Archive for March, 2015

60 Changes in Zelda Majora’s Mask 3D From the N64 Original

I totally, completely underestimated how long it would take to write this. Blame Monster Hunter.

So I finished The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask 3D on 3DS a couple weeks back, and my oh my, it was quite an experience. This is a game I once called my favourite of all time, so I wanted to make sure I devoted the proper amount of time to revisiting the whole thing. After 36 hours of gameplay (according to the Activity Log app) I had completed the Bomber’s Notebook, collected all the heart pieces and beaten the final boss. As soon as the cartridge was out of my 3DS, what was the first thing that comes to mind about the game?

Well, they sure did make a lot of changes to Majora’s Mask for this remake.

You see as it turns out, ever since Nintendo partnered with co-developer Grezzo to release the 3D remaster of Ocarina of Time in 2011, they were apparently working on this follow-up. Even as Zelda fans went back and forth on the idea that a remake of MM even existed, the developers were tweaking away, rebuilding the creepy, unique game piece by piece. But unlike with Ocarina of Time, which only received a sprinkling of non-visual changes, Eiji Aonuma and his team saw in Majora’s Mask a game with some issues, particularly with regards to a quest structure that may not have been friendly for the generation of gamers who missed out on the N64 original.

As a result, Majora’s Mask 3D is one of the most comprehensive remakes I’ve ever played. It’s still pretty much the same game, don’t get me wrong, but while playing I managed to jot down no less than sixty changes I think are worth mentioning, ranging from miniscule to massive, over the N64 original. And if you ask me, the vast majority of them are for the better. If you’ve played the game before and are tossing up whether to play it again in this new form, this list may help you decide on a purchase. If you’re new to MM, most of these probably won’t make any sense to you, and I may end up in spoiler territory. Regardless, here they are, in the rough order I discovered them.

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Mega Ultra Blast Cast Ep.38 – Introducing Baby Barlow


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It’s a special, limited edition sort of time, because in the absence of Delaney my brother Cameron joins Shane and I on Episode 38 of the Mega Ultra Blast Cast, where we discuss the best superpower, Kinect horror stories, memories of Mario Party, loose wizard physics and a tiny bit of League of Legends. We also revisit the topic of the rise and fall and maybe-rise-again of Square Enix, why the latest Monster Hunter game may be the best one yet and the sheer ludicrousness of Starwhal. Enjoy.

If you feel so inclined, go for a run, take a scenic drive, jazz up your afternoon commute or just curl up on the couch and play some games while you listen to the opinions of three mix-and-matched Sydneysiders.

You can play the whole episode right off this page if you like:


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Or you can go to the Soundcloud site/app and listen from there:
https://soundcloud.com/mega-ultra-blast-cast/mubc-38-introducing-baby-barlow

(To download and listen offline, follow the link and then click the download tab)

As always if you enjoy what you hear please share the cast with your friends – Until next time!

Ahead: 2015

OK, Oscars are done, our stupid movie release schedule overlap with the USA should be catching up, and the dry months of videogame releases are coming to a close. Let’s get hyped.

Well, here we are at the real beginning of a new commercial year of entertainment media, and it is astonishingly clear in terms of confirmed release dates or windows, particularly in light of the murky waters of the last two uncertain years. If I see one theme running through the suite of upcoming movies and videogames, it’s “Anything 2014 can do, 2015 can do bigger”. Yes, there are some real giants waiting to be awoken in 2015, most of which have not reached saturation point with audiences just yet. And they look positively mouth-watering. The question remains, however – will bigger equate to better in 2015? Here are my top ten most anticipated movies and games for this year.

NOTE: Because I’ve already devoted an entire post to Nintendo’s 2015 lineup, I’m going to disqualify them from my games list. Because, well, that wouldn’t be fair.

MOVIES

10. Chappie


Might as well start with a movie that’s actually really close to coming out in cinemas – next week, in fact. I certainly wasn’t alone in enjoying Neill Blomkamp’s Best Picture-nominated science fiction racism metaphor District 9, and I was more positive on his wealth gap themed follow-up Elysium than most people. But I do have to admit that the movies had a very similar feel, and from the looks of things Chappie is very much cut from the same cloth. It will need to do something pretty cool to stand out, and I look forward to finding out if it does.

9. Ant-Man


As the only superhero movie of 2015 that isn’t a sequel or reboot, Marvel’s Ant-Man could go one of two ways – it could expand Marvel’s ever-expanding Cinematic Universe with yet another breakout character, or it could flop and finally give the anti-superhero subsection of film critics some real ammunition. Losing a director as unique as Edgar Wright must not have been easy for the production, and it has everything to prove. Yet Marvel Studios has yet to really let fans down, and so Ant-Man well and truly has my attention.

8. The Good Dinosaur


After three consecutive years of huge (and really good) Boxing Day releases, Disney Animation Studios is taking a well deserved year off in 2015 to let Pixar take the 3D animation spotlight, with a pair of films to boot. The Good Dinosaur is half of said pair, and it seems to be taking an unorthodox approach to the well-worn prehistoric setting of animated family movies, asking the question of how things might have gone had dinosaurs lived alongside early humans with sufficiently less intelligence than themselves. It’s the less interesting of the two 2015 Pixar outings for me, but I’m ready to be optimistic about Pixar again, so bring it on.

7. Tomorrowland


Speaking of Disney, George Clooney’s Tomorrowland is also coming this year. Intentionally shrouded in an advertising campaign that seems to be giving nothing away, Tomorrowland is refreshingly mysterious for a Disney movie at the time of writing – scratch that – it’s refreshingly mysterious for any big movie in today’s day and age at the time of writing, and it seems poised to deliver a wondrous fantasy experience. I just hope that was the last of the trailers.

6. Jurassic World


Though I wouldn’t call myself the world’s biggest Jurassic Park fanatic, I definitely enjoyed the movies as a kid, and fourth film in the series Jurassic World is generating so much hype at the moment that it is taking on “event movie” status, and therefore attracting me like a moth to a flame. It hits right around the middle of the year and seems to be filled with set piece moments ripe for discussion. Oh, and Chris Pratt. count me in.

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