Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Tidal Sanctuary

I'm finally playing Donkey Kong Country Returns and I noticed early that Kenji Yamamoto was doing the soundtrack. He can't hide behind all those nice remixes. ^^ What gave him away was the "Tidal Terror" song, which is quite reminiscent of the Sanctuary theme from Metroid Prime 2: Echoes.

Love the game so far, more coming soon.

Little update: Also, in world 8 you can hear vibes from the Magmoor Cavern song.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

New Things for Ocarina of Time 3D

The good news about Ocarina of Time 3D continue. In the latest installment of Iwata Asks Iwata teases us with the following quote:

Of course, the Nintendo 3DS version of Ocarina of Time is crammed with interesting things that weren't in the Nintendo 64 version, but we'll wait to talk about those the release.

First the news about Master Quest and now this. But I'm not sure if he actually means new content (like a bonus dungeon) or if he just means more details, like in the above screenshot. So, I don't want to jump to false conclusions here, but I'm still getting more and more excited about this remake. In the Iwata Asks interview they state that they made the game so, "that even people who played them in the past won't get bored". Again this could mean anything, like the fact that the 3D itself will be a new and exciting experience anyway. However, I guess Nintendo knows, that the best way to lure fans of the original in is new content. Starfox 64 3D will have quite some new content, especially in multiplayer, so why not Ocarina of Time? But I guess we'll have to wait and see until E3.

Source: Kotaku

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Online Multiplayer for Virtual Console

Check out this story.

For the franchise's 20th anniversary, Sega plans to release the original arcade version of Puyo-Puyo on the Virtual Console in Japan, complete with online multiplayer.

This is unprecedented. And a great development. Well, Nintendo never added something to any of their Virtual Console games, actually it's more common that features get removed or lost (like Rumble or Memory Pack features of Nintendo 64 games). But this example shows that it would be entirely possible to add something like online multiplayer to a Virtual Console game. And this is great news. Well, actually so far there was no need to do so. You could still play games like Mario Kart in multiplayer with your friends. But this is going to change with the introduction of the Nintendo 3DS Virtual Console. There's no GameBoy connection possible with this system and a lot of GameBoy games would suffer from this development. For example you wouldn't be able to trade your Pokémons in the classic Pokémon Red and Blue editions, definitely a potential hit for the Virtual Console. So, Nintendo might be doing something about this. A possibility would be a simple wireless connection to emulate the GameBoy connection. But even greater would be online. And we all know, that there's one Zelda game, which would benefit immensely from such a development...

The least played Zelda game (not counting any spin-offs), Four Swords. I've been harping on and on about this topic, so I spare you the big talk. But this definitely would be a second (or for most people first) coming for this game.

Reggie about the 25th Anniversary of Zelda


Two things here. Reggie says they will celebrate the Zelda Anniversary in a different way from how they celebrated the Mario Anniversary last year. Also, it's supposed to be something special.

Well, what did Nintendo to celebrate the 25th Super Mario Bros. Anniversary? They released special red versions of the Wii and the Nintendo DSi XL bundled with New Super Mario Bros. each and with a preinstalled copy of Donkey Kong on the Wii. Additionally they re-released Super Mario Allstars on the Wii together with a booklet and a soundtrack CD, overall a cheap effort, but nonetheless sold out after a short time. And there was lots of general coverage of the Anniversary like videos featuring the whole Mario series, a special edition of Iwata Asks, a Flip Note gallery, wallpapers and so on.

So, the Zelda Anniversay is going to be different from that? Well, you can rule out something similar to Allstars. The only thing that comes close would be a re-release of the Zelda Collector's Edition disc for the Wii. However, all those games are already on the Wii's Virtual Console and if you already have the Collector's Edition you can still play it on your Wii. And Majora's Mask on the CE was really unstable... so, this is really not a good choice.

I already speculated about The Legend of Zelda (The Hyrule Fantasy) being part of the "3D Classics" on the Nintendo 3DS eShop (including the worlds and dungeons from the first BS Zelda game as a vital bonus). I guess remaking the classic Zelda game in that way would be a perfect choice for its 25th Anniversary and Nintendo already showcased a demo of how this could look like at E3 2010. And I guess this would be "special" enough.

But there are still things from the Mario list that I would like to see happening for Zelda as well. Another Iwata Asks Zelda interview wouldn't hurt to start with. And I would like to see a Nintendo 3DS Zelda bundle. Imagine a stylish Zelda themed 3DS bundled with Ocarina of Time 3D, some more Zelda augmented reality cards and with preinstalled copies of Link's Awakening DX and the 3D Classics version of The Legend of Zelda. Doesn't this sound like the perfect deal for every Zelda fan? Right now I'm unsure whether I want a Nintendo 3DS right now or not, but with a bundle like that I could hardly resist... Also, it's likely that they'll bundle Skyward Sword with a golden Wiimote. A golden Nintendo Wii bundle would be too much for my taste, but a Wiimote would be cool.

Well, whatever Nintendo plans to celebrate the Zelda Anniversary, I'm really excited for it.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Master Quest Confirmed for Ocarina of Time 3D

Check out this video: CNM

"This also comes not only with The Legend of Zelda [Ocarina of Time], but also with the Master Quest. That's like two games in one."
- David Young, NoA

This is great news! Well, I've already talked about this possibility a couple of times on my blog and I'm happy to see it come true. It's like I said, they have the content and judging from the estimated approach how they made this remake it shouldn't have been too difficult to reuse the content. So, it would be a pity, if they would have "forgotten" to include Master Quest. I'm really happy about this and I'm looking forward to play the Master Quest version in 3D as well. Now, if they also added some new content like a small bonus dungeon, the remake would be "perfect".

Source: ZU Forums

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Ocarina of Time 3D GDC2011 Screens

In addition to the 25th Anniversary logo and the new Skyward Sword trailer Nintendo showed us a couple of new screens from Ocarina of Time 3D.

The most impressive screen is the one in the shop, it's pretty amazing and much more detailed than the original, especially when compared to the other screens. But I guess you will have a fixed camera inside the shop like in the original game, which will make this level of detail possible.

The horse battle screen however is weird, the fence looks like a 2D sprite, much like in the original game. I thought they were getting rid of all 2D sprite graphics for the 3D effects.

Update: And the game will be released on June 7th. That's right after E3 and pretty close.


Skyward Sword GDC2011 Trailer

Watch the trailer at GameTrailers.

Duh, how lame. There's nothing mind blowing or exciting and it pretty much looks like the worst case scenario, that the game is just all about MotionPlus and MotionPlus based puzzles. Overall it really reminds me of the Nintendo DS Zelda games fused with Twilight Princess. It has all the general aspects of the NDS Zeldas like the "simpler" looks, the focus on the touchscreen or in this case MotionPlus controls, especially when it comes to puzzles, and fewer items with more variety. But it's played like Twilight Princess. Judging from this trailer we're getting the exact same stuff from the last years all over again, nothing in the trailer felt fresh or exciting. The only new thing is that MotionPlus is powering the gimmicky puzzles this time.

I was always hoping for a new approach, since they were talking about "going back to basics". They should focus on sword combat itself, it should be all about kicking ass, going 1on1 with some bad guys. But the fights again look more like puzzles and not like real fights, it was all just some "swing the sword in different angles"-puzzles. And of course the focus on free exploration, this was completely missing in the trailer. The whole trailer just says "this game is all about gimmicky MotionPlus puzzles". MotionPlus should be a tool for fun gameplay, but not the center attention of the game.

Oh, and we have some generic bad dude again. I wonder if he wants to resurrect some other generic demon king...

However, there were some interesting details. Notice how Down on the D-pad shows the head of the sword fairy girl, similar to Midna in Twilight Princess? I thought that button was going to be used to recenter your MotionPlus powered weapons and tools like in WiiSports Resort. And there's a gauge next to an Hylian Shield icon. I wonder what this means, without the shield icon right next to it I would say it's a magic meter. Well, obviously this shield gauge has something to do with your shield, but I can't think of any use for it. The most interesting thing however was Link's sword, so far it looked like the Master Sword was going to be your companion the whole game, but Link is wielding a different sword in the trailer. But it could be that the Master Sword is still not "finished" like in The Wind Waker and the sword in the trailer is just an early version of the Master Sword.


More details coming in. At one point you can see that a harp is assigned to Up on the D-pad, so Skyward Sword will have a musical instrument after all. And a new action item is shown, though I can't tell what it is.

Also, in the scene, where Link uses the Beetle, you can see something in the background, that on first glance looks like the Skull Kid wearing Majora's Mask. Actually, if you look closely, this is only a Skulltula and you can see other of those Skulltulas hanging around when the Beetle flies around, but it was very still creepy at first. xD

And I like the music.

25th Anniversary Logo

Today was Iwata's keynote at the Game Developers Conference 2011. For the first time Nintendo officially acknowledged the 25th Anniversary of the The Legend of Zelda franchise, they even made a nice looking logo:

Love it, great design. There was no word what they will do to celebrate the anniversary, but Reggie mentioned that the Nintendo 3DS eShop will sell "3D Classics", classic games with added 3D effects. I already speculated earlier this year, that the original The Legend of Zelda game might be among them. However, I'm very excited for what Nintendo has in store to promote the anniversary.