R.I.P. Wii Shop Channel

Double Jump Kris MiiHappy Monday everyone!

Honestly, there are probably a couple of blog posts out on the Internet with this title with the news that had surfaced last week. It definitely seems appropriate.

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Last week, it was announced that the Wii Shop Channel was taken offline, and I was oddly sad about it. Granted, we haven’t turned on our Wii in quite some time — pretty sure the last time we actually played a game on it was Mario Party 2 a few years ago with some old friends — but it was the earliest version of the Virtual Console. The games we found on there were tons of fun, ones that made us feel nostalgic and ones that were brand new to us.

Aside from Mario Party 2, Rachel and I downloaded our favorites from previous consoles immediately, Paper Mario and Super Mario RPG respectively. It was great to return to those games, as well as Ocarina of Time from the Legend of Zelda series. Majora’s Mask was also a title we downloaded with the idea that I would officially give it a try… I did, getting as far as the second dungeon, but ultimately not being interested enough in it for the long run.

Pokemon Puzzle League and Donkey Kong Country were also two great older games that we added on there, enjoying playing them again considering our Nintendo 64 and SNES weren’t in the best shape just from being loved too much as we were growing up.

From the Wii Shop Channel, we also discovered the Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney original trilogy, cementing us as lifelong fans of the series. Not only did the Wii Shop Channel introduce us to such a fantastic series, we also used to play them with our older sister. Considering the last time she had played video games with us like that was way back with the original Mario Brothers and Donkey Kong games, it was fantastic to spend more time with her trying to figure out how to piece together evidence to prove who killed whom in Ace Attorney.

It was definitely a shame to hear that the Wii Shop Channel was closed, especially since it doesn’t sound like we’ll be getting a replacement Virtual Console — aside from the Wii U’s at the moment — any time soon.

Did you download much from the Wii Shop Channel? Do you think you’ll miss it? Let me know in the comments below! If you liked this post, please share it around.

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The Return of the NES Classic

Double Jump Kris MiiHappy Memorial Day! I hope everyone has had a wonderful weekend!

We had a pretty chill weekend, with Rachel and me going out of town with a friend. Filled with movies, books, and video games, we had a good time. We went to a place that Rachel and I have been going with the family for ages, a nice house in the mountains filled with nostalgia. Nostalgia is what I thought I would feel when thinking of the NES Classic, but now that we have a second chance to get one, I’m not so sure about it…

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The NES Classic (along with the SNES Classic) is supposed to return to stores in about a month, on June 29th. When I first heard about the news that the NES Classic was going to be a thing, I thought it was a great idea. Plenty of gamers love their old favorites and the nostalgia that was sure to come with the mini version of the console made it popular.

Too popular, if there was such a thing. Scalpers overtook the stock NES Classic and the consoles were out of stock within minutes of hitting Amazon or store shelves, only to be resold on eBay for thrice the original price. Rachel and I were disappointed, of course. I remember having the NES as a kid (and, honestly, we still have our original one packed away), but I myself never played too many of the games. I played mainly on the SNES when we had gotten that. Rachel herself wasn’t born when the NES came out, so it would have been great to see her get to experience some of the NES games.

With that said, though… I don’t really remember the games of the NES. Our disappointment didn’t last too long considering we never had too much of a tie with the original NES as kids. I imagine the nostalgia would be much stronger with gamers who had grown up with it.

Seeing the news that the NES Classic would be returning, I found myself finding it nice but… I’m not really as interested as I was back when it was first announced. If we get an NES Classic, it’ll be cool, but it’s not something that’s on my wish list anymore. I just hope that scalpers don’t ruin this batch for those who truly want the NES Classic and hadn’t gotten the chance to get them before!

Are you planning on trying to get the NES Classic this time around? If you already have it, what do you think of it?

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SNES Classic Edition

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We all know Nintendo is launching the SNES Classic Edition, right? Last I heard, it will be out September 29 this year, and pre-orders are not happening right now. If pre-orders had happened, they went so fast that I hadn’t noticed. The mini console will have 21 games on it along with two controllers with actually decently-lengthed cords. While I can remember the NES, it was the SNES console that I had really started playing and getting into games, so having the Classic Edition would be very nostalgic for me.

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This is definitely something I want. Since we weren’t able to get our hands on the NES Classic, I hope we’re able to get our hands on this one. I remember watching Kris play the SNES when I was younger and even playing a little bit of it myself. It was the beginning of our video game craze.

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I was actually a little iffy on wanting the console because, honestly, the games that we truly loved from that era we still have either in their original cartridges or on the Virtual Consoles on the Wii or Wii U. However, the game line-up doesn’t look too bad at all, with plenty of games that could be new for us, such as the two Star Fox games. The only Star Fox game we’ve ever played was Star Fox Adventures for the GameCube, so to see the original one and the never-before-released sequel to it is great.

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Even if we do have most of the games, it’d be great to try out some “new” ones for us. Not to mention, it would be nice just to have the games all in one spot. And, who doesn’t want another console to add to their collection?

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The SNES Classic Edition will be a perfect addition to our collection. It’s how we started this gaming journey, and how cute would it be next to our original SNES console? The most amazing thing about these classic editions is how excited everyone is for them. It just proves how timeless these games are and how many people have such fond memories of the old Nintendo games. Minus the scalpers, of course, who are only in the race for the money. Let’s hope there’s enough supply to go around this time…

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Well, they did say they were only making it for 2017, right? We’ll see what happens… maybe they’ll end up making some extra upon learning their lesson the first time.

What do you think of the SNES Classic Edition? Let us know in the comments below!

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Currently Playing: Fire Emblem Blazing Sword

Double Jump Kris MiiOur attempt to get a Nintendo Switch this past weekend did not work out… Cross your fingers for us that we somehow get one this week!

In the meantime, Rachel and I are keeping ourselves busy so we don’t end up wallowing in self-pity that we still don’t have the latest console.

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While we don’t have the Switch just yet, we do still have the Wii U and the lovely Virtual Console with plenty of games to explore. One of the first games that I remember downloading on the Virtual Console was Fire Emblem: Blazing Sword.

I have the actual GameBoy Advance cartridge of the game, generously gifted to me from my parents for one Christmas or birthday years ago. It was probably fairly soon after I had just gotten into the franchise after Sacred Stones, eager to dive further into the Fire Emblem series.

It had been a little difficult for my parents to find the game, but they eventually found a used one, which was more than okay with me. I burned through the first section of the game, Lyn’s story, on that day. However, when I picked it up again the next day, none of my progress was saved. I was a little disappointed and confused, sure I had saved it, but I figured the only thing to do would be to play it again.

The same thing happened.

Apparently the game was so used that the saving mechanic no longer worked. My young-self’s brilliant solution was to keep the GameBoy SP on 24/7, plugged in when necessary, so I could experience the game. I believe I had beaten the next section of the game, Eliwood’s story, before finally giving my GameBoy SP a rest. I never played the game again until I downloaded it on the Virtual Console.

Over the weekend, I started a new game on it, enjoying the nostalgic feelings as the GameBoy graphics popped up on the Wii U’s Gamepad. I don’t remember too much of Eliwood’s story, so I’m looking forward to playing through it while waiting to get a Switch.

What have you been playing lately (I mean, besides Breath of the Wild, haha)?

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Looking Behind and Ahead

Double Jump Kris MiiShow of hands, who thought the weekend went by way too fast?

Despite how quickly the weekend has come and gone, I hope everyone had a good one and an awesome week ahead!

This past holiday weekend I spent my time finally playing Pokemon Moon. I’m definitely enjoying it so far, having gotten past my third trial, and I’m severely missing the time off of work that I had to continue binge-playing it. Rachel and I will go into more detail about the games themselves once we both complete them, but I just wanted to share my thoughts about the changes going on in the franchise that I grew up with.

Diving into the gaming world for me was like Alice falling into the rabbit hole. I was full of curiosity and totally enamored when I used to watch my father and my uncle play video games. It was a story that you controlled. The characters were puppets to the buttons and I was amazed that you could make someone on the television jump just by pressing A.

A couple of years later, I was good friends with a pair of twins who fully introduced me to the world of Pokemon through Pokemon Snap. That year Mom and Dad got me my first GameBoy Color, complete with a trio of Pokemon Red, Blue, and Yellow games. For about twenty years, the handheld Pokemon games followed a formula that consisted of your character exploring a new world with new creatures to partner with in order to defeat the Gym Challenges, whatever evil team that was plaguing the region, and the Elite Four.

Pokemon Sun and Moon threw that formula out the window, and while I’m enjoying the games, I can’t help but feel as if I’m missing something. Perhaps it’s too early in the game for me to tell, or maybe I’m just feeling particularly nostalgic for the older games that I grew up with. It’ll be interesting to see if Zelda’s Breath of the Wild, with how it’s going to be shaking up the Legend of Zelda franchise, will affect me in the same way.

The NES mini recently came out to hit us older gamers in the gut with memories, while virtual reality is rising on the gaming scene. Now I understand when my dad, upon seeing the motion controls of Wii Bowling, started talking about the “good ol’ games” from the past, like the original Mario or Donkey Kong!

 

Regency Gaming

Double Jump Kris MiiWhile doing a little research for this post, I realized that there is apparently a site dedicated to gambling games also called Regency Gaming. This post is not about that particular store. On that note, I hope everyone has a great start to their week!

Ever hear of Regency Gaming?

Rachel and I took a little weekend trip just to get away one last time for the summer with our parents, and part of where we went included some outlet stores. In this vast mall, Rachel and I wandered around, bought a couple of new puzzles to add to our collection (four new Thomas Kincade Disney-inspired puzzles and a map of Tolkien’s Middle-Earth), and came upon a gaming store called Regency Gaming.

I have never been socked with so much nostalgia in my life.

The store wasn’t brightly lit or anything — rather, it was decorated in grays and muted hues, showcasing the video game memorabilia that adorned their walls, shelves, and cases. There were a couple of times as I was gazing at the SNES consoles and the NES games for sale that I asked Rachel, “Are you old enough to remember these?”

Most of her responses were, “Barely.”

It was a nice walk down memory lane, and if I had the money, I may have bought a few things just for nostalgic’s sake.

Of course, the store had a few newer products as well, such as chargers, gaming headphones, games from the most recent consoles, but the history of gaming was the main point of the place, and it was glorious.

You’re Playing It Wrong

Double Jump Kris MiiAnother Monday, another week. I hope it’s the start of a wonderful week for everyone out there!

 

There have been a couple of posts on this blog fairly recently about playing games solo, group games and, especially, Pokemon Go. Most have been about feelings of nostalgia and, in regards to Pokemon Go, indifference.

Pokemon Go itself is still sweeping through the world, despite the slow servers and glitches that have upset those who are more… shall we say, into the game than I am. For example, there’s a glitch that changes caught Pokemon into different species. Not the worst thing to happen if your Caterpie turns into a Charizard, but a Blastoise that changes into a Rattata? Yeah, I’d be annoyed too.

Despite the cons, Pokemon Go still seems formidable in the mobile games market. It’s praised mostly for the social aspect. People are sharing all sorts of feel-good stories about meeting new friends, about exercising more, about exploring their neighborhood (and the world) more thanks to Pokemon Go.

Rachel and I have been feeling a bit lukewarm regarding the game, but we’ve recently realized that maybe it’s because we’re playing it wrong. We got the basic mechanics down, of course — swiping up to flick a pokeball toward a Pokemon and hoping your aim is true is pretty simple to understand. Yet, we haven’t had the chance to really go out and find other Pokemon fans nearby, and that seems to be what the true magic of this game is.

Our neighborhood is sleepy. We’re a couple of the extremely few young adults in the area while the rest of the block is dominated with elderly couples and some young families just starting out. Granted, our neighbors are awesome, but we’re the minority when it comes to our age bracket. Our town is wonderful, but there aren’t too many places where we can just walk and hang out.

Over the weekend I was at a bachelorette party in a much bigger city, a place I don’t visit very often because there’s no real need (and, I’ll be honest, because of my lack of sense of direction). During a few minutes of downtime while waiting for our dinner reservations, I curiously checked my Pokemon Go at and was astonished at all the Pokestops and dropped lures on the crowded streets. The aching feeling that comes with wanting to explore the world, much like whenever I started a new Pokemon game as a kid, smacked me in the gut, and I just wished that Rachel had been with me to enjoy the feeling.

Maybe one day soon, when work and weddings and adult stuff, Rachel and I can properly be kids (while playing safely, of course) for a little while further from our neighborhood.