Archives for posts with tag: fantasy

Nintendo has always been big on “innovation.” While the 3DS is not, at this point in its lifecycle, a success, the 3DS also has no great software. Or currently, and let’s hope that changes. Nintendo – more than any other developer –  should know that it is software that sells a system. The original Halo is the reason the Xbox 360 exists: without that game, the Xbox probably wouldn’t have sold enough units to make Microsoft stick around, considering Microsoft’s attitude towards abandoning things (for example the Zune HD). Think about it: what would the game industry look like had Microsoft pulled out of the running?

So Nintendo needs to bring guns. And this E3, I believe they have. Nintendo’s press conference was confusing, and focused too heavily on their new hardware, but they – albeit passively – made plenty of major software announcements, especially for the 3DS. And I think this will sell the system much more units than the Playstation Vita (PSV), Sony’s new weirdly-named handheld. Here’s why: universality. Look at the 3DS’s new lineup of games:

  • LoZ: Ocarina of Time
  • Super Mario 3DS (which I want to call Super Mario 128)
  • Paper Mario
  • Star Fox
  • Kid Icarus
  • Luigi’s Mansion 2
  • Mario Kart
  • Cave Story 3D
  • Pokemon 3DS (inevitably)
  • Super Smash Bros. 3DS (tentative title)

And for the Japanese market:

  • Dragon Quest
  • Final Fantasy
  • Kingdom Hearts: DDD
  • Professor Layton vs Ace Attorney

What does the Vita have so far?

  • Uncharted
  • WipEout
  • LBP
  • BioShock
  • BlazBlue

Most of the Vita’s games have the same PSP feeling to them: yes, there’s analog sticks and touchscreens, but there is still a focus on 3D realistic adventure games, stylistic racers and overly-detailed Japanese fighters, save for LBP (which suffers from inaccurate controls). This works for Sony’s market, but they aren’t as universal as Nintendo’s games. Anyone can play Zelda, anyone will enjoy Mario, Luigi’s Mansion, Star Fox, Pokemon, and even hardcore gamers have Cave Story, KH, FF and DQ. But there isn’t a Mario for Sony, which is why the DS sold much more units than the PSP worldwide.

Do I have numbers to support that claim? Regrettably, no. But I saw a kid in Palestine – Palestine – playing Pokemon on his DS, I saw people by the pool in Santorini playing Picross, I’ve seen multiple kids playing DS’s together in diners, at dinner, at the park. What haven’t I seen? PSPs. Anywhere. I’m sure Japan is Sony’s biggest buyer, but that isn’t enough to make up for the rest of the world.

It boils down to this: Sony needs a new software hit, or the Vita will suffer the same problems as the PSP.

     So believe it or not, some people still read for fun. Whether it’s reading biographies for information, fantasies to get lost in, or romances to imagine you were a part of, books are magnificent. I personally love fantasies and everything about them. Needless to say, I’m a fan of the Harry Potter series, but since I have finished them, I need something to fill the gap. Because of this, I have started a few series to see if there is anything out there that can come close to the adventures of Harry and his friends at Hogwarts. One of the series I started is Frank Beddor’s The Looking Glass Wars, the first book also being titled The Looking Glass Wars. It is a very interesting twist on Alice in Wonderland. I don’t want to give any of the story away, but I will give you a little taste. For starters, Alyss Heart is in the middle of a war against her Aunt Redd. Accompanying her is her personal bodyguard Hatter Madigan, her friend Dodge Anders, and many others. Loaded with plenty of suspense and drama, this book also includes numerous surprises that I didn’t see coming at all. This is a classic example of a true page turner that one can’t get himself to put down. To prove that, I was reading this during a very busy semester in college, one where I was averaging roughly 4 hours of sleep a night, and I was still finding an hour or so a night to put aside just to read this book and delve into the beautifully pieced together magical land that Beddor has created. It’s hard not to tell you everything about this book, but then there wouldn’t be much of a reason for you to go out and read it! If you’re a fan of fantasies, definitely give this book a read. I know I will be going to pick up the remaining books in the series so I can find out what happens with Alyss and her seemingly endless struggles. Overall 4.5/5.