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Recent Articles: Pandora’s Tower
Pandora’s Tower is the third game published by Nintendo in Japan that has made it to North America thanks to the activist efforts of Operation Rainfall. It is also the one I was most excited for of the three. The strange, beautiful trailers filtering here from Japan intrigued me, and the combat system looked refreshing and different. While the graphics are limited on the Wii, the strength of both the gameplay and the narrative drew me in. When I finally played the game, it was even weirder than I’d expected, but even with the weaknesses, I felt my 25 hours were well spent. (more…)
NetherRealm Studios (the creators of Mortal Kombat) are back with their latest game, the DC Comics one-on-one fighter Injustice: Gods Among Us. Watch Superman and Batman battle it out for the soul of the DC Universe on the PS3, Xbox 360, or Wii U this Tuesday.
This week also sees the release of the final Operation Rainfall game, Pandora’s Tower. The Operation Rainfall group worked tirelessly to find a publisher for the Wii game (along with Xenoblade Chronicles and The Last Story before it) and it is amazing that we’ll finally get to play the fruits of their labor for oursselves this week.
A trio of other games will also be available this week:
- Atlus is returning to the world of Shin Megami Tensei this week with Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Summoner – Soul Hackers on the 3DS.
- Pandora plans to release Victoria II: A Heart of Darkness, the second expansion to Victoria II.
- And the beat ‘em up Sacred Citadel is coming to the PC. PlayStation Network and Xbox Live Arcade editions should also be available this week.
When XSEED Games announced that they planned to bring Pandora’s Tower to North America, a “Spring” release date was all we had to go on. Today, the publisher has confirmed that the game (likely the final major release for the Wii) will be available in April.
In addition to a solid release window, XSEED has released a new trailer that lays out the game’s “dark fairytale” theme:
The trailer introduces players to Elena, an unassuming singer who succumbs to a wretched curse during a festival performance, Mavda, a mysterious merchant who reveals the fleshy cure to the curse, and Aeron, a young ex-soldier whose heart has forever been pledged to Elena. Aeron must now embark on a daunting journey to retrieve the flesh of twelve “masters” and free Elena of her curse.
With the release of Pandora’s Tower almost upon us, thanks must go out again to Operation Rainfall and their tireless work to secure a North American release for the game.
Pandora’s Tower is coming to North America! This Spring! XSEED Games is bringing the long-awaited JRPG for the Wii to our shores in just a few months.
Who do I thank first? XSEED, the publisher who brings us so many great games we’d never see? Operation Rainfall, the amazing team that helped bring Xenoblade and The Last Story into our arms? I’m certainly not going to thank Nintendo, who could have done this a million months ago.
I guess I’ll just thank the CEO of XSEED, Shinichi Suzuki, who had this to say in the press release: “It’s fantastic to be bringing such a highly-anticipated title like Pandora’s Tower to such a vocal fan base… North American gamers have been very patient in waiting for this game to be released, and we’re confident they will be pleased when they get their hands on the title.”
We’re confident, too. What could we not like about a “tale of unfortunate circumstance” that includes a character who “succumbs to a wretched curse during a festival performance,” and then transforms into a monster? The love of her life fights to save her, battling through thirteen towers and fighting monsters to reverse her transformation. Just watch this European trailer if you’re not convinced.
After emerging victorious in their battles to bring Xenoblade Chronicles and The Last Story to America, Operation Rainfall has now set its sights on the final game on its wishlist, Pandora’s Tower.
Changing up their tactics slightly, the group plans to pitch Pandora’s Tower directly to third-party publishers who might be interested in picking up the action RPG. To do that, they have asked their community for monetary donations to create six pitch kits. Each of these pitch kits will contain a PAL copy of the game (the game was released in Europe last week), high-resoluton printouts of concept art from Pandora’s Tower, and many of the game’s “glowing” reviews.
Operation Rainfall plans to send these kits to all of the major publishers that specialize in localizing Japanese RPGs:
- Aksys Games
- NIS America
- Rising Star Games
- UTV Ignition
- XSEED Games
Obviously, this campaign doesn’t guarantee that Pandora’s Tower will find a North American publisher, but with two wins under their belt already, I believe in Operation Rainfall.
First there was Xenoblade Chronicles, an action RPG from Monolith Soft. Then there was The Last Story, an RPG from Final Fantasy creator Hironobu Sakaguchi. And today, if you live in Europe, there’s Pandora’s Tower, possibly the last Nintendo-published game on the Wii.
The three games have become a rallying point for Operation Rainfall, a grassroots effort to convince Nintendo to release the previously Japanese-only titles in the US. The group has already succeeded with Xenoblade Chronicles (which was released last week) and The Last Story (a Summer release is planned), but there’s still been no word on Pandora’s Tower. With the game now available on European store shelves, perhaps that’ll change.
I, for one, am definitely pulling for a North American release for Pandora’s Tower. Just check out the trailer above with its operatic score, British voices, and Japanese aesthetic. Pandora’s Tower could be a hack and slash for the ages.
Nintendo of Europe has announced that Pandora’s Tower, an action RPG that was previously only available in Japan, will be released in Europe on April 13. As with The Last Story, a North American release has yet to be confirmed.
Pandora’s Tower stars Aeron, a soldier who must climb the tower and vanquish the monsters within. Defeating the monsters is the only way to find a cure for his friend Elena, who has been bound to the tower thanks to a curse. In a cruel twist of fate, the curse has also caused her to mutate uncontrollably.
Can true love conquer all? If you’re in Europe, you’ll be able to find out in April. We in America will likely have to wait and see if Xenoblade Chronicles manages to sell enough copies to spur on a release for Pandora’s Tower and The Last Story.
Nintendo of Europe has revealed their latest release schedule, and at the very, very bottom, there are two names we’ve all been hoping to see: The Last Story and Pandora’s Tower. The release date just says “Coming to Europe in 2012.”
I know it’s too soon to crack out the champagne bottle, and that we can’t consider Operation Rainfall a success just yet, but I have to admit, I let out a whoop of joy when I saw this. I understand that Nintendo doesn’t have to cater to us, but in the end, we are the hardcore gamers Nintendo keeps saying they want to please, the ones who have been desperately importing games and playing ROMs for years. Why not give in to the untapped potential that is our undying love for your quirky JRPGs… not to mention our wallets, which have Zelda maps on them? (No, seriously. My wallet really does.)