Sunday, August 30, 2009

An Open Letter to Adam Biessener of GameInformer

"Hey Adam,
In issue 196 you reviewed The Conduit, and I've been wondering about your review.
Did you actually finish playing the single player campaign?

You said at one point in the review, "...but drawing a bead on a human opponent is tough even with the game's ploddingly slow movement speed.", and "Aiming is mediocre without being heinous."
You didn't mention though, that you can adjust your turning speed, running speed, the bounding box, etc., in the control settings in the game.
The level of customization for controls in The Conduit hasn't been matched by any previous FPS game on the Wii or other consoles for that matter.
I honestly don't know how you failed to mention or if you even tried for yourself to adjust the turning speed and running speed in The Conduit.

I played The Conduit's single player and multiplayer for about a week and a half after I bought the game(still playing the multiplayer some), I went back to KillZone 2, and thought something was wrong with my PS3 controller because of how slow I moved in the game compared to The Conduit.

Also, why doesn't your review or Ben's "Second Opinion" mention anything about the achievements in the game?
I understand that achievements are standard on the Xbox360 and even PS3 now, but the fact that a 3rd party on the Wii actually took time of their own, with no obligation to Nintendo, to add achievements in the game, should have been mentioned, as it adds replay value to the single player campaign.

If you didn't finish the single player campaign, the readers should know that you didn't finish it.

The game definitely isn't perfect, the online has glitches and bugs, but that wasn't mentioned in the review either.
I'm really confused with the reviewing process these days...if you don't play a game at length and don't actually finish the single player campaign, why even review it?


For my readers and for those of you that have played The Conduit and aren't sure if my points are valid, I encourage you first, read Adam's review of The Conduit,
If you think that the review is fine, let me know.
If you've played The Conduit and think my points are legitimate, maybe you will let Adam know. You can email Adam Biessener at ADAM@GAMEINFORMER.COM.
If you email Adam, please be civil in your emails.

I think we as subscribers to magazines like Game Informer and readers of gaming websites, should expect full, honest reviews of games, especially if the person is getting paid to review the game and it's their job. I don't think The Conduit received very many FULL, HONEST reviews when it was released.

What do you think?

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Analyzing the Wii Manufacturing Costs in 2009

Analysts like Michael Pachter and others are now more or less singing a chorus that the Wii needs or would benefit from a price drop. While they can analyze that all they want, I just find it interesting how much it may actually be costing Nintendo to manufacture the Wii console.

In December 2006, had an article* that discussed how much the Wii cost to manufacture back then. The article says at one point, “…it seems that Nintendo's brainchild is only costing $158.30 to manufacture, before you consider the Wiimotes…”.

On the chart they were looking at, there was also a “wholesale price” of $195.99 and their article stated, “ which could be a more realistic figure of how much Nintendo is shelling out when taking external costs (like Reggie flying all over the world) into the equation.”
Fast-forward to April 2009, analyst(oh how we love them), Koya Tabata, is basically quoted that, “manufacturing costs are down a full 45%”, according to a second Engadget article*.

Assuming the Wii console bundle was originally costing Nintendo, $195.99, for everything in the box(minus Wii Sports, as I don’t know if that was included in the wholesale price), and now the manufacturing cost has been reduced by 45%, here’s how much it may be costing to manufacture the Wii console with one Wii remote and nun chuck included:
$195.99 x 45% = $88.1955
$195.99 - $88.20 = $107.79

From the original manufacturing price estimate of $195.99, to the new estimate in manufacturing costs reduction being 45%, I would say Nintendo can manufacture and distribute the Wii, for less than $120. If correct, this would mean a Wii retailing at a MSRP of $149.99 or even $129.99 is possible, but not probable, in the very near future.
How much does it cost Nintendo to manufacture a Wii, including everything in the box, in 2009?

Based on the analyst's assumption manufacturing costs are down 45% for the Wii, the amount of $107.79 is what it should be costing Nintendo to manufacture a Wii, including everything in the box, currently in 2009.
How much does it cost Nintendo to manufacture JUST the Wii system itself?
$158.30 x 45% = 71.235
$158.30 - 71.24 = $87.06
$87.06 is the amount it should be costing Nintendo to manufacture just the Wii system itself, if the analyst Koya Tabata is correct that manufacturing costs are down 45%.

That may seem like a low cost to manufacture the Wii, but we must remember, the Wii is simply two GameCubes duct taped together*…

Do you think Nintendo is charging too much for the Wii based on these numbers? Or do you think when looking at numbers like these, that an analyst like Michael Pachter may be right in assuming that Nintendo will announce a Wii Plus HD next year and sell it alongside the current Wii?


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