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Episode 157: Little Blob Mountain

by Jonathan Metts - August 9, 2009, 3:19 pm PDT
Total comments: 16

Neal sits in for a report on upcoming games, while James and Greg delve into Little King's Story.

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The hot summer of RFN rolls on with this big episode. We invited Neal Ronaghan to come talk about his recent hands-on experience with two upcoming Wii games: Cursed Mountain and A Boy and His Blob. Before that, though, we stretch out for a five-man New Business segment. Neal kicks it off with Art Style: precipice and bit.Trip Core, and Greg has the Japanese version of Cybernator from Virtual Console. Jon has an update on Chrono Trigger, plus a pair of handheld rhythm games. James breaks into Little King's Story, which he may in fact really like (though we're not sure), and Greg jumps in flesh out the comparison to Pikmin. Jonny tops off the pile of games with a Fable 2 love-fest and an admission that Klonoa does, in fact, get really hard.

Listener Mail is down to two letters this week, partly because we've started reserving mailbag emails for the actual mailbag. So, if you want to hear your question read and discussed on the podcast, be sure to use the podcast email address (or select "Radio Free Nintendo" in our website email form). With all that said, we have some good letters on Sonic's downfall and the prospects of increasing the WiiWare file size limit.

Finally, thanks to everyone who voted in the latest RetroActive poll. We're looking forward to playing and discussing Super Mario World over the next couple of weeks -- be sure to join the conversation in the dedicated forum thread. Your comments may be read on the show!

Credits:

This podcast was edited by Greg Leahy.

Music for this episode of Radio Free Nintendo is used with permission from Jason Ricci & New Blood. You can purchase their newest album, Done with the Devil, directly from the record label, Amazon.com, or iTunes, or call your local record store and ask for it!

Talkback

EjamerAugust 09, 2009

Once again Greg is amazing for getting yet another podcast in on time! Thanks for the hard work Greg.

I'm so tempted to get Little King's Story but I'm so broke right now!

VuduAugust 09, 2009

Greg is a machine. On the reunion show Karl spilled the beans on how many people listen weekly to RFN and I think those numbers are due in large part to a consistent schedule.

CëricAugust 09, 2009

My problem with the Turtles in Time remake is that it just seems so deliberately generic now.  The new 3D graphics look like crap, the music sounds pretty generic now, and the game's missing any of the enhancements that the SNES version introduced.  Plus, the new "edgy" graphical style just flies in the face of a game that was deliberately not trying to be taken seriously.

And most egregious of all, I don't see any mention of the remake having Pizza Power (it's a very 80s "Coming out of their shells" tune used for the title screen music in the SNES and Arcade versions of the game).  You just can't have a Turtles in Time remake without Pizza Power.  ;)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l5wm0ujQ6TI

Hopefully, we'll see a proper unaltered Virtual Console release of the game sometime in the near future.  I pity the people who's first exposure to the game will be this remake.

EjamerAugust 09, 2009

Quote from: broodwars

My problem with the Turtles in Time remake is that it just seems so deliberately generic now.  The new 3D graphics look like crap, the music sounds pretty generic now, and the game's missing any of the enhancements that the SNES version introduced.  Plus, the new "edgy" graphical style just flies in the face of a game that was deliberately not trying to be taken seriously.

And most egregious of all, I don't see any mention of the remake having Pizza Power (it's a very 80s "Coming out of their shells" tune used for the title screen music in the SNES and Arcade versions of the game).  You just can't have a Turtles in Time remake without Pizza Power.   ;)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l5wm0ujQ6TI

Hopefully, we'll see a proper unaltered Virtual Console release of the game sometime in the near future.  I pity the people who's first exposure to the game will be this remake.

I hate to say it AGAIN, but I agree with brood. I was pretty dissapointed in the remake of Turtles in Time.

Once I got over the "wait? its not the SNES version?" I enjoyed it. I finished playing through it after recording this podcast, actually. I doubt I'll go back to it much except maybe to play it with some friends.

I wouldn't say I was disappointed because I was wary of it from the start, but I'm not impressed either. I'm just kind of blah about it.

LolmonadeAugust 09, 2009

It's funny that you mention a retail remake of Assault Suits Valken because there is one for the PS2.

Killer_Man_JaroTom Malina, Associate Editor (Europe)August 10, 2009

Great show again, guys. I'm glad my Sonic the Hedgehog downfall letter provoked a great discussion to listen to.

My stance on the so-called "3D Sonic curse" is that the series as a whole is not suited to the change in perspective. The best games in the franchise of the last decade have been Sonic Advance and Sonic Rush, both two-dimensional. Why? Because the brilliant level design is the focus and not the stupid gimmicks that have plagued every console release from the year 2000 onwards. The parallels you made between this and some of Nintendo's franchises really illustrate that Nintendo know not only when the perspective is appropriate, but also when to try out other developers. That's the thing - if Sega are really so adamant about keeping Sonic in the third dimension, they have to stop going to Sonic Team. If they weren't so afraid to use someone else, for all we know, we may have had the game we've been yearning for by now. Look at Wario Land: Shake It!; made by Good-Feel, who proved their worth with that excellent production despite having no experience on anything like that ever before. Sega might have a developer with an ideal vision of a good Sonic game, but they won't find out if they keep trying to fix the problem to going to the people who cause the problems.

Sorry for rambling on. I look forward to participating in the RetroActive, though I'll be using the Game Boy Advance version of Super Mario World, which hopefully shouldn't affect things too much.

LolmonadeAugust 10, 2009

Deep Silver is the publisher on games like the X series AFAIK.

Pushing away from TP and towards PH? Where do I sign up?

Sonic Unleashed had the slow night levels because it would have been too short (in Sega's eyes) without them so they added filler. Keep in mind that the good Sonics lasted between half an hour and a full hour.

CëricAugust 10, 2009

This may sound odd, but I'm starting to think the best thing that Sega can do for the Sonic franchise is to farm it out to Ubisoft.  I've recently been replaying the newest Prince of Persia game (I was bored and felt up to knocking off a bunch of leftover trophies, including the 1001 Light Seed one), and something that struck me early on was that the flow of the platforming is remarkably similar to what people keep saying they want from Sonic games.  Yeah, it's a great deal slower than Sonic, but the basics are in there: impressive-looking platforming that looks impossible while still being incredibly manageable.  They could always speed it up so long as the visual cues are kept apparent.  The power plates in the game even allow the player to do spectacular things like run up and along vertical surfaces and leap from one side of a huge environment to another in rapid succession.  And best of all: there's little combat (though I like this Prince's combat system) so it's almost pure platforming.  If you get good enough at recognizing and responding to the visual cues in the platforming, it's an almost non-stop flow of movement.

I've never thought the Sonic franchise was good to begin with, but I'm starting to think that Ubisoft might actually be the company to be the first to make it such.  They just seem to understand the importance of the flow of platforming, and the camera's pretty decent in their titles, setting aside a few minor hang-ups at times.  Just something to think about.

YoshidiousGreg Leahy, Staff AlumnusAugust 10, 2009

Quote from: KDR_11k

It's funny that you mention a retail remake of Assault Suits Valken because there is one for the PS2.

I'm aware of the ASV remake (apparently it's not so hot - http://www.hardcoregaming101.net/assaultsuits/assaultsuits.htm), but when I said I would like to see the same kind of gameplay in a new game (be it downloadable or retail) I wasn't thinking of a remake. Instead, what I'd like to see is a similar but reworked design that exploits the fact that it could now use dual analog or even pointer control for much more fluid gameplay. This would allow there to be, for instance, many more enemies on screen at once while remaining manageable for the player. 

noname2200August 11, 2009

Again, hats off to the crew. I'm especially glad to hear that Klonoa is getting some love from some corner of the internet: it's not worth a full $50, but at $25-$30 I thought it was money very well spent.

I'm also glad to hear the Little King's Story talk. The criticism about the bosses having too much life and too small an opportunity to counterattack iis valid, especially in Tyrant mode. That said, I do appreciate how all but two of the other kings change the gameplay up dramatically, some more than others. It doesn't sound like either Greg or James have reached the kings yet, but I loved how many of them subverted what the rest of the game was doing. Shishkebaboo in particular came out of left field, but it was also a blast. It's obvious that the other kings got even more attention than the rest of the game did, and considering how much effort the developers put into even the most minor of details I think that's saying something.

I was also glad to hear the frank Sonic talk. I enjoyed the first three games, but I've never been blown away by them as others have; it really does seem like a very by-the-numbers series. I haven't heard the word "cynical" used in regards to Sonic, but I have to agree that it often feels like a very appropriate statement. I was surprised to hear the details of how Sonic came to be though: I kind of thought it was all in my head.

And the Cursed Mountain segment was cold, but also really funny. Anyhow, keep up the good work y'all, and I look forward to next week.

Quote from: GoldenPhoenix

Once again Greg is amazing for getting yet another podcast in on time! Thanks for the hard work Greg.

I'm so tempted to get Little King's Story but I'm so broke right now!

Do it! Sell a kidney if you must! You have two of the damned things, might as well get some use out of them!

EjamerAugust 11, 2009

I'm reluctant about Little King's Story now, the bosses sound too frustrating lol.

noname2200August 11, 2009

Quote from: GoldenPhoenix

I'm reluctant about Little King's Story now, the bosses sound too frustrating lol.

It's not so bad on normal difficulty, where your guys have enough health that you have to work at getting them killed. That means they can take quite a few lumps, so you don't have to look for that narrow opening quite as much.

Just stay away from Tryant mode, and all will be well.

CaptainK.923August 14, 2009

I'm new here so I don't know if this is the right place to comment.
So, I work at a game store and I noticed something odd about recent Wii releases. Wii discs all used to have 2-3 colors on them. All new releases for the last month or so are in full color! I noticed this when I got a trade in on MLB 2K9 and I didn't recognize the disc. I looked in the drawer and saw that the disc was clear except for the game logo written in only black and red. The disc being traded in had a solid full color background and looked very nice. I looked around and saw other recent games like Ghostbusters, The Conduit, GI Joe, and a handfull of others had this going on as well! I know its trivial, but it really makes the games look more like a quality product. Any idea why this has happened?

LolmonadeAugust 15, 2009

Dunno but The Conduit is still only silver, black and red here in Europe.

StogiAugust 16, 2009

Quote from: GoldenPhoenix

I'm reluctant about Little King's Story now, the bosses sound too frustrating lol.

Like noname said, the bosses aren't too bad (at least the couple I've played).

I just beat Duvroc (the second boss) without losing a single man.  The first couple times I fought him he killed every single one of my guys.  I was overzealous and charged in there without thinking too much ahead of time.  I thought I would be able to overpower him quickly with sheer force--this is not the case.  If you don't play smart he'll hand you your ass on a platter.  But if you're smart about it you can defeat him without too much trouble.

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