PAX West 2019: NISA (Nippon Ichi Software of America)

Tuesday, September 10th, 2019

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It should come as no surprise to anyone that I met with NISA at PAX West and played some games. And while I may have secretly been hoping to get hands-on time with the newly announced Langrisser games, there were plenty of other great titles available. The trick for me was finding games I hadn’t played at E3, but I managed to spend time with 3 very compelling upcoming titles (well, technically 3 and a half). Here they are, listed in alphabetical order.

Destiny Connect | Cutscene 2

I have to admit, Destiny Connect: Tick Tock Travelers wasn’t on my radar before playing it, but now it is thanks to NISA. Mostly that was because I erroneously thought it was only coming to PS4, but it turns out it’s also coming to Nintendo Switch! It’s a charming little game all about robots, time travel and cartoony graphics that are quite appealing. Another mark in its favor is that it’s a turn based RPG, which I prefer to other versions.

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Though the art drew me in, so did the quirky characters. The game is set in the town of Clocknee at the turn of a new millenium. While the real world didn’t suffer from Y2K, it hits Clocknee hard, freezing the populace and unleashing a horde of crazed robots. Every single enemy I fought in the game was some sort of silly robot, usually a typically safe appliance brought to horrible life. Most of my characters were young children, but then there was Isaac. He’s a massive tank of a robot, and his time traveling powers give you the ability to travel to strange periods of time in your adventure.

Destiny Connect | Cutscene 1

Frankly I was pleasantly surprised by Destiny Connect, especially since it’s coming to a system I can play it on. If you like what you see, you can check it out very soon, as it is coming to both Switch and PS4 this October 22nd.

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I was more than a little surprised to see La-Mulana during the NISA demo. The reason being, the sequel came out pretty recently. But I know oftentimes games are published more than once by different companies, and thus it is here. The upside is, NISA is publishing two for the price of one with La-Mulana 1 & 2. It’s coming to PS4, Switch and Xbox One, and in a attractive physical Hidden Treasures edition to boot.

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Normally I would say a lot more about the demo, but most people have played one of the La-Mulana games by now. It’s quirky, challenging and good fun. I have yet to beat the original myself, since I get lost pretty easily, but I still am drawn to the series. If you enjoy hunting for treasures and slaying ancient beasts, you owe it to yourself to check this compilation out. La-Mulana 1 & 2 is slated to release on PS4, Switch and Xbox One in early 2020.

Psikyo | Samurai Aces

The last game I played with NISA is actually more like two games. It’s none other than Psyiko Shooting Stars Alpha and Bravo, a collection of the cult classic SHMUPs that’s only coming to Nintendo Switch. I spent some time playing Dragon Blaze via the Alpha collection, and had my butt handed to me repeatedly. But in a good way.

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Psikyo Shooting Stars is a massive collection split two ways. The Alpha games consist of Strikers 1945 I, II and III, as well as Sol Divide, Dragon Blaze and Zero Gunner 2. As for Bravo, it has the following titles – Gunbird and Gunbird 2, Gunbarich, Samurai Aces, Tengai and Sengoku Cannon: Sengoku Ace Episode III. That’s a lot of games to push into 2 physical editions, but I’m glad it’s happening. I’m one of those old school gamers that prefers games I can touch, and any compilation of a bunch of hard to get classics like this is worthwhile. Even if I am terrible at SHMUPs that are this challenging.

Psikyo | Gunbarich

If you’re interested in Psikyo Shooting Stars Alpha and Bravo, you’re in luck. They’re both slated to release close together in early 2020 as Switch exclusives. So if you are one of those people that believes there’s nothing worth buying on Switch, you now stand corrected.

All in all, I had a great time checking out these games with NISA this year. Stay tuned to oprainfall for more coverage of quirky and indie games as they release! And be sure to check out our continuing coverage of NISA titles.

About Josh Speer

Josh is a passionate gamer, finding time to clock in around 30-40 hours of gaming a week. He discovered Operation Rainfall while avidly following the localization of the Big 3 Wii RPGs. He enjoys SHMUPS, Platformers, RPGs, Roguelikes and the occasional Fighter. He’s also an unashamedly giant Mega Man fan, having played the series since he was eight. As Head Editor and Review Manager, he spends far too much time editing reviews and random articles. In his limited spare time he devours indies whole and anticipates the release of quirky, unpredictable and innovative games.