but I'd say first and foremost Ninty needs to get those boxes into homes ;)

Price cut or a killer bundle is needed at retail by late fall. At the $350 price point if they tucked in either of the Mario games surely that would accelerate interest?
Oh yeah, and effective marketing yeesh :/

Podcast Discussion / Re: E3 2013 Bringing the Home Team Back Together
« on: June 17, 2013, 03:52:38 AM »
I want to echo a couple of the comments here lauding Jon, Greg and especially James for delivering a fantastic episode of RFN. Jonny and G could rest easy this week 'cuz you dudes absolutely held down the fort.

While every RFN is appreciated, I particularly value the show when it delves into the kind of thought exercises that look at Nintendo's E3 stance this year in context of where the company is in the market currently, what they sought to accomplish last week and their interesting decisions regarding E3 engagement (obvious confidence in the Direct medium giving them, surprise surprise, full control of timing and message). Very interested to hear that their Best Buy hands-on initiative has been relatively well executed in lieu of their terrible handling of the much-anticipated live-stream.<p>

Really wonderful job, James, tying the Greg segment (what a treat to hear his level-headed thoughts again!) with the spirited and funny rat-a-tat chatter with this promising new Jon fellow. Great PR-idea spitballing. (BTW promising fresh voice here, looking forward to hearing more from him!) Cute little segue you put in there, too, bravo.

Podcast Discussion / Re: Episode 327: In Tents Pro Duck Shun
« on: March 04, 2013, 03:02:21 AM »
The suggestion by Johnny for Nintendo to allow WiiU owners to download and play demos of games shown at E3 during that week is genius! It will not only help Nintendo stand out positively at a very critical E3 this year, it'll also set a very new precedent and direction for E3, making it more relevant to gamers again.  If they were to pull this off, and successfully, every company will be scrambling to do the same going forward. 

Despite the new video reels and games being played for the next systems at the conference, there is something undeniably compelling about being able to play Nintendo's show demos at home the same week.

Yeah Johnny's comment here really got my attention, as well. I understand the potential benefit: the key is that Nintendo E3 demos are "highly polished" and thus likely to demonstrate the game in a favorable light (a terrible demo would of course do the opposite, ala early Kid Icarus impressions). Assuming they were willing to eat the online distribution cost, what a marketing help this would be, right? A case could even be made that this could aid development by providing developers with a largely free beta-testing audience for certain concepts in a game that are still fluid and could be tweaked and altered.

The major problem is that this boils down to a significant cost. Just to splice together E3-worthy sizzle reels, much less playable demos, takes a good chunk of resources that are diverted from actual development processes. It goes to follow that producing a "highly polished" playable demo suitable for mass distribution would demand even more attention. Lacking the rep guidance present at official exhibitions, maintaining that "highly polished" user experience might require a lot of nip-n-tuck!

About this week's show:
Thoroughly enjoyed the podcast review of Ken's Rage, G. You have absolutely convinced me to treat the game with judicious trepidation.
Appreciated the discussion of graphics and emotive expression (was bummed to miss the Steam sale for that Moon game, tho). Reminds me of a cartoon illustration book that discussed how simplifying character expression requires a deeper commitment from the viewer to "fill in the blanks", forming a readier connection.

TalkBack / Re: Wii U Sells 57K Units in January
« on: February 20, 2013, 01:18:35 PM »
You also have to take into account that every single one of those consoles on thier except Wii U where launch Pre-Financial Crisis.  I think being even in the running on that chart is amazing in its own.

Honestly the "Supply Constraint" and "Stupid Price" arguments don't tread water.  Are those going to be used next month when they track similar?  How about March when we see a bump in Wii U being sold because their is actually new software being released?

February is going to have "bad" numbers.  Why?  Because thier is NOTHING new on the system.  The fact that if the numbers break into 30,000 that be pretty good.  Now March on the other hand has some games.  2 of which are Exclusive to the system.  People will jump in at that point and will see an uptick.

I agree absolutely that part of the U's somewhat lackluster reception is due in part to larger economic factors, as pointed out in the retail report I linked to. If Wal-Mart is seeing the worst sales it has in years, including throughout the Financial Crisis, well I think it is safe to say there are strong macro factors at play as well.

That said, supply constraints and stupid price I feel are both hyper-aquatically water-treading arguments. Assuming of course that those conditions were true which several folks, anecdotally, now tell me were not so in the case of the 360 :p
In the case of the PS3 however, pre-crisis, on the coattails of an immensely successful cycle, at the absolute height of the Playstation brand, with the hype train over the "revolutionary" cell running full speed, with many folks predicting the PS3 would "Dreamcast" the 360...thats a very "meh" reception. Dat pricetag is a pretty decent place to start when trying to figure out why. Demand for a PS2 successor was there, but not for that product costing 
Five-Hundred Ninety-Nine US Dollars.

BTW, y'all watched the video, right? Man I love that video.

*edited to include more Riiiiidge Racerrrr!!

It's either going to come out in the West without a subscription fee or not at all. Nobody outside Japan would pay a monthly fee for Dragon Quest.

A neat compromise could be to offer a one year subscription with purchase of the game in the US. At $60 bones and the presence of DLC in the game perhaps that would be enough to justify the cost of localization and servers. Development cost itself after all is partially subsidized by the Wii version.

This game of course isn't at all the bee's-knees over here, but I disagree with Broodwars that localizing it would amount to jack. It would be another step for Nintendo in the long road to demonstrating that they are committed to keeping the platform flush with core content. That doesn't happen with one game but rather with sustained support.

TalkBack / Re: Wii U Sells 57K Units in January
« on: February 19, 2013, 08:29:44 AM »
I think this chart puts things in perspective:

Now I'm not trying to say it's selling well right now, but looking at other systems on that chart, this certainly isn't doom and gloom time for the Wii U.

Mop It Up, I agree 103% that its Doom and Gloom is silly so early into a console product cycle. The killer-apps have yet to be played!

That said, the full context of the article you got the graph from notes this about the two consoles below the Wii U in sales at that point in their lives:
1) 360 was supply constrained at that time, whereas anecdotal evidence (and hard sales data) indicate the U was in plenty of supply.
2) PS3 had a msrp double that of the U. Lets watch this video.

Abysmal is a pretty fair way to describe Wii U's January in the U.S. market.
Just like it is for some fairly important consumer chains.

TalkBack / Re: Wii U Sells 57K Units in January
« on: February 19, 2013, 08:04:02 AM »
Would they just go with handhelds?
That's not a bad possibility.  A handheld that acts like a Console.  I've said as much on NFR before.  Especially if they can get Wireless HDMI working well.

Oh so what you guys want is Apple TV and iPad but with Nintendo games? :D

I hear Wii U's Miracast streaming tech performs even better than Apple's Airplay tho.
But really, as long as this hypothesized portable-console hybrid can dock with the TV all you really need is a wireless controller.

TalkBack / Re: Nintendo Reveals Several New 3DS eShop Titles
« on: February 19, 2013, 07:55:13 AM »
Correct, James Turner.

Wow Turner went from new artist in the company to lead designer (I assume you mean art lead and not game designer) in two years? Well done, old bean. Theres gotta be a lot of artists there to create so many imaginary animals year after year.

TalkBack / Re: Nintendo 3DS: Embarrassment of Riches
« on: February 19, 2013, 07:48:55 AM »
However, I'm going to wait on Castlevania: LoS - MoF for at least 6 months. I want to play it, but the team's already admitted they made the game in HD & scaled it down for 3DS. I want to make sure that game's not going to an actual HD platform (especially a console like the PS3) before I pick it up.

Of course it is always a possibility, but looking at the Developer's schedule I think you would have to wait a year at the least. With Mercury Steam finished with MoF, they'll go full...steam...ahead with Lords of Shadow 2, which is listed as 2013 TBA release date. If that TBA goes, uh according to schedule, that places Lords of Shadows 2 around (surprise) Nov-Dec.
The point is here is that, if Konami decides to follow up LoS2 with MoF, there will need to be a grace period while people finish. This would effectively place an HD version 1st quarter 2014, at the earliest. So, if you are comfortable waiting that long for the game then by all means. There will be a ton of good games in the interim.
But, if you at all would fancy some brand new whip-slinging, swords-swinging, teeth-gnashing, shield-bashing(?) Castlevania goodness might as well take the plunge.

And that my friend is how we write like two paragraphs about something we have absolutely no certainty about.

TalkBack / Re: Nintendo Reveals Several New 3DS eShop Titles
« on: February 18, 2013, 12:13:59 PM »
Kersploosh sounds awesome.  It may be the best of all the games announced today, though I have no idea what HarmoKnight is, so I can't talk about that one.

Naw mang, Chris Kohler says HarmoKnight is the one you want. Unless you want all of them, in which case more power to ya.
I do believe its another non-Pokemon joint from the Pokemon developers...first one since Drill Dozer?

TalkBack / Re: 3DS eShop Sale Announced for North America
« on: February 18, 2013, 12:08:30 PM »
Really ticked off. I downloaded Mutant Mudds for my son as his Valentine's present less than 10 minutes before they announced the sale. I would have waited for Easter if I had known and gotten one of the other games instead.

Mate, a few extra bucks for a big smile from your son. Its a good deal.
In the future, it will take a few hundred $$$. Or whatever the next Nintendo handheld will cost.
And in the even more future it will be thousands $$$. He gonna want that car!

I figure that in order to secure this uber-franchise on their system, Ninty agreed to give some perks to Square-Enix. Like, say, distribution and marketing help in other territories. The Wii game came out too late tho, partially because of delays and partially because NoA had already let the Wii market implode by then.
But here we are, shiny new console that NEEDS GAMES and looky here, this is a BIG GAME.

They'll announce its coming here in May. Maybe even as part of a similar boxset to further stimulate sales and play extra nice with Square-Enix as part of their master plan to secure a version of the next mainline Final Fantasy.
(full disclosure: I only believe part of what I just typed)


TalkBack / Re: Wii U Sells 57K Units in January
« on: February 18, 2013, 11:50:56 AM »
They are still likely to be decent loss leaders tho...what with Ninty already losing on their $299-350 skus. The other boys meanwhile are packing higher octane silicon, bigger boxes, large-ass drives, mucho memory and of course each will come with their own party favor i.e. Kinect, Eye and whatever else they feel they need to CONQUER THE LIVING ROOM.

Not cheap.
MS can afford it though. Sony? They can get credit.

TalkBack / Re: Wii U Sells 57K Units in January
« on: February 18, 2013, 09:32:28 AM »
...But if you must talk price, remember PS4 and Durango are going to be $600 each. Wii U will be the cheap option come the holiday season. So relax on the price. It's not coming down. It's going to be the bargain.
Go play some Wii games, 95% of you missed a ton of great games on the system for various reasons. You can find those games for cheap now. So go play them.

If you think either of those competitors will put out $600 boxes you are in for a sticker shock. Or a... reverse...sticker shock? Anyways, its going to be lower. Honestly, above $400 would surprise me.

"WHYYYY!?" you might be thinking.
 In the case of Sony, pricing PS3 at 599 US Dollars did a ton of damage to their market share. They won't make that mistake again. Microsoft must have been doing happy dances those first two years.
Speaking of Microsoft, they already were successful with the $299-399 pricing strategy with Xbox 360 and of the "Big Three" they have the most cash to burn in the name of establishing a rapid foothold for their new box.
Then you can consider that both of those guys are watching U's market reception closely and gauging consumer receptiveness to expensive new living room products. U stumbling at $299-350 must have them scribbling copious notes.



TalkBack / Re: Wii U Sells 57K Units in January
« on: February 18, 2013, 08:56:45 AM »
As for Lego City. Well these days Nintendo won't even push their premier IPs. They won't and haven't even advertise for the Wii U system itself or Nintendo Land/NSMBU.

Wait is this true? Have they done that little advertising in the States? I was under the impression they had a decent amount of advertising airtime, just that the advertising itself was not decent, if ya get my drift.

On sales reports, to put things in in a bit of perspective, mighty Wal-Mart reported horrendous store sales for the month of January, with recent reports indicating February will be just as bad. It seems US consumer confidence is low right now?

That said, 57,000 units is really really terrible. Can't sugarcoat that. Especially when the 360 sells five times that. Really curious what the average-sale-price is with the 360s. An especially low ASP would mean their Live-subsidization strategy is doing quite well indeed. If the ASP ends up being in Wii U's ballpark, man I wonder what made Microsoft's marketing efforts so successful?

TalkBack / Re: Call from EU: Stepping Away from the Comfort Zone
« on: February 18, 2013, 08:41:10 AM »
For some reason I was all geared up for a discussion about European fiscal policy.

I used to be a lot more adventurous with my game choices. Back when Blockbuster was still a thing I'd head there and rent anything that got good marks in the gaming mags. I don't really have the same kind of time and patience as I used to though. The internet has a lot to do with that, as much of the free time I have I put right here...typing things like this.

Podcast Discussion / Re: Episode 323: Bad Moon on the Rise
« on: February 05, 2013, 04:39:34 AM »
While you guys are complaining about the size of the Wii U OS do realise that most of that 5GB size is merely reserved space for future possible updates to expand into. The sluggishness of the system however is probably more down to a rushed release for the software, at least it works at the moment.

I think its 2 GB total, 1 GB reserved for the OS. A big reason why they reserve so much is because they need to account for the user accessing the built-in always-on apps like Mii-verse and the browser. Even with that, it is still sorta bloated considering its functionality so it could very well be they expect to add more swt appz this year.
The sluggishness tho is does not simply walk into OS-land and expect to offer a smooth product right out the gate. They will improve, but as Iwata himself mentioned the criticism is justified. Especially with customers conditioned to far smoother experiences on other devices.


Podcast Discussion / Re: Episode 324: Punky Hamster
« on: February 05, 2013, 04:29:46 AM »
Gui's praise of Ika-Chan's pixel graphics on the XL further cement my frothing need to replay Cave Story once I get an XL. Enjoyed the extended "out-takes" btw guys, cheers for bringing that to the 'cast man!

TalkBack / Re: Fire Emblem: Awakening Review
« on: February 05, 2013, 04:22:03 AM »
It as the right move to add the "Casual Mode" and therefore allow the game to appeal to a larger audience. I've read many comments over the years from experienced players along the lines "[blank] got killed. He was my favorite. I can't take this anymore. I'm quitting." If a good number of experienced players already felt this way, good luck with attracting newer folks in this day and age!

That said, as a player who enjoys that sense of danger and risk as well as other wholesome masochistic activities, I would have appreciated extra easter eggs in the form of characters or scenarios or story scenes reserved for the "pure" Fire Emblem players :)

Podcast Discussion / Re: Episode 321: Return of the Mack
« on: January 14, 2013, 02:17:26 AM »
Interesting that everyone seems convinced that Retro's next big project will be Metroid. It makes a lot of sense, especially in the context of Retro's comment last year that they were working on something "everyone wanted to see them do" (I'm paraphrasing here). That said I would love if the other rumour, that they are creating the next Starfox, turn out to be true. Would love to have their talent applied to other genres now that they have proven with DK that they are not limited to FPS/FPA gritty type games.
Or, you know, Nintendo can fund Platinum's Hideki Kamiya cuz that guy would love to do one and he has some experience making decent games.
Also, hes a funny guy:

Of course we all still want our Metroid fix, but Nintendo pretty please make it a 2D (in glorious 3D on the 3DS) return to side scrolling exploration. Heck, you could even talk to the guys at Chair (developers of XBA's Metroid-like Shadow Complex) if you can't spare a quality in-house team and Team Ninja is too busy with their next-gen boobie physics engine.

Great to hear from Lindy again! Interesting GamePad prediction. Nyko and other 3rd parties now have their 'Pad battery solutions available, doubling and even tripling the controller's battery life. Are you expecting Nintendo to offer a streamlined, boosted 'Pad as an accessory purchase (which, AFAIK, they still have not made available outside of repairs)? Or as the definitive new pack-in controller?

I bought and played this game on an iPod Touch. The aesthetic is very cool as are some of the bosses. Slick jump and shoot gameplay.
I felt the game was a bit too short, however. Beat it in a few sittings. Granted, I did not replay the game on Hard after beating it initially.
Kudos to the dev for releasing it at the same pricepoint on 3DS, would have thought the "3D" feature and the "buttons" feature would double the price.

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