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  1. #1
    Let There Be Rock vashivihan's Avatar
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    411 Games Fact or Fiction 03.25.08: The New Final Fantasy VII Game, Nintendo's Big E3

    411's Mark Salmela and Derek Robbins give us their thoughts on Nintendo's supposedly big E3 announcement, playing Guitar Hero: On Tour in public, "downloadable content" that is already stored in the games you buy, hope for a Final Fantasy VII spinoff that doesn't suck, using the Wii Wheel, and Sonic's return to form in this edition of Fact or Fiction Games.

    Welcome to another edition of Fact or Fiction. This week Mark Salmela and Derek Robbins return for another go at giving us their views on some of today's most important video game news and issues. Before we get things rolling, let's see what they do at 411mania -

    Mark currently writes 411's Sony-centric news report,The SIXAXIS. He also does reviews, his latest being ones for MLB 08: The Show (PS3) and Twisted Metal: Head On: Extra Twisted Edition (PS2). In addition, Mark recently posted his hands-on impressions of the DualShock 3 controller here.

    Derek Robbins puts together The 10th Hour, his weekly top ten list. His recent offering lists the top things he hates about gaming. Check it out, and don't forget to post what you think about his choices in the comments section.

    Let's go -


    1. Even though Nintendo's major franchises (Zelda, Mario, Smash Bros., and Mario Kart) have already made it to the Wii, you still believe Reggie when he says that Nintendo will have a major Wii announcement at E3 that gamers will be excited about.

    Mark Salmela: Fact

    I still think we'll see a major announcement regarding Animal Crossing as well as voice chat coming to the Wii. The online system on the Wii is in desperate need of an upgrade and I'm hoping we'll see some sort of improvement over friend codes and the lack of voice chat this year. In terms of actual games, I'm hoping we'll see another Kid Icarus as well as maybe an F-Zero or Star Fox. While these aren't the triple-A titles they used to be, Nintendo can't possibly have another Mario or Zelda game ready so I don't know what else they could be working on. Animal Crossing for the Wii will probably be awesome, but they've got to have something else. Pit has quickly become one of the most popular Brawl characters - a Kid Icarus rebirth is more probable than you may think.

    Derek Robbins: Fact

    When it comes to pleasing the fans, Nintendo usually knows what it's doing. My guess is that we'll be getting a new Zelda title - or at least, we'll be hearing that a new one is being developed - and also I think Pikmin 3 will be unveiled. I think that Olimar's inclusion in Smash Bros. Brawl may have generated some interest in him and I believe that a Pikmin Wii game could be an interesting experience. As Mark mentioned, Animal Crossing for the Wii seems pretty likely. The first two Animal Crossing games were a smash hit and a Wii title only seem imminent. For that sort of game to work - or at least feel different than the DS version - the online play would really need to improve. I'm talking about the ability to visit random towns, not just towns of people you are friends with. Naturally, I should also mention that perhaps the Wii announcement isn't game related, but Internet related? What if Nintendo planned on improving their online service? I'm sure a lot of Nintendo fans would be pleased with that one. Whatever the case, I'm eager to see what they've got in store.

    Score: 1 for 1


    2. Guitar Hero: On Tour for the DS is going to be hot!

    Mark Salmela: Fiction

    I'd be embarrassed to be caught playing Guitar Hero on the DS out in public. The game just looks cheap and stupid. I wouldn't play the game outside and if I'm inside there's no reason to play the DS version over the superior console versions, so where would I possibly want to play this game? Guitar Hero is quickly oversaturating the market and if they aren't careful they'll kill themselves just like DDR did. Not to mention Rock Band is superior to Guitar Hero and Activision may be milking Guitar Hero for all it's worth before it loses its popularity.

    Derek Robbins: Fiction

    As Mark mentioned, Activision is milking Guitar Hero at this point. There are three new games for this series being released this year, and I can't see how any of them could be anything special. The problem with this game is that it's for a portable system. Now you may be thinking: "Why is that bad?" Well, Guitar Hero is the kind of game that can only work when you're holding a guitar. It makes the experience more surreal. When the game goes portable, it LOSES that. You'll just be holding the DS sideways. It makes for a decent rhythm game, but one that would be embarrassing to play in public. This is coming from someone who is willing to play Pokemon in public, so there you go. So, embarrassing to play in public AND lacking the key aspect that made Guitar Hero a hit in the first place (the guitar?) = INSTANT FAILURE. Enjoy being the new Madden, Guitar Hero.

    Score: 2 for 2


    3. There is nothing wrong with "downloadable content" that is already stored within a game.

    Mark Salmela: Fiction

    Let me say that I hate the way the majority of games handle downloadable content. You may think you're getting a deal when developers add a pack of maps for download for a game like Call of Duty, but in all reality, it should have been there to begin with. It's no secret anymore that there are plenty of developers (Namco being the most guilty) who purposely withhold content from games in order to try and make more money for downloadable content. Downloadable content is overpriced. If you look at it you could have paid over $200 for Ace Combat 6 on the 360 right now with all of its extra content. I dare anyone to try and justify that. Downloadable content is overpriced and even more unjustifiable if it's already in the game. Devil May Cry did it right. If your game isn't complete, don't release it. Extra costumes and such should be free from the get go; I shouldn't have to pay an extra $5 or $10 to make my original $60 purchase feel complete.

    Derek Robbins: Fiction

    If the content was free, I'd have NO problem with it. Though I'd be a bit perplexed as to why it wasn't available from the get-go, it'd be alright by me. The problem is that companies actually CHARGE for this! This is basically suckering loyal customers into paying WAY over market value for content that is already on the disc. Here's the deal - if you BUY the disc, you should be entitled to ALL the content on the disc. Having to pay to unlock anything is pure bullshit. The problem is people ACTUALLY BUY these things so companies will keep doing it. That's a shame, because they really need to stop. Mark mentions Namco, but there is another company that needs to be called out for this - EA. EA not only rehashes the same games year in and year out, they also manage to squeeze every penny they can out of the consumer by charging for content. SOME of the content they charge for you can even unlock yourself in the game! Like in Tiger Woods you can unlock courses you would normally have to play for... at a price. Sorry, but if you buy a game and want your stuff quickly, it's not something the company should charge for. This makes me mad. It's just wringing gamers for an extra buck, and in a market where games already cost too damn much, that is a problem.


    Score: 3 for 3



    4. Final Fantasy VII: Crisis Core is a game that Final Fantasy VII fans can look forward to.

    Derek Robbins: Fact

    Crisis Core appears to answer a lot of the questions that fans of the series may have had about Zack and his origin. Unlike Dirge of Cerberus, this game features a lot of fan favorites. Cloud, Sephiroth, and Tifa all have large roles in this game. It seems that Square is releasing this game right TO the Final Fantasy VII fanboy, so I don't see any reason why they wouldn't be looking forward to this. As a plus - unlike Dirge of Cerberus, this game actually LOOKS like a good game. Good Game + Fanservice for long time fans = Success! I really can't see a FF VII fan not getting this.

    Mark Salmela: Fact

    Sorry to say, but despite being the Sony guy, I haven't followed Crisis Core very well. I just don't play PSP games anymore with the exception of Patapon and God of War. I agree that everything I've heard about the game looks good and looks like it lives up to the FF7 name, but there's no reason we can't get an actual remake of FF7 since every one before it has gotten a remake.

    Score: 4 for 4


    5. You will use the Wii Wheel when you play Mario Kart Wii.

    Derek Robbins: Fiction

    Let me preface this by saying that I will at least give it a shot. If it's fun, I will stick with it... but that's looking like a longshot right now. The wheel is looking like a bit of a gimmick on a gimmicky system. On top of that, the Wiimote can function as a steering wheel as is! Don't get me wrong, using a wheel can add a bit of realism... but it all seems unnecessary. I played Excite Truck just fine with my Wiimote held sideways. From what I've seen so far, the wheel doesn't appear to add anything to the experience. In fact, it looks like it detracts. People who have gotten hands-on time with it say it's a bit of a bother. That's a shame. I hope it surprises me, but I just don't see it happening.

    Mark Salmela: Fiction

    I will also try out the Wii Wheel, but just like Smash Bros. I will end up using the GameCube controllers. Reports indicate that the wheel sucks and every other racing game using the wheel type control has sucked so why bother using it? It's just like SIXAXIS controls - the Wiimote in most situations does not replace the analog sticks. I like using the Wiimote for games like Cooking Mama and House of the Dead 2 and 3 Return, not Smash Bros. and Mario Kart. I'll take tighter controls over a gimmick any day.

    Score: 5 for 5


    6. Leaked images and a recent video indicate that Sonic Unleashed will feature 2D gameplay. Many Sonic fans see this as the game that could make Sonic relevant again. They have reason to be excited, as a 2.5D Sonic game on a console made by today's Sega will rock.

    Derek Robbins: Fact

    Take this with a bit of caution. In trailer form, Sonic Heroes and Sonic the Hedgehog 2006 looked like amazing games, and look how they turned out. Many even consider Sonic 2006 to be one of the worst games of all time, and up until it was released, it was one of the most highly anticipated titles of the year! That said, I will toss warning aside because I love Sonic and from the looks of this trailer, the game at least appears to be fun. Fellow long-time Sonic fans are like this too. They endure the crap in hopes that one day the Blue Blur can be THE MAN again. Can Sonic Team mess it up? You bet! They have a tendency to tack on characters that nobody cares about. It ruins things. If this game can limit it to Sonic, Tails, Knuckles, and MAYBE Amy (with Dr. Robotnik of course), I think it has the potential to be the game that puts Sonic back on the map. With this and the Sonic RPG for the DS, the future is looking bright for our favorite blue hedgehog.

    Mark Salmela: Fiction

    Now don't get me wrong - I've been a Sonic fan all my life. I watched all the cartoons, played all the games, and loved Sonic with a passion. But it seems like the older I get, the more out of touch Sonic Team gets with reality. Any non-handheld Sonic game after Sonic Adventure 2 has been embarrassing and Sonic Team knows it. But instead of improving Sonic, it seems like they just keep making each game progressively worse. The story gets more and more retarded with every game, the camera somehow manages to get worse with each title, and even the controls become worse with each passing game. Add in the fact that this new title looks like a PS3/360 version of Sonic and the Secret Rings (a bad Wii game) and the alleged rumors that this game will be a direct sequel to 2006's Sonic the Hedgehog, I already hate this game.

    Score: 5 for 6



    And we finish things off with a score of 5 for 6. Don't forget to join us next time for more Fact or Fiction!

    Now, some bounty hunter just handed us a glass container with a jellyfish-like creature inside. For some odd reason, it feels like our lives are about to end. If we can figure out why a feeling of dread now permeates the air, we'll be back next week.
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  2. #2
    Where is your god now? zapasant's Avatar
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