First trailer of Mechwarrior Tactics. Like many new western developed tactics games, Mechwarrior Tactics uses a WEGO or simultaneous turn system where both the player and enemy execute their actions on the same phase.
Nintendo of America registered the domain name fireemblemawakening.com. While this might raise some localization hopes, and I'm fairly confident it will be localized, keep in mind they typically register domain names of all of their games to prevent squatting. They've had mother3.com for years. From what I'm reading, there is some DLC in FE: Awakening that might break the game's balance. No big surprise there.
First trailer of Project X Zone. New screenshots. You can see what the battle system will be like. No appearance of the overhead grid, which is typical for trailers. Why hide the strategic side of the game, huh? It shows a lack of confidence. A lot of posters seem to think the art style is second rate. Hopefully the game play isn't as well.
Previews of Pokemon Conquest. Preview #2. The previewers seemed underwhelmed by the game's simplicity and lack of difficulty.
New trailer of Rainbow Moon, the PSN tactics game. It looks good, but I don't think the 3 player deployment limit preserves much of the tactics feel we're used to in the genre. It looks more like a dungeon crawler with a few extra units to control.
Love Kickstarter? Hate Kickstarter? The official developers of Battle Chess have started a 30 day kickstarter to raise $100,000 for a robust multiplayer mode. Unfortunately a few days into the fundraiser and things aren't looking so hot - only $7300 raised. At least nobody will be charged if it doesn't meet the $100,000 goal.
Ghostlight announced that they're publishing Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Survivor 2 in Europe. Good news for the EU as they tend to miss out on tactics games.
That's all the news I've got for now.. on to what I've been up to.
I've been playing through 2nd Super Robot Wars Z Saisei-hen (or Z2-2) and recording my progress. Most of these are first attempts with quicksave failures cut out. It's actually a challenge run with the terms listed in the Youtube playlist description (link above). So if you ever wanted to check out my actual playing chops and potentially laugh at how much of a noob I am at tactics games, by all means take a look! It's a decent SRW, but I think there are far too many grunt enemies and the enemy turns take far too long. But I'm not a very patient gamer when it comes to waiting for my turn.
I'm working on an article for the blog, but in between working on games, playing games, arguing on forums, and being lazy, I haven't got very far. Sorry! Basically it will cover why analyzing and criticizing games assuming that the player takes advantage of all options given to them to win is more important and productive than analyzing a game assuming the player is going to restrict themselves in an attempt to salvage poorly balanced or heavily randomized game rules.
I'm excited to talk more about Skulls of the Shogun but I'm going to have to wait until E3 to reveal more about it. It's a fantastic fast paced arcade style tactics game that I think might garner itself a small but loyal competitive community.
My brother's tactics game, Strat Tech, was released a few weeks ago. We ended up making a lot of changes since that last demo build I linked to. I convinced him that each turn took too many commands and actions and it was bogging the player down. So we reduced the unit count and did some adjustments to movement and action point values. I think the game turned out pretty well and you should give the demo a try if you want an arcade style tactics game with lots of balanced classes and abilities that isn't bogged down in progression and stat growth systems and grinding.
While you're at it you can check out his other arcade style games that are all balanced and skill based with interesting rule sets and mechanics, and sometimes quite a bit of fun if you like that style of game. Probably the most accessible games are XOP and Twin Reaper, as they're mostly standard shoot em up games. But if you want to tie your brain in knots and love puzzles, go for the Brain Bundle or Sphere Shift.
And that's all I've got for now.