Category Archives: Opinion Piece

Nintendo Digital Event E3 2015 Roundup

Nintendo held their annual E3 Digital Event this morning. To put it simply, people weren’t very happy, but here’a a breakdown of what they presented:

  • Star Fox Trailer
  • Skylanders and Amiibo crossover
  • Co-op Zelda 3DS game, Triforce Heroes, announced
  • Metroid Prime: Federation Force announced
  • Fire Emblem Fates trailer
  • Fire Emblem x Shin Megami Tensei game trailer
  • Xenoblade Chronicles X trailer
  • Animal Crossing Happy Home Designer trailer
  • Animal Crossing amiibo Festival announced
  • Yoshi’s Wooly World trailer
  • Yokai Watch trailer
  • Mario and Luigi Paper Jam announced (Mario and Luigi and Paper Mario crossover
  • Mario Tennis Ultra Smash announced
  • Super Mario Maker
  • Disappointment…sorry that’s not a game

As you can see, they spent most of their time on games we already knew about or seen. Not to mention, a huge chunk of the direct was filled with Super Mario Maker and random people covering Mario music. On top of that, Metroid Prime: Federation Force and Animal Crossing amiibo Festival were both a huge slap in the face. Oh you wanted a Metroid game? Here’s Blast Ball with the Metroid tile slapped on it. Oh you wanted an Animal Crossing Wii U game? Here’s an Animal Crossing party game. Viewers were highly disappointed with their presentation and rightfully so. Luckily, there were still a few noteworthy highlights. Good luck next year, Nintendo.

 

Stay tuned for more in depth Nintendo and E3 coverage!

 

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Rayman Smash Bros Leak?

Super Smash Bros. 4 has been out for a few months now and it was full of leaks and rumors up until its release. But with the Mewtwo DLC on its way, more potential leaks are imminent. Today, a very legitimate looking leak has surfaced depicting not only Mewtwo on the character screen, but Rayman as well!

These are the images posted on 4Chan:

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You can also see the new “Shop” icon on the main menu. Now normally, I’m not one to take “leaks” seriously, and most of the time I don’t give them the time of day. But, this one in particular seems very valid.

For one, no existing photos of either the Mewtwo or Rayman character renders can be found anywhere. In addition, there does not seem to be any glaring evidence of Photoshop being involved. Some people pointed out that Rayman’s name in the character select screen is slightly too high and it seems to have a cutoff line at the top. However, the same thing can be seen with R.O.B.’s name, thus making this point invalid. To me it seems as though overly skeptical people are fishing for errors that aren’t actually there, much like the Smash Bros. 3DS leaks or Pokemon X and Y leaks, both of which turned out to be 100% real.

Another interesting thing to remember is back in July, a Nintendo employee actually stated that Rayman was in the game.

Start about 2 minutes in:

Granted, a Nintendo of Canada representative clarified that he was referring to the Rayman trophy, but this easily could have been a cover-up. On top of that, the trophy itself is pretty interesting.

Here’s Sakurai’s Miiverse post about the Rayman trophy:

I find it intriguing that Nintendo would take the time to contact Ubisoft just to make a Rayman trophy and even more intriguing that they sent a 3D model. Or maybe I’m just looking into things to much.

Bare in mind, this evidence does not mean the leak isn’t fake. For all we know it could be an exceptionally well don hoax. As with any rumor, take it with a grain of salt. However, I’d be willing to bet money that this one is real.

What are your thoughts on this supposed leak? Do you think it’s real or fake? If it turns out to be real, are you happy to see Rayman in Smash?

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Splatoon Will Not Feature Voice Chat, Nintendo Still a Step Behind

Recently, a Famitsu article detailed some information on the upcoming Wii U title, Splatoon. To many people’s dismay, the game will not feature communication for players you are matched with.

Here are a few things that were revealed:

  • Working on a local multiplayer mode in addition to online and Hero Mode
  • Hero mode is predominantly a 3D platformer with heavy emphasis on human-squid transformations
  • Random matching is done world wide, game tries to place you with players close to your skill level based on ratings
  • Tried implementing a system whereby you could give orders to your team mates, but battles were too quick and hectic for them to be effective so they got rid of the feature
  • Game won’t use CPU fighters; only once 8 human players have been found will a match start
  • Having multiple modes with random matching would limit the number of players per mode, so all the focus is on the 4 vs. 4 for that
  • No communication with players you are matched with
  • They didn’t think of using Bloopers when they decided on squids (they apparently forgot they existed)
  • No money can be earned in Hero Mode. Your points, as displayed at the end of the match, are turned into money and experience points.
  • A lot of the music is written by Touru Minegishi (who has worked on Zelda, Animal Crossing, and Super Mario)

It’s extremely disappointing that Nintendo still cannot seem to keep up with the times. Many gamers are excited for this new IP. It looks like a really fun and unique game, but Nintendo continues to hinder great ideas with their inability to stay in touch with their audience. It’s especially bad in this case because it’s a team based shooter. There should have been no debate here. Voice chat is almost a necessity for a game like this, at least in 2015.

Keep in mind, there still may be voice chat for games that are played with friends, but even if there is, it will likely be limiting. If Splatoon is anything like Super Smash Bros or Mario Kart 8, players probably will not be able to talk to friends during the match, only before and after, which pretty much defeats the purpose. Nintendo is always talking about how they want to bring gamers closer together, but with decisions like these, they are doing the exact opposite.

I really hope that one day Nintendo lays off being so stuck in their ways. Hopefully, they’ll get some younger people higher up on the ladder. Until then, they will always be a step behind, despite their amazing games.

What do you think of Splatoon not having voice chat?

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Samsung Galaxy Note 4 First Impressions

Well it is that time again, my Verizon Wireless contract is up so I decided it was time to upgrade my phone, marking the end of my tenure with my Samsung Galaxy S3 and the start of new one with the Galaxy Note 4. I have had it for almost a week now and I am ready to give my first week impressions of my new device.

Starting off I would like to say that when it comes to cell phones, I do not have any brand loyalty. While I did enjoy my Samsung Galaxy S3, in no way was the Note 4 a no-brainer for me. It really just ended up being the one that I decided I wanted. When it comes to the Note line, I have always been interested in it. I remember looking at my GS3 and coming across an almost identical phone that was much larger and that was the Note 2. When I saw that phone, I was extremely intrigued by it but at the time I was not ready for a phone that big. This time, however, I was ready.

While I will wait for my review to get heavily into the ascetics, the Note 4 is definitely the best looking in the line. There are many out there that bash Samsung for their designs. Personally, I really don’t see an issue with them, when I look at the Note 4, I see a very sleek phone, with a massive screen. While the design is nothing exciting, it definitely doesn’t look bad by any means. I am much more concerned about what the phone looks like when it is turned on; the Note 4 shows its inner beauty when the lights come on.

The best part about the Note 4 is definitely the screen. All the jabs about the physical ascetics are silenced the moment the screen is turned on, because the screen is absolutely beautiful. While I am not a screen resolution expert, my eyes tell me that this screen is one of the best out there on a smart phone. Besides the screen being beautiful, it is also very large. The Note 4 rocks a 5.7 inch display. I have found that browsing the web, texting, reading ebooks, watching tv shows, and even multitasking to be very comfortable and enjoyable. The size in combination with the resolution make for a great experience.

The last thing I want to discuss is the S Pen. The S Pen, Samsung’s special stylus for the Note line, has been a very interesting addition to my phone use habits. I have used it for photo editing and taking notes. The photo editing is hilarious and really easy to use. I will give some examples in my review but it has been a blast thus far. In terms of taking Notes, I have found the S Pen to be extremely accurate with very little lag, if any. I have used to write down my assignments and in some cases I was able to use it to do my homework, which actually turned out to be better than I expected it to. While I am not sure if everyone would use the S Pen, so far I find that it makes the Note 4 a much more versatile device than my GS3 and I can see why it is referred to as a Phablet.

So far, the Galaxy Note 4 has been serving me very well. There is, however, a reason why this isn’t a review. When it comes to any product there is always a “buyers high” so to say. Right now I believe that I am currently in that timeframe. I am waiting until next week for that high stabilize. After that excitement is over I am wondering if I will still be as thrilled with carrying around this larger device. Unlike a laptop or a tablet, a Phone or Phablet is an everyday carry device, so there isn’t going to be a time where you can just leave it at home. As of right now I don’t think that will be an issue for me but to play it safe, I’ll give it a couple more days.

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GTA V Dominating Twitch

With the release of GTA V on the PS4 and Xbox One it is looking to top Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare latest twitch stream records. Sledgehammer’s new shooter was the most streamed console game of 2014 during its launch week. In terms of hard numbers, Activision says last week alone, more than 75,000 unique Twitch users shared Advanced Warfare gameplay. Advanced Warfare streams were viewed over 26 million times, while the game drew nearly 6 million unique viewers last week. Twitch users spent over 327 million minutes watching Advanced Warfare streams during the week.

grand-theft-auto-v-Gamers
As of 6:35 pm EST GTA V is the most viewed stream passing the usual holder, League of Legends. This should come to no surprise considering GTA V holds 7 Guinness world records:

- Best-selling action-adventure video game in 24 hours
- Best-selling video game in 24 hours
- Fastest entertainment property to gross $1 billion
- Fastest video game to gross $1 billion
- Highest-grossing video game in 24 hours
- Highest revenue generated by an entertainment product in 24 hours
- Most viewed trailer for an action-adventure video game

With the intense popularity of GTA V, it would be to no surprise if more records are broken with this second release on Ps4 and Xbox One.

Follow us on twitch.tv/GaminRealm

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Sonic Boom: The Sonic Cycle Continues

Sonic fans and gamers alike all know the drill by now: a new Sonic game is announced, the game looks promising, hope arises within the community, the game comes out, and it bombs. This has been going on for years now, and Sonic Boom: Rise of Lyric is no exception. In fact, it may even be worse.

As soon as the game released gamers took to the internet with pictures, videos, and stories of glitches, terrible AI, mediocre writing, horrid textures, frame rate drops, and more. Take a look:

 

 

That’s right, SEGA didn’t even give out review copies. That’s even worse than Ubisoft.

 

 

This is barely the tip of the iceberg. Look up Sonic Boom on Twitter an there are loads of angry customers and jokes being made at the game’s expense. But that’s not all. There’s actually a glitch that allows the player to skip through 80 % of the game. In the video below (uploaded by DarkspinesSonic), you will see what is being called the “Infinite Height Exploit”. It involves the player jumping with Knuckles, then pausing immediately after. It’s really something else.  

Someone even took to Twitch and beat the entire game in about one hour.

I took a look at this game and I have to say it is incredibly boring and obviously unfinished. Unlike a Sonic game should be, the game is very slow with a lot of unnecessary gimmicks…again. One minute it’s a poorly designed beat-em-up, the next it’s a sleep inducing puzzle. Also I’m not one to usually complain about graphics or anything, but there is absolutely no excuse for these visuals. It is 2014 and gamers have standards.

They got it right with Sonic Colors and Sonic Generations, but other than that, it seems as though we haven’t had a decent 3D Sonic game in about ten years or so. It’s sad because I really love the franchise, but their games just don’t hit anymore. This game not only doesn’t hit, it’s appears to be near unplayable. I’m really glad I didn’t pick this one up. With this PR, Big Red Button’s going to need to bust out a seriously great game after this, assuming they’re still around.

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Fullmetal Alchemist (2003) VS. Brotherhood

Fullmetal Alchemist (FMA) is a series every anime lover knows and loves, for it’s wide variety of characters, which are relateable in their own little way, and for its crazy and extensive plot that’s gut-wrenching, traumatizing, and will outright make you cry like a baby. Because let’s face it, nobody really thought two little naive kids could resurrect their dead mother in the hopes of seeing her again, and then, tragedy ensues.

First, let’s discuss the similarities.

Both of the series do well in keeping to the main plot, trying to uncover to Philosopher’s Stone so Edward Elric (older brother) and Alphonse Elric (younger brother) can recover their bodies. They both lose valuable body parts after trying to bring their mom back from the dead who died from a serious illness. Ed loses an arm and a leg, while Al loses his entire body, so his soul is entrapped in a suit of armor (Talk about costing an arm and a leg, am I right? No? Nothing? This is what I get for trying to be funny) Anyways, all mommy jokes aside, both series cover the basic goal of the Elric brothers pretty clearly, but I doubt they’re hopeful of bringing back dear old mommy again, because using alchemy to bring back a human from the dead is taboo, and anyone who dares to try is basically scarred for life, mentally and physically.

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The differences:

The 2003 adaption of FMA definitely strays waaaaay off from the original plot, basically sticking Edward in a place he shouldn’t have been in in the first place. Getting himself killed at the hands of his half brother (Envy), being resurrected after dying in another world, saving Al, being transported back to this other world, and basically leaving everyone he loves behind. Not the mention Mustang loses his eye and Alphonse loses all memories he had after him and his big brother attempted to bring back their mother. So, in other words, it’s a pretty crap ending. There’s a sequel titled The Conqueror of Shamballa, but instead of sticking Edward alone in this new world, they place Alphonse in there with him. And, oh yeah, dad dies, too. Hip-hip, hooray! Not. And I’m just mentioning some of the major plot differences, too. There are plenty of other things I can get into, but I’ll spare you guys.

In Brotherhood, it’s a little more light-hearted. As much as I love the 2003 series for its dark themes and putting Edward through such anguish, (especially when Ed accidentally kills Greed. Oh man, that scene is SO powerful) I would have to pick Brotherhood over the latter simply because a better story is being told (Probably because it actually sticks to the freaking source material ) But how can you blame the animators? The manga and the anime were running at around the same time, so like Soul Eater, they kind of had to make up an ending that would fit for the story. Which wasn’t. But who’s keeping track?

In the end, Ed and Al end up getting their bodies back, Mustang goes blind for a period of time, Scar is kind of a good guy, Ed and Winry get married (squeal), and basically everyone is happy. Happy ending is happy, and you know what? The Elric brothers deserve a happy ending, and that’s why Brotherhood is so special.

What series did you enjoy most? Do you agree or disagree with me? Hey, guys? *sings* Do you wanna build a human? Oh man, I am going to Hell for this.

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The End of Naruto Marks the End of a Great Era

The Naruto series came to its conclusion today and I have to say that I am pretty sad that the series is over. Naruto is one of the most successful mangas ever. For many people, Naruto is the first series they think about when anime or manga is mentioned. This series means a lot to many, including myself. There is a huge void in mainstream manga now that Naruto is over, and that void cannot be filled.

Naruto was a great series. It had awesome characters, an interesting story, and some amazing action. It was an emotional rollercoaster ride from start to finish. It was a pleasure to watch the characters grow in both strength and maturity over the 700 chapters of the series. Looking back to how the series first started, it’s just so hard to believe that everything turned out like it did. Pairings, responsibilities, and the evolution of the world. But everything seems right. Everything ended exactly how it should have.

I won’t sit here and tell you that Naruto is a perfect series. It had some serious flaws, especially later in the storyline. The story took some unrealistic twists and turns which really  ended up hurting it. But at the end of the day, Naruto had a great message. It taught us that even in times of sadness and travail, when everybody is against you, as long as you don’t give up, there is still hope. It taught us that being genius didn’t just mean having natural talent, it meant that you were able to work really hard, hence, becoming a genius of effort, which allows you to rise up to any occasion. It taught us that friends are really important and if you just continue to be yourself, you will find friends that will accept and acknowledge you. It taught us strong friendships could survive even the harshest of circumstances. It taught us that at the end of the day, love is still stronger than hate.

Despite all the criticism Naruto receives, I refuse to hate it. I cannot hate something that intends to not only entertain its audience but inspire them as well. Naruto did that for many people, especially the young viewers and that is a great thing. Luckily, Naruto will be brought back in 2015 as a mini series featuring Naruto’s son, Bolt. But the original Naruto series, is officially over. It has been one heck of a ride.

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Pacing a Huge Issue for the One Piece Anime

When it comes to One Piece, I am a huge fan. Off the top of my head I don’t think that I could name an anime series that I like more. But something has been bothering me about One Piece lately. It is a problem that I wanted to ignore but with each week that goes by, it grows more apparent. Right now One Piece is experiencing a problem with pacing and it is a problem that has been here for awhile. Unfortunately it is really lowering my enjoyment of the the series.

I feel like pacing is an issue in a lot of anime, so this isn’t uncommon. Even though it is a common flaw, One Piece is struggling with it very badly at a time where it really shouldn’t. Right now, One Piece is in the Dressrosa arc, an arc that has some of the most intriguing characters in the series, with Doflamingo, Law, and Sabo to name a few. There are so many interesting backstories that are associated with these characters. I really can’t remember an arc that has had this much “star power”, at least in terms of individual spotlight. The variables are all present in a favorable configuration but the story keeps experiencing stunts in its progression and can’t seem to take advantage of it. Just last week, the episode ended with Sabo about to enter the final battle at the coliseum, it built so much hype going into this week’s episode. Unfortunately that hype didn’t translate into a good episode and nothing really happened. That is how this arc has been though; cliffhangers and then nothing the following week. It also doesn’t help that nearly five minutes of the episode is taken away every week, by an unnecessarily long intro and recap of the previous episode. They aren’t leaving much room for the story to unfold. While there have been some really awesome episodes, they have been scarce and were followed by weeks of Rebecca fan service, that did little to progress the story, and focus on characters that weren’t really important at all. It has gotten to the point where I am not really all that excited for the new episodes, because I feel like I could skip them, and I wouldn’t miss anything important. I am strongly considering jumping ship to the manga. I love the anime but as much as I want to stick around, I am growing impatient.

While One Piece has always progressed slowly, it was usually done in a semi-elegant manner but ever since the time skip, that hasn’t been the case. The One Piece anime is now riding on the waves of a stormy sea; the story progression has been anything but smooth sailing. After the Fishman Island and Punk Hazard arcs, which were the weakest arcs in the series thus far, the Dressrosa arc had the potential to be the best arc yet. While it still has the potential, they will really have to turn things around for that to happen. As a fan it’s frustrating because I know how many awesome things are around the corner. They need to stop swashing around  and start  setting the sails on this story already. It’s time.

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Star Wars: Battlefront Releasing Holiday 2015 as a First-Person Shooter

EA has been very quiet about Star Wars: Battlefront since their reveal of the project at E3 in 2013. While news on the game has been scarce, new news has finally surfaced. EA has confirmed that Star Wars: Battlefront will be releasing during the holiday season of 2015 but that is not all. In an investor call, EA CEO Andrew Wilson has confirmed that Star Wars: Battlefront will be a first-person-shooter. Which is a different perspective from the previous installments in the series. EA’s plan is to be able to have a major first-person shooter every year. The next Battlefield will not be releasing until 2016. While it is great to finally receive news on Battlefront, as a longtime fan of the series, I cannot help but feel disappointed.

One of my fears with Star Wars: Battlefront was the possibility that a perspective change would be made. It was something I was worried about the moment I heard that EA and Dice were taking on the project. While I don’t have a problem with the genre, I do feel like there is an oversaturation of first-person shooters on the market and I was hoping the Battlefront was going to remain true to the previous installments. While the door is still open for a third-person perspective option to be included, it is not going to be the same. As the game moves into first-person, the gameplay is most likely going to stray from the previous installments as well. At this point, I have no reason to believe that Battlefront is going to be anything more than Battlefield with a Star Wars skin. I plan on keeping that mindset until EA shows us some actual gameplay footage to prove otherwise. It is disappointing as a longtime fan because this was a highly anticipated game for me, as I have been waiting since Star Wars: Battlefront 2 for a third installment in the franchise. As it stands now, my skepticism is largely outweighing any form of excitement I have for this game.

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