March 23, 2007 1:42 AM | Simon Carless
Ah yes, those GameSetLinks - there's a few things hanging around that are worth posting before we get to the weekend, spanning follow-ups to previous posts through brand-new and hitherto undiscovered rubbish. Which you will like, honest:
- Firstly, an interesting comment follow-up to a recent GameSetWatch story about Guitar Hero 2 for Xbox 360 'going green'. Commenter T. Ryan Arnold notes: "I work in the Mastering Lab at THQ, so I would consider myself sort of an expert on things going Gold, Green, and everything in between. Here's another intersting tidbit of information. Back in the early Xbox days, builds submitted to Microsoft on DLT tape for submission would have a test run burned onto special submission DVD media which happened to be GREEN. Back then I'd hear a lot of devs talking about "going green", meaning that the final build had been burned to green submission discs. Most submission to Microsoft is electronic now...so [the naming] might just be a holdover to the days when "going green" meant that you basically had a build that was in the final stages before manufacturing." Useful!
- This is not game-related in content at all, but Half-Life writer Marc Laidlaw just updated his weblog with a great book recommendation: "The finest Robert Louis Stevenson novel I hadn’t read, The Master of Ballantrae (1889) blends the high-seas piracy of Kidnapped! and Treasure Island, with Jekyll & Hyde’s dark doubled vision of humanity. It seems to have had a strong influence on Joseph Conrad’s The Secret Sharer (1909), of which I was vividly reminded during certain long discussions in a ship’s cabin during a storm. And toward the stripped-down end of the novel, it turns into a grim frontier adventure reminiscent of Antonia Bird’s sublime Ravenous." So there.
- Gamasutra news guy Jason Dobson has posted a new interview with Atlus' Nich Maragos, also a former Gamasutra news guy (aha!) over at Snackbar Games, discussing the upcoming Etrian Odyssey - and Maragos explained of the first-person DS RPG: "What we hope to do... is put a little of the spark back into the genre. It's a very beautiful game, set in vibrant forest mazes that are a little more interesting to look at than your average medieval sewer. It's got colorful, bold designs for the monsters and characters that make it more appealing to people who have grown up with Japanese RPGs, rather than their American PC brethren."
- If you haven't seen Jeremy Parish's review for Cooking Mama: Cook Off! for the Wii, then you should do so. It starts: "[Editor's Note: The following teleplay is a transcript of the pilot episode of Iron Chef: Video Games, which was inexplicably dropped by the Food Network before its on-air debut.]", it's got an entirely goofy concept, and guys, guys, it's actually fun to read/view. Why can't more reviews be fun to read? That's the eternal question, of course.
- An interesting YouTube find, here - someone has posted a VHS-recorded video from BS Zelda no Densetsu, the "...expanded version of The Legend of Zelda that was released for the Satellaview attachment for the Super Famicom in Japan." Most bizarrely: "The game was divided into four weekly episodes. These episodes were played live, at the same time as a videogame tips show was running on the satellite network." Since the game can never be played live again, this is the only evidence we'll have of precisely how the game was shown through the Satellaview. [Via Frank, who adds: "They used cable television to stream "game data", which was actually live-broadcast, looping audio, with data downloaded via modem."]
- Worth pointing out at Gamasutra today - Alistair Wallis' profile of Mutant League Football's Michael Mendheim, explaining the genesis of the game: "Mendheim’s growing status in the industry saw his connections grow as well. Based on a love of American football and EA’s John Madden Football series of games, he contacted a producer at the company, and pitched an idea he had for a twist on the sport. “I loved Madden Football,” he enthuses, “it was and still is my favorite game. Football, science fiction, violence, and a touch of dark humor all seemed like a natural fit. Mix these elements up with the right amount of strategy and you end up with a blood and guts football game that makes people laugh and think.”"
- Kotaku's look at the upcoming movie Reign Over Me and its apparently intelligent use of Shadow Of The Colossus in the plot is a nice piece of reporting - we'll see how the movie turns out, but the point is good: "Reign Over Me must be one of the first Hollywood films, if not the first, to deal with games thematically and intelligently. While other industry pundits try to figure out how to take the latest blockbuster game and turn it into a movie or vice versa, Reign Over Me already has an insightful leg up: Let the games speak for themselves. Characters bond through games and lose themselves in them, only to find themselves again. They enjoy the simple act of play."
- Another Experimental Gameplay Workshop game I'm just waking up to (thanks Gillen/Kumar!) is 'The Truth About Game Development', in which: "You play the part of a game producer and your job is to produce the best game you can as cheaply as possible. Mostly you just try to motivate the lazy ass game developers by killing them." Nuff said, really - all of the Kloonigames 'done in a week' games are pretty awesome, so just look around!