News: KOF XII videos and official site update

kofxiiamshow.jpgSNK has updated the official site, including the official trailer, complete with SNKP’s new super lame “doki doki doki” intro. Should be coming to arcades in Japan this coming April… Meanwhile, there are lots of videos on niconico now, after the AM show…if you have no login, just use the professor’s viewer. Here are some highlights:

athena v ash

athena v ash and benimaru – note the shadow on the characters as they move in and out of the darkness. Awesome.
jacketless leona (!!)
terry v robert (finally, a video where people remember how to play a little)

ash v kyo – not how kyo’s fire still looks horrid.
crazy muscleman ralph redesign

I’m still waiting to see some characters in there though…I need Joe for this game to work!

News: Legend of Galactic Heroes PC Demo

logh_demo1.jpgRemember that Legend of Galactic Heroes PC game we mentioned a while back? Well, the release is looming and to help people to part with their cash, Bandai Namco has released a demo of the rather shiny RTS today (click this link to start the download). It’s not as freeform as Homeworld and actually quite planar but it’s much more tactical. As there’s a lag between setting up your fleet and them attacking the enemy. You have to plan ahead more as it’s essentially leaning towards a turn based approach, or at least one where your commands can leave you clearly open if you don’t position your fleet carefully. I quite like it. All it needs now is more Maurice Ravel.

For those curious about the main menu, the first option is a rolling (non-playable) demo, whereas the second option is the playable demo. This demo is entirely in Japanese in case anyone needed that clarifying.

News: Pier Solar available for preorder

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Peir Solar, previously Tavern RPG, is now available for preorder, in both standard ($35) and deluxe editions ($50). The game has been previously discussed here, but is an actual genesis cart release, developed by members of the Eidolon’s Inn forums. Both editions come with the cart, and a Sega CD disc for a hifi soundtrack. Also has a clamshell box and a poster – not bad for $35 bucks. The deluxe edition gets your name in the credits and the manual.

Update: Fixed the errors with the difference between editions – thanks to Sklabah for pointing it out.

News: Sonic NGPC alternate opening

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Someone recently came across a beta or possibly store demo for Sonic the Hedgehog: Pocket Adventure for the NGPC. The standard Sonic has long been known to have a debug mode, accessible through button pressed, and people had hinted about seeing an alternate intro – but thanks to this rom being found, you can now view the lost intro. It seems it was just a giant chunk of PCM sound, so was cut for size reasons. It seems to be the announcer from Real Bout, as well. Thanks to Flavor for pointing it out, and the Sonic Retro forums for the hard work.

News: NGPC’s hidden “D” button

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A fellow named FluBBa is making a NGPC emulator that runs on GBA. It’s pretty slow right now (download the beta here), but along the way he discovered something very interesting – an extra bit in the register of buttons, that when pressed, actually activates debug modes in certain games. This is different from the debug mode found in Sonic, but more on that tomorrow. Not all games have been tested, but so far three games have been shown to have interesting results when the button is pressed. They are Card Fighters’ Clash, CFC 2, and Dokodemo Mahjong.

Flavor, who did the CFC 2 English hack, kindly sent me some screenshots of all three games, including CFC2’s English version, which has odd results because it’s already been hacked. These were taken using a modified version of his own emulator, RACE. If you want to see the pics of all three games, download them here.

Update: Flavor explains the “button” better than I did: “Basically, there’s a byte (8 bits) in the NGPC that contains the status of all the inputs. On a normal NGPC, there are 7 inputs (up, down, left, right, A, B, and Option). That leaves one bit unused. It seems that it’s not totally unused after all. This bit seems to be the “D” button for debugging. Perhaps it is included as an input on the development hardware.

News: Amiga Forever RP2

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A new version of Cloanto’s Amiga emulator has been released, and it does all sorts of new things that I don’t precisely understand. Here’s what they are:

The new player for Windows uses heuristic logic to autoconfigure downloaded games and supports double clicks on disk images and game files, saved states, disk write undo and dual-monitor setups. On the cross-platform front (i.e. used without Windows), the KX Light boot environment features a new kernel and hard disk installation (with online updates).

On the content side, the Gallery section includes the full and original 1979 Tripos (Amiga OS precursor) presentation, and new “top secret” Amiga-Atari documents, while more than 200 games and demoscene productions are sure to deliver hours of enjoyment. The Premium Edition additionally includes more than five hours of videos.

So there you go. That is out. Unfortunately, it costs money. The cheapest version is $30. But if you’re serious about the Amiga, this is quite a good solution for playing it on your PC…

News: NFGcontrols

360mod.jpgLawrence/NFG has a new site, to (as he says) “get this festering love of controllers out of my system.” It’s called NFGcontrols, and has reviews, how-to guides for hacking and modification, and features about controller theory. It’s all pretty nifty stuff – like this mod that allows use of a Neo Geo, Atari, or FM Towns sticks on a wireless 360 pad (not in the cleanest way, but still). This post is also interesting, regarding the two manufacturers of PS1 pads – one of whom was excellent, and the other, not so.