Friday, January 31, 2014

Know Your Enemy - Moblins (The Legend Of Zelda)

Know Your Enemy - Moblins Direct Link

Oddworld Retrospective Is A Nice Appetizer For The Upcoming Oddworld: New & Tasty

With multiple Oddworld games coming to the Wii U in 2014, it's time to get fans up to speed on this excellent series which never truly gained the success it deserved (you can blame Microsoft and EA for the early demise of the series). Now that Oddworld Inhabitants has gone indie, we are seeing the rebirth that Oddworld has long needed and old school fans are coming out in support of the classic games that started it all. YouTuber and Oddworld fanatic Caddicarus has crafted his own personal multi part Oddworld Retrospective that is sure to help even the most passive fans hyped for the upcoming games. Enjoy!

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Zelda Four Swords Anniversary Edition Back On 3DS eShop For FREE Until February 2nd!

Back in 2011, Nintendo celebrated the 25th anniversary of The Legend of Zelda with a variety of games and special offers that included music CD's, a special Wii Remote and a free game for 3DS & DSi owners. The free game was The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords Anniversary Edition, an enhanced port of the GameBoy Advance original released back in 2002. It was a unique game that introduced multiplayer to the Zelda series for the first time and would pave the way for other Four Swords games such as The Minish Cap.

The enhanced Four Swords Anniversary Edition adds in an option for single player gameplay as well as a few new levels based on classic Zelda titles like Link's Awakening and A Link to the Past. When it was originally released, 3DS owners could download the game for free until February 2012 which meant that Zelda fans who purchased their 3DS after that date were out of luck. Fortunately, to celebrate the release of The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past on the Wii U virtual console (which launched today), Nintendo has made the game available once again on the 3DS eShop until February 2nd. Put simply, if you own a 3DS or 2DS, go to the eShop and download your free game as soon as possible. Enjoy!

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Wii U Indie Developers Sound Off On Their Upcoming Games

With all of the recent negative press surrounding Nintendo and the Wii U, many indie developers have come out in full support of the machine. While Sony would have you believe that the PS4 is the indie console of choice, nothing could be further from the truth as the Wii U is hands down the indie games king when it comes to the big three. Fortunately, Nintendo Enthusiast reached out to the many indie developers who have games scheduled for the Wii U to find out the status of their games and Nintendo fans are in for a treat. Enjoy!

Armillo (FuzzyWuzzy Games) - Game Trailer
“Still working mostly on polish, non-interactive sequences, final level work, and a few remaining features. Also getting a press demo prepared. We’re targeting a release on the eShop on March 24, 2014 *crosses fingers*”
- Armillo himself
Assault Android Cactus (Witch Beam) - Game Trailer
“Our initial goal was to have the PC version finished in 2013 and the Wii U edition out shortly after that, but here we are in January and still working hard to finish the PC version. I’d say mid year is a safer bet now - we want to take the time to do things right with the Gamepad and Miiverse features.”
- Sanatana Mishra
Blok Drop U (RCMADIAX) - Game Trailer
“BLOK DROP U was submitted to NOA in January and is undergoing final testing.”
- Mike Aschenbrenner
Cubemen 2 (3Sprockets) - Game Trailer
“We are finally done, submitting next week!" (Week beginning 27/01/14)
- Seon Rozenblum
ittle Dew (Ludosity) - Game Trailer
“Good news on the Wii U version, we’re submitting this week!” (Week beginning 20/01/14)
- Joel Nystrom
Monkey Pirates (Henchmen Studio) - Game Trailer
“We’re on our way, the game is finished and we extended the release to include North American territories. We’ve also completed a new Wii U exclusive game mode! It’s called sea king, and it uses the asymmetrical game play features of the Wii U Gamepad”
- Christophe Siccardi
Pier Solar and the Great Architects HD - Game Trailer
“We’re about to enter the beta test. The engine is practically finished, the major thing now is to finalize the HD assets.”
- Watermelon Spokesperson
Q.U.B.E: Director’s Cut (Toxic Games) - Game Trailer
“We’re currently looking to launch in April time as things have gotten a bit delayed.”
- Dan Da Rocha
Shovel Knight (Yacht Club Games) - Game Trailer
"Shovel Knight running on the Wii U was one of the major focuses of the project from the beginning, especially in getting it to work on the game pad with off-screen play. We’ve had that set up for a while now and it’s always cool to boot up the WiiU and see Shovel Knight diggin up dirt and bouncin on dudes running at a full 60 FPS on that little gamepad! It’s so good that I want everyone to see it! Sadly, we’ll have to wait until March 31st for that to happen. But that’s right around the corner; I can’t wait!!!"
- Nick Wozniak
Super Ubie Island (Team Notion) - Game Trailer
“We are planning to release within the next 6 months. Things have set us back a little bit because we have to really test out the Wii U build and make sure everything is solid.”
- Andrew Augustin
Tengami (Nyamyam) - Game Trailer
“We are in in the final stretches of having the complete game together. After that we will look at the Wii U specific features we would like to include, like for example Miiverse integration. I think we are about 3-4 months off from submitting to Nintendo for certification.”
- Jennifer Schneidereit
Teslagrad (Rain AG) - Game Trailer
“Giving an exact date makes me nervous, but ill be able to confirm a date soon”
- Peter Medahl
Another Castle (Uncade) - Game Trailer
"You should be seeing Another Castle on the eShop later this year. Sorry I can’t be more specific. A lot of the timing will depend on feedback based on the alpha of the game, which I’ll be releasing next week and updating throughout the year. I’m treating the development of the game as an iterative process, and letting the design evolve naturally as I work on updates. This unfortunately makes it a bit difficult to pinpoint when I’ll feel the game is a complete project, with later work considered bonus content."
- David
Forced (Beta Dwarf) - Game Trailer
"Since we launched Forced for PC, Mac and Linux in October, a lot of our resources have been tied down bug fixing. We have decided to make sure that every one of our existing users can enjoy Forced at it’s best, before committing resources to getting additional users on board through a Wii U version."
"We still love the platform and once we are able to free up resources we will look at porting to Wii U. On the upside, this will also mean the Wii U version will feature most of the improvements and extra content, that we have added to Forced since launch."
- Jesper Kristiansen
March of War (ISOTX) - Game Trailer
“Unfortunately it’s not going very well at ISOTX. They had to cut back and let go a lot of people. Now they focus, with a smaller team, on completing March of War for iOS and getting out of Steam Early Access”.
- Jeroen Roding
Project Aguraki (Enjoy Up!) - Game Trailer
“About Aguraki, the estimated release date is Q4 2014 on WiiU”
- Julio Moruno
Pure Chess (Voofoo/Ripstone) - Game Trailer
"I can’t give you an exact release date for Pure Chess as yet sadly, but I can tell you that we will be making an announcement within the next couple of weeks."
- Ami Langton


Stick It To The Man Coming To Wii U Care Of Ripstone

The surreal puzzle platform adventure game known as Stick it to the Man is planned to come to the Wii U eShop. The game has a bizarrely gorgeous art style which is sure to make fans of Psychonauts and 90's animation squeal with delight. Stick it to the Man has been released for Steam and Sony consoles and received excellent review scores and should be a great addition to the Wii U eShop. While not officially announced, the German ratings board outed the game recently also revealing that Ripstone is handling the port. Enjoy!

Nintendo President And Other Staff Taking Pay Cut To Offset Losses

People often wonder what inspires such fierce loyalty among Nintendo fans when it comes to the Big N. While some would attribute this purely to nostalgia for their games and characters, there is something deeper that sets the company apart from its purely profit driven contemporaries. One particular aspect of the company that would surely turn the stomach of many American businessmen is the willingness of Nintendo's top brass to take a hit for the good of the company.

Nintendo President Satoru Iwata is having his pay cut by 50% to help offset losses experienced by the company due to weak sales of the Wii U in 2013. In addition to Mr. Iwata, two other representative directors, Genyo Takeda and Shigeru Miyamoto, will be taking a 30% cut. All other board directors, including Tatsumi Kimishima, Kaoru Takemura, Shigeyuki Takahashi, Satoshi Yamato, Susumu Tanaka, Shinya Takahashi, and Hirokazu Shinshi, will take a 20% reduction. The cut goes into effect in February and will continue until June at which point, a salary decision will be made depending  on how the company is performing. It should be noted that Satoru Iwata took the same action back in 2011 when the 3DS was struggling to gain traction and we all know how that turned out. 

Nintendo has earned its fan loyalty in many ways and honorable business practices such as this speaks volumes about their integrity. It's entirely possible we may see a turnaround for the Wii U in 2014 similar to the 3DS and leadership like Mr. Iwata's will help make that possible.

Monday, January 27, 2014

The Rageaholic Reviews Splinter Cell: Blacklist

Splinter Cell: Blacklist Review Direct Link

The 10 Biggest Wii U Games Of 2014!

As bad as the mainstream media made out the Wii U's first year, the simple truth is that Nintendo's first HD console actually had a pretty good year in 2013 despite a rocky first half. As discussed before, the first half of 2013 and the drought of software had more to do with 3rd parties suddenly bailing on the Big N than anything else. This situation and the negative media backlash against Nintendo tried to sour fans against the machine but the Wii U finished 2013 with a surprisingly strong library of games (indie titles were a major bright spot). While the masses mindlessly threw money at the latest Sony and Microsoft consoles with nothing to really play on them, few can deny that the Wii U's library trumped both of those consoles in terms of games (especially in the first party software!).

Now that the 3rd parties have made their intentions clear in regards to Nintendo, the legendary company is entering 2014 with a strong first party catalog of games and an army of indie developers to help fortify the systems library. Nintendo Life has put together a video which highlights some of the biggest titles coming to the machine in 2014 and the reasons to own a Wii U are growing by the day. It should be noted that the list is based solely on known games announced by Nintendo and its partners in 2013. Expect the Big N to surprise fans with some major announcements throughout the year. Nintendo is often at its best during the worst of times for their consoles. Enjoy!

Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate Getting English Release In 2015

The Monster Hunter series has quickly become a notable third party exclusive series for Nintendo platforms over the last few years. In Japan, the series is amazingly successful selling millions of copies with each new game but struggled a bit in America until the release of Monster Hunter Tri on the Nintendo Wii which garnered the series a number of new fans. The 3DS and Wii U release of Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate in 2013 has shown Capcom that there is further interest for the series in the states.

Fans have been begging Capcom for an english language version of last years Monster Hunter 4 for 3DS but the company remained silent for quite a while. With the recent announcement of Monster Hunter 4G coming to Japan this fall, Capcom also confirmed that this same game will also see release in the west in "Early 2015" as Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate. Right now, the game is only confirmed for 3DS but there may be a chance for a Wii U version like Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate.


Saturday, January 25, 2014

Amazing Violin Cover Of Gerudo Valley

The Gerudo Valley theme from Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time is one of the best musical compositions from the entire Zelda series and is a fan favorite for covers and remixes. Taylor Davis is a talented violin player who has a history of covering themes from both movies and video games. She recently posted a music video on her YouTube channel in promotion of her latest album titled Melodies of Hyrule: Music from the Legend of Zelda. The song is an excellent rendition of the Gerudo Valley theme complete with a location shoot, costume and game graphics overlay. It's a must listen for any Zelda fan and I urge you to visit her site and check out her other work. She has multiple albums available to purchase in both digital and physical disc formats. Enjoy!

Yoshi's New Island - It's A Shell Of A Time Trailer

Yoshi's New Island Trailer Direct Link

Friday, January 24, 2014

Moon Chronicles Officially Announced For 3DS!

Renegade Kid announced today their latest game for the 3DS eShop and it is Moon Chronicles, both a remake of the DS original and a continuation of the story. Using their technical prowess, Moon Chronicles is running in a brand new first person engine built for the 3DS that runs at an impressive 60fps with 3D on or off (For those who've played the recent Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds which runs at 60fps, you know how smooth the gameplay is at this high frame rate). Moon Chronicles will also support both touch screen aiming like the original as well as the Circle Pad Pro peripheral for those who prefer twin stick gameplay. This game will also be the first FPS on the 3DS.

Taking inspiration from TV shows like Lost, Moon Chronicles will tell its story over the course of a series of episodes with episode 1 arriving in Spring 2014. The additional episodes will be released as DLC through the rest of the year. It's an interesting approach that is designed to create anticipation for the next episode. Here is a breakdown of the episode structure and pricing:
  • Episode 1: $8.99 (contains chapters 1-4 + 6 VR Missions: about 4 hours of gameplay)
  • Episode 2: $1.99 (contains chapters 5-8: about 2 hours of gameplay)
  • Episode 3: $1.99 (contains chapters 9-12: about 2 hours of gameplay)
  • Episode 4: $1.99 (contains chapters 13-16: about 2 hours of gameplay)
The 4 episodes which will be collectively known as "Season One" are a complete remake of the original Moon from the Nintendo DS. Provided this design is successful, we will actually see brand new episodes in "Season Two" and beyond which would like be released in 2015. Considering how good the original game is and how many players missed it in its original release, Moon Chronicles will make an excellent addition to the 3DS library. Renegade Kid has even included a QR Code which can be scanned with you 3DS so you can view a few screenshots in full 3D.

Fans of the Metroid Prime series should take notice of this game considering how similar it is in terms of atmosphere and gameplay. It should also be noted that this games release and episode structure will be used again by Renegade Kid with their upcoming Survival Horror FPS known as Cult County which can be viewed here. Enjoy!


Thursday, January 23, 2014

Shovel Knight Goes Alpha And Receives New Trailer To Celebrate!

The Wii U has become a powerhouse for indie games with new titles hitting the system every month. Many of those titles were born from successful Kickstarter campaigns proving the viability of the crowdfunding service. One noteworthy success story is Shovel Knight, a retro action adventure title that plays like a mix of NES classics Mega Man and Duck Tales with a touch of Zelda 2. The games developer, Yacht Club Games, has recently revealed that the game has entered its Alpha stage which means that everything is in the game and it is up and running. This is great news for both Wii U and 3DS owners as the game is currently planned for a March 31st release for both machines as well as PC. To celebrate the games development milestone and release date, Yacht Club Games has put together a new trailer which shows off just how sweet this game will be. Enjoy!

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

A Proper Reaction To "Bad News" About Nintendo!

Nintendo and negative press seem to go hand in hand in the current console generation. While many claim its because the Wii U is a bad system or not "next-gen", the truth of the matter is that negative press towards Nintendo has become easy click bait for lazy journalists. Combine this fact with the mainstream video game industry's vested interest in seeing Nintendo become a third party and it becomes easy to see why this is happening.

Fortunately there are fans out there who see through the bullshit and focus on what's important; the games. One of those fans is YouTuber Andrew Eisen who has been responsible for some rather entertaining Nintendo focused videos. His latest video perfectly illustrates where a Gamer's head should be in relation to the Wii U. Put simply, the Wii U is a great system that deserves to succeed as much as the PS4 and XBOne. If you like the games on Wii U, get the system and enjoy. If you don't, get one of the other systems and enjoy them but please don't feed into the mainstream media and its agenda. Enjoy!

Direct Link

Monday, January 20, 2014

Treon's Game Of The Week - Maldita Castilla

  Maldita Castilla is an old school arcade game that gets its inspiration from the Ghost'n'Goblins series among many other arcade hits. Fortunately while the game gets its inspiration from those games, it is a bit more forgiving as an actual gameplay experience choosing to reward skillful play instead of brutally punishing its audience. Developed over the course of 20 months by Locomalito Games, Maldita Castilla (Cursed/damn Castile) gets things so right, you'll swear this thing existed back in the 80's as an actual arcade cabinet. What really makes the game special is the rock solid gameplay, beautiful sprite graphics and stunning arcade sound that is sure to please arcade audio purists. While the game has been out since 2012, I only recently had the pleasure of playing this game on the OUYA and it is a must have for any arcade fan. The best news is the fact that the game is 100% FREE and available for Linux, Windows and OUYA (I highly recommend this for the criminally underrated indie console). Enjoy!

Gorilla Wayfare Shows The Benefits Of Donkey Kong Barrel Travel

Gorilla Wayfare Direct Link

Shadow Of The Eternals Is Far From Dead!

The long awaited Eternal Darkness sequel, Shadow of the Eternals, has been confirmed to be very much alive despite rumors to the contrary. After a couple failed crowd funding campaigns, Precursor Games has had to quietly put the game on the back burner while they work on other projects and figure out how to get the game made. Precursor Games Social Manager Phil Haymes has told fans via the official forums that Shadow of the Eternals is still alive but fans shouldn’t expect any major news anytime soon.
“We’ll be continuing to upgrade and keep the forums running and we’re taking a look at where the SOTE project is at, potential options and directions for the future as well as going over lessons learned from the campaigns.”
“We very much intend to keep the project alive and get back to production but please understand that there probably won’t be any major news or update for a while yet. We’ve got a lot of work ahead to understand the options available to us going forward and to do the best thing by the game.”
This is harsh news for fans who have waited well over 10 years for a follow up to the stunning Eternal Darkness but still gives hope for the sequel. Personally, I hope Nintendo will take greater notice of the game and step in to fund its production in exchange for exclusive Wii U rights as the game could join the ranks of Bayonetta 2 as a real showpiece for the system. Considering that the team was looking for less than 2 million to complete the project, it would be a cheap and easy addition to the system. What do you think should be done with the game? Please share in the comments section below.


Saturday, January 18, 2014

The Secret Connected World Of Mario Kart: Double Dash

Mario Kart: DD Secret Connected World Direct Link

The Empire Smashes Back In Super Smash Wars 2!

YouTube filmmaker James Farr has just released the latest episode in his brilliant Super Smash Wars series which retells the original Star Wars trilogy with the Nintendo universe (plus a couple notable third party cameos). The Empire Smashes Back does an amazing job of creating an entertaining Nintendo parody of the best Star Wars movie which is overflowing with fan service. One of the highlights is the Battle of Hoth re-imagined with Ocarina of Times Gerudo Valley theme. As with the previous chapter, this is a must watch for any Nintendo or Star Wars fan. Enjoy!

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Treon's Game Of The Week - Ripple Dot Zero

Indie games have literally exploded over the last year which has been great for gamer's of all types. With this boom, players are seeing every old genre revisited with brand new games that make the old new again. Ripple Dot Zero is a game that manages to recapture the feel of many older Sega Genesis classics such as Sonic and Vectorman. The game stars an anthropomorphic penguin who runs, jumps and blasts his way through a variety of levels to a rather sweet soundtrack. It's that perfect type of platform fun that made the 16-bit era so memorable and it's 100% Free (something to cherish in this new era of PS4's and XBOne's which try to nickle and dime you with expensive in game transactions). The game is not going to reinvent the platforming wheel but if you want to have some quick nostalgic fun, give Ripple Dot Zero a try. Enjoy!

Renegade Kid May Be Reviving Moon For The 3DS

Indie developer Renegade Kid has made a name for itself as a creative, technically impressive developer and major supporter of Nintendo and in return, fans have shown them a lot of love. Company founder Jools Watsham has also proven to be a man for the fans with his positive attitude and supportive stance of the Big N even going so far to state that Renegade Kid would be happy to become part of Nintendo if given the chance. Their technical prowess is evident in their amazing (and highly underrated) Dementium series as well as the atmospheric Nintendo DS first person adventure, Moon.

For those who haven't played Moon, you are missing one of the best first person games on the original DS. The game managed to take the style and feel of the Metroid Prime series and deliver a claustrophobic and original adventure that rivaled Nintendo's own Metroid Prime Hunters on DS. The game was published by Mastiff back in 2009 with an agreement that allowed them to hold the IP rights for 5 years. Those 5 years have lapsed and and Renegade Kid now has 100% ownership of their game which is great news for fans of the title. The company has hinted at a big FPS announcement for the 3DS coming soon and with the recent "Moon Chronicles" trademark by RK, odds are high that we will see this turn into a new franchise for Nintendo owners. When you consider that Nintendo is unlikely to return to first person Metroid for some time, Moon will be a perfect fit for those fans primed to explore in first person again. If you have a 3DS, grab a copy of Moon and enjoy (Thank you Nintendo for backwards compatibility!). Here is a video review for those who missed this gem.

Club Nintendo January Rewards Update

Nintendo has updated their downloadable Club Nintendo rewards for January and for the remainder of the month they are offering 4 titles across 3 systems (Wii games can be used on Wii U)The expiration date for this offer is now February 9 and the price is between 100-200 coins for each title. Be sure to check back February 10 for the next reward update.

F-Zero - Wii U eShop
200 Coins (Available Until February 9)

1080 SnowboardingWii Virtual Console
200 Coins (Available Until February 9)

Game & Watch Mario's Cement Factory - 3DS eShop
100 Coins (Available Until February 9)

Spin Six 3DS eShop
150 Coins (Available Until February 9)

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Next Level Games Only Making Nintendo Games Now

While many fans look at Nintendo and think that they alone provide content for their systems, few realize that the Big N has a stable of talented development studios who help them. In some cases, they are owned by Nintendo (such as Retro Studios) but there are many second-party studios which are overseen by Nintendo but remain their own entity (this was the situation with RARE back in the N64 days). This has been a rather smart strategy as it keeps their games from feeling to similar while keeping their internal development teams from overextending themselves. These studios are often given a specific franchise which plays to the strengths of the development team and in some cases, they are even given the responsibility of crafting a brand new franchise.

One noteworthy studio which has had a long history with Nintendo is Next Level Games who have been responsible for many excellent titles such as the Mario Strikers series, the Punch-Out!! reboot for Wii and the recent Luigi's Mansion: Dark Moon for 3DS which was a huge hit. In a bit of good news for fans of the studio, Next Level Games Co-founder Jason Carr has recently stated:
"We are doing only Nintendo products now" 
“We’re super happy with our relationship with Nintendo. There’s no reason to look anywhere else. They keep giving us better and better IP to work with, and as long as we do our job and make good games for them there’s no reason for us to venture out. 
“There are a lot of benefits to working with a first party. Nintendo’s great. They give you the time to make they games good. They’ve done really well — the Wii’s done really well, the DS has done really well, the Wii U is not the strongest start but we trust that they’ll come up with something to get it going, and the 3DS was a blast to work on.”
This is great news and with the industry feeling the pain of the ever failing economy, I am sure more second-party studios will begin to take a similar approach. The truth is that Nintendo focuses on their games more than anything and in return, those game tend to yield solid (if not excellent) sales. Game developers need a certain level of security and Nintendo is happy to extend their support to those companies who help them.


The Rageaholic Rants On The Puzzling Success Of The Next-Gen Consoles

The PS4 and XBOne have sold a perplexing number of consoles since their launches in November when you consider what the machines currently have to offer. It's not uncommon for a new generation of video game consoles to be successful but the sales are attributed to a solid launch library (Halo on Xbox, Mario on Nintendo, Sonic on Sega, etc.). Outside of the PS2 (which was a combination of hype and timing for DVD adoption) most consoles are sold on their software merits at launch and few can deny that the respective launches of these 2 new machines have been without any real compelling software. These machines currently have nothing major to offer outside of being a status symbol so I wonder what has caused so many people to throw their hard earned cash at these boxes? Apparently I am not the only one as The Rageaholic (a.k.a. xRazorFistx) has posed a similar question in his most recent rant. Please comment below if you have an answer to this situation. Enjoy!

Nintendo Is Currently Valued Higher Than Sony!

"Nintendo is doomed!" This is a quote which has constantly been heard by Nintendo fans over the last year. The grossly misinformed mainstream gaming press and hardcore gaming meatheads have done nothing but berate the longtime company operating on the idea that if they say something enough, it will come true. This of course is not the case as it was recently revealed that Nintendo holds a higher market value than all of Sony combined. Business markets currently have Sony's market capitalization at $17.7 billion while the total value of all Nintendo shares sit at $18.4 billion.

This news is a bit sobering when you consider that Sony's number includes not only the PlayStation business but also things such as the companies movies, music and computer divisions. Nintendo's strong numbers come from their continued dominance of the handheld market with the 3DS (remember when people were saying the 3DS was a failure?), the Wii U's upswing over the holiday's and the announcement of China's console ban removal. It's important to remember that Nintendo does not operate like other companies (thankfully) and their brands will maintain the company through even the worst of times because they focus on the games and not pure profit.


Tuesday, January 7, 2014

UnEpic Set To Raid The Wii U eShop Next Week!

The Metroidvania RPG hybrid known as UnEpic has finally been approved for the eShop which is sure to please Wii U owners looking for a deep exploration heavy RPG experience (a perfect fit for those cold winter days!). UnEpic made its debut on computers a couple years ago but the Wii U release marks its first home console release and it's a perfect fit for Nintendo's HD console due to the games many menus and plethora of item management which is handled via the Wii U Gamepad. The game features a rather unique tale of a modern day gamer playing D&D with his friends when the lights go out and he finds himself transported to the dungeons of UnEpic. Publisher EnjoyUp just announced via Twitter that the game was approved by Nintendo and is planning to release the game this month with January 16, 2014 slated as the current release date (gotta love the eShop and its rather quick turnaround for new releases). Wii U owners looking for a deep RPG experience with a heavy emphasis on Metroidvania style exploration should keep an eye on this game. I am including a review for the PC version of the game to give fans a better idea of the full experience. Enjoy!

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Zelda Themed Short Film To Get Feature Length Adaptation

In late 2012, a rather thought provoking and emotional short film titled ESCAPE was released showing the truly deep connection between a young gamer and her favorite game, The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess. The film illustrates the power of video games and their unique ability to allow the player to escape from or deal with the often harsh realities of life. Lead actress Bella Porter gives an emotive performance that is sure to strike a chord with just about any gamer with a heart. The film has been quite successful being featured on CNET, IGN and Destructoid as well as winning an award at the Asian Film Festival of Dallas 2012. Please be warned, the film deals with difficult themes such as psychological bullying and includes some swearing and a brief scene of simulated violence.
Writer/Director Kennedy Baruch has recently announced his plans to expand ESCAPE into a feature length film which will be titled PRINCESS IN ANOTHER CASTLE. The film will be set in 1996 and focus on the main character seeking solace in classic NES games such as Zelda, TMNT II: The Arcade Game and Mother (the NES prequel to EarthBound which never saw a US release). Mother's inclusion is the result of some artistic license by the filmmaker due to the games themes which are quite relevant to the core story. Honestly, films like this are needed to illustrate the real effects of video games and why their current role as media scapegoat for violence is so grossly inaccurate. Enjoy the following announcement trailer and be sure to share ESCAPE and show your support.

Friday, January 3, 2014

Ys V Finally Sees An English Language Version

The excellent Ys series (pronounced "eese") is hugely popular in Japan yet is largely ignored in North America having managed to only garner a small cult following through its fragmented english language release across a variety of systems. Ys is the type of series that requires a prior knowledge and actual effort to find yet is extremely rewarding to those who put forth the effort. Despite this difficulty and random release history, a surprisingly large number of the games in the series have made their way to US shores in one form or another. XSEED Games deserves a special thank you from fans due to their consistent US release of the Ys series across Steam and Sony Handhelds over the last few years.

Unfortunately, the fifth entry titled "Ys V-Kefin, Lost City of Sand" has been the one title without any official English language release. Thanks to the fan translators at Aeon Genesis, that all changes due to a translation patch just released for the overlooked action adventure title which originally came out in 1995 on the Super Famicom (Japan's named for the Super Nintendo). The patch is available at the Aeon Genesis website but will require the ROM in order to work. Since ROM downloading has a questionable legal history, I will leave you to Google and your own resources to easily find the file. Enjoy!

Thursday, January 2, 2014

Rap Song Perfectly Illustrates The Corruption Of YouTube

YouTube has quickly become a major source of reviews, news and content for those in the gaming community. Hell, there are a ton of people who make a living from their gaming content and the millions of subscribers who support them. Unfortunately it has become apparent that the steady decay of America has spread to this service which once stood for bringing people together and free speech. The YouTube of today and the YouTube of 6 years ago are very different beasts with money and corruption now dictating how the service can "screw the little guy" and how the behemoth can do so quite illegally.

This whole situation has been building for a couple years but absolutely exploded last month as both minor and major YouTubers were hit with thousands of unverified content claims effectively robbing them of their ad revenue which many depend on for their livelihood. The full ramifications of this will echo through 2014 and could potentially change the face of the gaming community for years to come as many look for alternatives to YouTube as well as ways to "fight the man". Unfortunately there are few legal means to fight the beast as the laws for protecting citizens have slowly been destroyed over the last decade while laws protecting corporations have grown by leaps and bounds over the same period (All the result of a society made purposely uneducated through a broken education system).

On a positive note, there are people fighting back in their own unique way. YouTuber Dan Bull has crafted a rather brilliant rap titled Fuck Content ID which illustrates how bad the whole situation has become. While some may dismiss this whole situation as trivial, the reality couldn't be more serious as the internet is the last source of truly free speech and corporations have literally been waging war on it attempting to regulate and control the flow of information. Watch it, Share it, Get educated and Join the fight!