Interesting Arcade Games


While I wait to hear more about E3 (note: MSNBC says Nintendo is kicking ass, Sony is playing defense and that XBox is sucking ass) I thought I'd mention what's in the arcades here in Japan.

Ripping off Pokemon Snap, Namco has released Photo Battle. It's a game very much like Pokemon Snap where your goal is to take as good a picture as possible. The difference is that instead of using a gamepad they have fullsize model Minolta cameras connected to the machine.

Also ripping off Konami's Drum Mania, Namco has Taiko no Tetsujin (Taiko Master). Acutally I think it's funner because it's easier since there is only one drum per player. You hold the two drumsticks and there are 4 moves. Hit one stick in the middle, hit one on the lip. Hit them as fast as you can. Hit both sticks once very hard. I think it's also cool that alot of the music is the traditional Japanese music you'd expect to hear a Taiko drum in but maybe that will make it less popular.

Speaking of Drum Mania I've always wanted to see my dad give it a try. Unlike most of the other music games Drum Mania is actually like playing the drums (vs Beatmania which is nothing like playing the keyboard and Guitar Freaks which is nothing like playing the Guitar). So, supposedly, somebody that can play the drums for real can really kick butt on Drum Mania. If you've ever seen some of the higher levels it can get pretty intense. I'd like to practice but it's embarrasing in front of everybody else.

Next on the list is Stunt Typhoon by Taito. I suppose you could call this inspired by Crazy Taxi. Basically you are a stunt driver and you have to do all these crazy moves, especially skiding around corners. I haven't tried it yet but it looks like it could be fun. On the other hand the graphics are not so great.

There's also Vampire Night YAGG (Yet another Gun Game) by Namco. The graphics are just so−so. The main difference that I can tell at a glance is that the enemies have hitpoint bars so you have to shoot them multiple times to take them down.

It's amazing to me, The most crowded games are the extentions of the Street Fighter series (and maybe other similar series). All 2D games.

I guess I should go check out VF4 which is either out or was just in test in Ikebukuro. According to Gamespot there was an hour long line to try it out. What is an hour in the arcade though, 20−30 people?

There's also a multi−player (multi−machine) Gundam mech−robot game that's getting some attention. I didn't check who made it. It looks like a more complicated Virtua−Troopers with more players.

Happy Music