A new season, a new apartment, a new commute. My daily walking route is about forty percent longer now, though I don't mind so much. I do a lot of my best thinking on foot. It does behoove me to get back home before my wife, though, since she works late nights so often that I'm generally in charge of dining arrangements. With that in mind, I now have this.
I have to make an effort not to start singing a particular Queen song at times, especially since I do not like riding it in the middle of the afternoon in summer. Faster it may be, but sweatier as well. Still, it's cheaper and far more convenient than catching the bus up the bypass. Some days, however, I just ignore it as I leave my apartment, and do the full five-almost-six kilometers on foot. Yes, it takes longer, but half the enjoyment is in the journey. If I'm not pressed for time, then it's not that important anyway.
I'm not sure how may people in the west are familiar with the Tokyo Maji Gakuen series, but it's an odd one. The general template is much like a social adventure game, but with RPG-style combat interludes within it. It's the series that made a name for Shuhou Imai, and that's where we start today's column. Imai has a new game coming out sometime next year for the PS3 and Vita called Mato Kouiro Yuugekibu (Magic City Crimson Ghost Attack Squad). It's listed as an adventure/RPG, so it almost certainly follows his usual style. Unfortunately, all we have to show are these screens.
And they don't give a good idea of what the game actually plays like. The article also gives some plot detail, but only for the first chapter of the game. Titled "The Exchange Student," i.e. the player, it serves the usual purpose of introducing the plot and major elements, like this girl.
This is Yurari Mifune, senior student at Kurenai Gakuen (which should mean Crimson Academy, but doesn't because of fun with kanji). While leading the player on the obligatory school tour, the two get attacked by a ghost, saved by a mysterious stranger, and have their lives turned upside down on general principle. And so the story begins. Where it ends, none can say, but judging from Mr. Imai's track record it's going to do some strange things before it's all said and done.
It's been a while since we last took a look at Hero Bank, the grade school prizefighting RPG from the guys who brought you Yakuza. This video provides the general highlights.
In the designer's own words, money is supposed to be a recurring motif to serve as a background for the drama, but from where I'm sitting it seems to be all about the Fukuzawas (10,000 yen bills). The video does give a good overview of the game's in-fight transformations, the general flow of combat, and a sense of how mixed up the cast list gets. There are also things called "gachinko" events in battle, which is a term usually reserved for unscripted events in professional wrestling.
Last time we mentioned the Dragon Quest Monsters 2 remake for 3DS, we didn't have any screenshots to show. This has since changed, so here you are:
Gotta admit, it's a step up from the original version.
|Elminage Gothic 3DS Remix: Dark Rite of Ulm Zakir
|Monster Hunter 4
|Fairy Fencer F
|Battle Princess of Arkadias
|Legend of Heroes: Sen no Kiseki
|Dragon Quest X (reduced price release?)
|Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker
|Cardboard Senki Wars
Thanks To Everyone Who Sent Well-Wishes
Although I am usually just lurking RPGamer, I wanted to congratulate you for your wedding.
Thanks for always keeping us up to date on the JRPG news front.
Your pictures got me all excited for you
Congratulations on the wedding!
I'm a LONG time fan and visitor of the site from back in the Unofficial Squaresoft Homepage days, as well as a fan of your column from the beginning. So, I congratulate you on getting married and wish you a happy married life!
I am curious, though, if you don't mind me asking...When was the big day exactly? I was just married on July 28th myself (yes, of this year, too), so I find it interesting that you and I had our weddings at almost the exact same time (if not the same).
Thanks, guys. And thanks to everyone on the boards as well. For the record, I was married mid-afternoon, JST, on July 26th, which would have been late-night on the 25th or early morning on the 26th in America, depending on the time zone.
Again, I am not sure when the next column will be. The J-news just has not been jumping at all this year. It makes me miss the crazy industry of 2008 and 2009, when I could open a Famitsu to find half a dozen games I'd never heard of before lurking in the back pages. Now I'm lucky to find info on one new game per month, and sometimes that new game has an overseas release announced even before I hear of it. Since the Tokyo Game Show is this month, however, something has to pop up. I hope.
And that's the news from Hi-no-Kuni,
Your man in Japan,