Sega Forever revealed as free mobile games

Sega Forever, on your phone.

SEGA!

I saw a Sega fan site was abuzz when the company revealed a brand redesign to the other. Now, I don’t know if Sega Forever is a part of that push. But it may well be. As you can see from the tweet above, this morning Sega revealed the series of games that will be going “live in the next 24 hours”:

  • Sonic The Hedgehog
  • Altered Beast
  • Phantasy Star II
  • Kid Chameleon
  • Comix Zone

From Sega’s website:

FREE CLASSIC GAMES ON MOBILE
SEGA® Forever™ is a free and growing classic games collection of nearly every SEGA game ever released from every console era – Master System, Genesis/MegaDrive, Dreamcast, and more. Available on iOS and Android mobile devices.

When I have a chance I’ll give these games a whirl and see how the ports handle. For me, this is coming on the heels of the equally mysterious “Atari Box” announcement last week. Sure, Sega hasn’t returned to the hardware business – they would be insane to in my opinion, but stranger things have happened – but this is a good start. I don’t know why more companies don’t leverage their back catalogs in this fashion. I know there’s an incredible amount of conversion work involved to modernize a lot of these titles. It would seem to me that the costs would be outweighed by the nostalgia buyers, though.

Of course, I don’t think Sega (or anybody else) would be willing to port the weird games I like to play and watch. A man can dream though. A man can dream.

Fantasy Baseball Update: Weeks 10 and 11

The Makers are coming off two tough back-to-back losses, and now have a record of 4-7 on the season. They’re sitting in 11th place. I want to avoid the pity party shuffle to woulda-coulda-shoulda; suffice it to say I’m not pleased with losing by a combined total of 9 points. Anyhow, here’s the breakdown of weeks 10 and 11:

Week 10

Recall that I was not confident going into Week 9, and the Makers delivered on that end. That is, until Saturday, when they put up an astonishing 120 points against my opponent’s 14. Suddenly they had vaulted into the lead. They outscored him again on the last day, 54 to 46, but I ended up losing by one point: 332 to 331. A bad performance by Adam Wainwright on June 6 against the Reds – to tune of -30 points – sunk me. I also stupidly left Andrew Miller riding the pine on a day he picked up a save – for 10 points – that would have made the difference. C’est la vie. The offense scored 243 points while the pitching tallied 88 points for the week. Tough loss.

Week 11

Instead of getting to 0.500, I was now 4-6 and smarting from the agony of a one-point loss. With E3 going on I paid little attention to my team, and that’s on me. Despite the loss, I could feel the momentum shifting toward me. The first day confirmed that for me, on what was an off day for most teams, the offense put up 72 points. I knew the match was going to be a tough slog, but the next day they scratched another 63 points. The score stood at 145 to 95. Not exactly a huge lead, but I was confident enough to let my team stay on autopilot while I watched E3 coverage. A bad portent though: Andrew Miller, who had been solid all season, exploded in back to back appearances.

I left Quintana languishing on the bench, but he turned in a good start. I would come to regret this as Cueto, Wainwright, and Lynn were all horrendously bad. Estrada was also terrible. For all that, the Makers stayed in the lead until the weekend. By Saturday, my opponent had closed the gap to a mere 10 points. Wainwright started in Baltimore, so I left him on the bench and dodged his disaster start (-35 points). I thought I had weathered the storm, but I noted that my opponent had two starters going Sunday. I was nervous about Lynn but had to take the chance. Alas, like his teammate Wainwright, he was knocked out for -22 points. At midnight, I still led by 8 points, but a late win from Dave Price put my opponent ahead. Some other guys put up an additional 6 points to wrap up my defeat.

So the Makers took their seventh loss in the midnight hour, 316 to 308. My offense contributed 302 points. The simple arithmetic should be enough to show you how breathtakingly bad the pitching did.

Season Outlook

I’m going to skip the usual Week Outlook since it’s already started, and there’s not much for me to say. On paper, my opponent and I are evenly matched, but with my pitching personifying High Risk, Medium Reward, there’s not much to analyze. Every matchup feels like a crapshoot. Including this week there are ten games left to play. To get one game over five hundred and accomplish my goal, they need to win seven games. Can the Makers play .700 ball the rest of the way? We’re going to find out.

E3 2017 Thoughts and Reactions

Quick post today for my final E3 2017 thoughts. Firstly, Happy Father’s Day to the dads out there. I’ll be resuming a regular schedule now that E3 is over. Starting tomorrow I’ll give an update on the Makers from the last two weeks, and we’ll get back to Read From Memory: FFVII and some long plays, among other things.

If you need a refresher, I listed all of the games that got some time during the pressers:

“Winner” of E3 2017

Anway, my E3 2017 thoughts: Overall I found the pressers underwhelming this year. I know the game journos get obsessed with who “won” E3. In my view, as the media gets more democratized every year, the trade show has become less important. Can anybody actually “win” an event that’s becoming irrelevant? But we should respect tradition, right? And we have our pet companies or products we like to root for and see do well. So if I had to choose, I would give “Winner of E3 2017” to Ubisoft. They had a strong presentation: they didn’t pander with social media stars like EA and didn’t show off a collection of trailers for games we already knew about (Bethesda). They also get points for showing off original IP. Skull & Bones looked spectacular.

And come on, they announced Beyond Good & Evil 2. It may not be on the same tier as say Half-Life 3 as far as legendary whales still out there, but it was getting close. I have some reservations about Ancel’s opus, as do others, particularly about the tone and feel of the game.  But for now, let’s bask in the glow of the fact that the sleeper hit of 2003 is finally getting its long overdue sequel.

Console Makers at E3

I wasn’t particularly enthused by the Microsoft presser, though I admit they did much better this year overall in their presentation. The XBox One X (X.B.O.X.), formerly Project Scorpio, feels pricey at $500. This appears to be a new precedent with this generation: initial release of the platform; a slim-line revision of the hardware and price drop; a “1.5” hardware update half way through the cycle; followed by an ultra souped-up version to round it out. But something tells me that you whiffed when the most buzz you produce is from backward compatibility with your very old games and a controversy over an indie developer’s 3-year-old tweets.

Sony coasted this year, despite their very impressive stage theatrics. Ending the conference with a lengthy Spider-man demo says it all. But they may have earned it. Four years into this generation of consoles, it’s pretty safe to say that Sony has “won” the battle this round. I wonder about their commitment to VR. There are some impressive looking games, but the jury’s still out if it remains a fad. Practically speaking a $800+ buy-in for the tech is still a bit too rich for my blood for novelty. As for the rest, I just want to play the games at this point: God of War 4, a new Uncharted, etc.

As for Nintendo, well, they’ve cut down on their press conferences, which I still think was a wise move on their part. Metroid Prime 4 got a pretty announcement trailer and generated the associated buzz, though I’m still a little mystified that they chose not to give the Samus Returns remake any time during the presentation. Mario Odyssey looks fantastic, and the news about the core Pokemon RPG was somewhat exciting for a quite a few. Nintendo remains a unique creature. I would like to see more for the Switch regarding third party support, though with Rocket League, Minecraft cross platform with Xbox, and their own version of Skyrim, FIFA, etc., I grudgingly admit that they’ve got most of the bases covered.

Panels

I only managed to catch one panel with Hideo Kojima. It was what you would expect: a softball session mainly about the movies he enjoys and some of his philosophy on making games that we’ve all heard him talk about before. As promised, there was no news about Death Stranding at all. I wonder if the lingering conflict with Konami is having any effect on the game’s delivery? The best place to find out about the influence movies had on Kojima as a designer remains a series of essays he wrote over ten years ago for PlayStation UK magazine. They appear (in Japanese…) in the promotional book Metal Gear Solid Naked, but some translations are floating around on the net if you dig.

In closing, E3 2017 wasn’t a great show, and it reflects the declining importance of the big gala on the West Coast. The fact that it was open to the public this year speaks to that. Let’s look forward to GamesCon this summer and the Tokyo Game Show in September.

 

 

Devolver Digital vs. ESA

Just a quick post for today. Devolver Digital put on a bizarre press conference late Sunday night, after Bethesda. I had no idea that there was additional tension between the publisher of the bizarre (and good) and the ESA. From Dual Shockers:

Apparently, Texas-based Devolver Digital — who is known for publishing an array of some of the best and some of the weirdest indies in the industry — lost a whopping $100,000 after the City of Los Angeles prevented it from using a parking lot it had rented to expand its E3 presence.

So what went down? Well, it all started with Devolver renting out the aforementioned lot in order to double its presence (which it decided to do because for the first time ever E3 was allowing the public — 15,000 people of the public — to attend the show). For those who aren’t familiar with what the indie publisher does each year at E3: it rents out of a parking lot at Hooters across the street from E3, where it showcases a variety of games, has free food and drinks..it’s essentially E3’s own festival.

Devolver Digital rented out an additional parking lot next to this Hooters, which the ESA usually reserves for E3. With the doors opened to the general public this year, the company decided to add the space. But the City of LA denied them use for anything but a parking lot this year, which co-founder Mike Wilson alledges was done at the behest of ESA.

One of the stranger stories to come out of the show this year.

Return of Samus E3 2017

I was very excited to see a reimagining of Metroid II Return of Samus at E3 2017. As you can see from the video, it’s been slightly rebranded as “Samus Returns.” Besides Metroid Prime, Return of Samus is perhaps my favorite of the entire series. Yes, I know, Super Metroid annually appears on all the “Best of” lists. But the old Gameboy cart has a special place for me.

I’ll have a more complete breakdown of this year’s E3 in a couple of days, but for now, here’s the Gameplay reveal from this past Tuesday during the Nintendo Treehouse.

E3 2017 Coliseum Day 2 panels

Sorry for not posting this again yesterday, I was preoccupied with the Nintendo E3 Treehouse. The panels are in progress and you can watch them on YouTube, Twitch, and FB Live.

Here’s the link to the YouTube stream:

I’m going to check some of the panels later on if they’re available on replay. I am interested, of course, in Hideo Kojima’s talk which should begin at 6:15 PM EST.

Some other news of note, particularly Steam Direct launching yesterday (June 13) I’ll dig into that some time next week.

Nintendo E3 2017 Spotlight Highlights

Nintendo presented its E3 2017 Spotlight today. It was a 25 minute long pretaped presentation with Reggie Fils-Aime. The games showcased are listed below.

Link to the Replay: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M2mZS_p4A7Y

Games

  • Xenoblade Chronicles 2
  • Kirby
  • Poken Tournament Deluxe
  • Pokemon RPG
  • Metroid Prime 4
  • Yoshi
  • Fire Emblem Warriors
  • Breath of the Wild DLC – The Master Trials
  • Breath of the Wild DLC – The Champions’ Ballad
  • Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle
  • Rocket League
  • Super Mario Odysessy