Toys: PlayStation Optimus Prime Announced
Following on from the MegaDrive Megatron toy being made by Takara Tomy, they've now also announced an Optimus Prime toy based on the original PlayStation. Like the first...
We now have the second extended promo for Super Robot Wars Z 3, this being the one that will be shown in shops across Japan to curious punters. It shows pretty much all the new aspects of the game, from the team system as well as Maximum Break. There’s also a lot of battle animation eye candy, with the the RX-93 Nu Gundam looking especially lovely. We’re still bummed by the lack of Final Dancouga but there’s a lot of other cool series afoot here, so that should be good at least. The game is still on track for its April 10th release and you can pre-order it accordingly here (PS3) and here (Vita).
Famitsu has the latest scoop on the next three DLC units to come to Gundam Extreme Versus Full Boost on March 5th. The units are Roux Louka’s Zeta Gundam (2000 Cost), Haman’s Acguy (2000 Cost), and Shiro’s Ground Gundam (1000 Cost). Like previous DLC units that were recommissioned clones of existing units, these three will have similar movesets with minor additions and omissions. For example, Haman’s Acguy jumps up a cost grade from 1000 to 2000, giving the unit 580 HP and Newtype pressure as its burst attack versus the original rolling Acguy army. Like before, these units will cost 400 yen each.
Today, Tecmo Koei Publishing revealed they will be bringing Shin Gundam Musou to the US and EU as Dynasty Warriors Gundam Reborn in Summer 2014. Another interesting thing to note is that it has only been listed for the PS3. The Vita version is currently absent from the press release so there is a possibility it will not come over.
So we now have the first promo for the Gundam Side Stories collection and it’s featuring Blue Destiny. There’s quite a lot of gameplay footage in this trailer and it’s clear now that these “HD remakes” are basically classic missions from the older games in the new Missing Link engine. This is a pretty big deal, as what made games like Blue Destiny so special was their claustrophobic first person view (something that seems to be entirely absent now). We’re actually pretty disappointed now about this new collection, as it seems very clear that Bandai are just going down the cheap and nasty route for this. Oh well, we’ll be picking this up in May but our reaction has now dropped to below “meh”. The other weird thing is that this version of Blue Destiny looks like it’s referencing the manga narrative rather than the original games (as the trailer talks about about letting down Marion after the Blue Destiny GM’s head is blown off by a Dom). This is because the manga ends on Earth between the Blue Destiny GM and Efreet Kai, whereas the games finish in space between two EXAM system Gundams. Anyway, this collection seems to be comprised of a whole ball of weird. The trailer is shown below.
In the latest issue of Famitsu, Bandai Namco have announced something wondrous. Specifically that of HD remakes for 5 classic Gundam gaiden games. These games being Blue Destiny, Rise from the Ashes, Space To the End of a Flash, Zeonic Front and the first Senki. All of these will be bundled with Missing Link and use the new engine. What’s not clear is whether the first person view that was key to the Saturn and Dreamcast games has been preserved (as from the screenshots it looks that the updated versions have gone third person in terms of the camera). Still, the fact this is happening at all is pretty damn great. In addition, there will be a limited edition of the game that will come with a kit of the new RX-80 “Pale Rider” as well as a soundtrack and artbook. Though at 14,893 yen it’s a tad pricey. We also have a release date for the games of May 29th. Considering how good many of these older games were, we really hope they don’t mess them up in terms of the new HD remakes.
For those of you waiting for any new information regarding the state of the upcoming Monolith Soft RPG “X” for the Wii U, the recent Nintendo Direct has shown two minutes of brand new gameplay footage. Using an upgraded version of the battle system from Xenoblade, the video shows the playable characters battling monkey-esque creatures on foot and in their mecha, called Dolls. Having logged in nearly 100 hours in Xenoblade, I personally cannot wait to get my hands on this game. The enemy AI looks to be lacking in this vid, but I’m sure that will be remedied as they get further along with the game. Be sure to check out the video below!
Not long after the first game was released on console, Bandai Namco announced a new arcade game would follow. That was nearly three years ago and in that time Full Boost has been a huge success in the Japanese arcades. Since coming back to Japan we’ve availed ourselves of the omnipresent arcades and naturally played a large amount of Full Boost too.
As we come from a game development background, primarily that of design, it’s interesting to see how much work went into Full Boost. To look at, the game doesn’t appear to be doing all that much new and could even be regarded as just a shallow cash-in. In reality though, that is a painfully inaccurate appraisal. There’s an enormous amount of improvement across how the game operates, consequently this is one of the most engrossing and rewarding versus games we’ve played in a long time.
Over the past few years, Border Break has had somewhat of tumultuous time. It started out very well, but with each successive iteration more and more players dropped away. From Airburst to Union and now Scramble, SEGA are obviously hoping that the fourth update will be one to bring the punters back. The biggest problem the series has had is through its aggressive monetisation. It started out fairly invasive but has become more encompassing to the point that it’s financially crippling to play at the higher levels (as in the cost to “get good” has just gone through the roof). Whether this monetisation will have been fixed for Scramble is unclear, as you’d expect SEGA are pretty cagey about this, but it’s clear they haven’t given up on the series yet. The smart thing about Border Break though is that each of the updates haven’t required new hardware as technically it’s just a software update. So from an arcade management point of view, it’s a lot less hassle to host the game. No word on a release date, bar sometime this year, but it will be interesting to see how this does in the wild and whether gamers will come back to it.
At this year’s JAEPO, Konami have announced yet another Steel Chronicle game entitled Steel Chronicle Ganesh. The two major changes to the game are its move to first person as well as having a panoramic cockpit (much like the still very successful Senjo no Kizuna). For those that haven’t played Steel Chronicle, it was Konami’s attempt to steal Border Break’s thunder whilst also being more PvE focused (think basically an arcade Monster Hunter with mecha). It’s never done overly well though, with rumours of it actually losing money for Konami. However, what with Border Break’s reduced popularity these days (due to aggressive monetisation) it’s clear that Konami see an opportunity here. No word on a release date as yet, bar sometime this year, but we’ll be keeping an eye out for this. As the arcade mecha gaming scene in Japan is about to get a bit busier it seems.
Over at this year’s JAEPO, Gundam Extreme Versus Maxi Boost is on full show. After the numerous recent location tests, it seems we’ll be getting the game in arcades here pretty soon. In addition to this, Bandai Namco released the game’s new CG opening movie. Whilst it looks pretty great, gotta love all the Xi and Penelope action, we do question the musical veracity of having auto-tuned metal in the background. For all of Linkin Park’s faults, they do write better music. That aside, it’s also pretty clear that due to Maxi Boost’s lack of newer units that the PS3 port of Full Boost’s DLC is turning into “Attack of the Clones”. Hopefully this will rectify itself once Maxi Boost starts getting more new units. In any case, the new opening movie is shown below. Brace thy ears!