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Posts tagged ‘Nintendo’

24
Apr

Nintendo backs off of bringing Super Nintendo games to Wii U


Bad news for Super Nintendo fans: your Wii U fix is about to dry up. Nintendo’s Virtual Console, the download service offering older games on its consoles and handhelds, has never had the most robust selection. With Nintendo turning its eye towards N64 games, though, SNES releases are being left behind. According to Natsume, a publisher with a plethora of SNES games primed for re-release, Nintendo is done with 16-bit for now.

“At this point, it’s unlikely we’ll see any other Natsume SNES games coming to the Virtual Console, as Nintendo’s interest has moved onto other classic systems,” said Cee-Cee, Natsume’s Community Manager in the US, responding to questions about whether the company’s game Pocky & Rocky would hit Wii U. When fans asked follow-up questions on Facebook about other, possibly more popular games from the archive, Cee-Cee dashed any hopes. “If it’s not up now, it’s not coming.”

During its April 1st Nintendo Direct presentation, the company did announce that it would start releasing N64 games on Virtual Console, but that didn’t necessarily mean it would stop releasing SNES or NES games. It never shied away from releasing Virtual Console games for multiple old devices simultaneously on Wii. Nintendo may be more interested in committing its internal resources to new projects, though. Natsume said that even though most of the games on Virtual Console come from outside publishers, it’s Nintendo that does most of the work preparing them for sale.

“The titles for Virtual Console are handled by Nintendo,” explained Cee-Cee. “The publisher and Nintendo discuss which classic titles would be a good fit and have the best potential to sell. Once a title is agreed upon, Nintendo and the publisher work together to bring that title to the designated system, with Nintendo doing the bulk of the work.”

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22
Apr

Wii U ‘Splatoon’ bundle lands at Best Buy on May 29th


Wii U 'Splatoon' bundle

Nintendo must be really, really confident that you’ll want Splatoon. It’s launching a Best Buy-exclusive Wii U bundle that includes the ink-drenched, kid-friendly shooter, Nintendoland and a 32GB Deluxe console for $300. That’s a good deal, but a bit of a gamble for a brand new game series — normally, Nintendo thrives on bundling familiar titles that lure you in based on the name alone. If you’re new to the Wii U and don’t mind trying something genuinely new, though, you can snag this bundle on May 29th.

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Source: Nintendo (BusinessWire), Best Buy

21
Apr

JXE Streams: Me, you and Mewtwo in ‘Super Smash Bros. for Wii U’


Nintendo’s reticence to make downloadable content has been exasperating this past decade. Is it admirable to focus on making full games, the whole thing complete and defined when it ships on a disc? Of course, but it’s also exciting to see games turn into thriving ecosystems of change. Super Smash Bros. for Wii U has already been tweaked, balanced and updated multiple times since its release last fall, but it was only this month that it expanded through big DLC. Mewtwo, the formidable Pokémon fighter last seen in Super Smash Bros. Melee, is back and we’re checking out his moves with The A.V. Club‘s own Matt Gerardi on today’s stream.

Catch a look at Mewtwo in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U starting at 3:30PM ET on Twitch.tv/Joystiq , Engadget.com/gaming and here in this post. We’ll be playing crazy matches with far too many amiibo. Will Mewtwo’s skills let us fend off the vicious AI waiting inside a Rosalina amiibo? Tune in to find out.

If you dig the streams and want more, make sure to follow us on Twitch.tv/Joystiq and to bookmark Engadget.com/gaming to get a look at our upcoming schedule.

[We’re playing a retail disc of Super Smash Bros. for Wii U, streamed through an Elgato Capture HD via OBS at 720p.]

Filed under: Gaming, HD, Nintendo

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21
Apr

The magic of Nintendo’s new shooter ‘Splatoon’ is in its multiplayer


My Nintendo 64 memories have nothing to do with GoldenEye 007, the famed first-person James Bond shooter that helped define the genre. Unlike seemingly every other N64 owner, I never played that game because, quite frankly, shooters aren’t my thing. With Splatoon, Nintendo’s quirky, new third-person action shooter for the Wii U, ready for release on May 29th, however, it may be time I change my tune.

There are two critical things Splatoon accomplishes for Nintendo: It breathes life into the Wii U’s Zelda-less 2015 lineup and it’s a completely new IP, which should please loyalists. The game boasts Nintendo’s signature polish as it’s filled to the brim with colorful art direction, instantly lovable characters (i.e., the Inklings) and a whimsical squid-ink twist on the shooter genre. What’s more, it’s meant to be “primarily a four vs. four online turf war battle,” according to Corey Olcsvary of Nintendo’s Treehouse. That’s right, with Splatoon, Nintendo’s putting online multiplayer first; that’s an actual first for the company, which typically favors local multiplayer a la Super Smash Bros. The demo I played, however, was focused on the single-player campaign and corresponding Amiibo challenges, so the verdict’s still out on how the multiplayer “meat and potatoes” of the game’ll pan out.

Shigeru Miyamoto, Nintendo’s celebrated Mario maker and overseer of the company’s prestigious EAD studio (from which Splatoon hails), is famously averse to a story-first approach to game design, opting instead to focus on “fun” gameplay. And so, Splatoon follows that blueprint with a thin conceit: You, a member of the Inklings, are trying to regain ownership of the Great Zap Fish from archrivals, the Octarians. That’s it. That’s the story.

Players that enter the world of Splatoon begin and end their journeys in a hub world known as Inkopolis. It’s from here that you’ll enter a tower to begin multiplayer tournaments; enter a sewer for single-player campaign; approach an Amiibo box to play those additional campaign challenges; or shop for upgrades like shoes, hats and outfits. There’s no extended ability to converse with the other players that inhabit your hub world as Inkopolis functions much like Wara Wara Plaza on the Wii U home screen. Only player stats will be accessible through interaction with others in the hub.

The single-player campaign in Splatoon plays out more like an extended training exercise and, according to Olcsvary, that’s entirely by design. It’s intended to help ramp up players’ skill levels so they’ll be able to confidently enter and compete in online matches. Each level in the campaign introduces a new mechanic or play style to gradually build up a player’s arsenal of moves and also get them acquainted with the various battle environments.

In typical Nintendo style, this is done so effortlessly as to be invisible. The first levels of Splatoon‘s campaign, while not childishly simple, don’t quite present much of a challenge. The enemies remain mostly static and the platforming elements are non-threatening. Most of that initial play time is spent coming to grips with the somewhat on-rails world of Splatoon and the motion controls of the GamePad, which are used to manipulate the camera. That said, players looking for a more traditional shooter setup can remap the camera to the right analog stick. Although, in practice, I much preferred the default motion setting.

The controls in Splatoon are otherwise fairly straightforward: To spray ink, you simply depress ZR (sorry, but there’s no targeted lock-on). To swim in your inkblots as a squid, you depress ZL. Ink capacity can be re-upped by swimming around and the ability to swap out weapons, of which there are three types (rapid-fire, charger and roller), comes only in multiplayer or Amiibo challenge modes. Upgrades in single-player are limited. Unlike the coins granted by online matches, campaign mode requires players to collect power eggs to improve stats (e.g., faster ink tank refills), not gear. So you’ll be stuck with the “hero suit” for the duration of the single-player campaign.

If you happen to conquer all 20 challenges offered by an Amiibo figurine, however, your Inkling will be rewarded with a special outfit: a schoolgirl look for the female Inkling, a samurai look for the boy Inkling and a “ridiculous” outfit for the squid. The major caveat here being that you must first unlock all the single-player levels in order to even access the additional Amiibo challenges.

As much as I was excited for the single-player experience in Splatoon, it lacks the compelling magic the IP was built around — and that’s the multiplayer mayhem. Though I enjoyed progressing from objective to objective, ink-blasting baddies and leveling up my proficiency in the increasingly difficult campaign, it wasn’t until I went head to head with another local player in Battle Dojo (versus mode) that I began to see the game’s frantic appeal. And this is where the Wii U’s unique design comes into play, as one player uses the GamePad as both controller and screen, while the other gets the TV and a separate controller (likely a Pro).

I’ll admit, I got my ass handed to me several times over while battling in local multiplayer — I’m crap at shooters — but I never felt discouraged and the gameplay never felt unfair. In fact, there are plenty of player assists in the form of power-up crates sprinkled throughout the sandboxed levels. The objective of this mode is simple: Pop as many balloons as you can and impede your opponent’s progress (read: Literally slow them down) by spraying the terrain with your color ink. It sounds simple, but it’s wonderfully maddening to play.

As enjoyable as Splatoon is in its more limited modes, I still couldn’t shake the sense that I was missing the larger picture. It appears as though much of the game’s mass appeal will live and die by the success of its online multiplayer aspect. And for that, we’ll have to wait and see.

[Image credits: Nintendo]

Filed under: Gaming, HD, Nintendo

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15
Apr

Mario Kart 8’s super-fast 200cc class almost made me puke


It could’ve been the latent heatstroke setting in from the three days I spent tut-tutting millennials under my breath at Coachella, or the five coffees I’d drunk to sustain some form of consciousness. But when I finished playing a demo of the new 200cc level in Mario Kart 8 with some folks from Nintendo on Monday, my eyes felt looser in their sockets and a barely containable feeling of nausea lingered in my gut for about an hour. It was as if I’d come off a roller coaster — like one of those daring, metallic serpents from Six Flags or Busch Gardens in the ’80s that jolted you just a bit too much and gave the impression you’d nearly avoided whiplash.

All of which is to say, 200cc is not for the weak. It is stupid fast and stupid good.

I’m a die-hard fan of the original WipeOut, the futuristic racer that helped catapult the PlayStation to success. Fans of that game will probably remember how frustrating and undeniably thrilling it was to play in Rapier class, that game’s unlockable ultra-fast mode. Mario Kart’s 200cc mode (which arrives as a free update on April 23rd) is like that. It’s maddening in a way that somehow makes you smile. And it requires an essential mastery of sliding, and in-depth knowledge of each track’s every nuance to avoid repeatedly running your cart off the track or slamming into walls. You’ll also have to carefully consider how you weight your racer — i.e., cart style, wheels and glider — to make those deft turns.

It’s a blink-and-you’ll-miss-all-the-things level of pandemonium. And I can’t wait to play it (and nearly puke) again.

[Image credit: Nintendo]

Filed under: Gaming, HD, Nintendo

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14
Apr

‘Guitar Hero’ gets born again with a new look and a new controller


Guitar Hero has no business being relevant in 2015. Ten years is an eternity for video games, especially so for games tied so closely to specific technology like Harmonix’s revolutionary PlayStation 2 game was to its inner-rock-star-summoning controller when it came out. A decade on from that original, and five years on from the last release in the series, Guitar Hero is an icon, but it also feels like a relic, a work hopelessly locked in its era. A 10-year anniversary reissue, maybe with some bonus tracks thrown in, seems like the best-case scenario for Guitar Hero coming back to life in 2015, a dignified archive for the nostalgic. FreeStyleGames has done so much more with its new game Guitar Hero Live. The studio has made a game that feels deeply modern, relevant, wholly distinct from Rock Band and somehow still rooted in tradition. It’s all thanks to a new controller and a wildly different look for the series’ debut on PS4, Xbox One and Wii U.

Guitar Hero Live keeps the fundamentals of the classics — using a plastic guitar to play fake notes in a song when they appear in a scrolling bar on your TV — but it’s different in every other way starting with its guitar. Harmonix set the standard for the entire music-game genre, from Guitar Hero to FreeStyle’s own DJ Hero, with the original plastic guitar and its five primary-colored buttons located where a guitar’s strings would be. The basic shape and weight of the new guitar is the same. The whammy bar is still there to furiously tap during a sustained note, accompanied by a devoted “Hero Power” button to hit when you’ve hit a series of successive notes just right, boosting your score in the process. The classic five finger buttons, though, have been replaced with six buttons at the far end of the neck. Three black buttons on top of three white buttons, arranged tightly together and flush with the rest of the fret board. It looks slick and, in action, feels even closer to playing the real thing.

The classic five finger buttons, though, have been replaced with six buttons at the far end of the neck.

“This is the universal air guitar, right?” asked Jamie Jackson, creative director of Guitar Hero Live during my demo of the game. He was furiously wiggling the fingers on his left hand in midair while doing a Pete Townsend windmill with his right hand. The air-guitar finger-wiggling is something everyone knows, but how do you translate that motion to a controller? “We actually have six buttons in two rows. We’re creating that illusion of playing guitar a bit more — still really, really easy to learn, but also difficult to master.”

When playing Fall Out Boy’s “My Songs Know What You Did in the Dark,” the familiar stream of cascading note cues still fills the screen, but is a little more staid thanks to the black-and-white color scheme. Playing on Easy has you fingering just the left, middle or right white (lower) buttons or black upper buttons in simple rhythmic combinations, but move it up to Normal or Expert settings and you’re bending your hand to cover both rows. It almost evokes the very real feel of chords on an actual guitar. It’s easier than playing a guitar, but the buttons are, after all, a whole lot bigger than strings.

While the stream of notes on the screen is familiar, the cleanliness of the display is new. It’s not just the color palette, but also a clearing of detritus. The neon explosions when your score goes up, the little multicolored meter telling you to use your “Hero Power,” are totally gone. In fact, all the cartoon elements of the old series are gone, including the bulbous polygon caricatures that you’d see flailing around in the background while you played. The visuals replacing them are cleaner, but also more complex and strange. “The other cool thing about Guitar Hero is it’s not like a Call of Duty where I need to run around,” said Jackson. Guitar Hero had a lot of flash, but the cartoon graphics in the background weren’t much more than, as Jackson put it, a painting in the background instead of an environment the player needs to explore. FreeStyle figured it would do something more dynamic. “So we thought, ‘Fuck it, let’s film a movie instead. Let’s film real people, looking at you, and responding to you.’”

Guitar Hero Live is played entirely in first-person view on a stage and in front of a crowd of live people. When you pick a song and venue, the game shifts to a shot following a bearded, tattooed roadie out onto a stage in front of a few thousand screaming fans. The drummer will give you an assertive nod before you start going. Jackson clearly loves the concert feel of his game, and it shows in Live‘s presentation. “You want them to scream at you if you’re doing well,” he said. “We want them to sing the songs along with you if you’re killing it. But if you screwed them up, we want them to tell you you’re screwing up as well.”

Live‘s presentation isn’t wholly successful. Of the two venues I got to try, including a medium-sized arena comparable to New York’s Hammerstein Ballroom and a massive outdoor festival akin to Glastonbury, both suffered from the inevitable feeling of manufactured excitement that comes with an orchestrated concert. Viewed from the outside when you’re not playing, Live has the air of a Super Bowl halftime show, full of sign-wielding super fans jumping up and down furiously regardless of what’s going on. There’s no one in the crowd checking their phones; they’re all too excited. Like any truly great illusion, though, Live‘s filmed action feels best when you’re not looking directly at it noticing its imperfections. When you’re actually playing the game, the effect is fascinating because you only notice the details of the film when something changes. Stumble over a few notes and the screen blurs for a split second and those adoring fans seamlessly turn to giving you confused, disapproving looks. Keep messing up and you swing around to see that drummer staring daggers right at you. The effect is both engrossing and motivating in the right ways.

There’s no one in the crowd checking their phones; they’re all too excited..

​The live performances of Guitar Hero Live may not ultimately be what most players spend the bulk of their time with. Included is Guitar Hero TV, the game’s most thoroughly modern feature. Rather than a download store for purchasing new songs of even more annualized disc releases (the flood of which arguably destroyed the series by 2010), Live‘s primary online mode is a set of music video stations. Guitar Hero TV lets you play the game over artists’ videos, like a playable cross between YouTube and Spotify.

“It’s very much like your TV at home,” explained Jackson. Like a cable box, Guitar Hero TV will let you bounce between set channels or pick a tune from an on-demand song list. There’s even a multiplayer component, with a list of scores on the left side of the screen showing you in real time other people who are playing the same song while you are. Guitar Hero TV feels like it’s delivering what previous games in the series and even Rock Band never could: a streaming service that lets you access new content without having to buy a disc or individually download songs.

Whether Guitar Hero TV can deliver on its promise remains to be seen. Only a video showing off its features was on hand, and Jackson was even hesitant to commit to which artists would be available. Newbies like Ed Sheeran were on display alongside classic staples like Blue Album-era Weezer, but beyond that are a lot of question marks. How many songs, how many live performances and many other details about Guitar Hero Live will have to wait for E3 2015 and later in the year, closer to the game’s release according to Activision. Even the briefly discussed Guitar Hero Live mobile version for tablets and phones — which Activision says is exactly the same game as the $100 versions hitting consoles this fall — remains under wraps. Still, FreeStyleGames has done something deeply impressive with Guitar Hero Live; it’s filled a seemingly dead series with life in time for its tin anniversary.

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14
Apr

Resurrecting ‘Guitar Hero’ through live rock and robots


Guitar Hero Live is trying to pull off one of the most difficult acts in rock and roll: the return to relevance. Not just a reunion tour feeding off nostalgic fans looking to recapture the good, old days of 2005, but a bona fide resurrection. After a five-year hiatus for the series, FreeStyleGames has taken over. It hopes to bring the rock star simulator back to the prominence that made Guitar Hero 3 the first game to break $1 billion in sales. Its first step: redesigning the iconic guitar, trading its five primary-colored buttons for six black and white keys that mimic actual chord fingerings, but that’s not its primary gambit. Chasing the rock star fantasy that the old games sold even further, this fall’s Guitar Hero Live places you on a real stage with a real band and audience, all filmed from a first-person perspective.

Gone are the bulbous cartoon people that rocked out in the background of Guitar Hero and its sequels. Replacing them are actors playing the band around you, roadies and the massive crowds filling the outdoor festivals and arenas where you play songs like Fall Out Boy’s “My Songs Know What You Did in the Dark.” Play well and the audience adores you. Miss a bunch of notes in a row and the crowd will turn against you faster than a Slayer riff. The transition is instantaneous while you’re playing, which makes the process of capturing the game’s fictional concerts on film all the more impressive.

“It was interesting bringing what we knew about video games into a world about films,” explained Jamie Jackson, creative director on Guitar Hero Live. During my hands-on session with the game, Jackson seemed genuinely pleased with his studio’s foray into a different creative medium. “Just getting a tent, getting the extras from the tent to the stage — that was a chore. And getting them to act how you wanted was even more interesting. I’d come on stage and say to them, ‘All right, this song is going to be on; this is the band; this is how you feel about the band: Go crazy. That was easy. That was funny.”

How do you get a bunch of people at an imaginary concert to behave as you want them to? Conjure up the same emotions that some of the best rock songs do. “We came up with this concept of asking, ‘Who’s ever broken up with somebody?’” said Jackson. “There’s three stages to a breakup, right? The first one is denial. So it starts with the song as it goes wrong; I want you to be in denial. The second stage of a break up is kind of tears of sadness, right? So we want you to be more emotional; we don’t mind if you cry a little bit. Then the third part of breaking up with somebody is that complete abject anger, and hatred. So at the end of the song, throw whatever you’ve got at them. And it worked!”

Unfortunately, the live-action concert feels too manufactured when watching another person play.

Unfortunately, the live-action concert feels too manufactured when watching another person play. It falls prey to the same shortcomings all fake concerts do, in that it can’t help but feel staged when everyone in the crowd is acting the same way. Where are all the people staring at their phones? Where are the couples making out? The effect is far more thorough when you’re actually playing the game. When you’re the one holding the controller, focused on hitting your notes, the illusion is impressively convincing. The seamlessness of the transitions buries the fact that it must have been profoundly difficult to capture the very different audience vibes without making it seem abrupt. FreeStyleGames’ secret to capturing alternate versions of identical shots: robot arms.

Jackson and FreeStyle drew from an unlikely source of inspiration for Guitar Hero Live‘s style. Peter Jackson’s The Hobbit managed to nail the effect of having Ian McKellen’s Gandalf look enormous next to Martin Freeman’s Bilbo Baggins by filming them simultaneously on identical sets that were different sizes. While Bilbo’s in his normal-sized hobbit hole, Gandalf’s in a cramped version where he has to bend low. Cameras mounted on robotic arms, meanwhile, capture identically framed images in both so it seems like the actors are right next to each other; different perspective seamlessly intertwined. “I thought: mind-blowing, now this is fucking cool,” said Jackson of his learning about Peter Jackson’s technique. “We took from it those motion cameras where we can do that same pass every single time. We can do a positive take; we can do a negative take; we could then have them running and switch between them, which means the frame is exactly the same.”

Rather than a live cameraman on stage dodging actors playing instruments and capturing every shot live, FreeStyle had someone frame every shot and then leave the rest to a robot cameraman. The robot would then capture the exact same frames — crowd at peak excitement, crowd wondering why the guitar player is messing up, incensed crowd, etc. — one after another. After each version was shot, they switched between shots on the fly to create the complete concert experience.

“A cameraman is an invaluable asset because they just know how to frame, and they know how to move, and they know how to keep things smooth; and we had a great cameraman do all of that for us,” said Jackson. “Then we take that camera data and then give it to our physical camera, Priscilla. She didn’t need feeding; she didn’t need a break; and she’d do the same shot time after time.”

Of course there are risks that come with using the robot arm.

“Priscilla, she doesn’t stop very quickly. She’ll hit you in the face — she can take your face right off — so we also marked out the danger zone on stage,” said Jackson. “We told the band members, ‘Do not stand in this area. She will take your face off.’ It allowed us to do so many things apart from just having a positive and negative reaction from the band and the crowd.”

Priscilla may have been dangerous, but she’s worth it. Guitar Hero Live still feels like a concert. Even though there are only a few hundred actors in the crowd, a robotic camera capturing the same space over and over again can make them look like thousands of people.

Priscilla may have been dangerous, but she’s worth it.

“There was only about between [200] to 400 people in the crowd,” Jackson admitted. “But once we’d done the passage with the band on stage, we cleared them off, and moved all the crowd back. We changed their clothes, swapped them around, shot another pass, moved them back again and shot another pass. By the end of that, we turned four hundred people into several thousand real people. Then actually we started to fill in with 3D, CG.”

Impressive effect or not, the jury’s out on whether these live performances will make the world fall back in love with Guitar Hero 10 years after the original’s debut. That will be borne out later this year when Guitar Hero Live comes out on PlayStation 4, PlayStation 3, Xbox One, Xbox 360, Wii U and a plethora of still unconfirmed mobile devices.

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8
Apr

Two popular 3DS games get sequels on smartphones and tablets


New games in two acclaimed 3DS franchises, Professor Layton and Fantasy Life, are heading exclusively to iOS and Android. During an event today, Japanese developer Level-5 announced it will bring Professor Layton and Fantasy Life to smartphones and tablets in Japan only (for now). Siliconera reports the next Professor Layton game is called Layton 7 and it seems to be a departure from the series’ puzzle-solving roots, offering a card game with fortune-telling aspects where players attempt to figure out who the “Vampire” is. The new Fantasy Life game, Fantasy Life 2: Two Moons and the Village of God, sticks closely to the franchise’s role-playing script but offers more city-building options, Siliconera says.

Layton 7 and Fantasy Life 2 are due out for iOS and Android devices in Japan in the summer. Level-5 revealed Layton 7 in 2013 and at the time it said the game would come to 3DS as well as mobile devices, though Nintendo’s handheld was absent from today’s announcements. Nintendo is a new passenger on the smartphone and tablet train: In March it announced an initiative to create original games for mobile devices as part of a partnership with handheld platform developer DeNA.

Level-5 also revealed today that Yo-Kai Watch, a creature-collecting game for 3DS that’s extremely popular in Japan, is heading to North America, Europe, Latin America, Korea, New Zealand and Australia. Nintendo is publishing the series, and Hasbro will manufacture toys related to the game. Siliconera reports that Yo-Kai Watch is due out in North America in 2016.

[Image credit: Level-5]

Filed under: Gaming, Handhelds, HD, Nintendo

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Via: The Verge

Source: Siliconera

2
Apr

‘Binding of Isaac: Rebirth’ reborn on 3DS, Wii U and Xbox One


Prepare your consoles for ritual sacrifice. An edited version of The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth, the adorably disturbing roguelike from Super Meat Boy co-creator Edmund McMillen, is on its way to 3DS, Wii U and Xbox One. This is really happening, despite a few years of uncertainty about the game’s fate on Nintendo consoles. Back in 2012, McMillen said that Nintendo had nixed The Binding of Isaac (the version before the Rebirth expansion) on 3DS because of the game’s “questionable religious content.” It is a game about God compelling a mother to murder her own child, after all. However, Rebirth has since launched on PlayStation 4, Vita and Steam, and McMillen has remained optimistic about working with Nintendo. In July 2014, he noted that a 3DS version was still on the table.

Now, McMillen has laid out some of the edits that make the 3DS and Wii U versions possible.

“Now you know how I am about artistic integrity and trust me when I say I’d never compromise my art to make a quick buck,” he writes on his blog. “But after thinking outside the box a bit I came up with a few minor edits to the game that got more than a few suits on my side when it came to getting the green light. I’ll list out the edits below and I think you’ll agree they are so minor none of you will even notice.”

Before we dive into some of the changes, it’s worth noting that this blog post was published on April 1st. We double-checked with McMillen that this wasn’t all a cruel, cruel joke. “Something’s [sic] are true some aren’t but I’m happy with the edits we made,” he wrote back. Microsoft’s Xbox One version will be the same as the PS4 game, meaning no Nintendo-level edits, but it will “feature the green Xbox ‘X’ carved into Satan’s head (a lil’ gag to MS).”

On to the edits for 3DS and Wii U. McMillen notes three major areas that Nintendo found problematic: nudity (Isaac is a baby and is cartoonishly naked), use of the word “God” and Christian imagery. To fix the nudity issue, there’s now a fig leaf between Isaac’s legs, over what McMillen calls “questionable underage dingle dangle.” We meant it when we said this game was truly adorable and disturbing.

“God” is now “Dog” in the Wii U and 3DS versions, offering a bit of wordplay and a Son of Sam reference for good measure. As for the Christian imagery, McMillen replaced all of it with another, commonly ridiculed religion: Scientology.

“By switching out one mainstream belief system with a smaller one that’s more socially acceptable to mock in the media I turned the tides and created a game that is more socially acceptable but still brings home the strong message the game always had,” McMillen says.

There’s no release date for The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth on Wii U, 3DS or Xbox One, but McMillen says it should be “soon.” Overall, he’s happy with the edited game on Nintendo consoles.

“A few easy changes to get the game into the hands of Nintendo fans around the globe!” he writes. “An easy compromise that took us longer than a year to do… but was well worth it, artistic integrity intact.”

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Source: The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth

2
Apr

A peppy, neon look at ‘Shin Megami Tensei x Fire Emblem’ for Wii U


“Thank you for waiting, everyone.” That’s how Nintendo capped the new trailer today for Shin Megami Tensei x Fire Emblem, a Wii U game it’s developing with Japanese publisher Atlus, announced back in January 2013. While the video is fairly gorgeous and shows off some gameplay, it doesn’t offer a release date. We did, however, get the following description: “The role-playing masters at Atlus are developing a truly modern RPG where everyday life exists alongside a secret world of fantasy.” Watch the trailer below.

Filed under: Gaming, HD, Nintendo

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