A response to GoNintendo’s latest talking point regarding the “Nintendo bump”

Here’s the video:

My Thoughts:

The “Nintendo bump” is definitely real, although maybe not to the extent some people like to pretend it is—but it is there. I’ll give you an example: I watched my bro playing Breath of the Wild the other day and he was constantly going on about how gorgeous it looked, how beautiful the water effect was, how stunning the grass detail was, how amazing the huge open world was, that kind of stuff, and he was basically saying it like it was pretty much the most impressive stuff like this there had ever been in a videogame; that’s how it came across to me anyway. This is slightly ironic considering my bro had already played The Witcher 3 at that point, and if you put Breath of the Wild next to games like Horizon: Zero Dawn and The Witcher 3 it still looks very good in its own right but not exactly cutting-edge or truly mind blowing—certainly not graphically (even as lovely as it is). So, imo there’s a slight distortion there basically because he’s judging it from the point of view of someone who’s not really seen this kind of graphical quality in Nintendo games before, but it isn’t necessarily taken in the broader context of where graphics are at across the industry*. Therefore, given that he clearly isn’t a unique example—see Josh Thomas’ [The Bit Block] recent video on his first minutes with Breath of the Wild for example, where he is gushing no end—there will be many cases where the overall presentation, visuals, and graphics are being kind of overrated and overstated to a degree, as though they exist in a vacuum and all those other far more powerful systems, including high-end PCs, simply aren’t a thing.

Continue reading A response to GoNintendo’s latest talking point regarding the “Nintendo bump”

Nintendo has a new Switch Ad ready to play at the Superbowl

It’s a pretty good Ad apart from one potentially major flaw as I see it: In the exact same way the specific look and design of the Wii U name and hardware confused many people into thinking that it was just an accessory for Wii (or whatever they thought it was), the games Nintendo has to show off on Switch could possibly convince some people it’s just some kind of add-on for Wii U this time around (or at least that it’s maybe not that much different).

If Nintendo had a bunch of genuinely brand new, cutting-edge, major AAA first party titles to show for the system (and third party too), even if they were all just sequels to its most popular and beloved franchises, I think that possible issue could and would have been entirely avoided. Instead it has a lot of games that are either direct Wii U ports (including The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild) or look like they are basically 1.5 versions of current Wii U games (certainly as they come across in this Ad). In fact, it sometimes even looks like we’re watching a new Wii commercial—and I meant Wii, not Wii U—with games that could have come from the Wii era and even run on the Wii.

And that’s probably the biggest problem with the launch lineup and launch window games as I see it in terms of selling this thing to both the hardcore gamers and the masses of casuals out there—it kinda doesn’t look like something entirely new and/or cutting-edge (even though the whole multi-mode thing is obviously very cool).

But, it’s a decent enough Ad other than that. And the final image of the full system at the end of the Ad at least makes it pretty clear that it isn’t just the Wii U—which is very important.

Here’s a bonus extended-length Switch Ad that I really like though; it gets a lot of stuff across in its nearly five minute long runtime:

Overall, I think Nintendo is doing the job of selling exactly what the system is all about a lot better than it did with the Wii U, which is good for everyone involved. 🙂

I do, however, really do want to see a lot more tentpole, flagship, system-selling, brand-new/current-gen first party and third party games. . . .

Apple’s just laughing at its customers now

So, here’s Apple’s new book, Designed by Apple in California, available now to all Apple “fans” for the bargain price of $200-$300 (Note: You only get one of the books pictured below for that price):

“Designed by Apple in California” That shouldn’t offend me, but it does right now.

“Remember when we changed everything with the iPhone. . . . Buy the new iPhone.”

“Buy an Apple Watch.”

“Remember when we were actually creative and innovative and you bought our classic products. . . . Keep that in mind when you give us $300 for a book.”

I’m not going to provide the links to the store page or whatever because I don’t agree with how much Apple is charging for this product. And, if anyone buys this book glorified product catalogue (most catalogues offer far more useful information and value than this book) for the $200-$300 price that Apple is asking, I’d have to conclude that maybe they deserve to be ripped off—but I won’t be a part of it.

Continue reading Apple’s just laughing at its customers now

Genuinely, you have to check out Black Mirror

Charlie Brooker’s Black Mirror is totally brilliant and Season 3’s first episode, Nosedive, is utterly essential viewing:

Seriously, if you haven’t watched any of this amazing series yet I’d highly recommend giving it a go (all of it, right from Season 1: Episode 1). There’s not been a single dud in all the episodes I’ve watched thus far; in fact, they’ve all been brilliant.

Nosedive, however, hits so close to home for me personally that’s it’s actually pretty terrifying and heartbreaking at the same time, and you’ll get exactly what I mean when you watch it, especially if you’re part of any kind of popular “social” media site or whatever, which we basically all are at this point.

I’m off to check out the other Season 3 episodes on Netflix; can’t wait to see what else this amazing series has in store for me. . . .

🙂 😮

One for the old-school UK video gamers. . . .

If any of you guys and girls grew up playing video games in the UK in the early ’90s you’ll no doubt remember the classic and seminal video game magazine that was Mean Machines, which originally started life as a dedicated console-only section in the similarly awesome Computer & Video Games magazine (C&VG/CVG)—the first dedicated games mag in the UK—that had focused mostly on PC gaming until that point (covering the older 8-bit systems like the Commodore 64, ZX Spectrum, Amstrad CPC and newly emerging 16-bit computers (the Atari ST and Commodore Amiga).

Even the logo gives me the feels.

When Mean Machines broke onto the scene as its own dedicated console magazine—initially covering the NESMaster System, Mega Drive, and GX 4000  but later adding the SNES, Game BoyGame Gear, and dropping the GX 4000—it quickly became one of the greatest sources of video gaming news and reviews you could find anywhere.

A legend is born: This is the cover of the first issue of Mean Machines.

Continue reading One for the old-school UK video gamers. . . .