Videogames, politics, science, all the important things in life.


Posted by nfinit on July 14, 2010

Cats and Dogs:  Revenge of Kitty Galore
Publisher:  505 Games
Developer:  Engine Games
Platforms:  Nintendo DS

Okay so I’ll admit that the industry needs shovelware because shovelware is profitable and somewhere along the way developers need to make money so that they can produce fun, wholly unprofitable stuff like, say, Split/Second.

But stuff like Cats and Dogs can’t possibly make a lot of money, as if it did you wouldn’t see it shunted off to developers like Engine Software, who’s last notable game was the Marvel Super Heroes trading card game, which was itself notable because holy shit someone made a Marvel Super Heroes trading card videogame.

Stuff like this irrationally annoys me as it’s the sort of thing a budding young gamer will find himself stuck with during the car ride to the beach and turned off games forever.  This shit should come with a warning sticker.

But back to Cats and Dogs:  Revenge of Kitty Galore– The promo material insists on calling this an “espionage game”, but when you look at the official trailer (and look at it you shall, as if I have to suffer so will you)

It’s a fairly standard godawful 2d platformer.  So I don’t know if the guy writing this realized “holy fuck this game has nothing to do with domesticated animals who are also secret agents I have to make something up quick” or if the developers took cues from Munch’s Oddysee (And we’re dealing with a development house based in the Netherlands, so who knows what the fuck is going on there) it’s hard to see the espionage connection being made there.

Also this has probably been stated a dozen times already but can we address the part where the title for this movie is a parody of a Bond Girl who’s name basically means “Lots of vagina”?  Because this has been bugging me ever since the posters started coming out.

Also also, I’ve just now realized that the previous Cats and Dogs movie was released back in July 2001.  This franchise predates 9/11!  How in the world is there a second movie?  Was there film shot back in 2002 languishing in some forgotten warehouse that was just recently discovered and edited into a new movie?  What fucking nostalgia can there possibly be for Cats and Dogs 1?  All the kids who were exposed to this movie and don’t harbor long-repressed feelings of resentment toward their parents for that fact are now in high school and all the animals involved are long since dead.

So how desperate does 505 Games and/or Engine Software have to be to pick up this license?  No kid’s going to want to watch this thing in the same Summer that’s giving them Toy Story 3 and Despicable Me, and buying them the videogame of this horrible movie is just reminding your children that you hate them for destroying your life.

Speaking of poorly thought out franchise tie-ins, I want to tell you all about this nightmare I had last night.  In it I was subjected to a world where the guys responsible for bringing Raiden IV and Way of the Samurai 3 to America lost so much money that they were desperate enough to release a videogame based on the Chuck E Cheese lisce– oh god

Chuck E Cheese’s:  Party Game
Publisher:  Reprehensible
Developer:  Detestable
Platform:  Of the Damned


(Also, we’re talking about a videogame based around a restaurant where you let kids lose to play videogames.  Try not to think about this too hard or your mind will turn to a grey sludge and drain into your sinus cavity.)

Dragon Quest 9
Developer:  Level 5/Square Enix
Publisher: Nintendo
Platform:  Nintendo DS

One of the great overlooked storylines of this console generation was how the Enix arm of Squeenix went and gave the entire HD generation a pass and dedicated the biggest videogame franchise in Japan to non-HD hardware.  And no one, not from NeoGAF fanboys to the people in charge of Microsoft or Sony seem to mind this, as they’ve all seemingly contented themselves to receiving the “real” Squeenix franchise in Final Fantasy, despite Final Fantasy 13 taking Square 30 years to produce and probably lost the company more money than if they remade Spirits Within in HD 3D using nothing but a constant stream of disposable Flip cameras.

Oh and FF13 sucked and everyone hated it.  Meanwhile DQ9 received a 40/40 from Famitsu and is seen as the best Dragon Quest since 5.  DQ9 is so good in fact, that Nintendo itself decided to port the game over for an American release and they’re generally terrible at recognizing this sort of thing.

Little league world series baseball 2010
When I first started researching this title I questioned the value in the Little League World Series license, as at some point you’re trying to sell a baseball game to kids who are quite obviously more interested in actually playing baseball.  But it turns out this is a long-running franchise which basically serves to keep alive the same sort of super deformed arcade action baseball found in Neo Geo Baseball All-Stars, which is fine.

Hilariously, although this series has been a Wii/DS stalwart, if you wanted to get in on a new game of Little League World Series Baseball on the Wii, Activision and Now Productions would like to say fuck you, because all you’re getting this year is Little League World Series Double Play, which is World Series 08 and 09 in one box for thirty bucks.  Little League fans haven’t been betrayed this badly since Danny Almonte grew a full beard during the semifinals of the 2001 World Series

NCAA Football 2011
Publisher: Electronic Arts
Developer:  Tiburon Games
Platforms:  PlayStation 3, Xbox 360

A few years back the Atlantic Coast Conference decided it wanted to be known as a major player in NCAA football despite primarily being known as a basketball conference and the general apathy residents of the Carolinas/Georgia/Virginia region felt for college football.  So instead of promoting thier own in-conference football programs, the ACC braintrust went and expanded the conference into Florida and New England, the immediate result of which was that the Miami, Florida State and Boston College football programs all came off the rails and the basketball rivalries that everyone cared about were watered down and weakened as all of the sudden each program had to accommodate travelling the length of the entire Eastern Seaboard.

So that’s why I hate NCAA football–  well that and the league’s utter refusal to adopt a playoff system in the name of protecting the student’s schedules despite willingly opening up the NCCA basketball tournament to an equal number of weeks that would be necessary to complete a rudimentary football tournament.  I may have something other that utter revulsion for the entire system if Chapel Hill had anything resembling a competent football program, but it’s a basketball school and I don’t really care about anything else.  Also while watching college football I can’t shake the feeling that I’m watching a really bad version of regular NFL football and once I start thinking about that I realize that none of these kids are interested in tackling and that this is the reason no one really tackles in the NFL anymore.

Also this sport is directly responsible for making Tim Tebow a millionaire.  Again, I loathe NCAA football.

As far as NCAA Football 2011 goes,  if you’re into this sort of thing you already own it.  It’s like trying to recommend Heart Gold to a Pokemon fan.

Paws and Claws Regal Resort
Publisher:  THQ
Developer:   Independent Arts Software GmbH
Platforms:  Nintendo DS

I wonder what it’s like to work for a THQ developer and have your kickass game idea shot down by the guys at corporate and realize that some asshole in Germany got this greenlit.

I’m done talking about Regal Resort.  Instead I want to talk about this incredible thing which came to light today, where Sean Murray of Hello Games gave a partial list of reasons why publishers turned down his (apparently excellent) Playstation Network title Joe Danger.  Below I have blatantly copy and pasted this list, along with my own attempts to match some of the quotes with likely  publishers:

“Name me one popular game with motorbikes?”
Clearly Codemasters, as they’ve proven quite capable of producing unpopular motorbike games.

”Collecting giant coins feels unrealistic to me”
Sega, showing their habitual aversion for making profit.

”I can see this working as a Facebook app”

Konami, who later in that same day would decide to release Castlevania: Harmony of Despair on Xbox Live Arcade instead of Nintendo DS, Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker on Playstation Portable instead of Xbox Live Arcade and Playstation Network, and Ninety Nine Nights 2 on 360 instead of a gasoline fire.

”We want games that are less about fun right now”

Bobby Kotick of Activision, who then proceeded immediately to gouge the eyes out of a nearby Treyarch employee’s skull.

”Can Joe be a monkey? We like Monkeys”

Going to go with Valve Software here, as they’re the world’s smartest publishing company and it’s one of the few improvements one could conceivably make.

Sorcerer’s Apprentice
Publisher:  Disney Interactive
Developer:  Disney Interactive
Platforms:  Nintendo DS

The entire Sorcerer’s Apprentice project just oozes with slimy cynicism, as it’s quite obviously a reaction to both the Harry Potter phenomenon and Disney’s own prior success with Pirates of the Caribbean.  That said, I can’t be too mad at anything that gives Monica Bellucci work, especially when this

Is the final result.

If you want to actually know anything about the game, I can’t begin to tell you as no credible information exists and the only screenshots provided is inscrutable shit like this:

Something something six wizards something Manhattan something.  That’s not my review, that’s the original design doc.


TRACKMANIA TURBO exists; gives me reason to talk about Hard Driving for the Genesis instead

SAMANTHA SWIFT: THE HIDDEN ROSES OF ATHENA is here to lobotomize the entire adventure game genre!



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