Happy turkey week everyone, and welcome to another edition of Go West!, your favorite [somewhat] frequent column about the latest Japan-only game releases. The holiday season is here, which means sales, lots of shopping, and no money. If you’re an import buyer however, it mostly just means no money because hahaha what are sales.
In the spirit of the season however, we can at least window shop and stare at all the stuff we can’t afford, and this week there’s a whole lot of releases. Fantastic!
So come along with em as we explore a new world filled with otome games, visual novels, RPGs, and one very big Nintendo 3DS release that might have to do with hunting monsters of some kind.
My history with Japanese developer Imageepoch is no secret. They’re a developer that started with noble ambitions, creating fun RPGs, but then totally lost track of what people wanted from those games. Imageepoch then collapsed on itself before it could release its final game, Stella Glow, leading Sega to step in over in Japan and publish it themselves.
Atlus picked up the title for western release, and here we are with Imageepoch’s last hurrah.
A spiritual successor of sorts to Imageepoch’s Luminous Arc SRPG series (the brand is in Marvelous’ hands now), Stella Glow follows the story of Alto, a young man with no memories of who he is or where he came from. He lives together with Lisette, the young woman who found him three years ago, and her mother. Despite his lack of memories, Alto is not living an unhappy life, spending his days helping out around the village. One day however, a mysterious witch named Hilda appears before him, heralding the end of his once peaceful life, and the beginning of the end of the world.
Was Imageepoch able to pump out one last quality game before shutting down, or is this another swing and a miss?
While they’ve existed for decades at this point, light novels are still a relatively new concept in the west. The closest English-language equivalent is a young adult novel, but even then the comparison isn’t one to one. I wrote about it in-depth here, but light novels are effectively the middle ground between manga, anime, and traditional books. They’re huge with kids anywhere from elementary school age to college age, and plenty of adults enjoy them too. It shouldn’t come as too much of a surprise that one of the biggest light novel publishers, Dengeki Bunko, would want to capitalize on their immense stable of IPs.
And what better way to do a crossover than with a big ole fighting game?
Dengeki Bunko: Fighting Climax is Sega’s latest 2D fighting game, featuring characters from 22 different Dengeki Bunko light novels. In this seemingly endless sea of new fighting games, does Fighting Climax manage to stick out among the rest?
Hey there buttercups, and welcome to another episode of Go West!, your not-quite-weekly column about new Japanese video game releases. I’m hoping that if I keep using out-of-fashion words to describe you all, eventually it’ll catch on. It probably won’t.
This week brings with it… not a whole actually. That said, it’s not a completely empty schedule. We have an unlikely sequel and another game in that one franchise that keeps getting new games. Not exactly drowning in riches, but hey, you take what you can get.
Do you like dancing?
I love dancing. Dancing is cool.
Apparently the cast of Persona 4 also enjoys dancing. As it turns out, they do it pretty damn well too.
Persona 4: Dancing All Night is a rhythm game developed by Atlus, and has the honor of canonically taking place the furthest on the P4 timeline.
If this is the last game we get featuring the P4 crew, I can think of a host of much worse ways they could close out this series. Let’s bust a groove.