Archive for February, 2011

MvC3 Promotional Art by Miho Mori
February 28, 2011

As always, click the image to embiggen’

[Art & Interview by Miho Mori courtesy of Capcom Unity]

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3DS: To Wait, or Not To Wait?
February 28, 2011

That is the question.

Right now I see myself wanting to wait until the inevitable re-design or new iteration of the Nintendo 3DS (when was the last time Nintendo didn’t do this?) but then again there’s always that possibility with each new console or hand-held system and at some point you’ve simply got to accept that you probably won’t ever have the best version unless you’re willing to hold off on all the great games until the end of the cycle.

Maybe the first price drop?

Just don’t know right now…

Xbox 360…Coming Home
February 24, 2011

I received some great news regarding my Xbox 360 a few days ago and I thought I’d share my excitement here for a moment.

As I’ve noted here recently, my brother-in-law and I halved the cost of the system several years ago and primarily use it to play co-op FPS’ when I visit (Rainbow Six: Vegas 1 & 2 probably take the top spot). I have the other current-gen consoles at my own home and was able to enjoy most of my favorite games on each of those, and this was the only console he had so I happily agreed to let it stay there most of the time. This worked out pretty well over the years though there were more than a handful of games that I was never really able to enjoy to their fullest.

Anyhow, apparently fortune smiled upon him last weekend and he ended up calling me to let me know that he had purchased a new 360 w/Kinect in an online auction for a swans song  and that I was welcome to take home the  old 360. Good for him, and now it appears I can finally play some of these exclusives that I’ve missed out on. A few that quickly come to mind are: Tales of Vesperia, Halo: Reach, and an indie game I’ve been harping on here at the Quester’s Log for the last month…Astroman! I played the demo late Saturday night and it’s even better than I had advertised. Come the first of the month, it’s mine!

[Astroman character art by gsilverfish]

MvC3: Signature Series Guide On Sale [Currently $10.99]
February 23, 2011

Just a heads up for Marvel vs.  Capcom 3 fans. Amazon.com currently has the MvC3 Signature Series Guide discounted to a paltry $10.99 (nearly half the retail price, and minus the tax). I’ve heard nothing but gushing praise about the depth the guide provides players thanks to the breadth of talent BradyGames was able to get to write the brick.

Shoryuken, for example, recently reviewed the guide and concluded:

What could have been a simple move-list for each character actually ended up as 397-page epic, filled with working strategies and tons of frame-data. What the four minds (including Joe Epstein and Ian Rogers) behind this guide were able to do should set a new precedent in paper-back guide publication.

I know I almost picked this up at full price at a local Game Stop last week I was so impressed with it, but I’m definitely glad I waited now! That said, be sure that you don’t hestitate too long on this deal if you’re interested in picking the guide up, these online deals don’t often last that long.

February 2010 Acquisitions
February 23, 2011

“Get Ready…Fight!”

I didn’t necessarily plan it, but I ended up picking up a lot more games in February then I had intended (and a few of these were part of late January’s orders). I simply ran across some great deals on games that I have been trying to hunt down and couldn’t pass them up. One of the areas of my collection I’ve been working on in the last couple of months specifically are 2-D & 3-D fighters and I’ve managed to make some real progress in that time without it hurting my wallet too badly. Now if I could just catch a break and finally get a couple of quality fighting sticks for these games without paying a king’s ransom…

Anyhow, here’s what I picked up in February:

(in alphabetical order)

  • Art of Fighting Anthology (PS2)
  • Capcom Fighting Evolution (PS2; New)
  • Darkstalkers Chronicle: Chaos Tower (PSP)
  • Donkey Kong Country Returns (Wii)
  • Dragon Quest VI: Realms of Revelation (DS; w/slime plush)
  • Fatal Fury Battle Archives Vol. 1 (PS2)
  • Fatal Fury Battle Archives Vol. 2 (PS2)
  • Metal Slug Anthology (PSP)
  • Might & Magic: Clash of Heroes (DS)
  • Neo Geo Battle Colosseum (PS2)
  • Radiant Historia (DS)
  • Red Steel 2 (Wii)
  • Samurai Shodown Anthology (PSP)
  • Shin Megami Tensei: Persona (PSP; Collector’s Edition)
  • Tekken 6 (Ps3; Greatest Hits)
  • Viewtiful Joe: Double Trouble (DS)
  • Xenogears! (PSN)
  • Yoshi’s Island (DS)

On the “retro” front (GBA and older for the purposes of these posts) I’m happy to say that I found several treasures as well:

  • Fatal Fury: First Contact (NGPC; complete in box)
  • Kirby Adventure (NES; complete in box)
  • Last Blade 2: Heart of the Samurai (Dreamcast)
  • Mega Man & Bass (GBA; complete in box)
  • Nintendo E-Reader w/Donkey Kong, Donkey Kong Jr., Mario Bros. and Game & Watch Collection

Ended up picking up several game-related items that may be of interest as well:

  • Knights in the Nightmare: Tome of Lost Souls Art Book
  • Lunar: Silver Star Harmony Strategy Guide
  • Samurai Shodown UFS Starter Deck (card game)
  • UFS Booster Deck (Samurai Shodown)

That should just about do it, and anything else I may stumble upon in the last few days of February here I’ll be sure to put in the next update. Really looking forward to firing all of this great stuff up!

Xenogears on the PSN This [Tuesday]!
February 21, 2011

You can almost hear the cheers throughout the ‘net following the news that Xenogears finally hits the PSN later this week. So many fans have been looking forward to the chance to play this again, and on the go if downloaded to the PSP, so this PSN update is no doubt going to make a lot of folks very happy.

I know the ability to play one of my all-time favorites on a hand-held system is definitely something of a dream come true. Who would have thought back then that you would be able to play Xenogears while on a lunch break!? So, yea, Tuesday’s PSN update can’t get here soon enough!

More on Xenogears from the Playstation blog’s The Drop:

Xenogears is a turn-based RPG with a combat system that unifies the Square’s Active Time Gauge feature as well as a newly created combo system. The game chronicles the adventures of a young reluctant warrior named Fei, who, after three years of residing in a small, remote farming village begins a long, tortuous quest to uncover his mysterious past. With no memory of his life before being placed in the village leader’s care three years earlier, Fei makes a violent and tragic break with his peaceful life and sets out upon a journey. Along the way, not only will his own past be discovered, but he’ll also unravel the mystery of the planet’s past and humanity’s role in relation to it.

Red Steel 2 Impressions (Wii w/Motion Plus)
February 21, 2011

A few weeks ago I began hearing a lot of talk about Red Steel 2 (Wii). It came strongly recommended by several review sources that I trust (all with gushing praise), and I liked the concept and overall look of the game, so after finding a great online deal last week for the Motion Plus bundle (which basically paid for the cost of the attachment) I bit the bullet and ordered it.

The game arrived late last week, and despite having a number of other games in the queue, I really wanted to fire this one up sooner than later. Being a dyed in the wool true blue Texan it’s an understatement to say a game like this appeals to me, so yesterday afternoon I spent a good 3-4 hours swinging the Wii Remote around the room, doing my best not to look like an idiot, but having a great time all the same. The accuracy of the Motion Plus controller really was impressive (it is necessary to play the game) and I immediately noticed the different nuances that the more controlled movement of the add-on allows. This really is that game that I think a lot of us wanted when the Wii-remote was first introduced and the majority of us envisioned the possibilities that sword fighting, and guns ablazing, might hold.

RS2 invites you don the hat of the last surviving member of the Kusagari Clan following his exile from the group (for reasons unknown as the game begins). The game kicks off as you find yourself tied to the back end of a motorcycle and drug over town until the hero manages to free himself. Not much else is known about your identity beyond this fact, though it’s clear that we’re dealing with an Eastwood type character infused with the skills of a legendary gunman and samurai. And, interestingly, it is this fusion of ‘East meets West’ that gives the game so much character and I’m surprised at just how well the Ubisoft team was able to make this work. In fact, the fusion seems pretty natural after you’ve played the game all of 5-minutes. I don’t imagine there’s going to be a grand narrative to all that’s happening, and so far there hasn’t been, but I don’t think that’s the point of this one. Instead, Red Steel 2 puts you in the boots of a bad#$@ hero, on a dangerously slippy slope, and let’s you become that unstoppable character you’ve always wanted to be — dual armed with a katana and six-shooter no less! I thought this whole approach was exemplified extremely well in a couple of early mission descriptions that informed the hero that ‘he was being hunted and that he might take this opportunity to start hunting them back!’ I love that stuff.

The combat is awful addicting, and upgrades for your character and weapons abound, and so far there’s always that extra incentive to just play for a few more minutes to see what’s around the corner. Additionally, the visuals take advantage of the cel-shading technique (one of my personal favorites) and they look mighty impressive on the Wii. I have seen minor complaints that the game looks a little ‘brown’ at times, but for me, so far they’ve achieved a great visual balance.

Red Steel 2 has definitely exceeded my expectations, and I imagine I’ll be rotating between this and Donkey Kong Country Returns for the foreseeable future. From what I’ve played, I can’t recommend it enough — definitely one you don’t want to miss.

 

Bengus’ Marvel vs. Capcom 3 Poster (High Res.)
February 18, 2011

Click image to embiggin’!

Bengus’ most recent Capcom-related piece and, no surprise, it’s a beaut!

[Source: Shoryuken]

SNK Stress Relievers…
February 18, 2011

Thursday evening ends the work week (spawned from hades itself this round) for me, and this one couldn’t come soon enough!

Fortunately, I chose to spend some down time tonight with King of Fighters R-2, Samurai Shodown 2, and Metal Slug: First Mission (as I mentioned earlier in the week) for the Neo Geo Pocket Color. I remain surprised at just how deep these little fighters are, and impressed at how much fun they pack into the games. I really would like to master all of these SNK fighting gems so I plan to spend a lot more time playing these in the weeks to come. Unfortunately, I do pretty much have to play directly under the light fixture in any given room to enjoy the games to their fullest given the lack of an effective back light, but regardless, this was definitely what the doctor ordered.

Hope you guys have a great weekend!

* Incidentally, my players of choice were Shiki and Terry Bogard from their respective series’.

Mega Man Legends 3: Capcom Servbot Designation
February 16, 2011

“‘Cause he’s got hiiiiiigh hopes!”

Mega Man Legends 3 is one of the games I’m most looking forward to in the coming year (or two?) and I’ve been following the Dev team in the official Devroom since the game was announced. One of the things I hadn’t been able to do because of site glitches, however, was sign up for my very own Servbot designation.

Well, looks like those glitches have been remedied and as of a few moments ago I was designated Servbot #002685. Surely this will take me places!

From the MML3 Dev Team:

Now’s the time to make this Devroom grow!! Getting the word out about this place and spreading its use across the globe is the best way to get our rocket off the ground!! Our greatest weapon right now is the Development Staff supporting this project! This game is going to be incredible! Why? Because we’ve got people working with us all over the world! That means you. So let’s put our all into launching this rocket. Lend me your strength!!

Go ahead, sign up yourself, maybe you’ll even make it into the game…