April 2, 2012

Rolling With The Yakuza

Filed under: Editorial Rants — Tags: , , , , , , , , — Jamie Love @ 10:57 pm

Yakuza Dead Souls
I’m reasonably sure Dead Souls is the only game about the zombie apocalypse where I’ve spent ten minutes at an arcade trying to win a toy Chihuahua from a claw-game. There was absolutely no reason for doing so, except that I really wanted it.

As a zombie epidemic spreads through the streets, large barricades are quickly deployed to seal off the infected area of the city, and the result is two very different realities – one in which life appears to carry on, and another where the infected are eager to feast on your delicious brains. The ability to walk the safer of these two streets while still enjoying the mini-game distractions and other interactions Yakuza has to offer probably makes this deviation the videogame most in line with the political commentary of Romero’s Dawn of the Dead and more recent Land of the Dead.

Players will find themselves in Akiyama’s shoes as the outbreak begins, the chaos quickly engulfing the streets around Sky Finance while he works to keep his faithful assistant safe and absorb the events unfolding. After a brief bout of linear direction, Dead Souls cuts players loose to pursue the main narrative or slip into the infected areas of the city to tackle side-quests that involve clearing areas and rescuing survivors. This creates two zombie filled environments in the same setting, with players combating zombies while working toward a narrative goal, or using entry points to simply run around and fill the endless hordes full of lead.


January 28, 2011

Demo Report – Catherine

Filed under: Editorial Rants — Tags: , , , , , , , — Jamie Love @ 5:50 pm

Catherine Demo
Catherine’s recently available Japanese Demo opens with a separate slice of animation, a montage that offers glimpses from iconic cinematic genres, including the biblical, the love story, the monster movie, and the horror film – and then the brief bit of video ends and the game’s protagonist, Vincent, enters the screen to face the first of two tastes from Catherine’s puzzle-block focused agenda. Film genres linger though, every one of those seen in that quick sequence showing some influence within the game proper.

Catherine’s animation builds on the seductive eye-candy of the Persona series, with a color palette and design aesthetic that is visually arresting, but which also shows new signs of maturity – and not simply because of the sexual psychology at the heart of Catherine’s most immediate and deliciously kinky appeal.

Whether through scenes featuring Vincent and girlfriend Katherine talking over tea, or the way a crime scene pulls back into a television report, and then further still to the bar where Vincent and his friends can see that television emitting signals, every shot and transition brings stylish cinematic sensibilities to the screen.

And then there is the playing…


January 13, 2011

Your Recommended Dose of Onechanbara Special

Filed under: News Feed — Tags: , , , , , , , — Jamie Love @ 7:29 pm

Onechanbara Special
On the list of PSP games I’d really like to see come to North America this year, another round of bikini zombie slaying with Aya gets something caught between a guilty nod and a gleeful shout-out.

I realize this makes me a bad person, I have an illness and I’ll admit to it, but PSP doses of repetitive slashing could prove the porridge Goldilocks would choose, at least where this franchise is involved – and if your significant other isn’t interested in playing co-op until their sword fills up with blood at night, then it’s probably best you find out now rather than later. Have no fear should that prove to be the case however, you can play the game’s multiplayer with an AI partner as well.

The game hits Japan on March 24th and D3 put out video showing Aya, Saki, Misery and the gang back at the grind fighting zombies, grayish brown blobs and a bear – I’m not sure any future release will ever top fighting a zombie killer whale though.


January 9, 2011

Trailer Park – Yes, Still More 3DS

Filed under: News Feed — Tags: , , , , , — Jamie Love @ 12:29 pm

Nintendo 3DS World Event Japan
I’m going to make an effort to get back to games that are coming out over the next few weeks today, but there’s no avoiding a video round-up as Nintendo’s 3DS Event fills YouTube with the off-screen joys of Star Fox and Paper Mario while presentation video involving Mii’s and AR Cards threaten to shatter your fragile grip on reality.



The Resident Evil Factor

Filed under: News Feed — Tags: , , , , , , , — Jamie Love @ 9:31 am

Resident Evil 3DS
I couldn’t help remembering over the weekend that it was pretty well ten years ago that Resident Evil played a major factor in my purchase of a GameCube – zombie exclusivity was a harsh mistress back then.

And even though zombies can be had by the bucketful today, watching Jill Valentine slowly move through the tight corridors of Revelations’ ship at sea brings back plenty of warm memories – the more things change, the more they stay the same I suppose.

Anyway, stir your own memories with an overdose of Resident Evil video from both the 3DS titles and let me know what you think.


January 8, 2011

Trailer Park – All Things 3DS

Filed under: News Feed — Tags: , , , — Jamie Love @ 10:43 am

Nintendo 3DS World Event Videos
Tecmo-Koei offers up over five minutes of video trailer-ing Dead or Alive: Dimensions for the 3DS, possibly confirming that bullets and daggers will fly out of the screen with lethal efficiency – the video also shows a list of moves players can apparently activate by tapping with the stylus.

Additional “all things 3DS” video offers up a different five minute ride, running through an overview of the hardware powering this brave new portable 3D future.


Good Morning 3DS

Filed under: News Feed — Tags: , , , — Jamie Love @ 9:51 am

Nintendo World 3DS Event
Nintendo’s Japanese 3DS event kicked off this weekend and Internet headlines erupted, particularly with the additional specs on the battery life – 3-5 hours when using the 3D in 3DS, and 5-8 hours when gaming the old fashioned way.

What’s interesting while slurping my coffee this morning is the list of titles slated for Spring and Summer 2011 via Nintendo’s 3DS page, which despite all the buzz Capcom has captured over the past few months show the biggest early contributors to the 3DS library so far as Ubisoft, Namco and Konami.

Ubisoft has 5 games listed – Combat of Giants: Dinosaurs 3D as a February 26th launch title, and Spring 2011 showing Ghost Recon: Shadow Wars, Splinter Cell 3D, Driver Renegade, and Rabbits Time Travel.

Another interesting tidbit is the initial launch pricing presently attached to February titles – Professor Layton and the Mask of Miracle launches alongside the system for 5,980 Yen ($72 USD) while Ridge Racer 3D runs 6,090 Yen ($73.3 USD) – assuredly making Nintendogs + Cats a steal at 4,800 Yen ($58 USD) – keep in mind those are just USD conversions and not final US pricing.

Plenty more bits of info litter Nintendo’s Japanese 3DS Site, so check it out.

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