Time for another Handheld Gaming News article. What stood out to me in the world of casual handheld gaming?
This was the second week of the Olympic Games in PyeongChang. Now I’m not a sporty type in any way. In fact, normally I’m not even interested in watching sports of any kind. And getting active myself doesn’t extend any further then trying to walk 10.000 steps a day and an occasional bike ride. (Remember, the Dutch are a bike riding people!)
But there’s something calming in watching the Olympics while doing other things, a cozy kind of feeling when you know so many people all over the world are watching too.
But let’s get back to games of another kind!
Fantasy Life Online once again delayed
Could be that Level-5 is being picky, or because delivering an ace mobile title for Fantasy Life isn’t easy. But the new game Fantasy Life Online is once again delayed. I mentioned the game a year ago when it was slated for release in April 2017.
Since then, the game entered a beta test towards the end of 2017. After this test, Level-5 announced that they would yet again delay the release of Fantasy Life Online to ensure quality of the game. The developers want to improve Fantasy Life Online visual presentation, as well as the user interface.
Below is a bit of the Beta test gameplay. Looks good already, but better is always great!
Atelier Marie Plus on mobile in Japan
Who can understand the release schedules of game developers? Remember how I mentioned the upcoming Atelier Online for mobile? That one was pushed back: originally announced for the end of 2017, but now we know no more then ” somewhere in 2018″ or so Gust tells us. The reasons are “to expand functionality for a wider range of users to play, strengthen the infrastructure technology, and improve the quality of the overall game”. I don’t even know what that means?
Well, it seems that to keep the fans happy, the first ever Atelier game: Atelier Marie Plus: the Alchemist of Salburg. This game was the first in the series in Japan, released in 1997. And now, it’s reworked to fit on mobile.
It revolves around Marie who starts out known as the student to have the worst grades in Salburg Academy history. While she starts out pretty terribly, she continues to constantly work on improving herself. After countless failures, her instructor Ingrid decides to go with a different approach by allowing her to open her own Atelier to practice alchemy outside of the academy while continuing her studies. Marie has five years to create an item using her own skills, and if satisfactory, she will graduate when the five years are done.
For now, the game is announced for the near future in Japan only.
The Little Dragon Café is announced
Aksys Games announced this week that The Little Dragons Café will be released on the Switch this upcoming summer. Dragons sound interesting to me right away, but what caught my attention was that the game was made by Yasuhiro Wada. And that is the game designer behind Bokujō Monogatari, the game series that was originally Harvest Moon and is now called Story of Seasons! Could potentially be a game to look out for!
Read what we know about the game here.
Otome sequel Code Realize: Future Blessings for Vita
I didn’t play many Otome, visual romance games, but the one that still stands out to me is how much I enjoyed Code Realize: Guardian of Rebirth. Now the sequel is coming, Code: Realize Future Blessings for the PlayStation Vita on March 30 in 2018. This one continues the original story. But there’s another game coming too on the same date, this time for the PS4: Code: Realize Bouquet of Rainbows. The one for the PS4 is a compilation of the first game and fan-disc epilogue.
Revenue Nintendo mobile games compared
Nintendo’s Fire Emblem Heroes the companies most successful mobile game to date, earning an estimated $295 million in worldwide player spend during its first year ( source: Sensor Tower Store Intelligence data.) This is a lot more then what Super Mario Run managed to bring in, but there’s still a long way to go when you look at giants like Pokémon Go or Clash of Clans.
Clearly, for Animal Crossing Pocket Camp, they are still trying to find the right balance between gameplay and income for the company. AC only brought in a quarter of the income that Fire Emblem garnered in its first two months.
Yonder: the Cloud Catcher Chronicles still up for pre-order
Still no official word, but I just checked. Amazon.DE still has this interesting sim game up for pre-order for the Switch for the end of May. In the style of Breath of the Wild, this is an open world adventure game with a variety of locations to explore. The ultimate goal is to become the champion of Gemea and save it from an evil murk, which can be done by contributing to the island and taking on tasks such as farming, crafting, cooking, fishing and brewing, and forming relationships with townspeople.
Read a bit more about it here.
Ni no Kuni II: I want it on the Switch!
There are times when I’m drawn to contemplating buying a PS4. I know, it’s not a handheld device, and I’m not good at making time for console gaming. So I’d better abandon that idea. But every now and then a game comes along that makes me want it: this time it’s Ni no Kuni II is close to release: March 23!
Ni no Kuni II is in development by Level-5, with participation from former Studio Ghibli animator Yoshiyuki Momose and music from Joe Hisaishi who composed the soundtracks of many Ghibli films. The game follows Evan Pettywhiser Tildrum, the young ruler of Ding Dong Dell who is dethroned by a treacherous coup. In his adventure, he’ll meet new friends in Roland, Tani, Batu, Lofty, and many others that will help Evan build a new kingdom free of strife while uniting the world of Ni no Kuni.
I played one Ni no Kuni game before, on my Japanese 3DS, and loved the art style. (Read my thoughts on that game here)
For now though, I can only hope Ni no Kuni II makes it to the Switch at some point too.
Releasedate for Detective Pikachu 3DS is close
A Pokémon game of another kind: Detective Pikachu has you cracking cases. The game follows a peculiar talking Pikachu who, despite not being as powerful and nimble as other Pikachu of his kind, is rather intelligent and claims to be a great detective. One day, Pikachu encounters a boy named Tim Goodman, who is able to understand what he is saying.
The two begin working together to solve various mysteries revolving around Pokémon in the city. After their first meeting, the two begin to chase two Aipom, one with ketchup on its hand and the other white paint, who were causing trouble by harassing citizens and stealing jewellery. And that’s the start of their sleuthing together.
On March 23 you can start playing the game in Europe and America, and enjoy the benefits of the big Pikachu Amiibo: you can view all the Pika Prompts you’ve seen or might have missed from the chapters you’ve already cleared. The game has 150 short animated movies telling the tale, a nice way to get stoked for the Detective Pikachu movie that is currently filmed in London.
Updates for Animal Crossing Pocket Camp keep coming
Hardly a week goes by that there isn’t an update for Animal Crossing Pocket Camp. Last week we got the ability to change the terrain around your camp. You can do this after you have reached Level 13 in the game. It costs a leg and a bone, so I feel Nintendo has to include more customisation options before I shell out for that, but it’s still a good addition.
Plus, they teased a Fishing Tourney coming to Saltwater Shores. Special new fish will appear just for the tournament to please Chip. He will be happy to gobble them all up!
Nintendo and Bloomingdales team up
Bloomingdales and Nintendo announced that they’re teaming up for the company’s spring campaign which is titled “Let’s Play.” The campaign launches on March 10th. (find the page here)
I checked it out, and although the items look good (I’m referring to the trunks, of course), I am wondering: why no ladies’ clothing items, Bloomingdales??
Well, I guess that’s enough news for this week. This has turned into a huge article! I’m going to go back to finding shrines in Breath of the Wild, and visiting my Pocket Camp daily.
What are you playing this weekend?
Seriously annoyed at Level-5 for rather making FL mobile only. Their excuse for not making it a 3ds game rather on mobile was dumb. ( thou there is still hope that after the release on the mobile they decide to port it to 3DS or switch….. but then knowing Level-5 it will be JP version only till decade later for western 🙁 ) The first game was a day one buy when it was announced for 3ds no hesitation no regrets, love the game, sleepless night playing it.
As for you contemplating of getting a PS4, maybe wait till release and see if people mention remote play on vita works? Many people now a days buy a vita just for that purpose (remote play). Maybe if it works you can consider getting a PS4 (finally) and a L2/R2button Load Grip if the game require a L2/R2 trigger.