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Found 51 results

  1. Emily Palmieri

    Community Content:The Art of The World

    The .hack multimedia franchise began in 2002 and now spans video games, anime, movies, manga, and novels that all explore the fictitious online roleplaying game (ORPG) known as The World. .hack//Sign, the animated series that began the franchise, centers on Tsukasa, a player who, after waking up in a dungeon, finds himself trapped inside the ORPG with no terminal in front of him to log off of. On his journey to find out what happened to him and why, he must also come to terms with the cruel reality waiting for him in the real world. One of the latest entries into the series, the computer-animated movie .hack//Beyond the World, tells the story of Sora, a technology-averse teenager who is persuaded to play The World. Initially hoping to become more connected to her technology-obsessed friends and love interest, she instead finds herself entrusted with saving not only the game but also the entire world. Like the anime series that preceded it, .hack//Beyond the World makes a visual distinction between the game, where part of the movie takes place, and the real world the characters live in. The artistic choices in both works complement their stories’ commentary on gaming, Internet addiction, and social connection or disconnection in the age of technology. .hack//Beyond the World, however, isn’t as successful in creating a believable and relatable story because it doesn’t also use its art style to elaborate upon its characters as .hack//Sign does. .hack//Sign takes place almost exclusively inside The World with brief fragments of the real world appearing in some episodes. These settings have different moods that are heavily laden with the emotions of the characters who inhabit them. To Tsukasa and his friends, The World is an escape from reality for various reasons. What each of them face is only hinted at throughout the series, but the dreariness depicted in the scenes showing the real world conveys their feelings well enough. Reality is shown through grainy and desaturated footage. Character’s faces aren’t usually shown, and if they are, their eyes are hidden in deep shadows. No sounds can be heard other than music or static, and if there is dialog, the words are only displayed against a black background. It’s as if we’re viewing the scenes from the perspective of people so internally focused on their own pain that the world around them has lost detail. Only in the last episode does the real world gain sound and color as Tsukasa and his friends have each fulfilled some desire that makes reality a much more bearable place. The game, while it appears happier for the characters than reality, is just creepy enough to serve as a reminder that beneath the surface there is something wrong. Scenes taking place here are colorful and have sound, dialog, and characters… as expected. Occasionally, however, shots are sideways, upside down, tilted, held at a distance for an abnormally long time, or focused on a random object in the scene reminiscent of the unusual shot choices in scenes taking place in the real world. The color palette is usually dark and the score is haunting. Frequently, these elements create a dark and mysterious atmosphere. The happier mood is tainted by some unseen or unaddressed problem. About half of .hack//Beyond the World takes place in the real world while the rest takes place inside the ORPG. With its pastel coloring and use of 2D elements, the real world is shown as dull, flat, and ordinary, but it isn’t a bad place. Scenes can be well described as moving paintings. The 3D character models appear to have painted textures and light cell-shading. In many cases, all or part of the environments are 2D painted textures that are composited with the 3D elements in the scene. The coloring of everything is soft and muted. In contrast, scenes that take place inside The World have semi-photorealistic 3D graphics, depicting an adventurous and awe-inspiring environment. The cell-shading is gone, the colors are saturated, and most scenes are composed entirely of 3D models. Camera movements are also more dynamic and exciting, including point-of-view shots and spins. Unlike those in .hack//Sign though, the two worlds have a similar tone to one another. When one is in chaos so is the other. While initially The World is amazing to Sora, it soon becomes the new ordinary. This, however, is consistent with a theme that runs throughout the movie: the real world and the digital world have differences but are overall the same. When Sora is finally convinced to try The World, she isn’t particularly happier there or more connected to the people around her. She is as clueless about ORPGs as she was in reality and as content to train by herself as she is to train with her friends. While it appears that her parents have separated and she feels somewhat disconnected from her classmates, her life isn’t particularly depressing. Her experiences in the game are as confusing and frustrating as they are extraordinary, which doesn’t make it much of an improvement. By the end of the movie, her feelings towards both worlds are still neutral. Let’s face it. .hack//Beyond the World and .hack//Sign are about people in the near future playing World of Warcraft with VR headsets. The success of their stories depends on convincing the audience to care about fetch quests, boss fights, leveling up, and the possibility that the characters might die in a game where they have an infinite number of lives. .hack//Sign accomplishes this by giving the game believable real-world consequences. Player killing is equated to bullying. Failing a time-sensitive fetch quest is devastating to someone who didn’t have any self-confidence to begin with. Breaking up a faction also breaks up a friendship. As has already been discussed, even how the setting looks and sounds mirrors the thoughts and feelings of the characters. While these events don’t have widespread repercussions, they show that the game has a real effect on the characters and make the game’s more farfetched elements easier to believe. For example, an anomaly within the ORPG can cause players to fall into an unconscious or comatose state in the real world. By the end of the series, we still don’t know much about the players behind the controls, but through the emotions we’ve experienced with them, we want them to find happiness in the real world… even if they have to defeat an AI powered by negative emotions to do so. .hack//Beyond the World gives the game much more devastating and widespread real-world consequences, but because it never takes the time to show how the game affects the protagonist, who we spend most of the movie with, it stretches the suspension of disbelief and fails to convince us that we should care. A computer virus has infected networks and servers around the world, including The World’s game servers. With electricity and networks down worldwide, reality is in chaos. In the game, the virus appears as a black cloud that destroys 3D assets and infects the brain signals of the players, causing them to fall into a comatose state. To save both worlds, Sora must find Aura, an artificial super-intelligence within the game, and give her information she needs to destroy the virus. The audience, however, has no reason to believe that Sora would do this. The World hasn’t had a significant effect on her personally. Even after playing it for a while, Sora still doesn’t seem to care that much about anyone or about technology. She continues holding her friend Tanaka, who she has a mild crush on, at a distance, and stops playing The World after a minor argument. When Tanaka becomes a comatose victim of the virus, Sora resolves to save him in an uncharacteristically impassioned outburst, but when everything is over, nothing about Sora changes. In the final minutes of the movie, she tells her friends of her indifference towards continuing to play The World. The final image is apparently of her enthusiastically breaking Tanaka’s cellphone to get his attention. Despite everything she went through, she is as disconnected and indifferent as ever, leaving us wondering why she even bothered. In a story about a fantastic, futuristic ORPG, providing the audience with a way to relate to the characters is crucial to the story’s believability. The art style in .hack//Sign is only one of many ways that it explains the characters and their relationship to the worlds they live in. The ORPG serves as an escape from reality and a place to work through personal feelings. In .hack//Beyond the World, the differences between worlds appear to be superficial, which mirrors the movie’s theme that the virtual and real worlds are only different ways to communicate with people; one isn’t better than the other. The movie, however, fails to provide an alternative to the art style to explain its characters. As a passionless and randomly impulsive individual with unclear goals, Sora is difficult to understand. In turn, it’s difficult to care about or believe the final scenario where she must save an ORPG to save the entire Internet. By using its art style to the fullest, .hack//Sign is able to take the audience on the emotional journey of a handful of anonymous people in an alien environment. .hack//Beyond the World tells a grander tale, but its believability suffers from inferior visual storytelling. --- Any other Extra Lifers out there with some writing skills and a good idea? Read about how to become a community contributor and start submitting today! View full article
  2. Sturbinator

    C4; Central Canada Comic Convention

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    Extra Life Winnipeg will be at Ai-Kon to promote Extra Life in the community and recruit gamers to join. We will also be hosting a panel to explain what Extra Life is to Ai-Kon attendees. http://www.c4winnipeg.com/about/ The Central Canada Comic Con (C4) is the largest convention of its kind in central Canada. Every October, more than 46,000 fans from around the world gather in Winnipeg, Manitoba to celebrate the best in comic books, science fiction, gaming, anime, fantasy, horror, and pop culture. C4 is a non-profit organization that is proud to support many Manitoba charities.
  3. Sturbinator

    Ai-Kon; Winnipeg Anime Convention

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    Extra Life Winnipeg will be at Ai-Kon to promote Extra Life in the community and recruit gamers to join. We will also be hosting a panel to explain what Extra Life is to Ai-Kon attendees. http://ai-kon.org/about/ Ai-Kon is a three-day event held during the summer, which runs around the clock from start to finish. Other than our focus on Japanese animation, comics and closely related media, the convention has branched off to include other events that have varying amounts of overlap with our attendees' interests. We host many anime convention staples, such as the cosplay masquerade, assorted video games with tournament prizes, and rooms for vendors and artists alike to showcase and sell their wares. Thanks to the diverse range of anime fans in the area, with each passing year we've been able to host panels and other events covering more ground in other semi-related areas, from Japanese Tea Ceremony and Aikido demonstrations from the Manitoba Japanese Canadian Cultural Centre to panels discussing the finer points of Go and ball-jointed dolls.
  4. Athena

    Portcon Maine 2016

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    It's that time of year again! We're going to need all the help we can get for Portcon so volunteer now so we can figure out what shifts we need to cover! Sign up here: http://www.signupgenius.com/go/20f0845afab2aa3f49-portconmaine
  5. Super Hobbit

    STL NatsuCon

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    NatsuCon is a Saint Louis metro-area based anime convention possessing the sole desire of expanding the appreciation, understanding, and acceptance of Japanese pop-culture in America. By the use of media ranging from art, to music, to visual screenings, NatsuCon strives to present attendees with an accepting, friendly environment allowing guests of all ages to meet and express similar interests. The staff and volunteers of NatsuCon all share the common wish of providing attendees with a fun and welcoming atmosphere. Through educational panels and interactive presentations and events based around precepts of Japanese culture, NatsuCon will offer its guests with an opportunity to empower themselves by increasing knowledge, diversity, and strength of character. Learn more at http://natsucon.org/
  6. K8Morosky

    Tekko

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    Join us for our first major recruitment event of the year. Our volunteers will be guests of Tekko. They've sent out an email blast to all past attendees, and we're going to be there recruiting additional players, and garnering interest through a fun multi event challenge! We need table people, and volunteers to hang out in the gaming areas, so we need as many people as we can get! For details on what's going down, visit the official Tekko extra life team page: www.extra-life.org/team/tekko If you can come out to volunteer, please contact me and make your availability known on this poll. http://doodle.com/poll/8bbbnucn28ceirwq
  7. At the Uncovered: Final Fantasy XV event held last night, Square Enix revealed that there would be a five episode animated miniseries to show how the friendships formed between the cast of characters depicted hanging out together in the trailers. The series, titled Brotherhood: Final Fantasy XV, will release periodically from now until the launch of the game on September 30. All episodes will be free and available on the Final Fatnasy XV YouTube channel. The first episode has even been released already! Give it a watch if anime is your thing. Each episode is expected to be around 12 minutes long. Also revealed was the feature-length CG film Square Enix has dubbed Kingsglaive: Final Fantasy XV. The story appears to set the stage for the return of protagonist Noctis to his rightful throne. While Noctis has been away, his homeland appears to have fallen into turmoil and only a select few seem capable of holding it together until the hair to the throne returns. A considerable amount of star power appears to be behind the film, too. Sean Bean (Lord of the Rings) will be playing the role of King Regis, Lena Headey (Game of Thrones) graces the CG screen as Luna, and Aaron Paul (Breaking Bad) assumes the part of Nyx, a member of the titular Kingsglaive, an elite group of soldiers tasked with defending the king. Square Enix has always been more miss than hit with its CG films, but perhaps Kingsglaive can change that and erase the sins of Spirits Within. Kingsglaive will not be shown in theaters, but it will be available for download and streaming at some point before the September 30 launch of Final Fantasy XV.
  8. kylez0rz

    Jacksonville Anime Day

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    Jacksonville Anime Day http://www.jacksonville.animeday.net/ Location: Embassy Suites Jacksonville 9300 Baymeadows Road, Jacksonville, FL 32256 Date/Time: Sunday March 6th 10am-7:30pm Volunteers – 2 pass will be provided. Admission is $5 for anyone else willing to volunteer, if a pass is not available at that time. The Marketplace is open 11am-6pm. Volunteers Kyle – 10am-7:30pm $5 AnnaMarie Matt Blocker ? ? Equipment Organizers have given us an 8’x8’ space in the marketplace with one 6’ table and 2 chairs. We have a table cloth, candy, a banner, flyers, offline sign up forms, and decorations for the table. We need additional chairs. We need swag for our tables and possibly raffle prizes. Additional Info HAVE THE RECRUITMENT APP DOWNLOADED TO YOUR DEVICES!! Let me know if I missed anything or you have any questions!
  9. stodd.ELBoston

    Anime Boston 3/25-3/27/2016

    Anime Boston Event Link Calendar Event for Anime Boston is up.. Click much, volunteer much.. Please and Thanks.
  10. stodd.ELBoston

    Anime Boston

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    Anime Boston Official Site Alrighty folks.. Anime Boston and Extra Life.. together again. We will be up in the gaming arena (upstairs ballroom) Volunteer Shift Below.. Did we mention that we get as many weekend badges we need for this? Please RSVP Below and let us know what shifts you are available for. We need volunteers: Friday 12P - 6P @The Guat, @SassyJ, @KriptiKFate, Additional Help @Merissa Saturday 10A - 2P @kavinsky, Sam MacDonald, @3dge, Huynh Valentine 2P - 6P @DMo2TheMax, @Serolis, @Oporotheca, Leader TBD Sunday 10A - 2P @Javier, Ana Richburg, @PotatoTaco Additional Help @Merissa 2P - 6P @SassyJ, @KriptiKFate, Ana Richburg, @PotatoTaco Additional Help @Merissa Awaiting Schedule Confirmations: @ellystar Badges/Names First Last Badge Name Luis Cardona Luis Cardona/Extra Life Jessica Houghton-Vella SassyJ Kerry Selberg KriptikFate Devon Cote 3dge Almond Khan Alma/Extra Life Sam MacDonald Sam/Extra Life Huynh Valentine Huynh/Extra Life Danielle Standring DMo2TheMax Gregory Harris-Jones Serolis Amelia Ott Oporotheca Ana Richburg Ana/Extra Life Eric Richburg PotatoTaco Javier Parra Javier/Extra Life Merissa Livermore-Johnson Merissa/Extra Life
  11. Super Hobbit

    Anime St. Louis

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    Anime St. Louis is a local convention that focuses on anime, video games, and general nerd culture. The St. Louis guild will be there all weekend long to encourage con attendees to sign up for Extra Life. More info on the Anime STL website at http://animestl.net/
  12. Super Hobbit

    STL Kawa Kon

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    Kawa Kon is a small anime convention that will take place at the St. Louis Airport Hilton from March 18th to March 20th. This year's theme is "Strange New Worlds", meant as a potpourri to involve samples of many other fandoms. Their website can be found at http://kawakon.com/about.html for more info
  13. kylez0rz

    Jacksonville Anime Day

    Jacksonville Anime Day http://www.jacksonville.animeday.net/ Location: Embassy Suites Jacksonville 9300 Baymeadows Road, Jacksonville, FL 32256 Date/Time: Sunday March 6th 10am-7:30pm Volunteers – 2 pass will be provided. Admission is $5 for anyone else willing to volunteer, if a pass is not available at that time. The Marketplace is open 11am-6pm. Volunteers Kyle – 10am-7:30pm $5 AnnaMarie Matt Blocker Cameron ? Equipment Organizers have given us an 8’x8’ space in the marketplace with one 6’ table and 2 chairs. We have a table cloth, candy, a banner, flyers, offline sign up forms, and decorations for the table. We need additional chairs. We need swag for our tables and possibly raffle prizes. Additional Info HAVE THE RECRUITMENT APP DOWNLOADED TO YOUR DEVICES!! Let me know if I missed anything or you have any questions!!!!!!!!
  14. Xeserox

    Genericon XXIX

    until
    Genericon is a weekend-long, general convention run by the students of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, NY. We feature a wide variety of attractions that run the gamut of geeky hobbies, including science fiction, gaming of all forms, and anime. Our events include panels by guest speakers, video gaming tournaments, role-playing games of both the pen-and-paper and live-action variety, and twenty-four hour showings of both science fiction classics and modern anime fresh from Japan. The convention runs for an uninterrupted 48 hours, starting at 5 PM on Friday and ending at 5 PM the following Sunday.
  15. stodd.ELBoston

    North East Comic Con 12/5-12/6

    North East Comic Con Calendar Event Dec 2015 Event is up for volunteering. Please check it out and RSVP.
  16. stodd.ELBoston

    North East Comic Con

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    We are going to be at North East Comic Con. www.necomiccon.net We will have a couple badges for cycling throughout volunteers, but if you have badges, that would be helpful. 2 Shifts each day Sat: 10-2, 2-6 2 persons and 1 lead per shift Sun: 10-2, 2-6 2 persons and 1 lead per shift
  17. stodd.ELBoston

    Another Anime Convention 10/17-18/2015

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    Folks, Looks like we need help up in Manchester, once again. We have AAC scheduled for 10/17-18/2015. We have 4 badges for the weekend, However, our location is on the Outer Concourse, so badges should not be necessary to work the table.
  18. Folks, Were calling for help from the SNH Satellite team. @aradiadarling, @KriptiKFate @cptcrowe @SassyJ @Strandwalker. 10/17-18. We have a table in the concourse at this event. (Which means that all valuable items need to be packed and brought in/out both days.) @3dge can't be there for this one, so we're looking for a senior leadership person to head this one up as well. @Chi, @Kelsey, @extralifeboston-kristin, are you guys available at all for this one and want to spend a lovely weekend up in Manchester? Another Anime Convention Calendar Event
  19. raebucher

    Anime Weekend Atlanta

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    What is AWA?Anime Weekend Atlanta is a 4 day convention held annually at the Cobb Galleria, Renaissance Waverly Hotel and Sheraton Suites Galleria. The event is a family-friendly celebration of Japanese anime (animation), manga (comics) and cosplay (costume-play) and is held annually during the last weekend of September.AWA was first organized in 1994, with the first convention held in 1995. Since then, AWA has been recognized as one of the most popular Japanese Animation conventions in the United States, and one of the top ten attended anime conventions in North America. In 2014, over 20,000 people attended the event.Why does AWA exist?AWA has three goals in hosting its events Provide a venue for fans of Japanese Animation and Manga to come together in a festive environmentEducate people about the history and culture surrounding Anime and Manga by hosting guests from the industryLearn about Japanese culture through animation and comicsWho are the people behind the curtain?We’re all fans, just like you. Every dollar spent by attendees goes back into making the show bigger and better for subsequent years. We do this for the love of anime, caffeine, and the smiles on peoples faces when they’ve met their idol or made a new friend.What can I do at AWA?AWA offers a wide variety of fan panels, guests from all over the world, concerts, activities, video games, table top games and cosplay galleries. Not only that, but we have an expansive dealer’s room, and incredible artist alley, and the cutest maid cafe you ever will see.Not only do we offer 24 hour programming, but AWA is a fun place to meet people and make new friends- and not to mention snap a few pictures of some amazing cosplays.
  20. raebucher

    Anime Weekend Atlanta

    We got a booth for AWA this weekend! We couldn't score free passes for volunteers this week but if you want an excuse to go- this is it! Click here to view the schedule and reply below what time blocks you think you could volunteer at our booth! http://schedule.awa-con.com/ Blocks Needed: Friday: 4pm - 8pm Saturday: 11am - 2pm & 2pm - 6pm Sunday: 11am - 2pm Pick you block and comment below!
  21. Kash

    Anime California

    Hello All, I'm trying to get a feel to see if anyone has a contact at Anime California in Anaheim. We'd like to have a presence there this year. Please let me know if you have someone or know how we could get some donated booth space at the event! http://animecalifornia.com/
  22. stephybot

    NatsuCon 2015

    until
    What is NatsuCon anyway? “Natsu” comes from Japanese word for Summer, and “Con”- well, “Con” is short for Convention. The two combine to form “NatsuCon” a summertime convention in Collinsville, IL. The goal of NatsuCon is to provide the St. Louis area with an easily accessible convention packed with star-studded guests, entertaining live acts, talented artists, and – of course – lots and lots of pocky! NatsuCon is an anime convention, meaning it will focus on Japanese animation, video games, manga comics, and Japanese traditions and culture. All attendees are allowed to and encouraged to dress up as their favorite characters, and will even have a chance at winning awards for best costumes in our Masquerade! If you don’t watch anime regularly, or don’t get what it’s about, or maybe even don’t know what it is, you are still welcome to join us this year at NatsuCon 2013! With your help we’ll make this our best year yet! Guest 2015: ----- Voice Actors: ----- Chris Cason: Known as Mr. Popo and Tien Shinhan in "Dragonball Z", Agent Shu in "Dragonball Z: Battle of Gods", Holy Roman Empire in "Hetalia", Gluttony in "Fullmetal Alchemist", Face McShooty and Mal in "Borderlands 2", Jack the Ripper in "Soul Eater", Miyamoto and M1 in "Yu Yu Hakusho", Taruru in "Sgt. Frog", Boo and Whitey in "Shin Chan", Hanai in "School Rumble", Ukyo in "Ouran High School Host Club", Chamo in "Negima", Babbit in "Kodocha", Siegfried in "Kenichi", and Hanbei in "Sengoku Basara" ----- Jon St. John: Jon St. John is an American voice actor who started out as a radio DJ at the age of 14. His vocal abilities and production expertise landed him various radio jobs across America in cities such as New Orleans, Birmingham, Philadelphia, Phoenix, San Diego, and Los Angeles. Over his 30 year broadcast and voice-acting career Jon has provided voice-overs for countless commercial, infomercial, multi-media, and video game projects. Best known as the voice of the first famous FPS - DUKE NUKEM, Jon is also heard on games such as: World of Warcraft, Half-Life: Opposing Force, Sonic Adventure, The Die Hard Trilogy, Heroes of Newerth, Call of Cthulu, Rochard, Twisted Metal4, Guild Wars 2, Counter-Strike, DoTA, Star Trek: Online, and D&D Neverwinter, to name just a few. ----- Musical Guest: ----- Chii Sakurabi: J-POP singer and recording artist from Tokyo, Japan. Chii is known for her high-energy music, angelic voice, and lolita fashion! In 2011, Chii's breakout first album Mirage was released. It featured a unique electro-pop style with fantasy themes, as well as a mixture of English and Japanese lyrics. In 2014, Chii's music evolved dramatically creating a distinct and dynamic sound with her second album Moon Princess, based on the Japanese fairytale character Princess Kaguya. Chii has performed around the world in such countries as the United States, France, Mexico, Canada, New Zealand, Netherlands, Costa Rica, and Japan. She has been invited as a guest to perform concerts at pop culture and anime conventions such as Anime Expo, Anime North, Paris Manga, and Armageddon Expo. Chii is excited to perform for the first time at NatsuCon! This is a show you will not want to miss! ----- UV Light Party: NatsuCon teams up with WeebCast to bring you the annual UV LITE PARTY REBOOT only at NatsuCon 2015! ~MORE INFO TBA SOON~ ----- Signature Events: Ramen Eating Contest -More to come soon- RSVP for updates and pre-register using the link below! https://www.facebook.com/events/1548833412063507/ http://natsucon.org/2015/register/ The St. Louis Guild will have a table in the gaming room.
  23. Sgoast

    Geek.Kon

    until
    From geekkon.net: Geek.Kon is Madison Wisconsin's very own anime convention, sci-fi convention, and gaming convention all rolled into one! As the name implies, Geek.Kon is a place to celebrate all that is geeky from strong foundations in anime, science fiction, video gaming, tabletop gaming, and costuming to up and coming fandoms like steampunk and gothic lolita. From Lord of the Rings to Doctor Who, Mario to Solid Snake, Geek.Kon covers it all. Visit the Milwaukee-Madison Extra Life guild at their booth in the vendor area! (Volunteer opportunities are still available!)
  24. Nintendo came out swinging this E3. It turns out when you develop most of the games for your own video game system you can hoard information about your first party games and then reveal them all at once. Nintendo seems to have learned a bit from its first digital press conference in 2013. This year, viewers were treated to amusing Robot Chicken claymation skits breaking up the gaming new (but not for overly long). After introductions, Nintendo introduced something called Amiibo; small figures which appear to be similar to the toys of Disney Infinity or Skylanders figures. These figures will be used first with Super Smash Bros. Wii U. Amiibo figures can be read with the Wii U gamepad and scanned into the game. There is two-way data sharing between the Wii U and Amiibo figures. In Super Smash Bros. Wii U, data in the figure becomes personalized over time, which means that the figures learn and get stronger the more they are used in-game. They can also learn new moves and level up. Next year a peripheral will be released that allows Amiibo figures to be read into the 3DS. Following the push to sell Amiibo figures, the digital event switched over to a yarn shop. Yes. You read that right. Yoshi’s Woolly World is a soft, friendly platformer starring everyone’s favorite Mario Bros. dinosaur. As the name suggests, the art style is fully committed to wool yarn and a handmade feel. According to Woolly World’s creative director, they want the game to constantly surprise and bring a smile to the face of their players. Yoshi’s Woolly World is coming in 2015. Who do audiences recognize from the Super Mario Bros. series that isn’t Yoshi, Bowser, Peach, Luigi, or Mario? Toad! Nintendo knows that Toad has never been front and center in his very own game… until now. Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker is a puzzle platformer that makes use of the Wii U gamepad. Players will be tasked with guiding Captain Toad through various stages to retrieve a star at the end of each. Then, Nintendo dropped its bombs. There is a new Legend of Zelda game coming to Wii U. That news itself isn’t entirely unexpected, but perhaps we all need to readjust our expectations a bit. I know that I wasn’t expecting to get blown away by the reveal, but I just about pooped my pants when I saw how gorgeous the game was. The brief glimpse of the game in action showed a figure on a horse who many assumed was Link (though later there was a comment by the series’ producer that cast some doubt on that assumption). Though we don’t know much about it, what tidbits we saw were really exciting. Initially we were shown a beautiful vista; then we were told that the vista was an entirely explorable. Yep, the next Legend of Zelda is going to be an open world. That has laser arrows. And weird magic robots. It will be released next year. Knowing that they couldn’t possibly top their previous announcement, Nintendo let everyone cool off with a friendly reminder that Pokémon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire will release on November 21. Bayonetta 2 was next on Nintendo’s announcement list. Releasing this October, Bayonetta 2 will come packaged with the first Bayonetta and different outfits based on various Nintendo characters. Speaking of characters, Nintendo announced that Hyrule Warriors will release September 26 and will feature a huge roster of playable characters that includes Link, Zelda, Impa, Midna, and the promise that “you’ll be able to play as your favorite Legend of Zelda character.” Also announced was Kirby and the Rainbow Curse, which looks like a cross between Kirby’s Epic Yarn and Kirby Canvas Curse. Players use the Wii U gamepad to draw a pathway for the ball-ified Kirby to make his way through various levels and defeat any enemies. The Monolithsoft’s logo came up on-screen. Afterward, gorgeous, sweeping CGI sequences heralded a new big budget JRPG. Xenoblade Chronicles X looks like another stab at the next great sweeping space opera and I am totally on board to see where this craziness leads. Next up was Mario Maker, which is possibly one of the most self-explanatory games in history. Mario Maker gives players the ability to create their own Mario levels and share them with friends. Level creators will have the ability to switch between original Super Mario Bros. and New Super Mario Bros. graphic styles. Expect to see this title sometime in 2015. Leave it to Nintendo to ask the one question no one has ever asked themselves: “What if you could shoot ink and turn into a squid?” That was the driving idea behind Splatoon, a third-person paintball shooter that allows players to transform into squids and traverse arenas by flowing through their own ink. Splatoon releases in 2015. The digital press conference concluded with the reveal of the goddess Lady Palutena from Kid Icarus as a playable character in the new Super Smash Bros. The disclosure came in the form of an animated sequence courtesy of the Shaft animation studio; perhaps that means we will be seeing a Super Smash Bros. anime? Make it so, Nintendo. Overall, this was a fantastic press conference from Nintendo. They unveiled games that I’m excited for and want to play. Unfortunately, many of the most interesting games shown were still a year or more out. That’s a long wait no matter how you slice it. Hopefully Super Smash Bros. and the possibility of some third-party titles can tide Wii U owners over until the promises of this E3 come to pass. What did you think of the conference? Good? Adequate? Meh? View full article
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