Starting us off this week is a big bang: Yakuza 5 is confirmed to be in development! I know, I know, if you are a human on planet Earth, there is a very good chance you never played Yakuza 4, let alone 1-3, but you should, as they are fucking great games. The news is that Yak 5 will be headed once again by series creator Toshihiro Nagoshi, and will be developed by his newly christened Studio Yakuza. But wait, there’s more! Famitsu also confirmed that Studio Yakuza is developing Yakuza Black Panther 2 to release on the PSP some time in 2012. Could this be the greatest crossover in videogame history? A world weary ex-gangster and a superhero from Africa fighting the power? Will those two ever get along?
Also, just as a final note, Nagoshi has been spending his time since Yak 4 on a game called Binary Domain, which just looks… neat. Check it out here. Binary Domain is expected to drop this February. When will we get Yakuza: Of The End? No fucking clue.
Speaking of HUGE news about games very few people have played, we can expect more Persona in the near future! First, the utterly fantastic Persona 4 is being developed for the PS Vita! Famitsu reported that the Vita version of P4 will be expanded, featuring a new character, new voiceovers, and some sort of multiplayer wireless functionality. Also, and I don’t know how I feel about this, BlazBlue makers Arc System Works are working on a Persona 3/4 fighting game for the 360 and PS3. The game is literally a fighting game where you play as selected characters from the third and fourth Persona games. Two things are certain here: the game will look absolutely gorgeous, and the content will be insanity. Finally, to put the cherry on this metaphysical sundae, Persona 5 is confirmed to be in development! Japanese blog Andriasang confirmed that the series’ director, composer and character designer were all back for P5, but no other details were confirmed except that it should be a good long while before the game comes out. Expect good things!
HEY! The two of you with 3DS’s! You can get your 10 free NES games now! You may not have known this, as Nintendo made every every to make this process as convoluted and uncessarily difficult as possible, but they are there for the taking. First, go to the 3DS Store, then click “settings,” then click “Your Downloads,” and finally be prepared to download each game one by one. At the end of the day, you’ll have Zelda 1 and 2, Mario, Metroid, and many others, so it’s kind of worth the hassle. Still though, wtf Nintendo? Why you no want us have games? We are your “ambassadors” after all!
We got some news this week from Bioware as to the future of the Mass Effect franchise. Specifically, Dr. Ray told PC Gamer (they still exist?), that after Mass Effect 3, Shepard’s story will be “complete.” In short, Shepard will NOT be in any future Mass Effect games, of which you can bet there will be plenty plenty more of. Also, maybe most importantly for me, Bioware has decided, through the audience applause-o-meter, that Lady Shepard (the only way to play, lulled by the dulcet tones of Jennifer Hale’s sultry voice), is a redhead. I approve.
Have you had enough Deus Ex: Human Revolution this week? After a massive review and an even bigger Free DLC Spoilercast, we certainly have. Even so, if you are just longing for more, it looks like Deus Ex: Human Revolution will be getting DLC in the near future. A series of ARG clues left by publisher Square Enix pointed industrious gamers at a series of images and URL’s until they uncovered a message, hidden in plain sight on the official web page’s RSS feed. The DLC will reportedly be called “Missing Link” and will take place during the three-day period that Jensen was stuck on that freighter traveling from Shanghai to the Omega Ranch. The catch? Apparently the mission will require Jensen to operate without the use of his augs. Expect official confirmation on or around September 8th. As for us? That game is great and all, but we are Deus Ex’d out.
In case you are like most people and are not a subscriber to any MMO that is not World of Warcraft, I have good news! Star Trek Online, a terrific but underrated game, is going free to play! Kelvin Lau, CEO of Cryptic’s parent company, Perfect World Entertainment, told investors on an earnings call last week that Cryptic was currently working on the free to play model and expected it to launch by the end of the year. All of my feelings about this can best be summed up into three words: Suck it Jeff.
In other news, EA said some smack about Origin not being an exclusive platform for all EA games going forward and EA publishing other people’s games on Origin, but honestly I don’t care enough to elaborate. Let’s just let that one play out and see where it goes. The marketing guys over at Playstation had some fun with announcing the fake retirement of fake “VP of many things” Kevin Butler, and then announcing his unretirement with this video. Fun stuff. On the Professor Layton front: the upcoming 3DS title, Professor Layton and the Last Specter, hitting on October 17, will come bundled with an exclusive North American bonus called Professor Layton’s London Life RPG, which will reportedly feature over 100 hours of gameplay. This may be the second Professor Layton game I have ever bought. All it took was those three little letters… and a graphical style reminiscent of Earthbound.