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The Obscurer Tribune # 43


This thing just keeps getting more and more monstrous…I’m half-tempted to take a break from it again. But it knows I’ll be back. I always come back.


Ketsui X should finally be out in Japan (and en route to me) by the time you read this – in the meantime, check out the official site for a video of this version’s exclusive “X Mode” which (I think) hasn’t been linked here before. Note the remixed soundtrack and new bullet-canceling elements. Some additional footage of Arcade mode can be seen here (fast-forward to about two minutes in), while a look at the artwork displayed via the in-game Gallery is here (a higher-quality MP4 version is this way).

A trailer for Fast Striker, the next shmup from NG:Dev.Team (the Last Hope and DUX guys) is available for download at the game’s official site, as is some footage and photos of a preliminary play-test. Not looking too bad so far, methinks.

If you’re waiting for the fix that allows ESPGaluda II to play on third-generation iPod Touches, it would seem that it’s almost ready.

According to this topic on the shmups.com forum, Cave’s 2002 shooter DoDonPachi Dai-Ou-Jou is just now making an appearance on IGS’s PGM arcade board. I can’t think of any reason why this would be happening, especially since the game is relatively easy to come by now…I mean, they already tweaked it with Black Label, what else are they aiming to do here?

According to this link there’s going to be a two-disc “Arrange” album out featuring the music of Darius Burst – moreover, pre-orderers will get an extra disc which includes a selection of tracks from various other Taito games. Any hardcore-enough Zuntata fans out there to snag this?

In semi-shmup news, US gamers are going to have to wait a bit longer for Sin and Punishment 2 – it’s been knocked back from June 7th to the 27th. Europe, however, seems to have dodged the bullet, and will still be getting the game on May 7th. (DToid coverage here.)

Meanwhile, if you’re still hoping that a new “true” Star Fox game someday comes to pass, those nuts over at Platinum Games have your back – in fact, big cheese Hideki Kamiya openly hopes that a mob from Nintendo walks in to his office one day, points a gun to his head, and demands he make it. I’d sure love to recap THAT news item! And eh, why not, have this too.

Here’s a video preview of the XBL version of Metal Slug XX – seriously, who decided on that cheapo hidden prisoner right at the beginning? Booooo!

Stride Gum is holding another “Save the Arcades” competition (i.e. play a game, “donate” your points to an arcade of your choice, the place with the most points gets some money), and the game on offer this year is Cowbots 2010, a Robotron-esque offering. Give the game a shot, and check out the developers’ website as well.

Tomopop’s got a review of a recently released Touhou figure, specifically recurring shrine maiden protagonist Reimu.

This week’s bit of Space Invaders-based artwork comes courtesy of c-blogger munkee.

de BLOO’s got more video for Super Street Fighter IV, as well as info on the “bonus” stuff for those who purchased the original game – specifically, certain stuff will be easier to unlock, and you’ll also have access to two new “colors” for characters, which are actually “ink” and “sketch” effects similar to those seen in the PC release. Nothing groundbreaking, but better than nothing. Then again, there’s some free DLC and probably-not-free avatar items in the pipeline too (video here). Also, watch a Guy vs. Ibuki match at Siliconera, and know that this is likely happening (or just happened) as you do so. Finally, don’t forget to pick up your thumb fighters next week!

IS MAHVEL BAYBEE! Yes, ladies and gentlemen, the rumors were true: Marvel vs. Capcom 3 is coming to PS3 and 360 next Spring (though it’s apparently been in development for some time already). As was also rumored, the graphical style is similar to that used in Street Fighter IV and Tatsunoko vs. Capcom – check the trailer at the link to see for yourself. The only thing so far that worries me is the assurance that the game will have a “deep story”…as far as I’m concerned, games like these shouldn’t try to make much sense. Well, as long as the fighting itself is fun that shouldn’t be too big of a deal. (DToid coverage here.) On the c-blogs Trev and GuitarAtmoik each take a whack (or two) at deciphering who else might be in the cast – the front page follows suit . Kotaku also posts some notes on how the game’s creators are going about finalizing the roster. I’d link the various wish lists too, but this item’s already long enough (though I will mention this amusing piece of artwork). Oh, and Udon says there may be a comic in the offing.

Of course, none of the above actually matters at all – Capcom vs. Eric Ruth Games is in the house!

It looks like the two latest fighters confirmed to appear in King of Fighters XIII are Vice (yay) and Takuma (eh…). Tengu mask or GTFO!

The XBLA version of King of Fighters 2002: Unlimited Match is coming our way sometime this Spring – check the link for a video of Kyo beating the snot out of the Ikari team. As happy as I am that this game is coming to the West in some form, I still wish I could pick up a copy for the ol’ PS2…without paying a premium to import, that is.

And you Europeans thought that the wait for BlazBlue was long! Turns out that you’ll also be getting Guilty Gear XX Accent Core Plus sometime in the third quarter of this year – the PS2, PSP, and Wii will all be getting it, but there’s no word on whether or not any bonus stuff (like the soundtrack CD included with the PS2 version in the USA) also made the cut.

Siliconera has posted a bit more media for Twinkle Queen – how much, exactly? Eh, I’d say one and a half new images.

In case you’ve been keeping up with the “Balanced Brawl” project (a fan effort to improve character balance in Super Smash Bros. Brawl), you might be aware that previous methods to get it running on your Wii could be a bit…extravagant. You might also be pleased to learn that an SD card shortcut has recently been implemented.

It’s a bit after the fact, but this goofy trailer for Final Fight: Double Impact is still worth a watch. Mike Haggar for re-election! By the way, PS3 users, Double Impact won’t work on your system unless you’re signed into the PSN – yup, it’s DRM tiem! Rest assured, though, Capcom is vewy, vewy sowwy for not telling you about this before you forked over cash for it. Ain’t technology grand? (DToid coverage here and here.)

Wry Guy’s “Fatal Impact” tournament is starting in earnest today – click that link to watch a pair of entertaining sparring matches. Brackets are here.

Metallion writes up a great Monthly Musing about a time when he managed to meet (and interview!) one of his favorite fighting game players from Japan. Bon appetit!

Looks like BigMex isn’t the only guy around here willing and able to spin a worthy yarn on fighting game character design – The Faux-Bot pens up a nice feature on the original eight World Warriors from Street Fighter II, and how they’ve kept their place in gamers’ collective consciousness over the years.

It won’t die! C-blogger Dreamweaver presents something of a counterpoint on Dead or Alive Paradise.

Namelessted is hoping to get a few people together in the Phoenix area to play some Super Street Fighter IV this weekend. How he already has a copy of the thing I’m not sure, but whatever, he also has beer!

Dell appears to be discounting some stuff this weekend – to whit, if you pre-order Super Street Fighter IV from them you get ten bucks off, and they’ve also got the “non-tournament” SFIV stick (360 version) for 35 bucks.

Here's a visualization of the "history of fighting games", as recently voiced by someone from Capcom. Warning - nerd rage imminent!

This article over at Tomopop showcases a whole bunch of figures, including Mature and Elizabeth from King of Fighters. On weirder fronts there’s also this set of “chibi-fied” characters from Lucky Star cosplaying as the Street Fighter cast. On a semi-related note, did you know that Capcom producer Yoshinori Ono apparently takes a little Blanka figurine with him everywhere?

Finally, do you remember the old fan-made video which depicted the Street Fighter cast in their later years? Well, now we’ve got one showing them during their awkward high school phase (y’know, because they’re not weird enough already). Poor Blanka, having to go through that period as a…ginger.

We mere mortals will have to wait another month or so for the release of 3D Dot Game Heroes, but Herr Sterling has already posted a front page review of the thing; Joystiq’s equivalent is here. Atlus has also released this amusing new “vignette” video (DToid item here).

In spite of myself I can’t help but be a bit giddy over upcoming console-parodying RPG Neptuneclick here for some (fan-servicey) artwork and screens. You can also look around here for an early gander at some of the company-specific characters that back up the “main” console-based ones.

The final official blog entry for Hexyz Force is out now – this one offers some insight into the somewhat unusual localization process Atlus used to do justice to the unique story structure of the game. And now we wait…

I THINK that the Tribune has made mention of Metal Max 3 at some previous point – anyways, Siliconera has an overview of the game’s classes, as well as some new screenshots, on offer, so stop by and check them out.

Here’s another trailer for Xenoblade – more stuff’s coming down from the sky, and it’s a lot meaner this time! (DToid coverage here.) A bit more info on the story can be read here.

After briefly teasing fans about it, Falcom has revealed that it’s putting out a new entry in its long-running Legend of Heroes series. It appears to be headed to the PSP sometime this year – check out some art and screens. (DToid coverage here.

Check out some screens showing off a couple of the new unit types to be introduced in Yggrda Unison. Those tiger dudes do not look to be taken lightly!

Looks like Square is digging up the ghosts of Final Fantasy VIII with its iPhone RPG Chaos Rings, which should be – apparently dungeons get tougher as your characters level up, giving you both extra challenge and access to better items. The ability to equip and use certain monster abilities is also in here – overall, not sounding too bad at all, methinks. (DToid coverage here.) A bit more info on the battle system has also surfaced.

It’s been awhile since we heard much of anything about The Third Birthday, but the game’s producer recently Twittered that the game is “in the middle of being finished” (interpret that as you will), and also revealed that Hexadrive (the company behind Rez HD) is helping to make it. Still not too much to go on, but at least we know the thing is still out there someplace.

Resonance of Fate is another RPG I haven’t been following as closely as I probably ought to have, but DToid just put up its front-page review if you’re interested. Is there a demo for this? If so I’ll have to try it out…

One more reason for me to be iffy about Arc Rise Fantasia – the dubbing is pretty awful.

Siliconera has dug up a new set of Super Robot Taisen OG: Lord of Elemental screenshots, mostly showcasing several characters’ various attacks.

The handful of impressions I’ve sniffed out for Mimana Iyar Cronicles haven’t been encouraging, but in case you’ve picked up a copy you can find some codes to unlock extra stuff at this link.

If any European Prinny jockeys are still waiting for the Disgaea 3 trophy patch, it’s coming on the 13th of next month.

The Tribune only just got wind of Knights of the Phantom Castle recently, but I’m sure you’re still happy to hear us report that it’s now on sale for half price through May 11th.

Since I made a mention or two of Ragnarok DS, I suppose it’s only fair to make a quick mention of Maple Story DS, as well as link you to a short commercial video.

The PSP version of Ys: Oath in Felghana is out this week in Japan, and Siliconera has posted an article about it along with a trailer – I’m not sure whether or not I ever linked said trailer here before, so just to be safe here’s the link.

Okay, it’s settled – The Last Ranker will have a label saying “RPG” right there on the box, so I’ve seen enough to officially put it into this section of the Tribune. Oh, and the game has received an official Japanese release date of July 15th.

Well don’t that beat all – remember Class of Heroes 2G, the PS3 port of the PSP game? Remember how sure I (and presumably pretty much everyone) was that it would be a downloadable title? “Suck on this!”, answers Acquire – “We’re going full-priced physical copy over here!” Um, so there. Anyways, the previous link also includes a list of the new features being added to this edition.

I personally have trouble stomaching “super-cliché” RPGs no matter what kind of window-dressing is on them, but the fact that Breath of Death VII is only a buck on XBLA might interest some others.

Tray Ben’s monthly musing gives the “Answer” portion of Persona 3: FES an E for Effort.

Ever wanted a time/date/weather indicator like the one in Persona 4 for your desktop? Go here!

You know that statue of Kos-Mos from Xenosaga that you’ve already had a couple of looks at? Well, have another one. Same goes for this figure of Velvet from Odin Sphere. Then, believe it or not, there’s a relatively new one for you, of Aigis from Persona 3.

It’s official! We already got wind of plans to bring Okamiden Westward, but now Capcom’s confirmed it, though only to the point of saying it’ll get here sometime in 2011 (and apparently not on the iPhone or iPad). On the bright(er) side, there are two new videos at that first link and a handful of comments from the producer too, so check ‘em out! (DToid coverage, and screens, over here.) There’s also a quick item on how “Chibi-terasu” first came to be, and some hands-on impressions here.

Less than a month to go now before Trauma Team hits the shelves (assuming it’s not delayed again), and Atlus has posted a feature about the game’s multiplayer aspects up on its official website – there’s a short video there too, so stop by and check things out. Siliconera also has some impressions of the Forensics sections.

I’m happy to see that DToid is keeping up the coverage of Flip’s Twisted World – the ol’ cartoon-style 3D platformer needs a bit more representation these days. Anyways, check out some new screens.

Speaking of platformers, have a look at a suitably silly trailer for Earthworm Jim HD – while you’re there you can also find how to enter a related contest, if you’re willing to prove yourself as the undisputed Biggest Jim Fan In the World. (DToid coverage here.)

Der Zimmerman posts a new trailer for Space Ark – bonus obscurity points to him for the Plump Pop namedrop!

Both fighting- and shmup-related news here, so into the Miscellaneous section it goes - we've got official release dates for goofy create-a-fighter Photo Dojo (May 10th) and vert-scroller Metal Torrent (May 24th), both on DSiWare.

Sometime over this summer, Japanese Hatsune Miku fans will have a chance to play Project Diva on the PS3 – a new “Dream Theater” download will be available, and if you’ve got the two systems, the game, and a USB cable you can transfer everything, including save files, onto the big fella, which also kicks the graphics up a notch. No indication yet of how much the download might cost though…

You probably already knew this was coming, but in case you needed confirmation, yes, Portal 2 will be at E3. And if you’re like me, you probably won’t be. *sniffle*

If you just can’t wait until What Did I Do To Deserve This, My Lord? 2 (which has the first game hidden alongside it) comes out, The Game Formerly Known As Badman has been renamed and re-posted on the PSN – to its credit, though, it’s only eight bucks now. (DToid coverage here.)

I’m not sure how interested I might be in actually playing it, but for the sake of it sheer bizarreness alone I have to at least make mention of upcoming iPhone something-or-other Crazy Test.

German Sakura Wars fans (there have to be some, right?) take note – Manganet is holding a contest related to the game, so give it a shot if you feel up to it

C-blogger moshboy keeps on doing what he does, this time linking us to an ongoing list of indie game developers.

A fellow shmup forumer is trying to drum up some interest in the “Devastation” tournament coming to Phoenix, AZ in June – while the event is most notable for its fighting game competitions, this year they’re adding a puzzler competition to the mix (Super Puzzle Fighter II Turbo HD Remix, Bust a Move Plus, Magical Drop III, and Pokemon Puzzle League are tentatively on offer), so if you’re in the area be sure to drop in!

Finally, as someone of partial Norwegian descent I couldn’t help but link the fact that Muscle March was the top-selling WiiWare game in Norway recently – I have never been prouder of my heritage than I am right now.


Back to my will-it-ever-actually-come-out other project…’til next week, thanks for reading and 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.


'Magnet School


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



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


The Forgotten Essentials

Part 1: RPGs
Part 2: Shmups
Part 3: Fighters
Part 4: Puzzlers


The Obscurer Tribune



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


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


Non-DT Writing


Saturn Shooter Rundown
PS1 Shooter Rundown
PS2 Shooter Rundown
Shmups 101
Shmups That Defined the Genre
"Hidden Gem" Shmups


Shadow Hearts


Unofficial Shmup Glossary (shmups.com, WIP)
My Backloggery (Warning: Inherent Shamefulness May Be Too Intense for Some Readers)