Late Night Consoling


In case it wasn't painfully obvious, last night's LNC was a bit of an April Fool's gag. Obviously the Intro Text™ and CGOTE were a gag, as were all the icons, the obligatory reference to Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom (obscure, yes...but oh so much fun), and yes, in case you were worried, so was the story about Square Enix canceling Dragon Quest VIII (however that quip about the Slime RPG really is's called Slime Mori Mori Dragon Quest, and is a big GBA seller in Japan). A big thanks to haiku for the icons (the Zoidberg and Hank Scorpio ones came out the best, I thought, but they were all fun) and to Maarten for both posting my pre-written content and digging up legitimate stories to fill out the post. In case it isn't painfully obvious from my other April Fool's gag this year (which was so much of a production that it ended up becoming semi-legitimate), I have a lot of fun with these every year, and since this is very likely my last chance to do this sort of thing (*sniff*) I wanted it to come off right, and I think it came out pretty well. Incidentally, I start working on these so far in advance (I first contacted haiku about the icons months ago, and you don't even want to know how much time I spent on IF Quake) that I did actually have an alternate version of the intro gag written before I found out I got the job at Rockstar. It's not worth posting now, but it basically is a paragraph in which I announced that I had grown tired of Nintendo's "childish" and "repetitive" lineup for GameCube, and was going to be selling off my console in order to buy "more mature titles" for PS2, Xbox and PC. This also would have been preceded by weeks and weeks in which I made subtle snide comments about Nintendo in various stories, making the whole thing more believable. Elaborate? You betcha. And probably more than a little pointless, but it would have been fun nonetheless. By the way, if you correctly identified the submitter of last night's CGOTE as the intrepid reporter for the Newsly Times, give yourself +10 geek points.
PlayStation PStwo at E3? Multiple PS3 Releases? No Region Encoding in PSP? A bunch of potential Sony news is up at tonight, which comes from an interview with David Reeves of SCEE, which was apparently posted on the official Sony site before being yoinked under mysterious circumstances (note the date: this is not an April Fool's gag). The first item deals with Sony's home systems, and Reeves says that a redesigned PS2 will be unveiled at E3. As for the next generation, he says that there may be two versions of the PlayStation 3: one regular console, and one "home server" along the same lines as the PSX. He also reiterates Sony's belief that broadband connections will make online game purchases commonplace, although let's not forget that Sony said we'd be buying movies on our PS2s by now. The second story contains some tidbits about the PSP, and Reeves says that games will probably not have region-encoding, while purchased movies will. Also of note is his confirmation about the increased RAM on the device, which he says is now 30 MB, although that number seems odd (and maybe even impossible). It's more likely 32 MB.
GameCube Paper Mario 2 Revealed The first details on Paper Mario 2, which was only just confirmed the other day, can be found at IGN tonight, containing some cool info about the combat system and how it will make use of its unique 2D/3D style. But that's not nearly as exciting as these first screenshots from the game, which look really, really cool, and despite their simplicity, are clearly a step up from the first game.
PS2 Xbox The FBI Wants to Hear You Frag According to CNET, the language in the FBI's latest wish list for electronic wiretapping would apply to all forms of voice-over-IP, which includes (among more serious things), Microsoft's Xbox Live (and presumably PS2 games with VOIP support as well). Obviously this isn't targeting games specifically, as let's face terrorists are going to get much across when they have to worry about MASTERCH13F yelling about how much he totally r00lz. Thanks GamerFeed for the tip.
Xbox Robbie Bach Interview The second half of Computer and Video Games' interview with Robbie Bach of Microsoft is online tonight. In this portion Bach comments on his expectations for the next generation, their continuing struggles in Japan, and the possibility of an Xboy-like handheld system ("I'd say it's possible, but it's not something that's on the drawing board today. ").
GameBoy Advance New Mario Games, Wireless Adapter for GBA Nintendo released a new list of their releases for the rest of the year yesterday (see next story for GameCube info), and on it were two new Mario games for GBA: a handheld version of Mario Party and Mario Pinball. Also announced is that Pokemon Leaf Green and Fire Red will be coming stateside in September, and they will be bundled with the GBA wireless adapter (as they were in Japan).
GameCube GameCube Release Schedule While there aren't too many surprises on here, Nintendo did indeed send out an updated release schedule for the rest of the year yesterday. We already knew some of these (like Wario Ware and The Four Swords), but newly dated games include Custom Robo Battle Revolutions (May 10th), Pikmin 2 (August) and Donkey Konga (September), and Geist, Mario Tennis, Metroid Prime 2, Paper Mario 2 and Star Fox 2 will all also be out this year, coming out in the fourth quarter. Presumably this means that Metroid Prime 2 really will be unveiled at E3 next month.
PS2 Xbox Pre-Order Psi-Ops, Get Kombat Free Midway has announced a new pre-order campaign for Psi-Ops: The Mindgate Conspiracy. Pre-orders for either the PS2 or Xbox versions of the game will come with a new copy of Mortal Kombat: Deadly Alliance.
GameCube Fire Emblem: Trail of the Blue Flame Announced Cube.IGN is reporting that the latest issue of the Japanese publication Jump Magazine contains the first details and images from Fire Emblem: Souen no Kiseki (roughly translated as "Trail of the Blue Flame"). The game marks the series' debut on GameCube, and is developed by Intelligent Systems, the people behind Advance Wars among other titles.
  Misc. Media/Previews
GameCube Hands-on looks at Wario Ware, Inc: Mega Party Game$ are up at GameSpot, IGN and GameInformer, new shots from Space Raiders are up at GameSpot, IGN has a look at the single player game in The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords Adventures and Planet GameCube has posted some music from the game.
PS2 A new preview of Bujungai: The Forsaken City is up at GameSpot, IGN goes hands-on with Popolocrois: Tsuki no Okite no Bouken, CVG has new shots from Cold Winter, 1UP has a huge feature on Shin Megami Tensei Nocturne (which is coming to North America -- a first for the series), Sony Europe has launched their official Killzone site, and we've got a trailer from Capcom's wacky Panic Maker up at FileShack.
Xbox GameSpot has new media from Iron Phoenix, both GameSpot and GameInformer have new movies from Rallisport Challenge 2, both CVG and GameInformer have new stuff from Galleon, 1UP is the latest site to preview Sudeki and Team Xbox has a new preview of Jade Empire.
PS2 Xbox CVG goes hands-on with Red Dead Revolver and Team Xbox has new media from Alias (both PS2, Xbox).
Console Game of the Evening: Gradius Galaxies for the Game Boy Advance. "Simply put, this game is everything that is good about the Gradius series on a cartridge smaller then my thumb. Challenging, but addictive." (submitted by Sideways Bob).

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