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With eight players, Super Smash Bros. for the Wii U is a riot (preview)

I got a little tired of all the other players kicking my Donkey Kong in the face. I was playing a preview of Super Smash Bros. for the Wii U, a long-awaited game that comes out on Nintendo’s console on Nov. 21. And the seasoned players around me were knocking me out of the arena.

This is a strategically important game for Nintendo, as it will determine whether the Wii U can still remain relevant as a competitor to the Sony PlayStation 4 and the Microsoft Xbox One consoles. Nintendo needs exclusives like this to grab a bigger share of hardcore gamers. A companion title, Super Smash Bros. for the Nintendo 3DS, debuted earlier this month and sold 705,000 units in two days and prompted a 55 percent increase in 3DS portable hardware sales.

On Thursday, during a Nintendo Direct livestream, the Japanese company revealed details of the Wii U version of its popular melee fighting game, where characters from all of Nintendo’s iconic games duke it out in one arena. Then it invited the media to try out the game Thursday evening. I went to it, and I got my butt kicked all over the place.

The 50 new features show how Nintendo’s game designers are trying hard to innovate with a well-known franchise. You can play a new downloadable content (DLC) character, Mewtoo, once it comes out in spring 2015. It has a board game mode, dubbed Smash Tour. You can also use a new kind of toy, the Amiibo, to save a character to an external storage device, much like Activision’s Skylanders digital toy characters. I “trained” a Donkey Kong version of an Amiibo toy simply by playing a bunch of rounds with it.

But the highlight is the capability to connect up to eight players in a raucous match on a crowded couch — with everybody fighting in the same arena. Super Smash Bros. for the Wii U has larger levels to accommodate this bigger crowd.

Super Smas

Above: Super Smash Bros. for Wii U

I played the local multiplayer eight-player mode for a bunch of rounds with other game journalists. I imagine these were rabid joystick junkies who couldn’t wait to get their hands on this game. I played with characters such as Pac-Man, Donkey Kong, and Link from The Legend of Zelda. No matter what I did, I got squashed, pounded, stabbed, sliced, and punched. Every time something like this happened, somebody else in the crowd laughed. I was basically trying to stay alive as long as possible, and making sure that I didn’t fall off ledges by accident.

The controls are simple. You hit the A button to do a standard attack. You can make that strike happen in a certain direction using the control stick or circle pad while pressing the A button. You just do this over and over again. You can flick the stick to the side to do a smash attack that sends your enemy flying. And you can use the B button for special moves, which you can make happen in any direction. You can dodge attacks or use a shield. And you can grab opponents too. It took me a while to learn all of this, as I was just getting pounded.

But that’s what Super Smash Bros. is all about. It’s a button masher, where you have to intelligently outmaneuver your opponent and close in for the kill. With eight players, the action is unbelievable. You can choose from among 40 Nintendo characters, from Mario to the Wii Fit Trainer. Each character’s moves match what the same characters can do in the 3DS version. So if you have trained with the portable, you can have an edge in the Wii U version. You can also import characters from the 3DS version to the Wii U game, and you can even use your 3DS to control the characters in the Wii U game.

The characters fight on different stages, such as the expanded Big Battlefield or the Great Cave Offensive. You can pull tricks like pushing your opponents into lava or knocking them off ledges. As Pac-Man, I enjoyed eating other players or dropping fire hydrants on their heads. But for the most part, everybody was too fast for me to catch them.

As for the Amiibo figures, your character joins as a figure player. The figure player can gain levels and become stronger over time. You can add a high level Amiibo to the game (by tapping the bottom of the character to the Wii U’s GamePad, thereby establishing a near-field communications (NFC) link). You can train that Amiibo by adding more experienced Amiibos or just by fighting that Amiibo character.

The Wii U version has lots of modes like the Smash Tour board game, a custom Special Smash Mode, Coin Battles, Stamina Matches, and others. You can use the GamePad’s touchscreen to create custom events quickly.

All of this makes Super Smash Bros. for the Wii U something that could lift Nintendo’s console fortunes.

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This Week in the Nintendo eShop

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Fantasy Life, Pokemon Art Academy and a smattering of dancing and licensed games launch as well.

By Neal Ronaghan

This week is a big one, with three brand new Nintendo-made games and a slew of other retail and download releases. The big guns are Bayonetta 2 on Wii U and Fantasy Life on 3DS. If you buy Bayonetta 2 on the eShop, you can get the original Bayonetta for free, which is awesome. Outside of Nintendo’s own games, a pair of Metroid-style games in Shantae and the Pirate’s Curse and Castlevania: Aria of Sorrow make this week even better. Also, Sweet Memories: Black Jack is on sale in case you want to play blackjack against high school girls and learn their deepest secrets.

Wii U Retail Games

Bayonetta 2 ($59.98, Available October 24) Bayonetta (Available October 24)

Buy both Bayonetta and Bayonetta 2 on the eShop for $59.98. The sequel, available exclusively on the Wii U, amps up the mayhem as you go for another action-packed ride feature high-quality action gameplay. It even has a two-player online co-op mode and a wide variety of Nintendo Easter eggs. The original Bayonetta, first released in 2009, is also available on Wii U, bringing the original game to Nintendo systems for the first time.

Just Dance 2015 ($39.99)

What does the fox say? I don’t know, you’ll have to play the song in Just Dance 2015 to find out. The new Ubisoft-made dance game features more than 40 songs and includes new modes like Community Remix and Dance Challenger.

The Voice ($39.99)

Based on the The Voice TV show and developed by Crush 3D developer Zoe Mode, The Voice brings the singing action to Wii U. You can lay it all out in a Blind Audition and work your way up to the Finale as if you were a contestant on the show. Of course, you can just grab seven friends and sing to your heart’s content in the Party Mode.

3DS Retail Games

Fantasy Life ($39.99, Available October 24)

Originally out in Japan in 2012, Fantasy Life is finally making it to North America. This Level-5-developed life sim/RPG mixes a whole bunch of game styles, ranging from Animal Crossing to Rune Factory and more. You pick one of 12 different lives, such as Paladin, Cook, and Blacksmith, and then live out each one while also saving the world of Reveria.

Pokémon Art Academy ($29.99, Available October 24)

You ever want to make Pokémon Trading Card Game cards? Well, that’s like the point of Pokémon Art Academy. You can also learn how to draw Pokémon using a variety of artistic techniques.

Big Hero 6 Battle in the Bay ($29.99, Available October 28)

From dependable licensed game developer 1st Playable Productions comes a 3DS game based on Disney’s Big Hero 6 movie. Set after the events of the film, Battle in the Bay lets you control each of the six main characters in a level-based beat-’em-up.

Power Rangers Super Megaforce ($29.99, Available October 28)

while I’m not sure exactly what’s going on with the latest edition of Power Rangers (I bowed out after the original crew), Super Megaforce looks to be a decent brawler from Bandai Namco and developer 7th Chord. The plot has the Rangers fighting Prince Vekar and his alien armada. Of course, you’ll have to transform from a regular ol’ Megaforce Ranger into a SUPER MEGAFORCE RANGER to save the day.

The Legend of Korra: A New Era Begins ($29.99, Available October 28)

Developed by Webfoot Technologies, The Legend of Korra: A New Era Begins is a turn-based strategy game where you control Korra and the gang in a story written by the show’s creators. No, Platinum Games had no hand in this version. If you want your Platinum fix, Bayonetta is out this week.

3DS Original Download Games

Shantae and the Pirate’s Curse ($19.99)

Shantae’s journey began more than a decade ago, but now you can play the end of her first trilogy. Pirate’s Curse, originally announced back in 2012, is finally out on 3DS. The Metroid-style game puts you in control of the genie Shantae who uses her hair-whip attack to fight enemies. However, in this adventure, she lost her genie powers and must acquire other abilities (sounds like Metroid!) to save her home of Sequin Land.

Castle Conqueror EX ($3.99)

Dubbed a real-time strategy game for casual gamers, Castle Conqueror EX is an expanded version of the well-received DSiWare game. It features 50 levels that can be played by each of the four unique heroes. The EX version contains improved AI and remade levels. You can even use your Play Coins to help you out in battle.

KORG DSN-12 ($37)

While KORG DSN-12 might seem like an overpriced eShop game, it’s actually not even really a game. KORG DSN-12 is a synthesizer that can be used to make your own music using a wide variety of tools. You can even make music in real time like you were a DJ.

Secret Journeys: Cities of the World ($4.99)

This hidden-object game features some “secret journeys” that are in “cities of the world.” It contains more than 1,000 hidden objects and even includes a sliding-tile puzzle for good measure.

Wii U Virtual Console Games

Castlevania: Aria of Sorrow ($7.99)

Aria of Sorrow is seen as the best of the three Game Boy Advance Castlevania games, and that’s not just because it takes place in the year 2035. Starring Soma Cruz, this game uses the Tactical Soul system, which lets you take the souls of enemies and equip them for different abilities. It even features a whole mess of other modes that unlock when you complete the game.

DSiWare Games

Magical Diary: Secrets Sharing ($4.99)

DSiWare still exists! And naturally, it’s a diary for your DSi or 3DS. The hook here is that you can add animations to your text. Also stickers. And some other stuff.

Sales

Sweet Memories Sale

The odd 3DS eShop game Sweet Memories: Black Jack is 30 percent off from now until November, bringing this high school girl card game down to $2.79.

Wakedas Sale

Wakedas on 3DS eShop is only $1.99 from now until November 6.

Neal Ronaghan runs Nintendo World Report in addition to writing this here article every week. You can follow him on Twitter if you want to see what happens when a man drowns in video games this weekend.

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Nintendo Reveals 50 New Features In New Video For ‘Super Smash Bros. For Wii U’

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Nintendo has just released a new video for the upcoming ‘Super Smash Bros. For Wii U’ that showcases 50 new features that are exclusive to the Wii U version.

With the video clocking in at around 35 minutes, an abundance of features for the upcoming Nintendo brawler have been revealed. I will be giving a little rundown on some of the game’s biggest features, but definitely make sure to watch the video at the bottom in its entirety for every juicy little detail. There definitely looks to be a lot of exciting stuff for this newest entry.

Right upon start up, players will be able to access 40 characters to play from. However, some are left locked.

‘Super Smash Bros. For Wii U’ has a higher resolution in comparison to ‘Super Smash Bros. For The 3DS.’ Due to larger screen size, the game will feature up to 8 players on screen fighting simultaneously. Though, rounds of this size are restricted to specific giant stages that can house that amount of players. For example, stages like Hyrule Temple, Palutena’s temple and the expanded Battlefield stage.

In addition to stock and time battles, players can now fight in coin battles and stamina battles. The former is a older mode from previous games where players compete to collect as many coins as possible before the time runs out. The latter is an all-new mode that plays similarly to a classic fighting game where hit points count down to zero.

SMASH TOUR

The Wii U version will feature an exclusive mode called “Smash Tour,” which is a fighting ‘Mario Party’-like mode that looks like a board game. Players spin a wheel, advance through the map and use items along the way. The mode supports up to four players at once as they navigate the map so they can accumulate items and power-ups for the final battle at the end of the game.

Another new mode called Masterpieces mode is also featured. In it, players can access stripped down versions of classic games that the roster of ‘Super Smash Bros.’ have appeared in.

‘Super Smash Bros. For Wii U’ will feature a custom stage creator which will give players the ability to create their own unique stages which they can share with their friends and others over the internet. Speaking of customization, songs played in stages and menus are fully customizable as well.

As previously noted in the past, ‘Super Smash bros. For Wii U’ supports various control styles such as the Wii Remote and nunchuk, the Wii Game Pad and the GameCube controller. It has been announced that players can also use their 3DS as a controller for the game as well. So players who have become accustomed to the 3DS version’s controls are free to use them for the Wii U version.

The modes from the 3DS version as well will be making a return in expanded formats such as Event mode, All-Star Mode and Trophy Rush.

MEWTWO

Ultimately, other than Mewto as a free playable character next year for both versions if you register both the 3DS and Wii U version and Ridley as a support fighter in the Pyrosphere Stage, what I have listed listed above are definitely some of the game’s most exciting new features. Once again, definitely give the video below a watch for the full details.

‘Super Smash Bros. For Wii U’ will release on November 21 for Wii U. The 3DS version is currently available now.

Nintendo Goes Crazy, Unveils Over 50 Features Exclusive to Super Smash Bros. for Wii U

You might have thought that the 3DS edition of Super Smash Bros. was disappointingly frugal and lacking in content. Or you might have found it amazingly stuffed to the brim with things to do. In both cases, you probably had your eye on the Wii U version, wondering if it would match the 3DS version when it comes to the amount of things in it.

Well, Nintendo held a 35 minute long Nintendo Direct yesterday to showcase the Wii U version of the game, and if one thing became clear during it, it was that the 3DS version that we got, great though it was, was just an appetizer to the main course- the Wii U version seems to be everything the 3DS version was, but more and better, while also adding more stuff of its own.

Consider, for example, the basics- the Wii U version has more stages, more music tracks, more Trophies. That’s great, right? But that aside, it also has more game modes, including returning modes that were missing in the 3DS version, such as Coin Battle and Event Smash, reimagined classic modes such as, well, Classic, as well as Wii U exclusive modes such as Master Orders, Crazy Orders, and Smash Tour.

In addition, the Wii U version of the game also adds eight player Smash matches to the game (yes, over eight players can face off at once), and for players who buy both the 3DS and Wii U versions of Smash Bros., they will be offering fan favorite Smash Bros. character Mewtwo as DLC for free some time in Spring of 2015.

Whew. I haven’t even begun to scratch the surface. Catch up on all the insanity for yourself in the Nintendo Direct, embedded above for your convenience.

Super Smash Bros. for Wii U launches on the Wii U (well, no shit) next month in North America, and on December 7 everywhere else.

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Bowser Jr. Joins ‘Super Smash Bros.’ in New Cinematic

Fans were treated to an onslaught of new information about Super Smash Bros. for Wii U during the latest Nintendo Direct presentation. With everything from 8-player Smash Battles to the return of Mewtwo as a playable character being announced, it’s easy to overlook new assets for previously known fighters.

It was confirmed during the Direct that, despite being an unlockable combatant in the 3DS version, Bowser Jr. will be available right from the beginning for those that own the Wii U installment of Super Smash Bros.. This lead to the newcomer receiving a cinematic trailer dedicated to his debut in the fighting game franchise.

On par with previous character reveal trailers like Greninja and Robin, Bowser Jr.’s official unveiling managed to be a decent spectacle that fans will undoubtedly appreciate. Of course, as many gamers are already well aware, Bowser’s number one son didn’t make his debut alone.

The trailer also shows off all of the Koopalings, which are set to be playable in both versions of the latest Super Smash Bros. games. Instead of occupying their own spots on the roster, much like Dark Pit and Doctor Mario, these fighters are simply alternate skin swaps – making their presence on the roster much more tolerable.

Super Smash Bros Wii U 3DS Bowser Jr Art

It’s not surprising to see Larry, Morton, Wendy, Iggy, Roy, Lemmy, and Ludwig all join the battle, especially considering how prominent the villainous group of Koopas has become in recent Mario titles; the Koopalings even managed to score playable roles in Mario Kart 8.

Despite their inclusion alongside Bowser Jr. in the newest Smash titles, it all comes down to how much fun the fighters are to play. Fortunately, all of these characters (despite playing exactly the same) are a lot of fun to jump into the driver’s seat as. Whether unloading cannonballs into Capt. Falcon’s face or using the Clown Copter’s drill arms send foes flying off the stage, these set newcomers are very satisfying and powerful additions to the series.

What do you think of Bowser Jr. and the Koopalings being included in the latest Super Smash Bros. games? Get at us in the comments!

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Super Smash Bros. is currently available on the Nintendo 3DS and is scheduled to arrive on the Wii U on November 21, 2014.

Follow Riley on Twitter @TheRileyLittle for more news on Super Smash Bros., as well as everything else in gaming.

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A Magical Idol 3DS Rhythm Game With A Protagonist That Will Melt Your Heart

By Sato . October 23, 2014 . 10:46pm

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Alchemist’s upcoming Nintendo 3DS game isn’t a rail-shooter or visual novel, but Moho Colle: Magic☆Idol Collection is about a cute magical girl who must defrost the hearts of the citizens in the land of magic. The latest trailer shows us a little track from the game.

You don’t need to understand Japanese to see how cute this is with the dancing animals and everything, but in case you’re wondering, Plum is singing about how your smile brings a rainbow to her heart, in which she hopes it can help reach to her thoughts.

Plum will go through all kinds of different idol songs, but she’ll also have to go around town to do a fair share of interaction with to help fix their hearts. You can read more about it in our earlier report.

Moho Colle: Magic☆Idol Collection will release in Japan on November 20, 2014 for Nintendo 3DS.

Video game stories from other sites on the web. These links leave Siliconera.

Korg DSN-12 analogue-style studio released for Nintendo 3DS

Thanks to Korg, Nintendo’s 3DS family of handhelds has a pretty good selection of synth apps available for it, and the latest – DSN-12 – is now available.

Produced in collaboration with Detune, this analogue-style workstation gives you 12 monophonic, Korg MS-10-inspired synths to play with, each of which can be bolstered with up to three effects. You can use these to create sequences and patterns, which in turn can be stitched together to create complete songs.

There’s also a 3D oscilloscope that can operate in Wave and Lissajous modes.

The Korg DSN-12 is compatible with 2DS/3DS/3DS XL systems and is available via the Nintendo eShop. It costs £25/$37€30.

Korg DSN-12 features

  • Contains 12 virtual analog monophonic synthesizers
  • Up to 64 sequence steps
  • Freely place sequences in up to 64 patterns
  • Pattern Program mode lets you chain patterns in up to 99 scenes; muting can also be programmed for each track
  • Three effects are provided; choose from delay, chorus, flanger, compressor, kick, and reverb
  • Local communication allows users to exchange song data and sound data
  • The world’s first* 3D display oscilloscope screen; Wave and Lissajous modes are provided
  • *For Nintendo 3DS software as of June 2014
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This month’s newest game and hardware updates

PS Vitaq is in the pink

Women’s fashion brand Mercury Duo is teaming up with Sony for a stylish “premium limited edition” Mercury Duo PlayStation Vita.

With a pink back and white front, the Wi-Fi model PS Vita bundle comes with a Mercury Duo white lace-decorated pouch and a special cleaning cloth to wipe away any smudges or fingerprints. Also included is an 8GB Memory Card, and USB and power cables.

Mercury Duo is known for its soft, elegant designs, and Sony has done its best to bring that aesthetic to this Vita bundle, which goes on sale Nov. 13 for ¥20,980.

www.jp.playstation.com/psvita/lightpink

“Pokemon” goes alpha and omega

Originally released in 2002, the “Ruby” and “Sapphire” versions of “Pokemon” were the biggest-selling games for the Game Boy Advance. Now, 12 years later, remakes “Omega Ruby” and “Alpha Sapphire” are headed to the Nintendo 3DS with beefed-up graphics, new Pocket Monster “Mega” evolutions, and even Pikachu cosplay — if you’ve ever thought Pikachu might benefit from a frilly pink dress in a character fight, well now you can find out.

As with other Pokemon games, there are two versions of each of these, both with exclusive Pokemon characters. The box art indicates that Pocket Monster Kyogre is slated for “Alpha Sapphire,” while Groudon will appear in “Omega Ruby.” Pick the exclusives you like best when deciding which version to get.

Priced at ¥4,571, “Omega Ruby” and “Alpha Sapphire” will be released on Nov. 21.

www.pokemon.co.jp/ex/oras

More bikini-clad chaos

One of Japan’s most eyebrow-raising franchises is back. “OneeChanbara,” a portmanteau of “oneechan” (big sister) and “chanbara” (sword play), features a sword-wielding protagonist in a cowgirl hat and swimwear. This time, “OneeChanbara Z2: Chaos” features four characters — cowgirls Aya and Kagura, and gothic lolitas Saki and Saaya) — which players can alternate between during play, providing a new and incredibly frantic gameplay experience.

It would be easy write off the “OneeChanbara” as mere titillation. But, as ridiculous as it seems, it does also provide a solid gaming experience, with players unleashing a slew of satisfying slices in over-the-top battles.

“OneeChanbara Z2: Chaos” for the PlayStation 4 runs at a smooth 60 frames-per-second, is in full HD and is rated Cero Z (age 18 and up). It will be released on Oct. 30 for the PlayStation 4 at ¥6,800.

www.d3p.co.jp/anez2_chaos

A smashing New Nintendo 3DS LL

While “Super Smash Bros.” for 3DS is a fantastic game, one complaint that some gamers have is that it’s sometimes hard to follow the action on the small screen. The “Super Smash Bros.” New Nintendo 3DS LL is for those folks.

The recently released New Nintendo 3DSLL is the same size as the regular 3DSLL but comes with a second analog controller called the C-Stick, which makes Smash Attack moves easier in “Super Smash Bros.”

For those diehard “Smash Bros.” fans looking to upgrade, this handheld is worth a look. Be aware, though, that this special-edition does not come with a copy of the game, and AC adaptors are sold separately for all NN3DS units.

The “Super Smash Bros.” New Nintendo 3DSLL will be released on Nov. 8 for ¥18,800.

www.nintendo.co.jp/3ds/axcj/hardware/index.html

Some serious military hardware

One of this year’s biggest games, “Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare,” is getting a special military-style Xbox One.

The black and gray console and controller have been designed with the game’s Sentinel Task Force in mind and the bundle comes with the Xbox One, a headset, a controller, the game, extra downloadable content and a 14-day Gold Membership for the Xbox Live online service. The console also has unique sound effects from the game.

But the real star here isn’t the fancy design and extra content, it’s the console’s onboard hard drive. The regular Xbox One sports a 500GB internal hard drive, but this “Call of Duty” console has an unprecedented 1TB. That gives gamers a ton of storage.

Out on Nov. 13, the “Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare” Xbox One bundle is priced at ¥49,980.

bit.ly/codog1025

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Review: Donkey Kong Land 2 (3DS eShop / Game Boy)

Diddy’s 8-Bit Quest

The success of Donkey Kong Country inevitably saw a sequel released. Likewise when Donkey Kong Land proved a similar platforming experience was possible on the Game Boy, it was a no-brainer that Rare would release a second handheld adventure. This time Donkey Kong has gone and gotten himself captured, and so it’s up to Diddy and Dixie to run, jump and swim their way through Donkey Kong Land 2 to rescue him.

Considering the hardware’s limitations the first Game Boy game did a good job of capturing the look of Donkey Kong Country, but sometimes suffered from the different elements blending together. For this game Rare has addressed the problem by having a bit less detail on-screen, mainly achieved with plainer backgrounds. There’s still the occasional confusing moment (safe wooden platforms being hard to pick out from thorny vines for instance) and the odd graphical glitch, but overall the action is easy to follow; you’re not going to find yourself getting clobbered by a Kremling you thought was a juniper bush.

Audio-wise the game has a few sounds for things like collecting bananas, bouncing off the heads of enemies and the crashing of barrels, but once again it’s the music that impresses. Though sometimes a bit beepy there’s a variety of fun, catchy, adventurous tunes. Other tracks go for mysterious, whilst the boss battles use a piece that’s a bit more intense. The odd track can get a bit repetitive if you stay on a level too long but the game is certainly enhanced by the music featured here.

There’s a range of foes throughout the game with the Kremling’s going for a pirate theme. King K. Rool is now Kaptain K. Rool (complete with blunderbuss) whilst other Kremlings have cutlasses, hooks and peg-legs. More enemies can be found in the waters (piranhas and stingrays) and the skies (wasps and dragon flies). The levels are varied too: winds blow you back, other winds blow you upwards, sometimes you’ll be jumping between platforms, other times shimmying along a rope. The action is certainly kept interesting and each level also includes treasure to find: Kremcoins, Banana Bunch Koins and Cranky’s particularly hard to find Video Game Hero Coins.

Whilst Cranky doesn’t appear in-game, there are two Kongs who provide you with help. Funky Kong’s Funky Flight’s service is used to travel to previous worlds and Wrinkly Kong will save your game for you if you visit her Kong Kollege; both of these services require payment of banana koins.

There are problems with this method of saving as it means you have to clear a few levels in a world before you can save your progress — having done that you may find you lack the banana coins necessary. The coins are easy to come by, but it will mean replaying a level first. Whilst this adds a bit of challenge as players must collect enough of the coins if they want to save, it doesn’t make sense for a portable title that may only be played in short bursts. Luckily this is a Virtual Console release and whilst that means the (admittedly slight) Super Game Boy enhancements are gone, the restore point feature is available — which is a much better option for gaming on the go.

As fun as the levels are, anyone who has played Diddy’s Kong Quest will find things here very familiar. The map screens closely resemble the 16-bit title and levels have the same names, although a few didn’t make the cut. Whilst the levels are not identical, you do have to do the same things on them, so ‘Mainbrace Mayhem’ has you climbing masts to reach the goal, rising liquid causes trouble on ‘Slime Climb’ and ‘Rickety Race’ sees the Kongs in a speeding roller-coaster cart trying to knock Kremlings off the rails. It’s quite interesting to play alternate versions of these levels (and there are a couple of stages unique to this title), but it’s a shame things aren’t a bit more like the first Donkey Kong Land which had new levels, new environments and even a few new enemies.

The controls are responsive with the two Kongs doing what your thumbs ask of them. As before A jumps and B is used for running, throwing and spin-attacking. Holding B whilst in mid-air with Dixie allows her to perform a helicopter spin and slowly float downwards — handy for clearing large gaps. The Select button switches between Kongs and is also used when controlling some of your animal friends.

There are a number of animals who appear in certain levels to help you with your quest and their abilities come in very handy. Holding Select down is used to perform charge attacks with Enguarde the swordfish and Rambi the rhino. For Rattly the snake it is used to jump higher. Whilst the Select button works OK for those actions, players may get frustrated when using Squitter the Spider. Certain sections require the spider to make web platforms to jump between — to do this you must fire a web with the B button (sometimes using up or down for direction) and then tap Select to set it in place. The platforms only stay in place for a short time before dissolving so you have to work quickly. This method was not ideal on the original hardware and due to the button placement would be even trickier on the 3DS were Select not also mapped to the much more convenient Y button. The ‘Toxic Tower’ level towards the end of the game sees Squitter having to make platforms to escape some rapidly rising toxic sludge, so mastering the technique is a must.

Players who do become the best web-spinner since Ben Reilly will find earlier levels with Squitter quite easy as you can just web-platform yourself over the dangers below. Similarly, find a high enough platform and Dixie’s helicopter spin can be used to sail over long stretches of Kremlings and obstacles. Whilst this can make some levels easier, it also makes bonus areas and coins easily missed.

The difficulty is nevertheless well judged, overall, with the game starting off quite easy and then steadily becoming trickier. Hidden coins also become harder to find as you progress. To help you out extra life balloons are scattered throughout and you can also acquire extra lives by collecting 100 bananas or picking up the letters that spell out KONG on a level.

Your save file includes a percentage score so you can see at a glance how much of the game you have cleared. With 40 levels to beat and Kremkoins and Video Game Hero coins to find, anyone aiming for full completion will be kept busy. Acquire enough Kremkoins and you can gain access to the Lost World which features the final six levels of the game. If you have cleared/collected everything it’s worth noting that your save file also lists the time you’ve spent playing the game, so you could always try to do it again but faster.

Conclusion

With more levels to play through and extra items to collect Donkey Kong Land 2 is certainly a bigger game than its predecessor, however it’s not quite as impressive due to being a bit too similar to Diddy’s SNES outing. Luckily the varied bunch of levels and enemies ensure that the game is still fun to play through. There’s some cracking music, too, and with the amount of content Rare managed to cram into the game there’s enough here to keep players occupied for some time.

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POWER RANGERS SUPER MEGAFORCE for for Nintendo 3DS…

[This unedited press release is made available courtesy of Gamasutra and its partnership with notable game PR-related resource GamesPress.]

(PARIS, FRANCE – October 24, 2014 )

BANDAI NAMCO Games Europe S.A.S announced today that Saban’s POWER RANGERS SUPER MEGAFORCE ® is available now in Europe and Australasia for the Nintendo 3DS™ hand-held system.

Power Rangers Super Megaforce marks the 21 st season of the iconic television series. The action side-scrolling Nintendo 3DS game gives fans the chance to experience the legendary powers of the Super Megaforce Rangers and save the earth from evil.

This season, the Power Rangers Super Megaforce must defeat a massive alien Armada sent to conquer earth. With the help of their supernatural guardian, Gosei, the Power Rangers are given special morphers and keys that allow them to morph into Super Megaforce Rangers. Before getting into fights, fans can use various Legendary red rangers, gaining access to their incredible powers, weapons, Zords and Megazords.

Being the Super Hero of an epic adventure is the promise we are making to all kids getting their hands on our games. Once again, thanks to a successful partnership with Saban, we manage to entertain kids with a high quality and diverting game boasting bewildering features such as controlling Legendary red Rangers or Zords and the use of Special Cards. To make a marvellous spread out of this new launch: Power Rangers Super MegaForce is fateful to the latest season of the long-running anime series !” Herve Hoerdt, Vice President of IP Strategy at BANDAI NAMCO Games Europe.

In this new game, fans are able to play as their favorite Super Megaforce Rangers in addition to the Legendary Red Power Rangers and the iconic Mighty Morphin Power Rangers.  Players are also engage in epic Zord battles to conquer the colossal monsters that threaten humankind. Go Go Super Megaforce!

For more information about BANDAI NAMCO Games’ entire line up, go to www.BandaiNamcoGames.eu.

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About BANDAI NAMCO Games Europe S.A.S.

BANDAI NAMCO Games Europe S.A.S., part of BANDAI NAMCO Holdings Inc., is a leading global publisher and developer of interactive content for platforms including all major video game consoles and PC, with marketing and sales operations in 50 countries across Europe, the Middle East, Africa and Australasia.  The company is known for creating and publishing many of the industry’s top video game franchises, including PAC-MAN™, Tekken™, TALES OF TM, SOULCALIBUR™, NARUTO™, NARUTO SHIPPUDEN™, Dragon Ball®, GALAGA™, RIDGE RACER™ and ACE COMBAT™.  More information about the company and its products can be found at www.BandaiNamcoGames.eu or  Facebook.

About Saban’s Power Rangers Super Megaforce

Power Rangers Super Megaforce is the current season of the iconic franchise on television. The series, which airs at 12 p.m. (ET/PT) on Nickelodeon, delivers super mega action, humor, excitement and entertainment, in addition to the core themes of friendship, teamwork, fitness and helping others. Power Rangers Super Megaforce introduces all-new morphing abilities, allowing the Rangers to morph into any team of Power Rangers from the past. The Power Rangers franchise is helmed by Haim Saban, who created and produced the original Mighty Morphin Power Rangers series in 1993. SCG Power Rangers LLC, which licenses and merchandises the Power Rangers brand, is an affiliate of Saban Brands. For more information, visit www.powerrangers.com.

Nintendo 3DS is a trademark of Nintendo. © 2012 Nintendo.

All other trademarks are properties of their respective owners.

TM & © 2014 SCG Power Rangers LLC, All Rights Reserved.

Used Under Authorization.

Game © BANDAI NAMCO Games Inc.

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Press Release © BANDAI NAMCO Games Europe S.A.S.

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