Whatever happened to the games of yesterday? And how will they be seen tomorrow? This week's podcast topic comes to us from Jeff from Texas who wants to know what Blake Grundman and I believe will happen to today's games in the future. Which of the current titles clogging up retail shelves in great abundance will become the next hard-to-find rare classic? When will Wii Sports be a sought-after retro title? Let's fire up the time machine and gaze into our amazing future. Download this week's episode directly from PTB, listen with the player below, find us on Stitcher, subscribe via iTunes, toss this RSS feed into your podcast aggregation software of choice, and be sure to catch up on past episodes if you're joining us late. Remember that you can reach us via , you can leave a message on the Power Button hotline by calling (720) 722-2781, and you can even follow us on Twitter at @PressTheButtons and @GrundyTheMan, or for just podcast updates, @ThePowerButton.
While we're still waiting for an official localized release of Nintendo's Mother 3 outside of Japan (that's EarthBound 2 to you and me, and of course the fans took care of the unofficial release a few years ago), apparently there's still a push from the fans for designer Shigesato Itoi to lead a new team to develop Mother 4. Don't hold your breath though; Itoi says that such a thing is impossible. Kotaku translates an interview from Game Watch Impress:
Here’s how Itoi explained his thinking. “Among big-time popstars, if they, you know, put out ten albums, around the fourth album, they can’t make very good songs. The albums sell, but everyone at the concerts wants to hear songs from those first three albums. Everyone.”
“I’m glad that video games are not my profession,” said Itoi, who’s best known in Japan as a copywriter and a commentator. “If it was my job, I would’ve already made 4 and 5.”
As much as I'd love more EarthBound and would want to see more of it, if Itoi is uncomfortable with creating additional sequels, I'm ready to let it go. Let's enjoy the games we have with their stirring stories and emotional themes rather than drive the franchise into the ground with soulless sequels.
Kotaku has summed up the current state of Sony's PlayStation Vita, a handheld gaming system that many people and publishers have written off as a failure. Look beyond the easy headlines and negative naysayers, however, and you'll find a nifty little gadget perfect for niche gaming.
In 2015, the Vita appears to be in a terrible place. Sales have been atrocious, marketing is non-existent, and Sony has all but admitted that they’ve stopped supporting the system. Just look at the Vita’s conspicuous absence from any Sony press conferences. Whether it’s due to the rise of mobile gaming or Sony’s other major Vita screw-ups—like those exorbitantly priced memory cards—the Vita just hasn’t been able to reach a substantial audience. By any account it’s a commercial failure and has been since it launched.
Yet not all is doom and gloom for the PSP’s successor. If you look past the dismal sales, you’ll find a rather fine game machine that’s become the system of choice for fans of Japanese games, especially RPGs. It’s also chock full of indie gems, solid ports, and old-school classics. Anyone hunting for the big-budget shooters and open-world adventures that Sony originally promised will want to look elsewhere, but if you like more interesting, niche games, the Vita might be a perfect fit.
I tend to flip back and forth between on my Vita and my Nintendo 3DS, binging on one for a few weeks before returning to the other. I've logged a lot of hours on Zen Pinball 2, selected PS1 classics, Capcom's iconic brawlers like Marvel vs Capcom 3 & Street Fighter X Tekken, and whatever little addictive indie title PlayStation Plus has offered up lately. Surprisingly, I'm less interested in the big budget, home console-style games (that largely no longer exist on the new release schedule) such as Uncharted or Assassin's Creed. With Vita (and 3DS) I'm looking for simple, bite-size gaming to enjoy for thirty minutes to an hour before I fall asleep at night. The major games are too deep and demand too much concentration to fill that need.
Pity the fate of poor Bubsy the Bobcat, seemingly destined to be forever remembered as one of the 16-bit era's Sonic The Hedgehog knock-offs. After a few lackluster sequels buried the talkative character in gaming purgatory, he's been a punchline in the community for years. Now there's an effort to redeem Bubsy by bringing him back for modern audiences to enjoy on PC via Steam Greenlight. Publisher Retroism has apparently acquired the rights to Bubsy and seeks to release the first two games in the series on Steam as the compilation pack Bubsy Two-Fur.
Accolade’s most notorious character had not been seen since an ill-fated venture into 3-D. Out of the blue, he showed up at Retroism’s doorstep, bedraggled and mumbling about being doomed to a legacy of shame and obscurity. But we’ve cleaned him up and given him a new lease on life, a shot at returning to the big time – but he’ll need your support!
Bubsy’s journey to redemption begins with your vote to bring two of his 2-D games to authorized digital download for the first time in the Bubsy Two-Fur on Steam. With your support, Bubsy may finally be able to look himself in the mirror and smile, carry himself with dignity, and perhaps find the strength within to go on new adventures again…
I'm a fan of these two Bubsy games (the first one, Claws Encounters Of The Furred Kind, is the better game, but Bubsy 2 has its charms) and would love to see them back again. Whether or not the rest of the community agrees with me remains to be seen. Whaddya say, folks? Could this be a case of "Local Bobcat Makes Good"?
Back in Episode 176 we outlined some of our dream pinball table ideas and now this week we're back with more suggestions that are, let's say, a little less likely to show up on Zen Pinball 2 or Pinball Arcade. Unless, of course, either of the studios behind those titles wishes to pick of the ALF gauntlet we've thrown down. Download this week's episode directly from PTB, listen with the player below, find us on Stitcher, subscribe via iTunes, toss this RSS feed into your podcast aggregation software of choice, and be sure to catch up on past episodes if you're joining us late. Remember that you can reach us via , you can leave a message on the Power Button hotline by calling (720) 722-2781, and you can even follow us on Twitter at @PressTheButtons and @GrundyTheMan, or for just podcast updates, @ThePowerButton.