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Project X Zone 2 photo
Project X Zone 2

Project X Zone 2 pre-order bonuses include a challenge stage

Nov 20
// Chris Carter
Pre-order bonuses, as a rule, are pretty scummy. I get that publishers really need that cash now, but providing in-game incentives, some of which are not sold later (or, even crazier, just included in the game -- weird, ...
Yakuza photo

Yakuza: Kiwami looks dope as hell, super weird

Comes with a demo for Yakuza 6
Nov 20
// Chris Carter
Sega just dropped a new trailer for Yakuza: Kiwami, and it looks awesome. There's plenty of new features afoot, including new combat abilities and minigames. I love the balance this series always struck with insanity an...
First Valkyria trailer photo
First trailer and way more screenshots
So I jumped the gun yesterday when I said Valkyria: Azure Revolution and Valkyria Chronicles Remaster (PS4) news was petering off. Yesterday's plain, boring website is now home to a bunch of new screens, the first footage of...

Valkyria PS4 details photo
Valkyria PS4 details

Valkyria: Azure Revolution, Valkyria Chronicles Remaster get websites

Plus box art
Nov 19
// Steven Hansen
Two days ago an announcement, yesterday the first screens, and today...web pages. Well, yes, things do get less exciting after their initial release. Gotta slow the pace down to be able to blow you out of the water with the n...

Valkyria shots photo
Valkyria shots

First shots of Valkyria: Azure Revolution and the PS4 remaster

New Valkyria series game coming to PS4
Nov 18
// Steven Hansen
I don't know if it was the Valkyria Chronicles Steam release success or Sega just doing its regular couple years of apologizing with good releases before falling into a funk again, but there is a new, anime-as-hell Valkyria C...
Valkyria Chronicles photo
Valkyria Chronicles

A new Valkyria Chronicles and a remaster are coming to PS4

Next year in Japan
Nov 17
// Jordan Devore
As it turns out, Sega's recent Valkyria trademark was worth getting excited over after all. The company has a new game in the series and a remaster of the original Valkyria Chronicles in development for PlayStation 4, accordi...
NSFW photo

What is going on with this Dragon's Crown figure?

Mesmerizing in all the wrong ways
Nov 11
// Jordan Devore
I'm almost at a loss for words other than to say you don't know what you've got until it's gone. The last Dragon's Crown Amazon figure (that I've seen, anyway) was over the top in ways you would expect given the source material, but that design now looks respectable compared to what's happening here. If you don't mind my asking, uh, what exactly is happening here?
Alien: Isolation photo
Alien: Isolation

A modder has taken the Alien out of Alien: Isolation

And I bet it's still fantastic
Nov 09
// Brett Makedonski
The first time I played Alien: Isolation, I was at developer Creative Assembly's studio in Horsham, England. The game hadn't been announced yet and we were the first non-Sega people to see it. There was the briefest of introd...
Sega financials photo
Sega financials

Sega sales down, but profits up

Gotta earn money fast
Nov 02
// Laura Kate Dale
In a recent financial results briefing for April to September 2015, Sega revealed a small drop in sales but an overall increase in profits compared to the same period last year. While net sales reached $1.2 billion, a 2.5 per...
More empty Sonic optimism photo
More empty Sonic optimism

SEGA sez: New Sonic to be 'inspired by how it played in its heyday'

That smoke'll make you choke!
Oct 29
// Steven Hansen
Earlier this year, SEGA issued a bold apology. The company apologized for accidentally naming its Halloween character "Boob" instead of "Boo." Even earlier in the year, SEGA made another apology for how shit Sonic games have ...
Oh...kay photo

Dawn of War II: Retribution just got some weird new DLC

Pay money for more blood
Oct 29
// Jordan Devore
Today's reminder that Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War III would be a lovely thing to exist comes in the form of a peculiar DLC release for 2011's Dawn of War II: Retribution. Out now on Steam, the Ridiculously Bloody Blood Pack adds a toggle for dramatic new blood effects in the real-time strategy game. It's the kind of thing that would be a fun little bonus, but it costs $1.99.
Alien: Isolation photo
Alien: Isolation

Alien: Isolation gets a Game of the Year edition, but it's named correctly

Alien: Isolation - The Collection
Oct 27
// Brett Makedonski
Xenomorphs are resilient little buggers. One year removed from the release of Alien: Isolation, we thought we had done away with the titular alien. Nope. It comes back to haunt us today because a flamethrower isn't hint enoug...
Sonic Adventure photo
Sonic Adventure

Do you prefer Sonic Adventure 1 or 2?

I want to know
Oct 27
// Chris Carter
It looks like I sparked a discussion yesterday in my recent article on Sonic Adventure 2's twisted backstory. I drew a line in the sand between the first Sonic Adventure and the sequel, and a debate started up, comparing...
Shenmue photo

Sega is apparently looking into re-releasing the first two Shenmue games

Says Sega Europe's marketing director
Oct 27
// Chris Carter
Anyone who knows my gaming habits is aware that I adore the Shenmue series. The second game in particular came at a perfect point in my life, and it got me through some hard times But over the years it's become increasingly t...
Sonic Adventure 2 photo
Sonic Adventure 2

Learn the twisted backstory behind Sonic Adventure 2

Haha, Shadow
Oct 26
// Chris Carter
Sonic Adventure 2 is a pretty strange game. I remember playing it for the first time with my cousin, plugging away at multiplayer for 10 hours straight. For that reason, I've always had a soft spot for the Adventure&nbs...
Sonic's 'Boob' photo
Sonic's 'Boob'

Sega apologizes for Sonic Runners 'Boob' boner

Typo of the Year
Oct 24
// Kyle MacGregor
Someone at Sega made a helluva typo, accidentally naming a character in Sonic Runners' seasonal Halloween stage "Boob" instead of "Boo," which prompted this apology: "In the current 'Halloween Special Stage' event, the charac...
Valkyria Chronicles photo
Valkyria Chronicles

Maybe Valkyria Chronicles isn't dead after all

Sega trademarks Aoki Kakumei no Valkyria
Oct 19
// Kyle MacGregor
Sega has filed a trademark for something called "Aoki Kakumei no Valkyria" (Valkyria of the Blue Revolution), which may or may not be the next entry in the Valkyria Chronicles franchise. It's worth noting the mark can be...
Yakuza 5 photo
Yakuza 5

Sega: Yakuza 5 coming west in mid-November

Good lord, finally
Oct 16
// Kyle MacGregor
I've been starting to wonder if Yakuza 5 would actually be releasing in 2015, as Sega and Sony promised at last year's PlayStation Experience and have scarcely mentioned since, but it seems the long wait is nearly over. Accor...
Sonic Boom photo
Sonic Boom

Sonic Boom Season 2 is coming, you can't stop it

He's the fastest thing alive
Oct 12
// Chris Carter
As far as Sonic cartoons go, the Sonic Boom show actually isn't bad -- hell, it's way more entertaining than the games themselves. For those of you who do enjoy it, you're going to get more of it, as distributor LER has ...
Sonic Dash 2 photo
Sonic Dash 2

Sonic Boom rides again in Sonic Dash 2, out this week

Oct 09
// Chris Carter
Not to be confused with the microtransaction-stuffed Sonic Runners, Sonic Dash was actually a decent little Temple Runner clone released in 2013. Now it's seeing its second release in the form of Sonic Dash 2: Soni...
Project X Zone 2 photo
Project X Zone 2

Can you sit through this 14-minute Project X Zone 2 trailer?

It's pushing it
Oct 08
// Chris Carter
I liked Project X Zone 2 well enough. It's basically another edition of the first game with more characters -- so it's going to be pretty easy to tell on paper if you're going to want to pick it up. For those of you on ...

Review: Dengeki Bunko: Fighting Climax

Oct 07 // Kyle MacGregor
Dengeki Bunko: Fighting Climax (PS Vita, PS3 [reviewed])Developer: French Bread, Ecole Software, SegaPublisher: SegaReleased: November 13, 2014 (JP), October 6, 2015 (NA, EU)MSRP: $29.99 (PS Vita), $39.99 (PS3) Dengeki Bunko: Fighting Climax has the appearance of a hardcore fighting game, and it certainly has the pedigree, coming from Melty Blood and Under Night In-Birth team French Bread and Ecole Software, but both looks and lineage can be deceiving. Here, the studios (along with their Sega-employed producers and associates at Kadokawa) aimed to deliver a more accessible experience than their previous work, something less impenetrable to the average person than the Guilty Gears or Street Fighters of the world. It's a noble idea. For as enjoyable and well-made as Arc System Works and Capcom's projects are, they are incredibly complex affairs. The barrier to entry with these games is much higher than, say, Nintendo's Super Smash Bros. series, which is more easily enjoyed by newcomers, despite its potential for high-level play. Fighting Climax tries to occupy a similar space, striving to create a middle ground, an intermediate that can appeal to fighting game enthusiasts of all stripes. In attempting to do so, Fighting Climax strips away many of the genre's more byzantine subtleties, while adding tools to facilitate absorption. There are no elaborate inputs here, not by traditional fighting game standards, anyway. The most difficult commands involve quarter-circle and half-circle movements, which makes executing special moves or "climax arts" relatively straightforward without reducing the gameplay experience to something oversimplified or wading into button-mashing territory. Well, that is aside from the auto-combo feature, which allows players to string together a reasonably powerful series of moves merely by hammering on the light attack button repeatedly. It's a concession to beginners, providing a mechanism to chain together a barrage of attacks, but its use is limited, preventing it from being a substitute for actual skill. Also more simplistic than a typical fighting game are the inputs, which are identical across the entire roster. The 14 main fighters, from Toradora's Taiga and Asuna of Sword Art Online fame to the unlockable Selvaria of Valkyria Chronicles and Virtua Fighter's Akira, all have the same commands for their basics attacks, special moves, impact skills, and supers. This makes picking up a new character easy, but weakens the roster considerably. Since every fighter is essentially cut from the same cloth, Fighting Climax doesn't foster as wide a variety of play styles or combat strategies as do its genre peers. And aesthetically, while every character has unique animations based on the source material, most of them fall into the "waifu" female lead archetype, exacerbating the sense of redundancy and lack of diversity present in the mechanics. There's some depth to be found in the assist system, with 23 support characters to choose between and a wide array of support and offensive moves to augment your fighter's innate abilities. These can be used mid-combo at the cost of meter to lay on some added hurt or topple your opponent, or just in normal situations with a cooldown to disrupt or punish other competitors. While assist characters accent the roster, they highlight a myriad of unique figures in the Dengeki Bunko catalogue that would have made for more compelling choices than several of the leading ladies. While everyone will have their own favorites, I was particularly disappointed to see Spice and Wolf's lupine goddess Holo relegated to a supporting role. The stages are also an odd choice, drawing inspiration from a number of Sega franchises (Sonic the Hedgehog, Shinobi, Virtua Fighter, NiGHTS, and Phantasy Star Online among others), rather than the non-Sega worlds the vast majority of the cast is drawn from. While this makes sense in terms of the scant narrative the title's story modes offer, it's curious move on Sega's part to impose itself to such a degree in a game made primarily for fans of Dengeki Bunko's light novels and their anime adaptations.  There is some fan service to be found in the story modes, though, where players get to see characters from various universes interact with one another in cute little vignettes. Beyond that, Fighting Climax offers a bog-standard suite of features fighting game enthusiasts should be familiar with -- a spartan training mode, versus mode, a trio of challenge modes, plus ranked and unranked online versus. Most of it is handled fairly well, but, while I have no major complaints, nothing is terribly exceptional either. French Bread is a talented maker of fighting games, giving the experience a high floor, but this is not the studio's best work. It's perfectly competent, but feels like a major step down from the outstanding Under Night In-Birth, even if the titles were made for different audiences.  While decent enough, Dengeki Bunko: Fighting Climax may be too simplistic for most hardcore fighting game fans to enjoy as anything more than an ephemeral lark, but is also perhaps still too complex for those that find the genre intimidating. It feels like another instance of game designers shaving off any sharp corners in an attempt to please as many people as possible. Fighting Climax shows a clear reticence to take risks, and its failure to do so betrays its potential to become truly remarkable or distinctive. [This review is based on a retail build of the game provided by the publisher.]
Dengeki Fighting Climax photo
Identity Crisis
Teenagers are in a strange point in their lives. No longer children, but not quite yet adults, adolescents exist in an uncomfortable grey area, a metamorphic state that compels them to forge identities independent of their gu...

More Sonic on PC photo
More Sonic on PC

Sonic Lost World heads to PC next month

Other 'past Sega titles' to follow
Oct 06
// Jordan Devore
Sega is bringing Sonic Lost World to PC on November 2, 2015. It's priced at $29.99 and the NiGHTS-infused Nightmare Zone, a stage available as DLC for the Wii U version, is included. In his 2013 review for Destructoid, Jim St...
Bayonetta photo

Sega Sammy is cutting its pachinko division by 200 jobs

Bayonetta machines blamed
Oct 05
// Chris Carter
Sega Sammy is cutting 200 jobs from its pachinko division, by way of a "voluntary retirement" program. Strangely enough Bayonetta and Fist of the North Star machines were blamed, which "were not sufficient to offset the ...
Nintendo 64 photo
Nintendo 64

Unreleased N64 game surfaces after 16 years

First footage of Viewpoint 2064 since 99
Oct 04
// Kyle MacGregor
History is littered with the bones of games like Viewpoint 2064, the unreleased sequel to Sammy's 1992 Neo Geo shooter Viewpoint. The Nintendo 64 project was first (and last) seen at Nintendo's Space World event in 1999, befo...
Yakuza 6 photo
Yakuza 6

Here's the first glimpse of Yakuza 6

Starring 'Beat' Takeshi Kitano
Sep 29
// Kyle MacGregor
Here's the first look at Yakuza 6, and -- wait -- is that Beat Takeshi? Why yes, yes it is. The famed Japanese entertainer, who you might know the host of cult game show Takeshi's Castle, has a role in Sega's latest gangster ...

When a bonus mode is better than the main game

Sep 26 // Kyle MacGregor
There's just something about Monkey Target. It seemed to have the power to transfix random passersby that might otherwise have little interest in games. Perhaps it was the peaceful music, which never seemed to get old no matter how many times you heard it. Maybe it was the bright colors that pulled people in -- a vast cerulean ocean stretching out as far as the eye can see, rainbow-coated targets, and rows upon rows of golden (and bizarrely Dole-branded) bananas hanging in the air. Maybe it was just the alluring concept of a bunch of monkeys in translucent balls rolling themselves down a slope toward the sea, popping the capsules open and gliding over the water toward faraway bull's-eyes. It's strange and fantastical -- the sort of thing you would have never dreamed up on your own in a million years, something you can learn in a minute but take a lifetime (or at least countless hours) to truly master. I'm not sure what it is about Monkey Target that I love so much. Everything, probably. Even today, I dusted off my old GameCube and fired the game up for a little "research." An hour later I was still trying to best my high score, just as enamored as I was 10 years ago. Are there any extra modes you enjoy more than the main games they're attached to? Funnily enough, the Chao Gardens from another Sega series, the Sonic Adventure games, also come to mind. Please share your favorites with us in the comments below.
Super Monkey Ball photo
Monkey Target forever
Super Monkey Ball was magical. It's a series for which I have so many fond memories. I have this vision in my head, a strong mental picture of half-a-dozen guys in a dimly-lit college dorm room playing Monkey Target 2. There ...

Warhammer 40K photo
Warhammer 40K

Steam's hosting a free weekend for Dawn of War

And not just the first game!
Sep 24
// Jordan Devore
It isn't the weekend yet, but I'm about to have me some fun. Ready up. The Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War series is free to play on Steam until Sunday at 1:00pm Pacific. I'd recommend Dawn of War II and Chaos Rising -- they'll...
Blade Arcus photo
Blade Arcus

Take a quick look at Blade Arcus from Shining EX

New trailer from Sega
Sep 24
// Chris Carter
Sega is gearing up to release a new fighting game (or rather, arcade port) later this year in Japan called Blade Arcus from Shining EX, and the visual style is a lot cooler than the name. This new trailer gives us a decent look at what to expect when it hits the PS3 and PS4 on November 26, as it seems to be a story-heavy fighter.
PSO 2 photo

After playing the PS4 version, PSO 2 needs to come out right now overseas

Do it, Sega
Sep 18
// Chris Carter
It's no secret that I've been pining for a western release for Phantasy Star Online 2 for quite a while now. I'm hesistant to install the international version of the game, mostly because all of my friends are waiting on true...

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