Weekly News We Care About Wrap Up – 4.8.07

Resident Evil games coming to Wii
Capcom loves to remake and rerelease Resident Evils. Resident Evil 1 was released first on the PS1, then the Saturn, and PC, then the director’s cut came out on the PS1. This was followed by the remake for Gamecube and the slightly modified Deadly Silence version for the DS. Somewhere in there a mobile phone game was released, but at least Capcom had the sense to scrap a GBC version. Some PS1 games don’t look good on an NES — who knew?

Good news for people who have only played this game eight times — the Umbrella Chronicles game coming to the Wii looks very much like a recreation of the first game (with some of the second thrown in to placate whiners like me). This version drastically changes the gameplay, though. Prepare for an on-rails shooter RE style. Which may be very similar to all the other RE light gun games I never played.

This news is slightly underwhelming. Not because on-rails shooters are a stupid genre as many people on the internets would have you believe (Sega makes awesome games in the genre) but because Capcom’s spin off RE titles have a tendency to suck. Wii owners will not get a RE5 and I’ve come to accept this. It makes little sense to develop the game for the more powerful consoles then port it to the Wii and throw in some spastic motion controls for opening doors and crushing and combining herbs (think Mortar and Pestle from Wario Ware). But give us something more than a spin off that looks mostly like RE1 from first person perspective.

Please god, tell me there isn’t a map in that sculpture.

Now just for fun, let’s run through the many other versions of RE games — and keep in mind these aren’t merely simultaneous releases for multiple systems. The second debuted on the PS1, then made its way to game.com, the PC, N64, Dreamcast and finally the Gamecube. RE3, the shitty one, was on the PS1, PC, DC and GC. The fourth title premiered on the Cube, landed on your computer and PS2, but that’s not all! Capcom has announced a RE4 remake coming to the Wii. Same game you loved years ago, brand new $50 bill.

…I’ll probably get it.

Microsoft pretends their new 360 harddrive isn’t enormously overpriced
I expect Nintendo to charge insultingly high prices for electronic hardware. Their branded SD flash cards cost a lot because they can sell them to children. Wii owners with a clue, however, will buy much cheaper cards because the Wii allows you to use any brand SD card. Finally, it feels more appropriate to be ripped off by a company dabbling in a market they aren’t really in.

Microsoft, on the other hand, should have all sorts of connections that can keep their hardware cheap. I understand they are a software company, and this may be a double standard, but they shouldn’t be ripping customers off so badly. More important than my subjective view on when companies should and shouldn’t overcharge is the fact that the 360 doesn’t allow you to plug any random harddrive into it.

This is getting into multiple fruit comparison cliché territory, being that the Wii doesn’t allow harddrive use (officially) and the Xbox does. You may cry foul because I am cutting Nintendo a break despite them not even offering any harddrive support, but I’m just comparing features consoles support to each other. The Wii lets us use any form of memory the system supports. For a better comparison I should’ve made three paragraphs ago, the PS3 lets us use any harddrive we want.

PSP price drop — sign me up for three!
I don’t collect handhelds like I collect consoles, which is bad news for Sony. Until the PSP is cheaper than the DS, I can’t justify buying it simply because there are still many good games on the DS I want.

The situation Sony has put themselves in with the PSP is really becoming a trend. To seriously compete with Nintendo (which they say they aren’t trying to do), they need to drop the PSP to about $140. Why don’t they do this? Because they can’t afford to. Sony seems to enjoy building hardware that is too powerful. I can’t say what Sony pays on each PSP, but my guess is that as it is they are either taking a small loss on each sold or breaking even. A price drop to the spot I suggest would surely cost them too much on every unit sold.

Looks like this baller will have to reprint his PSP money.

Sound familiar? Sony has damned themselves with their absurdly high PS3 price point. They want to be the luxury car manufacturer of consoles, but they don’t seem to notice that the majority of people don’t own luxury cars. If they want their system in the majority of gamers’ houses, they will need to drop the price to something more reasonable. But again, the PS3 is too powerful and they are already taking a large hit on each one sold. They just can’t afford to make the system affordable.

Nintendo making a lot of money
I don’t know what these numbers mean, but eight billion seems high considering I have trouble counting past 283. Also, the Wii is outselling the PS3 in Japan by 2-1. In other news Sony may want to pay attention to, normal houses still outsell mansions (unless we include mansions of gold created for us by Jesus and waiting for his faithful believers in heaven).

Itagaki still a total douche bag
Does this guy have an awesome sense of humor like me, or is he serious?

Miyamoto on third party development and more
Mr. Mario says that third parties too often use their third and fourth string teams to work on games going to Nintendo consoles. This may be true, but the situation is not as cut and dry as either Nintendo fans or detractors make it out to be.

Nintendo has not had great relationships with third party developers since…ever. If Miyamoto wants first tier titles on his systems he needs to work better with other companies. Nintendo also needs to sell systems if they want better third party games. Luckily, they do that now.

I have a theory about consoles. Each successful one needs a handful of awesome games, but then besides that it acts as a dumping ground for shitty games that still make money. Your Harry Potters, endless sports sequels, and Sponge Bobs. The problem with Nintendo systems is that Nintendo themselves fill that need for excellent games. Third parties are never compelled to make AAA titles because they can reap cash rewards by porting Open Season.

This idea that third parties don’t want to compete with Nintendo software is an old one and may indeed be true to some degree. In this case, Miyamoto is right — third parties need to stop making the easy buck on licensed drivel and begin to compete with Nintendo. Just not Ubi-Soft. They’ve proven they can’t.

Sega ending Saturn and Dreamcast support
Just when I was about to spend $100 to have my Saturn fixed and mailed to and from Japan instead of buying a new on for $50. Damn.

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17 years ago

I wonder if the the Wii (or any of the new consoles) will bring back one of the greatest rail shooters of all time: "Typing of the Dead"