Episode 228: In for a Penny

by James Jones, Greg Leahy, Jon Lindemann, and Jonathan Metts - January 23, 2011, 11:43 am PST
Total comments: 31

We discuss the 3DS launch details, lots of games, Avatar on a handheld, and more!

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Coming right off the 3DS events in New York and Amsterdam, we had to spend a few minutes (and then some) talking about all the new info and revealing our individual plans for launch purchases. Then we get into New Business proper. Greg concurs on Ghost Trick, Jonny wraps up two games and also succumbs to Borderlands, James tries to explain 999, and Jon begins a long, unhealthy relationship with Picross 3D.

In Listener Mail, we take some time to discuss Avatar and its chances of being a 3DS exclusive. A new listener points out the importance of word-of-mouth, then asks us to bad-mouth games we loved as children and now realize are crap. Finally, Jon is set up for even more jokes when someone asks for our thoughts on the Mass Effect series.

RetroActive #16 is decided: we'll be playing Ogre Battle 64. Be sure to leave your questions and thoughts in the dedicated forum thread; we'll read the best comments on RFN! Also, make your plans now for PAX East in March, where we will be returning for another exciting live panel in Boston! See the related blog for more details.

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 (CD) (MP3), 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

happyastoriaJanuary 23, 2011

Congratulation on the PAX panel.

Kytim89January 24, 2011

One thing about the price of the 3DS is how much trad-in value does the DS family gave towards the 3DS at places like Gamestop. If I could get atleast fifty dollars for my DSi then I would be more inclined to buy the 3DS. The only problem I have with this is that how will I transfer my DSiware titles if I sell my DSi before the 3DS is released.

I said it before, but Resident Evil Afterlife would be a good bundle movie with Resident Evil Mercenaries or Revelations.

The only thing that is holding me back from buying the 3DS is the lauch titiles. I do recognize that if games like Kid Icarus and Revelations are indicative of the potential of the 3DS then it might actually be smart to get my foot in the door early. If I can not afford the games for the 3DS, I might save up for Kid Icarus and then take advantage of the BC of the 3DS to play my DS games for the time being.

On a side note, Jonny, I believe that you picked a poor time to release your thread about how the Virtual Console can be saved. I could speak for days about how the service needs to be revived, but with all the excitement abouit the 3DS this week it appears as though your topic is being covered by the 3DS news. I appreciate the title, but I wanted to share this bit of advice with you.

It's okay, I am happy that a lot of blogs are being posted. It should be included in next week's RFN Now Playing segment, as it's the first original content I have written for the site in quite a while.

KDR_11kJanuary 24, 2011

I wonder if they actually translated Ghost Trick for Europe, Ace Attorney Investigations didn't get translated so my mother, who I usually hand my adventure games down to, couldn't play it at all.

If Mass Effect has such a great story it sure doesn't try grabbing you with it. I got ME2 during the crazy Steam sale but haven't played more than a few hours of it and don't really see more than a generic fight-the-aliens thing so far.

I know this sounds boring, but it's totally not -- look around the Codex, which is like a talking encyclopedia about the world of Mass Effect. It's all background info, but it's superbly written and very nicely narrated. Even a quick browse around the Codex will provide a lot of context for the events and character interactions you see in the actual game. Some of this would already be meaningful to you if you'd played the first game, but ME2 contains plenty of info to get you up to speed. Once you understand the "universe" a little better, I think the story will hit harder for you.

greybrickNathan Mustafa, Staff AlumnusJanuary 24, 2011

Quote from: Jonnyboy117

I know this sounds boring, but it's totally not -- look around the Codex, which is like a talking encyclopedia about the world of Mass Effect. It's all background info, but it's superbly written and very nicely narrated. Even a quick browse around the Codex will provide a lot of context for the events and character interactions you see in the actual game. Some of this would already be meaningful to you if you'd played the first game, but ME2 contains plenty of info to get you up to speed. Once you understand the "universe" a little better, I think the story will hit harder for you.

I think the Giantbomb crew's idea about having an iPad version of the codex is a fantastic one.

noname2200January 24, 2011

I'm glad to hear the 999 talk!  It's a surprisingly great game that gets better as you go along; there are some excellent plot twists scattered evenly throughout.  I actually got so hooked on the plot that I became annoyed at the puzzle solving sections...

It actually has six endings, not three, and four of those end in increasingly bad ways (the fifth basically trolls you).  Even better, you can NOT get the best ending without going through one of the bad endings. 

As for sales, it IS a niche title, but it's done well enough that the publisher has ordered a second shipment, so I encourage people to find a copy and give it a shot.

PlugabugzJanuary 24, 2011

This may convince greg, but Shopto.net is selling the 3DS in a variety of colours for £200.

I am in the same boat, Greg. The games in the launch window don't really jump out at me - there are a few I'd like to play, just not urgently - but the availability is a very real concern.

Kytim89January 24, 2011

I recall Johnny commenteing on the PSP2 screen and I ran across a article at Kotaku that mentioned rumours that organic light-emitting diodes might be incorporated into the system for better screen resolution. The reason I mention this is because he is an engineer and might know whether this is good or not.

http://kotaku.com/5741331/psp2-will-have-3g-connectivity-and-a-very-fancy-screen

yoshi1001January 24, 2011

I have to say, I hope whoever gave you those games isn't listening to this podcast. ;) I swear, James is like a magnet for bad games (though I like PMD).

happyastoriaJanuary 24, 2011

Quote from: Jonnyboy117

I know this sounds boring, but it's totally not -- look around the Codex, which is like a talking encyclopedia about the world of Mass Effect. It's all background info, but it's superbly written and very nicely narrated. Even a quick browse around the Codex will provide a lot of context for the events and character interactions you see in the actual game. Some of this would already be meaningful to you if you'd played the first game, but ME2 contains plenty of info to get you up to speed. Once you understand the "universe" a little better, I think the story will hit harder for you.

Yes, you're right! The whole codex thing is boring! I have Mass Effect 2 on the PC and never got past the fourth mission. I simply don't like the controls. I don't understand how people can say PC gaming is better. The keyboard and mouse combo is so uncomfortable to play. In addtion to the uncomfortable controls, the Mass Effect story is so stale, generic, and boring. At least Heavy Rain had an interestingly bad story.

On another topic, I'm glade there was some talk about 999, a truly underrated game.

ShayminJanuary 24, 2011

Some stuff I jotted down during the show:

- The Canadian 3DS details (price, colors, date) are identical to the US. Considering the dollars are at par, that's no shock.

- I wonder if the GBA got left off of Virtual Console Handheld because they figure most of the early adopting crowd would still have a functional DS Lite that can still play GBA games. And they get a free publicity bump when the GBA eventually does debut.

- So who wants to open the betting on how long Jon's 3DS will stay sealed? I give it 2 months. Meanwhile, I'll bite the bullet and say that Greg should be able to find a 3DS in the shops right after launch.

- I'm still working my way through DKC:R, but I wonder if what Jonny mentioned about Donkey Kong not being acrobatic enough explains why I still prefer Donkey Kong Country 2.

- Jon waited for a price drop on a game that LAUNCHED at $20? This is why we can't have nice things.

- I'm more of a Greg than a Jonny when it comes to final bosses, but I suspect we're becoming a minority thanks to Youtube.

- The only reason I can think of that James got all those crap games as a kid is that his parents were Acclaim shareholders. So they got every piece of **** they put out under the LJN brand.

Quote from: Shaymin

- The only reason I can think of that James got all those crap games as a kid is that his parents were Acclaim shareholders. So they got every piece of **** they put out under the LJN brand.

That would explain what happened to our estate in South Ossetia.


That or the Georgians bombed it...






"OH NO HE DI'UNT!"

It won't stay sealed, but my pre-order is precarious.  $250 is a lot for me right now.  Without that Director money coming in, it's back to the poorhouse.

TJ SpykeJanuary 25, 2011

I am waiting to see if one retailer offers a good deal on the 3DS at launch.

Kytim89January 25, 2011

I am thinking about preordering with Amazon, but I want to know how much will Gamestop offer for my DSi as a down payment for preorder at their store. If I can trade in my DSi and get the 3DS for $200 and Street Fighter 4 for the difference then I am set for the system.

Quote from: NWR_Lindy

It won't stay sealed, but my pre-order is precarious.  $250 is a lot for me right now.  Without that Director money coming in, it's back to the poorhouse.

What is this "Director money" you speak. I could use it.

FZeroBoyoJanuary 25, 2011


I'm tempted to pick up a 3DS on launch day even if I don't pre-order one. Might be worth it to avoid a Wii situation repeat should it come to that. I've played through Mass Effect 2 once and I thought it was very good. Certainly excited for the third game.

Also, The terrible-games-from-childhood beatdown was hilarious. You guys should do stuff like that more often.

I'm a tool. I placed my pre-order after hearing and agreeing with the RFN banter about how hard it might be to get a 3DS later. But like Greg, I know there is very little for me in the "launch window".

I really want the 3DS right away, if only for the cool factor and show-off factor. But if I don't have a job by mid-March, I will have to cancel my pre-order with Amazon. :-(

I'm considering cancelling my pre-order since the eStore won't be live until May anyways, and none of the launch games are really in the "I care" category.

RachtJanuary 30, 2011

Yeah, I've decided to hold off and wait, too. I'll pick it up once Kid Icarus and OoT are released for it -- whichever comes first.

vuduJanuary 30, 2011

Quote from: NWR_Neal

Quote from: NWR_Lindy

It won't stay sealed, but my pre-order is precarious.  $250 is a lot for me right now.  Without that Director money coming in, it's back to the poorhouse.

What is this "Director money" you speak. I could use it.

You mean to tell me NWR won't be getting a free 3DS for reviewing purposes?  I seem to recall Nintendo sending you a DSi and a DSi XL.

As director, I believe you have first dibs.  ;)

ShayminJanuary 30, 2011

If Episode 103 has taught us anything, it's that any demo hardware will end up in the hands of one J Metts.

vuduJanuary 30, 2011

Except for when Lindy got the DSi and James got the DSi XL.  Director always gets first dibs.

Quote from: vudu

Except for when Lindy got the DSi and James got the DSi XL.  Director always gets first dibs.

I believe Jon was director when he got the DSi, and he put the XL in my hands.

vuduJanuary 31, 2011

Isn't that what I just said?  Directors get first dibs on review consoles.  I think I recall Windy getting the Wii.  Jon got the DSi.  Jon also got the DSi XL but he gave it to James.

oohhboyHong Hang Ho, Staff AlumnusFebruary 01, 2011

Mass Effect has a lot of story (Codex), whether it is good or not, I don't know because I never got around to finishing the game due to how limp the gameplay and levels are. There is nothing wrong with the graphics on the technical level, but there is sod all art direction or inspiration. Oh look, a bunch of random boxes, I guess I have to shoot some people. Oh random height map planet with singular environments to drive around in an oversized golf kart. The gunplay lacks impact, it all feels like your playing laser tag and arbitrary.

But if you are going to play Mass Effect, the only way to play it is to play Femshepard as a "Renegade" and make her looks like Jodie Foster, an angry Jodie Foster.

SundoulosFebruary 04, 2011

I remember renting Whomp' Em once (for whatever reason) and really enjoying it mostly because, as James mentioned in the podcast, it reminded me of a Mega Man game.  The Japanese version of the game was called Saiyuuki World 2, and it didn't really have any of the Native American aesthetic at all; it was loosely based on Journey to the West.  They basically gave the Son Goku's sprite face paint and changed his staff to a spear. 

It's too bad that this was never released on Virtual Console; I'd love to play it again.  The music is fairly decent, too; I keep hoping that TYP will put it on a Radio Trivia episode sooner or later.

ClexYoshiJanuary 03, 2014

I finally found it... this was the first episode of Radio Free Nintendo I listened to. I think I had taken a good year or two off from listening to podcasts or something because I had really felt that Nintendo Voice Chat had lost nearly all of it's charm with the various IGN Nintendo editors taking their exodus   and that asshole who I can't remember his name spikin' the mic and blowing out my goddamned ear drums. X_X;;

I had ended up following a small little blog about the 3DS in preparation for her maiden voyage, and they had happened to link to Neal's video coverage of the launch event and of course the ads for the site and the newscast were plastered all over it. Ultimately, I ended up finding Zach Miller's voice to be a bit dry sounding and I don't think Alex Culafi really clicked for me then either, so I saw you guys had another podcast and... yeah. You guys were interesting enough, but I think the thing that made me stay was James the following week going SO in-depth with Ogre Battle 64 that I had to stay and... well, the rest is history.

'tis been a wild ride, going back at random spots to hit various episodes up. Looking forward to live F-Zero GX, even though I haven't been able to procure a copy, I have been playing F-Zero X a bit here and there on my gamepad, which is a surreal experience to me for some reason.

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