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This Week in Games - Utawarerumono: Mask of Deception

It's a visual novel! It's a strategy RPG! It's a visual novel AND a strategy RPG! Dustin takes the second Utawarerumono game out for a spin. PLUS: The end of Hitman, Rap Rabbit and much more! ― It's tough to pick out a game less anime than the recently rebooted Hitman, but I can't avoid taking a moment to lament the fate of IO Interactive under the Square Enix umbrella. That new Hitman was an utter d...
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This Week in Games - Birthdays the Beginning

The creator of Harvest Moon guides you through the evolution of life on Earth in Birthdays the Beginning, and Dustin is ready to god. PLUS: Mario Kart 8 Deluxe and more! ― I mentioned last week that I'd begun setting up a Windows 98 PC for old games, and the project's pretty much done at this point. I'm still shifting parts around and messing with various drivers, but that screamin' Pentium III 500MH...
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This Week in Games - Mario Kart 8 Deluxe

Dustin kicks the tires on the glossy, gorgeous Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, which arrives just in time to fill out the Switch library. PLUS: Darksiders returns, next week's new releases and much more! ― I've spent the past week on one of my nerdiest projects yet—rebuilding a Windows 98 PC for the express purpose of playing old video games. Wildly unnecessary? Heck yeah. But also super fun and the only way I'...
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This Week in Games - Puyo Puyo Tetris

It's Tetris! It's Puyo Puyo! It's charming as heck, that's what - Dustin takes the Switch's new competitive puzzler out for a spin. PLUS: Night Trap and Vanquish rise from the grave, and much more! ― Let's not beat around the bush here, folks. There is precisely one important thing to talk about this week, and that is the end of our long national nightmare—Puyo Puyo Tetris is finally out in the West....
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This Week in Games - The Disney Afternoon Collection

Capcom finally releases a bunch of their old Disney NES games from the vault, but are they still worth playing? PLUS: SNES Mini, Xbox refunds and much more! ― I “finished” NeiR: Automata this week, and obviously I'm putting “finished” in quotations because I actually just got to the first ending of many. I liked it, but I wasn't enraptured by it. The daily stories of nearly biblical transcendance may...
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This Week in Games - Yooka-Laylee

N64 collectathon platformers rise from the grave in the form of Yooka-Laylee, which Dustin spent some time with. PLUS: Overwatch has a story now, Yakuza Kiwami and more! ― Nostalgia's a tricky thing. If you're reading this, there's a pretty good chance you had some formative experience with a piece of media in your youth. I love video games because of Kirby's Adventure when I was five, and anime beca...
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This Week in Games - Parappa the Rapper Remastered

Parappa the Rapper Remastered calls Dustin a little turkey, but he's a chicken, got it, you beef jerky? PLUS: Nier sells a million, Final Fantasy Wrestlemania and much more! ― My weekend was consumed by what felt like 37 consecutive years of round-the-clock professional wrestling. I wouldn't ordinarily mention that here, except to post this picture of a certain authentically nerdy tag team (featuring...
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This Week in Games - Final Fantasy XV Revisited

With a patched-up Chapter 13 and a new DLC mission for Gladiolus, are Final Fantasy XV's story woes finally fixed? Dustin goes through all the changes. PLUS: Persona 5 and more! ― I did it, you guys. I finally finished Zelda. I know, I know—you all were deeply concerned for my progress and my ability to find time to complete a very enjoyable video game. I appreciate your support in this dark time, bu...
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This Week in Games - Toukiden 2

Dustin dives into the monster-slaying open world of Toukiden 2, which some say is "Monster Hunter for people who can't get in to Monster Hunter". PLUS: Bloodstained and much more! ― I did not finish Zelda this weekend. Instead, I played through Nine Hours, Nine Persons, Nine Doors in its entirety. That wasn't my intention—I'd started it purely to say a few words on the soon-to-be-released PC port—but...
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This Week in Games - Thanks for 2017, Japan!

Resident Evil 7, Yakuza 0, Nier: Automata, The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild... most of 2017's greatest games came from Japan, and Dustin gives thanks. PLUS: Persona 5 and more! ― I've been continuing to play that Zelda, which is continuing to be a real good use of my time. I feel like I'm losing track of the internet's opinions of it, though. I understand the complaints about rain and slippery...
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This Week in Games - Atelier Firis: The Alchemist and the Mysterious Journey

Dustin dusts off his alchemy books for Atelier Firis on the PS4. PLUS: Zelda, Zelda and more Zelda, next week's new releases and much more! ― I got one of those fancy new Nintendo consoles this week, and I like it a lot—with some reservations. I wrote a lot of words about it here, but the short version is that it's a solid foundation for a platform that will be great by the end of the year. My pro co...
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This Week in Games - Horizon: Zero Dawn

In the calm before the Nintendo Switch storm, Dustin takes down some mechanical dinosaurs in the postapocalypse. PLUS: this week's news and all of next week's new releases! ― It's a slow news week, but that doesn't mean that video games have slowed down. On the contrary—video games have never been hotter. This week has a giant new first-party Sony release, and next week is bringing us new RPGs, that ...
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This Week in Games - Digimon World: Next Order

Dustin takes the latest Digimon RPG out for a spin, along with the remake of Princess Maker! PLUS: Capcom's comeback and next week's new releases! ― I like to touch things. No, not in a creepy way. I'm talking about hanging onto physical goods in a world increasingly dominated by digital media. The benefits of digital libraries are clear: no shelf space, portability between platforms, and increased a...
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This Week in Games - GameCenter CX

Dustin shares his appreciation of the long-running GameCenter CX series, where retro games great and terrible are put to the test. PLUS: Yakuza reprints, Zelda and more! ― There's no shortage of new games out right now, but it's perhaps a shameful admission that I've been spending more and more time digging into the retro side of things. I picked up a lot of early Nintendo Power volumes not too long ...
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This Week in Games - Fate/Extella: The Umbral Star

Saber and friends wreck stuff en masse in Fate/Extella, but is it a satisfying experience for Fate fans? PLUS: E3 open to the public, Final Fantasy XV patches and much more! ― Look: Amiibos are dumb. As toys, they're overpriced figures that are too small for meaningful display and too static to be fun to play with. As game accessories, they're mostly just overpriced bits of costume DLC that offer onl...
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This Week in Games - Yakuza 0

Dustin slips into the violent, bizarre and shockingly fun world of Sega's Yakuza 0, the latest in the cult favorite franchise to reach our shores. PLUS: Nintendo Switch, next week's new releases and more! ― Are there too many video games? There might be too many video games. I finally survived the (high-quality) horrors of Resident Evil 7 and was ready to dive into my increasingly tall stack of negle...
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This Week in Games - Resident Evil 7

Biohazard is back - and it's actually good?! Dustin claws his way through the Resident Evil mansion and reports back. PLUS: Overwatch's Year of the Rooster, Death Stranding and much more! ― Video games are back, you guys. Since last week's column went up, we've seen the release of the Dragon Quest VIII remake, Kingdom Hearts 2.8, and Tales of Berseria. On top of that, there are the games I've actuall...
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This Week in Games - The Switch Is Upon Us!

It's finally here! The rumors can be laid to rest! Dustin reacts to the Nintendo Swich announcement, plus the rest of this week's Nintendo news and much more! ― The rumors are done! Nintendo held a presentation officially unveiling the Switch, the details of its launch, and a big chunk of its first year of software. There's a lot to cover, so let's just get right into it. Opinion: Nintendo Switch The...
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This Week in Games - The Sudden Rise of Fanservice Games

Dustin breaks down the discourse over fanservice games and where the business realities took us. PLUS: Games Done Quick, Scalebound and much more! ― Before anything else, you need to start your day off right. There are unlockable videos in Poochy & Yoshi's Woolly World, and Nintendo put one of them up on Youtube. It is so utterly, incomprehensibly adorable that it even elicited an audible “d'aaawww” ...
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This Week in Games - What's to Come in 2017

As we bid the old year adieu and welcome the new, Dustin breaks down the most anticipated upcoming releases of 2017's first quarter. ― If you're reading this, you made it out of 2016 and into a brand new year. Congratulations! Give yourself a round of applause! You've earned it. Last year brought us some excellent games, but we're now at a time where we look forward, rather than back. This is the wee...
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This Week in Games - The Best of 2016

Dustin runs down his best games of the year, from Final Fantasy XV to Overwatch to Stardew Valley - what were your best games of 2016? ― 2016 is at an end. For some folks, that's going to be a major relief. A combination of factors far beyond the scope of a humble gaming column have made the terrible, no good, very bad year of two-thousand-sixteen into a tragic meme. But luckily, this is a gaming col...
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This Week in Games - Super Mario Run

Dustin pays $10 to make Super Mario jump on his celphone - is Nintendo's big move in the mobile market worth it? PLUS: Dragon Quest XI, Shenmue III and much more! ― We're just a few days away from the biggest gift-giving holiday in most of the world, and that means there jack-all going on in the world of video games. News is slow, and I can't seem to find a single new release to report on for that se...
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This Week in Games - Shantae: Half-Genie Hero

Dustin takes the latest Shantae game for a spin, and catches up with the still-in-development Shenmue III! PLUS: more on the Nintendo Switch, next week's new releases and more! ― We're inching ever closer to the end of the year, and that means the tide of news and new releases has slowed to a mere softly lapping trickle. So have fun catching up on Final Fantasy XV and the Last Guardian before your fa...
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This Week in Games - Let It Die

It's Dark Souls by way of creative powderkeg Suda 51, and Dustin has strapped in for a weird, bloody ride. PLUS: Death Stranding, Final Fantasy XV, Super Mario Run and much more! ― It's the end of the year, and that means it's time for game releases to start winding down—but don't worry, January is already packed. There's only one release of any note this week, but don't think the lack of new games m...
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This Week in Games - Final Fantasy XV

It took 10 years, but Final Fantasy XV is finally out, and Noctis and the boys are ready for their epic road trip - Dustin is along for the ride. PLUS: Nintendo theme parks and more! ― Final Fantasy XV just came out. I'm playing it. Let's talk about it. Impressions: Final Fantasy XV I'm about a half-dozen hours into Final Fantasy XV. That's with a handful of early story segments completed and a whole...
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This Week in Games - Sword Art Online: Hollow Realization

Dustin takes a deep dive into the new Sword Art Online game, for better and for worse. PLUS: Pokemon Sun & Moon, Final Fantasy XV and much more! ― We're closing in on the end of the holiday release season, though we've still got a couple of huge games to go—one of which is out this week! Yes, folks, the artist formerly known as Final Fantasy Versus XIII is nearly among us, and while I think I will su...
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This Week in Games - Switch Rumor Roundup

There's a new Nintendo console coming - and the rumors are flying fiercely. Dustin runs down everything we think we might know about the Switch - plus Persona 5 and more! ― After a couple of very slow news weeks—in the world of video games, anyway—the valves have been opened and we're now drowning in a deep, dark ocean of announcements, reports, and rumors. So much so that there isn't even room enoug...
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This Week in Games - Rest In Peace, Wii U

It brought us Mario Maker, Splatoon, Super Mario 3D world and Bayonetta 2, and now it's toast. Dustin salutes the Wii U on the eve of its demise. PLUS: Overwatch's Sombra and more! ― First, a note: please be excellent to each other, people. Now let's forget our problems for a few moments with the most beautiful of distractions—video games. Farewell, Wii Hardly Knew U We heard that the Wii U would be ...
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This Week in Games - Owlboy

Zac Bertschy reviews the Castlevania and Metroid-inspired "hi-bit" adventure Owlboy and discovers it's a real hoot! PLUS: Dustin runs down this week's big news and release list! ― Let me fill you in on a secret—moving sucks. I'm writing this in the midst of a pile of boxes that I can barely see over, in a hastily thrown together office that I had to set up in the new house because the cable company s...
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This Week in Games - Nintendo Switch

Dustin goes deep on the Nintendo Switch and considers the possibilities. PLUS: a video game voice actor strike, The Last Guardian, Dragon Quest and much more! ― This Week in Games gets published on Thursday mornings. You might even be reading this on Thursday morning—if so, congrats! However, it gets finalized and submitted on Wednesday, typically early in the afternoon. This is why last week's colum...
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This Week in Games - Exist Archive

The Nintendo Switch is here! Plus: Dustin digs deep into Exist Archive, a gorgeous new Valkyrie Profile-style RPG. ALSO: Red Dead Redemption 2, World of Final Fantasy and more! ― First things first, let's get this out of the way: the teaser video for the Nintendo Switch, Nintendo's next console, is here. Watch it, absorb it, really give it some thought, and you'll get my full reaction next week. Movi...
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This Week in Games - Dragon Quest Builders

Dustin digs in to the Minecraft-flavored crafting action of Dragon Quest Builders - and discovers it's got a whole lot to like! PLUS: Persona 5, Final Fantasy XV, Bloodstained and much more! ― Yakuza 5 is long. In fact, Yakuza 5 is too long. I'm closing in on the 60 hour mark, and I'm not sure there's really enough here to justify all that time spent. Granted, it's partly my fault, since I keep engag...
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This Week in Games - PlayStation VR

Dustin has a few things to say about Playstation's new Virtual Reality peripheral - plus the NES Mini, Pokemon Sun & Moon and much more! ― After last week's dry spell, holy cow the floodgates are open now. We've got a ton of new releases, a good bit of news, and the launch of a new platform. Or platform-ish. We'll get to that. Amid that flood of new stuff, I'm still working my way through a 2015 rele...
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This Week in Games - Fall Gaming Preview

Dustin runs down the biggest Fall games, from Pokemon Sun & Moon to Final Fantasy XV! PLUS: An N64 emulator on the Xbox and much more! ― It's a slow news week. There aren't a lot of games out. So what do we game fans do when there aren't a lot of current events? We certainly don't catch up on our back catalogs! No, we look to the future. Now that we're entering the fourth quarter of the year—you know...
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This Week in Games - Tokyo Twilight Ghost Hunters Daybreak

Dustin takes on Tokyo Twilight Ghost Hunters Daybreak: Special Gigs!, discusses Metal Gear Survive, Pokemon on the Nintendo NX and next week's biggest releases! ― The Tokyo Game Show took place over the past weekend, and like most recent years for the show, it didn't provide a ton of huge announcements. That's generally reflective of the past decade of AAA Japanese development, which has obviously go...
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This Week in Games - Death Stranding

This week's biggest news, including the Playstation 4 Pro, The Last Guardian's release date slip, a few more details on Death Stranding and much more! ― Ireland's a nice place. Good food. Great beer. Lot of sheep. But now it's time to put all that fresh air and beautiful country aside and talk about the things that really matter: video games! I had all these grand plans of playing through the Phoenix...
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This Week in Games - What's NeXt for Nintendo?

In the wake of yesterday's Super Mario Run news, Dustin considers Nintendo's next move. PLUS: next week's new releases, including Psycho-Pass and Valkyrie Drive! ― You might notice that the news section is more than a little lacking this week, and that's not just because the massive pile of new games took up all this column's space. I'm actually writing to you from the past. As you're reading this I'...
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This Week in Games: Nioh, Dead or Alive

A new Dark Souls-style game is in beta on Playstation 4, and Dustin's ready for it. PLUS: Dead or Alive VR controversy, Resident Evil 7, a new Phoenix Wright game for the 3DS and much more! ― It's been another week in games, and that means it's time for another column here to try and make sense of it all. The news brings us some long-awaited plot details on Resident Evil 7, a sneak preview of the lat...
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This Week in Games - On the Verge

Dustin sings the praises of the grimy Metroid-alike Axiom Verge, Super Mario cosplays at the Olympics, a new game from Pokemon developers Game Freak, PLUS Attack on Titan for the PS4 and the rest of next week's new releases! ― Welcome back once again to This Week in Games! News is a little slight this week because of a substantial stack of new releases, but we've still got a pair of surprises includi...
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This Week in Games - Pokemon Uranium

This week: a Pokemon fan game flies too close to the sun, a long-lost Game Boy Color game returns from beyond the grave, Konami stuns everyone with Metal Gear news and much more! ― Nobody's told me about any fires in the Anime News Network offices, so I'm going to go ahead and call the inaugural instalment of This Week in Games a success. That means it's time for another one! This week we've got a su...
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This Week in Games - Metroid's Saddest Birthday Ever

ANN's new weekly gaming feature launches with this week's big news - including a remake of Metroid II that Nintendo doesn't want anyone to play - and next week's biggest new releases! ― Greetings and welcome to This Week in Games, our new weekly gaming feature here on Anime News Network that probably reminds you a whole lot of our previous column, The X Button. But where the X Button was a roundup of...
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The X Button - Signing Off

It’s the final X Button, and Todd retires the column with a rundown of his lesser-known favorites! Plus Sonic Mania, Lady Layton, and Nintendo rumors! ― Here it is, readers: the last installment of The X Button. Next month will see another video-game column take its place, with the talented Dustin Bailey (that's Dustin, not Justin) at its helm. I thought hard about how best to close this little attr...
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The X Button - First Impressions: I Am Setsuna

This week: Todd looks at Square Enix’s throwback RPG! Plus Gravity Rush 2, Nintendo classics, and a major announcement! ― I'll start this column with some very important news: The X Button is retiring. If all goes as planned, the final installment will go up next Thursday, July 28. I must preemptively fend off rumors that the column's being shuttered because of my controversial stand on the Breath o...
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The X Button - Children of Ico and Shadow of the Colossus

This week, Todd checks in with some games inspired by Ico and Shadow of the Colossus! Plus Naruto Online, the latest Dead or Alive guest star, and the all-consuming Pokemon Go! ― I will make the broad assumption that everyone reading this has tried or at least heard about Pokemon Go. Perhaps I'm wrong, but I suspect that anyone curious about video games on an anime website cares enough about their c...
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The X Button - Import Roundup with Super Robot Wars

This week is an import-fest with Super Robot Wars, My Hero Academia, and dungeon-exploring drums! Plus Adventures of Mana, Metal Slug, and a deadly game of idol singers! ― Anime Expo saw Aksys Games announce Steam versions of several titles, including XBlaze Lost: Memories, Tokyo Xanadu, and Aegis of Earth. By itself that isn't major news. Plenty of games head to Steam these days. Yet this small dev...
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The X Button - Interview: Grand Kingdom

This week: we talk with the director of the beautiful strategy-RPG Grand Kingdom! Plus Berserk, Mighty No. 9, and the latest in game decorations! ― The X Button takes a short summer vacation next week, as I'm moving. And when you're moving, you go through all of your possessions and realize just how much crap you're keeping. For example, I discovered that I saved almost every Flying Warriors and Lit...
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The X Button - Interview: One Piece: Burning Blood

This week: An interview with the producers of One Piece: Burning Blood! Plus Kojima’s new game, the next Zelda, and more from E3! ― The Electronic Entertainment Expo unfolded this week. I wish I'd gone, but that's only because I'm certain Sony gave away Gravity Rush 2 trinkets on the show floor. What did I want from E3 besides that? I was content with news about my three most-desired games. And I wa...
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The X Button - First Impressions: Guilty Gear Xrd Revelator

This week: Todd looks at the latest Guilty Gear cavalcade of heavy metal and fisticuffs! Plus remastered Final Fantasies, robot wars, and pranks! ― Next week brings along E3, but this week is all about Guilty Gear. And it reminds me of one proud accomplishment: I'm quoted in the Wikipedia page for my favorite Guilty Gear character, Millia Rage. Granted, the quotes make me sound like a nutcase. I was...
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The X Button - First Impressions: Kirby: Planet Robobot

This week: the mechanized magic of Kirby: Planet Robobot! Plus The Last Guardian, Twinkle Star Sprites, and a long-lost piece of history! ― This week brought news about The Last Guardian, a notable game on two counts. It's the next game from one of the industry's most acclaimed creative minds, and it got delayed an awful lot. This is also another opportunity for me to feel old, because I remember a ...
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The X Button - Lost in Anime Licenses

This week: we look at promising developers now sunk deep in the anime-game swamp! Plus a Mighty No. 9 debacle, a returning Square RPG, and a Pac-Man celebration! ― Pac-Man turned 36 years old this May 22, and there are a few ways to celebrate. You can dress up as Pac-Man and run around alleys until the authorities intervene. You can listen to "Pac-Man Fever" and its varied remixes. You can ignore th...
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The X Button - Crowdfunding in Zombie Space

This week: exploring new Kickstarters with zombie girls, galactic knights, and self-indulgence! Plus Final Fantasy: Brave Exvius, Wild Guns Reloaded, and two potential game-industry icons! ― Last week brought important news for the world of game-company mascots. Hideo Kojima remains coy about his first game after his departure from Konami, but the creator of Metal Gear and Snatcher (and, yes, Police...
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The X Button - Bandai Namco's Anime Wave

This week: Bandai Namco’s staggering anime videogame lineup of Jojo’s, Sword Art Online, One Piece, and more! Plus Persona 3, Phoenix Wright, and the best new Pokemon! ― When the Pokemon craze enveloped children everywhere in the late 1990s, comedians and parents and cultural pundits opined that it would soon give way to some other fad. I wonder if any of them still predict that. Bolstered by Ninten...
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The X Button - Import Roundup With Gundam Breaker

This week: it’s an import recap with Gundam, Digimon, and a deadly, mist-filled castle! Plus The King of Fighters, Cave shooters, and Nintendo’s next move! ― I think I'll get my inevitable Valkyrie Profile update out of the way at the start of this column. I'm still playing Valkyrie Anatomia, the mobile-game series prequel that hit Japan last month, and I'm still enjoying it. I concluded long ago th...
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The X Button - Interview: Tekken 7

This week: Producer Katsuhiro Harada on Tekken 7 and the world of fighting games! Plus a Suda51 classic, Exist Archive, old computer novelties, and the return of Valkyrie Profile! ― It's hard to know where to start when discussing Prince. He leaves behind an immense body of work, even if you ignore the massive archive of material he never released in his lifetime. Well, this is a column about video ...
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The X Button - Interview: Star Ocean: Integrity and Faithlessness

This week: Star Ocean producer Shuichi Kobayashi talks sequels, scandalous attire, and Valkyrie Profile! Plus Let it Die, Nier: Automata, and a dangerous new direction for games. ― Welcome to another edition of the X Button. I must interrupt your regularly scheduled Valkyrie Profile updates for some news about Sony's new PlayStation 4. Yes, some solid rumors point to Sony releasing an upgraded versi...
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The X Button - First Impressions: Bravely Second: End Layer

This week: a look at Square Enix’s brand new Bravely Second! Plus Valkyrie Profile’s long-awaited return, a newly lost RPG, and a rediscovered fighting game! ― I hope you like Valkyrie Profile, because it comes up in this week's column yet again. And I actually have an excuse for discussing it, too! But first we have a mystery on our hands. It's rare for an unreleased video game to turn up, and it's...
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The X Button - First Impressions: Star Fox Zero

This week: the sights, sounds, and gimmicky little robots of Star Fox Zero! Plus Assault Suits, Mega Man, and yet another game-industry departure. ― Last week, we heard a little bit about Valkyrie Profile 3. To be specific, we heard about Shuichi Kobayashi, producer of the new Star Ocean, keeping a Valkyrie Profile 3 proposal in his files. That's no real shock, of course. Game companies have plenty ...
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The X Button - First Impressions: Nights of Azure

This week: A look at the darker turns of Gust’s new action-RPG! Plus arcade comebacks, Fire Emblem fallout, and a long-lost relic of the 1990s! ― I came down with a stomach virus last week, and it made me think about the mixed blessing of staying home sick when I was a kid. I'd stretch out in bed, sip flat 7-Up, read books and magazines, and maybe get propped up in front of the TV if I was well into...
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The X Button - First Impressions: Senran Kagura: Estival Versus

This week: a rundown on the new Senran Kagura: Estival Versus cavalcade of ninja! Plus the PlayStation VR, Romancing SaGa, and a shocking piece of Fire Emblem’s past! ― I hope you're enjoying Anime News Network's expanded video-game coverage, including Gabriella's look at Fire Emblem's history. It's very thorough, but there's one minor piece of the series I'd like to examine in greater detail: its e...
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The X Button - Import Roundup with Shin Megami Tensei

This week brings imports for Raiden, Shin Megami Tensei, and bug superheroes! Plus Ace Attorney’s best news yet, Zero Escape victims, and Kirby in a robot! ― So what was your favorite part of last week's Nintendo Direct? Wait, scratch that. What was your least favorite part? The front-runner there appears to be Nintendo's announcement of Super NES games arriving on the 3DS Virtual Console...the New ...
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The X Button - Interview: Return to PopoloCrois

This week, we talk with XSEED’s Tom Lipschultz about the wonders of Return to PopoloCrois: A Story of Seasons Fairy Tale! Plus Black Rose Valkyrie, Bravely Second, and a retro-gaming debacle. ― A new Nintendo Direct airs later today, well after this column regularly shows its face. So I'll do what any proper pundit does: I'll make predictions. And when the Nintendo Direct actually broadcasts and con...
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The X Button - First Impressions: Digimon Story: Cyber Sleuth

We dive into Digimon’s big North American comeback this week! Plus Super Robot Wars, Ys, Guilty Gear, and more! ― I wasn't kidding when I mentioned that Fire Emblem Fates spawned the first real video-game controversy of 2016. Nintendo's localization of the game changes a few things: the translators rewrote a scene where the player's avatar drugs a female mercenary to shake her fixation with beautifu...
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The X Button - First Impressions: Fire Emblem Fates

Find out everything you need to know for this week's biggest release with hands-on impressions of the Fire Emblem Fates special edition! PLUS: Street Fighter controversy and much more! ― Controversy grips the game industry this week, and it all stems from a single shocking issue: the newly released Street Fighter V makes Chun-Li's chest preposterous. This matter goes back to earlier exhibitions of S...
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The X Button - Voyage to Neptunia

This week: a look at the referential turns of Neptunia and Sega Hard Girls! Plus Mother 3 rumors, Kickstarter woes, and the secrets of Mega Man! ― It seems as though everyone's playing Firewatch this week. That's fine with me, because it's a very interesting game. Firewatch casts the player as fire lookout Henry, who monitors a patch of Shoshone National Forest in the late 1980s. Communicating only ...
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The X Button - Hard-Boiled Detective Pikachu

This week: imports join the yakuza, the Asterisk War, and a Dragon Quest construction crew! Plus Detective Pikachu, 7th Dragon, a shooter with a great title and a DBZ game contest! ― I have the winners of my recent games-as-art contest, but I'll save them for this column's last stretch. That's because I have another contest to run! Bandai Namco's mobile game Dragon Ball Z Dokkan Battle starts up its...
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The X Button - Delay of Games

This week: what happens when games like Mighty No. 9 get delayed, and why it matters! Plus Super Mario discoveries, Fire Emblem problems, and a new Mistwalker RPG hint! ― The deadline for the latest X Button contest draws near, as you all have until midnight Friday to submit your entries! It's for the sake of art, after all! We've all heard arguments about how video games are Art With a Captial A, s...
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The X Button - See the Future

This week: Todd tells us what 2016 holds for Nintendo, Capcom, and the rest of the game industry! Plus Story of Seasons, Mario toys brought to video-game life, and a continuing contest! ― The X Button has next week off, so you'll get even more free time to enter the ongoing contest. It's all about explaining why video games are high-minded art…especially when they're not. I want your best pseudo-int...
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The X Button - Exist Tense

This week: imports with Exist Archive, Monster Strike, and classic mecha space wars! Plus Kaga Create’s fall, Nintendo’s lesser-known Zelda offspring, and a contest to kick off the new year! ― The X Button starts off 2016 this week, and I think it's time we had another contest. This one is all about art, or at least nonsensical attempts to rationalize it. How do you enter? I want you to humorously e...
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The X Button - The Top Ten Games of 2015

This week: ANN’s video-game crew rounds up the best of the year! Plus God Eater, Tales of Berseria, another excuse to mispronounce “Ys,” and Christmas card conflict! ― The X Button has next week off for Christmas vacation, and I'll be back in the new year, stirring up debate just as I did in 2015. For one thing, I tried to goad XSEED and Natsume into a full-scale war over who had the better Harvest ...
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The X Button - Roundup Sides

This week: the X Button’s strange and new awards for 2015! Plus new Smash characters, Kojima’s next move, the latest final PSP game, and some commercial signs! ― Gravity Rush Remastered is out in Japan. I've talked before about the game and its box set, which includes Kat and Dusty figures for an apparently exorbitant amount. But I haven't talked about its Japanese commercial. It's cute enough in it...
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The X Button - Expert Ease

This week: Todd unboxes the Xenoblade Chronicles X limited edition! Plus: King of Fighters returns, Final Fantasy, Ni No Kuni, Street Fighter, Sony’s PlayStation Experience, and much more! ― Xenoblade Chronicles X is the sort of game meant for special-edition packaging. It's a gobsmackingly huge journey across an alien world where the player finds towering creatures, massive robots, and a generous f...
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The X Button - Net Started

This week, it’s an import watch with Shining Force fighters, knightly warfare, and a game all about Twitter squabbles! Plus Super Robot Wars, Darius, and another developer’s exit! ― We had fun last week. Koei Tecmo's Facebook page alluded to Dead or Alive Xtreme 3 not coming to North America or Europe due to potential issues over the game's ribald depictions of women, and arguments exploded. Koei Te...
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The X Button - Vanishing Point

This week, Todd scrutinizes some missing pieces of Mario, Sonic, and other popular series! Plus Dead or Alive controversy, Disaster Report’s rebirth, and the quest for holiday games. ― This may be the first X Button to arrive on Thanksgiving, due to the new schedule. I'd like to use the opportunity to mention Thanksgiving-themed video games, but I've noticed a problem. There aren't any. It's rare to...
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The X Button - One Sleuth Prevails

This week: Digimon Story: Cyber Sleuth’s producer talks about comebacks and more! Plus the latest version of Link, the return of Valkyria Chronicles, and some good Gravity Rush news! ― Oh, Xenoblade Chronicles X. You can't stay out of trouble. Mere weeks ago, the American and European versions of the game stirred controversy with entirely justified alternations of an underage character's outfits. No...
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The X Button - Eating Well

This week is an import array with God Eater, 7th Dragon, and a scary night out! Plus Street Fighter debates, Zodiac: Orcanon Odyssey, and a Project X Zone bonus! ― This column deals with video games most of the time, but I figure I can squeeze in a tangentially related piece of news once a year. I normally use my allotment when Dark Horse releases a new volume of Eden: It's an Endless World!, but th...
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The X Button - Long Division

This week, we talk with the creators of the new RPG Indivisible! Plus Street Fighter, Guilty Gear, NieR: Automata, and yet another potential fashion disaster. ― I didn't expect another Nintendo controversy so soon. A few weeks after the company stirred debate by replacing bikinis with Zelda and Metroid outfits in Fatal Frame: Maiden of Black Water, a similar fuss arose over Nintendo's upcoming Xenob...
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The X Button - Blasting Away

This week, Todd considers the history and fate of light-gun games! Plus Gravity Rush 2, more Trails in the Sky, and some strange Sonic sightings! ― With Halloween approaching, now's a good time to pull out your favorite scary games. I assume you'll be dressing up and going to parties or passing out candy when the actual holiday arrives, but a creepy game is invaluable during the buildup. And you hav...
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The X Button - Might Be Wrong

This week: a look at the good and bad of Mighty No. 9! Plus Konami’s latest problems, Final Fantasy’s newest nostalgia bait, and some Fatal Frame lingere controversy! ― I could talk about Hideo Kojima leaving Konami, about how the next Harvest Moon War will shake out, or about how neat Undertale is. However, there are more pressing concerns. Fatal Frame: Maiden of the Black Water is out in North Ame...
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The X Button - Artful Ways

This week, we talk with the producer of Sword Art Online: Lost Song! Plus Phoenix Wright, Yo-Kai Watch, and a Nintendo relic rarely seen in public! ― I was at the New York Comic Con for about five hours total last weekend. That gave me time to do little more than wander the floor and take part in the Anime News Network panel. My thanks go out to the audience members who picked Dog Soldier and the dr...
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The X Button - Cat Fantasy

This week: imports pop up with Monster Hunter spin-offs, new anime adaptations, and a modern take on an RPG classic! Plus the latest Street Fighters, Project X Zone 2 additions, and the closest we’ll come to another Valkyrie Profile! ― You'll notice that the X Button has a new time slot. It's airing Thursdays, right between Battery Park and The Weber Show! We're in Must See TV territory now, folks! ...
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The X Button - Saber Rattling

This week: crowdfunding cases for Saber Rider, mecha strategy, and a long-lost series! Plus Tokyo Game Show wrap-ups with Persona 5, Ni-Oh, and the newest face in Street Fighter V! ― There'll be no X Button next week, since I'm taking a vacation. But don't worry. I'll make sure that my next column covers all of the important video-game sights in my hometown of Dayton, Ohio! I might not be joking, ei...
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The X Button - On With the Show

This week: the first chunk of the Tokyo Game Show brings Todd’s favorite news all year! Plus new Street Fighter characters, more Kingdom Hearts, and a great bonus costume for Dead or Alive. ― This week brings the Tokyo Game Show, and with it some news I've wanted to hear for a long, long while. Before I get to that, however, Nintendo has a new leader up for discussion. The tragic loss of Nintendo Pr...
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The X Button - Capsule Corps

Todd takes on Capsule Force for a double dose of retro-stuff! Plus Monster Hunter Tales, Arslan: The Warriors of Legend, and the best Project X Zone addition yet! ― I talked a lot about Mega Man last week, and I'll continue for just a little while. It seems that a new Mega Man movie, first rumored months ago, now has slightly more solid grounding. The Tracking Board reports that the film has produce...
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The X Button - Lumine Nation

This week, we go importin’ with Super Robot Wars, Ray Gigant, and Luminous Arc! Plus the next Ace Attorney, a Cave shooter comeback, and new reasons to complain about Street Fighter! ― Nintendo has a depleted lineup for this holiday season, with a new Star Fox, Yoshi's Wooly World, and Xenoblade Chronicles X occupying space that normally would go to a new Mario or Zelda game. Of course, Nintendo has...
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The X Button - Cyber City

This week: Bandai Namco’s future with Dark Souls III, Project X Zone 2, and Digimon Story: Cyber Sleuth! Plus your chance to vote on Konami games, Dead or Alive rosters, and the future of Guilty Gear! And comics! ― Nintendo recently put a little The Legend of Zelda comic on its Play channel. It's drawn by Seitaro Komatsu, it's based on The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask, and it showcases a lazy, man...
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The X Button - Lost in Blues

This week, Todd reviews the under-the-radar Vita RPG Lost Dimension! Plus Exist Archive, a Resident Evil return, and some extreme Guilty Gear nerding out. ― Fighting games play us for suckers. To be fair, just about any game series with semi-annual upgrades plays us for suckers, but fighting games at least do it predictably. The initial version of a new fighter comes out shiny and freshly redesigned...
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The X Button - Dragon Forces

This week: the creators of Dragon Quest Heroes talk of whacking slimes and stewarding Japan’s biggest RPG series! Plus SNK’s future, Fire Emblem’s resurgence, and a new way through an old favorite. ― I talked about Final Fantasy XII last week, and since we just don't talk enough about Final Fantasy games, I'll talk about Final Fantasy VI. It's one of my favorite games, but it sure is glitchy. The ga...
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The X Button - Crime Scene, Part Fun

This week, imports appear with ace detectives, strategic moves, and hungry cities! Plus Red Ash’s fate, Konami’s saving grave, and second chances for several games! ― Hey, would you like a remastered version of Final Fantasy XII? I sure would! Maybe it's not your thing, but Final Fantasy XII is up there with Tactics and VI among my favorite parts of the whole Final Fantasy buffet. Sure, XII feels a ...
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The X Button - Heaven Sense

This week: a chat with Final Fantasy XIV producer Naoki Yoshida! Plus Exist Archive, Red Ash, Dragon Quest, and a classic wonder-world! ― Some loyal readers may be tired of hearing about Red Ash, Keiji Inafune's Kickstarter attempt to relaunch Mega Man Legends in just about everything but name and storyline. You must forgive me, as I really enjoy the Legends games and want to see more in their gener...
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The X Button - How Suda is Now

This week: further talk with Goichi “Suda51” Suda about Killer7, No More Heroes, and in-jokes! Plus new Street Fighters, Odin Sphere’s return, and the only election that matters! ― I was on the way home from Comic-Con when I heard the news: Satoru Iwata, the President and CEO of Nintendo since 2002, passed away at the age of 55. Iwata's time at Nintendo saw many momentous things: the DS replacing th...
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The X Button - Wii U Ready

This week: Is the Wii U a failure or just misunderstood and cranky? Plus the pseudo-return of Mega Man Legends, more Digimon, and an amazing video-game relic! ― There'll be no X Button next week, due to my covering the San Diego Comic Con in all its crowded, blistering splendor this weekend. If you're there, you can see me host a panel for Goichi “Suda51” Suda, creator of delightfully weird games fr...
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The X Button - Inner Stella

Have some imports this week with Tatsunoko tributes, Rhythm Heaven, and an RPG developer’s final days! And there’s Fire Emblem debate, Ace Attorney history, and Todd’s revelation of his favorite King of Fighters character! ― The Fire Emblem series has a few controversies, but you'll have to dig to find them. Those games with the more disturbing plot twists, such as Fire Emblem: Genealogy of the Holy...
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The X Button - Chapter Plays

This week: Kickstarters bring tactical comedy, haunted echoes, and something called Shenmue. And we spy new Nier, celebrate Sonic’s birthday, and get all mushy about a giant puppy. ― You might've missed me during last week's E3 nonsense, when I came down with food poisoning. Fortunately, I wasn't at E3, so I just rode out the extravaganza by watching trailers and making feeble Twitter posts from my ...
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The X Button - Awful Great

This week: how bad games can be good! Plus new Tales titles, more Mega Man, localized Legends, and a comeback that you really can’t call a comeback. ― The Valkyrie Profile series isn't completely dormant, folks. Trust me. Square Enix hasn't made a new game since 2008, but people still remember it! I have it on good authority that the second Neptunia game's equipment screen alludes to three Valkyries...
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The X Button - Psycho Power

May’s imports are all about Cross Ange, Psycho-Pass, and an old NES classic! Also discussed: Fire Emblem, Guilty Gear, and a true test of Nintendo prowess! ― Well, the preliminary round of the Nintendo World Championships is over. As most people expected, it wasn't a gaudy spectacle like the 1990 Championships. How could it be? The original Nintendo World Championships came at the height of Nintendo...
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The X Button - Score Attacks

This week: arcades, high scores, and the cruel tides of fate! Plus yet more visual novels, even more Guilty Gear, and still more horrors from ancient times! ― On tap this week: old games and how their trends died off. This reminds me that I don't discuss the days of Atari and arcades that often. I was too young to really remember them now, so they're just a dim Nintendo-less prehistory where I might...

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