Clarity Ensues: Nintendo Introduces Crystal Red and Crystal Blue Nintendo 2DS Systems

Nintendo.Crystal2DSOn November 21, Nintendo will launch new Crystal Red and Crystal Blue Nintendo 2DS systems featuring a slick, semi-transparent design. The Crystal Red and Crystal Blue systems are launching alongside Pokémon Omega Ruby and Pokémon Alpha Sapphire, and the Nintendo 2DS is compatible with the Nintendo 3DS’ library of more than 3,000 games, including Super Smash Bros.

The system maintains many of the same hardware and connected features as Nintendo 3DS such as touch-screen controls, StreetPass, Miiverse, and online multiplayer functionality. The Nintendo 2DS is also backward compatible with the library of Nintendo DS games, and offers the ability to download games from the Nintendo eShop.

COMMENTARY: Lego Friends Video Game Appeals to Boys and Girls

Lego Friends box art.jpgRight in time for the holidays, Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment has released Lego Friends, a video game based on the construction toy line of the same name. While the game is all-ages-friendly, the target demographic appears to be young girls in particular: The box art features many of the characters that appear in the game—fresh-faced ladies of various hair colors, skin tones, and hobbies.

I first heard of Lego Friends, developed by TT Games and Hellbent Games for Nintendo 3DS and DS, months before, and even then I was interested in how it might differ from titles intended for more of a boys’ audience. Eventually, I got to demo it alongside Lego Marvel Super Heroes, a game that if not specifically for boys, is certainly a more testosterone-heavy affair. The art direction and color palette for Lego Friends are cuter and brighter, respectively. But do those factors alone—and that the main avatar and supporting characters are all female—qualify calling it a video game for girls? Could it still conceivably appeal to other audiences? [Read more...]

Moshi Monsters’ Katsuma Is Unleashed on Nintendo DS and 3DS

MoshiMonstersMoshi Monsters: Katsuma Unleashed was released for the Nintendo DS and 3DS. The game features six monster-ific worlds, and the 3DS version includes StreetPass secrets—18 explorable levels, 12 playable mini stage challenges, seven boss battles, and additional mini games where users play as each of the Moshi Monsters using their own unique moves.

Moshi Monsters: Katsuma Unleashed was created as part of the partnership between Activision Publishing Inc. and Mind Candy, the company behind the children’s brand, Moshi Monsters. The game was developed by UK-based studio Sumo Digital Ltd., and is available at retail and katsumaunleashed.com.

Disney Planes the Video Game Launches Exclusively for Nintendo

Disney PlanesDisney Interactive has announced that Disney Planes the video game is available at retailers worldwide. The game is exclusive to all Nintendo platforms including the Wii and Wii U systems, as well as the Nintendo 3DS and Nintendo DS handheld systems.

Inspired by Disney’s animated comedy-adventure film, Disney Planes continues the storyline with Dusty, a big-hearted, speed-loving crop duster voiced by actor and comedian Dane Cook. Players can embark on races and global adventures with Dusty and other characters from the film including Ishani, voiced by Priyanka Chopra; Echo, voiced by Anthony Edwards; and Bravo, voiced by Val Kilmer.

From Propwash Junction to China, players will soar across different environments inspired by the film, playing as any one of 10 of the film’s most memorable characters. Co-op play for two players is available on any console mission. Meanwhile, handheld players will enjoy six different film-inspired skies and the option to play as any one of six characters.

Four different modes of gameplay include Air Rallies, Story, Free Flight, and Balloon Popping. Free Flight mode is exclusive to console play, while the handheld has an exclusive Challenge mode.

Mind Candy Partners with Activision for Moshi Monsters Game

Katsuma_Unleashed_AUSMind Candy has partnered with Activision Publishing Inc. for a new video game, Katsuma Unleashed. The game is planned to hit store shelves on October 11 in Europe and November 5 in North America, and is currently in development at UK-based studio Sumo Digital for the Nintendo DS and 3DS handheld gaming systems.

Katsuma Unleashed is a side-scrolling, action-adventure platform game designed to appeal to Moshi fans of all ages. In a move away from the previous two titles, the game will feature stand-alone hero character Katsuma. As the franchise’s most popular Moshi Monster, players will embark on a voyage with Katsuma through new worlds packed with mini arcade challenges and boss battles. Along the way, Katsuma will have to battle enemy characters using powerful new capabilities, including Furi’s Smash and Diavlo’s Flight, in order to rescue other Moshi Monsters. Another feature available in the 3DS version is StreetPass secrets—18 explorable maps and monster attack games where users get to play as each of the Moshi Monsters, each with its own unique set of moves.

D3 Publisher Debuts Turbo: Super Stunt Squad Video Game

turbo-super-stunt-squad-400D3Publisher debuted Turbo: Super Stunt Squad, a new action game that features the characters from the upcoming DreamWorks Animation  film, Turbo, set to hit theaters July 17. Each playable character has its own signature street style and skills including jumps, drifts, slides, flip, and other super stunt moves. Key features of the game include multiple upgrade and unlock abilities, and larger than life courses, all of which vary depending on the game console used. Turbo: Super Stunt Squad is available for Wii, Wii U, Nintendo 3DS, Nintendo DS, Xbox 360, and PlayStation 3 entertainment systems.

Commentary: Get the Party Started in The Croods: Prehistoric Party!

bat 0004 dvd o-sleeveThe Croods: Prehistoric Party!, inspired by the DreamWorks Animation animated film, The Croods, is now available for Wii U, Wii, Nintendo 3DS, and Nintendo DS.  The Croods premieres in North American theaters today.

A while back, I had the opportunity to check out The Croods: Prehistoric Party! at D3Publisher. Whether or not you’ve seen the movie, the Croods family is lovable and takes you on an adventure through dozens of mini-games. The game is fun for all ages and is great for family time or single play—the Wii U and Wii versions support up to four players.

Some of the games key features are highlighted below. For more information on The Croods: Prehistoric Party!, visit www.d3publisher.us. [Read more...]

Mattel Releases New Monster High Video Game

Mattel has released a new video game for the tween-girl franchise, Monster High. In the new game, Monster High: Skultimate Roller Maze, players can pick a character and skate their way through the crypts of Monster High and other schools along with a team of friends. The game is available on Wii and Nintendo DS at major retail stores.

Kids’ Hit Cartoon Series Comes To Life With Transformers Prime Video Game

The battle to protect mankind from the evil Decepticons rages on in the Transformers Prime video game from Activision Publishing, Inc.

Created for kids and based on the animated television show produced by Hasbro Studios seen in more than 170 countries and airing on The Hub television network in the U.S., Transformers Prime allows fans to take on the roles of Optimus Prime, Bumblebee, Arcee, Autobot Ratchet and Bulkhead as they fight through heroic battles against the Decepticons all around the world. Players will engage in brawler-style combat and diverse driving sequences in order to save Earth from the sinister Megatron and his new secret weapon, Thunderwing.

Transformers Prime is available now for Nintendo‘s Wii system, and the Nintendo 3DS and Nintendo DS hand-held systems, and will be a day-one launch title for Nintendo’s new Wii U system launching on November 18.

For more information and exclusive updates, fans can visit www.TransformersPrimeTheGame.com.

Talking, Singing, Dancing Lalaloopsy Doll Hits Shelves

As the holiday curtain rises, Lalaloopsy is poised to grab the spotlight with Lalaloopsy Silly Hair Star, the talking, singing, and dancing doll.  On her stage, Harmony B. Sharp tells jokes, speaks funny phrases, and sings and dances to five classic kids’ songs with a Lalaloopsy twist. Accompanied by her pet kitty, which also doubles as a “purr-cussion” instrument, Harmony B. Sharp performs on her stage, aka her doll stand.

Already a Lalaloopsy Silly Hair Star, Harmony B. Sharp makes a special cameo appearance in Activision’s upcoming video game, Lalaloopsy: Carnival of Friends, available October 30 for the Nintendo 3DS and Nintendo DS handheld systems. Specially marked boxes of Lalaloopsy Silly Hair Star: Harmony B. Sharp contain instructions to find an exclusive code that unlocks her character in the new video game.

For more information, visit the world of Lalaloopsy at www.lalaloopsy.com.