Three Things Learned At The Sweet Suite…

Sweet Suite 2014
STT_starter pack
1. Red velvet cupcakes are fantastic (Yeah, I’ve never had ANYTHING red velvet before, so shoot me. Or not.) – Thanks Activision! Skylanders Trap Team is fantastic too. You parents with kids and gamers already hooked in? have your money ready to fly out of that wallet this October.

lemonhead martini2. Lemonhead Martinis? They actually DO exist (well, as of yesterday) and need to become a summer “thing”. Like NOW. Thanks Ferrara Pan! Oh, and someone really smart at that company needs to post that recipe ASAP along with a kid-friendly lemonade version (because we adults shouldn’t have ALL the fun with Lemonheads, right?). And I don’t usually like martinis! I only had ONE, by the way, ladies and gents – I’m not a total booze-hound (although here comes another alcohol-related note):

ZIPZ (1)3. Wine by the glass in a retail form that won’t bust your wallet wide open? Yeah, that also exists (in at least 39 states, 33 where this can be shipped to). These made me laugh way too much when I saw them (and that was long before I had that Lemonhead Martini). And yeah, someone tell this guy he should probably learn to appreciate a good Merlot. Thank you, ZIPZ! Yes, I’m in one of those 33 states, so I’m happier now that anytime I want a few glasses of quality wine, I don’t have to buy an entire bottle. Wait, am I supposed to be writing ALL about toys and other fun stuff I saw last evening here? Don’t worry, that’s all coming in another post!

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Drakengard 3 Launch Trailer: I Thought Gals Liked Dragons? Hmmm, I Guess Not In This Game…

 
It’s finally here in North America and looking more polished than its PlayStation 2 prequels, Drakengard 3 ups the action while going tonally sideways. Granted, the game still has the gloomy, doom-y feeling of the first two entries, but there’s more in the way of light comic relief as well as a decidedly more manga/anime edge to the character art. If you like what you see, zip on down to your favorite game emporium, slap $49.99 down on the counter (plus tax where applicable) and both you and your PS3 will be happy campers. If you’re eager to play but lazier or just prefer digital games, clickety-click on your PlayStation Network account and get this as a download on the PlayStation Store or the Square Enix Online Store for the same price. In an interesting twist, the physical game gets a standard retail packaging, but if you’re a digital-only drone, you can get a Digital Collector’s Edition exclusively on the PlayStation Store for $64.99. How that all works baffles me, but hey – it’s the future, so stuff is SUPPOSED to be baffling. I think.

 
Oh, and speaking of baffling… you get an interview with the game’s director, Taro Yoko, but he’s a puppet here. Don’t ask… just enjoy!

Child of Light Out Is Out Today (So You’re NOT Reading This Post, Right?)

 
Nope, I wasn’t lucky enough to grab a Child of Light review code from whomever handles this stuff over at Ubisoft, but I don’t mind paying the $15 to play this game at all. My platform of choice will be the Wii U, as it’s a system that needs more love and it’s great that Ubisoft decided to bring this game to the console, although it’s no surprise given their support for it since its launch.

 
As you can see, reviews are indeed in from those who DID get codes early and yes, the game comes highly recommended. I’ll probably get to playing this early next week, as I’m working on a few things and my poor backlog is indeed killing me these days. I guess I can train a monkey or goat to play games and write about them, but that would cut into my budget something fierce (and the food? Yikes, I’d go broke with a pet here in NYC)…

PlayStation Plus Brings May Showers Of FREE Games!

 
Yeah, the pay for online multiplayer access thing is still here and silly, but PlayStation Plus is still the best deals in console gaming in terms of what you’re getting otherwise for that $50 a year. Next month’s pile of stuff you’ll need a working time machine to play is quite awesome (as you’ll see above) and overall, you make that cost back each month and then some if you also own a Vita in addition to your PS3 and/or PS4. I keep wondering what will happen when Sony runs out of stuff to give away, but given the large library of old first and third party titles people are clamoring for from the PS1 and PS2 era plus the amount of indie titles currently on PSN, I’m gathering this won’t be an issue they’ll need to deal with for quite some time…

Child of Light Making of Part 3: Same As It Ever Was, No Matter What You Play It On…

 
Ubisoft is really pushing these making of videos to show that Child of Light will be the same gorgeous visual experience across every platform. Given that all the consoles it runs on support HD resolution (and of course, PC as a given run at higher resolutions anyway), it’s clear that the game will be a feast for the eyes no matter what it’s played on. I’m now leaning towards the Wii U version as noted before just because it’s the easiest console for me to update from a wi-fi spot and get games for as well. Decision made! Now, it’s just less than a week of waiting to go…

Child of Light On Wii U: Same Game, Different Console (Get It And/Or Get Over It!)…

 
*Sigh* Ah, the internet… home to fools with busted soapboxes and lousy opinions, all in the name of… something. Anyway, YES, the Wii U version of Child of Light is going to look exactly the same as the other versions, yeesh. That UbiArt Framework and the lovely hand-drawn art in the game will run on any modern console as well as anything next-gen and any decent PC. But try telling that to the trolls out there and all you get is under-bridge bile drippings from people who haven’t touched Nintendo’s console and don’t intend to.

 
Frankly speaking, screw those dolts, I say. As a multi-system owner and longtime gamer, I’m still trying to decide which system to get this one for, but I’ll play and review it on the Wii U if I have to just to have another game for that system that needs to get MORE of them this year. Anyway, April 30th is the big day and hopefully, this version won’t get slapped with a last-minute delay or anything else that will get the skeptics babbling from their stinky toll-haunts under every local bridge. I don’t normally wast my space on people like this, but after overhearing some inane anti-Wii U drivel today, I had to put my foot down before I put it up someone’s read end.

 
That and the last living thing I actually kicked was a REALLY slow pigeon a bunch of years ago. Hey, I was in a hurry, it was in front of me trundling along like an over-sized inchworm with wings and it wasn’t a “kick” at all… it was more of a foot-lift and bird shift to my right as I zipped past.

Child of Light Making of #2: Music and Sounds Get The High Note This Update…

 
Equally as important as the plot and lovely visuals are the music and sound effects in Ubisoft’s upcoming soon to be classic Child of Light, and as you can see above, all those pieces are indeed falling exactly where they need to. It’s clear that this project will be one for the ages as well as a great first game made with UbiArt Framework (which needs to get into the hands of a few other developers just so we can see how different art styles hold up to the new tech). April 30th is when this one comes out for PC and consoles, so keep an eye peeled, I say…

LEGO The Hobbit In Stores Today: CG Plastic Playground Beats CG Movie FX Any Day of the Week…

 
While I’m not a huge fan of the fantasy amusement park thrill rides that are The Hobbit films, TT Games has never let me down with their takes on the Lord of the Rings franchise and a bunch of other games they’ve done up with the full on LEGO treatment. While production values have been beefed up considerably since the first LEGO games, the same sense of silliness and all-out fun is intact, as is drop-in drop-out co-op play, loads of secrets and probably so many characters to play as that the game’s replay value is way off the charts if you’re one of those folks who wants to see it all and doesn’t care how long it takes to unlock everything. Anyway, this one’s available NOW for Xbox One, Xbox 360, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 3, PlayStation Vita, Nintendo 3DS and PC, so round up the family and go grab a copy, I say…

Child of Light Gets The Always Amazing Amano Touch…

 
While I’ve had the great pleasure of seeing Yoshitaka Amano’s artwork up close and personal, it was too many years ago here in NYC when he was promoting HERO and I even got to chat briefly with him about his art on the Front Mission games thanks to a friend who translated my questions and compliments. Anyway, here he is doing what he does best for Ubisoft’s upcoming Child of Light and making me wish I could actually afford to own one of his paintings one of these days. It’s too bad this video isn’t longer, but oh well – sometimes you have to take the art you can get however you can get it, right? Child of Light will be available April 30 for assorted platforms and yes, you need to buy it.

Child of Light is My Game of the Month (And I Haven’t Even Played It)

Well, what else is new, right? As soon as I saw screen shots of Ubisoft’s upcoming RPG Child of Light, then video of it in action, I had to immediately add it to the top of my “PLAY IT OR ELSE!” pile and add both a background and banner using the gorgeous art to the site. It’s coming out April 30, 2014 for PC, PS3/PS4, Xbox 360/Xbox One and Wii U, so if you’re currently owning one of these systems or have a PC capable of running this game, you pretty much have zero excuse not to snap this up. That new UbiArt Framework tech makes the game look like a storybook come to life and I’d love to see it get used as a game making tool by an even wider range of artists as the years go by. Of course, as this is a digital only release, I’m hoping it’s not gone and forgotten by gamers out there who still prefer packaged titles for a few key reasons. But as with anything rolling out these days in this economy, we’ll see what happens…