News: Gundam Side Stories Ez8 DLC Released
Following on from the somewhat improved set of DLC for Gundam Side Stories, there's now a new mobile suit out. Specifically that of the mighty RX-79[G]Ez-8 Gundam Ez8...
In the latest issue of Famitsu, Bandai Namco have announced Gundam Battle Operation (pictured above). A free to download online multiplayer PSN title that will very likely offer further paid content (freemium basically). It’s being developed by B.B. Studio, though they’re citing the upcoming Super Robot Wars Z 2 Saisei-hen as a reference. That’s a little odd as it’s far more likely being developed by the team who made Gundam Senki 0081, who are also part of B.B. Studio (plus the early screenshots look like it’s similar tech anyway). Apart from the freemium thing, which inherently concerns us (as many titles that adopt this model are often pretty crappy to play, though Hawken may likely change all that to be fair), we are more worried if Terada gets involved in this. As whenever he ventures outside of SRW he tends to ruin everything, especially when it comes to action games. That aside, the game seems to be set in early Universal Century, judging from the mobile suits on display, and will feature 12 player online matches (6 per side). Apparently, you’ll also be able to exit your mobile suit and walk around on foot too. There will also be a closed beta at the end of March for 10,000 players and the final game is expected in June.
In a rather cool move to celebrate the 30th Anniversary of Macross this year, Bandai Namco will be releasing some new DLC for Ace Combat Assault Horizon with some F-14D’s made up with the livery from Hikaru Ichijoe’s VF-1J and Roy Focker’s VF-1S. What’s especially lovely about this is that the F-14 was in fact the base by which Shoji Kawamori penned the original VF-1 series of variable fighters in the first Macross. So to have F-14D’s made up like this brings a nerdy tear to our eye. Naturally, these jets don’t transform but both will be available (as a set) on March 21st for either 600 yen (PS3) or 400 MSP (360).
Now with the Western release of Armored Core V only a few week’s away, the PR machine has kicked it up a notch. A nice new walkthrough video (shown below) takes you on a whistlestop tour of the game, showing all manner of cool stuff from the customisation to the huge bosses too. Interestingly, the Overed Weapons have been renamed to “Ultimate Weapons” now. Whilst it sorta makes sense, we did like the original term. In any case, both versions of the game will be available on March 20th in the US and March 23rd in the rest of Europe.
The new Gundam Unicorn game has been released today, along with a first set of DLC. The DLC encompasses free and paid content, with various mobile suits and missions. What we’re most happy to see is that Quattro LadyParts is present and correct when it comes to piloting the MSN-001 Delta Gundam. Unfortunately, this version doesn’t have the classic spelling of his name but we’re okay with that. The paid DLC will only cost 500 yen too, which is pretty decent. We will be reviewing this game but considering how long Armored Core V took to reach us the Rapture may have already occurred by the time our copy of Gundam Unicorn ships. If you haven’t done so already, you can also order the game here.
You’ve seen the pictures, and you know the price. So it’s either now or never: threeA’s Metal Gear Rex replica goes on sale in just a few. At 9 am Hong Kong time, to be exact.
Which is 1 am GMT for the rest of the world (for you lazy Americans reading this, that’s 8 pm east coast/5 pm west coast, fyi). And that’s a little less than two hours from the time of this writing.
Unfortunately, at this exact moment as well, threeA’s exclusive online retailer is running somewhat sluggishly. One hopes that everyone interested in nabbing will be able to do so with minimal of technical issues.
As many have been already speculated, the production run for this is assumed to be quite low, so this might be one’s only chance to pick Rex up. Though Tomopop also notes that Sideshow Collectibles will be selling it later down the road.
But who knows if they’re offer free shipping (which makes Bambalandstore asking price of $490 a tad easier to swallow).
Bandai have announced that one of the next Robot Damashii toys will be that of the original XXXG-00W0 Wing Gundam Zero. Whilst we’re not fans of the anime that much really, we do like the designs a fair bit (barring the mecha chicken variant of the Wing Zero in Endless Waltz obviously). This release has been hinted at for a fair while now as well but we’re glad it’s finally going to happen. Released this June for a very reasonable 4,410 yen, the toy even transforms.
After a fair while, Kotobukiya have finally revealed their release plans for the forthcoming Vic Viper LEV kit from Anubis. Coming in at 5,670 yen and released this June, the kit will also come with its own stand. The latter makes a lot of sense as the design itself doesn’t have feet in the traditional sense and it also transforms into the classic Gradius inspired fighter the mecha takes its name from. As with all Kotobukiya kits the detailing and the sculpt look suitably impressive and considering the engineering at work here we’re surprised the price tag wasn’t higher. In any case, if you’re a fan of the design then you can pre-order the kit here.
After a fair bit of ambiguity regarding Armored Core V’s toys, we now finally have some concrete details as to what and when is getting released. Over at From Software’s official site for the game, it’s now clear that the prototype figures we saw will actually be released as part of two separate packs. The first, is the mecha itself with a fairly default weapon loadout. This will cost 5,040 yen and be comprised of ABS, PVC and diecast metal. The second pack is for the Grind Blade overed weapon, which will cost 2,940 yen and only be made of ABS and PVC (bit unfortunate that). Both packs will be available sometime this June, which is quite a way away really.
Considering that the last set of Armored Core toys we got were the pretty horrific Kaiyodo monstrosities for Armored Core 2 and Another Age, the fact Bandai are finally handling this and in their Super Robot Chogokin line no less is making us very happy indeed. The paint job looks to be suitably decent too.
What’s really interesting is that the mecha design for the game was actually partially handled by a group known as BEE-CRAFT. This is comprised of multiple members who have worked at Bandai for years, specifically helping design the various model kits for the Gundam franchise. Of these, Junichi Akutsu is especially notable as he was one of the main mecha designers for the wonderful Gungriffon games too. The latter being ironic as these were originally a direct competitor with Armored Core, so in that sense the mecha design has come full circle at least. The reason BEE-CRAFT’s involvement in Armored Core V is notable is because it means that these toys will likely have been designed by very nerdy professionals. This is something we wholeheartedly approve of.
No word on whether more figures will follow this initial set in June, as it will likely depend on their sales. With any luck these toys will also make it to the West but that will again depend on how well the game does come its March release.
The upcoming Gundam Unicorn PS3 game had some new footage uploaded to its official site recently. Showing the game’s cover system, with the MSN-06S Sinanju positively fraping its opponents followed by the MSN-001 Delta Gundam being pretty superfly. Overall, the combat is looking really quite fascinating still and we really can’t wait to play it for ourselves. Both videos are shown below.
If you missed out on the crazy short run for the last 1/60 scale DX Chogokin YF-29 Durandal then you’ve now got a second chance. Coming in May, the toy will be reissued. Still no word on whether the super pack set will resurface, as that was an online only purchase originally. Considering that the original toy now goes for almost three times the original asking price, this reissue is a good thing. Admittedly, this will still cost 17,850 yen but it’s a very nice toy indeed. The mecha itself was featured towards the latter part of the Macross Frontier movie The Wings of Farewell and was playable in Macross Last Frontier too. We managed to nab one of the original toys, with super pack, at release so we may get around to doing a toy review of it as some point (if people are interested). You’ll be able to pre-order the reissue YF-29 from here.