Yakuza 3,4 and 5 are Heading to the PlayStation 4 as Remasters

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In the latest issue of Dengeki and Famitsu, SEGA has announced that Yakuza 3, 4 and 5 will be headed to the PlayStation 4 and will be upscaled to 1080p and running at 60 frames per second. It is confirmed that in Japan each remake will get a seperate release, the release scheduel is as follows:

Yakuza 3-August 9th

Yakuza 4-Fall 2018

Yakuza 5-Spring 2019

It is unknown if these releases will be heading westward, but E3 is right around the corner, and SEGA has often stated that 2018 will be an amazing year for Yakuza fans everywhere. So I have full confidence we will see these remasters in the west. Fans of the Yakuza series just getting into the series at 0 or Kiwami will have a way to play through the entire series on the PlayStation 4 soon enough.

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Super Neptunia RPG Heads Westard for Nintendo Switch and PS4 Fall 2018

Today Idea Factory International has confirmed that the latest spin off in the Hyperdimension Neptunia series will be heading to the west for PlayStation 4 and Nintendo Switch this Fall!

2D or not 2D? That is the question! We are thrilled to announce that Super Neptunia™ RPG will head to North America and Europe this Fall 2018! The side-scrolling RPG will be available physically and digitally for the PlayStation®4 and for the first time ever, a Neptunia game will now be available on the Nintendo™ Switch! The game will have Original Japanese and English voiceover options, as well as English and French subtitle options.

Developed by Artisan Studios in Canada, this game brings the characters of the self-referential Neptunia series to life in a whole new way. Each character was hand-drawn by Tsunako, the artist behind the series, then animated by computer magic to create a world that’s mysteriously gone from three dimensions to two. Explore side-scrolling dungeons and fight in turn-based battles to settle the debate once and for all – which games are better: 2D or 3D?

-PR

You can expect to find quite a lot of cool stuff in this interesting RPG spin-off!

  • Old School Dungeons! – Explore gorgeously painted, interactive dungeons in a style inspired by classic gaming titles.
  • Follow the Leader! – Enter turn-based battles where the party’s attack style changes based on the battle leader. Switch leaders on the fly, transform mid-battle, and use elemental attacks to maximize your team’s strategy!
  • Save Gamindustri! – In a time where retro gaming and 3D graphics are at polar ends, this story delves headfirst into the debate for a self-aware ribbing of gaming culture.
  • 2D Comes to Life!  The hand-drawn art of Neptunia series artist Tsunako is brought to life by Artisan Studios, showing the characters in a whole new way!

Be sure to look out for any future coverage of Super Neptunia RPG as we get closer to the game’s release! In the meantime have a look at some screenshots of the game:

VA-11 HALL-A Serves its way onto Switch and PS4 Early 2019

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The bar simulating indie hit VA-11 HALL-A will be making it’s way to Nintendo Switch and PlayStation 4 later this year! The bartending hit was one of our favorite games that released back in 2016, and we are happy to see it making its way to the home console market after launching on Vita not too long ago.

 VA-11 HALL-A: Cyberpunk Bartender Action, the booze em’up about waifus, technology, and post-dystopia life with more than 200,000 copies sold on Steam from Ysbryd Games and Sukeban Games, will launch on Nintendo Switch and PlayStation 4 in Q1 2019.
 
VA-11 HALL-A puts a twist on traditional point and click games with the story branching based on bartending decisions. Chat with customers and serve them life-changing drinks as Jill, a bartender at a dive bar frequented by average citizens in a cyberpunk future ruled by megacorporations.
 
With 24 drinks to concoct, there is no one correct drink to serve in any given situation, as characters are impacted by whatever cocktail they are poured. Every character that comes through has a story to tell which reveals more about both their lives and the futuristic Glitch City, run by the mysterious Zaibatsu Corp.
 
Explore what it means to be human by creating bonds with characters while listening to Garoad’s pulsating electronic soundtrack, customized in a jukebox-style playlist. Discuss transhumanism with Stella Hoshii, a human who has cat-like genetic modifications. Debate the finer points of morality with Dorothy Haze, an android sex worker. These are just two of the bar’s regulars, depicted in a cool, subdued pixel art style infused with anime and modern influences.
 
“We were inspired by old-school adventure games, and really wanted to create a narrative experience without the pressures of obtaining a particular ending,” said Christoper “Kiririn51” Ortiz, co-founder, Sukeban Games. “Every story you hear is important, and drinks served to even the supporting characters can have tangible impacts on progression through the game.”
 
VA-11 HALL-A: Cyberpunk Bartender Action is currently available on Steam and PS Vita for $14.99 USD and supports English, Simplified Chinese, and Japanese.
-PR

If you want to see our thoughts on this amazing game, be sure to check out our review of the PC version here!

Shin Megami Tensei Strange Journey Redux Review

Developer: Atlus

Publisher: Atlus USA

ESRB Rating: M

Release Date: May 15th, 2018

Thank You Atlus USA for a Review Copy of this Game

Shin Megami Tensei: Strange Journey released on the Nintendo DS back in 2010. Strange Journey is often argued to be one of the best games in the SMT series due to its story, gameplay and atmosphere. So now almost a decade later, and as part of the 25th Anniversary initiative, Atlus has remade the game for the 3DS as Shin Megami Tensei: Strange Journey Redux with completely overhauled re-drawn art, more demons to recruit, an entire new character arc and new dungeons to explore. So how did this remake turn out? Was it best left in the past? Or has it become a strange turn of events?

Shin Megami Tensei: Strange Journey Redux’s story for the most part is similar to that of the original DS release. A strange force has opened up in the arctic that has been named Schwarzwelt. You and a special task force are sent in to investigate the Schwarzwelt to discover its origins and see if you can prevent it from swallowing the entire planet.

The story itself is honestly very engaging and kept me on the edge of my seat the entire time throughout the game. The more I discovered about Schwarzwelt, the more I wanted to know about the world surrounding it. The atmosphere of this game also added a lot to the storytelling, thanks to the eerie and creepy vibe that follows you the whole way, like something is just looming around the next corner. This game’s story is probably the most I have ever been engaged in when playing a Shin Megami Tensei game. All of the characters felt full of life and the voice acting added a lot to the performance. There is also an entire new story arc in this game centered around the mysterious character Alex. Her story for the most part is pretty interesting, but I won’t go into it as to avoid spoilers.

It should also be mentioned that, like any Shin Megami Tensei game, there is an alignment system; during the story, you have the option to make certain choices, which will determine your alignment, and the way demons will interact with you. Which can make negotiating with some demons more of a pain, as demons who are towards one alignment may not be as eager to talk to you if you are in another.

The gameplay for SMT Redux is not that of your typical SMT game. SMT Redux plays as a DRPG as opposed to a normal JRPG, so be prepared for a lot of first person dungeon crawling. Schwarzwelt is broken up into several different dungeons with their own themes. You can go from a war torn battlefield to a red light district in Tokyo; this place is truly unpredictable. What sets each dungeon apart from each other gameplay wise is that there are many puzzles in each one. Whether its navigating boobytrapped tiles, or moving tiles that can send you around the floor, there are many things to keep you on your toes.

While the dungeon crawling may be different from other SMT games, the combat pretty much remains the same. You still recruit and fuse demons to join your party and the combat is as fun as ever. It is your standard turn based fair, with you controlling yourself and each demon in your party. With the many different demon types, there are infinite ways for you to build up your team, but team composition may be more important in this game than others. Unlike previous SMT entries, Strange Journey Redux does not use the traditional press system, but instead uses an alignment combo system. As mentioned earlier, SMT games are known for their alignments you can take, and if a demon attacks an enemies weak spot, then every party member with the same alignment will follow up for additional damage. While on the surface this can lead to some pretty cool combos, it doesn’t feel as fleshed out as the press system. It also can make creating team compositions a bit odd, as depending on the story alignment you are going for, you may have to build your team accordingly to get the most out of it. All of that said, once you get the hang of it, it is really cool using it to your advantage against the enemy.

In this remake of the game, there are quite a lot of things added that makes the game’s quality of life all the better. New to this game is the ability to have field saves. SMT games are known for their harsh, yet fair, difficulties, and a gameover can be around any corner if you’re not careful; the ability to save anywhere is a nice safety blanket if you feel like you are about to enter a dangerous situation.

Alongside of the new character route with Alex, you also get access to an entire new dungeon that centers around her. This dungeon is very expansive, with its own side plot alongside the main story. You can return here for some extra grinding and finding certain demons. Completing each floor’s boss also gives you access to some pretty powerful special fusions as well. This dungeon in and of itself felt like an entire Schwarzwelt with how big it was. It should also be noted that your actions here will also determine which additional ending you get in Alex’s storyline.

Close Up of Alex

Other changes to the game include new art, dynamic story scenes and new background scenery, alongside of the game being fully voiced. It should be mentioned that this game only has a Japanese dub, but the Japanese voice acting is spectacular, and (as stated earlier,) adds quite a bit to the game’s atmosphere. The changes end up giving the game a nice fresh coat of paint, and looks a lot sharper compared to its DS counterpart. Additionally, for those of you looking for a real challenge after completing the game, try your hand at the impossible game mode. Also the game has three new endings alongside the traditional three endings, so there is plenty to keep you coming back for more.

One last thing I should mention is the game’s soundtrack. I honestly don’t know why, but the music in this game really stood out to me. Instead of the retro and techy style music from other SMT games, this game opts for a more orchestrated score, and it really fits the games theme incredibly well. The music made a lot of the boss fights and even more tense moments in the story all the more powerful to go through, which went a long way in cementing my immersion.

Overall, Shin Megami Tensei: Strange Journey Redux is really a classic game in the JRPG and DRPG genre. From the engaging story that will really make you think at times, to the enjoyable dungeon crawling and intense combat, you have a game that fans of both genres will enjoy. Fans who have played the original Strange Journey will find plenty to do here in this remake of the game. Once again Atlus has delivered a gem that is easily one of the best games out this year.

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Shining Resonance Refrain Launches on July 10th

Today SEGA has announced that their upcoming JRPG Shining Resonance Refrain launches in the west on July 10th.

The island of Alfheim is under siege by the Empire of Lombardia, and it’s up to Yuma Ilvern, the boy with the soul of the Shining Dragon, and his new companions, to fight back! Get ready to jump into battle when Shining Resonance Refrain launches on Nintendo Switch™, PlayStation®4, Xbox One™, and Steam® for PC on July 10!
-PR
To accompnay the announcement, SEGA has also provided a new Heroes trailer that shows off the game’s cast.

  • First off, we’re introduced to Kirika Towa Alma, the Diva of Nature. She uses her bow to deal damage from a distance while supporting allies with healing magic.
  • Next, we meet Sonia Blanche, the Lightning Princess. Fierce, yet elegant, she darts across the battlefield with her sword and shield, dealing damage to single targets in quick bursts.
  • Following Sonia, Agnum Bulletheart, the Pyromaestro makes his appearance. Always aiming to be the center of attention, Agnum deals massive damage to large groups of enemies with explosive fire magic.
  • Cooling things down after Agnum’s appearance, we have Lestin Sera Alma, the Glacier Sentinel. He uses ice magic to slow down enemies before cleaving through them with his trusty halberd.
  • Rinna, the Whirlwind Sylph brings some cheer to the party with her lighthearted attitude. She deals heavy damage from the back lines with powerful magic abilities.
  • Finally, we meet Yuma himself. Armed with the power of the Shining Dragon, he fights with dragon-like ferocity to protect his friends.

 

 

More Senran Kagura and Fate/Extella Link Heading Westward Later this Year, Bullet Witch Comes to PC April 25th

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This morning XSEED Games and Marvelous Europe have announced plethora of localization announcements that western fans can look forward to.

First up we have Senran Kagura Burst Re:Newal, a remake of the 3DS title Senran Kagura Burst heading to the PlayStation 4 and PC this fall.

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Originally released under the name SENRAN KAGURA Burst in North America and serving as a “director’s cut”-style take on the inaugural entry in this now storied series, SENRAN KAGURA Burst Re:Newal brings the prior release’s classic 2.5D action to modern hardware with a full 3D remake and a fresh retelling of the story that started it all. This fast-paced brawler will provide updated combat mechanics and character models, as well as all-new special effects for a voluptuous visual feast! The series’ popular Dressing Room mode continues to see expansions too, with a wealth of new outfits and options that allow players to customize their favorite girls’ looks and styles. With additional DLC episodes to come that will reveal new story episodes for Yumi and Miyabi detailing their histories prior to meeting Asuka and Homura, SENRAN KAGURA Burst Re:Newal delivers an authentic recreation of the original game while ensuring that series fans will have plenty of new content to look forward to!
Developed by Honey∞Parade Games, Inc. and slated for publishing on PS4™ system and Windows PC, SENRAN KAGURA Burst Re:Newal will release this fall both digitally and physically on PS4™ system and digitally on Windows PC. More release details will be shared at a future time. 
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Dragon Quest Builders Nintendo Switch Review

Developer: Square Enix

Publisher: Nintendo of America

Platform: Nintendo Switch

ESRB Rating: T

MSRP: $49.99

A Review Copy Was Provided by Nintendo of America for the Purpose of Review

While Dragon Quest Builders graced Dragon Quest fans on the PlayStation 4 and PlayStation Vita last year, Square Enix’s interesting spin off graces Nintendo’s new hybrid system. How does this mesh of a beloved JRPG series and Minecraft turn out? In today’s review we take a dive into it and see if this game could possibly be one of the best games on the Nintendo Switch.

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Kirby Star Allies – Switch

Developer:Hal Laboratory

Publisher: Nintendo

System: Nintendo Switch

Release Date: March 16th

ESRB Rating:E

MSRP:$59.99 USD

There are very few franchises with the same consistency as Kirby. Though it may not be for everyone, every main series entry manages to engage its fans with a surprisingly deep power up system and simple level design. Does Star Allies manage to keep this formula fresh or is the gameplay starting to become stale? Aside from one returning mode, there will be no spoilers regarding the post-game content.

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The Alliance Alive Review-The 3DS is Still Alive

Developer:FuRyu

Publisher:Atlus USA

System: Nintendo 3DS

Release Date: March 27th

ESRB Rating:T

MSRP:$39.99

The Alliance Alive is the latest JRPG brought to us by FuRyu, who are best known for games such as The Caligula Effect, Lost Dimension, and The Legend of Legacy. The Alliance Alive may look like a sequel to The Legend of Legacy at first glance, but it instead is a standalone  game with its own separate story. That being said The game does borrow quite a few elements from The Legend of Legacy such as the combat system. With all of this in mind, does The Alliance Alive hold up on its own?

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First Screenshots of Little Dragon Cafe

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Story of Seasons creator Yasuhiro Wada’s latest project Little Dragon Cafe is now available for pre-order on Amazon. With the pre-order availability we got quite a few new screenshots of the game!

While no trailer is currently available for the game, we can get quite a bit of information based off these screenshots! This game seriously looks like a return to Wada-san’s Bokujo roots, and I am honestly excited to see what else this game has to offer.

Little Dragon Cafe is currently available to pre-order on Amazon with a Limited Edition on the way!