Put your hands down! I can’t actually see you.
Big ups to N8R for bringing this product to my attention! In the immortal words of Han Solo:
And I thought…they smelled bad…on the outside!
I’m sure many of you have been craving this exact product and here it is: a tauntaun sleeping bag from Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back! If you’ve ever fantasized about being a beat up (almost) Jedi that needs the warmth of a tauntaun’s innards for survival, your dream has come true.
C’mon, I know at least one of you is going to pick this sleeping bag up. Admit it!
Legendary Nintendo game creator Shigeru Miyamoto addressed a crowd of Japanese retailers to assuage any fears that New Super Mario Bros. Wii will be anything but a blockbuster hit. According to a Games Maya manager, Miyamoto said:
It’s a Mario that will continue selling even after one year has passed.
It’s interesting that Nintendo felt that trotting out Miyamoto was necessary. I can’t imagine the game doing anything but ridiculous numbers, but Andriasang’s Anoop Gantayat (hi Anoop!) feels that some retailers might be concerned with Super Mario Galaxy not selling as well as previous Mario games. I think those retailers should have their heads examined — New Super Mario Bros. Wii will be a fun game that appeals to gamers of all ages and skill levels. I will stand on my head if it doesn’t sell millions of copies.
Are you dudes and dudettes looking forward to this game? Or do you think it’s a case of Nintendo selling the same title over and over again?
On Sunday, I wrote about a service disruption that zapped the data of T-Mobile Sidekick users. To make amends for the loss, T-Mobile is offering its users a free month of data service and a $100 gift certificate. The company updated its forum post with the following:
In the event certain customers have experienced a significant and permanent loss of personal content, T-Mobile will be sending these customers a $100 customer appreciation card. This will be in addition to the free month of data service that already went to Sidekick data customers. This card can be used towards T-Mobile products and services, or a customer’s T-Mobile bill. For those who fall into this category, details will be sent out in the next 14 days – there is no action needed on the part of these customers. We however remain hopeful that for the majority of our customers, personal content can be recovered.
A free month of service and $100 gift card? I’d still be pissed off. So much of my personal and business data is stored on my phone and in a Google cloud. If that were to suddenly vanish…well, like I said before, I’d probably break down and cry (whoa-oh-oh Sweet Child O’Mine). Then again, the Sidekick demographic is pretty young and I’m sure the percentage of those using one for work is pretty low. So maybe a high-school stud that lost the numbers of all his girlies would be perfectly satisfied with T-Mobile’s payout.
To all the “data disruption” victims and friends of said victims, is T-Mobile giving enough back to its customers?
Okay, I’m pretty much a BioWare fanboy, so when the company says anything or releases new media — like a new Dragon Age: Origins trailer — I pay attention. Here are some official lines from the press release, followed by the video.
This trailer takes a look into a quest in search of the Sacred Ashes, where danger awaits the band of warriors in the glacial, jagged edges of a treacherous mountainside. Darkspawn assault the group, and pressed into action, the soldiers leap into battle. Using world-class skill, magic, might and outright brute force, the Darkspawn are being eviscerated; just when the situation appears to be under control, a massive Dragon – stunning in its size and might – swoops in and crushes everything in its path, threatening the very survival of the heroes. Check it out and let me know what you think (please)!
According to Katie Melua, there are nine-million bicycles in Beijing…and soon there will be zero money from foreign game investors. Reuters has reported:
China’s video game industry regulator the General Administration of Press and Publication (GAPP) and copyright watchdog issued a circular on Saturday prohibiting foreign investment in domestic online gaming operations through joint ventures, wholly owned enterprises and cooperatives.
The new directive also disallows foreign firms from indirectly influencing Chinese gaming firms through agreements or technology support.
Hundreds of game companies have been trying to take advantage of the billions of people (millions of gamers?) in China. It looks like the government has put a stop to that, at least in the online gaming space.
I have a few friends in Shanghai attending GDC China. Hopefully they’ll be able to dig up some more info on this development.
Gamasutra has an excellent write up of Jordan Mechner’s keynote from GDC China. The Prince of Persia creator covers a wide range of topics. One of the tidbits I found interesting was him talking about his mindset going into Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time. Mechner said:
You really couldn’t find a better example of what not do than the first 10 years of Prince of Persia. The franchise was like a garden that I was neglecting. By 2001 Prince of Persia was really a dead franchise — completely and totally dead.
We really felt we were underdogs, because it was a dead franchise. We really felt we had to make an original game, as if nobody had heard of it.
And take a look at the franchise now, with Jake Gyllenhaal flashing his pecs as the prince. My, we’ve come a long way.
Seriously though, The Sands of Time was an excellent game and really brought the franchise back to life. While some of its sequels were not quite as good, the whole reboot is a fine of example of how to modernize a classic franchise. Hopefully someone will reboot a franchise so that Jake’s sister will bare her chest in a movie (again).
A few of you have been wondering how avatars work in the comments section. The blog uses the Gravatar system. If you have a Gravatar account, you can use any avatar you wish. When you make a comment here, be sure to use the same email address associated with your Gravatar account. That will make it so that everyone can see your awesome customized avatar. If you don’t use Gravatar, you get some funky monster that’s based off of your IP address.
Feel free to leave a comment with your custom avatar hotness!
This week’s Xbox Live Deal of the Week has Hasbro Family Games Night titles on sale. According the Major Nelson:
Xbox Live Gold Members can save 50% when they purchase any of the Hasbro Family Game Night games.Normally priced at 800 points, this week Battleship, Connect 4, Scrabble, Yahtzee, Boggle and Sorry Sliders are 400 points each.
Most of these games should have been 400 points to begin with, but I love me some Scrabble and recommend it.
Hey…anyone interesting in getting some round robin Scrabble going?
Welcome to the first edition of Coffee Talk! Let’s start off the day by discussing whatever is on your (nerd chic) mind. Every morning I’ll kick off a discussion and I’m counting on you to participate in it. If you’re not feelin’ my topic, feel free to start a chat with your fellow readers and see where it takes you. Whether you’re talking about videogames, the return of Barry Allen, Chris Jericho carrying the WWE for two years running, or how awesome the NY Yankees are, Coffee Talk is the place to do it.
Today I want to talk about replay value. It’s mentioned in practically every videogame review you see and many critics use it as a scoring factor, but does it really have a role in your purchasing decisions? For me, it’s not really an issue when it comes time to plop down cash on a new game. It’s more of an added bonus that I enjoy after I’ve beaten a game.
Don’t get me wrong — I appreciate games that have extraordinary replay value, but that’s not why I buy (or pass) on a title. I’ll pick up every game in the Final Fantasy Tactics series because I love the world of Ivalice and the gameplay style. The fact that I’ll play it for dozens of hours after I’ve beaten it isn’t the point. That said, I completely understand that I’m not a normal customer since I get to play a ton of games for free and can be picky with the ones I buy.
My question for you on this fine Monday is whether replay value impacts your purchases. Are you more likely to buy games that you can play over and over again? Will you skip on a game because it’s not really worth playing after the initial 10 to 15 hours? Or is it a case-by-case basis? Leave a comment and let me know (please)!