Nintendo has done it again. They've filled the bright and shiny platforming void in our lives with an amazing little game called Super Mario Galaxy 2. But of course, nothing's perfect. And even with all the praise that Adam has for it, there are some tiny issues that he thinks could improve the experience, which he will proceed to explain in this week's Sessler's Soapbox. Were you totally satisfied with your Mario experience? Or would you like to see some similar improvements?
It's no secret that we here at the G4 offices love playing Red Dead Redemption. So it comes as no surprise that Adam decided to use the same game as the subject for this week's Soapbox. Is this the first game to nail down the Western Video Game genre? Or is the game a success regardless of its setting? Take a listen to Adam's opinion and let us know what you think in the comments below.
In case you didn't see last week's Soapbox, Adam was recently invited to give the commencement speech at the ceremony for recent graduates of the SMU Guildhall Game Development Education School in Dallas, Texas. Not only was Adam deeply honored by the invitation, but he was also slightly nervous. After having spent the day seeing student games and projects, he was so impressed by their creativity and talent he felt they deserved the best speech he could possibly give them. In my opinion, I think he succeeded. Enjoy.
As the comments section shows, many of you had a lot to say about President Obama's recent comments about video games and iPods. In case you missed it, you can find his quote right here. Now that you have a frame of reference, you're fully prepared for this week's edition of Soapbox. Adam decides to not argue with Obama, but challenge him to change the way he thinks about gaming. Where the President might only see it as a distraction from learning, Adam sees interactive media as a form of mental exercise, challenging your mind to think in abstract ways and solve problems in worlds with different rules and consequences than our own. What's your take?
Oh boy. This fall the U.S. Supreme Court is planning to hear a case pertaining to the constitutionality of a California law banning the sale of violent video games to minors. Yeah, it's heavy. You can read about it here.
Now that you've got some background information, you may move on to this week's Soapbox where Sessler is taking the issue head-on. While he may debate the merits of games as art, Adam will not back down when it comes to the First Amendment. In his opinion, games are absolutely a form of free speech and should be protected in the same way films and books are. What do you think?
This week's Soapbox is a doozy. Adam recently saw the movie Kick-Ass, which is a pretty great flick if you haven't checked it out yet. He enjoyed it, but was surprised by the level of shock and awe it caused amongst many film critics. With that in mind, The Sess decided to return to a familiar subject in our industry; violence in video games. Take a trip back in time with Adam as he details the history of entertainment and how blood and gore has always been a part of our culture. At least when people want to be entertained.
By now you've at least heard about Roger Ebert's article on the Chicago Sun Times' website, Video Games Can Never Be Art. If you haven't read it yet, click that link and give it a skim, because Adam uses is as the topic for this week's Soapbox. We've all been involved in this debate before, but this time Adam doesn't necessarily disagree with Ebert. At least not completely. We all know that games require a lot of artistry in order to develop them, but is a game, in itself, art?
There have been some new developments regarding Jason West and Vincent Zampella, the two heads of Infinity Ward that left the company under unique circumstances. As of this week they announced they would be creating Respawn Entertainment, a developer partnered with EA that would retain the rights to all the intellectual properties they develop. While this isn't a first in the world of gaming, these kind of deals are reserved for the select few, so The Sess decided to use this week's Soapbox as a forum for discussing what this may mean for the gaming industry as a whole. Do you think the ripples of this agreement will shake up how other publishers and developers work?
By now, anyone who regularly visits this website knows that Adam Sessler does not like 3-D. However, Nintendo announced they will soon be revealing their next portable, the Nintendo 3-DS, that will have 3-D technology that doesn't require glasses. Combine that with the fact that Nintendo rarely promotes a technology they haven't thoroughly tested and are proud of (VirtuaBoy not included), and Adam's interested. Check out this week's Sessler's Soapbox to find out just what The Sess thinks might be over the horizon for Nintendo and 3-D gaming.
Indie games have been making a huge splash recently, thanks in part to XBLA, PSN, and all-inclusive gaming conventions like PAX. Fresh off the plane from PAX East in Boston, Adam was so impressed by all the independent games he saw on the floor he decided to use them as the subject for this week's Soapbox. Do you regularly browse the Indie Games section on XBLA? Do you read about small indie projects on gaming blogs and track their development until they find a method of publishing? Let us know what, if anything, indie games mean to you.
By now, gamers are very used to playing a large collection of open world games. From GTA IV to Fallout 3 to Just Cause 2, there are plenty of high quality titles that allow you to make your own story and go about missions how you see fit. But is that enough to make a great game? Such is the subject of this week's Soapbox. The Sess uses his recent experience playing through Just Cause 2 as a jumping off point to discuss the current state of open world games and if they're giving us enough motivation to explore the expanded universe they've created. Do you always go for 100% completion? Or do you need a thread to follow?
Now that the GDC dust has settled, people are taking the time to really dive into the PlayStation Move and what it means for the future of gaming. Such is the topic of this week's Soapbox. Find out why Adam thinks that the PlayStation Move is important, even if us hardcore gamers are paying little to no attention to it. So prepare for some insider analysis from The Sess himself.
Next week we all finally get our hands on one of the most anticipated action games in recent memory, God of War III. Of course, a few lucky people around the office have already played it, and Adam Sessler is one of those lucky few. Long story short, he really enjoyed it. Find out exactly what The Sess loved about the latest from Sony's Santa Monica Studios and why he thinks God of War III might set a new standard for pacing in video games today.
Check out Adam's full review of God of War III right here.
Disclaimer: It should be noted that this week's Soapbox was shot at 11am on Monday, March 1st before we knew the glitch would be fixed or repair itself later in the day.
That being said, Adam didn't see the Great PS3 Glitch of March, 2010 as a sign of Sony's problems, but a sign of problems that could possibly touch the industry as a whole. Do we want to trust our ability to game to some remote server located in who knows where? Are we sure the internet age isn't making out games less reliable because of their reliance on being connected? You decide.
Every year G4 covers tons of gaming conventions all over the country and across the globe. Most of the time it's a lot of fun, and every convention has it's own style, but the one that stands out for Adam Sessler is DICE. Having just returned from Vegas, this year's DICE is fresh on his mind, so Adam decided to sit down and explain to you why he loves this particular event. So take a listen and get a unique, insider's view on an insider's gaming convention in this week's episode of Sessler's Soapbox.
To see what Adam is talking about, check out all our coverage from the 2010 DICE Summit at G4tv.com/DICE