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The Obscurer Tribune # 53


Okay guys, it�s time to finally make a decision � you�ve got to choose, once and for all, whether to utterly ignore The Obscurer Tribune, or �Magnet School. Seriously, who has the time to so completely disregard both? You must be driving yourselves to drink out there!


PAL shmuppers, rejoice � top-notch compilation Raiden Fighters Aces is confirmed to be coming your way in about a month and a half, for around 20 GPB. Assuming that the port is left intact as capably as it was in the US version, do not miss this one!

It seems a bit odd that the ESRB blurb for DeathSmiles didn�t start making the rounds until the day it released (by the way, have you all BOUGHT IT YET?), but it�s now available for all your �partially-exposed pelvis� needs. By the way, as someone who�s played the import version, trust me, a �T� rating is more than sufficient here. (DToid coverage here.) Off to the side, a fellow c-blogger contributes some thoughts about the occasion � some similar sentiments are also on offer elsewhere.

Even after all this time, I still learn something new every day � I was under the impression that the original R-Type had already been ported to absolutely everything, but apparently it has yet to come to the iPhone. Naturally, though, this anomaly is about to be corrected.

Here comes another trailer for The Flying Hamster, with a bit of story exposition (which, of course, is always the most important thing for any shmupper to take into consideration).

The latest upcoming indie game to create some buzz around the shmupping community is Jamestown, a vertical-scrolling shooter featuring 4-player co-op and a theme based around the British colonization of Mars. So far it looks rather promising, so keep an ear to the ground for more news on this one!

While most of the impressions for Vampire Rage have been pretty good, this post on the front page has apparently lead to one on this thread at the shmups.com forum, where the game�s creator says that the game�s �cover art� will be changed in an upcoming patch, thanks to the bad reception it got here. Never forget, it�s you guys who make the magic happen!

The latest edition of shmup-centric video series �Bullet Heaven� features none other than XBLA Indie standout Shoot 1Up � if you haven�t at least tried the demo for this one (or spent the one measly dollar to buy it), be sure to get on that! If you can�t/won�t do so on XBLA, the game appears to be on the way to Windows Phone 7 � click here for a short interview with the developer, as well as a weird test video of the thing running super-fast.

American gamers should be able to get their greedy mitts on Sin and Punishment 2 by now � in case you need one more write-up to get you ready, here it is. Er, actually, make that two write-ups. Aaaaaand a c-blog review. AAAAND a front-page review. My initial take on this segment is looking pretty darn stupid right about now�

While they�re at it, Siliconera also contributes a few more words to the Hard Corps Uprising discussion.

Joystiq shares with us the contents of a concept art book for Alien Breed: Impact, perfect for the giant mutant bug alien-lover in you.

From the model company that brought you the �Type A� plane from DoDonPachi Dai-Ou-Jou comes�the �Type B� plane from DoDonPachi Dai-Ou-Jou! For a mere 166 bucks it too can be yours!

Over at the shmups.com forum, word was recently spread about Tap Dodge, a small Cafepress t-shirt printer with a handful of shmup themes, among others, featured in its collection. I am sorely tempted by the �Cho Aniki Men�s Gymnasium� tee.

Look out, Twitter users � the �Fail Whale� appears to have gotten a few upgrades.

Just in case you needed another reason or two to attend this years �Evolution� fighting tournament, consider this � not only will Marvel vs. Capcom 3 be playable, with the game�s producer there to present it, but the top competitors will receive special gold-colored MadCatz TE joysticks in addition to whatever else they win. So hurry up and finish that Skullomania cosplay outfit, time�s a-wastin�!

A (Japanese) price for BlazBlue: Continuum Shift DLC character Makoto has been set � it works out to between 7 and 9 U.S. dollars. Think they�ll try to drop her on us for that price? I�d honestly have rather paid a bit extra for the retail version to have her on the disc, even if that meant a small release delay�

If you�ve been frustrated by the decidedly-lacking online components of many recent fighting releases, NetherRealm studios promises a cure for what ails you, in the form of �pretty much� the most robust online system ever. Will it pretty much happen? Let�s hope so.

Just a rumor at this point, and frankly not very surprising if true, but supposedly even the recently-announced 3DS version of Dead or Alive will be doing�well, Dead or Alive things. (DToid coverage here.)

This one might be old news to some of you, but just to put it to rest once for all: the rumored glitch which allows you to play as Master Hand in Super Smash Bros. Melee? It�s real.

The Super Street Fighter IV portion of nilcam�s �ranbat� tournament nears its conclusion � here are the latest updates.

Podsumaki went freestyle this week and will go totally Mortal next time around � hide the kids!

As usual, the front page keeps us posted on the latest costume DLC releases for Super Street Fighter IV � gripe about them all you want, but chances are they look better than you do while playing the game. Also, you probably wouldn�t know it if nobody told you, but these sneakers are actually Street Fighter-themed � I guess it�s better than cheesy flashing lights and a muffled �ha-DO-ken!� with every footfall. (DToid coverage here.)

Remember the snippet quoted here a little ways back about how NISA is looking into publishing Neptune overseas? Well, make sure to check out the full interview with the company�s president, which contains several illuminating statements, most shockingly some harsh words for (former) partner Hit Maker. Also, if you�re interested in how some of NIS�s stuff sold, a handful of figures are here.

Speaking of Neptune, good and bad news on that front�at least that�s how I see it. Bad news first � thanks to a handful of Agarest-esque scene illustrations, the fan service factor for this game (which was hardly lacking to begin with) has been bumped up another notch. On a brighter note, the �console characters� theme is being taken further too � note the status screens, which contain ratings not only for �Strength�, �Agility� and the usual stuff, but �Clock Frequency� and �Memory� as well. It�d be hilarious if the 360 gal had an abnormally high �Heat� stat�make it happen, Compile Heart!

Aaaand speaking of fan service, Ar Tonelico III is set to receive some DLC � first up are five extra �episodes�, one of which is free, with the rest running two or three bucks apiece (check a trailer for them at the link). Moreover, there are free �patches� you can download to actually change the innate personality of one of your characters � want an instant �tsundere� type? You got it!

One more �good/bad news� post, this time for PAL RPG fans � the bad part, it looks like you�re not getting UMD releases of the Falcom games that Xseed recently picked up. The silver lining? You will be given the next best thing, namely downloadable versions, not long after the US physical copies get to market. Then again, you could also just import those. By the way, Joystiq has poted a brief preview of Ys Seven, and one of the commenters there links to this video demo I missed back when it first appeared.

Elsewhere in the Magical Land of Falcom, a trailer for Ys vs. Sora no Kiseki has gone live, and you are free to watch them yell stuff at each other as things explode; also, there�s a bit more on Zero no Kiseki, whose characters actually make their inaugural appearance in {Vs.

Trinity Universe should also be out by the time this issue goes to print (I�m still waiting for my RosenQueen LE in the mail), though another preview is here for the still-curious � if you�re playing it right now, keep an eye out for at least one �spoony bard� joke, among others. The official site has been updated too, if you want to snoop around there.

Persona 3 Portable, meanwhile, is out next week, and Siliconera has a second playtest up for your reading pleasure � Agent North, in the meantime, laughs at everyone else�s preliminary write-ups, going right ahead and reviewing the thing.

Here come some more screens of The 3rd Birthday � Squeenix certainly still knows how to bring the eye candy, if nothing else.

Recently it was mentioned that Xenoblade has six different composers working on its music � want to know a bit more about them all? Look no further. On slightly more worrying aural fronts, apparently the game�s characters talk a lot � hopefully there�s an option to quiet them down once their dialogue snippets start to repeat.

Siliconera handled Etrian Odyssey III screenshot duties last week � now, it seems, is DToid�s turn.

The second volume box set of Persona: Trinity Soul is now up for pre-order at NISA�s new online store. On a related note, two of the voice actresses from Toradora (another anime NIS is publishing) will be at the company�s Anime Expo panel (more info here) � also, if you�ve been having video quality issues with either of those two releases, NISA is apparently aware of them and working on a fix, so keep an eye on their site.

Aksys and Natsume will be at Anime Expo as well � the former, among other things, will be auctioning off some full-body Agarest pillows, while the latter will have Lufia: Curse of the Sinistrals in playable form.

You have almost certainly seen this Aegis figure before. You do not care. You will look at it again.

The most recent episode of Bit Transmission features Super Meat Boy maven Ed McMillen, so tune in if you need some extra protein.

More demo footage for Portal 2 is coming out, starting with a segment early in the game, featuring the new British-accented orb character. There are a few other videos floating around out there as well, though their footage has already been seen elsewhere (not that you shouldn�t watch them again, mind you). (DToid coverage here.)

3D WiiWare platformer Jett Rocket just came out, but if you�ve finished it then you already know that a sequel is in the works � hopefully Shin�en is better at keeping these sorts of promises than, say, the developers of Axelay.

More unofficial stuff here, but the rumored �Team ICO Collection� has been listed by Amazon. One part that I certainly hope is unofficial is the 70-Euro price tag! Sony themselves throw a little more fuel on the fire: when asked about the possibility of HD remakes for Team Ico�s stuff, their reply was �We wants it!�

Joystiq took a crack at a MonkeyPaw Games interview last week, and now Siliconera does the same, taking a particularly PC Engine-centric angle throughout.

Looks like PS Home is taking a page from a Chrono Trigger mini-game, courtesy of NIS�next time you�re there (*snicker*) feel free to bet on the Prinny races and win some (virtual) stuff. The question is, can you run around in front of the competition to slow them down? (DToid coverage here.)

Do you want a plushie of Chibi-terasu from Okamiden? Of course you do. Unfortunately, you probably can�t have it, since it�s only available in Capcom�s Japanese online store and costs almost 60 bucks. If you do get one and blog about it, though, it�s likely an instant Topsauce in the recaps. (DToid coverage here.)


Speaking of drinking, I�m out for this installment�as always, 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)