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Joystiq presents

DS impressions: Zelda: Phantom Hourglass

After sitting down with Zelda: Phantom Hourglass for a few minutes, we feel the verdict is still out. Granted, we didn't get to sail Wind Waker style with the stylus, and were kicked off early, so take criticism with a grain of salt. The game feels like a traditional top-down Zelda title only you direct Link with a stylus rather than a directional pad. We cruised around a mini dungeon for a bit and could see right away that the game has potential with touch controls.

1-on-1 Battle Mode versus another E3 attendee was a good time. One player guides Link to collect and safely return Triforces to base, while the other controls three "baddies" that try to stop Link from doing so. Though it felt like a rehash from gaming's past, it was fun to play. More to come.

[via Joystiq]

E3: Square Enix conference

Chris Kohler at Game|Life is live blogging the Square Enix press conference. Here is what we know so far:
  • Release dates, galore! Valkyrie Profile on PSP July 18, Valkyrie Profile 2 in September, Final Fantasy III and Rocket Slime in September, and ... Final Fantasy XII in October.
  • Mobile games, galore! Dirge of Cerberus: Lost Episode coming this year, based on PS2 version. Also a remake of original Final Fantasy Adventure ("looks like a straight port with much nicer graphics") and new Mana title.
  • Dragon Quest Swords for the Nintendo Wii ... ! Announced as launch title.
  • Crisis Core trailer looking nice, but all cinematics - "Big WORK IN PROGRESS thing at the end."
  • Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles: Ring of Fates -- 4-player action on Nintendo DS
  • Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles: The Crystal Bearers for Wii.
  • Final Fantasy XIII on PlayStation 3 -- no surprise, but still mega-exciting. "Looks amazing. Female protagonist. Dramatic battles with amazing cinematic presentation." Also, Final Fantasy XIII on mobile: "It's a multiplayer RPG."
Excited? We are.

First Nintendo booth pictures

We tried to get on the expo floor this afternoon, but security is tight. We even thought about risking our media passes to rush the floor and try to catch a glimpse of a new trailer or whatnot. We decided against it, so this image via WiiGamer will have to do.

[Thanks, Paul]

First Nintendo wifi RPG title

Lost Magic
, the first online RPG for the Nintendo DS, now has its own gaming hub on Nintendo's official wifi connection site. The title which will be released on March 20 will allow you to "create new characters and challenge friends" over the Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection. This is very exciting news for both DS and RPG fans.

What multiplayer game mechanics are you hoping for in this, and any subsequent online RPG's for the DS?

[Thanks, TheMayor]

Japanese line up to buy DS Lite

The DS Lite sold very well in Japan today. Many stores even sold out before doors where opened. IGN put it best by saying: "With the Japanese DS Lite launch on Thursday morning, 3/2, Nintendo has embraced launch carnage like the good old days of Super Famicom and N64. Forget about selling out minutes after opening -- the DS Lite was sold out hours before opening time at every retailer IGN was able to visit."

Breaking the heart of the original DS

This is what happens when the first born child learns to deal with a new baby in the family. The original DS is no different. Honestly though, do any readers plan on eBaying their original DS?

[Thanks, Rik]

DS Lite price gouging

Two days before the official DS Lite release in Japan and Asian retailers are already pricing a markup. Hong Kong stores are quoting their first shipment of units at $300 a pop. That's almost double the MSRP. From the article: "As is common with launch feeding frenzies of this nature, they are speculative and fueled by limited initial inventory... If there is retail support at US$300 for an NDS Lite, prices will remain at that level."

Supply and demand in action, folks. Would you fork out $300 bones to be a DS Lite first mover?

[Thanks, Tim]

Mario Kart DS Tourney

The Home of Handhelds is hosting what they are calling the "BIGGEST Mario Kart DS Tournament." The competition will consist of 192 users (considering they get enough sign-ups) spanning 380 races in all. Follow the link for registration details and be sure to polish up those snaking skills.

"I'm a gonna win!"

[Thanks, David]

Hands on: Nintendo DS Lite

The folks at Lik-Sang get their hands on Nintendo's new DS Lite. Follow the link for impressions and tons of hi-resolution close-ups of the system. From the article: "Now, you can officially add whiter, cooler, prettier, sleeker, and overall better to your arsenal of superlatives when describing the Nintendo DS Lite in comparison with the first edition of the Nintendo DS. The new edition has for sure a fashionable look, and appears more modern than the previous model... Nintendo has adopted the transparent see-through layer of plastic that comes on top of a product casing to give it a shinier look (like with the PSP or the iPod for instance)."

[via Nintendo DS News]

Cooking Mama video

Some new video footage of Cooking Mama for the DS has surfaced today on YouTube via GoNintendo. Enjoy!

[Thanks, mandarin]

Tetris DS wifi page up

Though the game won't launch until March 20, Nintendo has already begun the prepping for puzzle wifi madness with a dedicated Tetris wifi page. From the article: "Log on with Tetris DS and dig in for some puzzling head-to-head action via Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection. When you're ready to take a break from your block battles, come to the Tetris DS gaming hub and see how you rank against other players."

Not a lot new here, rather a heads up regarding the pending service and reminder that the game is a mere 21 days away. Let the sweet Russian music prevail.

[Thanks, Nushio]

DS March releases

March is looking to be a solid month for DS releases, not to mention the arrival of the much anticipated Metroid Prime Hunters. What game(s) are you most looking forward to next month?
  • Pokemon Trozei - 3/7
  • Worms: Open Warfare - 3/14
  • Ice Age 2: The Meltdown - 3/15
  • Top Gun - 3/15
  • Metroid Prime Hunters - 3/21
  • Tetris DS -3/21
  • Tao's Adventure: Curse of the Demon Seal - 3/22

Nintendo DS desktop

A new DS desktop OS is in the works using the current DSLinux project as a basis. The system will include some of the following features:
  • A touchable on-screen keyboard.
  • A standard 80x25 console on the top screen that communicates with on-screen keyboard
  • Will use Busybox for standard commands to keep use of CPU low.
  • An upside-down web-browser with controls that dock on the top of the bottom screen, while the content of the browser is displayed at the top. (Dillo port)
Be sure to contact deantheappleguy[AT] to help make the desktop a reality.

Screenshots: Tetris DS

Warning! The following link contains more Tetris DS screenshots than you may care to see. We started to count how many, but stopped after 24.

The game's March 20 US release for the DS can't come soon enough!

DS Lite in Europe this summer?

According to some reports, the DS Lite just might launch in Europe during mid-summer. writes: "The August 16th [DS Lite release] date apparently centers on information from German retail outlets... according to our source, that date is 'way off. We'll see it sooner than that,' he assured us."

If true, does this mean a spring DS Lite launch in the US is likely?

[Thanks, unreal mccoy]

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