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Destructoid Discusses!

Destructoid discusses Codename: NGP, the PSP successor

Jan 27 // Jim Sterling
Nick Chester: Yeah. So... about that new PlayStation handheld?  Jim Sterling: Hooboy, it sure is handheld! Matthew Razak: That fancy Portable Next Generation is pretty big. Does it remind anyone else of a Game Gear? Chester: I don't know what it reminds me of, because I'm still trying to wade through all of the bullshit buzzwords Sony dropped in its press release on the thing. Seriously, it was just a bunch of nonsense. Also, call me when Sony announces that there will be two or three models, and the least expensive of them will cost $400. And they'll try to convince us that's a good deal.  Conrad Zimmerman: I expect it'll have the same battery life as the Game Gear. With the quad-core processor draining shit, people aren't going to be able to use all of those newfangled wireless capabilities for very long. Sterling: It's cool, and if they did a proper Killzone FPS on it, I'd spunk up. But Sony burned me several times with the first PSP so I am going to go into this very warily.  Right now, it's the PlayStation Suite that I'm most excited for. Sony content on my Android? Yes plz! Zimmerman: Yeah, that's what I've been saying is going to be the real coup of this event. The behemoth that is Sony finally lumbering into the mobile space not only with hardware but a platform-agnostic software framework? That's the story that will have far greater impact than the PSP2. Chester: If you expect any of that shit to run properly on your device, you're out of your mind. Also, good luck playing any PS1 game with a touch screen. Sterling: "Rawr rawr I'm Nick Chester!" That's my impression of you in this discussion, Nick Chester. Chester: Whatever. You have to be realistic. It looks impressive, but so did the PSP when it was announced six years ago or whatever. And look where that landed us. It's clear there's a lot of high end tech in this thing, but what does that mean for games outside of "Hey, it's a PS3 in your hand!" That's great, but coming from someone who plays his handhelds on his couch or in bed... who cares? If you want a new Killzone, you've got it -- it's on your TV. I know how much you travel and commute, Jim: you don't. Why do you care?  This thing is also going to cost a million dollars, and we all know it. Sony can't reasonably price hardware. On the Android thing -- seriously, let's get real here. The hardware wasn't designed for games. I have what's considered a "high end" Android phone with the EVO 4G, and the motherfucker CHUGS when I'm playing Fruit Ninja sometimes. FRUIT NINJA. Sterling: I'm fucking around, Nick. I actually agree with you on a lot of points. Even when I do commute, I usually listen to music more than I play games. But I do like handheld games, so I don't know what's up there.  In any case, I am tentatively eager to see what this thing can do, but I am definitely staying realistic. The PSPgo and PlayStation Move killed my faith in Sony products, at least from an early adoption standpoint. I don't want to drop another several hundred dollars on something that won't be supported, or have a terrible infrastructure. I'm adopting a wait-and-see approach, but I don't want to be bratty and dump on what does look like a cool bit of tech. As far as PS Suite goes, I'm still waiting to see. I am excited about that. I understand touch screens aren't great for traditional games, but some notable innovations have come from it. Gameloft have made games work on the iOS that I would've thought impossible, so we'll see. Sure, controls will be compromised, but I anticipate that at least a few Suite games will work surprisingly well. Jonathan Holmes: That's why I think the PS Phone (or Xpedia, or whatever it's called) will be a lot of fun. Good controls on phone games. I wanted that. That might be my first smart phone. Razak: I feel like Sony is making the exact same mistakes it made with the PS3 and PSP here. Over powered, but nothing that catches people's attention. It'll sit on shelves much the same way, I fear.However, the Suite and Phone could mean big things. I could see those taking off much faster as long as they work. Sterling: Oh yeah Matt, I agree there. What we have with the 3DS vs. NGP is almost an exact rehash of the DS vs. PSP battle. The technically inferior system at a cheap price with a quirky, attention-grabbing gimmick versus raw, expensive power. With the mass market, cheap n' quirky beats expensive and powerful. That's one area where Sony is totally out of touch. It doesn't take an analyst to predict that the 3DS will trounce the NGP. Chester: My biggest issue with the PS Suite stuff is simply hardware. I'd say that a large percentage of Android phones out there can't even handle some of the games and content being pushed out there right now. Look at the release of Trendy's Dungeon Defenders, the Unreal Engine-powered game -- most folks are having trouble playing that on their hardware because it wasn't designed to support something that powerful. I can't play it on my EVO, and I haven't even tried because of the poor comments from EVO users the game has been getting. I don't expect most phones on the market right now to be able to play PS One games, and I put myself in that camp of users. Holmes: So wait, the NGP has a "rear" touch pad? Am I missing something here?Isn't that like having your ass where your face should be? Chester: See, I didn't even know that, that's how bogged down with specs and features this thing is. It's like everything and the kitchen sink was put into this handheld, and it's just completely overwhelming to the point where I can't seem to care. WTF am I going to do with a rear touch pad? Sterling: Rub your dick against it while playing. Zimmerman: The rear touchpad thing has been in the rumors since there were rumors. It's so you can operate the touchpad without blocking your screen, or something.  Sounds awkward to me, but I can see possible applications. Holmes: They should have just copied the DS feature-for-feature, but improved on them. Sony has never had good original ideas hardware and interface-wise, but they are awesome at taking other people's ideas and making the better. Razak: People aren't going to "get" the rear touch-pad either. I mean, gamers will, but you run out to the general public and go look at this cool rear touch pad and they're going to look at you quizzically and then start tapping their stylus on their 3DS some more. It feels to me like the kind of tech that's cool and innovative, but no one picks up on because it just doesn't catch. It could also suck very easily for many, many reasons. Zimmerman: But, like I was saying the other day, I don't know that the processing capability is going to be as much of a concern as time goes on. 4G is some pretty fast shit, though it needs standardization. With the rate at which mobile broadband is improving, combined with cloud computing, I don't think it's unrealistic to expect a service like OnLive could become a distribution venue for more powerful mobile game. PS Suite therefore allows Sony to lay the groundwork for a long-term strategy in mobile gaming. If it works as a platform-agnostic system and allows Sony to develop for any of the platforms, that's highly valuable and could pull the rug out from under everybody in the end. Sterling: Regarding the touchpad, it seems more for showing off than for anything practical. I *am* a gamer and I don't get it. I don't know if my brain will comprehend anything more complicated than "rub the back of the system randomly to make stuff happen." Anything more complicated and I don't think I'll be able to retain it.  Not to mention, it's a handheld -- my hands are back there, holding the system up. I hope that won't screw a game up. Chester: I'm firmly in the camp that over the next ten years, we'll be playing everything from the cloud, OnLive or Gaikai style. But that has nothing to do with Sony's current Android offerings, which rely on hardware. Whether it lays the foundation for Sony's future plans in the space remains to be seen, but PS Suite as it stands doesn't do anything for me, because I'm positive my hardware won't play nice with it. Colette Bennett: I don't care what it does. I'm not paying $400 for a portable gaming device no matter what. Josh Tolentino: I'm with Colette in that I won't pay $400, but if I heard the event correctly, didn't they say that NGP would be backwards-compatible with the downloadable PSP games?  I know a lot of you don't care about the PSP's software lineup, but that's good news to me. The PSP has some amazing games, and if I can have at least some level of access to those at some point, it's big plus for me. Bennett: That is a plus for me too -- I like the PSP library a lot, esp RPGs....but I don't need a portable PS3 with shitty battery life, cause I already own a PS3 that I can plug in =/ Razak: The power of the PS3 bragging point does absolutely nothing for me, nor will it for most consumers who pick up a portable gaming system to have quick fun. I play my DS and PSP as serious gaming systems, but the entire design around this seems to ignore the fact that most people don't. Then again, if they're hoping to corner some iPad market with the larger screen and more social networking then maybe that could work. However, the marketing would have to go in a completely different direction to hook in that crowd. Holmes: Josh, I like Backwards compatibility too, but I own a crap load of UMDs. No UMD compatibility means no real backwards compatibility, at least for me. I'm sure that the Japanese audience will be thinking the same thing. UMDs sell by the truckloads there. I'm not so sure they huge Japanese PSP audience is going to be too keen on dropping their huge library of UMD games just to jump ship to the NGP. In a way, I think it all depends on who gets the first new portable Monster Hunter. If it's the 3DS, then the NGP is screwed in Japan, at least initially. If it's the NGP, they'll probably do alright. My bet is on the 3DS though. I don't see 3rd parties supporting the NGP right away, largely due to development costs. That's just me guessing that the NGP game development will cost like PS3/360 games, and not Wii/PSP/3DS games. Chester: I agree -- the fact that it can push PlayStation 3 visuals or whatever is impressive, and in action I'm sure I'll appreciate it, but that's not something that factors in for me when playing portable games. If Plants vs. Zombies were rendered using the Unreal Engine and looked as impressive technically as Infinity Blade, I don't think that would change how I felt about the game. If I'm going to have to sacrifice things like my hard-earned dollars, battery life, and load times -- things that are really important to me in portable games -- then I'm not interested in a portable PS3.  Also on that note, if simply having that kind of power just means folks are going to try to make console experiences on a handheld, that's disappointing. I'm interested in playing a new Uncharted adventure, regardless of what platform its on, this is true. But if it's just a game that tries to mimic the look and feel of its console big brothers on a handheld, I'd much prefer to be playing that game sitting on my couch. Tolentino: Price point concerns aside, I like to look at the PSP platform from the perspective of your average Japanese Monster Hunter player, even if it's not necessarily relevant to what I do every day as a person with near-constant access to a powerful gaming PC and PS3. That's important because Monster Hunter and their ilk are basically what saved the platform years ago and continue to prop it up today. So what does the NGP have to offer the Monster Hunter player? It offers the Monster Hunter player the promise that they can play the next Monster Hunter game and feel like they're not missing out on what the game might be if it were on a home console. Basically, what I see is a handheld that, gets handheld gaming out of its technological ghetto. We're always talking about the whole graphical arms race and how gamers are too obsessed with it, and one of the results of that obsession is a disregard of handheld games because of their technical inferiority, like the way a lot of people dismissed Valkyria Chronicles II because it was on the PSP, and couldn't handle the beautiful art style. With the NGP we're closer than ever to being able to emulate a home console gameplay experience in a handheld. True, that was kind of the supposed situation with the PSP way back when, but with the extra analog stick, the (apparently) better integrated online stuff, and so on, the transition is closer to 1:1 than it was then. So to offer a point on Jonathan's that who-gets-the-first-Monster-Hunter-game-idea, I would much rather play a Monster Hunter game where I can control the camera with the right stick. Wait, does the 3DS have a right stick? Oops. And as for doing something different, who knows what they can do with those touchpads. I imagine with some (not inconsiderable) reworking, a game with the 3DS gimmick (sans 3D) could be made to work with the NGP. It's all up in the air for me at this point. Holmes: No, you're right Josh, the 3DS doesn't have a right stick. Monster Hunter would definitely control better on the NGP. That said, my bet is still on the next Monster Hunter coming to the 3DS, for the 3D, for the nearly-guaranteed massive global install base, and because I'm guessing 3DS games will be cheaper to develop for. To speak to Nick and Matt's points, the 3DS is looking to offer something different than just "a home console experience in your hand", while the NGP that seems to be exactly what the NGP is going for. I know that personally, I want to own them both, but I'm not guessing most people will feel that way. Chester: What I got from what you just said, Josh, is that it comes down to games. And that's very true, to a point. It comes down to games like Monster Hunter in Japan, for sure. The PSP had a lot of great software for gamers like yourself, like Colette, like Dale... it was a very RPG, Japanese-centric platform, and that's great. Not great for me, and not great for North American gamers (which is maybe why it never truly seemed to take off in the states). It's going to come down to software, but not only that, it's going to come down to unique software. At least for me.  The the idea of Call of Duty on a handheld really isn't doing anything for me, honestly. But let's think about something that might... a portable Team Ico game. That sounds great, right? But what about this particular game is going to make me want to play it on a portable, over something like the PS3? Is it just going to be Shadow of the Colossus on a portable? People would go nuts over that idea, but when you stop and think about it, what's the point?  Right now, it's too early to say what developers have in store for this thing. I feel like I'm too hung up on the thing's power and its specs -- Sony is pushing that a lot. It's the "arms race," like you said, Josh. Sony always gets into this game, coming out of the gate with untouchable hardware that it hopes will wow everyone into throwing dollars their way. It's easy to get excited about what a platform CAN do, and this NGP certainly looks capable of doing everything other portables can do and maybe even better. But what it comes down to, for me, is what it WILL do. Bennett: I just don't think gamers that want the cutting edge of what's new in games want to play it on a small screen, no matter how big said screen may be for its size. I think they'd rather play that game on a big screen. Maybe I am wrong, I don't know, but I think of my handheld gaming experiences and my console ones in completely different terms. Julio Capote: Our image server seems to have gone down, it's back up now. Chester: I can't believe we hijacked a tech issue thread with game discussion. Bennett: I can.
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In the dead of night, Sony lifted the lid on the long-awaited PSP successor, a system codenamed Next Generation Portable. In addition to this, it also revealed a cross-platform mobile gaming service, the PlayStation Suite.&nb...

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We came. We played. We drank. We hurt. After a weekend of proper PAX debauchery there's no better way to wind down the last day than on bean bags, comfortably nerd-piled with people that frequently shower.  In the spiri...

Destructoid Discusses: 3D at E3 2010

Jun 24 // Dale North
Dale North: I didn't go in expecting to love 3D, but I came out...still not caring much for 3D. It's not like it isn't cool; it just seems unnecessary. It seemed unnecessary for just about everything I saw on the show floor. Save for the 3DS. I'll get to that. Sony had a lot to show in both their press conference and in my booth tour. The problem is that just about all of it had little to no effect on me. The only real exception was the new MotorStorm Apocalypse, which actually turned out to be so good that it should be on the shortlist of things with which to show off 3D display tech. But, even then, as cool as people and fires and falling buildings looked in 3D, I'm sure the game would be just as fun without all of the 3D. It was always a good racing game series. The stuff added on just seemed like excessive special effects. To me, the 3D video reminds me a lot of the push they had for surround sound music releases a few years back. Listening to music over 5 channels in surround was neat, but no one felt like they needed it. The game industry has yet to show me why I need 3D. Well, hold on. "The 3DS looks like 3D done right." By their design, 3D isn't required. It's a really neat effect that you can slide on or off at your leisure. I bet a lot of thought went into that. I thought that all of Nintendo's examples of 3D were so pronounced that it made some of the higher-resolution PS3 games look bad in comparison. Even as good as these demos looked, I still don't feel like I "need" 3D. I'll take it on a slider, though. That'll be fun for awhile. Benjamin PerLee: Well, Dale, in comparison, I came into E3 really looking forward to the 3D tech with the 3DS, and I wasn't disappointed at all. Part of the problem with 3D for consumers is that there is no standard, as every major tech company is releasing some new format of technology that, while interesting, is a competing format. Sony, the masters at this method of polarizing the market with inane formats, is doing it again. Nintendo, in contrast, presents one format, one standard, one norm that developers can work with. From a development standpoint, this is a dream. And it's so smartly designed. Want to share the game with a friend? Drop the 3D slider, and it's visible from a wider (or any) angle. Color me impressed. And what we were shown proves that Nintendo is doing 3D right. The technology is solid, it works, and it's based on a powerful little platform that looks like it can do a lot, 3D or otherwise. I mean, you look at that insane little augmented reality tech demo, the target practice one, where you, the holder of the 3DS, watches as a real-life piece of paper in front of you morphs into warbly mounds or dragons that spit fireballs that, you, the holder of the 3DS, has to dodge in real life. It's crazy, and almost impossible to describe without playing it in real life. Of course, that's the biggest problem with 3D: it's impossible to recreate without actually experiencing it firsthand. There's going to have to be some special evangelizing with this one. Jonathan Ross: I didn't actually attend E3, so I can't speak to hands-on experiences.I will say I have no idea what Sony is trying to pull. Even if I was super-interested in 3D gaming, which I'm not, there is no way I would spend $4,000-6,000 for a special TV when 90% of what I'd be doing with it would just be standard HD. Once 3D TVs see price drops and (if?) the format becomes standard, I'll care more about 3D gaming. The 3DS really excites me, but not so much for the 3D aspect rather than the game lineup that's already been announced. Dale pretty much articulated my thoughts on that already, so assume I feel the same way as Dale. Of course, I didn't get hands on with the 3DS or Sony's stuff, so maybe it'll blow me away when I actually see it. Samit Sarkar: To Jonathan's point, you don't actually have to spend nearly that much -- it's a common misconception. Do 3D-ready TVs cost much more than standard HDTVs? Yes. But you can get them for under $2,000 at this point (and right now, we're in the early adopter stage anyway). PerLee: Well, I'd rather drop $300 for a handheld, working right from the box, 3DS with some solid tech than $2000 for a 3D set up that requires a bunch of glasses. Sarkar: Oh, totally. I think Sony's 3D push is folly as well -- I just get annoyed when I see people everywhere saying, "OMG 3D TVs COST EIGHT BILLION DOLLARS." Nick Chester: You can't discount the cost, especially when many folks have just recently upgraded to HDTVs. In fact, it's possible to get "decent" HDTVs for far less than you ever could before, even in the $500 range... sometimes even cheaper. But forget the cost for a second -- and I think this has already been touched on -- I'm not sold on the idea that I need 3D to enjoy experiences I already love. And I'm not entirely on board with the fact that it would immerse me in experiences that I don't currently enjoy. I played or saw a number of games in 3D at E3 or prior: Killzone 3, Crysis 2, Gran Turismo 4, and even Gears of War 2. With all of them, the 3D experience worked fairly well; I was able to perceive that extra depth, the trick that my eye was seeing three dimensions. It's neat, for sure. But you know what? After five or ten minutes of playing the game, that "neat" factor subsided; I was simply playing the game as I always had. I had completely forgotten that I was playing it in 3D. As for the 3DS, it's a neat trick and impressive technology. No glasses! We hate glasses. You always hear people saying, "I don't want to wear those stupid glasses." Now you don't have to. But again, back to my point that I haven't seen or played anything that makes me think I'll want to be playing games in 3D. Kid Icarus Uprising looks great running in 3D on the 3DS; it also looks great not running in 3D. And considering the strain it was taking on my eyes (I found my eyes almost crossing after a minute or two of use if I focused too hard on the 3D), I have a feeling I'll be playing 3DS games with that 3D slider turned way down. To off. And I'm pretty sure I won't be alone. Jonathan Holmes: My HDTV cost less than $400. As someone who's generally blind to the joys of high definition, I went to the store looking to buy the cheapest 32-inch (or larger) TV I could get. This was it. As for 3D, I see it as the new motion control: the new thing to get non-gamers interested in gaming. It's not necessary to enjoying most games, and it can be a bit distracting at times. It's a cool magic trick, and I could see how people might buy a 3DS for the 3D tech, and/or how rich-as-fuck PS3 owners might play as many of their games in 3D as they can. As for me, it's probably going to be slider-off 3DS fun most of the time. There was one 3DS demo I played where you had to have the 3D on, a game with a cat on a pogo stick platforming in and out of the foreground. Of course, for clever uses like that, I'll be all for 3D action. For the most part, though, I'm planning on treating my 3DS like a PSP, except I'll be playing games on it and stuff. Chad Concelmo: Nintendo figured out this 3D thing perfectly.From what I could tell from the games they had on display, they are using 3D as part of the gameplay, not just as a fancy effect. Just like the two screens with the DS, this is not just going to be an aesthetic thing with Nintendo. They are going to make sure the 3D technology is incorporated into the gameplay. That's what they do best! Imagine the first WarioWare game in 3D! Imagine the first 2D Mario! Stuff won't just look cool; it will play cool. Sure, it will take a few months to a year for the creativity to really kick in -- that's what happened with the DS and the Wii -- but once it does, I think all gamers (even anti-3D ones) are in for a real revolution. With Sony and Microsoft, though, they are treating their 3D like most 3D movies. It looks really cool, but it doesn't necessarily change the overall experience. Like Nick said, after ten minutes of playing MLB The Show in 3D at E3 (Samit would be so proud!), I didn't really care that I was playing it in 3D anymore. It really did look neat, but it doesn't really matter. "With Nintendo, their 3D will matter. You can quote me on that." Ross: Chad, I believe you about the Nintendo making the 3D matter -- could you elaborate on your thoughts about the slider? Why do you think they included it? Will there be games that simply will be unplayable if you turn the slider off? Will you only need it at certain times? I'm definitely glad the slider is there, but its existence kind of suggests that the 3D aspect is gimmicky. Concelmo: Oh, I don't think it is a gimmick at all. I can understand why people would think that, but here is how I see it.The slider is there for multiple reasons:1) Nintendo wants to appeal to as many people as possible -- especially with their handhelds. 3D is such a specialized visual concept that there may be some people who  physically can't handle it. It may make them dizzy or mess with their eyes. Heck, there are some people who may not even be able to see it correctly. By adding a slider, Nintendo has not cut out any of its potential market. 2) 3D will be used like crazy at the beginning by all developers (see: Super Mario 64 DS -- why was that whole thing controlled with the touch screen again?), but as the 3DS grows older, designers will start to only use it when needed. For a good example, look at New Super Mario Bros. -- almost the entire game is played without the touch screen. The slider allows this option for games that don't need the 3D. 3) Even though the slider makes the 3D optional, I still think Nintendo and third parties will create games that force you to use 3D. Look at the Wii MotionPlus. That is a completely optional add-on, but the new Legend of Zelda requires you to use it. Once designers wrap their brains around the possibilities of true 3D game design, I think we are going to see games that have to use it -- be it because of the intricate, multi-planed level design or a specific visual style. It may alienate some gamers, but, with Nintendo, they like to push the limits of gameplay, not sit back and watch others do it for them. I can see a new Mario on the 3DS, for example, requiring use of the 3D. The slider allows many more options, ensuring Nintendo sells more units!People may see it as a gimmick, but I think it is anything but that. Actually, I would go so far as to say this is the first 3D I have ever seen in any medium that doesn't feel like a gimmick. Matthew Razak: I was going to say that a lot of these arguments about the 3DS were leveled at the DS when it originally launched. People argued that its unique features would just become gimmicks and wouldn't really add much, but we saw that explode and change. Games on the DS have been incredible and offered such amazing variety. I think the obvious difference here, though, is that people are actually really excited for the 3DS, and developers are, too. So instead of everyone finding their footing for a year or so, we'll have companies hitting the ground running with stuff. Game quality should theoretically start at a higher level than DS game quality did. Another thing aside from the 3D, which is obviously the big sell here, is that Nintendo seems to be actually committing to some serious Internet/network stuff. This might be overshadowed by the 3D, but I think it is important to note that the 3DS is bringing a lot more to the table than just 3D. Even if you think the 3D is just a special gimmick, this is still reportedly a really powerful handheld with immense game support, a plethora of other awesome features and a 3D camera. 3D is obviously the big shiny object everyone is grabbing at, but this system should offer a crapton more beyond that. For people who don't play in 3D (like Nick, it seems), the 3DS is still going to be an amazing system. No matter what the price point, it seems like you're going to get your money's worth -- even if you don't use the 3D once. Chester: "I'm actually really curious as to what Chad means by 'true 3D game design.'"   Chester: I'm actually really curious as to what Chad means by "true 3D game design."I think of myself as a pretty open-minded and creative person. Even with the introduction of motion control, I was able to think of dozens of ways it would be used in games. Even something like "waving your arm like a sword" was immediately obvious.  But with 3D gaming, I can't think of a single way it could change how we play games. Think about when we moved into the HD era, for instance: regardless of whether or not a game is beautiful and crisp and clean, it's the core gameplay elements that make it so great. It's things like more intelligent AI and physics on the current-gen consoles that really differentiate today's games from how we used to play games, not the high-definition visuals. Granted, I love gorgeous games -- I'm a "graphics whore" -- but it's how a game feels and plays that is key. What about 3D will change how we play games? No one has really answered this yet. Razak: Nick, do you think that 3D not offering anything "new" will make the price point of the system not worth it? If the 3DS didn't have 3D, would it still be worth buying at the price the 3D tech is going to raise it to? It seems like a great handheld, period, so does it matter if 3D gaming is just a glaze like HD graphics? Chester: Well, don't misunderstand me. I do feel that, from a tech level, the 3DS is far ahead of the Nintendo DS. But that's across the board, not the 3D in particular. I'm not crapping on the 3DS -- I think it's going to be a killer handheld. I'm really, really excited about it as a gamer. But of all of the things it offers -- more advanced visuals, a pretty kick-ass analog stick -- the 3D stuff has me least excited. I also think that Nintendo is going to come in pretty low with its price point; it'll surprise a lot of people.   Holmes: To answer Nick's question, that "cat-on-a-pogo-stick" 3DS tech demo I was talking about definitely used 3D in a way that felt new, and maybe even necessary. In the game, you're a cat who has to jump from platform to platform. Thing is, you can't tell which platforms are closer or farther away based on their size alone. In your average polygon-based game, you can tell which objects are closer to the in-game camera by their relative size. Bigger objects are closer to the camera, smaller objects are farther away, etc.   In this game, all the platforms were about the same size. Try playing the game with the 3D off, and you'll be misjudging jumps and falling to your death all the time. You won't be able to tell if the next platform is above you, beside you, or behind you. Play it with the 3D on, and you can see exactly where things are: objects near you are popping out of the screen, while distant objects appear to be deep within the screen. This almost made things too easy. Still, this is a cat on a pogo stick we're talking about. Good times were guaranteed from the start.   Now, am I saying that the game is more fun because you have to use 3D to properly navigate the space? No, not for me -- but this is coming from the guy who thinks that thinks that Mario 64 and Ocarina of Time nearly ruined Mario and Zelda. I'm not generally fan of "3D games," in all senses of the term.   That said, I'm sure there are a fair amount of people who will see the "cat-on-a-pogo-stick" game and declare it a revolution. They'll say "I never enjoyed videogames before, but this is different. This is fun."
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Maybe two-thirds of what we saw at E3 involved 3D technology. Hell, Sony even had us wearing 3D glasses at their press conference! There was 3D racing, 3D platforming, 3D shooting and even 3D portables with "3D" in the name. ...

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Destructoid Discusses: PSP's download dilemma


Jun 10
// Dale North
We heard this morning that all PSP games will be downloadable by October 1st, save for some third-party games from uncooperative companies. This refers to games that will be released from that date on. But what does this mean...
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Destructoid Discusses: Team Nintendo Go!


Jun 01
// Colette Bennett
There's been many a year where I've hoofed it out of a Nintendo press conference feeling let down, wishing I had heard more that was relevant to my interests. After all, if they were going to f*ck me and leave me hanging, the...
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Pre-E3 09: Destructoid Discusses: PSP NO!


May 31
// Dale North
When we first saw the supposed PSP Go leaked images, we were quick to discount them as a fabrications, saying that there's no way that Sony would have released something that looks like that. And then we saw the alleged leake...
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When you're at GDC, you hear sh*t. We do. We have. So this evening we walked around San Francisco and talked about what we've heard this week and what we think is coming up. The topic: portable gaming, with a focus on downlo...

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Destructoid Discusses: Metal Gear Solid Touch


Mar 18
// Dale North
 The Metal Gear franchise has made that inevitable jump to the iPhone and iPod Touch with today's release of Metal Gear Solid Touch. Tap, tap, taperoo. You didn't think we were going to let that go without discussing it,...
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Destructoid Discusses: The value of review scores


Feb 11
// Conrad Zimmerman
Everybody else on the internet seems to be talking about review scores, what with the furor over some outlets giving Killzone 2 a less-than-perfect score. I see no reason for us to be different.So, this week's Destructoid Dis...
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Destructoid Discusses: Is death in gaming dead?


Feb 04
// Conrad Zimmerman
I kinda have death on the brain right now, which led me to pose this week's question to the Dtoid staff. And I learned a valuable lesson: Citing an example in the topic is a good way to derail a conversation to discussing sai...
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Destructoid Discusses: Media tie-ins to gaming


Jan 28
// Conrad Zimmerman
Lately, there have been more attempts to branch videogames out to other forms of media. I'm not talking about the (all-too-frequently horrible) adaptations of established properties, rather attempts to tie-in comic books (Pro...
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Destructoid Discusses! The definition of 'retro'


Jan 21
// Conrad Zimmerman
It's time again for another edition of Destructoid Discusses! In the spirit of more community participation, we're doing something a little different with our series of roundtable discussions of gaming topics. Each week, we w...
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Destructoid Discusses: Controllers (featuring Dexter345)


Jan 13
// Topher Cantler
Earlier this afternoon, Dexter345 tipped us on the strange fact that this horrid-looking Wiimote from Nyko took home the CES award for Best of Show. In true Dtoid fashion, this led to an email thread a mile long, throughout t...
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Destructoid Discusses! iPod touch vs DS, also DSi


Oct 06
// Dyson
In the "news" that the iPod touch will somehow trump the Nintendo DS Lite as the portable handheld of choice, we decided to discuss the merits of both of the systems and how they would effect each other's markets. M...
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Destructoid Discusses! PAX 2008


Sep 08
// Dyson
In case you missed CTZ's post collecting all the community members' PAX stories, we thought we'd throw out one more "I <3 PAX" piece to cap off the glory that was PAX '08. Although the discussion doesn't contain ...
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Destructoid Discusses! On the matter of videogame taste


Aug 25
// Dyson
Remember the Space Invaders vs The World Trade Center game that came out recently? We do, and it became the impetus for this week's installment of Destructoid Discusses! The gang takes the release of the controversial piece o...
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Destructoid Discusses! Everyone loves Jonathan Holmes


Aug 18
// Dyson
Time again for this week's installment of the only conversation blog I know of: Destructoid Discusses! This week we started off with no topic, but then we were suddenly steered into the wonderful discussion of the latest and ...
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Destructoid Discusses! Braid


Aug 11
// Dyson
It's time again for another late night posting of Destructoid's (semi) weekly conversation blog. Last week I suggested that we talk about review backlash, but we just ended up talking about Eternity's Child. So this week, I just decided to cut to the chase and make the subject the only game anyone is talking about: Braid.  Discuss!
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Destructoid Discusses! Lazy reviewers? Or, maybe your game just sucks


Aug 06
// Dyson
You may have heard Jim report the other week, that the AIAS prez says that "game reviewers are lazy." I can certainly see how the whole world of game reviewing is not an exact science, but we're not here today to wa...
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Destructoid Discusses! Should we collect videogames?


Jul 27
// Dale North
We're back this week with another Destructoid Discusses!, our featured discussion among the Destructoid editors and staff. This week, Dyson handed the reigns to me, so I decided to poll the staff on a topic that has recently ...
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Destructoid Discusses! E3 equals meh? Maybe


Jul 22
// Dyson
Once again, back is the incredible ... The thyme animal ... The incredible Dyson G! Next-gen enemy number one ... FPS said freeze! And I got numb.Okay, so my poor attempt at quoting Public Enemy didn't go so well. In fact, it...
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Destructoid Discusses! Is the Wii a novelty item?


Jul 15
// Dyson
Once again, we'd like to bring the rest of the world into our nice little robot corner and give them a peek into our unedited internal conversations. Why would you want to read such things? Because we happen to be hilarious, ...
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Destructoid Discusses! Did someone say emulation?


Jul 07
// Dyson
Hey everyone, this week I'm taking a suggestion from Hamsa and throwing out the dark topic of emulation. We had some good points of view in another thread when we were talking about Chrono Trigger for the SNES, so we figured ...
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Destructoid Discusses! We talk about SSFII Turbo HD Remix, but fail excellently


Jun 30
// Dyson
Yeah, you should take that title with a huge grain of salt. Because, in an effort to create a new and vaguely recurring article here at the 'toid, I proposed to the staff that we discuss a random topic in our internal emailer...

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