LOL Wal-Mart

I found this really amusing. And I don't just mean Kotaku's Mike Fahey's commentary on the issue (which is plenty entertaining on its own). The fact that Wal-Mart is so horribly out of touch with technology and yet desires a notable place within it is fairly humorous.

Via Kotaku: Wal-Mart Suggests Cardboard Packaging, Save Games

Wal-Mart has made the remarkable suggestion to video companies of adding a save game function to video games so that we poor gamers can save our games and turn them off when we go to eat or go to bed, thereby saving power! And not only that, they also make the useful suggestion of adding a standby feature to games! Gee, if only game and console companies would do that for us so that we could do our part in saving the environment! Oh, wait.

Now, in their defense (ouch, that hurt to type), they could simply mean adding more, easier save points. But I find that more and more games I play these days allow you to save pretty much whenever. So...I really can't give them that, either. As for the cardboard packaging...well, then we'd be killing trees.

Mercenaries 2 - Good PR

Edit (10:07 PM): It appears I wasn't the only one to think that this is a great commercial.
Edit 2 (11:04 AM, Friday): EA is giving away free gas now. That's right. Free gas. At a lucky (or unlucky) little gas station in California, mercenaries will be waiting to fill up your car all day today. From a PR standpoint it's a good idea; I mean, it fits the game really well. But I shudder to think of the mass chaos this could cause. I can just imagine a line of cars from one end of Cali to the other, waiting to be filled.

I don't really know much about Pandemic's Mercenaries 2, except that their TV commercial seriously rocks. If you haven't seen it, you can watch it right from the game's website. And you can listen to the incredibly catchy song. Because that's what really makes the commercial. Every time it comes on TV I chuckle or at least grin. I think it's a testament to great marketing that a game I don't give a shit about has grabbed my attention with it's commercial (because, you know, that's what it's supposed to do, but most commercials tend to do that very poorly). Though, unfortunately, even a brilliant commercial won't convince me to buy a game I have no personal interest in playing; which should in no way be a statement to the entertainment value of the game. It's just not a genre I'm into.

I'm not very interested in GTA style FPS games (or indeed FPS games in general, or, well, I guess they're technically 3rd person shooters), but it looks good (graphic wise, and gameplay wise), and it looks like it should be a fun game (lots of majorly destructible environments). Mostly I just want to comment on the excellent marketing. I hope whoever designed the commercial got a good raise.

Mercenaries 2 comes out on August 31st (...which is a Sunday, so I assume it will actually arrive on Friday or Saturday, with a street date for Sunday) for the PS3, PS2 (lol Sony), Xbox 360 and PC. It's rated T for Teen, so I assume the violence (and the language) isn't as graphic as it is in similar games. And there's nothing wrong with that. Battlefield Bad Company has the same rating, and it's plenty entertaining (and they also had some amusing commercials).

"Until I get my vengeance, I will never end this mayhem."


Vampire Knight Season 2 trailer

It's up on the official website. It looks great, and I love the new song ("Rondo" by ON/OFF, the two gorgeous twin brothers who did the opening for the first season). Very catchy. Though Still Doll (the ending from the first season) will probably always be among my favorites. The second season is called Vampire Knight Guilty, which is appropriate, as it's a guilty pleasure of mine. I'm actually a little embarrassed to admit that I watch it (and I read the manga as well, which is a little better as it gives you more story where the anime feels choppy, but I love the animation and the colors of the show). So please don't tell anyone. ^_^

At the end of season 1, pure blooded vampire Kaname murdered another pure blood for a mix of reasons. Partly to protect Yuuki, partly to free himself, partly for her power, and probably partly just because he felt like it.
He then offered his blood to Zero, which, if I understood the mythology correctly, should prevent him from becoming a Level E (although the character who revealed that could have been lying). We'll see, I guess. The manga that's been released in the states hasn't surpassed the anime (they're at about the same place, though I'm sure the anime will out pace it here once it starts up again; it's up to volume 7 in Japan, and volume 5 will come out here in September, but I'm not sure how many total volumes there will end up being).
Anyway, I guess we'll know come October.

I thought I had reviewed the first season, but it seems I didn't get around to it. I'll probably re-watch the first season before October, so I'll try to get a review up of it then.


All Around News 8-24-08

Microsoft is partnering up with Rock the Vote to allow gamers to register to vote on Xbox Live. Which is really great. Although I'm not sure how it will work. I haven't looked into it in detail, so I'm not sure if it will just take your Live information (like off your credit card or something), or if you will have to sit there and type all that shit in with your 360 controller. Which would be annoying. Still, good going getting the vote out to gamers. The gamer group is notoriously known for being categorized as lazy and politically unaware (or uncaring). So this is a great way to get gamers more involved in politics, and remind them that there's an important election coming up. We're a large forceful...uh, force, and we should use that more often.

And speaking of the election, Obama's VP pick has been announced (a little prematurely). He is Joe Biden, a senator from Delaware, and an outspoken critic of Obama's foreign policy experience who has plenty of said experience of his own. It should balance out the ticket rather nicely. Now all McCain needs to do is hire some young upstart (keyword "young") who's more in touch with the world than he is (not hard) to balance out his ticket.

If you've been playing the Fable 2 Pub Games, you may have noticed a small glitch that allowed you to exploit the betting system in Fortune's Tower. You may also have noticed that Lionhead patched (or is patching) the glitch so it can no longer be used.

Square-Enix, upon hearing that one of their Final Fantasy XI bosses took a high-leveled guild 18 hours to fight and they didn't even manage to defeat it (while suffering nausea, exhaustion, dehydration), scaled down their mega bosses to more manageable levels. One wonders why a company that reminds you in the game (or at least in in the book for the game) to remember your work, school, friends and family, ever managed to let such bosses slip past. Don't they play test these things?

If you're a fan of Dungeons and Dragons (check) and you have a Facebook account (double check), then you may be interested in Wizard's D&D application for the social networking site. It's a click based fantasy adventure gamed called D&D Tiny Adventures. I haven't gotten a chance to play with it myself (and I usually stay away from just about every app on Facebook anyway), because as soon as the game went up, its servers immediately crashed. In fact, it seems their servers are still down. The link above is a direct link to the app; here is a link to the game's page.

In other news, The World Ends With You is still fantastic, the Olympics are officially over (China stomped all over us with their gold medals, though I believe the legality of some of them is still in question), Infinite Undiscovery comes out in a couple of weeks, and Please Teacher and Please Twins are two of the most ridiculous and contrived shows I've ever seen.