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...
Gamespot has managed to land a very interesting interview with the father of Armored Core and producer of Armored Core V, Toshifumi Nabeshima. In addition, there are a slew of new screenshots available too alongside the interview. The full interview is shown below and it’s even dubbed in English. Enjoy!
In the latest issue of Famitsu more details about Armored Core 5 have surfaced. From the news that Bandai Namco will be publishing this worldwide to the increased focus on online multiplayer, it seems that From Software have been quite busy. Regarding online play, the game will be based around players forming teams and undertaking a form of territorial conquest, with whoever taking the most territory winning. Teams are of 5 players a piece, with 4 in traditional Armored Cores and the fifth in a new command unit. If all this sounds familiar, then you’re not alone. This setup was used very successfully in From Software’s other mecha game Chrome Hounds. With the reduced size of the mecha the levels consequently require more strategy too, which is where the whole commander setup comes in. For those concerned about the absence of a singleplayer segment, there will be an option for this but the main online campaign is intended to be an almost meta-campaign. Again, this is a follow on from the Neroimus War concept seen in Chrome Hounds. What with this new information regarding the online setup, as well as the previous nods by From Software to games like Metal Wolf Chaos, it really seems as though they are cherry picking design elements from their previous games and merging them with how Armored Core used to traditionally work. All of this is clearly brilliant and Armored Core 5 could turn out to be something genuinely special. The game is set for a 2011 release in Japan but no actual dates as yet.
Update: Famitsu now has some screenshots on their site. These show the commander view as well a front end war menu, so it is indeed very Chrome Hounds (as we suspected). Bandai Namco have also mentioned the fact that Armored Core 5 will be released in 2012 for Europe and America (rather than this year as was previously stated).
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.
Back in the fall of 2009, TimeGate Studios released Section 8. A fairly robust, though nearly totally ignored, multiplayer shooter title for the Xbox 360, PC, and later the PS3. Although the game suffered from poor controls, it remained popular with those who had discovered this gem.
The game itself featured power armor clad soldiers, a variety of vehicles, weapons, custom load outs and even larger powered armor akin to Gasaraki’s Tactical Armors.
Although Section 8 was passed over by many. TimeGate, being an independent studio saw fit to make a sequel. Bigger. Better. Cheaper. Section 8: Prejudice seeks to correct many of the design flaws of its predecessor. The game will feature much of the same core game elements as the last and then some, as well as an all new single player campaign.
One feature that seems to be getting a little more focus is the heavier mecha you can purchase through play. Playing similar to some sort of Halo: Reach/Planetside mash up, Section 8: Prejudice promises to be a fun, engaging sci-fi shooter. Prejudice is set to come out early this year at a very affordable 14.99 (USD).
4Gamer is showing that the next DLC pack for Gundam Musou 3, that’s released tomorrow, will feature the NZ-666 Kshatriya from Gundam Unicorn. This suit is a successor of sorts to the NZ-000 Quin Mantha and the ORX-013 Gundam Mark V (with the latter forming the basis for the AMX-014 Doven-Wolf). However, much like with many of the ill-fated designs in Gundam ZZ, the Neo Zeon mantra of “more power” rarely seems to work out for them, as the lighter and nimbler mobile suits often take them to the cleaners. As with many of the Unicorn mecha, there is a strong ZZ connection though. Especially as the pilot of the Kshatriya, Marida Cruz, is actually a grown up clone of Elpeo Puru. The DLC pack will cost 600 yen (PS3) and 480 MSP (360) respectively .
Not that long after the release of Oratan in the arcades, rumours of a four player version surfaced. Considering the breakneck speed at which Oratan operated, a four player version sounded suitably insane. However, it wasn’t long until a new Virtual On game graced Japanese arcades running on the then somewhat notorious Hikaru board and sporting the rumoured four player setup. Titled Virtual On Force, with a massive “4″ in its logo to denote to the less astute that there were more than two players now, the game was to be the last of the Virtual On arcade lineage.
There is good reason for this finale though and much of it was, and still is, attributable to the decision to make the game accommodate two extra players. Many thought that the red-headed stepchild of the Virtual On series would never see a home release, especially after the pretty catastrophic Virtual On Marz, yet in commemorating the 15th Anniversary of the series we seem to be faced with a painstakingly faithful port of the game.
For years OverClocked Remix, perhaps the most widely recognized fan-based community of game music remixers, has been releasing special collections (albums as they refer to them) that pay homage to a specific game. For the most part, the choice of subject matter has been on a bit of a safe side: Sonic, Castlevania, Final Fantasy, and the like. Hence why their most recent release, which is centered around Armored Core, is particularly noteworthy.
4Gamer once again delivers the goods, this time with an announcement of some interesting DLC for Gundam Musou 3, including a mission consisting solely of Acguys. The lowly mass-produced aquatic unit from the original Mobile Suit Gundam has developed a cult following of sorts over the years, mostly due to its bizarrely incongruous cuteness. Most people – the lucky ones -gloss over the unit on first impression, but eventually you start to see the big ol’ teddy bear underneath that gigantic undersea Zeonic death machine, and nothing ever looks the same again. Welcome to the cult of Acguy.
Bandai, never one to ignore their fanbase, have a very special version of the Acguy in the new Gunpla Builders line, although I dare say that they are playing with fire. You can’t try to modify a cosmic horror/cuteness like the Acguy without putting your very soul into peril. Whatever vein of madness Kunio Okawara struck upon should remain forever undisturbed.
And on the opposite side of the cute/awesome spectrum: there’s also a stage featuring the Einerad support unit from Victory Gundam, because nothing says ‘manly’ like taking your giant bug-eyed robot and putting it inside a giant racing tire, complete with giant guns on the top. It’s a damn shame that Victory Gundam was produced as a cartoon series and not as a heavy metal concept album, because a picture of this as the cover art would have made it go triple platinum. People say that Victory Gundam can be the most depressing Gundam series, but if you think about it, it’s really just the most metal.
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.
4Gamer has a piece on the recent interview with Juro Watari where, apart from drinking beer, he does talk about various aspects regarding the series’ history. Notable points are further information as to why Hajime Katoki was chosen to design the mecha, as V Gundam was also airing around that time, to the almost perennial question about an all new Virtual On game.
Unsurprisingly, Watari is pretty cagey in terms of information for a new game but tries his best to say some positive (though non-committal) things. There have been rumours that G.rev are working on a new Virtual On game, which would make sense as their Senko no Ronde games are very similar in some ways, but Watari has yet to confirm or deny this. The fact that Watari didn’t outright deny the fact a game is in development is reassuring anyway.
It’s also no big secret that post the arcade version of Force, there were at least two attempts to do a new game (once on NAOMI 2 and another on Lindbergh). In many ways Border Break, and the Ring Edge board, were a result of this unnamed sequel’s pre-production. Either way, what with the recently released port of Force and the massive success of the Oratan 5.66 port there’s reason to be hopeful that we might get a new game.
In any case, the piece also has a rather cool gallery of fan collected Virtual On memorabilia too.