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I demand to be taken seriously

I hit my keyboard and things resembling words seem to form! Come along, and perhaps you may even find some jewels among my sea of garbage! (Oh, who am I kidding! It will all be garbage!)

Wed 13th November, 2013

Recent Comments



Stubborn_Monkey commented on Splatoon Creation Was Inspired by Rare's Perfe...:


Oh, yes. The game has a very carefully crafted atmosphere. Light/ shadow effects are excellent. And the soundtrack is out-friggin'-standing.


I remember that. Photos were planned to be uploaded from a Game Boy Camera using a Transfer Pak.


Yes, Counter-Operative is a unique mode in Perfect Dark. One person playing a single-player mission as usual and another one in the role of a random enemy... I don't know if any other FPS has ever done anything similar.



Stubborn_Monkey commented on Nintendo Submits Trademark for NES Controller:

Nintendo's next console revealed to be an EXACT REPLICA of the Nintendo Entertainment System, with which the company will manage to achieve again the kind of market domination it had in the 80's.

You want proof? NX. Just a few letters off NES.




Stubborn_Monkey commented on Diddy Kong Nerfed In Latest Super Smash Bros. ...:



THIS... THIS IS SICKENING. The moment an ape manages to achieve something in this medium, The Establishment finds one way or another to bring him down. That masked booger, Meta Knight ( I suspect he's not even a REAL Knight.) spent years overpowered in Brawl and Nintendo didn't lift a finger. Same with McCloud in Melee. But good ol' Diddy here climbs out of the C-list barrel and BANG, the powers that be nerf him without a second thought.

But this won't end here. Oh, no. That monkey isn't alone. I'm declaring my own personal crusade against the Big N for this. Those scumbags are going to regret the day they decided to weaken a certain cap-wearing primate. You've awoken the sleeping giant gorilla, Nintendo.



Stubborn_Monkey commented on Review: Donkey Kong 64 (Wii U eShop / Nintendo...:


I got a cartridge in early 2001 (packaged with an Expansion Pak) and I still own it. I've played through it, collecting everything in the game (golden bananas, banana medals, banana fairies, everything, every single one of the collectables.), twice. I even surpassed the high scores for Rambi Arena, Enguarde Arena, DK Arcade and Jetpac.

When I first played it I thought it was outstanding. I was a veritable Rare and DK fan back then (I still am, to a lesser degree.). But now I think DK64 was "too much of a good thing" even back in the day. Banjo-Kazooie and Banjo-Tooie did it better.

But hey, it's just an opinion. If you think it's excellent, then good for you. Hope you enjoy the game as much as you can.



Stubborn_Monkey commented on Talking Point: Splatoon Is a Typically Colourf...:

@Blakenator @abe_hikura

Yeah, we all want Splatoon to succeed, because it's not everyday you get something from Nintendo that has original gameplay and isn't hosted by a familiar face (though it almost was a Mario spin-off.).

Also consider that Nintendo (Nintendo itself, not branches or partners like HAL Laboratory, Intelligent Systems or Game Freak.) has already a sizeable catalogue of IPs: 3D Mario, 2D Mario, Zelda, Metroid, Star Fox, F-Zero, Pikmin, Donkey Kong, Mario Kart... so some of them may end up having to sit a generation out due to all the teams being busy... or have them handled to an external developer. Which is a risky move that can have good results (Metroid Prime, F-Zero GX, Punch-Out!! Wii.) or not-so-good ones (sorry, Star Fox Assault and Yoshi's New Island.).



Stubborn_Monkey commented on Talking Point: Splatoon Is a Typically Colourf...:


But there's also danger of milking franchises way too much in a few years. It wears them prematurely. Like releasing a Call of Duty or Assassin's Creed game every single year. It was that kind of overexploitation that killed Guitar Hero, no, the ENTIRE music video game genre a few years ago.

Failing to appeal to the mainstream audience is, of course, bad. But excessive success (or, better said, pushing a game that sells well too much.) can also cause harm...



Stubborn_Monkey commented on Talking Point: Splatoon Is a Typically Colourf...:

New IPs are often regarded as secondary when buying a Nintendo console, the usual suspects (Mario, Zelda, Metroid et al.) are the ones that sell consoles. Also, New IPs tend to perform better both in sales and critical reception with their second instalments (Smash Bros., Animal Crossing, Star Fox and F-Zero are examples.); but Pokémon showed that new brands can also be instantly successful (though it had an extraordinary marketing push when it made it to the West and played with the advantage of already being a blockbuster in Japan.), so there might be hope.

About giving shooters a new spin, well... Portal and Team Fortress 2 did it and they became very popular. But I'm not sure Splatoon will convert the unbelievers into proud Wii U owners.

What the console needs is a Metroid Prime. I don't mean that literally (though it would be nice.); I'm talking about something with outstanding audiovisual design that while not being completely revolutionary in terms of gameplay, has well-implemented ideas and polished level layout. A good-looking, good-sounding, somewhat safe bet that is able to seduce outsiders.



Stubborn_Monkey commented on Mario Maker Japanese Website Points to Inclusi...:


Thorough analysis. Good video. Thanks for the link.

BTW, the different Mario games had different physics (for example, the NSMB games have floatier jumps than the original SMB.), so I wonder how are they going to adress that? Are they going to give all the different graphic styles a single, unified physics engine?

This game is shaping to be much more than "an official SMB ROM hack"... it could produce some downright INSANE levels...



Stubborn_Monkey commented on Mario Maker Japanese Website Points to Inclusi...:

Hope the game gets as much elements as it can.

It takes inspiration from all the 2D Mario games to date, so if the difference between the gamestyles would be purely graphical, it would be rather shallow... but it's also problematic; I mean, some of the stuff found in later games (different flying power-ups, Yoshi, Mario being able to lean on walls when jumping, etc.) isn't present in the original Super Mario Bros., so how are they going to reconcile all of it?

It would be hard to do it well, but if they do, the potential for clever level design would be huge...



Stubborn_Monkey commented on Video: Learn More About the SEGA Genesis / Meg...:

Good video. What's truly interesting is that it showcases how important marketing and demographics are in this industry. Seems players can reject quality games based solely on the "cool" factor (then again, "quality" is a pretty nebulous term, so...).



Stubborn_Monkey commented on Review: Donkey Kong 64 (Wii U eShop / Nintendo...:

The game got flak back in its day for reasons similar to the ones stated on this review, so I'd say a 7 is an adequate score. IMO, it would have benefitted from having a greater number of worlds while making them smaller. I like it, but it's got some questionable design choices.

In case you're wondering about the lag (or the lack of it) in the PAL version, "US and JP run at 60 Hz and ~30 fps, but PAL runs at 50 Hz and ~25 fps, which is 1.2 times slower. However, the lag compensation speeds up the kongs so they move as fast as in the NTSC versions. Everything besides movement (cutscenes, menus, enemies, ...) is slower than in NTSC.", according to this page:



Stubborn_Monkey commented on Poll: Is Splatoon a Blockbuster That'll Help R...:

An odd one, this. It wouldn't be out of place if it was released for the GameCube more than a decade ago. I know it's been compared to Mario Kart, but it's more like Jet-Set-Radio-meets-Super-Mario-Sunshine-meets-the-wall-merging-ability-from-A-Link-Between-Worlds-meets-Team-Fortress-2. The art design is rather Sega-esque... it wouldn't be out of place on the Dreamcast either. On the other hand the "become a squid and swim through ink" thing is pure Nintendo. Sunshine and aLBW had mechanics that deviated from what's usual for Mario and Zelda so it's nice to see those recycled in a new environment.

When first announced as an entirely online multiplayer game it was quite a radical change from the Big N's previous game design choices... then it gained single player and local multiplayer modes. Guess the developers don't want to break completely with the traditions of the company.

It was well-received at last year's E3, so I wouldn't be surprised to see it become popular with those who own a Wii U. But for its potential as a system-seller... I don't know. Did Pikmin or Animal Crossing convince anyone to buy a GameCube?

But I'm looking forward to it. It is the freshest thing from Nintendo in years.

"(...) we'd suggest the Monolith Soft game will do well among dedicated Wii U owners, but is still rather niche and unlikely to be a 'mainstream' success."

Hey! Final Fantasy VII made the original PlayStation a must-own system, you know. JRPGs have been losing popularity since the late 2000's (well, to be honest, every Japanese developer has faced lower sales and critical reception in the last decade. It's been, using cheap wordplay, The Decline of the East.), but a game that promising can't hurt console sales.



Stubborn_Monkey commented on Talking Point: Nintendo's Plans for DLC and Mi...:

Allow me to state the obvious: Nintendo makes games for money.

In that way, it's not better or worse than any other company in this industry. Because, once stripped of any kind of romanticism or aesthetic ideal there might be, it's pretty clear that video games are a bussiness. Gaming has reached the place it is in today because it moves enormous quantities of CASH. If there wasn't any profit to be done, the proliferation, popularisation, and influence in culture that the medium has achieved wouldn't be so quick nor significant.

Contemporary video games have high production values. They are no longer made by a few people in a few months. Therefore, it is understandable that companies want a way of making sure they get profit. Is that greed? Exploitation? It might be, but the audience wouldn't get the games of the size they are getting today if there wasn't a proportionate revenue.

I might be playing "devil's advocate" here, but if you don't want this kind of stuff, you may as well be ready to accept smaller games.



Stubborn_Monkey commented on Video: Donkey Kong 64 Tumbles Onto Wii U Virtu...:

@Moshugan #43

Uploading the PAL version is actually justified this time. The PAL version of DK64 is translated to English, French, German, Spanish and Italian. The NTSC version is just in English (the Japanese version being in Japanese, of course.). So this takes the issue to a whole new level.

Regarding speed differences, "US and JP run at 60 Hz and ~30 fps, but PAL runs at 50 Hz and ~25 fps, which is 1.2 times slower. However, the lag compensation speeds up the kongs so they move as fast as in the NTSC versions. Everything besides movement (cutscenes, menus, enemies, ...) is slower than in NTSC.", according to this page:



Stubborn_Monkey commented on Video: Donkey Kong 64 Tumbles Onto Wii U Virtu...:


"Every 3-D platformer from the N64 era had some
Form of backtracking or replaying the same area"

Have you played the thing lately?

Here's an example of DK64 gameplay:

You need some golden bananas to advance in the game; you're going to get them from the sixth world. But wait, the part of the world where they are located needs to be opened up and it can only be done with Tiny's weapon. So you go to Funky's armoury to buy it.

Hang on, you don't have enough money. Let's explore the worlds to get some coins. Aha! the fourth world has some purple coins, let's go get th- oh no! Too high to reach, you need to use Lanky's pad and inflate yourself (JUST LIKE A BALLOON!), but to do so first you need to get the potion that allows the orangutan to use that move. So you go to Cranky's shop and but it.

NOT SO FAST, you don't have enough coins either. So you go back to explore the worlds once again to get some blue coins. You find them in the fifth world. But their location is behind some sealed gate that needs to be activated pressing a Chunky switch in the ground. That should be eas- the damn thing is blocked by a boulder. To lift it, Chunky must first buy a potion at Cranky's.

Have you got the money? OF COURSE NOT. Where did you see some green coins? In the second world, someplace high, you vaguely remember. So let's get Diddy's jetpac and search for them from the sky (keep an eye on the number of crystal coconuts; or you could fall to your doom, or at least be forced to go back where said coconuts are re-spawned.).


What I'm trying to say is that it's a game that can really test your patience. You can't use the abilities of the different characters at any time, like in Banjo-Kazooie. No, You need a barrel to change the Kong you've chosen; and sometimes said barrel is located halfway across the world you're in. And the worlds ARE ginormous. There are several teleporting pads in each world to ease the pain of getting to places. Add everything up and you've got a game that can be nauseatingly complicated.



Stubborn_Monkey commented on Video: Donkey Kong 64 Tumbles Onto Wii U Virtu...:

If you had to choose between DK64 and Perfect Dark, and you ended up with Miss Dark's ever-escalating gunfights, I'd say you made the right choice. (Somewhat ironically, without a Expansion Pak you'll only get a minimal amount of content from PD, and DK64 included an Expansion Pak in the package.).

There's something "off" with DK64, its size is... disproportionate. The game doesn't do anything inherently wrong, but its pacing isn't good. You control five characters, none of them at the same time, and you have to backtrack so many times it becomes tiresome. Add to the problem that the worlds are REALLY huge. And the controls also feel rather awkward at first, even if you've played B-K and B-T. These two are better examples of how Rare mastered the "3D-platformer-with-heavy-emphasis-on-adventure" genre. Its flaws (overlong gameplay sequences, unresponsive controls.) truly show up in the final boss fight, which features all five Kongs, each with his/her own way of battling said boss.

All things considered I can recommend this one only to people who really like 3D platforming action-adventure games or Donkey Kong fans. But knowing that this game has never been re-released since 1999, it's good to see that now people who want to play it have an easy way to do so.



Stubborn_Monkey commented on Xbox Boss Phil Spencer Reckons "It Would Be Co...:

Bear and bird can take five, what Smash needs is the presence of INCOMPARABLY HANDSOME shaman Mumbo Jumbo. No, better yet! Grunty herself! With a Final Smash that has her host a gaming quiz that penalizes wrong answers with comically harsh punishments!

Wait, there's an even better candidate --- MR. PANTS FOR SMASH BROS.! You KNOW you want him in! (If not, you're lying to yourself. Stop lying to yourself.).

By "previous work" I guess he means Diddy Kong Racing DS, that featured some characters owned by Rare itself, and, consequently, Microsoft. (Yet still had Conker and Banjo replaced with Dixie Kong and, uh, a now-adolescent Tiny Kong.). Or the fact that DK64, now available on the VC, includes Ultimate Play the Game's Jetpac.



Stubborn_Monkey commented on Nintendo Announces Next amiibo Waves And Asks ...:

CRANKY KONG takes it to the fridge! Because the lack of geriatric fighters in Smash Bros. is APPALLING.

Less powerful and quicker than Donkey, but not as much as Diddy. His cane gives him a considerable attacking reach, despite lacking ranged moves.

Final Smash: Rage Rant. The old ape starts denouncing what's wrong with today's video games (EVERYTHING), his shouts harm any character they hit (think of it all an automatic, mobile, less powerful version of DK's Final Smash.). At first, the soundwaves are big and Cranky moves slowly; they become smaller and he regains his agility as his self-righteous anger dissipates.



Stubborn_Monkey commented on Talking Point: Nintendo Turns to Classics, DLC...:

Seems Xenoblade Chronicles X won't make it to the West anytime soon. Cosidering the amount of text in a RPG and that it has to be dubbed, it's not surprising. Good to know that Shin Megami Tensei X Fire Emblem and Fatal Frame are still in. Mario Maker to be released when SMB turns thirty, I expected it. Nothing on Zelda, Star Fox and others. Hmm. Hope they're hard at work. Two months 'til E3...

On a personal level, I'm liking Splatoon more each month that passes, BOXBOY! looks nice, and the fact that DK64 has been chosen as one of the first games to be on the N64 VC put a big smile on my face. I own the original cartridge, and It's not quite as good as Banjo-Kazooie and Banjo-Tooie; but those two will never be back to a Nintendo console so it's the next best thing. It's good to know that people around the world will be able to hear DK saying "OKAY!" on their WII U consoles each time they start the game. (Also, now all of Rare's DK-related platform games are available to download in some form; and Country Returns and Tropical Freeze can also be downloaded to the Wii U. MUCH appreciated.).



Stubborn_Monkey commented on Talking Point: It's Too Early to Write Off the...:

Delaying the game if they didn't felt it was ready was a wise choice even though the console is doing bad and it needs something big for the Holiday season. There are too many instances where promising games were released when they where far from completion and the results were horrible for everyone. So congratulations to Nintendo for making the right decision even under pressure.

Yes, the Wii U is a misfit of a console. The casual crowd that bought the Wii just stayed with the Wii. And tEh_harDc0er don't like it for its lack of 3rd party games. But continuing to support it is the thoughtful, cautious choice. Terminating development of the projects for the console and moving to another machine would:

1- Waste resources, experience and infrastructure already spent on the console. The Wii U is over two years old. Nintendo's teams are now familiar with the thing, and that speeds up development process; moreover, devkits of already released games could be used as a starting point for other games. Add to this the money and technology spent on storage for VC games and leaderboards, servers for online gaming, amiibo, etc. All that, to kill the platform only three years after launch? Talk about frivolous spending.

2- Anger a user base that, despite being small, would be left without games they would very probably buy (with third-party games not being an option, what else would they purchase?) AND would be forced to spend money on another piece of hardware should they want to play said games. Yeah, let's do that. Let's pull a Saturn.

3- Force development teams to re-start (or at least heavily modify) their work in an alien, experimental environment. Beginnings aren't easy. It would take time and money to learn how to master the use of new tools and hardware. Perhaps Nintendo would need to recruit new staff to teach or supervise the use of new technologies. A costly transition.

These are the reasons I can think of right now that tell me it's wiser to stick with the Wii U, flawed as it is, than move to a new console. Keep releasing the usual big-profile games (Zelda, a Retro-developed Metroid.), add some creative new IPs (Splatoon had a surprisingly popular debut at last year's E3.), and let the thing have a natural, peaceful death. In the future, those games could find new life being released to download on Nintendo's next console, just like Wii games are being brought to the Wii U download library.

NX will be released in 2016 or 2017. But we know next to nothing about the damn thing and everything said about it is conjecture. What we know is that the Wii U has to be around for a couple of years more at minimum. Third-Parties ignore it, but the main appeal of Nintendo consoles have always been the Nintendo games. "It's low-end tech. The GamePad forces desing choices that make it unattractive to developers. It's aimed at kids, and kids don't have the money or decision power to buy a large quantity of games.". Those are real shortcomings, but even with those, Nintendo keeps on developing quality games for the console. Zelda being delayed to not only reach a minimum standard, but actually be the best game it can be is PROOF of it, instead of meaning that the Big N plans to end the console's life cycle. I would be truly alarmed if they rushed an unfinished game instead of taking the time to make it a worthwile entry to the series.

The situation of the Wii U is frustrating right now. And seems like it will be in the following months, at worst during the rest of its lifetime. But killing it would cause more harm than good. Think in the long term. Look at the big picture.



Stubborn_Monkey commented on Poll: What Did You Think of Nintendo's E3?:

It was good. It could've been better, (especially if it had more Zelda Wii U in it.) but I am satisfied with what I saw. The Robot Chicken skits were actually pretty funny, and while the Iwata vs. Fils-Aime fight went on for a bit too long for me, it is good to know that Nintendo keeps making fun of itself at the biggest event of the video game industry (remember when Miyamoto appeared on-stage wielding shield and sword at the Twilight Princess reveal ten years ago?). Reggie's speech about that "having fun" is what's matters to Nintendo was somewhat corny and PR-ish, but I like to believe that the Big N has that kind of philosophy deep down, on its core.

The Treehouse staff livestream was also a good idea, as it was to bring some of the developers of the games to have a closer look at them; and the Smash Bros. Invitational was alright, too. All in all, a good show.

I don't like the question about who "won" E3. I don't like to see it as a competition. Each developer has its own offers and each one of them should be appreciated on its own right. I like Nintendo, it's what I'm interested in; but I wouldn't say Nintendo "won" E3 just because I'm not interested in what others had to show.



Stubborn_Monkey commented on E3 2014: Nintendo Hopes to Share Metroid News ...:

A portable 2D Metroid would be great. One with strong emphasis on exploration, like Super Metroid. I really liked Metroid Fusion, but right now I'd prefer it to be a more open experience than that game. If they are afraid this might alienate younger players, they could introduce an entirely optional help system; I'd love to have a vast world that gives the player as much freedom as possible to traverse it.

That being said I don't think a 2D Metroid is in the works right now. I do suspect, however, that a 3D Metroid game is being developed by (who else?) Retro Studios, and that it will be released for Wii U around Q4 2016.



Stubborn_Monkey commented on E3 2014: Code Name: S.T.E.A.M., A Brand New IP...:

This being Intelligent Systems, first thing that comes to mind is Advance Wars and Fire Emblem, but the emphasis on Third-Person Action makes the game sound closer to Batallion Wars.

Modelled after American super-hero comics with a retrofuturistic setting? Sounds very interesting, but I'll wait until I see it in action.



Stubborn_Monkey commented on E3 2014: Hyrule Warriors Not Part of Zelda Tim...:

Hmmm. I don't really know how I feel about this. When I first saw Hyrule Warriors I wished it was non-canon, but just leaving it out of the timeline doesn't feel right. I like to think that there is some sort of order, some cohesion in the Zelda franchise.

It is true that the timeline was already incoherent and contradicted itself in several ways, with each new game release rewritting the story to a bigger or smaller degree... but in the end, you could always come with an explanation of your own (or other's) to reconciliate all the storylines into one big world. Saying "it never happened" feels too cheap.

And sure, I know it's a fictional world and that it doesn't have to make sense all the time, but trying to craft a world is part of the fantasy, part of the fun, as much as talking to that weird vendor in the alley or getting lost in an ancient dungeon.



Stubborn_Monkey commented on Reaction: Our Thoughts on Nintendo's Big Day a...:

It was good. I liked everything I saw.

My only complaint is that there should've been MORE. More Xenoblade, more Yoshi, at least something about Starfox, and, of course, more Zelda. It was understandable though, as those games are most likely still too green for serious display.

There were also pleasant surprises: Splatoon feels very fresh, and I was surprised by the warm reception the game had. Kirby was funny and charming. Capt. Toad looked nice. Mario Maker will surely bring to Wii U ruthlessly punishing levels. Lots of fun to be had overall.

And if you thought there wasn't much on the 3DS... hey, that console is already, uh, consolidated in the market. It is the Wii U the one who needs most attention right now. It is hard enough to sell a single console that relies almost exclusively on First-Party efforts to do it with two.



Stubborn_Monkey commented on E3 2014: Pokémon Omega Ruby & Alpha Sapphire ...:

When I first saw the trailer with the kid exploring the sorroundings of a lake, I thought it was another Zelda announcement. Seconds later I was proven wrong.

Omega and Alpha, eh? Nintendo is getting more daring with the religious references. The days of Devil World not being released in America are long gone!



Stubborn_Monkey commented on E3 2014: Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker Announ...:

Captain Toad: proving you don't need to know how to jump, attack, run, or just be able to do anything other than breathe and walk to star in a game. As someone who loved SM3DW, I'm perfectly okay with it.

This one looks like an eShop release.



Stubborn_Monkey commented on E3 2014: Hyrule Warriors Will Be Crossing Swor...:

I didn't like this when it was first announced last year, but now it looks way better. Good job, Tecmo-Koei and Nintendo.

"You'll be able to play as your favourite Zelda character." If Grandpa Ulrira isn't playable I'll be extremely dissapointed.