Super Mario Maker Level: Sinister Den

Super Mario Maker Sinister Den

Instead of making levels with friends, I recently decided to try playing alone and designing my own level. This is Sinister Den! It’s really not so sinister, but I have realized I like lots of jumping and bouncing at the beginning of levels apparently. And don’t worry, this bouncy part is only one section.

Super Mario Maker Sinister Den

Be careful not to kill friends. Also, remember that coins can help guide you. There are no traps in the level. Trust the coins.

E3 Day Two

There were a few tidbits that interested me today.

The Last Guardian

Yoshida of Sony remarked that The Last Guardian isn’t canceled. He also said that when they do cancel a title that’s already been announced, they’ll tell their fans. It’s nice to see that reiterated, but I’m still annoyed that when I bought my PS3, I did so under the impression that I’d get to play The Last Guardian on it.

– If we ever cancel The Last Guardian, we’ll tell you, Sony’s Yoshida promises, Brian Crecente, Polygon, 6/11/14.

The Last of Us, Shadow of the Colossus, and Diablo 3

There will be a nephalem rift in Diablo 3 Ultimate Evil Edition with references to The Last of Us. This is sort of interesting although I haven’t played The Last of Us and prefer D3 on PC. What’s slightly more interesting is that there will be armor based on Shadow of the Colossus. After reading the first part of an article about the inclusion of The Last of Us, I was really hoping for more than just armor. Could you imagine fighting a Colossus in Diablo? Oh well.

– The Last of Us and Shadow of the Colossus guest star in Diablo 3 on PS3 and PS4, Owen S. Good, Polygon, 6/11/14.

LittleBigPlanet 3

Another reminder of a game I own and still need to play – LittleBigPlanet 2 in this case. LBP 3 still includes Sackboy but has three new characters as well: Oddsock is a dog-like character that moves faster. He’s adorable, and I’m excited. Toggle is a large, heavier sack-person that can move heavy objects and use his weight to solve puzzles. Lastly, Swoop is a flying bird. I’ll admit it; I’m interested.

– LittleBigPlanet 3 has some new friends for you to meet, Colin Campbell, Polygon, 6/11/14.

Devil’s Third

Here’s a game that I skipped yesterday until my friend talked to me about it today. It was announced as a Wii U exclusive. The trailer shows the main character as some sort of ninja, sniper, assassin cool guy with an attitude that also plays the drums, cusses a lot, and drinks. Honestly, it seemed over the top, and not in the good way like MadWorld or No More Heroes. It just seemed like Nintendo wanted to show that they can have mature exclusives, when that should be obvious by the titles I just mentioned. This just looked silly.

– Devil’s Third Trailer (Wii U), GamesHQMedia, YouTube, 6/10/14.

Destiny

Lastly, I watched a new Destiny gameplay video. I’m fairly certain others had already been released, but I didn’t know much about the game. A friend of mine has compared it to WoW a number of times. He’s never played WoW, and that’s incredibly clear after watching the video. It might still be a fun game, but it’s not really in the same market at all.

– Destiny gameplay video and interview, E3 2014, Polygon Staff, Polygon, 6/11/14.

E3 Day 1, Nintendo’s day

It seemed like Nintendo announced new entries in most of their franchises. Many of them looked pretty great. Hopefully it’ll be enough to substantially increase their install base. I suppose I’ll talk about the games for which I’m least excited first. I didn’t put a ton of thought into the order besides wanting to end on high notes.

Super Smash Bros.

Super Smash Bros. is still coming out. It’s not one of my favorites, so I don’t have a lot to say. I’m sure I’ll play it and enjoy it, but Smash is usually a game I play a bunch for a day or two and then leave. Creating custom fighters with miis could be interesting.

amiibo

Nintendo has figures called amiibos that work like the Skylanders toys. I’m really not sold on this idea. Okay, they can into my game, but can’t I already bring things into games using, I don’t know, DLC, without having to store a bunch of figures? They mentioned that as an amiibo fights in Smash, it’ll get better, and I could then bring it a friend’s house. Again, I feel like you could just save this to an account. Now, I’m not against figurines. If they’re really cool, that’s great, but it seems needless.

Star Fox, Project Giant Robot, and Project Guard

A new Star Fox is being designed by Miyamoto. I was shocked that the Wii didn’t have a Star Fox or a Pilotwings, so I’m glad to see a new Star Fox coming to the Wii U. I’m not clear on how it controls, but it requires you to watch the TV, which displays what looks to be a familiar view for a Star Fox game, as well as the gamepad, which is used for aiming and shooting. I don’t know. That sounds terrible.

Miyamoto is also designing Project Giant Robot, which also uses the TV and gamepad. The TV gives you a larger view of what’s happening while the gamepad has a first-person perspective. You control a giant, slow-moving robot. The sticks control the arms while tilting the gamepad controls the robot’s balance. It was compared to sumo wrestling. I’m more open to this than the controls of Star Fox.

His third game is Project Guard in which players control security cameras defending a base. The TV displays feeds from all the security cameras while the gamepad shows a map. You use both to see enemies approaching your base and to plan your defense.

Zelda

Link’s going to do some running around on the Wii U in a new Zelda game soon that’s supposedly going to be much more open and focus on exploring. That’s good and bad. I liked going into side dungeons back in A Link to the Past to find better weapons to help. It was nice being able to obtain some at any time. On the other hand, sometimes if I spend too much time playing around in an open game without making progress, I feel demoralized. I’ve also been annoyed at the increasing long tutorials in Zelda games. I hope we get started quickly and that Link gets his sword within the first two minutes. It does look really beautiful! I’m not sold on it yet, but I do really love the Zelda universe.

Kirby and the Rainbow Curse

A new Kirby game is coming as the successor to Kirby’s Canvas Curse called Kirby and the Rainbow Curse. At first I thought it said “Course” and was excited in the hopes that it was a sequel to Kirby’s Dream Course. Come on, Nintendo! I didn’t play Kirby’s Canvas Curse, so I don’t know what to expect here. Also, there are plenty of other Kirby games I missed that I could play cheaper (or already own) – Dream Land 2, Dream Land 3, 64, The Amazing Mirror, Epic Yarn, Mass Attack, Return to Dream Land, and Triple Deluxe.

Yoshi’s Woolly World

Yoshi’s Woolly World looks like a combination of a Yoshi game with Kirby’s Epic Yarn. It looks like a lot of fun, but it also reminded me that I didn’t play Kirby’s Epic Yawn. And then I realized that there was a recent Yoshi game, Yoshi’s New Island, with which I wasn’t familiar at all!

Splatoon

Splatoon is an interesting third-person shooter that involves squids shooting ink. The goal is to cover the map with your color, and the ink they shoot has consequences in the game. You move faster through your own ink (and refill your ink), and you move slowly through the opposing squids’ ink. It looks like it could be fun.

Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker

Last night I was playing Super Mario 3D World, and as I played a toad level, I realized that they’re a lot of fun and wondered if Nintendo would ever release a game based on it. Apparently they would, and it’s going to be called Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker. I can only imagine it’ll be fun because I love the puzzles in Super Mario 3D World.

Mario vs. Donkey Kong

Speaking of puzzle games, a new Mario vs. Donkey Kong game was announced for the Wii U. I played and loved the first two, but this announcement did make me realize that I missed the last three titles in this series.

Mario Maker

Mario Maker is the game that makes me giddy. Mario Maker is to Mario levels as Mario Paint is to pictures and music. As far as I could tell, there was no information released on sharing your levels. I really hope I can share them online with my friends. It looks like a blast.

Final thoughts

Before I jump back into Nintendo, I should also mention that a feature-length Sonic the Hedgehog movie was announced blending animation with live-action. I bet it’ll be terrible, and I’ll definitely enjoy watching it!

As for Nintendo, they had a very strong showing, but there’s still a problem. I’m not sure how many of these I’m going to purchase. I hope that they get strong sales, because I want Nintendo to succeed. When I have so many games that I own and haven’t finished, I shouldn’t be buying new games. Some of these games would be ones I’d be super excited to play except for the fact that they reminded me that I’ve already missed entries in their series I could play cheaper. I have Kirby’s Dream Collection and Kirby’s Epic Yarn, for example. There are also similar platformers I missed such as Donkey Kong Country Returns and Tropical Freeze (or non-Nintendo series such as Epic Mickey and its sequel).

I would have been interested in purchasing Star Fox if it wasn’t for that control scheme. It might not be so bad, but I’ll need to wait and see. Considering that Mario Kart is one of my favorite series and I’ve resisted buying Mario Kart 8 in an effort to save money and play what I own, I’m not sure I’ll be buying many of these.

Mario Maker looks amazing, and I’ll probably be picking that up. If Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker is cheap enough, I could see getting that. (If it’s a retail release, I’ll likely pass.) That’s not  to say that I’m not interesting in the others. Many of them I’ll likely play in the future, either picking them up cheap, borrowing them from friends, or possibly just caving to my cravings. This is all really a reflection of where I am with gaming and not their announcements, I suppose. I don’t think Nintendo could have had a stronger showing honestly. It’s not enough to simply release good games, because there isn’t enough time to play every good game. They have to be better than whatever else one would do with that free time. Let’s hope these announcements help Nintendo!

Another month, more games crossed off my list

My backlog is now down to 314 unfinished games and 269 unplayed games, down from 323 unfinished games and 277 unplayed games from my last post on April 25. Slow and steady wins the race.

SquidsOdyssey_WiiU_turtle

SQUIDS Odyssey

I was given a download code for this game to review for Game Boyz. You can read the review, if you’d like. It’s a port of the first two games in the series with additional content. Fun game. This increased my backlog count by one, and I haven’t crossed it off yet because I’m not quite done with it.

World of Warcraft: Mists of Pandaria and Cataclysm

As usual, I won’t spend too much time talking about WoW. I’ve been playing three characters. First, I’m still doing some LFR for transmog on my main, Devee, the troll priest. I’ve also been playing Voidgazer, my undead warlock. Voidgazer’s in his 50s now. Lastly, I made a pandaren monk named Sleepypaw that recently joined the Alliance. I have some friends that play together every Friday night Alliance-side, so I thought I’d try to catch them. Sleepypaw is 12 or so, and my friends are approaching level 30.

phoenix wright justice for all

Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Justice For All

I’m currently in the third case. I don’t spend a lot of time in this because I only play while I’m walking at lunch at work. It’s fun though!

Dr. Mario Express

I just can’t stop playing this. My high score is currently 55,200.

Knuckles the Echidna in Sonic 2

This game was part of Sonic Mega Collection Plus, and it was about time I finished it. I’ll admit, I didn’t go for the Chaos Emeralds. There was some pressure to reload save states when I failed the special stages, but at this point, I need to decide whether something is worth my time and provides enjoyment. I hated those special stages, so too bad. The game was fairly fun, but I wish the stages were updated more for Knuckles. There were many places in which I climbed and then suddenly hit an invisible wall. Also, I remember there being better enemy and pit placement. If I’m moving fast, as expected of you in a Sonic game, and in a ball, I shouldn’t roll right into a spiky enemy. The game should reward you for going fast. Even so, I like Sonic 2.

Sonic Drift, Sonic Labyrinth, Sonic Blast,The OozeFlicky, and Dynamite Headdy

Here’s a nice set of games in Sonic Mega Collection Plus or Sonic’s Ultimate Genesis Collection that were just bad. I was glad to cross them off my list. I jotted some notes down in my backlog after I tried them; I’ll reproduce them here.

Sonic Drift: “Wow, this is bad. I’m glad that they improved the formula by the time Sonic & SEGA All-Stars Racing was released.” It’s a racing game but just barely.

Sonic Labyrinth: “I finished one level. It’s nothing like a Sonic game and quite boring.” It’s like an even worse version of Sonic 3D Blast.

Sonic Blast: “Played one zone. It’s so slow and bad.” Surprisingly, this isn’t like Sonic 3D Blast. It’s just a really slow, bad Sonic game.

The Ooze: “What? No. Just no.” I don’t know how to explain this one. You’re a puddle of ooze, and you ooze around in a boring fashion.

Flicky: “More fun than I expected, but I’m not going to keep playing it.” You play as a flicky bird, and jump between platforms gathering up your little chicks.

Dynamite Headdy: “Cute style but weird game. I don’t want to keep playing.” You fling your head around or use it as a bomb. Reminds me a little of Vectorman.

Streets of Rage and Streets of Rage 2

I own Streets of Rage in Sonic’s Ultimate Genesis Collection and thought it was about time to give it a try. It seemed boring as beat ’em ups go. I decided to stick with it until I either beat it or got game over. I was on the last round with I reached that game over screen. I’m crossing you off the list, Streets of Rage.

Sonic’s Ultimate Genesis Collection contained Streets of Rage 2 as well (and I also own it on iOS). I went it with the same mindset as the first game and actually liked it a bit more. This I managed to beat.

Ecco: The Tides of Time

Here’s another Sonic’s Ultimate Genesis Collection game. I think the Ecco series contains some really interesting and eerie games. I’m very glad to have experienced them, but I don’t think experiencing more of this game is worth the time put into it. Unfortunately, I’m crossing it off my list.

Shining Force

Okay, one last Sonic’s Ultimate Genesis Collection to mention. It’s interesting to me how old RPGs spend such little time building the story at the beginning. It’s seems less realistic to have you mission and be on your way within two minutes, but at the same time, it’s refreshing to jump into the game. I was also expecting a menu-driven RPG and not a map with a grid. I didn’t realize it was a tactical/strategy RPG. I played it a little, entering a few battles, but I don’t think I’ll play it more.

Rock N’ Roll Racing and The Lost Vikings

I didn’t play either of these, but I added them to my backlog because Blizzard added them to everyone’s Battle.net accounts. Unfortunately, that causes my backlog account to increase by two.

SQUIDS Odyssey for Wii U reviewed on Game Boyz

The SQUIDS franchise consisted of SQUIDS and SQUIDS Wild West for iOS, but now it’s getting bigger with the release of SQUIDS Odyssey, a downloadable title for the Wii U and 3DS by The Game Bakers. SQUIDS Odyssey is a port of the first two games with new, additional levels and content. You can read my previous reviews of SQUIDS and SQUIDS Wild West if you’d like, as much of them are still applicable. This review is based on the Wii U version. I suspect that the 3DS version is very similar, especially considering that the 3DS, like the Wii U, consists of one touchscreen and one normal screen…

SQUIDS was one of the first games for iOS about which I was truly excited, looking forward to sequels. The Wii U version didn’t let me down. It’s available on the Wii U eShop for $14.99. Not only is it fun, but it’s also very beautiful. While I’ve played the iOS games before, it was still great to jump back into the ocean-world of SQUIDS on my Wii U. This time I had the opportunity to let people watch me easily, which isn’t something I could do on my iPhone. I’d definitely recommend SQUIDS Odyssey to strategy fans who like light-hearted fun and will be waiting to see what The Game Bakers do with the series next.

via SQUIDS Odyssey for Wii U | iPhone/iPod, Wii U, Nintendo DS , DSI, Reviews, Strategy.

I have a new review of SQUIDS Odyssey up at Game Boyz. It’s my first console game review for the site actually.

New Super Mario Bros. U beat!

I know it took me a while, but I beat New Super Mario Bros. U this week! I still have star coins to collect and bonus levels to complete if I wish, and I haven’t tackled Challenge Mode or Boost Rush at all yet either. I thought it was very fun. While I preferred the 3D obstacle courses of Super Mario 3D land, I thought New Super Mario Bros. U was a great addition the series. It seemed to be reminiscent of Super Mario World just as New Super Mario Bros. was reminiscent of Super Mario Bros. Given that Nintendo just announced Super Mario 3D World, I wonder if that’s supposed to be the new Super Mario World. New Super Mario Bros. U just seemed a bit more playful, and I loved the use of the Koopalings, the Koopa Clown Car, and the airships.

After beating the game, a “secret island” is unlocked. It contains one building that offers you some stats on your records. Here are mine:

  • Coins Collected: 12039
  • Star Coins Collected: 126
  • Goombas Stomped: 32
  • Items Collected: 409
  • 3-Up Moons Collected: 2
  • Distance on Boost Blocks: 300.4
  • Distance on Mini-Boost Blocks: 0.0
  • Goal Poles Reached: 68
  • Goals Reached with Yoshi: 2
  • Goals Reached with Baby Yoshi: 3
  • 1-Ups Earned at Goal: 16
  • Fireworks at Goal: 9
  • Times Applauded: 133
  • Nabbits Caught: 7

E3 day 1 was full of Nintendo news

As I mentioned previously, I’m not reading every bit of E3 news, but some stuff sticks out. Here’s what I read yesterday that’s interesting to me.

PS4 hard drive is user-replaceable, Samit Sarkar, Polygon, 6/11/13.

Good news!

The Last Guardian is ‘on hiatus’, Jessica Conditt, Joystiq, 6/11/13.

Absolutely terrible, yet not surprising, news. The Last Guardian was, sadly, a factor in my purchase of the PS3.

Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze hits Wii U in November, Sinan Kubba, Joystiq, 6/11/13.

Lots of Nintendo games seemed cool to me. A new DKC is always welcome news, although I didn’t even play Donkey Kong Country Returns (besides at E3).

New ‘Yoshi’s Island’ game called ‘Yoshi’s New Island’, Alexander Silwinski, Joystiq, 6/11/13.

It’s been a while since we’ve seen Yoshi’s Island, so I’ll be happy to try Yoshi’s New Island.

Super Smash Bros. coming to 3DS, Wii U in 2014; Mega Man joins fray, Alexander Silwinski, Joystiq, 6/11/13.

I’ve never been big into Smash multiplayer, but surprisingly, I love the single player. I hope it has a cool adventure mode.

Legend of Zelda: Wind Waker HD hits Wii U in October, Sinan Kubba, Joystiq, 6/11/13.

When Wind Waker was released, I thought it looked dumb. My tastes in graphics have changed completely, and for a while now I’ve been really interested in going back to Wind Waker. I guess I’ll be trying to HD remake!

Mario Kart 8 races to Wii U Spring 2014, David Hinkle, Joystiq, 6/11/13.

Mario Kart 8 looks awesome and includes anti-gravity segments. Hopefully Nintendo steps up their game in response to Sonic & All-Stars Racing. Transformed was absolutely awesome.

Super Mario 3D World pounces on Wii U Dec. 2013, Bob Mackey, Joystiq, 6/11/13.

Super Mario 3D Land was the greatest 3D Mario game I’ve played in a very long time. It ranked with 64 in my mind, although I’d be hard to pressed to crown one the best over the other. We’ll see how this new one is!

Nintendo has a tendency of releasing a lot of great games in their core franchises early and then tapering off. I don’t know if that’s going to happen with the Wii U, but I don’t care. They’ve announced enough already to make the Wii U more than worth the cost.