News: Cima the Enemy, coming to Japan

FS_01.jpg It’s one of those rare examples of (decent) quality games which are developed in Japan but only released in Western territories – until this Fall, that is. Marvelous Interactive is preparing a Japanese version of this obscure action RPG for the Game Boy Advance, according to Famitsu. Developed by the veteran Neverland Company (Chaos Seed, Estpolis Denki, Shining Force Neo), Cima: the Enemy will get the name of ‘Frontier Stories’ for the Japanese market and be released on October 27th.

News: Castlevania Resurrection interview

cvr.jpgCastlevania Resurrection was to be the second 3D CV after the poorly-received N64 game. It was planned for the Dreamcast, developed in the US, and by most accounts, wasn’t very good. Given that, it’s quite interesting to read this interview with art director Greg Orduyan. Check out his website as well, to see what his ideas were for character design, keeping in mind that he finds current artist Ayami Kojima‘s work just ‘okay.’

News: San Francisco NES club

Can’t be sure how legit this is, but walking around Haight St. on tuesday I came across a flier with the Konami Code across the top of it. It reads (typos removed): “The SF area’s official ‘old school Nintendo’ fun club is here!! Be a member of an elite club dedicated to all good nintentions. Club activities will include, and absolutely not be limited to: regular meetings at local coffee shops where we will play our favorite NES games, monthly competitions to show off our NES skills and tricks, game trading, and memorabilia show and tell!! Membership fee is 80% showing up and 20% donation of your choice, and will include club t-shirt and ID card. Contact oldskulnes @ yahoo.com for more info, or call (removed), and remember ‘now you’re playing with power!’

So it looks interesting. If you’re in the SF area, might want to drop this person a line. Not sure if they’ve actually thought it through past the fliering stage, but there it is anyway.

Edit: There’s also a craigslist entry, where you can see why I bothered to edit the typos…

News: Zaimudaijin Ninatte Yosan o Tsukurou! ~ Yosan Sakusei Game ~

zei.jpg Japan is having a hard time with their national budget, as the country faces a debt of over 538,000 billion yen. The japanese ministry of finance chose an original media to inform the population about this issue (and to show them that each possible answer would bring its own share of new complications) with the early july launch of a free game on their webpage, Zaimudaijin Ninatte Yosan o Tsukurou! ~ Yosan Sakusei Game ~ (which roughly translates as “Let’s pretend we’re the minister of finance and work on the budget! ~ The budget making game ~”). The game, which is already the most popular section of their website, almost always ends up with a report telling you the national debt issue will go on for another generation. Saving Japan suddenly becomes slightly less sexy than in the days of Godzilla and Ultraman.

News: HaneHane Paradise

hanepara_game4.pngKoji Wada recently released another nice freeware based on his memories of old arcade games he liked as a child: HaneHane Paradise. It’s a screen clearing action platformer in the same vein as Bubble Bobble, Snow Bros. and Saboten Bombers. The game is filled with numerous references to various famous titles of the eighties, both in gameplay and graphics. Koji wada is already responsible for two noticable efforts : the addictive bullet grazing game Skratch it! and the retrofantastic racer New Oldies GP.

News: GPX2 unveiled

gp.jpgAs you might have heard earlier today, Korean company Gamepark presented the GPX2, which is indeed the successor to the illfated GP32. The GPX2 is yet another attempt at challenging the mainstream handheld market by providing a system filled with multimedia applications and a very open policy on homebrew development. One good news is that the system is supposed to be cheaper at launch than the actual GP32. Check the official website for technical specifications ; it looks like the device is still mostly focused on 2D.

<Brandon’s note: The system uses a dual ARM9 processors, one for general processing, and a separate one for video, which should make this pretty decent for multimedia. The sound specs don’t look much higher, but it should still make a semi-decent MP3 player.>

The GP32 was one of the most promising systems in the 2D-centric market and has one of the strongest homebrew software followings, so there’s a good chance the GPX2 might benefit from the same. Alas, Sony’s multimedia policy behind the PSP, as well as homebrew developers taking full advantage of the numerous security failures on both the DS and the PSP make GPX2′s utility less flagrant than the GP32′s in the calmer times of the GameBoy Advance’s quiet dominance.

Edit: removed stupid error from brandon – the GP32 used SMC, not SD cards. Thanks Lawrence!

News: About the AtomisWave’s demise

awave.jpg Rumors about SegaSammy putting a stop to the AtomisWave have been sprawling since last spring’s Sega private AM show, and The Stinger Report has had a number of writings on the matter over the last few weeks. This arcade news website needs subscription to be consulted, but TSR’s editor kindly provided a related news digest on MMC yesterday. It’s recaps the origins of the AW’s existence, the issues it faced with the competition of Taito‘s TypeX and Sega’s own Naomi, and what solutions SegaSammy seems to be opting for in order to replace their ill-fated system.

News: Atari retro watch

atariwatch.jpg
Retrogaming is getting more and more mainstream. After the small buzz around their Flashback console, Atari intends to keep toying with young adults’ nostalgia by producing, in cooperation with Fossil, a retrowatch line “featuring graphics from some of the games that catapulted the game-maker to fame in the mid-80′s“. More details here. Thanks to forum member Guardian Final for pointing this out.