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DS Daily: OMG LOL, amirite

Skip, the creators of Chibi-Robo, surprised us last year with Archime-DS, one of the most bizarre games on a system known for bizarre games (seriously, its most popular games are about doing math and walking dogs). Then Agetec surprised us by announcing plans to (sort of) release it in the U.S.! It's about the weirdest and most simplistic concept for a game we can think of, basically a chat client with a configurable timer and a voting mechanism.

We normally don't like to rely on our friends to create a game's content, but at the same time we can't deny that Pictionary is fun -- and LOL is even more freeform than Pictionary. It's designed with the idea of voting on the best answer to player-submitted questions, or best prompted drawings, but you can kind of do whatever you want. There's definitely the possibility of fun to be had here, but do you think you'll be able to get past the strangeness of the game to seek it?

Gallery: LOL

Europeans get to LOL with Bakushow

We won't bombard you with more details about LOL (we can really only LOL so many times in one day), but news just rolled in that Rising Star would be bringing the game to Europe. Instead of being called LOL, though, it will be titled Bakushow, which means "big laugh" in Japanese.

There's no word yet on whether Rising Star will follow in Agetec's footsteps and make the game available online only, but even if it is available in stores, we're sure it won't be the easiest game to find. Rising Star also gently reminds us that "Billy No Mates need not apply," since this software includes no single player mode. You probably already knew that, but we just wanted an excuse to write "Billy No Mates."

If that doesn't deter you, we've added some new screens to our gallery (for the love of all that is holy, we get it, you can ask people to draw pandas!) should you feel so inclined to check them out.

Gallery: LOL

[Via press release]

Look Online for LOL

Skip and Route24's LOL is seemingly a very freeform game. It has no prescribed content, just an open canvas with which you can design your own trivia or drawing game -- or anything else you want that involves sending pictures and text between DS systems. It provides the infrastructure and a timer, and that's pretty much it! But LOL is defined as much by its constraints as it is its freedom, in that it is a strictly multiplayer-only game. Don't have any friends around? It doesn't work.

Now it seems there's another restriction: according to Agetec's product page, LOL will only be available online when it is released on May 30th. This has the effect of ensuring that what was once going to be just a bizarre game will be a very expensive bizarre game within a year's time. Also found on the product page: new screens (in our gallery!) and the boxart, with the ESRB "Game Experience May Change During Online Play" notice. Online play?

Gallery: LOL

[Via Siliconera]

GameSetWatch names Chibi-Robo one of 2007's Top 5 Overlooked Games

Chibi-Robo: Park Patrol, the environmentally-conscious (though perhaps not produced under such auspices!) DS sequel to skip's GameCube domestic adventure, has been listed as one of five notable games that didn't get the attention they deserved this year.

GameSetWatch's Brandon Boyer said that the game "managed to pack big charm into its diminutive body, with a mostly non-combative and environmentally-minded ethos typical of the lineage of the staff at developer Skip." With such a big trend towards going "green" this year, a green-themed game should have been a huge hit, right? Well, it might have been, had people been able to find it. Unfortunately, it was exiled to Wally World.

We do like to see DS games making best-of lists, even if it's because of their relative invisibility. Maybe some added attention will inspire someone to pick it up used or even maybe go to Wal-Mart.

Metareview: Chibi-Robo: Park Patrol

The Wal-Mart exclusive, environmentally conscious sequel to Chibi-Robo came out this week, and the reviews seem to be hovering around the low-to-mid 80's (with Eurogamer as an outlier). We find that sometimes we like the kind of games that inhabit that space, since it usually means they're solid and fun, but not too epic. It seems that the game has weathered the transition from adventurous chore simulator to park-building fairly well. If any of you out there have made the dangerous journey to Wal-Mart to pick this up, please let us know what you think!

GameSpot -- 80%: "This delightful, bizarre adventure simplifies and builds on the gameplay of the GameCube original while making innovative use of the touch screen and presenting an often-hilarious story rife with colorful, insane characters."

GameSpy -- 80%: "Chibi Robo: Park Patrol retains the fun and charm of its console predecessor even if the gameplay is noticeably different. It's a shame that it's being released on the same day as The Legend of Zelda: Phantom Hourglass as it will undoubtedly get overshadowed. That's too bad -- this tiny robot deserves better."

Eurogamer -- 60%: "If you don't have the name of that significant series that Park Patrol resembles in your head right now then you've not been paying attention, but Harvest Moon springs easily to mind as a comparison. Its sow-reap-repeat dynamic, set against the pressures of a quickly diminishing day are easily mirrored here. And while Park Patrol lacks the extra-curricular entertainment of the best of those titles, it gets the core right."

Chibi-Robo retail presence rolled back

The rumor that Chibi-Robo: Park Patrol was cancelled is totally false. Well, mostly totally false. Gamespot contacted a Nintendo rep in order to verify the rumor, and got a surprising response.

"Chibi Robo: Park Patrol will launch October 2. The game, which features an adorable miniature robot who wants to clean up the environment, will be available exclusively at Wal-Mart stores nationwide."

We have to wonder why Nintendo has such little faith in one of their own first-party franchises that they're limiting its distribution so sharply. Sure, Wal-Mart is the second-largest game retailer in the US, but do you know who's bigger? All game retailers.

Chibi-Robo review brings a load of screens along

GAME Watch seems to have loved Chibi-Robo: Park Patrol. They enjoyed cleaning up the park and arranging it to their liking, saying that, in the end, they wished for a multiplayer mode because they wanted to be able to show off their work.

We had a little trouble getting through the review for some reason, which is why we summarized their conclusion about the multiplayer, and didn't give you detailed information about their judgment. There's no problem looking at the screenshots, however, which are beautiful and copious. We really hope this game actually comes out here.

A chibi trailer for Chibi Robo

This commercial for Chibi Robo: Park Patrol is really, really short. Fifteen seconds. It also shows no real game footage at all. But it's about Chibi Robo, which we really don't see or hear enough about. Also it's got some creepy flower things in it!

It's mostly just great to see Nintendo putting some advertising yen into Chibi Robo. What are the odds that even fifteen scant seconds will be devoted to it on American television?

Continue reading A chibi trailer for Chibi Robo

Archime DS screens: enjoy them alone while you can

Savor your solitude; once Archime DS actually gets released, your enjoyment of the game will hinge on the participation of the masses. Or at least the people you've shared friend codes with.

These screenshots mostly show example play sessions-- one player writing a question, and then everyone voting on the best answer, or each player's version of a panda drawing. Since most of the content in this game is created on the fly, previews seem a little hollow. We can't really preview what you and your friends will draw, you know?

We trust Skip (Chibi Robo, Giftpia) to make a compelling experience, but this program does have the air of non-gameness about it. It's not a training game, but it's not a traditional game either. It's in the "toy" category of non-games along with Jam Sessions and Electroplankton, we suppose.

Continue reading Archime DS screens: enjoy them alone while you can

Archime DS = LOL

We haven't heard much about Route24's mystery project, LOL DS, since developer Kenichi Ishi (Chibi Robo) first announced the game over a year ago. After months of leaving us in the dark without any screenshots or information beyond its acronymous title, the Route24 team has broken its silence, publishing a teaser site and revealing a new name: Archime DS.

Archime DS
is as far away from a traditional video game as you can imagine. Strictly multiplayer -- with no single-player modes planned -- the title promises to deliver a handheld twist on "Oogiri"-styled Japanese comedy . A leader asks a question or poses a challenge with a set limit, and players earn points by using their DS to present the best answer. It's a lot like the final round of Jeopardy, but with a humorous theme.

Skip Ltd. will be publishing Archime DS in Japan this summer, selling the game for about $18. We're hoping that the English-translated official page foreshadows a future North American release, but we wouldn't be surprised if the screwy title missed our market.

Check out Chibi-Robo: Park Patrol

If breakdancing refreshed dying flowers out in the real world, gardening would be a hell of a lot more fun. We can't wait to try it out in the upcoming Chibi-Robo!: Park Patrol, the DS sequel that pits our favorite tiny household robot against killer plants in the great outdoors. Since we have absolutely no idea when this game will hit shelves, we'll have to console ourselves with screenshots for now. Check 'em out after the jump!

Continue reading Check out Chibi-Robo: Park Patrol

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