This Week In Gaming News

Other than the release of the much anticipated Vita, it’s been a bit of a slow week. However, there are a few things worth mentioning that have the gaming universe a stir.

PS Vita [BoxTitle]The PlayStation Vita Hits North America[/BoxTitle] [Trailer][/Trailer] [BuyNow][/BuyNow]

The long awaited follow-up to the PlayStation Portable was finally unleashed to American consumers this week. It’s too early to tell what the sales numbers are, but Sony is optimistic that it will fare well in today’s rough and tumble marketplace.

Sony does have reason to be optimistic; critical response to the hardware has been positive, and news that the 3DS is doing well proves that there’s life for portable gaming systems after the iPhone. A pretty nifty launch-line up of software also helps, but time will only tell if the masses bite.

Pokemon Was On The iPhone, For A Little While At Least
Over the President’s Day holiday weekend, a pair of apps popped up on the App Store with the names Pokemon in the title. Did Nintendo finally get into bed with Apple? Of course not; they were simply slapped together junkware designed to rob people of their money.

The first was simply a collection of images related to the franchise, and that’s about it. The second claimed to be a port of Pokemon Yellow, the Game Boy classic, only the final product didn’t work for anyone. Who knows if it was shoddily programmed or if that was supposed to be a dud. After a few days of negative attention from the press, the apps were pulled by Apple.

God Of War 4 And Black Ops 2 Outed By Retailers
Everyone knows that it’s inevitable, but it would appear that follow-ups for two of the biggest franchises of the modern era are indeed forthcoming. Despite no official announcement for either title. All thanks to loose lips on the part of the foreign retail outlets.

God of War 4 is now available for pre-order thanks to a video game chain store in South Africa. For a short period of time money could also be put down for Black Ops 2 on Amazon France, before Activision demanded the listing be yanked. Word on the street is that the publisher is livid but no news yet if Sony will react to their golden boy’s premature arrival.

JSR Is Coming To XBLA And PSN
Fans of Sega from back in the day can rejoice. A port of one of the most beloved titles for the dearly departed Dreamcast is coming back. Sega has just released a teaser hyping the arrival of the cel-shaded, rollerblading / graffiti spraying sim.

Because the name was not actually given, there’s no word yet on what the official title could be. Just keep your fingers crossed that the entirety of the soundtrack makes a return as well.

The Last Story [BoxTitle]The Last Story Is Actually Arriving In America[/BoxTitle]

Operation Rainfall, the grassroots campaign to bring over a trio of RPGs for the Wii to America appears to be paying off once again. The second game of the bunch, The Last Story, has just been announced for a domestic release and Nintendo will share publishing duties with XSEED.

Along with the previously confirmed Xenoblade Chronicles, all that’s left is Pandora’s Tower. No word on that one yet, but if the first two titles do well, we may have all three in the end.

Sequels That Could Have Been, Recently Uncovered
Often times games that never make it to market are never known to the masses, but sometimes word gets out, especially when said company ceases operation and no longer has the fear of getting sued for breaking a non-disclosure agreement.

As is the case with GRIN, the Spanish studio that helmed the ill-fated Bionic Commando revival. Apparently, they were working on projects related to Streets of Rage and even Final Fantasy. The one though that has gotten everyone’s imagination churning is a teaser to a Strider reboot that we will not be getting.

The Next Metal Gear Might Be Made By Americans
Kojima Productions, creators of the Metal Gear saga, are opening a studio here in America. In California to be exact. They’re in the midst of a hiring frenzy, though the job descriptions themselves don’t offer much insight as to what to expect in their final product.

Their websites cite the need for help to bring the latest MGS to high-end consoles and PCs. And while hearing that part 5 is slated for the Xbox 720 and the PlayStation 4 is hardly a shocker, this is the first time that word has been uttered of a PC port. The last time MGS was ever on computers was part 2, about ten years ago.

Skyrim iOS maps [BoxTitle]A Map For Skyrim Is Now Available For iOS[/BoxTitle]
Given how helpful the iPhone is for real world travels, the kingdom of Skyrim could certainly use something similar, given how vast its lands are. And that’s precisely what Bethesda thought as well.

Available as a free download, initially, is the Skyrim Official World Interactive Map. The download has a map of the world in its entirety and all 9 hold capital cities. But for detailed info, you’re going to have to pay in the form of micros-transactions. Which provides specific and valuable info like points of interest, where to learn new shouts, and even were potential wives can be found.