Happy Puppy


Imagine a never-ending field of pure white snow. Now shape that snow into a mountain full of gently undulating banks and turns. Throw in the occasional ramp (including the occasional impossibly large ramp), some expertly placed rails to gently glide on, and some trees and rocks to break up the monotony. Now imagine yourself at the top, ready for the most amazing skiing and/or snowboarding experience of your life.

But wait… first you have to dodge that kid on the innertube. And be sure to grind the marked rails to build up your "hype." Don’t forget to pick up the little floating dollar sign symbols to earn cash for new gear. Try to ignore Tyson as he tells you that "you’re going down."

And why is there a helicopter in the middle of the mountain?

(full article)


Portable games are not supposed to involve sprawling, multi-generational stories. Portable games are supposed to involve matching blocks together or making things explode or jumping on things with licensed cartoon characters. They are supposed to be full of quick action that can entertain you for fifteen minutes without requiring you to think too much.

Like many DS games before it, Trace Memory dashes the expectations of what a portable game can and should be, and draws you in to an entrancing world in the process.

(full article)


A lot of licensed games are absolutely horrible. Developers and publishers know that fans of the property being made into a game will buy it based on the characters on the cover, so they tend to throw these characters into the most derivative, cheaply-produced game they can make as quickly as possible.

One Piece: Grand Battle does not fit this pattern. There is actually a decent game underneath the anime-licensed shell. But this only makes it more frustrating, as every good element seems to have an accompanying annoying flaw that keeps the game from being anything more than an aggressively average fighting game.

(full article)


I’ve never owned a dog. Sure, I’ve played with my share of other people’s dogs, but I’ve never gone through the trials and tribulations of raising my very own puppy. So I have no real basis of comparison when judging how well Nintendogs simulates the real life experience of owning a dog. Based solely on this game, though, I’d have to say that owning a real dog seems like it might get old pretty quickly.

(full article)


Attorney Jack Thompson announced today that he was going after Nintendo, makers of the SNES classic creativity program Mario Paint, for allowing children access to a game in which they can draw frontal nudity, including nipples, genitalia, and pubic hair.

Thompson said that Nintendo released the game with full knowledge that players could use it to create and view pornography, and charged that the company was cooperating, gleefully, with the community to turn Mario Paint into a porn offering.

The drawing and animation program, the first to use the SNES mouse, does let children create depraved, if crude, scenes of sex and violence, and even allows players to easily place Nintendo’s trademark characters into these scenes. The resulting animations can even be set to music and saved to VHS video tape, where they can be shared with friends, all without the knowledge of their parents.

(full article) 


You’ve probably played Nanostray already.

This might be hard to believe, expecially if you’ve never heard of Nanostray, but I’m telling you,chances are you have already played it in another form. If you’ve ever played any one of the dozens of games in which a spaceship shoots enemies as it automatically scrolls through the sky, you already know what this game is like. And the version you played was probably more exciting than the bare bones, bland action offered in Nanostray.

(full article)


A field of blocks three rows deep sits against a colorful background. You casually shift the blocks around, sliding them up and down their columns as additional blocks occasionally drizzle down from the top of the screen. Lining up groups of three or more like-colored blocks launches whole columns skyward, where some blocks disappear into the heavens and the remaining drift slowly back down to Earth. Pleasant music and sound effects fill the air to accompany your every action.

This is the dreamworld of Meteos as it exists at the start of a session – calm, peaceful, all-in-all a generally agreeable diversion. This version of the world lasts… oh… about a minute before you begin to notice the drizzle of blocks turn into a light shower, then a steady downpour, until finally a torrential flood of blocks begins to fill the screen almost faster than you can handle them. Far from a lackadaisical diversion, Meteos quickly transforms itself into a frantic test of visual acuity and reflexes.

(full article)


Thus far, developers making games for the Nintendo DS have been pretty desperate to show off just how useful the system’s distinctive features are. Unfortunately, these developers seem to have focused so much on using these features that they forgot to create a substantial game to apply them in. Nintendo DS owners have had to suffer through a string of games that generally get repetitive after a few sessions and waste the DS’ potential.

Now along comes Kirby Canvas Curse, a surprisingly meaty platform game that just happens to be perfectly designed for the DS. Suddenly all those wasted features are put into what could pass for a decent platforming game on any system, and the DS’ unique functionality begins to make a lot of sense.

(full article) 


Ever since Konami scored a major worldwide hit with the Dance Dance Revolution series, it seems everyone wants in on the act with games that feature either (1) licensed music, (2) some sort of wacky controller or, preferably, both. Nintendo’s Donkey Konga series manages to include both of the above but, in true Nintendo fashion, also squeezes in (1) lots of Nintendo’s franchise characters and (2) a totally unique controller that looks weird but works well.

(full article) 


Serious Role Playing Game fans may be quick to dismiss the Pokemon franchise as too simplistic or too child-oriented for any further consideration. Critics sneer that the games have no gripping story, there’s little to none of the character development that characterizes other RPGs, and that the type-A-beats-type-B battles don’t provide enough of a challenge for an experienced RPG player.

These critics are right, to an extent, but they also miss the entire point of the Pokemon universe and what makes it so endearing to millions, young and old alike. Collecting and battling Pokemon can be fun and interesting… if you let it.

(full article)


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