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RetroAdvisoryBoard

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  1. You're right. Intellivision will release its trailers, its announcements, its digital engagements as it sees fit. Pat will work in his comments as he likes. Tommy will no doubt respond in kind, but now is about the time he said Intellivision would be moving into its next awareness phase - some of which might be delayed if the console gets pushed back, but I'm sure there's enough prep work to do for announcements, and less free time to trade jabs with a barking sideshow act. Is it defamation? Yeah, it'd pass the legal standard in several states for review if damages could be shown. May not prosecute, much less likely a win, but they could build if that’s where they wanted to spend resources. "Imputing that an individual committed a crime". "Imputing that a person is unable or lacks the integrity to perform one's employment duties".. seems familiar. Maybe more prudent to approach YouTube and its community standards, but even there it’s grey. But as you state, it'd be a PR headache, an uphill battle and suddenly make Pat the martyr. Some of you reading this when you come up for air from the YouTube comments may have got a little excited - whoa there, put some ice on it, I don't see that happening. This comes out. In three months, four, six or eight. Don't know the timeline with the world upside down, not going to pretend I do. But when it does, you get get a few hundred let's play videos, people encouraged to film fun moments. Then there are the communities who have an interest in playing games (and not just congealing for the odd conspiracy theory). They either have fun with the system and talk about it, or they don't. If they don't, well, the Amico doesn't have much of a lifespan. But if they do, if some amount of people are enjoying themselves and promoting this little system, what's the counterargument? That the system sucks? The people playing it and loving it are a video suggestion down. No amount of spam videos are burying that. That was the narrative with the Switch - the system sucks, it has no games - but people were playing it, having fun, sharing their experience and word of mouth plus advertising set it off. This ain't the Switch, but it ain't exactly the "Super Footbath" - it'll sell enough to generate it's own narrative on its own terms, and Pat and Ian's weekly narrative.. kinda fizzles away. I don't see big YouTubers jumping on board. I don't see more than a modest increase in views or likes per video - they're appeasing that segment of their crowd, and that's that. An irritant, a thorn in the side, not exactly the baseball bat to the knee. Intellivision can move on, Tommy will move on (though likely slap back every few insults).. but get to the premieres, to the digital events, to launch, and leave Pat and Ian (and the traveling flea circus) behind.
  2. For nostalgia’s sake, Armor Battle probably has more notoriety on this page. But nostalgia isn’t going to click in most of the people seeing this. “Armor” is not synonymous with “Tank” for most people. So, I’d say Battle Tanks. If you wanted, you could work in the term “Armor Battle”, maybe it flashes before the conflict starts, sort of the “Ready, Set, Armor Battle!” countdown. Could also be the badge one receives (a la Activision) as a Battle Tanks veteran, “Armor Battle Commander”.
  3. You non-believer. I like it. Didn’t have much affinity for the logo at first (before the animation sequence), but it’s grown on me. I see more in it the more I look at it. And the voice at the end? My hope is that they may eventually consider some way to incorporate a voiceover for that... I think the kid on mic is adorable, but there is no substitute for gifting this to the grands, they turn it on for the first time, and it’s their own grandchildren saying “Amico!”... or “Let’s play a game!” or “Aaah, stop touching me!”... whatever 🙂. Take that simple principle and move it to the intros for games... that can be a very personal touch. post-publish edit: Tommy mentioned back in a April the logo is written into the chip on board, soooo, it’s a logistical nightmare. BUT, if they dropped everything, maybe it could happen. You, know, once they actually begin building the firmware, hire the guy who sits in a room with a hammer banging hardware/testing, or wherever current speculation is about where they are in the process.. 🙂. Just saying, priorities!
  4. I believe the correct answers are: Cloudy Night Armor Planes Socball Bowl-hole Cracker Squad Knievel Racing Breakmissile It's not against the rules to tell the genie you wish for infinite wishes. He doesn't have to say yes, but, can't hurt to try.
  5. I think that's where a lot of the eyerolling, the "we don't even NEED this thing, PlayStation/Microsoft/Nintendo give me everything" retort really misses. Baseball.. you make a baseball today, there's a formula for how it's done. It's going to be batter's perspective, it's going to be perfect timing to get that curve or slider.. it's going to be outfielder's first-person perspective to field that ball hit your way, the quick button switch to grab and throw with your analog stick to the desired infielder.. it's going to look the same because the formula is kinda stuck with "this is how a baseball game is supposed to look and we'll never deviate from it". That's great for EA or 2K Sports, but, it is so completely derift of creativity. Why not give more of an overhead view? Why not focus on the mechanics of the game as mini games.. not every game has to be "Baseball Simulator 202_".. I miss mutant league sports and robots doing ridiculous things in the sport. I miss an overhead perspective. I look forward to MAYBE sending my teammate a cue that I intend to run, or maybe I'm playing the field and notice the runner doing something I THINK is a tell, and I want to very discreetly send a warning to whoever's playing Pitcher - 1st base runner looks like they want to steal. That alone is a fun play mechanic, and I DON'T KNOW HOW Sony or Microsoft can make this work. Some elitist podcaster is gonna tell me, "Just buy 7 Switch Lites! Game of the YEAR!"... but that's not how these companies think of baseball games. To Nintendo's credit, they thought outside of the box with Toy Baseball on Clubhouse Games 51. But that's a solitary mini game. They really haven't made an off-the-wall baseball game since a third party effort on the Wii with Backyard Sports, Backyard Baseball and MLB Power Pros Baseball. The Switch has a few different baseball titles - RBI 19 Baseball, Super Mega Baseball 2, SNK's Baseball Stars 2 (a retro throwback) and the import-only Jikkyou Powerful Pro Baseball.. but, they largely simulate the standard perspective and don't really mix up how you could handle special plays, certainly don't get too outside the box with odd moves or get silly with the physics. And that's part of the fun, part of what makes playing a sports game on a video game system entertaining. It's fun. Some games can be ultra realistic. Others ultra cartoonish. When you're playing Mike Tyson's Punch-Out, you're not concerned with the physics holding up some comically large Piston Bull.. you're playing a pattern game, a survival game where you learn opponents (eventually), with the trapping of a boxing game as its presentation. I think most modern sports franchises are soooooo hung up on capturing the entirety of the experience, from season modes to franchise building and the ownership behind them - which I LOVE.. I can spend a whole spring and summer consoling myself with how my Mets are doing, because come September in real life, my Mets aren't often doing so much to console me. But, I also love games we can jump into and expect totally different experiences - under the theme of baseball, or going through several of the familiar motions, but, a different experience I can just pick up and play. And I don't have to explain all the potential play options to my kids or friends who are over. Here's a controller, it's a couple buttons and a couple options on your controller screen to check out, otherwise, you can figure out the disc and play along. Where's THAT game? And why is Tommy making us wait another week to give us a peek?
  6. Trick question? Based on what I've seen/heard so far: Night Stalker Armor Battle Baseball Chuckin Corn Safecracker Auto Racing Missile Command but, am more intrigued to see more of: Cloudy Mountain Biplanes Soccer Bowling Bomb Squad Auto Racing Breakout I think we have a good deal of gameplay or discussion on most of the others, these I'd be more interested to hear and see more of. So, basically, casting a non-non-commital vote for any tie breakers 🙂
  7. Right. And you only see the dichotomy you’re in. Which is where a lot of people get hung up. We have something of a formula for a successful game, a successful console.. and while that’s aimed to success, we have a hard time seeing the audience that model is unsuccessful at picking up or appealing to. I think that’s where most retro video game players are at. They understand the nature of the market and what works in that market as concerns the examples they’ve seen. But they haven’t seen something like this. They factor in “people play mobile because it’s in their pocket” - which is part of the reason, convenience can’t be ignored. But I bet if you looked at phone location vs gameplay data, *most* of that gameplay is done in people’s homes during downtime, evenings, timewasters on a weekend. And if you look at older people in gaming communities, you hear the same refrain off burnout, or no time to play the styles of games being put out. Part of why they return to retro or mobile. Easier to pick up and put down. And while some might suggest “just put these games on a compilation disc!”, those have limited reach and attention. They’re lost in thousands of options. The vast libraries of digital $10 games aren’t selling casual buyers into getting an Xbox, they SEE the AAA games in those aisles and top Amazon suggestions and top YouTube results. Anything else is lost. A separate system is a necessity in marketing to a new audience not in our “gamer” evo-system. They’ll get it, will just have to see it play out to realize some of the potential.
  8. Check these guys out. Adam Koralik was their guest arbitrator/judge (pretty connected retro/modern gaming YouTube reviewer/commentator. I appreciated the format, plus both Chris and Will saw some interesting things with what Intellivision is doing, as did Adam. Just less tuned into the general marketing strategy or what appeal to non-gamers (and waning-interest gamers) a system like this is shooting for. Be courteous, ignore the familiar crew in the comments, I engaged the guys on Twitter and they’re amicable guys. here was my 7-part Tweet manifesto ‪@chrillcast @chrillcast_will @chrillcastchris @AdamKoralik @Intellivision Fun take on the Amico guys. I think Chris has grounds for a mistrial! Answering Adam’s Q regarding success: here’s a GameDaily.biz article https://gamedaily.biz/article/1680/intellivision-amico-receives-10000-preorders-only-needs-180000-sold-to-hit-break-even-point. That’s to reach profitability. They haven’t marketed to anybody yet (retro community is free to engage +Tommy’s already in it) Assuming few buy it on Intellivision name (about 25,000 pre-orders from this community to date), but they plan to market on mobile phone games w/those pesky freemium ads, in more family spaces since PS5/Series X/Switch consumerbase are mostly going to be disinterested. Audience: younger families (my kids are Chris’ kids ages, I feel the same), people who have friends over (it’s the most simplistic controller & screen encourages party games), & people who don’t have time for the epic action adventure games they see promoted and on the Target/Walmart aisle - the wall of games we love as gamers but ask us to immerse in a lengthy story to play. These are simple pick-up-&-play style games you can play an hour or 4 mins. Think differently from games made for gamers. These are for people who play games, board games, card games, assume modern consoles don’t have things of interest. You sell this to churches (youth groups), to convention organizers (easy to wngage w/strangers), even to bars (Jackbox-type party games and patrons whip out their phones), and to the nursing home/group living facilities still after Wiis- you have an int’l presence & some marketing- it can reach that modest goal before word of mouth. Will accept the judge’s ruling, but this may surpriseyou, your honor. :-)‬
  9. Thanks for the quick post! I’ll be on tonight, I promised no novels.. it’s pretty open format and I know the crew has everything under the sun covered, but will try to add in some less discussed points.
  10. There is absolutely nothing about a cross d-pad that makes it more fitting a solution to platformers than a well-made disc overlaying a directional array of inputs. In some ways, it can even be worse than this proposed disc. Yes, our beloved platformers may not have the absolute best input device in the d-pad. With the disc, you can restrict the inputs to 4 quadrants, just like your standard d-pad. Your thumb rests of a disc mounted to a central ball bearing or pivoting joint. No different from the Genesis or other era Sega controllers. Now, Amico’s control disc rotates, and unintended rotation can be problematic IF not accounted for in design. The solution is enough friction to reduce inadvertent rolling in an undesired direction. The original Intellivision pucks didn’t do this, they were so early in design. These controls however have a custom silicon gel that can detect pressure. I.E user intent. And if their testing can accpunt for unintended slipping out of position (reads of various pressure inputs when going through rote exercises with the disc), they can factor in what counts as a “ move lower left” and what doesn’t register as a “move lower left” in instructions for the developers going out with that controller API. What’s a more sensitive control scheme vs a less sensitive control scheme. There also should be enough contact so not to slip much, so I don’t see it as a great detractor. But I do see the inherent way reading “intent” is better handled using a disc that CAN MEASURE INTENT using the pressure applied and 64 input array. I played through Contra with my dad for the first time in a few years - i play it every year or so, but it was his first time breaking out the classic NES controller in a while. Reflexes were quick, but there were a dozen cheated deaths because you TRIED to turn and duck at the same time as a running alien popped up behind you, but slight misplacement meant I turned and stood. My fingers were on both the left arrow and the down arrow and the control should have picked up one thing. However my weight was certainly not properly placed to register the down arrow. Result, a precision turn and duck wasn’t executed because of user error. So as no-miss precision goes.. it’s debatable. Yea, every contact is a Yes/No Was Contact Made binary relay. But those perfect jumps are 100% dependent on your honed mastery of finger placement, and there’s no room for intent or a hint of a shift. Is that the sole solution? And there’s nothing a d-pad can do to alter that. There aren’t enough inputs to have detected intent. There’s no silicon layer to spread out and hit more contacts, again, indicating intent. And would I had wanted to slightly adjust my position on a d-pad, I can’t roll slightly upward without depressing, because you only have your four directions and four combination directions. the inabilities to perform these precision maneuvers are exactly why we use fighting sticks to give greater flexibility. But they’re less pixel precision. The analog stick is not ideal clearly because any shift of weight with a placed thumb on top is going to waggle, and they’re greater for operating in free space but not for precision. The disc has merit, if handled correctly in game design, there is no reason why it should be a worse platforming experience - people just haven’t used a sophisticated modern disc design. No offense to the team at APh Consulting who made the original, but precision and user intent weren’t the drivers to do what it needed to do. And if as much care has been put into it as Tommy and J. Alvarado have shown, it looks like the disc will more than hold its own. With some programming, could perform better than a traditional cross shaped d-pad. Of course that caveat that should go without saying: we have to feel the thing and see it in action. But in theory and real-life examples, the scheme works.
  11. There is a word for all of this. Hassle. I am ever frustrated with presumptuous podcasters and those who must rent a second home in the comments sections of Amico videos insisting how easy and seamless the menus and forced intros and tutorials, the unnecessary configuration and misplaced customization and selection are. It's never as easy as they present, because they're not new to the medium. They are used to certain flows to access and play, and accept the screen before them as normal - because it's some iteration of the screen before them in accessing many games they've played for years. And they purport everybody has loads of experience with similar interfaces and selection options and presume everyone participates in the digital age just as they do. It's just not the case. And for the population that does have experiences with these interfaces on a regular basis, they're not exactly enamored with them or not frustrated by janky navigation and obtuse control schemes that aren't apparent or user-friendly. I don't know if Intellivision can create a better "turn on system and get to game" experience, but the fact that they're promoting simplicity and striving to not feature all these features by design, to maintain ease of use, is encouraging. I may find the simple menu system still to be frustrating, but at least they're making a point to address this and attempt to make a system, and playing games on said system in somewhat predictable if less standard-encountered situations like you've pointed out here, hassle-free.
  12. Totally gone? Are you suggesting modern pop has killed off melody? Just a stream of 2 or 3 constrained notes, totally dependent on a rhythmic layer to get to that all important hook? Nooooooooo..... ::listens to recent hits:: No, I take that back. Not that I'm going to go on some "the kids these days and their music, bleh!" rant - beats are great, lyrics are clever, but more melodic rock and pop and classical tunes.. an unrestrained YES PLEASE!
  13. Agreed. Earthworm Jim is a great game. However it did not enter the general zeitgeist like a Pac-Man or Space Invaders or Tetris or Candy Crush though. That casual audience has never heard of him... "so, you're a worm? Do you just squirm through the dirt? Is it like Dig Dug?" EWJ is definitely a double-take for the gaming crowd though, and cause for them to weigh a new system for its beloved exclusives on IPs THEY hold dear. "They got.. they got Earthworm Jim as an EXCLUSIVE???" A handful of those titles will convince some segment of the retro gaming community that they HAVE to pick up an Amico, just as a Gears of War and Halo convince audiences that a new Xbox is worth their coin.
  14. Amazon launched their own game development software (Lumberyard) and their own game studio (Amazon Game Studios), along with their own current digital access platform (Amazon Gaming), all to very limited results. AGS stepped in to purchase the rights to create a Lord of the Rings MMO last fall, and they have a handful of new games they've launched for mobile on iOS and Android, along with a few exclusive games they had (have?) for their Amazon Fire tv streaming device. But their gaming studio has a free shooter/battle royale game recently released on Steam (Crucible), and another sprawling open world player v. player action adventure title (New World) out soon if not already. Looks pretty. But that's all before their supposed big focus: Project Tempo, which is supposed to be Amazon's answer to Google's Stadia. Amazon is definitely dipping into gaming, but they started making big announcements 5-6 years ago, and have.. very little practical to show for it. Between their impossibly deep warchest and Google's, it's fair to say they could do most anything they want in gaming. But they either are content to dabble, or are focused on the cloud and don't want to do conventional gaming. Amazon and Google are sort of doing this dance of "We know where gaming is going and where people are going to want to be in 3-5 years, and we're aiming for that window now, and the audience will follow" approach. Reminds me a lot of the hubris in the early 80s as every video game console manufacturer and the whole of the computer industry were dead-set determined to sell the customer on home computers, when just 5-8% of the market were having it.. computers were still too limited and not user-friendly to the casual audience. They were 10+ years ahead of the curve, they saw the simplicity and elegance of what lay ahead, but were convinced they could drag customers along. Coleco's ADAM basically gutted their profits and caused them to retreat from video games by the mid 80s. Mattel weren't burned enough by their keyboard component debacle, they had to go back to that vision with Aquarius and it tanked, and Atari, Commodore, Tandy all price-warred themselves to near bankruptcy trying to usher in a great home computer buying spree that wouldn't materialize for the better part of a decade. And now these richest companies in the world are off building systems to make gaming a device-neutral service experience managed on giant server farms that you tap into. Awesome. But glaring how making fun games just isn't the mission statement for either.
  15. An Android & Linux hybrid you say? Soooo.. Anux? Which sounds Latin for a*shole, but looks like it might be available? No relevant players have copyrighted it, so it's all yours I guess? As is the potential title for the Record & Talkback game: RecTal, and the also a title for a concept game where you Associate online Haters by their Amico quotes: AssHat. Yeah, I may have some marketing experience, but think you're gonna want to run these by the advisors, if not legal, just in case...
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