I’ve held back on this until the deluge of stuff had subsided. For those that haven’t been aware, the recent SEGA AGES release (Vol. 31 to be precise) is a pristine port of the 1995 arcade original Dennou Senki Virtual On. It was released yesterday but the build up to the release produced some cool stuff. The first being at Game Watch, where they posted a step by step guide to getting the PlayStation 2 port working online via Xlink Kai (which bodes well for the quality of the opposition we’ll meet online). The second big “drop” came from SEGA themselves, who updated the port’s site with a slew of interviews, breakdown on all the new secrets and lots of shiny wallpapers. The secrets in the game are of special note due to their unhinged genius. To kick off, you can play as the final boss Z-Gradt, which is just crazy enough as it is, then they followed that up by introducing a slew of special moves to the virtuaroids that originally lacked them but, at the same time, making sure that the new specials were in-line with their progeny in Virtual On Oratorio Tangram. To finish off, I think its worth clarifying that this is an arcade perfect port. It’s not even vaguely based on the Sega Saturn version, as many had originally feared, and they’ve even used all the original art assets. If people are curious on the reasons behind this, SEGA went and hired almost the entire team that made the original and the results really do speak for themselves. Considering the budget pricing it’s a wonderful bargain but unfortunately there isn’t any support for the Saturn TwinSticks (though the USB Saturn pad released recently is supported). You can get it here if you need to.
Update: Game Watch had another update about the game’s secrets but what makes it noteworthy is a very short movie they included with the update. It shows Temjin executing a “big four”. This is produced by doing a single frame cancel in close combat range and then firing off your right weapon. Normally you only get two large shots for a forward dash, this produces four regardless of the direction. Pretty cool that it’s in this version.