Things X 5 – January 21, 2013

by Francois Joron

Last week, while attempting to finally finish ZombiU, I had a Miiverse epiphany… Well, maybe not that much, but still worth mentioning. You see, I was pretty much stuck in a very frustrating area in ZombiU.

Without spoiling too much, let’s just say that for a game where the odds are pretty much against you, that “arena” part strips you of most of your options. Anyway, right before writing that post, I stumbled across that comment in the game’s community:

That guy is obviously pretty good at this game… So, I asked him:

But, here’s the good thing. Not only “Mike” helped me out. But he wrote a detailed walkthrough for that specific part of the game:

I really did not expect that. Someone, took its time to write a step by step to help me survive an hoard of zombies. I was literally jumping in and out of the game then to the Miiverse app, that was all happening live, and it eventually led to my victory.

You see, right here, this is the beauty of Miiverse. Simple as people helping each others in videogames, which in the case of ZombiU, a game about survival, makes even more sense.

Obviously, I made a friend request to Mike (and joined my growing Friends list) and thanked him for all his help. Without him, I wouldn’t have finished the game…

My most prized gaming possession is an authentic 1979 Williams Tri-Zone pinball cabinet sporting a cool 70s sci-fi look. The tactile feeling of a real pinball table is quite unique; the simple task of powering up my table, with a big metal switch found under the hood, always feels otherworldly with the constant buzzing sound and multiple lights blinking all over.

I do remember a time where, while my friends were busy playing Street Fighter II or Mortal Kombat, I was fighting against that really tricky The Addams Family table. Now, with most of the arcade parlors vanished, pinball tables can only sometimes be seen in malls or cineplex although they do have found a sort of virtual renaissance with the likes of Zen Pinball and Pinball Arcade. But, if you have played any pinball tables branded with a popular license recently (The Avengers movie, Transformers) it’s most probably has been made in Stern Pinball’s modest facility in Melrose Park, Illinois. The Verge has a look at one of the last pinball manufactures in the USA along a bunch of very cool hi-res photos. It’s fascinating to see how little has changed in the basic confection of a pinball table.

Speaking of prized possessions, Game Radar listed some of the most expensive recently released games. I wasn’t surprised to see Metroid Prime Trilogy ($200 for a sealed copy) or Xenoblade Chronicles (for around $100), even though the game has only been released for less than a year in the North America – I guess it had a very limited run. But never would I have guessed to find such a weird amount of random licensed titles like American Idol Encore ($120), One Piece: Unlimited Adventure ($180) and even My Horse and Me: Riding for Gold for Wii (at nothing less than $300 for a sealed copy). Many of those games were discontinued shortly after their release but that doesn’t excuse those overblown prices. The most expensive of the bunch? A bad basketball game by EA that was so bad that it wasn’t supposed to be sold; still few copies made it through some retailers back then but now you’ll need $2 295 for a sealed copy on the PS3.

So, I’ve finished Paper Mario Sticker Star a few days ago. It was a fun ride with a few small bumps along the way, environmental puzzles relying to much on hidden blocks comes first to my mind, but it is still nonetheless one of the best title to be found on the 3DS. While the previous titles in the series were heavy on dialogue (remember Super Paper Mario?), delivering much of the series humor throughout text, Sticker Star keeps its dialogue to a minimum and instead adds real life items, or “things” as the game calls it, into Mario’s arsenal to be funny. The best one: a dancing roasted turkey. Check it out, it’s hilarious.

A great random Miiverse moment, Austrian developer Broken Rules (And Yet It Moves, Chasing Aurora) had a bit of a “sad moment” last week: Our beloved BroMii wasn’t human enough to function as an official developer’s Mii, so we had to make a tough decision and let him go. We are sad to announce that he’s departed the Miiverse. We are very sorry about our loss and will miss him greatly. 

Tip: Did you know “official” Miis have a green check in the upper left corner of their icon?

Got anything that could be worth mentioning on Things X 5? You can drop hints on my Twitter account. Also, you are welcome to send me a friend request on my Wii U, my Nintendo Network ID is Jorf-Jorf.


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