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United States

Sun 10th Jun 2012

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Salnax commented on Gravity Falls: Legend of the Gnome Gemulets Ge...:

@DarkKirby Don't you know? Scheduling shows that are popular among a wide demographic irregularly is the way to go! Just like what Cartoon Network did with Young Justice.

On a less sarcastic note, I have hopes for this. Licensed games on handhelds have a bad history, but there have been just enough exceptions in recent years to give me hope. Disney itself has put effort behind games like Disney Infinity and smaller titles like the Phineas and Ferb games, and games like 2012's Adventure Time, the DS Spider-Man titles, and Alien: Infestation were well liked by fans. Plus, UbiArt has been successfully used to make pretty 2D games even on mobile devices.

I am a touch worried Ubisoft will give this the usual treatment they gave DS games. But Disney probably has too much of a hand in this to allow that.



Salnax commented on Feature: Nintendo Life's Top 10 Super Mario Pl...:

While we're all confessing our Mario opinions:

I feel that New Super Mario Bros U deserves more love, being the best of the "New" sub series by far. I even like it more than SMB3, which I like, but feel people remember too fondly. It was a big step forward for gaming, but I feel it lacks the breadth and depth of World, and has some bad power ups. The Frog suit is terrible, the Shoe is used about one time, and the Tanooki suit is not any better than the cape.



Salnax commented on Nintendo Confirms Super Mario Maker Console Bu...:

So in Review:

North America: The Wii U has Super Mario Maker, LEGO Dimensions, and Skylanders in September, Guitar Hero, Just Dance, and Yoshi in October, Star Fox in November, and Xenoblade X and Devil's Third in December. The 3DS has Happy Home Designer in September, Triforce Heroes and Chibi-Robo in October, and Yokai Watch and Pokemon Mystery Dungeon in November.

Europe: The Wii U has Super Mario Maker, LEGO Dimensions, and Skylanders in September, Guitar Hero and Just Dance in October, Star Fox and Mario Tennis in November, and Xenoblade X in December. The 3DS has Triforce Heroes and Happy Home Designer in October, and Chibi Robo in November.

There are enough noteworthy games, but only Mario Maker is a very big deal for either platform. Its bundle is solid, but I can't help but wonder when there will be a price cut. Star Fox could end up surprising us, but it has not been quite that impressive yet.

The 3DS situation in particular is worrying. The 3DS hasn't had a terrible year, but the only big hits since 2014 have been Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate and Majora's Mask 3D. Compared to the holidays of 2011, which had 3D Land and MK7, 2013, which had Pokemon X/Y and Link Between Worlds, and 2014, which had Pokemon remakes and Super Smash Bros, Chibi Robo and Happy Home Designer look niche. And if you noticed how I didn't mention 2012, remember how Western 3DS sales were lower for Holiday 2012 than 2011 or 2013.



Salnax commented on Nintendo Download: 13th August (North America):

Obligatory "eShop Gets No Games" comment.

With that out of the way, Pandora's Tower is a welcome sight, considering the scarcity Wii release. It fits well with the general theme for retail Wii games on the eShop, games that never became easy and/or cheap to get as the years went on. I wouldn't put it on par with Metroid Prime Trilogy or Return to Dream Land in terms of demand, but it is still welcome.

Besides that, the discounts on the Wii U are interesting. Bombing Bastards and Block Bot look interesting. And although the 3DS has a worse week, it really hasn't been that bad for the 3DS eShop. Over the past few weeks, we've gotten Streets of Rage 2 3D, Dragon Fantasy, Dr Mario, and AVGN Adventures.



Salnax commented on Genyo Takeda The Likely Choice For Nintendo Pr...:

Not a terrible choice, considering his accomplishments, experience, and skills, but he'll be about 20 years older than Iwata was upon becoming president. I doubt he will remain President for too long before retiring, though he may be a particularly healthy person.

Yamauchi only retired in his 70's, so Takeda isn't too old. But he's older than preferable.



Salnax commented on Pokkén Tournament Dated For 16th July in Japa...:

I'm getting a bit concerned.

This game's arcade release is not even a couple of weeks from now, and there are still only eight confirmed fighters to my knowledge (These two, Pikachu, Machamp, Lucario, Gengar, Suicune, and Gardevoir). That is simply not a lot of content. If I remember correctly, the original Arcade-Only version of had over 30 playable characters.

A Wii U version would either need a lot more content or have to be a budget release to justify its anemic content.



Salnax commented on Talking Point: The Pros, Cons and Questionable...:

If the NX is truly the true successor of the Wii U, I can't imagine it being released before latter in 2017.

First, Nintendo needs the Wii U to last long enough to profit from the hardware. Some hardware profits are going to be necessary to counteract the next generation's price tags.

Second, the Wii U lineup is far from dead. Note how Nintendo has the habit of hiding big releases prior to their release. On the Wii, games like New Super Mario Bros Wii, Donkey Kong Country Returns, Kirby's Epic Yarn, Nintendo Land, NSMBU, Super Mario 3D World, and Captain Toad were all unveiled just a short while before release. So even though Nintendo's holiday lineup is most of what they've announced, I sincerely believe they have more on the way. And a holiday lineup with Star Fox, Super Mario Maker, Yoshi's Woolly World, Fatal Frame, and Xenoblade Chronicles X along with some notable 3rd party titles is hardly abysmal.

Nintendo is likely to make more software for existing hardware because software tends to make more of a profit. That was one of the reasons the GameCube didn't bankrupt Nintendo; the high number of games sold per console. Many of Nintendo's developers have only released one game on the Wii U at most thus far. So even if we ignore known quantities like Zelda U, Amiibo Festival, Mario's Tennis and Devil's Third, we have many likelihoods.

EAD Kyoto could likely be working on a second 3D Mario game for Wii U, be it 3D World 2 or whatever else. Yoshi Sakamoto is probably doing something WarioWare or Rhythm Heaven related with SPD, possibly using the GamePad to create the ultimate combined Rhythm Heaven experience. ND Cube is going to make Mario Party 11 for the Wii U, simply because that's what they do.Retro confirmed that a new Wii U game was in development even before Tropical Freeze was finished. HAL is probably going to do a proper Kirby platformer along the lines of Return to Dream Land and Triple Deluxe.

Nintendo also needs to prepare their next launch so that both their next handheld and console, or the combined whole, see a healthy number of releases from them. This implies a certain required period of time for games like Mario kart 9 or whatnot to be made. And I don't think MK9 would be ready by 2016.



Salnax commented on Nintendo Download: 2nd July (North America):

Nice week. Ocarina of Time is great for those without a 3DS, those Ace Attorney discounts look nice, the original games are interesting, and Not-Bomberman is tempting depending on the discount.



Salnax commented on First Impressions: Our Maiden Flight In Star F...:

I'm not too worried.

The very different controls sound weird, but are likely the thing you get accustomed to within the first session with the game. Not to mention that Nintendo tends to be decent about including some control options, so stuff like gyroscope controls can likely be turned off.

As for the graphics, I don't get the worry. Yes, this game does not look like Uncharged 4 or whatever. It's too busy rendering what seem to be huge environments on two screens at once, one of which is 1080p and 60 FPS. I'd like more complex environments, but some of those enemies look big and complex enough.

As for multiplayer... did anybody actually enjoy that in SF64? I just remember me and friends messing with it before giving up and hot seating the main campaign.

I am worried about how few enemies appeared on screen, but that could either be a sign of a more boss-based experience or a last-minute change to make the demo prettier.



Salnax commented on Video: Take A Look At The Evolution Of Fairies...:

I really like the N64 style of Great Fairies, and by extension the Hyrule Warriors design. They are creepy as hell, but I appreciate that. The way they casually float in casual postures despite being clearly humanoid and very large conveys a sense of power and other-worldliness. It's one of the better examples out there for using the uncanny valley to improve a game's atmosphere.

Besides that, I also like the relatively vanilla "Partner Fairy" that appears as a glowing orb with wings and Wind Waker's more alien designs.



Salnax commented on Poll: Is It Time For a Fresh Alternative to th...:

Though the Virtual Console has disappointed me on the 3DS and Wii U, I can see why Nintendo has not pursued that area very aggressively.

The Virtual Console launched alongside the Wii in late 2006. At this point, software support for Nintendo consoles was very different. WiiWare would not be launched for another 16 or so months, and even it focused on games from big developers like Square Enix and Capcom. However, the Wii got plenty of retail games, including some that would be high-end downloads today. The Virtual Console was a good way to keep a regular supply of content flowing to the Wii without pushing its limits or the 3rd parties' tolerance of competition. After all, people are not likely to pick a $5 retro game rather than a new $50 game unless they were probably not going to get the new game anyway. Plus, the old cartridge-based games of the 80's and 90's did not take up too much of the Wii's tiny storage capacity.

Today, things are really different. The Wii U in particular relies more on 3rd party digital support than retail support. Think about 2014's lineup for example. The Wii U got a late port of Watch Dogs, Sonic Boom, and a few licensed multiplatform games. It was likely less than 20 titles total. Conversely, the eShop brought us Shovel Knight, Shantae, Tengami, Costume Quest, and Tetrobot in just the last 10 weeks of the year.

So Nintendo relies on 3rd party downloadable games for most of their outside support. The problem here is the Virtual Console. Nintendo could easily release half of their N64 library in a couple of months for $5 apiece, and those would sell to fans. But if you are a 3rd party, how are you supposed to compete with that? Why would people buy Shovel Knight for $15 when they could get Ocarina of Time, Super Mario 64, and Super Smash Bros for the same price? Making a new great game for the Wii U is much more expensive than emulating an ancient one.

So Nintendo has to hold the Virtual Console back. They lose a bit of money this way, but keep their remaining supporters on board.

My only "suggestion" for Nintendo would be to focus on the N64, DS, and GameCube. These platforms should not be too hard (except for maybe the GameCube) to emulate and can still be sold for high enough prices ($10 to $15) so as to not compete with indie developers. Plus, a lot of N64 and GameCube games have seen less widespread releases than NES and SNES games.

Otherwise, the state of the Virtual Console is an unfortunate necessity.



Salnax commented on Review: Pokémon Rumble World (3DS eShop):

I've played for over 5 hours so far and have neither spent any real money nor felt required to do so. At a couple of points, I was unable to use any balloons, but after going back to a Challenge or two for more Diamonds, I was able to proceed as usual with tangible rewards. And although sometimes a battle will not be particularly rewarding, even releasing unwanted Pokemon will reward the player with in-game currency.

I'm not sure if this is "F2P done right," but it is much closer to the positive end of the spectrum than the negative. Some of those balloons will take more time to get than preferable, but even a 100 Diamond balloon is not that hard to get when you can get 5 Diamonds for turning the game on once a day and another regular supply via Spotpass in addition to the various challenges that give over 10 each.

I'm putting this under the same category of "Nintendo did a decent F2P thing" as Steel Diver and Rusty's Real Deal Baseball. I don't necessarily look forward to more games in this model, but they won't necessarily be wrecks either.



Salnax commented on You'd Better Get a Bigger Micro-SDHC Card for ...:

That's it? I was expecting this to be the first 3DS game to require a card bigger than 4 GB. Compared to the orignal, which was apparently 6 GB or so, 3.6 GB is not much.

Just looking at some recent Nintendo games, 3 to 4 GB is not too much for an extensive open-world RPG. For reference, Bravely Default, Metal Gear Solid 3D, Super Mario Galaxy Resident Evil: Revelations, and Pikmin 3 were all in this range.

Fire Emblem: Awakening, Super Mario 3D World, Kid Icarus: Uprising, Wind Waker HD, Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate, NSMBU, Pokemon X/Y, Shin Megami Tensei 4, Twilight Princess, and Theatrhythm: Curtain Call are all less than half the size of this 3DSmake.



Salnax commented on Dragon Ball Z: Extreme Budoten is Fighting Its...:

@Caryslan Tien is pretty awesome, especially in his debut at Goku's second Tournament. His "Antagonist becomes Good Guy" arc was probably the best in the series (I lost count of these by the Cell Saga), and he had a really great dynamic with Roshi at that point and in the King Piccolo arc. I really liked how Roshi was think forward even at this comedic point in the series, helping Tien reform himself and become part of a larger legacy.

I guess I like Yamcha because I started with Dragon Ball, so I was introduced to Yamcha as a Badass Bandit who rivaled Goku as a fighter but could still be the butt of jokes. By the time Yamcha started becoming less impressive (that bit with the Fortune Teller), I was already fond of his style and personality. Not to mention that despite being way out of his league, Yamcha kept on helping however he could, even directly helping to beat Super Cell.

I would have liked it if Dragon Ball split into two series at some point, with DBZ having larger scale fights starring Goku, Vegeta, Piccolo, etc, while another smaller series could tell smaller stories about less powerful characters in the early Dragon Ball style. That would have given the great characters who can't quite destroy worlds a place to shine. This probably would have killed Toriyama though, and I do like his artwork in Dragon Quest, so maybe this is for the best.



Salnax commented on Dragon Ball Z: Extreme Budoten is Fighting Its...:

Hmm... I'm not a huge fan of the DBZ fighting games (I would prefer they made more games based on the pre-Z era), but this looks like they're at least making a decent effort with the team battles and assists. To to mention that Arc System Works is not only skiller in the art of the 2D fighter (BlazBlue, Guilty Gear, Persona 4 Arena, etc) but also were the folks behind the Supersonic Warriors games back in 2004 and 2005, which were a mark above the typical GBA/DS fighters.

I might get this if reception is decent and the character roster is to my liking. I already like the universe and many of the characters of DBZ, so all they need to do is convince me that there is enough content of a decent quality to warrant a purchase.

If I get this, I will likely play as Yamcha whenever possible. I like Yamcha.



Salnax commented on Poll: Which is the Best Mario Kart Game?:

Short Version:

MK8>MKDS>MK7>MKDD>MK64>SMK>MKWii>MK: Super Circuit

Long Version:

Super Mario Kart was not bad, but has been surpassed in most aspects long ago. Multiplayer was limited to two players, courses recycled themes, and 2.5D graphics simply don't convey the races as well as 3D entries do. Plus, I don't like this game's Choco Mountain tracks and despise the Lightning even more than the Blue Shell. That said, the game's battle mode was very good.

MK64 was where things got rolling IMO. The mostly 3D graphics made the game easier to play, and the game's visuals and music gave all the courses a more unique feel, as did the longer courses. 4 player multiplayer was a really good idea. Plus, the new sliding and item box mechanics were great. The new fake item box and blue shell were fairly good additions for keeping races interesting, especially since the blue shell worked differently back then. That said, I feel that some people overrate MK64, at least when comparing it to more recent games. I dislike the N64 versions of Toad's Turnpike, Yoshi Valley, and Rainbow Road, and other than Kalimari Desert, none of the other tracks are among the best in the series.

Super Circuit is probably my least favorite, but is not necessarily the worst in the series. To its credit, it had a LOT of courses to race on, it had "Download Play" for multiplayer years before that was even a named feature, and Quick Run mode ought to return. My main beef with the game is that it is probably the worst in the series in terms of multiplayer, simply because of the required Link Cable and lack of online play. Though single player content is perfectly fine by the standards of GBA racing games, it alone doesn't make up for it. Plus, I feel that Super Circuit's graphics, though prettier than the original's, don't work well for a high paced racing game on a tiny screen.

Double Dash was a mixed bag. On one hand, it made huge jumps from prior entries in some ways. The character roster was more than doubled, by far the most dramatic jump in franchise history. The combinations of two characters per kart and a choice of karts made preparing for a race far deeper than in prior entries. Having both competitive and coop play was great for having groups all play at once. Battle Mode was still pretty good. And in general, I feel this game had better tracks than MK64, though I'm still not sure how I feel about Baby Park. All that said, I have things to complain about. The Blue Shell became overpowered, Character-specific items might have been better as regular, though possibly rare, normal items. Last, note that this game was the one that introduced unpopular characters as racers. Say what you want about MK8's roster, but acknowledge that DD was the game that included two ordinary koops, two ordinary Toad people, and the dreaded Baby characters.

Mario Kart DS was the best Mario Kart game to date. I personally divide the series's history in half: before the DS game and after its release. It had online play that surpassed that of any racers on the GameCube, though obvious improvements were still possible. Its 12/13 character roster was the second largest in series history, and was a great selection (though I think ROB should have been download-only instead of Shy Guy). It introduced Retro Courses, which has increased the number of courses per game ever since and has generally resulted in older courses becoming either being faithfully remastered or renovated into something better. It had wireless play for up to eight people, only one cartridge and no cables required. For a single player, the new Mission Mode was a great idea that should have been reused in future handheld entries. As for the courses themselves, Waluigi Pinball and Airship Fortress as two of my favorites in the series. Unfortunately, this game also marked the beginning of a decline for Battle Mode. Online play was a mess in retrospect, and the Retro courses chosen were not necessarily the most interesting picks. Also, although Mario Kart Wii was more chaotic, this game's addition of the Bullet Bill and Blooper items was a turning point in the series being too chaotic for people who wanted to compete.

Mario Kart Wii is possibly my second least favorite in the series, which is a shame because it did so many things I liked, both back in the day and in retrospect. Adding bikes to the mix helped give players more ways to play the game. Drifting based on angles made the nuances of the game more accessible while remaining intact. Tricks that grant speed boosts both added depth and helped add extra Mario-flavor to the game. Online play was also improved, though it was still a bit behind the curve compared to online play on PC's and contemporary consoles. Courses were also solid, featuring both great new courses like Mushroom Gorge and Coconut Mall and new versions of fun Retro tracks, with even originally plain tracks gaining flavor and character. The problem was, Mario Kart Wii was often more frustrating than fun. The Wiimote controls were accessible, but are generally less precise than other control mechanisms after your first few races in the Mario Kart series. This is made worse by the items, which included many new and returning powerful specimens, and were more common than ever thanks to the 12-player races. And although 25 characters is a great number, the selection was a bit odd. Miis and Rosalina were welcome, but the other new drivers were a pair of baby princesses and... Funky Kong. Paratroopa, Petey Piranha, and Shy Guy had already appeared in prior games and were all better choices. Plus, local multiplayer could have been better.

MK7 felt like a small but sweet package. The basic gameplay changes, Kart Customization and aquatic and aerial sections, were great additions that added complexity and depth while making the series more zany and fantastic. Streetpass, Spotpass, and the 3D screen on the 3DS were all used very well, making the new hardware feel revolutionary. Online play, like MKDS before it, far exceeded that of its console predecessor, with Communities being a great inclusion. Coins came back, but felt more significant and helpful than ever before, especially since they unlocked kart pieces. The chaos of MKWii had been cut down to a manageable level, thanks to a selection of more moderated but still useful items. The main problem was that the game ultimately wasn't as expansive as it could have been. MKDS's Missions did not return, Versus mode is more limited than in DS or Wii, and although Time Trials were improved by the 3DS's functionality, they were not enough to fill the void. Even the roster of racers felt a bit constrained; the most important characters were present, and most new characters were not necessarily poor choices, but the lack of veterans like Waluigi, Diddy Kong, King Boo, Toadette, and even the Babies made the game feel like it had a smaller scale.

Mario Kart 8 took MK7's basic ideas, threw in the good stuff like Bikes that didn't carry over from MKWii to MK7, and many additions that were excellent. Antigravity was somewhat underwhelming in some ways, but made tracks more complex without making them hard to race through, as well as changing the dynamics between racers. 12-player races are much better than in MKWii, due to various little tweaks to keep the chaos manageable. Basic Wii U "gimmicks" like off-TV play and a constant flow of information on the Gamepad are helpful, and online play takes another major leap by including Miiverse integration. The roster is pretty good, including the best racers of the prior couple of games, though the quantity of Koopalings makes the absence of Diddy Kong and Birdo odd. Dry Bones is the only character I actually miss though, and having Shy Guy, Lakitu, and Waluigi makes up for it. Unlocking characters is a bit simple, but the randomized order makes unlocking them more thrilling, and the two factors combined prevent frustration. The abundance of unlockable parts, even compared to MK7, gives plenty to accomplish, as do the 62 stickers to collect. The current mix of items is excellent, keeping enough of MKWii's arsenal to create havoc, but also including new and old items like the Super Horn to reward strategy and defensive players. Courses themselves are very good, with Sunshine Airport, Electrodrome, and Shy Guy Falls being new favorites. And though the Retro courses aren't necessarily my favorite in the series, I feel that some of them, especially Toad's Turnpike and Yoshi Valley, have been more improved by their makeovers than any other Retro tracks. And though I may be weird for saying this, I don't mind the battle mode. It is not as good as it was prior to MKDS, but I feel the emphasis on racing along true tracks fits MK8's mechanics better than the more traditional Battle mode would, since it focuses on forward movement rather than a 2D equivalent of aerial dogfights.



Salnax commented on Expect Oddworld: New 'n' Tasty To Cost Around ...:

Considering how the original was a 12-hour game just to play through, and this is a TRUE HD remake (not some 720p remastering), this sounds fair. Pricier than I'd like, but fair. Plus, I expect at least a few collectables or extras to be thrown in, so you'll probably end up paying $2 for an hour the first time playing through. Considering how Super Mario Bros, a port from 1985, takes me two hours to beat (I don't use Warp pipes) and costs $5, that sounds about right.



Salnax commented on The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds Sha...:

It sounds like this is sort of testing the waters for changing the formula with Zelda Wii U. I hope this ends up being good, if only because the Zelda dungeon format has been a bit repetitive this past decade. High quality, but predictable.