Gurumin: A Monstrous Adventure 3D: Join Thursday’s Twitter Chat!

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Hey! Got some burning questions about the Nintendo 3DS version of Gurumin: A Monstrous Adventure, coming soon to the handheld? Well, join the Gurumin 3D Live Twitter Chat this Thursday (3-5pm Pacific Time, or 6-8pm here in NYC) on the game’s Twitter page! If you’re asking “What’s Gurumin?”, well, thank me now for removing that stone off your head and getting you into the daylight!

Here you go:


 

While you’re cooking up those tasty questions for tomorrow, check out this blog post on the Gurumin Rocks site to find out a few cool nuggets on how the game’s battle system evolved during development. I’ll be sitting on this session at some point, but don’t mind me – I’ll just be taking a break from a really insane backlog, chilling with a cold drink watching the questions roll in.


 

And if you need to get Gurumin and don’t own a 3DS, you’re still in luck! If you own a PSP, Vita, or PS TV, or have an active Steam account, well… you know what to do, right?

Odin Sphere Leifthrasir Hands-On: Vallhalla Yeah, Vanillaware is BOSS

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Back in 2007, Odin Sphere came to the PlayStation 2 as a gorgeous yet flawed masterpiece. Developed by Vanillaware, the game’s sumptuous visuals and challenging gameplay were only hampered by rather pesky slowdown and a few clumsy design choices. When Vanillaware announced it was bringing the game out on PS4, PS3 and Vita, one of the concerns expressed by fans was whether or not the game would be a straightforward HD update that didn’t fix some of the issues. Well, let’s just say after about two weeks with the Vita version of Odin Sphere Leifthrasir, any concerns about those problems can be erased completely.

The game (set for a retail and digital release June 7 for PS4, PS3 and PS Vita) has been redone using the same art assets, but with enhanced backdrops and *many* new major to minor gameplay tweaks that make this the best version of the game you’ll ever play. Combat has been made more fluid and accessible, blocking actually works, item, magic, and potion use is simpler and the game is running at a beautiful 60 frames per second. If that wasn’t enough, Vanillaware has updated the leveling and skills system, polished up the cooking stuff, and overall has made what’s going to be forever known as THE definitive version of an instant classic. Oh, and for those who want to compare, the original version is also included as part of the package, making this an even better must-buy deal.

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Fans of the original who own PS4s can, should and NEED to get the demo from PSN. Like NOW. There’s a Vita demo coming soon and yes, it’s going to be a must download and play experience. I’d say more, but that’s dipping a toe into review territory. Just mark the date, get your wallet ready or if you’re into pre-ordering, go do that stuff you do best and hope all your omake gets shipped in a BOX as it shouldhttps://fanboydestroy.wordpress.com/wp-admin/post.php?post=31367&action=trash&_wpnonce=a79f89fd60. Yeah, I’m talking to YOU, Amazon, GameStop, Best Buy, EB Games and anywhere else stuff just gets tossed in a flimsy bubble mailer and kicked onto the back of a truck. A game this stellar deserves the kid gloves.

Back in a bit with more on this gem. Now, about a proper Princess Crown remake… hey Vanillaware and Atlus, can we talk?

Review: MegaTagmension Blanc + Neptune VS Zombies

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Zombies_ESRB_coversheetPlatform: PlayStation Vita/PSTV

Developer(s): Idea Factory/Compile Heart/Tamsoft

Publisher: Idea Factory International*

# of Players: 1 – 4

MSRP: $39.99 (retail/PSN)

ESRB Rating: T (Teen)

Official Site

Sneaky, Tamsoft, SNEAKY. Teaming up with Idea Factory and Compile Heart and getting your Onechanbara in my Neptunia while making it a ridiculously fun and ridiculously cute hack & slash with a ridiculous amount of replay value. Ridiculous! MegaTagmension Blanc + Neptune VS Zombies is an absolutely silly blast of a game that’s easy to get into and deserves a sequel of some sort down the road. Yeah, I missed out on Hyperdimension Neptunia U: Action Unleashed (it’s on my list of stuff to get to, really!), so I’m going into this one as it’s an all-new and different experience.

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While it’s packed with characters and content, the “Hey, let’s put on a show!” hijinks that revolve around the female students of Gamicademi trying to save their school from closing by making a low-budget zombie movie also makes for a pretty amusing plot. The game is part visual novel, part action/RPG and definitely going to take up a small to moderate chunk of your time thanks to all the variables that come into play. That tongue-in-cheek humor it bashes you over the head with gets you into the groove right from the start, but it’s not going to be everyone’s cup of tea. Your Vita will either pop out of its hiding place and kiss you for making this purchase or slap you in the face with a smirk if you get too serious while playing this game. Or both. Continue reading

Lumo: Brilliant Iso Platformer’s One of The Year’s Best Surprises

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Lumo is out now on Steam, gog.com, the Humble Store (PC/Mac/Linux), and PlayStation 4 now and that $20 price tag may actually be too little for such a gorgeous and brain-twisting platform/adventure game hybrid. Created by Triple Eh! (Gareth Noyce) and published by Rising Star Games, there’s so much packed into this isometric wonder that most gamers under a certain age with no sense of game history outside their own short memories will spin themselves silly trying to keep up with the seemingly endless references to games they’ve never seen or played. North American gamers with some experience will note the Solstice and Equinox homages along with nods to Donkey Kong, Marble Madness, and a few other classic arcade and console games while they jump through around and in many cases, OVER levels to locate some very-well hidden secrets.

This isn’t a proper “review” (yet) as I’m basing my wordy noise here on the preview code I received and finally got around to this past weekend. Think of this as a fine and dandy heads-up if you’re on the hunt for a lengthy, challenging blend of old and new schools that’s cute enough to be a kid’s game, but tricky enough to get the most seasoned player checking out every nook and cranny for hidden stuff. As you play, you’ll discover Noyce is indeed a very, very talented guy with an elephantine memory and deep knowledge about his favorite games and a willingness to share that with anyone who picks up a controller. 400 rooms in a beautifully rendered Easter Egg farm where fast movement is necessary, yet paying attention to visual cues makes for truly rewarding play sessions. The sense of discovery in Lumo is fairly remarkable because you’ll be doing things both inside and outside the box. See some crates stacked by a wall or what looks like a curious means of reaching the top of a wall? With a bit of effort poking around in nearby room or a bit of backtracking to other curious spots, you’ll be up and over those walls and into new territory. Continue reading

Odin Sphere Leifthrasir PS4 Demo Out Now: A Dish of VanillaWare For Dessert Sounds Grand

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If you own a PlayStation 4, you can do yourself a HUGE favor today and download the demo for Odin Sphere Leifthrasir NOW on PSN. The game isn’t arriving until June 7, but you’ll see that this revived and remastered PS2 game looks absolutely gorgeous and runs at a wonderful 60fps. There’s also a VERY nice surprise for those who remember the original release, but I shall let you see for yourself what that is. I’d say more, but the embargo isn’t over until tomorrow and I don’t want to get smited by my favorite PR guy. This pairing of Atlus and Sega is a match made in gaming heaven.

MegaTagmension Blanc + Neptune VS Zombies: Time To Kill (Some Kind of Cute Undead)

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Zombies_ESRB_coversheetWell, in the North American territories, that is. You gamers overseas in Europe and the UK need to hold on for a few days longer, but you’ll get what’s coming to you soon. Or more precisely, those nasty zombies will get what’s coming to them from YOU (POW!). MegaTagmension Blanc + Neptune VS Zombies hits the Vita running, all cute gals slapping the slime out of zombies in colorful, fast-paced action. I hear a voice saying “Get it, or get HIT!”, but that’s my brain calling forth demons or an old slogan I saw somewhere something. Still, this one looks as if it’ll be portable thrills galore guaranteed to make you miss your bus or train stop.

Hey, don’t blame ME for that, now. I play most of my games at home so the only stop I miss is when I forget to stop playing. Yes, I probably have a problem. But that’s not your problem, right?

The trailer, in case you need a friendly reminder to nab this one soon (as in NOW!):

Tower of Samsara on Kickstarter: Get This Unique Platformer Well-Funded

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Welcome to Tower of Samsara

 

The wheel of life runs indefinitely. Just like the path that you’ll take through the planets of our solar system living your adventure and making your choices so you can build yourself to reach nirvana.

 

 

So many Kickstarters, so little time (and money)! That said, Martelo Nero’s interesting-looking indie game Tower of Samsara has enough going for it that I shot a few dollars its way as soon as the funding went live. It’s been a few days since and guess what? A Vita version has been announced as a stretch goal. Hmmm. Time up up my pledge, it would seem. The stylized visuals and karmic elements of the gameplay noted on the KS page are what lured me in, and with time to go before pledges are all taken and a 2018 release date, it’s a hopeful sign that ToS is climbing its own tower to its goal.

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April PSN Flash Sale: Your Wallet Just Went On A Crash Diet

PSN Flash Sale April…and is now MUCH lighter. Thanks, Sony!  This new PSN Flash Sale will have your head spinning as the values pile up in your digital shopping cart thanks to so many deals on PS4, PS3, and Vita games plus a bunch of Video content to keep you entertained and your friends wondering how you can afford all that content.  Hey, up to 75% off is nothing to sneeze at. Unless you’re allergic to discounts (of course).

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In case you didn’t get the picture – there are some NICE deals here!

Of course, they probably know all about this sale by now if they’ve read this far and they’re busy clicking away adding stuff to their carts in order to entertain themselves and make YOU jealous.  Such is life, right? Anyway, get to it – there’s a lot of tempting stuff there and you don’t have much time to spare.

Axiom Verge on Vita: Instant Classic Goes Pocket-Sized

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Hey! That’s what we Vita owners are supposed to be saying to YOU, game! Thanks for showing up when you’re most needed, though.

While I’ve only sampled a bit of Thomas Happ’s outstanding and astounding retro action game Axiom Verge last year at Indiecade, it impressed me more than enough to want to play it as soon as it was released. Then I heard it was coming to the Vita and decided to hold my breath and wait because that powerful but plagued by a few issues handheld needs more top-drawer games like this.

VERY blue in the face later (*gasp!*), it may have taken a while to port over (it wasn’t a simple process at all), but it’s out now on PSN for $19.99 (Cross Buy with the PS4 version AND 10% off for a limited time) and it’s a must for Vita users worldwide. Got get it and prepare for a total blast. From what I played on the PS4 last year, the game is a fantastic mix of retro game challenge and messes with your head as it allows you to use intentional glitches as means to further your progress.

If you don’t have a Vita or PS4, fear not. PC owners can buy the game directly from the Axiom Verge site, on Steam or through the Humble Store. The game is also headed to Xbox One and Wii U at some point this year, so you kind of have no excuse NOT to play this one. Well, unless you hate great games and supporting indie developers, of course.

Gallery: SEVERED

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In Severed you play as a distraught warrior, who is lost in a fantastical world. She is tasked with the challenge of knitting together pieces of her story from both the past and the future. Our heroine will embark on a journey through a surreal non-linear world using a gesture based combat mechanic to defeat enemies in this first person adventure. Unlock new abilities, discover secrets of the land, and grow in power as you master both offensive and defensive techniques. Let Severed be your mystery to unravel.

 


Despite not being the biggest fan of touch screen or gesture-based games on the Vita (why can’t I use a stylus on this handheld?), Drinkbox Studios’ SEVERED caught my eye (ow!) with it’s gorgeous stylized visuals and overall “not for the kids” plot. Memories of a few arcade games and the Super NES sleeper Shien’s Revenge also came to mind, which means I’ll most likely have a blast playing this. Granted, I wasn’t so fond of Guacamelee (fun to play as it was), but I never judge a developer by ONE game (I just judge my taste in games I should have liked more when I first played them). Anyway, this new Vita title should be out digitally on PSN at some point this year. It’s screaming for a Wii U/3DS port, but we shall see what happens over time, right?

Some lovely screens below:

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The gameplay looks smooth enough and those graphics sure are easy on the eyes (unless you’re that poor sap in the tree above), so it looks as if Drinkbox will have another hit on their hands (and in my hands as well).