The Legend of Zelda: 25 Years of Elfin Goodness

When Nintendo game guru Shigeru Miyamoto was a kid, he used to explore the hillsides surrounding his childhood home in Sonobe, Japan. He found his way through forests with secluded lakes, caves, and rural villages. One particular day, he found a cave entrance in the middle of the woods, and after gathering his courage he set out to explore the cave with the aid of a lantern. Sound familiar? It was these experiences that would inspire the young lad to create one of the biggest, most important franchises in video game history: The Legend of Zelda.

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E3 Round-Up: The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword

Coming into E3 2010 everyone and their Mom knew Nintendo would make an announcement in regards to The Legend of Zelda series. It has been a little more than 3 years since the release of The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess and in all respects an announcement was due. Nintendo delivered from the get go of their press conference with the premier trailer for The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword. Zelda is officially back, but for everything we know right now there is still plenty of unknown. So without further ado here is what we do know.

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Link and Zelda Join Forces

Well since it’s right in the press release I guess it doesn’t count as a spoiler. Yes, Princess Zelda (in spirit form) actually joins Link in his latest adventure, The Legend of Zelda: Spirit Tracks, coming out December 7 for the DS and DSi.

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There’s More to the Story

Nintendo has confirmed a follow-up to 2007′s well-received DS game, The Legend of Zelda: Phantom Hourglass. [Read more...]

Super Smash Bros.: Brawl


In Stock

Publisher: Nintendo
Developer: Sora
Platform: Wii
Genre: Fighting
Players: Single, Multiplayer
Input: GameCube Controller, Wii Remote, Nunchuk
Cartoon Violence
Crude Humor
Related Links
Wii News
Wii Games
Wii Accessories
Discuss This Game

Alas Sonic and Mario can duke it out! Ok, we will get to that later. The object of Super Smash Bros. is to pit your character against others by roughing them up and then knocking them off the screen. You have hand to hand combat, items, interactive environments and weapons at your disposal. Super Smash Bros. Brawl is the third in the Super Smash Bros. series and offers countless improvements over its predecessors.

I won’t give away the story of Super Smash Bros. Brawl for those who want to attempt to play it but I will say that it is long, repetitive, boring, and drawn-out.  It is almost torturous. The story can be found in the Adventure mode called The Subspace Emissary.  To give you the gist of it, all the bad guys are teaming up, to take down the heroes so they can turn them into trophies and take their powers. As the story progresses they are all transported to another dimension called Subspace and we find that Ganondorf and Master Hand are subordinates and there is an even greater evil. Good triumphs over evil and the day is saved. Now there is nothing wrong with a long story, but you have to mix it up. Throw in some humor, drama, suspense, fear, anything. This is just a straight side-scroller with emotionless silent 3D cut scenes. The cut scenes would make the story a lot better with some dialogue and character interaction but nope, Nintendo doesn’t believe in such things. So we get this long silent story that keeps you dong the same things over and over. The few positive aspects are the introduction of new villains and the ambush by my favorite character at the end. You play Smash Bros for the fighting, so I won’t be too harsh on the “story.”

Sometimes it seems like Nintendo is the only one capable of putting out a good looking Wii game, and SSBB looks pretty good. All the character renderings are exactly the way they should be and the textures are gorgeous. Some characters have never been so detailed so it’s a real joy to see classic characters in new light. The stages are vibrant, lush, and detailed as always. Some stages look too good and have too much to see and you will find yourself getting sent off screen for looking at the scenery. Some of the stages seem overly simplistic and uninspired in terms of design but they all look beautiful visually.

The sound SSBB is superb. The effort they put into recreating all the music from all the various games really shows. You will hear classic tunes from all the different franchises and they are all orchestrated beautifully. This game kind of serves as a soundtrack of Nintendo’s best music, with bonuses from Sonic the Hedgehog and Metal Gear Solid. If you love beautiful orchestrated game music then you’ll enjoy unlocking the tracks and using the My Music feature. The voices in SSBB are good and they get the job done. You have your standard grunts, taunts, yelps, and victory speeches but the new comers are the ones worth noting. Hearing Wario’s demented laugh, or Sonic’s snide remarks are some of the highlights. With all the brawling, and effects, there needs to be good sound effects and the sounds here do not disappoint. In a 4 person brawl you will be engulfed in a harmony of beeps, blips, voices, and other effects; pure auditory bliss.

Super Smash Bros. Brawl will have you fighting in a variety of different ways and also doing more than just fighting. The game provides you with standard brawl matches, rotation matches, tournaments, customized matches, mini games, stadium games, training, numerous event challenges and the adventure mode. You can unlock rewards, music, characters, and stages for completing tasks in any mode so play through them all to unlock more goodies. The control schemes of all these modes function perfectly and you will have hours of fun playing through all SSBB has to offer.  SSBB also supports online multiplayer matches which is great but could have been done a lot better.  Playing with known friends seems to offer the most reliable experience with little or no lag.  Playing against unknown opponents seems to take longer to connect and sometimes looses the connection all together.  Neither option offers overall scoring and ranking, but there is a spectator mode which allows you to view matches and bet coins.  Also lacking is voice communication.  Instead Nintendo gives you the lame option to create 4 phrases and they are displayed as word bubbles through out the match.  I used my bubbles to make dispariging remarks toward Nintendo.

With the addition of online play, new items, moves, Sonic, Snake, and other new characters, SSBB still feels a bit stale. I definitely had fun playing this game, but I was not addicted like I was in the previous installments. They raised the bar in every way but they could have done more in my opinion. I would have liked to see a better online mode, adventure mode, maybe an action RPG like adventure mode, and deep character customization beyond changing the color of their clothes. While it fell short if my expectations SSBB is fun as hell and a must have for Wii owners. Let’s just hope they knock it out the park with the next Smash Bros. game.

There is a story here, but it is not that good, and it is very slow, long and convoluted. You do not play Smash Bros for the story and you have to have a strong will to want to finish this one of you try it. Just brawl it up, forget the story.

The visuals in Super Smash Bros. Brawl are pretty good. Some of the characters never looked better in 3D form and the environments are beautiful and creative as usual.

The sound is good as well. You will enjoy your favorite characters voices and lots classic stage music. The sound effects are done well too.

Super Smash Bros provides you with many gameplay modes throughout the solo, group or adventure mode categories.
Game Over:

A definite step up in the series and a Wii necessity, but I am still left feeling like the fun factor could have been pushed more.

4 out of 5