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Wii Battle Report
It's the little console that could and it indeed has been a smash hit for Nintendo. The Wii's price point, the motion sensing Wiimote controller and games like the included Wii Sports and Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess have turned the Wii into a must have for not just gamers but people who have never picked up a video game. It's not the most powerful console; it's just fun to play. Oh, and good luck trying to find one in stores. Unlike the PS3 or the Xbox 360, Nintendo can't keep up with the demand for the Wii.
Sooner or later there will be enough Wii consoles to go around for everyone. That's when the final battle will truly begin. Nintendo is without a doubt the most secretive of the three console makers when it comes to the future plans for its machine so there is nothing but speculation about when upcoming games and services will be offered. They also have a tendency to miss projected release dates for games (Metroid Prime 3 was supposed to be a launch title for the Wii). While the Wii has had a great start, will it have a great finish? We offer these humble suggestions for Nintendo to keep up its current pace.
Offer Online Multiplayer Support ASAP
Nintendo clearly is still intimidated in entering the online space for its consoles. Sure, the Wii offers things like downloadable classic games and friends codes to link to other person's Wii. But let's face it; it's 2007 and people want to play online games against others and that's something that the Wii (at least in the US) just doesn't have. Nintendo needs to at least announce a timeline for getting the Wii online multiplayer network up and running along with a list of compatible games (Metorid Prime 3, anyone)? If they wait too long (say by fall 2007) it will be way too late to compete with games like the Xbox 360's Halo 3.
Don't Wait For Fall To Release New Wii Games
Nintendo has promised there will not be a drought of games for the Wii between now and this Fall, but at the moment it looks like a rather barren release schedule until the holiday season. This is certainly not the case with the Xbox 360 which looks like it will have a very aggressive schedule of games coming out. If there are enough titles for the Wii between now and this Fall it could get flattened in the face of major PS3 and Xbox 360 releases.
Offer Original Virtual Console Games
It's fantastic that the Wii allows you to download great and even not-so-great classic games from Nintendo's library of titles (along with Sega and Hudson games) but these are very simple ports; no added content or features like Microsoft offers for ports of classic games for the Xbox 360. Most importantly there are no original titles currently available for download.We know that there are some in development (indeed, IGN's Wii editors have admitted they are helping to develop an original Wii Virtual Console game) and we think that will go a long way in turning the Wii console from a retro machine into a real rival for the Xbox Live Arcade.
Get More Community Involvement
Like Sony, Nintendo tends to shy away from involving its fans in its business, preferring to release press notes to members of the media. We think Nintendo should embrace blogs, podcasts and more outreach programs to inform its Wii owners on upcoming news and releases for the console. Nintendo had some odd ways to promote its products (the Wii launch was preceded by an series of small invite only parties) and has relied on its long time fans to spread the word. But using the resources of the Internet could be an even better way to keep the Wii's buzz growing.
Again, its still too early to declare a winner in the console wars. We will take a look at how the battlelines and war fronts on all three sides will shape up in the months ahead and offer an update this summer on the war and its skirmishes before the final fall 2007 battles begin. We think that will be the time when the true winner will be declared. In the meantime, don't forget your helmet and your first aid kit; this next-gen console conflict could get bloody really fast.
Elemental: Fallen Enchantress Preview Elemental: Fallen Enchantress is a standalone expansion pack and follow-up to developer Stardock's previous game in the series, subtitled War of Magic. That 4X strategy game was highly-anticipated and slated to compete with games such as Sid Meier's Civilization V for your turn-based strategy play-time, but was released in an incredibly broken and unfinished state that it never fully recovered from. Lead designer Brad Wardell apologized profusely to fans and set out with his team to go back to the drawing board and try again.
Almost two years later, the result of that proverbial mulligan is currently undergoing closed beta testing. In today's article, Will reports his thoughts on how Fallen Enchantress is shaping up, and will tell you whether or not you should be keeping an eye on it as it nears release later this year.
The Elder Scrolls Online Details Leak - Should Fans Be Excited? The Elder Scrolls Online, long rumored to be in development, was officially announced yesterday. Still in development at Zenimax Online Studios, this MMO aims to combine traditional genre mechanics with the spirit and sensibilities, not to mention setting and lore, of the immensely popular series of single-player RPGs. Though the game is set for a full unveiling in the next issue of Game Informer magazine, what appears to be the entire cover story article has been leaked to the interwebs already. In today's article, you'll find summary and analysis of all the alleged details, as well as feast your eyes on the very first screenshots and concept art from the game. Of course, the burning question now is, should you be excited?
ANNO 2070 Review
The year is 2070. The majority of life on Earth was devastated when global sea levels surged after the melting of the polar ice caps. Swaths of previously habitable land are now deep underwater, and sovereign nations are a relic of the past. But there is still hope...
This city-building RTS/simulation game from Ubisoft tasks you with re-colonizing what little land areas are left on the planet following a global warming apocalypse. Does it have what it takes to be worthy of your time and money, or should it be cast out to sea with the rest of civilization? Find out in today's review!
Hear that? It's the sound of the largest computer chip manufacturer in the world churning out new processors to power your gaming rig. This week, Intel is launching their next generation of Core CPUs, code-named Ivy Bridge. Like last year's Sandy Bridge chips, they're low-power, quad-core powerhouses that also feature integrated graphics processors. Want to find out more? Maybe check out a whole bunch of performance benchmarks on both the CPU and graphics sides of things? Well you can, in today's review!
Intel Z77 Chipset & DZ77GA-70K Motherboard Overview
Looking forward to those new Ivy Bridge CPUs? In anticipation of their release later this month, Intel has already unveiled the new Series 7 chipsets designed especially to take advantage of what will be the 3rd-generation of Core processors. In today's article, we take a look at the architecture of the enthusiast variant, the Z77, and how it's used in the Intel Desktop Extreme DZ77GA-70K motherboard. Even if you're not particularly interested in the motherboard itself, you'll probably want to see some of the new features that come along with it, so read on!
Mass Effect 3 PC Review
This latest release from EA/BioWare is the final entry in their trilogy of sci-fi action RPGs, putting you in a dire situation: rally the troops to save Earth at all costs. There was a lot of hype surrounding the final act of what has been a vast and highly-customizable story-telling experience, and the reception among many hardcore fans has been less than stellar. Even people that haven't played the game have probably heard about all the nerd rage going on over Mass Effect 3's ending...
If you want to cut through all the crap and find out whether or not the rest of ME3 is worth playing, come check out Will's spoiler-free take on the first blockbuster game release of 2012.
Batman: Arkham City PC Review Batman: Arkham City is the sequel to 2009’s smash-hit action game Batman: Arkham Asylum. As the name suggests, you will be reprising your role as the Caped Crusader and going against an even larger 'prison' filled with Gotham's criminals and villains. A textbook example on how to do a proper sequel, Arkham City takes what worked in the original, excised or improved upon what didn’t, and elevated everything to an even greater scope. The PC version suffered from a few months of delay, but in that time, Rocksteady worked closely to NVIDIA to implement some familiar technologies from the last game, such as PhysX and 3D Vision, along with new DirectX 11 optimizations. But how well was the whole package executed? Read on to find out!
Saints Row: The Third PC Review Saints Row is one of most unique series of games to build upon the open-world action template forged by Grand Theft Auto, and has met with plenty of critical and commercial success since it began on consoles back in 2006. This latest iteration, titled Saints Row: The Third promises the most outlandish fun and freedom of customization of them all, and in a much more PC-friendly package than its predecessor. Does it live up to those expectations and, more importantly, is it worth the price of admission? Find out in Will's latest review!
The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim PC Review The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim is Bethesda Softworks’ latest offering in their series of epic fantasy RPGs, as well as one of the most highly-anticipated PC titles of 2011. As the Dovahkiin, or Dragonborn, prepare to take the fight to the mythical beasts that have returned to the realm after centuries of slumber, all the while exploring a huge and highly-detailed open world.
The PC version of the game promises enhanced graphical fidelity, standard RPG trimmings such as hotkeys and quick-save, as well as unbridled mod support, something we’ll all be thankful for once they release that SDK. Skyrim has already sold millions of copies and set records for play-time on Steam... Find out why in today's review, which happens to be one of the biggest and most in-depth articles on the subject out there!
L.A. Noire Complete Edition PC Review L.A. Noire, as the name clearly states, is a video game built on the tropes of one of the greatest periods of American cinema: film noir. Developed by the now defunct Australian developer Team Bondi and published by Rockstar Games, this title has been out on consoles for a full six months before finally making its way to the PC. This “Complete Edition” of the game features improved graphics, keyboard/mouse controls, and every bit of previously-released DLC for free. But was it truly worth the wait? Read on and find out!