News We Care About Update 12.29.08

Nintendo to offer streaming videos, just not here
Nintendo is bizarrely slow to adopt some aspects of technology. Their latest console, the Wii (pronounced “Why”), has only cursory online abilities, and lacks both a practical storage device and the ability to function as a time machine.

As a curmudgeon who spouts things like, “Game systems should do nothing but play games” I was once on board with Nintendo’s seemingly similar stance. Their real position, which they have revealed at glacial speed, is game consoles should do a lot of things poorly and much, much later than other game consoles.

Whether this half-assed approach to new technology will be their ultimate undoing as Sony and Microsoft take over your living room in 2010, your wine cellar in 2015 and your apiary in 2020 is yet to be seen.…

Tales From Behind The Counter – A Time of Loathing

When working in retail there is one time of year you dread above all others: the holidays. It means angry customers with no time and no money, pissed off that they have to brave ice covered roads and bumper car parking lots instead of being gleeful and warm in the comfort of their own homes. In video game retail land, there is one other time that I have come to regard in the same way I would a diagnosis of colon cancer: EA Sports Game Release season. Also called, the Unholidays, with a long e sound on that i.

During this time, Electronic Arts decides to rain shit from the sky in the form of a new NCAA everything, new Madden, new baseball whatever, and [shudder] Nascar 09.…

EA: Level 10 alchemists, Level 1 Tech Support

So unfortunately, like many Rock Band players, our guitar broke about a month ago. No problem, we have Guitar Hero 3 backups, so we’ll send it off for repair. Additionally, rumor is that you get a free EA game, so sure, we’ll take free stuff. So my roommate packaged up the guitar in a box (opting to not pay for immediate gratification, which was an option), and sent it off. We waited a few weeks, nothing happened, although the repair status on the website changed, so we anticipated that some sort of witchcraft was occurring deep in the EA support labs.…

Dreamcast Mania! – EA

In my development of articles for Dreamcast Mania!, one theme has come up quite a lot – the lack of support from major companies like EA, Square and Konami greatly injured the Dreamcast’s chances of success. I agree that it certainly wasn’t a good thing, and I certainly agree that missing support from companies like Square and Enix in Japan was very close to receiving a death note. But when it comes to good ol’ Electronic Arts, I’m not so certain.

Hear me out with this one – the Dreamcast was released here in 1999. It died in 2001. 2001 is also the first year of Madden on the Playstation 2.…

Second verse same as the first?

So hey, Peter Moore is leaving Microsoft for Electronic Arts. When have we seen this before? Dreamcast gamers will remember when the chump left Sega in the days of the console’s waning to go to MS, and that he was influential in the canceling of Shenmue 2 in favor of an Xbox port.

I remember reading a very angry IGN forum post years ago, in which an avid Sega fan went over all the stupid things that Moore was responsible for. While I don’t remember any of it, I do remember it being convincing enough to give me a permanently sour taste for the man.…

Behind the names of our favorite companies and consoles

Gamers speak the names of companies and systems on a daily basis, but many of us don’t know what these words actually mean nor their origin. And so here is a list of many of the biggest companies and consoles and what information is openly known about their names. I speak absolutely no Japanese and have no new information to add to this planet, but I have not seen all this info neatly compiled in one spot before. Thanks to Japanmanship and others who had already done much research on the topic.

Companies


Microsoft – Micro Instrumentation and Telemetry Systems created the microcomputer Altair 8800 and Bill Gates offered to implement BASIC on their system.…

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.…

Weekly News We Care About Wrap Up – 1.18.07

Breaking news: Bill Gates likes the 360
When asked how the system’s strategy is working out, Gates replied, “It’s working perfectly.” So they DID mean to launch with nothing worth buying, have fewer than a 10 million lead on their year delayed competition, and fail in Japan a second time. That’s a relief. Other comedic tidbits — Gates says Sony is their biggest competition, despite last week saying Nintendo was their biggest competition, and then goes on to brag about owning Rare, which was largely a waste of millions of dollars.

Gates is a bright guy, sure, but he is also a bullshit artist.…

Weekly News We Care About Wrap Up – 12.8.06

Analyst predicts doom for blu-ray
A study has found that HD DVD has more positive buzz than the Blu-ray, at least partially because Sony is backing the Blu-ray format. I will now do my part to add to the negative Blu-ray buzz — Boo Blu-ray!

Maybe real issues would be taken seriously if there were violent video games about them.

Democrats focused on what really matters – videogames
“We all share in the responsibility of making sure our children play age-appropriate video games, and I’m pleased that the ESRB and retailers are working together to educate parents about the video game ratings and make sure they are enforced.…

The Electronic Arts I remember

A long, long time ago, back when Electronic Arts went by the abbreviation ECA, the company was not clearly evil. It turns out that they screwed Chris Crawford in the 80’s and undoubtedly weren’t the pinnacle of business ethics, but they also published good games. Every now and then, usually after reading a review of some terrible EA published game or news that they bought and destroyed a small developer, I reminisce about the good old days when the ECA logo didn’t make me cringe, but was actually a sign of quality. What’s that, you ask? You’re a snobby gamer who dislikes EA, too, but you wonder why they were once a respectable publisher?…