The couch. The TV. A Saturday night. 4 controllers. 3 friends. Nothing but time and a potato chips.

When was the last time you had all of the above in one place? Local co-op ha slowly become a chore to organize. In our younger days, a Saturday night was MADE for gaming, and what better way to play than with your friends? These days, some planning is required for online multiplayer, but it seems that even more stars must align to get 4 people into the same room and find a game that supports local multiplayer. 

Sportfriends is a collaboration consisting of a bunch of games that ONLY offer local multiplayer. You might have heard us speak about J.S. Joust or Hokra – games I’ve had access thanks to Die Gut Fabrik’s kickstarter a couple of years ago. Well, on Tuesday, DGF hopes to revitalize local multiplayer with Sportsfriends on your PS4 and Ps3, and later, on your PC. 

What are some of your favourite local multiplayer memories?

Friday, 2:26 pm – Gavin

Part of the problem for the Wii U is its missteps right out of the gate, which are effectively impossible to recover from.  They can’t abandon the Wii U now because they’ll be alienated the very core people they need for future survival.  They can’t really re-brand it because it’s been out for almost two years.  They’ve alienated the third-party developers (except for Ubisoft), and there’s no universe where Ubisoft continues to absorb the kinds of Wii U losses they have.

It’s worth mentioning, however, that Nintendo is not alone in their struggles.  It’s not like the Xbox One is selling like hotcakes, considering discounted bundles are already popping up across the province.  As last generation belonged to Nintendo and the generation before that belonged to Sony, I wonder if Sony is in line to run away with it this generation.  But since it’s been less than a year for the PS4 and Xbox One, it’s entirely likely that this is a stupid prediction.

That said, I do firmly believe that we aren’t going to see console sales numbers the way we did last generation.

Nintendo is a strange company that alternates between insanely forward-thinking and stupidly backwards.  They’re very good at predicting market trends, while simultaneously being horrible at responding to other societal pressures (lest we forget, their online service is only good for toilet paper).  There are going to be a million workarounds for the Tomodachi Life folks, but that’s so far beside the point that it’s in another time zone.  Nintendo needs to very carefully consider who they want to alienate.  It’s not just the decisions they make – it’s the response as well.  You don’t always get to decide whether or not your game is meant to make social commentary.

It’s hard to blame one person.  Iwata was in charge for two of the top five-selling gaming consoles of all time.  How can you not have someone with that track record in charge.  But then, certainly the argument is to be made that Nintendo needs to adopt a more western approach to survive.  North America and Western Europe are generally the powerhouses of home console sales.  It’s imperative to appeal to them.  I can only imagine how infuriating it must be at times to work at Nintendo of America.

The entire home electronics market is not in a great place.  Sony Computer Entertainment is doing OK so far, but they’re just barely escaping the giant warehouse fire that is the global Sony Corporation.  Microsoft can toss endless amounts of money at the Xbox division thanks to its Windows profits, but ability to throw money at a problem doesn’t imply success.

As long as people stop suggesting that Nintendo get out of the hardware business and release their games on other platforms, I’m fine with whatever happens.

Wednesday, 3:55 pm – matt

certainly not encouraging news coming from Nintendo there, but as you point out they are facing some difficulties right now as they battle Sony and Microsoft with a system that’s having a hard time gaining traction and they focus on this new healthy life initiaitive.

they are also turning their backs on the LGBT community with their latest life sim, Tomodachi by not allowing same sex partnerships. it’s a battle no one wants to be on the wrong side of, and considering that as the oldest player in the gaming industry, there are surely large number of LGBT gamers that grew up with Nintendo and now feel slightly burned.

Wednesday, 8:41 am – Ricky

OK, so I’m not a Nintendo hater. I really do like what they’re trying to do in the marketplace right now (for the most part). But this is bad. There’s no positive way to spin this: Nintendo has lost a ton of money this fiscal year, to the tune of $456 million USD.

That’s the operating loss, with a net loss of $228 million USD for the fiscal year ending March 31st. I get that they have billions in reserve, but billions in cash? Remember that a company’s net work is made up of all assets and debts, which can include the pencil on your desk. Also remember: R&D for hardware is expensive, and with their “Quality of Life” lineup taking up a bunch of cash, and a new console to start working on in the next few years, money will go even more quickly if they can’t start to right the ship in this new fiscal year.

Monday, 11:47 am – matt

couch co-op is the original multiplayer, kids nowadays with their high speed internet have no idea why someone would need a second controller other to play with while the second is charging. ever try explaining a LAN party to someone under the age of 18, its nearly impossible…

with a competitive older brother around sports were a big feature on the early Nintendo and Genesis. I think everyone first co-op games were either Super Mario 1, 2 or Contra. when Ricky and I started hanging out on a regular basis I cant think of a game we didn’t play together on the couch co-op, either swapping controllers or 2 player simultaneously. (Nintendo: Smash Brothers, Eternal Darkness, Resident Evil 4 | Dreamcast: PowerStone, Phantasy Star, Sonic Adventure, Tony Hawk 2, Shenmue| PSOne: WWF Rawzone, Tony Hawk, FF7, 10 minutes of FF8, FF9, XBOX: SKATE. SKATE. SKATE… I could keep going). Couch co-op gaming was THE best way to still hang out with your friends while staying playing games, as fun as online is, the excitement of scoring a last second goal or pulling off an epic boss battle with half a heart left just isn’t celebrated the same over a headset…

remember playing madden and trying to pick your plays so fast so your friend couldn’t read the screen, so they implemented the “hold” button to select your play and fake out your friend by making it look like you are still choosing a play. awesome.

I honestly haven’t heard too much about the topic game, but my girlfriend and I enjoy playing causal games, especially the PS Move type games so maybe this could be a good pick up, once I return from Cali of course…

Monday, 8:21 am – Ricky

I’ve got some great memories playing NHL and NBA games with matt, pass-and-play Skate and insane in-ring wrestling action with Preezie with Albert, and various Nintendo products with Gavin. I’ll share some later this week! For now, back to work… and dreaming of Diablo 3…