Thursday, September 29, 2011

Psychonauts Arrives On The Mac (Finally!) And Double Fine Rolls With It

Hey, Tim! Next time, send these releases out to everyone! Or actually, maybe I need to update my contact info with Double Fine, huh? Anyway, I missed this Psychonauts press release, but thanks to a few "Did you see this?" emails pointing to Bitmob, you can check out the pretty funny press release about the Mac version of Double Fine's rather awesome and funny (and classic) platformer. Yes, the PC version over Steam has gotten some cool enhancements as well. I actually haven't played the PC version (it's on my to-do list), but I do have both console versions here (the Xbox version is the better of the two). I'd gather the chances of seeing the game get an HD upgrade for PS3 and Xbox 360 are slim to none, but hey - if I had a few million bucks laying around, I'd wave some of it under the noses of a few games companies to tempt them into committing to doing at least ONE run of discs and selling them directly to gamers rather than going through the retail chain hell...

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

New Look (Part One!)

As you can see, I'm playing around with a few tweaks to the layout. I'm not quite done, so bear with me while I tinker with Blogger's updated design tools. I prefer a simpler look, so some of the fancy page designs I'm seeing won't be added here. On the other hand, I'm liking some of the other layout options and new text choices, so perhaps we'll see about adding some of those in the coming weeks. Back in a bit - feedback is welcomed and feel free to click on an ad or two so I can make some money!

Update - Feh. Apparently, Google of all people (er, corporations, which are people, according to some dopes running for office), hates it when users ask readers to maybe support their sites by clicking on ads. So they've cut me off AdSense. Wonderful. You suck, Google, considering all the shameless shilling click-fest contests allowed on other blogs here. OK, off to move some stuff around. back in a bit, possibly at a new location. 

Dark Souls "All Saints' Day" Trailer + Serious Statues To Do Battle For

With its October 4 US release date right around the corner, here's a last at the latest Dark Souls trailer plus some awesome one of a kind statues created by one of the game's biggest fans, sculptor Peter Nordstrom. These five absolutely beautiful artworks are actually being given away over on the Dark Souls community page, so there will be a few lucky gamers who are going to walk away with some incredible showpieces you won't find anywhere else. If you want to give it a shot, it;'s actually not too late. Just head on over to the PREPARE TO DIE Forums and have at their interesting puzzle contest. Good Luck!

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

The House of the Dead Overkill EC Gets Eye-Popping (and Retro) 3D Modes

Nice. Now Sega can add "Retro-ier" to that "Longer, Harder, Gorier!" tagline for its upcoming M-rated arcade shooter. The company is really going all out with this super-enhanced HD remix of the Wii sleeper hit. In addition to PS Move support, both Anaglyph as well as Stereoscopic 3D support have been added so you can play the game on any TV and have zombies even more in your face. Of course, if you don't have a 3DTV or hate those cardboard red/blue or red/green glasses, you can still get your shooting on without the added effects. Me, I plan to blaze through the game many times in at least two of the three modes, as I don't yet own a 3DTV. No matter, I'm still expecting a total blast for as long as I can stand wearing those goofy 3D glasses I've kept since the 80's. Check out the new screens below (you DO have a pair of 3D specs around the house, right?). The House of the Dead OVERKILL Extended Cut is set to hit retail on October 25 (just in time for a little scary Halloween fun).

Sony Teases Gamers With A Little Mystery Project...

Hmmmm... My head is too full of other stuff to even venture a guess, so it looks as if I'll be holding out until October 5 to get the answer. Of course, it'll probably leak before then, but that's how it goes. It's probably something Home-related, but I'm just throwing out the first thing off the top of my head. Which means I'm probably wrong. Still, it WOULD be nice if we all found out The Agency was being revived from the dead, right?

Rayman Origins "Around The World" Trailer

Awesome and funny new trailer from the upcoming retro-flavored (but decidedly modern) platformer set to hit PS3, Xbox 360 and Wii soon enough. Poke around on the official site for more on this fresh take on classic gameplay. If this game doesn't make you smile, you're a hopeless dope who needs an anvil dropped gently on your head. Or some rat named Ignatz aiming a brick at you from throwing distance (POW!!!). Tough love always wins over the hard-headed, I say...

Ico & Shadow of the Colossus Collection Launch Trailer

Yes, it's here. And Yes, it's a absolute must buy at a measly $39.99. Hell, if you happen to know someone with a 3DTV and no PS3, do them a favor and lug yours over to their house with a copy of this game and they'll probably BUY their own PS3 afterward. Seriously, it's THAT good.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Review: Resistance 3

Platform: PlayStation 3

Developer: Insomniac Games

Publisher: SCEA

# of Players: 1 - 2 (Online: 1 - 16)

ESRB Rating: M (Mature)

Official Site

Score: A-

It's absolutely been the best year to be a PS3 owner and Resistance 3 continues Sony's streak of solid first-party titles with an exhilarating, action-packed shooter that's an absolute must-buy. Packing in a lengthy single-player campaign (with solid offline or online co-op), satisfying multiplayer and a ridiculous amount of over the top battles, this is one of those games FPS fans will get a ton of mileage out of. Key to the gameplay experience are the incredibly fluid controls whether you're using a Dual Shock 3, PS Move/Navigation controller combo or Sharpshooter peripheral and yes, the game looks fantastic. There area few quirks here and there with the AI on the easier settings and if you want to get the most out of the co-op and multiplayer, the game requires some mandatory patching that fixes a few release bugs. Nevertheless, once that's taken care of, you're in for quite a wild ride.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Xseed Bringing Grand Knights History To North America (Go Vanillaware!)

Even if you're not into gaming, it's hard not to look at a Vanillaware game and see the love and care that goes into them. While the company has only a handful of titles under their belts, each has been a truly memorable experience well worth playing. From the absolutely beautiful 2D character art and richly colored backgrounds to the gameplay that's simple, yet intensely challenging and rewarding, George Kamitani and his dedicated team of artists and programmers always bring their best work to whatever platform they touch. Based on these screenshots, it looks as if Grand Knights History is no exception. Xseed has grabbed the publishing rights to Marvelous Entertainment's PSP game and is targeting a Winter release for this fantastic-looking RPG. Expect a deep character customization system, lengthy quest set in a colorful medieval fantasy setting, online play and more. By the way, "Winter" could mean anywhere from Holiday 2011 to early 2012, but that's what updates are for, right? We'll keep you posted once an actual date surfaces...

GoldenEye Reloaded Stealth Walkthrough

Mr, Bond, I presume? As far as replay value goes, it certainly looks as if GR will give players a few ways to go through the game (just like the Wii version). Here's a bit of fun with vents galore in this walkthrough for the upcoming FPS set to shoot into stores on November 4. I'm leaning towards the PS3 version just for the Move controls (it's just grand that shooters play so well with the peripheral).

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Back In A Bit... Laundry Version

LOTS of news rolling in these past few days, from Xseed nabbing Vanillaware's Grand Knights History for the PSP (yes!), gog,com having a BIG sale on classic D & D PC titles (BUY!), a lot of other fun game-related stuff that I need to decide what to do with and yes, MORE Facebook changes that may squeeze a poem out of me again. But, the last of my huge pile o'laundry needs to get done along with a review or two, so those will take priority. It'll be raining all weekend, so expect a few too many updates then (well, for ME, anyway)...

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Facebook Is Inspiring, After All...

So, Facebook made a few changes some people seem really, really upset about, as poking around on the site today has revealed. I find the new stuff annoying (the right side feed and blue corner "news" notations), but not to the point of venting angrily about them. I guess some of the really pissed off folks are also Netflix users who are feeling extra burned at having more stuff changed without being asked first. Still, I did wake up and write a little poem about this new look for the site,

Yes, it's musical in a sort of Gilbert & Sullivan manner...

Drakensang: Complete Saga In Stores Now (Well, GameStop Stores, That Is)...

Yeah, yeah, Gears of War 3 is out and fantastic all that, but I'm actually a tad more excited about (The Dark Eye) Drakensang: Complete Saga arriving this week as part of THQ's ValuSoft games lineup (albeit as a GameStop exclusive). "What's a Drakensang?" you ask? Why, a pretty cool third-person PC fantasy role playing game that's got a nicely loyal fan-base, solid visuals, fun classes to choose from and a great, challenging combat system among other things. I'm absolutely recommending this collection to fans of open-world fantasy games, deep RPG experiences and anyone who likes games with at least a hundred hours of gameplay. Even better... it's on a retail DISC, not a download, so even if you have a crappy Internet connection, you can STILL buy and play a quality RPG while getting a great deal in the process.

Press release below the jump.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

ICO/Shadow of the Colossus Classics Trailer Update

Sony keeps rolling out the gems with this set of two of the best PS2 games ever made. Even if you still own both of them, the updated HD graphics, superb use of 3D and bonus features should make this a must-buy disc. I'm probably the only person NOT whining about The Last Guardian as I KNOW it's going to be completed and released at some point in 2012. I'm more than willing to wait as well as cut Sony (and Team ICO) some slack for not bombarding us with non-stop info and updates on a weekly basis. The game WILL be worth the long wait whether or not we see any sort of bonus content about it on the collection disc.

Monday, September 19, 2011

New Aliens: Infestation Trailer (Yes, There's Still Life Left In That Nintendo DS!)

WayForward and Gearbox' upcoming DS exclusive is probably going to be the best thing to happen to the DS in terms of licensed movie titles and definitely the best portable Aliens game I can think of. Of course, it IS coming from one of the best developers of 2D games working today, so it's pretty much a given that it's going to be a solid game. October 11 is rushing up really fast, so put this one on your to-do lists. Thank you, Sega!

TGS 2011: Resident Evil Revelations Trailer

Well, the whole helpless female vibe going on here is not exactly going to make the gal gamers too happy (nor anyone who hates this particular stereotype in gaming), but here it is. Nintendo 3DS owners are in store for another great-looking Resident Evil game with hopefully much better gameplay and multiple save slots this time. I guess we'll have to see when the game ships now, won't we?

Saturday, September 17, 2011

TGS 2011: Inversion Teaser Trailer

Saber Interactive's innovative gravity flipping cover-based shooter is one of those games you HAVE to play to fully grasp. This action-packed teaser is a fun clip, but I can see some people mistaking it for yet another Gears of War clone (when it's FAR from it). As I've said previously, this one will surprise a lot of people once they get their hands on it. Hopefully Saber can make the full experience as rewarding and surprising as what I've seen and played so far. A Vita version down the road would be really sweet as well.. but let's not get ahead of ourselves just yet.

TGS 2011: Ni No Kuni Coming To PS3 In North America Next Year

Fantastic. Level-5 and Studio Ghibli's gorgeous single-player RPG Ni no Kuni: Shiroki Seihai no Joō has been one of the most desired for localization imports of the last few years. The game revolves around a young boy who enters an alternate world using a magical book in order to try and resurrect his late mother. The Nintendo DS version, Ni no Kuni: Shikkoku no Madōshi was released last year to rave reviews in Japan and excellent sales, so it's pretty much guaranteed that the November 2011 Japanese release for the PS3 will be equally successful. As soon as we find out who's localizing and publishing the US version, that news will become available.

While no word of an English localization of the DS version has been announced, I'd imagine Nintendo (and Nintendo of America) wouldn't let Sony steal all the glory by getting the only version of this eagerly awaited game to gamers outside of Japan. That and the Japanese version of the DS game came in a really cool over-sized box thanks to the game manual designed to look like the magic book the main character carries and yes, it would indeed be great to see a similar package hit US as well as UK and European retailers.

Valve Offers PC. Mac Versions Of Portal Free (As An Educational Tool)

Valve is always doing some rather fun stuff with their older games, and now they're giving educators a chance to share one of the coolest puzzle games ever with their classes without paying a dime for it. Even better, it's supposed to be for purely "educational" purposes, meaning it would be awesome if some clever teacher out there actually downloaded this for a class and used it in a lesson plan. All you need is a Steam account and a PC or MAC capable of running the game and boom, you're in. This offer expires on September 20, 2011, so act fast. Hopefully Valve will extend this deal a bit longer. Click on over to Learn With Portals and prepare to be schooled in more ways than one.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Oddworld: Stranger's Wrath HD Remake Trailer: This Game NEEDS TO Be On A Disc!

With the blessing of Oddworld Inhabitants, The fine folks at Just Add Water have been hard at work on an HD remake of one of the best (and still under appreciated) original Xbox games ever made. While it looks absolutely spectacular, the game is currently only set for a PSN release, which stinks for those gamers who've never played the original, don't have PSN accounts or happen to be "unlucky" Xbox 360 owners (the original game wasn't backward compatible). I really, REALLY think this game absolutely NEEDS a disc version, even if it's part of a multi-game set in the future. Even better, I bet that a lot of folks would pay for an Oddworld HD Collection on disc similar to the solid HD collections Sony and other publishers are putting out on the PS3. Hopefully the PSN version will sell well enough to make this happen, as I'm not the only one who wants to see this game get a little more of a permanent form at some point...

TGS 2011: Asphalt: Injection PS Vita Trailer

This super-fast arcade racing franchise may not yet be as big as certain others, but it's hard to top for a pick up and play experience that caters to folks who prefer a game that's not even close to an accurate simulation yet still tons of fun. Check out the trailer for the upcoming Vita game, which is looking like it'll be a launch title in Japan come December 17. No doubt it'll also be part of the US launch lineup, but don't hold me to that...

TGS 2011: New Little King's Story Trailer

Well, now - it's definitely looking super on the Vita and I like the new characters as much as I did the ones in the Wii original. Given that the Vita game isn't a direct sequel, I'm willing to forgive it for not going for the exact same look as the first game. Hopefully, the small but dedicated fan base that played and enjoyed this on the Wii will like what they see as well. It looks as if KOnami is releasing the game in Japan, but as for who's got the US publishing rights, your guess is as good as mine. Let's hope Xseed does the deed once more for continuity's sake.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

TGS 2011: Sonic Generations "Genesis Era" Trailer

Ah, nostalgia... SG is looking really cool and hopefully will capture the absolute best of the 2D and 3D Sonic games in one package. The last couple of Sonic titles have been quite good, warts and all, but I think Sega is on track to deliver one of the best games featuring its popular mascot to date. If not, it's off the the glue factory. That or I can see some failed mascot from days gone by taking Sonic's place. Anyone remember Socket, Pulseman or Awesome Possum? NO? Hmmm.. then again, I think Sonic's job is quite secure after all...

TGS 2011: Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom Trailers/Reversible Cover Art

Capcom is really going all out to give MvC3 fans the best version of the game outside the arcades. There's even a reversible cover set for both the PS3 and Xbox 360 versions with voting taking place on the Capcom Unity blog so fans can let their voices be heard on which they think is the better cover. I'm betting most go for the Japanese cover art more because they think Japanese-designed game covers are best (which isn't always the case). Check out the three trailers above and below the jump to see what all the fuss is about.

TGS 2011: Namco Bandai Trailer Blowout: TOO Many Good Games + Some Surprises

Yikes. I don't have time to write up separate posts for all of these, so I'll let the assortment of trailers above and below (and below the the jump) show you some of what's cooking at TGS from Namco Bandai. Between the nice support for PS Vita and 3DS plus the other key console titles coming, it's clear that the publisher is really intent on bringing it where it counts. There's definitely something for just about every taste in this lineup. I'll try and get some screens up this weekend or next week, as I'm swamped with a few reviews and such to get done. I will say that Katamari looks like it will be an absolute dream on Vita, especially with the double touchscreen deal...


It's almost here and if you've been watching this season of Breaking Bad, you've been getting peeks at the game here and there. By the way, for the still confused, over-thinking types wondering just HOW Jesse Pinkman can be playing a game that's not out yet, stretch your imaginations for a moment. As the show never states exactly what year this season takes place in, perhaps it's set just after the game has shipped, thus justifying his owning and playing it. Granted, that light gun attachment and no sight of a console are harder to explain away to any gamer worth his or her salt. However, I'm gathering you're not supposed to obsess over that detail and just tie it in to Jesse shooting that would be meth cooking replacement for Walt and his mental state as a result of the crime. Anyway, nice TV spot, right?

Starhawk Trailer Shows Off Some Surprisingly Stellar Flying Combat

Excellent. Every time I see more of this game, I just KNOW it's going to be one of 2012's best in terms of both single and multiplayer action. Lightbox Interactive is going above and beyond the call here, that's for sure. The game looks gorgeous, is super fast and I love how the trailer manages to be funny as well as thrilling no matter how many times you watch it. Sony has been on a big roll with the first-party games and 2012 is going to continue the streak with a ton of solid titles.

TGS 2011: Dark Souls Full Prologue Trailer (UK)

And here you go: the complete prologue to From Soft's upcoming action/RPG guaranteed to make grown men and women weep, throw controllers and hide under the couch simultaneously. I can't wait for October 7, that's for sure.

TGS 2011: Street Fighter X Tekken Trailer Twofer

Hmmm... If Capcom and Namco somehow ever fail at this whole games thing, they definitely have a future in making some pretty funny comedies starring their Street Fighter and Tekken game characters. Of course, I'm kidding, but that TGS trailer above is pretty darn hilarious. Below is the new Pandora Mode, which looks like a ton of fun. I'm more of a sit down with someone on the same couch kind of player when it comes to these fighters, but then again, I'm no competitive player at all. I just love checking out all the animation and art that goes into the games, win or lose.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

TGS 2011: Dragon's Dogma Trailer

The more I see of Capcom's action/RPG, the more I like what I see. Granted, I don't think it'll be as ridiculously huge as some of the other open-world RPG's from this or last year, but there's no doubt that it'll be one of those games that pulls in players willing to succumb to its charms. Hell, at this point trying to compare too many of these games is a losing battle, kids - just play as many of these epics as you can fit into your schedules and enjoy them based on their own merits. None take place in the same worlds, so it's a fool's errand to tackle criticizing point for point aspects (unless there's some sort of magic crossover system in your favorite console). I hope this pops up as playable at NYCC next month, as I need some hands-on time so i can see how cool it really is.

TGS 2011: Asura's Wrath Trailer

As a fan of CyberConnect 2's work for some years now, I was over the moon for Asura's Wrath as soon as I saw it at last year's TGS. The game is looking even better a year later and yes, this trailer does yet another great job at showing off how wild it's all going to be. I do hope that people enjoy all the hard work that's going into this god-smashing insanity, as I "got" the game almost immediately. Then again, I'm so old, I pre-date pixels, so I "get" most everything. Anyway, It's going to be a blast, that's for sure...

TGS 2011: Dynasty Warriors Xtreme Legends/Dynasty Warriors Next Trailers/Gameplay Videos

Koei Tecmo is set to hit the PS3 and Vita with a VERY cool 1-2 punch with these two entries in the long-running franchise. Critics may hate these games, but the core fan base (and folks like me who just like the non-stop chaos and combat the series provides) just eats up each new installment. The PS3 exclusive Xtreme Legends will feature new characters, secret weapons, a new Legend Mode, a Challenge Mode and Japanese voice-overs (nice). No news on a NA release date, but that's what updates are for, right?

Nintendo 3DS Trailer Trio: Big Guns, More Motoring With Mushrooms & Slippy Is Still Annoying

Since Nintendo isn't at TGS this year, it held a pre-show event to announce a few important games, peripherals and other interesting news for the worldwide market. Items of note: a pink 3DS for the gals out there and a few game announcements to go with it (slightly sexist or clever marketing to the ladies? It's your call), a nice chunk of LOZ: Skyward Sword info (50-100 hours? Excellent - sign me up!) and the oddball 3DS Slide Pad. It's an inexpensive add-on that makes the handheld bigger and adds a second circle pad to the right of the face buttons. Hmmm. Does that mean I can expect a classic twin stick game like Libble Rabble to show up on the 3DS at some point? NO? Crap... I was hoping to see that weird as hell Namco arcade game again one day. Oh well... good thing I still have the Super Famicom port with the funky controller disc add on. All snark aside, here are three trailers to ogle. Still don't have a 3DS yet? Well, it's cheaper, there are some great games for it and more good games are coming. Some are delayed (sorry, Kid Icarus fans!), but they're on the way. Oh, Mario Kart 7 and Super Mario 3D Land trailers are a click away...

Max Payne 3: First Trailer

Rockstar's take on Remedy's modern noir character goes for a really intriguing mix of elements for its third installment, set for a March 2012 release on PC, PS3 and Xbox 360. I'm liking the visuals, color palette and overall tone of the trailer. As usual, Rockstar KNOWS how to sell a story with a trailer that also shows off their latest tech in action. This definitely isn't the game some are "expecting" but it's sure as hell going to be washing the taste of that film out of the heads of anyone who paid to see it. I can't wait to get some hands-on time with this one and see how it plays. So far, I'm betting it'll be a hit (in part due to the pedigree). The trailer can be viewed by clicking on the image above. On a side note, someone needs to sue the ESRB (or at least make them see the light) so they can stop this nonsense about restrictive age gates and such.

TGS 2011: Dead or Alive 5 (Pre-Alpha) Gameplay Footage

Nice. Self-shadowing on the characters, still wickedly fast and while yes, not as "technical" as some other fighters, the game still packs quite a (wait for it) punch. PS3 and Xbox 360, sometime in 2012, I'm guessing. Expect more trailers with the ladies of DOA to show up at some point, as they're the draw for some of this longtime series' fans.

TGS 2011: PS Vita. Japan. December 17, 2011.

Well, it's official. Sony is launching its newest handheld on December 17 in Japan and based on what I've been reading, it's going to be region free (yes!). Official North American, European and other territory launch dates have yet to be announced, but sometime in 2012 is the safe bet. As for the Japanese launch lineup... I'll post that list tomorrow, as it's late and I need my beauty sleep.

Expect a mix of interesting AAA titles, HD remakes of PS2 titles, quirky stuff that will stay in Japan and a bunch of PSN stuff that's also probably not going to make it out here, as the markets for certain types of games is quite different. In any event, you can also expect import shops such as Play-Asia to have a boom in pre-orders and sales from early adopters. eBay will also see a bunch of Japanese Vitas rake in a ton of profit for those who put theirs up for sale. Granted, scammers will also be part of the program as well, which is why I'll wait for the official US launch (unless I suddenly come into a ton if money and can afford plane fare, a nice hotel for a brief stay, a new Vita or three AND a bunch of games).

GoldenEye: Reloaded Gets Fully Loaded PS3 Exclusive Double-O Edition Box Set

Yes, I still dislike MOST limited edition bundles because you often get stuff that's not important to the core game experience. However, here's a case where one of these big box deals is done really well AND has stuff you can actually use (particularly if you're a fan of PS3 shooters). In other words, I'll take a dozen, please! The Double-O Edition contains the game (of course), PS Move and Navigation Controllers, PlayStation Eye camera and Sharpshooter peripheral.. In addition, buyers will get a DLC character, Hugo Drax from Moonraker, complete with his spiffy laser pistol. No price point has been announced, but both the Standard and 00 Editions will arrive at retail on November 1, 2011. Xbox 360 owners will no doubt be boiling mad at this set, but hey, what do you expect when your version of motion control leaves you with noting to point at the screen but an angry finger. Still, you guys are getting the same game at least, so enjoy Eurocom's awesome work to its fullest in single and multiplayer modes.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

TGS 2011: Anarchy Reigns Trailer

PlatinumGames' outstandingly quirky and dynamic PS3/Xbox 360 brawler is looking good to go and absolutely spectacular. I'm still not 100% sold on the multiplayer-only aspect of the game, but if anyone can make me reconsider my stubborn ways, it's this team and this particular fighter. Go Sega!

TGS 2011: Asura's Wrath Developer Interview II

Here's the second part of the Asura's Wrath interview. CyberConnect2 should become a household name after this one, but fans of its Naruto and .hack games already know the team can really do some fantastic games. Of course, this one looks as if it'll be the craziest thing they've done to date, so let's hop it click with new and old fans alike.

Monday, September 12, 2011

How Atari Can Really Take Advantage Of The Digital Age

While the company has seen its share of ups and downs (and a few sideways moves) over the past few decades, there's something about Atari that makes me hope they'll be around in some form for as long as people are around to play video games. Primarily a publisher for a good deal of the past decade, since 2004 they've been tapping into their history to produce a few different plug & play console variants in the Atari Flashback line. These units feature not only many classic games, but unreleased as well as homebrew tittles have managed to make it into the mainstream thanks to the small but dedicated team contracted to put the Flashback project together. As good as these systems are, I think Atari can bring things to the next level in a really cool way.

Super Monkey Ball Coming To PS Vita

Get it through your skulls, people: unless they can turn back time, Sega has NO plans to make a Dreamcast 2, period. Too much money down the drain in R&D plus the sad fact that the industry isn't going to support standalone home consoles in this rush to enforce digital evolution, which is a bad idea at the end of the day. Trust me, when there's a service outage along the lines of this year's PSN debacle spread across whatever set top "cloud" box is in your house, you'll be wishing you had a few consoles and physical games to fall back on while you're waiting for service to be restored. THAT said, those cute as hell monkeys are back, this time on the Vita. Sega may not be cranking out consoles these days, but they sure as heck know how to produce and publish some great games. SO, focus your attention and gaming dollars on cool titles like this and help Sega thrive where it's doing its best. That is all...

Review: God of War Origins Collection

Platform: PlayStation 3

Developer: Ready At Dawn/Sony Santa Monica Studios

# of Players: 1

ESRB Rating: M (Mature)

Official Site

Score: A

Even if you already own both games on the PSP, God of War Origins Collection is a stellar must-purchase PS3 title that's also one of the most polished ports of a portable game to a home console ever. Ready At Dawn along with Sony Santa Monica Studios have gone above and beyond here beefing up the two games with high resolution visuals (in great optional stereoscopic 3D), refined controls, Trophy support and even a bit of additional content. Both games are brutal, brilliant chapters that flesh out lead character Kratos' story and make for a great pair of games that should please any fan of the franchise as well as anyone new to his violent world. As a longtime GOW fan, I'll absolutely say that the man certainly knows how to make an entrance, no matter what platform he's on.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Gallery: Max Payne 3 (Remedy Gets Even More Real)

After a long wait (and still ongoing development cycle), Rockstar is finally bringing Remedy's modern noir detective back, and this time he's looking both better and worse for the wear. Better as in the game is taking the stellar visuals and phenomenal attention to detail the developer is known for to new heights of realism. Worse in terms of the presentation of a down and out Max Payne as an alcoholic, pill-popping gun for hire living in Sao Paolo. Of course, the game is not just about his decline well off the grid and whatever rotgut and cheap drugs he can score to feed his bad habits. There's plenty of gunplay, bullet-time sequences and what's looking like the most spectacular use of the Euphoria Engine to date. Rockstar is set to reveal the game's first trailer next Wednesday, so expect that to get posted (most likely on the other blog, as I'm expecting it to be nice and violent).

Some in-progress screens are below and more are on the way (most likely next week with the trailer I'll bet)..

Friday, September 9, 2011

Street Fighter X Tekken TGS Teaser Videos

Two more character reveals from the upcoming PS3 and Xbox 360 fighter set to launch sometime next year. In case you still haven't figured out who they are, look for the answers at TGS next week. Of course, if you're a REAL fan, you already know who's who, correct?

Happy Birthday, Star Trek!

Hard to believe it's been 45 years since the series first premiered on TV, but yes, it's true. I actually have vague memories of watching parts of some episodes as a little kid, but I really didn't have a clue as to what was going on. It took watching reruns of the original series in my teens and finding a few friends who were also into the show to make me appreciate it a lot more, but we still had fun pointing out the cornball effects and occasionally bad dialog, sets and visual effects. Here's a clip of the Science Channel's upcoming documentary, TREK NATION, a film project done in collaboration with the late gene Roddenberry's son, Rod about the impact the show has had among a wide range of people. Now, I need to check my cable guide to see if I actually get the Science Channel. The documentary airs on November 30th, so you've got enough time to check your own cable listings.

Seven MORE KOF XIII Trailers (Atlus Keeps On Rolling...)

Yes, these are going up a bit later than planned, but I was busy playing a few games and got sidetracked. Such is the life of the one-man operation. Here you go - seven more characters from the upcoming fighter. These are pretty short, so like the first nine, you won't need that beer and chips or have to worry about falling asleep halfway through. Hell, one of these guys or gals will slap you silly if you did anyway...

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Guardian Heroes Is Back! Now, How About A Sega Saturn Collection?

Well alright! Treasure's innovative fighter/RPG hybrid is finally coming to Xbox Live Arcade (and hopefully, PSN) soon. While this is indeed a great thing to see, I'd really love it if Sega just took the time to bring a bunch of their first-party Saturn games to us on a disc like they've done with the numerous Sega Genesis collections over the years for consoles and PC. Of course, given that Sonic The Hedgehog's presence on the Saturn was somewhat weak, I'm wondering if that's a main reason we haven't seen a PS3 Blu-Ray or Xbox 360 disc collection yet. On the other hand, with games such as this one, Astal, Shining The Holy Ark, Shining Force III, The Panzer Dragoon games, Burning Rangers and more classics, it's a no-brainer that seeing all these great games (and getting them all in one shot at a great price point) would be a win-win situation for Sega and gamers alike.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Studio Profile: From Software (Or: It's About Time These Guys Got More Love!)

Here's a brief look at one of my very favorite game developers since 1994 when I first saw Japanese screenshots of King's Field and later, Armored Core. The company has done a wide assortment of games since then, but it wasn't really until Demon's Souls and now, Dark Souls that they're a household name among more gamers. Of course, the terrifyingly difficult Dark Souls will probably garner them more than a few curses from those that hop in unprepared or expecting the game to have a super-easy mode... but I think From wants those players to learn something about they way games used to be made.

Asura's Wrath: CyberConnect2 Interview

Capcom sits down with the developer's CEO and producer for a few minutes of chat time about the upcoming action game set to hit the PS3 and Xbox 360 in 2012. So far, the game seems to be quite like an anime in terms of the storytelling and over the top action sequences. I happen to like the visual style quite a lot and I'm also curious to see how it all fits together once the game is completed and ready to ship. By the way, if you don't see subtitles, just click on the "CC" button on the video bar for English text.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Dragon Quest X Announced As A Wii & Wii U Online RPG

Holy Final Fantasy XII, Batman! Or something like that. Twitter practically fell over dead after the DQX news was dropped by andriasang a few hours ago. Rather than join the bird-buzzers out there, I'll cut to the chase. I don't think I'd like it (I'm not a big MMO fan) unless it has an offline mode and a decent story to play through. That said, it'll probably do really well in Japan, as pretty much ANYTHING with a DQ logo will sell there. As for the US, well, that depends on stuff like subscription fees, gameplay and how data is shared between Wii and Wii U consoles if one upgrades down the road after buying the Wii version. Let's see now: Akira Toriyama character designs? Check. 3D environments reminiscent of the lovely DQ VIII? Check. Interestingly enough, Square Enix seems to be developing the game in-house. While Final Fantasy XIV was pretty controversial in terms of a number of flaws in its online play, there's little doubt that the development team is focusing on making the game a far better experience. I'd also imagine that the game is going to be programmed for multiple languages in order to get it to English-speaking gamers in as many territories as possible soon after the Japanese version ships sometime in 2012.

Everything else such as story, number of players online and other features will be announced soon (no doubt TGS will reveal more and probably some awesome DQX-related swag).

Thanks to NiNTENDOMiNATiON for posting these videos!

Curb Your Enthusiasm May Have Explained George Lucas' REAL Issues (But Probably Not)...

Tinkering with film history thanks to a possible OCD and making longtime fans dislike all that futzing around isn't Lucas' ONLY worry according to last night's episode of Larry David's brutally hilarious HBO comedy. In the episode titled Mr. Softee, Larry's psychologist name drops a wee bit to much info about the director's addiction to prostitutes and his er, shortcomings in those encounters. All more than likely not true at all, but I was laughing so hard that I can only hope to hell that David let George in on the joke before the episode was shot. If not, I'll expect the more irate Star Wars fans will use that not so true info as yet another reason to hate him. Hey, when you have that much money lying around, I guess everyone needs a hobby. His is "updating" his movies until he thinks they're perfect... then updating them some more until the nostalgic factor vanishes under a heap of spectacular CG effects (and soon to be 3D effects). As to the title of the episode, well it has nothing to do with Lucas, but once you see it, it'll make you laugh and/or cringe when you see and hear that familiarly annoying tune warbling from one of those white trucks...

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Bill Kunkel: 1959 - 2011

Wow - this ht me over the head a few minutes ago, so I'll need a bit of time to let it sink in. Back around 1992 or 1993 when he was writing for Electronic Gaming Monthly as The Game Doctor, I'd sent in a few questions about random game stuff I'd been thinking about and much to my surprise, Bill not only printed my letter, but sent a nice note not too long afterward answering my questions in greater detail. Shortly afterward, he ran a contest asking readers of his column to draw up a Game Doctor picture and send it in. The winner would get his or her work printed in the magazine along with a prize package of random goodies, which was a big thing back in the day. I recall JUST making the deadline with a nice watercolor pic of some futuristic-looking guy in a green "surgical" robe. I didn't win the contest, but Bill liked my piece so much he ran it anyway, which made me quite happy. What made me happier was getting a small box packed with random items and a signed note on Sega/Capcom stationery that I still have here filed away. If I can track it down, I'll post the note for historical purposes, as the image on the note has Mega Man and Sonic shaking hands (now THAT would have been a great game had it ever gotten made)...

Sony's TGS 2011 Lineup Brings The Games (Now About That Affording Them Part)...

Sony is definitely showing up for this year's Tokyo Game Show more than prepared, that's for sure. As the list below the jump notes, the company is leaving none of its consoles out of the lineup (although PSP pickings are slim this year, I expect a few third party publishers to show off a few more titles). According to siliconera, some 32 PS3 titles will be shown, so the 13 on the list is only the beginning of what's looking to be a solid lineup. While The Last Guardian is nowhere to be seen on this list, I'd bet my entire games collection that there will be at least a trailer or some new info dropped at the show. Hell, there's always at least ONE surprise at TGS and and TGL news would be just that for the more rabid fans who crave every drop on information about the Team ICO developed game.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Onechanbara Z Kagura Coming to Xbox 360 (In Japan): Hey D3PA, Don't Leave Us Hanging!

Thanks to YouTube user shinshaobaka for posting this video!

Yeah, yeah, this game isn't for every taste, but I happen to love the cheesy, bloody zombie killing by the boatload goodness of the Onechanbara series. I actually own all of them except for the PSP import and while they're not the best action games out there, there's just something to be said about scantily clad zombie killing gals with attitude, ridiculously challenging bosses and tricky to complete side quests. Well, we'll have to see what D3Publisher's US arm thinks about all this. I'd love to see this one hit the 360 here as a budget release on a disc and not JUST a quickie XBLA download. Granted, it probably won't get a manual (like the 360 version of Earth Defense Force Insect Armageddon), but hey, at least more people will get to enjoy the crazy ride. Actually, it WOULD be nice to see the series head back to a Sony home console, as that's where the first four games appeared...

Shin Megami Tensei: Persona 2: Innocent Sin Trailer

Sometimes, abbreviating a game name just doesn't work well. Case in point: SMTP2IS looks and sounds like a license plate number to me. Anyway, Atlus is set to knock it out of the park again with yet ANOTHER great RPG to devour all your free time. September 20, 2011 is the date and yes, it's yet another PSP exclusive. Color me giddy that publishers such as Atlus, Xseed Sony and others are making this the best year for the portable.

Friday, September 2, 2011

Resistance 3 Doomsday Bundle & "Radio" TV Spots

Two great commercials for Insomniac's upcoming FPS - As usual, Sony can really put together some memorable ads for the same game and approach each one from a different angle. That and yes, the Sharpshooter works like a dream for yet another PS3 shooter. No doubt R3 will be the biggest game yet in the franchise and if it's the last, it also looks as if it's the best.

Aliens: Infestation Launch Trailer: WayForward Wows Once More

What's looking like one of the last great Nintendo DS games is winging your way courtesy Sega, WayForward Technologies and Gearbox Software. No flashy gimmick here, folks - just good, solid old-school gameplay, amazing 2D visuals and plenty of action. This one is definitely in the running for portable game of the year in my book. I really hope a PSP version is in the works, as this game is too good to be relegated to a single platform...

Thursday, September 1, 2011

White Knight Chronicles II Story Trailer (It's Getting Closer...)

Level-5's more polished follow up to the original is set to hit stores on September 13, 2011. Here's a look at a bit of exposition from the upcoming PS3 exclusive. It's definitely a spectacular year for all sorts of RPGs, that's for sure. This one definitely deserves some quality play time if you liked the first game but wanted to see a few things fixed or reworked.

Mass Luminosity Wants YOU to WIN Deus Ex: Human Revoloution (I'd Take Them Up On That Offer)

Usually, one of ML's giveaways involves Facebook or Twitter sign-ups, which can be annoying if one doesn't want to go to the trouble of setting up an account at either social networking site. For this new giveaway, the company is running a more simplified method of entry that allows nearly anyone to grab a chance of winning one of 15 Steam downloads of Eidos Montreal's amazing RPG. Just click on over to the contest site, sign up and that's that. One winner will also win a SAPPHIRE AMD Radeon 6950 graphics card along with a copy of DX:HR and DiRT 3 as a bonus. Go sign up NOW and keep your fingers crossed!