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Go West! Week Thirty-Five: E.X. Chaos Troopers - JAPANATOR






Go West! Week Thirty-Five: E.X. Chaos Troopers


10:00 AM on 11.25.2012
Go West! Week Thirty-Five: E.X. Chaos Troopers photo



Welcome back, ladies and gentlemen, to Go West!, your weekly column about Japanese games and a man slowly descending into insanity. We've hit week 35, which means I'm one step closer to the edge, and I'm about to break. 

Bad music-related pun notwithstanding, the shelves are relatively packed with new titles this week, so there'll probably be something for everybody. 

Enough with the chit chat! Follow me after the break as I play games and lament the lack of Idea Factory releases this week.

New releases for the week of November 18-24:

Playstation 3:


E.X. Troopers
Capcom
Online Price: PS3 version: 6,421 Yen ($80.90) 3DS version: 5,706 Yen ($71.90)

The Lost Planet franchise has always struck me as a huge waste of potential. Monster Hunter proved that there's an audience for games that revolve around fighting giant monsters, and Lost Planet 2 really botched its chance to capitalize on that.

While E.X. Troopers takes place in the Lost Planet universe, it's a very different beast. Described as a manga-esque high-speed action game, this spinoff game is a cel shaded, ultra stylish 3rd person shooter that has its roots firmly set in the anime world. The game is quest based, and if you perform well you earn gold and experience points, all of which go toward upgrading your equipment and move list. Giant monsters and crazy foot soldiers are the enemies of the day here.

In the PS3 version of the game, you can take the fight online and partner up with two friends to take down monsters in the game's VR mode; a collection of optional quests that can get quite tough. The game also features three on three team deathmatch. Unfortunately, the 3DS version of the game lacks online play, so if you don't have friends close by, you're out of luck. On the plus side, all the VR missions can be played with two bots, so you won't be missing out on content.

E.X. Troopers isn't a complicated game, but it makes up for its simplicity by just being a good time. There's lots of stuff to do, the characters are fun and quirky, and the visual style is great. You really can't go wrong by picking this up for either system. 

Plus, it reminds me of Mega Men Legends. Le sigh.

Chaos;Head Noah
5pb
Online Price: 6,579 Yen ($82.90)

From the folks who would later go on to bring you the brilliant Steins;Gate, Chaos;Head is a pretty hit or miss affair. I personally didn't like it all that much, because I found the main character absurdly unlikable. I get the whole idea of making the MC an otaku, but the protagonist of C;H is such a shut in weirdo that I don't want to get to know him. In story heavy games like these, that's pretty much the nail in the coffin for me.

Still, I know there are fans out there, which makes this port a good thing. I've said it before with Steins;Gate, but I'm really glad that 5pb has started to show the PS3 some love.

Import only if you have an advanced hold on the Japanese language.

Chaos;Head - Love Chu*Chu 
5pb
Online Price: 5,865 Yen ($73.90)

Much like the romance spin-off that Steins;Gate got, Love Chu*Chu is an alternate timeline in which the main character gets a chance to make any of the main female leads fall in love with him. It's the romantic comedy to Chaos;Head's horrific tragedy, so to speak.

I'm beginning to think we'll see a similar release for Robotics;Notes somewhere down the line. Considering the tone that game strikes, I'm finding it hard to imagine what sort of route 5pb would take.

Like the original Chaos;Head, import only if you have a firm grasp on Japanese.

Playstation Portable:

Kokoro Connect: Yochi Random
Bandai Namco Games
Online Price: 6,024 Yen ($75.90)

For our weekly anime game, Kokoro Connect steps up to the plate. I've noticed it's been getting a surprising amount of coverage in the weekly game rags, but on closer inspection, it's exactly what it looks like.

That's right, another adventure game! Huzzah!

Where Kokoro Connect differentiates itself from the rest of the bunch is in the way the characters actually animate when talking. Checking out the trailer should put things into perspective. It also helps that the original author has come in to pen the brand new scenario. This fortunately isn't a retelling of the anime story, but rather a brand new event that befalls the characters.

If you're a fan of the original series, you could do much worse than Yochi Random. Just make sure you can read Japanese.

Wand of Fortune 2 FD: Kimi ni Sasageru Epilogue
Otomate
Online Price: 5,786 Yen ($72.90)

One day, a mysterious fairy named Bell appears before Lulu in her dreams. In order to repay a debt to Lulu, the little fairy reveals that she can travel to and fro through time. Hence, she offers the main character a chance to change her own fate. By using Bell's power, Lulu will be able to see three different destinies that await her, in which she ends up falling in love with a different person. Which fate will she choose?!

Yeah, this is probably the weakest otome-ge synopsis I've read in some time. It's not crazy enough to be interesting, and it's way too generically wishy washy to want to read for the romance. 

I say stay away from this one.

[And that's all for this week's edition of Go West!. Thanks for reading as usual, and I apologize for the somewhat irregular posting schedule. Hopefully I'll be able to get things back to normal soon, as there's some big releases coming up in the next few weeks. In the mean time, stay tuned for more Japanese game goodness, and feel free to ask any questions you might have below!]






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