Happy Valentine’s Day. Snow, Nintendo Direct impressions, and updates!

I apologize for the lack of updates this week, with the storm coming through my neck of the woods, I haven’t had the chance to finish this week’s article. I always try to have at least one update a week because I do enjoy blogging, I do enjoy gaming, and I do appreciate everyone who reads, and enjoys my work.

I do have a few things to mention however, not all of them mine but some cool stuff indeed.

There was a Nintendo Direct this week. It delivered pretty much what I thought it would, some updates on Smash Bros., X, Bayonetta 2, Mario Kart, and Donkey Kong for the Wii U, and a few 3DS updates which included Yoshi’s Island, Kirby, a new soccer themed RPG, and a new Steel Diver. We were also surprised with a sequel to NES Remix.  The biggest information that most people are really excited about is that Little Mac will be an actual playable character in Smash this time around, and not an assist trophy.

Honestly, he does look pretty cool. It will be interesting to see how the arcade machine’s punch arrows work in person. Video footage only goes so far. It also makes one wonder if at least one other Punch-Out!! character makes the cut for the game. Who wouldn’t love to see Super Macho Man, Mr. Sandman, or Bald Bull show up in this one?

The other character news that seemed to get a little bit of buzz is the fact that the Koopalings from Super Mario Bros. 3, World, and the NEW series are going to be playable in Mario Kart 8. This should prove interesting since the last three Mario Kart games expanded the roster, and this one is pushing it even further. Like fighting games, unless the emphasis is entirely on the vehicles Mario Kart 8 will have to take balance into consideration. I don’t doubt the game will be great, all of the Mario Karts have been fun.

But even going back to Double Dash on the Gamecube, players constantly bickered over what characters paired with which cars would deliver the most consistent wins. Mario Kart Wii, and Mario Kart 7 eliminated the two rider system, but there was still the question of which rider to use, and which car to use. So it will be interesting to see the reaction fans have when this one comes out.

I was impressed with the combat they showed in X, the upcoming Monolith game. It seems to be going for a sheer Action RPG style, as the combat seemed to be free roam. But like Borderlands, there is a numerical value displayed over each enemy with every hit delivered. This one has been pretty light in terms of information. But what has been shown so far looks very good.

Bayonetta 2’s new trailer showed a little bit more in terms of its plot details, recalling some of the back story of the game’s universe. The action looks fast, and frantic like the original one with all of the flash, style, and witty retorts fans would expect. It’s probably the one of the Wii U bunch I’m most excited to check out.

NES Remix 2 was a little odd in that the trailer makes it seem like an expansion pack. It basically takes the set up from the first one, swaps out the ROMS, and gives you a mirror version of Super Mario Bros. as a bonus.

And of course they hyped Donkey Kong Tropical Freeze, as it’s around the proverbial corner. It honestly looks like it will be a pretty good follow-up to Donkey Kong Country Returns. It remains to be seen if it will be as popular as Nintendo wants it to be. But even if it isn’t, it does look like it’s shaping up to be a platformer that makes a few changes with its formula. Interestingly enough it doesn’t seem to have K. Rool as the antagonist this time around. Instead there seems to be an army of owls hell-bent on ruining Donkey Kong’s banana supply.

If you missed the direct Nintendo’s own Youtube had it recorded, so you can check it out for yourselves.

In other news, my pal Eleven06 started up a twitch account. He’ll be doing them whenever he can. I too have a twitch stream. I hope to get those going up again a  bit more once I get my sound problems ironed out. The first major stream he’s done is a play through of Secret Of The Magic Crystals. You may wonder why he chose it. Well the two of us have a tradition at Christmas, and birthdays where we try to out gag gift each other. About two years ago I was gifted Action Girlz Racing, which I actually reviewed on Retro Retreat.

Since then of course, we have still fired friendly volleys of bad or seemingly bad games at one another. So in the interest of fairness, he did a pretty funny stream on this game. It’s nowhere near the pain of AGR, but it still looks pretty bad. Please note, he isn’t going to solely be streaming shovelware or misfires. He’ll be doing a lot of good games. He’ll also be doing things you might not have heard about, but find interesting.

So do him a solid, and check it out here

Finally, internet Electronica artist Ali Spagnola is doing a pretty interesting promotion on Facebook. She’ll be streaming a concert, and tying it into her drinking game. If you have no date (or even if you do), it should prove to be a fun way to get through Valentine’s Day.

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