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Tuesday, March 2, 2021

Faithful Sinnoh Remakes Were Always My Ask

By LUDWIG VON KOOPA - I'm content for now.

Last week, the Pokémon fanbase actually got news that many of us have been hoping for for many years now: A return to Sinnoh. There's both a lore-filled prequel, and the highly anticipated Sinnoh remakes, which for now look more like Sinnoh remasters.

I wrote an article almost four years ago with the title, “It's Time For Adventure, Diamond and Pearl!” I claimed that we are “supposed to” get Sinnoh remakes “soon.” Obviously, “soon” didn't happen, and you need to have read “supposed to” as, “well it turns out that stars repeatedly aligning really means absolutely nothing.” Anyway, in that article, I pointed out several things: I wanted Super Contests to remain in the game and preferably be untouched, keep the Battle Frontier, give Arceus a big role and allow Him to catch up to the generations of power creep, and do not completely redesign all of the Sinnoh trainers (for the worse) like they did to Hoenn's humans for Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire.

You can summarise that whole article as, “Keep the game the same, and add additional Arceus content.” And it seems like that's exactly what we're getting, except the Arceus content is apparently its own entire separate videogame (Pokémon Legends Arceus, which, if it was going to do anything else besides explore Sinnoh lore, I wouldn't care about. It just happens to have exactly the one premise I'm interested in playing through despite me being pretty sure I won't like the gameplay.)

And is that what we're getting according to the limited information we have? Well, so far Pokémon Brilliant Diamond and Pokémon Shining Pearl have been marketed as...

Monday, March 1, 2021

KoopaTV's February 2021 Review Newsletter

By LUDWIG VON KOOPA - I think KoopaTV is finally banned by China's Great Firewall.

February 2021 saw yet another catastrophic death: Right-wing radio talk show host Rush Limbaugh, who pioneered the whole super-genre of conservative public commentary to the masses. He created a whole new blueprint of one-to-many interaction. Without Rush Limbaugh, the likes of Herman Cain (may Herman Cain also rest in peace) would have never been relevant. And without Herman Cain, KoopaTV wouldn't exist. Basically, our godfather's godfather passed away in February, and that's always a bummer.

Still, Rush Limbaugh produced a very large body of archived work, and his influence over culture has been deeply embedded. Speaking for this website, we don't need him around in order for us to keep functioning. We know what we're doing and how to do it well. And... do it well we shall, as shown in the rest of this newsletter

Top Five Recommended Experiences of February 2021

The most important part of KoopaTV are the experiences published in the form of week-daily articles. All of them are worth your time and emotional investment, but here are the top five from February (which only had about one or two less articles than usual despite being two or three days shorter than normal months):
  1. BALAN WONDERWORLD is how you don't make a 3D Platformer (or any other game) — Ludwig tried out the BALAN WONDERWORLD demo on the Nintendo Switch, and it's really bad. He writes how it's everything wrong with 3D platformers.
  2. Abandon Ship! Not a Projectile? Excluded from the Ballistic Barrage Event Tourney!? — In certain circumstances, KoopaTV is a fighter of injustice. This article is about the blatant inequality of how Super Smash Bros. Ultimate characterises what is and what is not a projectile.
  3. VIDEO of Nintendo Cloning Human Earth Girls?! — This may seem like a minor thing now, but this is Earth-changing stuff. Clones in the human world. ...With technology from (or at least showcased by) a videogame company.
  4. Bowser's Shulk-Bash Backslash Backlash — The Koopa reaction to Mythra and Pyra coming to Super Smash Bros. Ultimate... revenge on Shulk!
  5. What I Think About the Project TRIANGLE STRATEGY Debut Demo (Survey Q&A) — If you wanted to know about the Project TRIANGLE STRATEGY demo, or its survey, this is the article for you. It's a promising strategy RPG experience!

There's probably something to be said that the month started with a harsh look at a SQUARE ENIX game demo, and ended with a relatively positive look at another SQUARE ENIX game demo.

Friday, February 26, 2021

KoopaTV's Live Reactions to the Pokémon Presents February 2021

By LUDWIG VON KOOPA - They call it exciting news, but... Half of it was a montage!

I already have recommended to everyone not to get excited over however The Pokémon Company International is going to hype and promote the 25-year anniversary of the Pokémon series. They got some musicians and artwork and merchandise, but how about games?

Well, today TPCi provided a 20-minute Pokémon Presents, and KoopaTV (...actually, it's just me, because everyone else has a day job—I do too, actually...) live-reacted to it with no expectations other than assuming we'll be disappointed. Literally the last time this happened they talked about Pokémon UNITE.

[9:56 AM] Ludwig Von Koopa:
[9:56 AM] Ludwig Von Koopa: "Set your alarms now, Trainers. We’ve got some exciting news to share that you won’t want to miss!"
[9:59 AM] Ludwig Von Koopa: ...Happening...shortly.
[10:00 AM] Ludwig Von Koopa: Which should be now.
[10:00 AM] Ludwig Von Koopa: Two-minute countdown on-screen. Hmph.
[10:02 AM] Ludwig Von Koopa: Oh, it's going now.

Thursday, February 25, 2021

Ring Fit Adventure Fitness Log Week 29: The Four Masters’ Pets

By LUDWIG VON KOOPA - Minibosses for each fitness element!

As we continue to get closer to the Tokyo 2020 2021 Olympic Games, as well as closer to our inevitable deaths, we need to be thinking about getting fit. And then going from thinking to... DOING. That's why every Friday KoopaTV has a Fitness Friday, and because we're a gaming site and think videogames are the best form of entertainment (and can do a lot of societal good), Ring Fit Adventure for Nintendo Switch a great platform to do fitness goals in. I get a lot of questions of, “Is it fun?” And the answer is yes. ...This week happens to have the Fitness Friday article on a Thursday because there's a Pokémon production we're doing a live reaction log to on Friday morning.

Last week, I went through and logged my experience in World 28. Starting this week, my left hip and other bodily pain issues are being alleviated due to better sleep posture, thanks to sleeping with a second pillow under/between my legs. This week, I'll be playing on difficulty level 28 in World 29: Extra Fitness Lv. 195. This is based on World 6: The Shrouded Land, which featured little more than four miniboss fights against darkly influenced Four Masters (and a cute town Lady). (World 6 is finished up at the start of Week 7's fitness log.)

While the Town doesn't have the cute Dragaux-worshipping Lady, it does have General Store Number 25. This is only selling the complete outfit for the Spring Dancer II, but you need two Onyx stones to complete the set. Dragaux dropped one at the end of World 28. Where to find another? My first stop is to the warp zone, which has three Game Gyms and three overworld treasure chests.

Ring Fit Adventure Shrouded Land World 6 29 warp overworld map treasure chests game gyms
The next paragraph discusses everything you need to know about the three chests and three Game Gyms.

The upper-left Game Gym is Smack Back (Novice) offering three Ashitaba Smoothies for an A-rank completion. The lower-left Game Gym is Robo-Wrecker (Novice), which offered a 400-coin bonus for an A-rank completion. Neither of these posed an issue, and the overworld Treasure Chest on the left side contained... one Onyx stone! Exactly what I need to complete the Spring Dancer II set (and then not wear it). As for the right side of the warp zone... The Game Gym is Squattery Wheel (Novice), which IS actually difficult to get an A rank (let alone S rank) in for its Defense Drink bonus. I have a tip for it after the jump break, but the two overworld Treasure Chests guarded by the Squattery Wheel Game Gym contain five Peaches (upper-right) and one Dragon Fruit (lower-right).

Wednesday, February 24, 2021

What I Think About the Project TRIANGLE STRATEGY Debut Demo (Survey Q&A)

By LUDWIG VON KOOPA - Filling out the feedback survey.

As was mentioned in last week's Nintendo Direct, Project TRIANGLE STRATEGY by SQUARE ENIX exists, and there's a demo available, and now there's a feedback survey available with that. It's a fantasy-setting strategy roleplaying game like Fire Emblem or FINAL FANTASY TACTICS. I decided to give it a try and fill out the survey, so I'm going to tell you what I told SQUARE ENIX. You can access the survey itself here, but the email that Nintendo sent out has coded links in it that you may or may not need in order for SQUARE ENIX not to filter you out.

The first page of the survey opened up with, “Thank you very much for playing the Project TRIANGLE STRATEGY Debut Demo. We’re looking for your input on how the quality of the full game can be improved going forward.”

It then asked for a one- to five-star satisfaction rating. I gave it a 4. It then asked me, “What did you enjoy? Please comment freely using 250 characters or fewer.” It provided me with an open text field. I answered, “I enjoyed the 2D-HD art style a lot. The game was a pleasure to look at. I also liked the world-building that was occurring in-between and during battles, especially the side stories on the world map. I think the voting mechanic has potential!” I couldn't say anymore due to the enforced character limit. Moving on...

Tuesday, February 23, 2021

Bowser's Shulk-Bash Backslash Backlash

By LUDWIG VON KOOPA - One-upping basic “M” alliteration with a tongue twisting tale.

One consequence of the Pyra and Mythra newcomer announcement from last week's Nintendo Direct is that there's new artwork associated with their Super Smash Bros. Ultimate existence:

There's a lot of very interesting things going on here. First, pay attention to Mythra's outfit. In a previous KoopaTV article titled “Massive Melee Mythra is a Marvelous Meta Miracle” by ex-KoopaTV staffer RawkHawk2010, he predicted—over two years ago—that Mythra's leggings and Xenoblade Chronicles 2 DLC would result in Mythra appearing in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate in more than just a Spirit capacity. By the end, he was rudely warning King Bowser Koopa about Mythra, referencing Shulk's trailer that we saw in an August 2014 Nintendo Direct. What you need to know about that trailer is it began with Bowser innocently wandering the Gaur Plain and watching butterflies, and then this Shulk jerk surprise BACK SLASHES the Koopa King for no reason. That was the first time I had ever heard of Shulk.

Super Smash Bros. For Wii U Shulk Back Slash Bowser trailer
Shulk Back Slashed Bowser in his debut trailer for Super Smash Bros. For Wii U.
I've personally held a grudge against Shulk ever since.

Now, look back at the embedded artwork at the top of the page by Masatsugu Saito. Notice who is right behind Shulk's back? That's right. It's King Bowser Koopa. And while everyone's Xenoblade Chronicles attention is on Pyra and on Mythra, Lord Bowser, expertly avoiding Pyra's and Mythra's trailer altogether (as did every other Koopa in the game, including myself), is instead using this time for REVENGE on Shulk. Saito happened to catch the moment before the backslash backlash.

Monday, February 22, 2021

JOIN the Mario Tennis Aces North American Open February 2021!

By LUDWIG VON KOOPA - At the last weekend of February.

Check it: The first Nintendo of America out-of-game online tournament (for prizes) of 2021! And it's for Mario Tennis Aces! Register now over here. Taking place February 27 at 13:00 Eastern.

Mario Tennis Aces North American Open February 2021 logo key art
For the first time, someone other than Mario gets to appear in the tournament key artwork.

If you do ever want to play Mario Tennis Aces during any other time of year, you're never going to find a random person in the free play online section. You may find someone in the in-game online tournament, but if you don't like that ruleset and want to make your own, you're out of luck, unless you look for non-random friends to play with. (And you can find a lot of people—and help/guides resources—in the Mario Tennis Aces Club Discord server.)

Friday, February 19, 2021

Ring Fit Adventure Fitness Log Week 28: Training for an ARMS Race

By LUDWIG VON KOOPA - Featuring just one of the Four Masters.

The G7—the governments of United States, United Kingdom, Canada, Germany, Italy, France, and Japan—have today reiterated their support for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics to happen this 2021. This is contrary to reports from anonymous sources from last month. I can confirm that Koopa Kingdom's opinion wasn't consulted, but should the Olympics go on, we'll be there under Team Koopa. And I'm in Team Koopa. ...Which means I gotta be FIGHTIN' FIT FOR FENCIN'. And to be in better shape, I'm playing Ring Fit Adventure every week. In 2020 I completed the normal Adventure Mode, and in 2021 I'm playing Extra Fitness.

At the end of last week's Week 27, I adjusted the Ring-Con vibration setting from Strong to Weak, for the first time. There is a very noticeable difference, and Weak really is... weak. At first, I forgot I made the settings change, and I actually thought my Ring-Con was broken. There should be a setting in-between Strong and Weak (the only other setting is to have no rumble at all), but Weak is much more quiet for things like Back Press, where the Ring-Con will be constantly vibrating (and behind your body).

On Week 28, we're playing World 28: Extra Fitness Lv. 192, which is very lengthy and substantial because it's based on World 5: Dragaux vs. the Four Masters, and that was another world that took me one and a half weeks to complete. I'm trying to do it all in one week.

Armando opens up the world declaring we need to reach his gym first, and there are a lot of levels (16) to get there.

Ring Fit Adventure World 28 Armando dialogue will be opponent world map
We're going to have to do far more than deal with just Armando in this world.

The world first opens up with General Store 24, which offers the Flame Contender II, Volt Contender II, and Atomic Contender II outfits for a LOT of money (and six Citrine stones). These raise red-skill, yellow-skill, and blue-skill attack power by 5%, respectively. I'm actually trying on the Atomic Contender II outfit for the first level, Exertion River, since it recommends to use Leg Fit Skills. It's in my best interest to clear these as fast as I can so I can clear the world in a week, but still doing all the enemy fights so I'm, you know, getting the game's fitness benefits This does let me situationally turn two-round KOs into one-round KOs compared to wearing the Galactic Jogger (which has worse stats, but is my go-to outfit due to its 5% increased experience bonus), which speeds fights up considerably.

The Exertion River—besides several minutes worth of rowing activity—also has an unavoidable squat Treasure Chest containing the recipe for Deep Red Smoothie. For two Strawberries, two Raspberries, and two Fennel, you can concoct a smoothie with 7 hearts of restoration, and ↑↑ to red Fit Skill attack power, AND it turns all your Fit Skills to red. My problem is that I only have one Fennel, and I dunno where to find more. ...It turns out that I picked one up at Exertion River, and Exertion River in World 28 has different ingredient drops than Exertion River in World 5. That's already very interesting.

Thursday, February 18, 2021

Ludwig Babysits in Mario Kart Tour; Joe Biden Plays the Series Too?

By LUDWIG VON KOOPA - How'd I get stuck with this?

For some reason, it's like every political site, news site, and gaming site wrote something about President Joseph Robinette Biden Jr. playing Mario Kart Arcade GP over Presidents Day weekend when he hung out at the Camp David retreat with his family. I'm not sure the fascination behind it. If the arcade machines were at Camp David the whole time, then other presidents (possibly starting with President George Walker Bush?) have probably played it too. We just didn't hear about it because they didn't have 27-year old granddaughters with an active social media life.

Naomi Biden, that aforementioned granddaughter, apparently used a “story” feature on the social media platforms to spread the word (which subsequently deletes it after), but this journalist documented/preserved the one-second clip that caused a media firestorm:

Wednesday, February 17, 2021

KoopaTV's LIVE Reactions to the February 17 2021 Nintendo Direct

By LUDWIG VON KOOPA - ...You could skip to the end for the “one last thing”, or you could participate in the journey along the way!

Many Nintendo fans have proclaimed the DEATH of the Nintendo Direct. After all, the last one called NINTENDO DIRECT was in September 2019, and to these people (I'm not included), Nintendo presentations like the Nintendo Direct Mini and the many Partner Showcases throughout 2020 just don't count.

But today, an indisputably direct and grandiose in scale Nintendo Direct has arrived, and KoopaTV's entire five-member staff reacted to it. Follow along with the embedded Direct with our live commentary immediately below:

[4:55 PM] Ludwig Von Koopa: Five minutes until the Nintendo Direct of February 2021 begins...!
[4:56 PM] Ludwig Von Koopa: Either I got something broken, or there's no waiting room audio from the Nintendo Direct stream.
[4:57 PM] HeavyLobster: I'm here.
[4:58 PM] Ludwig Von Koopa: Do you hear any audio?
[4:58 PM] Ludwig Von Koopa: It's eerie.
[4:58 PM] HeavyLobster: no
[4:58 PM] HeavyLobster: Let's hope this is a good one.
[4:58 PM] Ludwig Von Koopa: They usually have waiting room audio, don't they?
I guess it's been a long time so maybe I don't remember.
[4:59 PM] Witch Princess: hiya
[4:59 PM] Ludwig Von Koopa: Witchy! You're...alive!
[4:59 PM] Witch Princess: yeah I survived that blizzard
[5:00 PM] Ludwig Von Koopa: RATING PENDING TO MATURE 17+
[5:00 PM] HeavyLobster: Let's Go!