Ubi Soft has picked up the US publishing rights to From Software's Xbox mech-based third person shooter, Murakumo: Mech Hunter. What's more, a extra, Trial mode has been added to the original gameplay modes - it allows players to challenge ten mech bosses, with ten new missions in total.
Although no European plans are mentioned, it's a safe bet that if Murakumo makes an impression in the US (in a field not exactly devoid of mech games, it has to be said) it will also appear in Europe at some point.
For those to whom the word "Murakumo" could mean anything, Fromsoft's mechanised blaster is a simple game of seek and destroy. Levels are set in cityscapes, enormous industrial wastelands and various other futuristic Japanese locations, and players pilot one of several mechs in pursuit of the target enemy or enemies. The idea simply being to destroy them and not let them escape.
The game's only problem is that it's too short. We completed the Japanese version in a matter of four hours, and 10 new levels are unlikely to up the ante all that much. Still, it's a very accomplished mech game, and if it appears in Europe you could do a lot worse.
Murakumo is due out in the US in February 2003. Oh, and it's another Xbox exclusive.
Now, publishing types, how about picking up From's Otogi while you're at it?