Weekend Short-Takes: 9/13/13

Xbox One Dashboard Shown Off In Leaked Video

 

Simon Wu:

The improvement I am most concerned about in the new console is speed. If you want to get anywhere quickly in the 360 interface, forget about it. For any actions where you’re running through menus and trying to go between apps and games, you can easily wait 5 minutes before you can go from doing one action to another. With resources dedicated to keeping things running in the background, this is going to be such a welcome advance.

Max Gruber:

From what I saw of the video, the dashboard looks a bit cluttered when compared to the 360 dashboard. It feels like they just let the separate parts of the dashboard become one instead of segmenting it separately. Also, it’s really clear that they went with the “Windows 8 Style”, also formally called the Metro style, for the dashboard. I do like how they removed the Guide, and instead have the dashboard be the Guide for everything. I am still skeptical of the console, but I do look forward to getting one… eventually.

PlayStation 4 won't launch in Japan until February 2014

 

Simon Wu:

At first I didn’t understand why it could be that Sony would delay release of their new hardware on home territory. But as Max points out, Microsoft is a non-starter in the region, so Sony can take their sweet time when the race is uncontested, and instead focus more resources and supply where Microsoft is going to be putting up a fight: North America and Europe. This also marks a good opportunity, if there ever was one, for Nintendo to make some aggressive moves in Japan to try and sell as much as possible in this window without any next-gen competition.

Max Gruber:

Microsoft can’t possibly convince the Japanese to buy their console, seeing how poorly its predecessor faired in sales for Japan, and there are still games coming out for the current-gen that will keep them occupied for the time being. Interestingly enough, on the same day as the Xbox One’s release is a game I’m very excited about, for many reasons (including one that’s disclosed until further development is made), which is the Japanese release of Lightning Returns, so I’m sure that’ll keep Japan busy for the next four months.

EA Working on Between Six and Eight New Franchises

 

Simon Wu:

This news is certainly commendable, and necessary for the long-term health of EA as a viable business. We’re going to see a bunch of different ideas thrown out at the wall as the company tries to take advantage of this opportunity to start fresh with a new console generation and really harness the new capabilities that both the PS4 and X1 can provide. Old franchises mean back catalogs and backstory trapped on a previous generation, not something you want for consumers that might be getting into gaming for the first time, not to mention gameplay mechanics or experiences that might have been limited by the previous generation, where the advance or change might be too jarring.

Max Gruber:

>EA

>Working on new franchises

WHAT SORCERY IS THIS!? But, in all seriousness, I do find it intriguing that now is the best time to start new franchises, given their current track record of already existing franchises. We already know what some of the new franchises will be, like Titanfall and Battlefront (the IP itself was already in existence, but for EA, it’s 100% new). I predict that there will be another Star Wars title that will come out, and possibly a competitor to Destiny.

Ubisoft Announces Child of Light

 

Simon Wu:

As JRPGs continue to falter, something that has been highlighted by Max in a recent Mindshare, one of the very possible solutions the decline is to have a Western developer take a good crack at it, implementing those elements that make Western RPGs so popular while preserving the creative elements of a traditional JRPG. That it’s being spearheaded by a small group of developers behind a very successful RPG in it’s own right? That’s just icing. 

Max Gruber:

Uh, a Western adaptation of a JRPG from the team behind Far Cry 3? YES, PLEASE!! No, seriously, I’m so excited about Child of Light. It has everything you want in a compelling JRPG: mystery, a very interesting story, vintage turn-based gameplay, and, what intrigues me the most, co-op—which is something you don’t see that often in a JRPG. I always love Ubisoft’s commitment to taking a lot of risks with their games (not including As Ass in his Creed), but it always warms my heart when they’re willing to embark onto uncharted territory with games like From Dust, and now Child of Light. Reminds me of the olden days of Final Fantasy. Ahhh.

kotaku.com

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