Toys: Arcadia YF-19 Breakdown
Over at AmiAmi they have a stupidly lovely breakdown of the upcoming Arcadia 1/60 YF-19 toy set for release in April of next year. As always we're taken aback by the quality...
Here’s a new trailer for the forthcoming Hawken and it, looks at least, pretty big budget. If one of the chaps appears familiar, that’s because you’ve probably seen him before in X-Men: First Class (specifically that of Edi Gathegi who played Darwin, also pictured above). The trailer does merge what appears to be game meshes into a live action-ish context, which is also pretty sweet. Anyway, it’s clear that this will have a pretty big marketing push the closer we get to the December release.
Over at 4Gamer there’s a new update for Mobile Suit Gundam Online regarding the third Alpha test. With a variety of new features, from a map of New York (shown below) as well as a new mobile suit that of the RGM-79F Land Combat Type GM. The latter is an interesting choice as it’s from M-MSV, the same line of designs that were used in Gundam Senki 0081. The game isn’t exactly a looker but it seems to be garnering quite a following already.
The forthcoming Mobile Suit Gundam Online is now in the throes of its third alpha test. The biggest changes they’ve made to the game are its graphical engine as well as how they’re handling battleships. For those that have managed to sign up for the alpha test, players will also be rewarded with a special wallpaper penned by Naochika Morishita. Still no word on a final release date or how much it will cost as yet.
Despite our double-take on the whole weird marketing for Hawken, the playthrough of the game now has us a bit more excited. Especially as the customisation options look to be pretty cogent. If that didn’t pretty squarely make Hawken a mecha game, then behold its own controller (shown above). Dubbed the slightly tragic “Mek-Fu”, the controller is actually a fully customisable USB device. So even after Hawken has been and gone you’ll still be able to use it quite happily on other games. Considering MechWarrior Online’s Artemis controller, this looks a lot more like the classic Steel Battalion setup we loved and adored. However, the price tag may end up being considerably more than the Steel Battalion one and that even included the game. Though at least you’ll be able to use it on other games, something the Steel Battalion controller wasn’t really able to do. If you want to see the playthrough we’ve linked it below.
The folks behind many fine gaming mice, keyboards and other products are cooking up a treat for MechWarrior Online. Razer’s still in development controller, named Artemis, was shown off at this past E3. You can see some pictures here.
As it is still in development, what you see here is likely to change somewhat from now to release. Though what we have now is quite lovely, if I don’t say so myself. From left to right we see a 12 key console with sliding throttle, a centre section featuring an 8 inch monitor to be used in conjunction with the game’s main screen, and finally an adjustable flight stick featuring force-feedback. The unit will also feature fully programmable button combinations (macros). For example; you would be able to bind one key of the 12 to fire a volley a missiles, followed by a barrage of laser fire, topped off with a peppering of autocannons.
We might also point out that this is the first time since the original Steel Battalion, that a mecha game has had a similarly complex controller of its very own (the recent HORI TwinSticks are pretty simple by comparison). We’re quite excited indeed and cannot wait to get our hands on this beauty.
As this year’s bizarre clusterfuck that is E3, there’s now finally some (supposedly) in-game footage of Lost Planet 3 in a pretty slick trailer (plus some nice screenshots). Despite the somewhat desperate attempts to emulate a Hollywood film, the whole setup does show the fact we have another middle of the road Unreal powered game on our hands. This is not to say that Unreal is a bad toolset, far from it, but that publishers tend to force developers to play safe and opt for functionally very standardised design. Though in this instance it feels more like Spark are leading Capcom down the garden path due to their lack of inspiration. Considering this developer’s pretty crappy portfolio up to this point and the fact we’re getting a Red Faction: Armageddon vibe from this, we’re expecting something functionally very safe but also deeply lacklustre. Thank fuckity there’s E.X. Troopers on the way. The full trailer is available for your viewing pleasure below.
What with this year’s E3 almost upon us and that means trailers. Hawken is no exception, as it’s clear their new marketing budget has been blown on a swanky live action trailer (shown below). PR crap aside, the last gameplay trailer (circa this year’s PAX) is looking pretty good. Though there’s still a crazy amount of v-sync issues going on, what the deuce is up with that? Functionally we’re still on the fence with Hawken though, whilst it does look pretty none of the gameplay we’ve seen or heard about has us really excited yet. Only time will tell and we’ll all know if the game is any good come the end of the year.
The recent alpha test for Mobile Suit Gundam Online has been given a full on report, coupled with a pretty interesting in-game video. In short, the game plays like a standard TPS, with WASD and mouse control (something you can pretty much deduce from the video below). Whilst it does look a bit dated what the game is doing technically is no mean feat; as it handles over a hundred online players per match. Our only real concern is the strange and rather excessive use of motion blur, hopefully that will get toned down at some point. Still no news on a release date for this but it’s expected sometime this year.
The second alpha test for Mobile Suit Gundam Online is now underway. With 5,000 or so testers the game now has a few more interesting features to boot. From the use of strategic weapons, such as nukes (that knowingly breach the Antarctic Treaty), to reinforcements in the form of battelships. They’ve also confirmed that if the number of players falls below the maximum amount that bots will make up the difference. What’s still the most compelling thing about all this though is that the game can have over a hundred players squaring off in one battlefield and sagely they’ve not opted for a photo realistic art-style either, so most people can run this on a semi-decent PC. It will be interesting to see how this does once it’s finally released to the public and it goes without saying that a Steam version would be totally sweet (as well as wholly unlikely).
Released in 1989 to little fanfare, Herzog Zwei, an action/strategy hybrid, was one of the most influential titles in video game history despite remaining relatively unknown to this day. Its major innovation was strategic gameplay in real time, with bases creating units that would be carried by your commander mecha’s fighter form into battle. This real-time aspect, the management of resources, and construction of units would inspire what is generally considered the first Real Time Strategy game, Dune 2, which would inspire Command & Conquer, which would in turn inspire Warcraft. Despite helping launch an entire genre, Herzog Zwei has unfortunately never received the modern update it so rightly deserved, other than an indie spiritual successor in Cyber Wing and a stealth homage by way of the brutally underrated Brütal Legend.
Thankfully, Carbon Games is bringing Herzog Zwei to the 21st century with a freemium game called AirMech. While still in alpha, and currently only playable in the form of an add-on for the Google Chrome browser, the game already has all the charm of the original and then some. Many were put off by Herzog Zwei’s almost impenetrable game mechanics, but the short tutorial and simple controls of Airmech allow you to get right into the action. Thankfully, this doesn’t mean the game has been dumbed down; it remains the same hectic mecha shmup crossed with the grand tradition of screwing your friends with a lightning raid of tanks right outside their headquarters.