Dead or Alive 5: New Fighter ‘Rig’ in Action!

Posted in Dead or Alive 5, Fan Service, Fighting Games, Game Advertising, Game-related Events, Gaming, PS3, Xbox360 on June 28th, 2012 by thelonegamer

Fast Tube by Casper

Meet Rig. He’s Canadian and loves to kick people.

The latest issue of Famitsu recently gave a pretty big nugget of newness for Tecmo-KOEI’s upcoming beat ‘em up sequel, Dead or Alive 5- a totally new character named Rig. This new challenger is a Canadian Taekwondo fighter, set to give the rest of the roster quite a time with his kicks. Thankfully someone has uploaded the latest DOA5 trailer with this newbie in action- in ENGLISH, at that! So anyway… the fights take place on a new stage- an Oil Rig, apparently… so is Rig named for his job? An Oil Rigger? Eh?

Anyway, the hoodie-wearing new fighter aside, the trailer also shows off returning grappler Bass Armstrong, some cutscenes which will probably appear as part of the game’s Story mode (or similar narrative affair) AND Christie in a sexy dress. DOA5 is looking better and better with each new spot, and a certain buy for me this coming September. Now… when are we going to meet Mila, Team Ninja?

Dead or Alive 5 Preorder and CEs Bring the Bikinis

Posted in Dead or Alive 5, DLC, Extra Costumes, Fan Service, Fighting Games, Game Advertising, Game-related Events, Gaming, PS3, Xbox360 on June 26th, 2012 by thelonegamer

A teasing look at the goodies to come with DOA5′s preorder offers.

Tecmo-KOEI’s sexy fighting comeback, Dead or Alive 5, is set to brawl with Namco’s Tekken Tag 2 for beat ‘em up fans’ favor this coming September. TTT2 is bringing loads of additional characters for the console version. What does DOA5 have? Bikinis. Yep, in lieu of a large roster (so far DOA5′s lineup looks to include most of the cast from DOA4, plus several extras), DOA5 is going to give gamers a ‘deeper’ look at several of the available playables- notably the females. There will be Preorder Offers from Gamestop and Amazon which will give the player a set of 3 swimsuits for three babes- an ‘Angel’ set of white for Kasumi, Leifang and Hitomi from Gamestop, while a ‘Devil’ set of black bikinis for Ayane, Christie and Tina. These offers are available in US and Europe.

Meanwhile, a Collector’s Edition will also be available that will come in a steel case with an artbook, music CD, poster and swimsuits for all the girls.

I’m pretty irritated at this kind of thing that piecemeals the bonuses- I just want ‘em all, dammit, and since I’m in Asia these preorder offers are probably not available. Anyway, they should be all on offer online as DLC eventually… still, hate this kind of exclusivity crap. Oh well. We’ll hopefully see what all the fuss is about with this upgraded fan service for DOA as we creep towards the September release. Till then, chew on the artwork/screen above (that’s all we have for now…).

Musing About Tekken Tag 2′s Story Endings

Posted in Fan Service, Fighting Games, Game Advertising, Game-related Events, Gaming, My Stuff, PS3, Tekken, Tekken Tag Tournament 2, Xbox360 on June 19th, 2012 by thelonegamer

Asuka, looking pensive in her CG cinematic for Tekken Tag 2 (Console).

It’s still quite a bit still to September 2012 and the release of the console versions of Tekken Tag Tournament 2. But really, this is the big game to watch later this year (unless DOA5 shows me something more than tons o’ stage gimmickry) thanks to the huge amount of content being added in over and above that in the arcade version. Actually, of all the stuff- the new Fight Lab (Customize a robot? Meh), the ‘improved’ Character Customization (Just how improved, really?) and the legion of additional characters, I’m looking forward a lot to the gobs of CG ending cinematics in store for us. As Katsuhiro Harada has tweeted, each of the roster (of over 50 and perhaps up to 60?!) will have their own ending cinematic, which will vary in length from a minute and a half to a pretty long 2 minutes and a half. That’s quite impressive to hear. But WHAT will these endings contain?

Tekken Tag 2 being a ‘non-canon’ title doesn’t necessarily need to follow the established storyline told in Tekken 1 to 6; they could be just showing the characters in situations that suit them or tell a micro-story, mostly stand-alone snippets or slices of Tekken life. It could be as simple as Asuka taking a walk in her native Osaka and encountering a situation where her troubleshooting, interloping ways gets her into some action. Or Miguel getting into some barroom brawl.

But then again, TTT2 does have it’s own story bit, about the Tag Tournament itself. Perhaps we’ll see endings more directly in line with this competition- perhaps Jaycee finally unmasking, or who finally wins in the tag team tussles (which will probably depend on from which point of view you’re seeing it from). Perhaps we’ll see the source of Heihachi’s fountain of youth as well.

What I am surprised of most is the length- the endings seem long, far longer than any Tekken ending shown before- and they are apparently pre-rendered CG, not realtime endings. Even now I guess Namco’s CG studios are cranking out those cutscenes to reach the September deadline.

Well, whatever story we get in the many TTT2 endings, I think they’ll be entertaining and pretty at least. Meaningful? Probably not. But we’ll see.

Tekken Tag Tournament 2 is out on PS3 and Xbox360 this September 2012.

Playing Zombie Games in Smell-o-Vision!

Posted in Action Adventure, Fan Service, Game Advertising, Game-related Events, Gaming, Lollipop Chainsaw, PS3, Videogame Comedy, Xbox360 on June 19th, 2012 by thelonegamer

Sorry if I haven’t updated in a bit- well, since E3 there really hasn’t been much in the way of big updates. Been playing quite a bit of Virtua Fighter 5 Final Showdown, of course. Oh, and a little title called Lollipop Chainsaw.
Yep, I got the cheescake-heavy Suda51 zombie beat ‘em up recently, and well… it’s actually quite fun. It’s even more fanservicey than the usual stuff from Grasshopper Manufacture, although not as crazy or as funny as it would like I guess. Still, the game looks gorgeous (like it’s star heroine), plays quite well and has a lot of content to warrant at least a couple of playthroughs. Killing zombies certainly was never this… bright and cheery. There’s still quite a lot of F-words and heavy language which I feel is a bit overdone though, even if it matches the bloody decaps and bisections that inevitably follow a chainsaw-wielding zombie hunter babe.

Anyway, the funniest thing about my weekend playing LC was, as the title of this post suggested, that I played it in Smell-o-vision. Recently there has been a quite irritating scent of dead thing in occasionally wafting into my room… not sure if it’s dead rat or cat. But I’ve searched high and low and haven’t found a carcass in the room, and handymen haven’t found anything in the ceiling above. So where is the damn stench coming from? Perhaps, from the LC disc? Nah… can’t be. Anyway, the game doesn’t stink at all, in my opinion… in fact, it’s quite a winner- haven’t had this much zombie-killing fun in a while… and man, is that Juliet a vision in a swimsuit. Heheh.

Hoping the smell runs out well after I finish the game though… man, what IS making tha smell..?!

The Lone Gamer’s Virtua Fighter 5 Final Showdown Review: Mastering the Fine Art of Beating People Up

Posted in DLC, Extra Costumes, Fan Service, Fighting Games, Game Advertising, Game-related Events, Gaming, PS3, Virtua Fighter, Virtua Fighter 5 Final Showdown, Xbox360 on June 12th, 2012 by thelonegamer

Jacky and Sarah wanna play.

Yeah, Tekken Tag 2 and Dead or Alive 5 were slugging it out for beat ‘em up fans’ attention during E3… but really, for me- the first week of June was all about ONE fighting game… and that was Virtua Fighter 5 Final Showdown. It’s a kinda-sorta-new-but-also-technically-old fighter; probably not as shiny fresh as TTT2 or DOA5, but hell- for everyone outside Japan, this is all new and it’s all good. Legions of beat ‘em up fans begged, prayed, demanded, threatened and wished for Showdown to make it to non-Japanese arcades or consoles, and finally, somehow, someway, they were answered and here it is. If you’re one of those VF-ers or old school fighting game fans, you probably already know about this game a bit; and you probably already have it. But what of the rest who aren’t as in the know? Is this Virtua Fighter upgrade something you wanna plunk some PSN credits or MS Points for?

Fast Tube by Casper

Clap yourselves on the back, VF Community and friends- we did it… we got game!

VF5 Final Showdown (VF5FS for short) is the latest (and probably last) upgrade to the original VF5 (released in 2007). Seeing as it took five years of solid arcade play feedback, FS incorporated TONS of changes which pretty much make it a totally different game from Vanilla. Two new fighters are added to the roster. Every character gets major changes to their move lists. Stages have been remixed and redone. Overall, animations are even more fluid and expressive, with more intense and lifelike reactions to hits… really, this game makes the moves look even more hard-hitting than ever before. Gameplay-wise, it’s a lot faster and even more refined… but most importantly it’s been actually streamlined and simplified to make it more accessible to new players than ever before. ZOUNDS!

Here’s the Big Scary Thing that’s always been there about VF- it’s that this game is Freakin’ HARD to play. ‘You need Zen-like dedication to master characters like Akira or Shun’ was the thing usually said. Well, that was probably something Sega could afford to say years ago- I guess it was a bit of an elite thing. But nowadays, that’s something you don’t want to hear… gamers get frustrated, don’t feel they will get instant grat for a little effort, they’ll walk away. So now, I’m here to tell you guys- it’s NOT that hard. It’s actually pretty easy to play. Yes, it will take practice and lots of it to MASTER, but you can play quite quickly, and get good with just some bit of effort and patience.

Quashing the Myth
The game uses three buttons- Punch, Kick and Guard. That’s it. You tap up or down to do a ‘Defensive Move’ or sidestep/evade in-close, or to move ala 8-way run in Soul Calibur if elsewhere in the stage. The key to VF isn’t really about hard-to-do moves (though there are quite a few of those). Moves are easy to DO- the trick is knowing WHEN to do them. Timing is important- when to tap up or down to do that evade and sidestep; the wrong timing will have you eating a fist or foot- the right timing will put you on the opponent’s vulnerable side. Intimidating? Maybe- but that’s really what it’s all about in any fighting game.
VF-style is all about in-close, melee brawling, pitting one usually real-world, authentic martial art against another, one player’s mind and skills against another. No fireballs, no magic, no aliens (aside from a decidedly alien-looking metallic ever-there end boss). It’s about as straightforward a fighting game can be, without becoming boring or mundane as a sports action simulator. Perhaps that’s going a bit far- VF still has some trappings of the classic mainstream beat ‘em up, but it concentrates mainly on the fighting itself, rather than side stuff like back story, fantasy/mythology or flashy supers.

Jean Kujo AKA Karateka is the latest addition to the VF roster.

VF5FS has 20 fighters in the roster- not large, considering that other games have double that number and more. But each of the characters in VF is unique, possessing a huge move list and wealth of strategies to use- yes, it will take lots of time to master even one character completely… but again, that’s the trick- you don’t have to unless you want to. All you need is to find the fighter you like; learn a few key moves. Know when to block and evade. Know when to move. Know about throws and throw-escapes. Practice a bit… and you’re set. Before you know it, you’ve been playing for hours, it’s the early hours of dawn. Yes, if the VF bug bites you, it bites hard.

Graphics and Animation
You’d ask, how could VF5FS look great when it’s basically VF5- a game that’s been out since 2007? Well, it’s NOT really the same game- same engine, but minutely there have been details which have refined and improved the visuals all these years. Characters are wonderfully detailed, and have lost the plastic sheen from early on, details are a bit better and well, lots of new items and costumes have kept the look fresh. Cloth animation is amazing to see, particularly on characters like the kimono-clad Aoi (unless you take off most of her clothing, that is). For the most part, VF’s beauty is also in it’s motion- there’s a quality to the animation that makes it more lifelike (relatively) compared to other fighters- and the slams, throws and hits in VF seem more hard-hitting and intense than anywhere else.

Gameplay Modes
The Fighting action of VF5FS is it’s strong point, and is basically as pure as can be. 19 characters (20 counting the unlockable end boss, Dural) to use, master and throw against the others either in some limited offline single player or local VS play, or in the potentially limitless arena of online play. As much as I am a single player guy, I have to sadly say that the offline content of VF5FS is at least adequate, at best.

There’s Arcade Mode, which is your usual fight your way to the end boss type of thing. Score Attack is similar but timed.

License Challenge has you fighting a semi-tutorial gauntlet of various tasks, ranging from simple to less simple to downright hard. There are about fifty challenges with tens of fights going up the ladder (you go up in rank), so this will take quite a bit of time to finish completely, unless you’re a VF monster. A Survival mode of sorts is actually buried in this mode, unlocked for anytime use once you beat it.

Finally Special Sparring is the somewhat truncated return of Arcade Quest mode/Kumite- you fight various groups of themed opponents, the schtick here being that they are all customized using the game’s matchlessly huge assortment of customization items (to unlock and use this mode you MUST have all the character customization DLC installed)- this is cool but I wish there was a way to randomize customizations or add more teams/enemies.

Tutorial mode or Dojo is made in the same vein as the much-revered training mode in the PS2 Virtua Fighter 4, and should be something good for new players. It has tons of options for honing your skills, including frame counters that allow you to get the timing down for the more complex moves. Nice options include the ability to give the CPU several attacks that it will randomly mix up and throw at you, which should help immensely any newcomer’s game when it comes to the stiff competition online.

Darn, I really wish the Offline VS allowed you to setup Player VS CPU fights… sigh… Why is it that only Project Soul puts that option in their games..?

Fast Tube by Casper

THIS is how you do Customizations, Other-Fighting-Game-Makers!!!

Oh, and yes, there’s the Character Customization. Once you pay the reasonable $30 DLC (get the two character bundles), you get basically the BEST Character Customization in a fighting game out there. Yes, it kicks Tekken Tag 2′s ass and makes Capcom’s crap DLC extra colors look positively retarded. There are literally hundreds of items to use per character, and it ranges from stuff to make your fighter look cool or sexy or badass or scary, or just silly (as opposed to some other games which seem to just know how to make them look boring or generic). Perhaps only Soul Calibur comes close, but the items are just not as good or varied as yet (they’re several years behind, after all). All that plus, yes I will say it- VF out-fanservices Dead or Alive too- who says you can’t be sexy (yes, bikinis) yet still be the most legitimate and hardcore fighting game around? VF can and does.

If you think Sarah’s bikini is skimpy, wait till you see what the guys are wearing…

That’s basically it for the Single Player, but then you can crank up the Difficulty to raise the challenge- the good part is that the CPU A.I. is pretty awesome- it doesn’t feel cheap here like in similar games. There’s just something about the style of play that makes every win makes you feel badass and just a little bit better- that’s where the pleasure of this game is… seeing yourself get better and kick arse handier with every new fight. Yes, it will take a long time to master any single character, but if you just get into it, you’ll enjoy yourself all the way.

As for Online, I have to admit- it’s a bit more playable than, say, Tekken 6 or Mortal Kombat, but still… a bad connection means lag and frustrating fights. THAT was on the US servers. As for the Asian servers… I tried but there seems to be no one playing. Sigh. So I’ll probably append this when I get to play more… and I WILL.

+ Still one gorgeous-looking fighting game on par with more recent fighters; animation is still second to none
+ Simply the most balanced, deep, refined and satisfying fighting action available anywhere
+ Best character customization with tons of items and costumes per character
+ Costs less than disc-based games

- No Story mode or general shortage of single player content
- Online is better but still laggy unless you’re playing against same-region players

VF5FS isn’t about slick CG and flashy, funny modes- yes, it’s a pretty bare essentials package (but with thousands of customization items though…) in terms of modes, which kinda makes it similar to Namco-Bandai’s Soul Calibur V. But VF is all about the nitty-gritty; the actual fighting, the core action. And IF you get into that, if you’re a beat ‘em up fan who loves seeing awesome fighting gameplay that CAN satisfy casual to master-level players like no other game, then you’re going to have a ball. Just getting better, just seeing your Sarah, Shun, Jacky or Akira dominate is pleasure in this game.

See You in the Arena!
Here’s the simple, plain fact. VF5 Final Showdown is pretty much the best fighting game you can get out there right now, plain and simple. Plus at less than $45 dollars it’s a freakin’ STEAL. It’s just as fast and hardhitting as Tekken, sexier than DOA, and it’s got a guy in a gi like Streetfighter. What’s not to love? If you’re a beat ‘em up fan, spend the bit of change, get this game and discover the finest one-on-one brawling there is out there. Practice a bit, and go online and play. Let’s keep the fight alive and kicking, shall we?

Let’s Dress Up! Virtua Fighter 5 Final Showdown’s Character Customization

Posted in DLC, Extra Costumes, Fan Service, Fighting Games, Game Advertising, Game-related Events, Gaming, PS3, Virtua Fighter, Virtua Fighter 5 Final Showdown, Xbox360 on June 8th, 2012 by thelonegamer

Fast Tube by Casper

Hey! Aoi actually has legs under those hakamas… Mmmm…

With all the hubbub about upcoming fighting games at E3 2012, beat ‘em up fans also have an awesome treat that’s available right NOW. It’s Virtua Fighter 5 Final Showdown, a Downloadable, home version of the once Japan-only upgrade to the original VF5. Here’s some little bits you need to know about this game

• NO, You do NOT need a VF5 disc to play it
• It costs $14.99 for the base game, but you owe it to yourself to spend the extra $30 for the two Character Customization bundle packs for all the characters to experience this game in the fullest.

Really, Character Customization is one of the coolest features of fighting games (well, ANY game, actually) in this current generation, and VF5FS has, without a doubt, the best customizations out there- the variety and quantity of items and outfits (you customize everything from eyes to fingernails along with clothing tops and bottoms) is just mind-boggling.
Yeah, it’s not perfect- instead of letting you mix or assign colors yourself there’s simply multiple-colored versions of articles, plus some characters have more items than others. It’s not quite like Soul Calibur’s Character Creation, but that’s not really the same thing (plus VF5FS’s character models are still better than SCV’s IMO).

Anyway, check out the vid above for a look at how detailed the customizations are, and in the vid below to see a couple of fights in Special Sparring Mode, a single-player mode where you fight teams of customized CPU opponents that is only playable/unlocked if you have ALL the Character Customizations for all characters installed (Really dudes, get all the stuff. Live a little, dammit). Currently I am having a ball losing sleep every night just playing this damn game. The fighting action and needing to just get better at kicking ass is just so addictive. Damn, I love this game… Sega, I love ya!

Fast Tube by Casper

I really dig Aoi’s off-the-shoulder kimono; shades of Asuka’s Diceroller look in T5DR.

Fast Tube by Casper

Aoi picks a fight with the Sephiroth wannabee, Jean Kujo.

Tekken Tag 2: Five MORE Characters for Console?

Posted in DLC, Extra Costumes, Fan Service, Fighting Games, PS2, Tekken, Tekken Tag Tournament 2, Xbox360 on June 8th, 2012 by thelonegamer

Bring out those wishlists, Tekkenfans!

Looks like the fun and surprises aren’t ending anytime soon for Namco-Bandai’s Tekken Tag Tournament 2. We’ve already been given four additional fighters recently, but now it seems that there are even more waiting in the wings according to the above teaser pic. The screengrab comes from a recently-posted updated version of TTT2′s ‘Switch’ trailer, and points to at least five more challengers just itching to be outed and revealed.

So who’s next? Doctor B? P.Jack? Tougou? Some word on forums is that the next reveals will be in July- man, that’s a bit far away… but well, so much stuff has been shown off at E3, we at least have lots to chew on for now. Let the speculations continue! Tekken Tag 2 is out for PS3 and Xbox360 in September 2012.

Streetfighter X Tekken… On the iPhone?!

Posted in DLC, Fighting Games, Game Advertising, Game-related Events, Gaming, iGaming, iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch, Streetfighter X Tekken on June 7th, 2012 by thelonegamer

Fast Tube by Casper

Okay, iOS can do anything, apparently…

One of the less-spectacular but nevertheless intriguing little fighting game bits at E3 is an iOS Demo for Streetfighter X Tekken. Yep, the cross-over fighter is coming to your iPhone. Well, actually, Capcom’s still thinking about it. Their Streetfighter IV and Marvel VS Capcom 2 releases on Apple’s platform have apparently pleased the company biggies, so perhaps we’ll be seeing SFxTK on the go sometime in the near future. Heck, makes sense… pretty sure the iOS gamers don’t mind DLC… heheh. Anyway, the footage above looks pretty impressive, and it’s running on an iPad, which means the graphics on this mobile game are High Res, much more so than the SFIV or SFIV Volt games, or even the MvC2 port. I’m very inclined to get this- guaranteed if they manage to squeeze in the whole roster. I think I’ll be keeping an eye on this… DAMN iOS is freakin awesome…

Early VF5 Final Showdown Reviews

Posted in DLC, Extra Costumes, Fan Service, Fighting Games, Game Advertising, Game-related Events, Gaming, PS3, Virtua Fighter, Virtua Fighter 5 Final Showdown, Xbox360 on June 7th, 2012 by thelonegamer

Mr. Kujo would like to have a word with anyone badmouthing VF…

Virtua Fighter 5 Final Showdown hasn’t been out long- it just got released on XBL yesterday. But there are quite a few reviews on the game already online, so anyone still on the fence about VF5FS can get some views on it from sources other than rabid VF fans (who are probably too busy playing to review it anyway).
Me, I already got my copy (PS3), already playing- review will be up in due time. For now though, check out the following VF5FS reviews from PS Nation, Gamers Daily News, Game Revolution and Shoryuken.

Thanks to reader Trevor for sharing these links! The game is looking and playing awesome right now… makes the wait for Tekken Tag 2 and DOA5 so much easier now. Heheh…

Tekken Tag 2 Console Character Trailers!

Posted in DLC, Fan Service, Fighting Games, Game Advertising, Game-related Events, Gaming, PS3, Tekken, Tekken Tag Tournament 2, Xbox360 on June 7th, 2012 by thelonegamer

Fast Tube by Casper

Angel is no angel in the arena.

TekkenChannel on Youtube just released several trailers, each focusing on the four console-exclusive DLC characters for Tekken Tag Tournament 2. Looks like each one has a teammate already on the roster ready to watch their back- Angel makes a killer pair with Devil Jin (and have one heck of a Tag Throw), the Two Ogres come together, Kunimitsu pairs up with Raven and of course, Michelle looks a great match with Jaycee. Check out all the vids for a glimpse of the action sure to come to PS3′s and Xbox360′s in September.

Fast Tube by Casper
Kunimitsu’s back and deadlier than ever.

Of course, Namco-Bandai’s focus for the event is the Snoop Dogg collaboration/guesting, with the rapper appearing both with his music and in game-rendered form within a DLC stage for the console version. Not really a huge thing for me, but hey… the guy does sound cool as an announcer…

Fast Tube by Casper

Michelle is looking great and moving even better.

Fast Tube by Casper

Ancient Ogre and True Ogre make for one monster of a team…