Posted by: seanmalstrom | March 28, 2017

Nintendo Direct April 2017 leaked!

Is it true? We will find out soon enough.

Paper Mario: The Thousand Year Door HD
A remaster of the GameCube classic for Nintendo Switch. In addition to bringing back the features fans loved about the original, some things are tweaked and balanced, like the back tracking in Twilight Town. The game is scheduled for release in October.

Super Mario Maker for Nintendo Switch
A port of Mario Maker is coming to Switch with the Wii U features intact. This includes Amiibo support, Costume Mario, and uploading levels to Course World. A couple new course features are introduced as well, like slopes.

Breath of the Wild DLC
Gameplay is shown of the Cave of Trails, which was announced back in February. The new feature in the map shows players when enemy camps are nearby.

Splatoon 2
A new trailer is shown detailing the game’s story mode. Agent 3 must defend Inkopolis from the Octarians as they invade Inkopolis and try to steal back the Great Zapfish. Bill also talks about the game’s ranked modes, which include the returning Splat Zones and Tower Control, along with a new mode. In addition, all 3 modes can be selected separately at any time, and are not tied to a time rotation like the stages. The game will also be compatible with the Splatoon series of Amiibo, and the Amiibo challenges from the first game are returning.

Virtual Console
Virtual Console will be starting up soon. NES and SNES titles are planned to start being released in May. Gamecube Games are indeed coming to the Virtual Console. Certain games that required Analog Triggers will have the option to configure the shoulder buttons to indicate a light, or full press. For example, pressing R will indicate a light press, or ZR will indicate a full press. Super Smash Bros. Melee will be available in early June, with Super Mario Sunshine and Mario Kart Double Dash coming in late June.

Indie Games
Bill passes it over to Damon Baker, who announces release dates for some of the Indie Games described in the Indie Presentation back in February. Runner 3 will launch on October 12th, SteamWorld Dig 2 will launch on June 8th, Overcooked: Special Edition will launch on May 18th, Stardew Valley will release on July 13th, and Shakedown Hawaii will release on April 6th.

Ever Oasis
Damon them pases it back to Bill to talks about upcoming 3DS games. This section starts with talking about Ever Oasis, which releases on June 8th.

Lady Layton
Lady Layton is coming to the US, and is planned for a 2018 release date.

Fire Emblem Echoes
Details on the special edition of the game are given, as well as a deeper look into the game’s world, and what the Alm and Celica Amiibo do. The Amiibo can allow you to summon certain characters from past Fire Emblem titles to add to your party. You can also scan previously released Amiibo of FE characters and add them.

ARMS
The direct ends with the new trailer for ARMS. It details the game’s story mode, and announces 4 new characters. The game releases on May 29th.

Sounds like a Gamecube orgy which sounds like Nintendo. Why put up Mario Kart Double Dash so soon after Mario Kart 8 Deluxe releases? Paper Mario HD? No.

Why can’t we get Legend of Zelda HD? Or Super Mario Brothers 3 HD?

Or a D-Pad Joycon?

How are we supposed to play Mario Maker without a D pad?

Fuck the Amibos.

Fuck the Breath of the Wild DLC. Cave of Trials sounds shitty. Just one room after another of enemies. Boring. I want more Hyrule Castle type dungeons, not this crap. Why should enemy camps be seen on the minimap anyway?

Yay to Mario Maker and Stardew Valley though. Will they come on cart?

Posted by: seanmalstrom | March 27, 2017

The Presentation of the Zelda Dungeons

Everyone agrees that space was at a premium during the gaming days of the 1980s. But why did Zelda I and II make a ‘grand entrance’ for its dungeons/palaces? Each dungeon had them. We had to waste time going through them back in and back out again.

Yet, no one complains about this ‘bloat’. When people do not complain about something, I notice.

Image result for zelda 1 dungeon entrance

These ceremonial parts do a good job of presenting the dungeon to you. they give the dungeon a sense of mystery and dazzlement.

I’m so tired and cranky, I shouldn’t answer any more email. But this above point was on my mind.

Someone at Nintendo thought it was very important to put those entrances in. Why? It serves no gameplay purpose. I thought Nintendo was ‘gameplay is everything’.

With Link to the Past, we stopped getting these ceremonial entrances. And I think the game suffers for it.

Posted by: seanmalstrom | March 27, 2017

Email: Bow Wow Playstyles

I’m loving that everyone could tackle Zelda in a different way. The last time that I came close to this in a Zelda was the Wind Waker. Bow Wow feels like Wind Waker done right. In that game, exploration seemed to be there to show off the developers work. In Bow Wow, it’s there for us to devour the game and to make our own story.

I loved getting to new islands and mapping them out in Wind Waker. I did it to the point that the second the story allows you to ignore the actual story, I explored everywhere that I could. By the time I finished the last dungeon and went to fight Ganondorf I had the entire triforce piece. There was no late game triforce quest for me.

Bow takes everything good about Wind Waker and cranks it up to a million. It takes everything good and adds it to the original two Zelda game then modernizes it all.

Like how you missed the Korok guy for upgrades? I saw him. I also saw and fought the people that align with Ganon as well. I got a horse, the same as you, but I did one side mission from the stable with it. The horse got in the way and I saw that it was going to be a problem. I dropped him back off at the stable and set off to Kakariko on foot. I don’t even use my own horses often because they’re a hassle to use. I once I had to track down where I left one, get it back to a stable then teleport to where I really wanted to explore and grab it from that stable.

I just steal the horses that moblins/bokoblins ride. They work well and are easy to tame. They will wander off when you leave them, but not too far. They can’t come to your whistle, but it works for me. It’d be great if the horses could ride on the rafts with you, but unfortunately they can’t. Bow Wow needed to add magic to at least one of its’ horses. We should be able to ride a pegasus. I should be able to find some crazy way to earn a pegasus, drop it in a stable or summon it via a special call in-game and have it fly to me from wherever. I should be able to run to and fly everywhere with it, but not be able to land it on places like the steep side of a mountain. It would kill part of the challenge, but not remove in entirely. There should even be dangers inthe sky and moblins that ride dark pegasus’s. There could even be mini-bosses and a boss that uses one. Using a pegasus should expand the ability to explore while equally increasing the challenge while using it as well. It would signal that you’re open to more badass, tougher action.

Because I’m on foot a lot, I fight a lot. I ran into Lynel’s long before I ever had that Zora mission. That taught me how to guard, dodge, quickly weapon switch, etc. I conquered most of my first 50 hours with only 3 hearts. I placed every upgrade into stamina so that I could explore more. I only began to gain more hearts after I maxed out stamina. For 5 minutes after I initially had max stamina, I reconfigured my link to swap stamina for hearts, got the master sword, then put it all back into stamina. I don’t know why I had to do that, they could have easily just the dang sword drain the stamina instead of hearts if you went that route.

I’ve conquered the Gerudo and Zora divine beasts, 51 shrines, I’ve completed the entire map and I have two normal fairies and a horse fairy unlocked. I’d also suggest that you buy the stealth suit from Kakariko. It makes it easier to sneak up on most animals and to literally run past many enemies without them noticing you.

 

You comparing Breath of the Wild with Wind Waker? Are you drunk?

I think the shrines wear out their welcome. It gets repetitive.

I put all my spirit into hearts. Strangely, I don’t see much reason to climb. I just get the next shrine or tower and keep leapfrogging into the territories.

Posted by: seanmalstrom | March 27, 2017

Email: Re: Master Sword and progress

And wasn’t that the most satisfying unlocking of the Master Sword? I had to try three times to get it. Getting to it was fun as well, there being multiple ways to find the path. As always though, it would have been even cooler if they added danger. The atmosphere would have gone all the farther if there were enemies.

It’s great that you’ve been to Hyrule Castle. Very happy that you mention the bookcases. A secret bookcase captures the essence of what old Zelda “puzzles” were about. I approached Hyrule Castle in several runs, I ended up making use of the armor you get around the Elephant.

There’s reasons to believe that the DLC dungeon won’t be another Divine Beast, though some sheikah tech dungeon might happen. I may be foolish, but I hope for another Hyrule Castle. I truly do believe that while puzzle bunkers will stay around, Puzzle dungeons aren’t making a comeback anytime soon.

When your spoiler embargo ends, I’ll follow up on enemies, what’s missing, what could be improved. If the Unfortunate Nintendo Employee assigned to your site lead to BoW “WoW!”, then perhaps you and us readers can help them reach even higher. If BoW “WoW!” has mastered the sense of adventure, the next Zelda’s​ must master inevitable​ danger, which they show glimmers of here.

Danger and tension… to whom? The hardcore gamer? The housewife? At least with this open world approach, the player can define their danger.

BoW “Wow!” is overstaying its welcome. I feel I make no progress even if I do things in the game all day.

It seems like traveling in this game is WAY too slow (perhaps intentional) which is why activating the shrines and towers are so useful. I spend more time teleporting to one place to another, watching the loading screen, than actually traveling through the world. Once I get to a shrine, I only teleport back. I never walk back.

As such, the game has awe and wonder at the beginning because you have to walk everywhere. But later in the game, everything shifts to teleporting to one spot to another. The world disappears to the loading screen. There is no reason to travel the world in shrines and towers you’ve already done.

Posted by: seanmalstrom | March 27, 2017

Zelda BoW “Wow!” 65 hours in… Completed 45 shrines

2 dungeons + Master Sword now with 45 shrines and about 4000 rupees.

This game is beginning to drag. The culprit seems to be lackluster zones in the Hyrule Forest and Hyrule Ridge.  Boring ass zones with crappy ‘shrine quests’ that fill up the map. .The Lost Woods ‘trials’ are sheer crap and boring and annoying as hell. Was this one of Aonuma’s ideas? The ‘ridge’ area also is empty, lifeless, and just boring. There is one shrine where you complete it on the overworld where the overworld part, which initially looked promising by having giant mushrooms, is combining the two annoying things in this game together: moving balls and rain. The thunder trial is NOT fun.

I also found out my Switch wasn’t connecting to the Internet. I didn’t realize my Switch had never been turned off since launch. Instead, it has been ‘sleeping’. You must push a button on Switch to turn it off. Lame.

BoW “Wow!” is really beginning to get grindy. I have enough to get ancient armor but, oh noes, I gotta get more ‘gears’.

Posted by: seanmalstrom | March 26, 2017

Console Generations For Dummies

Game console generations tend to overlap. We are in transition from Generation 8 to Generation 9.

Wii U and 3DS are Generation 8.

The successor to both of those is the Switch. The Switch is Generation 9.

What is confusing people is that the Switch software isn’t Generation 9 just yet. Breath of the Wild and Mario Kart 8 are Wii U ports. It would be like launching the SNES with NES ports.

PS4 and Xbox One were launched in 2013. They are four years old. Both consoles are reaching their climax. This is why Microsoft and Sony are putting out more hardware because they have no idea what to do for Generation 9.

Switch will confuse many people because it is the ONLY handheld console left. People keep trying to act like Switch is chasing PS4 or Xbox One. They couldn’t be more long. Switch is defining the market of Generation 9. It will be difficult for Sony, who has failed in the handheld space, to respond to the Switch.

3DS was launched in 2011.

Wii U was launched in 2012.

The average span for a generation is 5-6 years. Switch is definitely the Next Gen to 3DS and Wii U. No one can say otherwise without looking ridiculous (but when has that ever stopped the hardcore?).

Console generations are defined by time, not by ‘power’. The Switch is not more powerful than the PS4 or Xbox One not because it is ‘in their generation’, but because Switch offers handheld portability as its console value.

People have been trying to re-write the past for a decade now. Analysts were trying to get PlayStation 1 to be ‘Generation 1’ back in Gen 7 (which I am sure the NES and Sega Genesis came from the Land Before Time, yes?).

We are in a year long transition to Generation 9. At E3, Nintendo will show off their Gen 9 software.

Posted by: seanmalstrom | March 26, 2017

Email: re B.O.T.W. progress or lack thereof

Dear Sean,

I can assure you that you are far from alone in your ‘lack of progress’ where B.O.T.W. is concerned.

I am 120+ hours in yet have only revealed about 40% of the map, to the best of estimation, and am still yet to tackle my first dungeon.

Now, admittedly, my natural play style is rather methodical and I am endeavouring to max out an area as much as possible before moving on to a new area tower but this is slow going even for me.

This game is so full of content however that I feel one would be doing both oneself and the developers a great disservice by rushing through it to ‘beat’ it, if I may use that curious hardcore gamer phrase.

I am glad that you are enjoying the game so much.

Let us both continue to savour the journey and not fret about the destination :).

Regards,

Matthew

P.S. Future Nintendo software has a very hard act to follow! If Mario Odyssey manages a similar quality….Mama Mia!

Back when the Wii launched, I kept saying we need games with more content. This confused Nintendo. I recall Reggie saying, hesitatingly, ‘more content’ as if The-Unfortunate-Person-At-Nintendo-Assigned-To-Read-This-Blog told him to say that. To Reggie, content meant ‘games’. More content meant more games. Zelda BoW was what I was talking about. Perhaps a better word for it would be VOLUME.

I was doing the scenic route, but I wanted to get more powerful. I’ll be returning to those earlier areas but with some muscle now.

I would like to be finished with Zelda BoW “Wow!” before Mario Kart 8 Deluxe hits. I don’t know if I’m going to make it! And I have a month! hahahaha

Posted by: seanmalstrom | March 26, 2017

Got Master Sword

60 hours in.

Finally got the Master Sword.

37 shrines completed so far.

I even went exploring inside Hyrule Castle.

Above: Treasure awaits in Hyrule Castle

Hyrule Castle is EXACTLY how the dungeons *should* be done. No puzzle bunkers here. Hyrule Castle has many routes through it, and it is funny that I can climb over stuff and go spiderman throughout the spires. It was very challenging to get to Zelda’s study. There are no ‘puzzles’ except what we want such as ‘using Magnesis to uncover hidden doors in the library’ or ‘use bombs on cracks on wall’. The castle is filled with nasty monsters and mini-bosses. I love it! Imagine how disappointing Hyrule Castle would be if it was nothing but a puzzle dungeon like the divine beasts.

I am getting the hang of combat. It isn’t that combat is hard, it is that there are so few times to use combat because of all the puzzle dungeons. In the overworld, you can easily avoid most enemies.

I like the Master Sword’s unique ability. Is it supposed to become twice as strong inside the castle?

Some tips for new players that I wish I knew:

-You can EXPAND your inventory (swords, shields, and bows). To do this, talk to a giant korok that is outside Kariko Village along the road. Using korok seeds, you can upgrade your inventory. Upgrading your inventory for melee is very important because you will want to hold all the melee weapons you can (because they break all the time!). I missed the Macarena Korok because I rode into Kariko Village on an out of control horse. I bet most players missed him due to riding a horse (why else is our first stables before Kariko Village?).

-Getting fire lizards suck. The trick to getting them is to WALK to them. Do not run. If you walk, they stay in place, and you easily pick them up. You will need many fire lizards in this game. Remember this.

-Bring lots of arrows to the Giant Elephant when you leave the Zora town.

At 60 hours with two dungeons down and Master Sword, I feel like I am halfway done with this game. There is much grinding ahead though it shouldn’t be seen as grinding. This game is such a turf game. You want to clear out ‘areas’ before moving to another. I probably should go back to the early areas and clear out all the side quests.

I am 60 hours in and this game keeps getting more fantastic. The good news is that Nintendo knows how to make dungeons we want with Hyrule Castle. The question is will Nintendo give us those dungeons? Imagine if all the dungeons were like Hyrule Castle!!!!! This game would be even better!

Posted by: seanmalstrom | March 25, 2017

Email: I Totally Agree About Zelda

Hi Master Malstrom,

Is it worth anything to say that I agree with you and your emailers? I don’t really like to email you because I fear that it will prove redundant or otherwise moot as well as wind up just saying something plain old stupid…8 I know that you’re a busy man.

However, lately, you and your readers/emailers have been slamming down some really good points about Zelda that have me thrashing in my chair, saying “yyyeeeeeeessssssss!” and after reading those discussions I felt that I just had to say something.

That story about the redead encounter that one emailer told is the same as mine, 1:1. I thought they were NPCs! I miss how Zelda use to have scary enemies like these.

That whole email, “The Enemies Missing in BOtW”, is great. I agree with everything it said! I have not played Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild yet, but I’d been watching lots of videos and I, myself, began to wonder about the enemy variety and, sure enough, it is lacking according to what I read from others. Iron Knuckles and Darknuts are my favorite enemies. Zelda hardly does legitimate sword battles anymore. I use to keep saves just before a battle with one of these just so I could do them over and over!

I really like the idea of bringing directional combat back and expanding on it. I always loved directional attacks in (3D)Zelda. I see you as influential, so when you stated that everything in that “Sequelitis” video about Ocarina of Time is true, which stated the directional combat as being too complicated, I think that Nintendo might back away from the idea. However, others writing to this site, pointing out spaces where it could work, gives me hope.

I really like the idea of a mobile dungeon that walks all around the map. It would be extra cool if the dungeon continued to travel with you inside (if it doesn’t already do this), traveling even to places you might not have been to and being able to look out of windows and see where it’s gone After you beat or get kicked out of the dungeon somehow, you could find yourself stepping out into an unexplored area.

I’ve always loved the idea of an Underworld and cave systems for Zelda too. It would be extra nasty down there! Imagine finding a whole Dark Souls-like world beneath the surface of the overworld! Dank, scary, ugly… The most foul of beasts would be down there too. Some places could be nicer looking like castle/temple basements and whatever. I loved those “lantern caverns” in Zelda: Twilight Princess. Especially the one at Lake Hylia, it was the biggest.

Wouldn’t it be cool if the map expanded even more with the greater of the map being on the other side
of a giant cave similar to the first Zelda’s map being a small portion of the Zelda ii map?

I’ve been wanting these things in a Zelda game for a long time. I’m disappointed that Nintendo never  ent the Shadow-of-the-Colossus route with the bosses. Which is what I’d imagined for Zelda before that game was even around (or at least before I’d heard of it).

Nintendo did plan this for Ocarina of Time, but the N64 couldn’t handle it, Shadow of the Colossus beat them to it and Nintendo shied away from the idea, apparently (even though they claim that Megaleg in Super Mario Galaxy fulfilled that original desire for them… …THEM). Sometimes I wish that Nintendo would focus more on doing great things rather than just things that are new…

So, I guess that’s it. I really just wanted to say “ditto!” to all of the recent posts about Zelda.

Anyway, bye.

PS- I think Nintendo made a mistake staying so quiet about all of Zelda: BOtW’s details. I had to actively pursue “spoilers” just to make this game barely seem wort it! All they really brought attention to was “ooh, open world”, “you can cook” and Bokoblins!!! I don’t remember hearing any juicy details about the game from them! When the game came out, I still knew nothing! How does it play!? What kind of areas will we find in this “open air” game? We can pick up enemy weapons? Then show me some of the more interesting enemies. They didn’t even show any epic battles!
Nintendo should have told us that those centaur enemies would be back. Nintendo should have showed a laser-sword-and-shield-wielding enemy to hint that I might be able to get those weapons (I guess they did do this when they posted a screenshot of a small guardian that had one)! Think about it: If you’re never played a Zelda, How are you suppose to be convinced that you should play this one? Because of the ugly anime look? Because of the cinematic trailers that didn’t showcase the gameplay well? The story isn’t even really interesting! WHY SHOULD I BUY THIS GAME!?!? AND I’M A ZELDA FAN!!!

What do you think? Is it just me?

Reading between the lines, I was confident enough to pre-order Zelda and Switch on January 13, 2017 when the Internet was still pessimistic about Switch. Nintendo takes a while to reverse course of a ship, but when it reverses it, it goes full team ahead. Keep a careful eye on Metroid. After Other M and Federation Force, everyone is thinking Metroid is dead. But it only takes one game. Next Metroid may blow us away as Zelda BoW “Wow!” did.

Also, why the hell are you watching videos on Zelda when you don’t have the game? Stop that! Don’t spoil yourself. Perhaps I feel so behind in Zelda because gamers who have more time have already finished it while I am not even halfway done with 55 hours in. I still forget there are those who cannot get a Switch or Zelda.

My advice: go replay the old Zelda games. You won’t want to replay the old Zelda games after BoW “Wow!” I think BoW “Wow!” makes every Zelda game obsolete including Link to the Past. Zelda 1 and Zelda 2, though, still survive in uniqueness. I’d rather replay Zelda BoW “Wow!” instead of any post Zelda 2 game again. The thought of playing Link to the Past again, which I have been doing consistently for decades, bores me now.

While you may hear griping about Zelda BoW “Wow!”, you should know that it is an incredible game filled with volume. This is perhaps one of the best single player games ever made. I feel it is on a equal level to compare to the legendary classics of Legend of Zelda or Zelda 2 or even the Ultima games.

I don’t want my email to build up so I put it out there. When people put the word spoilers in the email subject, I just delete it! hahaha.

I have only defeated two dungeons and I have 55 hours in Dungeon with 30ish shrines out of 100 (?) done. I can tell you that this game is the real deal.

Every criticism I have had with Zelda over the decade has been answered in Breath of the Wild. Sure, there are puzzle bunkers and puzzle dungeons, but none of that can stop this juggernaut of an open world. This isn’t just the best or one of the best Zelda games ever made, it may be one of the best video games ever made. No one will disagree that Breath of the Wild deserves gold cartridge treatment. I keep trying to find things to criticize in it, and you can find things to criticize if you look for it, but the point is that I have played 55 hours of this game with no sign of stopping.

I am beginning to suspect the replay value of this game is going to be nuts too. Imagine a replay where you go different way off the plateau. I certainly will do that!

To those of you who don’t have Zelda yet…. oh man. You guys can hear the sizzle but cannot taste the steak. I went in this game skeptical and cynical, as someone who is tired of playing video games, and this game feels as fresh as a rose. Do you remember playing Zelda when you were bright eyed and young? Those days await you again with this game.

Above: The lines for this commercial would be perfect for Zelda: Breath of the Wild!

And the Lynels (Centaurs) are awesome with neat AI. They just stare at you if you approach. If you draw out a weapon, they immediately attack!

I am 55 hours in, and there are enemies that I am too scared to fight because they mow me down. Guardians and Lynels still slaughter me. It takes a long while to get strong enough to tear down some of these enemies.

Posted by: seanmalstrom | March 25, 2017

Email: Virtual Console on Carts

Hello Master Malstrom,
What’s your opinion on this?
http://www.gamespot.com/articles/secret-of-mana-series-coming-to-nintendo-switch/1100-6448857/

​Do you think this can be trend?
More “old” and “forgotten” games should arrive on Switch in cart format?

It is like the collection discs of Generation Five and Six. (Final Fantasy Anthology, Mega Man Collection, Mega Man X Collection, Sonic Collection, etc.)

I like these collection packages and prefer their physical releases over buying digital games one by one. They make great collector’s items too!

However, I haven’t seen them do anything to push console momentum. I would like to see Square put out new stuff on Switch. Collection packages, especially during the launch period, aren’t that good.

I have those Mana games on original hardware, so I don’t have much demand for just those three games. But those games are getting pricey on original hardware so it may not be bad to have more supply.

What I badly want to see on Switch is a Shmup Collection Package like PSP and Vita had.

Oh, be still my heart! Gradius Collection! Yum!

Check this one out for the Saturn: Salamander Deluxe Collection. Ooohhhh.

Shmup games are just so ridiculously expensive these days. We need more supply!

How about a Treasure Collection? Radiant Silver Gun, Ikaruga, Guardian Heroes, Gunstar Heroes, + More.

I would like collection packages of games that are physically hard to get.

Konami should do a Castlevania Package:

Castlevania NES box art.jpg

Vampire Killer MSX.jpg

Castlevania II Simon's Quest.jpg

Castlevania III Dracula's Curse.jpg

Castlevania: Bloodlines

Super Castlevania IV

Dracula x (j) front.jpg

Castlevania Harmony of Dissonance.jpg

AriaofSorrowCover.jpg

Castlevania - Dawn of Sorrow Coverart.png

Portrait of Ruin.jpg

Castlevania ooe front cover.jpg

Castlevania SOTN PAL.jpg

That is all the 2d Casltevania games I can think of. Would you buy a collection that included the above games, reader? With that Castlevania show coming on, you’d think Konami would put out a Castlevania collection. Such a game on the Switch would sell gangbusters.

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