Hump Day Otaku News Report 08.06.03

It’s nice when things go the way you want them to.As I’ve said before, I’ve had to work a lot of overtime, and if I didn’t, it’d count against my attendance. Well, apparently enough people complained and it has been changed so that it will NOT affect attendance. They even went back and corrected it where it had previously counted against me. It wasn’t much, but with as bad attendance I’ve had so far, it was helpful.

I need to get some new games. There’s a bunch of older games I need to pick up, but I’m kind of hankering for something different. For some reason, I want to play a good football game. I’ll probably wait for Sega ESPN Football so I can decorate my crib. That just sounds cool.

Last week, I made an ass out of myself with some of the comments I made, so this week, I’m going to be more positive. Not much, but more so that usual.


Gaming News

Front Mission Dedux
Squaresoft has announced that it is remaking the original Front Mission (which I kind of predicted a while back) for the Playstation. From what information is available, it will be basically the same game, except some missions will be different, allowing you to play as the bad guys, which is cool with me because I’m THE bad guy.

Level 5 + Cel Shading = Good?
The makers of Dark Cloud and Dark Cloud 2 have been very busy as of late, producing new and great looking games. First of all, they are making the latest in one of the most popular RPG series in the world, Dragon Quest VIII. Second, they are making an XBox MMORPG called True Live Fantasy Online (those wacky Japanese and their silly names). Note that both of these are cel shaded and both look AMAZING. Especially DQ8, which looks breathtaking. Now I’ve typically been against celshading, because it’s usually done just because and the company doesn’t know how to do it right. Case in point: Wild Arms 3 and Harvest Moon: Save the Homeland, both of which are the worst games in their respective series. Level 5 knows cel shading though. Dark Cloud 2 is one of the best cel shaded games out there, and DQ8 looks to improve on that. Oh, and Level 5 released a teaser of yet another game they are working on. Is it cel shaded? I don’t know, but rumor has it that this game they are working on is actually Dark Cloud 3. Sweet!

Speaking of Wild Arms”¦
In hopes of regaining some of the lost fanbase with their most recent games, the makers of Wild Arms are going to be remaking the original. I know, boo, hiss, no more f*cking remakes. Whatever. This one is going to be good because it should be a completely different experience. They are going to rewrite the script, overhaul the graphics and give you more playable characters. Dubbed Wild Arms F (no, I don’t know what the F means, except First, or maybe “Fuck you, we’re taking all your money! HAHAHAHAHAHA!!!”), this one looks like it may be a worthwhile investment, but as long as they don’t try cel shading again. Then I will have to put them in the Edge.

Square’s Last Chance
Ok, this is it guys. I’ll give you one more game to impress me. To make me relive my favorite times of playing your games. I’ll give you one last chance. No, not FF:Mystic Qu, err, Crystal Chronicles. I don’t think I’ll like it much, but I will try it. Not FF:X-2, because your stupid ass trailer on Unlimited SaGa changed my mind. I thought I’d like it, but it doesn’t seem likely. It doesn’t help that 2 of the 3 main characters are my two least favorite characters in the game. If it was all chicks, why not Lulu?? Dammit, she was awesome! I bet even Lucard liked her, since she was all goth and stuff. And you definitely don’t have FF:Online in your favor. I will NOT play that game under any circumstances (unless it is given to me for free with a free membership and a free HD), so it can rot for all I care. The last chance is Final Fantasy XII. Why? Well, nothing is known about it, so it may be really good, or really shitty. All we know is that it will be “very different”, and I hope so. FFX was good to a point, but the boring main characters and non-ending left a lot to be desired. So this is your last chance. If it’s not good, I probably won’t ever buy another FF game.

Survival Horror Hell
Non-RPG news? Say it ain’t so! Well, don’t worry, it’s more of the bashing kind of news. And yes, I put thought into it. Anyway, a company called iGames is making a new game called Nosferatu: The Wrath of Malachi, which is said to be a survival horror first person shooter. Now, I’m not the biggest fan of survival horror, though I’ve only played Resident Evil, Silent Hill 2 and Parasite Eve, and I didn’t really like any of them. I loved Fatal Frame, and can’t wait for the sequel, but that’s because there were actual parts where that game scared me, unlike the others. And as I’ve said before, the only FPS I’ve liked is Metroid Prime, but I don’t think it really counts. Anyway, I honestly don’t think this game will work. With so many established horror games out there, and FPS games are dime a dozen, this one will be hard to find a niche. It’ll probably be marketed towards the goth crowd, but they won’t like it because they will end up fighting their “own kind”. I don’t know, I could be wrong, but I don’t think this game will do well.


I’ll Admit When I’m Wrong
I have a tendency to speak before thinking, and such a thing has happened before. This past week, though, I discussed two things that I was probably wrong about. Open mouth, insert foot.

First off was regarding the Maxx Payne lawsuit. 411Wrestling’s Eric Szulczewski (or as he prefers, “Lord High Reeve of the Wrestling Section, Master of the Scathing Insult, Hater of Flea and Wife-Beater, Scourge to All Marks Everywhere”) wrote in his most recent column:
Memo to Baxley: Maxx Payne is entitled to sue, because I think he owns the trademark that WCW took out on his nom de guerre (some wrestlers do endeavor to purchase any trademarks to names they’ve been using after their departure from the company that took the trademark out). Besides, don’t you want to see 3D Realms (for the Duke Nukem Forever shenanigans) and Rockstar (for delaying GTA3 and GTA:VC for the PC) take it up the ass?
And after talking with Eric on the subject further, he made me realize that even though the lawsuit may seem silly, if he does own the trademark to the name, he has every right to sue. Besides, it’s probably all he has left, really. And yea, 3D Realms deserves some deep dickin’ for Duke Nukem Never and it’s not like Rockstar needs the money they’d be giving him. They have it coming out of all orifices now.

The other subject has generated the most mail I’ve EVER gotten, which is pretty funny. But seriously, I never expected that bashing Mario Golf would create this much controversy. So I’d like to say I’m sorry. I’ve never played the game before, and based my whole argument on the fact that it starred Mario. So while Mario Golf is probably a good game, based on the fact that everyone who wrote me liked it (and even Gabe and Tycho like it), I still think the mascot is overused. They could easily throw another mascot in and make a game out of it, or hell, they could create a new one! They need it.

And I’ll admit that Camelot isn’t being wasted since they are producing good games, but then again, Camelot could make Mario Taking a Shit fun. But I’d still prefer they make more RPGs, since that is their forte. And from now on, I’ll try to think before I type.

Oh, and there was one thing I wasn’t wrong about: Mozilla. To everyone that said thank you, and even to those that didn’t, you’re welcome.


Survey Time
Hey Yo. This is going to be a new feature of mine. It’s kind of like audience participation, so it’s meant to merit responses from you, the loyal readers. I’m gonna talk about something I think is going to be good or is going to suck, and I want you to reply back with what you think. I’ll tally up the scores and there will be a winner. Kinda like Bebito’s thing he did this week, but I’m not ripping it off, honest. I thought of this before Bebito’s column.

So this week, the survey is about Final Fantasy: Crystal Chronicles. Being the FF nut I am, I honestly think this game is going to be a DUD. Yes, as in a Scott Keith DUD. Why? Well, the graphics are good enough, but what else would you expect from Squaresoft? I don’t like the character designs since they look like they’re based on the short dudes from FF:Online. As for gameplay, well, it struck me as being a lot like Kingdom Hearts. Don’t get me wrong, I like the game, but would you play it if it didn’t have any of the Final Fantasy or Disney characters? I probably wouldn’t. And the fact that it just strikes me as a new FF: Mystic Quest.

That’s what I think. What do you think? Write me at flee_dawg77@yahoo.com and let me know.


New Game Releases
* Ship Date — 8/4-5/03
Freaky Flyers (PS2, XBox), Splashdown: Rides Gone Wild (PS2), Ghost Recon: Island Thunder (XBox), Silent Hill 3 (PS2), Chaos Legion (PS2)

While there are some stinkers this week, there are also two very big releases. First is the third in the Silent Hill series, which many regard as the best survival horror series out there. While they may be wrong on that, they are definitely more right than people who prefer the RE games. Speaking of which, the second top game is by Capcom themselves, and it looks pretty sweet. Supposedly, the combat and play are a little like Devil May Cry, so this game may be a winner.


Links to the Past

Thank God It’s Thursday News Report – Bryan Berg
Yes, yes. He is that damn good. He’s like me in that he loves to bitch about things (especially internet writers), but it particular, he bitches about sports games. Wait, he didn’t bitch about them? He praised them? Oh shit, the world’s coming to an end.

Friday’s Slice o’ News – Jeff Watson
Jeff made one fatal mistake in his top 10 list: though he DID include Lodoss, which is an awesome game, he did not include Skies of Arcadia, Shenmue, or Grandia 2. For that, you must die. Watch out for that glass ceiling.

Retrograding Weekend News – Alex Lucard
Though our resident Necronomicon thumper has decided to slack off on his Shining Force History (I thought you said this week? Maybe I was drunk at the time), he did post a great article about game music. He lists his top 10 soundtracks as well, and I find it odd that he disrespects Uematsu-sama so much, yet goes on to praise the Pokemon soundtrack. Granted, Uematsu-sama tries to make his music more cinematic (meaning, it would probably fit better in a movie than a game), it doesn’t mean that the Final Fantasy music is lacking in any way. And how could you neglect Mitsuda-san? With classics like Xenogears, Xenosaga Episode I, Chrono Trigger, Chrono Cross, and Legaia 2 on his resume, he’s done some really great stuff. In fact, Xenogears: Creid is probably my favorite video game CD. I should probably shut up now, or Mr. Lucard will superkick my ass.

Gamer’s Hangover News Report – Cory Laflin
Lafin Sucks! Lafin Sucks! Err, LafLIN Sucks. No, no, Cory doesn’t suck. He yet again proves that he is worth every penny that he’s getting paid here (which is to say, the same as the rest of us, but that’s beside the point). Anyway, despite what he makes you think, he Bronco Busts his ass on every column and it’s easily one of the most entertaining columns every week.

Rumor Down-Lo – Bebito Jackson
This week, we have rumors, Smackdown! Vs. No Mercy, and a tribute to Chris Pankonin. Plus we have that sick f*ck Rumor Monkey running around humping the furniture and shit. Oh wait, the Rumor Monkey is here with a note. What’s it say? Oh, ok. He’s saying that it wasn’t him humping the furniture, that was me last week when I was at Bebito’s place. I had apparently had too many. But it’s the monkey’s fault! He kept bringing them to me! He’s an enabler, dammit!

A Thumb to the Eye – Chuck Platt
Another debut column! Thanks to the recruiting efforts of Chris, Alex, and Bebito, we’re turning into the best gaming site out there. Give it a year or so, and we’ll be on top! We’ll be better than Gamesplotch, GamesRFunk and TheMagikBlox put together! No, seriously, I like the latter 2, but Gamesplotch not so much. Oh, and Chuck writes about how it’s a good time to be a gamer. I agree. I’m finding myself amazed at all the PS1 games I need to get (sadly, Lucard, most are by Atlus, but with few good RPGs coming for the PS2 and GC in the near future, that’s what I’ll focus on, starting with Persona).

CHEAT! – Alex Williams
The nude code!! It’s in there!!! I tried it and it works!! I’ve been looking for that thing for ages, and finally someone found it!! Alex is the bomb!!! Oh, and be here next week when he posts the way to resurrect Aeris in FF7!! SWEET!!!!

The Angry Gamer – Liquidcross
Now, I think LC is a cool guy, and I really like what he’s written, but I have to disagree with him here. I think that 50% of the benefit of the GBA IS the remakes. I want SMA4:SMB3 because I used to love that game. But I can’t play it anymore. So it’s perfectly fine to rerelease it. Now releasing shit like SMB2 as a GBA game isn’t right. But SMB3 and SM World is fine. Besides, I’d rather play a remake than some of the shit that’s out there now. But then again, they are releasing original BARBIE material. Umm, no, I’ll stick to the ports.

A Thumb to the Eye – Chuck Platt
Another column by Mr. Platt, and he proves why he is easily one of the funniest guys we have. If you could see some of the emails he’s written, you’d laugh your ass off. And just so you know, it’s hard to snuggle up to the womens when you always have grog goggles on. Soloman was pretty hot though. Errr, moving on”¦

Review of Wario World (GC) – Alex Williams
Hollywood and his pythons got together to write this review which is pretty damn good if you ask me. The game isn’t my style (not enough hard liquor in it, I guess), but the review itself is good.

Review of Big Mutha Trukers (XBox) – Jeff Watson
I can’t say that I have any desire to play this game. There was upgrading of trucks mentioned, but I don’t know to what extent. Needless to say, despite the fact that it’s a bargain title (and that I don’t have an XBox”¦.yet), I won’t be playing this game, since I’ll be playing, um, good games.

Review of RTX: Red Rock (PS2) – Cory Laflin
This a quick and simple review of a not so simple game. While some of the concepts sound interesting, it’ll fall by my wayside only because there is better stuff out there. Still, give Cory another clickie and read the review.


New Anime Releases
* Release Date — 8/5/03
Argentosoma Vol. 4, Devil Lady Vol. 6, Kikaider Vol. 1, Noir Vol. 5, Sugar Vol. 3

Though the first week of a month is usually pretty light (except when Bandai cuts loose), this week has some solid picks. Note that what’s listed above is ALL the releases this week. Two of them that I collect are Noir and Sugar. And all the others are shows I’m slightly interested in, but haven’t purchased any yet.


Ok, I know this week wasn’t all that special. Sure there was more news, but no reviews to satisfy the cravings of you anime lovers out there. Well, fear not! I have purchased not one, but two full series from the good folks at TSRI. One was the Gasaraki box set, which was on sale before, but I missed it. They put it on sale again, and I snatched one up! The other is the Boogiepop Phantom Mega Mofo Super Special Limited Edition. So expect a review of one of them next week. Or if my wife is up to it, maybe both, but watching a full series in a day (or 2 in a weekend) is hard, so don’t expect it. But definitely one.

This is The Bad Guy. Seeyas.