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Thursday, February 20, 2020

Animal Crossing: New Horizons Direct Live Reactions!

By LUDWIG VON KOOPA - Did Animal Crossing: New Horizons take advantage of its opportunity to impress?

I believe everyone on KoopaTV's staff has owned and enjoyed an Animal Crossing game at some point in our lifetimes. Yet, there's no great Animal Crossing advocate on our staff.

Regardless, Nintendo put out a Direct, and someone's gotta get content up on As you may have come to expect, I got the short end of the flimsy shovel, but whatever, I'll do this myself. Not at the time it actually aired (some folks have jobs that franchises like Animal Crossing seek to relax the stresses of) but hey, I came into watching the video-on-demand with no spoilers whatsoever:

...The question to keep in mind, though, is “Is there anything in this Direct that's worth spoiling?” Or do people simply watch it, nod, and say “Okay.” Well, find out in my live reaction log below. I have at least one good, ALL-CAPS sentence moment with it:

Wednesday, February 19, 2020

Nintendo brings you the Super Smash Bros. Ultimate North American Online Open Spring 2020 tournament!

By LUDWIG VON KOOPA - Nothing should stop you!

I don't know about you, but I still consider every Nintendo-Battlefy tournament to be a big deal. They have announced the Super Smash Bros. Ultimate North American Online Open Spring 2020, taking place on either February 29 or March 1, depending on where in North America you'll be during the tournament. The fact that it transcends over two months in the calendar means that they can't name it after a month, so it's named after a whole season. Guess that implies there won't be enough until the summer, so you better make your performance count.

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate North American Online Open Spring 2020 logo Battlefy Nintendo
Spring 2020 brings a Halloween colour scheme.
Halloween sucks, but I support normalising it so people stop making a big deal out of it.

What's at stake? Well, the last three of these online-based tournaments—February 2020, November 2019, and September 2019—had a guaranteed round-trip flight, lodging, $350 visa card, and ticket to major tournaments taking place in... Detroit, Oakland, and Detroit, respectively. Those aren't places that are hospitable or nice to visit, quite frankly.

But this time, the prize is in Orlando, Florida, to be able to participate at CEO Dreamland 2020 from March 13–15. Orlando is a nice place to go, especially in March. There's a lack of hurricanes. The weather is nice. Full Sail University is there, which is a game design (and other media/entertainment) college that Nintendo used to plug often. If you're into theme parks, Orlando has them.

Also new for the upcoming tournament versus the one a month ago? Québec citizens are now allowed to participate (in Region 7), and the rules regarding the $350 visa card were changed from “$350 Visa gift card provided to winners only” to “$350 Visa gift card provided to winners only to be used for expenses”, which is a significant nerf preventing you from just pocketing the cash-equivalent.

Speaking of nerfs, I don't think there will be any changes to Super Smash Bros. Ultimate within the next ten days, so it will still be on 7.0.0. It will be very interesting to see how much Byleth's play rate collapses a month and a half after his introduction compared to two weeks after his introduction. I'll certainly publish that data in March.

I have good news if you already have a Nintendo Switch, already have Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, but don't have a Nintendo Switch Online membership and you already used the generous free trial: My Nintendo is offering an ADDITIONAL seven-day free trial! You can use this while you're participating in the tournament. You have until March 6 to take advantage of that, which pretty much means it exists just so everyone can enter this tournament.

On March 1, Ludwig will be writing up his progress in the comments section of this article while in the tournament. The majority of entrants will be participating in the first round of the tournament, which functions as a pools round to weed the hundreds of per-region entrants into a top 32. In this, you play in a ladder-based format, meaning you get to play as many games as you can fit in three hours, and you can keep playing even if you lose several in a row. Fun times. It's free to enter.

Tuesday, February 18, 2020

People Actually Watched the Sonic the Hedgehog 2020 Movie?!

By LUDWIG VON KOOPA - Well, it's not my glass of milk.

The last time I wrote an article dedicated to the Sonic the Hedgehog movie—and understand that coverage of this movie (mostly through its protagonist design decisions and delay) makes up the majority of Sonic the Hedgehog intellectual property coverage on this website (not counting things related to Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games, which tends to omit Sonic's presence entirely)—I wrote that it won't be a great movie.

The delayed date finally passed, and the movie released over the previous weekend. Apparently, its performance during that weekend made Sonic the Hedgehog the best-performing (in terms of dollar value) videogame adaptation movie ever.

A lot of people are comparing Sonic the Hedgehog to the Detective Pikachu movie, but I've always rejected the comparison. The Detective Pikachu game is terrible with no redeeming qualities, and I'm not sure most movie-watchers knew that it was a specific game. The game only really existed to become a movie, all for a quick Communist cash grab.

For what it's worth—and it's not worth much for videogames but I don't know if that also applies to movies—the critics’ reviews see the Sonic the Hedgehog movie as mediocre. Normal people seem to like it for its feel-good qualities.

A lot of moments from the (second) trailer never actually happened in the movie, so that was fake news. I don't have data or statistics to back this up, but from my experience reading what people are saying about the movie, a plurality of the discussion is around the last two scenes of the movie. One of those scenes briefly appeared at the end of the very first trailer, so I don't consider it a spoiler:

Monday, February 17, 2020

Exclusionary Ace Attorney Ad

By LUDWIG VON KOOPA - I know Phoenix Wright is disbarred, but what did Miles Edgeworth do to deserve this?

If you're reading this now, that means the February 2020 CAPCOM Publisher Sale is over. Did you take advantage of it? Did you completely miss being able to purchase Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney Trilogy at 50% off? If that opportunity passed you by, it sure ain't MY fault. But it could've been CAPCOM's. Observe:

CAPCOM Publisher Sale Facebook Ad February 2020 Miles Edgeworth Phoenix Wright removed Steam discounts
Left: CAPCOM using a Facebook ad to target people interested in CAPCOM stuff, I guess.
Right: The CAPCOM Publisher Sale page on Steam that the ad leads to.
Phoenix Wright and Miles Edgeworth are suspiciously missing from the Facebook ad, despite being prominently in the centre of the original artwork. (You can get a list of all of the characters in that artwork back when it was used a year ago for the CAPCOM Store.) CAPCOM's designer very consciously replaced the attorneys with GreatSword and Palico from Monster Hunter World, since I guess Rathalos in the background was going to be cut off and they needed some form of Monster Hunter representation since Monster Hunter was responsible for CAPCOM even being afloat for a while.

But there's a surplus of folks from, say, Resident Evil. Does the zombie cop really have to be there? As I mentioned in my header text, CAPCOM has every right to disassociate with disbarred, crooked Phoenix Wright. But Miles Edgeworth still has a viable career, and in multiple countries! Surely they could prevent a whole franchise from disappearing, and especially one with such an amazing discount behind it.

Can one extrapolate this purposeful Ace Attorney snuff and extrapolate that CAPCOM doesn't have any greater plans for the franchise? ...Sure. Should you? I don't think so. Though, after several years, I'm doubting that “Ace Attorney 7” ever really existed. We'll keep hoping.

The proper way to read the article title is that it is an ad that excludes ace attorneys, not that it's an ace attorney ad that excludes everyone else. It's not often that KoopaTV gets to make TWO Ace Attorney articles off of one event, especially a very limited-time sale, but KoopaTV is an Ace Attorney fan site with arguably more gusto than being a Koopa Kingdom propaganda outlet. Which permutations would you have made with CAPCOM's source image's characters to fit within the Facebook ad? Is Ludwig just trying to be an unwarranted victim? Was CAPCOM making up for Ludwig excluding everything BESIDES Ace Attorney in his promotion of the sale? Discuss in the comments section.

Friday, February 14, 2020

Ring Fit Adventure Fitness Log Week 14: Ghostly Abdominals

By LUDWIG VON KOOPA - Don't be an ageist jerk. (Except if one is so old they're senile.)

As of when I'm starting this, Week 13 wasn't even published yet. There is a funny situation about that, and it's still not even resolved as of publishing. Either way, there's two Ring Fit Adventure fitness logs published on KoopaTV in one week, except this one is actually on Friday (hence KoopaTV Fitness Friday).

At the end of Week 13 I started World 14: Moppets Gone Missing. Here's the continuation of that story, starting on Sunday:

Ring Fit Adventure World 14 Moppets Gone Missing overworld map second half
At the end of Week 13 I completed the first half of the map (left side).
Week 14 is dedicated to this half.
(My difficulty level in week 14 is still 29 out of 30.)

The first thing I do in World 14 second half is enter... General Store Number 12. Honey and Hubby are discussing the dangers of fog and children disappearing. They now sell Ginger as an ingredient, and the Bleached Skeleton clothing set, as well as the Blue Skeleton clothing set. The skeleton clothes are black with white/blue painted-on bones and the same power rating (more than Peacock Contender). Bleached has no set bonus, but Blue will restore your hearts if you do repeated knee lifts. That's a useless set bonus, since it's a ridiculous notion that I'll be in a heart deficit with my abundance of healing items and monstrously high defence stat.

There's a story-relevant woman in town, Martha, who is crying about her daughter (named Carrie) disappearing. Ring volunteers us to find her, though it's also noted that ALL of the children have disappeared in this unnamed land. Meanwhile, the other townspeople are speaking of an abs instructor who used to hold seminars and sing abs-related songs, but that person has disappeared. But if I score at least 1500 points in 40 seconds in Bootstrap Tower (Novice), I can get the Abs Master top clothing, which looks suspiciously similar to Abdonis's zipper-challenged jacket. You have to try to fail this challenge.

Disturbingly, it turns out that the Ab Master not only is Abdonis's jacket, but it also comes with Abdonis's hair. Does that mean that his isn't natural?

Ring Fit Adventure Abs Master tops change look outfit Abdonis hair jacket clothing
I'm not wearing this creepy thing in public, believe me. It's going right to the wardrobe and staying there.

Thursday, February 13, 2020

Help Me Understand Shigeru Miyamoto's Senile Nintendo Video Content Answer

By LUDWIG VON KOOPA - What does this mean?

Last week, I wrote about Nintendo's nine months financial results for fiscal year ending March 2020. (Also known as the quarter ending December 31, 2019.) Shortly after, Nintendo published a question & answer summary featuring president Shuntaro Furukawa and famous Nintendo producer Shigeru Miyamoto.

Among other things, they believe the Nintendo Switch is “just entering the middle of its life cycle.” And then there was this strange answer, provided by Shigeru Miyamoto, on the question of... 
“The touchpoints that consumers have with Nintendo IP, especially Mario IP, are currently Nintendo Switch, smart devices, and the like. I understand this will expand to theme parks, a movie, and so on, but what lines separate these different media? I expect each medium probably has some certain set themes, not just introducing the Mario character anywhere. I would like to know what will be different about each touchpoint, and what will be the same.”

(In other words, this questioner is asking about Nintendo licensing their intellectual property across a variety of media types, and if there is a specific, thought-through strategy that differentiates each media type, or if Nintendo will just spam Mario.)

Now, the answer from Shigeru Miyamoto, which I will quote in full for your context...

Wednesday, February 12, 2020

CAPCOM Publisher Sale; February 2020: Ace Attorney Trilogy (Switch, Steam) at 50% Off!

By LUDWIG VON KOOPA - Love yourself with Ace Attorney. Even if no one else loves you.

I have significant news for you: Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney Trilogy (2019 edition) is at its lowest price EVER: 50% off, or $14.99, if you're buying from the Nintendo Switch or Steam. (It's currently $19.79 or $20.09 on PlayStation and Xbox respectively. Don't tell me there's a Switch tax.)

But you only have until the morning of Monday, February 17, to take advantage of this deal. That's how long the CAPCOM Publisher Sale of 2020 lasts. Well, there'll probably be multiple CAPCOM Publisher Sales of 2020. 2019 had at least two: one in May, and one in August. That August one is more important. Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney Trilogy was 33% off at the time, and they had just released the language patch letting you play the game in French, German, Traditional Chinese, and Simplified Chinese—in addition to the base languages of English and Japanese. Personally, I just started playing the game in French in honour of Benjamin Hunter. It turns out that nearly everyone but Phoenix Wright himself (who is in the current year now a struggling crazed homeless guy) has weird names.

Phoenix Wright Ace Attorney Nintendo Switch French language autopsy report contradiction
This is the first successful OBJECTION in the series. Something about a total contradiction of the autopsy report?
The whole French language is a mess.
You can switch between languages from the title screen menu, but you can't switch languages mid-play. Each language has its own set of up to 10 save slots, per Trilogy game. (Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney, Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney: Justice For All, and Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney: Trials & Tribulations.)

I've recently heard someone tell me that they “[n]ormally enjoy watching streams of [visual novels] as opposed to actually playing them myself.” There is a massive difference between watching someone else play Ace Attorney and actually playing it yourself, based on the principles of you having the opportunity to think the solutions out for yourself—which is significantly more fulfilling than watching someone else do it—as well as taking advantage of player agency and going through optional/incorrect dialogue at your own pace. (Ace Attorney is the kind of game where reading that is its own reward, since the dialogue is amazing. Not that I can tell in French.)

At only $15 ($5 per game... and each of these are lengthy, substantial games at a couple dozen hours each), you can easily find out for yourself the difference and you will not regret it.

Phoenix Wright Ace Attorney French language version je suis en retard Mia Fey office
Don't be like Phoenix.
Take advantage of the CAPCOM Publisher Sale before it's too late!
(That's what he's saying. That he's late. Not, uh, that he's retarded. ...You don't want to be accused of that, either, of course.)

I'm obligated to mention that if you'd rather play on the Nintendo 3DS, Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney, Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Dual Destinies, Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Spirit of Justice, and Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney Trilogy are 50%, 70%, 60%, and 60% off respectively. The 3DS also has demos.

There are also other CAPCOM games that are on sale, as well as many other games on sale from other publishers. KoopaTV only has the time to shill for Ace Attorney, however, so you'll have to discover those other games on sale for yourself. Not that they're necessary when the best franchise in videogames is on sale. Ludwig wants to complete the entire Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney in French before the end of 2020, but he underestimated just how different French is from English. If you want a rebate covering 2/3 of the cost of Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney Trilogy on the Switch while it's on sale, go win the KoopaTV Loyalty Rewards Program.

Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney Trilogy was most recently (before February) on sale one month ago in January 2020 at 33.33% off.
CAPCOM paid money to tell people about their sale... but they excluded Ace Attorney from their imagery! Why?!

Tuesday, February 11, 2020

Some (but not all) Pokémon Leakers Found: Lousy Gaming Journalist!

By LUDWIG VON KOOPA - Excommunication. Plus, Home.

First of all, these aren't the same group of leakers that were involved in the Pokémon Sword and Pokémon Shield strategy guides. That's progressing smoothly so far, with The Pokémon Company International (TPCi) getting a bunch of subpoenas served on various Internet service providers. They already got long lists of defendants' IP addresses thanks to hiring private forensic investigators. You can follow that case here.

No, before the game released, there was some source that was leaking the game contents from the game itself, not just its guidebook with its artwork. We now know where that source came from—an undisclosed reviewer at the Portuguese Nintendo-based website FNintendo. If you're familiar with popular four-letter swear words, that website name might not SOUND like a site that's on good terms with Nintendo, but they apparently were for a little over a decade. Now Nintendo and The Pokémon Company International have FNintendo on their shit-list of outlets they won't work with. 

We added FNintendo to our shit-list, too, at least until they name-drop who the reviewer is. FNintendo has provided a statement saying that they've dropped their relationship with this person and they've accepted their fate on Nintendo's shit-list, but they have not provided their identity.

Why is this important? Well, if we don't know who that person is, then they could try to join another outlet and hide their very shady past. What if this disreputable individual tried to join KoopaTV's staff (it's a really easy process, as you can find out for yourself over here) and we wouldn't be able to do a complete background check because this person is unknown?

In other news, Pokémon HOME being out in the vague “February 2020” actually means it's out now. It's already a mess, though many things are at launch. Personally, I won't invest in it...ever.

By the way, other outlets reported that Pokémon HOME would be free for the first month. If you read my article on it, you'll see that KoopaTV did not report that. Specifically, TPCi always said:
“To commemorate the release of Pokémon HOME, we will make Pokémon Bank and Poké Transporter available at no cost for a one-month period after Pokémon HOME is released. ”
Keep in mind that is NOT written as “Pokémon HOME is at no cost.” Totally different product. Pay your mortgage-subscription, you sucker. Don't get into those reverse-mortgages you see advertised on TV. And don't keep giving outlets that LEAK or provide FAKE NEWS your views.

Ludwig doesn't want agreement-breaking leakers on the KoopaTV staff, or in the greater general gaming journalism business. These are very bad people who are not only untrustworthy, but also are actively trying to ruin people's gaming experiences for some short-lived attention. KoopaTV will never leak unreleased titles. (KoopaTV likely will never be in that position anyway, though.) If you're Portuguese and you're looking for a good site, KoopaTV is available. ...Just hope you can read English.

Monday, February 10, 2020

Ring Fit Adventure Fitness Log Week 13: Where in El Dorago is Lord Dragaux?

By LUDWIG VON KOOPA - ...In the fog?

Normally, KoopaTV's Fitness Friday series are supposed to be published on... Fridays. Last Friday, we faced a difficulty with Facebook and Nintendo Switch screenshot sharing, which continues to this day. (We're working around it with Twitter.) Still, regardless of when these come out, expect in-depth coverage of my playthrough, on a week-by-week basis, of Ring Fit Adventure as I try to get in better shape for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics. By the way, by necessity, KoopaTV's fitness log series totally spoils the story of Ring Fit Adventure, and may spoil gameplay too. You better be alright with that.

I had a crisis over the weekend (February 1–2). I ran out of milk. You can't expect me to FUNCTION without milk, you know. I only got 37th out of 533 in the Super Smash Bros. Ultimate North American Online Open February 2020 due to contending with a severe milk shortage. It's more difficult than dealing with post-traumatic Pichu combos. Anyway, that's why I didn't play Ring Fit Adventure on Sunday. I will say, though, playing high-level Super Smash Bros. Ultimate works up a sweat all by itself.

But on Monday (February 3), I went to the store and bought milk. BACK IN BUSINESS. Where did we leave off from last week's (week 12's) fitness log...? Ah, World 13: El Dorago. Looks like this:

Ring Fit Adventure El Dorago World 13 overworld map
The state of World 13: El Dorago, at the start of me playing on February 3, 2020.
I'm still on difficulty level 29.

Let's try that bottom-left spot... This Dragaux Stadium is littered with squat-powered springs... and your spring-induced height gets reset if you take a breather and stop squatting. Argh, physics.

By the end of it, we encounter...

Friday, February 7, 2020

Error Codes 2801-7180 and 2801-7181: Nintendo Switch Unable to Post to Facebook

By LUDWIG VON KOOPA - Interrupting our regularly-scheduled programming...

You know, for the past... many weeks, KoopaTV has dedicated Friday to my fitness log series about Ring Fit Adventure. This Friday, however, I can't publish it. Why? Nintendo Switch screenshot sharing doesn't work, and I absolutely need pictures for those fitness logs or else they'll be an incredibly intimidating wall of text. Imagery helps tremendously with those.

Unfortunately, the Nintendo Switch currently—and has all week—spits out error codes 2801-7180 (for a screenshot) and 2801-7171 (for a video), which states that the Nintendo Switch is unable to connect to the social network service, specifically Facebook.

Nintendo Switch error code 2801-7181 2801-7180 screenshot video sharing Facebook
I've been trying all week!

If you have trouble reading that, it says...
“You cannot post screenshots / videos to this social network right now.
We apologize for any inconvenience.
Please try again later.”
If you click Details, it reads,
“The server is operating normally.

See the Nintendo Support website for information on network status and maintenance schedules. ”

It says about the same thing on Nintendo's Network Maintenance Information page.

If you go to the error code look-up on Nintendo's support site, there's nothing for 2801-7180 or 2801-7171 specifically, but the 2801- family deals with posting to social media. 2801-7199 is about not being able to upload a photo to Facebook. Nintendo suggests to un-link your account, re-link your account, and try again. Well, I did that. It also suggests looking at your settings on the Facebook side to see if you have the appropriate permissions. I already do. In fact, I even went into my Nintendo Switch settings and cleared my cache, which is a setting that I bet most people don't even know exists, especially since the Switch doesn't actually have an Internet browser. 

The problem still persists. There's no way to fix it. We just have to wait indefinitely.

...Which is pretty bad for this site, since we gotta keep doing what we're doing, and that sometimes necessitates screenshots.

Ludwig has a Facebook account with no friends on it that exists just as a place to dump his Nintendo Switch screenshots before he downloads them to his hard-drive, and then re-uploads them to KoopaTV. He may have to do the same but on Twitter, since posting things to a public account would not only spoil KoopaTV's subject matter, but it'd bother people. He wants to know if he should blame Nintendo, or if he should blame Facebook. (He can confirm Twitter works.)

Ludwig publishes Week 13 of Ring Fit Adventure on the following Monday by using screenshots obtained by Twitter sharing.

Thursday, February 6, 2020

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate: Version 7.0.0 (February) Fighter Usage Stats!

By LUDWIG VON KOOPA - The weekend after Byleth releases, are they the most popular choice?

I posed a prediction to the Internet in last week's article promoting the Super Smash Bros. Ultimate North American Online Open February 2020
“I predict that Joker will FINALLY no longer be the most-used character, after he has been so for all of the previous tournaments.” 

My basis for this prediction was that the version 7.0.0 balance patch nerfed Joker, introduced Byleth, and buffed several other characters, with specific notable boosts to Samus, Dark Samus, Sheik, Zelda, Dr. Mario, Young Link, Toon Link, Ryu, Ken, and Cloud. Besides Joker, Zero Suit Samus and Palutena also got nerfed. My basic hypothesis is that the player base pays attention to patch notes and changes their behaviour accordingly. The major buff recipients from 6.0.0 back in November all got usage bumps afterwards.

Was I correct in my prediction? First of all, congratulations to King Chris (Zero Suit Samus player from west Canada), Frawg (Bayonetta player from Nevada), Pelca (Snake player from New England), and Wrath (Sonic player from Georgia) for winning the tournament and getting trips to Frostbite 2020 in Detroit later this month. But thousands of other players—including me, and you can see my very detailed journey and results in last week's article's comments section—also joined the tournament, and thousands less (but still thousands—this tournament actually had the highest players-to-registrant ratio since I've been tracking them) showed up to participate. Collectively, the following usage stats are aggregated from nearly 39,000 games, and I believe it's a representative sample of the metagame that you're likely to encounter while playing Super Smash Bros. Ultimate online as of publishing:

Wednesday, February 5, 2020

December 31, 2019 Nintendo Quarterly Financial Update

By LUDWIG VON KOOPA - And we thought we were done writing 2019.

Quite recently, Nintendo revealed the financial results for the end of the third quarter for the fiscal year ending March 2020, or whatever their weird way of wording it is. Shuntaro Furukawa, Nintendo's president, had another boring investor briefing that was about the very-familiar themes about Nintendo IP access expansion through stores and theme parks you'll likely never be able to go to, the need for incentives for Nintendo Switch Online subscribers to renew, and the Nintendo Switch itself is performing great, with 52.48 million consoles sold, which is over 10 million in three months.

Here are some game unit sales in my very selective long-running chart of below-top-tier million sellers:

Nintendo Switch software game sales numbers December 2019 graph Ring Fit Adventure Fire Emblem Three Houses Super Mario Maker
The chart from the September 30, 2019 article had typographical errors in it, which are now resolved!
Let's be honest: I just wanted to know how much Ring Fit Adventure sold, which is only 2.17 million units. I think that's a low number, compared to what other Switch games are doing. Of course, Ring Fit Adventure has the constraint of being a physical-only title with supply constraints—Furukawa notes it's sold out in Japan, and digital-version titles are increasing in their proportion. He also notes that Ring Fit Adventure is responsible for increased daily Nintendo Switch interaction, and that's true in my experience. Even if I think it's frustrating.

There's nothing else really interesting to say here, except Nintendo plans to sell more Nintendo Switch than previously projected, and less Nintendo 3DS, which is totally irrelevant by now. There also won't be a Nintendo Switch hardware revision in 2020. ...Though I'd remind you not to trust that.

Ludwig thinks you should buy Ring Fit Adventure.  He's sad that most of the games on that graph won't get any sales figures updates anytime soon, since the only reason so many games got an update is because the quarter covered the holiday season, and Nintendo only discloses numbers if a game sold at least one million units in that quarter.

For Nintendo's quarterly financial update for the quarter ending September 30, 2019, see here.
Ludwig wrote the 2018 version of this here.
What were investors asking Nintendo after this? Find out here, but note they didn't get good answers.

Tuesday, February 4, 2020

KoopaTV Live Reactions: SOTU 2020

By LUDWIG VON KOOPA - State of the Union 2020.

I have a large, growing number of gaming commentary I need to provide to you. But unfortunately, President Donald John Trump has taken over the universe's airwaves to make everyone a captive audience, all to hear him applaud into his own microphone as he says tired platitudes about how the State of the Union is strong.

Despite the KoopaTV in the article headline, this is just me reacting. Fortunately, I'm able to condense over an hour and a half of lame content into a pretty short reaction log, with perceptive commentary.

For your context, the current American political landscape involves a ridiculous impeachment trial coming to an end very soon, and the Democrats’ presidential primary has been a total disaster so far, even by their standards. With all of that said, the universe—even if unwillingly—is looking at President of the United States Donald John Trump to make sense of this turbulent time and boast his accomplishments.

Plus, there's some surprising events.

Monday, February 3, 2020

KoopaTV's January 2020 Review Newsletter

By LUDWIG VON KOOPA - I've surprisingly been very good about writing that it's 2020.

Look at me, crowing about 2020. It's already February...3rd! (2020.) Well, it can't be a newsletter reviewing January 2020 without January 2020 actually passing by first. KoopaTV waits for things to end and then reminisces. That's why we have our Game of THAT Year Awards in January, as opposed to some other places, which pretend the year ends in November so they can reminisce in December. Nuh uh. No way. At KoopaTV, we do it correctly. That's our guarantee to you.

You can see that work ethic exhibited in our articles and content from January 2020. Just have a gander throughout this newsletter:

KoopaTV's Top Five Recommended Experiences of January 2020

KoopaTV is all about the premium (at the cost of nothing to you—no money, no personal data handed over... just your time) content, so here's five of the recommended experiences from January 2020, in chronological order. ...If something isn't here, it's still worth it.

  1. Pokémon Sword/Shield Expansion Pass: GAME FREAK's Scumbaggery — Ludwig believes that the Expansion Pass for Pokémon Sword and Pokémon Shield combines every anti-consumer practice out there for this kind of content. Read his persuasive argument!
  2. Impressions on the Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Rescue Team DX Announcement and Demo — But on a much more positive Pokémon note, he endorses the Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Rescue Team DX demo, and suggests you try it out.
  3. Learn in 7 Seconds Why Byleth Isn't An Interesting Choice in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate — Ludwig, on behalf of all of the Koopalings (and Bowser Jr.) explains why Byleth isn't interesting and is inherently contradictory. It's an issue that's very personal to him.
  4. I Brought A Drednaw Plushie To My Dentist Appointment — Writing of what's personal to him, Ludwig tells the story of his dentist appointment in January, and what reactions he received to bringing a Drednaw plushie there. (Photo included.)
  5. Ring Fit Adventure Fitness Log Week 11: Three Sucky Friends at the Valley of Wishes — Ludwig finds the storyline of the 11th world in Ring Fit Adventure to be fairly engaging, so he wants to share that with you in his fitness log series.

Friday, January 31, 2020

Ring Fit Adventure Fitness Log Week 12: Wing Ability for an Up-B

By LUDWIG VON KOOPA - Well, now we know how Ring Fit Adventurer will recover...

Welcome back to KoopaTV's—well, it's really my personal—fitness log series, Fitness Fridays, as we—well, it's just me, but you can pretend to be doing it alongside me—play through Ring Fit Adventure in an effort to be more fit, flexible, and in better shape for all of life's challenges. Oh, and the Olympics.

Near the end, and again at the very end, of last week's (week 11)'s log, I lamented the existence of an in-game achievement (title) for playing the adventure mode for consecutive days in a row. I turned the game on Saturday just to claim it (and I fought the 3 Silver Hoplins—renamed Rare Hoplin, though it's still only based around giving experience points—mentioned at the end of week 10's log in the World 11 portion) and stopped. Except now there's a title not just for playing 7 consecutive days... but 10 consecutive days! This is why games are better off without achievements.

Ring Fit Adventure Titles achievements Adventure Fan Regular Maniac days consecutively
What happened to Ring Fit Adventure encouraging players to take breaks during the week?

Anyway, we're starting World 12: Wings of Daddalus. On Sunday, because I have to for the damn achievement. Still difficulty level 29, which is one away from the maximum.

The first level is called Clever-Trick Temple, which I'm hoping will wow me with novel level design. Sure enough, it has the push/pull puzzle blocks from World 9's Pushpull Temple that I really liked, with a treasure chest containing Almond Milk recipes that combine them with a variety of fruits. Surely not something you'd ever do with real milk. I can't confirm that Clever-Trick Temple is a palette swap of Pushpull Temple, but there wasn't anything inventive there. Moving on, there's a Sentry in the next level overworld that says I'm trespassing Eureka Village's holy mountain. The only person allowed there, I guess besides the Sentry, is the village leader, Daddalus. ...But since I'm not from the village, he lets me through. It's named Mt. Fearmenot. It's a holy awesome place where there's Milk on trees... and there's SNOW. There's also a massive cliff that we can't cross, so Ring forces us to quit the level and talk to the Sentry, who suggests we go to the next town to talk to Daddalus.

Thursday, January 30, 2020

Yooka-Laylee and the Impossible Lair Demo Impressions


After I complimented Yooka-Laylee and the Impossible Lair as “not a mess”, KoopaTV kind of left it at that and moved on. However, today Playtonic and Team17 released a Nintendo Switch demo, so in the interest of backing up my statement from the months-ago released, I decided to play it. For all I know, I'm wrong, and I owe it to the readers (you) to correct that, or at least elaborate.

For whatever reason, Yooka (chameleon) and Laylee (bat) are summoned to the Royal Stingdom (in a book) to take down Capital B, a cool-looking big bee. Queen Phoebee is concerned that Capital B has a “bee mind control device”, the “hive mind!” This will enslave all of the bees in the Royal Stingdom.

Yooka-Laylee and the Impossible Lair title screen demo
I don't really know why Yooka is involved in this, and if they really wanted to be, why are they swimming against the book's suction-vortex?
I shouldn't need to press L and R to get them to stop unless it's against their will.

The demo takes us through a tutorial for the controls (press B to jump, Y while moving to roll and Y while stationary to do a basic attack... and you can do a roll-jump and a jump-attack) as well as the Beettalion mechanic. (You can take a hit for each bee you got.)

After the tutorial, there was what I assume is a tutorial boss fight against Capital B, but he used his Hivemind to take our Beettalion. I... lost the fight, and quite early, and instead of getting a game over, I triggered the next part of the story in the new overworld mechanic, where Queen Phoebee says each member of the Beettalion is in a chapter accessible in this overworld. Chapter 1 is Capital Causeway, and I must rescue the bee here!

Wednesday, January 29, 2020

The Pokémon HOME Details—Get Ready For The Mortgage

By LUDWIG VON KOOPA - Unlike a real mortgage, you'll never be able to pay it off, and the asset won't appreciate in value.

We learned about Pokémon HOME back in that Pokémon 2019 press conference/snooze-fest 8 months ago. Today (or yesterday), Nintendo and The Pokémon Company International released what Pokémon HOME actually is, and that it's coming to the market sometime in February 2020. Pokémon HOME is their solution for a cross-generation and cross-platform Pokémon storage service, so your Pokémon pals from the past 17 years can continue to be used in generations to come in one capacity or another.

They also revealed the crucial detail that the syntax is “Pokémon HOME”, and it's not italicised. (Compare to Pokémon Bank.)

There is a Nintendo Switch HOME, and then you can get a summer HOME on the mobile app. You can connect these two with a Nintendo Account, and they enable different movements.

To move Pokémon from Pokémon Bank to Pokémon HOME, you can use either the Nintendo Switch app or the mobile phone app. For Pokémon Let's Go, Eevee!/Pokémon, Let's Go, Pikachu! and Pokémon Sword/Pokémon Shield, you must use the Nintendo Switch version of the app. At some point, you will be able to store Pokémon GO Pokémon into Pokémon HOME, likely with the mobile app. All of these movements are uni-directional (source to HOME) with the exception of bi-directional support for Pokémon Sword/Pokémon Shield.

Beyond just storing Pokémon, there are a few value-added features. There's four kinds of trading. There's a Wonder Box, where your Pokémon disappears and is replaced with someone else's. The GTS, where you can pick the Pokémon you want to receive. There's the Room Trade, where you can trade with specific people. (Think public Battle Arenas?) Lastly, the Friend Trade, where you can trade with friends because Pokémon HOME has its own friend system.

Tuesday, January 28, 2020

Be the Best Byleth? Super Smash Bros. Ultimate North American Online Open February 2020!

By LUDWIG VON KOOPA - Or be the best of any number of buffed, nerfed, or untouched characters in 7.0.0!

Tonight, while I type these words, the world... nay, the universe, is waiting for Super Smash Bros. Ultimate to enter Version 7.0.0. All I can do while I wait is write this article and play Ring Fit Adventure. This update promises the addition of Koopaling-wannabe Byleth, some Mii Costumes, and patch notes with balance changes. That last bit is most exciting, ESPECIALLY because we will be able to IMMEDIATELY track how it affects the metagame.

That's right. Returning from November 2019 is the online Super Smash Bros. Ultimate tournament series that's a collaboration between game publisher Nintendo and eSports platform Battlefy: The Super Smash Bros. Ultimate North American Online Open February 2020! (Register at that link.)

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate North American Online Open February 2020 Battlefy logo
Now in a snazzy black-and-yellow logo.
(I like the blue one better.)

The rules are simple, and the same as November 2019 (with the exception of banning those Québec scoundrels). When you come to your region's tournament page (and that's based on where you'll be playing from) on your tournament day (regions 1–4 are February 1 at 10 AM Pacific time, and regions 5–8 are February 2 at 11 AM Eastern time), you'll see a red search for match button. For three hours after the start time, you're in a ladder round. That means you keep playing matches trying to get the best win-lose rate, and as you play more, you'll be matched with people closer to your skill level. You need to be in the top 32 of contestants in terms of win rate (with a minimum of 8 best-of-3 matches played) by the end of the three hours to qualify for the single-elimination bracket round. If you're a top-2 finalist in that, you get to join the other three regions on that tournament day for a top-8 bracket. If you're in the top-2 of that, you get the prize, which is...

Monday, January 27, 2020

Before It's Taken Down: Listen to 2 Sound of Kirby Café Soundtracks

By LUDWIG VON KOOPA - This article has the potential to become obsolete pretty quick, so be IN THE MOMENT.

I briefly wrote about the Kirby Café in that stupid coffee article back in 2017. This was an actual Kirby-themed establishment with Kirby-themed food and drinks in Japan with Kirby-themed plates that opened in 2016, was ended, reopened temporarily, closed again, and now (as of December 2019) reopened in Tokyo on a permanent basis.

There's a short storyline involved about how this café exists, but it's in Japanese. There's a video that goes with it, which, if nothing else, is precious. There doesn't appear to be characteristic deep Kirby lore involved, however.

King Dedede wearing a beanie? Amazing content. ...Not sure what he's eating though.

However, this article exists to serve an English-speaking audience. You probably can't read Japanese. You probably won't be able to go to a tourist trap in Tokyo. In that case, what's in it for you? Well, the Café has some really great music that goes along with it. There was a CD soundtrack back in its 2016 existence, and now there's a second soundtrack for its 2019 revival. If you have access to buying things from Japan, you can purchase these for a combined 4000 yen (or nearly $40). Otherwise, you can listen to people dumping the soundtrack on YouTube. (If those get removed, try this 49-minute video of the whole first soundtrack, and this 60-minute video of the whole second soundtrack.)

If nothing else, listen to awesome and soothing remixes of songs that span the entire Kirby series, including my precious Kirby Air Ride. And do it before they get mysteriously taken down and swallowed up in a Copy Ability claim.

Ludwig obviously loves the Kirby series music, and this may or may not be why the KoopaTV Best New OST awards every year go to that year's Kirby title, most recently Super Kirby Clash won Best OST of 2019. He obviously listened to the music this article is promoting while composing this article.

This kind of article isn't unprecedented on KoopaTV. Ludwig wrote one similar to it for Paper Mario: Sticker Star's soundtrack being uploaded to YouTube.

Friday, January 24, 2020

Ring Fit Adventure Fitness Log Week 11: Three Sucky Friends at the Valley of Wishes

By LUDWIG VON KOOPA - I have trouble with friends and I wish it was different, so this world is personal!

What is a fitness log and why am I doing it? This article should answer your questions. And the end of last week's Fitness Log, Week 10, should tell you where we are at in our current Ring Fit Adventure quest: World 11: Valley of Wishes.

The first thing I do on Sunday night is try my first Multitask Mode donation. Then, I increased my difficulty level by 1 to 29. Then... there's a Fitness Gym guarding a Treasure Chest in the Adventure overworld. It's the Waist Set gym, involving...

  1. Russian Twist (x58) — I'm not really sure what you need to do to get 100 points every time. Sometimes I get those. Sometimes I get somewhere else in the 90s. I figure it has something to do with what angle the Ring-Con has to be in?
  2. Pendulum Bend (x26) — You should get 100 points every time for this. The game is grading you on the Ring-Con being held perpendicular to the floor, which you'll be able to do regardless of if your form is actually correct or not.
  3. Overhead Hip Shake (x58) — The most fun activity in this game. Easy 100 points for every one of them. Just shake your hips left and right!
  4. Standing Twist (x58) — Same point story with the Russian Twist.
  5. Tree Pose (x24) — All of the above are Abs Fit Skills, except for this one, which is Yoga. You should get 100 points on every repetition. The game is incredibly sympathetic to you for the Tree Pose, suggesting you can hold your leg much lower than they suggest and still be fine. You're graded only on the easy arm movements, after all.
I got an average score of 96 points, or an A-rank. Good enough to earn 500 coins from the Fitness Gym. That Treasure Chest, by the way, has the Chair Pose Lv.2 Yoga Fit Skill (single-range, recharge turns of 2, for 260 base attack). I levelled up to level 91 in the process, and unlocked the Standing Twist Lv.2 Fit Skill from the skill tree (205 base attack, 3 recharge, and all-range). Perhaps I'll learn how to use it properly in the next level...

Thursday, January 23, 2020

I Brought A Drednaw Plushie To My Dentist Appointment

By LUDWIG VON KOOPA - What kind of response did I get? Plus, a photo!

Six months ago, I wrote about a poor experience I had at my dental cleaning. Well, that's nothing new—dentist visits are always torturous affairs. I absolutely have dental anxiety. The dentists know that, by the way.

That article from six months ago's headline was, “Remind Me To Bring A Plushie To My Next Dentist Appointment”, and I put in the article's footer that today was the day for the appointment. Truthfully, I didn't need a reminder... anxiety means the thought of the appointment consumed my thoughts for this whole week. And last week, too. Though long-time KoopaTV fan Kody B. gave me a reminder anyway.

Speaking of time periods in the past, two relevant things happened a month ago. One, I got an Oral-B Pro 5000 for my birthday, which is a super-powerful, high-tech automatic toothbrush. (To my knowledge, there is no relationship or association between Kody B. and Oral-B.) Two, I got a Drednaw plushie from The Pokémon Center online store, which was offering pre-Christmas free shipping on plushies. I wanted to get a Wooloo plush too, but they were and still are sold out. Still, I do like Drednaw.

And no, there isn't any hypocrisy in me refusing to buy Pokémon Shield and me buying/wanting to buy plushies of Galar Pokémon.

Perhaps you see where this is going. Yes, I brought Drednaw to the dentist appointment. I think it's fitting, given that Drednaw is an expert with teeth, jaws, and biting. Dentists should appreciate that, right? Though the “dread” part might not be the best for soothing anxiety...

Wednesday, January 22, 2020

What is Multitask Mode in Ring Fit Adventure?

By LUDWIG VON KOOPA - What you do when not playing Ring Fit Adventure.

My playthrough of Ring Fit Adventure on KoopaTV doesn't currently demonstrate this, but Ring Fit Adventure has other main menu options besides the adventure mode. One of those is Multitask Mode, which you don't actually play in-game. Pressing this option for the first time on the main menu will give you this explanation, and then will return you back to the main menu:
“In this mode, you can work out using only the Ring-Con without the need for a screen.
Enabling Multitask Mode records the number of presses and pulls you do with the Ring-Con while you watch television or do other activities.
To enable Multitask Mode, first set the Nintendo Switch system to sleep mode or turn it off. After that, attach the Joy-Con (R) to the Ring-Con and press the Right Stick as shown in the diagram.
While Multitask Mode is enabled, up to 500 reps of presses and pulls you do will be recorded. When you return here afterward, you'll get a bonus in Adventure mode according to how many presses you did. (This bonus is available once per player per day.)
If you're connected to the Internet, you can send the extra press/pull counts you've earned in Multitask Mode to your friends as a present. (Only once per friend per day!)”

Ring Fit Adventure Multitask Mode Controls Ring-Con Joy-Con
You can also wait for 60 seconds to pass while not doing anything with the Joy-Con to turn Multitask Mode off.
It will also automatically turn off once you've gotten 500 reps.
(The Vibration button is B, and the Sounds button is A.)

Once you have more than zero repetitions, you'll be able to gift them to either yourself or to any of your Nintendo Switch friends who have Ring Fit Adventure. That gift gives you a generous (read: worth the effort) amount of coins (equal to the amount of reps you did), experience points (a multiple of the amount of reps you did), ingredients, and drinks, and the quantity of goodies is increased if there are more presses/pulls behind it. 

Tuesday, January 21, 2020

President Donald Trump's Third Year Reflection

By LUDWIG VON KOOPA - Technically, it's us reflecting on ourselves when talking about him.

For the past two years, KoopaTV has reflected on our coverage of President Donald John Trump. Why? We committed a long time ago to wanting to be fair & balanced as we discuss the performance of a man that we, representatives of the foreign government of Koopa Kingdom, endorsed and helped elect. We owe it to our Earth readers.

In KoopaTV's first year of coverage, we wrote 19 articles where the main topic was about President Donald John Trump, with 9 articles with positive coverage, 1 article of neutral coverage, and 9 articles containing negative coverage. However, KoopaTV's second year of coverage was not only reduced with only 9 articles in that year, but only 2 of those were positive, 2 were neutral, and 5 were negative

So what happened from January 2019 to January 2020? For this article, I continued what we've done in previous years and I compiled the following list of all of KoopaTV's coverage about President Donald John Trump, and noted for each item the topic, and if our coverage was positive, neutral, or negative. As an easy summary, there's a table at the end.

Articles that mention President Donald John Trump in passing, but aren't about him, are excluded from this. Every Democrat presidential primary debate article is excluded since those aren't about him by definition!

For fun, try guessing what the ratio will be before getting to the end.

All dates in this article are in mm/dd/yyyy format.

Monday, January 20, 2020

Learn in 7 Seconds Why Byleth Isn't An Interesting Choice in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate

By LUDWIG VON KOOPA - Byleth brings no new mechanics.

There are a whole lot of people out there who took the announcement of Byleth as the fifth Fighters Pass character from last week as, “Oh, great, now Fire Emblem has eight characters or 10% of the entire Super Smash Bros. Ultimate roster.” I'm not one of those people.

I do, however, remember things that Masahiro Sakurai has said about characters. One thing he said right after he introduced Byleth is that, “Right from the start, we intended to make the most out of new gameplay mechanics. [...] When we add a new fighter, we don't simply make their attacks or their movements a little different. Instead, we try to offer you a whole new style of play.” He also said with Terry's stream, “Whether or not the character is fun to play as, is more important than whether the character is new or old, or whether the character is recognizable to everyone.”

I asked, in my live reaction log, what new gameplay mechanic was introduced with Byleth? Was Byleth added to be more than being a new recognisable character from the latest hit Nintendo Switch game? Well, according to Byleth fans, it's the whole real-time weapon change. If you press a button and a direction, it'll use a different weapon than if you pressed a button and another direction, or no direction at all!

The Nintendo UK VS Twitter account makes this argument as well, claiming that Byleth is no ordinary sword user:

Friday, January 17, 2020

Ring Fit Adventure Fitness Log Week 10: Game Gyms and Grandminions

By LUDWIG VON KOOPA - I'm pretty sure grandminions are the equivalent of grandchildren. A minion's minion. They haven't yet learned how to be a good minion.

Fun fact. Before I began this week's Ring Fit Adventure fun time (KoopaTV Fitness Fridays), King Dad wanted me to go vacuum the castle floors (and pick up any banana peels that intruders left behind) because now just seemed like a good time of year. Why me and not a servant? He said it's good exercise, and cited a Ring Fit Adventure tip as justification. I'll edit in a screenshot of the tip here if I ever see it again. Ugh. This game has some mindset downsides for sure...

...Anyway, let's talk about Sunday! What's the difficulty level? Now it's 28 (from 27). What's the world? World 10: Grandminion Gauntlet. Apparently, this country is where children come to play, but Guru Andma, one of the Four Masters and Dragaux's personal balance trainer, has apparently trained a bunch of Grandminions to stand between me and Dragaux.

The Grandminions, who are apparently children, have taken over all of the world's Game Gyms and are challenging me to do better than them. As I foreshadowed last week, this world is full of minigames. First up? Gluting Gallery, which I must complete with a B rank or higher. Hey, that's like all of the Game Gyms from the other 9 preceding worlds. Hmph.

...Actually, no, there's one difference. This is Gluting Gallery (Advanced). All of the minigames up to this point have been at the Novice difficulty level. In Advanced, the game elements move faster. There's far more tokens and bombs. The patterns are much different. And the actual minigame duration lasts for longer as well. It's a huge difficulty jump. Still, I got an A-rank, disappointing the Grandminion named Gutso.

The Grandminion Armie is guarding the Game Gym Robo-Wrecker (Advanced). Something to note here is that all of these Grandminion children are saying that Guru Andma has warned them about my presence, and that I'm a baddie. Unlike Guru Andma, their talking portraits don't have Dragaux's dark influence aura, so these kids are just under the influence of regular propaganda, as opposed to mind control.

Anyway, Robo-Wrecker (Advanced)—which I got an A-rank in—differs from Robo-Wrecker (Novice) in that some of the robots have a protective barrier over them, so you need to mash them twice (one to bash the shield, and one to bash the bot) in order to succeed. They also come in much greater frequency.

Thursday, January 16, 2020

Ludwig's Live Reactions to Super Smash Bros. Ultimate – Mr. Sakurai Presents "Byleth"

By LUDWIG VON KOOPA - I got spoiled in the title, and so will you.

This is a live reaction not in the sense that I reacted to it right at 9 AM Eastern. I wasn't available. I have a job. Miraculously, I resisted the temptation to goof off during my job and look at anything gaming-related at all. Totally focused on my work. So I had no idea what was going to happen when I got home.

Because of me being totally absent throughout the whole day, including KoopaTV's Discord server, I couldn't coordinate any multi-staffer viewing of the Direct. Radio silence, you know. So I did it all by myself. But I'm pretty qualified, since I have Fire Emblem: Three Houses and have played through it twice already, as you'll read me repeatedly state that during this log.

Do you think I'll like the information presented by Masahiro Sakurai as he describes the fifth Fighters Pass character/stage/music (paid downloadable content) for the best-selling Nintendo Switch game, Super Smash Bros. Ultimate? Check out my reactions and see if your thoughts are correct.