The holidays are well and truly upon us as game after game is released in the face of the upcoming winter months, where we can all stay in and play games without feeling too guilty. It is a busy time of the year, with many a gaming event taking place in many parts of the city. Last week, tucked away in a mysterious location in Toronto, Nintendo held their holiday media preview event in which they showed off some of their latest and upcoming games. Thankfully, I speak Mushroom language, so I was able to ascertain the location of the event and infiltrate to give you my impressions of what I saw. As usual, Nintendo did not disappoint!
People really love a good team-up. It’s not hard to see why; the idea of something being greater than the sum of its parts is very compelling – especially when the components are amazing. We have seen it before, with games like Street Fighter vs. Capcom, or the Super Smash Bros. franchise – and it works. I have often wondered what it would be like for Professor Layton and Luke Triton to meet other videogame characters on one of their adventures. Would it work? Well, Professor Layton vs. Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney (Level-5 and Capcom) answers that question, in a Nintendo 3DS game that has the most FPS out of any game ever made. And by FPS I mean Finger Pointing Sequences, of course.
For all of the experiences that my 3DS has brought me over the past three years, none of them have made me think “console quality”. This isn’t a negative – I consider my 3DS as a system for portable experiences, and I appreciate how smartly key franchises were shrunk down and adapted for on-the-go play. But after sinking a few dozen hours into Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS, I’m realizing that it’s every bit as satisfying as its console forebears.
Like an octopus, LEGO has many franchise arms – one of them being their own Ninjago series – and there is usually a corresponding videogame series for each of these arms. Traveller’s Tales and Hellbent Games have put their noggins together to create a next-gen hand-held entry called LEGO Ninjago: Nindroids – a puzzly-platformy-bricky entity. So, is it a good game? Is it good enough to stand on its own amidst a sea of LEGO games? The answer is a mixed bag – depending on how much of a fan you are of either LEGO, Ninjago, or both.
This past E3 saw each of the “big three” firing on all six cylinders to impress upon gamers that the best is yet to come; but Nintendo’s showing was particularly successful at changing the Wii U’s prognosis from more cynical gamers (enough that a poll of IGN’s readers showed the majority rated Nintendo as “winning E3″).
Nintendo recently invited Toronto Thumbs and other Canadian outlets to a post-E3 demo session, where multiple kiosks were available to showcase the big hitters coming this holiday season and beyond for Wii U and 3DS.
I have never really been a fan of the One Piece anime series. Odd as this may sound from a Naruto nut: I have always found One Piece to be somewhat zany and over the top – and while I have found it amusing, I have not really. Ever committed to follow the series. So, it was with great trepidation that I approached Ganbarion’s action/adventure One Piece: Unlimited World Red for the Nintendo 3DS; of course, this caution was misplaced, as the title is definitely more fun than I expected. More brawler than RPG, One Piece: Unlimited World is a fairly standard adventure game that does a good job of entertaining existing fans while being accessible enough to conscript new blood, provided they have the patience for the formula.
Back in June, Thumber Seán O’Sullivan spoke very highly of Nintendo’s Tomodachi Life for the Nintendo 3DS. Since then, Smallest Thumbs has taken the game for a spin and really enjoys it, hinting that this game might be a great choice for kids with a 3DS that are looking for an experience that steps out of the usual formula that seems to make up many games for children.