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Late Night Consoling

by jason bergman, Apr 14, 2004 8:00pm PDT

I've spent some time over the last couple of days racking my brain in an attempt to guess what new GameCube peripheral Nintendo's going to unveil at E3, and I gotta admit...I'm stumped. Basically all I came up with was a Nintendo knock-off of Sony's EyeToy (which may be possible...Satoru Iwata's said they're jealous Sony came up with it first, and already compared their new device to it) or an updated version of that stupid LCD monitor they announced two years ago. Whatever it is, I doubt very much I'll care about it very much. I've already said as much here before, but I am not a fan of gimmick games. I think Sony's claims of some EyeToy device being used to gauge player emotions and adapt the game to it to be pure sci-fi (and lousy sci-fi at that), and while I think the EyeToy is very cool, and is clearly a mainstream device, it ain't for me. But then, I thought Boktai's light sensor was a complete joke too, and I know there are plenty of fans of that game. Personally I'll be much more excited if Nintendo shows some amazing games using existing hardware rather than relying on some new external device I won't buy.
n-gage N-Gage QD Formally Announced All the details were pretty much leaked out yesterday, but regardless, Nokia today officially announced the N-Gage QD, the second generation of their cell phone/game system. For details, images and other random crap, check out CNN/Money, GameInformer, GameSpy, GameSpot, IGN, 1UP and HomeLAN, and gamesindustry.biz has an interview with Nokia's Ilkka Raiskinen, who talks about the new device. Also, it went unnoticed by most places, but Nokia also announced today a Call of Duty game that's in the works for the platform, and in case you were wondering, gadget blog Engadget confirmed with Nokia that the "QD" doesn't stand for anything whatsoever.
GameCube Metroid Prime 2 Multiplayer Confirmed According to IGN, the latest issue of GameInformer Magazine has a first look at Metroid Prime 2, and in it a four-player multiplayer mode is confirmed. It's apparently split-screen deathmatch, with each player playing a Samus-like character, complete with morph ball action. Don't hold your breath for online support. The magazine apparently contains the first in-game shots from the game, and IGN says that "the graphics do not appear to be drastically upgraded over Metroid Prime".
GameCube Factor 5 Drops GameCube Just last night it was revealed that Silicon Knights has ended their partnership with Nintendo, and now it looks like another developer close to Nintendo has left the fold...IGN is reporting that Factor 5, the developers of the Rogue Squadron series have effectively dropped the GameCube platform, and will no longer produce games for the system. Of course they don't say what they are working on (although apparently they've hinted at PSP support), so it's entirely possible that they're moving to Nintendo's next platform. The two widely-circulated rumors about Factor 5 have suggested an Xbox compilation of the Rogue Squadron series for LucasArts, and a long-rumored remake of Pilotwings for Nintendo, which some have said was indeed bumped to the N5 (although Nintendo's never commented on it at all).
PS2 Xbox Rockstar Delays Games Along with the surprising news that CEO Jeffrey Lapin has resigned from the company, Take Two Interactive announced today that two Rockstar games have been delayed: Red Dead Revolver for PS2 and Xbox has been pushed back a week (which is much more important on paper, as this puts it at the start of Q3, instead of the end of Q2), while the PS2-exclusive title The Warriors has been bumped to Q1 of next year. Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas is still on track for release in October. Full Disclosure: on Monday, I become a full-time employee of Take Two Interactive.
GameBoy Advance Guardian Heroes Returns? As noted in this story at 1UP, Amazon Japan has started taking pre-orders for a Guardian Heroes game for Game Boy Advance. So what is this game? Nobody's actually announced anything, so is it a sequel? A remake? An RPG? A rhythm action title? The developer is listed as Treasure, which should comfort those of you whose hearts just skipped a beat.
GameCube PS2 Xbox America's Army Invades Consoles The US Army and Ubisoft announced today a long-term agreement to produce America's Army games for unnamed console systems. It's not entirely clear, but since Ubisoft isn't in the business of giving away games, it's safe to assume that this will be more than just a port of the existing (and free) PC game, although I would guess that any online component would resemble the PC version.
GameBoy Advance Famicom Mini Round Two Confirmed Nintendo of Japan has announced the full lineup for the second series of Famicom Mini releases for GBA (which will be released here as the Classic NES series). This is pretty much the same list we saw here a week ago, only it's official now. The games include Mario Bros, Clu Clu Land, Dr. Mario and Ghosts n' Goblins, and I have to say again that if you're stupid enough to shell out $20 for Mario Bros, you deserve to be parted with your money.
PS2 Konami Making EyeToy Games Konami became the latest company to announce support for Sony's ultra-successful EyeToy peripheral today. Their first EyeToy-compatible game will be called (rough translation) Ape EyeToy, and will be an EyeToy party game based on the Ape Escape series.
Xbox Itagaki's Advice Column Xbox Nation has posted the first of what I hope will be a long-running series of truly bizarre columns. Called "Ask Itagaki", it's an advice column starring my favorite industry ringleader, Tomonobu Itagaki of Tecmo's Team Ninja. In this installment, Itagaki admits that he's currently playing Pokemon, says he'd love to turn The Godfather into a game (sorry, but EA's already working on it!), tells the world what superpower he'd have if given the choice, and offers some hilarious advice for someone with an office crush. On a somewhat related note, in an interview in this month's Official Xbox Magazine, he says that in the future he'd like to make "games based on the war theme" (whatever that means.
  Misc. Media/Previews
GameCube New shots from WWE Day of Reckoning are up at GameSpot and IGN has a look at the MIA (at least in this country) title Giftpia.
PS2 GameSpot has yet another preview of Transformers and The Magic Box has new shots from Jak III.
Xbox The Magic Box has new shots from the Xbox port of SNK vs. Capcom: SVC Chaos and CVG has shots from Fable.
GameBoy Advance IGN has posted a hands-on look at Payback.
Console Game of the Evening: Cobra Triangle for the NES. "A cool boat/shooter that had a ton of different gameplay scenarios and upgradeable boats (Gradius style)." (submitted by Dmiller).




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