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Famicom Dojo Podcast: It’s All About the Cheevos

It’s nice to feel like you’ve accomplished something in a game, but rather than bragging about your accomplishments, doesn’t comparing achievements instead make you judge your friends for not being as awesome as you are? Vinnk and Sean reminisce about what they did before achievements and tropies, and if they really enhance the gaming experience — or just feed into already-present addictive gaming behaviors. Also: our first listener voicemail!

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‘Halo 4: Forward Unto Dawn’ Teaser Trailer

There is not a whole lot to chew on here, it really is a teaser for a web series leading up to the release of Halo 4.

Live action commercials and shorts were used to promote Halo 3, ODST, and Reach, so it is of no surprise to see another one. What is a shock is series protagonist Master Chief will appear. We may never get that big budget Halo movie, but the Sparan II armor shown in this video looks pretty good.

Expect the series to run online starting in October.

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Famicom Dojo Podcast: E3 2012

Did Nintendo try to steal the show, only to stumble? Is the Wii U just an expansion for the Wii, with only enough extra horsepower to run the GamePad screen? Did Sony and Microsoft play it too close to the vest, or can we expect something greater from them in 2013? Sean and Vinnk talk about the ups and downs (sometimes it feels like mostly downs) of E3, Vinnk’s game of the show Project P-100, and all of the reasons we tell ourselves that E3 wasn’t that great, even thought we just really wanted to be there in person.

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Powet Game News: May 2012

Plus a little bit of E3!

Show Notes after the jump

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E3 2012: Is ‘Watch Dogs’ Next Gen?

Microsoft and Sony were very careful to announce ‘no new hardware’ before E3, and stuck to that promise. Nothing shown at either of their press events was for anything other than the devices that are already out on the market. The closest thing Xbox has to hardware launch right now is a Windows 8 tablet running Smart Glass.

But other publishers show games too.

Ubisoft wowed audiences and critics with a demo of Watch Dogs. Graphically amazing, but also implying a depth of gameplay and sandbox options above and beyond what their own Assassin’s Creed series is capable of. The demo was played on stage using an Xbox 360 controller, but Ubisoft confirmed later that it was a PC version of the game we’d seen.

Ubisoft clearly has a hit on their hands, and usually a game like this gets showcased at a hardware maker’s show. Why would Microsoft pass on Watch Dogs and take Splinter Cell? Easy, Splinter Cell shows a game running on XBox 360, and Watch Dogs won’t look like the demo we saw on Xbox 360.

Ubisoft says the release date for Watch Dogs is beyond 2012. If new hardware (aside from Wii U) does launch in 2013, Watch Dogs could be an important launch title. We’ve been assured that the game will come out on PS3 and XBox 360, but it isn’t hard to think back to 2005/2006 when games like Tomb Raider Legend and Gun launched on PS2 and Xbox with HD versions on PS3 and Xbox 360.

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E3 2012: All Xbox 360 Trailers Playlist

All killer, no filler.

These are all the videos from the Microsoft press event, minus the staged introductions from the executives.

Enjoy, and post your thoughts about any of these videos in our comments section!

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E3 2012: ‘Halo 4’ begins The Reclaimer Trilogy

The Covenant you thought you’d stopped at the end of Halo 3? They’re not done yet. If anything the survivors have an axe to grind with John 117 for taking away their great journey.

The on stage demo from the floor of Microsoft’s Xbox 360 E3 event starts with a live action short showing the launch of the UNSC Infinity, the largest ship ever constructed by man and intended to be a peaceful ship for exploration. On the surface of an unknown planet, Master Chief and Cortana watch this ship barrel over head ready to crash. As Chief treks to catch up, you’ll see Halo 4’s new Heads Up Display, now with Cortana’s face displayed when she talks to you. After taking out a small Covenant scout party, Chief runs into a nasty bunch of Forerunner AI. He’ll pick up a new Forerunner rifle and a Forerunner shotgun, both of which disintergrate enemies.

The demo ends with Chief surrounded by these Forerunner AI, and then a quick montage of scenes from other parts of the game. Cortana was put into service 8 years ago, and UNSC AI only have a lifespan of 7 years. She’s dying and going crazy, and some voice from beyond announces “I have long dreamt of this day, Reclaimer.” Reclaimer is the title given to Master Chief by the Forerunner AI in the first Halo game, when it was thought he was activate the ring and eliminate all life in the galaxy.

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Famicom Dojo Podcast: Matrimony

The idea and practical applications of marriage barely come up in video games. Sure, there’s not much of a place for it in Angry Birds, and it theoretically might be the ultimate goal of dating sims. But what about games where you’re playing as a character or interact with NPCs who just ARE married? Sean and Vinnk (gamers who are, apparently miraculously, each respectively married with children) explore the reasons why games might actually shy away from the trapping of matrimony, and how the few games that do use it (Fable, The Sims, Alan Wake) want to milk it for emotional impact. But how "emotionally impacted" might an 8 year-old gamer feel about such subject matter — and is that right there the reason it’s a subject few developers dare to tread? And when is Mario just going to marry Princess Peach already! How many more times does she need to get kidnapped by Bowser for him to get the hint??

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