Game Ranter Banter: Medal Of Honor: Warfighter, Mass Effect 3 DLC, New Pokemon Games & More!
It's almost March, which means one thing... it's almost time for Mass Effect 3! Yes, we know many of you are replaying Mass Effect 2 (or maybe even the first game!) in anticipation to get your Shepards absolutely perfect. But we hope you can still spare a few minutes to take part in the Game Ranter Banter.
This week, Mass Effect 3 is on our brains as our writers discuss the Mass Effect 3 DLC controversy. We'll also be talking about the just-announced Medal of Honor: Warfighter, Killzone 3 going free to play, the lack of gameplay footage in Kinect Star Wars trailers, and the announcement of Pokemon Black and White 2.
Not Kinecting The Dots With Kinect Star Wars (By Ben Kendrick)
It's been nearly two years since Kinect Star Wars was first announced at E3 2010 and, since that time, it's as though LucasArts has become more and more tight-lipped about the project - as opposed to the normal marketing strategy of increasingly revealing trailers, screenshots, gameplay trailers, and more screenshots. Instead, the developer has kept the actual gameplay under tight-wraps (with only leaked demo footage appearing online unofficially) - opting to sell people on the concept with live-aciton comedy sketches instead of actual gameplay.
Following up on an unnecessary 3D re-release of Star Wars: Episode 1 - The Phantom Menace, that didn't exactly ignite the box office this round, it'll be interesting to see if the Star Wars brand alone is enough to sell a game that LucasArts doesn't seem particularly confident in. Hiding the game away is not exactly a good sign that the title will showcase anything but sub-par motion control mini-games packaged in a galaxy that is increasingly far far away from its heyday.
Evolving the Free-to-Play Model (By Brian Sipple)
Back before the heyday of MP3s - when Apple was more synonymous with desktop PCs than iTunes, the iPhone, or the iPad - a frequent bane in the life of a music fan was buying an entire CD (or cassette, or record) only to find out that that song from the radio was the epitome of a one-hit-wonder. The same issue can be found today in gaming, with consumers forking out $60 on experiences - only to find out that single player was an afterthought to multiplayer (or vice versa).
That’s why the news of Killzone 3’s free-to-play multiplayer (and subsequent truncation of it) sold me, to a certain extent, on a similar strategy for games whose various modes offer vastly different experiences. I’ve never really embraced the free-to-play model as more than a way for publishers to ensnare consumers, making them go overboard on in-game purchases. But when used in the context of choosing your favorite "tracks" off of a multi-layered "album," it's a win-win for gamers and game-makers — who, among the later, sometimes struggle to find a listening audience any other way.
Beware (By Anthony Taormina)
By far the most controversial topic of the past week was the Mass Effect 3 — From Ashes DLC and the back and forth that went between fans' assumptions and BioWare's explanations. At the end of the day it most certainly could be true that BioWare didn't start work on the DLC until Mass Effect 3's retail content was finished, but that shouldn't undermine the fact that the content being offered as DLC yet again feels like it should be part of the main campaign, not ancillary.
There are better ways out there to entice your audience into picking up a Collector's Edition, or into forking over a few more dollars after purchase -- something BioWare knows all too well. It might not have that lasting of an impact on sales for Mass Effect 3 in the grand scheme of things, but right now BioWare should consider themselves treading on thin ice.
Do Something New (By Rob Keyes)
This week saw Electronic Arts officially confirm the existence of a sequel to 2010's Medal of Honor. Titled Medal of Honor: Warfighter, the follow-up will release this October and is being developed - in its entirety - by Danger Close Games who are implementing Battlefield 3's Frostbite 2 engine this time around.
While a sequel was inevitable, I find myself asking what the purpose of this game will be. What will it do to compete with EA's own Battlefield 3, a game whose community is cursing DICE for news on future content and updates, and how will it compete against not only Modern Warfare 3 but Treyarch's new Call of Duty gaming also coming this fall?
If this is more of the same, with standard multiplayer and co-op offerings, with another campaign we've already played through in other games, forget it. I almost thing it's a better idea to turn this into an expansion for Battlefield 3 as to not split the player base even more. Either way, we'll find out March 6th at the Game Developer's Conference.
First Time Sequels (By Riley Little)
After months of Pokemon Gray speculation, the next Pokemon adventure has been revealed... and it's a direct pair of sequels to the latest series releases, Pokemon Black 2 and Pokemon White 2. This marks the first time in franchise's history that a direct sequel has been made to any of the other games. The games will also feature the legendary Pokemon Kyurem and his two new and previously rumored forms on their covers.
What really got me though was why The Pokemon Company and Nintendo decided to make the game for DS instead of the 3DS. Fans have been waiting for a more graphically in-depth and potentially 3D Pokemon game on the Nintendo 3DS since the handheld was first announced, and not bringing these games to the portable seems like a missed opportunity. Still, it's hard to be upset with two new adventure games, and knowing little to nothing about them doesn't diminish the anticipation by any stretch of the imagination.
Fans are craving a Pokemon game on the 3DS though, and maybe they'll finally get it in the form of Pokemon Ruby and Sapphire remakes.
If you have specific topics you'd like any of the team to cover, don't hesitate to ask!