This Week in Games
by Heidi Kemps,
Hey friends! How are you all doing? I'm currently trying to not die from heat, but other than that, I'm pretty OK! If you missed it, check out my Tales of Arise preview here on ANN! Also, by the time you read this, my Scarlet Nexus review should be online over at GameSpot, so give that a read too.
Compared to last week, we don't have quite as much to talk about… but what we do have to discuss here on This Week in Games is pretty interesting. I mean, my favorite Nintendo DS game is getting a remaster, how could I not be excited to talk about it?
KNIGHTS IN THE NIGHTMARE IS COMING BACK, BUT WILL IT COME WESTWARD?
Finally, I get a chance to talk about Knights in the Nightmare! God, I love this game. It released back on the Nintendo DS, got a solid PSP port a bit later (though it suffered due to the lack of a stylus control scheme), and then was forgotten by most folks beside a handful of folks who would sing its praises (me).
Well, good news, everyone! Knights in the Nightmare is coming back to iOS, Android, and Switch later this year, and I am SO INCREDIBLY HAPPY.
What kind of game is Knights in the Nightmare? Well, uh… look, it's complicated. It's kind of a strategy game with resource and army management. It's kind of a grid-based strategy RPG. It's kind of a bullet hell game. It's a mishmash of genres and offbeat ideas that merges together into something that is absolutely unlike any other video game you have ever played, and it's wonderful… provided you're okay with its learning curve. The game has over an hour of tutorials, and you are going to need all of them to understand anything that's going on. But should you learn the game's complex mechanics, you'll be treated to a unique, fantastic dark fantasy you won't soon forget.
Most of Knights in the Nightmare was controlled through the DS's touch-screen, so it makes sense to port to the touch-focused iOS and Android platforms, where I imagine it'll play pretty darn well. Switch is a bit iffier, hopefully it supports full touchscreen functionality. (Not all Switch games do, even ones you would think touch input would be ideal for.)
Now, here's the question: Are we getting this in English? I would think it's a no-brainer since the game was released here twice already, but two other loosely-connected titles made by KitN developer Sting – Yggdra Union and Gloria Union – both had Switch and mobile remasters in recent years that, as of yet, have not been published in English. Gloria Union might be excusable since that one's never been translated (it was a PSP game when the PSP was dead everywhere but Japan), but Yggdra Union released here on both Gameboy Advance and PSP, so there's an English script just waiting to be used. What gives?
Previously, much of Sting's output was licensed and published in the West by Atlus USA. I've seen some speculation that Atlus being absorbed into Sega of America might have put localization of these remasters on ice, as the combined Atlus/Sega are now primarily focused on localizing their own output rather than licensing others’ work. (That might not be entirely true, given the next news item we're covering.) Still, Sting's games have an audience here, so if Atlus isn't acting on these titles I'm not sure why folks like Aksys, XSEED, and NIS aren't.
Well, despite what may or may not be going on behind the scenes, I'm hopeful that we'll see Knights in the Nightmare again soon. Will I play through this again in Japan? Oh you bet your ass I will!
I'm not sure if you all have heard about this Demon Slayer thing. I'm told it's kind of a big deal.
Sarcasm aside, after a year of COVID-related delays, CyberConnect2's Demon Slayer arena fighter is finally nearing its release, and it's got a Western publisher lined up! While Aniplex themselves will be selling the game in Japan, North America and Europe will be getting Demon Slayer: Hinokami Chronicles courtesy of Sega, who no doubt looked at the boffo sales numbers for CyberConnect2's Naruto fighters for Bandai-Namco and said “yeah, we want some of THAT.”
And honestly, Hinokami Chronicles looks… a lot like CC2's Naruto games! Which isn't necessarily a bad thing – those games looked great, sold tremendously well, and made fans happy. If Demon Slayer is getting the same sort of attention from CC2, I'm sure it'll end up being a cut above your typical anime-license game release.
Demon Slayer: Hinokami Chronicles is releasing for a wide swath of platforms: PS5, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series, and PC. There's a standard physical and digital edition for $60 US, along with a $70 digital deluxe edition that comes with an array of downloadable bonus goodies (characters and costumes) along with early access two days before its official release on the 15th of October. No word yet on if there's a physical limited edition with tangible goodies. I hope so, because this little statue that comes with the Japanese LE of the game is pretty rad.
FALCOM'S MAKING MORE TRAILS INTO TO THE WEST
There was a Falcom 40th anniversary broadcast very late on Thursday evening – so late that it was Friday for a good chunk of North America, in fact – but if you were a fan, it was well worth staying up for. In-between live musical performances from Falcom's beloved JDK band were a slew of announcements related to the Legend of Heroes series. Remember all of those Kiseki games that languished in Japan due to being mostly PSP and PS Vita exclusives? They're coming to Switch, PS4, and PC over the next two years! In English! Officially! From NIS America!
The games announced include three titles in what fans refer to as the Crossbell Arc: Trails from Zero, Trails to Azure, and Trails into Reverie. Zero and Azure will actually be using the text from recent fan translations by the group Geofront, similarly to what XSEED did with some of their Ys releases many years back. Reverie will be getting a completely new localization. The three games are scheduled to release across 2022 and 2023.
A quartet of legendary titles from Nihon Falcom are coming to the west! Experience the Crossbell duology, unravel the fates of Erebonia's greatest heroes, and discover adventures beyond the horizon! pic.twitter.com/n9dMjcCb2T— NISAmerica (@NISAmerica) June 25, 2021
But there's a fourth game, too: The Legend of Nayuta. Unlike the mainline Trails games, which are all turn-based combat RPGs that take place in a single timeline on the continent of Zemuria, Nayuta is an action-RPG in a completely different timeline on an island far, far away from any large continents. It's considered a spinoff of the other Kiseki titles, which might be why NIS is opting to drop the “Trails” titling for its English release.
Anyhow, this is some great news for Falcom fans and folks who love The Legend of Heroes/the Kiseki series in particular, as these games fill in major gaps in the series’ overarching timeline. I'm really glad to see NIS throwing their whole support behind this, as Kiseki’s had a long and difficult road coming Westward. Now, what about the upcoming Kuro no Kiseki…?
FIGHTING GAME NEWS ROUNDUP: ANOTHER VANESSA AND MORE MELTY
It's that time again – King of Fighters XV trailer time!
This week… it's Vanessa! No, not my waifu, the other Vanessa! She joins Luong and Blue Mary on a new team, Team Secret Agent! But are you really that secret if it's the official name of your team?
Meanwhile, we have more news on the Melty Blood Type Lumina front! The new and improved Melty Blood has a global release date of September 30th, and a PC version has been confirmed! While Melty Blood Type Lumina will be a digital-only release in the West, Japan will have physical editions of both the regular and limited kinds for PS4 and Switch. If you want Melty on physical media, you'd best contact your favorite importer!
Here's a new trailer, featuring Hisui and Kohaku's new HD revamp:
Alright, that's about everything I wanted to cover for this week. Are you all as hyped for Knights in the Nightmare as I am? Probably not, but I'm sure more than a few of you are happy that the Crossbell Arc is getting a proper localization. Anyhow, you know the drill – post your takes in the forums below, but given our current heatwave, I think I'd prefer them cold. I'll see you again next week, assuming I haven't melted into a pile of goo by then!
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