Nintendo of America’s Reggie Fils-Aime Announces Retirement

File this under news I didn’t see coming. Nintendo of America President and Chief Operating Officer Reggie Fils-Aime announced on Thursday that he’s going to be retiring. The Reggielution is scheduled to come to an end in April so he can spend more time with his family and friends.

As many of you know, Reggie has been a legend at Nintendo ever since he made his debut at E3 2004 where he first earned the nickname Regginator. He’s been involved with some of the most memorable moments at the company from his famous “My Body Is Ready” line, to the E3 Puppets Direct from a few years back, and many more. I mean, how could you not like the man once he said this after being introduced to the public for the first time:

My name is Reggie. I’m about kickin’ ass, I’m about takin’ names, and we’re about makin’ games.

How many executives that you know talk like that? While he may have worm a suit, he didn’t always act like a suit and to me, that was really refreshing. He brought a bold personality and charm with him, something which wasn’t always seen from a company like Nintendo which had more of a prim and proper image to it. Being bold, brash, and loud wasn’t normal for them. In a way, he kind of felt like a representation of us and my fear is that we’re now going to lose that aspect of Nintendo.

Speaking of, who is actually taking over? Bowser.

No really, the current head of sales at Nintendo is named Doug Bowser. I guess it can’t get much more Nintendo than that, right?

I’ll be honest with you all, I’m a bit saddened by the news. Personally, it feels like Reggie hasn’t been around for as long as he has been, especially when you look at other high ranking members of Nintendo like Miyamoto. These guys are basically lifers so to have a very public figure in Reggie choosing to walk away at 57 seems really weird.

But hey, the fact that he can leave this all behind at what many would consider an early age is a testament to the work he’s put in over the years.

Reggie, thank you for all that you’ve done over the years and know that you will be missed, especially in all of the clever E3 promotional videos. Enjoy the time with friends and family, you’ve certainly earned it.

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Crackdown 3 and Where The Franchise Goes From Here

After a much longer wait then what Microsoft likely envisioned, Crackdown 3 finally arrived this past week. Originally announced back in 2014 and intended for launch in 2016, the game was hindered by multiple delays, development problems, as well as studios and high profile developers leaving the project.

Sadly, I think these issues have had a BIG impact on what the game ultimately ended up becoming. I can’t really fault Sumo Digital, as they likely did the best they could under the tougher than normal circumstances. Original Crackdown creator, Dave Jones, left to join Epic Games once Cloudgine was acquired. Not only that, the other developer, Regeant Games, eventually dropped out and became a consulting studio, leaving Sumo to basically handle everything on their own. Probably not what they originally signed up for.

crackdown 3 logo

I mean, Crackdown 3 is basically more Crackdown. You’ll likely already know what that means to you. It really doesn’t do much of anything to advance the franchise forward. You’re still a super cop fighting cartoonishly villainous people in a hierarchy style way. You cause damage and chaos to lure out these bad guys and take them out one by one until you reach the top baddie.

The game looks like something from an earlier era and utilized mechanics that were once considered to be unique but are now outdated. Again, for a game that was supposed to launch years ago, it’s likely something that couldn’t have been helped at this point.

You still collect orbs to become stronger and ultimately, the majority of the guns you find will never mean much outside of rocket launchers. You’ll find a great loadout and likely never change. I do appreciate that they’ve added elemental effects (fire, electricity, acid, cold) and each time you level a core skill you get a new ability, passive, or weapon.

For example, while Agility will increase your speed and jump height like the previous games, now you’ll gain new abilities like double jump, air dashing, and more. It’s a simple, but nice touch. It also renders driving to be essentially useless. Why drive when I can leap across the city like a quasi-superhero?

crackdown 3 agility orb

At the end of the day, I kept coming back to the idea that Crackdown 3 is the video game equivalent of comfort food. Does it push the franchise forward? No. Is it likely to win any end of the year awards? I’d have to say no. At the very least, it’s a nice change of pace and it’ll likely bring you back to the days when games were a lot simpler. Crackdown 3 hands you a gun, lets you get crazy as Terry Crews, and gives you a city to run around in. As a video game, it’s…fine.  That’s the long and short of it.

Thankfully, this game is apart of the ridiculously good deal that is Xbox Game Pass, so if you have that, I think Crackdown 3 is worth your time. If you need some sort of palate cleanser from what’s currently out there, then Crackdown 3 has you covered.

So far, we’ve had three games that all largely play the same. Considering the lukewarm reception and mediocre reviews, it’s clear that in order for a fourth to succeed, things will need to change. I put together a small list of ideas as to where the franchise should go from here. Enjoy!

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Sunday Video Round Up: Feb 10 – 16

Hey, would you look at that? It’s Sunday, which means it is now time for an all-new entry in the weekly Video Round-Up series. It was a big week for new trailers (thanks Nintendo!) so there’s a lot of new stuff to take a look at below. Here’s a small teaser of everything below the jump.

Nintendo finally gave Switch owners something to salivate over this week, as their first half (mostly) of 2019 direct showcased a plethora of games. Fire Emblem: Three Kingdoms, Super Mario Maker 2, and Astra Chain got people hyped before the reveal of The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening shocked everyone.

While the PC version has seen a bit of controversy regarding its exclusivity deal, the beautiful looking Metro Exodus has finally arrived. To commemorate the moment, the launch trailer is aiming to give you a small taste of what the game brings to the table.

I’ve also got new videos for Resident Evil 2, SoulCalibur VI, Jump Force, and so much more after the break! The full list of videos awaits you after the jump…

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The Promise and Potential of Tom Clancy’s The Division 2

This past weekend, I was able to jump into The Division 2’s private beta. Now, many of you may already know that I was a big fan of the first game, and was even pulled back into the experience after 6+ months away from it.

Part of the reason why it was easy to come back was due to the tireless work of Massive Entertainment, the studio behind these games. The team continued to plug away at the game, releasing huge updates which not only overhauled and fixed things that players didn’t like but also added swaths of new content and zones, like the West Side Piers.

the division 2 logo

That level of dedication and care to keep improving the user experience seems to have carried over into the sequel. Based on what we heard at E3 2018, The Division 2 looks to be a big step up over the first game, correcting many of the things that were found lacking at launch. This private beta would be the first time that many players could get a taste of that promise, including a look at some of the end game material like Invaded Missions, PvP conflict, and the completely renovated Dark Zone…or zones in this case.

The beta was absolutely massive, especially when compared to the recent Anthem demo, so let’s get to talking about what worked and what didn’t for The Division 2’s private beta.

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The Return of Titanfall?

When I initially wrote about the debut of Apex Legends, I lamented the fact that it wasn’t Titanfall (even if Apex takes place in that universe) and it seemed as though Titanfall 3 wasn’t coming as a result.

I’ll be honest, I’m thrilled for Respawn and the continued momentum that Apex Legends continues to see day after day. Their take on Battle Royale is well made and you can absolutely see that the team has done their homework. They’ve added a number of smart features such as the intuitive ping system, which lets players who don’t want to use a mic still accurately communicate with their squad. It’s fantastic and super easy to use. You can highlight nearly anything from a location to travel in, items to pick up, or even where enemies have been spotted.

Couple that with fantastic gunplay (basically ripped straight from Titanfall 2), a varied and diverse set of heroes to select from, and the ability to revive a teammate and you have a recipe for success.

Interestingly enough, the success of Apex Legends has also had a small impact on the now over two-year-old shooter, Titanfall 2. Players numbers have increased across all platforms, and I’m definitely included in that. I’ve reinstalled and jumped on a few Titanfall 2 matches recently as well. Honestly, the game is still outrageously fun and I’m really happy to be back on it.

PSA: Titanfall 2 is still a fantastic game and is absolutely worth picking up. 

Considering everything we heard about Titanfall 3 and the fact that Apex was essentially born out of its ashes, I didn’t expect to hear much of anything about the franchise for a while, at least. Well, it seems that Respawn has a few more tricks up its sleeve.

Here’s a bit of surprising news for you:

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Sunday Video Round Up: Feb 3 – 9

It’s Sunday, which means an all-new edition of the Video Round Up. Per usual, I’m bringing you all of the latest trailers and gameplay videos from the past seven days. I feel like I’m saying this every week, but there’s a lot to get to so here’s a small look at what’s waiting for you below the break.

Surprise! Respawn Entertainment (of Titanfall fame) not only announced their latest title but they released it at the same time (No, not Star Wars: Jedi Fallen Order)! Apex Legends is their take on the Battle Royale genre. While taking place in that universe, the game mixes the familiar last man/squad standing gameplay, adds some really innovative new tweaks and wraps it all in that smooth and satisfying Titanfall style movement.

Mortal Kombat 11 also had a pretty big week, holding its first official Kombat Kast since the reveal event back in January. In addition to the return of D’Vorah, Ed Boon revealed the latest trailer for another classic klassic character making their return to the playable roster of MK11.

I’ve also got new videos for Anthem, The Division 2, Crackdown 3, and so much more after the break! The full list of videos awaits you after the jump…

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My Hopes for Anthem Following The Demos

Man, what a time to be a fan of looter shooters! The Division 2 is on the way, Warframe continues to get better over time, Destiny 2 is still getting consistent updates, and now we have Anthem on approach.

I’ve been itching to write about Anthem for a while, ever since my time with the closed alpha back in December. Plus, the VIP demo from a couple of weeks ago had so many technical hiccups and glitches that I just didn’t feel comfortable talking about it until I had another chance with it. Thankfully, the open demo managed to fix many of those issues and I got plenty of hands-on time with the game.

Anthem Logo

With that said, this latest demo had a lot of things that are ultimately going to be changed or altered in some way upon full release and there were at least a few problems that BioWare confirmed are no longer an issue in some of the newer builds of the game. I’m looking at you super slow movement speed in Fort Tarsis!

All in all, it’s difficult to really talk about knowing all of this, so instead of offering my thoughts on every aspect of the demo, I’m also going to weave in some thoughts on what I’m hoping to see when the full game launches.

Regardless, here are my thoughts. Let’s dive in!

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