Articles tagged with eshop

Posted by James at 15:13
Speaking at the Tokyo Sandbox game developer event/mixer today, Inti Creates gave some insight into the development of 3DS and Switch release Blaster Master Zero. The reimagining of NES darling sidescrolling platforming/shooter hybrid Blaster Master took 35 people six months to make before arriving just in time for the Switch's launch day in Japan.

We also heard about the game's sales performance on the eShop; the Switch port of the game has currently racked up 80,000 copies sold. We weren't told whether this met Inti Creates' own expectations, but this is a fairly respectable figure for what was presumably a version of the game bolted on fairly late in development.

There are tell-tale signs that this was indeed the case: The Switch version of the game inherits the 3DS's strange 5:3 aspect ratio, and the game uses non-integer scaling to scale up to both 720p and 1080p resolutions, so it's fairly clear that the game wasn't originally planned to be on Switch.

In any case, 80,000 sales for the Switch version alone should have net Inti Creates a tidy amount of revenue and would have almost certainly justified the cost of the port. Whether the game sold enough for them to have broken even is hard to say, since we lack information about sales of the 3DS version, and we don't know whether the 35 staffers working on the project were solely dedicated to it or were working on other games. The former is more likely there.

Regardless of current sales, Inti clearly plans to make sure Blaster Master Zero has long legs. Last week it released an update to the game which added a new, remixed difficulty setting, and it's currently working on new DLC characters who are more than just a palette swap.
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Posted by Ben at 14:48
Circle do an admirable job of bringing obscure Japanese games to the western 3DS eshop, and this time it's the turn of Ambition of the Slimes, which is, as things go, a great idea for an rpg

Slimes are the fodder of the rpg world. They're the training wheels. Well, what if they decided they were sick of that and took the fight to humans? Jumping in to our mouths and controlling us. A terrifying thought I'm sure you'll agree

Ambition of the Slimes is available in Europe and America on the 11th August priced at 5

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Posted by Ben at 04:42
Have you ever dreamed of working in a convenience store? No, of course you haven't, why would you, but if you wanted to try out a bright, colourful version of working in a shop Circle have you covered with Conveni Dream

Conveni Dream is by Arc System Works and looks not unlike the kind of themed management games Kairosoft (Game Dev Story etc) put out

We don't have a price yet, and the European date is currently 'TBD', we've asked, and there's no price, but Circle tend to price their 3DS eshop games fairly low. For the folks over in the Americas, you'll be able to download Conveni Dream on the 26th May

trailer below

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Posted by Ben at 02:26
Or this week if you're in the Americas.

We Europeans, and Australians I guess, can pick up the sequel to the well regarded Witch and Hero from the 3DS eshop on the 7th April

There's a trailer of sorts below. Witch & Hero isn't a game I ever got around to but it always looked worth a shot, maybe I'll pick up the sequel

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Posted by Ben at 11:05
I had some mixed feelings about the WiiU exclusive Typoman. It's undoubtedly a very good idea, a game I wished I liked more, but ultimately it had a few too many niggles and frustrations

Good news then, there's an update for the game that promises to address some of the hiccups in performance plus make some improvements to the gameplay

In an ideal world I'd get to take another look at the game to see if it has addressed some of my issues, but I'm not sure it's realistically going to happen. However, if you want to give Typoman a go yourself there'll be a demo up on the WiiU eShop on Thursday the 4th February
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Posted by Ben at 15:29
Basically this is just a declaration that I'm going to buy Detective Pikachu. Nintendo aren't going to send it to us for review, and I'm not going to not play it, so, assuming Detective Pikachu gets a European release it's getting bought

I don't actually know what the game is, other than a 3DS eshop title due in the next week, I just like subversions of established franchises.

Granted I can't see detective Pikachu having a drinking problem, estranged from his wife after their child went missing, a case he's never solved, but just having a normal man's voice while all the other pikachus don't is enough for me tbh

There's a trailer below is you want to see what's dividing the gaming side of the internet

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Posted by Ben at 16:19
The Delusions of Von Sottendorff and His Square Mind looks a fairly interesting game. It's a puzzle box of sorts, where you must move around the rooms of a mansion to make a route, so that items, keys and the like, can be recovered. It's a simple idea, but a fairly sound one

It's also nice to see, as The Delusions of Von Sottendorff and His Square Mind is a game developed in Spain, that the game is voiced in both English and Spanish. It's always nice to see developers able to cater to their own country like that

The Delusions of Von Sottendorff and His Square Mind is due out on the Nintendo 3DS eShop on the 17th December, and will be priced around 10 (or whatever $13 equates to).

For a bit of a look at the game there's a trailer below

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Posted by Ben at 17:12
The title kind of says most of what you need to know. Petit Novel Series - Harvest December, a collection of visual novels for the 3DS, is beginning on the 3DS eshop on December 10th.

I say "beginning", because it's getting a monthly release, with each month being a new story. There's 13 parts, I'm dubious if the release schedule will mean that the series isn't complete for over a year, but that does seem to be the implication.

There's a trailer below, and the series is priced at somewhere around 10 ($11.99)

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Video Review
Posted by Ben at 15:50

We posted our Typoman review yesterday, and here's the accompanying video.

I feel a bit bad for the score I game Typoman, it's not without merit, but reading the review back, a 6 looked comical. I do think some people will find something to like about the game though

The video mainly focuses on the end of Chapter 1 and a chunk of Chapter 2. There's spoilers, solutions to puzzles, which depending on if you're stuck or not will either be a good thing or a bad thing, but don't say you weren't warned Show/hide video

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Posted by Ben at 09:16

A few weeks back we posted a feature called 'How Good Does Typoman Look'. The game had been featured as an upcoming indie game on the WiiU eShop, I'd missed it there, but after seeing the trailer I was won over. I thought the game looked fantastic, the concept at least, and was expecting good things. Unfortunately, the horrendous mess of Batman Arkham Knight on the pc aside, Typoman might just be the most disappointed I've been with a game all year.

The premise is wonderful. Typoman is a puzzle-platformer, where you must use and rearrange words to progress. Simple things like 'NO' being switched to turn a switch 'ON', 'remove'-ing things, draining the rain. It's cool, and when it's being that, the simple execution of a good idea, it's a good game. The problem is it feels like the developers decided that wouldn't be enough, and maybe they're right, maybe they do need to push on the way they do, focusing more on the puzzles and difficulty, maybe it's just that the balance isn't right.

Typoman is oddly ruthless. The platforming is needlessly precise, considering it's not the focus, final pixel jumps are not uncommon. There'll be sections where one nanosecond pause will guarantee failure, the final boss is a prime example of this. The boss itself wouldn't be too bad, but if you aren't moving the second you respawn after a death you're dead... again. One of the other issues that the final boss flags up that's an issue throughout is how little time you get to think. It's not constant, other times you'll have all the time in the world to not know how to solve a puzzle, but on occasion you'll be faced with imminent death and no respite to even look at the solution, let alone try it out. For the last boss I took to grabbing my phone and taking a picture of the letters available to me, then pausing the game and giving myself the time to think. Typoman really is peculiar in its ruthless streak.

When you do get stuck there's a hint system. Hit the '?' on the WiiU Gamepad, and you'll get a bit of prose, a poem of sorts that points you to the answer. Press the '?' again and the particular word you need to make will light up. It's good that the hint system is there, I certainly made use of it, but it comes with a few problems. The hints, even before you light the word up, can be a little on the nose, essentially giving you the answer when you just want a poke in the right direction. Conversely, you can have the answer, even the word revealed, and still be left staring at the screen with no idea what you need to do.

There's a balance problem with Typoman, it too often leaves you completely bewildered. You'll have everything you need but have no idea where to start. Take the puzzles that involve letter machines, a production line that lets you print letters to build words. You'll have more letters available than you need, it clouds things, especially when the word needed to provoke the action seems unintuitive. You can usually see the logic once you've solved it, but wonder if you'd ever have reached it without using a hint. It's the double-edged sword of the hint system, it's too easy to go to it, it takes away the 'game' a bit, it's too all or nothing. I wish they'd made the hints a bit more like those of a crossword puzzle, something to solve before just handing you the word you need.

Typoman suffers from too many technical issues. The initial load time is long, once you're in the levels there's no loading, but getting there takes surprisingly long. Initially I thought this might be because I was running the game from a harddrive, but too many other people have mentioned it. Similarly the hitching, presumably it's caused by the engine streaming in a new area, but it's off-putting and can occasionally happen at key times. I've had a couple of moments where Typoman has got stuck, where spawned words have glitched through an object causing me to die. There's also an issue where leaving the game paused for a long period will make the pause menu freeze up, but that's a bit of an edge case.

Really the technical issues are the kind of thing that need to be mentioned in the review, but not necessarily the sort of thing that will ruin a game. Typoman's problems are all with its puzzle design and platforming. Difficulty is fine, leaving the player frustrated isn't, especially in the moments where the puzzle has been solved but the application let's you down. It's a shame too, there's moments where I really liked Typoman. There's some good ideas, some cool set pieces, and the concept is great, but once I got through the early sections I'm not sure how often I had fun. It's a game that's almost there, but as it is Typoman is too frustrating for its own good, it leaves you cursing it too often, and it left me feeling like it was a huge missed opportunity.
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