Sonic Team look like they are on the way to another Dreamcast hit, this time with Phantasy Star Online. The game, which allows 4 players simultaneously, will be release as early as this Winter (Summer in Japan) and best of all will allow players from different countries to enjoy the game together through a universal language with pre-defined phrases. It will also be possible to find friends online through an unique ID system so you can continue your battles together.
Austin Powers fans take note, Austin Powers Mojo Rally is due for release on Dreamcast in October. The game will feature all the characters from the game including Austin, Dr Evil, Mini-Me, Fat Bastard and Number Two. (I am desperately hoping that Felicity Shagwell is there too). The game will consist of 15 courses including London, Las Vegas, Dr Evil's Lair and the Moonbase. Best od all the game will include a 4 player split screen mode. Yar Baby!
Unfortunately, the release of Rayman 2 this week is looking a little shaky. Katy Richardson stated that the game should be here within a week or two, putting it just behind the expected March 31st launch. Whatever you do, don't spend your money elsewhere as this game is hot.
Famitsu has scored several more Dreamcast games. Some of the more interesting scores are;
Jikkyou Powerful Pro Baseball 2000 (Konami) 31/40, Marvel VS Capcom 2: New Age of Heroes (Capcom) 34/40, The King of Fighters 99 Evolution (SNK) 29/40, and The Typing of the Dead (Sega) 35/40.
Climax Graphics have revealed their next Dreamcast title. If your thinking Blue Stinger 2 you wouldn't be in the minority. However, Climax Graphics' have announced their next Dreamcast title is called Illbleed which is discribed as a "haunted house game" by the company and will use quite a few Americans in the design and voicing positions. The game will be shown at the upcoming Tokyo Game show and should be released in Q'3 2000.
I was right. It has been revealed that Konami's Imperial Hawk is a flight simulator although the exact nature remains to be seen. My money is still on a flight shooting game similar to Air Force Delta, which incidentally was just release in Australia as Deadly Skies.
What do you get for $US654 million dollars? Well pretty much anything, but Sony have spent the money building a high performance semiconductor plant for the Playstation 2. This plant will produce the graphics synthesizer and should boost production of the system to 1.4 million units per month.
Tekken Tag Tournament is the most anticipated Playstation 2 title so far and Weekly Famitsu has score the game a whopping 38/40. It will be interesting how Playstation 2 sales are affected when this title launches in a couple of days. Square's driving game Driving Emotion Type-S didn't fare so well with a score of 28/40.
Interplay have announced their America Playstation 2 lineup. The games scheduled for release include Baldur's Gate II, Star Trek: New Worlds and Giants: Citizen Kabuto. All of these games are scheduled for release in 2000.
Dead Or Alive 2 is the highest anticipated brawler this side of... well it is the most anticipated brawler and there is some great news for PAL gamers with the game now scheduled for release in Europe on April 28th instead of late May as earlier predicted. Expect the Australian release to be very close to Europe if not on the same day.
Sega have announced that they will be porting Virtua Tennis to the Dreamcast. The game is due out in Japan during their summer (our Winter) with and American release set for July. No word yet on an Australian release, although it is certain to appear towards the latter part of the year.
One of the most popular games in Japan has been Sega's own Virtual On : OT. But Sega have been refusing to list the game on their schedules which led to speculation that the game would never appear outside Japan. Fortunately, Activision have picked up the rights to the game with a release date of June 7th in America. That's the good news. The bad news is that Activision are still deciding about online gameplay and the release of the twin stick controller. Expect more news soon.
Konami has officially put Castlevania Resurrection on "permanent hold". This is sad news for Castlevania fans who were eagerly anticipating the title. It is possible the game will be picked up at a later date and completed or moved onto another system.
Konami have also announced that they are working on an new Dreamcast title called Imperial Falcon. Although nothing is known about the title yet this Dreamcast exclusive should be released mid-year in Japan and will be shown at the upcoming Tokyo Game Show. Perhaps a sequel to Air Force Delta?
Famitsu has scored the latest batch of Dreamcast games in Japan and some of the results are surprising. Lake Master Pro Dreamcast Plus received 27/30, NBA2K deserved its 33/40, Twinkle Star Spirits from SNK got 26/40, Activision's upcoming Vigilante 8 was trashed with 25/40 and Rayman 2 was harshly done by with 29/40 (perhaps the 2 should have been a 3). If you read IGNDC lately they gave UbiSoft's platformer a massive 9.6/10 and my score will be fairly similar to that after playing the beta version for 2 weeks.
Contrary to popular belief it now looks likely that Interplay will publish Messiah on the Dreamcast. Dave Perry has stated that the game will be published by Interplay and EBWorld.com is also listing this. The game is currently scheduled for release on August 31.
While many of us have been waiting for an announcement of AM2's Spike Out on the Dreamcast it looks like we might get the sequel instead. Slash Out is apparently coming to the arcades running on the Naomi chipset which makes a Dreamcast conversion certain.
Shenmue is still hitting the headlines with Yu Suzuki histing that the sequel will be vastly improved in the graphics as well. Apparently AM2 have improved the graphics engine to the point where they can have 50! characters onscreen at once.
Well I've finally moved house again and I'm back online (after a broken phone line as well). Expect the updates to get back to the usual regularity within a couple of days.
One of the greatest games of all time, Prince Of Persia is headed to the Dreamcast. While last years PC game, Prince Of Persia 3D didn't set the world alight it was a respectable game nonetheless. The best news is that Mindscape aren't going to port the recent PC version but are developing a Dreamcast exclusive game which is aimed more at the console market. Expect more news at the upcoming E3 show in America.
Crave's highly anticipated Tony Hawk Pro Skater has been pushed back from April until late May. There have been some questions about the graphical improvements of the game and it looks like the developers want to spend a little more time getting the game just right.
Human Head Studios' upcoming game Rune may be making an appearance on the Dreamcast. This Viking based Unreal engine driven game could make an appearance on the Dreamcast after it's PC release late this year.
Tetsuya Mizuguchi, the designer of Space Channel 5 has confirmed that the game will be released in America in June, not May as SOA had previously stated. The game is currently scheduled for release in Australia on July 21.
Although we are still waiting for the release of Evolution here in Australia, Ubisoft have been so pleased with sales of the game in America that it is looking likely that they have snapped up the rights to publish the sequel later this year. Expect an official statement soon.
Fox Interactive have confirmed that they are developing Buffy the Vampire Slayer for the Dreamcast. This third person action adventure is expected to be released towards the end of the year.
According to Amusement Graffiti Psykio and Capcom are working on a new Naomi game starring Nash and Cammy from Street Fighter. The game, called Gun Spike, is a 3D action game, and may be release sometime this year.
Naughty Dog have confirmed that they are currently developing a new Crash Bandicoot game for the Playstation 2. As yet no details regarding gameplay or release have been announced.
Rockstar have announced that they will be developing Oni for Playstation 2. Bungie Software, who are currently developing the PC and Mac versions will work closely with Rockstar to ensure the games quality. Expect a release towards the end of the year.
UbiSoft have confirmed that they are developing a game based on Disney's upcoming movie called Dinosaur. The game will follow the release of the movie, which is scheduled for May 26 in America with Europe toward the end of the year. Expect the Playstation 2 version to have the best graphics of all the systems.
Could we be seeing Crash Bandicoot on the X-Box? While that is unlikely what is known is that Crash's developer Naughty Dog, are currently working on two X-Box titles.
Namco has confirmed their next Dreamcast title. No, it's not the rumoured Time Crisis or the highly speculated Tekken Tag Tournament. Instead Namco have chosen to develop Mr Driller for the Dreamcast. While this may come as a disappointment to many this 2D puzzle styled game is meant to be a lot of fun. Beyond.com have the game listed for release in America on 15th June with a RRP of $US34.99. Namco weren't able to confirm anything other then the game is still in development.
Sega have confirmed that World Series Baseball 2K1 will be released in May this year. The game is currently in development in Japan and will feature 28 rendered ballparks as well as the latest rosters as well as several game modes.
Yu Suzuki gave a speech at the Game Developers conference last weekend in which he discussed Shenmue and it's sequel which will be called Shenmue 2. The reason it isn't called Shenmue Chapter 2 is that the game will actually be made up of chapters 2, 3, 4, and 5. The sequel will take place in Hong Kong and will feature locations such as a bay, a city, a castle and a few more locations. Suzuki also let on a few other tidbits including the fact that the sequel may include Jacky and Sarah from the Virtua Fighter games. When Yu was asked about the meaning of Shenmue he stated that that would become clear in Shenmue 3. It looks like we will have a wait for that one.
Yu Suzuki has hinted that the graphics engine used in Shenmue may be used in other Dreamcast games, although most likely only those being developed by AM2. Hopefully, Yu will be kind enough to let other teams use the most advanced game technology on the system so far. Time will tell.
Sega of Europe have once again revised their release schedule. While there is no confirmation that Australia will follow suit it is extrememly likely as we get our games from Europe. ANyway here are the changes (Delays); Red Dog (April 21), Ecco the Dolphin (May 26 or June 2), Sega Worldwide Soccer Euro Edition (May 26 or June 2), Maken X (August 25).
Acclaim and Criterion surprised everybody at the Game Developers Conference by showing off Trickstyle running on the Playstation 2. Unfortunately Acclaim have no plans on releasing this game in America as it has already seen the game in the past. Japan will get Trickstyle on the Playstation 2 in the coming months but before you start complaining America will be getting Trickstyle 2 on the Playstation 2 when development finishes in the coming months. Confused yet?
Sony of Japan have confirmed that a keyboard will be released for the Plasytation 2 in the early part of 2001. Does this point to the launch of the online Playstation 2? Possibly.
Firstly I have to apologize for the lack of updates over the last couple of days and the coming week. I am moving houses in 4 days time and haven't really started packing. I am also re-doing many of the sections to bring the site more into multi-format mode. I have almost completed the cheats for almost every Dreamcast game available which should go online by the end of the week.
According to IGNDC the latest footage from Activision's Toy Story 2 is greatly improved form the version they saw last month. Hopefully the game will improve further before it's release late this month or early next month.
For those of you that don't look at the main page too often I have added a review of Jimmy White's 2: Cueball. This pool/snooker game was released in Australia about a fortnight ago after several delays.
Epic have shown Unreal Tournament running on the PS2 behind closed doors at the Game Developers Conference. The game has only been in development for a couple of months and hasn't even been shown or approved by Sony yet. Unfortunately due to the lack of network options on the PS2 this will be a single player game only. As yet there is no publisher or expected release date for the title.
Interact, who make quite a few Dreamcast peripherals, have announced they will be making some PS2 peripherals as well. Interact are planning to release a steering wheel, dual analogue control, fishing controller and 8MB memory card in time for the American launch.
Microsoft have officially announced the existence of X-Box at the Game Developers conference. The system will launch in the second half of 2001 and is equiped with the following specs;
Bill Gates also announced several developers for the system including Capcom, Midway, Acclaim, Namco, Bungie, Enix, Hudson and Konami (who have Metal Gear Solid in the works). Perhaps the biggest surprise is that Electronic Arts are also developing on the system which seems strange due to their lack of support for the Dreamcast due to a small user base. Activision apparently have a Tony Hawk game in development as well and apparently Square have also been negotiating for development although nothing is certain yet.
Bill also showed of several tech demos of the system which included a demo of thousands of butterflies flying over a reflective pond, a fireworks particle demo reminescent of the original Playstation 2 demo and a realtime lit office desk which looked pre-rendered but wasn't. Unfortunately no games were shown although Microsoft have stated that there will be games shown at E3, behind closed doors.
Ozisoft are almost set for online browsing to begin on Monday the 13th March. The final phase is complete with the Dreamcast internet portal (http://www.comma.com.au) is complete and live. Make sure you go an have a look right now as the web site can be viewed through a PC as well. Unfortunately the site looks a little funny as game reviews are pulled from the official Dreamcast site with a different style to them.
Sega Europe has released a new batch of release dates for the latest Dreamcast games. These are quite different from the Ozisoft anticipated dates but seing as out software comes from Europe I would believe the new dates here. Sega Bass Fishing (April 7), Chu Chu Rocket (May 12), SWWS Euro Edition (May 26), Time Stalkers (June 9), Zombie Revenge (June 23), Metropolis: SR (July 7), Maken X (July 4), and finally Space Channel 5 (July 21).
Genki have confirmed that they are currently developing Tokyo Extreme Racer 2. The title is expected to be released in June in Japan and towards the end of the year for the rest of the world. And if your wondering about multiple tracks, the answer is no. But don't fear. The original game has 30km of tracks to drive around and the sequel will have a whopping 180km of road. The number of car pars has been bumped up from 30 to 120 while the number of opponents has gone from 141 to 300+.
For those of you who haven't picked up your copy of Crazy Taxi yet you'd better be quick. Most people that I have talked to across Australia have said that their local video game store has only received a couple of copies and most of them hae already been sold. Electronics Boutique on the Gold Coast, which is where I picked up my copy, only received 4 copies with mine and another pre-sold and the other two being sold within 5 minutes of hitting the shelves. Fortunately the sales girl said they are expecting another 8 in late today or early next week. Expect a review in the coming days.
Ubisoft's highly anticipated underwater submarine title Deep Fighter has been delayed until July in America with an Australian release likely several weeks later. I was wondering why is wan't on Ubisoft Australia's release list last week. Hmmmm...
Sega of Japan has confirmed that Typing of the Dead will be released as a stand alone game for 4,800 yen or as a package with a Dreamcast keyboard for 8,800 yen. No word yet on an English release for the obscure game where you kill zombies by typing words instead of shooting them.
Square have announced taht their driving games Driving Emotion Type-S has been delayed be a couple of weeks from March 16 to March 30. This is the same release date as Tekken Tag Tournament and Dead Or Alive 2.
Konamie have confirmed that Gradius III & IV will be released o the Playstation 2 on April 13 in Japan. Hopefully it will be released outside Japan as well.
SOA have announced that Time Stalkers, also known as Climax Laders in Japan, will be released in America on March 21st. No word yet on an Australian release but it's still looking some what off if it does happen. Hopefully this won't be another case of the ever-delayed NFL2K.
Capcom has delayed the release of Marvel Vs Capcom 2 from March 23rd until March 30th. No reason has been given for the delay.
Well what exactly is going on here. SCEA (Sony Computer Entertainment America) are now claiming that the online reports of the 8MB memory card recall are bogus. They have acknowledged there is a fault when saving Ridge Racer V which overwrites the DVD movie fiels however this is easily overcome by re-installing them from the utility disc. Hmmmm...
One of the most highly anticipated games Ecco The Dolphin has been delayed yet again. Apparently the games developers, Appaloosa, require some more time to polish the title resulting in a delay from April 21st until sometime in May.
Konami is slowing down it's Dreamcast production. While they currently have a massive 25 Playstation 2 titles in development they are only developing 5 Dreamcast titles for release by March 2001. Hopefully they can provide something more substantial then dancing titles. While they may be fun, they can become repetitive, especially when each version only has marginal changes and different songs.
Chu Chu Rocket is due for release in America today. This is the first game to include online gameplay and an Australian release is scheduled for late April.
Tecmo have confirmed that Dead Or Alive 2 will hit the shelves in America on March 16. This is several weeks earlier then expected which may also result in the title making it to Australia in April through Acclaim.
The Playstation 2 has sold an incredible 980,000 units in the first 3 days in Japan. This is just short of the anticipated 1 million units with 380,000 units being sold through Sony's online ordering network. The other 600,000 units were sold through 26,400 retailers and convenience stores (yes, you can buy games and systems as 7-11 type stores in Japan). These sales are almost ten times the number of original Playstation games sold in the first 3 days when it launched.
Sony have admitted that there is a fault with the 8MB memory cards and are recalling the product. Apparently the new 8MB cards have problems with corrupted data when you save Ridge Racer V. This corruption deletes the DVD drivers and stops the machine playing movies. Reports are also surfacing about some problems with the DVD drive including skipping movies and freezing. Expect more on this soon.
MOre information has been revealed about Microsoft's X-Box thanks to Nihon Keizai Shimbun from Japan. The system is set for possible launch in September 2001 which could be announced this Friday 10th at the Game Developers Conference. Apparently Microsoft are trying to get major Japanese companies such as Konami, Capcom and Enix involved with the system. The X-Box system will include an AMD 600Mhz CPU with DVD and high speed internet. It is also believed that the system will include an 8GB HDD and should retail for around $US250 to $US300.
According to FGNOnline nVidia is expected to be the company to supply the graphics chip for X-Box.
Ozisoft have announced that the Dreamcast will go online beginning March 13th. The browser disc's should arrive soon although Ozisoft did not give a ship date for these disc's in the press release. Each disc will have 150 free internet hours enclosed which will begin the first time you log onto Telstra's web site. These hours must be used within 3 months of the first logon. Online gameplay should begin in late April with the release of Chu Chu Rocket. For the full press release about online browsing click here.
Infogrames has announced that they are going to release Demolition Racer - No Exit on the Dreamcast. The game see's 15 cars trying to destroy themselves and Infogrames have promised enhancements for the Dreamcast version over the Playstation and PC incarnations. Additional cars, new power-ups, new tracks and improved AI have all been promised. No release date has been given yet.
Reports are beginning to surface from Japan that some of the 8MB Playstation 2 memory cards are faulty. Sony have ceased shipments of the device to retailers until at least March 20 so they can look further into the matter. It is expected that consumers will be able to exchange faulty cards in the coming weeks. Confirmation from Sony is expected soon.
Well I wasn't sure where to put this but after alsmot 2 years of waiting it looks as if there is a silver screen Lara now decided upon. Angelina Jolie has been chosen to play Lara in a decision that will have more then one man drooling. For those of you who aren't sure who she is have a look at the movie Hackers where she plays well, a hacker called Acid Burn or the recent movie, The Bone Collector.
Lionhead's Black and White has been delayed until September from it's expected Q'2 2000 release on the PC which will result in a slight delay for the Dreamcast version. This is one of the most highly anticipated titles this year with Peter Molyneux, the company's founder, previously responsible for many of Bullfrog's hits including Theme Park, Syndicate and Dungeon Keeper.
The Playstation 2 has been a huge seller in Japan. With no official word on exact units shipped to stores unofficial estimates range between 300,000 units to the more plausible 600,000 units. Whatever the figure, is if you are still looking for a system in Japanese stores you are probably out of luck with most stock sold by mid-Saturday.
The most popular games at the Dreamcast launch are Ridge Racer 5 followed by Street Fighter EX3 and then the strategy game Kessen.
One disappointment of the Japanese launch was the lack of peripherals on sale. There was no 4 player multi tap's to be found which resulted in 2 player action in Capcom's fighting title while the 8MB memory cards are promised soon.
Famitsu have scored the first batch of Playstation 2 titles ad the results are promising. The biggest seller so far, Ridge Racer 5 (Namco), scored a great 36/40 while Capcom's Street Fighter EX3 was only a few notches behind with 32/40. Perhaps the biggest surprise is the strength of the other launch titles Eternal Ring (From Software) 25/40, Kessen (Koei) 32/40, Stepping Selection (Jaleco) 32/40, Drum Mania (Konami) 32/40, Fantavision (SCE) 31/40 and finally A-Train VI (ArtDink, SLG) 28/40. The launch lineup suffered with the recent delay of GT2000 andTekken Tag Tournament to the end of the month.
Well there have been a couple more changes to the site. You are probably saying, well not much has changed. Well, that's true from where you are but I have done a lot of work behind the scenes to make it easier to update and maintain the site. I realise there are a lot of missing backgrounds and graphics in the previews/reviews and a few pages need cleaning but that will be fixed soon. As you have probably noticed there is PS2 news as well now and when information on X-BOX and Dolphin becomes more readily available that will be added as well.
The great news is that in a few weeks time I will start accepting reader reviews for addition on the site so if you want to add a review get to it. I would like to keep the structure and layout similar to the reviews already done so get writing.
Before we get into the news for the day I have something I want to let you all know about. I will be moving DC Australia to a multi-format site soon (with a different name). No, I won't be covering old systems such as the Playstation, Nintendo 64 or even the PC but I will concentrate on new and upcoming systems. Of course news, reviews and previews for Dreamcast will continue will continue as it is now. Expect a site re-design and new URL in the coming months. Speaking of URL's I have a new one for this site which is easy to remember, "dcaustralia.cjb.net".
This is it. The day that the Playstation 2 goes on sale in Japan. Initially there are expected to be around 600,000 units on sale for close to 40,000 yen each. That's twice the price of the Dreamcast in Japan. The biggest game is expected to be Ridge Racer 5 with Tekken Tag Tournament due later in the month. The Playstation 2 will be released in Australia by the end of the year with late September/October the hot tip.
Acclaim have secured the rights to release Tecmo's highly anticipated Dead Or Alive 2 on the Dreamcast in all territories outside America, Japan and South East Asia. When I asked Acclaim Australia for a release date they said it will probably hit the shelves a few weeks after America.
Acclaim have sent me their latest release schedule for Australia and South Park fans have a reason to rejoice. South Park Rally is now scheduled for release on the Dreamcast on June 22nd.
For those people hanging to get Rayman 2 you can consider yourselves lucky. The Playstation version has been pushed back until September. The Dreamcast version will also include a hidden level on the GD-ROM which isn't in any other version of the game and there will be downloadable levels in future. Apparently the multi-player part of the game will be turn based.
I have once again updated the Coming Soon page with the latest release dates from Acclaim and confirmations from other companies.
Online gaming in Australia looks set to begin within 2 months. The latest Ozisoft release schedule has Chu Chu Rocket listed for release in late April. This action/puzzle game has been likened to Bomberman and should be a good test for game servers in Australia. The American version is due for release soon but unfortunately Ozisoft look like charging the full $89.95 for the game even though it retails at about half the normal game price in other territories. The American and Japanese versions are compatible and can compete from different countries. Hopefully, Australians will be able to beat the rest of the world too.
More details have come to hand today about the Official Australian Dreamcast Magazine. Apparently the magazine is nearly complete with Ozisoft suggesting a few minor alterations prior to release. The magazine is expected to hit the stands in the last week of March.
There have once again been some changes to the Australian release dates. Firstly the bad news. Sadly, Capcom's highly anticipated 2D fighting game Street Fighter Alpha 3 has been delayed from February 25th until May. Arognaut's Red Dog has been delayed a couple of weeks until the 14th April while Ecco The Dolphin has been pushed back 14 days from 7th until the 21st of April. Both Plasma Sword and Resident Evil 2 have been pushed back until sometime in April while the highly anticipated Metropolis: Street Racer has been pushed back several months until July 2000.
There has been some good news on the release front however. Ozisoft have now confirmed that Legacy of Kain : Soul Reaver will be hitting the shelves on the 9th March. Sega's scrolling brawler, Zombie Revenge is now confirmed for the 24th of this month while the superb looking Tomb Raider: The Last Revelation will be out on March 31st. Sega Bass Fishing is confirmed for a release in early April but I'll beleive it when I see it. Ozisoft have confirmed Time Stalkers for a May release as well as Worldwide Soccer Euro 2000. Finally the gory, and excellent, Maken X has been confirmed for Australian release in July this year.
An announcement from Ozisoft with regards to the browser disc is expected over the next couple of dayst. Hopefully the online components will begin soon. In the last couple of days several other details have emerged. The official Dreamcast portal will be live within 2 weeks at www.comma.com.au. Don't as me where they got that URL, it beats me.
For those of you that haven't noticed I have added a new poll on the main page asking "Which platform game are you most looking forward to this year?". Make sure you vote on the main page now.