User Profile



Tue 16th Feb 2010

Recent Comments



PhoenixRising commented on Nintendo Download: 26th March 2010 (Europe):

Wow, I don't know which has more vaseline-o-vision. Orge Battle 64 or Diner Dash...

I was going to support Shinen' by buying Art of Balance but I bought the truly dissapointing Military Madness: Nectaris last week and so have reverted back to my stance that Wiiware still sucks despite the glowing reviews this site doles out.



PhoenixRising commented on Review: Red Steel 2 (Wii):

I love how people slam the first game as terrible. Thing is, I playing through the first game no problem and outside of the slow camera when gun-fighting there really wasn't much of a problem with the game.



PhoenixRising commented on Shin'en Introduce Jett Rocket for WiiWare:

@MrMartinLee: You're probably right there. I'm getting quite excited about this one. In a recent review, Shinen said they're using procedural textures generated in real time for grass and other materials which saves on a hell of a lot of storage. Oh, and the game is planned to be running at 60fps!

Despite my reservations on Art of Balance I'll be buying it in order to support Shinen'. By the sounds of things they've got another project under wraps for Wiiware too.



PhoenixRising commented on Review: Mega Man 10 (WiiWare):

andol123 wrote: "Am I the only one who still hasn't managed to finish a single boss in MM9? It's the only MM game I've ever played and I don't feel like buying another one yet."

I've completed three bosses in MM9, six in MM2 and two in MM1 so you're not the only one who struggles. Maybe you'd be better off with MM10 and its easy mode to give you a better footing into the series (or even MM2 which is considerably easier than MM1 and MM9 and you're only forking out half the price)



PhoenixRising commented on Review: Mega Man 10 (WiiWare):

@lz2010: Glad you're enjoying it.

"There might not be a lot of fancy parallax scrolling or other special effects seen in more modern titles, but you can't deny the game's classic visual presentation and how good it looks, even in today's world of high-res 3D graphics."

I think it looks like crap, just as with Mega Man 9. But hey ho, whatever floats your boat ...

You should have phrased it as ""There might not be a lot of fancy parallax scrolling or other special effects seen in anything more advanced than in your bog-standard NES title, but you can't deny the game's classic visual presentation and how good it looks for a NES game."



PhoenixRising commented on Dreambox Games Unveils its Debut Title:

Hmm... the art direction looks nice in a Python-esque sort of way. Do the dangers involve being crushed by falling feet or is that just a fate left to the developers for releasing a pile of soul-less screen shots? Whatever - no doubt it'll be craptastically good so I'm going to say 7/10 just for the hell of it.



PhoenixRising commented on Nintendo Download: 26th February 2010 (Europe):

Pretty poor week all in all:
Castlevania on Wiiware- not that great
Reel Fishiing - average at best.
iPhone port with added benefits of being really expensive - not that great.
No VC - absolutely expected, yet still truly disappointing.
Knowing Nintendo haven't got a clue - priceless.

Oh well, at least it saves on the pennies. I only expect the VC to continue to suffer, considering the line-up of "AAA" titles that are coming this year (no, I'm not talking about the lack-lustre Wiiware stuff)



PhoenixRising commented on WiiWare Market Grows to Nearly $60M USD in 2009:

Yeah, that's another thing that sucks about the VC. Ratings. Microsoft have gone a completely different route with their new arcade application in that only the application itself is ESRB rated - not the individual games. It only needs to get re-rated when a higher rated game is added, making the process of adding new games to the service much quicker. Proves once again that Nintendo failed to properly think out what they were doing (outside of catering for casual gamers) I'd use the adage "Only fools rush in where angels fear to tread" but y'know - Nintendo can do no wrong... (and all that crap)

By the way, the title of the article is mis-leading. Initially I thought it just related to the US with the $60m but it counts for the entire Western market (Europe and Australia included) Might want to change it so people don't get their hopes up too much, considering the total number of Wiis sold in that market alone - nearly 58 million - equates to $1 per sale. That's either a damning indictment of Nintendo's failure to encourage people to go online, or it's perfect reflection of how poor most Wiiware really is (and how badly Nintendo has treated the VC service and community)



PhoenixRising commented on WiiWare Market Grows to Nearly $60M USD in 2009:

Wiiware is improving? How? By offering countless generic puzzle games to appeal to the casual crowd, remakes of VC titles and a plethora of truly over-rated Flash remakes. That's how. Like I've said so many times before, Wiiware really isn't that good outside of a dozen or so titles, whereas the VC largely exhumes quality even if it lacks huge amounts of games that most of us 'less modern' gamers want to play again.

I saw some figures for 2008 and the VC was stomping all over Wiiware which makes me question whether a similar release schedule in 2009 wouldn't have made a complete laughing stock of the Wiiware service. Nintendo obviously decided to cut back on the VC releases to give Wiiware a chance, being a case of "Wait, we've now got three competing DL gaming services for a large proportion of our Nintendo gamers - one has to go!"

Now I'd like to see the VC make a return to form so I can start downloading good games on a regular basis rather than once every couple of months. Maybe Nintendo will come up with the goods and introduce a VC service for the DSi - that way I'll buy one and have four competing services to spread my money over. Nice work Nintendo!



PhoenixRising commented on Super Meat Boy Coming to Xbox Live Arcade:

Truth be told I hated the Flash game so I won't be buying this on Wiiware. People buy more games on XBLA so I can see the reasoning, seeing as it's not exactly a title with a creditable following. It'll need a platform that appeals to people who are a little more frivolous with cash and are less wary of crap games that gain some unexplainable 'credo' - just like so many unremarkable Flash games and animations before it.

I say let it die before it hits our service.



PhoenixRising commented on Rage of the Gladiator - Amit the Snake Charmer...:

I'm sure if you guys are up for this game a few niggling gameplay issues won't stop you. It does look like it'll be a blast to play although I hope the music isn't the same all the way through 'cause I can see me reaching for the mute button on my TV remote very quickly.



PhoenixRising commented on Nintendo Download: 19th February 2010 (Europe):

Not a bad week if you like the new Monkey Island games or Ace Attorney but for me it's a no go. Shame about the VC but surely people still have plenty to play if they downloaded Sonic & Knuckles last week.

No Mario Kart is a downer and the same goes for either version of Master Blaster. Looking forward to the new Military Madness though, will be replaying the TG game this week in preparation.



PhoenixRising commented on Talking Point: Does Nintendo Need to Exercise ...:

I think The Seal of Quality meant something between the launch of the N64 and for the large portion of the Gamecube.'s life. Both systems struggled against their competitors and as such were the focus of smaller but highly dedicated (and very talented) teams which produced some of gamings greatest moments. Why just use it to prove the quality of the media?

There is no way anyone can guarantee that any media is flawless (even back then it was a ridiculous claim) so that doesn't make sense. Even if a cartridge or disc works at testing there's nothing to ensure it won't get damaged outside a controlled environment. Nintendo might have claimed that was the purpose but subconsciously which sounds better? A big sticker that says "this will work" or a big sticker that says "this is going to be the best game you've played in a long time" A sensible marketing strategy would suggest the latter. It's pretty damned obvious that no-one will buy your games if the media is consistently faulty so I'd say there was more than a little lateral thinking went into that idea.

As 'core' gaming popularity exploded within the NES and SNES era there simply wasn't enough resources to ensure game quality and now the market has once again exploded for Nintendo, there once again isn't the resources or hindsight to bring developers into focus. As far as they're concerned it's a mass market that will absorb all kinds of waffle as long as the games vaguely resemble something familiar to grandpa Jo, little Johnny or mummy dearest. Outside of well known franchises (like Monopoly, Tetris or Uno) who's to say an untested idea won't work?

Nintendo have been very clever in focusing their games around peripherals this gen. In fact without them, they'd be dead in the water. The Wiimote was a stroke of genius in that it looked like a remote and people could point it at the screen or swing it to roll or hit a ball. Likewise, the balance board combined with Wii Fit appealed to a whole lot of people who neither had the time or inclination to go out and walk. Hell, even the Wii-wheel worked well for Mario Kart Wii and has probably proven to be the most un-celebrated success. I'm a 'core' gamer and I bought two and I've played through Mario Kart at least twice (once with the wheel) How many 'core' gamers bought a wheel to do just that? I'm guessing quite a lot.

The trouble is is that while Nintedo have maintained a sense of quality by being first to bring out games that make good use of the peripherals, once the market releases one or two games for them, everything else (even it they use the peripherals heavily) starts to look old-hat and gimmicky. Developers seem to have picked up on that fairly early into the Wii's life and so instead of focusing on developing for peripherals, they've worked around them.

The result is the large proportion of the Wii's gaming populous are getting tired of having few titles that make use of the large pile of plastic building in their houses. Something even a slew of carnival / party / puzzle games can't resolve for long and it's an issue that's hit other peripheral heavy games like Rock Band and Dance Revolution. You'd think that MotionPlus might help (please, don't even utter Vitality Sensor) but a lot of people are wary, taking into account the total number of titles which (or will) make use of it it really doesn't seem a good investment - particularly when it's driving up the cost of controllers to almost ridiculous prices.

I won't go into the Wii 'core' games scene much because frankly, there isn't one. Yes there are a few (and by a few I mean a just over a dozen) good games out there but outside of first party titles there's been little that really stands out. In fact, the glut of half-decent original games seemed to arrive during the first year of the Wii's launch after which we've been treated to the odd good port, Nintendo's sequelitis and the rare gem like Little Kings Story and err... that game.

If there's one area Nintendo could focus on with quality assurance it's Wiiware. The service is still relatively young and given the necessary care and attention could be the core gamer's saviour, but a lot of things need to change.

Firstly, the size restrictions need to go. Despite criticism for the cost of the game and its DLC, I commend Square for releasing Space Invaders Get Even, it actually felt like someone wanted to make a game bigger than the rest. 2D gaming seems to have had a resurgence but even then, how many 2D platformers will people palette before a general malaise sets in like we've seen with puzzle games on the service. There are lots of other genres that are simply too restricted by the size limitations (and sales requirements) to produce recognisably good alternatives on the service. Nintendo need to allow DLC to be streamed from the SD card even if they won't allow games to play direct from SD.

Secondly, Nintendo need to encourage developers to go cold-turkey on puzzle games. There's simply too many of them and quite frankly most have short lived appeal. For me even the 'good ones' are starting to loose appeal before they've even hit the shores. I just don't want any more - the puzzle genre is hitting saturation level.

Thirdly, Nintendo need to re-structure their pricing plan. People look at games on XBLA and Apple's store and see prices amounting to $2 or $3 as opposed to Nintendo's $5 minimum and its a turn-off. Before the Apple store arrived, Wiiware could survive because - hell, we didn't mind paying a premium. But it's becoming more and more apparent that people don't have to pay a premium to enjoy a couple of hour's worth of entertainment and that's what a lot of Wiiware games offer.

Fourth, Nintendo need to re-design that god-awful Shopping Channel and integrate it with the Nintendo Channel as one so they can advertise games properly. I'd love to go to the shopping channel and be greeted with a video of the weeks releases and at a click of a button havethe ability to view information and download the game from one page without switching from one app. to the other.

Finally, and on a related note. Nintendo need to advertise their products using WiiConnect24 and the messaging system. The flashing blue light is like a giant diamond - it draws people in like crazy - yet Nintendo simply refuse to make use of messaging. I opted in to commercial messages from the Nintendo Channel expecting to a least seem something once a month. What have I had? Nothing. Nintendo need to redesign the messaging system to that they can provide web-based content directly - not through another channel, but directly - and get a message out to people every weeks letting them know what they can buy.

Of course, that's not the only thing they need to improve online but that's a different story...



PhoenixRising commented on Review: Art of Balance (WiiWare):

You're missing my point. I won't play the game because it's yet another generic puzzler. My overall criticism was over the scoring of games, not just by Nintendo Life but by many internet sites and magazines. I just think scores are too high these days and hence skew people's perception of what makes a game truly exceptional.



PhoenixRising commented on Review: Art of Balance (WiiWare):

@Damo: Sounds about right. That -1 might just put people off of it good and proper Then again,, assuming your database only uses positive integers for scoring you'd be screwed, but a big fat zero would do nicely.

@Corbie: What about medals (platinum, gold, silver, bronze for 10 to 3 scores and a rusty tin can for 1 and 2/10 achievers?



PhoenixRising commented on Review: Art of Balance (WiiWare):

Nah, my taste is in good games. I agree that World of Goo is a good game but it's nothing so special that it deserved a 10/10 score. Rush was just a shoddy puzzler with awkward controls, blurry ugly graphics (the cube explosions were particularly awful) and audio that begged to be muted. Oh, and the difficulty curve was terrible forcing players through tens of mundane layouts until they eventually get stuck for a few minutes - great principle.

Like I said, so much garbage tends to make people appreciate good things more. Its no different for the 360 or PS3 either. It's just that today's expectations of games are such that any moron can write a game in a month and it'll suddenly gain 'internet popularity' and become an instant candidate for ripping people off on Nintendo's less than flexible pricing scheme. Apple and Microsoft have considerably more sense than Nintendo when it comes to distributing these 'wonderful' games.



PhoenixRising commented on Review: Art of Balance (WiiWare):

Yawn. Another puzzler ... wake me up when Wiiware gets remotely interesting.

Personally I wouldn't expect anything less from a Nintendo Life review score. Rubiks Galaxy was given a high score and that was god-awful so as long as you stick to the -2 principle (i.e. take 2 points away from anything these guys score) you'll have a better instant idea of what the game is like. So here it'd be a 7 out of ten which is good but nothing like the almost spectacular that a 9 out of 10 score would indicate. Really guys, please use sense when giving out scores.

By the way, using World of Goo as a bench mark is so horibly flawed - that game was waaaay to easy and truly boring by the time you reached the third world. Ultimately it's the proble with Wiiware and the Wii in general - there's so much garbage out there that something remotely good looks golden.



PhoenixRising commented on GTI Club Supermini Festa! Under Starter's Orders:

Yeah, but Beetle Adventure Racing actually looks better than this. Is this Wiiware and why would anyone want to play another game that forces them to make use of Nintendo's crappy friend codes? Please Nintendo, just ask EA to release Beetle Adventure Racing on the VC so we don't keep getting these overly expensive half-arsed remakes forced in our faces.

Phoenix is back again!