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Japandemonium - When Conglomerates Attack!!

New Shining Force Character Details || Shin Megami Tensei Online Beta Info || New Tales of Rebirth Characters Unveiled
First Day Sales Chart || Brownie Brown Makes Hiring Call || TGS 2004 RPGs
Release Date Corner || Square Enix Gets Board || Final Grumble



Introduction

Billy Young - September 5, 2004 - 7:44 Eastern Standard Time

First, i just wanted to say howdy, madhtr here. I'm sitting in for Phil as he took a mini vacation which was cut short by him coming back and helping me out some with this update because he wanted something to do. So this is a joint venture between the two of us and it looks as if we have quite a bit to show you. While the last column was short and sweet, this one is fairly long and full of all kind of goodies.

New Shining Force Character Details

Sega has announced new character details for the newest installment in the simulation RPG series. The title is currently scheduled for a 2005 release on the Playstation 2 in Japan

The character designer for the title is Yuriko Nishiyama who is best known for work on Dragon Voice and Harlem Beat. At this time, only three characters have been revealed. The leader is Max, whose father was a hero in a past Shining Force title. Meryl is the female lead and has strong feelings towards Max. The third character announced is a mysterious man who wears armor and a helmet and very well could be an antagonist in the story.




Shin Megami Tensei Online Beta Details

Atlus has revealed some information regarding the closed beta testing phase of their upcoming MMORPG Shin Megami Tensei Online Imagine. Those who are interested in taking part in the beta will have the chance to apply September 1 through September 16. Among all of the applicants, only 2000 testers will be selected. Because of this limited number of players, the server setup in the beta will be considerably smaller than what is planned for the commercial release.

Atlus has already let gamers know that the beta isn't aimed at entertaining the testers, as the beta test's main purpose is to test the game's systems, server load, and balance. Long downtimes will most likely occur, and the content will be somewhat limited. However, if you are among the lucky few to be chosen for the beta, you can expect to begin testing on October 1.

    Recommended beta system specs:
  • 3GB of hard drive space
  • Inten Pentium 4 2GHz or higher CPU
  • A 3D graphics accelerator with at least 128MB of memory
  • Windows 2000/XP
  • DirectX 9.0



New Tales of Rebirth Characters Unveiled

The cast of Tales of Rebirth, Namco's upcoming PS2 RPG, has grown in size. The first of the newly announced cast members, Hilda Rhamblins, is a 21 year old huma woman who is a beautiful tarot fortune teller. Her tarot cards are also her weapons of choice in battle. Zapy, another new character, is a pet of the heroine Claire Bennett. Zapy swells its soft long hair to express feelings, is able to adapt to different environments, and is able to understand human language. Xiaoroon is a scared blue beast which rules the element of water. The sacred beasts were legendary beasts, who are rumored to hold some secret power. This one in particular appears in the form of the Hero Veigue and desired to travel with him.




First Day Sales Chart

This chart shows the first day sales of some recently released titles. Konami should be quite pleased with Suikoden IV's sales. Taito should also be happy with how the PS2 remake of Zwei!! did on it's first day. Sega's new Virtua Fighter game, Virtua Fighter Cyber Generation for both the Gamecube and PS2, didn't bode so well with sales for both were well below expectations.

Title
System
Publisher
Sales
Percentage Sold of First Shipment
Genso Suikoden IV PS2 Konami 111,954 42.2%
Genso Suikoden IV Limited Edition PS2 Konami 10,678 72.6%
Zwei!! PS2 Taito 4,300 32%
Virtua Fighter Cyber Generation: Judgment Six No Yabou PS2 Sega 2,000 13%
Virtua Fighter Cyber Generation: Judgment Six No Yabou Gamecube Sega 900 14%



Brownie Brown Makes Hiring Call

Brownie Brown, the developer who brought such titles as Magical Vacation and Sword of mana for the Game Boy Advance, have announced that they are on the hunt for new staff for a new GameCube project. Game details, thus far, are nonexistent. However, it has been released that the game will be revealed late this coming summer.




TGS 2004 RPGs

This year's Tokyo Game Show, which will take place from September 24 to 26, will be host many game companies who are eager to show off their newest projects, many being RPGs. A list of registered companies and their games are as follows:

Microsoft (Xbox Only)
Fable
Jade Empire
Kameo: Elements of Power
Sudeki

Namco
Tales of Rebirth (PS2)
Tales of Symphonia (PS2)

Sega/Sammy
Sakura Taisen V Episode 0: Arano no Samurai Murasume (PS2)
Sakura Taisen 5: Saraba Itoshiki Hitoyo (PS2)
Shining Force (PS2)
Shining Force: Resurrection of Dark Dragon (GBA)
Shining Tears (PS2)

Sony
Arc the Lad Generation (playable)
Waga Ryuomiyo: Pride of the Dragon Peace (video only)
-In addition, Sony will be distributing a demo version of Waga Ryuomiyo: Pride of the Dragon Peace at the Tokyo Game Show. Sony has yet announced any plans for the PlayStation Portable at TGS.

Square Enix
Before Crisis: Final Fantasy VII (iMode)
Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories (GBA)
Kingdom Hearts II (PS2)
Final Fantasy XI: Chains of Promathia (PS2/PC)
Front Mission Online (PS2)
Fullmetal Alchemist 2: Akaki Elixir no Akuma (PS2)
Radiata Stories (PS2)






Release Date Corner

Quite a few release dates have been announced for both the Playstation 2 and the Game Boy Advance during the past couple weeks. Along with the release of Tengai Makyou II: Namida, Hudson has planned a large scale campaign in which someone can win a prize of one million yen. Square Enix has mentioned that Chain of Memories will be 6279 yen when released.

Title
System
Publisher
Release Date
Magna Carta PS2 Banpresto November 2004
Tengai Makyou III: Namida PS2 Hudson Spring 2005
Harvest Moon: A Wonderful Life PS2 Marvelous Interactive November 11
The Legend of Zelda: The Minish Cap GBA Nintendo November 4
Sakura Taison III: Hometown Paris is Burning PS2 Sega Spring 2005
Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories GBA Square Enix November 11





Square Enix Gets Board

While this isn't an actual RPG but a party/board game, it does star some of the characters you have come to hold dear over the years. Final Fantasy & Dragon Quest in Itadaki Street Special is a board game series that includes both Enix and Square characters. The familiar faces you might see in the game are Cloud, Tifa, Chocobo, Yuna, Rikku, and Paine from the Final Fantasy series; heroes and slimes from the Dragon Quest series. This title is currently scheduled for release this winter.




Final Grumble

And we have come to the end of a long road. This has been a fullfilling adventure and hopefully you enjoyed it as much as we did. We hope that the news for Japandemonium next update is just as plentiful but the game market is a fickle thing and fluctuates from week to week and month to month. Look for Phil to be taking back over the column next update but i will be back whenever Phil is in need of another break. Also, in Phil's next update, expect to hear some comentary from Paul (Point of View's Amish) regarding his recent vacation in Japan.





Sources: [Game Front] [Magicbox] [RPGfan]

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