Ever since its inception, the Entertainment Software Ratings Board, or ESRB, has had the AO rating in its repertoire of ratings. AO, short for Adults Only, is a relatively rare rating to get with only 27 games ever getting the rating (now 28 with Hatred’s inclusion). Most of them get it for essentially being porn games, with very few getting it for violent acts and one getting it for real-money gambling. Unlike other rating boards around the world, the ESRB does not ban a game for having certain content nor does it refuse a rating (like the BBFC and Manhunt 2). However the AO rating is pretty much a kiss of death in the U.S. as no major retailer will carry an AO game (except maybe GameStop) and all three console manufacturers and Valve’s Steam (from what I’m guessing) don’t allow such games to be sold nor played on their respective services. This was back then when the only way to get your games was in brick and mortar stores.
But with the rise if digital storefronts, it’s now possible to release games with content that could be considered AO. On PC at least, while not rated, games like Katawa Shoujo and Monster Girl Quest probably wouldn’t see the light of day on Steam. And yet they have gained something of a healthy following. On top of this, those games are available directly from the developer’s/publisher’s websites. So in exchange for exposure, they get the freedom to sell whatever they want on their own terms.
So how exactly would games like these find a way on major storefronts like Steam or major consoles?
To the corner of the Capcom booth was a demo of Dustforce playing. Intrigued by what he was seeing, Steve tries his hand at this indie platformer. He only had very little knowledge of the game, posting a single song from it on Night-Time Listenings. How did Steve like Dustforce? Click play and find out!
One of two outcomes had to happen, and it looks like my gut was right. Atlus has released the original Playstation version of Persona 2 Eternal Punishment on PSN, finally making every Persona game much more possible to collect. Persona 2 Eternal Punishment was released late in the PS1’s lifecycle, and as such became a rather obscure title in the Persona series (and damn expensive as well). It wasn’t until games like Shin Megami Tensei Nocturne, Digital Devil Saga, and Persona 3 brought the game into the limelight. Another odd thing about this entry was that it was actually the second game in the Persona 2 duality, probably confusing players when events of the first entry, Innocent Sin, would be recounted somewhat. However given the way things end up by the end of Innocent Sin, you’d probably be able to play the game anyway without too much being spoiled. Regardless, players would finally be able to play P2: IS on the PSP many years later.
Eternal Punishment would get the enhanced port treatment Innocent Sin got last year on the PSP. However many wondered if it was going to get localized considering the status of the PSP in the U.S. and the release of the Vita. Two things were going to happen to this game: it gets localized and released, albeit without the sweet packaging Persona 1 and Innocent Sin got, or the PS1 version got released on PSN, costing considerably less than localizing the PSP version. And it looks like they took option two. No word yet if the PSP version will get localized anyway, but it looks like a done deal and this will be the only way we play the game. Besides, at least the original PS1 game’s localization wasn’t as idiotic as the PS1 version of Persona 1.
Developer Black Forest Games has confirmed via their stream that their game, Giana Sisters Twisted Dreams will be console bound this around the Spring/Summer. Released on PC late last year after a successful Kickstarter campaign, this latest game gave players the ability to switch between both Cute and Punk variants of Giana, both having abilities exclusive to each type. Changing between the two also changed the world around Giana, with the dream side for Punk Giana and the nightmare side for Cute Giana. This mechanic as a big departure for the once clone game, nixing its more traditional Mario-like platforming to a more puzzle-platforming approach similar to other indie games in the market.
Black Forest has also enlisted the aid of original Giana Sisters composer Chris Hulsbeck and Swedish sid-metal band Machinae Supremacy. Giana Sisters DS composer Fabian Del Priore also returns. These three at the helm help to make the music match the changing mechanic, with Cute getting a more standard composition and Punk getting Machinae’s metal music.
So far there’s no word yet if the game will also be released on XBLA. It is however currently available on Steam, Origin, and Amazon.
Earlier this year marked the release of Skullgirls, a game made by pro-tournament player MikeZ and his team as Reverge Labs. It was an all-girl (for now) fighting game that was rife with references and was a love-letter to fighting games. While critical and fan reaction was mostly positive, there were still lots of things to be addressed. Shortly after release, Reverge said that they’ll ready a big patch to release later on, and that later on is now. And since patches cost money to go online, the team at Reverge Labs wanted to make this patch count and fix a multitude of things all at once. Since this is a small dev team, they don’t have the resources to make constant patches and put them online. Highly understandable, and preferable (PS3 guys, you’ll understand. I sure do). The fix list is massive. Really massive. Summarized list after the break.
Last night Jeremiah “Module” Ross performed at the San Francisco Bath House in New Zealand. He was doing the music from Shatter, which was rife with Electronica goodness. Since the concert was in New Zealand, the time difference was pretty immense, and most of use were either sleeping or at work. But Module was nice enough to archive his performance on YouTube for the public that missed it. The actual performance begins around the 1 hour mark. Before that is the opening act. So have a listen and enjoy. And remember that Shatter is available on PSN, Steam (I believe), and is part of the current Humble Indie Bundle.
Shatter composer Jeremiah Ross, aka Module, is going to do a live performance of the Shatter soundtrack in the San Francisco Bath House in New Zealand. This is NOT in San Francisco, repeat, NOT in San Francisco. This is in a club called San Francisco Bath House. Okay, now that that’s out of the way, he’s informed people on his Facebook page that if enough people are interested, he’ll livestream Shatter Live on Ustream for those that can’t make it to NZ. All you gotta do is go here and like/tell him you’re interested. The performance begins at 9PM NZ time on September 20th. He’ll be accompanied by Benny Tones (which he collaborated with before) and Jen Kyle.
You don’t know about Shatter music? Well getacquainted! It’sawesome! And buy the game on PSN or Steam while you’re at it!
I remember once in composition class, my professor mentioned something about Rock of Ages while telling one of his old stories (the guy’s at least in his 70’s), tipping me off that there might be some other, probably more popular work that shares the same name. Sure enough, a Google search is more likely to direct you to a musical or movie. I never was into theatre, so don’t be too surprised when I say that it was the game I first heard about before the production.
While titles are shared, thematic content is not. Our game does not revolve around a timeless musical genre (there isn’t even rock in the soundtrack). Instead, the title is to be taken more literally; it’s about one man and his giant boulder traveling through different time periods and doing battle with various historical figures throughout Europe.
Any of you guys remember those old JibJab political cartoons which while slightly funny, started a trend of manipulating still pictures of people so that they appear to be talking or performing various actions? Imagine that treatment with authentic historical art styles and you have just about every cutscene in the game. While in play, units, buildings and the overall scenery on the playing field are three dimensional models. On the other hand, all human characters including the ones controlling the boulders from behind castle walls and the giant human hand that places the boulder back on track if it falls off are presented as paper cutouts.
We got a pot luck of items this week, from an installment from the Sonic series coming back, an obscure game inspired by a manga coming to the 3DS, an anticipated piece of DLC, and more in this mixed bag of news this week.
This isn’t the Fox McCloud your brother grew up with
Sine Mora is a side scrolling shoot ’em up game exclusive to the Xbox Live Arcade that has you controlling a team of time traveling animal pilots trying to stop a crazed serial killer from committing genocide on their precious world. The game has been praised by critics for its fresh take on game modes, story (which can be hard to understand) and gameplay of this type of genre. Now the possibility of Playstation holders being able to play this game is coming to reality.
By Grasshopper Manufacture and Digital Reality,Sine Mora came out in March of this year on Xbox Live Arcade. The response that this game has been receiving has allowed the developers to bravely release the game later this year for the vita (which was shown at E3). It has been confirmed by publisher Balazs Horvath (Digital Reality) that the game is also coming out for the Playstation Network later this year on December 31, 2012. There has been no confirmed price but knowing how these digital store games work when going multi-platform, it is safe to assume it will be priced the same (which goes for $15.00 on the Xbox live arcade).
Good news for any Legend of Dragoon fans out there. The classic Sony RPG is now available on PSN. Well, it’s actually been available for a while. I’m a bit late to the party (playing Xenoblade and all). I do remember my time with The Legend of Dragoon. I got quite hooked on the game and almost beat it. What happened? Well, first my gaming ADD acted up (I got a new game). Then my PS1 stopped working. Then my PS2 had trouble reading PS1 games. And I was on the fourth disc. Damn. But hey, I got a PS3, and it does read PS1 games (as ALL PS3s DO.) So maybe I’ll return to this someday. But hey, if you want a bug-free romp through this game and/or you want to finally play this game, it’s up on PSN as a PSOne classic.
And now for some crotch kicking news. The Legend of Dragoon almost had a sequel. Yep, and it was in production, most likely for the PS2. However, no one knew about this until Shu Yoshida talked about it recently. He states that when he left SCEJ, the game was still in production. Why it was cancelled is a mystery. But it could’ve been lack of interest at the time. I mean, yeah, there were fans of the game and yeah the game did well with critics, sales, and gamers. But when you have Final Fantasy X looming around the corner and everyone talking about how awesome the game was going to be, you know your morale’s gonna take a major blow. Yoshida didn’t state how long the game was in production, nor when exactly it was cancelled. But hey, at least this cancellation wasn’t as bad as another one we know.
Ouch… well, at least now we know the real reason Sony was so reluctant to include cross game chat in one of their updates. According to an interview Eurogamer had with Shuhei Yoshida, the Sony Worldwide Studios president admitted that the PS3 does not have enough ram to implement cross-game chat. The PS3 has 256MB of RAM each for the system and video, and all of it is used to run games. He states that the games themselves implement the voice chat feature, not the system. Because of the infrastructure of the PS3, and the possibility of alienating owners of newer PS3 models, Yoshida stated “It’s not possible to retrofit something like that after the fact.”
So there you have it. If you’re curious, the Vita has 512MB of RAM and 128MB of video RAM. So that little thing is quite a beast in that department.
Welcome one and all to the third episode of The Wired Fish Podcast. For this third episode we finally have Kung-Fu expert David and fighting game funnyman Bryan on board to discuss the issues at hand in this wonderful geekoverse we live in. In this episode, we discuss Sonic Generations and the trials and tribulations of the series leading up to this point. Next is Sony’s PSN Pass and their attempt to combat used game sales. Afterwards we discuss the current state of the JRPG market and its migration too handhelds. And finally we talk about comic-con and the anticipation of many new fighters on the horizon.
The new intro animation and title card was inspired by Gaijin Game’s BIT.TRIP series if you notice the similarity.
Lost Odyssey trailer obtained from IGN.
Intro – ………………………………………:30
Sonic Generations – ……………………2:18
The Sonic Supporting Cast – …………16:40
PSN Pass – ……………………………..26:00
The current state of the JRPG Market – 45:23
Comic-Con -…………………………… 1:13:10
Credits – ………………………………..1:17:16
Soulja-Boy Attack -…………………. 1:17:48
This past Sunday, DIY games interviewed Skullgirls game composer Michiru Yamane (of Castlvania and Suikoden fame). In the interview, Yamane explains that since becoming freelance after leaving Konami back in 2008, she has more freedom to work with any company she wants, whether it’d be Eastern or Western. She reveals that she came into contact with Reverge Labs after 8-4, who deals with game translations, invited her to a company party. They asked her if she wanted to work with an American company, and she agreed. You can read the full interview on DIYgamer’s site.
Things seemed to have been going all fine and Dandy for Sony and their PS3 and PSP. But then the shit hit the fan when PSN suffered a major hack attack, shutting it down for almost a whole month. But now, things are back to normal (hopefully). But, does anyone remember what Sony was planning to do for E3? To be honest, I forgot since the PSN stuff was the talk of the town. Regardless, we expect the usual things Sony will show. We should be seeing some Infamous 2, Twisted Metal, and Move action to go along with this conference. Hopefully after today, we can really put this PSN stuff behind us and focus on the games Sony will be releasing.
Sony’s Press Conference starts at 8PM EST (5PM PST). Once the conference starts, click the link below.