November 16, 2010

Gamesugar Contest – Ys: The Oath in Felghana

Filed under: News Feed — Tags: , , , , , , , , , — Jamie Love @ 7:52 pm

Contest Ys The Oath in Felghana
I’m confident that no other title on the PSP this year, or perhaps ever, has offered up the endurance run that is Xseed’s latest dose of Falcom’s Ys series to hit North America. I’m also certain that the Falcom faithful wasted no time in devouring the release. But while I’m grinding away on some form of a review for the game, it seemed a noble cause to try and spread the Ys agenda with a giveaway in the meantime.

Courtesy of Xseed Games, we have a chance to give five of you a digital download copy of Ys: The Oath in Felghana, pretty sweet right?

All you have to do to enter is leave a comment on this post telling us why you need a copy by 11:59 pm est on Sunday November 21, 2010.

Curious about the game after hearing some talk on the street? Did you happen to run out of blood to sell right when it released? All reasons are welcome here, because we’ll draw five names at random the following Monday afternoon and a winner could be you.

July 14, 2010

Your Recommended Dose of Ys Seven

Filed under: News Feed — Tags: , , , , — Jamie Love @ 1:44 pm

Ys Seven
The above screen may cause you to think that “Michael Wootton” is a curious choice of name for a random RPG character, but it in fact belongs to one of the winners of XSEED’s contest that offered fans a chance to attach their name to the upcoming release of Ys Seven – also known as the first shot in a landslide of Falcom goodness for your PSP.

Ys Seven, along with one very sweet collector’s edition, is set to release summer 2010 – which caused me to mention that it was summer 2010, which in turn caused someone to remind me that the summer doesn’t end until the first of September. If that sounds unhelpful, Amazon says August 17.

In the meantime XSEED sent that screen along with a bit of art, which you can catch after the break.


July 8, 2010

Forests Of Eternity – The Art of Etrian Odyssey

Filed under: News Feed — Tags: , , , , , , , — Jamie Love @ 3:20 pm

Forests of Eternity
Following the tradition of Atlus spoiling their fans comes Forests of Eternity – your 60 page full-color artwork pre-order bonus for the upcoming DS RPG Etrian Odyssey III: The Drowned City. Atlus mentions that the book offers up character designs and concept art from the entire Etrian Odyssey series.

While I haven’t been keeping up with Etrian Odyssey much over the last month, I’m glad to see another artbook on the way, especially from the publisher responsible for my much cherished Knights in the Nightmare Tome of Lost Souls.

Etrian Odyssey III is set for release on September 21, 2010 btw.

Check out the full image here, or catch a virtual sample of the book over here.

June 30, 2010

Catching Up With Half-Minute Hero

Filed under: Editorial Rants — Tags: , , , , , , , — Jamie Love @ 1:45 pm

Half-Minute Hero
While perfectly suited to quick traveling bouts of play, it wasn’t hard losing an entire day to Half-Minute Hero when I finally caught up with the 2009 XSEED PSP release last week. The game offers four primary modes of play, allowing it to boast a marketing pitch that unites a shooter, RPG, and RTS on a single UMD, all thematically tied together by the thirty-second hook that makes this release the bat-shit crazy and addictive game it is.

Evil Lord 30 mode sunk its teeth in the deepest, an RTS campaign wherein players partake in a summoning spree while guiding the vainest Evil Lord in existence toward returning the only woman he may love more than himself back to human form after being transformed into a bat.

Each quick stage along the path to victory allows players to summon four monster types and seek out elemental gods to overcome armies while blood crazed techno-rock music breathes heavy in the ears – I want to suggest it’s that heavy sort of breathing you get when more familiar gaming tunes go bar hopping with the Future Sound of London.


April 9, 2010

Review – Fragile Dreams: Farewell Ruins of the Moon

Filed under: Reviews — Tags: , , , , , , , — Jamie Love @ 7:31 pm

Fragile Dreams
Wandering through the decaying monuments to civilization that litter the world of Fragile like dead museums, Seto attempts to give words of justification to his obsessive search for a survivor, Ren, the girl with silver hair, who leaves a trail of cave art chalk drawings on the crumbling walls like breadcrumbs meant to lead the player toward understanding the abandoned landscape.

Reflecting on the sight of a pale moon against Fragile’s chilling sky, Seto realizes that if he can never tell another human about that sight, never share the feelings it stirred within him with another living person, that the memory and moment will never achieve meaning and ultimately be lost.

Fragile Dreams is a game possessed of a goal, a hope of making a connection with the player. And while this is ideally the goal of any release, this particular title continually reflects upon this need as the only way in which the experience of the game can achieve a sense of meaning that extends beyond the disc containing that hope.


April 6, 2010

Catching Up With Lunar: Silver Star Harmony

Filed under: Editorial Rants — Tags: , , , , , , , , — Jamie Love @ 12:55 pm

Lunar: Silver Star Harmony
Lunar sets the stage by opening with a bit of classic RPG drama, pitting archetypal heroes against a formidable evil – the game seemingly beginning where most others would end. The ensuing battle, which players cannot lose, offers a taste of the combat system and some understanding toward the world awaiting an expanded narrative.

And when the heroes have proved victorious, the player discovers that these events are being recounted for two children, Alex and Luna, living in a cozy home on a hill – two characters who quickly emerge as young adults, ready to have the player assume responsibility for them as they set off on their own adventures, greatly inspired by the heroic tales they grew up listening to.

The sequence represents a clever approach to establishing the world of Lunar, putting some ground beneath the player’s feet about where they are starting out from, as well as foreshadowing the challenges that wait ahead. It’s a beautiful way to open a game, offering some instant justification as to why the title has seen so many revisits over the years, revisits that cause the world nostalgia to easily attach itself to this PSP remake.

And while that word fits for anyone familiar with earlier versions, nostalgic leanings don’t keep Silver Star Harmony from proving as competitive and compelling as any other on-the-go RPG in recent memory.


March 30, 2010

Farewell My Love, and Tomorrow We Shall Meet Again

Fragile Dreams
When Muramasa released last year, I understood why some criticized the game for not offering more to collect, find, and simply “do” while running through the crafted backdrops Vanillaware paints with a level of detail and skill worthy of history’s artistic masters. I didn’t agree with any of those people, but I grasped the complaints of those that weren’t drawn into the real depth of that living-breathing world just beneath the digital brush strokes of painted splendor those same people saw as the game’s central draw.

When it comes to Fragile, I can already hear a similar chorus not so thoroughly impressed with the way the furnishings of the apocalypse are offered on the Wii. Part of me enjoys a ruined world full of junk to collect and strange personalities to catalog – the world of Fallout does make for good stories from the road.

And yet, Fragile is carving a path that allows me to justifiably use the word unique for once, exploring a neglected aspect attached to the end of civilization – the immense and chilling isolation that leaves stray animals to inherit the earth.


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