Maximum Tune 2 has just started shipping, this follow-up to the well-known streetracing game from Namco features 6 new cars, 10 new adversaries, a new ranking system, the legendary Hakone circuit and up to 4 players simulatneous play! The ability to save your progress and your vehicule's tuning on a IC card is ofcourse still present. Interesting fact, cards are totally interchangeable between both versions of the game. Another streetracer; Faster than Speed by Sammy offers you an amazing sense of speed, especially with the nitro boost enabled. Above this, 12 different (tunable) vehicles are available to race on the 12 featured circuits. This game is available as a dedicated cabinet, a kit (fitting almost every existing cabinet) or a simple Atomiswave cartridge (to replace very easily and at low cost the disastrous Maximum Speed). Like all Atomiswave games, its low price is its most appealing characteristic. While we're at talking about racers, a Mario Kart Arcade GP location test will take place in the UK, we'll give you the date very soon.
Here's the final ranking of this european championship that took place last weekend in Norway. The swedish Kasu wins the cup. The 2nd and 3rd positions are occupied by the englishmen K-Dogg and Stelisevil. The norvegian Snute finishes fourth and the dutch T_Bone_X_Zeo is fifth. Follow; 6th: Haggar (Norway), 7th: Drummer (Italy), 8th: Bonzo (Norway), 9th: OJK (Norway). Notice our national Eric's very good performance who ranks 10th! Well done Eric! Considering this ranking, we see that players from the northern countries are the best at this kind of game. This event was the opportunity to experiment large scale multiplayer gaming with a demonstration of 20 players simultaneously dancing on 20 different mats... You can consult the complete ranking at this URL: http://home.samfundet.no/~sesse/ec2.pl.
After Will Wright (Sim City), Yuji Naka (Sonic), Gunpei Yokoi (Game Boy) & Marc Cerny (Marble Madness), Eugene Jarvis received the "Game Developers Choice Award for Lifetime Achievement" during the ceremony that took place on march 9th at the Game Developers Conference in San Francisco. This prize, awarded once a year by the International Game Developers Association rewards developers who dedicated their life to improve video gaming. Former Midway employee, Eugene Jarvis is known as the creator of Defender, Robotron: 2084 and more recently the Cruis'n series. While developing games, Eugene always tries to offer the highest amount of "fun" to the player and always managed to find the means to achieve that. You can enjoy the meaning of the word "fun" by playing his two latest titles (made by his "Raw Thrills" company); The Fast and the Furious and Target: Terror. Both distributed in Europe by Namco. A new version of this last one was just released. Named "Target: Terror Gold", this upgrade offers 10 bonus games, new graphical effects and a new scoring system. This game is available as a kit fitting any cabinet (whatever the screen resolution is)!
The DDR European PG Cup 2005 will take place this weekend during The Gathering 2005 demoparty (that began yesterday) at the Vikingskipet in Hamar (Norway). Organised for the second time in a row by Positive Gaming & M-Games, this tournament gathers the 20 best european Dance Dance Revolution players and 40 highly skilled challengers. The opponents will do their best on 3 Dancing Stage EuroMIX 2 machines from Konami. Here's the schedule: on friday 25th at 18:00, surprise tournament lasting 40 minutes, then at 20:00, local communities leaders meeting to talk about including all communities into a large european one. On saturday 26th: official tournament from 9:00 to 19:00. Finals will begin at 17:00 and will be displayed on big screens. Eric Fjøsne from Brussels will represent Belgium at this tournament. Good luck Eric! S'Tsung who ranked 2nd at the DDR Belgian Tournament will represent Czech Republic. The event can be followed in real-time on IRC: #ddrnorway on efnet. And for the Dancing Stage addicts, one URL: www.ddrbelgium.be.
The next big european show about arcade games will undoubtedly be Enada Spring 2005 that will take place from 10th to 13th march in Rimini Fiera (Italy). All the latest machines will be showcased; from video games to pinballs, jukeboxes, billiards, automatic dispensers, kiddie rides, gadgets, and other equipments. One goal of this show is to make exchanges and meetings easier. Many seminaries are planned, talking about the market evolution and the way to encourage its changes. Some pratical infos: entrance (10 €) is of course limited to professionals. Open hours are from 10:00 to 18:00 on thursday, friday and saturday and from 10:00 to 16:00 on sunday. Here's the official website: www.enadaprimavera.it.
A small report of the open days that took place last week can be found in the articles ("Reports" section). We rather talk about the showcased products than about the event itself but we kept is short since we'll review all these titles soon. So, keep an eye on this page! We noticed that many visitors have been very interested in the latest video games, notably OutRun 2 SP, Ghost Squad and The Fast and the Furious.
You dreamed about it, Namco made it! Unveiled yesterday at the AOU Amusement Show in Chiba (Japan), this version of Nintendo's famous racing game promises epic duels between friends. With its first Triforce title, Namco causes a stir. Presented in a modified Maximun Tune cabinet, this game will offer 24 different tracks divided in 6 "cups". You'll have to choose 3 bonuses before race start including various projectiles to launch at your opponents' face with a button on the steering wheel. Jumps are back in this "GP" edition (press both gas and brake pedals simultaneously to activate it). The cabinet features a camera allowing the game to display your face above your kart. Announced characters are Mario, Luigi, Peach, Wario, Donkey Kong, Yoshi, Bowser, Toad, Blinky the ghost, Ms Pac-Man and her well-known husband. Let's finally mention the possibily to use a magnetic card to save your best times and acquired objects... The japanese release is scheduled towards the end of the year. You'll find pictures here, here and there and some videos there.
On tuesday 15th and wednesday 16th of february (so next week) from 10h to 18h, National Music Company will open its doors. Based in Brussels, Namusco is the official belgian distributor for Sega, Namco and Gaelco video games. These open days will be the opportunity for the professionals that weren't in London for the ATEI to try the latest games specially imported from the U.K. for the event. If you've never been there, you can check the map on their website: www.namusco.be ("Contact" section). Remember to bring your invitation with you!
The ATEI was a success once again. For the very first time, Sammy and Sega were sharing the same booth, that didn't avoid the fact that Sammy games looked pale aside their brothers from Sega. Another fact is that there are more american and canadian companies among the video-games exhibitors with manufacturers like Global VR, Triotech or Visual Sports Systems decided to regain the space left by the defunct Midway. We already told you about the games showcased by the different companies so it's useless to talk about it again. But we strongly advise you to check these two reports (in pictures): The first can be found at www.flippers.be and the other one at Arcadia amusements. Don't hesitate to come talk about it on our forum!
Tomorrow the ATEI will invest the Earls Court in London. Once again for 3 days, you'll discover the latest arcade games and other coin-op products. These are the games to be showcased by the main manufacturers; Konami: Dance Stage Fusion (dancing stage), Thrill Drive 3 (driving) and Lethal Enforcers 3 (shooting). Sega: Initial D 3 Cycraft (Cycraft version of the driving game based on Shuichi Shigeno's manga), Virtua Striker 4 (football game that for the first time features the true european players!), Mushiking (cards), Ghost Squad (the shooting game we reviewed last month), OutRun2 SP (OutRun2 upgrade kit, also exists in deluxe format) and two games with satellites; Derby Owners Club - Horse Shoe Edition (upgrade of the World Edition) and World Championship Club Football (football game that's played using Panini cards). Sammy: Faster Than Speed (driving), Ranger Mission (shooting), Extreme Hunting (shooting/hunting) et The King of Fighters Neowave (fighting). Namco will showcase his Tekken 5 and perhaps Wangan Midnight Maximum Tune 2 (Maximum Tune update) and Cobra: The Arcade (shooting game based on the classic sci-fi manga "Space Adventure Cobra"). The American UltraCade Technologies will present a brand-new horse racing game called Breeder's Cup World Thoroughbread Championships Tournament Edition. Regarding other coin-ops; Namco will bring a pusher named Pacman Ball which features a video screen and Sega will unveil his SpongeBob Squarepants redemption game (with tickets). More info on the ATEI 2005's official website.
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