A weekly summary of what is being talked about quite a bit in the gaming community.
Earth Defense Force X
The official website for Earth Defense Force X opened this week in Japan and not without people noticing — NeoGAF was all about the upcoming Xbox 360 title and TeamXbox picked up some screens too. As pretty much a sequel to Earth Defense Force 2, a budget title from D3 Publisher and Sandlot for PlayStation 2, it will hopefully get published here in the United States. Basically the game is protecting earth while killing huge ants, spiders, centipedes, robots and what not, in a fully destructible environment while alien ships, that you can shoot too, hover above dropping more of these on you. How does that not sound like a fun game?
Pink and Black come to the US
After rumors started circulating, Nintendo announced this week that the pink and black versions of the Nintendo DS Lite, previously available only in Japan and Europe, would be on sale in the U.S. on September 13. While the U.S. still doesn’t have the enamel navy or ice blue versions, at least black seemed to be one of the more coveted versions on the boards when it was announced, leading to at least quite a few imports I’m sure.
Leipzig Games Convention: FIFA 07 and Pro Evolution Soccer
As part of a briefing at the 2006 Games Convention at Leipzig, Microsoft announced that the next-generation versions of EA’s FIFA 07 and Konami’s Pro Evolution Soccer 6 would only be available on the Xbox 360 this holiday — and even the next twelve months. This was huge news for Europe, probably the biggest market for these soccer games, and a firestorm of a debate ignited about the reasons, significance and implications of this news on NeoGAF. Pro Evolution Soccer producer Shingo Takatsuka stated otherwise in a 1Up interview, completely reigniting the debate on NeoGAF and on TeamXbox. Whatever the details end up to be and what fans of either platform say, Xbox 360 is going to be where the biggest soccer market in the world is going to have to play their favorite game anytime in the near future.
Lost Planet at the 2006 Games Convention
At the Games Convention this week, Capcom showed off some great looking new screenshots of Lost Planet and the first peek ever at multiplayer gameplay. Joystiq compiled the videos into one handy post so you can see how Fox Hunt and Post Grab modes play out. There’s a reason this game is so anticipated and the demo on Xbox Live, all the screenshots released and now these videos show exactly what that reason is — the game looks and plays incredible. Coming off of the success of Dead Rising (the thread on NeoGAF has over 52,200 views!), Capcom is really showing off its goods on the Xbox 360.
Penny Arcade Expo
Over in nearby Bellevue, WA, the guys at Penny Arcade are putting on their annual expo, PAX. Bigger than ever and looking to keep getting bigger especially after the demise of E3 as we know it, PAX is all about games — video, tabletop and pen and paper. John over at Gamerscore blog has been constantly keeping a Flickr gallery filled with photos from the expo. Don’t forget to check out the events and concerts on top of the games. Because of what I do, I think “The Role of the Community and PR in the Game Industry” (with Frankie from Bungie) and “Blogphotopodcasting: New Media in the Game Industry” (with Brian from Kotaku) are pretty interesting panels to check out — don’t toss them any softballs if you ask them a question. Joystiq and Kotaku are blogging live from PAX all weekend.
The official website for the upcoming Atlus game, Contact, went live this week. The website did reveal some unfortunate news — the release date was pushed back to October from a mid-September release. This game, from the content of it’s gameplay to details like the Livejournal-style manual in the English version, has been highly recommended by message board posters in Japan.