Archive for the ‘co-op’ Category

Interview: Sniper Elite V2 Wii U – What about the DLC and Miiverse updates?

June 4, 2013
Excellent sniping spot! Behind the planes, behind a tank, and behind sandbags!

Coffee Beans
Sniper Elite V2 released a few weeks ago for the Wii U, and the description for the game on the Wii U’s eShop says, “You are elite US sniper, Karl Fairburne, sent behind enemy lines into besieged Berlin during the final moments of World War II. You uncover a horrifying plot which threatens to kill millions of civilians throughout Western Europe, and which would irreversibly change history as we now know it. Make every single bullet count or the world dies with you.”

If you don’t know, the game was originally developed by Rebellion and published by 505 Games for the PC, PlayStation 3, and Xbox 360 last year. The Wii U version currently has a MSRP of $59.99, and received an ESRB rating of “MATURE” with “Blood and Gore, Intense Violence, Language” listed as content for parents and gamers to be aware of.

I reached out to Rebellion and 505 Games with some questions about Sniper Elite V2 on the Wii U, such as will the game be updated to allow in-game pictures to be posted to its Miiverse community? Also, what about the DLC for the Wii U version? I did receive answers to these questions about the game, and a few more as well, so brew yourself some coffee and hit the jump to learn more about Sniper Elite V2 for the Wii U!

That’s not a camera lens view, and I doubt they would say “Cheese!”

The Brew
First up, Sniper Elite V2’s Miiverse community is active. Right after the game released, I saw some comments about players not being able to take in-game pictures and post them to the Miiverse community, as well as some Wii U owners wondering if the game will receive the DLC found in the other versions of the game released last year.

I asked specifically about the free multiplayer expansion pack that the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 versions have, and if there is any plan to make the DLC and online multiplayer mode(s) available for the Wii U version.

505 Games’ answer was very straightforward about the DLC. They said, “We currently do not have any plans for DLC.”

Some Wii U owners might not be happy about it, but many of those who have the game and are active in its Miiverse community really seem to be enjoying it, even despite it not having the DLC and multiplayer modes. Here are a few examples:

What about updating the game to make the Miiverse in-game picture functionality work though, like basically every other Wii U game? This question (along with the next) was sent directly over to Rebellion, and their CEO and Creative Director, Jason Kingsley, answered it with: “With the game just launched, it’s probably a bit early to talk about updates or new content yet!”

So, until the game is updated to take advantage of the Miiverse feature for in-game picture posting (or, if it never is), Wii U owners will have to draw their own Sniper Elite V2 X-Ray Kill Cam shots to share with friends and other Wii U owners, to show the cool effect from the game. Some have already done so, as you can see in the two images below.

Drawn by hand on the Wii U GamePad!

While Sniper Elite V2 on the Wii U might be missing out on some of the content found in the other versions, I did ask which version the Wii U port was based off of and if the Wii U version looks and runs better than the other console versions.

Mr. Kingsley replied, “We can’t really go into specifics, but all versions of Sniper Elite V2 are running off our powerful in-house engine – Asura – which is very adaptable. We even use it to power our mobile games. The game also runs at a higher resolution on Wii U than it does on Xbox 360 and PS3 due to the platform’s hardware strengths.”

Mr. Kingsley’s statement about the Wii U version running at a higher resolution does seem to be backed up by some in the Miiverse community, and from at least one comment it seems the Wii U version does not have a screen tearing issue found in the PlayStation 3 version; or, at least not as bad/noticeable.

Caffeinated Thoughts
I can sort of understand Rebellion not including the online multiplayer in the Wii U version, because the online community would probably be small (and it’s apparently almost non-existent now in the other versions from what I have read). I do think that Miiverse can help solve some online community aspects in games though, with players finding other Wii U owners to hop into online matches from Miiverse.

While they don’t have any plans to release the multiplayer, co-op, or DLC for the Wii U version right now, I am glad to know that Rebellion took the time to make the Wii U version run at a higher resolution.

If you missed the trailer for the Wii U version of Sniper Elite V2 released a few weeks back, you can see it below:

The day the Wii U trailer was released, I received a message from a friend who had not seen the trailer, and didn’t even know that Snipe Elite V2 was releasing on the Wii U. I found his message and the timing of it pretty ironic. Why did I find it ironic?

His message said that he was, “playing a cool Xbox game right now…V2 Sniper Elite.” Again, he had not seen the Wii U trailer, and we had not discussed the Wii U version prior to him messaging me. He described the game in the message as, “Tenchu Stealth Assassins meets Call of Duty“, and while I haven’t played Sniper Elite V2 I have played the other games he mentioned.

From some of the footage I have seen of the game and some of the comments I have read about the game since I received the message, I think his description of Sniper Elite V2 seems like a very good way to describe the game.

I have not played the game, but I am interested in it, and I think I would enjoy the Off-TV play feature the most from what I know about it on the Wii U. I do hope that Rebellion/505 Games at least take the time to update the Wii U version to take full advantage of Wii U specific features though, such as posting in-game images to its Miiverse community, and perhaps even adding alternative and custom control options to the game.

Questions
Have any of you had a chance to play Sniper Elite V2 on the Wii U, and if so, what do you think about the game? If you have played another version of the game, as well as the Wii U version, do you like the GamePad controls and the way they are implemented in the game?

You can order Sniper Elite V2 for the Wii U from Amazon.com below:

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New Super Mario Bros. U to have online multiplayer? "Online Interactions Not Rated…"

October 15, 2012

Coffee Beans
Will New Super Mario Bros. U have some form of online multiplayer?

New Super Mario Bros. U will be releasing with the Wii U on November 18th, just over a month away now. Nintendo has not really detailed the Wii U’s online features, and hasn’t even really confirmed which Wii U launch games will feature any sort of online multiplayer, yet. We do know New Super Mario Bros. U and Nintendo Land, both Wii U launch titles, have Miiverse functionality; but Miiverse details have not been fully discussed by Nintendo either.

At the Wii U Preview on September 13th, Nintendo showed off two new game modes in New Super Mario Bros. U for the first time, those being the Boost Rush Mode and Challenge Mode. So, Nintendo had kept two new modes in New Super Mario Bros. U under wraps until the Wii U event, and nothing was said if either of those modes would have an online multiplayer function.

Why do I think New Super Mario Bros. U might have a form of online multiplayer, outside of just Miiverse communication? Brew yourself some coffee, and let’s take a look!

The Brew
Look at the two boxes for New Super Mario Bros. U and Nintendo Land in the image above. Do you notice anything significantly different between the them? If not, take another look.

So, why would one box have the text, and not the other if it is just talking about Miiverse? At the Wii U Preview event in September, Nintendo’s Bill Trinen said of Miiverse, “…we’re gonna go into more detail on Miiverse in New Super Mario Bros. U and other games, as we get closer to launch.”

Again, we know that both New Super Mario Bros. U and Nintendo Land have Miiverse functionality, according to Nintendo representatives’ statements and the official Nintendo fact sheets for both games:

If you are still haven’t spotted the difference on the boxes, look to the right of the ESRB’s “E” logo on NSMBU’s box. The small black text next to the ESRB rating says, “Online Interactions Not Rated by the ESRB“. Not just in English, but also in Spanish beneath it, “Les échanges en ligne ne sont pas classés par l’ESRB”.

The image below will show it more clearly than the image above:

Why does New Super Mario Bros. U’s box have that extra text, but Nintendo Land’s box doesn’t? The fact sheets for both game specify Miiverse functionality, so if the text is only for the Miiverse functionality in New Super Mario Bros. U, is it a lot different from what is being offered with Nintendo Land’s Miiverse functionality?

Caffeinated Thoughts
I think it’s interesting that both games feature Miiverse, and both boxes have the Nintendo Network logo on them, but only the NSMBU box has the text specifically about online interactions. Perhaps the Miiverse interactions allowed in New Super Mario Bros. U will be different from those allowed for Nintendo Land? Maybe Nintendo is trying to change the standard “online multiplayer” lingo, to a Wii U console specific “Online Miiverse” lingo for future marketing reasons?

If you haven’t seen any footage of New Super Mario Bros. U or Nintendo Land, you can see trailers for both games below:

Knowing how Nintendo has been pretty careful with what they are saying about the Wii U and even certain games being developed for it, gives me slight hope that they are preparing one last big Wii U online detail reveal. I hope they detail the key features of the system such as Miiverse, multiplayer, patching, eShop prices, accomplishments, the friend code situation, and things like video chat and voice chat features.

Having games to demonstrate the online functionality live, or even in a pre-recorded video, like New Super Mario Bros. U, I think would help cement buyers’ decisions, and perhaps even make the console more appealing to gamers currently sitting on the Wii U fence.

I hope that New Super Mario Bros. U features some form of online co-op, or even a Mario platforming multiplayer battle mode of some sort. Even if it doesn’t though, I already have NSMBU pre-ordered (for Bean 1), so we should be playing it together as a family this holiday season at the very least, and maybe even with some of you if there is online multiplayer of some sort in the game.

Questions
Do you think that Nintendo has perhaps kept online multiplayer for New Super Mario Bros. U a secret this entire time, waiting to tell us all about it when they detail more of the Wii U’s online capabilities and Miiverse features within the next few weeks? If you haven’t decided on buying a Wii U system yet, would New Super Mario Bros. U having online multiplayer help you make your decision?

Are there any Wii U online features that could still be revealed, helping to push you toward getting the system if you still aren’t sure about it?

If you are interested in either New Super Mario Bros. U or Nintendo Land, you can see links for them below:

LEGO City: Undercover to feature multiplayer? Nintendo says no, then yes?

September 25, 2012

Coffee Beans
Other than the “Grounds for Celebration! Award – LEGO City: Undercover” post, I haven’t seen this really talked or written about anywhere else, and I did “google” for it.

Apparently, LEGO City: Undercover is going to have a 2 player mutliplayer feature of some sort, though there was some confusion whether it did or didn’t, apparently. Nintendo has not specified if the 2 player feature will be a local multiplayer mode, an online multiplayer mode, and/or perhaps even some multiplayer function with the 3DS system.

How did Nintendo representatives respond when asked if LEGO City: Undercover had any form of multiplayer, local or online? What was the reason for confusion on whether the game has multiplayer? Brew yourself some coffee, and let’s take a look!

The Brew
This was told in the “Grounds for Celebration! Award – LEGO City: Undercover” post, but I wanted to highlight this about LEGO City: Undercover with its own post, for the people that may skim over the other one.

The sources of my confusion.

Last week when I was working on the other post for LEGO City and about to publish it, I noticed the official page for the game and the fact sheet on the game had different information about the number of players that will be able to run around LEGO City.

The official page for the game, HERE, shows “No. of Players: 1”, while the fact sheet for the game shows “Players: 1-2”. I “googled” for other posts on the topic, looking for an announcement on it, but I didn’t find any post that was specifically about the multiplayer option in LEGO City: Undercover, or any post that even talked about it really.

So, I sent over an email to the press contact for the game, and waited on a response. 24 hours passed, and I didn’t receive a response, which I thought was kind of odd. Jeremy from NintendoFuse.com offered to send an email over, seeing if perhaps they could get clarification on the issue for me.

He did. The question he sent over was the question I had pretty much asked, “Does, LEGO City: Undercover have a multiplayer option?” and he mentioned how the official page and the fact sheet showed different things.

The response he received was, “The game is 1 player. No co-op/multiplayer of any kind.“, with the representative apologizing for the confusing language on the site and fact sheet. Pretty straight forward, right?

Well, yesterday, I decided to send one more email about it, just to attempt one last time from my side to get an answer before posting up the other story. I asked, “Does LEGO City: Undercover have a multiplayer option? Perhaps, a co-operative play mode like in other LEGO games?”

This is not what I did while waiting on a response…

I received a reply shortly after that said, “We are looking into this and will get back to you soon.” Interesting.

I wasn’t sure what “soon” was, but only about 5 minutes later I received a second response that said, “Please refer to the fact sheet that states there are 1-2 players.

With the time that my emails took to be responded to, I would imagine they were trying to get clarification from Nintendo on what they could/couldn’t say about the multiplayer options in the game, which still isn’t much other than verifying the game will have some form of a 2 player mode.

Caffeinated Thoughts
Many of the past LEGO video games have featured local co-op multiplayer on Nintendo systems, so that could be one option. Some of the LEGO games on the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 have featured online co-op, as well as local, so that multiplayer option would make sense as well.

After seeing the trailer for the game though, I’m wondering if there might perhaps be some sort of “hide-and-seek” mode in the game using the Wii U’s GamePad. One player would run around the city with either a Wii Remote and Nunchuk combination or a Wii U Pro Controller attempting to “hide”, while the player with the Wii U GamePad could use the controller’s scanning capability as they showed in the trailer for the game (seen below in the awards video), to try and locate the other player in the city.

I think a “hide-and-seek” sort of mode in LEGO City: Undercover, even if only as a local option, would be fun with its “open city” setting and perhaps a good way to use the GamePad for a multiplayer feature.

Also, a big thanks again to Jeremy for trying to help me out last week! You can visit NintendoFuse.com HERE, and enter their “Ultimate Mario Kart 7 Competition – Win a Wii U” contest HERE.

Questions
Are any of you planning to purchase LEGO City: Undercover when it releases for the Wii U? Would a multiplayer feature in the game make you more likely to buy it, or would it not really matter to you?

Any predictions as to what the 2 player mode will be in the game?

If any of you are interested in LEGO City: Undercover, you can pre-order the game on Amazon.com and GameStop.com below:
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Grounds for Celebration! Award – LEGO City: Undercover

September 25, 2012

Coffee Beans
Did you see Nintendo of America’s Wii U preview event? If not, you can watch the full conference as it happened, HERE. During the press event a few Wii U games had live gameplay demos (Nintendo Land and Call of Duty: Black Ops II), while many more were shown via trailers.

If you missed the, “New Feature – Grounds for Celebration! Award“, post last week, in it I described this new feature briefly and said, “If I’m playing a game and I notice a coffee reference, or if perhaps I see a game with a coffee reference that I haven’t even played or isn’t even out yet, I’ll try and give the game some attention with a ‘Grounds for Celebration! Award'”.

Well, it’s time for the first Grounds for Celebration! Award, and if you missed the coffee reference during Nintendo’s Wii U preview event, you can see it in the video below…in a slightly updated form:

LEGO City: Undercover was the only game during the conference that I can remember having a coffee reference. While the full trailer as seen in the video above was not shown during the conference, the coffee scene was. What was my reaction when the coffee reference was mentioned during the conference? “COFFEES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! GAME OF THE YEAR!!!!!”

Other than the trailer and screenshots in the video above, what else do we know about the game? What is one feature for the game that I don’t think Nintendo has talked about yet? Brew yourself some coffee, and let’s take a look!

The Brew
LEGO City: Undercover is being developed by TT Games and published by Nintendo. It is a Wii U exclusive set to release in the system’s “launch window”, which is through the end of March next year. A few retailers have the game listed with a MSRP of $59.99 right now, but it doesn’t have an ESRB rating yet.

LEGO City: Undercover features:

  • The Wii U GamePad is woven seamlessly into the game-play experience. Players use it to scan for hidden clues and criminals, receive mission updates and place waypoints on an overhead city map that displays their position in real time.
  • Experience LEGO City like never before. Players will encounter familiar play sets come to life as they explore the vast city, looking for clues to bring Rex Fury to justice.
  • Players can go undercover with a variety of disguises, including a firefighter, a construction worker and even a robber, and use their unique abilities to solve puzzles and access new areas of the city.
  • There are more than 100 vehicles for players to collect and use to explore the city, including sports cars, motorcycles and even aircraft.
  • LEGO video games are known for their humor and parody, and LEGO City: Undercover delivers this and more with fully voiced characters and ambient crowds, bringing LEGO City to life.

If you like pre-ordering games, there will be a special pre-order bonus of a LEGO figure for the game’s main protagonist, Chase McCain, for a limited time while supplies last.

Official logo.

The one feature in LEGO City: Undercover that I do not believe Nintendo has spoken about, or even really announced yet, is either a local multiplayer option (maybe co-op?), or even an online multiplayer mode in the game. After looking at different information on the game, as well as a few emails back and forth with Nintendo representatives, it has pretty much been confirmed that a 2 player option will be in the game. Skip to the “Odd Beans” section below for more.

Caffeinated Thoughts
I was a big LEGO fan when I was younger, and had many of the sets. Our first trip out of the house with Bean 1 was to a “grand opening” of a LEGO store in our area, and they had a LEGO Master Builder making Star Wars LEGO figures.

Can you spot Bean 1?

With Nintendo usually having more “family friendly” games, I’m really excited to see LEGO City: Undercover being published by Nintendo for the Wii U. I have enjoyed “open world” games in the past, and from what I have seen of LEGO City: Undercover it seems to be an “open world city” game, but probably one that I won’t have to worry about if Bean 1 starts playing it one day when I’m not watching.

Hopefully Nintendo will clarify the multiplayer option in the game, because it is one of the Wii U launch titles I am interested in, and having a local and/or online multiplayer option I think would be great.

Odd Beans
The reason this post was delayed several days since last week is that when I was looking over the information before publishing it, the LEGO City: Undercover “fact sheet” had something that grabbed my attention. The sheet showed “Players: 1-2”, while the official page for the game on Nintendo.com showed “No. of Players: 1”.

Sources of confusion.

I contacted Nintendo’s press contact for the game, and waited on a direct response for whether the game has a multiplayer option, before publishing it. Was the fact sheet correct, or the official page for the game? I was wanting to get this post up by last Friday night, and Jeremy from NintendoFuse.com was able to contact somebody with Nintendo and get the question answered quickly for me.

The response he received was:
The game is 1 player. No co-op/multiplayer of any kind.“, and it was mentioned that the confusing information would be brought to Nintendo’s attention.

I contacted the press contact for the game one more time yesterday though, seeing if perhaps I could get a direct response before posting this story. I did get a response yesterday, but it was, “We are looking into this and will get back to you soon.” Odd.

Well, “soon” was only a few minutes later, when I received this response:
Thanks for your patience with this inquiry. Please refer to the fact sheet that states that there are 1-2 players.

So, after a couple of emails, a few days of waiting, and several pots of coffee, I can confirm that LEGO City: Undercover for the Wii U will have a multiplayer feature for 2 players? Again, no specifics on whether it will be a local or online 2 player option have been provided. Perhaps it’s just a local 2 player co-op and online co-op like many of the past LEGO games?

A big thanks again to Jeremy from NintendoFuse.com for attempting to get an answer last week for me, though, it appears we both may have caused some scrambling behind the scenes at Nintendo trying to get a clear answer, without them spoiling too much about the game just yet!

No more pretending your LEGO copters can fly.

Questions
Did any of you catch the coffee reference in LEGO City: Undercover as you were watching the Nintendo Wii U preview event, and immediately think “GAME OF THE YEAR!” as I did?

Even if you didn’t, are any of you interested in LEGO City: Undercover as a Wii U title and would you purchase it day one if it releases with the system, especially if/when Nintendo confirms the multiplayer aspects of the game in more detail?

Also, any feedback on the first Grounds for Celebration! Award in general?

If any of you are interested in LEGO City: Undercover, you can pre-order it on Amaaon.com and GameStop.com below:
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