Huh? What? Blog?

I know I’ve been updating this blog faster than you can read it, so I’ll keep this one relatively short so everyone can catch up.

Taking a morning break from GDC, which sadly means missing the Kojima keynote, but I needed the rest and chance to refresh my laundry before heading back out into the fray.

GDC Highlights, thus far:

  • The Casual Games Summit, specifically panels on “red ocean” and “blue ocean” opportunities — the former is markets that are highly competitive, the latter is markets that have yet to be created. You’ll hear a lot about this in regards to casual and social gaming. And speaking of social gaming, it’s going to be a huge part of the future of games across the board.
  • The Iwata keynote yesterday morning was very enjoyable (and incredibly Apple-esque), especially hearing about Miyamoto’s unique playtesting techniques, i.e. kidnapping random employees, sitting them down with a controller, and just observing them play. Contrast that with the methods Bungie used to playtest Halo 3 (there was a great Wired article about it last year), and it’s hard to figure out who’s “right,” if that’s even something that can be determined.
  • However, it’s a bit much to ask us to be excited about a storage solution that should have been there in the first place. I just updated my Wii to 4.0 and moved all my VC games over, and now I’m interested in Wii Ware stuff because I know it won’t be a headache. Wish the 32GB SD cards were a bit more affordable…
  • I love the Legend of Zelda, and I have always loved trains. Therefore, Zelda: The Rail Waker looks awesome. FAVORABLE.
  • The Modern Warfare 2 teaser is pretty neat — bad things happening in airports leads to some good drama (see also: 24). Interesting that they’re reportedly dr0pping the venerable “Call of Duty” prefix. Perhaps now that “Modern Warfare” is recognizable on its own, maybe Activision is using the CoD name as a sort of reusable rocket to launch new spin-offs into their own things. If so, Call of Duty: World War Z remains at the top of my fantasy request list.
  • OnLive…I won’t believe it until I see it working in a post-beta environment. I just can’t trust controlled environment demos, and noticed a few moments of stuttering in Burnout that reinforced my skepticism. But theoretically, this is indeed the future — the equivalent of Netflix streaming over PCs and media boxes which I already adore, and it will be amazing for getting into high-growth potential markets while avoiding piracy problems. Pete Wanat and the boys talked about it on Tuesday’s Listen Up…and I’ve heard the phrase “end of the disc” from various independent panelists this week.  It’s definitely coming, it’s just a matter of when, and who does it best — but it raises (and perpetuates) very interesting questions about the concept of ownership and media.
  • For any of you spazzes spazzing out about new game announcements and trailers and reveals and megatons and whatnot, save your spazzing for E3.

OK, time to put on some freshly warm pants and get back to the show. I’m stopping by the planned podcast party at the 1UP office this afternoon. Sounds like it’s going to be a bit out of control, which always means entertaining listening. Also, I’ll be writing more about GDC and other things, here and at other places, very soon.

Seriously.  I mean it this time.


3 Responses to “Huh? What? Blog?”

  1. 1 Brian Haberer March 26, 2009 at 12:35 pm

    Yea I saw very noticeable shuddering and video slowdown during my time with OnLive. You would think they would have been ready to support the 6-8 machines connected to the service, but they couldn’t even cope with that load.

    It’s interesting for use as a demoing service, or for slow not frame rate defendant games. The prospect of state saving and instant loading (and no more download-install-play-uninstall dance) is very intriguing.

  2. 2 donduvall March 26, 2009 at 1:11 pm

    The day I close the firefox tab to your blog is the day you update it. Cruel, cruel fate.

    Agreed re: On-Live. Smells like snake-oil, which is stinky. The latency has to be super super good. I’m talking 10-20 ms good to your server farm.

    Biz cards eh? The ramping up of the Andrew Pfister project continues! Keep on writin;/podcastin’, you have an audience.

    Differentiating Modern Warfare 2 from CoD is a good thing, I just hope it still translates to sales to the rest of America who wouldn’t know the game without the CoD stamp on it.

    Hope you grabbed the Ten DLC and gave it a play-through. It’s fan-fucking-tastic. If nothing else it has taught me more respect for Jeff Ament and McCready, whom I already greatly respected. Playing Master/Slave is….. surreal. Ever wonder what it was Eddie was mumbling during the trail-end of the Even Flow solo, now we know. Hot damn the new mix is so clean.

    I’m not 100% sold on the remixes but there are aspects of them I love. The subtraction of reverb on some of Vedder’s vocals is super nice (I always secretly hated how EVERY TRACK had reverb on the vocal track, bugged me since I was 16 and first heard it). The clarity on various guitar riffs is so nice you can hear individual strums/picks much clearer now.

    Man, that was a bunch on Ten.

  3. 3 cbirdsong March 26, 2009 at 8:55 pm

    Call of Duty: World War Z would be pretty boring. First you would be in a bunch of armor and can’t see or move very well, and then later you would stand in a line with a bunch of other dudes and go for headshots every second without moving. At least “The Trooper” might be playing during that last part.

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