Gitaroo Man Lives!

Koei tweaks PAL titles

Atelier Iris and Disgaea sequels. Plus, pre-order bonuses.

Koei has tweaked the content of the PAL version of Atelier Iris 2 based on feedback from Japanese and US audiences, and will include a Japanese voice option in Disgaea 2 as well.

Gitaroo Man Lives!

Gitaroo Man Lives!

Rumours of his demise were premature, it seems.

Help! It's the middle of summer! Nothing of any note's being released! We need an emergency pointless introductory paragraph! Something to stop us inserting exclamation marks in the name of faux excitement! Contrary to Tina Turner's misguided assertions, we do need another hero. A Gitaroo hero. Eh? What is a Gitaroo Man anyway? The Jimi Hendrix marsupial experience? Now that would be some game.

Some of you might have briefly pondered this question when KOEI's charming little rhythm action fest sauntered surreptitiously onto the nation's sagging PS2 shelves back in summer 2002. Then you promptly didn't buy it. S'okay. Things have changed. The guitar is BACK. 50,000 people gathered in Hyde Park to windmill in unison last Sunday as decrepit old rock warlords The Who played a triumphant set, and the time is ripe for all the frustrated axe heroes to take their primal urges out on another game that celebrates the joy of the six string. The sequel to Guitar Hero is still months away - hence the perfect opportunity to find out what you missed from iNiS' forgotten cult classic. Essentially it's a direct port, so existing fans will be entirely familiar with pretty much everything on show (apart from the new wireless multiplayer 'Dual' mode).

Despite being cast in the flaming pit of death that is the rhythm action genre, Gitaroo Man Lives! is nothing like RedOctane's celebrated effort. Not even similar. There's no 'rocking out' to familiar classics required, nor any use of innovative peripherals to add to the novelty, but thanks to an endearingly oddball cast, some fine tunes and a solid, original control system it's well worth a strum. Probably the best way to describe it is as some sort of musical beat-'em-up, where each of the 10 stages in the game require the player to face-off against progressively tough opponents. Both you and your foe have an energy bar, and the 'bout' takes place to the strains of a generally hilariously over-the-top tune (penned in-house) while a lavish and ker-azy animation sequence takes place in the background. Constructed around a series of riffs, you generally take it in turns to attack and defend, throwing licks at one another in the hope of draining your opponent's energy bar.

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Gitaroo Man coming to PSP

Some time later this year.

Nearly four years after rhythm action title Gitaroo Man arrived on the PS2, Koei has announced that a PSP version is on the way.

Gitaroo Man for PSP

Next month in Japan.

A PSP version of Gitaroo Man is in development according to Sony's Japanese retail site. Not only that, but it's due out on 25th May.