Gamestop and the Classics

Despite the title, this blog post is another update on the (awesome) shenanigans going on with Atlus USA. About two or so weeks ago, Atlus quietly reprinted some copies of Shin Megami Tensei: Nocturne. It was so quiet that not even Atlus employees that often float around the Internet knew the details. The only reliable retailer that seemed to have it was Play Asia, but now we know quite differently. Turns out that a reprint was done for both Nocturne and Digital Devil Saga, and according to some Gamestop employees, almost every store was getting one copy of each game, brand new but labeled (and stickered) as used. Naturally this caused much rejoicing among the Atlus Faithful, and both games as well as Persona 3 FES are the top selling PS2 games on the ‘Spot’s website. →  Read the rest

Sony CEO – PS3 better than Wii

Howard Stringer is the CEO of Sony. He makes over 650k a year (very likely million/s). And he is terrible at PR.

“I’m happy the Wii seems to be running a bit short of hardware. The PlayStation 3 will come into its own because its are infinitely more fun, demanding and exciting.”

He is glad the Wii is selling out because consumers may now buy a PS3 out of frustration. He’s pleased that Nintendo’s giant safe can barely fit any more money in it because that may mean a few dollars drift down the street to Sony. He enjoys that Iwata’s back is sore from carrying bars of solid gold to the bank, and Miyamoto’s neck aches after craning to see the top of his new mansion.

But then he must also hold the public in contempt for not recognizing his product’s blatant superiority. →  Read the rest

Does Nintendo care?

With games like WiiFit and Face Training becoming the staple of Nintendo’s wares in this “new generation”, most hardcore gamers are left asking, “Hey, what about me? Where are my kind of games at, son?” I’m sorry to have to tell you this, but Nintendo doesn’t care about you anymore. They have moved on to greener pastures. Which is to say they want your mom’s money now, not yours.

The number one indicator for this theory was their show at the 2007 E3 conference. We had nearly 20 minutes of WiiFit, but only 20 seconds of Mario Kart Wii.

They didn’t want to show more because Nintendo was in front of all the world’s media, and they wanted to send out the word that they’re all about the non-gamers now. That’s why they focused so much on WiiFit. →  Read the rest

Nintendo is waiting for shoes to be eaten

So guess who is the second largest company in Japan as of now?

NCL, otherwise known as Nintendo.

That’s right, the same Nintendo that countless people asked to drop out of the hardware business for the entirety of the Gamecube generation.

I’m sorry, but I have to vent a little about this one. There came Nintendo with its crazy ideas that everyone scoffed at, while Sony was praised for making “sexy” consumer products, quite possibly one of the most asinine descriptions I have heard in the world of business. Everyone had their mind set on the victor, and apparently sluggish Gamecube sales surely meant Nintendo had no money in the bank.

Well I guess they did after all. And I guess their crazy ideas worked pretty well too. You can disagree with what they are doing, but the fact that so many people put themselves in what seemed to be a state of self-imposed denial because (god forbid) the “kiddie” games company wasn’t being beaten to a bloody pulp has been one of my biggest pet peeves of the last seven years. →  Read the rest

Lumines sells like hotcakes. No, the original one. Yeah.

See, I told you guys the PSP wasn’t dead. This week, Lumines, the damn-near-perfect musical puzzler for the PSP, saw a 5900% rise in sales on Amazon. And all because of a bug. Yes, Lumines is probably the first game in history to become more sought-after because of a minor bug that not even QA’ers can find. Yes, you’ve entered Bizarro World. Welcome.

Over the weekend, PSP homebrew programmers/hackers found an exploit in Q! Entertainment’s puzzler in the form of a buffer overflow. Basically, this allows anyone to run unsigned code on the PSP, which Sony’s been desperately trying to stop. Ya know, so they can actually make money on the thing.

And of course, the underground homebrew scene has already released a downgrader app to bring the PSP’s firmware version back to the coveted 1.50 release. →  Read the rest

N’Gai Croal to Phil Harrison: What’s Up With Rare?

Following yesterday’s big news story about Rare’s departing co-founding brothers, Chris and Tim Stamper, N’Gai Croal of Newsweek interviewed Sony’s Phil Harrison and asked him what he thought of Rare’s recent decline in fame.

Can someone explain to me why he asked Sony this question? Did he willingly pick the most irrelevant person to ask, or was it, “Damn, I have this huge hole in my Q&A sheet. Hmmmm. Oh, I know what to fill it in with!”

Phil tries admirably to dodge the issue a bit, and tries to assume logically what happened.

“… I think that they became quite insular and quite inward-facing, and they missed some of the trends that were going on in the business generally. Now also, if you sell your company to Microsoft and get hundreds of millions of whatevers, currency in the bank, it does tend to defocus management a little bit.” →  Read the rest

Capcom Compilations

So a trip to my local Gamestop enlightened me to two nice little releases from Capcom. It seems the store is selling exclusive 3 game boxsets for Devil May Cry and Resident Evil. You can get all three DMC games for just $30, while $40 nabs you the three Cube exclusive Resi’s (REmake, Zero and 4, which was at least initially exclusive). Both packages come in rather nice boxes, though there seem to be no other special items along with them.


I think this a pretty great idea from Capcom. The prices for both sets are very reasonable, especially for the Resident Evils. Despite the fact that most of these games are quite old, something like this could easily go for $20 more if they wanted to. Instead you can get three great titles for less than the cost of a brand new one. →  Read the rest

Review – Goonzu

Goonzu – B


If you’re bored and want to try something new and inventive, try Goonzu. Its blend of economic and political aspects only add to its addicting nature and in-depth gameplay. Did I mention it was free?

Full Review:

Is that an evil onion?

At first glance, Goozu seems like just another Korean clone of Ragnarok Online, but a closer look might change your mind. Like any other MMORPG, gameplay centers around creating a character and improving your stats through hours of play during sleepless nights. Combat is a part of the game, and so is the process of completing quests in order to advance to the next level of experience. What sets Goonzu apart from other games in the genre is the fact that it focuses on the mechanics of economics and an active political system. →  Read the rest

Sony will have the last laugh…all the way to the bank…or something

Sony has gotten a lot of crap from gamers recently. Most of it is entirely deserved. They are forcing consumers to buy a Blu Ray player if they want a PS3, charging $600 for their new console and games are anticipated to sell for $60 or $70 a piece. PR statements from Kutaragi and Hirai have made Sony seem more arrogant than ever. More recently, there have been reports of delays in production and now Sony has announced that the PS3 will launch next year in Europe and the launches in North America and Japan will be limited. To top it all off, the new Sony slogan for European territories sucks total ass – Now this is living.

All of these factors combined with how promising the 360 and the Wii are looking have led many to attack Sony, some going so far as to “break up” with them (funniest article in the world – he acts like Sony is a girl, not a company, get it?). →  Read the rest

Weekly News We care About Wrap Up – 5.5.06

Analysts analyze the future through use of crystal ball
My arch enemy Michael Wallace of UBS Securities predicts this next generation console battle will be different than the last because the systems are so expensive. Startling revelation number two is that the Wii is unique so publishers won’t just port every game they make onto it. Wallace and his crony Stephen Kam think the “Wii” is a kiddy name but it won’t matter if the system has good games. Somehow these guys, who I assume majored in bullshit in college, missed the classes on image and branding because A) people don’t have infinite time to research everything so they often need to go with their gut reaction B) people are stupid and shallow and C) the name really is god awful. →  Read the rest

The Ethics of Farming part I

As someone who once used to rent the old school NES “cheats” videos (it’s how I learned to beat Castlevainia 2) I am not sure if I am the right person to talk about what is ethical in the gaming world. I will anyway though, so take that!

Anyone who has ever made it beyond level 10 in World of Warcraft knows that there are people in places usually not the US that grind away all day in game collecting items and gold (in game currency) to sell for real world currency. Big deal, right? Well here is what I think… No, it isn’t a big deal. Blizzard, in one of their more incandescent moments, decided to combat this by making the best in game items BOP, which means Bind on Pickup. →  Read the rest