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Ask Alundra Vol. 3





Note: It has come to my attention that all but one of the links in my article were broken. These issues are now resolved and will now transfer you to the correct path.

Ask Alundra Volume 3

Welcome to the third edition of our weekly gaming discuission dubbed "Ask Alundra". As always, this topic touches on literally every facet of the gaming world, not just the anime part. This weeks discussion is filled with the many questions that surround the next generation of gaming, classics, and also happen to be quite challenging to answer! Also, I have decided to keep headlining my articles with the random video-game related pictures I find on the internet.

So, let's get started with Volume 3: The Clash Of Old and New.

Firetears writes:

"Are there any classic games that you desire a need of a console remake? Is so, why and what would you expect? Are there any upcoming classic remakes you're looking forward to at the moment?"

As a matter of fact, I was very excited for the Chrono Trigger: Ressurrection project that was ultimately cancelled due to a Cease and Desist order straight from Square themselves. It was quite the ambitious project that was to bring Chrono Trigger from 2D to 3D, and was very much supported by fans of the game such as myself. I found it quite strange that even purists were supporting the jump due to their usually disgruntled outlook on the 3D gaming market.

Anyways, there are a few games that I am excited to see that haven’t seen a console release in a number of years, such as The World Of Mana, which is a continuation of the Seiken Densetsu series; many of you know these games as Secret Of Mana, or Legend Of Mana for the younger crowds. Also, RPG fans that have not been in the loop lately will be pleased to hear that Lunar: Dragon Song for the DS will be released in a little over two months, and Tales of Legendia will continue the always fantastic Tales series starting February of ‘06.

JSy3k writes:

“It is about the game makers in the Europe and Japan. Most of them agree that the Japanese companies are doing a much better job than the Europeans. Is it true or it is just opinion, not really facts?"

It is both opinion and fact, which is a hard thing to say without losing readers who are fans of Japanese developers, or those alligned with European developers. While not European per say, Ubisoft is a gigantic company that has met with huge success, a success that has power-monger EA interested in buying them out. To some degree, EA has had some influence on Ubi (thus making it a partly-American company now), they have still released some of the most lucrative games in the past two years, namely: Splinter Cell.

I don’t know a soul who hasn’t either played, or heard of the Splinter Cell franchise, and that’s because of its popularity mixed with an aggressive marketing team behind it. Not only did it put hot coals under Metal Gear’s feet, but it revolutionized stealth gaming overall with its Tom Clancy influence, which was a breath of fresh air for some gamers who didn’t understand the more cinematic and exaggerated Metal Gear series.

Another developer that is across the pond would be Peter Molyneux's team Bullfrog Productions (now known as Lionhead Studios), which many of you know as the creators of Fable. The UK-based developer has some of the most anticipated PC titles being released later on this year (and next), such as god-game Black and White 2, and the highly creative title: The Movies. Needless to say, I think that the UK is secure in their development, and they won't be going anywhere soon.

On the other hand, it has been a very tough time for the Japanese gaming market these days; an increasing amount of Japanese gamers are losing interest in games, and the market has been shrinking at an alarming rate. It is almost a counter-effect on the American market, which has been growing at an impressive rate over the past few years, so impressive that the video game industry is now more fiscally successful that the movie industry in America. One of the most resounding peices of evidence associated with the decline is the attendence at the Tokyo Game show, which has been falling at about a 15-20% rate every year (160,000 in 1999, 130,000 in 2000, 110,000 at 2001). The reason for this? E3.

Most developers are pinning their hopes nowadays on the booming American gaming market, and in a way, alienating their home fan base for the sake of better business. This would undoubtedly anger Japanese fans, and ultimately, lose them due to their lack of interest in an industry that seems to not care about them. So, the decline of the Japanese market can be traced back to the counter-effect of the American market; the solution for this problem would be to balance out the two shows so that each country would be able to see what exactly the industry is up to each year.

At this rate, I can honestly say that I see the Japanese market declining so much that it will come to the attention of the industry to rejevenate it somehow, whether or not it is too late.

seefutbow writes:

"How much do you think the high price of the ps3 will deter video game consumers from purchasing the ps3? The ps3 already looks to be about 500 dollars. The psp recently debuted for 250 dollars after being estimated to cost 200. Will many video game consumers be unwilling to fork over the large chunk of change? If so, how badly do you think the effect will be."

Your question directly back to the E3 presentation that left me baffled on why Sony was trying so hard to blow us away instead of showing a good amount of content: they were trying their best to buy us all over again to cover the fact that a good majority of the gaming community will have to seriously commit to the company into the next generation. As of now, analysts say that the system will be falling in-between the 300-400$ mark next year, and to many gamers, that is a large chunk of change to drop for just the system. It is also becoming a huge issue that the PS3 may not have the Hard Drive packaged with it. I feel that it would be a huge mistake for Sony not to include the Hard Drive with the PS3 at launch for 2 reasons:

- Even though online play was a big point in Sony's marketing for the PS2, the Network adapter was not released with, or even a year after the PS2's launch. Thus, when the adapter was finally launched, it did not do as well as say, XBOX Live!. Even though it did recieve a decent amount of success, the adapter never really reached its full potential as an online peripherial because many PS2 owners had lived without the adapter for over a year, and really didn't see the need to purchase it. Combine that with the piss-poor online support and no real official service from Sony, and you get a service that trembles in the shadow of Live!.

- If consumers are going to pay a large sum for their new console, while Microsoft is selling theirs with a hard drive, as well as cheaper, would it not deter them from buying a console for more that has less functionality out of the box than a cheaper one? Personally, I will be buying myself a PS3 on launch date undoubtedly, but I may not have enough money to buy a hard drive in correspondence with picking up a launch title. Let's crunch some launch time numbers, shall we?

Lets say the PS3 is 400$, the Hard Drive is 60$ (a reasonable estimate), and it turns out to be true that next generation games are 70$ each, coupled with NJ (where I live) state tax (.06% on the dollar): we are looking at a total of $551.80 for people like me who want the full package with one launch game. Say I want to get two of them? Try $625.00. Now, if the Hard Drive was included with the system for no extra charge, and a launch game, we get $498.20. In conclusion, which package would look more attractive and reasonable to a consumer who doesn't want to go on a wild goose chase for components for his PS3?

What this all boils down to is the question of how much faith you put in Sony to provide you with triple-A content for its supposed true next-generation console. I, for one, am going to put my faith on Sony and take the dive with them. Their plans for connectivity and the sheer amount of power the system has is enough for me to take the chance to be one of the first out there to delve into the next generation. If you would like to see more specifications and outlooks on the PS3, please refer back to my past articles.

CGY writes:

"I got a question too, are they going to make any GOOD GBA games?"

Interesting question, not because it is intruging, but how blatantly ignorant it is to the success of the Japans #1 selling console. It is astonishing that you don't realize that the cream of the gaming crop lies in the triple-A lineup of GBA games that have been released in tandem every year. As for this year, we recieved quite possibly the best Zelda game to date: Minish Cap, an amazing tactical RPG: Fire Emblem: The Sacred Stones, and the surprise title: Riviera: The Promised land. You want more? Well, here is a list of games off the top of my head: Castlevania: Circle Of The Moon, Harmony of Dissonance, and Aria Of Sorrow; how about Metroid Fusion and Zero Mission? Mario & Luigi: SuperStar Saga? WarioWare? Astro Boy? Kirby & The Amazing Mirror? FFTA? Boktai?

The list goes on and on for the system, and its just ignorant to deny the fact that the GBA is a superb gaming system.

Thank you to Firetears, JsY3k, seefutbow, and CGY for posting their questions for this weeks edition. I have already recieved a good amount for next weeks article; but still, please post in this thread if you wish to have a question answered.









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Published on: 2005-07-23 (5317 reads)

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