Saturday, April 27, 2013

Nintendo Needs to Stop Sucking

Oh Nintendo, what have you gotten yourselves into now?

The beloved video game giant seems to have fallen on hard times. After 2009/2010, it looked like no one gave a shit about the Wii anymore, only a few years after it set sales records and had everyone going apeshit over it. Truth be told, other than "Wii Sports", the "Super Mario Galaxy" games, Mario Kart, "Madworld", "House of the Dead Overkill", and a couple others, I didn't really enjoy much of what the Wii offered outside of the novelty of the Wii-mote. Last year for holiday time, Nintendo unleashed the Wii-U, their first HD console, which promised to introduce new gameplay elements including a touch-screen based controller and a library of intuitive games as well.

Well, it sucks...and so does Nintendo these days too.

Now let's get one thing straight here before you all start calling for my head. Even though I grew up primarily a Sega kid, the first home console I ever owned as a kid was the original NES. I also ended up owning every iteration of the GameBoy since its original launch, and I grew to love the Super NES on a journey of discovery after its prime. After that though, that was pretty much it for me and Nintendo. Although I loved the original DS, their home consoles on the other hand never did much to rock my world. The Nintendo 64, Gamecube, and Wii all just looked like shit to me, but then again around those times when they came out, I was too busy with my Dreamcast and Playstation's 1, 2, & 3 to ever really give them a deserved shot.

Now here we are in 2013, and Nintendo's profits are falling fast. They even made the curious decision not to have a featured presentation at this year's upcoming E3.

Let that sink in.

While Sony and Microsoft will be pimping out their new, upcoming next-gen consoles, the granddaddy of all video game companies will be absent.

Now granted, Nintendo has made strides with selling their products and making big announcements through social media outlets instead, but to option to not be included in the industry's biggest jack-off fest is disheartening, and kind of frightening, to say the least. Even though I said Nintendo sucks these days, the idea that there is a legitimate possibility that they could possibly end up bowing out of the video game hardware business if the Wii-U falters any farther is scary. That means that only Sony and Microsoft, two mega-conglomorate corporations, would be the only horses running in the video game race. That is scarier to me than anything else.

If Nintendo did bow out of making consoles and switched to being a third-party software developer/publisher like Sega did after the discontinuation of the Dreamcast a decade plus ago, that would mean we'd be seeing Nintendo's classic characters hitting XBox and Playstation. Could you imagine that? Seeing Mario, Donkey Kong, Link, and the rest on the same consoles that offer up "Halo", "Killzone", and the thousands of "Call of Duty" knock offs and wank-fests? Would anybody even care? Probably not...and that's sad.

So yeah, fucking suck. You fucking suck for possibly having to say R.I.P. to making consoles, and waving the white-flag as being the only true video game company left. Do I really want Sony and Microsoft being the only two console developers left only because they have an endless amount of money and resources that could absorb any kind of loss that companies like Nintendo and Sega could only hope to dream of? Fuck no.

Stop sucking Nintendo, for the love of the video game gods, stop fucking sucking.

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Reviewing the Third Season of "The Walking Dead"

Hello assholes, it's been a while I know. But since I'm back from the dead for time being, let's talk about the "dead" shall we? Case in point, the third season of "The Walking Dead". If anything from the time it started, this was a season in which it seemed like the fans got what they wanted from the get-go...before it felt like everything turned to shit and what seemed like so much promise that was built up just became nothing more than wasted potential. Be warned that spoilers are ahead for anyone who hasn't watched the third season yet, so read at your own risk.

Like I said, throughout the season it felt like the fans got they wanted in terms of a few things: Lori and Andrea get killed in horrible ways, Carol isn't annoying anymore, Merle comes back, and there's more Daryl. We also got to see what happened to Morgan, Michonne kicked ass, and after a bit of a rocky start, we saw The Governor become a pretty damn good villain. But for all the promise this season delivered, so much of it became wasted potential.

While we finally got to see Michonne and The Governor, it took a while for their characterizations to really make their mark. When they did though, both characters became magnetic and some of the best parts of this season. Their bloody showdown in Woodbury set the stage for The Governor really losing his shit, and his thirst for revenge against Michonne was wonderfully orchestrated.

On the other side of that, we got to see both Lori and Andrea bite the big one, and oh how satisfying it was. While Lori died in childbirth and Andrea died from being a fucking idiot, both deaths proved satisfying as both characters had become just so goddamn annoying and far from their comic book counterparts that seeing them both meet their demise was worth the wait. My biggest gripe with "The Walking Dead" in television form is how different the characters are portrayed on the show than they are in the comic: case in point Andrea. In the comic, she's awesome. She's a strong-willed, intelligent, and cool under pressure character that has been a fan favorite for years. On the show, she's a selfish bitch whose motivations change at the drop of the hat. With her dead now, maybe that will be the end of the show's tradition of poorly written female characters. Then again, probably not.

While I've chastised the show for veering down different paths than the comic, seeing Andrea die was a welcome deviation. Some things that made me want to pull my hair out, like The Governor still being alive, irked the shit out of me. Add to that what they've done to Carl lately, and I'm torn between yawning to myself and saying "this is fucking stupid" whenever I watch an episode. The fact that the show is now veering further from the comic also sets up a feeling of not knowing what to expect to happen next, which is one of the few reasons I continue to watch the show, just for the fact that I don't know what the fuck is going to happen next.

With all that said and done, the one thing I absolutely cannot stand is how AMC keeps on slashing the budget of the show. Glen Mazarra, who was the showrunner up to the end of this season, was shit-canned in favor of a showrunner who will make the show more "character driven", which is code for someone who will keep things going with only half the budget at his disposal. This isn't a surprise, considering AMC shitcanned Frank Darabont over the fallout the show's budget getting slashed because AMC is apparently run by "Mad Men" (other AMC shows, like "Breaking Bad" suffered the same fate, while "The Killing" got cancelled), but neither of those shows are the ratings juggernaut that "The Walking Dead" is. It's just infuriating that once again, here we are with budget cuts, all so "Mad Men" can keep moving forward.

All that aside, this season of "The Walking Dead" wasn't as much of a letdown as the second season was, as viewers got what they wanted for the most part, despite a particularly disappointing season finale.

Let's hope things get better come October, though I've got a sinking feeling that they probably won't.