Video games: one’s escape from reality to become a hero and save the land from a dark malevolence, or weaving among banana peels, and green shells. The video game sector is a tens of billions of dollars industry spanning the globe and everything from portable consoles to powerful PCs.

Sonic: Lost World Zelda trailer

Frederick Linsmeyer • March 27, 2014 • Gaming, Videos

Sonic the Hedgehog travels a lot. Not only has he attended multiple Olympics, but he can now add Hyrule to his passport. New downloadable content for Sonic: Lost World includes a Legend of Zelda-based level which is available starting today, for free, through the Wii U eShop.

But that’s not all: Sonic dons Link’s signature green tunic and hat, plus his gauntlets and boots. There’s no rings, only rupees. Familiar foes, including stalchildren, keese and Deku scrubs, return to stand in Sonic’s way. Even Link, in his form from The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword, makes an appearance.

Sonic: Lost World is available on the Nintendo Wii U.

Source: IGN

Japan chooses Pikachu as mascot for 2014 World Cup

Frederick Linsmeyer • March 18, 2014 • Gaming

While Fuleco the Armadillo might be the mascot for the upcoming 2014 FIFA World Cup, Pikachu will be representing the Japan National Football Team in Brazil.

The popular electric-type Pokémon, along with ten of his friends, will don jerseys to cheer on the Samurai Blue after getting approval from both Nintendo and team kit outfitter Adidas. Original starters Charmander, Bulbasaur and Squirtle with Chespin, Fenneken, Froakie, Pancham, Meowth, Helioptile and Litleo will join Pikachu.

Pokemon mascots for the Japan National Football Team

Pokemon mascots for the Japan National Football Team

The 2014 FIFA World Cup kicks off June 12th, 2014 with 32 participating nations, including Japan.

Source: Soccerly

Canadians pay more for PS4

Frederick Linsmeyer • March 16, 2014 • Gaming

Haven’t purchased a PlayStation 4 yet? Be prepared to shell out a little more money for the gaming console in Canada now that Sony has upped the price to $449.99 CAD from $399.99 CAD. Canada is notorious for higher prices on products, even when the Canadian Dollar was at parity with the US Dollar in previous years.

But it’s not just the price of the console that are going up. Accessories, including the DualShock 4 controller and PlayStation Camera jumps from $59.99 CAD to $64.99 CAD. First-party games MLB The Show 14 and inFAMOUS: Second Son also are affected, retailing for $69.99 CAD instead of $59.99 CAD.

According to a statement released by Sony Canada, the increase in price was in reaction to market fluctuations.

“The PlayStation 4 computer entertainment system delivers phenomenal play experiences that will shape the world of games for years to come and has quickly become the next gen console of choice with gamers in Canada. To respond to changes in the market environment, the price of PlayStation 4 will be revised from CAD $399.99 to $449.99 MSRP.”

The increased price still leaves the PlayStation 4 $50 cheaper than Microsoft’s Xbox One console, which retails for $499.99 CAD in Canada.

Sources: Kotaku,

Inazuma Eleven available in Nintendo eShop on Nintendo 3DS

Frederick Linsmeyer • February 23, 2014 • Anime, Gaming, Videos

The field is ready for soccer as the long awaited soccer RPG has landed in North America. Inazuma Eleven is available as a digital download through the Nintendo eShop on the Nintendo 3DS.

While the popularity of the series has spawned numerous games in Japan, the original title which started craze, has been translated for an English audience (and to market the series for a younger crowd). Mark Evans (Mamoru Endou), the soccer-obsessed the captain and goalkeeper for Raimon Junior High, has his sights set on leading his club to the Soccer Frontier (Football Frontier) tournament.  First up, the mighty Royal (Teikoku) Academy!

As Evans, it’s up to you rally the rest of the club’s players and start the long journey to greatness. Winning matches unlocks new skills and techniques to build the strength of your team. With so many candidates, over 1,000, it’s easy to create your perfect team to play against your friends.

As a bonus, the first three episodes of the English-dubbed Inazuma Eleven anime can be watched, for free, through the Nintendo eShop as well.

Sources: Nintendo, Level 5

Nintendo offering Four Swords for free

Frederick Linsmeyer • January 30, 2014 • Gaming

To honour the success of The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds, Nintendo is giving away another Zelda game for free! For four days only, starting Thursday, January 30th, 2014, The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords Anniversary Edition will be available in the Nintendo eShop until 11:59 pm PST on Sunday, February 2nd, 2014.

Grab your Nintendo 3DS or 2DS, some friends and get ready to save Hyrule together, or save Princess Zelda by yourself. Items, both new and classic are available to help you overcome obstacles and solve puzzles to restore order to the land.

The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords was originally released in conjunction with a remake of The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past for the Game Boy Advance in December 2002.

Source: Nintendo

Inazuma Eleven set for 2014 North American release

Frederick Linsmeyer • January 6, 2014 • Gaming
Inazuma Eleven 3: Spark

Inazuma Eleven 3: Spark aka Inazuma Eleven 3: Lightning Bolt

Lace up your cleats and get ready to hit the field — Inazuma Eleven is finally coming to North America. The popular soccer series has been released on the Nintendo DS in Japan and Europe, but never in Canada or the United States. An interview last year with the president of developer Level-5, Akihiro Hino, hinted at the possibility of a North American launch.

The game itself is a mix of role-playing and sports: the player is given the opportunity to interact and explore the available areas in town and recruit new members to the team. Building up the team allows the player to participate in soccer matches. Special abilities used during the match can help turn the tide — either for better or worse! It’s an exciting way to play soccer!

Inazuma Eleven is mentioned on Nintendo’s release calendar with a date of Q1 2014 – so sometime in the next few months. This past September, Inazuma Eleven 3: Lightning Bolt and Inazuma Eleven 3: Bomb Blast were released in Europe on the Nintendo 3DS.

Sources: IGN, Nintendo

Hyrule Warriors announced for Wii U

Frederick Linsmeyer • December 19, 2013 • Gaming, Videos

Nintendo has revealed a new collaboration with Tecmo Koei to create a Legend of Zelda inspired spin-off of Dynasty Warriors called Hyrule Warriors. Nintendo president Satoru Iwata introduced Hyrule Warriors as part of their Nintendo Direct video released on December 18th, 2013.

The upcoming game does not fit into the traditional Legend of Zelda storyline, but utilizes the lands, enemies and items from the series. Link, in his form from The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword, faces familiar foes with the trusty Master Sword, bombs and even hearts to replenish lost health.

Dynasty Warriors is a combat-oriented series that has been published by Tecmo Koei since 1997. Many of the titles take place in China during times of turmoil between kingdoms jostling for control of the ancient world. Other spin-offs of Dynasty Warriors have not only dealt with other historical conflicts, but with popular anime series including the Gundam, Fist of the North Star and One Piece franchises.

While Hyrule Warriors is not the confirmed title of the game, it does has a tentative release date sometime in 2014 for the Nintendo Wii U.

Sources: Nintendo Direct, Wikipedia

Nintendo to host Zelda parties in Toronto and Montreal

Frederick Linsmeyer • November 13, 2013 • Gaming

In anticipation of the upcoming launch of The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds for the Nintendo 3DS, Nintendo is hosting celebrations in Toronto and Montreal this weekend.

Fans will be given an opportunity to play the latest title in the Zelda series, watch an artist decorate a wall with art from the game, and take pictures with acclaimed Link cosplayer, Li Kovacs, better known as Pikmin Link. Those who show up in costume from their favourite Zelda game will be able to collect neat prizes.

The first event will be in Toronto, Ontario at the The Great Hall, 1087 Queen Street West on Saturday, November 16th, 2013 from 12:00 pm to 4:00 pm EST.

The second event will be in Montreal, Quebec at the Square de l’église St-James, 463 Sainte-Catherine Ouest on Sunday, November 17th, 2013 from 1:00 pm to 5:00 pm EST.

The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds will be available for purchase on Friday, November 22nd, 2013.

Sources: Nintendo, Pikmin Link

A golden gift for Zelda fans

Frederick Linsmeyer • October 29, 2013 • Gaming

Nintendo is not shy about releasing themed consoles for certain video game series. Wii U recently was covered with a motif from The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD to commemorate the game’s re-release, and now it’s the Nintendo 3DS for The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds.

The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds Nintendo 3DS XL console

Package artwork for The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds Nintendo 3DS XL console

To celebrate the worlds of light and dark, the Japanese gaming company is letting Zelda fans hold the Triforce in their hands with a limited edition gold and black Nintendo 3DS XL console. The top of the device is brilliant golden colour with a Triforce screened off-centre while the bottom is all black with another shadowy Triforce emblem. Included with the gleaming handheld is a download code for The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds. Originally announced for the game’s launch in Europe, Nintendo is confirming gamers in North America will be able to purchase this shining console. The bundle has a suggested retail price of $219.99 USD.

Both the gold-and-black Nintendo 3DS XL and The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds (which can also be purchased separately) will be available for purchase in North America on Friday, November 22nd, 2013.

The Legend of Zelda: Symphony of the Goddesses Second Quest in Vancouver

Frederick Linsmeyer • October 18, 2013 • Gaming, Local
The Legend of Zelda: Symphony of the Goddesses Second Quest poster

The Legend of Zelda: Symphony of the Goddesses Second Quest poster

You can’t say no to an amazing adventure a second time around. The Legend of Zelda: Symphony of the Goddesses Second Quest (that’s a mouthful) returned to Vancouver’s Orpheum theatre for an encore performance. As the first concert in 2012 was such a success, Nintendo and the event producers decided to add a “second quest” with a new selection of pieces from the Legend of Zelda video game series. For this adventure, conductor Susie Benchasil Seiter led the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra and UBC Opera Ensemble Choir in a four-movement symphony that covered the land of Hyrule and its neighbours from the depths and into the skies. Read the rest of this article…

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