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Here it is, the long-awaited milestone episode recorded in a professional studio, live and in person!
We always try to do something special for these milestone episodes, but 400 is our most ambitious episode ever. It's over three hours of game discussion, born out of a wild weekend full of playing and streaming games together at Jonny's home in Colorado. We played great games, weird games, and horrible games, and you'll hear about tons of them in a distended New Business segment right up front. The first chunk of this big episode also includes a couple of feature discussions on Nintendo's use of classic characters, plus our most idealistic hopes for the next Nintendo system(s).
During the break, you'll hear a special message from our friends at Nintendo Free Radio, then a direct thank you to each person who donated to make this whole event possible.
In the last segment, we talk about not one but three MiniRetroActive games selected by donors. Then, we play "Secret Santa" by recommending games based on each other's tastes. This gigantic episode concludes with just a little navel-gazing (as requested), which is really just a chance to look back on what the show means to us and how it has become a major part of our lives. We hope it's a fun and positive part of your life, too! Thanks so much for listening, interacting, donating, and just being the greatest audience we could ever imagine.
We may take next week off to recover from the intensity of this trip, but RFN will be back very soon. Please consider chipping in a thoughtful email to keep the discussion going well beyond 400! Also, check back in a day or so for the complete list of YouTube links to watch our weekend gaming hijinks -- with full audio commentary from the entire RFN crew! It's like having several bonus hours of the podcast, except you also get to watch us play all these crazy games.
One week prior to the big anniversary, we discuss TVii (really), the Smash Bros. 3DS demo, and much more!
This final episode of RFN Season 3 begins with important and exciting news about one of our favorite guest stars and why he probably won't be back anytime soon. It's a happy reason!
It doesn't happen often, but Jon Lindemann starts New Business with his surprise at the rock-solid Super Smash Bros. for 3DS demo, which everyone else played too. James follows up on Layton x Wright by strongly recommending the DLC scenes. Jonny tries the Theatrythm Final Fantasy: Curtain Call demo and also suggests the perfect companion experience to Fire Emblem: Awakening. Guillaume wraps the segment with his advanced impressions of Azure Striker Gunvolt, plus the demo (or maybe accidental purchase) of Wooden Sen'SeY, the lone Wii U game in this 3DS-heavy edition of New Business.
There's just a pair of emails in this abbreviated episode, but they're both unusual topics. The first is about TVii, the confounding failed attempt to get people watching television while also doing... something... on the GamePad. Listen for a wild live demonstration! The other question is about Crush 3D and just how similar it is (or isn't) to Fez. I bet even Sega can't believe we are talking about Crush 3D in the year 2014, but there it is. As we're always saying, you can write an email to RFN about nearly any topic! If we have something to say about it, we'll probably do so on the podcast.
It won't feel real until everyone is standing in Colorado, but we really are just a few days out from the epic Episode 400 weekend, thanks to all of you! Be sure to check the front page of NWR, the NeoGAF thread, and our social media accounts to be alerted when our live streams are starting. We're going into the studio on Sunday afternoon and hope to get the big show out for you that evening or maybe the next day. EXCITE!!!
This week's episode is overloaded with brand new games and a brand New 3DS.
Last week's episode was a big one for us, but we promised at the end to come back with an earful of games discussion and a look at the New 3DS hardware... so that's exactly what you get! New Business is slam-packed with new and/or interesting game, including Guacamelee on Wii U, the charming Fez, Layton x Wright, Sherlock Holmes in Dai Gyakuten Saiban, Azure Striker Gunvolt, and yes, even Destiny. There's something for everyone in this lineup!
A full-length Listener Mail segment gives a chance to chat about the New 3DS models -- finally! We also consider which older 3DS games could benefit from the new hardware. The last email forces us to look at Ubisoft's slow, maybe irreversible retreat from Wii U support after crafting one of the best launch titles. As always, we love hearing from you and would like to talk about topics of your choosing, so step right up to that email form!
Dan Adelman is our special guest for an intense look at establishing WiiWare, DSiWare, and the eShop. Plus: we discuss the effects of Phazon within the games media in Listener Mail.
We don't often have full-on interviews or new guests on Radio Free Nintendo, because it's asking a lot of these people to deal with our strict recording schedule and the relatively complex procedures needed to make the show sound good every week. This time, it was absolutely worthwhile. Our special guest is Dan Adelman, the independent development consultant who recently left Nintendo of America after nine years of work on digital distribution platforms. It so happens that we on RFN have spent the last eight years obsessing over the mysterious workings of those same platforms and shop portals. Dan couldn't talk much about Virtual Console (we'll keep trying) but he answered freely and at length our very specific questions on everything from the WiiWare file size limit (40 megabytes!) to the evolution of Nintendo's digital storefronts and how backwards policies eventually got changed through the maze of Nintendo's bureaucracy. We think you'll find his answers enlightening and fascinating, as we did throughout the interview. Dan is now a freelance consultant for independent developers who need business help -- check out his website for more information, or ping him on Twitter (@Dan_Adelman). The guy knows what he's doing, as you'll hear.
It's back to just the four of us in part two, but we stay on the industry talk train with an in-depth edition of Listener Mail. Just one topic this week, but it's a big one that consumed the remainder of this episode. A listener is concerned about corruption within the gaming media and asks us to tell all. No problem! Note: Our discussion is removed from sex stories, crowd-sourced harassment, hashtag wars, etc. It's just about standards of ethics, disclosure, and professional relationships across the industry. We aren't calling out anyone, except maybe ourselves.
We'll swing hard back into game discussion next week, so keep that in mind when you write an email for the show! And of course, huge thanks again to Dan Adelman for spending so much time answering our obsessive questions.
We're back to prune backlogs and examine a rare set of leaks from Nintendo.
Other than intercontinental pro football discussion, most of us spent the week off playing lots of games and, generally speaking, we all made some progress on our backlogs. Gui starts off with Shadow of the Ninja from the NES days, plus an interesting indie game called The Fall that just dropped on Wii U's eShop. Jonny has a whole grab-bag and spends a least a few minutes each on Gone Home, Wario Land 3, Rogue Legacy, SpecOps: The Line, and even the notorious "PT" demo. Lindy takes us into an opposite direction with Madden 15 (you know, the fifteenth Madden game...) and even a bit of Demon's Souls. James wraps up the New Business with his long-awaited impressions for Persona 4, and we beg the question of whether it is weird. Answer: YES.
The final segment begins with a feature discussion about Mario Kart 8's DLC plan and what it may say for other Nintendo games, especially the new Smash Bros. Then we have time for a single but rather deep email topic: leaks. We've seen a few of them lately, whereas Nintendo has historically been very tight. Why is this happening now, and could it affect Nintendo's strategy? You'll have to listen to find out what we think! We have some great emails that got bumped to next time, and you can add to the fun by sending in your own question or topic for the RFN crew.
Hear our early reactions to the funding success, plus lots of discussion about Nintendo games, Sega games, classic games, Japanese indie games, and massively multiplayer online role-playing games.
Last week we announced the RFN 400 campaign, and this week we're already celebrating its success. This show opens with a few minutes of basking in the generosity of our listeners, as well as more info about what happens next. Then, we get an unusual start to New Business with a conversation that starts as Guillaume's wrap-up thoughts on the book Console Wars. That quickly evolves into our own angles on how Sega performed in the 90s, leading to several minutes of what Jonny calls "Radio Free Sega".
Gui brings it back to Nintendo with his long-awaited (and surprising!) impressions of Rayman Legends on Wii U. The next topic comes from Jon, and that's Cybernator (SNES) on Virtual Console. This one may not be a classic, but it's a rather interesting example of that generation's mech sidescroller fad. That provides a lovely segue to James, who's got the modern equivalent in Armored Hunter GUNHOUND EX and also checks out flashy, zany new shoot-em-up Astebreed, both from the lesser known Japanese indie scene. New Business finally concludes with Jonny's further exploration of The Mysterious Murasame Castle, plus his first real exposure to the MMORPG thing with an outsider's perspective on the first several hours of Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn.
The remainder of the show is Listener Mail, and the two selections for this week include a look back at Link Between Worlds, how to control (or at least live with) your game backlog, and what bizarre franchise crossover is coming next. Please keep the great emails coming, and start getting excited for an awesome Episode 400!