Thursday, July 21, 2011

IDOLM@STER 2 for PS3 announced

Today THE iDOLM@STER 2 for PS3 was officially announced.

As I said when iM@S 2 was first announced, it was heavily implied that the franchise was going to do the leap to the PS3 (the PSP versions, the presence of iM@S related events and items in Playstation Home), but the surprise is that the release will be not roughly a year after the original release but in October 27th, exactly 7 months after the Xbox360 version. It seems that the sales where really that bad and Bandai Namco is leaving the sinking ship beforehand...

According to the info available and the entry from Famitsu, the four non playable girls (Ritsuko, Ami, Azusa and Iori) are still not produceable (at least not at first).

Songs, outfits, and accessories from the first 3 DLC catalogs from the Xbox version will be included in the disc, that means that the songs "Little Match Girl", "Honey Heartbeat" and "Ai Like Hamburger" will be available from the beginning, as well as the iM@S anime opening song "Ready!!". It seems that new outfits will be also available, since the pattern of the Floral type outfit used in the promo pic is new. Ah, and an extra difficulty will be selectable as well.

The anime opening song (and choreography)

The limited edition will be bundled with the first Blu-Ray of the iDOLM@STER anime, and also includes another disc with the game Gravure4You!, that allow you to take pictures of the idols in the beach. Is labeled as "Volume 1", so other volumes will also be released along other media.

The limited edition is quite expensive (19,800 yen) and is in essence the same game that I have, but most likely I'll buy it... The mind control power of IdolMaster sure is frightening.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

iDOLM@STER 2 Official Guide Book

Keeping with the delayed reviews, next is THE iDOLM@STER 2 Official Guide Book, released in March.

Despite the overly nice picture in the cover, this guidebook is awful, and the worst of it is that is the "official" one. I expected a book like iDOLM@STER SP Producer's Guide, but this is lacking all the aspects of a guidebook and is mostly a very bad photobook of sorts.

The first part is centered in each of the nine playable girls:

Basic profile with the official art. The quality of the pictures included is pretty bad (especially the Master Artist 2 one in the top left) with visible compression artifact.

Probably the best part of the book are the interviews with the voice actress, along a nice photo of each. In the picture Hara Yumi (Takane).

The last part consists in some screenshots from the game, a chart of how characters call each others and a bunch of random outfits displayed (changes for each idol). The screenshots from the outfits are taken directly from the game, with awful quality and badly jagged edges.

Ritsuko gets a summarized version, with only two pages...

...but Ryuugu Komachi girls doesn't have as much luck and all three are covered in only two pages.

The outfit and accesory gallery is a complete joke, badly organized, incomplete and again with jagged edges and compression artifact.

The last part that explains the game mechanics is pretty much the same information that appears in the instruction booklet from the game, using even the same graphics.

Overall a guidebook to avoid because not only is useless as a guide but also fails as artbook, character reference and pretty much anything.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Fate/stay night volume 15

First of all, I broke my leg 3 weeks ago. I thought that the blog updates would be unaffected, but I was wrong so for now the blog updates will be fewer, shorter and about thing that are easy to take pictures of (mostly books).

So, the today is the turn of Fate/stay night volume 15 by Nishiwaki Datto.

As I said over and over, is not my favorite TYPE-MOON related manga, but is the only available with reasonable shipping costs at Hobby Link Japan, so every time I do an order there I purchase the latest volume of this manga as well.

This volumes includes the end of Caster in hands of Gilgamesh and up to the "date" between Saber and Shirou: