NAMCO BANDAI Games America Inc. announced today the details surrounding its DARK SOULS II Collector’s Edition and Black Armor Pre-Order Edition. Offered in limited quantities and while supplies last, both the Collector’s Edition and Black Armor Edition of DARK SOULS II contain items that are sure to please fans of DARK SOULS; a game that has been lauded by critics and fans to deliver one of the most challenging experiences in videogame history. DARK SOULS II is scheduled to launch in the Americas on March 11, 2014 for the PlayStation®3 computer entertainment system and the Xbox 360® games and entertainment system from Microsoft. DARK SOULS II for PCs will launch in the Americas shortly after the console version becomes available to consumers.
Avid videogame collectors and aficionados will want to immediately reserve their copy of the DARK SOULS II Collector’s Edition. The DARK SOULS II Collector’s Edition will feature a premium quality Warrior Knight figurine measuring in at 12 inches in height and weighing in at nearly 16 ounces. Fans will also be able to thumb through an exclusive hardbound art-book filled with never-before-seen images created by the talented artists at game developer FromSoftware. True adventure fans are sure to enjoy the sizable full-color fabric map of the DARK SOULS II game world that can only be had within the Collector’s Edition. Topping off this extensive package is the metal game case from the DARK SOULS II Black Armor Edition which will contain both the game disc and the official game soundtrack.
Rewards also await DARK SOULS II fans that simply pre-order the game as they will automatically receive the DARK SOULS II Black Armor Edition when the game launches; while supplies last. The Black Armor Edition features a metal case that contains both the game disc and the official game soundtrack that is sure to stir emotions and set players’ mood for battle.
“DARK SOULS II possesses one of the most enthusiastic and hardcore fan bases in today’s videogame cultural sphere,” says Chris Gilbert, Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing at NAMCO BANDAI Games America Inc. “We’ve paid extra close attention when creating the Collector’s Edition and Black Armor Edition to ensure that each package offers compelling contents to both our most passionate hardcore fans and for gamers that are ready to take on the challenges in DARK SOULS II for the first time.”
DARK SOULS II will be launching in the Americas on March 11, 2014 on the PlayStation 3 computer entertainment system and Xbox 360 video game and entertainment system from Microsoft with the PC edition to follow shortly.
Leading videogame publisher, NAMCO BANDAI Games America Inc., today announced the Dark Souls®: Artorias of the Abyss downloadable content (DLC) pack for Dark Souls®, the critically acclaimed action role-playing game (RPG) developed by FromSoftware. The DLC pack will be available this winter in North America for the Xbox 360® video game and entertainment system from Microsoft through Xbox LIVE® for 1200 Microsoft Points and on the PlayStation®3 computer entertainment system through the PlayStation®Network for $14.99. Dark Souls®: Prepare to Die™ Edition for PC will be able for purchase in North America through Steam and Games for Windows® — LIVE beginning August 24.
Dark Souls: Artorias of the Abyss for consoles and Dark Souls: Prepare to Die Edition for PCs will include sprawling new maps and environments, new boss characters, enemies, non-player characters (NPCs), an arsenal of new weapons and armor and additional challenging content for stalwart heroes to face as they return to the deadly world of Lordran. Players will also experience an untold chapter in Dark Souls. Darkness born in the forests of Oolacile is expanding and engulfing the kingdom and all of its people. Only the strongest players will be able to stop the spread of darkness.
Both titles will include an online match-making feature that creates one vs.one, two vs. two and four-player battle royale scenarios; allowing gamers to showcase their skills against other Dark Souls players around the world.
“Dark Souls fans are a highly determined group of gamers, they’ve earned their stripes through countless melee encounters and challenging boss battles; releasing new content with Artorias of the Abyss will extend their adventures even further,” says Carlson Choi, Vice President of Marketing at NAMCO BANDAI Games America Inc. “NAMCO BANDAI has also been actively listening to the PC community and we are excited bring Dark Souls: Prepare to Die Edition to PC gamers via Steam and Games for Widows Live.”
Best Buy patrons will get their mitts on the Chrome Blitzer Armory which includes the increased turning speeds of the Impact armor and the increased power of the Tiger armor which, unsurprisingly, is painted in tiger stripes.
Pre-order from the giant that is Amazon and you acquire the Carbon Assassin Armory. Included is the Savannah armor which increases bullet velocity and pimps out your Vertical Tank in zebra print. You also get access to the Storm armor which increases shooting range and has cheetah like spots over it.
Finally heading to Gamestop will net you the Iron Gaurdian Armory, giving you the bright red Rock skin and the ability ignore your enemies advances with increased defense. Also included is the Jaguar skin which does resemble Jaguar print and make you a much faster foe out on the battlefield.
So get out there now and place that pre-order soldier. Dismissed
Our Score: 4 / 5 – Awesome
The Corporation run by a dictator known as “Father” has taken over. The Revolution is mounting attacks to take The City back and pure manpower alone won’t accomplish this task, as big mechanical robots with immense firepower are the key to winning. This is the third Armored Core on current generation of consoles, the fifth main entry in the series, and the fourteenth game overall.
Fans of the series will notice that the speed at which Armored Core games have played has been greatly reduced. Fear not, as thrusters and being highly maneuverable are still at the forefront here. It is also equally important to take cover behind buildings to be covert and stealthy when possible to acoid taking unnecessary damage. It’s best if you switch to the new “Scan Mode” with the click of the right stick, where you can’t fire your weapons but can scan for enemies or deploy recon units that can reveal enemies in the area. There are no more prolonged high flying sequences, as you are predominately earth-bound. You’ll be able to climb buildings for high-altitude attacks to catch an enemy off guard or destroy a mounted sniper mech that’s been taking pot shots at you across the map. You can even consume large amounts of energy to perform thruster jumps that will keep you in the air for a short time. Controlling these massive beasts is nearly effortless as you always feel in control of what you’re doing and where you’re going. The mistakes that get you killed are of your own volition and no one else’s.
Comparisons will and should be drawn to Chromehounds – a prior From Software simulation mech adventure, only found on the Xbox 360. Customization has always been instrumental in your success or failure in Armored Core, and here is no different. Building your mech could easily take an hour to get it the way you like. Whether it’s designing a custom emblem, choosing the right colors and pattern options, or buying and setting parts that don’t overload the mech – there’s a way to put your signature on it. Chromehounds had a story, but was basically a tutorial for the main mode of the game – Online. Armored Core V takes a page from that book and introduces a online-driven game where you and friends and strangers can join and create teams to take on other online teams to battle for territorial control. Lastly, you can join a Free Battle and played Ranked or Unranked games to simply have a battle arena to blow-up mechs.
With that, the menu system “logs you on” to the network in which you can immediately chat with teammates and effortlessly choose between online and offline missions. Missions are all referred to as “Sorties” which by definition means to attack from a defensive position. Story sorties are as bland as they come and often are multi-tiered to which the experience is hindered by extended missions that feel they should have ended a while ago. There is no saving mid-mission, so plan accordingly. Thankfully there are checkpoints at select locations, but are sparse. When a mission is completed you’re given a letter grade ‘E’ through ‘S’ that will also give you credits to buy more parts to outfit your mech to make it faster and stronger. The other main mission type for offline play is “Order” which are short, varied affairs that almost always take less than 5 minutes to complete, a stark contrast to that of the story. Objectives are simple, kill all enemies, destroy all enemies under a certain time, or fight a 1-on-1 mech battle. Here I found this to be the most fun even as many of the missions were similar, but never felt like a chore or overstayed its welcome. With them being so short, it’s understandable there are 83 of them.
The graphical style has improved from the prior games as there’s more color and texture, but a lot of it is muddy looking with grainy camera and oversaturated hues. It actually hurt my eyes during the day, but tolerable at night. Sound design is what you’d expect, deep bass for stomping around, a rush of noise from engaging thrusters, a hailstorm of gunfire and shrieking alarm noises that will get stuck in your head long after you’ve turned it off.
It seems with Armored Core V, there was a lot of attention paid to what fans wanted in a true sequel for the franchise – and the answer was something that went back to its roots, but was approachable by newcomers. I think that gets achieved here. It’s overwhelming at first, but once you parse all the data being thrown at you you’ll find a deep, slightly messy, and engaging game with a lot of replayability for years to come.
Retails for: $59.99, recommended purchase price: $47.99
A PS3 review copy of the game was provided by Namco Bandai for Review purposes
NAMCO BANDAI Games America Inc. today announced ARMORED CORE V will be released on March 20, 2012 in North America and on March 23, 2012 in Europe for the Xbox 360 video game and entertainment system from Microsoft and PlayStation 3 computer entertainment system. Developed by the acclaimed FromSoftware, Inc., ARMORED CORE V will bring the most intense and strategic mech battles yet to the veteran series.
The ARMORED CORE franchise is renowned in the mech action genre for its intense battles and customization options. ARMORED CORE V revolutionizes the series with massive online multiplayer battles designed around huge team-based skirmishes on a grand scale, a robust offline mode, and a completely new atmosphere. Featuring mechs or “Armored Cores” that are customized for more strategic gameplay,ARMORED CORE V focuses on tactics and effectively utilizing the geography of a level to maximize the devastating effects of attacks. Players will be able to customize their Armored Core with countless unlockable parts creating their own personal weapons of mass destruction.
“Gamers have been eagerly anticipating the release of ARMORED CORE V, which will bring strategic mech combat to new heights,” said Eiichi Nakajima, studio head, FromSoftware, Inc. “With cooperative missions, a persistent online world battling for territories and epic team battles, ARMORED CORE V is the complete action shooter package.”
The all new Operator Mode gives one player a leadership role by being able to supply his Armored Core teammates with enemy positions, movements and details.
“A quick trigger finger and razor-sharp reflexes won’t always turn the tide of battle in ARMORED CORE V,” said Carlson Choi, Vice President of Marketing, NAMCO BANDAI Games America. “The Operator adds a new layer of strategy orchestrating his team of Armored Cores to victory by finding the enemy’s weaknesses.”
NAMCO BANDAI Games America Inc. also confirmed today that ARMORED CORE fans pre-ordering the title from GameStop® stores across North America, as well as GameStop.com, will gain exclusive access to the ‘HEAVY ASSAULT PACK’ while supplies last. The pack will include additional weapons and parts that will help give players a competitive advantage on day one in the innovative and sophisticated online multiplayer battles of ARMORED CORE V.
In a future world where the arid lands have been ravaged by war, The Resistance will rise up in ARMORED CORE V, the latest title in the renowned mech action franchise releasing in 2012.
To showcase the heavily armed mechs, action and carnage that the franchise is known for, here are some beautiful shots:
Demon’s Souls, From Software’s previous title was declared one of the hardest games ever made. It to this day has a devoted fan base and while it didn’t reach record-breaking sales, it allowed for another game to be created. One detriment and complaint about Demon’s Souls was that it was a PS3 exclusive. From Software has since changed publishers and created the spiritual successor, Dark Souls for Xbox 360 and Playstation 3. …continue reading » QUASI-REVIEW: Dark Souls