The long history of pretty good indieszero games you probably didn’t play: a guide

Sushi Striker: The Way of Sushido released earlier this month! We say that because E3 makes June a busy time, and also because, if early reports are accurate, not a lot of players picked it up. This is not new for developer indieszero, making its decades-long mission delivering interesting, quirky games that may slip your notice! Let’s look at the team’s history and break down what you may have missed.

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What do you need to know about Tales of Vesperia?

Tales of Vesperia is making a comeback! As part of the E3 2018 announcements, a definitive edition of the game was announced during Microsoft’s media briefing. This remaster will be the complete version of the game for the Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, Xbox One and PC. The first trailer shows the formerly PlayStation 3 exclusive characters and offers a glimpse at a crisp world filled with familiar characters. But what do you need to know about this game before its Winter 2018 debut? Let’s review!

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Review: PixelJunk Monsters 2 demands perfection in defense of its tiki tower title

While the PixelJunk franchise’s PS3 heyday has long passed, many of its concepts are well worth another look. None were ever quite as popular as PixelJunk Monsters, so developer Q-Games’ return to it doesn’t exactly come as a surprise, but a lot’s changed in the world of tower defense in the past decade and what the team kept, and scrapped, is interesting to explore.

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Which Otomate otome games can people enjoy in English?

There is a name people caught up in the otome game craze should know: Otomate. This is the branch of Idea Factory that devotes itself to making games for women. These tend to be visual novels with dating sim elements, though Library Cross is a mobile RPG and I Will Protect You was an Otomate Forte Metroidvania. Lots of Otomate games have been released in English for people to enjoy! Depending on the system you own, you could have at least one title to try.

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One route in The Charming Empire offers a dark view of court life

The Charming Empire is an otome visual novel that does not shy away from darker elements of life as a member of the royal family. While these are themes that can come up in many of its storylines, it is especially evident in Kei Yoshimine’s storyline. After all, he is a kidnapped prince who was brought to Japan in the Taisho era, held as what is basically a prisoner and is left to act as a tutor to players’ avatar as the story begins. The sides of court life players see here and the lessons learned offer an insight into a plausible world that is not as bright and lavish as people might expect.

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What do you need to know about SaGa?

It is a great time for fans of Square Enix’s SaGa series! Romancing SaGa 2 was ported to multiple platforms and released worldwide. SaGa: Scarlet Grace was the first new entry in the series in over 11 years when it was released on the PlayStation Vita in Japan in 2016. Basically, it feels like it is experiencing a renaissance. Which means it is a good time to review what makes it so special.

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Hakuoki is big on alternate histories

The Hakuoki series has always been one that offered an opportunity to enjoy alternate histories. Adding supernatural creatures to retellings of historical events is going to do that. As is adding in romance elements, since the players falling for these warriors will want happy endings with the men they love. Hakuoki: Kyoto Winds and Edo Blossoms takes this concept to new heights. These new and expanded storylines offer even more alternate takes, some of which play with the course of fictional events.

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Review: Atelier Lydie & Suelle ties up a trilogy

Gust’s Atelier series releases in groups of trilogies as of late. For example, Atelier Rorona, Totori and Meruru are part of the Arland trilogy, while Atelier Ayesha, Escha & Logy and Shallie make up the Dusk line. We are now at the end of another group. Atelier Lydie & Suelle: The Alchemists and the Mysterious Paintings is a game pulling double duty. It is expected to provide people an opportunity to help a pair of twins develop the best atelier in their town, while also wrapping up all of the Mysterious series’ storylines. While this particular trilogy has not been the most enthralling in Atelier history, this installment tries to make up for its predecessors’ story shortcomings while quickly tying up loose ends.

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Review: Ni no Kuni II builds a nation of imagination

The return of a property mashing up all-stars, Ni no Kuni II: Revenant Kingdom aims to step out of its predecessor’s shadow. It uses animation work from those with Studio Ghibli experience, but no longer has a connection to the studio itself. It comes from the team behind many core Dragon Quest titles, but moves further away from some of that series’ tropes while retaining what works in a more divergent context. It tells a tale of idealized innocence, without for a second apologizing for it. And it never lets up on the charm.

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