You can go on about how much you know about Mega Man’s model number or the reason for Blanka’s electrical powers, but did you know of Cosmi, Under the Skin’s alien protagonist who terrorizes Earth with bowling balls, boxing gloves and bad karaoke?
With the 30th Anniversary Capcom Character Encyclopedia, now you’ll know.
Announced back in June and released this past October, the 30th Anniversary Capcom Character Encyclopedia is a hefty piece of work that comes at a surprisingly low price of around $10 (down from its original $16.99 price). The hardcover book, assembled by DK and BradyGames with official licensing from Capcom, contains 200-plus pages of profiles that span the entire 30 years of the company’s diverse assortment of characters.
With the low price comes a bit of a caveat – don’t expect a very in-depth look at each character that’s represented. Each character is given a single page with two pieces of artwork, a brief write-up and a data box that lists a few bits of trivia (which curiously feature a few minor typos here and there). While I do understand that incorporating more screenshots, concept art and spritework would have resulted in a larger book and a higher cost, it does seem a bit underwhelming, particularly for those characters that have gone through some dramatic changes over the years.
The best thing to glean from the book is its large assortment of Capcom’s far more obscure characters. You’ve got your staples like Ken Masters, Zero, Leon S. Kennedy and silver-haired Dante tucked in there, but I also found the entries dealing with Capcom’s early arcade games and its lesser-known titles throughout its 30-year reign far more interesting to read. Through those entries, I’ve learned about characters and games I never even knew existed, like the Nameless Ones from Forgotten Worlds and the biologically-engineered EXES bugs from Exed Exes.
Plus, the book has entries for the Breath of Fire series’ Ryu and Nina. That alone makes this book worth it to me, even if its mention of Breath of Fire: Dragon Quarter as the franchise’s “final chapter” is a little outdated given the announcement of Breath of Fire 6 back in August.
Stay tuned, we’ll be planning a giveaway of this book in the coming days. Think of it as a sort of Christmas gift for one lucky reader.
Nintendo rolled out one final Direct stream before the year’s end, dishing out news related to its 3DS and Wii U Spring 2014 release schedule as well as some new game announcements.
The stream kicked off with its biggest shocker: a new spin-off Zelda title tentatively named Hyrule Warriors, which will be coming out sometime in 2014. Developed by Tecmo Koei, this Wii U title is essentially Dynasty Warriors meets The Legend of Zelda, in which Link does battle with tons of monsters across the fields of Hyrule.
Other new reveals include a new Chibi-Robo! game for 3DS, free Sonic Lost World DLC that features a level inspired by Yoshi’s Island and the reveal of a new Super Smash Bros. character: Rosalina and Luma.
Mosey on over for the full recap, including all the juicy tidbits for the aforementioned games along with other kooky announcements (like Dr. Luigi), trailers and screenshots.
- Hyrule Warriors, a tentatively-titled Dynasty Warriors-meets-The Legend of Zelda game will be developed by Tecmo Koei and released sometime in 2014 on Wii U.
- Kirby Triple Deluxe on 3DS will utilize the back and foreground in its platforming (think Mutant Mudds). New concepts include the “Hyper Nova” ability which allows Kirby to inhale bigger objects and enemies.
- Kirby Triple Deluxe will feature two new modes: “Kirby Fighter,“ a four-player battle royale in which combatants use copied abilities, and “King Dedede’s Drum Dash,” a rhythm minigame. The game launches in 2014.
- Yoshi’s New Island on 3DS will be produced by Takeshi Tezuka, who directed the original. Footage shows the use of giant eggs and pastel-like sprites.
- Chibi-Robo! Photo Finder will debut on the 3DS eShop on Jan. 9, 2014. In it, a Museum curator utilizes a tiny robot to collect objects and take photos for his museum. Satoru Iwata promised a diverse cast of characters, from “superheroes to singing sponge bears [that] aid Chibi Robo.”
- New Pokemon apps will come to the 3DS eShop on Dec. 27, 2013. Pokemon Bank and Poke Transporter let you store and transfer Pokemon from Pokemon Black, White, Black Version 2 and White Version 2 to Pokemon X and Y. Both apps will have a free 30-day trial.
- Bravely Default on 3DS will have a StreetPass feature in which players gain “Sleep Points” in standby mode, which can be used to power up characters.
- Bravely Default will launch on Feb. 7, 2014 physically and digitally. The game’s demo will launch on Jan. 2, 2014 and will be comprised of a side-story that’s not included in the main game. Item packs gained in the demo can transfer to the main game along with the first 20 StreetPass tags players get.
- Donkey Kong Country Tropical Freeze’s Cranky Kong was shown off. His pogo cane ability lets him bounce like DuckTales’ Scrooge McDuck. The game launches on Wii U on Feb. 21, 2014.
- Sonic Lost World gets two new DLC packs. The first is a free DLC level entitled “Yoshi’s Island Zone” which features Yoshi’s Story-esque levels. The other DLC will be revealed at a later date.
- Wii Sports Club gets a new level based on the NES Golf. A 24-hour free trial of the game’s Tennis, Bowling and Golf modes is now available on the eShop.
- A new Wii U eShop title called NES Remix has just been released and features remixed levels from early NES classics like Super Mario Bros., Donkey Kong and The Legend of Zelda.
- The Year of Luigi carries on with Dr. Luigi, where viruses are assaulted with L-shaped pills. It will come out on Dec. 31, 2013 on the Wii U eShop.
- A new Club Nintendo reward featuring a Luigi’s Mansion-themed figurine will be available for members.
- Rosalina and Luma are the newest characters in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U and 3DS. The two work together as one unit, a la Ice Climbers.
- New Mario Kart 8 footage was shown. The game features an airport level and the hang-gliders from Mario Kart 7 are back. The game comes out in Spring 2014 on Wii U.
Ever since it was announced that Konami would be delisting Skullgirls from PSN and XBLA by the end of the year, there was a bit of uncertainty as to when it would become available again. But fear not: developer Lab Zero Games has the answer, in the form of the rebranded Skullgirls Encore.
In a news post on its blog, the indie developer has revealed that the original Skullgirls will be removed from PSN and XBLA by the end of Dec. 31, 2013. The Marvelous AQL-published Skullgirls Encore will subsequently be released on both platforms sometime in Jan. 2014.
For PSN purchasers of the original Skullgirls, Encore will be a free download. While old DLC will not work with this new iteration, the character color DLC bundle will be made available for free for a limited time. On the XBLA side, Encore will be downloaded as a patch to the original Skullgirls, which means all the DLC, leaderboards, achievements and save data will remain unaffected.
The Squiggly DLC that was funded by an Indiegogo campaign several months ago will be made available solely for the Encore version of the game, and will be free to download for three months after its release.
Throughout this entire transition, Skullgirls will remain playable both online and offline, although the game itself will not show up on either platform’s storefront following its delisting.
The world of publishing and digital storefronts is quite a complicated one, but it seems like Lab Zero and Marvelous AQL have everything down pat to ensure that console fans of the fighting game won’t get burned.
Source: Lab Zero Games
The weather outside may be getting frightful, but the copious amount of eSports is still here to keep you warm through the week.
With the year winding down, events are becoming a bit few and far between. Even professional gamers need a holiday.
Thankfully, there’s still some exciting action to be had in Dota 2, League of Legends and Counter-Strike: Global Offensive this week.
Hit the jump for a list of notable streams going live this week.
In League of Legends, the Battle of the Atlantic is still raging as teams compete in showmatches alongside the all important Promotion matches. This week’s action takes place in Manhattan Beach, California and features top teams like Fnatic, Gambit Gaming and Counter Logic Gaming in the showmatches while Curse and five other teams fight to make into the LCS.
Check the LoL eSports website for more details including streams and how to get tickets to see the event live.
Over in Dota 2, the G-League 2013 comes to an exciting conclusion this week.
Last time on the eSports Forecast, we talked about the interesting grudge matches to come. Well, the dust has settled and respected Chinese teams DK and Invictus Gaming have risen to the top. They will wait in the semifinals while the four other qualifying teams, which include EMS One Fall winners Vici Gaming, LGD, Speed Gaming and Tong Fu, battle to reach the next round.
Basically, if you want to see some high level Asian Dota, don’t miss these matches. Every single prominent team is represented and there are sure to be some great matches.
Nearly ten years after Counter-Strike’s period of dominance in the eSports world, Counter-Strike: Global Offensive has experienced a bit of a resurgence among fans.
This week, the StarLadder Season VIII bracket is coming to a close, as top teams like Astana Dragons, Mystik, Universal Soldiers and Natus Vincere battle to call themselves champions.
If you’ve never watched a competitive first-person shooter, this game is basically what started it all, so stay tuned to HLTV.org for more information on this week’s games.
Since the tournament scene is taking a break for the next few weeks, eSports Forecast will too. Check back at the beginning of January to better plan your week around your stream watching obsession.
Until then, bundle up and enjoy some great eSports action.
North American fans of Square Enix’s seminal role-playing series Final Fantasy got a glimpse into what a little extra cash can get them this March, as info on the PlayStation 3 collector’s edition of Final Fantasy X | X-2 HD Remaster was unveiled earlier today.
Sold exclusively through the Square Enix Online Store, the collector’s edition comes with a hardcover artbook, five lithographs of featured artwork and characters and a Blu-Ray comprised of “over six hours of music” from the Final Fantasy X HD Remaster soundtrack juxtaposed with scenes from the game.
Along with the two games of course, the whole shebang will set you back $79.99.
Square Enix said in a press release that the collection shown today was exclusive to North America and that it may not be what other territories will get on March 18.
As for the Vita version, Final Fantasy X | X-2 HD Remaster will be sold as a bundle, with the former being sold on a game card, while the latter will be offered as a download.
You better not pout. You better not cry. The group of robbers from Payday 2 are taking your cash no matter how hard you try – in a new downloadable heist released today on Steam.
Like the last free add-on to Overkill Software’s sequel to Payday: The Heist, The “Charlie Santa” Heist has four players working together to rob a bank based on a map in Counter Strike: Global Offensive.
Along with the new mission, Payday 2 users get a free weapon modification. Those who join the game’s official Steam community also get access to a free (and kinda creepy) Santa mask.
Nine new achievements are also included in the free update.
Like the rest of Payday 2, there are mainly two ways players can tackle their act of grand larceny, but even the best laid plans usually fall apart when the game starts throwing wave after wave of cops and SWAT members in.
You can check out a trailer featuring the DLC after the break.
Nintendo’s got a good deal going on the Wii U and 3DS Virtual Console for both Mega Man X and Mega Man: Dr. Wily’s Revenge, but you better hop into some dash boots sooner rather than later.
The SNES and Game Boy classics are $2 a piece on their respective eShops, down from their original $7.99 and $3.99 price tags. They’ll continue to be for only two days, so you’ll have until Wednesday, Dec. 18. 8:59AM PST to take
Despite still having a working cartridge of Mega Man X, $2 for one of the best SNES action platformers out there is too good of a deal to pass up. Commence silly Miiverse posts about jumping through the boss gates and joking about how the password screen is now useless with restore points.
With Drakengard 3 (Or Drag-On Dragoon 3 depending on your location) set to launch in Japan in three days, Square Enix has released one final trailer–an “advertisement movie”–to entice players to jump into the world of Drakengard.
The trailer focuses on both story and gameplay, but with an emphasis on stronger single enemies versus platoons of weaker enemies like the previous games. Players can also take to the skies to set foes on fire with their dragon ally.
As a big fan of the original Drakengard (and Drakengard 2 to a lesser extent), I can’t wait to get back to hacking and slashing said foes.
Drakengard 3 will hit Japanese shores on Dec. 19 and will be reaching North America and Europe later in 2014.
Jump ahead to see Drakengard 3 in action.
Editor’s note: In the Postcard Review, members of the Pixelitis staff write small, easily digestible reviews big enough to ‘fit on a postcard’ – hence the title. It can be about the whole experience or just a small piece of the pie. No scores needed.)
There’s no reason this game should have been good.
Its very existence is dripping with visible marketing. “Pokémon games are popular. Pokémon cards are popular. Let’s do it!”
Yet somehow Game Boy’s Pokémon Trading Card Game dodged its fate and turned out to be a pretty fun game.
Ironically, despite all the Pokémon cards I owned as a youth, I never really knew how to play. I credit this game with teaching me the proper rules and realizing that my elementary school bully didn’t properly defeat me with his shiny Charizard.
So once you learn the real rules and realize your childhood was a lie, the game surprisingly delivers. It starts off hilariously echoing Pokémon Red and Blue by having a scientist ask you which “deck” you want. It’s a nice nod to the series, but it is much less exciting to choose the “Charmander & friends deck” over a real Charmander. Though I guess neither is real, in retrospect. This game really makes you question everything.
After you choose your first deck, you end up in a hub world where you can travel to different clubs who each use a specific type. Beating players will unlock booster packs which let the player customize and build more decks.
Hearing the game described makes it sound like the poor-man’s Pokémon, and in some ways it is, but there’s something intriguing about the meta game within the game. I’d say its worth a look, even if it’s just for the soundtrack.
Growing up, the magic of this time of year was always so palatable. You could practically feel it on your skin – school was out, friends were itching to come over to play and then it was the start of a brand new year.
Now, as I get older, I find myself more and more in line with Arnold Schwarzenegger’s character in Jingle All the Way than I did with Macaulay Culken’s in Home Alone. It’s a time of strife, hardship and financial ruin all in the name of “spreading good cheer.”
That being said, I’m no scrooge. With the final days of shopping before Christmas looming ahead of us this week, I wish you all good luck in finding that special something for that special someone.
Thanks to some revelations on Monday, we know the NSA has a team of Level 80 Dark Elves spying on our raids in World of Warcraft. We also know that Japanese restaurant-goers will soon have to prepare to di(n)e in a Dark Souls-themed cafe.
As always, we have everything we’ve posted in the last week waiting for you right after the break.