411MAX: News News Revolution 10.28.03

Another Tuesday, another bunch of news bites. Welcome again to 411MAX!

Some of you may not know, but I’ve recently secured the Friday spot in news recapping in addition to the Tuesday slot. The good news? I get two slots a week! The bad news? I might get burned out a bit quicker. Either way, if I can’t fulfill my duties for Friday in a given week, I’ll hand off the column to someone else. Lets just hope that it doesn’t happen soon.

Plus, I’m sorry, but there’s no real commentary this week. I got lots of school crud I need to catch up on, and, well, my awesome pieces have to go on hold until next Tuesday. Eggplant Wizard already called me in for a meeting later on today, so I’m going to have a LOT of explaining to do…

In any case, that’s enough of an introduction. ON WITH THE NEWS!
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TOP STORY: Nokia’s Capable of Comedy!

So, is Nokia delusional? According to this story, yes! Yes they are!

Nokia has officially gone on record to state that they have sold 400,000 units worldwide.

So, 400,000 units sold, huh? Hmmm…lets see here. 5,000 US units + 500 units = 5,500 units, right? Where are the rest of the 394,500 N-Gages right now?

Oh, that’s right! Sitting on the shelf! Note to Nokia: shipping them to stores does NOT mean you sold them to consumers. You still have a user-base of less than 10,000 people!

Then Nokia rep Nada Usina decided to take shots at the US market. To quote her directly:

“It’s not a surprise to us that the U.S. market needs a lot more work. [We’ve] still got a lot of work to do from an educational standpoint,”

And…

“The games press is a pretty cynical audience. It is interesting to see the things that are difficult to get over, things like the removal of the battery.”

Boy, this gal is full of it, ain’t she?

She criticizes US about the whole battery issue? No offense lady, but opening the back of the system and removing the POWER SOURCE of the dang unit just to change a game really isn’t that smart of an idea. I mean, what happens if you lose the battery? What happens if someone spills his or her drink all over it? What then? That’s another $50 to get the dang thing replaced!

And I love this attitude she cops. Things that are difficult to “get over”. Like they’re the only handheld in town. This really doesn’t want me to buy an N-Gage, people!

I bet people purposely bought a Game Boy or NGPC in DROVES just to piss them off after that.

(Credit goes to Gamespot)
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The Quickest Price Drop In History!

If you’ve been keeping up with our news reports weekly (And you SHOULD!), you’ve probably realized that the N-Gage is the biggest flop in the history of flops. Hell, its ALREADY been dropped to $199.99 by both Electronics Boutique and Gamestop!

Well, at least though November 2nd.

And this is only AFTER a $100 rebate. That means you STILL have to shell out 300 bones for the unit in the store. Oy.

We don’t know who dropped the price in this case. Did Nokia, or did the game stores? Anyway, we’re going to assume the game stores since they need to move the thousands of N-Gage units off the shelves. That, and no other locations seem to be doing the $100 rebate thing.

To be honest with you guys, I’m surprised that this is newsworthy now. EB has had this $100 rebate deal going as a pre-order bonus since mid-September. And it was continued since the launch began. Proving that even EB knew this thing was going to flop before the release. Gamestop’s just following suit here.

Man. I just LOVE producing proof that the N-Gage is better served as a doorstop than a gaming system.

(Credit goes to Gamespot)
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A Real THUG is a THUG That’s “Hush”!

The song list to Tony Hawk Underground (or THUG) was released recently. And holy cow, it’s HUGE! There’s going to be over 75 freakin’ tracks on this thing, with stuff ranging from Hop-Hop, to Rock, to Punk.

For the curious, here’s the list as lifted from Gamespot as lifted from THUG’s official website:

ROCK
1. Authority Zero / Every Day
2. Blind Iris / Drive
3. Camarosmith / It’s Alright
4. Crash and Burn / Crazy and Stupid
5. Electric Frankenstein
6. Entombed / To Ride, Shoot Straight, and Speak the Truth
7. Five Horse Johnson / Mississippi King
8. Fu Manchu / California Crossing
9. High on Fire / Hung, Drawn, and Quartered.
10. Hookers / The Legend of Black Thunder
11. Hot Water Music / Remedy
12. In Flames / Embody the Invisible
13. KISS / Lick It Up
14. KISS / Rock and Roll All Night
15. KISS / God of Thunder
16. Mastodon / Crusher Destroyer
17. Nine Pound Hammer / Run Fat Boy Run
18. Orange Goblin / Your World Will Hate This
19. Queens of the Stone Age / Millionaire
20. S.O.D. / Milk
21. Smoke Blow / Circle of Fear
22. Solace / Indolence
23. Superjoint Ritual / It Takes No Buts
24. The Explosion / No Revolution
25. The Hellacopters / (Gotta Get Some Action) Now!
26. The Midnight Evils / Loaded and Lonely
27. Unida(Top Priority) / Black Woman
28. Jane’s Addiction / Suffer Some

HIP-HOP
1. Aceyalone / Rapps on Deck
2. Anacron / A Prototype
3. Busdrive / Imaginary Places
4. Cannibal Ox / Iron Galaxy
5. Dan the Automator featuring Kool Keith / Better Tomorrow
6. Deltron 3030 / Positive Contact
7. DJ Q-Bert / Cosmic Assassins
8. Frog One / Blah Blah
9. J-Live / Braggin’ Writes Revisited
10. Juggaknots / The Circle (Pt. 1)
11. Jurassic 5 / A Day at the Races
12. L.A. Symphony / King Kong
13. Living Legends / War Games
14. Mr. Complex / Underground Up
15. Mr. Dibbs / Skin Therapy
16. Mr. Lif / Phantom
17. Murs / Transitions as a Rider
18. Nas / The World is Yours
19. People Under The Stairs / The Next Step II
20. Quasimoto / Low Class Conspiracy
21. R.A. The Rugged Man / King of the Underground
22. Supernaturccal / Internationally Know
23. The Herbaliser feat. M.F. Doom / It Ain’t Nuttin’

PUNK
1. The Angry Amputees / She Said
2. Assorted Jelly Beans / Rebel Yell
3. Bad Religion / Big Bang
4. Blue Collar Special / Don’t Wait
5. Bracket / 2 Rak 005
6. Dropkick Murphys / Time to Go
7. Flamethrower / I Want It All
8. G.B.H. / Crushem
9. Mike V and the Rats / The Days
10. NOFX / The Separation of Church and Skate
11. Paint It Black / Womb Envy
12. Refused / New Noise
13. Rise Against / Like the Angels
14. Rubber City Rebels / Pierce My Brain
15. Social Distortion / Mommy’s Little Monster
16. Stiff Little Fingers / Suspect Device
17. Strike Anywhere / Refusal
18. Sublime / Seed
19. The Browns American / Werewolf in Calgary
20. The Clash / White Riot
21. The Transplants / California Babylon

Of course, I’ll be using the custom soundtrack I’ve been using for the past few Hawks, but hey, to each their own!
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I Guess Thats Why They Called It “International”, Huh?

Reports are coming in that the American version of Final Fantasy X-2 will have brand new features that are also appearing on Final Fantasy X-2 International in Japan. The main new feature will be a “creature create” thing, where you capture monsters, give them equipment, and have them fight alongside you.

Man, I HATE these rerelease concepts Japan has going right now. First they release the game in Japan, right? Then for the American release, they come up with a few new features to put in the game. Then, they take the American game, RETRANSLATE it, and release it back in Japan under a different name! I swear, who in their right minds would buy the same games all over again just to take advantage of a few minor upgrades? Huh? I ask you!

Now if you’ll excuse me, I have unfinished games of MGS2: Substance and Virtua Fighter 4: Evolution to play…

(Credit goes to Games Are Fun)
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It’s A Mirra-cle!

Yee Gods, that title was lame. I apologize.

Anyway, Dave Mirra and Acclaim have officially settled an ongoing lawsuit that stemmed from BMX XXX. The game was originally titled “Dave Mirra BMX XXX”, and Mirra sued, claiming that this was done without his consent. In any case, the lawsuit has been dropped, and everything is back to normal.

Now Acclaim can use the Mirra name to make crappy BMX games until 2011. (I wish I was making that up…

(Credit goes to Gamespy)
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CHEAT!

Time for list a few Easter Eggs for a popular game! This week, its…

VIEWTIFUL JOE (Nintendo GameCube)

The #1 game in our feature gets its secrets revealed!

Beating the game on various difficulty levels will get you some excellent bonuses. And here they are!

–Beat Kid’s Mode to get the “Viewtiful World” video.
–Beat Adult Mode to access V-Rated Mode, and to play as Joe’s girlfriend.
–Beat V-Rated Mode to access Ultra V-Rated Mode, and to play as Alastar
–Beat Ultra V-Rated Mode to play as Captain Blue.

Plus, if you beat the game with a Rainbow V ranking in each level, you’ll be able to have unlimited VFX if you press Z when selecting your character.

(Credit goes to GameFAQs)
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A Small Conversation With Eggplant Wizard

(We are taken back to Eggplant Wizard’s office, as seen in Monday’s news report. This time, it is Alex W who is walks into the door.)

AW: You wanted to see me, oh Lord upon Lords of Gaming?
EW: Yes, yes. Come in. Seems like I’m calling a lot of you people in this week.
AW: Really. How so?
EW: First Laflin makes a Jewish joke at your expense.
AW: Hey, I LET him! It’s all good!
EW: Okay, fine. As for YOU, you don’t have a commentary for this weeks report!
AW: Aw, come on! I’m busy this week!
EW: Busy?
AW: Of course! I got school work and projects out the wazoo!
EW: Of course you do.
AW: I do!
EW: Are you talking back to me?
AW: Uh…no! Of course not! I’d never…

(EW takes out his famed Eggplant Staff, which begins to emit a strange, purple glow.

EW: Because I don’t have to remind you what happens when people talk back to me, correct?
AW: R-r-r-right, sir.

(EW puts his staff away.)

EW: Right then. Now, since you don’t have a commentary this week, you’re going to make it up to me on Friday.
AW: Another news report?
EW: Better.
AW: Huh?
EW: You see, Friday is Halloween. It will be YOUR job to inform the other members of the Games staff that there is a costume party that day.
AW: A costume party? Cool!
EW: AND you’ll have to cover the event for Friday’s column.
AW: …Oh.
EW: Do I sense disappointment in your voice?
AW: Hey, no! None here!
EW: Because I don’t have to remind you…
AW: I KNOW! FOR THE LOVE OF EGGPLANTS, I KNOW!
EW: Good. Than we “understand” each other.
AW: Of course.
EW: Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have important business to attend to.
AW: Thank you for sparring my life, oh great one…thank you…

(AW leaves the office, while EW pulls out the latest Farm & Gardening magazine. He opens it to an Eggplant centerfold.

EW: Oh yeah, baby, that’s what I”M talkin’ about…
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Plugs and Shills That Pay The Bills

This is gonna look slightly smaller this week, considering I plugged a LOT of stuff on Friday.

Top Billing

Our Features Section — The 411 All Stars
We’ve done plenty of special stuff here at 411. And now, we’ve piled it all into one section! To kick it off, we’ve relaunched our interviews with Adam Ryland, XSN Sports, and Danny Tyrrell, as well as our GameCube feature. Also included is Lucard’s “History of Shining force”, all in one place! And keep a look out for some new stuff in the coming weeks. I’ll guarantee that you’ll enjoy it.

News You Can Use

Encore Extra Stage News Report— Me, Myself, and I
I get to cover the Friday spot for the time being! A nice, short read, this one is. Includes eggplant madness, and recaps in haiku. Lets see how long it takes for me to get burned out!

Gamer’s Hangover News Report — Cory Laflin
Seems like Eggplant-O-Mania is spreading throughout 411Games! And Cory is no exception as he writes an entire skit, and the “Eggplant Wizard Song”. He also gives me a Pimp Coat! Hey, all I need is the Pimp Stick, and I’ve collected the whole set!

Reviews You Can Use

Super Mario Advance 4: Super Mario Brothers 3 — Me, Myself, and I
This is officially the hardest thing I’ve ever done for this site: give a Mario platformer a 6.5. I mean, its a great game, just not that great a port. Given that you have to pay extra to use 90% of the extras is a pretty big let down.

Viewtiful Joe — Chuck Platt
The man that was honest and gave SCII a mediocre score comes back with giving an excellent game a great score! Chuck likes this one, and lets you know it. Hell, this was #1 in our GameCube feature for a reason!

A Column You Can…Uh…Use

The Gamer’s Conscience — Fredrick Badlissi
Freddie questions whether or not he’s a real gamer simply because he doesn’t invest as much time in them as the rest of us do. My opinion is if you play games and enjoy them on a regular basis, even if its only for 30 minutes a week, than you’re a gamer. Playing them nonstop 7 days a week means you have no life and probably brain-dead.
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Parting Thoughts

(Sigh) Probably not my best news report ever, but still serviceable.

Tune in on Friday where I’ll have all the Lo-Down (A lawsuit from Bebito is imminent) on the 411 Staff Costume Party. It’ll be a pretty entertaining read.

Also tune in Friday for more news, plugs, maybe a cheat, and perhaps, a return of the Haiku recaps. Those were fun to do.

Until next time, sacrifice a few heroes with wings to PRAISE EGGPLANT WIZARD!

Alex Williams