October 8, 2013

YouTube Digest: Nintendo Edition 10.8.13

Welcome to my first ever YouTube Digest: Nintendo Edition. As you may well know, there are plenty of YouTube channels devoted to or strongly geared toward Nintendo or video games in general. I'm here to bring you the best in Nintendo-related entertainment straight from YouTube. Above is a brand-new trailer for Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze focusing on Dixie Kong, a returning character who debuted in Donkey Kong Country 2: Diddy's Kong Quest. After the break you'll find more videos well worth your time from fans and Nintendo alike. Let's get this party started!

September 29, 2013

My mad piano skills (well, maybe not): Underwater Theme from Super Mario Bros.

I finally posted another video to the ol' YouTube channel. If you like piano covers for video game music, you may like to take a look at me playing the underwater theme song from the original Super Mario Bros. on NES. It was surprisingly difficult to learn! All that bouncing around in the left hand...which is very literal: as you'll see in the video, I really do get to bouncing around a bit near the end of the song.

You'll need to pump up the volume a little bit extra for this video, so please remember to turn it back down afterwards so you don't receive a major shock when you resume your normal playlist!

September 25, 2013

The Blue Shell Problem, Part 2: Three Ways to Solve the Problem

As discussed in my previous post, the blue shell in Mario Kart can ruin the best of races at the last second, making it difficult to take the game seriously. Here are three possible solutions to this problem, one of which I would love to see in Mario Kart 8:

The Blue Shell Won't Appear in Lap 3
I honestly don't mind the blue shell too much...until it hits me at the end of a race, ruining my chances of taking first place. And this is a surprisingly frequent scenario. So my first suggestion of how to solve the blue shell problem is to force it not to appear in the third lap of any race.

September 17, 2013

The Blue Shell Problem, Part 1: A Short History

The anger is boiling up as we speak...
Yes, it is a problem. In case you don't already know, the blue shell is an item in the Mario Kart series notorious for 1) being next to useless to the racer who uses it and 2) destroying perfect races at the very last moment for the racer in first place.

I bought Mario Kart 7 for the Nintendo 3DS when it was released back in December, 2011. The game was fantastic. The courses were some of the most well-designed in the history of the series, the online features were more extensive and compelling than just about any other game on the Nintendo 3DS at the time (they probably still are), and the controls were smooth as silk. What was not to love?

August 29, 2013

How our gaming perspectives change as we age

When I was young, I lived at home with several older siblings and a few younger ones. For a time, Saturday mornings were devoted to eating my dad's Swedish pancakes and then playing Nintendo together. Mario Party 2, among others, sticks out in my memory as a family favorite. We would take hours to plow through 50-turn parties complete with a (mostly) friendly, competitive atmosphere.

August 26, 2013

Glasses-free, stereoscopic 3-D: How well has it aged?

Arguably the biggest selling point for the Nintendo 3DS began as its ability to display full, stereoscopic 3-D graphics, no glasses required. Indeed, when you first turn the system on, it requires you to configure your 3-D preference (this is mostly to show off the fact that a 3-D slider on the system's side smoothly alters the depth of the effect).

August 22, 2013

It's a small universe after all - A Review of Wii U's Miiverse

Miiverse is a carefully regulated online hub of Wii U owners who've signed up for a Nintendo Network ID. There are various "communities" in Miiverse, most of which are for the games that have been released for the system.

August 19, 2013

Welcome to the Familly, Game! The tangible joy of physical copies

Due to the strange absence of Fire Emblem: Awakening from retail stores when it was first released, I purchased the full game on the Nintendo 3DS eShop and downloaded it to my 4-gigabyte SD card. This is the first (and so far only) time I downloaded a full retail game to any of my game systems. I continue to seek physical copies of games whenever possible.

Reason number 1 for this: all of the extra storage a full game download takes up! Digital storage is an expensive thing. I don't want to be spending the full retail price for a game, plus all the storage it takes up.

Reason number 2: owning physical copies is a delight in itself! I look at my stack of Wii/Wii U games (pictured above) and I can't help but feel a little proud. Plus, they're easier to show off [insert winking emoticon here]. I'm not just saying that, either; I've gotten plenty of comments from people on my physical games collection, and they usually don't even know that I have plenty of other Virtual Console/download-only games too.

August 17, 2013

Watch trailers for upcoming Nintendo 3DS games

Like this playlist for upcoming Wii U games, I have created a similar playlist for upcoming Nintendo 3DS games. Sometimes you just want to watch game trailers, right? Well, whenever that urge hits you, head over to the official Nintendo Juice YouTube channel and check out our playlists of trailers for upcoming games. These will be updated as needed, so check back whenever you like!

August 15, 2013

Trine 2: Director's Cut offered at a 60% discount, here are my first impressions of the game

Normally $19.99, the downloadable Trine 2: Director's Cut for Wii U can be purchased for a mere $7.99 until September 5, here in North America. When I found this out, I thought now would be a perfect time to share my initial thoughts and impressions on Trine 2: Director's Cut, which I've been playing for a while now. So let's talk about the game, shall we?