The GamerSushi Show, Ep 83: The Year of Birdo

the gamersushi show ep 83

The GamerSushi Show is back for another week, but this time the intrepid boys from the States are hosting a different Canadian: Patrick, friend of the show, joined us this week to try and defend Nintendo against our usual merciless onslaught.

Since Patrick is a long-time friend of Eddy, Jeff and Nick, he fits right in. In fact, you might not even notice that a certain other Canadian is missing. *sniff*

So, if you enjoyed the cast, why not let Patrick know by rating it? Thanks for listening, and see you next time!

0:00 – 9:51 Intro
9:52 – 23:23 Titanfall and EA
23:24 – 29:21 Metal Gear Solid: Ground Zeroes
29:22 – 32:40 Square Enix
32:41 – 40:03 Bravely Default
40:04 – 59:50 Nintendo
59:51 – 1:16:25 GTA 5 and games as cultural events
1:16:26 – 1:18:30 Outro

A Retrospective on Square’s Final Fantasy Roots

And we’re back. Over the next week or so, you’ll see us returning to our old form and regular posting schedule. So let’s get to chatting about cool video game stuff.

Many of you know of my love for the Final Fantasy series. Although it’s not quite as intense as a certain other GamerSushi contributor, I do consider the series formational as a part of my youth, and really helped me explore my love of story, characters and all things fantastic.

That’s why I was excited to see a new documentary focusing entirely on the beginning of the Final Fantasy series, and Square’s roots as a company. It’s a really interesting look at gaming as it was a few decades back, and how RPGs first entered the scene. Even if you don’t love FF, I’d definitely recommend a look at some of its founders.

Pushing Through in Tomb Raider

Tomb Raider

Coming off Bioshock Infinite, I was anxious to start Tomb Raider, a game I have had my eye on since the first E3 reveal way back when. But once I started, there was one big problem: I just couldn’t get into it. There were a number of reasons for this: I was tired, I was trying to get in a little more WWE ’13 before trading it in and I had a pretty busy week with lots of “real life” obstacles getting in the way. I liked what I played, but being only able to play in 20-30 minute sessions a night wasn’t allowing me to get invested in Lara Croft and her tribulations in the Dragon’s Triangle. Even during cut-scenes, I found myself checking Twitter instead of paying attention.

But, as I knew it would, the game finally grabbed me this past weekend, when I was able to play for a few hours in one sitting. Little things like upgrading your weapons, exploring the areas and the really fun use of the bow managed to reel me in and after one gorgeous and harrowing sequence where Lara must climb an insanely tall radio tower, I am now riveted. The mystery of the island and how Lara overcomes these dangerous situations have got me playing through the story at a fairly decent clip now. The voice acting is great, with perhaps the exception of Whitman, who’s characterization just feels out of place with the rest of the cast and the gameplay is tight. Continue reading Pushing Through in Tomb Raider

Review: Sleeping Dogs

sleeping dogs review

When a game originally starts its life as part of the True Crime series and gets dropped by its publisher in advance of its release, it doesn’t bode that well. Such was the case for Sleeping Dogs, until Square Enix swopped in and scooped up the rights to bring the game to the public, saving United Front’s Hong Kong-based open world game from development hell.

Starring the enigmatic Wei Shen as an undercover police officer infiltrating a local Triad gang, Sleeping Dogs takes the melee combat style popularized by the Batman: Arkham titles and mixes it with some familiar open-world tropes and in a brazen move, refuses to give the player a gun for the first few hours. Sleeping Dogs takes a lot of risks for what should be a safe bet in the video game world. Does the game succeed or is its cover blown?

Continue reading Review: Sleeping Dogs

Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII Strikes At PAX

Yeah, that’s the title of the game: Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII. After the somewhat misleading marketing approach of Final Fantasy XIII-2 that fixed itself around Lightning, even though her appearance in the game was little more than a cameo, Square Enix is not taking any chances and apparently shoving the main marketing theme right in the name: Lightning is back and that’s a good thing. Somehow, despite the mixed reception of the first game in the Final Fantasy XIII trilogy and the more positive if cautious welcome of Final Fantasy XIII-2, the one thing people seem to agree on is that we all want more Lightning.

So Square Enix is obliging, but in a radical departure from the previous two games, which I applaud because that’s the main reason I love Final Fantasy. Details are still scarce, but we know that Lightning is the only playable character in the game, but is highly customizable, allowing you to change her combat style and appearance in drastic ways. The biggest shock is that the menus are gone as this is an action-RPG, giving you direct control over her movements and actions for the first time. It’s something Square has hinted at in the previous two games, but now they appear ready to fully embrace it. It’s a direction the series has been heading for quite some time, so I am anxious to see how they pull it off.

The other big gameplay difference is the presence of a Majora’s Mask type Doomsday countdown clock. The game will take place over 13 days and every action you perform, including healing, casting spells and reviving yourself will drain precious time from the clock, hastening the final showdown. Oh and the game takes place hundreds of years after FF XIII-2. Consider me intrigued.

What about you? Do the drastic changes Square is implementing only further turn you away from Final Fantasy? Or does their desire for innovation make you want to give it a chance? Hit the comments!

Source: IGN

Console Cycle’s Length A Mistake Says Square Enix

This current generation of video game consoles has brought a great many new innovations to the industry. The most surprising has to be the length of the current gen. Now, as a consumer, I am happy with this. There are so many games I want to play that the thought of a new console still makes me nervous. However, even I am starting to wonder about the when the next generation of consoles will land on store shelves.

One person is not pleased with the lifespan of the PS3 and the Xbox 360: Julien Merceron, the worldwide technology director of Square Enix, stated that:

We have Sony and Microsoft talking about this generation lasting seven, eight, nine or even 10 years and it’s the biggest mistake they’ve ever made.

He goes on to say a few more things, such as advocating for shorter console cycles and lower costs of development, the latter of which being a good thing for all, in my opinion. Merceron’s reasoning for this is that developers are always attracted to the new hotness and since there were no new consoles to develop games for, they went to web broswers and iOS. And he claims that they will not come back to consoles.

But let’s examine his initial claim that devs went elsewhere because there was nothing new to develop for. First, as a fan of Square Enix, I have to say that this is utter drivel. If new consoles had come out, say, a year ago, iOS and web browsers were already strong at that point. So that doesn’t hold. If he means they should have released them before iOS games came out, that would have been in 2007. So that would have given the 360 a 2 year lifespan and the PS3 a 1 year lifespan. That doesn’t make any sense.

On top of that, there’s the fact that even if the consoles had been released in 2009 or so, before the rise of Farmville, the devs would still have gone to web browsers and iOS, to at least try them. That’s his whole point. So it doesn’t really matter when the consoles come out because according to him, the devs go towards the new technology. And since iOS is pretty damn good, I don’t think they would have said, “Oh, this is great and all, but we should make Angry Birds for the PS4 instead.” It doesn’t compute.

And for a final shot at the company that gives me more agita than any other, if the console cycle is so long, how come I have only 2 Final Fantasy titles on my shelf, one of which was a direct sequel reusing the assets from the previous game? Answer me that, Tech Boy.

Am I being too harsh on Mr. Merceron? Or is he making excuses and suffering from delusions? Hit the comments!

Source: IGN

Final Fantasy VII Coming to PC

final fantasy 7 pc

Gamers rejoice, Square’s much lauded Final Fantasy VII is getting an HD remake for the modern age! Unfortunately it isn’t being redone in FF13 style graphics, but I say take what we can get.

Coming soon to PCs everywhere, the remastered Final Fantasy VII will take the classic RPG into the modern age, adding such gaming staples as achievements, cloud saving and the ability to buy items, gil and HP/MP without waiting to earn them.

That last bit is a little strange, but in this day and age not everyone has the time to endlessly grind these things out, so the ability to buy items and HP will certainly be appreciated by some. The game will be available exclusively from the Square Enix online store when it launches soon ™ .

Are you guys excited to be getting an FF7 remaster? Are you going to pick it up? What do you think of the new features being added, and what kind of achievements do you think will be in there (I hope they added our “Once You Go Black” cheevo)? Go!

Source – Final Fantasy VII PC