News: Steal Princess images

stealprincess.jpgThe game has been mentioned other places (been on my to-do list for a month, hooray!), but if you haven’t seen, Steal Princess has an official site. It’s being developed by Climax of Landstalker fame (and published by Marvelous). The site will open in earnest in December (soon!), and a visit to the Climax blog reveals nothing more than the fact that president Kan Naito has visited Monaco. Great for him! The game has a good title anyway. According to a Famitsu preview, the game seems to be 3D with 2D prerendered sprites, in the classic Landstalker isometric perspective that some people love to punish themselves with. And it’s for DS, naturally.

News: Beggar Prince 3rd printing

beggarprince-news.jpgSpeaking of Oldergames (they distributed the first run of Beggar Prince, as I recall), the 2006-released Genesis RPG is getting its third and final (so they say) print run. The first two runs were 900 copies all told, so I would guess this one will be rather small. They’ve changed the cover art this time around (to the awesomely frightening image you see on the left – here is the old one), and fixed a bug that prevented the game from being played on CDX, X’Eye, Nomad, Laseractive, or 32x systems. It should play on anything now, PAL or NTSC. More box/cart shots and suchlike over here. Still only $40, still rather tempting!

News: Oldergames for sale-ish

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Oldergames is ‘maybe’ up for sale, according to co-founder RW Bivins, who says that they’ll sell the company essentially if somebody makes a decent offer. I assume this includes whatever releases they still had upcoming. Perhaps most amazingly, through this announcement I discovered the company’s investor relations page. If you were ever curious to know what kind of money a company selling unreleased Sega CD games makes, this is your chance. It also shows the disc cost versus selling price, which is pretty interesting – but these profits don’t include whatever money needs to be paid to the original rights holders (where applicable). If you look at the breakdown by game, Jack Sprite and Plunderball were their most popular releases. They each made a profit of $5,680 at a profit margin of $14.20 each, meaning they sold 400 copies. Most curious. Most likely it wouldn’t be too expensive, but it’s unclear how much you’d get for your money.

Anyway, they’re considering selling Oldergames to focus on their Knurdz Media brand, which seems to consist of a potential retail store, a game site, and an IT business called Mr. FixIT. The latter has a satisfied customer review from Knurdz/Oldergames’ other co-founder John Campbell. Eep.

News: KOF98, back to the arcades

kof98um.pngMost will say that it actually never left, but the most popular KOF game ever is getting an update, which is now scheduled for the arcades too. The PS2 version of The King of Fighters ’98: Ultimate Match has been in development for almost 2 years now, and supposedly it’ll be out next January. It will be the base, according to the latest issue of Arcadia Magazine, of the now-officially-announced-for-the-spring version, which is specifically for the arcades. Which makes us wonder, of course, what system will SNK Playmore be using for this iteration — Taito’s Type-X doesn’t look like the best choice, you know (not that it has too many options, anyway).

News: ACE3 Display Awards

ace3_display_award.jpgThis was posted up on the official Another Century’s Episode website fairly recently and it’s about From Software/Banpresto giving awards to shops that managed to display the latest installment with the most gusto. It’s a bit bonkers but also rather fun at the same time. Some of the award titles are also a tad crazy as well.

It’s also worth pointing out that the Special Vocal Version of the second game will be released in the next few days. This uses the technology from the third game that allowed full blown audio tracks (in this case classic anime opening songs) to stream from the disc. It’s pretty cool that they’re doing this (and at a more budget price too no less).

To finish off, it’s also worth pointing out (as nobody else has yet) that the OG mecha used in ACE3 (called the Ixbrau, it’s the blue mecha in the top right of the photo in case you’re wondering) was designed by a chap called Takayuki Yanase. He used to work at From Software years ago, namely on Armored Core 2 and Murakumo (for the latter he had a large involvement with the mecha design) but then left to try his wares in the anime industry (you’ll have seen a lot of his work in Eureka 7 without realizing it most probably). Anyway, he’s now working on the latest Gundam series and pretty much helming the designwork (personally, I think his work on ACE3 was much better though).

News: Kid’s Fighter

kidsfighters.jpgI found this while checking out Nihon System’s page a while ago. Nihon System makes…stuff, and I think are pretty much/confusingly maybe the same as Nihon Bussan, which is about to release Crazy Climber for Wii. The game in question here is Kid’s Fighter, a competitive roulette game starring three cats names Fatty, Smart, and Pinky. Fantastic. Kid’s Fighter is an awesome name for anything, and I applaud Nihon System in their efforts, even when said efforts result in frightening Nippon Ichi Software-distributed monstrosities. Speaking of Nippon Ichi, they’re releasing Jaleco’s rather cute Puchi Puchi Virus in the U.S., so keep an eyeball peeled for that.

News: Yukinko Daisenpuu ~Sayuki to Koyuki no Hie-Hie Daisoudou~

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The long-titled Yukinko Daisenpuu ~Sayuki to Koyuki no Hie-Hie Daisoudou~ now has an official site. It’s coming out for Wii, full priced unfortunately, but looks quite interesting as a 2D action shooting game, in the vein of Pocky & Rocky, et al. Just a static image with some screens, but better than nothing! Oh yes – coming out in December for 6,090 yen, tax included.

[Recap’s note: Though it’s really hard to tell, Yukinko Daisenpuu is actually the final form of Starfish’ Kiki Kaikai 2, which you’ll remember as one of the most promising projects for this year (if you want to know the details, you can find the full story compiled and illustrated right here). As you can see, there’s already a US version of Yukinko Daisenpuu planned (announced indeed even before the Japanese one). Quite an odd bastardization, isn’t it.]

Youtube: SMS tribute video

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Lousy simon scooped me on this whilst working for the enemy because I take so long to do everything, but there’s an awesome tribute video for the SMS on youtube which is amazing for a couple reasons. First, the initial demoscene-y song matches the feeling and theme perfectly (the second song, a Zillion remix, not as much. Chromelodeon’s version is much better, but still wouldn’t fit). Second, the in-game footage taken is so well executed that it manages to make all of these games look fun. Quite a feat in itself.

Youtube: Virtual On Sega Ages secret boss

robosecrets.jpgComplete and utter robot fellator Cacophanus has found a hidden boss in the Sega Ages remake of Virtual On for PS2. Here’s what he had to say about it. “This is a full playthrough on the new Fierce difficulty on the Sega Ages port of the arcade original Virtual On. This also features a secret final boss, in the form of the original Fei-Yen (the VR in the game was actually a copy). You reach the secret boss by completing the other stages very quickly.”

By quickly, he means, well…the whole video is 9 minutes, from the machine select screen to the end of the final credits. This boss, he tells me, is exclusive to the PS2 version, so if you too have mental problems, you might want to get it.

Update: Once again I forgot to link the video. It’s linked now! Just a few hours later this time! He’s also got footage of the Z-gradt mode and a bunch of character-specific superplays, so you might want to check his profile.

News: Nights coming to PS2

Everyone knows this by now, but Nights is coming to PS2 as part of the Sega Ages collection – perhaps as a full release. It retains the 16:9 aspect ratio of the original (and why shouldn’t it? I only point this out because some folks seem to think it’s new), and has no confirmation of Christmas Nights yet (though people say the ‘gallery’ image they include looks a lot like the presents gallery from that game…). But given the tradition of super-hot extras, I’d be surprised if it weren’t in there.