PC · Steam · Video Game News · Video Games · Video Games Industry

No New Five Nights at Freddy’s

By James Daly

There will be no new Five Nights at Freddy’s game according to the game’s creator.

Scott Cawthon, the American independent video game designer who brought the jump-scare-centric Five Nights at Freddy’s series to the world, took to his Steam community page to inform fans he will not keep working on the new title.

Cawthon confirmed that he was working on “FNaF 6”, but has decided to cease development due to the “mounting expectations” for the game putting him under too much pressure.

Scott Cawthon
Scott Cawthon developed Five Nights at Freddy’s on his own

What next for Cawthon?

The developer made it clear that he was not planning on moving away from his fanbase, explaining that he would like to make a new game for his current demographic, describing it as “something for fun, and something for the fans”. He mentioned the Foxy Fighters minigame from FNaF World and “Pizzeria Tycoon” as ideas for what he may work on next.

FNaF Series Success

Since the first Five Night at Freddy’s game was released back in August 2014, the series has gained critical acclaim and worldwide popularity, resulting in a large, devoted fanbase. This success was due in part to impressive the speed at which the series produced instalments, singlehandedly made by Cawthon himself, earning a place in the Guinness World Records for most sequels release in a year.

realfreddy
Freddy Fazbear oozes charisma

No more Freddy Fazbear?

This may look like the end of Freddy Fazbear and his horrifying antics, but fans still have plenty to look forward to thanks to a Five Nights at Freddy’s film in the works. Cawthon also hinted at a new book, as well as going on record to say he would like to add a VR experience to the series.

Perhaps most importantly, it was also revealed that those involved in FNaF 6 have been sworn to secrecy over the content matter, maybe indicating that Cawthon is not yet finished with this project.

Nintendo · Video Games · Video Games Industry

Satoru Iwata: Video Game Icon

By James Daly

In the wake of Satoru Iwata’s passing, people all over the world publicly expressed their sadness at such a loss, along with their appreciation for Iwata’s contributions to the video games industry. In fact, approximately 4,000 people attended Iwata’s funeral to pay their respects but, regrettably, I was not one of them. Instead, I offer this brief account of Satoru Iwata’s career and, dare I say, legacy.

Satoru Iwata began his career at HAL Laboratory as their Coordinator of Software Production. During this time, he helped develop a healthy relationship with Nintendo in order to produce games for the Famicom gaming console. During this time he worked on several games including Kirby and EarthBound, but his first game as a developer was Balloon Fight back in 1985, a game that is still revered for its simple but fun, arcade-styled action. Iwata rose to the position of President of HAL Laboratory just in time to save the company from bankruptcy, and further strengthen their relationship with Nintendo.

 

satoru-iwata1
Iwata showing the Nintendo 3DS

Iwata’s first official Nintendo project was Pokémon Gold and Silver for the Game Boy Color and, although he was not a Nintendo employee at this time, it was Iwata’s tinkering that allowed the games to be more expansive by including the Kanto region along with the new Johto region, thus increasing the game’s playtime exponentially. Iwata also worked on Pokémon Stadium for the Nintendo 64 around this period, and it was his contribution to this title that helped establish his talent. Iwata dissected Game Freak’s battle system from Pokémon Red and Blue and reverse engineered it before porting it over to Pokémon Stadium, amazing Shigeki Morimoto, the president of Game Freak and the man who originally developed the battle system, almost to the point of disbelief.

Inevitably, Iwata took a position at Nintendo in 2000 as the Head of Corporate Planning, although this position did not keep Iwata from personally working on games. Within two years, Iwata succeeded the esteemed Hiroshi Yamauchi as the new President of Nintendo in 2002.

As President of Nintendo, Satoru Iwata oversaw some of the best and worst periods in Nintendo’s history. With regard to the latter, Iwata essentially was the force that kept Nintendo going during difficult financial periods, even going so far as to reduce his own salary by 50% to reduce business spend. Actions like this demonstrated the selfless manner in which Iwata conducted himself, and made his success seem even more impressive as moral integrity doesn’t traditionally accompany accomplishment in the business world.

nintendo-satoru-iwata-wii-u
Iwata and the WiiU

In terms of success, Satoru Iwata oversaw the production of the Nintendo DS and the Nintendo Wii, two consoles which changed the way video games were seen forever. The revolutionary move of bringing touchscreens and motion controls to home video gaming not only allowed new mechanics for game developers to explore and utilize, but also made video games accessible to new audiences outside of the typical 18-35 demographic. The practice of inputting complex sequences of key commands became irrelevant as games could be played using the more simple methods available on these pioneering consoles.

As a result, Iwata’s dream of changing the gaming industry for the better was now achievable, and many would argue that he did just that during his lifetime. Satoru Iwata was a visionary and a revolutionary within the video gaming industry, an industry that will be eternally grateful to him for his innovation and devotion. He didn’t shy away from a challenge, and was always ready to do what was right, including the odd line of code whenever necessary. His legacy is such that it seems impossible to imagine a successor now, but if any company could find one, it would be the Nintendo that Iwata so bravely redefined.

Editorial · Nintendo · Video Games · Video Games Industry

Nintendo Game Boy 25th Anniversary

By James Daly

The Nintendo Game Boy is the most iconic handheld gaming console. Famously strong enough to survive a bombing, the only thing more fortified is the legacy it left behind after it was discontinued in 2003. To my generation, the Game Boy represented where all video games began with its compact screen, minimalist command keys, and wealth of iconic titles.

Nintendo made their first big contribution to Video Gaming in 1983 when they released the Famicom in Japan, before releasing it to the rest of the world as the Nintendo Entertainment System in 1984. The NES brought the joy of arcade gaming into the home thanks to its user-friendly nature, and a string of memorable video gaming franchises that cemented the console’s iconic status.

Game Boy Games
Countless games graced the Game Boy

Though Nintendo had released handheld games in the past with Gunpei Yokoi’s Game & Watch series, the Game Boy was part of a generation of consoles that changed video games for the better. The Game Boy defined Nintendo’s business model when it outclassed its technologically superior rivals to become the most successful handheld console of its time through iconic mascots, and games that focused on replayability. This success continued, and now the Game Boy along with the Game Boy Color has sold over 118.69 million units worldwide.

As for the games, The Game Boy catered for a variety of tastes, ranging from Super Mario Land to Alleyway. The latter was essentially a copy of Breakout, but Super Mario Land was a stunning game that cleverly differed enough from the Mario games on the NES that it proved to be a console seller. The core strength of Game Boy games was that they offered the optimum level of immersion with the convenience of portability. Gamers could play state-of-the-art sports simulation games on public transport, in waiting rooms, or any other place that separated them from their home console. Bear in mind that this was a world before smartphones and laptops were ubiquitous.

Game Boy
The Nintendo Game Boy is a gaming icon

As the Game Boy was joined by the Game Boy Color, gaming changed forever again with the release of the first Pokemon games. The potential for unique gaming experiences had never been so big before, and yet ironically this series debuted on a handheld device! Pokemon took immersion to a magical level, and combined that with a new kind of replayability. Most importantly, Pokemon was the first video game titan to be exclusively handheld, which meant that Nintendo had yet another console seller on their hands. Though Pokemon games would feature on other consoles later, none of them were made in the same vain, thus assuring the importance of the Game Boy.

In short, the Nintendo Game Boy redefined video gaming by being the perfect digital companion. Having a durable console with battery life long enough to play anywhere at anytime opened up possibilities for game developers, and this resulted in a superb back catalogue of handheld video games. The Nintendo Game Boy is what really started the tradition of big games on a tiny screen, and this is why we have the Nintendo 3DS/2DS, and arguably the PlayStation Vita today.

Happy 25th Anniversary, Game Boy! We wouldn’t be here without you.