Wednesday, December 23, 2009

The Big Let Downs of 2009: Epic Fails

While I loved many of the games of 2009 and much of the news in the gaming world, many things irked me as well. Here is my top five epic fails of the gaming industry for the past year:

5. Square says "Fuck you, Chrono Trigger fans" - SquareEnix loves to alienate their fans it seems. Many people have waited years for any news of a of possible sequel to Chrono Trigger or Chrono Cross. One fan took action by starting a 3D remake of Chrono Trigger, and another group worked on a new sequel using sprites directly pulled from the SNES version. These were both fan projects, that would earn the groups no monetary gain; but Square did not care. They sent Cease and Desist orders to both fan groups to stop their projects immediately or face the legal consequences. For them to screw over such a neglected fan base makes no sense. Is it only about the money to SquareEnix? The sequel, Chrono Trigger : Crimson Echoes was 98% complete when they recieved their legal warning... what a waste of time for those poor fans and the people eaglerly anticipating the project. I guess SquareEnix cares about small fan projects, but the elicit pornographic doujin scene surrounding Final Fantasy in Japan is all good. What a waste.

4. King of Fighter 12 Sucks! - I wanted to love this SNK game. When I first saw screen shots for it I was very excited. The new graphics and animations finally seemed to step up to the modern generation of consoles. Closer and closer to release I noticed problems however. The character rosters looked very small...I thought I can work with it, Street Fighter IV's roster was fairly small actually. Then I heard their was no end boss...I thought that kinda sucks but I mostly play fighters online anyway. Finally, I get the game and the online is horribly broken and laggy as hell. WHAT HAPPENED?! I think SNK ran out of development time, and the big boss in Japan said," You better get this game out the door, and quick!" This came as a huge blow to long time King of Fighter fans, and made me personally question how viable SNK's future in the gaming market really is.

3. Deathsmiles is Japan Only, Sorry other 99% of the World - This is one of the finest shooting games I have played. I actually gave this game a glowing review earlier this year. How did I review it? I had to buy a Japanese Xbox 360 and import the game. For some reason Cave region locked the game to Japan only even though there was alot of hype in the UK and the US. Does Cave not like money? I can see no reason to keep such a fine game with such limited text to translate exclusive to Japan. Cave attempted to gauge the reactions of players outside Japan by making their latest title region free. From sales figures, it was clear more people bought Deathsmiles even with region locking. There is still a small, small chance someone might pick this up for us "gaijins" but I would not count on it.

2. DSi Became Region Locked - I hate region locking. It is an outdated theory in an international world. I used to do quite abit of traveling overseas with my Gameboy Advance and Nintendo DS. It was always great to walk into a foreign store and buy one of their games then try it out on my US system. This is what portable systems are for, they are meant to be played anywhere in the world. With region locking, the DSi only allows games from your region to be played, so I hope you don't travel overseas with it. Plenty of fine DS games never received a domestic release such Jump Ultimate Stars, but sell well on import sites because the Nintendo DS and DS lite did not discriminate between region. This was a poor marketing idea by Nintendo. I think it might have been to combat piracy, but as far as I know the R4 cart still seems to work with the DSi. "Thanks" Nintendo.

1. Duke Nukem Forever Cancelled - Duke Nukem Forever was a title many looked forward to for a decade. I thought it was going to be awesome, anything that took that long has to be...or at least that is what I told myself. Instead the development team squandered millions without producing as much as a working demo. For Duke Nukem fans and FPS fans the day cancellation was announced seemed like the end of one of gaming's coolest heroes. Duke Nukem has yet to receive a modern game that is worthy of how badass he is. I for one wouldn't count on a new Duke Nukem project for a long time....maybe ever.

Well that is the fail list 2009. The PSPGo was a close runner up, but since the PSP stays region free they are exempt from my anger ( for now.)


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