Handheld Games Articles
NVIDIA is coming into a “touchy” market with the Shield and its beefy controller. How does it fare?
In the realm of racing games there are few challengers to the top seat of racing wheels; the Fanatec 911 Turbo S is the latest, packing 900 degree turning a 6+1 shifter and a full pedal set.
Handheld Games News
In case our previous introductions to Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc didn't properly convey the absolute insanity of the game's premise, we now have something a litter clearer in its conveyance. NIS America has released the first English trailer for the game and it is messed up. For a game about kids stuck in a murder house continuously fighting for survival, that's about what you'd expect.
Things in this trailer, however, get a bit more ridiculous than what you'd just expect, however. It's so very... Japan. It's the 3D backgrounds mixed with the 2D sprite art, it's the editing that rather makes it feel like you're experiencing a seizure, it's the odd grainy, dark filters, it's the rocket-ships, carnivals and backhoes, but mostly it's just the bear. That bear will kill everybody, I know it.
Danganronpo: Trigger Happy Havoc is coming to the PS Vita in February, 2014. This is one epic localization get by NIS American and I can't wait to try it out for myself. Make sure to check out the latest screenshots in the gallery as well, as they show off a bit of the RPG-ness of the game.
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Just needs those magic words, cross-buy and cross-save
It could be one of the best game of the holiday season that nobody is talking about, but hopefully Ratchet & Clank: Into the Nexus gets a bit more attention with this upcoming announcement. It seems that the game, previously exclusive to the PlayStation 3, has been rated in both Europe and Brazil for the PS Vita. While it won't buy Insomniac Games the advertising the game likely deserves, a second chance to build hype would certainly be more than welcome.
Plus, if they include those two magical phrases that PlayStation fans love to hear, cross-buy and cross-save, then the thing will almost certainly sell quite well. Heck, how about taking it a step further? If Sony made Ratchet & Clank: Into the Nexus a free PlayStation Plus inclusion I bet it'd be one of the most popular additions to the subscription service yet.
Currently, however, Ratchet & Clank: Into the Nexus remains exclusive to the PlayStation 3. Hopefully these latest ratings are good indicator that the PS Vita version of the game will be announced within the next week or two. It'd be a great game to put on my Vita and take hope for the holidays.
Akihiko Yoshida's departure from Square Enix hasn't exactly been a secret, but today the official confirmation that he has left the company has come through. In Yoshida's dedication at the front of his Bravely Default art-book he confirms he's no longer with Sqaure Enix. The artist behind Final Fantasy XII, Final Fantasy XIV and all the way back to Tactics Ogre will leave large shoes to fill within Square.
It's not all bad news, however. Just as Yoshida confirmed he had left Square Enix, he reaffirmed his dedication to a new project. That project is of course the Bravely Default franchise:
"And as long as I’m needed, I will continue working on the Bravely Default series. Thank you for your continued support."
Bravely Second being announced just yesterday, with the teaser images prominently featuring Yoshida's art, makes this all the more poignant of an announcement. It's truly great to know Yoshida will still be working on games going forward. Ah, if only they'd get to North America a bit sooner! Hopefully Europe will confirm the RPGs greatness for us.
Cheers, Akihiko Yoshida! Your work has left its imprint in gaming's history and it's sad to see you leave the company you helped grow into what it is today. Keep making games for us, okay?
Doki-Doki Universe hasn't built up much buzz, unfortunately. It's a PlayStation platform exclusive title about a robot out to prove its humanity. A majority of its gameplay revolves around solving interrelationship puzzles for a variety of aliens, customizing your personal homeworld, and taking personality quizzes to help understand yourself better. Sounds... unique, right? That's Doki-Doki Universe for you.
Today HumaNature Studios confirmed that Doki-Doki Universe now has a concrete release date. Expect the game to be released on PlayStation 4, PlayStation 3 and PS Vita starting December 10 for just $14.99. Alternatively, players will be able to download a "Starter Pack" demo of the game featuring 16 personality quizzes, the customizable home planet and a tutorial story planet to explore.
This may be an indie title worth trying out based off of its unique premise and interesting visual style. Is it a game for everyone? Probably not, but the best games never are.
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Details are scant, but it's great to hear the franchise is taking off
We've yet to receive Bravely Default in the western world quite yet, but that won't stop Square Enix and Silicon Studio from announcing a sequel. Introducing Bravely Second, a follow-up to the original RPG set in the same world, but starring a new protagonist named Magnolia. Bravely Second currently has no scheduled release window, but we do know the RPG will be coming to 3DS just like the original.
Details are insanely scant, considering the release was made made via a magazine scan and translations have been hard to come by. What is known, beyond what's said above, is that Akihiko Yoshida is once again doing the character designs. Yes, Mr. Tactics Ogre, Vagrant Story, Final Fantasy XII and all the great handheld Final Fantasy character design is back again. It's good to know the series is in good hands artistically.
Stay tuned for more information on Bravely Second in the coming months, hopefully with some early localization details after Bravely Default is released in North America next February. Europe and Australia will get the game on December 6 and 7 respectively, the jerks, so the more Bravely buzz, the better!
-- Please note Bravely Second shouldn't be mistaken for Bravely Default: For The Sequel, which is an updated version of the original game that's meant to provide a better a better foundation for the franchise going forward. The Bravely Default being released in the west is based on the For the Sequel version of the game.
Today, Nintendo announces the upcoming release of two Pokemon X/Y 2DS bundles, intended to be more affordable buying options for their handheld market. The holidays can be tough on the wallet, but Nintendo totally wants to help.
The bundles will include a 2DS handheld pre-installed with either Pokemon X or Pokemon Y, depending on where you buy it. Both versions will be priced at $149.99 USD upon launch, making them somewhat cheaper than the 3DS XL bundles from October.
Nintendo describes the 2DS Pokemon X/Y bundles as "new and affordable options" for consumers. Granted, the 3DS and 3DS XL handhelds are pricier than a 2DS to begin with, but if you don't mind the "slate" design, then there's no real reason not to grab one. The only catch here is the exclusivity, essentially limiting where you can go to pick up a bundle:
- For the Pokémon X 2DS bundle, you'll have to go to Target. This version comes with Pokemon X pre-installed on a red Nintendo 2DS system. MSRP $149.99
- The Pokémon Y 2DS bundle will be available at Toys 'R' Us (in-store and online). This bundle will include a blue Nintendo 2DS system and the Pokémon Y game pre-loaded on an SD card. MSRP $149.99
Pretty good deal, either way. A hard copy of Pokemon X/Y is already $39.99, while a 3DS would be another $169.99 and a 3DS XL $199.99.
Both the Pokemon X and Pokemon Y 2DS bundles will be released this Friday, December 6.
Sad news today for fans of Rune Factory, Shining Force and Lufia as developer Neverland has announce that they've ceased all operations and filed for bankruptcy. Loosely translated, the company revealed today in a statement released on their website that sales have been sluggish in recent years. Attempts to raise further investment funding had proved unsuccessful as well, thus resulting in the company's closure.
Rune Factory 4 had only just been released in North America and was found to be the fastest selling title in the franchise yet. Though to be fair, the game was released in July, 2012 in Japan and it's unlikely XSEED's localization would have little effect on the company's financial woes. As for Rune Factory 5, which Japan publisher Marvelous AQL had confirmed was in development, it's likely the game will never see the light of day... unless another studio has picked up the franchise.
We wish all of the staff at Neverland a speedy turnaround. Hopefully each of you will be back working on a project you love soon. Fans will fondly remember everyone's work on Rune Factory, Lufia and Shining Force, in addition to all the other great games from Neverland.
The PS Vita may have finally hit its stride this holiday season
While much of the current gaming discussion is revolving around next-gen console wars and the like, there's another war brewing. The PlayStation Vita has gained a lot of respect over the past year, building up a substantial library of Japanese localized titles and unique first-party projects. That said, many North American gamers are still waiting for that standout game to justify the purchase.
However, it may not be a game that really makes the Vita a must-have platform, but rather the handheld's robust new feature set. I'm referencing, of course, the Vita's ability to work with the PlayStation 4 as a controller or even an off-screen alternative. Plus, more and more games are being released featuring Vita cross-buy, which means two versions of the game in one.
Does that make the Vita a must-buy? Not necessarily, but the Vita is certainly a viable option for picking up this holiday season. Costing around $200, often without the platform's spendy storage cards, watch out for bundle deals this Black Friday where the handheld drops between $150 and $180. Watch out for those spendy memory cards, however -- pick up a bundle with one included or buy an 8GB one for $9.99 on sale this Friday.
Must Have Exclusives
From the developers of LittleBigPlanet comes this cheerful, adventurous game that should put a smile on every player's face. The entire world is made out of paper, including the player's customized character, and in order to journey through it they'll have to tear and rip and a variety of interesting other gameplay features. When it comes to the Vita, it doesn't get anymore high quality than Tearaway.
- Who It's For: Adventurers, all-ages, origami fans, smilers and LittleBigPlanet fans
- Why You Want it: Made by one of the top development studios in the business just for Vita, Tearaway is a beautiful world filled with wonderful ideas
This PS Vita exclusive first-person shooter is all action, from the developers of the LittleBigPlanet Vita game. Set between the events of the original Killzone trilogy and those depicted in the PlayStation 4 launch title Killzone: Shadow Fall, Mercenary sets the page with firefight after firefight. Plus, for the first time in the series players can fight alongside Helghast, though why you'd want to is something else entirely!
- Who It's For: Shooter fans, young adults and up, gunners, runners and campers
- Why You Want it: Maybe the best first-person shooter on a handheld, plus all of the continuity that goes along with being a Killzone title
Japan knows how to do fighting giant monsters right. Monster Hunter got that down pretty quick. Now it's up to Japan to make fighting giant monsters even weirder. Welcome to Soul Sacrifice, where you had fight giant monsters and then eat their Souls, or save their Souls. Somehow all this soul-eating turns into leveling up and preparing yourself for the ultimate battle -- OF SOULS.
- Who It's For: Hunters of giant beasts, young adults and up, fans of dark fantasy, fans of Japanese oddity
- Why You Want it: Nothing's more pleasing than battling giant monsters, defeating them and then deciding their fate
More Great Vita Exclusives:
Dragon's Crown is likely another title that many gamers missed, since it's digital only. Basically, it's what would happen if Japanese developers based a 2D beat-em-up on Dungeons & Dragons. Pick the dwarf, witch, knight, or sorceress and battle through dungeons in either single-player or multiplayer, picking up loot and leveling up in order to regain the magical Dragon's Crown.
- Who It's For: Budget gamers, loot grinders, those who are big on action, small on story
- Why You Want it: While there's some mature art, it's a beautiful style, tons of action, great cooperative gameplay
Perhaps the best Atelier RPG yet, Gust's Plus version of the game has one of the most robust item synthesis systems yet. A direct sequel to Atelier Rorona, if you're interested in lengthy Japanese RPGs then investing in the Atelier franchise is one of the best decisions you can make. Well, if you have a few hundred hours to spend on it.
- Who It's For: Those with lots of time, those with lots of patience, all-ages, fans of lots of story that may not be written outstandingly
- Why You Want it: Very endearing story with very in-depth and rewarding gameplay that will eat a week, month, year of your life
This is the official Ys part four that fans of the franchise have been waiting for, for years. Even though other developers have tried to make a Ys 4 RPG, it just doesn't feel right unless it's made by Falcom. Finally, there's a modern take on the classic franchise.
- Who It's For: RPG fans, nostalgic gamers, all ages
- Why You Want it: There are so many Ys games that this might be the first step in falling down the rabbit hole
More Great Vita RPGs:
- Atelier Meruru Plus: The Apprentice of Arland
- Sorcery Saga: Curse of the Great Curry God (Releases December 10)
Sometimes genres of games become stale and it takes a truly prophetic team to cut away the fat and get back to the basics. That's not Iron Galaxy and it certainly isn't their game Divekick, but nevertheless Divekick takes everything that's core to the fighting game community right now and boils it down to a system that's easy, fun, and perhaps most of all still highly competitive.
- Who It's For: Fighting game fans, all ages, newcomers to fighting games, bargain hunters, those with a sense of humor
- Why You Want it: The best fighting game released this year doesn't have all bells and whistles of a Street Fighter, but it does have subtle racism
Where Divekick attempts to usher in a new era of gaming , Guilty Gear XX throws us back to the past. This game is a classic arcade fighting game with tons of recognizable characters, flashing action and tight controls.
- Who It's For: Hardcore fighting game fans, wannabes, anime nerds, Sol Badguy
- Why You Want it: Outstanding animation and unique characters fighting it out in classic Japanese arcade fashion
More Great Games
- Spelunky - Dynamically created levels packed full of secrets, dangers and loot that should be challenging to even the most hardcore of gamers
- Guacamelee - 2D brawler with a great story and tight, combo-based fighting, it's like Metroid meets Mexico
- Pixeljunk Monsters: Ultimate HD - Small tower defense that's challenging and still hours of fun
- Rayman Legends - Some of the best 2D platforming ever made, with great level design and art direction of the generation
Check out all of Neoseeker's other Holiday Gift Guides for 2013:
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Only samurai can defeat demons, so the bigger the demon the bigger the sword
You've got to give Japan one thing, they know how to make action titles where the player battles giant of all kinds. That's not even a genre to North American developers yet! Luckily these games are getting localized so everyone can experience Japan's talent in this regard. Case in point, Toukiden: Age of Demons. This one's about fighting giant Oni demons as a samurai. Just announced, Toukiden's release date will be February 11.
Just in case you are wondering how Japanese Toukiden is, please read this:
"Set against a backdrop inspired by various historical periods of Japan, Toukiden: The Age of Demons tells the tale of humanity’s last stand for survival. When monstrous demons (Oni) of varying strength and size invaded the world through cracks in space and time and started attacking humans, the only opposition came from the Slayers, a caste that has always secretly protected mankind from their murderous intent.
Eight years after the time warp and Oni appeared, a brave young Slayer embarks on a journey to thin the numbers of the enemy and help humanity survive. Players take the role of this young warrior and can fully customize their characters, weapons and armor and form a group of hunters to take down the destructive Oni."
Oh yeah, it doesn't get more Japan than that. Despite the jokes, Toukiden is actually supposed to be extremely popular in Japan where the Vita is actually doing quite well. In fact, you might even call it one of the Vita's top sellers. Usually that means it's pretty good or based off of some anime or something. Hopefully this one's just really great!
Pick up Toukiden on Vita in North America starting February 11 or in Europe February 14.
It's here, it's finally here! Ys IV, developed by Nihon Falcom themselves, has finally been localized for western release by XSEED Games. What a glorious day to be a Ys fan, here 25 years after the franchise was started. Retitled Ys: Memores of Celceta, the PS Vita exclusive RPG launches today and should brighten many a fan's day. Released just last year in Japan, this modern take on Ys isn't one to pass by.
In addition to the standard edition of Ys: Memories of Celceta, XSEED is also making available Ys: Memories of Celceta's Silver Anniversary Edition. Celebrating the franchise's 25th anniversary, the Silver Anniversary Edition packages in a 3-CD collection of original and arranged music from the franchise's history, a cloth map of Celceta, a logo-emblazoned compass, and "Adol's Travel Journal" with 130 pages of artwork and strategy.
Pick up Ys: Memores of Celceta on PS Vita for $39.99 or the Silver Anniversary Edition for $59.99. Props, as always, to XSEED for making it happen and hopefully it won't be too long before XSEED is back in the thick of it localizing Ys V! Maybe? Might need an HD update first...
- VGX Live-blog and Live-chat: GTAV crowned GotY (surprise), Naughty Dog wins top studio 
- Bethesda won't be revealing anything soon, despite alleged Fallout 4 teasers 
- UK man scammed into paying $750 for Day One Xbox One console, receives photo instead 
- Neverland, developers of Rune Factory and Shining Force, ceases operations and files for bankruptcy 
- First English trailer for Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc shares its wonderful insanity 
- Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm Revolution confirmed for localization in 2014 
- League of Legends LCS contracts ban streaming of Dota 2, World of Tanks, Blizzard games 
- Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze delayed into February 2014, never trust a monkey 
- Public Service Announcement: Next-Gen Has Been Canceled 
- VGX Live-blog and Live-chat: GTAV crowned GotY (surprise), Naughty Dog wins top studio 
- Xbox One Countdown Liveblog 
- Terrifying disc drive sounds from Xbox One and PS4, let's compare 
- Neoseeker's PlayStation 4 Introductory Livestream (recording available) 
- Sony Entertainment Network on PlayStation 4 facing serious issues, login errors