Friday, January 18, 2008

Wii Fit Mat - Preorder, Ships on February 21, 2008

Back in 1982 when the VCR was revolutionizing the way the world watched television, a video titled Jane Fonda Workout was released. By playing the video tape, couch potatoes were able to observe the limber Jane Fonda in spandex and legwarmers performing assorted exercises. The video went on to sell millions of copies and a fitness craze was born.

Wii Fit is sort of like that. Ever since Nintendo released the Wii Fit bundle in Japan, over a million units have shifted to eager consumers anxious to get a Wii powered workout in their living rooms. Instead of Jane Fonda (Barbarella to you and me), Wii Fit features non-descript characters who perform exercises on screen that you're supposed to mimic.

Since Wii Fit has a massive installed user base, Hori hopes to capitalize on the new fitness craze by releasing a Mat. When preordering from NCS, please ignore the fact that you can buy a rug at Home Depot for about $5 that would probably serve the same purpose. The Wii Fit Mat measures a tidy 183 x 61cm (72.04 x 24.01") in area and is made of a non-slip material that'll cling to your floor like a thick wedge of Saran Wrap. Preorder.

Duel Love Koisuru Otome Ha Syori no Megami - Preorder

Girl gamers used to be a rare breed but their numbers have grown in recent years. Bandai targets the fairer demographic with a new romance adventure where lanky boys are the objects of affection. Players attend Sakura Katsura Private Academy and make friends with a bunch of classmates and possibly find love amongst the rabble. Similar to other dating games, Duel Love features interactive scenarios where characters converse by way of multiple choice selections. For example, if a boy says he likes wrestling, you should agree that wrestling is fun to win his heart even if you secretly despise wrestling with every fiber of your being.

All preorders will ship with a bonus Sakura Katsura Entrance Guide CD which is being given away by the publisher in 1:1 ratio.

Hayate no Gotoku (Gakko Hen) Ojyo Sama - Preorder

Hayate Ayasaki is an accidental butler who serves a young woman named Nagi Sanzen'in who's an heiress with a yen for manga. In the Hayate no Gotoku (aka Hayate the Combat Butler) manga and animation series, Hayate finds himself involved in various escapades and adventures thanks to Nagi's tendency towards drama.

Konami's upcoming
Hayate no Gotoku (Gakko Hen) Ojyo Sama Produce Daisakusen Bokuro ni Somare! game puts players in the shoes of Hayate who guides Nagi's development by way of interaction and communication. In addition to the simulation aspects of the game, five mini games are included such as a parody of Pooyan, a Twinbee variant, and a Butler-esque version of Yie Ar Kung-Fu.

Along with the (Gakko Hen) version of the game, Konami will also release a (Oyashiki Hen) version. Both editions will ship with a bonus drama CD and a trading card that's being given away by the publisher in 1:1 ratio. The differences between the two versions are the stages in each game and the trading card that's included.

Idol Yakyuken DX Portable - Preorder

Janken in Japan is what we know as rock-scissors-paper in America where two hands are all that's required to make a wager. Yakyuken is a graduated form of janken where the bets are well defined and simple to execute. Lose a throw by thrusting out rock against your opponent's paper and you'll have to remove a piece of clothing. Embark on a losing streak and you'll soon be in skivvies and beyond.

Gebet has built an empire... well, maybe a duchy... on the game of Yakyuken where Japanese AV idols strip when they lose at janken. The company adds to their library with a new release next month. The three idols featured in Idol Yakyuken DX are: Ami Sakurai, Yuma Asami, and Nana Konishi. Preorders are welcome to ship on Feb 21, 2008 at JPY3800 or US39 from NCS.

PutiPuti MOE Edition - Preorder

Bandai's PutiPuti toy is a sales sensation in Japan and NCS has not been able to procure sufficient stock since it was released. PutiPuti is a bubble wrap simulator. Push a button and the sound of bursting bubble wrap sounds forth from the toy's speaker. A MOE version of the PutiPuti toy was announced by Bandai recently which ships in March 2008. Due to the expected shortage, our Japanese distributors have stipulated that they may be unable to fill all preorders but we'll give it a go anyway.

Mega-Drive Granada X Cartridge - Clearance Sale

Once upon a time when the Mega-Drive and Sega Genesis were the gaming consoles of choice, a veritable flood of shooters were released to satisfy the yearning of shmup fans the world over. Memorable games included Gaiares, SWIV, M.U.S.H.A., Sol-Deace, and the ever lovin' Gunstar Heroes from Treasure. Amongst the glut of releases, Granada X got lost in the shuffle. Maybe that's why sales back then weren't as great as Japanese vendors and American importers had hoped.

In Granada X, players control a tank which roams levels and destroys anything that moves. Think of it as mindless fun for trigger-happy gamers with an appetite for explosions and wholesale carnage. Eighteen years after Granada X first hit store shelves in Japan, NCS digs our inventory out for a sale. We could sit on them for another decade but in the spirit of SOTD, we'll try to sell a couple this year and shuffle them out again on an annual basis. All stock is new and still packaged in the original factory cartons. Pricing is set at US$12.90 which includes shipping by Media Mail.