What Does the Switch Mean for Pokémon?

So, last week, Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon released on the Nintendo 3DS. I’ve been playing through them. Don’t worry, no spoilers here. The reason I mention these games is that these games have been revealed to be the last Pokémon games for the 3DS. Now I’m very new to the Pokémon games due to having neither Nintendo consoles or handheld consoles as a kid. The handhelds were withheld due to a belief of my parents that I would play the games all night. They weren’t wrong, but now I’m an adult and can make my own poor life decisions.

So, a couple years ago I bought a 3DS and played through Pokémon X and Pokémon Alpha Sapphire. Through these games, I completed the Pokédex and got invested in the series. You can read about some of my experiences with going back to play Pokémon Blue in my first post on this site. Anyway, I’m fairly tied to the series now. A friend recently suggested that I post my theories about what the Switch will do to the main Pokémon formula and so, this piece exists.

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Why GTA V Has the Worst Online Community

So, I’ve been playing some GTA V Online on PC recently and … oh, boy. It’s an interesting beast. The last time I played GTA V Online was about four years ago on Xbox 360. At the time I didn’t really see the appeal. Fun stuff was expensive and mostly I just tried to steal a jet from the military base. When I returned earlier this year, I found a lot more to like. There were more varied game modes, especially for someone like me who’s not so good at the combat. I felt like I could have fun in this world that Rockstar had created. Well, almost. There was one thing that hampered my enjoyment quite a bit. Well, two things that are sort of the same side of one coin, those being the griefing and the hacking.

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I Won’t Play Cuphead and That’s Ok

Cuphead is a good game. Cuphead is a hard game. Cuphead is a Microsoft-backed indie game. Cuphead is meticulously drawn in the style of 1930s cartoons. Cuphead was first announced at E3 2013 as a boss rush game. Cuphead was released recently for Xbox One and PC. Cuphead excited me from announcement to sometime before release. Cuphead is a good game, the critics say. Cuphead is all anyone is talking about in games media this week.

Now I’m talking about Cuphead.

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What Does VR Mean for Storytelling?

So, recently I’ve been tinkering with Virtual Reality. With that, I’ve been thinking about the sort of experiences we can convey in VR that wouldn’t be possible in any other medium. Essentially, I’m going to look at three ways you can experience VR and what each can do to tell a story in its own unique way.

 

Headset Only

The most basic version of VR is headset only. This could take the form of a smartphone and a device like Gear VR or Google Cardboard/Daydream, or it could involve the headset for the Oculus Rift or HTC Vive. With this set-up, you are essentially a floating head or camera. So any stories that would use this method would rely on accelerometers to judge what you’re looking at. A couple ideas spring to mind.

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My Attempt to Plot Super Mario Odyssey

So, in a couple months Super Mario Odyssey will release on the Nintendo Switch. Now, at the start of this year, the game was revealed at an event all about the Nintendo Switch. Now I’m not sold on the Switch personally. I just don’t feel like buying a system for a couple exclusives. The portability is exciting but I wish I could play my current library on the Switch, not work at building a new one. However, that’s neither here nor there.

Anyway, the game was revealed with this trailer. Then at E3, this trailer was released. Now, as the Internet tends to do, this spawned quite a few sleuths and theorists who think they have the whole thing figured out. Despite my derision for them, I’m not out to prove them wrong or insist that I’m right. In fact, this piece is a deliberate attempt to be wrong in my speculation. Being wrong can be fun. Sometimes exploring ideas with no expectation of being right can lead to some interesting insights.

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A Look Back at L.A. Noire

So, recently I’ve been getting back into L.A. Noire. I reckon I first played the game back in 2012. So, five years on from my original playthrough of the game, how does the game hold up? Also, what was the effect of L.A. Noire on the wider games industry, as at the time of release it was both wildly ambitious and occupied a slice of the cultural landscape for that year.

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