Friday, October 20, 2006

Gekitou! Custom Robo Rumble

Sometime in the future, tinkers of machinery have a new hobby in the field of customized robots made from parts. Against the craze, a lad enters the fray and battles opponents in bouts of fast-paced theatrics. Measuring a mere 30cm in height, a Custom Robo is a player-designed mech which is constructed from 180 possible parts. Every robot is made of four main customizable parts: arms, legs, helm, and body type. Once created, a robot is ready for the arena and literally launches into action against opponents in brisk battles. Gekitou! Custom Robo features a Wi-Fi versus mode for two players to bout it out and is compatible with the voice chat function supported by the NDS Earphone-Microphone. «Game Notes»

Oto o Tsunagou! Gunpey Revers

Two galactic cowpokes who carry musical instruments do away with the cow herding and go hunting for outlaws. The player selects a male or a female protagonist and travels on a space cruiser to different planets where the bounty awaits. Before each puzzle challenge, a "Wanted" poster appears with an image of the target in question. Gunpey is a game of linkages where players manipulate "pipes" so they're attached to each other across the play field. Once a line is connected, the pipes disappear from the screen as more pipes appear from the bottom of the screen which require connecting. The tiles that hold the pipes slowly move up the screen and the goal is to keep connecting the pipes. «Game Notes»

Captain Tsubasa

Tsubasa Ozora's manga and anime exploits have thrilled and inspired fans from around the world for the past few decades. Ever since he was a child, Tsubasa's dream was to evolve and grow into the greatest soccer player on earth and to this end, he travels the world to compete against the best. Similar to previous Captain Tsubasa games on the Playstation and Gamecube, PS2 Tsubasa features flick-action soccer where players don't have direct control over the movements of the team but rather participate when key moments arise to determine soccer ball possession or scoring. Soccer games feature dramatic anime sequences where soccer balls catch fire or change shape from sphere to oblong to indicate the velocity at which they're traveling. The appearance of character portraits during the action also convey drama, encouragement, and general rah-rah exhortations.

Similar to previous Captain Tsubasa games, play mechanics consist of watching the screen, assessing the situation, and selecting the appropriate action in order to score, attack or defend. Once chosen, the move is played out in cinematic spurts accompanied by dramatic sound and voice effects. As the games pile up, each win boosts Tsubasa's team. «Game Notes»

Gift Prism

Gift Prism is an interactive adventure where the player may find romance and perhaps true love. Voice acting is also featured in the game. The player takes control of a lad with the surname of Fukamine whose sister Riko provides foil for the adventure along with seven love interests. There's childhood friend Kirino Konosaka, a loner named Rinka Hokazono, Chisa Fujimiya, Yukari Kamishiro, Sena Asakawa, Nene Himekura, and Miyu Akihara. A supporting cast of 14 characters which include Mr. Fukamine, father of the protagonist, also provide interaction sequences and help to massage the story along.

Gift Prism Limited Edition

The limited edition of Gift Prism includes the following bonus items which are packaged in a colorful slipcase along with the game DVD:

» Original Drama CD which contains a completely new voice acted episode where the cast of the game participate. The CD drama runs for about 60 minutes and features the vocal talents of well known voice actresses.

» Gift Prism illustration booklet whose pages are made up of thick cardboard cards with glossy faces and colorful artwork. A total of 20 card pages are enclosed inside the booklet.

Originally released on the PC in May of 2005, Gift Prism has sold over 20,000 copies in Japan which pretty much qualified it for porting over to the top gaming console of the current generation. Since its release, Gift Prism has expanded to manga, dramatic novels, and music releases. The PS2 version of the game expands upon the original and features a new girl for additional bouts of interaction. A new opening cinema and song have also been produced for the PS2 game to add value for gamers who've already conquered the PC edition.

Homestar Portable

Put a planetarium in your pocket with Sega's Homestar Portable software for the PSP. Imagine wandering down a country path with your boy scout troupe under a starry sky. When the scoutmaster asks, "Where exactly is Orion?" you can flick out of the PSP, power-up, and stare at the flickering screen. After hunting and pecking for a few seconds, answer (with steely-eyed authority), "The Hunter is over there..." while pointing skyward like Babe Ruth at the batting cage.

Homestar Portable includes a database which maps 5,000,000 stars in the heavens and their respective constellations. The program is based on the Megastar-II Cosmos planetarium projector developed by
Takayuki Ohira who oversaw the Homestar project and provided his expertise. Homestar Portable features over 300 celestial bodies and formations that may be viewed including constellations, comets, eclipses, nebulae, planets, and aurora. For eager learners, a series of 20 sky tours in the Fantasy Theater goes through star systems and showcases events in the skies.

When the PSP GPS receiver is released later this year, a Homestar Portable user will be able to lock his position in the software and view the night sky on the PSP as it currently appears above him. Since the Earth moves across the solar system and the orientation of the stars change, the program keeps track of your location on Earth and maps the skies according to the time, date, and geographic location. A game sharing feature allows users to beam their current star maps to other users of the software.

Tenchi no Mon 2 Busouden

A bare-chested ruffian named Rou and a willowy waif who answers to Shunka provide the muscle and magic to prevent a catastrophe. Every few hundred years, the Sema Gate in the land of Sema serves as a harbinger of disasters to come. It's that time again when it gradually turns crimson and foretells calamity. At the outset of the game, Rou and Shunka are being judged in an arena but the two foil their captors and escape into the wilds of Sema. Despite their fugitive status, the two nevertheless resolve to join together and prevent another disaster.

Game play is fast and fluid. Players may toggle between Rou and Shunka on the fly and attack with quick combo-friendly strokes and stabs. Each fighter has particular skills at the outset but more techniques may be learned as the game progresses. Save points dotted around the terrain serve as inconvenient way to save progress. We'd much prefer a press "START" and save option but no such luck. As new characters are met during the adventure, new comrades may be recruited into your ranks who bring their own special attacks and magic blasts. The action is now mission-based with the successful completion of early quests unlocking new ones. The game boasts 200 types of moves that may be used and over 100 missions are featured which gradually reveal the story. New missions may be downloaded to PC and then transferred to the PSP via wireless LAN. A 2P ad hoc versus mode is also available for two fighters to duke it out.

NCS Concludes Our Magazine Run

After listing Japanese magazines every business day for the past 2.5 years, NCS finishes our sales run. Thanks to everyone who helped us clear out about 800 square feet of warehouse space that was once stacked to the rafters with tons of magazines. We still have a couple of tons worth of listed magazine back issues that haven't sold yet but we'll throw them up on Ebay or something one of these days.

If you are part of our magazine "subscription" program where we hold an issue of each and every magazine for your account, we will include 5-6 free issues of Konami Magazine that the company gave away back in the late 90s. The magazines contain Konami propaganda but they're somewhat collectible and interesting to pore through.

Highlights During the Run
The first MOTD issue that we posted up may be viewed here. The best selling Saturn Fan issue (Radiant Silvergun cover) may be viewed here. We still have about 160 issues available and ready to ship...