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Joystiq presents

Get a glimpse of Disgaea DS

Both veteran Disgaea fans and new fans who want to experience the series for the first time are getting ready for the release of Disgaea DS. The strategizing won't begin until September 23rd, but until then, it's a good idea for us to know exactly what we're getting into by observing some gameplay action.

We think that the presentation is pretty nice on the DS, and although the graphics may have toned down in the translation, the visuals aren't wanting for anything. As for the gameplay, Disgaea virgins will notice from the videos that while the grid-based style is familiar, the actual execution differs from many other strategy games.

Come September, we're ready to sacrifice hundreds of hours of our lives playing this title. Are you with us?

More battle footage lies after the break!

Continue reading Get a glimpse of Disgaea DS

Potential flash cart ban helps R4 sales

Chalk this one up to "we saw this coming," but the troubled waters that flash carts have found themselves in has led to an increase in R4 sales.

Nintendo and fifty-three other companies are filing a suit against retailers selling flash carts, demanding that they stop the sales and imports of said cards. According to Kotaku, Japanese retailers in Akihabara are noticing a difference in demand for flash cards already. Regarding the R4, one staffer noted, "The rush in demand has been amazing. These devices always sell well. But this weekend should be staggering, don't you think?" has also seen a rise in cart sales, which is to be expected.

We're sure Nintendo foresaw the immediate panic following the company's announcement, and that's the risk they decided to take -- watching things get worse before they get better. If Nintendo and the others win the suit, though, it will likely be worth their while in the end.

[Thanks, supa_s!]

Are games with puzzles a dying breed?

The Brainy Gamer has an interesting op/ed piece, in which the author states that youths of today aren't interested in the puzzles that come along with adventure games. While crotchety old veterans like ourselves (who were actually alive when games like Monkey Island flooded shelves) still enjoy the genre, younger gamers don't have the patience and just don't see the point.

We're inclined to agree a bit, as adventure gaming has become a lot more niche than it was in the past. We would argue, however, that the DS has been doing a good job of reviving such puzzlers, even for younger fans craving more action. With the touchscreen making point-and-click (or point-and-touch, if you will) much more accessible, not to mention the added bonus of portability, we think adventure games reach more than just a veteran gamer demographic. Maybe that's just wishful thinking on our part, but we wouldn't be surprised to see young teens popping in a copy of Phoenix Wright or Professor Layton.

What do you think, though? Are we just too oldschool and stubborn to let the genre lay to rest? Maybe those of you with younger siblings might have more insight when it comes to the patience of the younger set of gamers.

[Via DCEmu]

Nintendo and others file suit against flash cart sellers

Nintendo is finally taking aggressive action against piracy, as the company is suing five Japanese firms over flash cart equipment. The Big N is just one of many plaintiffs in the case, though, with fifty-three others joining in to aid the fight -- just a few companies that you may have heard of, like, oh, Square Enix, Sega, Level-5, Hudson, Pokemon, Capcom, Namco Bandai, SNK Playmore, Koei, and so forth.

While details are scarce, we can imagine a lot of popular carts (like the R4), if not all carts, will be affected. Should Nintendo and friends win the suit, selling and importing such carts will be illegal, meaning that people would have to resort to the black market to get their hands on one.

We understand why Nintendo and other companies would want to fight the good fight against piracy, but we can't help but fret over the impact on our precious homebrew hobby. At any rate, we'll give you more information as this case unfolds.

[Via Joystiq; Thanks, Kimiko!]

Eating Space Invaders

Talented video game baker Hello Naomi is at it again, this time using our favorite theme to make delicious cupcakes -- Space Invaders, of course.

We really wish we could eat these tasty treats, but only so that we could help save the world from an alien invasion. Not because they look incredibly yummy or anything, really.

To see more pictures of the cupcakes in question, just head on over to Hello Naomi's Flickr set.

[Via Technabob]

Unsolved Crimes offers more clues about gameplay

Anyone who was around thirty-some years ago (or saw the movie Summer of Sam) might know that New York City wasn't the safest of places during the 1970s. That's why we're even more intrigued by the realistic-looking adventure game, Unsolved Crimes, which takes place in this crime-filled setting.

The game should be releasing this fall (in the UK, at least), and centers around a rookie detective. He (and therefore, you,) must figure out the circumstances behind the disappearance of aspiring model Betty Blake. The game will focus on the one overarching storyline, but will include other mysteries for you to solve as well (à la Hotel Dusk). In fact, the press release boasts that there are eight different cases to solve.

Also like Hotel Dusk, you'll have to pay close attention to detail so that you can answer questions later (in addition to point-and-click adventure gaming and action-packed shootouts). Check out the new screens in the gallery below for more of an idea of what to expect.

Gallery: Unsolved Crimes

Carnival Games makes its return to the DS Download Service

For people longing to play new demos via the Nintendo Channel, the frustration continues. All we saw on the channel today was the return of two demos that we never really missed in the first place (we're looking at you, Carnival Games and Crosswords DS Wordsearch).

Nintendo also extended the availability dates on three of the existing demos, probably because offering three new ones would have been too satisfying (/bitter). The good news is, you have another week to try out Trauma Center: Under the Knife 2 and Contra 4 if you haven't done so already.

Click past the break to see yet another underwhelming list of demos.

Continue reading Carnival Games makes its return to the DS Download Service

DS Daily: Favorite feature

We imagine many of you love the DS (or else you wouldn't be here). Granted, there are many reasons to consider the DS as your electronic soulmate, or at least we think so. Still, what do you think is the DS's very best feature? You know -- that feature that you just can't live without?

DS Daily: Gaming zines

Obviously all you computer savvy folks like to check out gaming blogs and sites to get your fill of gaming news (you're reading this right now, after all), but do you subscribe to magazines as well? If so, which ones (Nintendo Power, perhaps)?

More importantly, how do you feel about game magazines? Do you think print journalism still has a place in the video game industry? (Note: We do.)

Sega shows more Destruction

Along with the news that World Destruction will be releasing in Japan on September 25th (shock, gasp, it was pushed back a week!), Sega has released a new video for the title. Although it shows some more gameplay footage, most of it is your classic RPG fodder and not battle scenes. Still, we're pretty impressed by how it seems to be turning out. Not only does it look great and have an interesting story, but the 300 event scenes and plethora of maps and voices that Sega promised should be enough to excite any RPG gamer.

Also, folks interested in the game (or anime, or comic) can go and check out World Destruction's official website. There's not much in the "Game" section, aside from a nice-looking background and a gorgeous song (the one from previous trailers), but the song alone is enough to get us to keep on coming back until they add some content.

Get fired up about Fire Emblem after watching video footage

If we lived in Japan right now (or had enough Japanese skills to import it), we'd be able to play Fire Emblem: New Dark Dragons and the Sword of Light in two mere weeks. Since that's not the case, though, we'll just have produce puddles upon puddles of drool while watching video footage (seriously -- we're that excited). We're sure that many of you don't need to be convinced to join the hype train, though, and are anticipating this one as much as we are.

The two videos (one is posted after the break) are in Japanese, but it doesn't take a genius to figure out what's being highlighted. For one, you can see that the game will utilize the stylus to move around the grids. The announcer also talks about a few of the different classes, as well as features in the game (like class changes), but those are all things that Fire Emblem fans will be familiar with. Lastly, you'll get a glimpse into the Wi-Fi battle system, which put to rest our fears about the dreaded countdown timer. As it turns out, the dwindling clock is only a factor when it comes to online play.

After the break, check out the Japanese TV ad which makes us want something else entirely -- Fire Emblem: The Board Game.

Gallery: Fire Emblem DS

Continue reading Get fired up about Fire Emblem after watching video footage

Rhythm Heaven looks heavenly

Those of you interested in Rhythm Heaven have probably already read JC's impressions jealously -- though if you're neither interested in the game nor spent the time to read about it, shame on you.

All you sane-minded folks don't have to be too jealous of "Lucky Dog Fletcher" anymore, though. The video above shows the exact demo that he got to try during E3, only it's in Japanese. Sure, that's not quite the equivalent of playing the game, but it's enough to make us squeal all the same. (We rhymed, so it must be true.)

Go on now and watch the video above to see extended play of the Assembly Line, Robot Gallery, and Chorus musical microgames.

[Via NeoGAF]

Kimi no Yuusha comes to life in Famitsu

The latest issue of Famitsu revealed a new game for the DS, which releases in Japan this winter. Called Kimi no Yuusha, we don't know much about the title other than it looks absolutely adorable. It was also revealed that SNK Playmore is the developer behind the game, and it's some sort of light novel and RPG combination.

The two main characters are a blue-haired girl named Wanda (pictured right) and a blond-haired girl named Tio. The 2D battle graphics in the scans aren't all that pretty, but the rest of the art seems very pleasing. When we find out more details about this cute-looking game, we'll be sure to let you know.

Rumor: Kingdom Hearts coming out this year in Japan [update]

Kingdom Hearts: 358/2 Days' teaser website has turned into an actual website now, with menus to click on and everything else you'd come to expect from a Square Enix website. It's still lacking in compelling content, however, aside from a downloadable wallpaper and a beautiful background song. (You can also see the Japanese character profiles for Roxas and Axel, as well as browse through a few screens in the "Story" section.)

The other interesting 358/2 Days news is that in the manual for the DS remake of Dragon Quest V (which released last week in Japan), an ad for the game boasts "Coming 2008." We'll probably find out for sure at Square Enix's DKΣ3713 event whether this is true or just an advertiser's wishful thinking, although it's important to keep in mind that us non-Japanese gamers will have to wait for localization, anyway.

[Update: Everything on the website is translated into English here. Thanks, Monkey!]

[Thanks for the original tip, supa_s!]

Space Invaders Extreme: DS vs. PSP

Space Invaders Extreme has been out in the U.S. and Europe for about a month now, so if you haven't bought this gem yet (and according to certain chartz, most of you haven't), we can only assume it's because you're still deciding which version to pick up.

As you probably know, the game released for both the DS and the PSP. One of the reasons that certain bloggers (namely, this one) were so excited for the U.S. release of Space Invaders Extreme in the first place was because its downloadable demo for the PSP was nothing short of awesome. You can imagine, then, how torn we were when it came to choosing between the DS and PSP versions of the game. We only figured that some of our readers were going through the same dilemma, and thus we ended up trying out both just so that you don't have to.

If you want to see how Space Invaders Extreme DS and PSP stack up against each other, just click on past the break for a pretty chart and in-depth category breakdowns.

Gallery: Space Invaders Extreme (DS)

Continue reading Space Invaders Extreme: DS vs. PSP

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