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By Jonathan Balofsky On 6 Jan, 2017 At 02:08 PM | Categorized As News, PC Games, PlayStation, ROG News | With 0 Comments

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Sega of Europe registered multiple domain names this past September that seem to indicate a beloved classic will see new life. The company registered the domain “Shenmuehd.com” as well as “ShenmueRemastered.com” & “SheMnUeGame.com”. The latter is spelled that way because Shenmuegame.com was already taken.

Obviously this is not proof enough on its own of a Shenmue HD remaster or remake, but they are quite telling. Sega had mentioned an interest in in remastering Shenmue last year, and this seems to follow up on that. It is likely they will do this to continue building anticipation for Shenmue III, as well as to get new players caught up on the game.

 

 

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No GravatarThis is another special episode of “Geeks on the Internet Having a Beverage” with EGM alum Trickman Terry Minnich. We talk about old times at EGM and all of the work he did back then. We discuss how he found the tips and tricks for games. He talks about the process of coming up with the infamous Shen Long trick. He got in the ins and outs of making the layouts and other aspects of the print industry. It is truly an honor to chat it up with him.

No GravatarThe following is an opinion piece and only reflects the author’s views and not neccesarily that of the rest the Real Otaku Gamer staff.

 

2016 was a big year for gaming. Some new franchises came into being, and some series received amazing sequels. Join me as I list my top ten games of 2016. Just a note, I will only include games that I have actually played, so no Overwatch or Uncharted 4. This list will also include indie games.

10) AVGN II ASSimilation

Angry Video Game Nerd adventures was a brilliant indie game and spoof of bad retro games. AVGN 2 picks up where the first game left off and builds on it to make a game that is bigger and better in everyway. A full worldmap, a lot more levels, new powerups and ecouraging of replays, and tons of crass humor that just makes you laugh. The game referenced more games, the AVGN movie and even Board James, and is a treat for fans of James Rolfe. I cannot say enough good about this game, it is a brilliant parody of bad games while being awesome in its own right.

 

9) Tokyo Mirage Sessions #FE

The sole Nintendo game on the list, TMS #FE was a great RPG for a sytem starving for more of that genre. What was thought to be a fusion of Shint Megami Tensei and Fire Emblem’s play styles and elements, it actually turned out to play much more like Persona for the Wii U with the Fire Emblem as the personas and enemies. While some were put off by what the product was, it ended up being one of the best Nintendo games of the last decade. This was a brilliant game with a fun combat system and detailed plot that a player could lose themselves in for hours. This in many ways is a new IP with guest appearances from the FE characters, and hopefully this gets a sequel. Nintendo got themselves a brilliant RPG and this is one to be remembered.

8) King of Fighters XIV

While Street Fighter V got all the attention this year, it was actually SNK’s fighter that was the superior game. A complete experience and not barebones at launch, KOF XIV had something for everyone. It had good signle players modes as well as multiplayer modes, and there as inceintive to play the arcade mode with different teams to unlock secrets. The new characters were mostly fun and engaging and even some of the ones receivess less warmly turned out to be well thought out. SNK has been quick to fix any issues with the game, including fixing the online, and an upcoming patch to upgrade the visuals. As well, they have been evaluating fan interest in DLC characters for the game, so expect to see this title be supported for a while at least. This is perhaps the second best fighting game of 2016.

7)  Shantae: Half-Genie Hero

A late entry into this list, Shantae: Half-Genie Hero was a major surprise to me in terms of how much of an upgrade it was over the previous entries. The visuals were bright and beautiful and the game was nothing like I expected. I don’t know why, but I believed this would just be a game on the scale of Shantae and the Pirate’s Curse, just with better visuals. It turned out to be a dramatic leap for the series and showed that Shantae can be a heavy hitter in gaming. Excellent power-ups, tons of replay value ( with even more coming) and a fun, engaging narrative, made this one of the best indie games of the year.

 

6) Guilty Gear Xrd Revelator

The greatest fighting game released in 2016, Guilty Gear Xrd Revelator did something so few fighting games do these days, and did as much as it could to make itself accessible. The tutorial was unlike anything else and truly taught you how to play the game. The fighting was top notch and perfected from previous iterations, and the online was much better than ever. In fact the lobby system in the game was extremely innovative and helped make the experience much more worthwhile. While the story mode lacked the English dub of the previous title, it still was a welcome experience and did its job in answering details about the Guilty Gear story. This was just the most refined fighting experience in a long time and needs to be played by all.

5) Dragon Ball Xenoverse 2

This game can be best summed up as bigger and better. Bandai Namco took all the positives of the first game while taking a look at what didn’t work, then went about fixing those issues.  The fighting feels more epic, the visuals are far better, and the story mode feels a lot more engaging this time.  With a large amount of characters, including some from Dragon Ball Super, Xenoverse 2 has something for everyone. Even the online is overhauled and this time it feels far more worthwhile to do co-op. It does reuse much of the original game but that isn’t a bad thing. This just feels like a better version of the first game.

4) Digimon Story: Cyber Sleuth

This one caught me by surprise. A game that combined the world of Digimon, with the design and feel of the Persona series, Digimon Story: Cyber Sleuth is a bold departure for the series. This game is one that I would recommend not only for Digimon fans, but also non-fans, as it is extremely accessible to all. The game feels like nothing else Bandai Namco has done with the Digimon series yet and I want more of this.  A detailed story, deep combat system and likeable characters, Cyber Sleuth has a lot to offer players of the RPG genre, especially those who are still waiting for Persona 5. This game was a hidden gem this year and I recommend it for all.

3) Shadow Warrior 2

This one is good. The previous Shadow Warrior was a game that helped get first person shooters out of the rut they were stuck in. It successfully revived the series while not compromising on what the original was, and made it a great experience. Shadow Warrior 2 makes the first game seem like a tech demo in comparison. Everything is on a grander scale, with vastly improved graphics and combat. The game uses a procedural generated level system to ensure no two replays are the same and it is better for it. This time around, there is a co-op mode that allows you to team up with 3 others and coordinate your playthrough differently. The best part about that is that the gameplay is scaled for co-op so it is never too easy or too hard. Also important is that the game does not act condescendingly towards people who play on easier settings. That is something that is sadly not common anymore.

2) Dishonored 2

Dishonored was an amazing game but this one takes it to the next level. Dishonored 2 is an epic experience that offers so much more than the previous entry. You can play as Emily or Corvo, with both having unique playstyles. This allows for a lot more replay value, especially when you are given multiple ways to play with those characters. The visuals are far better and the overall presentation is excellent. Even the music is great and helps bring you deeper into the gameplay. This is the best stealth game released in a very long time, if not ever and the action elements are so expertly woven in, that it just feels completely natural to shift to attacking. The various abilities you get in the game just make you feel like a badass and that is a welcome feeling. The game brings so much to the table that I cannot say enough good things about this

1) DOOM

The absolute best game of the year bar none ( that I’ve played), DOOM shows you how to revive a classic IP. We were all worried about this game based off the beta, which only showed the multiplayer, as well as the fact that the game wasn’t given to critics in advance. The fears were for naught luckily as DOOM is amazing. Fast paced shooting, with gory action, yet a well developed character who doesn’t need to say anything. The game perfectly marries story telling and gameplay into one in a better way than Half Life ever did, and the result is amazing.  This just feels like a proper return to form, not only for the Doom series but for the FPS genre in general. Many have been too dragged down in storytelling or rote gameplay, but DOOM shows the right way to do it. An amazing soundtrack that really gets your heart pumping for battle, and an amazing arsenal that keeps things fresh. The game’s SnapMap function also brings a form of modding to consoles, as well as giving you an endless amount of content to play through. Bethesda and Id software have been consistently updating the game with both free updates and DLC and all of it is welcome. This is an absolute must play for everyone.

By Jonathan Balofsky On 2 Jan, 2017 At 11:47 PM | Categorized As News, NINTENDO, ROG News | With 0 Comments

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Takayuki Kawasaki, territory manager for Epic Games Japan, recently did an interview Social VR Info. In the interview he confirmed that the Switch does indeed support Unreal Engine 4, and stated that there are a lot of titles coming that are using the technology on Switch. This will include releases of already announced major titles and new games. As well Kawasaki indicated that he’s hoping the Japanese console business could have a revival once the Switch launches. That is quite the stamp of approval from a developer.

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By Jonathan Balofsky On 29 Dec, 2016 At 02:38 PM | Categorized As News, NINTENDO, ROG News | With 0 Comments

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Stephen Radosh (who produced the Mario and Zelda games for the Philips CD-i) spoke to Game Informer and has revealed something very shocking. He nearly made a Donkey Kong arcade game for Sega that involved being a parking attendant.

Radosh commented thatt Sega had actually gotten the rights to make a Donkey Kong arcade game and there were plans to release this game before business interactions got in the way. The company was owned by Paramount at the time but was sold back to Japanese companies before the game could come out and was thus cancelled.

“Somehow Sega had gotten the rights to Donkey Kong. You were dodging cars that were pulling in and out of the lot, and you had to get X number of cars parked in spaces.”

I am trying to picture how this would work and it just sounds so utterly strange to me.

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By Jonathan Balofsky On 28 Dec, 2016 At 11:16 PM | Categorized As News, News, News, NINTENDO, PC Games, PlayStation, ROG News, Xbox 360/Xbox One | With 0 Comments

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Mistwalker, the developer of great games such as Lost Odyssey and the last Story, has a new game to be revealed at some point next year.

 

Sakaguchi didn’t have much to say during his year-end talk session with 4Gamer, but he did say “I plan to announce a new title in 2017. Stay tuned!”

 

While there’s a chance that it’ll be something that has yet to be talked about, the new title could be the untitled game that is currently in development between Mistwalker and Bravely series makers [image art above] Silicon Studio that was announced earlier this year.

This is cool news and hopefully it is not just a mobile title. The return to gaming greatness for Mistwalker is something I truly hope happens. What do you all hope it is?

 

 

 

By Jonathan Balofsky On 28 Dec, 2016 At 06:43 PM | Categorized As News, News, News, NINTENDO, PlayStation, ROG News, Xbox 360/Xbox One | With 0 Comments

No GravatarPuyo Puyo tetris came out in Japan in 2014, for PlayStation 3,4, and Vita alongside Wii U and Xbox One. There were no signs that an English localization would ever come despite fan demand. That is until now. A list of trophies for the PlayStation 4 version of Puyo Puyo Tetris has been found and it is quite extensive. The question now is, will the game be PlayStation exclusive in the west, or will it come to other systems as well? We will have to wait for more answers.

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By Jonathan Balofsky On 25 Dec, 2016 At 12:03 AM | Categorized As News, NINTENDO, ROG News | With 0 Comments

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Almost two decades after its release, new test levels have been found within Bomberman 64. Skelux made the discovery and posted his discovery on youtube.

The stages are included in a “Test World”, are incomplete and lack music, but are still really cool. How many other hidden secrets are there still to be found in retro games.

 

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Shantae: Half-Genie Hero was in development for a number of years. Funded via kickstarter and paypal donations, the game was incredibly ambitious in scope, but kept getting delayed. Many were worried that the game would end up being another kickstarter disaster, but after just five minutes of playing, I realized that the game was more than worth the wait.

Shantae HGH is a beautiful game, that must be stated. Forget how the series has looked in the past, this game is gorgeous beyond belief. The videos and screenshots do not do this game justice, the game has to be seen to be believed. The animation is so water-like and with a buttery smooth framerate, it looks unbelievable.  The music is also far above the previous games, with fully voiced tracks right from the very beginning ( and what a start it was), and throughout the game the music stays amazing. Some of the best video game music of 2016 is in this game right here and that is saying something.

Gameplay is similar but also a little different to previous Shantae games. The game is less metroidvania ,and more linear and stage based., but replaying levels multiple times is greatly encouraged, especially since you can only access certain areas of the levels once you have the appropriate power-ups to go where you need. Shantae still attacks with her hair, which can be upgraded repeatedly, and she can use power-ups as well as magic to make things easier for herself. In fact, it is not smart to go into some of the boss battles without some attack magic. Speaking of bosses, they are amazing in this game and range from quirky to epic encounters, all of which are memorable ones.

With an amazing level design, and creative bosses and enemy A.I., Shantae : Half-Genie Hero has a lot going for it, but that is not all. The game still has that quirky sense of humor that the previous games had, but the story just makes it shine so much brighter. No spoilers here, but this entry in the series has the best writing yet by far. WayForward Technologies set out to create the ultimate Shantae game and they did. I honestly cannot find faults with it at this moment. If I did not recommend this, I would be an idiot.  Buy it now!

 

By Jonathan Balofsky On 21 Dec, 2016 At 06:44 PM | Categorized As News, NINTENDO, ROG News | With 0 Comments

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In the latest episode of  his series,Pachter Factor, industry analyst Michael Pachter said something about the upcoming Nintendo Switch system that many will probably like. Pachter said that “Developers have said that Nintendo is the easiest of the big three to develop for.” This most certainly refers to the Switch, and the Ps4 & Xbox One when he says the big 3. If this is true,  then this could be a major game changer for Nintendo but does not guarantee third party support. He also notes that how much the games cost to port and how well they will sell, will determine how much 3rd party support the system will get.

You can see Pachter’s video below.