Listen, I like The Legend of Zelda as a series, I really do, but Skyward Sword was…well it wasn’t the worst thing ever, but let’s just say it was fairly average. If anything it really displayed that the Zelda franchise needed a bit of a shakeup.
For A Link Between Worlds, the newest entry in the series on the 3DS, Nintendo is changing things up a bit. For instance, the introduction for Between Worlds in incredibly short as opposed to the lengthy tutorial of Skyward Sword, and the game no longer relies on the typical Zelda progression of slowly unlocking a large number of items that are more or less exclusive to the dungeon they come from (something that was fairly rampant in Twilight Princess). You can now rent any item in the game at any point from the merchant who moves into your house, but you lose them if you die (you can also buy them permanently later on, although this is expensive). The dungeons can also be tackled in any order as well. Couple that with the fast travel and this is the Zelda game with the most sense of exploration and freedom since, well, A Link to the Past, which this game is a direct sequel to.
The isometric presentation works great too, and this game runs at a speedy 60 frames per second even in 3D so the action is nice and crisp. The music is also fantastic, and features an updated remix of the classic Dark World theme from A Link to the Past. While Zelda games on the Nintendo handhelds have by and large been pretty good, they usually haven’t matched the caliber of a full-fledged console Zelda. A Link Between Worlds blows this notion out of the water and gives us a pretty good look at how Nintendo is planning on making Zelda a different beast for future games.
Has anyone else played A Link Between Worlds? What do you think of it?
The Wii U got some flack, and rightly so, for launching last year without any games. Well, it had Zombie U and some third-party cross-overs, but what I really mean is that it didn’t have a recognizable Nintendo title outside of New Super Mario Bros. U.
Flash forward a year later and the Wii U has a game that is not only a potential system seller but a game of the year contender as well. Super Mario 3D Worlds, a console-sized semi-sequel of the excellent Super Mario 3D Land available on the 3DS, brings four-player co-op to a 3D Mario game.
While a year is a long time to wait for a 3D Mario title, Super Mario 3D Worlds absolutely nails it in every aspect. The game looks gorgeous in a way that New Super Mario Bros. U never managed to, despite also being a high-definition game. From sun-dappled beaches to lava-ensconced castles, Worlds is one gorgeous game. Although the Wii U might be a little behind the Xbox One and PS4 in terms of horsepower, you wouldn’t know it looking at this game. The level design is clever as well, with this game boasting some of the most memorable Mario levels. My personal favorites are a Mario Kart-inspired course or a level that opens up into a huge savannah.
Now that the Xbox One is finally out in the wild, I thought I would ask what all of you GamerSushi peeps will be up to this weekend.
Are you playing a shiny new Xbox One, or are you perhaps gaming with a PlayStation 4? Personally I’ll be checking out Super Mario 3D Worlds and The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds this weekend, both of which have been getting sterling reviews.
I also tucked into some Assassin’s Creed 4: Black Flag last night and I’m already enjoying it much more than AC3. While I can kind of tell that Edward will end up being a character that is ultimately fairly forgettable, the world and the sheer amount of piratey things to do really speaks to me.
As you may or may not know, I recently bit the bullet and purchased a Legend of Zelda themed Wii U because after Nintendo’s showing at E3 this past year, things are finally looking up for the system. Super Mario 3D Worlds is shaping up to be a must-own title, what with it bringing four-player co-op to the a 3D Mario title. Nintendo is going pretty crazy adding new things to the game and they released a trailer today detailing 10 new things you can see in Super Mario 3D World.
The game drops on November 22 and you can bet I’ll be picking it up. Any fellow Wii U owners looking to get it? Does this gameplay video entice anyone? Let us know!
We’re back with another episode of the video game podcast you love, the GamerSushi Show.
This week bears some exciting news as Eddy finally joins the ranks of 3DS owners. Nintendo’s handheld has picked up in some big ways, and the mere fact that he bought one brought up a conversation about how we’re all transitioning to a different style of playing games.
After that we talk memories from out PlayStation One and Two days and then I finally get to talk Pokemon. Anthony has also been digging into the newest iteration of the series so we get my perspective as a veteran and his as a newcomer.
I think you know the drill by now, but listen, rate the cast, and be nice to everyone. Except that one person. You know who I’m talking about. See you next time!
0:00 – 2:00
2:01 – 10:22 Eddy gets a 3DS
10:23 – 17:42 Getting older and finding time for games
17:43 – 33:00 PlayStation memories
33:01 – 46:55 Pokemon X and Y
46:56 – 50:40 Outro
Pokemon X and Y, the first of the series to be released on Nintendo’s 3DS handheld, dropped a couple weeks ago and since then I’ve been playing the junk out of it. I’m currently at the sixth gym, so I feel like I’ve got a good handle on all the changes Game Freak has made.
For the first time in a long time this feels like an honest upgrade for the series, instead of just incremental tweaks. The new art is gorgeous, especially with the enhanced polygonal Pokemon models. Sure, performance suffers some times (the frame rate drop is most noticeable during battles), but leaving the sprite-based graphics of the previous games behind was a good move. The camera perspective changes can also be a little jarring at times.
Pokemon X and Y removed some of the grind from the series by giving you the EXP Share very early on and having it apply to your entire team instead of just two Pokemon. This is a great boon, because you no longer have to spend a lot of time making sure your team is around the same level; with an equipped EXP Share, it just happens automatically. I am finding that my team is somewhat over-levelled, but the Pokemon series was never too difficult to begin with. Besides, I’m always free to turn it off.
With the release of Pokemon X and Y, the total current number of Pokemon adds up to over 650. Given the widespread love that the newest games are getting (as well as the series’ cultural presance over its lifespan) it’s reasonable to assume that out of these hundreds of critters you must like one more than the others.
Personally, my favorite Pokemon would have to be Koffing. Although I find Poison-type Pokemon to be the least useful (aside from Ice), Koffing’s design has the elegant simplicity that was the hallmark of a lot of Generation One designs.
Just by looking at this guy you get the sense of what he’s about. There’s smog, and a skull, so you know he’s bad for your health. Plus he has that big goofy smile. What’s not to love?
9 Oct 2013 | Posted by Anthony | Comments Off on Pokemon Trafficker Confesses to Charming Crimes
Pokemon X/Y will be out worldwide in less than a week and I’ve been slowly immersing myself in all things Pokemon while trying to assess whether or not to bite the Bullet Seed and plunge into the legendary franchise. So rather than skip the countless Pokemon stories I am stumbling upon everyday, I am actually reading them. And this uplifting tale on USGamer.net caught my eye and I felt it was worthy of sharing.
Rich Stanton is a veteran Pokemon player, who came across an efficient way to breed Pokemon and then trade them to others. Not for money or for other Pokemon, but simply to help people, most likely kids, who wanted the original starters (Bulbasaur, Charmander and Squirtle) in Pokemon Black/White. It’s the familiar tale of playing a game and then creating a new objective for yourself, which we all do at some point, but Stanton accomplished this on a much larger scale. Reading how his trade partners were overjoyed to get their desired Pokemon brought a smile to my face and I hope it does the same for you.
Have you ever done anything similar to this? Has anyone helped you in such a way? Are you going to get Pokemon X/Y? Hit the comments!
I’ve been gaming for as long as I can remember. I was lucky enough to be a kid during the beginning of the NES revolution, a revolution that we owe to Hiroshi Yamauchi, former President of Nintendo, who died yesterday. Yamauchi is largely responsible for turning Nintendo from a card-game company into the video game giant it is today, thanks to the NES, the brainchild of Yamauchi. He didn’t design games himself, but he was instrumental in crafting what would eventually become the NES.
As sad as it is that Yamauchi is no longer with us, his legacy lives on through the NES and all the great games and memories associated with it. I got my NES when I was 5 years old. I didn’t even know what it was, it just appeared one day, a gift from my mom to my brother and myself. Playing through Super Mario Bros, finding the warp zones, wondering how many damn levels there were in the game…it was a blast. I remember using the Power Pad to play Track & Field and losing to Cheetah over and over until finally resorting to pounding the pad with my fists instead of running on it like we are supposed to. Cheetah went down and my hands ached, but damn it, I won.
In my 26 years of existence, I didn’t think I’d ever feel bad for standing up a tiny animal made of pixels in a fake video game world, but I did. I said I would be at their house at 6:30 pm, but I missed it, leaving them looking crestfallen and disappointed in me. I felt more than a little ashamed.
This is what Animal Crossing: New Leaf for the Nintendo 3DS has done to me. Let’s review the damn thing.
Aaaand…we’re back. After our traditional Summer break we return to the mics to bring you the latest installment of the GamerSushi Show where we talked about how much we missed eachother. Not really, it’s mostly dick jokes, video games and the Benedict Cumberbatch name-generator, which is where I got the title for this episode.
When we recorded the cast last Wednesday, I had just come back from PAX, so I give an in-depth breakdown of what I saw and played. Well, more accurately I have to be gentle lead through the discussion, but we all know I’m bad at just talking about stuff.
Seeing as how we’re back, you should definitely listen to the cast, rate the cast, and enjoy the cast. We’re back on the regular schedule, more or less, so we’ll see you next week!
0:00 – 11:44 Intro
11:45 – 20:39 Dark Souls
20:40 – 42:59 PAX Prime
43:00 – 54:18 Microsoft and the Xbox One
54:19 – 1:13:24 Nintendo’s Missteps
1:13:25 – 1:30:06 Saint’s Row IV
1:30:07 – 1:31:46 Outro
1:31:47 SEKRIT PODCAST STUFF
Another month, another update to the rankings. This time, we’re seeing not only movement in our backlogs, but movement in a few games that we managed to stick with from one month to the next. Imagine that!
I couldn’t finish The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword. In fact, I could barely start it. I played for 3 hours, entered the first dungeon and then paused the game while I consulted a walkthrough just to see what was in store for me. The thought of enduring all that I read made me recoil in horror. So I traded it in, which is a historic moment for me. The first console Zelda that I didn’t finish. A dark day for Anthony and a dark day for Nintendo.
You see, Zelda was always my second favorite video game franchise after Final Fantasy. Final Fantasy was the barometer for which console I would buy, but Zelda was the mark for WHEN I would buy my inevitable Nintendo console. I got a Nintendo 64 so I could play Ocarina of Time. I got the N64 Expansion Pak solely for the purpose of playing Majora’s Mask. I bought a GameCube one month before Wind Waker was released and I jumped for joy when Twilight Princess was released on GameCube AND the Wii because that meant I didn’t have to buy a Wii yet.
Very few games compel me to play them every day. Sure, there are times when I’m obsessed with a game for a few days, but rarely do I log on every day consecutively for weeks at a time.
Animal Crossing: New Leaf is one such game. This is my first experience with Nintendo’s long-running life-simuilator, and it’s got me hooked. For Animal Crossing veterans, some of the experience will be familiar: you collect fruit, seashells and various flora and fauna in your attempt to accrue enough bells to stay out of debt with Tom Nook.
The kicker this time around is that you’re the mayor, and as such you can build public works and enact ordinances to change how your town functions. I typically play Animal Crossing on the bus to work at 8:00 am, but the shops don’t open until 9. With the “early riser” ordinance, I can force the shops to open at 8. The only downside is they close a little earlier, but it’s better than having to wait until lunch to sell my pockets full of goodies.
Animal Crossing: New Leaf isn’t typically the sort of game I play. It’s cutesy and there’s no combat, but it’s deep, addictive and a heck of a lot of fun. Because the game keeps track of the clock (a long-running feature of Animal Crossing) this is a title you can play for years on end if you want. In terms of value for your money, there’s few games that can offer that.
Who else is playing Animal Crossing: New Leaf? What did you name your town? Does anyone want to come visit Assville?
It’s the Season Finale of The GamerSushi Show! At the end of this season of the podcast, we talk about E3 2013: the press conferences, the games, and how we felt about the whole thing!
All five of us assembled like some sort of giant robot or mighty super-hero team, so it’s a pretty great cast. Unfortunately I had to duck out early thanks to work things coming up, but the guys brought it home in grand style.
So, you know the deal. Listen, rate, and eagerly await our return in September (or August, if Saint’s Row 4 has anything to say about it).
E3 has come and the Big 3 have shown us what they have in store for us over the coming months. There has been so much news, updates, retractions, clarifications and denials that it is kind of hard to keep track of everything. Still, this has been an eventful E3, one where the details of two new consoles were revealed, where fanboys waged war and where Nintendo did whatever it is they do. Microsoft brought the games, Sony brought the Internet to its feet and Nintendo brought its beloved franchises.
So now that we have a clearer picture of what Microsoft and Sony are going to do with their next gen systems, it only makes sense to take a poll of our loyal readers and find out where your current desires lie. A lot can change between now and release but it seems reasonable to assume that some of you have made up your minds. So tell us in the poll below which system you plan on doing your gaming in the near future. Please leave the reasons for your vote in the comments!
E3 2013 is right around the corner (seriously, it’s on Monday!) so it’s time to bust out those E3 predictions! Gaming yearly extravaganza always seems to sneak up on us, even when we know exactly when it’s coming.
So! What do you think is going to happen at E3? What are you looking for out of the press conferences? Of the big two, since Nintendo is skipping E3 this year, who do you think will come out on top? Will EA announce SimCity 2? Go!
31 May 2013 | Posted by Anthony | Comments Off on Review: Fire Emblem Awakening
The Nintendo 3DS has had some great games in the past few months with one of the most notable being Fire Emblem Awakening. Having a love-affair with strategy games and being a Fire Emblem virgin, I was anxious to delve into the game and see what all the fuss was about.
The story of Fire Emblem is a bit of a mixed bag. It starts off in an interesting, if cliched fashion: your custom avatar wakes up in a field with amnesia. Now, I know what you’re thinking but stick with me, the story gets better. Having been found by Chrom, the prince of the kingdom of Ylissia, and his companions, you help them in defending the countryside from marauders, eventually joining them in the greater struggles that await. These struggles range from demonic Risen to all manner of political intrigue and attemped coups. Chrom’s sister rules the kingdom and he enforces her rule, but there are neighboring nations that have nefarious plans of their own, all of which give you a reason to do what you do best: fight some battles and kick some ass. The story encompasses everything from bandits to time travel to world-ending dragons, so there should be something in here that appeals to everyone.
I’m not entirely sure how to feel about Sonic the Hedgehog anymore. While SEGA has made some decent efforts in the past to revitalize their old mascot’s image, for every step they take forward it seems like they take two back. Sonic Colors was good, but it was only on the Wii, so a lot of people didn’t play it. Sonic Generations was, by and large, a really fun Sonic game, but every couple of levels the developers seemed to forget what kind of Sonic game they were making and shoved in some clumsy platforming sections. That said, the new Wii U and 3DS exclusive Sonic game Lost Worlds looks like Sonic Team has been bitten by the Mario Galaxy bug, and that isn’t a bad thing at all. Watch the trailer below!
Besides the Galaxy influence, I’m detecting some Sonic Extreme in there as well, which is good news for people who waited for that game back in the mid ’90s only to have it cancelled. So what do you guys think of Sonic: Lost World? Are you on board?