Friday, April 10, 2009

BlazBlue Calamity Trigger - Import Preorder

«©NCSX» BlazBlue is a recent coin-op release which is winging its way to the Playstation 3 and Xbox 360 this summer. The original game was built on Taito Type-X2 hardware and featured the use of four buttons to pound out attacks. Join Ragna the Bloodedge, Jin Kisaragi, and Noel Vermillion as they face off against a motley assortment of fighters who seem oddly familiar. If you look at the design of Iron Tagar, he looks awfully like Potemkin from Guilty Gear X while Bang Shishigami is sorta like Sol-Badguy. If we squint, Haku=Men could be mistaken for Justice. The character similarities shouldn't be much of surprise however since BlazBlue is the successor of the Guilty Gear X franchise from ArcSys.

Toshimichi Mori is the lead designer for BlazBlue and 12 fighters are featured in the game who fight on sharp and brilliantly colored 2D stages. The presentation hearkens back to Arc System's GGX series with snappy animation, bold voices, and feverish action that's executed with nary a hiccup. Three buttons are used for weak, medium, and strong attacks along with a fourth "Drive" button which pulses out a super attack. Preorders for the PS3 or the Xbox 360 version are welcome to ship on June 25, 2009.

BlazBlue Fighting Stick - Import Preorder

«©NCSX» Hori has announced preorders for two Arcade Sticks which are being released for the Playstation 3 and Xbox 360 to coincide with the debut of Arc System's BlazBlue game. A note from our vendor indicates that the PS3 stick is an update of the Hori Real Arcade Pro 3 but we're not sure what that means exactly. The form factor looks like an HRAP3 but we'll update again once we have more information. Both joysticks will feature BlazBlue artwork on top of the controller and will feature a standard button layout as follows:

PS3 button configuration - 2 rows of 4 buttons each
360 button configuration - 2 rows of 3 buttons each

The arcade version of BlazBlue (TTX² Viewlix cab) features a 7-button array but the game only uses the first three buttons on the top row for attacks and the first button on the bottom row is for the "Drive" attack. We're assuming the default button configuration will be the same for the home conversion of the game but the buttons will likely be customizable. Preorders for both versions of the joystick are welcome to ship on June 25, 2009 at JPY9334 (US$139.90) for the Playstation 3 version and JPY7600 (US$99.90) for the Xbox 360 stick. Please note that NCS' pricing reflects overnight shipping costs for the joysticks from Japan so they'll be ready to ship on June 25.

Mamoru-kun wa Norowarete Shimatta - Import Preorder

«©NCSX» The arcade version of Mamoru-kun wa Norowarete Shimatta was released on Naomi cartridge last summer at the price of JPY178,000. There was no way we were paying nearly US$2000 for a cartridge-based game but we did pick up a used copy from an operator for about $600. The price of admission gets even better this summer when G.Rev ships an Xbox 360 conversion for roughly US$60.

The game follows the adventures of a lad named Tomoka Mamoru who's been involved in a car accident. After he's hit by a speeding vehicle, his soul is immediately spirited to the underworld by a priestess who calls herself Fululu Jigokudani. As the story goes, the gateway to the underworld is under attack and the spirits who reside there have been cursed by malevolent forces. Since Fululu can't fight the oppression by herself, she has summoned Mamoru and three other heroes to fight on the underworld's behalf. The summoned protagonists are:

» Tomoka Mamoru - A grade school student who enjoys baseball
» Miyuki Mayuno - Passive girl with no memory of her previous life
» Narai Kinya - High school rebel with a yen for riding motorcycles
» Higatera Beniko - A posh young lady who seems to enjoy the underworld

Upon starting the game, the camera settles on a revolving tree which is what Fululu conspired with to bring Mamoru and company to the underworld. Players may select any of the five heroes who differ in their firing patterns which is shown on the lower right corner of the character selection screen. For example, Mamoru shoots straight ahead while Beniko fires her shots in a outwards radiating arc. Fululu is also a straight shooter but her shots are governed by orbiting spheres which give her shots a bit of a twist. Although Mamoru-kun is a shmup which features vertically scrolling stages, some stages share commonalities with the old school run 'n gun games such as Commando, Ikari Warriors, or
Guerilla War. In these stages, the characters walk around on the ground and players move at their own pace instead of being continually forced upwards. You can walk left, stop, shoot, walk right, shoot, stop, and then move upwards towards the inevitable end-level boss. The Xbox 360 home conversion will feature updated graphics, a new playable character (downloadable), a Practice Mode, a new Story Mode, and a Gallery. Preorders for the regular edition are welcome along with a limited edition package which includes a Soundtrack CD and a Superplay DVD that's being handled by INH of Insanity DVD fame.

Famitsu Wave DVD May 2009 - New Import, Sold Out

«©NCSX» The May 2009 issue of Famitsu Wave DVD features print and video coverage on the following games and/or events:

» PS3 and X360 Biohazard 5
» PSP Sengoku Basara Battle Heroes
» Wii Pro Yakyu Baseball Next
» Wii Oboro Muramasa
» PSP Yuusha 30
» NDS Game Center CX 2
» Wii Monster Hunter G
» PSP Dissidia Final Fantasy
» PS3 and X360 Street Fighter IV
» PC The Last Remnant
» PSP Persona

The preview for the June issue of Famitsu Wave DVD shows that the content will be much like the May issue (Biohazard, Muramasa, MHG, etc).

General Updates

NEWS Easter Holiday in Hong Kong
Sony Hong Kong has not released the next batch of Demon's Souls (Asian English Edition) yet but please note that Hong Kong businesses will be on their Easter holiday between April 10 to April 14. Due to the holiday, there will not be any news or shipments until after April 14. We will email our customers again once we receive an update but based on what distributors have told us on Thursday night, it may be another 1-2 weeks until the next production of the game is ready to ship. Thanks for your attention.
PS3 Death Smiles Limited Edition Update
After we posted our DSLE shortage notice a few days ago, a few Japanese vendors contacted us and offered to sell some of their allocation of Death Smiles LE to NCS... since there's such a manmade shortage. Their kindness comes with a price however but we'll make a final purchasing decision in the next few days.
Due to the new development, we may be able to fill more preorders than originally expected but please wait for further updates. Take note however that we will probably not purchase the additional quantities if the vendors' offer prices are significantly above the regular retail price.