Review: .hack//G.U. Last Recode (PS4)

dot hack ps4You’ve two choices to deal with as soon as you fire up .hack//G.U. Last Recode on your PS4 or PC. Do you play it as intended and enjoy the story as it spools out across the three remastered games (Rebirth, Reminisce, and Redemption) along with one new shorter chapter (Reconnection)? Or do you activate the Cheat Mode that maxes your party out from the get-go and makes zipping though most of the game a total cakewalk?

I ended up choosing the first option and while the game took a lot longer to play through, I didn’t feel as if I was taking advantage of Bandai Namco or developer CyberConnect 2‘s overly gracious hospitality. As a huge fan of the original four chapters games and later, the G.U. series’ three entries, I wanted to play these as originally presented, carrying my save data over into each game and getting the same thrills I’d gotten way back when the PS2 was going strong with quality JRPGs dropping on a semi-regular basis.


This remastered trilogy benefits from a higher resolution, better frame rate, somewhat simpler combat and much better looking cut scenes. That said, it also doesn’t go overboard in trying to be a purely visual showpiece far beyond the original games. Lead character Haseo is still very much an angry jerky guy for a good chunk of the experience, but you’ll get used to him as the game progresses. The end result is a reliable buy that will please fans of the old games while maybe making some fans that expected too much or come into this wanting to see every trick in the PS4 book exploited a tad disappointed. Then again, you’re going to be playing this game more for the story and somewhat deep world building that extends into how you interact in the “real” world presented outside the faux MMO game.

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.hack//G.U. Last Recode – Launch Trailer: Time to Deep Dive Back In


Good gravy, veteran developer CyberConnect2 is made of of some incredibly busy and possibly crazy (in the best possible manner) people. Those power-packed Naruto games they’ve been doing great work on have set and raised a few bars in the anime to games scene and now, it’s .hack//G.U. Last Recode getting a superb-looking and super-polished remaster, now available on PS4 and PC.  I’ll need to grab this one when I have actual free time as I’ve been a big (but silent) fan of the .hack series since the PS2 days and while I was hoping the originals would get full remakes with new assets and features, this update of the second series will do more than nicely.  So, yeah – go add this one to your want list as it sure is coming in hot and pack to the gills with new stuff.



Strange Love: JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure: All-Star Battle

JoJo's All-Star Battle Key ArtNamco Bandai seems to be conducting a little experiment and I’m gathering they need your assistance. For a little while the company has been releasing digital versions of popular Japanese anime-based fighters available overseas as retail and digital purchases, and now they’re trying out a limited edition physical release to go with the (to some) more convenient downloads.

JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure: All-Star Battle is coming sometime this Spring via PSN (digital) and as a limited edition physical disc ( and No price has been announced just yet, but I think it’s a good idea as even niche games have fans who want them who can’t buy digital only product. Ever busy developer CyberConnect2 shows once more they’re the master of making anime fighters look as close to their source material as possible, as you can see above and in the screenshots below.

As for what’s on that disc or download, below the jump is some cut ‘n paste press release work plus those eleven screens… enjoy!

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Naruto Shippuden Ultimate Ninja Storm 3 Full Burst: The Return of TOO Much Content!

If there’s one thing eternally busy developer CyberConnect2 knows how to do, it’s pack their Naruto games so full of content that trying to pin the tail on how many hours it takes to complete is a futile proposition. Despite that timer showing how long you’ve been at it for the last few weeks or whatever, you really don’t want to know how many hours you’re sinking into a game with a ton of playable characters and customization options unless you’re going for some sort of bragging rights someone can easily match by firing up the same game and letting it sit on a status screen while they do the Rip Van Winkle for a month or so.

For those of you who’ve blown through, are still playing, or missed out on and plan to purchase Naruto Shippuden Ultimate Ninja Storm 3, you may want to hold onto something or just have a seat. Namco Bandai and CC2 are about to drop an even better game on your heads in the form of Naruto Shippuden Ultimate Ninja Storm 3 Full Burst, set for a PS3 and Xbox 360 release on October 22 and followed later by a PC release through Steam. Full Burst packs in the original game with reworked cinemas, all the DLC content and some all-new and insanely tough challenges that will test the best players with some truly brutal battles. A build of the new game was up and running at Namco Bandai’s press event a few weeks back and just listening to the staggering number of changes was exhausting yet showed that CC2 really loves its fans and wants them to have the best game possible…

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There Are More Fighters In The New Naruto Game Than Letters In This Title.


Between the massive roster, the all-new Studio Pierrot animation created for the game and the endless hours of fun that will have you and your Naruto-loving friends up (for endless hours, I say!)  I think it’s about time to stock up on a few extra controllers.  Just in case stuff happens.  “WHAT stuff?” you ask? Well, you know… stuff. Now, you don’t HAVE to buy those extra gamepads because I said so, but don’t cell me up at 2AM when you bust your stick and want to borrow one of mine. Go poke around on or something, snap up a few inexpensive Nyko wired controllers and leave me alone, I’m trying to sleep. Good Night!

Asura’s Wrath DLC Packs Quite The Punch (And Needs To Be Put On A Disc)…


Wow, It really stinks to be an Asura’s Wrath fan without a decent online connection, that’s for sure. Capcom has launched the first of a few killer add-ons for CyberConnect 2’s manly muscle-bound masterpiece that in the coming weeks will include some pretty amazing content.  Starting today over PSN (and tomorrow over Xbox Live), “Episode 11.5” launches, followed next week (April 3) by “Episode 15.5” hitting PSN and XBL. Each episode will sell for 1.99 over PSN or 160 MS Points over Xbox Live.  April 24 hits even harder with a four-episode content pack for 6.99 (560 MS Points) and finally, May will be the big killer month for many AW fans. Why? Capcom plans to pit Asura up against two of Street Fighter’s legendary combatants, Ryu (May 9) and Akuma (May 16). Each content pack will be 1.99 over PSN and 160 MS Points through Xbox Live.

Hey, Capcom! I’d actually pay a little extra for a expansion disc with ALL that content and I’d bet a lot of others would too. Think about it.

Capcom Fans Go Mad For Asura’s Wrath (But Not Quite Like You’d Expect)


Always vigilant, Capcom (through its Capcom Unity blog), does its part in keeping some gamers off their usual slippery soapboxes griping about stuff by asking them to submit a rage-filled video clip to YouTube to support Asura’s Wrath (go buy it, it’s awesome stuff and original as hell in terms of a few things). Here are the best of the best (and some others you’ll want to check out. Enter the Rage Cage, sit back and prepare to laugh (hopefully you have some earplugs handy and don’t mind screaming)…


Asura’s Wrath: Wow. I Bet Jack Kirby Would Have LOVED This Game…

As far as I know, the late, great comic art legend (and creator/co-creator of far too many important characters to count for Marvel, DC and a few other publishers) never did any video game design work. Nevertheless, a lot of game creators around the world have clearly been inspired by Kirby’s work and it’s always fun to play something that manages to nail certain elements in his art perfectly. It’s great to see a game like CyberConnect2’s latest on store shelves that pays homage to The King’s wilder Silver Age art along with his epic “Fourth World” saga, so go support Capcom and give the game a shot, I say.

Sure, it’s easy to think the game is ONLY anime-influenced if you ONLY follow anime and have no sense of comics history. On the other hand, as an ancient comics fan from the late 60’s and beyond playing the game, I’m seeing a bit of New Gods here, some of the Galactus saga there along with the massive scope and scale of the outrageous battles and characters that remind me of Jack’s work. Yup, I’m loving Asura’s Wrath so far – My full review will go up over the weekend.

Asura’s Wrath US Launch Trailer: This Year’s GOD HAND, I Say…

CyberConnect2’s masterpiece mash-up is in stores NOW for the PS3 and Xbox 360, so grab it. My review copy is on the way, so I can’t wait to see how it turned out. I played the demo to death and back, so I have a good idea of what’s coming. Still, I always go into a review with NO expectations, as it helps judge a game based on its own merits and not stacked up to something completely different. Yeah, yeah, I made a GOD HAND reference in the title above, but I meant in terms of how quirky, funny and flat out insanely creative both games ended up.

Gallery Update: Asura’s Wrath

Whoops. I forgot to run these screens with the trailer the other day, so here you go.  The demo is out now, so go play it and groove on the weirdness and crazy action taking place. The funny thing about the demo is thanks to the score in one section, you can tell if someone’s playing it if they’re blasting their TV too loud. As I said already, I really HOPE people “get” what CyberConnect2 is doing here in terms of presentation, as the game breaks a few rules and sets up a few new ones that work for the story it’s telling…