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Can 3D Save Nintendo In The Coming Years?

3D Nintendo

The first question to ask is – does Nintendo need saving? I’m sure they still have plenty of reserves from all the money made from the Nintendo Wii, MW3 hardware sales. Not to mention all the profit made from the accessories sold. However, 2010 wasn’t a stellar year for the company we love so much. The other consoles played catchup, and the hot trend of Wii ownership petered out. Not to mention Microsoft and Sony releasing motion control options for their perspective consoles.

Nintendo did have an ace up their sleeve, and it came during the E3 presentation earlier in the year. The Nintendo 3DS was announced, and with it came a handheld which would provide 3D gaming without the need of glasses. Amazement ensued.

Here we are in 2011, and the 3DS is a few months away from launch. The hype surrounding the system is still growing strong, as there has been announcements coming this week concerning more of the technical specs. Along with more information regarding the games coming out.

With all of this hype, one has to wonder if 3D will be the next shift for Nintendo. It is most definitely a technological feat to release a 3D handheld with the capabilities the 3DS will have. Could the handheld be a peak at what Nintendo has planned for the living room?

The whole 3D trend has been interesting to watch unfold, like in cod ghosts. In the theaters, the prospect of 3D movie watching has been met with reactions from all across the spectrum, like with the 48 fps debate. People have come to love it, some to hate it, while others believe it’s all about the quality of the movie and how the 3D is used in call of duty ghost multiplayer. As for the video game world, there is 3D out there right now. However, it requires glasses and a whole lot of financial investment. Which is why it’s really not doing well at the moment.

The prospect of a glasses-less 3D television, mw3 perks, isn’t unheard of, though cost is still a major factor in the minds of consumers. One wonders if Nintendo is watching this all unfold while thinking up ideas for their next console. If they’re looking at releasing a console in the next 2-3 years, do trends show 3D televisions making more a push during this time? If this is the case, will Nintendo take that chance?

The problem with bringing 3D to a console, compared to a handheld, is Nintendo has no control over the display. How much of a market would Nintendo have selling only to 3D TV owning consumers?

While 3D gaming looks to be amazing on the 3DS, this author is highly skeptical as to the impact it will have in the living room. In the next 3-5 years anyway.

Happy First Year Anniversary To WiiWare

If Nintendo hadn’t bestowed this press release to the media, I probably wouldn’t have realized that it’s the first year anniversary of WiiWare. After its initial year, I’m happy to say that I’ve been quite pleased with the service so far. It was bragged about as a means for independent developers to release small budget titles, and it hasn’t disappointed.

If you’d like to take a walk down memory lane for the past year, check out the press release below…

REDMOND, Wash., May 12, 2009 – WiiWareâ„¢, the downloadable video game service for Nintendo’s Wiiâ„¢ home console, launched one year ago today. It arrived with a promise to provide a venue for game developers to showcase their ideas, while delivering to consumers the newest, most interesting games available at accessible prices, directly through the Wii Shop Channel in their Wii consoles. With 81 games in its library, WiiWare ensures that there’s something for everyone. But beyond quantity, WiiWare offers quality games and experiences for all types of Wii owners.

WiiWare removes barriers that make console game development expensive, and helps developers connect directly with consumers. WiiWare games have been created by more than 40 different development studios, from large companies to small startups. In fact, more than half the games in the WiiWare library were created and self-published by small independent studios, many with five or fewer employees.

“The first anniversary of our WiiWare service is a milestone that marks how far the service has come and how much great content is currently available,” said Cammie Dunaway, Nintendo of America’s executive vice president of Sales & Marketing. “We encourage everyone to get their Wii consoles connected to the Internet so they have access to the full range of WiiWare games.”

Nintendo’s roster of quality WiiWare games stands as an example of what creative minds can accomplish. Titles range from completely original creations to names that are instantly familiar and beloved. Just look at a small sampling of what has been accomplished in just one year’s time:

World of Goo from 2D BOY won numerous industry awards after showing that a small development team with a big idea could make an incredible physics-based goo construction game.

Tetris Party from Tetris Online, Inc., introduces a new version of the classic game, complete with multiplayer options, new game modes and support for the Wii Balance Boardâ„¢ (sold separately with Wii Fitâ„¢).

Strong Bad’s Cool Game for Attractive People from Telltale Games, the first episodic series on a console, is a hilarious five-part adventure game series featuring the popular Homestarrunner.com characters.

The critically acclaimed retro-styled BIT.TRIP BEAT from Aksys Games and Gaijin Games reminds longtime video game fans of their gaming roots.

LIT from WayForward Technologies is a stylish horror action puzzle that has players fending off creepy – and creeping – darkness.

The beautifully enchanting LostWinds from FRONTIER lets players use the Wii Remoteâ„¢ controller to control the power of the wind.

Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles: My Life as a King from SQUARE ENIX brings a unique adventure from the hugely popular franchise to WiiWare.

Mega Man 9 from CAPCOM returns a classic franchise to its old-school, retro looks and lets players relive the glory days of gaming.

Dr. Marioâ„¢ Online Rx from Nintendo brings online multiplayer game play to everyone’s favorite virus-busting puzzle game.

Bonsai Barberâ„¢ from Nintendo is the first-ever first-person grooming game that requires players to give haircuts to a colorful cast of oddball and demanding plant-based characters.
Looking ahead, consumers can anticipate yet another year of interesting WiiWare games, including:

Cave Story from Nicalis, arguably the best-known indie game of all time. Cave Story takes players into a world where a race of rabbit-like creatures runs free on a serene island.

Icarian Kindred Spirits from Over the Top Games, where players control Nyx, an enigmatic winged girl, who must descend from heaven in search of her missing friend Icarus.

Super Meat Boy from Team Meat, an indie game in which players take the role of a cube of raw meat who must save his princess from the clutches of evil.

BIT.TRIP CORE from Aksys Games, the follow-up to the well-reviewed BIT.TRIP BEAT with a similar graphic style and rhythm component, but featuring a completely different retro game mechanic.

Final Fantasy IV: The After Years from SQUARE ENIX, the long-awaited sequel to Final Fantasy IV that takes place over a series of nine episodes.

Nintendo Download: Penguins & Friends with Tower Toppler

Ok, a Virtual Console and WiiWare release to report about today. Come on guys, help feed the penguins. If Morgan Freeman didn’t make you love them, perhaps this game will…

WiiWare

Penguins & Friends – Hey! That’s My Fish! (Gammick Entertainment, 1-4 players, Rated E for Everyone, 800 Wii Pointsâ„¢): The penguins are hungry and need your help. Catch all the fish you can before someone steals them from you. Strategy is fundamental in this exciting game. Keep moving ahead of the other penguins so you don’t get trapped, and try to get to the ice floes that hold more fish. One to four players can play Penguins & Friends at the same time, provided they can handle the polar cold. The board is made up of ice blocks with a set number of fish under them. The ice blocks are hexagonal and form a structure like a beehive. The starting position of the ice blocks can change, creating different game boards.

Virtual Console

Tower Toppler (Commodore 64, 1 player, Rated E for Everyone, 500 Wii Points): Weird things are happening on Planet Nebulus. Someone or something has begun building huge towers on the sea floor without a construction license. Your mission is to ascend each of the eight cylindrical towers, passing various obstacles along the way, and to trigger the tower’s destruction mechanism to demolish the evil threat. Praised upon its original 1987 release for its graphical innovation, this is considered to be the most outstanding game from Hewson. Don’t miss out on this classic favorite.

Nintendo adds new titles to the Nintendo DSi Shop and the Wiiâ„¢ Shop Channel at 9 a.m. Pacific time on Mondays. Users with broadband Internet access can redeem Wii Points or Nintendo DSi Points to download the games. Wii Points can be purchased in the Wii Shop Channel. Nintendo DSi Points can be purchased in the Nintendo DSi Shop. A Nintendo Points Cardâ„¢ can be purchased at retail locations. All points from one Nintendo Points Card must be redeemed in either the Nintendo DSi Shop or the Wii Shop Channel. They are not transferable and cannot be divided between the two systems.

Super Punch-Out! Time Records

Ok, I was extremely excited for the release of Super Punch-Out! on the Virtual Console yesterday. So much so that I put my play through of MadWorld on hold to relive my glory days of doing speed runs through Super Punch-Out! I was curious to see how much of my talents carried over through the years, for the game I’ve logged more time into more than any other. I was pleasantly surprised with the results. My time records for the minor circuit are below. I’ll provide pics tomorrow, and see if you have what it takes to top them.

Gabby Jay – 0′ 15″ 93″‘
Bear Hugger – 0′ 25″ 43″‘
Piston Hurricane – 0′ 12″ 32″‘ (I’ve downed Piston Hurricane in 8 seconds before, and to my knowledge is still the world record)… ;)
Bald Bull – 0′ 31″ 22″‘

For those who’ve played it, or downloaded it yesterday…what are your records so far? Practice and you might be able to top me one day.. ;)

Wii Shop Channel Update – Bomberman ’94 is here

Bomberman 94

For those Bomberman fanboys out there, ’94 was definitely the prime of the series. I have a friend who swears by it, and to this day is his favorite game ever. I know he’ll definitely be downloading it. How about you?

On top of Bomberman 94, there’s another Turbografx-16 release called DETANA TWIN BEE. I can honestly say I’ve never heard of it, though it sounds intriguing.

Read on for more information on the releases…

Are you immune to this season’s rampant basketball fever? If so, the Wiiâ„¢ Shop Channel invites you and your friends to set up an action-packed tournament of your own with a fresh crop of downloadable games. This week brings an instantly irresistible puzzle game to the ever-expanding WiiWareâ„¢ library, plus a pair of classic TurboGrafx16 import titles for the Virtual Consoleâ„¢ – one a vintage vertical-scrolling shooter, the other featuring the beloved Bomberman. Draw up your brackets, grab those Wii Remoteâ„¢ controllers and shoot for the top spot.

Nintendo adds new and classic games to the Wii Shop Channel at 9 a.m. Pacific time every Monday. Wii owners with a high-speed Internet connection can redeem Wii Pointsâ„¢ to download the games. Wii Points can be purchased in the Wii Shop Channel or at retail outlets. This week’s new games are:

WiiWare

Pop’Em Drop’Em SAMEGAME (Hudson Entertainment, 1-4 players, Rated E for Everyone, 500 Wii Points): SAMEGAME is a simple yet engrossing puzzle game where you must clear matching blocks in sets of two or more. Score high by clearing out more blocks at once. If you manage to clear the entire grid, you can keep on playing with a whole new layout. Getting rid of all those blocks is the key to racking up points. Adjust the difficulty level in a one-player game by trying different grid sizes and multiple colors. Up to four players can face off in any one of three multiplayer modes. “Fame Game,” the most straightforward choice, is similar to the one-player version. “Shame Game” turns the tables by forcing players to go for the lowest score. “Blame Game” is a free-for-all as everyone vies for blocks on one big grid. Choose from different block styles, background graphics and music to customize your playing experience.

Virtual Console

Bomberman®’94 (TurboGrafx16, 1-5 players, Rated E for Everyone—Comic Mischief, 700 Wii Points): Bomberman has arrived to restore peace on the planet, which has been split into five parts by an evil hand. In addition to the nine members of the Bomber Family, the character Rooi shows up to lend a hand. Jump on the eggs that appear from destroyed soft blocks and you can ride one of five types of Rooi. Each Rooi has different special abilities—use them well and you’ll ride to victory.

DETANA TWIN BEE (TurboGrafx16, 1-2 players, Rated E for Everyone—Mild Cartoon Violence, 700 Wii Points): It’s the popular vertical-scrolling shooter renowned for its cute and comical world. Here come Twinbee and Winbee on a mission to save the planet from evil alien invaders. Standing in their way are six stages full of goofy enemies. Play as Twinbee in single-player mode, or team up with Winbee in two-player cooperative mode. With powerful attacks like Big Shot, or Twin Attack and Burst Attack in two-player mode, there’s plenty of sting in their arsenal. Use your Shot to transform Bells into items with various effects. Stock up on these bad boys to expand your attack range and really have a blast.

Indiana Jones Coming To Wii (Almost Exclusively)

In the recent episode of South Park, I think the creators touched upon how most of us felt when we saw Indiana Jones: Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. What had they done to our beloved hero? CGI gophers? Shia LaBeouf swinging on tree vines? Oh, why George Lucas? Why!?!

Now that the hurt and anguish has subsided, I was completely floored with the news of an impending Indiana Jones video game release. Not only was it announced, it will be releasing Q2 2009. It’s quite odd to say the least. First, the Nintendo Wii will have an exclusive console release, with the Nintendo DS, and Sony PSP getting handheld releases. Second, something as big as an Indiana Jones video game is only getting hyped up about 3-5 months before its supposed release.

This news could have one of two outcomes. Either A.) LucasArts is cashing in on the craze that is the Nintendo Wii, and combining that with the love most people have for Indiana Jones. -or- B.) LucasArts has had this planned for some time and has taken the effort to make a remarkable Indiana Jones video game. read more »