Friday, November 30, 2007

FIFA Player of the Year, why Kaka should not win

Poo Poo had a wonderful 6 months but since august and not playing Copa America, has shown that Poo Poo success has waned the last 6 months. If AC Milan wins the Club World Cup in Japan and Pu Pu performs well, yes the award should go to him.

Totti may think that Messi should be player of the year, but the young striker did not win any trophies this year. Barca floundered at the end of season, having oppurtunities to clinch the La Liga and losing emberessingly in the Kings Cup. Messi performed well all year around, but giving an award without any brass in the trophy room seems ridonkolous...(Messi may have renacted two of Maradona’s famous goals but the comparision only happens because they are both Argentinian. Ronaldo has taken 6, 7 players during his time with Barca, and was never compared to the Diego.)

My vote, would either go to Riquelme or Van Nistelrooy, both lead their team to trophies. Riquelme came back from international retirement (to show how much he is worth of course) and led Argentina to a second place finish in Copa America. Each Copa America game for Argentina, Riquelme played beautifully and was the main playmaker up until the final. Goes back to Boca Juniors, singlehandedly destroys Gremio in the Copa Libetadores Final, cementing himself as a demigod to Boca fans.

Van Nistelrooy, being shoo shoo away from Man U for their younger strikers and being kicked off the Dutch team and then reconcile with Van Basten, scoring two important goals during Euro 08 qualifying matches. Lead Real Madrid in scoring to secure La Liga (saving Beckham's legacy in Real) wins the Spanish scoring title even netting seven games in a row, (Ruud has won the scoring titles from Dutch Eredivisie, Premiership and La Liga.)

I do not consider the hand of god goals to be cheating, since the ref does not see, and there are other underhanded techniques used on the field. If FIFA and UEFA want to include instant replay, then the goals should be anulled, but the two federations are very opposed to instant replay. The whole Zidane-Matterazzi incident serves a great example of cheating. What Zidane did was wrong and rightfully deserved the red card, but what Matterazzi did and is known for baiting players is considered cheating but he has never ever been punished for any of it. The attitude has not change, just a couple of weeks ago, Tevez fell victim to the same “cheating” tactics in the Argentina-Colombia match, but no one makes a big deal out of it.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Freestyle MC The Hip Hop Game

Guitar Hero and Rock Band are two of the biggest franchises in the music-game industry and it is only inevitable that a "Hip Hop Hero" is formed. Listening to the never aging, Dr Dre's The Chronic 2001, I came up with a game concept for the 50 Cent in all of us.

As with all video games, our Freestyle MC protagonist, starts as a lowly freestlyist trying to get into the rap/hip hop/battling scene. A practice session's are done with popular songs and beats but once you decide to venture into the game, a venue location is chosen within your urban area, and battle up and coming mcs from that area, leading into a boss battle with a major rapper. After defeating your first boss, you progress to other areas to "promote" yourself and album.

In each area your mc goes, one can enter the battle scene of another urban area or just perform hip hop songs at concert, radio or in a studio creating an "album." Of course there would be a trophy room, to view your "grammys, BET Awards, Soul Train awards, MTV popcorn awards, even oscars" including a garage of your "rides." With enough money and awards, the ending would be MTV doing a Cribs episode or VH1 "Behind the Music" based on your gameplay.
The Gameplay engine would borrow from different games, Guitar Hero, Singstar, and have a puzzle element.

The battling sequences would need to have voice recognition, to track rhymes, flow, pitch and street slang. The difficulty would increase with words populating on the screen, that need to be rhymed with and included in your battle rap. Creating albums would be more Guitar Hero, where you would perfect already released hip hop songs, and your album score would be base on how well you do in the "studio" perfecting the song. But remember, you get only a few tries, since "studio" time costs money.

When the game first starts, you create your avatar, like in Sony's Home, or Mass Effect and choose what City and State you reside in. Based on this criteria, you are placed within a city, ala Virtua Fighter 5, and go to a club (based on game difficulty) to start battling opponents. The boss battles would be against hip hop figures of the area, for SF, it could be E-40 or JT the BIGGA FIGGA, in LA, EAZY E or XZIBIT. To Detroit and NY, imagine, Insane Clown Posse, Ghetto Boyz, 3 6 Mafia, Eminem, Biggie Smalls and so on. There also could be thematic from era to era. We do not have to stay with the heavy hitters, we can find up and coming artists, or local veterans that never made it outside of their area. Also, if you choose to be a "white rapper" or "brown" one can choose to go that route and also battle the Kid Rocks, Cypress Hills of the rap world.

The hip hop beats can be a mixture of up and coming producers to classics, imagine freestyling over the famous "Hit em up" song that many freestylists have done. Album recording would be either from new unreleased or proven classics, and base on which songs you choose to record, song score, and how you advertise the "album" all takes into account how the public receives it. If you promote a gangsta image, and only Roots song, your album will flop.

The peripherals will include, Mics and.... only Mics. Why? All I need is one Mic...

For the first installment all the game will need is a mic, of course one can add a beat maker (to produce beats in the studio mode) or two turntables to do dj battles, but that can be added in the sequels.

Let me know what everyone thinks of this ambitious project, Actvision and EA here I come...

Thursday, November 15, 2007

FIFA 08 Review

FIFA has arrived, I have to give apologies to a series that I have ignore for its weak gameplay, and shameless licensing tactics. Having played FIFA 08 for two weeks now, my attitude has change for the better. The series that brought soccer to sportgamers, EA's football King has returned. Over thirteen years of multiplatform releases, FIFA 08 scores first and has the features to win the cup this year. The FIFA franchise has always been a cash cow for EA, what other videogame sport can handle three versions in a year every four years? EA dominated the soccer field in the 2d era, but always seem to behind a Beckham curve with Konami's Pro Evo/W11 3d dominance. FIFA's changes from previous installments create a simulated type of experience that makes FIFA 08 a go to player.

The most notable difference is the use of tactics, ie wall passing, through balls, and timed crosses helps FIFA 08 become more of a simulation sports game ala Fight Night than Konami's PES/W11 series. By slowing down the gameplay, FIFA 08 feels more authentic, plays like a real soccer game, takes tactics, smart passes, patience, all qualities found when playing soccer in real life, to succeed. One can learn how to play soccer by playing FIFA 08 on a game console.

Scoring has become harder, takes time, your passes accurate and well timed. Playing as countering team, one touch passes accurate through balls and crosses help your scoring chances as in real soccer. FIFA has removed the Maradona like gameplay of taking more than 6 players at once.

The be a pro feature is playable unlike other sports games. An immersive gameplay mechanic, be a pro, has bright spots but will need better AI. Favorite online feature, is the ability to save replays. Check out this awesome Eto GOOOAL.

FIFA 08 does need improvements in various areas. South american teams and tourneys need to be added, as well as, authentic chants, ref, and fans. The FIFA series can now start to delve into deeper tactics, by adding different through runs, such as; j runs, cut runs, and check in runs. With the slower gameplay, Pro Evo veterans will have a longer learning curve, but it is worth every second.

The beautiful game has arrived to your home game consoles, a must buy for any footie fan.


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