Saturday, April 4, 2009

Hands-on and ridiculously in-depth with the Nintendo DSi

Ok, I am sold about this new DSI. Reading through this piece of article and I think you will be able to find out everything you wanna know about dsi(this one is much better than what I linked here last time).

When I say everything, it means everything ranging from its camera and its photographic toys, its sound application to how the slightly bigger screen is gonna affect your gaming experience. Believe me, even though this article spans 5 pages, I am sure it will definitely worth your time if you are still hesitated on getting one or you plan to get one. Hafez, I am sure after reading this it will definitely make you get it once it is released. I know I would provided I have the green! Say YES to blazingly louder volume baby!

Now, when can I get my hand on this? At least I wanna tinker with it as soon as it is released. Hopefully I would be able to attend the LYN gathering and get to experiment with this, particularly on the volume side of it!

Monday, March 30, 2009

I love Play-Asia

It had been some time that I didnt make any purchase at Play-Asia due to the my slowly changing nature that propels me to wait for discounted products and used games. However, since there was a lucky spring sale last week(it should last until tomorrow which is the end of March), I hopped into that site hoping that I could get something as I hadnt bought any new games in a while. A quick snooping around was made and finally I came out with 2 games which were Ninja Gaiden Dragon Sword and Chrono Trigger japan version(it features double translations which are English and Japan).

Thanks to my fellow friend, Corez, my order was paid on 22th March and they were shipped out to me the next day. I was lucky he could help me out with the order as I found out 1 or 2 days later both games were restored to the original price. Then of course I had to wait patiently for it to reach me. I was anxious at the same time fearing that this order may not be lucky enough to escape the bloody sucking claws of customs as I had ordered something before at usd80 and unfortunately I received a letter asking me to pay for some tax. No one is gonna enjoy of shelling extra dough for something they have already paid and neither do me. I prayed hard that I could receive this as early as possible and please no letter from custom this time.

To my surprise, I actually receive the order today and I never expect myself to receive it so fast. Ok I lie, I was kinda hoping that I would receive it today but that was really unforeseen as I would expect myself to get it this week. As soon as I received the package, I quickly fire up Ninja Gaiden Dragon Sword(without reading the manual! Guess I have been clamouring for a new game for some time as I would read a manual first before playing a new game).

Once again Play Asia has done a great job of delivering its goods and top notch service and I would happily go back and shop again during next sale. For those who have obtained something from the Lucky Spring Sale, have you received your item? What have you bought anyway?

PS: Ok, I gotta head out now to pay Corez his money. He just received his bill statement today and I guess it is time to do my job now. Thanks again, Corez.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Why Zelda?

There were a couple of big news disclosed during Satoru Iwata's(Nintendo CEO) keynote at GDC 2009 like the support where virtual games could now be played through your SD cards after a firmware update and new Final Fantasy games would be available through both Wiiwares and Virtual consoles(for more info, please refer here for the entire keynote) but nothing beat a trailer of a new entry in Zelda series.

It didnt come as a huge surprise to me and I was kind of expecting a new Zelda game on NDS or to be exact I was expecting either port of Ocarina of Time or Majora Mask but to my surprise, NDS is getting another new entry of Zelda series named The Legend of Zelda Spirit Tracks. Why would I be surprised that NDS will have another Zelda whole new sequel? Let's have a look at the Zelda series on Nintendo portable systems. The original gameboy has its first share of portable Zelda series which is the Link's Awakening while the Gameboy Color has 2 Zelda games which are Oracle of Seasons and Oracles of Age, I consider them to be a game since the you have to link both games to acquire the real ending. Ok, Link's Awakening DX on Gameboy Color isnt considered as a new game. I am talking about the new game which has never appeared on the other consoles before. Next, move on to Gameboy Advance and what we have here? A Minish Cap right? Well, looking at every single portable system before Nintendo DS, you would realize only only 1 original entry of Zelda series will appear on each portable system. The Legend of Zelda seems to break the tradition and by having a new Zelda game on DS, I am both euphoric and disappointed simulatenously.

You know the reason I am happy right? Because it is a WHOLE new Zelda game. On the other hand, I am let down because it seems like as for now the game is not a lot of different than the Phantom Hourglass. Maybe it is too early to judge it but based on the trailer it seems like the game just plays out like Phantom Hourglass. I sure hope that this time it will AT LEAST include a d-pad control but I do notice the fairy is still available in this game, I guess I have to wait until my dream comes true in another outing. I am not trying to say that total touch screen control is bad here. In fact it is intuitive and it certainly injects a refreshing experience into a series that has been around for some time for those who are used to Zelda series but sometimes those Zelda veterans just want something traditional with their beloved Zelda series. Is it that hard to implement both touch screen and d-pad controls? The second reason I am disappointed is until now the DS still hasnt received its port of Ocarina of Time and Majora Mask. I don't care if some player think that Nintendo may milk this series by porting Ocarina of Time so many times(2 times on Gamecube and another one could be found at Virtual Console) but I havent played it and I have been waiting for a long time to see it on my Nintendo DS. This is one great masterpiece that I have been anticipating to play on the go. Why can't Nintendo make it happen? Up until now, both NES and SNES games have already appeared on GBA so I expect the N64 iterations to follow their heels by making ways to NDS. Hopefully this is going to happen one day. Nintendo, be it release them separately or combine them together in one cart, faithful ports or with some added and tweaked controls, just port them to DS one day I beg you!

Deep in my heart I know Spirit Tracks is going to be great and I will be there first day to get it, and not to mention its BGM is really that stellar and I have at least replayed the trailer 50 times to listen over and over to the same BGM and I dont seem to get bored with it. Hopefully Miyamoto will come out with something different to surprise me again in the latest Zelda game. For those Wii owners, I guess you would have to wait until next E3 to see if Zelda will be swinging his sword(or you can do that with the marvellous Motionplus technology, hehe)on Wii.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

NDSi FAQ! Everything you would want to know regarding NDSi!

Excited of NDSi? The third iteration of NDS is going to make it way to USA on 5th April. That is actually a tad earlier than I expected since based on what Nintendo said, I thought it will not be available until end of 2009. Nonetheless I guess it should be a great news for anyone anticipating it as the launch date is just 2 weeks away.

For those who are interested in it, have you ever wondered what the differences between this baby with the previous NDS phat and NDSL? I guess some may have done some snooping around to obtain more details but for the rest, they may still be left in darkness. Hence the following link that I am gonna provide is chocked full with everything you should know about NDSi. They are using a Japan version of NDSi to come out with this FAQ but I guess specifications will likely remain the same so it is still a utilitarian and useful FAQ....although I still wonder why no one has ever addressed the comparison between the volume of NDSi and NDSL. I am so eager to find out how loud NDSi volume in comparison with NDSL volume. Call me stupid but this might be the sole reason that might entice me to get it.

Five Years, 20 Lessons, 20 DS Games

While most of us may not be familiar with Griptonite, it is actually one of the game developing companies that have created abundance of games for Nds in 5 years starting from games that first appeared alongside the launch of Nds Phat until now.

The following link will give a full picture of what they have learned(mistakes, lessons, improvements). Something I noticed while reading the article is the reason why movie adaptation games are generally bad! Most probably it is the shockingly short deadline. Tell me, how is a particular game supposed to be good when you are ordered to develop the games in just several weeks? Not going to happen I guess, hence it explains why most of the movie adaption games are so sucked.

It is a long and you might want to have a cup of coffee with you but I am gonna tell you this article is really worth you time.

P/S: I never thought that I have played one of their games which is the Urbz Sims in the City. The game itself was good but probably I am just not interested in Sims games, hence the game is no longer in my possession and I never buy any Sim games since then. What games developed by them that you have played before?

Saturday, March 14, 2009

WTF price?

For those who have followed this blog, they should know that now I already have the tendency to get something used rather than brand new copy due to the disparity in price. As usual I was browsing for cheap bargain at lowyat forum.

However I found it amusing that one particular seller was trying to sell his nds games at rather expensive price(more than rm100 for 1 used DS game anyone?). While I thought the high price tag was just set for display only initially(well, you know we can always ask for best price right?), after a couple pms, the seller was reluctant to even slightly reduce the price for some reasons, it is after all square enix games that we are speaking now(I am interested in one particular game but you know what? Other non square enix games are expensive as well!!) and due to the stronger USD currency. I know, it all boils down to the simple fact where if you agree with it, you just buy or you can leave if you don't like the price but I could not help to wonder who is gonna get it from you if you aren't willing to even reduce the exorbitant price and the fact that the games he is trying to sell aren't even rare?

Seeing how the whole thing took place around 2 or 3 months ago,when I bumped into the same thread recently and looked at how those NDS games are still "lying" at the thread without any buyers for now, I know the price set is just too high and even if I am trying to add the game into my collection, I know for sure I wont even consider getting it from him if he is still adamant to stick with his original price tag. I guess it is just a lose lose situation for both of us now.

Anyway, this post is not meant to bash this seller but just to get us wonder, what is the comfortable price that you would consider for a used ds game? I know I wont get a used ds game if it is more than rm100.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Music on!

Having just completed Disgaea DS recently and clocked in around 80 hours in my first playthrough, even though I am compelled to play it again to level up my characters and see other endings, deep inside I am reluctant to do because I know I will be having difficult time putting it down once I start playing it again. Then I thought I am gonna have some new games in my hands soon, so Disgaea DS is temporarily put aside.

To my disappointment, I never managed to get The World Ends With You, Dragon Quest IV and Ninja Gaiden Dragon Sword at discounted price since Stringfellow was too preoccupied with his future in laws during his vacation in USA(well, he is going to walk down his aisle later this year, so congratulations!) Fortuitously, The World Ends With You and Dragon Quest IV are getting the same treatment at Play-asia as well, so I might as well get them there later.

Being stuck in my library of games, I was having a hard time trying to decide what games should I replay. Unbeknownst to me, my hands just reached to Ouendan and holla, here I am playing Ouendan again.

Recalling how hard I tried to get all rank S for the very hard difficulty before but just gave up and moved on to another games when I grew too tired and bored of this game, I thought I will never manage to reach my goal and never did I realize that I am having a blast again with this game currently. Although until now I still haven't managed to get a rank S yet, I have been training and practicing hard to get one. However, the slightly distorted touch screen has so far managed to hamper my relentless effort. I tried Elite Beat Agents also but to my dismay this game seems to be less attractive to me now due to its rather poor selection of songs. I think I may not be able to finish this game at all since I am still in the normal difficulty.

Now that my interest in Ouendan series has piqued again and I would like to get Ouendan 2. Unwilling to spend dough on this hence I am thinking of trading this game with my getting-less-love-from-me Elite Beat Agents. Who has Ouendan 2 and wanna trade it with my Elite Beat Agents? Let me know please!

Friday, February 13, 2009

Another Mother 3 BM now?

Apparently there are still many fans out there who are still clamoring for translations in their own mother tongue language even though the unofficial english translation patch had been released by starnet for sometime ago. I couldn't believe my own eyes and nearly fell off my chair when I saw someone apparently from Malaysia is trying to do its own BM translation of Mother 3. Don't buy into it? You gotta see some screenshots to believe in it.
This really sounds corny as it seems but we Malaysians should be proud that this game is going to be in Bahasa Malaysia soon(chuckle). Apparently this project has just started around January 2009 and I guess it should take some time before we can see the light of the final project. I was just hoping that this wont get canned eventually when he isn't passionate to do it anymore. The status of this ongoing project could be monitored here. You might wanna check it from time to time if you are interested in the final outcome of this project.

Hmm, if my eyes serve their purpose, apparently the person who works on this ambitious project seems to be only a secondary school student at SM Teknik Kota Tinggi. I can't imagine how a teenager can work on this alone and this only proves that I am rather outdated and obsolete by having such thought. We really can't underestimate anyone nowadays eh?

At Gamingeuphoria I am praying for all the best to this guy who works on this project and I am tempted to check out the final results.

Trivia: For those who dont have, we do have some localized international games like Resident Evil 3 and Dino Crisis for PC which were released years ago. I still remember the the localized title of Resident Evil 3 is Kubu Iblis 3 but I already forgot the localized title of Dino Crisis. I tried to find the boxarts for both games but to no avail. Both games are totally in BM and if my memory serves me well, the original versions were just rm20 each. Very cheap right?

Friday, February 6, 2009

The 14 best pre-order bonuses

Call it gimmick or whatever you like but it is undeniably sometimes pre-order items are really essential in spurring sales of certain games. I am sure most of the gamer would have put down deposit just for the sake of certain preorder thingy.

However, trying to obtain pre-order thingy has been a hassle in Malaysia since the original gaming scene here isnt as active as it is in other countries like Japan or USA, hence most of time those who are interested to secure some really compelling preorder items would have to part with their hard earned dough and go the hard way plus a little luck to get them. As a gamer who has only started supporting the original games since the DS era, I dont have much experience of acquiring many preorder bonuses but some goodies still manage to make their ways to my collection. The most recent ones happened to be Disgaea DS and Rhapsody The Musical Adventure which came with a stylus, a Rune Knight figure and a musical cd respectively(although I mentioned it is the latest one, do note that the purchase was made last September) but the most notable one and most worthy one should be the Castlevania Portrait Of Ruin. Sure, I had paid premium for this game but the preorder bonus bundles with it was definitely worth the admission. Look at the image below and you would realize all the hard work and effort are definitely worth it.

Hmm, if only every preorder bonus is that sweet, I would dare to say everyone in Malaysia would be more inclined to support the original gaming.(not to mention they should be made easier to purchase as well).

However, it seems like Atlus has a new strategy and a new way to define pre-order bonuses where they will just bundle something cool with their latest games. Their latest games which have been bundled with some cool goodies are like Luminous Arc 2(comes with a original soundtrack and artbook), upcoming Legend of YS I and II(comes with an original soundtrack cd) and also Super Robot Taisen Endless Frontier(comes with an original soundtrack cd as well). This strategy seems to be paid off and has garnered some positive feedbacks among the gamers and I myself really applaud such a good decision where every gamer virtually everywhere(Malaysia also of course) would be able to get some preorder bonuses without paying premium price.(Those are actually obtainable at Play-Asia) But then again, I feel that some gamers might not find themselves to be happy with such decision from Atlus as it may seem that this move might render some of the preorder bonuses to be less valuable, hence make them less interested in getting the games from Atlus, haha.

The following link features some of the coolest pre-order goodies that have ever appeared, let's see how many of you own something in the list? I know that the Castlevania preorder bonus is listed as one of them, hehe.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

R.I.P Electronic Gaming Monthly?

I was shocked today when the news of Electronic Gaming Monthly(EGM) will be discontinued emerged out from today nowhere. The slumping economy must have helped to quicken the process(rumours of EGM demise have been circulating around for some time). It seems like everything has been finalized and January issue of EGM shall be the last printed issue we could find at book stores...

I may not have been a subscriber of EGM nor I get to read every issue that has been released but somehow I still managed to kill some time by getting some issues occasionally. But when I do have this mag, I will enjoy myself reading every article in the mag as this mag tends to be more"mature" so it does contain some jokes and article that can appeal to adult gamers like me. I would reckon that this mag resonates more with me compared to Nintendo Power and it is so sad to see it leave in this way.

In this new era where we can almost get everything latest related to gaming almost immediately on internet, it is not hard to figure out that printed magazines must have some hard time trying to convince old readers to stay subscribing let alone attract new readers to embrace it. In my opinion a mag can still thrive if it tries to break out the old mold and try to go in a new and radical direction where something available in the mag itself could not be found at internet. Let's see, an exclusive interview with some big people in the industry? How about exclusive games unveiled in the latest issue? I really applaud Nintendo Power decision to dedicate almost one page every month teasing us what great games that are bound to appear in next issue. Next thing I really like about a printed magazine is usually the features presented. I gotta admit here, the time I spend alone in reading features related articles is far huge compared with the time I spend reading reviews and previews of certain games. Since I am only a Nintendo DS player, features can always provide some insights for me in other gaming platforms which is a great welcome as I don't always have the time to keep tabs on all the news related to current gaming platforms.

I guess for those who have ever read EGM before are gonna miss the days without it anymore and everyone will miss its notorious EGM Aprilfool joke(Lego Halo anyone?)