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Akumajou Dracula X: Symphony of the Q&A
  March 29th, 2013

03/29- 7:00PM EST

Welcome back to Q&A! While I was away, a remake of the NES Duck Tales game was announced and I get explain how excited I am for that. I'm also working on a review of Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate. I'm moving steadily through single player so I hope to have that ready soon. Also, be sure to check out our PAX East covereage! Anyway, on to the letters as we have one big topic to discuss...

The Letters
The Fix is In

@AskWheels How would you fix Square Enix?



Well the company has a lot of issues so a lot of different approaches would be required!

  • For starters, I'd get the company to set some realistic expectations. Tomb Raider sold a cool 3.4 million, and although there's some lower than expected sales in North America involved there that's almost double the previous game. There should be no disappointment with that! I don't know if Square Enix spent too much on marketing or the pointless, tacked-on multiplayer contributed to the disappointment, but they need to get this in order. Expectations for Deus Ex seemed to be just right so I'm not sure what happened
  • Foster the growth of Eidos Montreal. This studio showed a ton of promise with Deus Ex: Human Revolution and it needs to give them the resources to continue to deliver on that promise. Having Eidos Montreal do a multiplayer mode for Tomb Raider is not the right use of its talent. How about you put them on a Final Fantasy game?
  • Move most console development to Western studios. I'll probably take some flak for this, but Square Enix's internal studios have had a lot of trouble with the current HD console generation. Though they've been able to pump out two Final Fantasy XIII sequels quickly, most projects have languished. In this regard, Square Enix should let its Japanese studios do more lower budget portable titles and have Western studios do most console releases, or at least have them co-develop big console titles with their Japanese studios. This isn't a Japanese vs. Western development thing, this is solely based on the issues its Japanese studios have faced. If that issue changes Square Enix could revisit this issue.
  • Hire Level-5 to make Dragon Quest XI on HD consoles. Ni No Kuni showed that kind of game could still sell very well in the West, so Square Enix should jump on this.
  • Let Kawazu continue the SaGa series on 3DS. The Maestro himself should be allowed to continue his series, and by doing it on 3DS Square Enix can make it a low risk with potentially high reward. This will of course come with the stipulation that he not do something crazy like Unlimited Saga again.
  • Localize Dragon Quest VII 3DS - OK this one doesn't help, I just want it!
  • Finally, Square Enix should stop making pre-rendered cut scenes once and for all. They probably cost a lot to make and as Final Fantasy XIII has shown us they add very little to the game. It's time to hang up this aging process and stick to in-engine cut scenes.

There you have it! Feel free to send me in your own ideas readers.

Fixing EA and SE

@AskWheels Will Riccitiello's departure from EA help BioWare return to form in the future?


I think BioWare would return to form regardless. It seemed to me that after Dragon Age II was a bit bungled  , EA learned its lesson and wouldn't force BioWare to rush out a game again. We could talk about Mass Effect 3 coming out quickly to some extent, but that kept the engine of the previous game so it naturally was going to have a shorter gap to its release than there was between 1 and 2. The multiplayer portion was needed of course. So, long story short I think EA was headed in the right direction with BioWare anyway so I don't think Riccitiello's departure will have much effect here.

@AskWheels will Wada's departure from Square Enix fix anything?



That all depends on the direction his replacement takes the company. Given the many issues at Square Enix a change in leadership was way overdue. So just by his leaving it seems to me that it makes it much more likely the company will go about trying to fix these issues. We'll see who replaces him!

I Did Say I'd Answer ALL His Questions

Question the First: Why do you hate gays?


The only people I hate are whoever decided SaGa 2 and SaGa 3 for DS weren't worth localizing.

Question the Second: Why are you a Nazi?


Question the Third: When will there be a good new Castlevania game in the 2d style?


Do you mean 2D art style, or 2D gameplay style? Lords of Shadow: Mirror of Fate is a pretty good 2D gameplay style game, but doesn't exactly follow the classic formula. That said, given how "in" retro games are I'd be shocked if we don't see another 2D Castlevania in the near future. I mean Konami doesn't really have IGA working on anything else does it?

Question the Fourth: Why do you kick puppies?


They bit my ankles!

Question the Fifth: Why won't you admit that lumpy, meowing sack you threw into the river was full of kittens and not, as you said, a rogue Cat AI?


I would never hurt cats man, they're scary!

Evil Cat

Question the Sixth: When was the last time you called your Grandma and told her you love her?


When was the last time YOU called your Grandma and told her you love her?

Question the Seventh: Has there ever been a video game that captures the coolness of cyperpunk the way Neuromancer (the book) did?


Not quite as far as I know, but I guess the Shadowrun games might come close? I think the best bet might be the Cyberpunk 2077 game that we'll see in the near future. Maybe keep an eye on that?

Question the Eighth: Do you prefer being high or drunk while answering these questions?


I don't do drugs man, so drunk obviously.

Question the Ninth: Do your employers know that you are drunk and/or high while on the job?


Of course!

Question the Tenth: How long is your penis?


The Rock

Question the Eleventh: What RPGs, other than Persona, are you interested in seeing this year? Any of them indie titles?


Several are indie titles in fact! I'm looking forward to checking out both Dragon Fantasy Book II and Penny Arcade Adventures II, both indie RPGs that use a 16-bit art style. As for the non-indie titles, I'm looking forward to the new Ys on Vita and Soul Hackers for 3DS. Ys I already imported so I know it's a fantastic action RPG.

Question the Twelfth: New Wizardry game. Exciting? Or too little too late? Or what's Wizardry?


Was there a new game announced? If you're talking about the online game, I've heard that's not like Wizardry in the slightest. If you're talking about the game released by XSEED, that was OK but the Etrian Odyssey series already revived that kind of game and did better things with it. If this is some other game I haven't heard then, then maybe it could be exciting!

Question the Thirteenth: Is the lyric in the DuckTales theme "Watch behind you," or "lurks behind you?"


Clearly it's watch behind you, but here's the song for anyone that doubts this:

Question the Fourteenth: Outside of Uplink are there any other games where hacking is the central form of gameplay? Also, how awesome *still* is Uplink?


There are no games outside of Uplink with hacking as the central gameplay that I am aware of. Uplink was amazing, which I thankfully was able to play due to a Mac port from Ambrosia Software (the makers of Escape Velocity). The tension that game was able to create was incredible. I wish they had done a proper sequel to it and not the weird game they ended up making.

Question the Fifteenth: What are the chances you will answer all of these questions honestly?



Question the Sixteenth: How many of your readers and pedantic, stinky, neckbeards?




At least one!


Fixing Square Enix Some More

@AskWheels Whoops!  Been stuck in test mode for school...  Thoughts re: Wada stpping down and selling of mobile freemium assets for SE?



No worries! I've been there so I know how insane school can get. I already shared thoughts on Wada previously but I wanted to touch on the freemium assets sale as I don't really get it. If those freemium properties were making money, why sell them? If they weren't making money, did Square Enix even get fair value? Those types of properties seem to be a great source of income for many companies so I just don't see why Square Enix would do it unless it desperately needed to get cash into its coffers or something.

See you next week!

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What I Can't Wait For:

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