Londragon

N-E Café Podcast

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Ah OK @Nicktendo now I understand the reference, for some reason I either completely forgot about that video or haven't seen it in a long time. :D

I might check out that Super Mario All-Stars video later, it's really great to have a lot of the contents of those old videogame VHS tapes available online now. :)

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N-E Café [014] Very Cross Animals has arrived at all good podcast providers.

This week;

The 14th N-E Café Podcast is full to the brim with Lee Davies and Nick Lone.  As always we talk about the recent Nintendo News; the winner of our Game Giveaway (Hypercharge: Unboxed); games we’ve been playing, featuring Timber Man Vs, OlliOlli, and Wargroove; and this week’s Topic of the Week, the Animal Crossing Fiasco.

This is episode 14 of the N-E Café Podcast, an N-Europe Podcast. Enjoy!

 

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Thoughts from this week's episode.

  • There were rumours a while back now that Miyamoto really liked what he seen of Plok! when he first came across it and that it was one of his favourite games on the SNES
  • I think Sora is a valid selection for representation in Smash Bros. They've been 4 Kingdom Hearts games on Nintendo systems ( Chain of Memories, 358/2 Days, Re:Coded and Dream Drop Distance ) all of which are vital parts of the the KH story. The PlayStation, not counting HD remasters/ports, has also had 4 entries. The series has had a strong representation on Nintendo platforms. 
  • EA have tried a few times to release games that have no microtransactions. These were part of their indie initiative named EA Originals. A part from the original Unravel game and A Way Out, I don't think they generated a lot of buzz or sales. Sea of Solitude and Fe were released with little fanfare. Yeah, EA do embrace scummy practices but they do also try other approaches with these types of games. Sadly, they fall by the wayside and are often overlooked. I'm also guilty of passing up on such titles.
  • I got a laugh out of Lee's reaction when he realised that it is Greg who's not keen on Animal Crossing and Nick actually likes the series. This will make for a more interesting conversation...or words to that effect. :laughing:
  • Like Nick, Animal Crossing is also a game I usually play on my own. I did play with members of N-E over the years on the various versions but for the most part it is a single player experience for me. I have such a weird relationship with the series. I imported the US version on the Gamecube, ordered an eReader and bought a load of the cards for it. I spent ages on that game and loved it to bits. Every other entry after that i've played but I usually get bored after playing it for a month or so. I'm not a gamer who likes a game that's a slow burn and feel like the game limits me to what I can actually do. I still continue to buy the things though.
  • I think the lack of cloud saves is an issue. We are now paying for an online service and part of the service is that we are able to use the cloud save feature. We have a fair few examples of games that don't support such a feature and this game is yet another one of those games. With the reduction of NES/SNES games (we no longer get them every month) and now another big release not supporting a feature that we are paying for, it once again devalues Nintendo's online subscription service to the point where all we are actually paying for is the ability to play online, which is even worse when you think that they don't use dedicated servers.
  • I do agree with the both of you about the lack of clear messaging and communication from Nintendo in regards to the matter. The local co-op point that Lee made is one that myself and others on here have made many time sin the past in regards to Nintendo's attitude towards online. Sadly, it's their way or nothing at all.
  • You had R4 cards for your DS....:nono: 
  • An upgraded Switch model is the biggest fear when it comes to the Animal Crossing save. For those who do upgrade, are said people going to have to start from scratch with their island/town? For a game that requires you to play all year round and put in lots of hours in order to get the most out of it, a better solution than what they have presented is definitely needed. I have yet to pick up a Lite and was honestly thinking of picking one up (especially as they are down to £169 at the moment) for Animal Crossing but not being able to transfer the save back and forth between my main console and Lite means i'm not going to bother.
  • I'm still baffled as to why a Nintendo online subscription is needed for the whole transfer process that Nintendo have said would be used if a Switch breaks. It's your save and it's essentially being held at ransom until you pay. 
  • I imagine the mobile app will be used for voice chat seeing as the Wii Speak was used for the bants on the Wii. Using the app for purchasing clothes and furniture is a good shout by Lee. I won't be using it though as my phone no longer supports the app. :( 
  • I think it was Darksnowman who was the other person playing Animal Crossing online with us. Wii Speak was awful. Look at you, Nick remembering my Geordie accent after all of these years. How touching. :D 
  • Luckily, just this morning, the ESRB rating has been altered and the listing no longer shows anything about in-game purchases. Hopefully it was just a mistake that has now been removed. Once again though, this information is out there and the messaging about the game is getting very messy. Nintendo really need to get a Direct out and address all of the issues that are surrounding the release.
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Well done Sam & Mike for getting Plok!

I’ve never played it, but here was my clearly wrong thinking from those clues last week:

• Super Mario All-Stars: based on that VHS, but clearly those tunes weren’t from it.

• Battletoads: again featured on that VHS and developed by Rare. Completely different style of sound though.

• Wheel of Fortune: Rare developed a NES game and the SNES version actually thanks “Dave Lister” in the credits (Craig Charles’ character in Red Dwarf).  I thought this would be an amazing link, but sadly the game contains a grand total of just one tune in it!

• Super Robot Wars: since Craig Charles used to present Robot Wars when I watched it... sadly nothing else about that game was like the tunes or associated with Rare.

 

Still, I enjoyed the clues and my laughably failed attempts to work it out! Kudos to Nick, plus Sam & Mike for being much smarter & more knowledgeable than me!

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I've just finished listening to this weeks Podcast, excellent stuff @londragon and @Nicktendo :D

I very much enjoyed the segment about Animal Crossing, very fair and balanced on the topical stuff about the upcoming game but what I really enjoyed was the discussion about the earlier Animal Crossing titles, especially Nick recounting tales about having multiple towns on various memory cards, trading the fruits between the towns and having a 'best' town plus a 'reject' town based on which animals were in it...because we might as well admit it, we all have our favourite Animal Crossing residents. :p

Also, you got a laugh out of me with the Podcast EXTRAS! again so well played. :grin:

Keeping with the theme, I'm going to ask a question for next weeks podcast as I think this deserves some deeper discussion...

Which are your favourite animal residents from each of the Animal Crossing games you've played?

You could even turn it into some kind of game if you really wanted to, as certain residents were introduced across different games, it might be interesting to see which ones you remember from the various titles... I'm mainly referring to mainline titles as well, not really counting the spin-offs or anything mobile-based unless you wanted to include them. ::shrug:

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11 hours ago, Hero-of-Time said:

Skies of Arcadia.

Correct! Thanks to @S.C.G for choosing the music this week! 
 

8 hours ago, Hero-of-Time said:
  • There were rumours a while back now that Miyamoto really liked what he seen of Plok! when he first came across it and that it was one of his favourite games on the SNES

As far as I know, this is true. He was a big fan of it back in the day, and I'm guessing that's why Ninty published it in Europe and why it received a bit of a marketing push through official channels.

8 hours ago, Hero-of-Time said:
  • EA have tried a few times to release games that have no microtransactions. These were part of their indie initiative named EA Originals. A part from the original Unravel game and A Way Out, I don't think they generated a lot of buzz or sales. Sea of Solitude and Fe were released with little fanfare. Yeah, EA do embrace scummy practices but they do also try other approaches with these types of games. Sadly, they fall by the wayside and are often overlooked. I'm also guilty of passing up on such titles.

This is true, I was interested in both Unravel 2 and A Way Out (don't own a next-gen console). I don't understand why they don't push these games and market them very well. It's almost as if they don't care. Unravel 2 has been fairly cheap on the e-shop, but I still haven't bothered picking it up. I'm not against EA Originals in principle. In fact, it would be good if they helped fund indie games. Something still feels lacklustre about it though, almost like they do it through gritted teeth. 

8 hours ago, Hero-of-Time said:
  • Like Nick, Animal Crossing is also a game I usually play on my own. I did play with members of N-E over the years on the various versions but for the most part it is a single player experience for me. I have such a weird relationship with the series. I imported the US version on the Gamecube, ordered an eReader and bought a load of the cards for it. I spent ages on that game and loved it to bits. Every other entry after that i've played but I usually get bored after playing it for a month or so. I'm not a gamer who likes a game that's a slow burn and feel like the game limits me to what I can actually do. I still continue to buy the things though.

As I mentioned in the cast, AC on the GC was amazing. I loved every second of it. I had the US version imported (pretty sure it came out a year before the EU version). I'd been interested since seeing Animal Forest on the N64 and was gutted when that didn't make it out back then, so I snapped this up as soon as I could. Again, as I said, the DS and Wii versions didn't really do enough new for me (including removing some stuff I liked about the GC game), but they won me back over in a massive way with New Leaf. It's by far the best in the series and it's my most played 3DS game by a long way, spanning about 3-4 years of regular play. I love how much of a slow burn it is - to still be unlocking stuff after a couple of years and hundreds of hours is really appealing to me in this game. I like the fact that I can ignore it for a couple of months, come back for an event and pick up where I left off. There's no pressure to constantly play. 

8 hours ago, Hero-of-Time said:
  • You had R4 cards for your DS....:nono: 

My mum did :heh: I barely played the DS. I do have a soft-modded Wii though, but that is mainly for the SNES / GBA games I'd sold over the years :weep: and for running Wii / GC games off a HDD instead of a disk.

8 hours ago, Hero-of-Time said:
  • An upgraded Switch model is the biggest fear when it comes to the Animal Crossing save. For those who do upgrade, are said people going to have to start from scratch with their island/town? For a game that requires you to play all year round and put in lots of hours in order to get the most out of it, a better solution than what they have presented is definitely needed. I have yet to pick up a Lite and was honestly thinking of picking one up (especially as they are down to £169 at the moment) for Animal Crossing but not being able to transfer the save back and forth between my main console and Lite means i'm not going to bother.
  • I'm still baffled as to why a Nintendo online subscription is needed for the whole transfer process that Nintendo have said would be used if a Switch breaks. It's your save and it's essentially being held at ransom until you pay. 

Yeah, I've said enough about this now, but I find it baffling, and the point about upgrading / buying a new Switch is one that particularly sticks out. 

8 hours ago, Hero-of-Time said:
  • I think it was Darksnowman who was the other person playing Animal Crossing online with us. Wii Speak was awful. Look at you, Nick remembering my Geordie accent after all of these years. How touching. :D 

 They were good times! Simpler times, for sure :laughing: If I do end up getting the game down the line, I would give the online chat stuff a go... once. I'm not expecting much though. 

6 hours ago, WackerJr said:

Well done Sam & Mike for getting Plok!

I’ve never played it, but here was my clearly wrong thinking from those clues last week:

• Super Mario All-Stars: based on that VHS, but clearly those tunes weren’t from it.

• Battletoads: again featured on that VHS and developed by Rare. Completely different style of sound though.

• Wheel of Fortune: Rare developed a NES game and the SNES version actually thanks “Dave Lister” in the credits (Craig Charles’ character in Red Dwarf).  I thought this would be an amazing link, but sadly the game contains a grand total of just one tune in it!

• Super Robot Wars: since Craig Charles used to present Robot Wars when I watched it... sadly nothing else about that game was like the tunes or associated with Rare.

 

Still, I enjoyed the clues and my laughably failed attempts to work it out! Kudos to Nick, plus Sam & Mike for being much smarter & more knowledgeable than me!

Well, I did try to make the clues obscure, but you have some nice ideas there - particularly about Super Robot Wars. One of the tunes I included does appear, pretty clearly, in the video, but I guess it's one of those things you had to have it as a child to really get the reference. :D

1 hour ago, S.C.G said:

I've just finished listening to this weeks Podcast, excellent stuff @londragon and @Nicktendo :D

I very much enjoyed the segment about Animal Crossing, very fair and balanced on the topical stuff about the upcoming game but what I really enjoyed was the discussion about the earlier Animal Crossing titles, especially Nick recounting tales about having multiple towns on various memory cards, trading the fruits between the towns and having a 'best' town plus a 'reject' town based on which animals were in it...because we might as well admit it, we all have our favourite Animal Crossing residents. :p

Also, you got a laugh out of me with the Podcast EXTRAS! again so well played. :grin:

Keeping with the theme, I'm going to ask a question for next weeks podcast as I think this deserves some deeper discussion...

Which are your favourite animal residents from each of the Animal Crossing games you've played?

You could even turn it into some kind of game if you really wanted to, as certain residents were introduced across different games, it might be interesting to see which ones you remember from the various titles... I'm mainly referring to mainline titles as well, not really counting the spin-offs or anything mobile-based unless you wanted to include them. ::shrug:

Well IF a direct is announced next Tuesday, I'm sure we'll have a section dedicated to predictions, and with AC likely to heavily feature, I can give me two pennies on the "best" characters. Not sure that'll be a question for Greg though :cheeky:

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With me mentioning EA Originals this morning, I now see that Fe is actually on sale this week on the eShop. I may finally pick up one of EA's indie games.

As for Greg picking AC characters, maybe he can say who is favourite riders are in Wave Race instead. :p 

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18 hours ago, Hero-of-Time said:

Thoughts from this week's episode.

  • EA have tried a few times to release games that have no microtransactions. These were part of their indie initiative named EA Originals.

Picked up Unravel 2 on the Switch, and it really is a well-thought out, and beautifully aesthetic looking game.  The little background nods to a child's adventure happening at prescribed locations adds to the charm and danger.

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And it's really good news to finally hear that microtransactions won't be taking place.  But once again this isn't coming from Nintendo, but from ratings boards.

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Halfway through the podcast, I'm miffed H-o-T already blurted Skies of Arcadia. Truly, he's the Domingo to my Vyse.

But also, that rumour that Disney said no to Sora in Smash... It is absolutely baseless. From what I heard, it came from some podcaster theorizing on what would happen if Nintendo ever asked. A couple of twitter threads later, it's suddenly a "rumour". For the record, the "Dante is the 5th DLC character" rumour also started in a very similar fashion. That's the world we live in.

As with every modern day problem, I personally blame Twitter.

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9 minutes ago, Jonnas said:

As with every modern day problem, I personally blame Twitter.

I'd pay good money for the likes of Facebook and Twitter to crash and burn.

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5 minutes ago, Hero-of-Time said:

I'd pay good money for the likes of Facebook and Twitter to crash and burn.

source.gif

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We’re going to hold a predictions Podcast this week, for the inevitable Direct happening this month, or March, or whenever. So, thought I’d ask all of you listeners what your one major prediction would be. Just keep it to one though, and you can make it as outlandish as you want.
I’ll mention them all on the podcast and get everyone’s reactions to your Nintendo gaming desires.

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7 minutes ago, londragon said:

We’re going to hold a predictions Podcast this week, for the inevitable Direct happening this month, or March, or whenever. So, thought I’d ask all of you listeners what your one major prediction would be. Just keep it to one though, and you can make it as outlandish as you want.
I’ll mention them all on the podcast and get everyone’s reactions to your Nintendo gaming desires.

I predict... A game will be shown.

There! I win!

Oh fine, It's quite close to E3 so I don't expect something like Bayo 3 or Metroid Prime 4.

I think we're gonna see some kind of WiiU port. Gut feeling says Pikmin 3.

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3 hours ago, londragon said:

So, thought I’d ask all of you listeners what your one major prediction would be. 

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I've now finished listening to all of the episodes apart from the PodPals/Demon's Crest episode. I haven't played the game yet and would like to go in fresh before giving it a listen. I've enjoyed all of the episodes except for one...

Episode 7 (Top 10 games of 2019) was a REALLY hard listen for me. Greg didn't seem bothered by the whole thing, Sam was listing games that had only been played a couple of hours each (was shocked to hear that his top game didn't even get played at all) and it seemed Nick hadn't played much on the Switch from 2019. I actually want to know what the game named Pass is because he kept selecting that as his top games. :laughing: It really should have just been Lee's Top 10 Games Of 2019 as I think he was the only one who actually had a list of games he had played, finished and enjoyed. However, I did respect Nick not putting games in his list that he hadn't put enough time into. With his list I think it would have been fine to actually add the games he played that weren't released this year. Provided that it was the first time playing through the game, I do think their is value in listing and discussing games that didn't get released in the year and I certainly would have liked to hear his thoughts on them.

Sorry to be negative but for me, if you are going to make this kind of list/episode then the credits should have at least rolled on the game before entry is allowed, unless it's something like an online game that is just there to jump into for quick play sessions. It would be like Empire magazine doing a top 10 films of the year feature but only having watched the first hour of each film. It did feel like the episode/lists were a little forced. I think because a lot of sites and podcasts do these kinds of lists, everyone thinks they need to do them as well. I think that outside of Lee's list the rest of the guys should have just picked a game or two that they finished and enjoyed and just discussed those, rather than trying to force the issue.

Sadly, this episode did highlight just how this place has changed and how out of place I feel on here at times. The general feeling on the podcast was that 2019 was an awful year for games, with nothing decent to play. I thought 2019 was a fantastic year for gaming. I played through over 120 games and yet despite this I can probably count on one hand the times I was actually able to have a proper conversation on here with people who were also playing the game. It goes back to what I've said for the past couple of years now, as a place for having gaming banter, this forum does seem to be slowly fading away.

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1 hour ago, Hero-of-Time said:

I played through over 120 games and yet despite this I can probably count on one hand the times I was actually able to have a proper conversation on here with people who were also playing the game. It goes back to what I've said for the past couple of years now, as a place for having gaming banter, this forum does seem to be slowly fading away.

Are there any (gaming) forums out there that still have in-depth discussions about games? My general feeling is that people just don't talk at length anymore on forums. I have been active on a couple of forums (this one, plus two music forums) and they all suffered from the same.

The reason why I think is a combination of factors. We grew up with online forums but now have a fulltime job, less gaming time in general let alone time to put whole epistles on forums. The new generation is all about short and snappy, use other media and in general have a much shorter attention span so online forums don't do it for them (hence the lack of new members). They prefer bitesize video content, or a few short lines on Twitter or a Facebook group that hopefully give confirmation to their opinion.

Those who do want to talk about their passion (in this case gaming) shift to a different format. For me it is writing a review or a special for the main site. Others record a podcast, or make a playthrough video for YouTube.

For this forum personally, I also feel like I don't always have much to contribute. If I play a game a lot it is probably for a review, otherwise I tend to play slow and forum discussion will have moved on and I feel like saying "oh yeah, I also finally finished the game and I liked this and this" just adds nothing to the discussion anymore. Plus there are too many games out and not enough active users to get a discussion going as people are busy playing something else. Finally, seeing topics end up in personal feuds sometimes just makes me think, why bother?

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2 hours ago, Hero-of-Time said:

 I played through over 120 games and yet despite this I can probably count on one hand the times I was actually able to have a proper conversation on here with people who were also playing the game.

To be fair, you plow through each game in a matter of hours while others take months :p 

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2 hours ago, Hero-of-Time said:

I played through over 120 games

All good points there HOT. 

But, 120 :bowdown:

I don't know the total of games I played last year, but this year I'm starting to number the games I've finished and I'm up to 12 so far.  That reminds me, I need to update the Gaming Diary.

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Thanks for the honest feedback. All very valid points. We did consider doing a "best games we'd played in 2019" list, which maybe would have been better in hindsight. 

The problem for me was the fact that up until September I was working far too much and didn't have much time for gaming. When I did, I usually stuck on Rocket League as that's my go-to game to relax and kill time. The second problem is the inflated price of physical games where I am living. I only picked up Mario Maker 2 and Link's Awakening physical last year until I got home at Xmas and got a whole bunch of 2019 games. That's slightly less of a problem where I am now, but I'm still reluctant to pay full RRP (60 Euros) for physical games when I know that they are usually 15-25% cheaper in the UK. Unfortunately, the lack of competition and online stores means that's unlikely to change. Though delivery from the UK is much simpler and cheaper now. 

My backlog is intimidatingly large, which can also be a problem as I often don't know what to stick on. The case can be that I'll shuffle through a few games before finally settling on something. This year though, I want to finish 50 games and am on course to do so... it's just a case of sticking to it, while keeping some funds free to pick up new games (even if that means paying full price on the e-shop at launch :o or slightly over the odds for physical releases). 

Forums are already dead to be honest, the way I see it. Sure big ones like Reset survive, but that's because the big ones still have a place among some specific circles. I'm glad to be a part of this one and don't plan on leaving any time soon. The podcast (coupled with increased YT output) was intended to be a way of trying to bring new people into the fold, but that's a very slow process and growth takes a long time. It's also heavily dependent on quality and consistency, which is something we have to be aware of and keep working at, so any feedback, positive or negative is always welcome and we'll take it on board.  

I'm honestly surprised you didn't play Pass though. Definitely my sleeper hit of 2019. So good, in fact, that I had it on my GOTY list 7 times. Better than Fortnite, that's for sure. 

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