Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Tokyo, more 360 HD, not Wii-mpressed, and more.

Well the Tokyo Game Show kicked off today (9/20) and runs until Sunday (9/24). Like this year's E3 Microsoft is hosting a big blowout of demos, videos, and information through Xbox Live calling it 'Bringing it Home'. MajorNelson has a list of today's content, some of which is localized to Japan (but you did set-up your foreign account already, didn't you?).

Some early news from the Microsoft press conference shared via Kotaku includes info that the HD-DVD add-on will hit Japan on November 22, 2006 for 19,800 yen (~about $169.00 US), and even better a new fall dash update will allow the console to display 1080p games, and movies! Now, unfortunately I'm not one of those that have a 1080p capable display, but it's good news none the less. One more thing that the PS3 no longer has an edge over the 360 in.

The more I hear (and see) about the Wii has left me unimpressed. Before E3 this year I was stoked for the system, but since then the impressions of people that played it at E3, and the Leipzig show have left me cold. I think that the $250.00 price tag is too high especially when they throw in a game that is multiplayer centric, but only include one controller. This is even more peculiar when Japan doesn't get the game (WiiSports) as a pack in, but when sold separately comes packaged with an extra controller(!?) for the same price as a normal game. At this point in time I won't be getting one at launch, unless the demo units (hopefully) available before launch totally blow me away. 1UPYours podcast last Friday (9/15) they have a lively discussion on the Wii information, well worth the listen.

Under the more topic, there is a new DS download station (Volume 3 for those of you keeping track) that includes demos of Mario Vs. Donkey Kong 2, Elite Beat Agents, Danny Phantom : Urban Jungle, and Clubhouse Games. Right now all of these are new(!) titles, so this is really amazing. I've been disappointed in the earlier download stations because most if not all of the games were already released. I see a demo as a preview, an interactive coming soon trailer if you will. They are supposed to peak my interest, and wet my appetite so that when the game is released I'm eagerly awaiting it. When the demos show up a month or so after the release I don't care anymore, if I wanted it I've already bought it, and if not by that time I'm not interested in trying the demo because I've already made up my mind. Back to the download station, I've tried Mario vs. DK2, and Elite Beat so far and really enjoyed both, Mario Vs. is almost like a Lemmings game, and Elite Beat is the U.S. sequel(??) to the Japanese Osu! Tatakae! Ouendan!
rhythm game is fun, although the demo is kinda short. I hear that Danny Phantom is actually like R-Type, and the guys at DualScreen Radio really like Clubhouse Games.

Closing on the new house was today, so I'm farther in debt. :) That's not a bad thing though because I'm excited to move, and both kids are looking forward to changing schools (okay maybe only one, but they both are excited to be getting new rooms.). Work right now is kinda strange because of vacations, and meetings so I'm working different shifts, and don't have a weekend available to move yet. We will try moving bits at a time, but I don't know how fast we'll actually be living there.

The new TV season is in full swing, and there are a bunch of new shows demanding my attention, as well as some favorites. I'll be updating the sidebar list in an effort to track the stuff I watch regularly. Amazing Race (#10 again for those counting) started Sunday night, this season Phil promised the racers things they hadn't seen before, and we got the first one less than 30 minutes in when the first team was eliminated before the first legs pit stop. I find it hard to like any of the teams this time, but I'm going to say that Erwin & Godwin the Asian brothers will be winning team followed by Tyler & James the rehab models, and Rob & Kimberly bringing up the rear.

I'm still playing Saint's Row even though someone came in the other day and ruined the ending for me. :( There is a lot of upcoming releases in Oct/Nov that I'm looking forward to so I need to work through it a little faster. Microsoft announced their 'platinum hits' lineup for the 360, Kameo, Perfect Dark Zero, Project Gotham Racing 3, and Need for Speed : Most Wanted would be dropping to $29.99 in early October. For NFS:MW this is a good deal, but the other three? Come on, they've been on sale for that price (or lower) already?! Call of Duty 2 for the 360 has sold over 1 million copies in the U.S. alone and it's not a 'platinum hit'? I'm a little disappointed by the price also, I mean $29.99 is 50% off new retail for 1 of them, but the other 3 were $49.99 to start with which is only 40% off (disregarding the fact earlier about sales and so forth). I realize that more of the titles will come from the $60 price point (since Microsoft only has out what 4 titles...) down the road, and maybe $19.99 is too low, but I think $24.99 would have been a happy medium (yes, I'm cheap).

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