Amplitude is Almost Here and I Can’t Wait

AmplitudeHarmonix Games’ revival of their famed Amplitude franchise is looking spectacular, thanks to a new trailer that was released today.

Put into production after a successful 18 day Kickstarter campaign, the PlayStation exclusive rhythm action game revives the cult classic series that Harmonix claimed fame for prior to their work on Guitar Hero and Rock Band. Players are challenged to create music tracks by successfully activating sections of a song. Each song segment (bass, rhythm, highs, vocals, etc.) are activated by rhythmic combinations of three button presses, similar to successfully activating a section in Guitar Hero or Rock Band. After a segment is successfully activated, it stays running for a limited time and a different segment can be jumped to (typically with the shoulder buttons) with the goal of adding more segments.

New to the series is the addition of a cooperative multiplayer mode where multiple players can stay on dedicated segments to create more complex tracks. It is a natural evolution for a company that saw incredible success in its work in cooperative rhythm games.

Newcomers to the franchise might notice many similarities between Amplitude and the colorful Rock Band Blitz. Blitz shared many of the concepts that made Amplitude and Frequency popular, with Blitz having a focus on Rock music thanks to the vast Rock Band library.

Amplitude is set to release this Summer for the PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 3. Harmonix will be showing the game off for the first time to the public at this weekend’s PAX East convention.

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Dragon Quest Heroes is Coming West After All

Dragon Quest HeroesDragon Quest Heroes will be releasing in North America and Europe later this year according to an announcement made by Square Enix today. The game has been confirmed for launch on PlayStation 4 and will carry a price tag of $59.99 in the United States.

The action/RPG mash-up draws heavily from developer Omega Force’s history of making their long running hack and slash Dynasty Warriors / Musou games. The Tecmo Koei studio is no stranger to collaborations, having already teamed up with Nintendo last year to develop the very successful Zelda themed Hyrule Warriors on top of other themed Musou style games including titles based on One Piece, Gundam and Fist of the North Star.

The game just launched in their domestic market of Japan for PS4 and PS3 (February 26, because it’s the future there) so early sales numbers are not yet available. But given the typically staggering popularity of Dragon Quest, on top of the loyal following Omega Force developed Musou games carry, it should be a safe bet that Dragon Quest Heroes does well. Dragon Quest Heroes does, after all, have one of the best advertisements in recent memory.

There is no official confirmation on whether the PlayStation 3 version of the game will make its way west, but I expect to see it released as a possible digital download, depending on the activity of PS3 users. Also unconfirmed are bubble wrap themed advertisements.

Polygon – Dragon Quest Heroes is headed west to PS4 this year

Gran Turismo 6 Launches Today

Gran Turismo 6

In case you forgot, Gran Turismo 6 launches today for the PlayStation 3.

I’ve been pretty hard on Gran Turismo lately, mostly due to the combination of Gran Turismo 5’s disappointing showing and my ever adoration of Forza Motorsport. But with early rumblings about Forza Motorsport 5 being less than positive, I’m willing to take a let Gran Turismo 6 impress me.

Fumito Ueda Discusses Long Delayed The Last Guardian

The Last Guardian

For perpetually delayed The Last Guardian, it seems any news is good news. Unfortunately, the only news is an apology from the game’s creator Fumito Ueda.

In the interview conducted with Edge Online, Ueda apologized for the agonizingly long development the game has undergone, in particular for the lack of information coming out regarding its status. Ueda spoke on the detail oriented nature of Team Ico and how, like himself, they want The Last Guardian to be perfect. While no specific time frame was given on how much work is needed for the game, Ueda was frank of his desire to see the project through.

A surprising point to highlight is that Ueda has finished his portion of work related to the game, but has stayed with Sony in an advisory capacity on a freelance contract.

While six years is certainly a long time for a game to be stuck in development, given the quality of Team Ico’s previous projects (the now legendary Ico and Shadow of the Colossus), I’m glad that they are pressing forward and giving The Last Guardian proper time to create this game. I’m a firm believer that time and care in development are what makes some games transcendent.

Unfortunately, having too long of a development time can lead to projects essentially being stuck in development purgatory. For every Team Fortress 2 there is a Duke Nukem Forever. The issues become even more compounded when you consider that The Last Guardian is listed as a PS3 project and Sony just began sales of the PS4 last week. There are legs left in the PS3 over the couple of years, but certainly not an abundance of time.

Edge Online – Ueda Terribly Sorry For The Last Guardian Delay

Final Fantasy X & X-2 HD Gets a Western Date

Final Fantasy X-2 HD

For those still holding on to the hope that the HD remasters of Final Fantasy X and Final Fantasy X-2 would be making its targeted Decemeber are in for a bit of disappointment. Square Enix announced that the Sony exclusive HD collection will be available in North America on March 18 and Europe on March 21. The collection is still set to release in Japan late December.

As we edge to the end of November, a December release date was looking increasingly unlikely and I expected the game no earlier than February. The March release date puts X / X-2 hot on the heals of the Tales of Symphonia Chronicles collection, so my PS3 is certain to get a nice workout next spring.

Square Enix unveiled a new trailer to go along with the announcement which only served the purpose of reminding me how terrible the soundtrack is in English.

PlayStation Blog – Final Fantasy X | X-2 HD Remaster Coming to PS3 March 18, 2014

Metal Gear!? Classic Snake a PS3/PS4 Exclusive

Metal Gear Solid V: Ground Zeroes

Metal Gear Solid V: Ground Zeroes, the prologue to Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain which takes place somewhere in the middle of the Metal Gear timeline, is getting some really clever PS4 exclusive DLC. Announced at last night’s PlayStation 4 launch event in New York City, “Déjà Vu” will put players in the polygonal shoes of a classic Solid Snake, ripped straight from the black CDs of the original PlayStation. While the game is releasing across both the PS3/PS4 and Xbox 360/Xbox One, “Déjà Vu” will be exclusive to Sony consoles.

Just seeing that Solid Snake again, in all his PSX glory, gets me excited. I’m curious to see how or if Konami will intertwine the stories of Big Boss and Solid Snake. Hopefully it will be more than just a costume. Hell, I’d love it if they brought David Hayter back, just so he can exclaim “Metal Gear!?” one last time.

Konami throwing exclusive Metal Gear content in Sony’s direction should be no surprise especially with the amount of success the series has received on Sony consoles. But missing additional content from major releases, even in a delayed fashion has got to hurt Microsoft’s odds. Already Xbox is missing out the exclusive Aveline DLC to Assassin’s Creed IV, is set to have a lengthy six month delay on Watch_Dogs DLC and even Bungie’s Destiny will have their beta on Sony consoles first. I know the exclusive extra content is swaying my developing opinion away from Microsoft, despite my past support of the Xbox.

Destructoid – Play as Classic Snake in Metal Gear Solid V on PS4

Assassin’s Creed: Liberation HD Due Early 2014

Assassin's Creed: Liberation HD

UbiSoft’s previously PS Vita exclusive Assassin’s Creed: Liberation is set to make its HD remaster debut on current generation consoles early 2014. While no Xbox 360 release date is being slated beyond “early 2014,” the hit Vita title from 2012 is set to launch on PlayStation 3 January 14 and Windows PC January 15.

AC: Liberation was praised for its bold narrative, a story centering around the assassin Aveline, a half French half African-American woman in the years preceding the American Revolutionary War in Louisiana. It was certainly a game that caught my attention, in particular for its tone and setting coupled with the fact that it is the best looking mobile version of Assassin’s Creed to date. I had previously been holding out for a console release as many viewed the game as solid, but something that would ultimately benefit from seeing a console release.

Assassin's Creed: Liberation HD

I am a little concerned at the lack of a immediate release date for the Xbox 360 as UbiSoft has been making a conscious effort to distance itself from Microsoft. What started as time-based exclusivity on DLC for games like Watch_Dogs has extended to franchises that have performed well on the Xbox brand, including Assassin’s Creed. Further muddling the relationship is that the Xbox One’s software status seems to be pushing forward while UbiSoft is mired in delays with their next generation fare, especially with the company’s push for support in Sony’s PlayStation 4.

Assassin’s Creed: Liberation has a base price of $19.99 and includes a special promotion of a $5 discount with the purchase of the Assassin’s Creed IV DLC season pass.

Assassin's Creed: Liberation HD