On last week's episode of Sup Holmes (now in iTunes and t-shirt form), we were introduced to Mr. Jeff Luke, formerly of 5TH Cell and current director at WayForward. We spoke with Jeff about how to fake it to make it, what it...
Even though Nintendo has taken enormous measures to welcome indie developers onto the Wii U, and despite a cavalcade of promising indie titles set to arrive on the eShop in the near future, Wii U's digital service is not that hot of a conversation topic around the web. It makes sense -- the console itself is not selling well, thus it's not at the forefront of people's minds. But what do the indies themselves think? Are they happy with the Wii U thus far? What do they think needs to be done?
Gamasutra recently got in touch with 20 different eShop devs in order to pick their brains about the state of Wii U. In contrast with what the big-time studios are saying, these guys are much more willing to give Nintendo the benefit of the doubt. They understand that the Wii U is only now starting to receive a solid stable of first-party software that could boost hardware sales, but even with the low ownership numbers, they are confident that their Wii U efforts will make them money. Some want to see how their initial contributions will perform before pledging further support, but they are nonetheless pleased with how much direct assistance Nintendo has provided.
There are legitimate concerns, but the overall consensus is a positive one. I've pulled a few choice responses and posted them below; please visit Gamasutra to read the rest.
Of the two Mario RPG sub-series, Mario & Luigi is much closer in tone and spirit to Super Mario RPG on the Super Nintendo. That's because M&L developer AlphaDream consists of former Square employees who worked on the ...
Last week, Destructoid brought you the first real details on Windborne, the next game from Hidden Path Entertainment heading to Steam on the PC. Now we can exclusively debut the first gameplay trailer showing off the game's world. Note that while a lot of what you see appears in third-person, the game is actually presented in first-person view.
Windborne is a social sandbox title where you can explore the game's story, or just go play and create stuff with friends. We've so far learned that there will be a tons of places to explore, dragons that you can breed, and there's a big emphasis on community too.
We spoke with Michael Austin, CTO of Hidden Path Entertainment, and he's given us some more details on what we can expect out of the game.
This week on Sup Holmes we kick off WayForgust with Jeff Luke, director of WayForward's upcoming Regular Show: Mordecai and Rigby in 8-bit Land. Legend has it that Jeff worked on such beloved DS titles as the Jim Sterling app...
As a young 'un, my only experience with the SEGA Dreamcast was with Sonic Adventure at a Target demo station. I was very much an outsider, admiring the machine as it appeared in magazines and on television. I finally picked up a unit three years back, though I shamefully admit that I haven't spent much time playing it.
Others have fonder experiences than I, and these are the people who continue to wonder why the Dreamcast's life was cut short after only two years on the market. SEGA department manager Tadashi Takezaki recently spoke to Famitsu magazine on the subject. The interview, translated by Polygon, touches upon why SEGA simply couldn't afford to support a console anymore.
According to Takezaki, who was in charge of marketing the Dreamcast, the machine was designed to address the glaring issues of the Saturn. It was extremely developer-friendly, it had a more attractive color scheme, and it was targeted towards a mass audience as opposed to just hardcore SEGA fans. Unfortunately, the launch of the PlayStation 2 in March 2000 forced SEGA to rapidly discount its hardware -- Sony had the distinct advantage of having helped found the DVD format and being able to use internally developed tech to design a console around that, whereas SEGA purchased all its equipment from outside companies.
Last week's Sup Holmes (now on iTunes) was a real barn burner. Cassie Chui lit up the screen with her effervescent personality and passion for game design. She decided at the early age of eight that game development was in her future. It was the N64 that did it to her, though what part she would play in game creation remained unclear for many years.
It wasn't until a game design theory class in college that Cassie's path was solidified. We didn't get to it in the actual interview, but I asked her after the fact what it was about this class that made her sure that game design was her passion. She told me "...that Game Theory class helped me discover that what I really wanted to do in games was create 'fun' for another person. The prospect of being able to create an experience like that for other people was really what drew me into game theory and game design." So this person wants to dedicate her life to helping you have fun, even though she doesn't even know you! How nice is that?
Answer -- Pretty darn nice.
We talked with Cassie about a whole slew of other topics, like her internship at Untold Entertainment Inc (creators of Sissy's Magical Ponycorn Adventure), her love of League of Legends, Animal Crossing, Monster Hunter, cosplay, and of course, the wild ride she's taken with Michael Todd and company towards creating Electronic Super Joy (now on Steam Early Access). Thanks again to Cassie for joining us, and tune in this Sunday at 1pm PST/4PM EST when we welcome Jeff Luke (Regular Show: Mordecai and Rigby in 8-Bit Land) to the program. It's the beginning of WayForgust! Expect at least one musical number.
Water is usually a background element in action/adventure games. Or at best, water gets a temporary spotlight in levels that let you take a break from standard play -- a quick splash and then back to land. It's rarely ever a focus in these games. Usually, underwater segments are the worst parts of these games. Poor water.
The ocean played a sizable role in Assassin's Creed III with its naval battles, and while that was fantastic, it only served as a tease for what the ocean offered. Reacting to feedback, Ubisoft is now bringing the deep blue sea to the forefront in Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag. They've embraced the open-world concept, and the free exploration extends to the ocean, not only by boat, but through underwater play.
We visited the team behind Assassin's Creed IV's ocean tech, Ubisoft Singapore, to learn how deep they were willing to dive this time around.
Nintendo should go third party, they say. "Nintendo should have their IP on every platform," they say. No matter how many times CEO Satoru Iwata or anybody in Nintendo management have repeated themselves, there's always some new chucklehead with the brilliant idea that putting Nintendo games on other consoles will result in a massive influx of revenue.
You should be happy to know that Satoru Iwata agrees with you! Nintendo would make a lot of money... in the short term, that is.
In a discussion with CVG, Iwata made himself as clear as possible: "If I was to take responsibility for the company for just the next one or two years, and if I was not concerned about the long-term future of Nintendo at all, it might make sense for us to provide our important franchises for other platforms, and then we might be able to gain some short-term profit. However, I'm really responsible for the long-term future of Nintendo as well, so I would never think about providing our precious resources for other platforms at all."
The whole non-American world will be getting their hands on The Wonderful 101 later this month, while US citizens must sit tightly until September 15. The wait has been especially difficult for myself, considering this has be...
Final Fantasy VI on the Super Nintendo marked a grand change in direction and tone for the series. The shift wasn't as noticeable out West, which didn't receive the second, third, and fifth games and thus didn't have much of ...
Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag takes us to the age of pirates, and because of that Ubisoft's Singapore studio was tasked with creating the full on ocean simulation. I spoke with lead designer Sebastien Berton who walked me through four of the major new features we can expect to go along with all this.
First up, there's harpooning! Yes, you can go throw a bunch of harpoons into sharks, you monsters. You're rewarded for the wildlife you hunt, as animals will get you vital upgrades for your character similar to Far Cry 3's system. With the sharks in particular, you'll first hook into them with a harpoon tied to a rope. One connected, you'll be pulled through the ocean and you have throw more spears at them until they finally die.
Next we learned a little more about how the underwater system works. It's a first for the series, and everything in the water is a threat to you while you search for treasure. You have to find pockets of air to stay under longer, and sharks can mess you up really easily as you can't fight back.
Sebastien also briefly touched on hidden caves players can find, and how the fort system has been upgraded in Black Flag. Check out the interview for the full details, and check out our past previews for more on the next bigAssassin's Creed.
Today on Sup Holmes we welcome Cassie Chui to the program. Cassie is a mainstay of Toronto's independent development scene, having partaken in multiple game jams and larger scale collaborations such as Project Overboard....
Matt Higby doesn't know what the future of his game may hold, and he's frankly OK with that. We prodded him with questions about Player Studio, the new marketplace we've blogged about before where gamers can upload and sell their own creations (similar to Valve's strategy).
Mr. Higby wants more of it in there: "People are doing a great job on camos, but there are almost no decals -- which is shocking despite being the easiest to create." You can make some real world loot by submitting helmets, decals, camo patterns, cockpit decals, hood ornaments. "Eventually, you'll also be able to submit vehicle cosmetics and even weapons," he added.
When we asked him what the company does with ugly submissions he smiled and admitted that "Some stuff frankly sucks, but the community is great about telling people (in the forums) about what's good and not good. We can't let everything through, but some really great stuff has come in."
Has anyone made a Sgt. Slaughter Warthog yet? Seems like a no-brainer for Hossin -- my billion dollar idea to is waiting for you in the gallery below.
Knights of the Old Republic II: The Sith Lords was a stellar Star Wars RPG that shone despite its bugs and rushed production schedule. It left me wanting to a sequel and, speaking to Eurogamer, Obsidian's Chris Avellone also ...
Irrational Games, and Ken Levine in particular, have been known for creating games with innovative narratives and unique gameplay. BioShock Infinite is no different, and we expect the same for the remaining downloadable content we've been promised, including Burial at Sea, announced earlier today.
The team at Irrational started working on the Burial at Sea DLC almost immediately after BioShock Infinite released, but the idea took some time to form. Ken explained, “I was running one day and the idea just started […] You’re Booker, you’re a private detective and this woman walks into your office like this classic sort of film noir [...] and that is Elizabeth dressed like Veronica Lake or something. That image was enough to sort of set everything into motion."
Ken mentioned that he wanted to stay away from telling a story just to tell it -- he knew that people were curious about what it was like before the fall of Rapture, but wanted to do it in a way that wouldn't rehash what they had already built in BioShock.
"We knew it had to start with, like all BioShock games, ‘what’s going on here, why is this happening?’, because otherwise you’re telling people what they already know. Retelling the story of what’s already in the audio logs of BioShock is not very interesting, so this is an opportunity to listen to it from the perspective of these characters and why they are there.”