For those of you who are, like, "sayonara what?"--Umihara Kawase is a wonderfully unique platformer that was created by "developer Kiyoshi Sakai, illustrator Toshinobu Kondo and several others," according to the game's Wikipedia page, and published by a company called TNN for the Super Famicom in 1994.
A sequel of sorts was released for the PlayStation in 1997--which was later ported (rather shabbily, it seems) to the PSP in 2008. Oh, and a DS version containing both the Super Famicom original and the PlayStation follow-up hit store shelves--only in Japan, of course--in 2009.
Umihara Kawase stars a Japanese school girl who, for some reason unbeknownst to me, has to make her way through a series of water-filled stages while avoiding various sea creatures such as tottering fish and gigantic, bouncing tadpoles. She does this, mostly, by using her trusty fishing rod and line to both reel in stunned baddies (which she places in her pink backpack) and swing between platforms.
If all that sounds a bit odd, well, it is--but it's also charming and exhilarating and even pull-out-your-hair tough.
As you probably can tell, I'm a big fan of these games--the one that started it all, especially--and, given that, I was beyond excited to learn yesterday afternoon that a new entry in this series is coming to the Japanese 3DS this summer.
The game will be called Sayonara Umihara Kawase, according to the latest issue of Famitsu, and apparently it will be an all-new game (as opposed to another compilation of the Super Famicom and PlayStation titles a la the DS iteration).
Assuming the finished product looks OK, I'm planning to pick up a copy as soon as it's available. I know that's not an option for every 3DS fan, though, so here's hoping some bold company brings it to the rest of the world sooner rather than later.
(News via tinycartridge.com, images via sufamithoughts.com)