Review – Spider-Man: Friend or Mere Acquaintance

In another installment in my untimely series on finding something to hate while surrounded by the best games in years, here’s another look at games that ate shit in 2007.

Until recently, the Spider-Man franchise had been the only comic book license that somewhat translated into an enjoyable gaming experience. Next Level Games, a company that specializes in cramming a licensed properties into games that have nothing to do with the license they are based on, must have won some sort of raffle to be awarded the development of Friend or Foe. Any company that works solely in licensed games is going to suck worse than a circus put on by disabled veterans. Anyone who tells you different is Next Level Games.

Now That's Amore!

With hands full of cash and laps full of stripper, Next Level Games didn’t waste time on relating this game to the movie or even comic when they had already developed what I can only assume would have been called Mario Strikers Love Corndogs if Nintendo had called them first. →  Sid Meier’s Alpha Centarticle

Gaming Meccas of Japan Pt. 2 — Akihabara, Tokyo, Japan

Every hobby and every religion has their sacred place. Baseball fans have Cooperstown. Gamblers go to Las Vegas. Catholics go to the Vatican. Maple syrup lovers go to Canada. For us, the nerds, the geeks, the otaku, we have Akihabara. It is here that we can fulfill our wildest, dorkiest dreams. If we feel like buying the newest video game, Akihabara. If we have a craving for that awesomely drawn manga, Akihabara. And, if we just must be called “Master” by a cute little maid while we have our morning coffee, you got it, Akihabara. There are very few places in the world where a video game lover can come anytime of the year and feel at home. And just like home, Akihabara also has plenty of porn.

The downside to the place also called Akiba is that it is in an inconvenient location for most of the world’s electronically inclined. →  I’m readin’ here!

Shenmue 3 would rock your Wii

Shenmue failed for a number of reasons. I’d argue it was too awesome for normal people, but others insist it was slow-going, chock full of stupid “That day it rained…” plot, and ultimately boring. The Shenmue games also cost huge amounts of money to develop – many reports approximated a cost of $20 million (Wikipedia simultaneously claims $20 and $70 million) and the first game in the series was supposedly entered into the Guinness Book of World Records for being the most expensive game that had been yet been produced.

Sega would presumably allow development of Shenmue 3 if it weren’t such a huge risk. A costly game that sells poorly is never an attractive prospect to accountants. Deciding the MMO format may make them a profit, Sega has dashed hopes of Shenmue 3. →  The Adventures of Cookie and Read

Weekly News We Care About Wrap Up – 2.2.07

Sony contemplates PS3 price cuts
A little more than a week ago, Sony’s Jack Tretton said there would not be a price cut to the PS3 any time soon.

Soon after Takao Yuhara announced, “We may look at the price as part of our strategy to expand the market when the timing is right.” Most sites are running with the idea that Sony has changed their stance on price. It doesn’t seem clear that Yuhara means Sony will change pricing any time soon, nor does he mention any specific territory.

Sony claims that they took a hit from the PS3 price reduction in Japan, so it seems counterintuitive for them to talk about more cuts. They are likely doing damage control since about every gaming website not owned by Sony has chalked up the phenomenon of PS3s sitting on shelves to its exorbitant price. →  The fuck does Cuno care about reading?