News: Gundam Side Stories DLC Update
Over the last two weeks, a large number of new Gundam Side Stories DLC has been released by Bandai Namco. Last week saw the release of the RGM-79N GM Custom and RGC-83...
Toys: DX Chogokin YF-30 Review
For those that are interested, we've recently reviewed the DX Chogokin YF-30 Chronos from the PS3 game Macross 30 over at HobbyLink.tv (in addition to a small unboxing...
The ever popular Gundam arcade game with a panoramic cockpit, Senjou no Kizuna, will be receiving yet another update soon (Rev 2.51 to be exact). Over at GameWatch they show some interesting shots of the game, especially as mecha from Gundam 0083 are making much more of a prominent appearance now. From the beefy YMS-16M Xamel to the sprightly RGM-79C Powered GM. Though the more curious additions, as shown on the official site, are that of the RGM-79FC Striker Custom (which despite appearances is actually a GM) and the MS-08TX/N Efreet Nacht from Gundam Senki 0081. Both these units seem to have a very clear melee focus too, so that should help mix things up with the addition of something like artillery focused Xamel for instance. In any case, it’s nice to see that the game is still being supported considering it is now five years old.
The upcoming G.Rev shooter Seisou Kouki Strania will be present at this year’s AOU show, which to the more astute of you will raise an eyebrow hopefully (in our case, this has the unfortunate result of losing our monocle to boot). The reason this is interesting is that Strania was announced originally as an XBLA only title, however according to this post at 4Gamer it will now also be released via the NESICAxLive system (basically a digital download setup for arcades). This is a fascinating development as it means a new XBLA game will also be available alongside its arcade variant at the same time of its release. Historically ports of arcade games occur after the arcade version, whereas this is a curiously simultaneous release. As for the XBLA version, well that’s still on track for a spring release for the princely sum of 800 MSP.
In an update scheduled for the 27th January, the shiny gold MRC-F20 SUMO will be added to Gundam Extreme Versus. The Sumo, like with many of the Turn A Gundam designs, was penned by renowned futurist Syd Mead. The Sumo is normally of a silver colouring though but the gold variant was exclusively reserved for the somewhat awesome Harry Ord. Both the gold colouring and Ord’s awesome shades were a partial nod to Char’s appearance in Zeta Gundam and his piloting of the MSN-00100 Hyaku Shiki. There’s been no word on a console release for the game as yet but it’s still looking oh so shiny.
It goes without saying that pachinko machines in Japan are quite the curiosity. Never-mind the bizarre legal waters that they tread; it’s how hard they try to dazzle one’s senses that’s most amusing. It’s not easy, asking someone to waste away his or her hard earned cash, not on some kick-ass fighter or shooter, but on a game of chance that involves watching little silver balls that rain down. With the goal being to earn even more little silver balls, to then be cashed out for silly prizes that can be exchanged for money by some shifty Yakuza around the corner from the pachinko parlor. One proven tactic has been to tap into popular film, television programs, and anime (naturally); many machines are undeniably amusing, but hardly anything to write home about. Except for Fever Macross…
The next episode of Gundam Unicorn is around the corner, with its PlayStation Network airing occurring in early March (again in advance of the DVD and Blu Ray release in April). The episode is called “Laplace no Boumei” (or the “Ghost of Laplace”) and features a new song by Chemistry called “merry-go-round”. The promo video is shown below and for those that have been fans of the NZ-666 Kshatriya then you may want to avert your eyes.
To mark the release of Break Blade’s fifth “movie” on the 22nd January, Border Break Airburst will allow players to use costumes from the anime via their BB.net service (as shown above). Break Blade is an interesting anime, formerly based upon a manga, as it sets the narrative in what appears to be a pseudo-medieval past where people are able to control quartz with their minds. The main protagonist, that of Rygart Arrow, is the only one that doesn’t have this ability and is thus able to control an ancient and mysterious mecha. The anime also has involvement with one Takayuki Yanase, who has a long and illustrious mecha design career in gaming. From Murakumo to Metal Gear Solid 4, not to mention SRW W and ACE 3, he does get around.
As with all Border Break related news though, we’re still much like a cat pawing at a fluffy ball of wool behind a glass screen. After tasting the mechanical nectar not that long ago, we need our fix again basically. Considering how much of a money spinner the arcade game is for Sega though, we’re becoming less hopeful for a console port. To make up for this sad state of affairs, we’ve linked the Break Blade opening (in HD) below. The opening song is called “Fate”, as written and sung by the hugely talented KOKIA.
4Gamer has the scoop on a new playable addition to Gundam Extreme Versus. That of the blade wielding GN-001 Gundam Exia from the first season of Gundam 00. In addition, the Exia can be encountered on one of the EX stages as an enemy in the game (specifically 3-A EX). As well as the inclusion of the Exia, there’s also a new boss mobile suit design in the game now. Specifically, a mode of the Extreme Gundam called the Tachyon Phase, designed again by Kunio Okawara. We think it looks pretty sweet. As always, still no word on the obvious PS3 release but the game is looking pretty damn amazing, hopefully we’ll know more in the New Year.
Game Watch has some nice coverage of a recent update (Rev 2.50) that occurred on December 16th to the glorious Senjou no Kizuna arcade game. Specifically on the inclusion of Torrington Base from Gundam 0083 (video shown below). What’s especially nice is that the map has the Albion as the Feddie base, with a Zanzibar II on the other side obviously (for the Zekes). As always, it’s pretty cool that the game is still getting supported with content (even after 4 years).
Back in 1995, SEGA were pretty much surfing the crest of success when it came to arcade games. With hardware that antiquated its competitors, the then new Model 2 boards were host to a slew of very impressive games. However, one game in particular wasn’t intended to be just eye candy. A small team at AM3 had ambitions for something more functionally complex and involved. To the extent they wanted to distill the core of real robot mecha combat and make that accessible to gamers at large.
The game they birthed was Virtual On and it was a milestone in many ways, from the use of a twinstick control setup to the innovative dashing focused combat. There are few games in the mecha pantheon that have defined so many that have followed in their wake. Even less that have influenced games outside of the mecha genre, to the point of distilling functional elements that many gamers now take for granted. Virtual On was and still remains to this day a very important game as without it many subsequent mecha games simply wouldn’t exist.