gamescom 2017: SEGA line-up

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We were able to spend some time at SEGA’s Games­com booth and play two sequels to two very ico­nic game series and we’re wil­ling to sha­re the infor­ma­ti­on – isn’t that nice?

So ever­yo­ne is still tal­king about Mania, but SEGA’s die hard blue hedge­hog is alrea­dy pre­pa­ring the run for his next adven­ture. Sonic Forces will once again be deve­lo­ped by Team Sonic, com­ple­te­ly unli­ke the cur­rent fan favo­ri­te Sonic Mania, deve­lo­ped by Pago­da­West Games and Headcan­non.
While we haven’t had the plea­su­re to play the latest Sonic game yet, the new plat­for­mer seems much more like a suc­ces­sor to Sonic Genera­ti­ons.

At first the clas­sic 2D game­play will be wai­ting for the play­ers in the new tit­le. You’ll be scoo­ting through ven­ture­so­me levels to collect your pre­cious rings, all while dimi­nis­hing enemies, jum­ping on them and fight against the more or less evil Doc­tor Egg­man in mul­ti-tie­red boss fights.  It not only feels good, but also looks the part as well.

Besi­des this, the­re is a human ava­tar which is con­trol­led in 3rd per­son view. Here you have to collect the rings as well, defeat enemies all the same but use your boosts effi­ci­ent­ly to get through. We tra­vel­led through a – how could it be any dif­fe­rent – robot-fac­to­ry, used a grap­p­ling hook for covering the distan­ce to reach far-off plat­forms, to (final­ly) kill enemies that pos­sess spe­cial abi­li­ties.
That’s fun and a refres­hing chan­ge to the usu­al 2D game­play come to mind.

Last­ly both cha­rac­ters were up and about tog­e­ther, with the strength of the human and the agi­li­ty of the hedge­hog, yet again tra­ver­sing levels in 3rd per­son view. Sonic him­s­elf has some spe­cial abi­li­ties for you to use as well. Qui­te fast-paced, but it also see­med a bit chao­tic at first. So we have to test this mode more tho­rough­ly in the final ver­si­on of the game, to give you all a more detail­ed impres­si­on of it.

All in all Sonic Forces feels like an inte­res­ting expe­ri­ment of Team Sonic. As in Genera­ti­ons the clas­sic 2D style is inde­ed pro­mi­sing. The 3D coun­ter­part on the other hand seems fun and could even mea­su­re up to the qua­li­ty of the Rat­chet & Clank reboot. Regar­ding the third mode, yet again more play­ti­me is nee­ded for a more detail­ed eva­lua­ti­on of its playa­bi­li­ty and inte­gra­ti­on.
Hope­ful­ly the feed­back that was given at the games­com will be used to fur­ther impro­ving the games aspec­ts. SEGA is cut­ting it clo­se in that regard though, sin­ce the release date of Sonic Forces is alrea­dy com­ing up. On Novem­ber 7th you’ll be able to play it yours­elf on Nin­ten­do Switch, Xbox One and Play­Sta­ti­on 4.

Game Tit­le: Sonic Forces

Gen­re: Jump'n'Run

Release Date: 07.11.2017




After a long drau­ght regar­ding the Yaku­za games, the fans of the series can only rejoice. The pre­quel Yaku­za 0 hit the shel­ves in Janu­a­ry of our wes­tern civi­li­za­ti­on, and the release of Yaku­za Kiwa­mi – a remake of the very first game – hap­pen­ed just last month.
Now Yaku­za 6 will hope­ful­ly arri­ve on sche­du­le on March 20th, 2018. This marks not only the very first game of the Ryû Ga Goto­ku Fran­chise that was deve­lo­ped only for the Play­Sta­ti­on 4, but also the last chap­ter of Kazu­ma Kiryu. Or so they say, but we know that this may dif­fer in the long run, aye Nathan Dra­ke and Solid Sna­ke?

The power of the PS4 does inde­ed shi­ne through the new Dra­gon engi­ne: In the Free Roam demo we’re able to look at Tokyo’s fic­tio­n­al enter­tain­ment district Kamu­ro­cho. Never have the neon signs been more gla­ring, the cha­rac­ter models more detail­ed, the ani­ma­ti­ons more smooth and wal­king through pudd­les more splas­hy and spar­k­ling than here. Natu­ral­ly this insight into the new city hub is pre­desti­ned for going into the well-known Club SEGA arca­de, just to test out some of the new miniga­mes. And we’re even per­mit­ted to try out two full-fled­ged SEGA-games as well; Vir­tua Figh­ter 5: Final Show­down and Puyo­Puyo. The figh­t­ing game series Vir­tua Figh­ter thus gets it’s first debut on the Play­Sta­ti­on 4, for this is actual­ly the latest tit­le in the series, which was released on the past con­so­le genera­ti­on in 2012.

As many might know, not only explo­ring the urban jung­le of Kamu­ro­cho and play­ing at the arca­de are part of the game, but the ela­bo­ra­te batt­le sys­tem as well. On con­tra­ry to the pre­de­ces­sor the­re seem to be no loa­ding times invol­ved; explo­ra­ti­on of the city fluid­ly tran­si­ti­ons into the next fight against street punks and drunkards, in seconds flat. With Kiwa­mi and Zero in mind, the­re see­med to be much chan­ge regar­ding the batt­le sys­tem its­elf, our dif­fe­rent figh­t­ing styles are gone. Ins­tead we’re able to use our envi­ron­ment to its full poten­ti­al, for the first time! We guess some­bo­dy play­ed Slee­ping Dogs here and lik­ed it.

Kiryu throws scound­rels over­board on a yacht, crosses obsta­cles like balus­tra­des and cras­hes the heads of his adver­s­a­ries into the next ven­ding machi­ne. Just like his 20-year-old self should’ve been able to do so from the start. What’s more, there’s now a so cal­led “Ulti­ma­te Heat Mode”. Uti­li­zing this, Kiryu will basi­cal­ly pose a near invin­ci­ble thre­at, swin­ging around motor­cy­cles and mal­tre­ats them with even more bru­tal spe­cial ani­ma­ti­ons than befo­re.
If the new batt­le sys­tem will actual­ly pro­ve its­elf, will be seen in our tho­rough review in March 2018, stay tun­ed.

Yaku­za 6 makes our wary prot­ago­nist Kazu­ma Kiryu tra­vel to Hiro­shi­ma, car­ry­ing an infant in his arms sear­ching for ….some­thing. But what exac­t­ly? We can only make a guess, sin­ce the game its­elf has not pro­vi­ded enough infor­ma­ti­on in this mat­ter. And sin­ce we have not yet finis­hed Yaku­za 5, this came as a reli­ef.
As usu­al the qua­li­ty of the cuts­ce­nes, pai­red with the Japa­ne­se voice over and the slight­ly chee­ky Eng­lish trans­la­ti­on is once more an enter­tai­ning accom­plish­ment for the series. And accord­ing to our infor­ma­ti­on all dia­lo­gues will be ful­ly voi­ced this time around.  Worthy of note is, even in our short play­ti­me with the game it, it doesn’t come short in exci­ting and breath­ta­king moments that let our hair stand on edge. Espe­ci­al­ly so as Kiryu pro­tec­ts the todd­ler liter­al­ly until his last breath in his usu­al idea­listic fashion.
We are extre­me­ly exci­ted as to whe­re the sto­ry and game­play of the sixth install­ment will lead us the­ma­ti­cal­ly.

Just to rai­se awa­reness, the game will be released in an “After Hours Pre­mi­um Edi­ti­on” as well.  True to Ryû Ga Goto­ku, inclu­ding not only a hard­co­ver art­book of the game, but also Tojo-clan emblem sty­li­zed coas­ters, two usable ice stones (one with the heat sym­bol and the other shows the Kan­ji “ 極 “aka extre­me) to liven up the abso­lute­ly stun­ning “like a dra­gon” whis­ky tumb­lers! That is all packed up in a sleek box for €89.99, £79.99 or $89.99.

Until then, in case you want to fire yours­elf up more you are always able to play the games your­sel­ves or watch our very own Let’s Play of Yaku­za 0 (finis­hed) and Yaku­za Kiwa­mi (on-going) to get your feet wet regar­ding the series.

Game Tit­le: Yaku­za 6

Gen­re: Action-Adven­ture

Release Date: 20.03.2018




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