We Don’t Deserve Masahiro Sakurai

They always say you shouldn't meet your heroes, but I can't help but wish I could sit down with Masahiro Sakurai for lunch. During my time as a self-described "hobby freelancer video game journalist" I've researched many game developers, and I've learned that many of them turn out to be quite flawed and controversial people. … Continue reading We Don’t Deserve Masahiro Sakurai

Ranking Smash Ultimate’s Second Wave of DLC Fighters

Well, people, it finally happened. We can now say for certain that everyone is here.  We’ve had quite a journey with this second wave of Smash DLC fighters. It all began as a bit of good news in January 2020 that we would get six more fighters, and then it kicked off for real in … Continue reading Ranking Smash Ultimate’s Second Wave of DLC Fighters

Arms Review: The New Nintendo IP Punching Above Its Weight

Arms is a fighting game developed and published by Nintendo. It was released exclusively on the Nintendo Switch in June 2017. MSRB is $60. Arms is a colorful marriage between a Fighting game and a Boxing game, like Street Fighter II meets Punch-Out!!. I'm not a fan of either genre. I picked up Soul Caliber … Continue reading Arms Review: The New Nintendo IP Punching Above Its Weight

Ranking Smash Ultimate’s First Wave of DLC Fighters

Normally I feel weird reviewing DLC, but I'll make an exception for Smash. It's been a while since I dissected something in this game, and I've had the itch to get out my video game scalpel. I need to come up with better metaphors. I gotta hand it to Sakurai, he always keeps us on … Continue reading Ranking Smash Ultimate’s First Wave of DLC Fighters

Sakurai, Part 5: The Kirby of Game Developers

In his beginning years, Sakurai made it a point to learn game design by playing games. Each game was a textbook of mechanics filled with ideas to analyze. Since then Sakurai has taken a unique position in the games industry where he can observe gaming as a whole, sample and borrow mechanics, and make them … Continue reading Sakurai, Part 5: The Kirby of Game Developers

Sakurai, Part 4: Designing Immortal Games

Overwatch, Anthem, Destiny, Fortnite, Call of Duty... In the short time I've been back into gaming, I've seen several publishers push their games into being subscriptions, trying to get their players to keep paying for content for extended periods of time, whether that's a schedule of DLCs, events, updates, season passes, or lootboxes. One of … Continue reading Sakurai, Part 4: Designing Immortal Games

Sakurai, Part 3: Designing Games with Variety

Eight games in one! That was the tagline for Kirby Super Star, Sakurai's third game, and the first one to include smaller games with widely different styles. This has become a staple of his design philosophy ever since. Opening up a game and seeing a sprawling menu has become his calling card. Sakurai flirted around … Continue reading Sakurai, Part 3: Designing Games with Variety