A new Unreal Engine powered FPS called Hawken has been announced. Whilst no official platforms have been cited, over at the official game’s site the team are keen to release the game on PS3, 360 and PC. The game has been in devlopment for around 9 months already, with a relatively small team. The mecha used are in the similar scale and vein as the Vital Suits in the Lost Planet games, but with a more industrial bent. Interestingly, this will also be yet another digital download title focused around online multiplayer. Visually it all looks suitably sumptuous, but in the trailer below it’s clear the online optimisation still has a way to go.
G4 has a cool breakdown on Double Fine’s upcoming XBLA game Trenched. Whilst there is a very obviously a third person action component, the main setup in the game is actually based around tower defense. For those that played Brütal Legend, there were a fair few RTS nods throughout and it’s well known that Tim Schafer is a fan of the Technosoft classic Herzog Zwei on the Mega Drive. The latter being especially notable as it seamlessly linked a top down shooter with RTS elements way back in 1989, pre-dating the likes of Westwood’s seminal Dune II by a good four years. In many ways, Trenched sounds a bit similar to Herzog Zwei but supplanting the top down view for something more contemporary.
4Gamer has a piece today about Armored Core V’s site re-boot, covering off lots of new ground regarding the operator setup. The epic 7 page Dengeki Online interview with Toshifumi Nabeshima we mentioned previously actually ties in with a lot of this new information thankfully. Specifically, operators are indeed separate from the mecha control entirely. Seeing the battlefield in map form and coordinating their team-mates. Information is actually imparted via the AC’s on the ground to the operator, so the team have to do recon basically. This was done to allow less functionally skilled, though strategically adept, players to help their team. In addition, parts and AC type balancing have been purposefully skewed to make sure that there are complimentary configs in a match. Meaning that certain configs will sympathetically outmatch one another, forcing players to work more in a team in most situations. This means that skilled players will have a harder time if they decide to go up against an AC that’s their config nemesis so to speak. Player skill is still hugely important though and apparently older players will still be able to transfer their skillset over to how ACV works. The reasoning behind this design choice was to emphasise team work in taking and holding onto territories. Despite all this Nabeshima was confident that players can still play the game in a singleplayer way (despite still being online). All in all, this is sounding more and more like ACV is going down the Monster Hunter / Lost Planet 2 route. The 4Gamer piece also has some lovely new mecha design artwork, which is suitably industrial.
The past few days has had the likes of Jamzy at Famitsu hinting at a live demo for Armored Core V, but now it seems that this is true and on March 12th Toshifumi Nabeshima and crew will descend on Akihabara to do a live demo of the game. Specifically at Belle Salle between 4pm and 6pm and attendees will be given an Armored Core V sticker for their troubles (admission to the event is also free). Unfortunately, punters won’t get to play the game but they will be able to watch. Due to Famitsu being somewhat conscientious, they will also be streaming the event. With any luck there will be an uploaded version of the demo to follow shortly after it goes live. This also ties in neatly with a pretty epic 7 page interview with Nabeshima over at Dengeki Online (something we will be summarising in a day or two).
GameSetWatch has found a new trailer for the upcoming Bangai-O HD Missile Fury flaunting the brand new co-op setup. Whilst trying to keep track of one player is pretty challenging, having two missile spewing mecha will make the game even more of a veritable cluster fuck. That said, we’re still buying this on launch. Treasure are also touting the fact the game will have over 100 playable levels, a level editor and leader-boards. The game will be released sometime this Spring.
Famitsu has a new piece today about the territory defense setup in Armored Core V. Due to the game being permanently online, the player has to setup their base with a selection of territorial defenses (in the form of beefy cannons). It’s nice to see that something that was mentioned in passing around the game’s announcement is actually a pretty cogent concept (as the above screenshot indicates). In addition, the piece also briefly talks about and shows how the operator view works in the game. As it allows players to see the whole battlefield play out in real time. Apparently, you’ll be able to place markers down on the map that other players can see and coupled with voice communications will enable the team to react to enemy threats. Still no word on a release date, though Famitsu thinks it’s still sometime this year.
It turns out Double Fine’s next digital download title will feature suitably retro mecha (circa WWI). Entitled Trenched it looks to be a cool little action game to boot. What most struck us though, was how reminiscent the mecha design were to Konami’s PS2 classic Ring of Red. In addition, what with From Software’s take on a new retro styled Steel Battalion, it seems WWI mecha are all the rage this year. Whilst no word on a specific released date as yet,it does seem to be an XBLA exclusive (unlike the two prior Double Fine digital download games; Costume Quest and Stacking). The announcement trailer is below.
A few days ago, a new online questionnaire popped up on the official Virtual On Force site. Something similar happened shortly after the XBLA release of Oratan 5.66 as well, to which we ended up with this new port of Force (so SEGA do clearly listen to what the fans want when it comes to Virtual On). However, as the questionnaire is all in Japanese some studious individuals have been good enough to do a translation of it. The main point that I think everyone is rooting for is question 3-4; “would you like a new Virtual On?”. Our answer is an emphatic “yes”. Thanks to the peeps at Oratan.com and Schooly D for the heads up, there’s even a forum post all about the questionnaire too. There’s also a thanks page for doing the questionnaire that has some sweet wallpapers.
Courtesy of our good friends at HobbyLink Japan, we’ve been sent the Robot Damashii L-Gaim Mk. 2 toy from Heavy Metal L-Gaim. To help give the toy some context we’ve also included some videos of it from the original anime and a few games it has been featured in over the years at the end of the review.
On the 23rd of February, another mobile suit will be added to Gundam Musou 3 in the form of another DLC pack. That of the beefy GN-008 Seravee Gundam and its more lithe internal counterpart the GN-009 Seraphim Gundam, from the second season of Gundam 00. The Seravee and Seraphim were also the upgraded versions of the GN-005 Gundam Virtue and GN-004 Gundam Nadleeh respectively. 4Gamer has some good shots of each of the mecha too. In terms of pricing, the DLC will cost 600 yen (PS3) and 480 MSP (360) and will also feature an additional mission. As has been said though, the fact that each of these have been released as separate DLC packs is a bit cheeky really. Hopefully, the Western release will conglomerate the DLC a bit better.