Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas to all!

I hope all of you who celebrate Christmas are having a wonderful day!

I certainly am, thanks to my parents--who bought me both Wii Fit Plus and Wii Sports Resort. I've spent most of the day playing the latter, with my favorite activities being swordplay (showdown!) and table tennis.

I've also been listening to lots of holiday music, including this chiptune mix of "Ave Maria":

How are you guys and gals spending this day? Are you playing any particular games with family and friends?

Thursday, December 24, 2009

The year without a Cave Story

Sigh. I guess I knew deep down that Cave Story wouldn't hit WiiWare this coming Monday, but that didn't stop me from hoping it would--along with Castlevania: The Adventure Rebirth, of course.

According to Cave Story's developer, Nicalis, the highly acclaimed (and anticipated) title won't be appearing on Wii's Shop Channel until "after the new year."

That doesn't mean it has to be a completely Cave Story-free Christmas, though--a few holiday-themed Cave Story songs were just posted to the Nicalis blog for all to enjoy.

Rocket Knight returns to the roost

The roost being my heart, of course :)

So, when Rocket Knight was announced for PC, PS3 and Xbox 360 earlier this year, I was ecstatic. I have fond memories of the Sparkster games that appeared on the Genesis and SNES, after all, so the thought of returning to the Rocket Knight world was an appealing one.

When I saw the first screenshots and videos of the game, though, I was eviscerated. I didn't expect Konami's (or, rather, Climax Group's) latest Sparkster title to be a sprite-filled affair like its predecessors, but I didn't expect it to be a hot polygonal mess, either.

That no longer seems to be the case, thankfully, as I just watched a new video of the game (over at and came away ecstatic once again. Here it is, in case you haven't seen it:

More videos of Rocket Knight in action--and a rather lengthy preview of the highly anticipated title--can be found here.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

The 'amazing awfulness' of Sukeban Shachou Rena

Once again, I can't claim credit for one of headlines that appears on this blog--at least not the "amazing awfulness" part, which was included in a recent Wall Street Journal article about this bizarre Wii release.

Anyway, I'm sure you're wondering, "What makes Sukeban Shachou Rena (loosely translated as Delinquent CEO Rena) such an amazingly awful game?" Well, for starters, there's the premise--which tasks players with working in an office under a demanding feline boss.

And then there are the mini-games that revolve around that premise--such as this one, which involves getting out of the way of angry cats as they launch themselves at your avatar:

Surprisingly, Sukeban Shachou Rena isn't known for its strange mini-games. Instead, it's known for selling just 100 copies when it was released earlier this year. Honestly, I'd pick up a copy myself if brought the price down a bit (they're currently selling it for $44.90). 

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Oh, I'm totally going to rock this at our Christmas party

An apron made with Mario and Zelda fabric--oh, and with red lace trim. What more could a girl want? :)

Unfortunately, somebody already bought it. Oh, well, maybe next year...

Mega Man, Rock Man or ... Rainbow Man?!?

OK, so I have Mega Man on the brain these days--thanks to the recent announcement of Mega Man 10.

Anyway, in today's Mega Man-related news: Your Weekly Famicom has unearthed a rather interesting article from the Oct. 2, 1987 issue of Famitsu magazine. The article seemingly offered the Japanese populace the first glimpse of the original Mega Man (known as Rockman in Japan) game. The game wasn't called Mega Man/Rockman at the time, though--according to Your Daily Famicom, at that stage the title was called The Battle Rainbow Rockman.

That wasn't the first time the word rainbow was associated with the little blue bombshell--a post over at Protodude's Rockman Corner (say that three times fast) suggests the folks at Capcom considered calling the character Rainbow Man before copyright conflicts (with Toho Co.'s television superhero Rainbowman) convinced them to go with the less colorful Rockman.

I wonder what Zangeki no Reginleiv will be called when/if it comes to the States?

Nintendo of Japan will be releasing its second MotionPlus-compatible game--the only other first-party title that utilizes the device is Wii Sports Resort--on February 11, and its name is a mouthful: Zangeki no Reginleiv.

I'd like to tell you that the marketing folks at Nintendo are doing their darndest to promote the title, but that seems to be the opposite of the truth. They did put a short trailer on the Nintendo Channel (again, in Japan) in the last few days, though.

Nintendo of America has yet to acknowledge the existence of Zangeki no Reginleiv, so who knows if it will show up on our shores. I hope that it does, despite the fact that it's not really my kind of game. It just looks like one of those games I'd like to watch someone else play--you know what I mean?

The lost art of game manuals

The folks over at Destructoid posted an interesting article about "the seven best video game manuals of all time" yesterday, and it got me thinking about the lack of effort that is put into the manuals that accompany today's titles.

Oh, sure, a select few modern manuals (such as the one created for We Love Katamari) display the kind of spunk we saw all the time back in the day, but the majority are little more than anemic, emaciated leaflets. I mean, when was the last time you encountered a game manual with this kind of character? 

That's a scan of a few pages of the Kid Icarus manual, by the way. I must have read that manual a hundred times (at least) when I was a kid. It wasn''t the only one--I spent just as much time with the manuals for Dragon Warrior, Final Fantasy, The Legend of Zelda and Super Mario Bros. 2 and 3, just to name a few.

Actually, the Final Fantasy manual--and the fold-out map that was stuffed inside of it--is just a few feet from me right now, despite the fact that I no longer have the cartridge. I also have the Nintendo Power strategy guide that accompanied the title's release. Maybe I'll snap a few photos of both this weekend...

Monday, December 21, 2009

Maybe Capcom should call this Monster Hunter Crossing?'s Anoop Gantayat made me a happy, happy guy today. Why, you ask? Well, he posted on his site a few details related to the upcoming PSP release, Monster Hunter Diary (aka Monhan Nikki Poka Poka Airu Mura).

Apparently, the game is a bit of a cross between Animal Crossing and Monster Hunter. Basically, players control one of the latter game's Airu characters and do what they can to attract other Airus to their village.

Players aren't restricted to their Airu village, however--quests appear to be a big part of the Monster Hunter Diary experience, with at least some (if not all) of those quests involving group hunts.

Hopefully this title will make it to the States at some point despite the dearth of Monster Hunter (and PSP) supporters on our shores.

NIS America: Holy Invasion of Privacy, Badman! 2 will be a twofer

PSP owners who passed on the original Holy Invasion of Privacy, Badman! because it was a download-only title can stop pouting: According to, Holy Invasion of Privacy, Badman! and its sequel will share space on a UMD that will hit store shelves on March 2 for the lower-than-low price of $29.99.

Here's a
Holy Invasion of Privacy, Badman! 2 trailer, for anyone who hasn't seen it:

Castlevania: The Adventure Rebirth remix (aka Christopher Belmont is a dancing queen)

If you haven't yet checked out the official U.S. trailer for Castlevania: The Adventure Rebirth, do yourself a favor and check it out now:

The choice of music is interesting, don't you think? Maybe the folks at Konami are trying to give us a hint as to how (and where) Christoper Belmont likes to spend his time when he's not hunting Dracula...

Sunday, December 20, 2009

A peek into Mario's closet sells "gear for geeks and gamers"--wants to know what you think about the following t-shirt design (created by Glen Brogan and called "Mario's Closet"):

I'd certainly buy a t-shirt bearing this design--assuming I like the cut of the shirt. How about you?

(BTW, you can share your thoughts on the design here.) considers 'the gayest video games'

Out magazine rarely, if ever, covers video games, so I was a bit surprised when I saw an article about "the gayest video games" pop up on recently.

The article (if it can be called that) starts out well enough, with the following, flirty text: "From the enduring love affair of the Contra boys to the sexplosion of Street Fighter, here are our favorite, gayest video games."

It kind of goes downhill from there, though. For instance, here's the text that accompanies Super Mario Bros., the first entry on Out's list: "Cleaning pipes and taking names." Duke Nukem's is even worse: "Chasing pussy was just a front for the muscled Chelsea queen."

Oh, well, at least they're talking about video games. Right?

Is it strange that I want a 360 just so I can play XBLA games?

I know I've mentioned the above before, but it's true--I want an Xbox 360, but only so I can play an increasing number of XBLA games.

Case in point: The upcoming Arkedo Series: 03 Pixel!

According to's Eric Caoili, this lovely little game is the product of a collaboration between two well-regarded French developers: Pastagames (makers of Maestro! Jump in Music) and Arkedo Studio (Big Bang Mini).

Should I ever get a 360, I'll have to pick up another of Arkedo's XBLA releases, too--Arkedo Series: 01 Jump!, which boasts a similarly.retro-rific appearance.