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Episode 474: The Day the Music Was Abandoned

by James Jones, Jonathan Metts, and Guillaume Veillette - May 1, 2016, 9:41 pm PDT
Total comments: 21

Nintendo's uninspiring financial briefing didn't deter half of team RFN from their responsibilities.

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Nintendo had their annual investors' briefing this week, and with it came a run of news that dramatically reset expectations for the next year. No NX at E3. Nothing but Zelda at E3. No Zelda (or NX) until March 2017. Fire Emblem and Animal Crossing going mobile. Corporate oversight is tweaked. It would be easy to compare this to the infamous past episode The Day the Music Died, and we did. However, not all of our dedicated hosts were nearly so dedicated as to do their duty in the face of such harrowing news. Greg skipped off to watch the NFL Draft (an annual holiday in England). Meanwhile, Jon rededicated himself to the pursuit of fraternity. James and Gui were forced to let former host Jonny Metts back in the house, putting aside long-simmering feelings of betrayal in order to best deliver you the insight you expect from this show. The entire first segment tries to make sense of all the news, candy-coating everything with some positive conversation on Nintendo's latest Humble Bundle.

The news really turned the show on its head this week, because after the break is New Business. Jonny finally gets to talk Xenoblade Chronicles X with James and Gui. Sadly, it sounds like he intends to give up the game before saving humanity; it's an incredibly selfish attitude to take. He then offers some suggestions for what his former colleagues should be playing. Guillaume flies solo with his thoughts on Star Fox Zero. He's had more time to find his inner fox than Greg had last week, so his positive impressions are based on a larger cross-section of the game. James is still on Bravely Second, but even 30+ hours in he's still not sure why anyone would want to make a direct sequel to a JRPG. He also misses Ringabell. Who wouldn't?

It's time for our Castlevania RetroActive. The voting has closed, and the RFN listeners have sided with team Little Girl: our next game is Castlevania: Rondo of Blood. You can get it on the Wii Virtual Console. We will be doing our RetroActive segment sometime before E3. The comment thread is now open.

Have a question, suggestion, feedback, end music suggestion, or press release about nonsense we'd never care about? You can send it directly to our inbox. We've already received quite a bit of email about the news of the last week, but we're always looking for different perspectives, so get on sending it our way!

This episode was edited by Guillaume Veillette. The "Men of Leisure" theme song was produced exclusively for Radio Free Nintendo by Perry Burkum. Hear more at Bluffs Custom Music.

This episode's ending music is Return to Corneria from Star Fox Zero. All rights reserved by Nintendo.

Talkback

ClexYoshiMay 02, 2016

oh jeez, 'dat title.

Time to see what sort of circus the talkback thread becomes.

Also, fuck you Gui I hope Freedom planet shows more of it's treasure heritage and other 16 to 32 bit era heritage and that you play the game on classic mode because I don't wanna hear Gui bitch about a story that's purposefully paying homage to Sonic Adventure style storytelling and is 100% OPTIONAL BECAUSE THE DEV KNEW THAT SORT OF THING WASN'T FOR EVERYONE AND IT SHOULDN'T RUIN AN EXCELENT GAME FOR PRETENTIOUS PRICKS WHO COME IN WITH A BAD EXPECTATION.



The two that got remade for DS were Shadow Dragon, which is a remake of Fire Emblem 1, which has a title that dranslates to the Dark Dragon and the Sword of Light or some nonsense. The OTHER DS Remake is of Fire Emblem 3: Mystery of the Emblem, which on SNES was ALSO a remake of the NES Fire Emblem, but with a new senario appended to it as the 'second half' of the original Fire Emblem. New Mystery of the Emblem is a remake of the new content from Mystery of the EMblem, but with a new player made character and a bunch of other bells and whistles. SO! Essentially what Intelligent Systems did on the DS for Fire Emblem was remake Mystery of the Emblem, but split it into two seperate packages. Also, New Mystery of the Emblem never came out in the US. probbly because SHadow Dragon did so terribly. Shadow Dragon, by the way, is easily the worst of the Fire Emblems that got localized in my opinion. they use these REALLY ugly pre-rendered models for the battles while trying to ape the look of the GBA games, and while they did add in the weapon Triangle retroactivley to these games. the mechanics they added I feel were mostly bad, and they didn't add some of the stuff I found most engaging about FE, so... there. that's my Fire Emblem Diatribe for the day.



On Bravely Second: the thing that honest-to-goodness surprises me about Bravely Second in particular is that Bravely Default is a game that adheres to Everett's interpretation of quantum mechanics. it's about a god sending a wicked fairy through the multiverse so he can link all versions of Luxendarc together to then beat the guiness book of world record's planet-kebab eating contest. I think if I had to do a sequel to that, I'd have used one of the NUMEROUS worlds where the original heroes fought through, got killed by Airy when the heroes linked the worlds, and you look at the consiquences of the more simple storyplot first, before THEN having the heroes from the previous game choose YOUR luxendarc to be the one they decide to live in after Oruboros' destruction.

fred13May 02, 2016

I bought the humble bundle. I was driving when I heard the part of the podcast where they gave out the URL for doing the copy and paste of the codes. Can one of you fellow listeners clue me in?
Thanks,


P.S. Star Fox Zero is amazing!

SorenMay 02, 2016

Great Star Fox discussion with Dr. Metts. I am intrigued whether an auto-pilot feature would have improved the controls. The constant back and forth between screens can be a bit too much.

DONKHATANT123 KongMay 02, 2016

It took a humble bundle for me to realise it but Freedom Planet is great. It's pretty funny actually; someone walked into the living room and thought I was playing Sonic.

It's strange when discussing Xenoblade, like normally 60 hours for one game sounds huge but for Xenoblade when I hear 60 hours I think it's clear that they're rushing the game and not stopping to smell the roses. I know the "give it a little more time" or "give it 40 more hours" is joked about on the show but I do think especially for Xenoblade the more you rush it the less invested you are and the less fun it is. How cool the skells are though can't be understated, I can't think of another single game that absolutely nails both mechs and on foot activity.

KobeskillzMay 02, 2016

This is one of those it is what it is I guess.

I mean if they aren’t ready then they aren’t ready and what can we do about it.

People always complained about the Wii U and 3DS launch (Street Fighter 3D was a good port) yet complain when Nintendo pushes back their system top make sure we have good launch titles and a good stream of titles after launch. For Nintendo to miss the holiday you know it came which a lot of thought and debating and I feel ultimately they did what was best and not fall into the same launch traps as before.

The Wii U and 3DS launched and weren’t ready. The software needed upgrading and while the Wii U launch line up was actually solid it had long stretches of nothing.

Oh and James I played the crap out of Street Fighter on 3DS. Bad port my ass. Get Gud.

Quote from: ClexYoshi

Also, **** you Gui I hope Freedom planet shows more of it's treasure heritage and other 16 to 32 bit era heritage and that you play the game on classic mode because I don't wanna hear Gui bitch about a story that's purposefully paying homage to Sonic Adventure style storytelling and is 100% OPTIONAL BECAUSE THE DEV KNEW THAT SORT OF THING WASN'T FOR EVERYONE AND IT SHOULDN'T RUIN AN EXCELENT GAME FOR PRETENTIOUS PRICKS WHO COME IN WITH A BAD EXPECTATION.

Haha, I forget what I said. Is this because of "for being based on bad games"? Mostly it's James who picked that ball and ran with it!


@fred13


https://ec.nintendo.com/redeem#/
https://eshop.nintendo.net/redeem#/

ClexYoshiMay 02, 2016

Quote from: Pandareus

Quote from: ClexYoshi

Also, **** you Gui I hope Freedom planet shows more of it's treasure heritage and other 16 to 32 bit era heritage and that you play the game on classic mode because I don't wanna hear Gui bitch about a story that's purposefully paying homage to Sonic Adventure style storytelling and is 100% OPTIONAL BECAUSE THE DEV KNEW THAT SORT OF THING WASN'T FOR EVERYONE AND IT SHOULDN'T RUIN AN EXCELENT GAME FOR PRETENTIOUS PRICKS WHO COME IN WITH A BAD EXPECTATION.

Haha, I forget what I said. Is this because of "for being based on bad games"? Mostly it's James who picked that ball and ran with it!

I meant it all in jest, but I can see you REALLY railing on what is essentially a throw-away feature in this game that everyone else seems to use as their excuse to not elevate Freedom Planet to the Nigh-shovel Knight status it deserves.

That, and the "oh, it's sonic because characters run through loops and bounce off springs" is a tad bit close to "Oh, it's Mega Man because the hero is blue and you go to themed stages that you pick the order you go in". reductive generalizations~!

But someone else said that! I just said it looked good and was based on Sonic, which is true!


And don't worry, I always skip story if I don't care for it.

pokepal148May 02, 2016

What, no corrections segment over all the cheap shots the gang took at you over the past year?

You know Johnny, you used to be so much fun but, I don't know man.

KobeskillzMay 02, 2016

In Xenoblade when you get experience on the left side you get the # of experience too and then it's easy math. So if you're getting 500 experience from one enemy and 100 from another and you need 2000 experience to level up which it tells you then its easy.


Nothing hard about that.


So if you look at the status that tells you how many exp to the next level and you pay attention to how much exp you get from ea enemy then its common sense to say ok i'm not wasting my time grinding with this guy the exp is too low.


when you find a monster that gives you high exp just kill it a few times and you'll grow super fast. The alligators in the lake from the snow world got me about 15 levels in about an hour. I went from 40 to 55 really really fast.


Every RPG has spots where you can grind faster so not sure whats different about this one. People play 300 of monster hunter or the witcher but this game gets flack for its time. Not sure why.

fred13May 02, 2016
LemonadeMay 02, 2016

Its nice to hear Gui ended up loving StarFox Zero. I bought the game, but I have very little experience with the series. I think I am slowly getting used to the controls, but its the first person view that I have the most trouble with. Its ok shooting straight ahead, looking around with the gamepad doesnt feel right.

EnnerMay 02, 2016

That cold open is chilling.


Remembering Jonathan tastes over various games, it's not surprising to hear that he is planing to end his time on Mira before finding the Lifehold. Xenoblade Chronicles X is not kind to those who want to do things quickly, and offers no comfort to those uninterested in juggling multiple objectives and systems. Top it off with a primary narrative that is very thing and ancillary narratives that don't become interesting until deep in the Normal Mission progression, and you have a tough pill for those that fell in love with Xenoblade Chronicle's directed journey.


As for the big Nintendo new doom fall, I understand. Obviously I'm supremely disappointed. But from the dismal sales of the Wii U, the precarious position of the NX, and other things, I can see why Nintendo decided to pursue this course. Abandoning the Wii U in such a manner (as far as we see) is a horrible decision. It is a terrible gamble to have another miserable end to a Nintendo home console in the hopes of that being outweighed by the dream of a new Nintendo home console. Or maybe I could be overestimating how strong of a grudge spurned fans can hold across the overall potential audience for the NX.

xcwarriorMay 06, 2016

Well that was something. Just finished listening. Thanks for the painful reminder why it was time for Dr. Metts to get off the show. I really do not need to hear again about how video games are wasting his time and he just wants to be done with them about 30 minutes after starting them.

You would say XCX was fun, but you sure didn't like to go into detail on how it is. But the parts that make you hate the game with every grain of your existence? Yep, you'll let us know in painstakingly detail about those elements.

Metts, I'm serious when I say this, stop playing video games. I don't think they bring you enjoyment anymore. Or maybe your job is sucking your soul out. But you are just a negative Nancy and it was really hard to get through that episode.

On the bright side, you guys were actually pretty mellow on the dire Nintendo investor's meeting. So glad you guys at least didn't scream end of the world there.

ClexYoshiMay 06, 2016

I think the good doctor is an avid listener of the show and the idea of going over the territory all the podcast regulars have over and over on Xenoblade X is a redundancy. He explained that the fun he had was in the freeedom of exploration, and that he was playing to the skell flight system so he could get that last injection of freedom.

I'm actually on his side that quite a few of the systems in play feel VERY arcane in their structure, and the text is tiiiiiiiiiiiiiny! I stopped reading quest line dialogue because the font is so friggin' puny that it'd give me headaches. my investment in the whole experience faded, especially after the abstraction that occurs when you start getting into Skells. while not exactly the same, I feel Johnathan Metts did an amicable job of vocalizing issues I personally had with the game.

Johnny, please keep playing games. your tastes may have shifted, but your input is still ever valuable.

ejamerMay 07, 2016

Quote from: xcwarrior

...

Meh... I liked hearing his opinions and (even though I don't agree with all of them) feel they are valid enough.
One of the reasons I really like NWR is because it's not incessantly positive like many other fan sites out there. We are all adults, and able to make up our own opinions. Having someone who I feel is knowledgeable about and experience with games hold different views doesn't hurt.

SteefosaurusMay 09, 2016

Pretty recent listener here so haven't heard many episodes with Dr. Metts on yet, but I found myself agreeing with him. Xenoblade really is impossible to read without a decent monitor and as someone with less and less time to play games I definitely concur that games are hella long. I'd much prefer a short 1-5 hour focused experience that can be finished in one night/sitting than something massive that'll take weeks.


But I accept I'm probably in the minority there, given the popularity of massive open world & endless multiplayer games.

ClexYoshiMay 09, 2016

Quote from: Steefosaurus

Pretty recent listener here so haven't heard many episodes with Dr. Metts on yet, but I found myself agreeing with him. Xenoblade really is impossible to read without a decent monitor and as someone with less and less time to play games I definitely concur that games are hella long. I'd much prefer a short 1-5 hour focused experience that can be finished in one night/sitting than something massive that'll take weeks.


But I accept I'm probably in the minority there, given the popularity of massive open world & endless multiplayer games.

Johnny is incredible and I'd highly suggest hitting up some older episodes. there's a thread on NeoGAF that has some best of episodes~!

lolmonadeMay 09, 2016

Quote from: xcwarrior

Well that was something. Just finished listening. Thanks for the painful reminder why it was time for Dr. Metts to get off the show. I really do not need to hear again about how video games are wasting his time and he just wants to be done with them about 30 minutes after starting them.

You would say XCX was fun, but you sure didn't like to go into detail on how it is. But the parts that make you hate the game with every grain of your existence? Yep, you'll let us know in painstakingly detail about those elements.

Metts, I'm serious when I say this, stop playing video games. I don't think they bring you enjoyment anymore. Or maybe your job is sucking your soul out. But you are just a negative Nancy and it was really hard to get through that episode.

On the bright side, you guys were actually pretty mellow on the dire Nintendo investor's meeting. So glad you guys at least didn't scream end of the world there.

I'm afraid i'm going to sound condescending here (which i'm not trying to be, I promise!), but how old are you?  Do you have full-time work?  A wife or children?  Because you get to points in your life with those where any spare time you can devote to gaming is precious, and when you're at those points, you get a lot more sensitive to bloat in games that doesn't seem to do anything but pad the time it takes to progress in it. 


Me personally, up until my early 20s, I had ample time every night to dive deep into a game, but 8-10 years later with a wife & children, and i'm lucky to get an hour in every night or so.  A bit hard to take a big bite into Xenoblade with that kind of schedule and be satisfied if you find that you didn't make much progress with the time you had. 


My game interests don't usually align with Jonny, but I can appreciate hearing someone struggle to get out of it what someone like James is able to with a seemingly larger abundance of gaming time. 

Evan_BMay 09, 2016

Quote from: xcwarrior

...

There are types of video games for everyone. I loved Xenoblade Chronicles, and I really loved its sequel, too, but they're completely different types of games, with story having a greater emphasis in the original. If you don't know what you're getting into (and I'm not sure many of us did), XCX can be extremely difficult to play because of how minuscule progression comes to you- the moments where it does are lovely and awesome, but they are dispersed through a MASSIVE listing of tedious, uninteresting quest lines, some of which you have to seek out. It is not a game for everyone and may not even be an RPG for those fond of the genre. Cut him some slack.

Quote from: lolmonade

My game interests don't usually align with Jonny, but I can appreciate hearing someone struggle to get out of it what someone like James is able to with a seemingly larger abundance of gaming time.

You had me till the last line.


I will say, I played XCX on my winter vacation. I had two weeks off and that made a big difference. It would have taken me a lot longer if I had been working 50+ a week an doing the show. However, I was playing it prior to my vacation and still enjoying it. I think for me the exploration was the big get for XC so XCX doubles down on that. The story is dumb in the right ways, but it isn't going to join the highs of the video game canon. That's rarefied air reserved for literary masterpieces like Chrono Cross, Final Fantasy VIII, and Tales of Symphonia: Dawn of the New World.

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