No Snow Villiers, they’re running away from the game.
Well the most anticipated game of the year, Final Fantasy XIII, is about to make it’s way to the American shores. Professional Japanese reviewers loved it! Professional American reviewers loved it! But whats this? The game scored a 3/5 on Amazon Japan player review. It appears Japanese players are split. On one side, they see it as an evolution, on the other side it’s deemed dull and repetitive, amidst all the hype and production.
I took the time to translate (with the best of my ability) certain bad Amazon reviews that gave the game a score of 1/5. Once the American version is released I want to compare if generally, Square Enix made a game that would appeal more towards International communities than their own.
Japanese Player Reviews
“The game stuffed in a lot of terminology and phrases which I found terrible. I wanted to enjoy more of the story, but I had to remember all of these made up words... There isn’t a town either. Plus, shops are attached to a save point, there isn’t even communication with the shopkeeper either. It’s strange to wonder why the producer would remove such features and think it would be fun for an RPG ” ~Mamasan
“This game is like one straight road from start to end. There aren’t that many people you come in contact with. It makes you feel isolated and lonely. You can’t even control the other party members , they just act on their own. Like they would just defend when I didn’t want them to. You really need a brain to understand this story, it’s really incomprehensible. I am very disappointed” ~Faran
“13 is like a terrible “Linear CG Game.” They took away our rights of enjoying an RPG by discarding things like ‘Story’ and ‘Content’.” ~morgan
“The battles were useless. Early on you just repeated the same attacks until you got tired of them. It wasn’t interesting (except the summons!) Later on in the game you will die frequently if you don’t utilize the Optima system. ” ~y
“The journey through this game is like just one long straight path… Generally, I’d evaluate this game as trashy. I feel as if the producer thought that this game would be popular just by slapping the name of Final Fantasy onto it. I feel uneasy about FF Versus after playing this.” ~dustpan
“Where on earth did Final Fantasy go? I’ve been playing FF games before I could even write Hiragana. I’ve been very happy with them since. However the direction of the games has shifted over several years, never returning to what it was. ” ~?
“I regretted my purchase of this game. I felt that it was just light on content and heavy on pretty visuals.” ~
“Final Fantasy 10 was good. Final Fantasy 13 is a pain. (FF12 I just didn’t find interesting.)… Playing this game is painful from beginning to end. [Battlewise,] I feel that we should be able to move in real-time freely. We should be able to walk around to any dungeon we want… I didn’t really feel like playing this narrow path. It wasn’t until Chapter 10 where I was able to actually walk around [in an open field]. That place was large and beautiful, but it still ended up rather annoying than pleasant. ” ~Ruru
“I tried FF13, I was impressed with the quality of the visuals. I didn’t really care much for the beginning but I finally gave up at Chapter 10. I felt stressed out after the amount of game overs I got from battling common enemies. You have to put in a lot of patience and spiritual strength for this game, but for me I just sold it.” ~wind
“This game is like a movie, with many cutscenes that pop up to disturb the tempo of the game… With so many cutscenes, the player feels left behind. In fact, I don’t even understand what the main characters are doing in the first 2-4 hours of gameplay. At least there is a dictionary within the game [to explain the terminology.] Battles get repetitive. It’s because much of the battle system is locked away in the early parts of the game. They should have implemented something that allows us to access these systems whenever we want to. ” ~Pundel
“…It feels like watching a visual novel with no choices [for dialogue]. This isn’t even an RPG muchless… [Squarenix] what were you doing all this time when you postponed the game?” ~waiting
“As a full time working adult, I can stay up all night with a game if it’s interesting. As for this game, I can only spend 2 hours with it. ” ~
“The story isn’t well developed. I felt it was childish and full of contradictions. I’d say it felt like “playing a game on rails.” ~
“Story: Not interesting. I get irritated with indecisive characters, especially “Hope” in particular. Battle: If you do it properly you can win, but, you may make a mistake if you don’t understand what you are selecting for the optima system. Most uninteresting thing: Buying weapons and items within the save point…” ~polarbear
The story, music, and graphics are good… We play with the main characters through this narrow straight path. Afterwards, we are shown a cutscene > forced battle > cutscene > and continue playing again through this straight unwavering path. This pattern continues on for eternity. You may hear some chatter in a town, but even a concept like “shopping” isn’t in the game. The town’s only existence is just so that the main characters may pass through it… [The town] is actually a part of the dungeon so to speak. ~monpuchi
“I was disgusted with this uninteresting story. I had to pull myself away from the story, the ambiguous background and setting, the stinky characters with their poor dialogue, you can’t feel any empathy for any of it. What the heck is a Fal’cie? Is there not a “regular” town? An Airship? Can we at least have conversations with the people in towns? I found the terminology to be dull, “Purge the L’cie of Pulse” I don’t even understand that… There weren’t many antagonist characters, sure they did have many types of similar enemy soldiers and weapons, but you couldn’t feel any affection (or sense of attachment) to them… Although, the battles were interesting, I just wasn’t able to become very familiar with it…. I miss some of the FF of olden days. Where did Final Fantasy go? Yes the graphics are beautiful, but I believe the script, which is the most important aspect of an RPG went to trash [in this game.] I am really disappointed considering I was a FF fan for such a long time. ” ~maru
The Best Worst Review
This review was actually quite funny to read. I think he kind of rambled off and on but you can see this game has affected him.
“Good Points about this game…
Well, the movie scenes are pretty!
The main character is a hot chick!
Well that’s it, just two [good] points.
It’s hard to even relax in this game because there isn’t really a town. You keep fighting from beginning to end. Heck, the battles tend to go on.. And, for some reason the producer thought the players would be strong, so he made the enemies stronger. Maybe he thought we’d enjoy this.
I want to be able to quickly advance through a dungeon, but the enemies are soo strong… I get really irritated…
This may be unrelated but, for those of you who quit smoking, you really should have never done that. I really want a cigarette so badly right now. I am really stressed out.
The battles has this command strategy called “Optima.” The characters look great when they pose, but… During that moment, you are completely defenseless. ‘Cause if the character you are controlling dies, it’s Game Over!
The story is the worst. Right at the start of the game, you get these incredibly confusing terms like Fal’cie and L’cie..
When Square Enix came to be, their Final Fantasy games turned to crap.” ~hiro
Well there you have it. From this I conclude the reason Japanese hate Final Fantasy is due to it’s linearity, confusing terminology, and lack of towns. The game does indeed have a city known as “Nautilus” which you can explore to some extent. But in reality, it is just a place you visit to continue the story. After you complete the story, the game throws up several missions where players can kind of explore areas they’ve seen.
New Info! 5/21/09!
The Sims 3 is nearing its June 2, 2009 release date.
As we get closer and closer to the date, it’s time to update some information from the previous articles.
Over the past few months various information, promotions, and CDs have been released to the public.
We”ll try to condense all that information into one blog post, sticking on the more important things.
Obtaining The Sims 3
EA has listed several release dates based on where you are in the world. The two options for buying The Sims 3 include purchasing it in a store, or purchasing it as a digital download. Please note that the digital download version includes the SecuRom DRM.
EA states you will be able to download The Sims 3 at 7am PST on June 2nd, 2009. This may not apply to other areas outside of US/Canada. The Sims 3 costs $49.95 and is available for Pre-ordering now!
May 17th, 2009: It also appears The Sims 3 has been leaked illegally online. Please don’t ask on this site where to find the game.
The Sims 3 Story
The storyline is sort of a prequel setting up all the families you’ve seen in past games. The main family everyone keep’s track of is the Goths. This time Mortimer Goth will be a kid. You’ll be able to see both his parents Gunther and Cornelia Goth.
The second family everyone loves to hate is the Crumplebottoms! This time Mrs. Crumplebottom is at her younger adult age and will be haunted by the ghost of her husband. (Presumably if The Sims 1 is Canon, her husband died from a chandelier accident.)
Next up is the Landgraabs who were featured in many Sim titles, including Simcity 3000. There appears to be a rival between the Landgraabs and the Altos.
Welcome to Sunset Valley
Sunset Valley is the main town featured in The Sims 3. In Sunset Valley there are a few areas your Sim can visit, the beach, science center, gym, library, city hall, park, public pool, hospital, cafe, police station, graveyard, stadium, a local diner, movie theatre, and more. Though your Sim may be able to visit such places it does not mean you as the player will be able to see inside all of them.
Updated 05/18/09 Message for SnootySims Forum: As for the areas you can walk inside with your Sim, so far the park, public pool, library, beach, gym, the art gallery, and the graveyard, are currently known. These are the non “rabbit hole” areas shown to the public. This list is not 100% complete and confirmation of other areas would be revealed eventually.
You will play as one family at a time, you can switch between different families if you choose to. Everyone around you will age and die alongside with you. Your neighbors can get married, move in, move out, have kids, and get promotions on their own. Your neighbors actions are directed through story progression and autonomy sliders. The higher the autonomy, the more drastic changes you will see in your neighborhood.
The Map view will be your guide to getting around on the game. In this view you can see every building with their appropriate icons. By hovering your mouse over an area, you can see what Sims are currently in that vicinity, and instantly zoom in without any loading screens at all.
You can also allow your Sim to travel to different buildings by zooming out to this view. You can select a house icon and your sim will travel their by car and even by bike.
This zoomed out shot will also be the home for a neighborhood editing screen. This is where you’ll switch families to play with. After you create a Sim you have the option to move a family into a lot. You select the family you want at the bottom right corner and click on an empty house or lot to move into. If you would like to switch between families, click on the options button, then click Edit Town, then Click Change Active household.
Neighborhood View screenshots via [gamesguide]
Selecting the hand will allow you to move lots around. Selecting the bulldozer would allow you to delete a lot. The paint and saw would be editing a lot. The button at the top of the shot means “return to game.”
You can also view where your Sims go to work and actually see them travel to that location. However once they are at work they will disappear from the map screen. The map view actually reminds me of the canceled Simsville game.
Welcome to Riverview
Riverview is the second Sims 3 neighborhood to be released after you register the game. Not much is known about this particular neighborhood other than it includes a river that splits and converges back into one. This neighborhood takes place along the Simomon river. More and more Sims have escaped city life to this picturesque and serene town.
Riverview screenshots via [simfans]
Careers and Entrepreneurs
The Sims 3 explores different ways one may earn income. The main system will be through careers. Your Sim can travel to one of the many career buildings in town and start a job there. There will be different careers shipped with the game, some of these include athletic, music, medical, politics, chef, and more.
Once your Sim heads off to work they will disappear from the screen.
Your Sim doesn’t have to work in a 9-5 job to make money, there are other ways to earn by looking around the neighborhood. Your can earn money through fishing, collect bugs and selling them, painting, stealing, gardening, becoming an author, investing in businesses, among others.
Pregnancy and Babies
Screenshot via [SimsDomination]
This seems to be a hot topic. I don’t know why. You people are so obsessed! Pregnancy pretty much plays out like it does in The Sims 2. One major change is now you can select which location to give birth. You can give birth at home or at a hospital.
At home your Sim will scream and shout as they are about to deliver. Next, you name the baby and it will show you what traits it has taken from the parents. The baby appears magically out of thin air and the mom spins around and grabs the baby.
If you choose to give birth in a hospital, the mom and dad will go off into a cab and will walk into the hospital. After a while the mother will walk out with the baby in hand and drive back home in a cab.
The mom and dad can now carry the baby around with them.
Create A Sim – Create a Style
Create A Sim has been enhanced further to allow for more customization over past games. This is due to the Create a Style feature. In Create A Style, you will be able to set up patterns and colors for any object, floor, wall, and clothing. The create a style has a small palette dock where you set all the colors and patterns. If you drag this dock to a specific item, it’s colors and patterns will change. This makes unlimited color combinations for clothes.
For example, in Sims 2, if a dress didn’t come in a certain color, you would have to edit the color through Photoshop. In the Sims 3, all you would have to do is select any color you want and apply it to your dress and it will instantly change to that color.
Personality, Wishes, and Skills
Each Sim will have their own personality through the selection of traits. After you create your Sim, you will be able to choose up to 5 traits that describe his behavior. These traits will dictate his personality and actions.
The inappropriate trait will let a Sim belch in public or sneeze in public. A Sim with a kleptomaniac trait might even steal items from your home. A Sim with the hot headed trait will get angry very quickly and yell at others. These personality traits can be changed by purchasing a special mid life crisis item.
You’ll also be allowed to customize what “preferences” your Sim has, like their favorite food, favorite music, and favorite color but you will not be able to change any of these after you create your Sim.
For a little eye candy, once your Sims’ family has been created, they will be placed in a little picture frame on a wall as the neighborhood screen loads.
After you select traits, you will be provided with a few lifetime wishes. If you fulfill them they will make your sim happy. There are also short term wishes that can be fulfilled at any time. By spending your happiness points, you can obtain achievement traits, which are special traits that allow your Sims to “cheat” their way through life. For example the haggler achievement trait lets your Sims get discounts when they go shopping.
Skills have been brought back yet again, but this time skills have a more social experience than before. If you excell at a particular skill, other Sims might want you to run errands for them. Some opportunities at work might arise and allow your Sim to be promoted in a field. There was one example where your boss might ask you to bring in a piece of artwork you made since he knows your creativity skill is high.
Freed from your need
Needs are one of the most boring features of the Sims. You often found yourself having limited time to do anything just because you had to go pee or sit down. The Sims 3 will still include needs but the game has been designed to have less focus on them. Instead you’ll have more time participating in socialization and achieving your Sims’ wishes and lifelong dreams. Your family for the first time will be able to take care of themselves on their own. This frees up time for you to explore the town and meet new Sims.
The Sims 3 will be released in NA on June 2nd, 2009
The Sims 3 will be released in UK on June 5th, 2009
The Sims 3 will be released in AU on June 4th, 2009
Windows XP SP2
- Pentium IV 2.0 GHz / Athlon XP 2000+ or equivalent
- 1GB RAM
- 6.5 GB of hard drive space with 1 GB additional space for custom content
- 128 MB Video Card with support for Pixel Shader 2.0
Windows Vista SP1
- Pentium IV 2.4 GHz / Athlon XP 2400+ or equivalent
- 1.5 GB RAM of Memory
- 6.5 GB of hard drive space with 1 GB additional space for custom content
- 128 MB Video Card with support for Pixel Shader 2.0
Computers with built in Graphics Chipsets
- Intel Integrated Chipset, GMA X3000 or above.
- 2.6 GHz Pentium D CPU, or 1.8 GHz Core 2 Duo, or equivalent
- 1.5 GB RAM (XP), 2 GB RAM (Vista)
NVIDIA GeForce series
- FX 5900, FX 5950
- 6200, 6500, 6600, 6800
- 7200, 7300, 7600, 7800, 7900, 7950
- 8400, 8500, 8600, 8800
- 9600, 9800, GTX 260, GTX 280
ATI Radeonâ„˘ series
- 9500, 9600, 9800
- X300, X600, X700, X800, X850
- X1300, X1600, X1800, X1900, X1950
- 2400, 2600, 2900
- 3450, 3650, 3850, 3870
- 4850, 4870
iPhone 2.0 or iPod Touch
The Spore Patch described below has been released. Download’s Spore’s Patch here!
After the massive amount of complaints about Spore’s “draconian” DRM, EA sheds some light on its future plans. Here are some details Mariam Sughayer shared with MTV Multiplayer Blog.
Up to 5 Computers Authorized
This new patch expected to release sometime in the near future, will allow 5 computers authorized to play concurrently. When one computer uninstalls the game, you will be able to deauthorize access to that computer, freeing up one installation attempt. With this new method, users will no longer be forced to hit the activation cap that was set in place since the beginning.
EA shows off its compassionate side by saying they might release a patch down the road that will completely make DRM “null and void.” Don’t expect this patch anytime soon, its more likely to occur many many years from now when everyone else is awaiting Spore 3.
As we wait until the final details of this patch to come forth, users are still not pleased deeming this is “not enough.” Concerns stem from SecuRom’s ability to cripple DVD hardware and burning software. Another concern includes the pirated version as the most ideal to play since it has been wiped clean from SecuRom and can be installed on an unlimited amount of computers.
Feedback from various online forums and websites have brought up several questions that need to be answered by EA.
What would happen if a user uninstalls the game but the deauthorization attempt has failed?
In order to keep this as fool-proof as possible, EA would have to create a new program that can detect whether Spore is installed or uninstalled on the system. Since really, if a user uninstalls the game while they are currently offline for whatever reason, they will have no way of contacting EA’s servers about this change.
Though this previous situation is hypothetical, a more common occurrence is where users will reinstall their operating system because of unforeseen circumstances. EA has to be able to deauthorize a computer that has no traces of this game within the registry.
Will this patch apply to hardware changes?
If the patch authorizes 5 computers to play the game, hardware changes should not use up an activation attempt. We do hope this new patch will deauthorize a computer once they detect hardware changes and reauthorize after it notifies EA.
The Amazon Controversy
Something strangely interesting occurred over the release of Spore. Spore, the critically acclaimed creature creation game, has a strong list of supporters and gained high reviews on major gaming sites. Yet still, the biggest issue it has is its SecuROM DRM. This has resulted in the game amassing a low review score among its players and critics. This appears to be a protest campaign against SecuRom DRM, from players who have played the game and majority of others who haven’t.
The majority of complaints on Amazon’s site deals with the limited amount of activations your allowed to use in order to play the game. An activation attempt can be used if you completely reinstall your operating system or upgrade a certain amount of hardware inside your computer.
Once you have used up your 3 activations, you will need to call or email EA’s tech support and prove to them that you have purchased the game. Otherwise your only other choice is to purchase another copy.
Three is the loneliest number…
Some users have also installed Spore on multiple PCs, effectively using up 1 activation attempt for each PC. Amazingly within days of the game’s release, one consumer has already used up all 3 activation attempts. There are other complaints as users also seem to be concerned over the longevity that these activation servers will be up. What would happen 10 years later when those servers go down? Will players be locked out of playing the game?
Its unknown how EA will react to this. Its likely they will not do anything at all and will continue to use SecuRom in the future.
Even amidst this whole fiasco, one reviewer claims Gamespot deleted his review of Spore because it made mention of DRM.
So in the past few weeks several fan sites were able to see a glimpse of The Sims 3. No EA didn’t ask me to attend. Anyway we’ll take a look at whats been announced since the last time we covered it, and summarize all the major details from the fan sites.
All fansites pretty much agree there will be no loading times from place to place. Everything is done seamlessly so you can play inside your house, zoom the camera out and get a glimpse of whats going on in your town. By that, you select where you want to go and your sim will reach there by walking, cab, or car. The location of the neighborhood is alongside a rocky shore and mountains off in the distance.
There will be many places to visit in the neighborhood, including civic areas, the beach, the cafĂ©, and more. Certain buildings will act as jobs which you can plop inside the neighborhood. One of the most requested additions to the Sims 3 is the abilities to place objects in any direction without grids. This will certainly add to the realism that fans want.
As you play the game, everyone around you no matter where they are will be doing something and aging alongside with you. Each action they do will have a purpose and their behaviors will be dictated by each traits they have. You will start out with a few traits and expect to gain some more as you play through. Social interaction will play a much larger role, and even “negative” actions might make someone more happier.
For more detailed information about The Sims 3, you can visit the fansites at the bottom of the article. Now we’ll take a look in some new screenshots to see whats been improved since the game was first announced.
Fat is in! The new body shape adds more variety to the people you’ll likely meet around the ‘hood. Talking on the cellphone is now a base game feature that everyone will have.
The trailer showed off some of the new seamless neighborhood transitions by zooming out. We do know that this may be a huge struggle for lower end PCs. Fan sites have said that developers will be able to solve this problem by making the neighborhood smaller for PCs that struggle. Still I would recommend buying a new graphic card to support this game. Nvidia 8800+ seems to be a surefire way to make this game run smoothly.
The whole neighborhood will transition into day and night at the same time. Some sims may come out at night to do some mischief. This sunset along shows off some shadow mapping that is based on light from the sun.
Sims will be aware of others actions and may get irritated by them. This was in development for The Sims 2, but it wasn’t so apparent as they made it sound once the base game was released. So we hope they can enhance this even further in The Sims 3.
The Sims 3 will be released on June 2nd, 2009
On PC then later on MAC
In a step to make Xbox 360 more friendlier to the casual audience. Microsoft has unveiled a completely new dashboard experience taking away everything you know about menus.
Borrowing From Nintendo WiiMii
Nintendo Wii has been known for its unique avatars known as Miis. Microsoft didn’t take any steps to differentiate from that style. From the eyes to the blocky heads, everything just screams Nintendo. The customizations and details may be a big step up from the Wii, but we hope that next time Microsoft will come up with its own unique avatar.
Borrowing From Apple and Sony
Coverflow; while not as practical on Ipod Classic as it is on Ipod Touch, is one of the most unique ways to search through a catalog with ease. In the new dashboard system, every game and option, comes towards the screen at a slight 45 degree angle. As you flow through, each game has its own cover which may also feature some minor animation as you select it.
Xbox Live will feature a new category of games called “Primetime”. Essentially you will be able to play in multiplayer games that starts at specific times throughout the day. The first Primetime game to be announced is 1 vs 100. Based on the TV gameshow. You and 100 others will be competing against each other for the most money. They have also unveiled other Primtime games like Uno and Trivia.
Every new Sonic game follows the same pattern.
- Highly anticipated!
- Great Visuals!
- Sega’s Last Chance!
- Product is Released!
- Low Review Scores!
- Angry Fans
- “True” Fans vs Angry Fans.
- Next year, a New Sonic Game Announced.
- Rinse Lather and Repeat.
Once it reaches the point where “True” Fans:
- Whom, quite frankly, can’t spell.
- Can’t ever see any flaws in any Sonic game.
- Thinks their ideas are the best.
- Hates IGN and Gamespot reviewers with a passion.
- Wants every character in the game because they are soo cool!
- Will have a temper tantrum on anyone who criticizes the game.
- Will bow down before God aka Ryan Drummond.
- Will write fanfiction with their own “original” character with supapowerzzz!!11
- Will post tl;dr topics about why everyone hates their favorite character.
Again once it reaches the point where “True” Fans argue with Angry Fans, the whole internet universe explodes with trolling, angry letters, petitions, you suck, we all suck, nobody cares, just a plain ol’ mess thats only cured once a new sonic game is announced.
So a new Sonic Game has been announced! Will Sega make a critically acclaimed game that will calm everyone down, or will it end up being a failure like Sonic 06. Only time will tell.
Old Article Below
Click For Newer Details for The Sims 3
Electronic Arts has been known for its struggle on garnering trust to its gamers. Economically EA’s potential for profit is huge with their Sports line, Maxis, Boxing, Action, and Mobile gaming department. They continuously flaunt their in-game advertisements and its economic success.
Still this all takes a toll on a consumers by the recent drop in stock shares and quarterly earnings reports. The Sims 3 has many potential spots to solidify game play and do well with gamers. But we worry if EA’s marketing strategy will get the best of it.
A New Gaming Approach
The Sims 3 has an ambitious goal ahead of it. One of the major changes is that it now focuses on ONE household. Your person is placed into a world where everyone’s lives evolves with or without you. It sort of follows the lines of a MMORPG. Everyone existing in the game has their own schedule, love life, and personality. This doesn’t seem to worry fans too much since this concept was used during the Life Stories product line.
The Art Style
The most critical component for potential consumers at this stage is the graphics. The graphics look marginally better than they appeared in The Sims 2. A more realistic approach was expected, unfortunately the only areas so far that seems to be visually improved are the outdoors.
This screenshot depicts of a more detailed and realistic look of how a neighborhood is like. Now that the world is seamless, the gameplay allows you to leave your house and walk to another in real time. You will be able to move around the world with as much freedom as the console games. Hopefully as you move around, there should not be anymore loading splash screens that break up the action, but I do expect a loading screen before you enter another building.
Interior design still has that barren Sims 1-like look, every object is placed on a grid. The only new feature with object placement is diagonal rotation. This is not enough to make this game stand out from its predecessor. [Editor's Note] They have now revealed 360 degree rotation. This will now place the game way above Sims 2. Path finding need’s to be able to adapt to these rotations though.
This is the only screenshot so far has the most radiant lighting effect. The sun shines through the windows and the couch gives off its glossy glow, if only every screenshot presented this rise in quality…
Here are some various user comments from different message boards:
What I was most looking forward to in Sims 3 was a major overhaul in the department–a more realistic looking game–after all, it is a life simulation, but apparently that’s not going to happen. This looks like more of same to me, with incremental improvements.
Actually I looked at some of the graphics and they are dramatically improved hardware wise. The problem is that everything is unquestionably UGLY
Lindsay Pearson Interview Response:
However the screenshots give a somewhat distorted image, because when you see the Sims 3 live at work, you immediately notice the high detail in the world and its characters.
We shall see how this will turn out, there isn’t much uproar for this game as Simcity Societies. So far EA, your on a positive note here.
The Sims 3 will be released in US on June 2nd, 2009
The Sims 3 will be released in UK on June 5th, 2009
The Sims 3 will be released in AU on June 4th, 2009
1up.com this week did a week long peice of all the new information spilling out with Nighs Videos galore. Finally we have a glimpse of what to expect from the game that sticks really close to the original. They also showed off some new features like platform levels where the kids run around throwing ideya balls to enemies.
So far I must agree with 1up, their running animation looks very odd. She looks as if she really really needs to go to the bathroom. The graphics might not be exceptionally outstanding on the Wii compared to Super Mario Galaxy, but its definitely better than Nights into Dreams.
This desert filled theme park looks pretty barren in the backgrounds. The music is pretty much stays towards the safe side, it doesn’t really go off to be as creative as the first game. Still we don’t know if the music will be dynamic changing its melody based on the Nightopians you have killed. The music follows the style of the Sega’s previous Daytona USA game from Sega Dreamcast. It is a very smooth jazz album, taking your hand as it guides you through the air.
So far we have only seen 3 levels. If this game remixes all the dreams from the original, we are still left with a dense jungle with tall trees (as seen in the artwork), a museum of some sort, and a snow covered mountain. 1up.com has provided an Mp3 of Aqua Garden which you can listen to here.
Psst… By the way, you can download the Mp3 from this link:
Well its safe to say that the most highly anticipated simulated city game has to be Cities Unlimited. Simcity Societies is expected to be released sometime soon and as far as I can say, I’m not really that interested in buying it. So a new challenger appears from the game developer studio, Monte Christo. They are most notable for the creation of the 2nd ranked simulation game: CityLife.
With staff all across the globe, their job is to create the most realistic and lifelike simulation where Simcity4 left off. Although personally they won’t admit to having competition between the two games, (but we know whats going on anyway…) Monte Christo has released some new screenshots of what to expect. They revealed a few new details about the game. You have the ability to use different types of landscapes, like the beaches in Rio, or the snow covered mountains in Aspen. These locales will add to the variety of the different types of locations you can make, instead of the usual generic city.
Map Selection Screen
Lets Ski in Aspen!
Cities Unlimited website will launch sometime in October, and will be featuring developers blogs, webcasts, and a forum. So join in once the website launches to be further closer to the action. The Official Cities Unlimited site is now at http://www.cuplanet.com.
Whats even more weird is that the name hasn’t been changed for the english version yet, but the Japanese Game is now called "NiGHTS: The story of the Night of the Falling Stars". The website will slowly update with new information before its final debut in the winter 07, including the stages section and quite interestingly a "sound" section in the media page. This could possibly mean that the music is once again a very important feature. However, the little snippets of music I’ve heard so far has not lived up to the previous game’s quality, and sounds quite bland. The main page has a new orchestral rendition of the main theme which may imply it will be sticking with the "Disney" inspired style throughout the game, as hinted from the English trailer. There is a little easter egg for NiGHTS fans as they rollover the buttons really fast.
As of now, Nights 2 is under skepticism again from major game reviewers. Even though the buzz for the game is high and the screenshots have proved that the graphics aren’t bad, EGM has rated Nights 2 a So-So. Others are worried if this game will appeal at all to newcomers who are already starting their holiday season with Bioshock and Halo 3.
EA released their newest expansion pack this week titled, The Sims: Credit Card. This revolutionary expansion pack brings your Sims as you’ve never seen them before. Now you can carry them around with you and relive the joys of Credit Card Debt in REAL LIFE! Ooooh! Experience hassling phone calls from debt collectors as you show off your pretty new maxed out The Sims™ card to everyone..
EA? What the hell is this? Why is this even being advertised? We know credit cards from stores are the worst. I think its the wrong type of product to expose to teenagers at this level. I’d rather this be an in-game item because quite frankly, your really scaring me now. I’m not even sure who exactly your targeting with this card? Women ages 18-24? Men ages 13-18? When something like this comes up the best way to work around it and make things better for everyone is to have a co-promotion with the big name credit card companies, ex. Chase, Discover, Capital One… Just let them choose a card design and be on their way.
Well we can’t have a parody post without actual factual details of this credit card, lets read the fine print. First off EA assumes no responsibility in controlling the terms and conditions for this card. So don’t think EA’s friendly tech support will call you when your late on a payment. Its all handled FIA Card services, we’re with the big boys now! Well the Default APR Rate is 18.24%, this instantly tells me its targeting college students, why you may ask? Because most of the time the APR rate starts at 0% then goes up to that after 6 months. Now look what happens when your late on a payment, the APR rate goes up to 29.99%. Mmm smell your money go bye bye! On the signup page, they boldly highlight this 4.9% APR and it sure does look pretty but guess what thats for, Cash Advance Checks, and Balance Transfers only, NOT PURCHASES. Ya so pretty much, the average college student won’t use those features. Unfortunately this 4.9% APR lasts only 6 months! Gasp! This sounds like those Cable and Satellite provider commercials, we’re only cheap for 6 months after that your on your own! So basically your stuck with 18.24% VARIABLE rate, Y’all better pay your credit card bills on time or its harassing phone calls for you!
The moral of this story is, this credit card isn’t different from all the other college credit cards out there. Your first credit card will always be stinky, and there’s no way around it. Would I recommend you sign up to it? Well its your decision but if you do, follow this advice. Don’t buy college books with it, Don’t buy Mp3 players with it, and Don’t buy anything costing more than $60 dollars. See this card wants to game you into high interest rates, cause they know college students don’t ever have a stable source of income. So here’s how we can get back at them! Use the card until you owe around $60. Next pay back the MINIMUM payment needed! Don’t pay the full amount back because its not going to improve your credit score at all. Pay back the minimum on time every month! Rinse Lather, and Repeat! After you do this for a year, your credit score can improve enough to the point where other credit card companies will beg you to join their Platinum ranks!
You only wish you could look Cool like them
Wow, ever since "Nights 2" screenshots were released to the public, many have been doubtful and skeptical about this game. One of its major pitfalls were its graphics, they looked terrible and washed out. I also concluded that this game might just be crappy remake to one of the most beloved Sega games out there. Opinions changed when Sega released some gameplay footage and its surprisingly better than what we’ve been shown. The trailer itself features Disney style footage and voice over with the help of Jim Cummings. The gameplay itself models very closely to the original game. Now the camera is on a diagonal right behind Nights. We also got a glimpse of how you’ll be closed into a field. Instead of a strip of land at the top and bottom, you are now enclosed in an arena, for example an island. The areas outside of the field are no longer purple, but have actual landscapes and backgrounds. The gameplay is a little different this time. You chase a little guy on a bird and take away his key, which you’ll then bring to your cage to unlock the next path. One viewer says he shed a tear after watching the footage. Good job Sonic Team, you may have brought back NiGHTS after all.
Wow after a few weeks of reviews and previews we’ve come to the million dollar question. Is this the next Simcity5 or not? Well it appears we’ve come to the point where now half of us are saying its just a spinoff. The rest of us are convinced its the next game. The answer might be found in the title. Its not Simcity5: Societies, its just Simcity Societies. However interviews and news sites have stated it is the 5th iteration of Simcity. Dr. Statistics believes 80% of gamers are against Simcity Societies in its current form, 18% are in a wait and see mode, 2% are fans of Tilted Mill and will definitely buy.
Whats wrong with Simcity Societies so far!
What I think:
The major complaint is the art direction. The road system looks overly simplified, the buildings look too cuddly and compact, and everything fits pretty much in its square. We were pretty much expecting more realistic graphics and some crazy intersections but that doesn’t seem to be happening. The roads are far too square like. There aren’t any curves seen so far, and everything is grid like. Even Simcity4 had a slight curve with their streets, but Simcity Societies is just thick grids with sidewalks. One of the major eyesores for me is the constant flat texture on the ground. Only around the shore does the game breaks this monotony.
What the Fans think:
We’ve had comments ranging from "Simcity 4 looks better than this game" to "I like fresh games and I like to see a new direction take place." I think for the most part, fans do want an easier game but easier in the sense of not having to put power lines, not having to put tedious zones, and easier tools for streets. But this is where it stops. Everything else should be brought back from Simcity4 but with better graphics. xSpartan039x says, "This game is obviously an attempt by maxis [actually tilted mill] to draw in young consumers who cant handle the difficultly of sim city. Basically a nullified sim city where everything is easy, cool and doesnt require much brain-busting to make something".
Come to the Magical Land of Legos!
Whats Right with Simcity Societies!
What I think:
The game’s focus is different, and I think this was pretty much well thought out. What happens with Simcity Societies is that your more of the role of a dictator. How is this different from Simcity4? Well In Simcity4, your population directs your actions. You try to appease the population in balancing jobs, residents, and your money. If they can’t get to work, or if they are uneducated, or if they aren’t living long lives, they will move out or devolve. In Simcity Societies, the gameplay changed towards you forcing who will live in your city. By building certain types of buildings you can attract a certain society. Its more like Black & White, creating a society where your citizens are controlled with force, makes the city darker and stricter. Your citizens might be unhappy but you will see less crime and more money. However placing buildings for artistic and happier people changes your populace into a brighter colorful society.
What the Fans think:
Its hard to find a positive comment about this game. Most positive comments stems from Tilted Mill’s work in the past. "The only reason why I’m interested in Societies is Tilted Mill’s involment and the fact that it apears to be much more of an Impressions-style city builder than Maxis-type one," and eedoon says, "At first, I thought SCS concept is a little bit weird. But then again, I think it is good for anyone to try something new and therefore I am eager to give this new SC a try." But this comment pretty much summed up the rest of the situation, "Will I buy it? Yeah, probably, if only in hopes the money will go to producing a REAL sequel" Well, there you have it, we aren’t satisfied until Simcity "5" comes out and until then we have Cities: Unlimited to look forward to. More on that later..
So is this Simcity5 or Not?
Well we do know that Simcity will continue if this game fails. Yep thats right! If this game doesn’t get good reviews and sales, Maxis will go back to basics and work on the next version of Simcity. You don’t need to kill yourselves or boycott this game. If this game is successful, Simcity Societies might be branched off in its own series while coexisting with Maxis creating Simcity 6.
Don’t ya Wish Your Simcity was HOT Like Me! Don’t ya!
Tilted Mill Productions will be running the development of the newest game of Simcity5. Tilted Mill has stated that the game will not be a realistic simulation like previous Simcity versions before it. Tilted Mill understands that the new direction might anger some fans but they want them to atleast try it out. Some have said Tilted Mill has killed simcity.
The following are some User Reactions against Tilted Mill:
"The Community was waiting on a new and better SimCity5, where realism is nearly perfect. SimCity Societies isn’t that SimCity5 we where waiting for…"
"When you said that this SC is not a realistic urban simulation, then this city building game should not be called Simcity. The whole series of Simcity has been based around realistic building sims… you are turning the new Simcity into just another cartoonish simulator…that upsets alot of people"
"EA, knows **** when it comes to simcity. They want to water itdown and simplyfy it down as much as possible to make maximum sales, great from a greed point of view, utterly rubbish if developers want their game to be reknown "
"How can you try to convince us, loyal SimCity fans that a game, that isn’t an urban simulator will please us? It won’t. Stop fooling us, there’s no city simulation therefore the Simcity name on that game is an insult, and we don’t like being insulted"
"It appears that EA has taken the course that is all too often taken nowadays; they are appealing to a mass audience and killing their base, which, with any luck, will be suicide for them later to the point where they will have to let Will Wright develop it again. SimCity is, at its heart, a game with a goal to be as realistic as possible. What EA is doing is like removing rollercoaster design from RollerCoaster Tycoon…"
And I must admit I have to agree with them. I want to personally put all blame towards EA most of all. You took a game like SSX3 and created crap for kids with SSX Blur. We want our realism back. You might as well let Maxis continue directing this game and let Simcity Socities change its name to something else. More Updates Today
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