Inside Look at Wii U Reveals Development Woes

Wii U

We’re sometimes hard on Nintendo around here, but it’s (for the most part) out of love for what Nintendo was and could be. The Wii U, Nintendo’s latest stab at relevance in the gaming world, has been met with a lack of enthusiasm embodied by abysmal sales.

So how does something like this happen? If you’ve ever wanted an inside look at the development process of an entire console, EuroGamer presented the latest in its series, The Secret Developers. The premise of this feature is that developers write candidly and anonymously about particular subjects. This edition of the Secret Developers just happens to focus on the genesis—and troubling development— of the Wii U by a major third party developer.

And it’s certainly…interesting, to say the least. Continue reading Inside Look at Wii U Reveals Development Woes

Pixel Count: The Next Hurdle

It’s Pixel Count Tuesday, Sushians. Let’s cast us some ballots.

Every generation represents a new set of hurdles for the medium (or art, if you’re feeling fancy) of video gaming. In the current generation — and yes, I do include PC games in this — I think the most obvious hurdles we’ve cleared have to do with graphics, the ease of connectivity and huge, immersive universes. Within the last few years, it’s easier to play with friends than ever before, or even talk to them across games. I can share games with them on Steam or track their progress through PSN or XBL. Games like Skyrim, Borderlands 2 and Arkham City have given us amazing, huge worlds that we can interact with, and feel like we’re a part of. The Uncharted series and Red Dead Redemption have given us high-caliber storytelling and some memorable vocal performances.

But do I think all of these things are perfect? Not by any stretch. The medium still has plenty of growing up to do in terms of what it can achieve, in any number of arenas. Today’s Pixel Count poll is a big one, representing what I think are the biggest hurdles that gaming still has in front of it.

So, if we’re entering the next generation soon, which of these do you think is the most important issue, from a player’s perspective? Vote and tell us what you think in the comments!

What do games need to accomplish in the next generation?

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GamerSushi Asks: What Are You Playing?

Diablo III Monk

April isn’t exactly the greatest month in the world for gaming, but we’re right up at the edge of it, and we’ve got to play something, right? As for myself, now that I’ve completed both Mass Effect 3 and Journey (both of which I loved), it’s on to a few other odds and ends.

For one, I spent quite a bit of time playing the Diablo III Beta last night, and I have to say that I’m surprised at just how much fun I had. It’s not that I didn’t expect the game to be great or anything, it’s just always been one of those games that I knew I would be playing, so the specifics of the gameplay never really mattered that much to me. I know that might sound strange, but some games are just such a given you don’t even spend that much time getting excited about them, and instead focus on things releasing ahead or behind. I rolled a monk, and in no time at all I decided that it’ll be my main class when the game drops in May. It’s hard to quantify just how joyous it was to pummel hordes of undead creatures and other ghouls in that good ol’ hack-n-slash style. It’s just been too damn long, you know?

In terms of other things I’m playing, I could rave on and on for an entire post about the beauty of Journey, which so captivated me in my one-sitting-playthrough that it’s already in contention for game of the year. The game affected me in a way that’s hard to put into words, which is weird because I consider myself a writer. In short: just go play the thing.

When I’m not Journey-ing or fighting minions of Diablo, I’ll be catching up on MGS HD, Battlefield 3, Mass Effect 3 co-op and anything else I can get my hands on – at least until my daughter arrives in just a couple of weeks’ time.

So what are you guys playing? Go!

Killzone 3 Multiplayer Goes Free to Play

Killzone 3 Multiplayer

Well played, Sony.

While there are a number of troublesome trends in the video game industry (as many of you have noted in the Mass Effect 3 DLC discussion), every now and then someone just gets it right. I think because of the anti-consumer nature of the industry at times, it becomes that much more potent when a company does something on our behalf, or something that goes against the grain.

Today, Sony launched a totally free version of Killzone 3’s multiplayer mode for download on PSN. Yes, Killzone, one of their staple franchises. You can play the game with friends, kill random strangers, and even rank up – although past a certain point you’ll need to pay money for continued experience and trophies. Again, that’s hours of entertainment for the grand total of free ninety-nine.

To me, this is a bold and brilliant move by the company that just a few years back tried to tell us their Heavenly Sword player was worth a staggering fee of $599 with a straight face. This is basically the equivalent of Microsoft announcing that Halo: Reach’s multiplayer was going free to play. Obviously, the business side of this is that Sony hopes that it will encourage gamers to buy DLC packs, maps and so forth, but I think the results will be interesting to watch. A number of MMOs didn’t become profitable until they went free-to-play, so I can only guess that this will have a positive effect for Killzone 3 as well.

What do you guys think of this decision? Would you like to see other companies pull something similar with their big franchises? Go!

Source – CVG

My Metal Gear Solid Experience

MGS Kill

I’ve never played Metal Gear Solid.

A startling admission, I know. Especially coming from someone who is a fan of Sony consoles in general and Japanese games in particular. But I missed the boat on Metal Gear Solid for the PS1, having only played Metal Gear Solid 2 when it was a Greatest Hit on the PS2 and then wondering, “This is what all the fuss was about? Gamers have terrible taste!” Seriously. I looked down on MGS fans after that.

All I had ever heard about was how amazing the story of Metal Gear Solid is, how it is just like watching a movie. All the hype before the release of MGS 2 focused on the story, rather than gameplay, something I had not previously seen before. So I played it, liked it, but didn’t see all the fuss. Then MGS 3 came out and finally MGS 4. I skipped those as well, but something was nagging at the back of my mind. Despite my experience with MGS 2, I still felt like there was something I was missing out on. With the release of Metal Gear Solid HD Collection, I saw my opening and I struck. I would download and play the original MGS on the PSN and then play all the rest on the HD Collection.

So that’s what I did. I recently finished the MGS and had a blast with it. Even so many years after its release, the game still holds up well and its design and story had me pondering video games and the state of the medium to a degree that I haven’t in quite some time. So here are my thoughts on Metal Gear Solid. Continue reading My Metal Gear Solid Experience

The GamerSushi Show, Ep 29: Colluders

Here’s a new podcast that’s not exactly new, seeing as how we recorded it a couple of weeks ago. That being said, it’s still a hoot. Is that what the kids are saying these days?

We talk about a variety of topics once the cast kicks off, from PSN to Brink and even a bit of the Gears of War 3 Beta, and just how much I want to have its babies. True story. After that, we kick things up a non-Minecraft notch with a game of Either/Or. For real, it’s good times. I only wish you all could join us during these games, because Nick does a great job of picking topics.

Oh, that’s right. You can. In the comments. Join in, dudes.

Alright, time to listen up. And when you’re done, go rate. Continue reading The GamerSushi Show, Ep 29: Colluders

Legend of Mana Springs to Life on PSN

Legend of Mana

I think Square Enix just got the Internet hooked up to their offices because they’ve been bombarding the PSN lately with classic releases, finally listening to what their fans have been clamoring for (Well, in some cases). Last week brought Parasite Eve and starting tomorrow another PS1 classic, Legend of Mana, will be available for download. Having rented Legend of Mana about 11 years ago, I am pretty excited to be able to play it again.

For those of you who don’t know, the game plays like the SNES classic Secret of Mana, but with a World Map, which involves you placing the locations and rebuilding the world. Depending on where things are placed in relation to each other, new secrets will be revealed. Also, the game is very side-quest heavy, so if you aren’t into that sort of thing, consider yourself warned.

What other classic games are missing from PSN, XBLA and Virtual Console? Hit me!

Source: Playstation Blog