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Showing posts from January, 2008

Lost Odyssey's Soundtrack is Nobuo Uematsu's Greatest Masterpiece Yet!

Nobuo Uematsu's Web Site:

Dear Nobuo Uematsu,

I really, really like this track from Lost Odyssey. It's a work of genius, a masterpiece!!! While the title of the track isn't really as fantastical as 'One Winged Angel' from Final Fantasy VII, the song itself is very memorable and it's stuck in my head; I can't stop playing it in my mind :D

I surely hope there will be more music like this from Mistwalker in future JRPGs. This, is a classic.

Third World Gamer

The title of the track is "An Enemy Appears"....the title may be unimpressive but the track itself is quite beautiful, epic, and fitting for the game. Here it is, along with a short slideshow that Yahoosoda created just for it.

NOW PLAYING: Lost Odyssey.

Sakaguchi's latest masterpiece JRPG is here, and it's awesome. Currently Yahoosoda is playing (using the 'Tankblitzer' gamertag....long story, I'd rather not get into why she had to use a different gamertag). We took some pics....the art direction is very Japanese and is quite gorgeous.

Another thing that owners of the Asian-English version may not have noticed: Look carefully at the paper for the box art.

Look closer.

The box art paper is textured, giving the overall package a more artistic look and feel. Nice touch, Hironobu Sakaguchi.

Early impressions from Yahoosoda indicate that the game is much, much more difficult in comparison with Blue Dragon, and battles require a bit more strategy than before. She seems to be enjoying the story a lot. After seeing her play a couple of scenarios I've told myself that I'm going to play this game with my Scytherage gamertag...not just for the achievements, but because it looks like an overall worthwhile experience. I go…

Third World Gamer's Guide to Jumping In to Xbox 360 gaming

Are you a 'third world gamer'? Well, the truth is I only coined the term because I live in a third world country, the Philippines, and here console gaming is not officially supported by anyone. Nintendo, Sony or Microsoft (USA). They don't recognize our country, they don't see us on the map other than being good for offering technical support services. I can't blame them, though. The perception is, people in the Philippines don't have the 'disposable income' to engage in an expensive hobby like video gaming. This argument is usually given in ignorance of the fact that Filipinos do have some technical savvy. They are familiar with computers and the Internet. They spend on lavishly expensive cellular phones costing upwards of $400 or more. Filipinos know what a 'video game' is, and don't live in a country where there's only coconut trees everywhere (the common perception).

Anyway, this post is really for Filipinos here in the general Manila…

We picked up LOST ODYSSEY today!

Pictured above: Servo101, Totoy Troso, Mystique QA, TeeJay, Scytherage, Yahoosoda, and Shinobi_ from PINOYXBOX.COM

Today we picked up Lost Odyssey from Pinoyxbox's Servo101 :D Met a couple of the other Pinoyxbox gamers and chatted up a bit about various things. Overall it seems everyone's really excited to give the game a shot!

A lot of the online feedback for LOST ODYSSEY has been very positive thus far, and right now I'm watching yahoosoda play it. The game looks quite impressive and well-polished. The thing that stood out for me at the start was the sounds very grand/epic and really gives the game an epic feel right from the very beginning.

To see our progress with Lost Odyssey, check the TANKBLITZER gamertag below for achievements.

Are you a Pinoy gamer who is looking for the ASIAN VERSION (ENGLISH) for Lost Odyssey? I highly recommend buying from SERVO101 from Pinoyxbox. He offers very good prices for his original titles and is also a very friendly merchant to…

Recently released RESISTANCE 2 Screens were PHOTOSHOPPED - proof here.

The original screen from Sony's site:

"Sony is reaching in their bag of dirty 'ole tricks again. Remember the Killzone 2 screenshot scandal? Well, click on the link to see another failure. (You'd think that the first set of promo screens would've actually been looked after a bit more. Oh well. )"
My opinion? Why am I NOT surprised.... they've done this before, and it always works on their own fanboys. They will do this again, and they'll keep on doing it for so long as they never get called out for it. I say to Sony fanboys---it's your responsibility to KEEP SONY HONEST. Don't let them give you false promises. Your anger shouldn't be directed to the 'Xbox fans' who found this. It should be directed at Sony for letting them deceive you time and time again.

Remember Killzone 2? Remember those videos of Tekken 6 that n…


Rating: GO BUY IT!

[Note: My writing style for this post is....I'm just writing like crazy, not really checking coherence and grammar, so bear with me. If you want to go straight to the 'review', look for the three asterisks “***”]

The Dead or Alive franchise by Team Ninja/Tecmo is the fighting game series that is usually associated with the Xbox platform. When DOA4 was released for the Xbox 360, I picked up a copy and was quite amazed with its efforts to incorporate a semi-realistic environment for the combat. Your characters fight in a variety of locations and the environments are highly interactive; you can kick players off bridges, smash them against fruit stands, knock over room walls in a Japanese styled house, and so on.

I guess the one thing that I never liked about Dead or Alive 4 was the learning curve. You could play the game casually and just mash the buttons and pray that you hit something. But if you wanted to explore the depth of the game, it was quite difficul…

Eternal Sonata - Cutscene Galore

By Monday, next week, I will have my most anticipated JRPG for the XBOX 360, Lost Odyssey. A month ago, after the release of the Japanese version, I was so tempted to spoil myself silly by watching all the event cutscenes in the game in NicoVideo. I was so close to ordering the Japanese version in Play-Asia when I remembered that my Japanese skills are extremely rusty.

Luckily, I picked up Eternal Sonata which help ease the pain of not having Lost Odyssey at the moment. So in commemoration of my pending Lost Odyssey copy and a big kudos to Namco for actually making a spectacular looking JRPG, here are the cutscenes from Eternal Sonata, sans the super long introduction and the final chapter of the story.

Chapter 1: Raindrops
Part 1:
Part 2:
Part 3:
Part 4:
Part 5:…

Anecdote(s) from NEOGAF: is Sony stuffing the channels?

To be fair, no, this isn't really a news item at all; it just piqued my curiousity as I was looking through NEOGAF. This is a forum thread entitled "Did Sony stuff the channels?":

And the thread starts with two photos from one Best Buy (that's why this isn't really news; it's more of an interesting set of pics). One is of a shelf with a lot of unsold Playstation 3's:
And the other picture is of a shelf where the same Best Buy was displaying Xbox 360s. There were only two units on the shelf and they were both Xbox 360 Arcade units (the most inexpensive SKU). The poster who took the photos insists that these were the only Xbox 360s left in the store:

Of course, in the same NEOGAF thread, bickering commences over how this one set of pictures for one store should be representative of how PS3/Xbox 360 sales are in the United States. Later on, another poster posts another picture of overstocked Playstation 3s, to …

February issue of EGM says Ninja Gaiden 2 will be available on the Playstation 3.

Apparently Ninja Gaiden 2 is coming out for the Playstation 3. This is from the February issue of Electronic Gaming Monthly (EGM).

Taken from this forum thread:

For the slow ones in the audience---before you start jumping for joy at this news, remember that Ninja Gaiden 2 is being published by Microsoft Game technically, this one is impossible.
Misprint or sneaky Sony propaganda?

Oh look, more FANFICTION in video game writing!

It's blanket statements like this that make me LOL. No, wait....statements like this make me LOVVLAROTFLMAO:

"But the PlayStation brand and the Sony brand have survived. They have clung on. They are still here. And now they are going to come back into play. The battle against Xbox 360 (let’s leave Wii aside for now) is not over. In fact, it’s only just beginning. And PlayStation will be the ultimate winner, although what that actually means is something I reckon is worth analysing in its own right."

Oh my goodness. So funny!!!

The craziness never ceases in paid advertising game journalism.
More delusionary video game writing here....including all my arguments against it. Why reiterate what's already been said before?
This generation's console battle (between Sony and Microsoft) is already over. Sony should be looking towards the next generation (2010 and beyond) for any chance …

December NPD Video Game Sales Figures

The latest sales figures for the US gaming market have been released by the NPD Group:

HW Sales
System December 2007 Annual 2007
PlayStation 2 1.1 million 3.97 million
PlayStation 3 797.6 K 2.56 million
PlayStation Portable 1.06 million 3.82 million
Xbox 360 1.26 million 4.62 million
Wii 1.35 million 6.29 million
Nintendo DS 2.47 million 8.50 million

Top 10 SW Sales
360 HALO 3 MICROSOFT (CORP) SEP 2007 MATURE (M) *6 742.7 K

Virtua Fighter 5 gets a free, major update from SEGA

SEGA just released a free, major update for the Xbox 360 version of Virtua Fighter 5. Here are the details:

Subtle Changes Improves the Perfect Fighting Game

LONDON (16th January, 2008) – SEGA Europe Ltd. today announced it has released a new downloadable patch for Virtua Fighter™ 5, the critically acclaimed arcade fighting game now available for the Xbox 360™ video game and entertainment system from Microsoft. The patch will include a number of gameplay additions and enhancements including:

*Some characters will now be able to select costume-specific pants in alternate costumes, for example equipping Costume A pants in Costume B.
*Replays of online battles can now be saved.
*One additional item per character (appear as "Downloaded item" in Costume settings/Item edit dialog).
*Gamer pictures will now be shown in online battles.
*After winning the World Tournament Final, it's now more likely that rivals you have not defeate…

DELUSIONARY Game Journalism 101 - Rob Fahey from

The following article is a great example of the DELUSIONARY writing that often goes on in the gaming industry.

Read the article above first, and then, read what I have to say below. Rob Fahey, I'm sure Microsoft-bashing will win you a Pulitzer. It just never goes out of style.That was probably the worst gaming-related article I've ever read recently...just another example of game journalism written with heavy, nostalgic anchors to the past of console gaming, and some delusionary ideas of how console gaming is today.

That said, I will say this: To believe that Sony is in a position to take the lead from the Xbox 360 is a completely crazy idea nestled in the belief that "they've succeeded before, they're likely to succeed again!". When have we heard that said before? I recall E3 2005 and these same 'game journalists' were saying the same thing. "The Xbox 360 won't win. It doesn't have a ne…

OFF TOPIC: Starting out with Photography :D

We live in a condominium unit in AIC Gold Tower, a building in Ortigas Center, Pasig City. The unit we live in has a balcony which has this absolutely fantastic view overlooking the rest of Ortigas and faces the sunrise every morning.

A year ago we found out that one of the resident famed billionaires in this third world country, Lucio Tan, bought off the land in front of our building, and is now going to build his own condominium, called Eton Emerald Lofts. They're constructing the building right in front of our own building, and because of this, we are going to eventually lose the majestic view of the city that we currently have.

That said, there isn't really much we can do about that one. Perhaps if I had a truckload of money I'd buy some units from Eton Emerald Lofts (the unit we live in right now is nice, but the truth is I don't own it....I'm just renting it). So one day [with full knowledge that I probably won't be able to afford it] we visited the sales o…

Game Companies Pull Support for EGM --- A GOOD thing

I'm posting my reaction to this...

Now, I'm pretty sure that some of the fans of these sites will be crying foul for what has happened but I agree with the course of action that Ubisoft and the other companies have undertaken. Why?

Because game reviews are taking a different landscape these days. 10 years ago, gamers only had access to gaming information through print magazines such as EGM. Back then, they wrote well and whatever biases that they had for certain products was pretty much oblivious. These days, its different. EGM / 1UP, appears at the forefront of the fanboy wars instigating rabid forum discussions with baseless rumors and pathetic reviews / impressions. This trend is not seen on EGM/1UP alone, other publications and major gaming sites like IGN and Gamespot are also at fault.

Why are these 'journalist' resorting to sensationalism? It's simple really...

The Internet.

These days, thousands …

Microsoft memo reveals more Xbox 360 exclusives to come in 2008

Dean Takahashi received this interesting memo from Microsoft:


These are truly exciting times for us in the Interactive Entertainment Business.

Tonight Bill Gates and Robbie Bach will take the stage in Las Vegas to kick off the 2008 International Consumer Electronics Show (CES), where it will be announced that according to US NPD data through November, Xbox 360 is on track to register the biggest year in video game history.

While final sales numbers are still being collected, consumers in North America have spent over $3.5 billion dollars on Xbox 360 hardware, software and accessories. That’s $1 billion more than consumers spent on the Wii, and $2 billion more than the PS3. When December data is added, we expect Xbox 360 in 2007 to have generated more calendar year revenue than any other gaming platform ever, including PS2 at its peak.

Thank you all for your hard work. It’s bec…

Microsoft: Xbox 360 sells 17.7 million consoles worldwide.

According to Major Nelson of Xbox Live, their PR team recently released this statement:

"The PR team has just released some interesting numbers on where we are with the Xbox 360 that I thought you would enjoy discussing:

We have sold more than 17.7 million Xbox 360 consoles worldwide
More than 8.1 million copies of "Halo 3" have been sold since its launch (September 25, 2007)
Mass Effect" reached 1.6 million units sold, in just six weeks (on sale November 20, 2007)"

17.7 Million Xbox 360s sold worldwide. That's NOT a typo.

Of course, some might contest that Microsoft might be making up these figures, or that these figures reflect consoles shipped and not sold. Two things:

1. Is Microsoft making this stuff up? I disagree. Microsoft's a publicly traded company and if they were to lie about something as big as this, they can (and WILL) get in trouble. I'm sure that a lot of people are waiting for a reason to sue Microsoft to get some of their billions.

2. Shi…