Sunday, January 15, 2012

4 games I'm looking forward to in 2012

This post is coming a tad bit late, but who said I had to follow the herd, eh? As the title suggests, I've wrangled up a few games that I'm particularly looking forward to in this hopefully epic year of the dragon. It should come to no surprise to any of you that all of these are Japanese games. I am very predictable.

Kingdom Hearts: Dream Drop Distance

Or Kingdom Hearts 3D, as it is also known... Get it?? Ahaha... Anyways, pretty much anyone save die-hard fans will tell you that Kingdom Hearts has been on a downward spiral littered with obsolete and downright unnecessary plot threads with still no true Kinghdom Hearts 3 (that 3D may be as close as we're ever going to get). But I've been playing some Kingdom Hearts: Birth By Sleep over the holidays and I have to say, its rekindled my Kingdom Hearts spark. And besides... The World Ends with You character appearances? A Hunchback of Notre Dame world? I was in before Disney could utter "Frollo."

Hakuoki: Demon of the Fleeting Blossom

Why look, it's another predictable title on Anne's list. I think all that needs to be said here is "first major English otome game." If you want to read more about otome games, I've written plenty about it. Here's a sample of what I'm looking forward to:

Theatrhythm Final Fantasy

Dream Drop Distance, Theatrhythm... Japan will never get over its absurd use of English in game titles. If you're wondering, the official Japanese site states that "theatrhythm" is a combination of "theater" and "rhythm." Well, it helped me remember exactly how to spell the title, at least.

As a fan of both rhythm games and Final Fantasy, this one is yet again another no-brainer for me. I am decidedly not a big fan of the cutesy art style used in the game's character art, but I'd be willing to overlook that if the game plays as well as I'm hoping. And with three different modes to play all of my favorite Final Fantasy songs in, it should provide many hours of fun.

Pokémon x Nobunaga's Ambition

Admittedly, I'm a bit of a shameless Pokémon fan. Okay, there's not much shame in that, as most of my video game loves are based on silly reasoning, but here's one to take the cake: After I saw these two character designs from Pokémon x Nobunaga's Ambition, I was sold. Also, Pokémon combined with feudal Japan? A fresh take on the old Pokémon formula? Sign me up!


Of course, there are plenty of other great looking titles that I am very much looking forward to this year, including, but not limited to: Atelier Meruru: Apprentice of Arland, Final Fantasy Type-0, Rhythm Heaven Fever, and Rhythm Thief and the Emperor's Treasure. 2012 is looking to be a great year indeed!


Alois Wittwer said...

It's a very slow process but I'm happy to see that visual novels are getting acknowledgement outside of Japan. That an otome game is getting an English release is even more impressive. Diversity!

GamesAndBiz said...

Yeah, I cannot wait for Pokemon + Nobunaga. Just watched the trailer, and it's going to be so much fun.

Hopefully this encourages a Pokegeneration to have a look at the "real" Nobunaga games too. Anything that helps Tecmo Koei is a-ok in my book.

Bryan Ochalla said...

Ah, I am soooooooo on the same page as you, Anne! Although I'm not that interested in Kingdom Hearts 3D, I'm really looking forward to the other three games on your list.

I've only become aware of Hakuoki recently, but already I've decided that I'll buy it and give this otome genre a try. (I'm planning to get a few more upcoming PSP games, too -- like Gugnir and, probably, Grand Knights History.)

As for Theatrhythm Final Fantasy: I'm going to be deeply disappointed if it doesn't leave Japan. I even like the cute art style being used. In other words: Take my money, Square!

I also hope the Pokemon X Nobunaga game comes to the States, but I'm not betting on it. If it doesn't, I'm seriously considering picking it up -- even if I won't understand a lick of it. I just really like the looks of it, and I've always had a soft spot for Pokemon designs, so there you go...

Adam said...

Wow I can't believe Pokémon x Nobunaga's Ambition is even being made.

apricotsushi said...

Thanks for the comment, Alois! Glad to hear you agree! I'm so excited!

apricotsushi said...

Y'know, GamesAndBiz, I've never played an actual Nobunaga game myself! Shameful, I know. Any you'd recommend in particular?

apricotsushi said...

Bryan – I love that we love the same games! Sometimes I feel like I'm the odd one out with everyone getting hyped over things like Bioshock Infinite and Mass Effect 3.

I'd really love to hear what you think of Hakuoki when you pick it up! I too think I'm going to grab Grand Knights History (even though I have the Japanese version, grumble) and Gungir... Love all the interesting releases we get at the end of a system's life!

If Pokemon x Nobunaga doesn't come out in English, I'll be sure to get a copy myself. I totally find myself sucked into the Pokemon franchise again and again, just because they're so darn cute >_< Maybe I can do some kind of "how to play" tutorial if that happens, like I did with the Pokemon Ie Tap iOS game a while back... That continues to be my most popular blog post by far!

Bryan Ochalla said...

Hello again :) Yes, I think we're two peas in a pod when it comes to niche/strange games, which is great!

Oh, I'll definitely let you know what I think of Hakuoki. I'm really not sure what to expect from it, which is nice for a change. (I usually know so much about a game before I get it that it's usually a bit of a letdown to actually play it.)

I'm actually waffling on Grand Knights History, for some strange reason. Actually, it's not that strange -- what I've read about it makes me think I may not like it. So, we'll see. How about you? Have you enjoyed what you've played of the Japanese version?

Finally, if you do get the Japanese version of Pokemon x Nobunaga, I think it would be *AWESOME* if you posted a "how to play" tutorial of it, especially since I'm sure those of us who don't know a lick of Japanese will have to refer to such a tutorial if we want to enjoy the game at all.

Molloy Boy said...

I agree, KH 3D looks great. However, I can't help but notice that The Last Story is missing from your list!

Sakaguchi looks to have crafted the Wii's swan song with that title and I simply cannot wait to get my hands on the UK release come this February.

apricotsushi said...

Hi Molloy Boy! You sound familiar... You write a blog about Japanese RPGs, right? ;)

And yes, I didn't mention The Last Story! Not because I'm not interested in it, but I honestly don't know enough about it for it to be at the very top of my list. I haven't even gotten my hands on Xenoblade yet... Have you picked that one up?

Eden said...

Oh gosh, a Final Fantasy rhythm game?? What was I saying about handhelds? This might be the time.

apricotsushi said...

Eden, I definitely think it's time you picked up a handheld! I'd probably say go for the 3DS just because I feel the experience is vastly different from what you find on consoles, rather than the Vita, which, though definitely snazzy, is probably something one can live without.

They haven't announced a US release for Theatrhythm yet, though :( I hope they do soon!