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May 2009

This page of the index features the latest of our listed NewsBites stories for May 2009

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Contents

  1. 1 Drawn to Life: The Next Chapter features time-based challenges
  2. 2 Looks like the team overseeing Drawn to Life's sequel are really confident with what they have on the table at the moment. They even go so far as to label themselves as "hardcore gamers" and they hope that they can appeal to the "hardcore" audience through various aspects of their game. One of these is by providing challenges and tough unlockables. Here's what they had to say:"Yeah Jason and I are really hardcore gamers, so while we want to make it really accessible for everyone we also wanted to add some great stuff for hardcore gamers too. We've got time trials in there actually, and there's a character in the main overworld that'll give you challenges and these time trials that you can try out. Also with these free draw areas there are places in them that normal casual gamers aren't going to try for, but we love them, so there's an extra challenge to people that want to go for all the toughest collectibles out there."IGN: Drawn to Life: The Next Chapter Interview >>
  3. 3 Square-Enix wants to focus more on unforgettable experiences and customer happiness
  4. 4 Looking optimistically towards the future, Square Enix has some ideas as to how the company can further enhance their games and enhance the experiences people have with said games. They're looking towards their corporate mission statement to find some answers as to how this can be done."This is expressed in our corporate philosophy statement: To spread happiness across the globe by providing unforgettable experiences. Starting with games, all the contents we provide are the ingredients for our customers' happiness."Recently, SE has also acknowledged the need for them to spend a little more time with their games and by focusing more on quality and core gameplay, they can certainly achieve these "unforgettable experiences" that they're striving for. They're doing quite well but there are certain aspects of their Wii and WiiWare support that could definitely be improved. Hopefully they'll take notice.Kotaku: Square-Enix plans for future growth >>
  5. 5 Super Meat Boy to feature more than 12 guest appearances, devs re-confirm plans for Aether
  6. 6 According to a recent interview with the producers of Super Meat Boy (coming to WiiWare during the 3rd quarter), the game will include special unlockable characters that will prove to be a challenging undertaking."There will be over 12 hidden indie characters to unlock as you play through the game, but acquiring them all will be a very difficult task." We've already heard that Commander Video from the BIT.TRIP series will be included and now we also hear that the main character from the game Alien Hominoid will also appear. Sounds great! Also nice to hear that the game Aether is still being considered for release on WiiWare as per the original plans:"They first approached me about my game Aether, something I'll also be bringing to WiiWare in the future with Tyler Glaiel but after Meat Boy kinda blew up on the 'net it seemed to make more sense to bring that over first." It's also very interesting that they make this remark:"Nintendo seems to acknowledge that there is a hole in WiiWare that needs to be filled with some meaty goodness. There's nothing like Super Meat Boy on WiiWare and I think Wii users are starving for more edgy, difficult and humorous gameplay."How intriguing! So (according to them) even Nintendo is noticing this lack of titles but what exactly do they feel WiiWare is lacking? Whatever it is, let's hope this can be rectified by either third-party developers or even first-party titles; and let's not forget about DSiWare!IGN: Super Meat Boy Interview >>
  7. 7 Sushi Go Round coming to Wii and DS
  8. 8 This popular flash game on MiniClip is heading to Wii and DS with updated features and gameplay. But why not WiiWare/DSiWare instead? Wouldn't it work better there? Either way, here's what they had to say regarding these new versions:"Sushi Go Round has been downloaded more than 60 million times from Miniclip.com and these updated versions build on the addictive time-management gameplay of the original. Players must run their own sushi restaurant, in which they’re responsible for memorising recipes, preparing food, ordering fresh ingredients and – most importantly – working hard to keep the constant stream of customers happy. As you progress through the game you’ll meet demanding bosses that require constant feeding, harsh food critics and increasingly fussy customers. Successfully completing these tough challenges unlocks new recipes and even different sushi restaurants."It's possible that they could change their focus and head to digital distribution instead -- which would make more sense anyway considering its a flash game. Until then, it looks like we got another game on our hands trying to compete with the likes of Diner Dash.
  9. 9 Tomodachi Connection details surface, releasing soon in Japan
  10. 10 What do you get when you try to breed a little bit of Animal Crossing, Tamagotchi and The Sims with Mii's? You get Tomodachi Connection, a new upcoming game for the DS that will further expand on the function that Personal Trainer: Walking first introduced us to - the idea of using Mii's on your DS/DSi! So how does the game work? Well basically, you import Mii's and take care of them inside an apartment somewhat like a Virtual Pet. You can earn money to spend on taking care of your Mii's (necessities such as food, clothing and shelter) and even on special accessories and furniture to spice up your Mii's life. Could Nintendo announce localization of this promising game for NA at E3? We'll have to wait and see! Until then, we'll have to continue to remain envious of Japanese Nintendo fans for getting all the goods first. Siliconera: Tomodachi Connection Preview >>
  11. 11 Ubisoft planning surprise for Wii-owners at E3
  12. 12 Ubisoft is teasing a special surprise on Monday at E3! What could it be? All we have to go in is the following line:"If you are a Nintendo fan like us, you shouldn't miss the Ubisoft E3 press conference on Monday. We have a little surprise for you!"They've also taken the liberty of providing a little teaser trailer that shows a slightly-deformed Rabbid stuck inside a Wii Remote. What could this hint at? A new Rayman platformer perhaps? We'll have to wait and see!YouTube: Special Teaser Video >>
  13. 13 Ubisoft announces three new Game Show titles
  14. 14 Ubisoft has just announced that three new Game Show titles will be shown off at E3 and rather than keep us in the dark, they've already taken the liberty of revealing the titles: Family Feud 2010, Press Your Luck 2010, and The Price is Right 2010. A sequel to The Price is Right doesn't surprise me at all considering how well the game went on to sell. Ubisoft hopes that these games will help expand their "already successful portfolio". 
  15. 15 Slot machines removed in localized versions of Pokémon Platinum
  16. 16 Apparently, a representative from NoE claims that the "slot machines" found in the "Game Corner" within Pokémon Platinum Version cannot be used unlike in past games in the series. This was done to "comply with PEGI age rating guidelines concerning gambling". How interesting.
  17. 17 New details surrounding DJ Hero surface
  18. 18 In preparation for its E3 showing, Activision has issued out a press release divulging more details on their upcoming project, DJ Hero. Some keys from the press release include the fact that Activision has cited the appearance of acclaimed "legendary artists" including the Black Eyed Peas, 50 Cent, Justice, and more. Activision also promises that the game will have over 100 songs, a large partion of them have been "transformed into more than 80 exclusive, original mixes." That's a lot of remixes! Glad they're really pushing their efforts with this one.View the full press release here >>
  19. 19 Super Mario Kart appearing in Japan's next update
  20. 20 This is very interesting. Not too long after the game was rated by the OFLC for the EU region sometime before the 300th VC Game Update, we now get word that Japan will be getting Super Mario Kart as part of their next update for the Virtual Console. How very interesting. Now, just like Smash Bros. 64, we'll probably have to wait like 5 months to see it come to North America. Needless to say, it would be very surprising to see this pop up before Smash Bros. 64 does.
  21. 21 Wii Fit Plus confirmed
  22. 22 Back on April 7th, "Nintendo registered a trademark with the Japanese Patent Office for "Wii Fit Plus" (#2009-026024). Now this logo pops up teasing that a sequel to Wii Fit is, indeed, being worked on. The fact that this trademark was filed in addition to the fact that a logo was produced for said trademark greatly evidences that this isn't some wacked idea or even something Nintendo just did to protect themselves with patent laws and whatnot. Plus, European retailers started having this mysterious listing in their databases around the same time in April. Very interesting. Surely we'll hear a mention at least at E3 before the inevitable announcement from Big N.
  23. 23 Kotaku: Wii Fit sequel >>
  24. 24 Sonic & SEGA All-Stars Racing announced!
  25. 25 What a pleasant surprise! SEGA teases us with this reveal right in time for E3! The beginning of the Blog Post hints that this may have been inspired by Sonic R, the fabled oldie Sonic racing game when it says:
  26. 26 "EVERYBODY’S Super Sonic Racing… or they soon will be. We’ve just announced a new title coming to PS3, 360, Wii and DS in 2010 - Sonic & SEGA All-Stars Racing. Check out the trailer."The game promises to be a racing game like no other even including online play for up to 8 players simultaneously! Awesome! Notice, also, the foregoing of the SEGA Superstars moniker? Think this could change before release? We'll have to see. See below for even more details!
  27. 27 View the full press release here >>
  28. 28 Shaun White Snowboarding: World Stage announced!
  29. 29 In a surprise twist, Ubisoft has announced the sequel to Shaun White just before E3 instead of at the event! They are promising that the game, however, will be shown at the event so we can look forward to that. Ubisoft cites that the original has received a total of 3 million sales worldwide from November 2008 till now, motivating them to make a sequel to capitalize on the success of the first.
  30. 30 View the full press release here >>
  31. 31 Koei unveiling two new titles at E3
  32. 32 According to their E3 Fact Sheet, Koei will unveil two new titles at E3 along with their line-up of showcased titles. It's quite possible that one or even both of these will be Wii-bound!
  33. 33 Square-Enix reconfirms Final Fantasy IV: The After Years for June 1st release
  34. 34 Square-Enix has recently issued a fact sheet listing their E3 showings and FFIV: The After Years has turned up once again, still with a release date of June 1st, as first revealed in a recent issue of Nintendo Power. Looks like it's coming to WiiWare on Monday after all!
  35. 35 A true sequel to the classic Super NES™ title, FINAL FANTASY IV: THE AFTER YEARS is an episodic game coming exclusively to Nintendo’s WiiWare™ service June 1, 2009. With both single and multiplayer modes, Wii users will now be able to explore the world of FINAL FANTASY IV with up to three of their friends and coordinate commands into a single attack. Unravel a mystery told through the intertwining stories of a familiar cast of characters, and complete the FINAL FANTASY IV experience with this latest installment in the franchise.
  36. 36 XSEED picks up Fragile, planned showing at E3!
  37. 37 IGN reported yesterday that Fragile has been picked up for localization in North America! How exciting, and XSEED is the one publishing the fabled title. They are clearly really excited and they have a lot of confidence in the game! 
  38. 38 "We are ecstatic to be able to finally confirm Fragile: Farewell Ruins of the Moon for gamers in North America," said Jun Iwasaki, president of Xseed Games. "We have received countless requests from eager gamers pleading with us to publish this title, and it gives us great joy to be able to give the public what they want while being able to work on such a great game."Today, XSEED has confirmed that Fragile will be making an appearance at E3. Here's a portion from their Fact Sheet of E3 showings:"Seto is an extremely special young boy; he may be the last remaining human being alive on the planet. As Seto searches through the eerily calm and beautiful ruins of a civilization lost, he comes across a mysterious girl named Ren, who quickly scurries away from him despite possibly being the only other living human in the world. As he struggles to locate Ren and search for other survivors, he must also fight off the ghosts and demons that haunt this forsaken land and piece together the mystery behind the disappearance of mankind. In FRAGILE: Farewell Ruins of the Moon, players will explore a dark and abandoned world with the aid of their Wii Remote™ that functions as a flashlight and as a proximity sensor to track invisible ghosts. The highly cinematic presentation, coupled with an emotive soundtrack, bring the narrative of a lonely and lost soul to life as players encounter memorable characters and discover the back story behind scavenged items that provide insight on people’s last days before the apocalypse. FRAGILE: Farewell Ruins of the Moon is scheduled to be released Winter 2009 exclusively for Wii."IGN: Fragile coming to North America >>
  39. 39 Mighty Flip Champs coming to DSiWare June 1st!
  40. 40 Well would you look at that! Just as I predicted, MFC is, indeed, coming to DSiWare in the NA Update this coming Monday as confirmed by WayForward. They issued out a whole press release for it and everything so if you'd like to read through it, you can see below. The game will cost only 800 Points! What a steal!
  41. 41 View the full press release here >>
  42. 42 Developers of Fish 'em All interested in more WiiWare titles
  43. 43 Abylight, the team overseeing Fish 'em All for WiiWare, has recently done an interview with Nintendo Life and have expressed that work is already under way for their next WiiWare title. They promise that the game will be completely different from their first WiiWare title and will probably be revealed in 3 months time or so to prepare for its release for the end of the year.
  44. 44 "Yes indeed, we are already working on our next WiiWare title, which I should say it's absolutely different from Fish'em All! It will be released at the end of this year."
  45. 45 Within the same interview, they also expressed interest in possibly developing for DSiWare at a later time, possibly when there are more titles on the service.
  46. 46 ESRB Ratings: BIT.TRIP CORE
  47. 47 The next entry in the BIT.TRIP series has been rated by the ESRB! Sweet! Hopefully we'll see it sooner rather than later. The summary describes a bit more on the gameplay:
  48. 48 "This is a rhythm game in which players use a laser beam to hit balls and other objects in time to music. Players can change the rhythm and tone of the music based on the pattern of objects hit."
  49. 49 29th May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8I wasn't surprised at all to see this pop up on ESRB's site considering that the game seemed like it would progress towards release very quickly. That being said, the game has a descriptor of "Mild Fantasy Violence". The summary gives us more details on what the game is like:
  50. 50 ESRB Ratings: Spaceball Revolution
  51. 51 "This is a puzzle game in which players are shown a geometric shape that they must recreate on a grid within a time limit. Players must complete the puzzles as large objects appear and fly around the screen to cause visual distractions. In some levels, players can earn bonus points by shooting down UFOs or robotic heads, resulting in brief explosions."
  52. 52 ESRB Ratings: Sudoku Student, Sudoku Master
  53. 53 Hudson's upcoming Sudoku-based DSi titles have been rated by the ESRB meaning that we could see them pop up sometime soon, but hopefully not before Mighty Flip Champs! The game's been rated E for Everyone with no accompanying descriptors and just like Bust-A-Move Plus, the summary isn't worth delving into.
  54. 54 Boxart Updates: DiRT 2
  55. 55 Codemasters has recently issued out the boxart for DiRT 2 on Wii and it looks quite nice, don't you think? The game's E10+ rating stems from "Mild Lyrics" which, according to the summary provided by ESRB, contain "brief violent references" and an "expletive". 
  56. 56 ESRB Ratings: Bust-A-Move Plus!
  57. 57 We can expect Arkanoid Plus to turn up soon also in the coming days/weeks ahead since it has been confirmed that the game will see a stateside release just like this title. ESRB rates the game an E rating, providing a generic summary that's not even worth going into. 
  58. 58 Nintendo announces Metroid Prime: Trilogy!
  59. 59 E3 is just around the corner and Nintendo is already announcing an awesome first-party title for Wii owners to enjoy! In lieu of revealing Metroid Prime and Metroid Prime 2 as new additions to the New Play Control! series (as per the Japanese release), Nintendo has announced a new collaborative project with Retro Studios that will see revamped versions of the original Metroid Prime releases on the Gamecube in addition to the existing Metroid Prime 3: Corruption all on one premium disk! Nintendo assures us that a lot of care has gone into making this game and will definitely appeal to "longtime fans" of the Metroid Prime franchise. The game will retail for an MSRP of $49.99 on August 24th.
  60. 60 ESRB Ratings: Mighty Flip Champs!
  61. 61 ESRB Ratings: Cave Story
  62. 62 Hudson focusing strongly on digital distribution this year
  63. 63 Miyamoto has some mysterious "concoction" brewing?
  64. 64 ESRB Ratings: Doctor Fizzwhizzle's Animal Rescue
  65. 65 ESRB Ratings: Sexy Poker
  66. 66 ESRB Ratings: Drill Sergeant Mindstrong
  67. 67 ESRB Ratings: Shanghai II: Dragon's Eye
  68. 68 ESRB Ratings: Sim Earth coming to VCA in NA!
  69. 69 ESRB Ratings: Family Mini Golf, Family Slot Car Racing
  70. 70 ESRB Ratings: Domino Rally
  71. 71 Bonsai Barber producer comments on gaming community, has more plans for WiiWare
  72. 72 Gaijin Works wants to focus more on RPG's and unique, hard-to-execute titles
  73. 73 Peter Moore sees need for stronger Wii focus
  74. 74 RUMOR: NASCAR getting revived on Wii?
  75. 75 Ronimo Games began with a 3D action game, changes focus on industry
  76. 76 Analyst predicts Starfox revival at E3
  77. 77 Cryptic Message features hidden secrets
  78. 78 Sales of Professor Layton see huge increase in March!
  79. 79 Magnetis coming to WiiWare soon
  80. 80 Majesco announces two new Jillian Michaels titles
  81. 81 EA announces Hasbro Family Game Night: Volume 2
  82. 82 Hasbro Family Game Night has done quite well since its release, even earning a few props from critics for its approach towards a solid social gaming experience. It's of little surprise, then, that EA has announced a sequel with the moniker "Volume 2". The game will be even heading to the DS platform, promising "wireless support" for multiplayer interaction amongst friends and family. WIthin the press release, they claim that the new features they've added to the overall experience make this a "must-have for all ages".    That's quite a claim, don't you think. Could the criticisms of the first title motivate them to rectify these in the sequel? Could online play see an appearance this time around or will they continue to hold onto the strength of local play amongst friends? Time will tell. Interestingly, rather than just having all the games for you to choose from freely, this time they are taking a Game Show approach out of it with Mr. Potato Head as the MC. The developers promise that it'll make the game have a "memorable experience" amongst friends and family.
  83. 83 Cooking Mama sells 4 million in North America
  84. 84 15th May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8In Joystiq's recent hands-on with Tiger Woods PGA Tour 10, a couple of interesting details surfaced such as the existence of "Tournament Moments" where a video will play showing some key moments on Tiger Woods' golf tour and the game will apparently "recreate the exact scenario" to see how you'd handle it based on your skills that the game has tracked so far. What was interesting in their hands-on was that they were able to experience the 1:1 motion found within the fun Frisbee Golf mode that EA has added this year. Notice this interesting tidbit:"Kudos to EA for not just turning this into Frisbee Golf 2010. Chas explained that the dev team was initially developing it as a party game, but decided to stick it into Tiger Woods during development."15th May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8There was talk that they were considering online play for Scribblenats, but after a quick browse through the Master Game List on Nintendo's official website, you can see that Scribblenauts is listed with having Wi-Fi support. What could this entail? Leaderboards? A level editor with community sharing? It'll be interesting to hear what 5th Cell reveals!15th May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8Recently a bunch of trademarks from multiple developers such as Namco Bandai and Nintendo have been updated. What's noteworthy about this update is the series of trademarks updated for Nintendo. Under the list of trademarks, the listing "You, Me and the Cubes" pops up! This is a big hint that this could very well be the final name for the localization of Nintendo's creative WiiWare title from over a month back over in Japan. Before now, the rough translation dubbed it as "You, Me and Shapes." There was also a listing known as "Art Academy". What could this be? 11th May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8The creator of Broken Sword has stated, once again, that work is being planned for an upcoming movie based on the series."I am in discussions with Radar Pictures, the production company behind Last Samurai and Chronicles of Riddick amongst many other films. We are still planning the project and I have been re-writing the game to work as a film treatment."How exciting! The game would work very well as a movie! But would it be animated?Joystiq: Broken Sword creator talks about movie >>View all news for May 2009 >>11th May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8IGN has recently published a look at the online modes found in EA's upcoming Grand Slam Tennis as per the conference held this past Friday. First of all, it's nice to get a confirmation that EA has worked really hard ensuring that lag is virtually unseen and IGN comments that even during doubles matches (that is, when two people are playing on the same console online), you "will not be able to detect any latency while playing against each other". That's really great to hear since lag would definitely screw up a tennis game. Apparently, the game only takes 30 seconds before you'll be ready to play. Also worth noting is that the game's system will be monitored by EA servers through EA Nation, thereby foregoing the friend code system issued by the Nintendo Wi-Fi sevice. The game further expands on the system used in Madden 09 and promises for "even speedier access times". IGN comments that the game has a leaderboard-tracking system entitled "Battle of the Nations". Apparently, every match one plays will add points to the overall score of not only your own personal ranking but that of your country/nation as well. Things sound to be shaping up very nicely!IGN: Grand Slam Tennis Hands-On >>View all news for May 2009 >>11th May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8As per Nintendo's latest fiscal report, they have confirmed the current list of titles that have sold one million units till this day. Here are the total numbers (worldwide) for the following titles:Nintendo DSBrain Training - 17.4 millionNew Super Mario Bros. - 18.4 millionMario Kart DS - 14.6 millionPokemon Platinum - 3.7 millionNintendogs - 22.2 millionPokemon Mystery Dungeon - 4.5 millionBrain Training 2 - 13.7 millionKirby Super Star Ultra - 2.3 millionMario Party DS - 5.8 millionPokemon Diamond/Pearl - 16.8 millionRhythm Heaven - 1.9 millionPersonal Trainer: Cooking - 18.4 millionPokemon Ranger - 2 millionProfessor Layton - 1.6 millionSuper Mario 64 DS - 7.5 millionAnimal Crossing: Wild World - 10 millionNintendo WiiWii Sports - 45.7 millionWii Fit - 18.2 millionMario Kart Wii - 15.4 millionWii Play - 22.9 millionSmash Bros. Brawl - 8.4 millionAnimal Crossing: City Folk - 3.3 millionWii Music - 2.65 millionLink’s Crossbow Training - 3.76 millionSuper Mario Galaxy - 8 millionMario Party 8 - 6.7 millionMario Super Sluggers - 1.2 millionLook at those numbers! Crazy stuff! Some interesting things to point out: Professor Layton's sales do not include the sales in Japan which would mean that the sales are actually higher since the game is doing very well over there (especially since its spawned a whole series of entries). Personal Trainer Cooking has reached a staggering 18.4 million in such a short time frame! Amazing! Rhythm Heaven hasn't been out that long and it's already reached 1 million! Mario Party DS has also done extremely well and just look at Mario Party 8's sales numbers: nearly 7 million! This further adds to the fact that another Mario Party entry must be right around the corner (E3!). Despite the critical reception, Wii Music has gone on to sell quite a bit but Iwata himself commented that it's not doing as well as he had hoped. Personally, I think he just should count his blessings and be thankful the game didn't flop. But in any case, certainly the game will receive more sales if the price were to go down since many are still skeptical of spending the full price tag on the game especially with its harsh reception from critics. Mario Super Sluggers has also capped on the million mark which is great. The game has been praised very well, even receiving awards from a few magazines. And just look at how many Mario Kart Wii has sold. Almost two times as much as Mario Galaxy! No wonder it's so easy to find people online, huh? These numbers are very encouraging to see.View all news for May 2009 >>11th May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8A press release was issued just last week confirming that Sakura Wars will be heading to NA on Wii and PS2. "After years of anticipation by hardcore gamers around the world, “Sakura Wars: So Long, My Love” will finally be released in North America this fall", the press release says. NIS America, the publisher, is also responsible for overseeing such projects as Disgaea, and Phantom Brave (which has also been confirmed for localization). The game is a strategy RPG that consists of unique battle system with robotic characters that engage in aerial and ground combat. Sounds pretty sweet, plus, the Wii is in need of more RPG's so the more the merrier! They promise that the game will feature replay value in the form of "bonus features" and possibly an unlockable final "story" after they beat the game's 8 chapters.View all news for May 2009 >>
  85. 85 Developers of Tiger Woods PGA Tour expressed interest in a party game, decided against it
  86. 86 Scribblenauts to incorporate WFC features
  87. 87 Japanese trademarks updated 
  88. 88 Broken Sword movie re-confirmed
  89. 89 Grand Slam Tennis' online modes outlined
  90. 90 Nintendo confirms series of million-selling first-party titles
  91. 91 Sakura Wars getting localized for North America
29th May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8

Drawn to Life: The Next Chapter features time-based challenges

Looks like the team overseeing Drawn to Life's sequel are really confident with what they have on the table at the moment. They even go so far as to label themselves as "hardcore gamers" and they hope that they can appeal to the "hardcore" audience through various aspects of their game. One of these is by providing challenges and tough unlockables. Here's what they had to say:

  • "Yeah Jason and I are really hardcore gamers, so while we want to make it really accessible for everyone we also wanted to add some great stuff for hardcore gamers too. We've got time trials in there actually, and there's a character in the main overworld that'll give you challenges and these time trials that you can try out. Also with these free draw areas there are places in them that normal casual gamers aren't going to try for, but we love them, so there's an extra challenge to people that want to go for all the toughest collectibles out there."

IGN: Drawn to Life: The Next Chapter Interview >>


29th May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8

Square-Enix wants to focus more on unforgettable experiences and customer happiness

Looking optimistically towards the future, Square Enix has some ideas as to how the company can further enhance their games and enhance the experiences people have with said games. They're looking towards their corporate mission statement to find some answers as to how this can be done.

  • "This is expressed in our corporate philosophy statement: To spread happiness across the globe by providing unforgettable experiences. Starting with games, all the contents we provide are the ingredients for our customers' happiness."

Recently, SE has also acknowledged the need for them to spend a little more time with their games and by focusing more on quality and core gameplay, they can certainly achieve these "unforgettable experiences" that they're striving for. They're doing quite well but there are certain aspects of their Wii and WiiWare support that could definitely be improved. Hopefully they'll take notice.

Kotaku: Square-Enix plans for future growth >>


29th May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8

Super Meat Boy to feature more than 12 guest appearances, devs re-confirm plans for Aether

According to a recent interview with the producers of Super Meat Boy (coming to WiiWare during the 3rd quarter), the game will include special unlockable characters that will prove to be a challenging undertaking.

  • "There will be over 12 hidden indie characters to unlock as you play through the game, but acquiring them all will be a very difficult task." 

We've already heard that Commander Video from the BIT.TRIP series will be included and now we also hear that the main character from the game Alien Hominoid will also appear. Sounds great! Also nice to hear that the game Aether is still being considered for release on WiiWare as per the original plans:

  • "They first approached me about my game Aether, something I'll also be bringing to WiiWare in the future with Tyler Glaiel but after Meat Boy kinda blew up on the 'net it seemed to make more sense to bring that over first." 

It's also very interesting that they make this remark:

  • "Nintendo seems to acknowledge that there is a hole in WiiWare that needs to be filled with some meaty goodness. There's nothing like Super Meat Boy on WiiWare and I think Wii users are starving for more edgy, difficult and humorous gameplay."

How intriguing! So (according to them) even Nintendo is noticing this lack of titles but what exactly do they feel WiiWare is lacking? Whatever it is, let's hope this can be rectified by either third-party developers or even first-party titles; and let's not forget about DSiWare!

IGN: Super Meat Boy Interview >>


29th May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8

Sushi Go Round coming to Wii and DS

This popular flash game on MiniClip is heading to Wii and DS with updated features and gameplay. But why not WiiWare/DSiWare instead? Wouldn't it work better there? Either way, here's what they had to say regarding these new versions:

  • "Sushi Go Round has been downloaded more than 60 million times from Miniclip.com and these updated versions build on the addictive time-management gameplay of the original. Players must run their own sushi restaurant, in which they’re responsible for memorising recipes, preparing food, ordering fresh ingredients and – most importantly – working hard to keep the constant stream of customers happy. As you progress through the game you’ll meet demanding bosses that require constant feeding, harsh food critics and increasingly fussy customers. Successfully completing these tough challenges unlocks new recipes and even different sushi restaurants."
It's possible that they could change their focus and head to digital distribution instead -- which would make more sense anyway considering its a flash game. Until then, it looks like we got another game on our hands trying to compete with the likes of Diner Dash.


29th May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8

Tomodachi Connection details surface, releasing soon in Japan

What do you get when you try to breed a little bit of Animal Crossing, Tamagotchi and The Sims with Mii's? You get Tomodachi Connection, a new upcoming game for the DS that will further expand on the function that Personal Trainer: Walking first introduced us to - the idea of using Mii's on your DS/DSi! So how does the game work? Well basically, you import Mii's and take care of them inside an apartment somewhat like a Virtual Pet. You can earn money to spend on taking care of your Mii's (necessities such as food, clothing and shelter) and even on special accessories and furniture to spice up your Mii's life. Could Nintendo announce localization of this promising game for NA at E3? We'll have to wait and see! Until then, we'll have to continue to remain envious of Japanese Nintendo fans for getting all the goods first. 

Siliconera: Tomodachi Connection Preview >>


29th May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8

Ubisoft planning surprise for Wii-owners at E3

Ubisoft is teasing a special surprise on Monday at E3! What could it be? All we have to go in is the following line:

  • "If you are a Nintendo fan like us, you shouldn't miss the Ubisoft E3 press conference on Monday. We have a little surprise for you!"

They've also taken the liberty of providing a little teaser trailer that shows a slightly-deformed Rabbid stuck inside a Wii Remote. What could this hint at? A new Rayman platformer perhaps? We'll have to wait and see!

YouTube: Special Teaser Video >>


29th May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8

Ubisoft announces three new Game Show titles

Ubisoft has just announced that three new Game Show titles will be shown off at E3 and rather than keep us in the dark, they've already taken the liberty of revealing the titles: Family Feud 2010, Press Your Luck 2010, and The Price is Right 2010. A sequel to The Price is Right doesn't surprise me at all considering how well the game went on to sell. Ubisoft hopes that these games will help expand their "already successful portfolio". 


29th May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8

Slot machines removed in localized versions of Pokémon Platinum

Apparently, a representative from NoE claims that the "slot machines" found in the "Game Corner" within Pokémon Platinum Version cannot be used unlike in past games in the series. This was done to "comply with PEGI age rating guidelines concerning gambling". How interesting.


29th May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8

New details surrounding DJ Hero surface

In preparation for its E3 showing, Activision has issued out a press release divulging more details on their upcoming project, DJ Hero. Some keys from the press release include the fact that Activision has cited the appearance of acclaimed "legendary artists" including the Black Eyed Peas, 50 Cent, Justice, and more. Activision also promises that the game will have over 100 songs, a large partion of them have been "transformed into more than 80 exclusive, original mixes." That's a lot of remixes! Glad they're really pushing their efforts with this one.

View the full press release here >>


29th May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8

Super Mario Kart appearing in Japan's next update

This is very interesting. Not too long after the game was rated by the OFLC for the EU region sometime before the 300th VC Game Update, we now get word that Japan will be getting Super Mario Kart as part of their next update for the Virtual Console. How very interesting. Now, just like Smash Bros. 64, we'll probably have to wait like 5 months to see it come to North America. Needless to say, it would be very surprising to see this pop up before Smash Bros. 64 does.


29th May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8

Wii Fit Plus confirmed

Back on April 7th, "Nintendo registered a trademark with the Japanese Patent Office for "Wii Fit Plus" (#2009-026024). Now this logo pops up teasing that a sequel to Wii Fit is, indeed, being worked on. The fact that this trademark was filed in addition to the fact that a logo was produced for said trademark greatly evidences that this isn't some wacked idea or even something Nintendo just did to protect themselves with patent laws and whatnot. Plus, European retailers started having this mysterious listing in their databases around the same time in April. Very interesting. Surely we'll hear a mention at least at E3 before the inevitable announcement from Big N.

Kotaku: Wii Fit sequel >>


29th May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8

Sonic & SEGA All-Stars Racing announced!

What a pleasant surprise! SEGA teases us with this reveal right in time for E3! The beginning of the Blog Post hints that this may have been inspired by Sonic R, the fabled oldie Sonic racing game when it says:

  • "EVERYBODY’S Super Sonic Racing… or they soon will be. We’ve just announced a new title coming to PS3, 360, Wii and DS in 2010 - Sonic & SEGA All-Stars Racing. Check out the trailer."
The game promises to be a racing game like no other even including online play for up to 8 players simultaneously! Awesome! Notice, also, the foregoing of the SEGA Superstars moniker? Think this could change before release? We'll have to see. See below for even more details!

View the full press release here >>


29th May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8

Shaun White Snowboarding: World Stage announced!

In a surprise twist, Ubisoft has announced the sequel to Shaun White just before E3 instead of at the event! They are promising that the game, however, will be shown at the event so we can look forward to that. Ubisoft cites that the original has received a total of 3 million sales worldwide from November 2008 till now, motivating them to make a sequel to capitalize on the success of the first.

View the full press release here >>


29th May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8

Koei unveiling two new titles at E3

According to their E3 Fact Sheet, Koei will unveil two new titles at E3 along with their line-up of showcased titles. It's quite possible that one or even both of these will be Wii-bound!


29th May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8

Square-Enix reconfirms Final Fantasy IV: The After Years for June 1st release

Square-Enix has recently issued a fact sheet listing their E3 showings and FFIV: The After Years has turned up once again, still with a release date of June 1st, as first revealed in a recent issue of Nintendo Power. Looks like it's coming to WiiWare on Monday after all!

  • A true sequel to the classic Super NES™ title, FINAL FANTASY IV: THE AFTER YEARS is an episodic game coming exclusively to Nintendo’s WiiWare™ service June 1, 2009. With both single and multiplayer modes, Wii users will now be able to explore the world of FINAL FANTASY IV with up to three of their friends and coordinate commands into a single attack. Unravel a mystery told through the intertwining stories of a familiar cast of characters, and complete the FINAL FANTASY IV experience with this latest installment in the franchise.


29th May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8

XSEED picks up Fragile, planned showing at E3!

IGN reported yesterday that Fragile has been picked up for localization in North America! How exciting, and XSEED is the one publishing the fabled title. They are clearly really excited and they have a lot of confidence in the game! 

  • "We are ecstatic to be able to finally confirm Fragile: Farewell Ruins of the Moon for gamers in North America," said Jun Iwasaki, president of Xseed Games. "We have received countless requests from eager gamers pleading with us to publish this title, and it gives us great joy to be able to give the public what they want while being able to work on such a great game."
Today, XSEED has confirmed that Fragile will be making an appearance at E3. Here's a portion from their Fact Sheet of E3 showings:
  • "Seto is an extremely special young boy; he may be the last remaining human being alive on the planet. As Seto searches through the eerily calm and beautiful ruins of a civilization lost, he comes across a mysterious girl named Ren, who quickly scurries away from him despite possibly being the only other living human in the world. As he struggles to locate Ren and search for other survivors, he must also fight off the ghosts and demons that haunt this forsaken land and piece together the mystery behind the disappearance of mankind. In FRAGILE: Farewell Ruins of the Moon, players will explore a dark and abandoned world with the aid of their Wii Remote™ that functions as a flashlight and as a proximity sensor to track invisible ghosts. The highly cinematic presentation, coupled with an emotive soundtrack, bring the narrative of a lonely and lost soul to life as players encounter memorable characters and discover the back story behind scavenged items that provide insight on people’s last days before the apocalypse. FRAGILE: Farewell Ruins of the Moon is scheduled to be released Winter 2009 exclusively for Wii."


29th May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8

Mighty Flip Champs coming to DSiWare June 1st!

Well would you look at that! Just as I predicted, MFC is, indeed, coming to DSiWare in the NA Update this coming Monday as confirmed by WayForward. They issued out a whole press release for it and everything so if you'd like to read through it, you can see below. The game will cost only 800 Points! What a steal!

View the full press release here >>


29th May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8

Developers of Fish 'em All interested in more WiiWare titles

Abylight, the team overseeing Fish 'em All for WiiWare, has recently done an interview with Nintendo Life and have expressed that work is already under way for their next WiiWare title. They promise that the game will be completely different from their first WiiWare title and will probably be revealed in 3 months time or so to prepare for its release for the end of the year.

  • "Yes indeed, we are already working on our next WiiWare title, which I should say it's absolutely different from Fish'em All! It will be released at the end of this year."

Within the same interview, they also expressed interest in possibly developing for DSiWare at a later time, possibly when there are more titles on the service.


29th May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8

ESRB Ratings: BIT.TRIP CORE

The next entry in the BIT.TRIP series has been rated by the ESRB! Sweet! Hopefully we'll see it sooner rather than later. The summary describes a bit more on the gameplay:

  • "This is a rhythm game in which players use a laser beam to hit balls and other objects in time to music. Players can change the rhythm and tone of the music based on the pattern of objects hit."

29th May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8

ESRB Ratings: Spaceball Revolution

I wasn't surprised at all to see this pop up on ESRB's site considering that the game seemed like it would progress towards release very quickly. That being said, the game has a descriptor of "Mild Fantasy Violence". The summary gives us more details on what the game is like:

  • "This is a puzzle game in which players are shown a geometric shape that they must recreate on a grid within a time limit. Players must complete the puzzles as large objects appear and fly around the screen to cause visual distractions. In some levels, players can earn bonus points by shooting down UFOs or robotic heads, resulting in brief explosions."


29th May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8

ESRB Ratings: Sudoku Student, Sudoku Master

Hudson's upcoming Sudoku-based DSi titles have been rated by the ESRB meaning that we could see them pop up sometime soon, but hopefully not before Mighty Flip Champs! The game's been rated E for Everyone with no accompanying descriptors and just like Bust-A-Move Plus, the summary isn't worth delving into.


29th May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8

Boxart Updates: DiRT 2

Codemasters has recently issued out the boxart for DiRT 2 on Wii and it looks quite nice, don't you think? The game's E10+ rating stems from "Mild Lyrics" which, according to the summary provided by ESRB, contain "brief violent references" and an "expletive". 



29th May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8

ESRB Ratings: Bust-A-Move Plus!

We can expect Arkanoid Plus to turn up soon also in the coming days/weeks ahead since it has been confirmed that the game will see a stateside release just like this title. ESRB rates the game an E rating, providing a generic summary that's not even worth going into. 


21st May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8

Nintendo announces Metroid Prime: Trilogy!

E3 is just around the corner and Nintendo is already announcing an awesome first-party title for Wii owners to enjoy! In lieu of revealing Metroid Prime and Metroid Prime 2 as new additions to the New Play Control! series (as per the Japanese release), Nintendo has announced a new collaborative project with Retro Studios that will see revamped versions of the original Metroid Prime releases on the Gamecube in addition to the existing Metroid Prime 3: Corruption all on one premium disk! Nintendo assures us that a lot of care has gone into making this game and will definitely appeal to "longtime fans" of the Metroid Prime franchise. The game will retail for an MSRP of $49.99 on August 24th.



21st May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8

ESRB Ratings: Mighty Flip Champs!

Another promising game gets rated by the ESRB. Could this be heading our way in the next update or the one following? It's quite possible! The game's been rated Everyone for "Mild Suggestive Themes" meaning that they find nothing worth noting with the gameplay at all. The summary has this to say:
  • "This is a puzzle game in which players navigate through platforms and mazes in order to meet up with animal friends. Players must constantly shift between different mazes, while avoiding spikes and other hazards. In some still images, a female hero is depicted wearing a tight-fitting halter top that exposes deep cleavage."

21st May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8

ESRB Ratings: Cave Story

Well, well, well. what do we have here? Cave Story getting rated by the ESRB? Considering that the producers of the game slated it for after E3, it's unlikely that it'll appear in the next update. That being said, it's nice to know the game may very well be ready for a June release and now they can use this time for QA testing and such. The game's been rated E10+ for "Mild Cartoon Violence" and "Mild Language", the latter part of the descriptors doesn't particuarly make too much sense though. Here's what the summary says:
  • "This is an action adventure game in which players assume the role of a tiny boy who traverses through caverns to save rabbit-like creatures called "Mimigas." Players run and jump across platforms, avoid hazards and obstacles, and shoot at "cartoony" creatures (e.g., giant mushrooms, square elephants, bats) along the way. Enemy creatures disappear in a puff of smoke when defeated. Dialogue contains some aggressive language (e.g., "Now kill me! Or I-shall kill You!" and "Please kill my master.") and a derogatory remark (e.g., "Dr. Dumb can go screw himself.")."


21st May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8

Hudson focusing strongly on digital distribution this year

After having a quick look at some of the raw data from Hudson's financial report, it's clear that Hudson has some really ambitious plans for Wii and DS this year. Their financial report shows that they are planning on localizing 2 Wii titles and 1 DS title for NA, they are planning on a DS version of Deca Sports, and they are planning on 4 DSiWare titles and 6 WiiWare titles! They are also planning 5 DS and 5 Wii titles. There could be even more, too. These are just stuff that's confirmed to be in development from what they're saying. Let's stop for a second and think about this.

Upcoming Wii titles? Well, we know Deca Sports 2 is coming. But what else has Hudson planned? One of the Wii titles they plan to localize could be Joysound, as well as its WiiWare extension. The second title for localization could very well be their survival horror game, The Calling. Amongst their Wii titles, Mario Party 9 could very well be there and development could be well under way. If that's the case, we'll hear something soon at E3.

On the DSiWare front, they've already confirmed work on two Sudoku-related titles so what could those other 2 titles be? Time will tell. As for WiiWare, they've already confirmed the following for the near future: Diner Dash, Military Madness, and Water Warfare. So they have 3 others that haven't been revealed yet.

Interestingly, no mention of VC titles unless that's included in the "Wii" moniker in which case Mario Party's VC release could be seen as very likely. I also thought of something. Could one of their Wii/WiiWare titles be the return/revival of Sonic Shuffle? This could be what the recent re-trademark was referring to! We'll have to wait and see if SEGA has something else planned for the game or not.

So potentially, here's how it could work out. Remember this isn't confirmed or anything, simply predictions:
Localization of 2 Wii titles: Joysound, The Calling
Localization of DS title: Unknown
5 DS titles: Deca Sports DS, 4 Unknown
5 Wii titles: Mario Party 9, 4 Unknown (Some could be VC titles such as Mario Party? One could be Sonic Shuffle?)
4 DSiWare titles: 2 Sudoku titles, Illustlogic, 1 Unknown
6 WiiWare titles: Diner Dash, Military Madness, Water Warfare, 3 Unknown (One could be Sonic Shuffle?)

More details on Hudson's plans for the future as well as some more tidbits about their finances can be found on Siliconera.



21st May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8

Miyamoto has some mysterious "concoction" brewing?

Taken from the blog of Matt from the IGN team:
  • "I think Nintendo’s master designer has some new concoction brewing at the chocolate factory. Not just franchise sequels, but something completely out there."
Not only does he suggest that something's in the works for us Nintendo fans out there but he also suggests that franchises revivals/sequels are indeed in the works, of which we will most surely hear more about at E3 next month.


21st May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8

ESRB Ratings: Doctor Fizzwhizzle's Animal Rescue

Replay Games' very first Wii game has been rated by the ESRB for Comic Mischief in preparation for it's upcoming release. Could this title have been better suited for WiiWare? Let's hope their first game will be a successful game. Summary gives us an indication of what the gameplay is like:
  • "This is a puzzle game in which players bounce a bubble across the screen to break boxes, collect power-ups, and rescue animals. Players can hit small "cartoony" aliens and UFOs with lasers or bubbles, causing them to get stunned."

21st May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8

ESRB Ratings: Sexy Poker

Sexy Poker's ESRB Rating has popped up for the second time. Looks like Gameloft is going through with it after all. The game is still sited as being rated M for Mature, citing such descriptors as "Nudity", "Sexual Themes", and "Simulated Gambling". The game is, essentailly, a "Strip Poker game" as the summary indicates. Question is, how will people react to this? How will Nintendo react? Will they even approve this in the end?


21st May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8

ESRB Ratings: Drill Sergeant Mindstrong

Looks like Drill Sergeant Mindstrong has popped up for the second time. XSEED had slated it for release back in April but it never arrived. Could this re-appearance hint that it could be heading our way this month, possibly even in the next update? My bets are that's quite likely.


21st May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8

ESRB Ratings: Shanghai II: Dragon's Eye

This Mahjong-inspired SNES title is coming to the Virtual Console, as confirmed by the ESRB. The summary reads as follows:
  • "This is a puzzle game in which players locate and match scattered tiles on a game board, with the goal of clearing the entire board. Players can choose from a variety of tile sets, including sports, animals, playing cards, and medieval themes."

21st May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8

ESRB Ratings: Sim Earth coming to VCA in NA!

Sim Earth is coming to the Virtual Console Arcade here in North America! This is great news! Hudson Soft is bringing it over. I could easily see this coming out this month since Hudson hasn't slated anything for release this month as far as digital distribution goes. The ESRB cites the game as E for Everyone with "Violent References", obviously. This is certainly great news especially since I wasn't particularly sure if it would come here or not. Summary reads as follows:

  • "This is a simulation game in which players explore a new planet and use tools to create habitable living conditions for a civilization. Players can control the temperature, adjust the atmosphere, and customize the landscape using a 2D overhead grid. Players can also “click on” certain icons that represent geological disasters (e.g., hurricanes, volcanoes, and atomic bombs) to alter conditions on the planet."

21st May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8

ESRB Ratings: Family Mini Golf, Family Slot Car Racing

Family Mini Golf was rated earlier in the week but the latter title just got rated today. Let's hope they don't plan on releasing them in the same update or, even worse, by themselves! Especially Slot Car Racing. That would be terrible. Summary for Mini Golf is as follows:
  • "This is a miniature golf game in which players select a family member (Billy, Sarah, Daddy, Mommy) to compete on a variety of courses (e.g., islands, castles, and parks). The courses contain speed boosts, blowing fans, and bumpers, along with other whimsical decorations and obstacles."
Whimsical? Lol. Interesting word choice, guys! Anyway, that aside, the summary for Slot Car Racing is as follows:
  • "This is a slot car racing game in which players select a family member (Billy, Sarah, Mommy, Daddy) to race small toy cars around a variety of tracks. Players can accelerate their cars, navigate sharp turns, and use "turbo" boosts to gain extra speed."

No surprises for either of these titles. Both are rated E for Everyone with No Descriptors meaning pure family fun.


21st May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8

ESRB Ratings: Domino Rally

One of the more recent ESRB ratings confirms that Go! Go! Go! Minon Everyday Hero is, indeed, still getting localized for a North American release! The summary commented:
  • "This is an action game in which players assume the role of a super hero named Mr. Domino who helps townspeople with tasks and chores. Players run on top of dominos and domino-shaped objects (e.g., humans, animals, and buildings) to reach goals and complete tasks. As the human and animal-shaped dominos are knocked over, they collapse to the ground as “dizzy stars” appear over their heads."


21st May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8

Bonsai Barber producer comments on gaming community, has more plans for WiiWare

The producer of Bonsai Barber had some very interesting comments in an interview last month regarding the success of his WiiWare title. First of all, he comments that it's games like Bonsai Barber that really do well because of the fact that developers aren't restricted by traditional gaming genres which motivates them to open up and try new ideas for the gaming community. Here are some of his own words:
  • "It’s just a complete blindspot for the whole development community. I think there’s so much virgin territory. But many developers are choosing to instead stay in these ruts."
Very true. Untaped territory is, indeed, out there and developers on Wii are starting to figure that out and develop cool titles accordingly! Interestingly, in the very same interview, he also comments that Bonsai Barber is far from the only idea he has up his sleeves. Apparently, they've come up with many many "outstanding" ideas for WiiWare!
  • "We’ve been working with a group from Japan for several years now to try and develop outstandingly new games for WiiWare," Hollis said. This new game is just one of hundreds of one-sheet ideas Hollis team concocted, one of several they’ve tested for Nintendo’s platform. "We’ve got prototypes that are still in flight." The "Bonsai Barber" game has been developed in earnest for nine months.
I seriously hope we see some of these ideas take flight if it means that they'll continue to delve into untaped territories in the gaming community and especially if it means they'll turn out to be games like Bonsai Barber with compelling structure and solid replay value!


21st May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8

Gaijin Works wants to focus more on RPG's and unique, hard-to-execute titles

The developers of Bit.Trip BEAT are hoping to further their mission statement by continuing to create a variety of titles. What kinds of titles do they see themselves doing in the near future? This excerpt tells all:
  • "The mission statement is to continue what we did at Working Designs. We started Gaijin to take what was Working Designs and pay it forward as a localization house rather than a publisher. The mission statement is still to do great games, to do RPGs, to do the stuff that other people find too scary or don’t think is going to work, and then show them it’s going to work."
Given the success of Bit.Trip BEAT, it's undeniable that Gaijin has a knack for more unique titles and they certainly have the creativity to execute titles that other developers are too "scared" to create.


21st May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8

Peter Moore sees need for stronger Wii focus

When asked how he feels regarding the changes in the industry regarding incremental improvements in franchises as well as his response to how EA is responding to the Wii, he had this to say:

  • "I think we need to continue to work on the Wii. When I look at the attach rate on the Wii of our software to where I think we should be, we're under-performing still, we need to do much better. I think we need to continue to increase our online presence - even though we're doing a lot of stuff, [which has started] to happen in the last six months."
It's so true. They really need to improve in that department. At the same time, they seem to have not included online in Nitro. Although there's valid reason for that, that's gonna hurt their case in the long run.

21st May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8

RUMOR: NASCAR getting revived on Wii?

In the latest issue of Game Informer magazine, there's talk that EA Sports is possibly considering bringing the NASCAR franchise back to Wii (properly). They're still unsure about how to handle the whole situation though so until we hear something more substantial, let's mark this as a rumor.


21st May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8

Ronimo Games began with a 3D action game, changes focus on industry

Ronimo Games is a small, ambitious team of 7 staff members and three interns. This developer is hardly little. Between its development of de Blob and its recent release of Swords and Soldiers on the WiiWare service in Europe, Ronimo Games is certainly making itself known and as such, they're a developer to keep your eyes on. What did they choose to do before Swords and Soldiers, though? They explain:
  • "[Money from de Blob's sales] didn’t go very far, so half our team started working on paid Flash projects, while the other half started on our first proper game design... a complex 3D action game. We over-estimated ourselves. We did manage to make a demo, and publishers liked it, but we had no track record. We eventually understood that this kind of company would be impossible long-term without digital distribution. When WiiWare came out, we realised we could make a 2D game in the same time it took to make a 3D demo."
The developers behind Ronimo Games were quick to discern that a company of their stature wouldn't go far if they didn't first make a mark after their development on de Blob. Even despite making a sweet demo of a 3D game, they still decided against it, possibly fearing that it would go unnoticed amongst the masses especially when Ronimo Games really had no "track record" to speak of. So what'd they do? They decided to develop a 2D game (Swords & Soldiers) "in the same time it took to make a 3D demo". What are their plans for the future?
  • "The team is focusing on Nintendo for the foreseeable future, with more WiiWare titles leading up to an eventual retail release... We thought we wanted to make huge games, but in the end we discovered we want to make small games that have a huge impact."
It'll be great to see more WiiWare games from them but let's hope that this retail game they speak of turns out to be the 3D game they were originally planning. 



21st May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8

Analyst predicts Starfox revival at E3

Michael Pachter is on a roll, continuing to make predictions and now his predictions have made their way over to the upcoming big event this June with E3. What does he have to say about Nintendo? He strongly feels that this time, Nintendo will be appealing to the "core" audience given that they focused more on the "casual" last year (possibly in reference towards Wii Music). He predicts that one of their big "core announcements" will be Starfox or "something [else] from the past." Within the same comment, he also predicts a Twisted Metal game will pop up on Sony's side but anyway.



19th May 2009 | Posted by Billy White

Cryptic Message features hidden secrets

We're not exactly well known across the internet for our exclusives, but we've got one coming up soon of a game that has been currently completely unheard of amongst the other websites until today, and right here, you can see the first revealing teaser image.

    It's a game that's by our good friends at Bplus, and although we're not exactly going to reveal all for you right now, don't forget to check out Wiiloveit.com in the near future for the exclusive first details. In the meantime, here's the first teaser image for the game... (note contains an unpleasant word D: )

See teaser image


15th May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8

Sales of Professor Layton see huge increase in March!

Nintendo has recently confirmed that Professor Layton experienced a big jump in sales during March. What's with the big jump? Remember the commercial they aired with the celebrity, Lisa Kudrow? Obviously, it gave the game the attention it already deserved! It's just too bad it took a commercial with a celebrity in it before people picked up such a great game.
  • "In March, Nintendo ran a series of commercials with Lisa Kudrow to promote Professor Layton. The results? Sales in March 2009 surpassed first month sales back in February 2008. The game got a serious second-wind on retail shelves. Not because of an expansion pack or a price drop — common reasons why we would sales increase. It was all because a commercial was shot with a celebrity playing the game for 30 seconds, that's it!"
So the sales in March were bigger than when the game came out?! Wow. That's crazy! See how much marketing helps? At least this should generate even more interest in the upcoming sequel!


15th May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8

Magnetis coming to WiiWare soon

Yullaby has recently confirmed that their upcoming puzzle game, Magnetis, is finished, is being tested and will soon be rated by the ESRB. Pretty soon, it'll appear in Nintendo's queue for the WiiWare releases. The developer promises for "short and tense" gameplay sessions where one can hone their skills and apply them to the game's multiplayer component.  



15th May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8

Majesco announces two new Jillian Michaels titles

Majesco is clearly capitalizing on the niche that Wii Fit is now leader of. Given that the first Jillian Michaels title wasn't received very well but still earned over 600,000 sales, it's enough for them to warrant more entries in this new series. Let's hope they examine the complaints of the first to create a better game overall. Fitness Ultimatim 2010 will be heading to Wii and Pocket Trainer 2010 (the very first DS entry) will also be on the way. Good to point out that in the press release, they mention the ability to "challenge family and friends in multiplayer competitions", something that was lacking in the original. Let's hope it shapes up to be a worthy sequel. The last thing Majesco needs is another flop after Major Minor.



15th May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8


EA announces Hasbro Family Game Night: Volume 2

Hasbro Family Game Night has done quite well since its release, even earning a few props from critics for its approach towards a solid social gaming experience. It's of little surprise, then, that EA has announced a sequel with the moniker "Volume 2". The game will be even heading to the DS platform, promising "wireless support" for multiplayer interaction amongst friends and family. WIthin the press release, they claim that the new features they've added to the overall experience make this a "must-have for all ages".

    That's quite a claim, don't you think. Could the criticisms of the first title motivate them to rectify these in the sequel? Could online play see an appearance this time around or will they continue to hold onto the strength of local play amongst friends? Time will tell. Interestingly, rather than just having all the games for you to choose from freely, this time they are taking a Game Show approach out of it with Mr. Potato Head as the MC. The developers promise that it'll make the game have a "memorable experience" amongst friends and family.

View the full press release here >>



15th May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8

Cooking Mama sells 4 million in North America

The Cooking Mama series has reached a milestone. The series has collectively reached a total of 4 million sales - this includes the two Wii entries, and the two DS entries. The CEO of the company assures that they will continue to look at new ways to offer innovative and compelling "entertainment experiences"

To mark this important achievement, Majesco has announced that they will now be listing Cooking Mama: World Kitchen at $29.99 placing all of the Cooking Mama games under the $30 mark.


15th May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8


Developers of Tiger Woods PGA Tour expressed interest in a party game, decided against it

In Joystiq's recent hands-on with Tiger Woods PGA Tour 10, a couple of interesting details surfaced such as the existence of "Tournament Moments" where a video will play showing some key moments on Tiger Woods' golf tour and the game will apparently "recreate the exact scenario" to see how you'd handle it based on your skills that the game has tracked so far. What was interesting in their hands-on was that they were able to experience the 1:1 motion found within the fun Frisbee Golf mode that EA has added this year. Notice this interesting tidbit:

  • "Kudos to EA for not just turning this into Frisbee Golf 2010. Chas explained that the dev team was initially developing it as a party game, but decided to stick it into Tiger Woods during development."


15th May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8

Scribblenauts to incorporate WFC features

There was talk that they were considering online play for Scribblenats, but after a quick browse through the Master Game List on Nintendo's official website, you can see that Scribblenauts is listed with having Wi-Fi support. What could this entail? Leaderboards? A level editor with community sharing? It'll be interesting to hear what 5th Cell reveals!



15th May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8

Japanese trademarks updated 

Recently a bunch of trademarks from multiple developers such as Namco Bandai and Nintendo have been updated. What's noteworthy about this update is the series of trademarks updated for Nintendo. Under the list of trademarks, the listing "You, Me and the Cubes" pops up! This is a big hint that this could very well be the final name for the localization of Nintendo's creative WiiWare title from over a month back over in Japan. Before now, the rough translation dubbed it as "You, Me and Shapes." There was also a listing known as "Art Academy". What could this be? 

11th May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8

Broken Sword movie re-confirmed

The creator of Broken Sword has stated, once again, that work is being planned for an upcoming movie based on the series.
  • "I am in discussions with Radar Pictures, the production company behind Last Samurai and Chronicles of Riddick amongst many other films. We are still planning the project and I have been re-writing the game to work as a film treatment."
How exciting! The game would work very well as a movie! But would it be animated?



11th May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8

Grand Slam Tennis' online modes outlined

IGN has recently published a look at the online modes found in EA's upcoming Grand Slam Tennis as per the conference held this past Friday. First of all, it's nice to get a confirmation that EA has worked really hard ensuring that lag is virtually unseen and IGN comments that even during doubles matches (that is, when two people are playing on the same console online), you "will not be able to detect any latency while playing against each other". That's really great to hear since lag would definitely screw up a tennis game. Apparently, the game only takes 30 seconds before you'll be ready to play. Also worth noting is that the game's system will be monitored by EA servers through EA Nation, thereby foregoing the friend code system issued by the Nintendo Wi-Fi sevice. The game further expands on the system used in Madden 09 and promises for "even speedier access times". IGN comments that the game has a leaderboard-tracking system entitled "Battle of the Nations". Apparently, every match one plays will add points to the overall score of not only your own personal ranking but that of your country/nation as well. Things sound to be shaping up very nicely!



11th May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8

Nintendo confirms series of million-selling first-party titles

As per Nintendo's latest fiscal report, they have confirmed the current list of titles that have sold one million units till this day. Here are the total numbers (worldwide) for the following titles:

Nintendo DS
  1. Brain Training - 17.4 million
  2. New Super Mario Bros. - 18.4 million
  3. Mario Kart DS - 14.6 million
  4. Pokemon Platinum - 3.7 million
  5. Nintendogs - 22.2 million
  6. Pokemon Mystery Dungeon - 4.5 million
  7. Brain Training 2 - 13.7 million
  8. Kirby Super Star Ultra - 2.3 million
  9. Mario Party DS - 5.8 million
  10. Pokemon Diamond/Pearl - 16.8 million
  11. Rhythm Heaven - 1.9 million
  12. Personal Trainer: Cooking - 18.4 million
  13. Pokemon Ranger - 2 million
  14. Professor Layton - 1.6 million
  15. Super Mario 64 DS - 7.5 million
  16. Animal Crossing: Wild World - 10 million

Nintendo Wii
  1. Wii Sports - 45.7 million
  2. Wii Fit - 18.2 million
  3. Mario Kart Wii - 15.4 million
  4. Wii Play - 22.9 million
  5. Smash Bros. Brawl - 8.4 million
  6. Animal Crossing: City Folk - 3.3 million
  7. Wii Music - 2.65 million
  8. Link’s Crossbow Training - 3.76 million
  9. Super Mario Galaxy - 8 million
  10. Mario Party 8 - 6.7 million
  11. Mario Super Sluggers - 1.2 million

Look at those numbers! Crazy stuff! Some interesting things to point out: Professor Layton's sales do not include the sales in Japan which would mean that the sales are actually higher since the game is doing very well over there (especially since its spawned a whole series of entries). Personal Trainer Cooking has reached a staggering 18.4 million in such a short time frame! Amazing! Rhythm Heaven hasn't been out that long and it's already reached 1 million! Mario Party DS has also done extremely well and just look at Mario Party 8's sales numbers: nearly 7 million! This further adds to the fact that another Mario Party entry must be right around the corner (E3!). Despite the critical reception, Wii Music has gone on to sell quite a bit but Iwata himself commented that it's not doing as well as he had hoped. Personally, I think he just should count his blessings and be thankful the game didn't flop. But in any case, certainly the game will receive more sales if the price were to go down since many are still skeptical of spending the full price tag on the game especially with its harsh reception from critics. Mario Super Sluggers has also capped on the million mark which is great. The game has been praised very well, even receiving awards from a few magazines. And just look at how many Mario Kart Wii has sold. Almost two times as much as Mario Galaxy! No wonder it's so easy to find people online, huh? These numbers are very encouraging to see.



11th May 2009 | Posted by KnucklesSonic8

Sakura Wars getting localized for North America

A press release was issued just last week confirming that Sakura Wars will be heading to NA on Wii and PS2. "After years of anticipation by hardcore gamers around the world, “Sakura Wars: So Long, My Love” will finally be released in North America this fall", the press release says. NIS America, the publisher, is also responsible for overseeing such projects as Disgaea, and Phantom Brave (which has also been confirmed for localization). The game is a strategy RPG that consists of unique battle system with robotic characters that engage in aerial and ground combat. Sounds pretty sweet, plus, the Wii is in need of more RPG's so the more the merrier! They promise that the game will feature replay value in the form of "bonus features" and possibly an unlockable final "story" after they beat the game's 8 chapters.