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LONG BLOG

The Obscurer Tribune # 13

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I delayed posting this Tribune by a day or two in an attempt to cram as much TGS stuff in here as I could – hopefully I didn’t miss anything too weird. Anyway, on to the (loads and loads of) coverage:

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ALL OF YOU, READ THIS ITEM RIGHT NOW. IF YOU SKIP IT, I WILL KILL YOU. While many skeptical shooter fans (myself included) thought it would never happen, Cave has finally decided to test the devotion of its Western fans – Mushihime-sama Futari will be REGION-FREE.. Read the link in full and you’ll know how huge this is – the company is attempting to gauge how much support there is for their products overseas, and how well this game does will likely affect our chances of ever getting to play any of their future releases here. Unless you absolutely hate shooters, IMPORT THIS GAME – if you need anyone else’s word on the quality of this sucker, read this. It’s settled – if I have to put up with never seeing another Cave game in this neck of the woods I’m blaming YOU. (DToid coverage here.)

A short trailer for Darius Burst can be viewed at this link – not a whole lot on display for the public yet, but more should be revealed before too long. A hi-def version can also be found here.

Yep, it’s official, his formal title is now “Uncle Topher” – also, he has a whole bunch of new Raystorm HD screens. Thanks, Unc!

The previous Tribune first covered the release of (the technically non-shump, but whatever) Thexder Neo for the PSP – by now we’ve got a trailer to feast our eyes upon and some impressions to read, so take a minute or two and check out all the pretty lasers. New trailers have also emerged for the two upcoming Square-published arena shooters, 0 Day Attack on Earth and Death by Cube – a few impressions of the latter can be found here.

Elsewhere in the realm of the “small-scale” shooter, check out some recent impressions of Pixeljunk Shooter.

I’m late on this, but one of the shmup forum’s denizens has put up a series of Youtube videos called “Shooter Inferno”, which feature footage of shooters set to the music of…other shooters. It’s a neat way to get a general look at what the genre has to offer, as both popular and obscure titles are shown – the latest edition even has one or two titles that I don’t recognize offhand. Be sure to check out the older videos too.

Here’s an interesting development – apparently one of the titles that MS is looking to integrate into Project Natal is Space Invaders Extreme. Along similar lines, remember Groundkeeper Willy’s line from The Simpsons, where he says that he busted his trigger finger “shooting space invaders in the 70’s”? Well, it looks like the front page has a link to the original footage.




The Blaze gets Bluer as BlazBlue: Continuum Shift is being loke-tested in Japan this week: aside from the usual Guilty Gear-esque tweaks and such, two new characters will also be added, though only one has been announced at this point. (Front page coverage here, C-blog coverage here, here, and here. And probably about twenty other places I missed or ignored.) UPDATE: Shin Oni is covering the tweaks in more detail here, so make sure to check that out.

Last issue showed off a few screenshots of new character Tekkaman Blade in Tatsunoko vs. Capcom – this time around we’ve got a link to his official hi-res artwork. More importantly, we’ve got another confirmation - Frank West of Dead Rising (hi-res art of him here) will indeed be one of the new characters (two down!). Check out this DToid link to see videos of the two of them in action (and here for another demo of Frank). Finally, it’s been confirmed that Ultimate All-Stars will be getting a near-universal launch in January, as the release dates for all three regions are within a few days of each other.

A fellow c-blogger covers some of the previous TvC news here, but also has a fresh new set of rumors about the next Street Fighter IV revision – it sure sounds like a lot more than Capcom has bothered historically to add from one game to another, but we shall see…of course, a photo or two makes things even more interesting (c-blog coverage here).

You probably already knew that some of Tekken 6’s characters were getting extra costumes designed by a handful of anime/manga artists (y’know, just in case their “regular” outfits weren’t impractical enough for combat already) – the latest batch of images along that front include new getups for Anna, Asuka and Lili, if you’re interested. Also check out some screens of the “Campaign” and “Character Customization” modes if you want more.

You also likely knew that these were coming, but Round 2 of MadCatz’s Street Fighter IV pads and joysticks are officially on the way – functionality-wise they’re pretty much the same, but sport new characters and whatnot as decoration. Neither system’s default controller is all that great for fighters, so if you’re gonna bash in some faces you’ll likely want to snag one of these at some point if you haven’t already. (DToid coverage here.)

In other “sorta SF4-related” news, a new batch of edits – though not the type you were expecting. Unless you were expecting Mega Man sprite edits.

It’s not the type of “fighter” that’s usually featured in this section, but you should still take a look at Mr. Leray’s article about HurricaneX2.




JOY! It’s finally official – we already knew that Atelier Rorona would be coming to Europe next year, but we in the USA can finally rest easy knowing that we’ll be getting the game too, this coming summer. Oh, and the sequel to Holy Invasion of Privacy, Badman! as well.

Looks like Atlus is spoiling its Japanese customers too…well, so long as they’re willing to pay extra, anyways. Persona 3 Portable is going to have a limited edition bundle available, which will include a t-shirt, a desk calendar, and a set of mini-posters along with the game. Think that stuff is worth the extra 25 bucks or so that it’ll run you? Anyway, Lady Colette has a handful of impressions from the Tokyo Game Show if you stop in here.

Depending upon who’s right, the wait for Sakura Wars: So Long My Love may be even longer than we thought – last issue it was revealed that Gamestop is listing the title’s release date as January 4th (as opposed to November/December of this year, as originally stated), but head over to Amazon and the forecast is even worse. March 31st? Ack! I suppose it’s worth noting that Amazon was needlessly pessimistic when it came to Raiden IV (which it dated near the end of October, though it came out earlier this month) – let’s hope this is the case here as well.

Had enough Valkyria Chronicles 2 screens and art yet? Of course you haven’t. Of course, if you click here you can also watch the TGS trailer for the game and get some additional information about the release date and pre-order bonuses. Looks like we’ve got another “guest character” showing up at some point… (DToid coverage here.)

Some TGS impressions of Ni no Kuni, aka “that Ghibli RPG”, can be found over here – on the front page, meanwhile, there’s a very nice trailer. You can also check out a few word (and a few more screenshots) on Sands of Destruction if you head this way.

Hopefully you remember Last Ranker, the RPG/fighting hybrid mentioned last issue – either way, it looks like the game is probably coming to our shores at some point, though it’s not even out in Japan yet. Also, as this corresponding article notes, the developer is the same bunch responsible for the Luminous Arc series as well as the upcoming Sands of Destruction – extra obscurity cred, if nothing else.

Speaking of which, an exact Japanese release date for Luminous Arc 3 has been announced – December 3rd will herald the return of busty witches to the DS. Still no word on a journey Westward.

If you’ve ever wondered where Riz-Zoawd, the Japanese title for The Wizard of Oz: Beyond the Yellow Brick Road, came from, there’s a brief answer from the game’s director on the subject at this link. Apparently a more detailed interview with XSeed is coming next week, I’ll be keeping an eye out for it.

“It's like Warioware got a hold of standard 8-bit games and injected them with high grade cocaine.” If that little excerpt is not enough to make you want to read Mr. PerLee’s preview of Half-Minute Hero, well, I don’t know what else to say.

TGS has also produced a trailer for Gyromancer, Square and PopCap’s Puzzle Quest derivative – anyone think the market’s not already too saturated for this one to stand a chance? (DToid coverage here.)




Time for some more Okamiden, starting with a new trailer – the front page links to a condensed version, while Monodi’s c-blog has it at full length. A set of general impressions of the game from TGS is here, while a little more information about the new “Shirabe brush” (aka the way you control your human partners) can be found here. Also, in case you thought the game’s characters couldn’t be any cuter, check them out in life-size figure form. Oh, and don’t forget the fan! And the official site.

The Last Guardian continues to rumble our way, via a TGS video featuring a bit of game footage and several minutes’ worth of talk by project head Fumito Ueda. (DToid coverage here.) You can also read two interviews with him here and here.

Here’s a release I completely missed, thanks to one of my fellow shmup forum members for catching it – Pinball Hall of Fame: The Williams Collection has not only been ported over to the 360 and PS3, but enhanced with some new effects as well as 3 additional tables not found in the other versions. It’s a pretty nice package even on the ol’ PS2, so pinball fans should definitely look into this if they haven’t already.

Confession time – despite my affinity for the strange I haven’t bought a Katamari game since the PS2 era, but either way you should still watch this trailer for Katamari Forever.

Atlus’s latest e-mail to “The Faithful” links to yet another video for Kenka Bancho: Badass Rumble – and this one’s another “quick look” that happens to go on for over 40 minutes. The e-mail also contained a bunch of screenshots – if you’re not on the mailing list (for shame!), start with this link and just replace the “01” with “02”, “03” and so on to see the rest.

I’m a little late on this one too, but I still have to ask – if you heard that a game called Music GunGun! existed, what would you think it played like? If you thought to yourself “Hmm, maybe a rhythmic light gun shooter? Nah, that’s too weird…” believe it or not you’d be right. General sentiment hopes for a Wii port, and I’d have to concur.

Continuing along the general subject of guns and weirdness, just in case “adding zombies to everything” hadn’t gotten repetitive enough for you yet, now you can get even more specific, to the tune of “adding zombies to fairy tales”. Since Little Red Riding Hood’s Zombie BBQ apparently didn’t saturate this micro-genre enough, now you’ve got Zombie Panic in Wonderland on its way to WiiWare (heck, they even brought back Momotaro in ninja form). We need to find a new breed of guiltless cannon fodder… (C-blog item here.)

I’d also be remiss not to mention this title from TGS, which requires you to whack the in-game ceiling via a punch-glove-on-a-pole peripheral (seriously, even I couldn’t make this one up).

Proving that games with MSPaint-esque graphics and lots of running and plowing through things are difficult for me to ignore, Ms. Davis’s look at RunMan: Race Around the World, complete with trailer, is worth a few minutes of your time.

I have absolutely no excuse for not linking to the site’s feature on some of the unused designs for Braid last week, but hopefully you’ll check it out now, along with this week’s Part 2.

On the c-blogs, Diverse gets even diverse-er, as he posts a trailer for yet another new indie game, Life/Death/Island, as well as a previous effort (Air Pirates) by the same developer. A particularly weird-looking batch this time around, not like that’s a bad thing. Also, if you want to risk messing up your hard drive in the name of avant-garde gaming, play this.

Eager to prove that fighting game characters shouldn’t get all the good figures, Maxwell from Scribblenauts gets himself a custom model. In slightly less savory news, you could have probably guessed that a more-or-less game-breaking exploit was waiting to be discovered in the game, and, well, it pretty much has. Before you view, be warned, if you’re the cheating type this may spoil a lot of the game (i.e. pretty much all the “action” levels) for you… (DToid coverage here.)

Speaking of figures, at this link you can find a nice sampling of some of the trinkets and whatnot up for grabs over at the TGS – the latest batch of R-Type ship models got my attention quickest, though some of the Dragon Quest slime-themed stuff is a hoot too.

Question: How can one make Earth Defense Force 2017 even cheesier? Answer: Put it on cell phones.

In a similar vein, have you ever wanted to see video game characters come to life and destroy the world? If so, make sure to check out Cloverfield parody Cloverbrawl. (C-blog coverage here.)

Finally, Atlus also sent me an e-mail with this image attached – looks like some of you had better start getting your costumes ready!

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Once again, everyone, thanks for reading (and importing Mushi Futari) – until next time, keep gaming obscurely.
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About BulletMagnetone of us since 9:04 PM on 10.04.2008

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)