Thursday, November 26, 2015

Seasonal treat Senran Kagura Shinovi Versus gets 60% off on PSN

Marvelous is putting up a bunch of offers across all formats over the holidays. First up for PS4 and PS Vita, it sees the buxom shinobi of Senran Kagura return in an over the top and out of their clothes 3D brawler.

The Shinovi Versus game tells the story of a grand clash among four rival ninja schools from each of their vantage points.

New Attack on Titan trailer and Japan release date

There's been quite a few teasing snippets of Tecmo's Attack on Titan in the last week, that was all building up to this new trailer and a release window - next February. Seriously hope there's more to the game than bashing naked giants.

But Omega Force has plenty of time to show off different beasties. There's the usual pre-order in-game goodies and no doubt a limited edition console or two closer to the time. A western launch is confirmed, but likely much later in the year.

With Dragon Quest Builders in January on the release list, looks like quite a bright start to the new year.

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Freedom Wars and Rocketbirds are your PS+ treats for December

According to the US PSN blog anyway, with no Cross Buy titles to make things feel a little more juicy. Don't we all own Freedom Wars? On the plus side, it might boost the multiplayer side for a while. Rocketbirds had plenty of style but hardly ruffled feathers.

I wonder how long Sony can keep PS+ for Vita running? I think I might drop my PS+ subscription and divert the cash into PlayStation Now, which at least has a wider range of games and seems to be more stable than when I first tried it.

The full list for PS4, PS3 and Vita is here.

Vita sales flat on Atelier Sophie and Omega Labyrinth release

Vita sales managed to sneak up a few hundred in the latest Media Create chart, but it looks like we've hit the ceiling for 2015, and perhaps for the future, bar the odd big-name release.

Even sales of 25,800 for Atelier Sophie, 25,100 for Omega Labyrinth can't help pop the Vita out of its current flattish trend. Now PS4 sales are outstripping games that usually do better on the Vita, its hard to see an upside.

As we approach end of year, Japanese Vita sales for the past three years are 1,232,967 - 1,173,823 - 804,192 with five weeks to go. Sales are unlikely to pass a million, unless Steins Gate 0 goes gangbusters.

1.Star Wars Battlefront PS4 124,000
2. Atelier Sophie PS4 30,750
3. Atelier Sophie Vita (Koei) 25,800
4. Omega Labyrinth (D3) 25,100
12. Girlfriend Beta (Bandai) Vita

Super Star Wars now up on EU PSN

This week's PS Vita releases are up on the EU PSN, with a free version of Dynasty Warriors 8 (3.2GB) leading the way. But having Super Star Wars (75MB) up there, no matter how good it actually, is reason to be cheerfuly - if more classics are headed our way.

Check Tecmo's twitter for the details on the Empires game, with free versions and a paid-for mega edition hitting the store. Pixel Hunter has a few trophies, but I know very little about it, time to start digging. 

Strange goings on in Vita pricing land

I don't know who sets the rules, but prices of Vita consoles on Amazon UK have suddenly shot up to around the £220 mark. Compare that to Amazon US where a Vita is $169 for Prime customers (£112 plus any import taxes, shipping or just get a US relative or friend to post it as a present!). It is cheaper to pick one of the import models from Japan.

That ignores the price slashes to PlayStation TV, which Sony seem to be trying to give away!

 So, what's going on here? Is Sony ramping up the EU RRP price (if it can?) to wring out the last of the profits from the Vita?

Is Amazon punting the prices up, so it can claim massive savings when it slashes them down in the Christmas sales?

Is a new price cut on the horizon, but first shake out the Christmas present buying parents and grannies?

Be interesting to see what happens next...

Dissidia looks mighty in its new arcade home

What did the PSP ever do for us? Well, it gave the world Final Fantasy Dissidia. The series lives on at Square Enix with a new arcade game that looks so glossy a distant Vita port is never, ever going to happen.

Still, as I mentioned Dissidia yesterday, I thought'd it was worth a peek at how the legacy lives on thanks to Tecmo and Square. I'd be surprised if the arcade machine headed west, so just enjoy the clip (and the many others on the Square YouTube site) for what they are.

American PSN gets a co-op friendly Vita Black Friday sale

The US PSN has a big co-op gaming sale on, with loads of sharing caring games getting a price cut. Okay the Vita is slightly limited in that respect, but its the first trim we've seen for Resident Evil Revelations 2.

Prices are regular and PS+ subscriber, expect more deals over the rest of the Thanksgiving week.

Dragon Ball Z: Battle Of Z $8.00 $6.00
Dragon’s Crown  $20.99 $17.99
Rayman Legends $13.50 $10.80
Resident Evil Revelations 2 $20.99 $17.99
Unit 13 $10.49 $7.49

The regular PSN store update sees the following hit the digital shelves, with a 10% off all purchases coupon - nice if you're a big spender.
PSN, sale, ps vita
Keep checking back to see if there are more EU sales to take advantage of Black Friday, Cyber Monday, Broke as Hell Tuesday etc.

A first look at Shakedown Hawaii

VBlank is loading live rounds into its next explosive action title Shakedown Hawaii for the Vita and PS4. Due next year, it will be on shown at PSX, and is a much, much later sequel to Retro City Rampage, with our hero very much gone to seed, but still packing plenty of weaponry.

With serious visual improvement, you can now go wrecking in cars, could be a great Grand Theft Auto homage, but with that early console vibe maintained. A bit more info on the PSN blog.

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Back to the Future for Vita games!

Okay, I've had my fill of JRPGs, for a while! I've had so much rhythm action that my hips are crocked, for a while! I've had enough retro shooter and indie action, for a while! I'll get back into them soon enough, but there is a hole in every western gamer's heart when it comes to the Vita.

That hole is the void left by major western developers. No big name games, just a few shoddy ports.

But I'm over the denial, rage and other signs of grief, I'm happily accepting that and digging out all my old carts and PSP downloads for a blast of fun with some totemic titles to get me through the winter.

If you want proof of that user need, look at launch game Uncharted, currently at No. 3 on the UK retail chart - surely it has made its money and more back by now! FIFA and COD are still in the top 10. Check out Need for Speed at No. 2 on the PSN Vita Top Sellers list, even at its full £44.99 price.

"Gamers gonna game", as someone famous and more attractive than me might have sung once.

How many of those games did I finish? What secrets still lie within. Assuming you haven't sold your older games (guilty, I'm afraid), or they're all lurking off card in the PSN, PS+ Matrix somewhere, now is the time to dig them out and have another shot.

No. 1 on my list is WipEout 2048, that I gave up on in exasperation on the Sol track with its endless plummeting to my doom! Well, no longer, it took a few hours of solid practice, but I finally Elite ranked the combat race and passed the time trial.

ps vita, wipeout 2048
Literally "drop in" gaming at its best! No safety nets on Sol. 
More important to me than a little personal success, is how amazed I still am by the game. WipEout's speed and beauty, its lighting, the classy design, the music and intensity of action. Studio Liverpool knew their stuff and made it shine on the little Vita.

So, as we wind down for the season, this is a simple call to dig out the games that really show what the Vita is made of. I'm not a Platinum freak, after perfection, just suggesting that there's gold in those early games that many newer owners might have overlooked. If you never owned them, they're mostly dirt cheap now, so why not give them a spin?

Whatever your choice, Uncharted, WipEout 2048, Lumines, Ace Combat (PSP), Ridge Racer (PSP), Dissidia (PSP) there's huge amounts of great, and mostly cheap games to still enjoy. Go get 'em!

Friday, November 20, 2015

January launch for Atelier Escha and Logy Plus

Koei Tecmo will bring Atelier Escha and Logy Plus: Alchemists of the Dusk Sky to the Vita next year via a digital release.

Arriving on PSN on 20 January, Atelier Escha and Logy Plus is the second stand-alone installment of Gust’s latest Atelier trilogy: the trilogy of Dusk. Preceded by the bittersweet Atelier Ayesha: the Alchemist of Dusk, Atelier Escha and Logy was released for the PS3 featuring a pair of heroes, Escha Malier, and Logix Ficsario.

Helped by a cast of interesting supporting characters, Escha and Logy combine their strengths and use the power of alchemy to unlock the secrets of the nearby ‘Unexplored Ruins.’ The Vita version comes with new content including brand new event scenes inspired by the Escha and Logy anime plus the DLC from the PS3 version.

That includes a new playable character, new costumes, and new, augmented difficulty missions and harder ‘boss’ enemies!

Earth Defense Force 2: Invaders from Planet Space lands in December

Xseed is bringing Earth Defense Force 2: Invaders from Planet Space to US Vita owners on 8 December. Here's a new gameplay clip to celebrate the game going gold.

Earth Defense Force 2: Invaders from Planet Space launches with major improvements, including English voice overs, new content, and a choice of four-player co-op and versus modes served up either online or via local ad-hoc connection.

In Earth Defense Force 2: Invaders from Planet Space, players take on the role of the Infantryman, a military soldier armed with conventional weaponry, the Pale Wing, a special ops soldier equipped with a jetpack and armed with energy weapons, and new to this version, the Air Raider, who fights indirectly through the strategic placement and dispatch of trip mines, sentry guns, airstrikes, and more.

Whether alone or with up to three friends, players must fend off the spacefaring invaders through frenetic real-time combat in a variety of mission areas, many of them inspired by real-life locations.

Digimon Cyber Story dated with exclusive gear

It looks like Digimon is coming back with a bang, as Bandai tries to push the series back into western minds.

Landing on 5th February in Europe, Digimon Story Cyber Sleuth will come with some extra goodies thanks to Bandai Namco. Players buying the game at launch on PS4 or Vita will get exclusive items, including the Agumon “Hero” Costumes and BlackGabumon, along with Beelzebumon and Cherubion.

Ray Gigant strides west next spring

Experience's big foot RPG was published in Japan via Bandai, but Acttil is bringing Ray Gigant west early next year. Coming digitally to America and the EU, the Experience RPG introduces idealistic yet contrary heroes to save the day.

Ray Gigant will reveal each of their stories through their own arcs which will all seamlessly converge by the end of the game. The RPG is typical Experience fodder but with bigger, badder looking visuals and a new combat system.

More pics on the game site's gallery.

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Odin Sphere gets the full story book

Odin Sphere will come west with one of the more impressive looking bundles thanks to Atlus, unfortunately, only for the PS4 version, but since by next spring, I might just have enough for a PS4, yay!

The retail Vita version will come with a soft cover artbook, so there's something to look forward to.