Saturday
Jun212014

Sonic Boom...

And just like that, I believe I'm done with the Sonic franchise. A universe that I've loved as a kid is now nothing more than a tired IP. Even in the hands of a new developer, Sonic Boom looks to be more of the same mediocre "watch the game play itself" type of game. What's worse is that every character now has these one-liners that are very cringe worthy.

Sonic: "This is what SPEED looks like!"
Amy: "Last one to the bottom is a rotten Eggman!"
Sonic: "Cowabunga!"
Knuckles: "I don't like getting wet."
Robotnik: "Nailed it!"
Knuckles: "HEY! There are things inside these things."
You can't have an "edgy" design to the characters and then have them say stupid crap like this. It doesn't work.

I'm still not sure what to think about the new combat parts, but then again they don't really look like anything to write home about either. I guess they could have been a lot worse, I'm looking at you Sonic Unleashed. But lassos. Really?

I understand that this new developer is trying to bring more character and perhaps an actual story to the game, but this is simply unforgivable. The sad part is that I was actually looking forward to this, a much needed change that might have broken the so called "Sonic Cycle."

I don't think Sonic was really meant for the 3D realm, or at least there hasn't really been a developer to do the series justice, and Sonic Boom so far doesn't do it any favors. I shall end my own Sonic Cycle by not further subjugating myself to playing any more of these newer entries until they finally somehow crack the code and bring about a much needed worthy game altogether. Until then...
Monday
Jun162014

Shape Up!

While there were quite a few surprising anouncments during E3 this year, there is one that I think is getting overlooked. During Ubisoft's conference, they showed one game that I know I wasn't expecting. A game that actually made working out somehow...fun. By incoporating these minigames that revolve around a certain exercise, you may even actually WANT to jump in to gain experience points and level up your character.

This entire premise is quite brilliant and reminds me before of a conversation I had with a friend where he introduced this thought of creating videogames that has potential of replacing our current archaic, and flawed public school system in ways of really learning and grasping concepts. The crazy part...it isn't an idea too far off and this is actually a thing that is occuring in certain schools. Even with games like Portal 2.

The future is bright indeed.

Sunday
Jun152014

Zenspath Fight! - We Play Smash Bros Wii U...and Josh Breaks It

Jeremy (myself), Arthur, Terence, and Josh were able to head over to Mobile on June 14th to get our hands on a preview for Super Smash Bros Wii U and 3DS which ended up being a mix of hillarious occurences for the trip as well as the gameplay. 

I will add in what the others thought, but I personally found the game to be very quick, not Melee quick, but WAY faster than Brawl with a great feel for the controls.  I played as Mega Man for the first match, and then Little Mac for the second and third ones.  Not much was seen of the items, but the levels worked out well for different levels to fight on as well as environmental surprises that worked with their individual themes.  The animations and attention to detail rival that of Nintendo's last game, Mario Kart 8, where everything seems to be ready for a nice close up look in replays and when you pause the game which is great to once again see.  

Below are the two videos for the three rounds we played.  The first video contains the first two rounds (the second of which came crashing down) while the last one has our third and final match together.  

Let us know what you think of the game and what else you would like to see!

Monday
Jun092014

"Super Ultra Dead Rising 3 Arcade Remix Hyper Edition EX + Alpha" Shown

So...this just got crazy.  You can now download and play as the previous Dead Rising crew (Nick, Annie, Chuck, and Frank) while dressing them in costumes ranging all through Capcoms history.  It's available now to download on Xbox Live for $9.99.

Monday
Jun092014

"Chromophore: The Two Brothers Directors Cut" Shown for Wii U

Ackk Studios has dropped the trailer for the upcoming release of Two Brothers for the Wii U eShop, and it seems even more will be changing than we originally thought.

Now titled "Chromophore: The Two Brothers Directors Cut" the trailer shows off the games classical beauty and vibrant use of color..and morbid humor as well.  Make sure to check out the trailer below, and we will update this article once we hear back from Ackk Studios.

Monday
Jun092014

Halo Collection Unveiled for Xbox One

Well it looks like the rumour of the Halo series (1-4) coming back as an HD remake set turned out to be true.  All four games will be contained on one disc, with the focus of multiplayer being on Halo 2 as its anniversary is coming up this year.  All of the games will be running at 1080p/60Hz so gameplay wise it will be one of the smoothest Halo experiences ever made (since PC).  

Halo Collection will be coming to the Xbox One later this year on November 11th from 343-Studios.

Monday
Jun092014

E3 Begins - Metal Gear Solid V Japanese Trailer Reveal (UPDATE)

UPDATE: And just like that, Konami has had it pulled from YouTube with a copyright claim.  I managed to download it, but don't have a way to put it up right now.  We will update the story with the English version once it is made available.

It's 2:30 am (CST) but that hasn't stopped E3 from jumping ahead and showing off the first goodie.  Below you will find the first new trailer for Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain which was leaked early.  This one is in Japanese, but the english version was shown and then taken down.  You can witness the beauty and detail...and even many MANY surprises and references inside.  It may say "Coming 1984"...but we have it right now to see.

Saturday
Jun072014

Zenspath Podcast Episode 022 - E3 2014 Predictions

Welcome back to the show!  Jeremy, Josh, Brent, Arthur, and newcomer Terence, come together for this episode to talk about what we think will be at E3 along with what we want to see for ourselves.  We talk about Microsoft and their changing issues with Kinect, Sony and their need to keep the games coming, and if Nintendo can turn around their fortunes and deliver the E3 surprises (Star Fox) that they need to make.  

You can download the episode here, or you can subscribe to us on iTunes (please rate us and/or leave a comment!) 

We also have videos up on our YouTube page as well as our Twitch channel.

Let us know what you think of our work by leaving a comment below, on Twitter (@Zenspath), or onFacebook.  

Intro/Ourtro Music: Not Mega - Retro City Rampage OST, Composed by Virt.

Thursday
Jun052014

Xbox One Makes Some Connections to PC

Well, today has been an up and down day for the Xbox One and PC with the announcement that the official drivers are out for the Xbox One controller which means it can be used for the just announced Dead Rising 3 from Capcom which is coming to the PC Summer 2014.  This has gotten many in the gaming community a little ruffled as Dead Rising 3 was touted as an Xbox One exclusive title even before the systems launch in late 2013.  

But on the other hand this is a game that more people should play in my honset opinion.  It may be buggy and have issue, but I have found a great deal of just FUN while running around the city coming up with crazy ways to survive and take out the zombie hordes.  The addition of the Xbox One controller support will help many people make the move one way or the other between the two platforms which could help them both in the long run. 

Check out the trailer below, and get the PC drivers for your Xbox One controller HERE.

Thursday
Jun052014

Jeremy Made a SuperPAC 100th Episode Guest Appearance

Hey all, sorry this is almost a week late but I wanted to share a guest apperance I was fortunate enough to be invited on for the GamePolitics.com Super Podcast Action Committee special 100th Episode Google HangOut!  I talked with Hosts Andrew Eisen and E. Zachary Knight, along with Gamepolitics.com Managing Editor James Fudge, fellow writter Jason D'Aprile, and Geek Culture Writer Carol Pinchefsky.  

We talked about Nintendo and their current policies with YouTube, the upcoming E3 2014 show, and more!  I had a blast and hope to be involved with their show again soon.  Also, I admitted my Stockholm Syndrome for Nintendo...I guess the first step is admitting the issue, and the next will be to ignore it and play more Mario Kart 8.

Check the video below, as well as the original article over at Gamepolitics.com!

Sunday
Jun012014

Ghost Song

 

...or the new Metroid game you didn't know you wanted. So, who's interested in a game that draws heavy influence from Metroid right down to the lonliness, alien planet, other-worldly monsters and has very high resolution hand drawn animations for each of the enemies?

*Raises hand*

Then you're in the right place. Ghost Song: A Journey of Hope isn't out just yet, but even in it's early development stages, it looks great. What's even more impressive is the fact that the majority of the game is being coded and drawn all by one guy. Matt White. That in itself is very ambitous for anyone to tackle a Metroidvania game, let alone for one individual. But I guess if you want something done right, you have to do it yourself.

http://www.ghostsonggame.com/

Monday
May192014

Twitch Being Bought By Google/YouTube (Rumor)

Variety reported yesterday about a possible purchase of the videogame streaming company Twitch for the cost of $1 Billion dollars in order to merge it with YouTube.  This came to be by "sources familiar with the pact" according to the Variety article.  

Twitch on its own has become an integral part of all three of the current generation of consoles with the Wii U lacking it being built in while the Xbox One and Playstation 4 now have them as live options for gamers to share what they are playing with the world.  It has become one of the ways many people will either come together to enjoy a particular title or series, get an inside look at a game to help them decide if it is worth their money, or to just enjoy seeing others play and discovering titles.  

But it is not happening just yet, as this kind of merger will likely come under the scrutiny of the Justice Department to find out if the grab for Twitch would make YouTube (and thus Google) a possible anticompetitive fource in the online streaming world.

So if this goes through, what do you think will happen to Twitch and the more than 45 million viewers and over 1 million video content creators?  Will there be great new features now that Twitch may have access to the Google wallet, or will we see the slow tumble of the service like we have with YouTube where Google+ becomes required, real names are forced, accounts split, and copyright claims could be slapped onto a streamer in real time?  I know I sound negative about this, but I can see many more things going wrong with this than right sadly.  But who knows...this hasn't even been confirmed yet. 

Source Link: Variety

Tuesday
May132014

Xbox One...Now $100 Less

You read right, starting June 9th Microsoft will finally drop the price on their flagship console in order for it to be competitive with the Playstation 4. The catch? Kinect 2.0 isn't bundled with it. Yeah...I didn't care either.

They will also be releasing how to purchase a stand-alone Kinect will be put out at a later time. For more details, visit the source link below.

http://majornelson.com/2014/05/13/delivering-more-choices-for-fans/

Tuesday
May062014

The New Retro

With all the newness, graphics, and 1080p's of these recently released consoles...there's one that many are completely overlooking. This one doesn't particularly do anything new per-say, but it does one thing that no one else does which that it's capable of playing the majority of your childhood all in one system. With the ability to play physical copies of Famicom, Nintendo, Super Famicom, Super Nintendo, Sega Master System, Sega Mega Drive, Sega Genesis, Game Boy, Game Boy Color and Game Boy Advance - count'em, 10 consoles! With a crystal clear picture hdmi output upscaling to accommodate your HDTV of choice, set your own visual filters (scanlines, AA, etc), save states, and ports that let you hook up your original NES, Genesis, and SNES controllers as long as you still have them around. With a very reasonable price of only $99. That's almost a steal for what this thing can do.
 
It's been delayed a few times with the original release being holiday season last year, but I understand that they could have released a broken product and instead decided to take the time to make it amazing from the get go. I respect them for that, and I kinda wished more companies would follow suit...
 
Can't wait to breakout my copy of Super Metroid again. Consider this part of my collection!
 
Monday
May052014

"Underpowered Consoles"

Going off of the Resolutiongate article, I also don't understand why people are so upset over the new consoles saying that they are somehow underpowered. The argument is that, compared to a PC, these are basically mid-range pc specs. Now what they fail to understand is how completely different computer and console work when it comes to videogame rendering magic. Consoles have a lot more power than people give them credit for. Look at what the Xbox 360 and PS3 is able to achieve even in today's standards with Gears of War: Judgment, Halo 4, God of War: Ascension, The Last of Us - just to name a few. They look amazing, and that's all off of video cards that are going on just about 10 years old now and with not even 1GB worth of RAM!

Dedicated hardware allows development teams to work wonders because it's a consistent piece of technology, something that is completely different on the PC side. Devs on PC have to develop the game to be utilized on multitudes of different operating systems, video cards, ram, etc. Two completely different archetypes. Look at the games that were introduced at launch, and look at what we have now. I have a feeling we'll be getting the same kind of power out of these new machines, in fact, I count on it. Game engines get more powerful and better optimized, and dev teams get better acquainted with these engines and hardware = fanfreakintastic looking games.

This also means that the Wii U isn't dead in the water either. Super Mario 3D World, Mario Kart 8, Smash Bros all look really great, and I'm sure they haven't even scratched the surface with what it's capable of and they have the hardware that is basically carrying the visuals from where the Xbox 360 and PS3 are leaving off at the minimum.

Here's crossing my fingers hoping for Legend of Zelda, Star Fox and Metroid at E3! Either way, this is a great year to be a gamer.

Monday
May052014

Resolutiongate

Why is this a thing? Why do we have a considerable amount of people throwing their hands up in the air with disgust over non-native 1080p resolution (60 fps ಠ_ಠ) games? I don't quite get it myself. More and more do I see this stuff happen especially more so now that the Xbox One and PS4 have been released. Resolutiongate is what it's being referred to as, which apparently is today's "Doritosgate." The latter being a bit more controversial at least in my opinion, but that's another story for another day.

People laughing at supposed inferior hardware saying that no one will purchase said game. Is this what the console wars have drawn out to now? I understand how people try and justify their purchases when they more likely than not can only afford one versus the other, but this is still a pretty pathetic argument honestly if that really is the case. I could show you a game set on a 720p resolution and chances are that you wouldn't even be able to tell the difference. It looks just fine. Games are meant to be about how the game PLAYS. It's always been that way. Anything else is irrelevant.

Friday
Apr112014

Y2K - A Look at Ackk Studios New Upcoming Game

Welcome back to a first look at the new game coming soon from the wonderful team over at Ackk Studios, previous makers of Two Brothers, titled "Y2K".  I got the chance to chat with one of the founders of Ackk Studios Brian Allanson again, this time via email, to find out some information about the upcoming title along with some new, never before seen, screen shots and the information included in their press kit as well.  This game is looking fantastic and I can't wait to get my hands on it, so lets take a look!

Click to read more ...

Monday
Mar312014

Zenspath Podcast Episode 021 - We Stumble Back From the Dead..Again

Welcome back everyone to the long overdue return of the Zenspath Podcast!  We had to take a hiatus for a bit from recording and the site itself because of personal issues that became the focus for a bit, but now that we are through most of them, we can return our wandering gaze back to the site and the listeners of the show.  That being said, here is what we have in store for you on this episode.  

Episode Music: "The Last Giant" from the Dark Souls II Soundtrack

Jeremy and AJ talk about the issue surrounding "resolution-gate" with the Xbox One and PS4, our odd exchange of places with which version of Titanfall we each chose to play, our love/hate relationship with the new Metal Gear Solid: Ground Zeroes, this generations controllers, and more.

You can download the episode here, or you can subscribe to us on iTunes (please rate us and/or leave a comment!) 

We also have videos up on our YouTube page (Youtube.com/Zenspathcom) as well as our Twitch channel (Twitch.TV/Zenspath).

Let us know what you think of our work by leaving a comment below, on Twitter (@Zenspath), or on Facebook.  

Monday
Aug262013

The GamePad Helped My Daughter Play Her First Game (and She's Almost Blind)

Well, it has finally happened.  My daughter has been BEGGING me to let her play videogames for quite awhile now, but even I couldn't figure out a way for her to really enjoy the games because of a few "issues".  You see, my daughter is pretty close to blind and can only focus within a few inches of her face, even with very thick glasses, and has an anoxic brain injury from birth.  Jennifer kept yelling "I'm Doing It!" (she's on the right)Since her birth we have always been told many things she can't do.  The list is almost a cliche now, but still worth noting in my opinion.  She was 13.6 oz at birth (for reference, a single pound is only 16oz itself) and we were told she would not live, she would not walk, run, talk, learn, read, etc...and she has done every one.  She has her challenges for sure, but she is the happiest kid I have ever seen and more of a morning person than I think is legally allowed.  

But with gaming I originally thought she just had no interest in it but that changed as she would want to hang out with us playing more and more until she finally started directly asking "Daddy...I want to play a game too!".  I had played with some ideas while reading about games like "Real Sound: Regrets in the Wind" from WARP in Japan on the Dreamcast back when she was younger and was thankful there were ideas being used to allow for games without the visuals which would at least let her experience gaming in a way, but I was still frustrated on what to do about "normal" gaming that she watched me and the family do on the big living room TV.  

Click to read more ...

Sunday
Aug252013

Finding Luigi - New Super Luigi U Launches Today!

Well, actually it released about a month ago, this is the PHYSICAL copy that I am talking about.  I will finally be getting my hands on this green cased box of fun and will get back to let you know what I think with a later update!