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News: Classic Armored Core now available on US PSNNews: Classic Armored Core now available on US PSN So out of nowhere you can now buy the original PSone Armored Core on the US PSN store. Costing a very reasonable $5.99, it's compatible with the PS3, PSP and Vita. Due...

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Toys: Robot Damashii Penelope Available For Pre-OrderToys: Robot Damashii Penelope Available For Pre-Order Not wishing to miss a trick, Bandai have followed up from their pretty damn fantastic Robot Damashii Xi Gundam with the news of a Robot Damashii Penelope to be released...

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News: AirMech Arena to be Released on PlayStation 4 and Xbox OneNews: AirMech Arena to be Released on PlayStation 4... In welcome news, it seems we are to get AirMech Arena released on both PlayStation 4 and Xbox One sometime this spring courtesy of Ubisoft. This is an update to the already...

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News: Hawken sold to Reloaded GamesNews: Hawken sold to Reloaded Games If you're wondering what happened to Hawken, well Adhesive Games and their publisher Meteor sold the game in a bankruptcy sale to Reloaded Games. This is the same Reloaded...

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Videos: Three New Units Added to Gundam Extreme Versus Maxi Boost RosterVideos: Three New Units Added to Gundam Extreme Versus... Three new suits will be added this month to Gundam Extreme Versus Maxi Boost, Gundam Harute from Gundam 00: A wakening of the Trailblazer, and Deathscythe Hell and Heavyarms...

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Toys: Robot Damashii Zwarth

Posted on : 02-07-2014 | By : | In : Toys/Kits

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Courtesy of our good friends at HobbyLink Japan, we’ve been sent a toy from one of our favourite anime series, that of Aura Battle Dunbine to review. Specifically, the Robot Damashii Zwarth that’s on sale. In addition, to give the toy some context, we’ve also linked gameplay and anime footage of it in action at the end of the review.

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Toys: Layzner V-MAX Parts Announced

Posted on : 26-06-2014 | By : | In : Toys/Kits

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Following on from the Layzner Mk2 announced recently, Bandai will also be releasing a Layzner with V-MAX parts early next year. This is a partial re-release of the original Layzner toy from 2007, just with a different set of armor to swap out. This is also a toy of the first Layzner and doesn’t have the parts to build the New Layzner seen towards the end of the show. The base also doesn’t talk or light up on this new version either. In addition to all this we recently finally received the final fansubbed episodes for the show. Whilst we don’t normally post fansub links, Layzner is somewhat special and we’re just happy more people can finally see this great series.

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News: Gundam Side Stories Second DLC Released

Posted on : 26-06-2014 | By : | In : News, Videos

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Following on from the Gundam Unicorn themed DLC for Gundam Side Stories we now have the second set released today on PSN. This includes some new VR missions as well as two new mobile suits; the Pezun Dowadge and the Efreet Nacht. We’re sorta meh on the former but the later is cool as we enjoyed Gundam Senki 0081. This could also mean we might get some 7th Gundam DLC too, which would be pretty nice. Talking of VR missions, the game is actually better without all the story stuff getting in the way. Much like the older PS2 Gundam games, the core gameplay on its own holds up much better than when it has to tell a story. This was true in Journey to Jaburo with the Tactics Battle setup, that later basically made up the backbone of the far better Lost War Chronicles. Without all the manky cutscenes to ruin the ambiance, Side Stories is actually really solid.

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Videos: Xenoblade Chronicles X Gameplay at E3 2014

Posted on : 12-06-2014 | By : | In : Videos

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Last seen this year at an earlier Nintendo Direct and previously known as X, Nintendo has finally given us more information on the upcoming RPG Xenoblade Chronicles X for the Wii U. Delayed until 2015, Nintendo showed off a CG trailer during its E3 Digital Event on Tuesday, June 10, showcasing the game’s story origins with a gigantic war between two alien factions above Earth. Even though they attempt to thwart the alien attacks with their mechanized dolls, the humans eventually escape from Earth facing extinction and eventually crash land on a planet in another galaxy. The story feels very reminiscent of the Phantasy Star series and that is by no means a negative, providing the foundations of what players will be engrossing themselves with when they play. Later on in the day, Nintendo provided a 45 minute presentation of the game during its Treehouse Live event, showcasing gameplay systems that appear to be an evolution of the Xenoblade on the Wii. Granted we did not see any doll gameplay, we can only hope they provide more mecha goodness before E3 ends. Until then, check out the CG trailer and Treehouse Live gameplay presentation below!

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Videos: Gundam Extreme Versus Maxi Boost Roster Update

Posted on : 12-06-2014 | By : | In : Videos

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This month Bandai Namco will be adding three more units into the Gundam Extreme Versus Maxi Boost roster. They are Blitz Gundam, Johnny Ridden’s Zaku II, and Lacus’ Infinite Justice. While we’ve seen Johnny Ridden’s Zaku II and Lacus’ Infinite Justice as Gundam Extreme Versus Full Boost DLC, Blitz Gundam has not seen playable action in the Versus series since Gundam Seed Destiny Plus. Armed with the Mirage Colloid cloaking effect that appears to act like Deathscythe Hell Custom’s stealth system and an Aegis assist, it looks to be a rather interesting addition to the already stacked roster as a melee oriented 2000 cost unit. So be sure to check out the announcement vids for the characters below!

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News: Gundam Side Stories Price Cut

Posted on : 09-06-2014 | By : | In : News

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So since Gundam Side Stories launched it’s been getting pretty terrible user reviews. Now in Japan these tend to have more weight with fans, more so than press reviews in fact, but this also means that we’ve already seen some initial price cuts. Whilst this is not an official reduction, a 40% decrease in price is pretty massive. Admittedly this is for the standard edition of the game, as the limited edition is still at full price, but even then this is pretty serious. It’s likely this has happened because outlets like Amazon have excess stock they need to shift, as the user reviews have relegated the game to the online bargain bin. Whether this price cut will shift over to importers is unlikely though, at least for the interim. In terms of sales, the game has done sorta average (at around 80k in its first few days). In any case, we ‘re hoping Bandai Namco will learn from this episode and either give these games a bigger budget or focus the scope to use the budget they already have.

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Reviews: Gundam The Blue Destiny (10/10)

Posted on : 01-06-2014 | By : | In : Reviews

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bluedestiny_coverOne of the biggest mistakes Gundam games make is when they try and put you in the shoes of a Newtype. It always ends up being disappointing as it is an impossible thing to get right. We’re not meant to be Newtypes, not yet anyway, and Gundam games should acknowledge this.

This is where the Blue Destiny trilogy came in. Released across three mini-games, they placed you as a grunt GM pilot on the front-lines. Not only that, you got it all via a faithfully claustrophobic first person cockpit view. Put simply, this approached nailed what the Gundam mythos was about in a way that hadn’t been done before. It’s also one of the best Gundam games ever made.

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News: Gundam Side Stories Review Addendum

Posted on : 01-06-2014 | By : | In : News

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Now that our review for Gundam Side Stories is up, we wanted to add a few more bits that cover the narrative. The reason why these aren’t in the main review is that these are pretty hefty spoilers. Whilst we don’t really care about spoilers some people lose their shit, so this concession is for them. This is by no means comprehensive but more the parts we thought worth mentioning.

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Missing Link – The Slave Wraith team are all ex-convicts that have been drafted into service, so they fight dirty. Their squad leader is Travis Kirkland (played maniacally as always by Keiji Fujiwara). They basically found out some Federation secrets and are then on the run. They later team up with the Zeon Marchosias team. Amongst all this the HADES system and Pale Rider play an important role, this also ties directly into events in Blue Destiny and Yu Kajima et al make cameos in the Slave Wraith arc. Missing Link is also split into four parts; Federation, Zeon and then two flash forwards one in UC 0090 and another in UC 0096, with the latter tying into the events seen in Gundam Unicorn.

Blue Destiny – This is now in two parts, covering the original games as well as Nimbus’ path. The big news, bar the Missing Link tie-in, is that it shows two major new events over the original games. The first is that at the end of the fight between the two EXAM Gundams, BD3 (Yu’s unit) emits a green aura just before it attacks. This then follows onto seeing Yu years later in a Jegan trying to push back Axis at the end of Char’s Counterattack. During this he calls out for Marion to help and she responds that everybody’s warmth is already here. So insinuating that it wasn’t just Amuro and Char’s power that pushed back Axis, but everyone involved. Again this ties into Banagher’s comments at the end of Unicorn saying that the pyscho frame light actually comes from the pilots themselves. This in turn explains that the red EXAM hue is the early stage of this effect with the final form being green. On the Nimbus arc it also sounds as though Marion survives, as she was in a coma and that Nimbus isn’t painted as being quite the bastard he was in the original games and manga.

Rise from the Ashes – The base White Dingo GMs are damn fast. Most of the missions make it into the remake as the original didn’t have many to begin with. There are a few odd changes from the original (no proto beam rifles) but it’s pretty close and was the most fun of all the segments to play. The only real downside is that Pierce Rayer talks, which is weird (doubly so as he’s voiced by Kouichi Yamadera).

Zeonic Front – Just feels wrong functionally but is nicely harder than the other parts, as you’re in underpowered Zaku II’s for the most part. The lack of any unit control and strategy is just very strange though. Nice heads up to Marchosias towards the end, as it is explained that they are sort of a special elite compared to Midnight Fenrir.

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Reviews: Gundam Side Stories (6/10)

Posted on : 01-06-2014 | By : | In : Reviews

Hardware:

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gunside_cover1Some of the finest Gundam games ever made have been the “gaiden”, or side story, entries. These are on the whole admired by fans of the Gundam saga, as they place the player as grunts on the front lines. Understandably, when a collection such as Gundam Side Stories was announced many people were obviously overjoyed. As modern day remakes of these classic games would be a wonderful thing indeed.

It then transpired that these classic games wouldn’t actually be remade, instead they would use a new game setup and only be recreated in a narrative sense. Despite this obvious disappointment, the new game is actually rather good but the overall package is very patchy and inconsistent. As such this is one of the more challenging games we’ve had to review over the years.

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News: Gundam Side Stories Release and Impressions

Posted on : 28-05-2014 | By : | In : News, Videos

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After much wait Gundam Side Stories is released today in Japan. However, because we’re awesome we got a copy of the Limited Edition a day early (pictured above). So from playing about fifteen or so missions on the Slave Wraith side of Missing Link this is what we think of it thus far. In terms of controls and gameplay, it’s actually pretty great. It’s fluid and simple but with some nice weight to it. It feels like an amalgam of the old Blue Destiny games mixed with Lost War Chronicles and Zeonic Front. In terms of the latter, you have three units per team and you can switch mid-combat between them (like in Zeonic Front somewhat). These also act as your “lives”, as once one is taken out it has to recharge and you can switch to the others in the team. Once all units are down then that’s game over. Missions are short and simple but still quite varied. The game is quite focused as a whole, in that you don’t really have to customise the mobile suits or their load-out. You also have access to two weapons from the off, normally a machine gun and a bazooka/beam rifle but this varies from unit to unit. All this makes the controls and combat feel very direct and almost arcade like. The story and voice acting is also good and suitably interesting. All this aside though, this game looks really quite ugly in places. The majority of the cutsenes clearly weren’t done by an animator and the engine itself looks very dated indeed (worse than 0081 did in fact). The terrain especially looks like something from the PS2 era. We’re guessing this is because the budget was small and the content in the game as a whole is pretty massive (as they had to make seven games in one package). Once we’ve played it some more we’ll post our review but in the meantime it plays well but looks pretty disappointing. There are also some new gameplay videos, which we’ve linked below. You can buy the standard edition here.

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