Starting the Year off Right & LE Review

Happy New Year everyone, on this, my first blog post of the new year! First off, I’d like to mention that my last post got over 400 views, making it my most read/looked at blog. I have no idea what happened there, probably just people browsing GT on Christmas Eve. Either way, thanks guys!

As usual, we’ll begin with the new games snagged this time around. Not a big haul this time, but that’s because I need to brace myself for the next few months, as the meat of my post will describe.

  • The Matrix: Path of Neo (PS2)
  • Obscure (Xbox)

See, not much. I bought the Ultimate Matrix Collection on HD-DVD (again) on Amazon, so I’m hoping the third time’s the charm and I finally get it this time. This has sort of put me in a Matrix-y mood so I picked up Path of Neo, which I’ve been curious about for a while now. Not bad so far. As for Obscure, well, I have the sequel for the Wii, which I enjoyed more than just about every reviewer out there, and I personally hate owning a sequel without owning its predecessors. Unfortunately Obscure isn’t backwards compatible with the 360 (damn Microsoft) so if I ever get the urge to actually play through it, I’m going to have to play it on the original Xbox in my sis’ room.

Now for the meat. As the title suggests, its something about starting off the new year on a good note. Now, the Wii has long been the butt of many a complaint from the hardcore gamer and although I’m far more tolerant than the next guy in that respect, I do see their point. Which is why, looking over the release charts for the next few months, I couldn’t help but feel giddy.

While I’m sure the coming months won’t, regardless of how many good games come out for the Wii, will do nothing to change the hardcore gamer’s perspective of the Wii, but maybe you’ll find a little something you’re interested in (or two).

Now January is fairly quiet, but things begin to pick up quickly in Feburary.

Feburary 3

-Rygar: The Battle of Argus
-Tenchu: Shadow Assassins

While we’re still unsure of the quality of these two titles, we do know one thing, they are aimed toward the core gamer, something the Wii really needs right now. Early reviews of Rygar were decent (6.5 range), but the publisher delayed it for several months. Here’s hoping they did so to further polish the game. What they can do in those few months, who knows. Tenchu looks interesting at the very least. Not quite as open as the previous games I’ve played, but it looks fun either way. So long as the execution isn’t completely ruined it looks like a purchase.

Feburary 10

-Deadly Creatures
-House of the Dead: Overkill

Only one week later we get two more good drops. Again, aimed at the core gamer. Deadly Creatures has been on many people’s radar for quite some time and the early reports indicate that it has some quality to back it up. House of the Dead: Overkill is a prequel in the long-running series of arcade shooters and looks to be one of the most extreme yet. Here’s hoping that it brings a good game along with all the grindhouse-quality blood and gore its bringing to the table. Also, if you just have to have more zombies, Onechanbara: Bikini Zombie Slayers also comes out the same week. Just sayin’.

Feburary 17

-Little King’s Story

This week is a little light on the violence, but hopefully not on quality. Little King’s Story has been on a lot of radars for a while. Its being produced by the creator of the Harvest Moon series and is being directed by the lead programmer for Dragon Quest VIII. In game characters and monsters are being designed by people who’ve worked on Final Fantasy XII and Tingle’s Rosy Ruppeeland, and the music is being composed by the person who did work on Kingdom Hearts. The talent is definitely there so expectations are high.

Feburary 24

-Samurai Showdown Anthology
-Dead Rising: Chop Till You Drop

As some of you may have read, I’ve had a growing interest in 2D fighters in recent weeks so I’m really looking forward to Samurai Showdown Anthology. Samurai Showdown 1 & 2 are available on the Virtual Console for $9 each. The Anthology collects 7 games for $30. Value it has. Now, more zombies on the Wii in the form of Dead Rising: Chop Till You Drop. This much maligned port of the popular Xbox 360 title has gotten a lot of heat for not supporting the endless armies of zombies it did on the Xbox 360, and while that is a bummer, everyone is ignoring a lot of the improvements that are being included. The game now runs on the Resident Evil 4 engine so it will play like the incredibly popular RE4 port of the Wii. How can that not be a good thing? Improvements have also been made to the save feature, one of the major complaints about the first one, and no, the original save system didn’t just make things more difficult, it was just a stupid design choice. Of course I know Capcom wants to bring some of the experience over from the 360 version, but at the same time I also feel that this is its own game. Unfortunately, I doubt it will ever get out from under the original’s shadow and will likely shatter upon the rocks of its reviews. Still, I’m looking forward to it and for $40 it doesn’t look like Capcom’s trying to rip you off.

March 2

An off week. Nothing to really grab any respectable gamer’s attention unless you really must have Major League Baseball 2k9 on the Wii, then its your lucky day.

March 9

-Mario Power Tennis
-Pikmin
-Madworld
-Sonic and the Black Knight

And we’re back! Mario Power Tennis and Pikmin are the enhanced Gamecube ports with added Wii controls. Mario Power Tennis looks to bring a heftier tennis game to compliment Wii Sports and Pikmin has been one of the titles that looks like it could benefit immensly from a Wii control scheme. Both games sold around 1.5 Million copies on the Gamecube but now the Wii has an install base twice that of the Gamecube so the games have a whole new audience to reach. The much anticipated Madworld also drops this week, bringing its stylish blood and gore to the Wii. Finally, Sonic and the Black Knight. Say what you will, but Sonic and the Secret Rings is currently the highest rated Sonic game this generation on Metacritic. Many reviewers said that it was a step in the right direction for the series and I really must agree. If Sega has taken the time to address some of the grievances from Secret Rings and hopefully don’t make too many new mistakes to make up for them, then we could possibly have a good Sonic game on our hands. Ignore it as you might, I’m still looking forward to it.

March 16

-Pro Evolution Soccer 2009

I may be reaching a little with this one, but I’m personally looking forward to this game as I haven’t picked up the prior Pro Evo for the Wii. I keep hearing that its an excellent take on soccer and that it works splendidly on the Wii. Hopefully the improvements continue and 2009 one-ups its predecessors yet again.

So there you go 12 games over 2 months. Not bad for the little box with no games. Of course it will do nothing to change perceptions, but who cares. Leave them to spout rhetoric while you go play some games.

And finally, the return of the LE Review!

Prince of Persia Limited Edition

PoP

 

First off, I’d just like to say that this is covering the X-Box 360 version of the special edition, but the differences between this one and the PS3 version are minor. Also, this is a unique ca

  • Prince of Persia
  • Bonus Disc
  • Box

Prince of Persia: The game, of course. Nothing much more to say about it. Moving on.

Bonus Disc: Yup the usual bonus disc. This is slightly different in that the box advertises certain things in the limited edition (art book, soundtrack, mini-strategy guide). Well, this is it. Everything that was advertised prior to the game’s release is digitally included on the DVD. Kind of a bummer, really. The soundtrack looks fairly complete, but you’re basically playing the song over a static image on your dvd player. The art book looks like the PDF of an actual art book loaded onto the dvd. That, plus the usual making-of video are present here. I suppose if you know what you’re doing, you can rip the audio tracks and burn them to a CD and if the art book images are of good enough quality, rip those, too, send it to a printer and make your own art book.

[i] Box:[i] Just a cardboard box to put the game in. The artwork is definitely nicer than the standard edition and…its a box. Nothing more to it than that, really.

This would be one of those times where it’d be easy to bitch about how you’re not really getting much in the limited edition. After all, all it really is is one extra disc with the usual stuff on it. However, Ubisoft went and made this a free upgrade to your pre-order as opposed to charging you $10 or even $20 (or even $30 in some rarer cases) for the premium edition. Free definitely helps make the lack of bonuses a sort of a non-issue. In a way it feels more like a pre-order bonus than a Special Edition, but there’s nothing wrong with that. Online the LE isn’t much more expensive than the standard game, if at all, so (most) people aren’t really pressing their luck too much. If you haven’t picked the game up, the LE is available for $30-$40 on Ebay.

And there we have it! A good outlook for the Wii owners out there and a lightweight LE Review to get me warmed up.

Again,

Happy New Year