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'A' for optimism, 'D' for style: the Red Bull BC One DS

It's normally only the biggest names that get splashed across limited edition DS Lites -- the Nintendogs, Zeldas, Pokémons, Guitar Heros, and Final Fantasys of this world. Playlogic clearly feels that Red Bull BC One is ready to join that elite bunch, because it ordered in an unspecified number of Onyx Black DSes and proceeded to uglify them by slapping these forgettable transfers on each.

We don't wish to be mean-spirited, but we're struggling to see who will pick this up. In our experience, limited edition DSes are based on games with either a rabid fanbase, huge brand power, or both. As out of touch with modern culture as we are, we're fairly certain that Red Bull BC One has neither. At least the children of Playlogic CEOs know what they're getting for Christmas.

Gallery: Limited Edition Lites: A History of Sadness

Play DS like a rock starToo little too lateMaster using it and you can have thisTake me out to the video gameWhat.

[Via Go Nintendo]

On Tour Decades looks a lot like Guitar Hero: On Tour

Something magical happens when a game's sequel is released only a few months after the original: they tend to look exactly the same. When those games are part of a franchise that pretty much always looks the same (look, there are guitars and dudes playing them; what more do you want?), then, well ... you really can't expect anything different.

There are legwarmers to sign, though. And platform shoes. That's how you tell the decades apart. Genius. Guitar Hero: On Tour Decades is set for release before the end of the year.

Gallery: Guitar Hero: On Tour Decades

I want to read about Guitar Hero all ni-i-ight, and eat Guitar Hero cake!

Guitar Hero returns with awesome multiplayer, underwhelming setlist

On the face of it, Guitar Hero: On Tour Decades is showing promise. IGN took the title out for a test strum, and we liked what they had to say about it. As well as new venues and characters, the ability to play songs from Decades against owners of other Guitar Hero DS games is an excellent addition -- the DS wirelessly transfers the audio track and note chart, essentially doubling the number of songs to those who bought the original On Tour. Speaking of which, Decades will come in two packs: one including the game and Guitar Grip, and the other with just the cart.

All of which is tremendously peachy, so what's the catch? Well, IGN also revealed the first ten songs, and in our not-so-humble opinion, they're -- nnngh -- not terribly good. Including any Fall Out Boy track is never the best of starts in our view, and as Eric pointed out, if you are going to include a Foo Fighters song, why not the superb "Everlong?" Okay, okay, so music is a divisive subject if ever there was one, but to us, this reeks of disappointment. We're certain you'll have an opinion, so check after the break for the full list.

Continue reading Guitar Hero returns with awesome multiplayer, underwhelming setlist

DS Daily: Instant import

Some games just have to be imported. For us, it was Ouendan and its sequel. We were even considering Taiko Drum Master, but ended up holding out for a localization. What about you all, though? Was there a Japanese game you just had to have? What was it?

An extra dose of Rhythm Heaven

Can't get enough of those wacky Rhythm Heaven commercials? There's a new dose of quick and quirky spots, fresh for Friday, featuring footage of some different mini-games with the same players we've seen before. They've also swapped some games from the last batch of commercials (which are also included in the second half of this video, if you missed them). Considering the way Toshihiko Takamizawa is dressed, the other players should be grateful that's all they're trading. We're not so sure we'd want to raid that guy's closet.

Check out the new (and old) commercials after the break, but be warned that, while the video plays just fine, the frame will display oddly here in some browsers. You can always go check it out at the source ... or at the real source, which is the Rhythm Heaven site. Or, uh, on Japanese televisions.

Continue reading An extra dose of Rhythm Heaven

Astley DS-10 just wants to tell you how it's feeling

The above video proves the old saying -- where there's a will, there's a Rickroll. With the release of Korg's DS-10 synthesizer software in Japan, naturally, someone has composed a track recreating Rick Astley's "Never Gonna Give You Up," the meme that launched a thousand prank Youtube links.

Half of the hilarity is missing with the singer's sunglasses and dance moves absent, just as any rendition of Europe's "Final Countdown" suffers without Gob, but that's what homebrew application RickRollDS is for!

Gallery: Korg DS-10

Rhythm patternsStylus synthingKnobs galore

[Via NeoGAF]

More Korg DS-10 info than we can understand

1UP's interview with Korg DS-10 producer Nobuyoshi Sano and Korg staff covers a lot of little details that we would never think to ask! For example, about linking up eight systems playing the thing and using one as a master. And about interfacing with other synthesizers.

But the parts of it that are simple enough for non-synth users (and non-programmers) like us to parse sound pretty neat. Prospective DS DJ types will be pleased to hear that Korg has, uh, "designed a type of limiter circuit in DS-10's internal mixer" in order to boost the program's sound output beyond the normal quiet DS levels. It's really not as technical as we make it sound, but we can't help but get into "WHAT IS THIS CONTRAPTION" mode whenever we see a screenshot of Korg DS-10 in action.

Gallery: Korg DS-10

Rhythm patternsStylus synthingKnobs galore

Music Monstars breaks free this September

A press release from publisher JoWood suggested, if not clearly, that they would publish developer Novarama's strangely compelling music game Music Monstars in North America. A new press release makes this sound a lot more likely, though the language is still a bit indirect.

According to the press release, JoWood is handling distribution in "North- and South America, Portugal, Spain and India" Tivola, who is releasing the game in Germany, will release the game in September. Does that mean that JoWood will also release the game in September in all those territories? At the very least, this is the first time that this game has been mentioned specifically as a North American release.

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]

The DS Life: While My Guitar Grip Gently Weeps

The discs, colored green, red, yellow, and blue, tumble towards her, spilling like candy from a tipped box of Sprees, almost too many of them to catch. Her fingers lift then push, then lift then push over and over again above the corresponding frets, more mechanical than graceful. Imagine a pneumatic robot hand, and you will understand the choreographed taps of her digits; it is as if they learned to dance from footstep diagrams.

She does not sing the lyrics or hum the melody or tap her feet with the rhythm, she has attempted to faultlessly play this track enough times that she is long past enjoying the song. Truthfully, she has always loathed "Rock and Roll All Nite" as a shallow anthem. This time, though, Gene Simmons is singing her victory, as she is only a few chords away from a perfect score.

Continue reading The DS Life: While My Guitar Grip Gently Weeps

Start beating the drum for Taiko localization

Against all odds, Namco decided to release a localized version of Taiko no Tatsujin on the PS2 in 2004. We don't have solid sales data, but judging by Taiko Drum Master's quick drop in price at retail (and the fact that Guitar Hero hadn't happened yet, so music games were still for scary nerds), the American public was less than enthused with the idea of paying $60 to play a miniature Japanese drum.

According to a Cubed3 interview with Bandai Namco's Ken Nakadate, the company may just be willing to give the series another chance in the U.S. on a system that doesn't require any specialized hardware: the DS. In response to C3's inquiry about localization, Nakadate gave an answer that is one step above the normal "we haven't announced anything" response:

"We want the customers in Europe and US to enjoy the Japanese Taiko drum. The schedule for US or European releases is undecided but we would release them if we receive a lot of requests from US and European customers!"

Enjoy the Japanese Taiko drum! Enjoy it with all of your heart!

User-generated content rules Band Brothers DX

For most of us, Band Brothers DX is just one of many unattainable titles in the Japanese market. We want to play it and love the crap out of it, but our inability to understand the Japanese squigglies keeps us from realizing just how great the game is. Thanks to Spencer at Siliconera, we can keep up with the most beloved content for the title.

You can see the top 100 downloads yourself right here. It's not going to mean much to a majority of you, but if you're looking for the top downloads of this week, then peep this:
  1. Shuchi Shin (Shuchi Shin)
  2. Gake no Ue no Ponyo (Miyazaki movie theme?)
  3. Nakanai de (Shuchi Shin)
  4. Kiseki (GReeeeN)
  5. Nando mo (Aoyama Thelma)* created by Nintendo
[Via Siliconera]

E308: DS Fanboy rocks out to Rock Revolution DS

Oh, poor Konami. You're a little too late to your own party. Actually, more like way too late. With the company finally trying to grab a slice of the delicious music game pie, they're not only pushing Rock Revolution on home consoles, but also on the DS.

After having some play time with the title at E3, I feel safe in saying that the handheld game is pretty much going to be the best of the bunch.

Continue reading E308: DS Fanboy rocks out to Rock Revolution DS

Commercial Heaven

We didn't have to wait long for footage of more of Rhythm Tengoku Gold's games after the three-game E3 demo. Nintendo has posted seven short commercials demonstrating gameplay. The YouTube video above collects six of the commercials; to see the other one, you can check the website, although (spoilers!) it's just footage of a metronome anyway.

The celebrities in the videos are almost as interesting as the gameplay videos themselves -- the Japanese Steven Tyler in the pink suit (actually Toshihiko Takamizawa from the venerable Japanese rock band The Alfee) is quite a departure from the indistinguishable idols these companies normally use in game commercials.

If that's not enough Rhythm Heaven for you (it isn't), the Japanese site has also been updated with new screens and control diagrams.

E308: DS Fanboy hands-on with Korg DS-10

The Korg DS-10 is an incredibly interesting thing. It's not really a game, and it's not really a full-fledged synthesizer. Instead, it's like a perfect middle ground of both. And, it's also something that looked incredibly daunting when first loaded up.

Gallery: Korg DS-10

Rhythm patternsStylus synthingKnobs galore

Continue reading E308: DS Fanboy hands-on with Korg DS-10

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