Welcome back for another exciting installment of Beta’d! In case you’ve been living under a rock, or if you’re so relentlessly patriotic that you think E3 is the world’s only video gaming trade show, you may want to sit down and take a deep breath, because what I’m about to tell you may shock you. Gamers descended on Tokyo this week for the Tokyo Game Show, one of the world’s largest gaming expos, and the volume of new trailers and info can only be described as torrential. Fortunately, we’re here to help you separate the wheat from the digital chaff.
Trailers, Trailers Everywhere
Soul Sacrifice (Vita)
Mega Man designer Keiji Inafune is having one hell of a TGS; not only were fans chomping at the bit for Soul Sacrifice‘s heady blend of co-op alt-history action, but they had an unnatural hunger after Team Ninja announced they were working with Inafune on the zombie action game Yaiba: Ninja Gaiden Z. Do we have you all excited now? Well, then, I’m sorry to have to tell you that it’s been delayed until Spring 2013.
Yaiba: Ninja Gaiden Z (PS3, Xbox 360)
Speaking of Yaiba, let’s cut to the chase. It was one of the biggest reveals of the event and for good reason: Inafune is collaborating with Team Ninja on a Ninja Gaiden spin-off that follows a cybernetic ninja cutting a swath of bloody terror through legions of undead as he pursues series stalwart Ryu Hayabusa to exact his revenge. Need more? Didn’t think so.
The Unfinished Swan (PS3)
If you have AAA, you may want to call them for some roadside assistance in picking your jaw up off of the floor. One of the most charming and creative titles of the show – and one Matt told you to watch out for at Gamescom – was The Unfinished Swan. An introspective, artful fairy tale, the game follows a boy who follows the trail of the titular swan when it goes missing from his favorite painting. Your only ability? Throwing black blobs of paint to reveal elements of the otherwise completely blank level. As fans of negative space and innovative video games, we’re unreasonably excited for this one.
Ace Attorney vs. Professor Layton (3DS)
Phoenix Wright has a busy caseload this year; not only is he starring in the newly 3D Ace Attorney 5, but he’s also going head to head with the Nintendo 3DS’ other super sleuth, Professor Layton. Co-developed by CAPCOM and Level-5, Ace Attorney vs. Professor Layton should prove highly unobjectionable to fans of smart puzzle games.
Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance (PS3, Xbox 360)
Solid Snake has also been busy at this TGS. He’s starring in GREE’s foray into smartphone stealth, Metal Gear: Social Ops, which has players engaging in a turn-based card game to sneak from point A to point La-Li-Lu-Le-Lo. For those of you who don’t care about activating Revolver Ocelot’s trap card or squaring off against Psycho Mantis’ Dark Magician, then Platinum Games will let you vent your frustrations by cutting everything in half. Seriously, Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance lets you rend a preposterous number of things asunder, and it’s damn fun. Having played it back at E3, I had an unexpectedly enjoyable time slicing everything from Roman columns to a watermelon to a helicopter in half. As it turns out, when you’re playing a cybernetic ninja like Raiden, taking a note from Bayonetta‘s action-packed gameplay ain’t such a bad thing.
Resident Evil Vs. (Mobile)
Kingdom Hearts HD 1.5 Remix (PS3)
Square Enix has a tough gig: its back catalog has such an obsessive following that it can’t put out a new title without legions of fans yelling at it to make HD remakes of titles like Final Fantasy VII. Well, it turns out it has been listening… to some of you. Thursday saw the announcement of Kingdom Hearts HD 1.5 Remix for PS3, a 3 game collection featuring Kingdom Hearts Final Mix HD, Kingdom Hearts Re: Chain of Memories HD, and Kingdom Hearts 358/2 Days with cutscenes in HD. While there’s no Kingdom Hearts 2 HD in this collection, there is trophy support for all 3 games. Still not satisfied? Buy 2 copies when it drops and pretend you’re playing Kingdom Hearts 3.
PS3 Does P90X
No, Sony didn’t announce the PlayStation 4, but it is trying to stay competitive with Nintendo’s Wii U this holiday season by shedding some extra pounds and getting down to show weight. Available in charcoal black or classic white, the newly announced PS3 model is 50 percent slimmer than the 2006 tanning bed model (which I still have in my apartment because backwards compatibility is the best) and 25 percent less bulky than the current PS3 Slim. In a concerted effort to look more like a tiny George Foreman Grill, Sony has replaced the slot-loading disc drive for a mechanical cover that slides across. The price point however seems to have gained weight; Sony will charge $270 for the 300 GB model and $300 for the 500 GB model.
Nintendo’s New Pad
Once the initial squealing over the Wii U returned to non-deafening levels, Nintendo revealed new peripherals for the Wii U and the 3DS XL aimed at making the system’s controllers more akin to its competitors. The Circle Pad Pro for the 3DS XL acts as a cradle of sorts for the already oversized handheld, adding an additional analog stick. While con-goers are reporting that it feels comfortable in the hand, you’ll be hard-pressed to fit the handheld in your pocket with the peripheral attached unless you’re wearing Yao Ming’s cargo pants.
Nintendo also revealed the Wii U Pro Controller (a.k.a. the Wii U GamePad), an alternate controller for the upcoming system, which looks like someone dipped an Xbox controller in a molten vat of the Apple Store. Much lighter than its Microsoft counterpart, the Pro controller seems to be taking a cue from Sony’s SixAxis by omitting force feedback capability. So, if you’re hoping to rumble while you play Bayonetta 2, might we recommend consulting a seismologist to find the nearest active fault line?
What are you most excited about from TGS? Quemment below and let us know!