The new Nippon Ichi Software Invasion

nis

The fine people of Nippon Ichi Software or NIS as they are better know, have brough us awesome games like the Disgaea series or not so famous (at least in th west) Marl Kingdom saga (know as Raphsody a Musical Adventure), all of them incredible and challenging games on there own, but damn NIS don´t know where to stop.

This year they are releasing one rpg after another to a total of 8 great games some pure rpg, a spin off and even a cross over, continue with care for there are some spoilers ahead but i try to keep them at minimum.

Ar tonelico II: Melody of Metafalica , known in Japan as Ar tonelico II Sekai ni Hibiku Shōjo-tachi no Metafalica (アルトネリコ2 世界に響く少女たちの創造詩(メタファリカ) Aru toneriko Tsū Sekai ni Hibiku Shōjo-tachi no Metafarika, literally “Ar tonelico 2: The Girls’ Metafalica that Echoes to the World


Ar_tonelico_II

The last installment of  the Alchemy series (In the west at least) have been around for few month already so you may already read a review about it but since this game kick so much ass i believe its worth mention in this article.

When i hear that Ar Tonelico  was going to have a sequel i was extasied, the first one kick ass in almost every aspect from the beautiful music, to the great storyline, and don´t let me get started on the galge like diving system.

The history of the game take off around one year and a half after the ending of the first Ar Tonelico and takes us to a different land in the same world of Ar Ciel, the land in question is Metafalss, and of course the no good history without a problem and this problem come in the form of the Infel Phira Dependency or I.P.D. which only affects Reyvateils, here is when the hero Croix come in. He is Knigth of the Grand Bell Church f Pastalia and he is entrusted with the mission to find the source of the epidemic however th more to this whole I.P.D. bussines than can be percived at first sigh.

Now the gameplay while remaining true to their roots have vastly improved mainly in the form of the battle system and that now the Dive systems have impact in the storyline. The characters are very well designed from our kind hero Croix, the tsunderish heroine Cloche or the sexy Amarie  to the rest of the support cast.

The art of the game is done by the great artist Nagi which was also responsible for the first game art  and the music was done by the incredible  Gust sound team of Akira Tsuchiya, Ken Nakagawa and Daisuke Achiwa returned from the first game to compose the music for this game, as did Haruka Shimotsuki, Takashige Inagaki and Akiko Shikata for the composition of several of the songs and Hymns.

cast

Prinny: Can I Really Be the Hero? (プリニー ~オレが主人公でイイんスか?~ Purinī ~Ore ga Shujinkō de Iinsuka?~?, lit. “Prinny: Is it Okay if I’m the Main Character, Dood?”

Prinnygamebox

Who don´t  love the this cute plushie like bombs even when they being bullied by everyone and their grandmas, relly the prinnies are my favorite mascot character of all time (mario being the second) and it was about time they get there own game.

Japanese promo video

Prinny Hero vs Asagi


Now instead of a tactics as is Disgaea tradition they get a side-scroller which is incredible difficult even with the 1000 lives you are granted, and thats is just the normal mode.

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They history is quite simple, Etna want some dessert, they were stolen last night and she trow a fit (quite scary since she can level countries with ease) and bid her loyal vassals (i.e. her slaves) the prinnies to find her the fabled Ultra Dessert, the problem is that the prinnies are the very definition of pushover so even with a million lives will be enough to complete the task, so Etna in her infinity mercy grant the a prinny a magical scarf that will prevent the user to explod (which is totally useless in hell finest mode), of course since the scarf only prevent explosion when a prinny dies other is throw to the fray hence the 1000 lives.

The game come with different scenarios each one with its boss which or unlucky group of heroes have to beat they include

  • Nethergrass: This grassy plain is in my opinion the easiest level in the game, its located to the North of the Prinny Base and the boss is the the Gourmet Ogre
  • Moab Fortress: A large haunting fortress where the Moab Army makes their home
  • Magma Hideout: A female Ninja, Hoshikage, runs the place. Also housed here is Lee Shang Long, the same dragon who appears as the Tera Fire spell in Disgaea 2.
  • High Tome Forest: This forest is said to be filled with countless tomes of knowledge. The Knight sisters, Kim and Chi  frequent this area. Alternately, a cat witch named Anise shows up.
  • Demon Sea Aria: A casino that floats above the Demon Sea and sinks during the day. The owner, a zombie named Bok Choy has hired guards to protect the area. One of these bodyguards is a Fox Girl who pretends to be a Nekomata, as Bok Choy likes them.
  • Death’s Watchtower: Originally a criminal execution site, burdened souls unable to pass on still wander this place, which abruptly changes height. A pair of Skull Dragons guard this place.

If you haven´t played this game yet i urge to add it to your collection, you wont regret it. Also check out the Prinny´s Blog.

Mana Khemia: Alchemists of Al-Revis (マナケミア ~学園の錬金術士たち~ Mana Khemia ~Gakuen no Renkinjutsushi-tachi~)

mana

While this game is actually a remake of the PS2 version still is incredible, like in the rest of the alchemy series this game have item creation at its core, from weapons like katanas or mechanical hammers to armors like diferent versions of the school uniform or useful items like a variety of fruits bombs.

Other aspect related to alchemy in this game is the Growbook which is actually a grid that unlock upgrades for your characters once you produce the correct item  and have the amount of AP required, kinda like final fantasy X.

Like in the other GUST games the soundtrack  was made  by Ken Nakagawa and Daisuke Ichiwa which really give life to the game from the workshop theme to the actual hymn of the school To the future of Dreams , also include some voiced songs like the opening Run for your Life, NEE (Nikki song), Sirius (シリウス ) among others.

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The main changes from the Playsation 2 version to the psp version as are follow:

  • More items to synthesize.
  • A new optional multiplayer mode.
  • Rare items are droped by monsters in the multiplayer mode.
  • Added the Jump Start function that allows faster loading.

That all for now folks but stay tuned for the second part of this post.

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  1. […] The new Nippon Ichi Software Invasion « Animecasters […]

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