7/17/2006

Strange Bedfellows

When Square first started out in the game buisness, they were pretty solid partners with Nintendo, as all their US released games appeared on Nintendo platforms. Then they had a less then amicable split (supposedly over Nintendo sticking with cartridges when everyone else was switching to cd-roms) and were staunchly behind Sony, and they've mostly been a staple of Sony's ever since, with most thinking you'd never see a Square title on a Nintendo platform again. But in the last couple of years, Square has really branched out, releasing Crystal Chronicles for the Gamecube, FFXI for the 360, and several upcoming titles for the Nintendo DS. Now in a most interesting turn, they are behind the development of an actual Nintendo game, Mario Hoops 3 on 3 for the DS, which suggests a pretty damn close relationship between the two companies, especially since they are including several Final Fantasy characters in the game. Just seems that Square, which had essentially by synonymous with Sony and were supposed to be for the foreseeable future, is really hedging their bets for this round, wonder if they know something we don't...

So, wanna no more about the mysterious Nintendo Wiimote? IGN has a fairly in-depth article that is really mostly speculation, but it's pretty good speculation. Lot's of interesting ideas, but one thing that worries me is that it apparently runs on batteries. Sure, 30 hours may sound like a lot, but any decent player can knock that out in a weekend, and hardcore ones much faster. I really hope there's some kind of rechargeable option.

Is the game industry broken? Well duh. But in case you didn't figure out that higher development costs, lack of innovation, and too much reliance on licenses & sequels is slowing killing the industry, Gamedaily has an article that nicely lists those & several other reasons why. Which pretty much supports to my whole argument awhile ago of Sony & Microsoft going bigger & better really isn't good for the industry.

Finally, it's common knowledge that the 360 is doing pathetic buisness in Japan. Now, there may be any number of reasons for this, and I know the Japanese market is very different form here, but horrible ads like this can't be helping:



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