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Messages - Patch

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TalkBack / RE: Meet the Nintendo DS!
« on: May 11, 2004, 02:45:48 AM »
Well guys and gals, it's the real deal. Kent is one of the most venerable gaming journalists out there, and he credits the picture to Nintendo. It's real.


TalkBack / RE:Everybody Go Surfin', Surfin' GBA
« on: February 10, 2004, 12:30:10 AM »
This isn't really anything new... Nintendo had a partnership with Tommy Hilfigger a few years back, with the GBColor I think.

Actually, it feels a little more like a half arsed attempt to bring back their 'cool' image. Maybe if they poured the money spent in partnering with Rip Curl into advertising, they might not be in such a dire position down here.  

TalkBack / RE: Nintendo DS Interview
« on: January 21, 2004, 03:35:53 PM »
That was an interesting interview - her shrouded comments on systems specs make me think that the DS could be potentially redesigned between now and launch.

Even the launch date isn't entirely firm.

Trying to visualize a mock-up is a little tricky. Beth describes the screens as being close enough together to form one large screen if developers wish to use it as such... I wonder exactly how this thing will look. Apparently they'll have to ditch the protective clamshell design.

I just hope they manage to keep dust outta BOTH screens in the manufacturing process.

TalkBack / RE:Platinum & Onyx Dual Color GBA SP Announced
« on: December 18, 2003, 12:56:20 PM »
Hmmm... looks more like someone goofed up a producton run and accidently mixed the two parts. Nice cover, Ninty!

TalkBack / RE:New Nintendo UK General Manager
« on: October 04, 2003, 10:14:52 PM »
It's like trying to patch up a leak by making a bigger hole!

TalkBack / RE:Who Are You?
« on: September 29, 2003, 09:10:24 PM »
My "Inner Gamer" thinks this is pretty lame, actually. Not as bad as the fat guy in a tutu from years back, though.

I still think Nintendo need an agressive, cutting edge image, not this pseudo-intellectual nonsense. I mean, kids want to feel cool about their purchase, like it or not. This is just confusing and goofy.

Time to rethink their advertising strategy for the N5.

TalkBack / RE:NAL Follows America's Lead
« on: September 25, 2003, 04:09:47 AM »
Whilst any price drop is good news, I think it's still too high. At the US to AU Dollar conversion, the price should sit around $169.00.

That said, I guess they need to keep it above the price of the GBA SP ($189.00), so maybe they should scale that back, too.

TalkBack / RE:Animal Crossing Hits Australia Soon
« on: September 15, 2003, 03:19:25 PM »
Ah. Finally.

...Oh dear. It would seem that I cannot purchase this game, as I ALREADY SPENT $125 ON AC AND A FRIGGING ACTION REPLAY. A *YEAR* AGO.

Thanks Nintendo Australia! I hope you all choke on your tongues while you sleep.

Or better yet, I want a cheque for $100 in the mail, please.

To all the UK / PAL gamers: I urge you to ignore Nintendo EU's plea to not import your games from Oz. IMPORT AWAY. Because lord knows how long it will take for a release over there.

*rant over.

TalkBack / RE:e-Reader Unscrapped for Europe
« on: August 20, 2003, 09:47:43 PM »
Hahaha, oh Nintendo you loveable goons. What a hillarious misunderstanding! Stay tuned for more highly unprofessional PR mix-ups! I know I can't wait...

You fucksticks.

They hate Europe. I'm sorry but it's true.

TalkBack / RE:Nintendo Shuns Euro Imports Again
« on: August 03, 2003, 11:15:14 PM »
Nintendo doesn't want Britons to import Advance Wars 2, instead "asking" them to wait the the rest of the year for their version to come out.

When Pokémon Ruby and Sapphire were released in the States on March 17, Nintendo of Europe wasn't all that happy about the relatively high amount of imports finding their way across the Atlantic.  Nintendo issued cease and desist letters to infringing retailers that offered Nintendo's GBA games as imports, and for the most part, the situation was resolved.

However, with Advance Wars 2 just recently released in North America, Nintendo is once again worried about a high amount of imports, that it claims will hurt the official launch of the game, and the sales of retailers who sell the game legitimately.  The UK arm of the company is again "asking" retailers that offer imports to knock it off, or suffer the concequences.

Advance Wars 2 is set for release in Europe in the late fall, where as the US version was released on June 24.  

TalkBack / GameCube Price Drop in Australia
« on: July 23, 2003, 02:27:26 PM »
Well, well, well. Another one bites the proverbial dust, as they say.

Let's add to the 'list'.

Dick Smith
Harvey Norman

Coming Soon:

Toys R Us (They've not advertised a GC product since, well, launch.)
Grace Bros
David Jones

What a mammoth cock-up. And Nintendo have no-one to blame but themselves. I hope they fire their advertising department. All of 'em. And then burn their houses down.

The Gamecube is a wonderous console. Failure in a marketplace that's similar in tastes to the US is shocking. All Nintendo needed to to was mimic US marketing (hold some events, or at least get their product out there, FFS.), but it's all too late now.

These are the final gasping breaths of a beached whale.

Goodnight sweet prince. T'was your parents that killed ye.

TalkBack / Stuff Magazine Announces Stuff Gamer
« on: July 17, 2003, 06:24:48 PM »
"The Nokia N-Gage mobile game deck will be the exclusive sponsor of this separate video gaming magazine..."

Well, that pretty much sums it up. Ick.

Nokia haven't got a clue what they're doing.

TalkBack / Half Price GameCube Games in Australia
« on: July 06, 2003, 02:07:27 PM »
I really wish Nintendo would initiate these price slashes, and not leave it up to the individual retailer.

I mean, once Dick Smith have shifted their stock, that's it, folks. No more GC games for yet another retailer. So let's count this one together...

No Harvey Norman

No Dick Smith

Major reductions at K-Mart

NOAus really need to pull their fingers out.

TalkBack / Viewtiful Joe Sells Out?
« on: July 03, 2003, 03:59:59 PM »
This is splendid news! It's about time Capcom had a new hit on their hands... hopefully the slow sales of thier games in the US won't turn them off releasing other 'left of the middle' concepts.

That's my biggest fear really. Oh how I love my oddball games, and the fact they rarely shift as well as they should usually means that other companies don't want to risk a bit of creativity.

So buy up people, for the good of gaming.

TalkBack / RE: Infogrames becomes Atari
« on: May 07, 2003, 12:32:45 PM »
Hahaha, Rick... I was commenting to a buddy of mine (that's working for the distribution company for the Matrix games here in Oz and New Zealand) that there's no way they're gonna shift 4 million copies.

Dollars to cents there'll be a million or so buried somewhere in New Mexico in a couple years

Or, best case scenario, they'll all become bargain-table games that will be shifted at 10 bucks a pop.

TalkBack / RE: Sega and Sammy Call it Quits
« on: May 07, 2003, 12:27:44 PM »
Anyone else get the impression that Sega's really hard to work with? I mean, a partnership has been on the cards since BEFORE Sega left console-making. If a company is going to partner up, why the hell should it take this long?

TalkBack / E3 2003 Floor Plan Revealed
« on: April 30, 2003, 01:18:28 PM »
Man, something always bothers me about Nintendo's floor space - Sure, they take up the largest area, but instead of filling it with ultimately pointless statuettes, cars and enormous Nintendoesque logos, why don't they fill it with more gaming booths instead?

More games on display, or a well-used statue of Pikachu? I know which one I'd prefer.

TalkBack / Billy Berghammer Retires From Planet
« on: April 18, 2003, 04:43:27 PM »
Wow, the end of an era, really. Billy, as a reader since the humble days of 'HQ', I shed a tear, and salute you on your way out.

You've done more for Nintendo fans all around the globe than Nintendo themselves, in some cases. This site is testament to your abilities as a writer and director, and I really hope the site can live on without you.

You were the glue in the cracks of the PGC. Billy, Thank you for everything, and God bless.






NWR Feedback / The Seamus Interview
« on: April 01, 2003, 01:33:02 PM »
I was just about to post this very topic

Billy, that was utterly fantastic. Seamus is a very charismatic speaker, isn't he? I love that he really went in-depth with the business-side of the industry. He covered the issues, and he did so with real class.

Loved his comments on Nintendo - it was interesting to see that he is very-much committed to fun over quarterly profits. Plus, he really remained pretty impartial.

"I'm a booby-fan!" Hehe.

Great stuff. One for the PGC hall of fame.

TalkBack / Holy CRAP! A New GameCube Color?
« on: March 10, 2003, 07:44:10 PM »

Originally posted by: PGC-Agent Cooper
Sorry, I'm a bit tired after GDC and DICE.  Man, I mess up once, and I get creamed.  

Hehehe sorry, didn't mean to sound critical...

Yeah I know, attending gaming press shows and displays can be such a drag

I love the coverage over the last couple weeks, btw. It's been great!

TalkBack / Holy CRAP! A New GameCube Color?
« on: March 10, 2003, 03:54:48 PM »
Heh. That's chocolatastic.

Oh, and its 'for all intents and purposes', not 'intensive purposes'

Though, a copper-toned or brass-coated GC might be nice.

NWR Feedback / Games Business 101: A Counter-Editorial.
« on: February 28, 2003, 02:25:38 PM »
Thanks for the reply, Rick! Again, this thread isn't a personal attack - not in the least! It just makes for interesting discourse, and is a topic I feel pretty strongly about. Sorry if it came off sounding overtly critical.

Anyway, onto a question first:

Originally posted by: baberg
Patch, since your profile says you're in Australia, I'd like to ask you a question about localization:

How quickly are PS2/Xbox games localized for PAL releases?  Are they released quickly after their NTSC counterparts, or do they also take a long time in coming?  How does the timing compare between consoles?

In most cases, it takes about 3 months for a game to be translated, converted and released in a PAL nation. This is the case for probably 85 percent of the titles, on all formats - GC included. However, my real problem is with how long it takes Nintendo to get their first-party efforts to shelf - anywhere from 6-12 months after the US release, or sometimes not at all, as in the case of Animal Crossing.

Rick mentioned that this extra development time is devoted to code optimization (the process of pefecting the code to run on a machine that is a little different from the machine released in NTSC regions.). Not to sound unappreciative (because I love my games to run at the same speed as US counterparts), but if other companies can push themselves to release PAL games in reasonable condition in half as much time, then I fail to see why Nintendo cannot push a little harder. The real problem is that we PAL gamers get just as excited over the prospect of new Metroid and Zelda, and after 8 months of waiting, and waiting, and waiting, some of the shine gets taken off of the final product. Graphics that were mind-blowing a year ago, tend to look pretty standard by PAL release time. I wouldn't mind not being able to run games at 60Hz, if it means I can be playing a Nintendo new-release while it's still new!

That's my argument for more efficient PAL releases

To Sean: Thanks for replying, firstly. I always welcome (hell, I encourage) a bit of fiery debate! However, you seem to have the wrong impression about my ideas on the issue of Nintendo's money...!

Obviously, I realise that spending is a necessary thing (I'm pretty sure Nintendo don't create games and systems via spontaneous generation ), as did Rick - but (and this is a BIG 'but') the idea that...


....They [Nintendo] cannot (CANNOT) stray from profit-making schemes, and when they make a mistake, they have to work extra hard to rectify it. Nintendo cannot do what Sony and MS do, so why do we keep comparing them? only a half truth. Sure, investing millions into clearly risky territory is a foolish decision. You're right when you say that Nintendo would have their work cut out for them in order to recoup their losses (fiscal and intangible - money and consumer opinion). BUT, the age-old adage applies: "...Nothing ventured, nothing gained.".

Without a small amount of risk, Nintendo would be stuck in a rut, forcing themselves to rely on Mario and Pokemon yet again, to bail them out. People want to see something new, not just a rehash of what is, very basically, the same technology, wrapped in a new plastic shell. "The GC is a dedicated gaming platform, what's wrong with that?" I hear you cry. And truth is, nothing's 'wrong', per se. But look at it from the standpoint of the average consumer, who just dished out a ton of money on the N64 - The GC is just an N64 with pretty graphics (uh-oh, I'm in for it now ) to them. Pretty, but a one-trick-pony.

I need to compare to Sony and MS here, so don't jump all over me!

Enter: Sony's PS2, and the 'DVD player in a console' image. To the average consumer, THIS looks like a big step ahead - a fairly large graphical leap beyond the PS1, plus a tangible, technical boost that people can clearly see the advantages of. Same can be applied to the Xbox.

In a nutshell, the GC is a games machine, cheap with great performance. Unfortunately, people over the age of 18 have been looking through these points (probably because price isn't a big a factor when you're out in the workforce, earning dough), and their gaze focuses on these new-fangled 'all-in-one' packages. Seems like value and flexability for money.

Factor in price of components, and the profits goe down. Fair enough. But if Nintendo applied their skills at finding great technology for cheap, with the public desire for DVD access, they could make a killing. If people want this sort of technology, Nintendo should make it readily available, with their own unique spin on it, for the sake of individuality (something that they obviously value).

Lastly, on secrecy: Yeah, it's definitely self-serving, but I strongly feel that it's a necessary evil. Perhaps releasing screens isn't the answer - just periodical announcements and progress statements. Consumers need to know in order to buy. Actually, this is probably the best argument yet for Nintendo to support Internet sites a little more

Thanks guys. Rick: just to make it crystal clear, I think you're an excellent writer with a brilliant understanding of the industry, and again, none of this is a personal attack. Just a differing view. Keep your editorials coming, they really are an excellent read.

Any more thoughts are welcome!  

NWR Feedback / Games Business 101: A Counter-Editorial.
« on: February 28, 2003, 02:33:06 AM »
First of all, I just want to make this clear: My intentions aren't to slander Rick's hard work, tell Nintendo how to do their jobs, nor to spray some controversy around. But there's two sides to every story, and I strongly feel that some of what was mentioned in here is very-much open to debate.

Let's begin with this:

While gamers like to think that every company wants to have the most market share and be “Number One”, there’s little point in doing that if it costs you money.

Fact is, it does cost money to make money. Granted, this is taken from what is practically an introductory paragraph, but this entire point conflicts with some of the latter business 'suggestions':


To “win” in the future, Nintendo would need to focus on the next generation of consoles, and meeting or beating Sony and Microsoft to market.


Nintendo will need to make sure they get great performance at a good cost, but not be afraid to compete at the same price point.


While there are many consumers that will pass up a Nintendo console in favor of a “do-it-all” box, Nintendo isn’t likely to win those consumers anyway.

So what we have here is the suggestion that Nintendo need to launch first, with similar but competitive performance, and minus 'set-top-box' features - because hey, clearly no-one will go for that frivolity... The end result, in theory, would be Nintendo regaining some ground in the market place.

In reality however, research and development of a new console takes hundreds of millions of dollars, and years of careful planning. For reference-sake, Sony is spending something upwards of $US 250 million developing a new processor, let alone DVD componentry, and whatever else they decide to put into their system. Moreover, they announced their intentions last year.

For Nintendo to 'get ahead' so to speak, they would need to follow suit - Invest money in a new chip, get through all the R and D formalities, design and manufacture the console itself, AND have the greatest launch title (

Nintendo needs to remember what got the Nintendo 64 all the cheap pre-launch press … and that is an absolutely stunning launch title.
) ready to ship well before Sony or MS. The sooner you want something to launch, the more it's going to cost. The sooner you launch with this costly technology, the sooner it becomes a) obsolete, b) the new high watermark that drives the competition to excel beyond, and c) will forever be compared with and used as a measuring stick, in terms of graphics.

As you can see, there are serious problems associated with rushing to the market. Look at the Sega Saturn's launch in the US, a near-disaster of (IMO, excellent) 2D technology, dressed up in weak 3D abilities, pushed out the door to get the jump on the mysterious 'PlayStation' and its polygon-pushing claims.

As for incorporating DVD functionality into the Nintendo-equation, it was said that certainly some sales will be forfeit, if it isn't included. Assumedly, removing DVD functionality lowers the cost a little, but the people have spoken. Multiple functions shift consoles. This is all the rationale Nintendo need to include this in their system. As was said, it cost them sales.

This brings me to a new point: Market trends.

The last 3 years have seen some clear shifts in consumer focus - gamers are getting older on average, and want mature-themed games. This was rightly pointed out in the Editorial, and I completely agree. But, as sales show, people also prefer a little flexibility in their systems. Hence, DVD and broadband functions are serious sales points. Nintendo probably should examine this generations' market trends, and, instead of bucking them, go with the mainstream.

The 'third party developer' issue is always a hotly debated issue. To say that

...third-party games rarely move hardware units, and it’s nearly impossible to predict any impact a single third-party title might have on sales of other games...
is entirely incorrect.

There are certain third party properties that are guaranteed sales - these are winning titles and series with a strong fan base and generally a certain amount of heritage that comes with the developer. The past has proven these games to be winners. Squaresoft/Enix's RPGs, Capcom's survival-horror games and 2D fighters, Namco's fighters, EA's 'Sim...' games, Konami's Castlevania and Metal Gear games, UbiSoft's tactical shooters, the list goes on and on. These companies consistently have top-selling titles.

Can it seriously be said that Nintendo can afford not to throw a little 'goodwill' towards these companies? Again, market trends speak louder than any amount of speculation. Third party games DO sell systems. Absolutely.

Lets move onto Internet fan sites.


Finally, Nintendo needs to leverage the Internet much more than it has been, and not just for online gaming. The Internet is a great advertising medium, especially after the latest Internet advertising crash. It’s much cheaper than just about any other medium now. More than that, Nintendo needs to use websites like this one more to their advantage.

Fair enough, the 'net is a cheap place to propagate some publicity. However, Nintendo have their own Internet gurus to create flashy adverti-sites. Think Animal Crossing, Zelda, Metroid, Mario and Smash Bros. The argument that is posed is reasonable enough, but think about the situation rationally.

Fan sites are generally created by fans (except for the 'big-business' examples pointed out in the editorial). If Nintendo suddenly decide to lend a helping hand (ala, giving the Webmasters free consoles, all-expenses-paid tours of NOA, a shiny, new computer etc.), there could be serious repercussions. Any generosity on the part of Nintendo could be considered 'cash-for-comments'-style bribery. And it wouldn't be the website that looks bad in the eyes of the media, that's for sure. I'm not saying that Nintendo shouldn't recognize, or even have regular correspondence with websites, but what more can you reasonably ask for? A fan site is still a fan site, not a NOA internally created site.

A few final issues to ponder.

There is one major point that wasn't really touched upon, I felt, and that is the PAL marketplace and it's effects on Nintendo's sales.

Europe and the Asia-Pacific region are big markets. Unfortunately, they are also neglected. Poor sales have dampened Nintendo in the eyes of the Australian marketplace, and European sales are now flagging behind MS. I'm not going to offer a definite solution, but here's the problem, anyway.

Localization. ...Of games, of systems, of hardware-specific requirements.

Without going into too much detail, Nintendo are notorious for how long their games take to be translated and adjusted for a PAL release. This is fact, not opinion. It just takes far too long for a title to hit the shelves in a PAL nation. 6-8 months is a ridiculously long time, no matter how good the title. And it can't be blamed on text translation, either. Third party titles generally launch 3 months or less, post-NTSC release. Clearly, if they can do it, so can Nintendo. They really, really need to look at their foreign release system. A lack of timely games is strangling the Gamecube in these regions.

Whilst not directly related, Nintendo continue to hold a policy of strict secrecy, for both games and hardware. They cannot continue to fall back on the notion that Sony MS, and game developers are out to steal their ideas. This must change. If a major move is to be made in the marketplace, then steady hype and product information is vital.

How can a consumer make an educated buying decision, if they don't have the information? Why should we be forced into scouring fan sites for teensy trickles of information and speculation? Fact is, we shouldn't. Moreover, the average consumerwouldn't.

In the end, no-one can shift Nintendo's plans for the future of gaming, but the men and women at NOJ and NOA. Regardless of their position in the market, there will still be loyal fans, dissenting ex-fans, and the average joe-consumer to mix things up, sales wise. We can hope that Editorials such as these have some impact, how ever minor, but in the end, it's Nintendo. ('Nintendo' translated, means 'In God's hands'.)

Thanks to Rick for fuelling my desire-- no, need to write this stuff down.  

TalkBack / Platinum SP Warning
« on: February 20, 2003, 11:39:27 PM »

Originally posted by: PGC-Agent Cooper
You'd think Nintendo would figure this out. Kids put these IN POCKETS WITH CRAP IN IT AND DON'T THINK TWICE. AND SO DO I. Jesus. It just sucks.
Sorry, I didn't know I had to hold it in a freakin' gravity free environment.

I can't speak for everyone, but when I dish out money for a product (be it a console, a car, a football), I expect a certain level of durability. Easily scratched paint is a problem. It means that the SP wasn't thoroughly tested for durability, either. This whole issue has far-reaching implications.

I wonder how long it will be until the first reports of 'squeaky hinges' surface. Or a burnt-out frontlight.

Add to this a lack of headphone socket (solely for the sake of money-spinning), and high price-points in PAL territories. It all makes for unsatisfied consumers, and a potentially lessened shelf-life. I mean, if your unit is only 12 hours old and is already scratched up from very minimal carriage, how on earth will it last three years?

TalkBack / Platinum SP Warning
« on: February 20, 2003, 07:36:38 PM »

Originally posted by: Mojo
No offense, but I'm not totally buying this. I'm not saying you're making it up, by any means, but I find it odd that the scratches are isolated to the lower (or upper -- whatever) portion of the SP. Also, to me it looks like the kind of scratch like something pointy rubbed againsts it, like keys or something of that sort. Not to lake a relativaly flat GB cartridge.

I think, my fellow gamer, that the point of the article isn't to prove the amazing cutting abilities of a GBA cart, or keys, or cat claws.

No, the real issue here is that the paint scratches so easily. This is the heart of the issue. The rest are just details.

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