Rundown (11/26-12/02) Natalie Loves Video Game History

I do not get to talk about this very often, but I dearly and truly do adore so much about the history of video games, far more than any person ever should, and find one of the most entertaining things I may do with my time is to learn about the industry’s past and the pivotal turning points that have come to define it today.  From how the bullheadedness of Sega Japan led to them turning down Sony, Silicon Graphics, and the advice of their American division before releasing the Saturn.  Or how Atari wanted to release the 7800 around the launch of the NES, but couldn’t due to unpaid wages and ownership disputes.  It has fascinated me for over a decade, and is largely the reason why I felt comfortable enough with the medium to even start this blog in the first place.  

Remember how last month Arc System Works announced a North American branch to better maintain communication with its fans, localize its own games, and possibly localize others?  Well guess what.  Danganronpa and Zero Escape developer Spike Chunsoft is doing that too with a newly established California based branch dubbed Spike Chunsoft, Inc.  This new branch will be the base of global publication for future Spike Chunsoft tiles, excluding those that have already been picked up by other publishers.  In addition to this, they will also begin localizing games put out by MAGES., or more specifically their subsidiary .5pb, developers of the Science Adventure series, which includes titles like Steins;Gate and Chaos;Child.  

If this collaboration seems a bit random to you, it really is not.  You see, both companies are subsidiaries of the Kadokawa Dwango Corporation, a massive Japanese company that owns MAGES., Spike Chunsoft, From Software the RPG Maker developer Enterbrain, the Japanese video site Niconico Douga, popular Japanese comic publication Dengeki Bunko, and western manga publisher Yen Press.  My inane ramblings aside, this is a positive change as this will likely lead to faster, better, and more frequent localizations and releases of Spike Chunsoft and .5pb games.  Meaning more neat niche games for me to add to my ever increasing pile of games to check out.  Yay.

Speaking of localization news, XSEED announced that the company will be publishing the 2001 Falcom action RPG Zwei!! as Zwei: The Arges Adventure for PC this winter.  If that sentence sounds familiar, it is likely due to how XSEED localized Zwei!! II earlier this year as Zwei: The Ilvard Insurrection.  Yes, for whatever reason, XSEED chose to localize and release the second entry in an obscure PC RPG series before the first one, and changed the titles to make it all the more confusing for those who do not rigorously follow these things.  

More ramblings aside, Falcom has a lineage of games that, while not all fantastic, do have a notable sense of ambition and dedication placed into them that actually make them some of my favorite games to review.  Although, I’m not sure why XSEED keeps putting them out considering how Xanadu Next sold less than 15,000 units on Steam since it released a year ago and Zwei: The Ilvard Insurrection sold less than 5,000 since its release last month.

For the past few years, there has been a subtle rumbling about Capcom’s Devil May Cry series getting a new numbered entry after the series was reimagined by Ninja Theory, much to the dismay of its fanbase.  Well, multiple people in the Devil May Cry community recently came out and leaked a series of details about the next entry, internally called Devil May Cry V, and it all seems to be fully genuine.  I would talk about the inner workings of the leak, but I am very unfamiliar with the series, and am honestly not going to be interested in this game simply because it is a character action games, which I notoriously struggle to enjoy… despite desperately trying to.

On the subject of leaks, back in 2016 prolific games writer Laura Kate Dale mentioned that Monolith Soft was interested in bringing over their Wii U title, Xenoblade Chronicles X, to the Nintendo Switch.  This sentiment was recently echoed by the company president, who mentioned he wanted to bring the title over to Nintendo’s latest platform.  It honestly would be a good fit, offering players a lengthy and massive RPG experience on a portable system.

Then again, I am of the mindset that Nintendo should put everything on the Switch, iterate on the system with the Switch 2, 3, and so forth while benefiting from the existence of a universal platform that is backwards compatible with all former titles.  I mean, just imagine it.  A single system that houses every major title ever created by Nintendo, all region free, all portable, and all periodically upgraded with increasingly advanced hardware.  Wait, no, that idea is too normal for Nintendo.  Nevermind.  I guess I shouldn’t expect them to do a cool and nice thing.

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