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About
Thanks kindly for paying my blog a visit.

I'm currently looking for paid writing gigs, so if you might want anything written shoot me a message (craighats at hotmail dot com).

In case the contents of this blog don't make it obvious enough, I have something of an affinity for slightly "offbeat" titles, so if there's something out there that few others cover, there's a fair chance I'm at least somewhat up on it.

If there's any sort of (reasonable) inquiry you'd like me to address, please don't hesitate to be in touch.

Below are a handful of recaps and other links (oldest listed first by section), in case you're interested - asterisks mark promoted articles.

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'Magnet School

Introduction

Curriculum: Puzzle Games

Course 1: Ochige 101
Course 2: Tossology
Course 3: Ochige 201
Course 4: Phys. Ed
Course 5: Ochige 301 (Adv.)
Course 6: Free Elective
Course 7: Ochige 401 (Hon.)
Course 8: Extra Credit
Graduation Speech

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Reviews/Impressions/Rants/etc.

King of Fighters: Orochi Saga
Ar Tonelico II - Part 1 and Part 2
Prinny and Street Fighter IV
King of Fighters '98 Ultimate Match
Nintendo DS
*King of Fighters XII
How-To: Atelier Annie
How-To: Mushihime-sama Futari

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The Forgotten Essentials

Part 1: RPGs
Part 2: Shmups
Part 3: Fighters
Part 4: Puzzlers

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The Obscurer Tribune

EXTRA! EXTRA!

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Monthly Musings/Writers Wanted

The Fear: The End
*A Time to Destroy: I Cast Thee Out
*Expanded Universes: Triple Triad X
*Those About to Die: Nocturne's Demons
*Untapped Potential: The Second Dimension
*I Suck at Games: and I'm Here to Help
*The Forgotten: Real Life
*Love/Hate: The Weirdo, The Wall, and The Beast
*The Future: A Refreshing Cup of Hemlock
*More Than Just Noise: Digital Cheese LIVE
East vs. West: Where The Old Gods Dwell
Resolutions: Fresh Flowers
Collaboration: IF Only...
Violence: The Gatekeepers

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Assorted Ramblings

Why Am I Here? (intro)
Non-Portable Portable Gaming
Hating the Unhateable
*Soul Bubbles, Mickey Mouse, Journey of the Self
Dreamcast: The Other Shmup Machine
One-Year Anniversary Reflections
Shmups: Gaming's EOE

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Non-DT Writing

Racketboy

Saturn Shooter Rundown
PS1 Shooter Rundown
PS2 Shooter Rundown
Shmups 101
Shmups That Defined the Genre
"Hidden Gem" Shmups

HG101

Deathsmiles
Espgaluda
Shadow Hearts

Misc.

Unofficial Shmup Glossary (shmups.com, WIP)
My Backloggery (Warning: Inherent Shamefulness May Be Too Intense for Some Readers)
Player Profile
Follow me:
BulletMagnet's sites
Badges
Following (28)  




Okay, so since I actually got around to posting something other than The Obscurer Tribune, and have in the process eliminated the need to offer hints about what I’m up to in the Tribune, there is officially no more reason whatsoever for anyone to pretend to care about said Tribune. These aren’t the offbeat gaming news items you’re looking for…move along!

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Just in case you haven’t heard enough from yours truly about DeathSmiles (oh, that reminds me : BUY THIS GAME), here’s a writeup about it from Siliconera.

Remember when news broke that a mysterious listing for “Otomedius Excellent” had appeared in Gamestop’s computers, and it was assumed that Konami would finally be bringing Otomedius Gorgeous to the West under a different name, several years late? Well, thanks to these two scans from Famitsu, the plot has thickened – it looks like Excellent is more of a sequel than anything else, with a bunch of new stuff added in, and Japan will be getting it too. Hopefully impressions of it will be better than those of its predecessor. The online version of the article is here, and the game’s newly-launched official site is here. By the way, here is Gamestop’s listing for Excellent, though it won’t show up in a search for some reason.

This press release from Sony indicates that the new release date for the PSN version of Gundemonium Collection is June 15th – you’ll be able to pick up the whole collection for 15 bucks or each game individually for 6 apiece. The disc-based PC edition, for its part, is already out, if that’s the one you were looking to pick up – the collection’s official site can be visited here. (DToid coverage here.)

Looks like the rumors were true – Space Invaders: Infinity Gene is on the way to PSN and XBLA. No further details at this point, but I’m sure they won’t be slow in coming. A trailer can be watched over here. (DToid coverage here.)

A Senko no Ronde DUO tournament was recently held in Akihabara – a video of the championship match can be seen here, and some other duels can be found in the sidebar there.

One of our shmup forum denizens recently conducted an interview session with the shooter mavens at Cave, and the resulting article can be read online – go here to either read the latest issue in your browser or download it as a PDF (the interview is on page 32). Among other things, Cave hints at a third iPhone shmup port (Mushihime-sama Futari will likely be their second, as reported in a previous Tribune) being in the works…

You don’t see too many shooters (or anything else, really) with “trackball” controls these days, but thanks to the wacky gizmos they tack on to mobile devices, anything is possible – one example is Sky Force Reloaded, which was originally released for cell phones utilizing traditional button controls, but just came out for the Android, and uses a trackball. A visitor to the shmups.com forum put up a review and a few videos over here if you want a look.

The latest “twin-stick” shooter to be announced is HOARD for the PSN – unlike most such games, though, here you play as a medieval-style dragon causing chaos around the local kingdom. If it’s executed well it might be worth a look for fans of the source material.

Anyone out there remember TechnoSoft, the company behind the Thunder Force games, among others? They’ve been pretty much dormant for some time now, but recently a shop appeared where their official site used to be, and a handful of stuff (soundtracks, mostly) is available to Japanese customers. Supposedly there’s even a spot to upload high scores for a couple of games, including the incredibly obscure pinball title Kyutenkai – could a semi-resurgence for the company be on the way? Stay tuned…




I wonder how many Marvel vs. Capcom 3 trailers we’ll end up seeing between now and the game’s release…anyways, here’s the latest one. Most of it is recycled from the previous video, but it does include a bit of Dante and Deadpool squaring off.

Now here’s one I don’t think ANYone saw coming – a few readers might remember Chaos Breaker, a 2-D weapons-based fighter from between five and ten years ago. Believe it or not, it’s being brought to the Japanese PSN this summer – I doubt it’ll happen, but it’d certainly make a colorful addition to the roster on this side of the planet.

The rumor mill just keep on’ a-churnin’ stuff out – apparently talk of an upcoming Tekken vs. Street Fighter is making the rounds (y’know, since Capcom’s not busy with any other high-profile crossover fighters at the moment, and of course has never had opportunity to learn that fans get burned out when a brand is over-extended). Shorter version: CONFIRMED!!!!11 Next door in rumorville, Dead or Alive 5 is said to be appearing at E3…at least we won’t have to wait long to confirm or discredit that one.

In ACTUAL Street Fighter news, Zangief is coming soon to the iPhone version of the game as a free downloadable character. Now you can finally enjoy rendered chest hair on the go!

A trailer appeared this week for a Mortal Kombatsomething. There was some confusion as to what exactly this video was for (since it never bothers to tell you), but as is explained here, here and here, it’s actually a pitch for a (presumably R-rated) movie. (DToid coverage here and here. A handful of c-blog thoughts here.)

That said, there actually is a new MK game in the works, which will return to the series’ original 2D mechanics and include features such as a “tag-team” mode. The trailer seen here suggests that the blood flow will be toned down some during matches (i.e. just punching someone doesn’t splatter stuff everywhere), but stuff that might actually make a mess (i.e Fatalities) will apparently be nastier than ever. (DToid coverage here and here.)

Remember Twinkle Queen, the Wii fighter being developed by Raidrgy developer Milestone, which borrows its characters from eroge titles? Well, here are some screens of it.

Neither beat-em-ups nor comic books are exactly my forte, but I’m sure that at least one of my readers would kill me if I didn’t link to this preview of the Scott Pilgrim game, so there it is. (DToid coverage here.)

Updates! Get yer fresh, piping updates for nilcam’s PS3 “Fight Club” Tourney! Get ‘em while they’re hot!

Or, if you’re in the mood for something a little more face-to-face, DToid San Francisco is holding a Super Street Fighter IV tournament of its own in San Rafael on Sunday – if you can’t get there yourself, there’s a link to a livestream of the event just for watching.

matty125 links to an interview with Daisuke Ishiwatari (aka “the guy who invented Guilty Gear”) and Toshimichi Mori (a designer at Arc System Works), placing focus on a part where the former talks about wanting to “officially” conclude Guilty Gear at some point – heaven only knows what sort of wacky stuff might come of such an effort.

Not specifically fighting game-related, but Novakaine posted a blog about Junichi Nakatsuru, a composer for Namco who’s done a bunch of work on the Soul Calibur series. He also includes several samples, so I thought it was worth sharing.

See Solgrim. See a Super Street Fighter IV review in EGM. See Solgrim rant about part of said review. Then See Solgrim Gush about the XBLA version of NeoGeo Battle Coliseum – be sure to check out the video he embedded there.

The tone of this week’s Sundays With Sagat starts off stupid, but once things calm down a bit the big guy makes some good points – I rather wish they’d just do away with all the shouting and swearing altogether, I think it distracts from the true items of interest here. Then again, I suppose a randomly-inserted f-bomb is the only way to get most readers’ attentions on subject matter like this…

In terms of videos that take stupid further, Mediated Mortal Kombat is old, but I just found it recently, so I figured I’d link to it in case anyone else was in the same boat.




NISA hasn’t confirmed an exact Western release date for Atelier Rorona yet, but Gamefly is listing it for September 30th – if past experience is any indication, it’s probably at least somewhere in the ballpark.

Neptune just keeps sounding more and more interesting – as this trailer reveals, yes, you CAN summon classic Sega characters into battle for special attacks. That’s not all, though – you can also import any image from your PS3’s photo album and customize that into its own similar move, meaning that you can potentially make pretty much ANYone a cameo in here. I sure hope the core game is solid, as the concept hooks me deeper and deeper every time I learn something new about it.

While Trine 2 is what grabbed most players’ attentions once Atlus’ E3 list was revealed, what caught my eye was the PSP version of Knights in the Nightmare – looks like the West getting it too. If you (like me) have been wondering how the game might work without a stylus, it looks like we’ll have a chance to find out. (DToid coverage here.)

A brand-new strategy-RPG is coming from NIS, but they’re only publishing it – new company Apollosoft is placing Blue Roses: The Fairy and the Blue-Eyed Warriors into their intermittently-capable hands. Check the link for a brief trailer and a guide to the game’s official site.

Parasite Eve fans, rejoice – it’s been confirmed not only that The 3rd Birthday will be coming to the USA (at some point), but that the game will be making an appearance at E3. In case you weren’t planning on following the coverage too closely before, here’s your excuse to relent!

Looks like someone out there bought enough suggestive sausage to prompt Idea Factory to make Record of Agarest War 2, which should be out in Japan sometime in the fall. Obviously any news of potential localization is still a ways off, but Japan will be getting a Limited Edition – check out a short trailer showing some in-battle footage.

Did you know that there are no fewer than six composers on the roster for Xenoblade? I didn’t ‘til I read this – check it out for an account of how the game’s director managed to put all of these different musical approaches together into one unified 90-song soundtrack (related DToid coverage here). Also, remember the ad for the game which put the image of a girl from an idol group into a weird mech outfit? Well, there’s another commercial out there featuring her in a slightly more normal-looking getup (DToid coverage here). Finally, if you visit the “Characters” section on the game’s official site, everyone’s profile is open now (credit to Mognet Central for the tip).

If any of the dungeon crawler fans out there were intrigued by the appearance of Class of Heroes 2G on the PS3, more of the same is on the way – in similar fashion, Class of Heroes 3 will be released for the PSP and PS3 simultaneously, so no matter which Sony console you own, you’ll never be far from a harrowing labyrinth of doom again! In related news, in case you missed it Etrian Odyssey III will be showing at E3, as indicated in the earlier listing on Atlus’ featured games there.

The voting for which Trinity Universe Giclee print to make was apparently pretty close, so NIS decided to whip up a batch of both the winner and the runner-up – you can pre-order either of them (and marvel at how much money you just spent) via the appropriate link.

I probably didn’t need to tell any of you that this week’s episode of Bit Transmission has a Shin Megami Tensei theme to it, but for the sake of completeness there’s your link – even if you don’t actually listen to the podcast you still need to check out the stars standing in a row on Igor’s nose. Oh, and they also talk about Nocturne for a bit. Agent North also offers us a preview of Persona 3 Portable, and mocks us via the Junpei Hat that he has and we don’t. Speaking of SMT, HawkeyedOne writes a c-blog about an experience with one of the older games in the series which greatly amused him.

W-what’s this? A Shining Wind figure which HASN’T been squeezed into a less-than practical swimsuit? It still ain’t exactly empowerment, but I think that Xecty here will take it, regardless. In Persona figure-related news, not only do we have a custom Chie, but OMG is right – some of the characters from Persona 3 and Persona 4 are getting cute-n-stumpy keychains!




It’s a ways late, but so was the game’s localization, and THAT was certainly worth checking out – anyways, be sure to read unang’s review of Sakura Wars: So Long My Love!

Just in case Twisted Pixel fans didn’t have enough reason to get excited about Comic Jumper as it is, it’s been revealed that the game will come packaged with two bonus levels for ‘Splosion Man (which, by the way, will be on sale next week) too! More media has also surfaced for the game – visit this location for a new trailer as well as footage of the “Silver Age” level (and the requisite Censors Galore!). (DToid coverage here.)

Siliconera gets ahold of NISA’s marketing coordinator and script editor, and makes them answer some questions about Disgaea Infinite from readers of that site (well, maybe “make them” gives the wrong impression, I think it was slightly more friendly than that).

Here’s another trailer for ilomilo, the Swedish-developed puzzle-platformer where you need to switch between two characters to guide them to each other, a bit like The Adventures of Cookie and Cream or The Lost Vikings. Anyway, the video also offers a quick peek at a mini-game that hasn’t been seen before, so give it a watch. (C-blog item here.

I’m not sure how I’ve missed it so far, but Slam Bolt Scrappers, recently announced as a PS3 exclusive, was shown previously at PAX (a video of it is here) and looks pretty cool, sort of an action-puzzle-tower defense hybrid. It’ll also appear at E3, hopefully it’s not overlooked by the reporting attendees.

Just in case you thought you’d already seen all there was to see of Super Meat Boy’s ability to mix the “awww” and the “ewww”, wait ‘til you see the second boss. Even more about him, and other aspects of the game, is explained within the developer’s latest blog entry, linked from here.

Looks like Siliconera guessed right – The Tales of Bearsworth Manor is the localized version of Kumanage, that wacky “bear-tossing” game mentioned here and elsewhere last week. The two “tales” which make up the full game will be available here within a week or two, so be sure to brush up on your, er, bear-throwing skills, I guess.

A quick look at some of the wacky stuff you can create with the help of adjectives in Super Scribblenauts – how does, say “Windsurfing Wolfman” strike you? (DToid coverage here.)

So, uh, yeah, remember that Castlevania: Symphony of the Night-themed puzzler/RPG revealed a little bit back? There’s a trailer out for it now, worth watching if only to hear the music from Olrox’s Quarters again (picturesque silhouette of your bat form against the moon not included). (DToid coverage here.)

Well, you certainly can’t fault Valve when it comes to honesty – as they announced that Portal 2 will be delayed into next year, the only excuse they offered was “making games is hard” (well, that and “public safety”). Got to give at least a little credit where credit is due, right? They also assure us that the delay will make the game better, not worse, which is always good to know! (DToid coverage here.)

The veritable fire sale over at Marvelous Entertainment continues – after the depressingly low sales of their most recent new IP, the company is getting out of making new games altogether, choosing instead to focus on existing properties. If this strategy treats them better than the “hardcore” types who were supposed to be breaking down doors to buy their stuff, it won’t be an encouraging message for any of us…

As we recently learned, the Hatsune Miku: Project Diva – Dreamy Theater application is almost certainly not worth the price they’re asking for it, but thankfully looking at this trailer is free.

If you want to get into NISA’a press even next month, go here and enter the raffle for a chance to win your way in – be aware, though, that all you get is the reserved spot, you have to pay for travel to San Francisco and lodging yourself.

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…oh, right, and we’re 50 issues old since being resurrected, now. Huh, how ‘bout that. Anyways, thanks for reading and keep gaming obscurely.

And don’t be late for class.



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