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Episode 190: Pokebuskers

by Jonathan Metts - April 11, 2010, 1:50 pm PDT
Total comments: 35

Games, tangents, interviews, and Virtual Console -- it's all in here!

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The show launches directly into gaming talk, as James tries to discuss the new expansion for Dragon Age while the rest of us launch derailing attempts the whole time. Jonny wraps up No More Heroes 2: Desperate Struggle and expresses disappointment in Ghostbusters, also for Wii. Pokemon SoulSilver is a mostly fresh experience for Greg, but it's also a launch pad for us to suggest reforms and maybe a total reboot for the franchise. (This was recorded just before the Black/White versions were announced -- maybe our dreams will come true?) The final bit of New Business is Weapon of Choice, an Xbox Indie game that Jon is loving these days. Somewhere in there, we also investigate Nintendo of Europe's resurgence and lack of synchronicity with Nintendo of America.

Despite a long, meandering New Business segment, we didn't skimp on Listener Mail in the second half of the show. It starts with a request for interview memories, which is naturally dominated by Jonny's favorites over the years. Eliciting the most discussion is a complaint about Wii-exclusive games that don't leverage motion controls. We also get a Shout-Out for Might and Magic: Clash of Heroes, an appetizing puzzle/RPG hybrid from late 2009. Finally, we once again discuss Virtual Console, from recent additions to better ways of marketing the existing library. Thanks for all the fantastic letters!

Be sure to vote in our latest RetroActive poll, Game Boy Edition! The winning game will be discussed on an upcoming episode (maybe two) of RFN, and as always, we'd like listeners to help develop the discussion. This may be our best line-up of nominees yet, so vote now and play along later!

We're always looking for great Listener Mail to read and discuss on the show, so please send your questions or comments! (We really love seeing your praise and feedback regarding the show itself; however, in the interest of time, we may edit your letter to be read on the podcast.)

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!

Additional music for this episode of Radio Free Nintendo is copyrighted to Nintendo, and is included under fair use protection.

Talkback

AVApril 11, 2010

pokemon extinction sounds like a GREAT GAME.


people fighting to catch it before it vanishes. The game starts off with 200 pokemon and the course of the game it decreases by 120 so it's a fight to catch them before they are gone for good. Online trading is critical

broodwarsApril 11, 2010

I've said it before and I'll say it again: There needs to be a mass extinction in the Pokeuniverse (starting with a certain electric rodent), because that monster count has just ballooned beyond recognition and far beyond at least my capability to give a damn anymore.  Maybe they can make it the plot of the next game: something like "Pokefluenza" is ravaging the world, and you have to find a cure or something to save what's left.  Yeah, it's excessively dark, but at least it would be something new in a game franchise that's starting to make Dragon Quest look progressive.  Unfortunately, just like DQ the series sells ridiculously well and Nintendo left behind their desire for a creative imperative with that franchise long ago, so it's probably going to be the same game with a roster update for the next decade at least.

As for Virtual Console, ordinarily I'd have a great deal of complaining to do about how Nintendo has completely mismanaged that service and basically doesn't give a damn about it anymore.  However, I can now play Ogre Battle 64 in glorious Component video with a wireless controller on a format that won't die on me due to battery failure, so that's put them in my good graces for a while.  ;)

I can just imagine the hell there will be to pay, however, when Nintendo inevitably announces that their next HD-capable console will not be compatible with your old VC/WiiWare releases, just as DSiWare won't be tranferable to 3DS.  ::)

Mt. Silver-sized meteor, perhaps?

I know people like to rag on Dragon Quest for being stuck in its own traditions, but at least every Dragon Quest has a new story, new characters, and a totally new world to explore. And since those are the main reasons to play this kind of RPG, every game in the series feels fresh despite the simple gameplay and call-backs to classic monsters. Put DQ8 next to the original Dragon Quest, and you may not even realize they're from the same series. But put Pokemon Platinum next to Red/Blue, and it's painfully obvious.

greybrickNathan Mustafa, Staff AlumnusApril 11, 2010

Quote from: Jonnyboy117

I know people like to rag on Dragon Quest for being stuck in its own traditions, but at least every Dragon Quest has a new story, new characters, and a totally new world to explore. And since those are the main reasons to play this kind of RPG, every game in the series feels fresh despite the simple gameplay and call-backs to classic monsters. Put DQ8 next to the original Dragon Quest, and you may not even realize they're from the same series. But put Pokemon Platinum next to Red/Blue, and it's painfully obvious.

Having played many hours of the original Dragon Quest can say that VIII can immediately be picked out as part of the Dragon Quest lineage. Dragon quest VIII was actually the first in the series to deviate from the first person combat, and to be fair it was quite a step above DQ VII which was essentially the same game as most of the others that came before it. I would say that the biggest innovation in Dragon Quest is the addition of monsters that the player can catch.

Of course, I know what point you are trying to make and I agree that Pokemon needs to move forward. In Dragon Quest, it was convenient to come into the game already understanding the monsters and the mechanics so that one could just enjoy the new story content. In Pokemon, games that are leveraged far less on story and more the mechanics of the game itself, I would argue that this lack of mechanical innovation is unacceptable.

ejamerApril 12, 2010

Hearing the negative impressions about Ghostbusters (Wii) was terribly disappointing.  Even though the game got middling reviews, I loved the movie and was really looking forward to picking this up eventually.  Oh well.  At least it's cheap now, and maybe I'll enjoy it anyway for the co-op play.


Also, would anyone else here rather play Dragon Quest than Final Fantasy?  One of these franchises has stayed true to it's roots while still offering new adventures.  The other has totally jumped the shark and become a "cinematic experience" aimed at angst-filled teens who are happy to think that style can overcome the glaring shortcomings in story-telling and gameplay.  To each their own I guess.
;)

broodwarsApril 12, 2010

Quote from: ejamer

Also, would anyone else here rather play Dragon Quest than Final Fantasy?  One of these franchises has stayed true to it's roots while still offering new adventures.  The other has totally jumped the shark and become a "cinematic experience" aimed at angst-filled teens who are happy to think that style can overcome the glaring shortcomings in story-telling and gameplay.  To each their own I guess.
;)


Not really, IMO.  I'd rather play a game series that is constantly changing battle systems and settings to attempt to stay relevant and creatively interesting than a series that has remained stagnant for over 20 years because its fanbase is paranoid of anything resembling change.  To each their own I guess.  ;)

I bought Ghostbusters and Little King Story used from Gamestop on the same day. I put a few hours into each (including some co-op with Ghostbusters), and then decided to return Ghostbusters because I wanted to focus on Little King Story.

I think I made the right decision. I still want to go back to Ghostbusters at some point, but I'm in no rush.

Kytim89April 12, 2010

Dan Akroyd has stared in a lot of movies since Coneheads. Atleast close to a dozen and a half since that movie came out.

greybrickNathan Mustafa, Staff AlumnusApril 12, 2010

Quote from: ejamer

Also, would anyone else here rather play Dragon Quest than Final Fantasy?  One of these franchises has stayed true to it's roots while still offering new adventures.  The other has totally jumped the shark and become a "cinematic experience" aimed at angst-filled teens who are happy to think that style can overcome the glaring shortcomings in story-telling and gameplay.  To each their own I guess.
;)

I always choose DQ over FF, but FF13 is awesome.

ejamerApril 12, 2010

Quote from: Kytim89

Dan Akroyd has stared in a lot of movies since Coneheads. Atleast close to a dozen and a half since that movie came out.

Were any of them good?  Checking IMDB, the most "notable" movies that I see in the list are Crossroads (with Britney Spears) and Curse of the Jade Scorpion (which I always wanted to see solely because of the poster art).


I'm not saying he hasn't been in good movies... but I just don't instantly recognize any of the movies he's been in for a LONG LONG time.

Quote from: broodwars


... because its fanbase is paranoid of anything resembling change.

I'm not afraid of change, but recognize the difference between a change for the better and a change for the worse!
:p

(Ok, that's a partial bold-faced lie.  I am actually just a old gaming curmudgeon who hates to see the franchises he once adored morph into something he strongly dislikes.  Square-Enix and Activision both had tremendous good-will associated with their names due to retro games... but that sense of good-will has been totally squandered by the directions those companies have pursued over the past decade.  I am now skeptical about everything they release, by default.  Now get off my lawn!)

*edited to (hopefully) show that I'm not being too serious*

Wasn't Akroyd in Grosse Point Blank? That's a rather excellent movie from the mid-90s.

broodwarsApril 12, 2010

As for Ghostbusters, I only played the PS3 version but I thought the voice acting (especially from Akyroid) was fine...except for Bill Murrey, who is terrible.  Unfortunately, the script is terrible and game design truly poor, shifting over the course of the game away from what works in the game (wrangling and trapping Ghosts in increasingly creative ways) to generic TPS action shooting generic ghouls or objects until they vanish.

Neal (above) is wrong.

That is all.

I'm glad we live in a world where Dragon Quest and Final Fantasy can co-exist, because I love both series and would never choose between them.

ReggieFA!April 12, 2010

"You don't train beetles. You train dogs and roosters to fight. You can't train a beetle, it's not smart enough. I've tried."

Jonny suddenly channeling Michael Scott in the Pokemon discussion cracked me up.

Quote from: Halbred

Neal (above) is wrong.

That is all.

You also don't like Rushmore, Zach. That means you don't like good movies!

And, honestly, Grosse Point Blank isn't a superb film. It just finds its way into the "Oh damn, this is on TV? Eh, I've got nothing to do for two hours. Let's watch Cusack as a hitman at a high school reunion being chased by Dan Akroyd."

ejamerApril 12, 2010

Quote from: Zap

"You don't train beetles. You train dogs and roosters to fight. You can't train a beetle, it's not smart enough. I've tried."

http://www.thaiphotoblogs.com/media/beetlefight_1.jpg




RRROOOOAWRR!

AVApril 12, 2010

Neal have you seen this :

Crystal Head Vodka :

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SKqjIv91Zx8

Dan Aykroyd's funniest thing ever !  Drunk Podcast 2 main ingredient

Pokemon Extinction: Pokemon don't fait they die for GOOD, and virus is slowly killing pokemon. Can you find the cure ? Are you willing to fight for the cure?

Quote from: Mr.

Neal have you seen this :

Crystal Head Vodka :

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SKqjIv91Zx8

Dan Aykroyd's funniest thing ever !  Drunk Podcast 2 main ingredient

Pokemon Extinction: Pokemon don't fait they die for GOOD, and virus is slowly killing pokemon. Can you find the cure ? Are you willing to fight for the cure?

Oh yea!

True story: I own a bottle of Dan Akroyd-signed Crystal Head Vodka. He did a signing for it a wine retailer in New Jersey and Lauren's brother got me a bottle of it.


Mine's unopened, but a friend of mine also got it. While I'll have to try it again using the Metts Technique, I recall it just being kinda crappy vodka.

Quote from: ejamer

Quote from: Zap

"You don't train beetles. You train dogs and roosters to fight. You can't train a beetle, it's not smart enough. I've tried."

http://www.thaiphotoblogs.com/media/beetlefight_1.jpg




RRROOOOAWRR!

Like I said, train beetles to fight.  Taste this evidence!

I'm not going to bother looking it up, but I would guess that beetles fight each other on instinct and can't actually be trained. More intelligent animals usually prefer to avoid fighting to the death.

Kytim89April 12, 2010

I really like final fantasy 7 through 9, 10 and 12 and possibly 13, but I have not had the chance to play the game yet. Overall, Final Fantasy 7 is my favorite with 8 being in second place, 9 in third and 12 in fourth place.

I do not have a favorite Dragon Quest game because I have not had a chance to play the games except for part 8. I am very interested in parts 9 and 10 though.

greybrickNathan Mustafa, Staff AlumnusApril 12, 2010

Quote from: Jonnyboy117

I'm not going to bother looking it up, but I would guess that beetles fight each other on instinct and can't actually be trained. More intelligent animals usually prefer to avoid fighting to the death.

To bring everything full circle, Pokemon are apparently intelligent enough to only fight until the point of fainting.

Killer_Man_JaroTom Malina, Associate Editor (Europe)April 13, 2010

Honestly, I don't think the Pokémon franchise's stagnation has much to do with the increasing Pokédex. Will watering down the number of collectible Pokémon in future games really alleviate the problems you have with the series? Not likely. No, I reckon the problem lies at the heart of the '8 gyms & then Elite Four' progression structure and the stale 'Team _____ goes for world domination' plot. While Pokémon Colosseum had flaws with its design, it was an interesting attempt to mix the usual proceedings up. I don't want something as off the wall as that game, but for heaven's sake, do something different, Game Freak.


Now for a random comment: I know it would have made more sense to ask this earlier, but Greg, have you tried the BBC iPlayer on Wii yet? Curious for your thoughts, that's all. I use it quite a lot when I'm up at university, where the faster internet connection allows it to run without stutters.

YoshidiousGreg Leahy, Staff AlumnusApril 13, 2010

Quote from: Killer_Man_Jaro

Now for a random comment: I know it would have made more sense to ask this earlier, but Greg, have you tried the BBC iPlayer on Wii yet? Curious for your thoughts, that's all. I use it quite a lot when I'm up at university, where the faster internet connection allows it to run without stutters.

I seldom use the BBC iPlayer on Wii as I watch most of my TV via DVR on Sky+, but as it happens I was catching up on some hardcore Paxman action through the iPlayer just recently, and I was quite satisfied with how well it held up. The picture quality was acceptable, it ran smoothly, and given the convenience of my Wii always being hooked up to the TV, I'd say it's the preferred option for those occasions where I want to catch up with BBC programming online.

Yes, but does the Wii play Jeeves and Wooster? Oh, I doubt it.

broodwarsApril 13, 2010

Quote from: Killer_Man_Jaro

Honestly, I don't think the Pokémon franchise's stagnation has much to do with the increasing Pokédex. Will watering down the number of collectible Pokémon in future games really alleviate the problems you have with the series? Not likely.


True, but I think that with a fewer number of Pokemon in the game, it shifts the emphasis away from the Pokemon count (something Nintendo's always hyping) onto the other features of the game.  This might entice Nintendo to actually do something new with the franchise.  Maybe.

KDR_11kApril 13, 2010

Fewer Pokemon would make it more feasible to give each one more individual graphics. The 3D versions never got upgrades because that'd be a crapton of work.

The Weapon of Choice discussion reminded me, thank you Jonny for recommending that I go to the Mommy's Best Games booth. It was too busy for me to be able to play anything before I had to leave to catch my flight, but what was there looked cool. It also got me to play the Weapon of Choice demo that had been sitting on my hard drive for a while, which I promptly bought.

NWR_KarlKarl Castaneda, Contributing EditorApril 13, 2010

Funny story about that Mommy's Best Games booth:

So Lindy and I went with Jonny on the last day of PAX to pick up his prize for getting the high score in Grapple Buggy (a t-shirt). Oddly enough, though. MBG had announced via twitter the night before (or maybe even that morning) that ANYONE could have a shirt, provided they said, "Grapple Buggy 'hooked' me."

So Lindy, always down for free shit, throws the phrase out, and the developer's wife hands out the shirt. So there I am, having not gotten ANY swag the entire show (aside from MTG and a Medaverse orb of participation) figure, hey, why not? So I throw out the phrase, too. She looks at me and starts laughing, "You too?!"

Oddly enough, I just remembered I promised I'd send that shirt to Zach Miller. Drat! I've grown fond of it (it's found its way into my gym/biking clothes).

Quote from: insanolord

The Weapon of Choice discussion reminded me, thank you Jonny for recommending that I go to the Mommy's Best Games booth. It was too busy for me to be able to play anything before I had to leave to catch my flight, but what was there looked cool. It also got me to play the Weapon of Choice demo that had been sitting on my hard drive for a while, which I promptly bought.

I stumbled upon their booth during the media hour before the show floor opened on Saturday. I knew little about their games, and I only walked by them because Jonny was splooging over Grapple Buggy.

There was quiet time so I ended up playing Shoot 1UP and Grapple Buggy, talking to Nathan all about the games and some of his thoughts on game design, and I was sold. Shoot 1UP and Weapon of Choice are probably the best $4 I ever spent.

To add to the Dan Akroyd discussion (why the hell not?), he had a cameo in Canadian Bacon, one of my favorite movies, and he also had a small part in Tommy Boy.

Quote from: KarlCastaneda

Funny story about that Mommy's Best Games booth:

So Lindy and I went with Jonny on the last day of PAX to pick up his prize for getting the high score in Grapple Buggy (a t-shirt). Oddly enough, though. MBG had announced via twitter the night before (or maybe even that morning) that ANYONE could have a shirt, provided they said, "Grapple Buggy 'hooked' me."

So Lindy, always down for free ****, throws the phrase out, and the developer's wife hands out the shirt. So there I am, having not gotten ANY swag the entire show (aside from MTG and a Medaverse orb of participation) figure, hey, why not? So I throw out the phrase, too. She looks at me and starts laughing, "You too?!"

Oddly enough, I just remembered I promised I'd send that shirt to Zach Miller. Drat! I've grown fond of it (it's found its way into my gym/biking clothes).

That's cool, man, you can keep it if you want. I'd totally forgotten about it!

KDR_11kApril 13, 2010

The talk about Mommy's Best Games just cemented my hatred of MS for not making indie games available in Germany. Sure, they aren't rated by the USK but that's not stopping Apple.

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