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N Plus review (DS)

Source: videogamesblogger.com

N+ on Nintendo DSAs you may or may not know, N+ — also known as “N Plus” — is an update to the beloved and award winning N flash-game, N+ brings the action-puzzle platformer to the DS (there’s also an N+ version on PSP).

With all the features of the cult favorite and more added (see details below), it faithfully translates the old-school look and fast & fluid action of the online game to the handheld. N+ will have players leaping and avoiding obstacles using the excellent physics and collision detection while they scour each level for as much gold as they can reach before finding the switch and opening the door to the next challenging level.

System: DS, PSP
Genre: Platformer, Action, Puzzle
Release dates: August 26th 2008 (USA/Canada/Mexico/Latin America)
Players: 1-2 simultaneous (Multi-Card)
Developer: Metanet Software & SilverBirch Studios
Publisher: Atari
Origin: America
Rating: E for Everyone with Mild Fantasy Violence
Pricing: $19.99

N Plus DS screenshotYour god-like speed, dexterity, jumping- sliding- & climbing powers, and reflexes are all the result of an amazingly fast metabolism; sadly, so is your natural lifespan of 1.5 minutes.

Like all ninjas, you have an unquenchable thirst for gold, a natural propensity for exploring rooms infested by increasingly lethal ninja-killing robots, and a devour belief in N.

N is a highly advanced system of spiritual, cognitive, and physical training. It emphasizes pacifism, humility, and the need to traverse five rooms before the end of your lifetime; a feat known only as ‘beating an episode.’

In accordance with the teachings of N, it is your profound hope that one day you will develop your skills, intelligence, and inexplicable ability to reincarnate, necessary to achieve mastery of all N+ levels.

The gameplay modes are:

* Tutorial: Before you begin Single Player Mode, you can play through the tutorial, which will assist you with sharpening the basic ninja techniques necessary for surviving and developing your N+ skills.

* Single Player Mode: Whether you are racing through an open room avoiding Zap Drones, jumping over Floor Guards, or navigating through a maze scattered with Timed Mines, your objective is clear… SURVIVE!
– Note: Aside from the single player game, that you can continue at any time, there’s the option to choose an episode, access your latest statistics, and look at your saved replays in user data.

* Cooperative Multiplayer: Team up with another cunning ninja in Cooperative Multiplayer Mode. In this mode players assist one another in order to survive an onslaught of enemy attacks. Be careful and remain in tune with your ninja skills. Your partner is counting on you! Work together with your ally in order to survive. Get the exit door open at any cost! Only one ninja must get to the exit, but it won’t be easy.

* Competitive Multiplayer: Now prove there is no other ninja with your level of skill and intelligence. Move with speed and agility, but move with purpose. Don’t let your competitor steal all the gold… that could prove fatal! Accomplish your goal faster than your adversary and stay alive.
– Domination Mode (competitive match type): The goal of this mode is to own as many black switches as you can. The ninja that has activated more switches gains time and the other ninja loses time. Have your ninja grab red colored switches to turn them black. Keep control of the switches and keep your time up!
– Tag Mode (competitive match type): You’re it! The only way to become a Tag Mode master is to make contact with your opponent making them ‘It’, then stay untouched for as long as possible. Whoever is ‘It’ loses time. Lose all your time and it’s game over for you.
– Blitz Mode (competitive match type): A race to the door. Race your ninja to the door as many times as you can in the time provided. The ninja with the most ‘doors’ wins!

Features included in N+ are:

* Hundreds of built in Levels: Conquer over 200 levels in single player or play with friends in over 100 Cooperative and 50 Competitive levels!

* PURE and PLUS modes: Play in PURE mode reminiscent of classic “N”, or try out the new enhanced PLUS mode only in the handheld versions!

* Ninja Techniques: Master stealthy Ninja techniques like wall-climbing and missile dodging to get past deadly laser drones, homing turrets, and other deadly enemies!

* Networked Content: Download new maps and replays from the N server. Design new maps or show off your slick ninja moves.

* Level Editor: Design maps and share them with friends or the world using the integrated level editor and the infrastructure modes of the Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection on the Nintendo DS (and the PlayStation Portable system).

* Unlockables: N+ offers optional unlockables such as different-colored ninjas, extra music tracks from up-and-coming video game music producer 5 Limbs, extra single and multiplayer level sets and more!

If you haven’t played the flash original N, you might want to watch the following N+ trailer for the platformer and action gameplay described in this review to make sense.

Click on the bottom-right corner arrow to view it fullscreen.

As a conclusion let’s rate N Plus on its fun-basis.

FUN FACTOR – 9.0
I can fully endorse the game for fans of the flash N original, the Xbox Live Arcade N+ game, or simply anyone who want to feel like a badass pixel ninja! Simple button-controls and a cheap $19.99 price make N+ easy to recommend. The best news is that it has 350 all-new levels and a new music soundtrack. The graphics are a perfect fit for this type of game, minimalistic but heavily stylized. You get all the simple-but-fast gameplay you want, and it lets you perform amazing acrobatics that’ll make you feel like you’re on the top of the world, or you’ll die dozens of times in a row and are left nearly pulling the hair from your head! No matter the outcome, your skills will improve over time making this challenging gem of a game crazy addictive.

Graphics – 7.5
You can play with either classic/pure or enhanced/plus visuals. In both settings the graphics come off as minimalistic yet incredibly sharp. The stylized character and level design gives the game a charm of its own.

Audio – 8.0
The fantastic music beats in the many retro-sounding techno tracks drive you forward in the game. The sound effects are pretty standard, meaning the death and other impact sounds are satisfying enough but don’t ‘pop’ like the music does.

Ingenuity – 9.0
The simple pick-up-and-play controls can be summed up like this: Running, jumping, and dying in unpleasant-yet-comical manners has never been more fun. If you happen to be a long-time fan of the N series, then you should know that this portable version has slightly different physics giving the game a bit of a controls-feel learning curve compared to the other versions, but it works great in the end.

Thanks to the DS stylus the level editor is simple to use (compared to the PSP version I tried). The zoomed-in and zoomed-out views of the level displayed on the DS’ dual-screens give a good overview, too bad there are no camera controls though (same story on the PSP where its set to medium view only).

Frustratingly difficult as the level design may be at times, since you’ve go unlimited lives that challenge makes for platforming at its best. The spot-on physics deliver gameplay that almost seems to be there to let you know that, if you die, you’ve got only yourself to blame!

Replay Value – 9.5
You’ll be playing this for many hours in a row. It won’t be easy, but you have all the skills needed to display your ninja mastery. Be clever, cunning, and quick. Unlock all of the level groupings to discover hidden bonuses and features. Once you get hooked, you’ll want to play through all 350 included levels and there are tons more to download for free.

The single player experience is expanded by the game’s support for: wireless multiplayer, unlockables like ninja colors, online community leader boards, local level sharing as well as the ability to upload your created levels that might get included on the levels downloadable content that comes out twice a week, and then the downloadable content in the shape of those user-created levels — only the PSP has unlimited storage for the free weekly levels downloadable content compared to 8 save slots on the DS — but you can browse/rate/download/play countless levels made by others this way. Altogether this gives N+ near-unlimited replayability.

Published on November 2nd, 2008 under , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Competition time: Win a DS Lite handheld and N+ games

Source: videogamesblogger.com

Nintendo DS Lite Onyx Black handheldN+ on Nintendo DS

Welcome to our “DS Lite handheld and N+ games” competition where you now have the chance to win two copies of Atari’s new N+ game along with a Nintendo DS Lite Onyx Black handheld!

First prize: A Nintendo DS Lite in Onyx Black color, 1 copy of the N+ game for DS and miscellaneous N+ swag.
Second prize: 1 copy of the N+ game for DS and miscellaneous N+ swag.

This all in celebration of the first portable release of N+ on August 26th. N+ will have you leaping and avoiding obstacles using the excellent physics and collision detection, while you scour each level for as much gold as you can reach before finding the switch and opening the door to the next challenging level… or dying a painful death and trying again and again till you make it in this fiercely addictive fun game.

What do you need to do to win? Answer this question: “Ninjas versus pirates. Who would win?” D

What are the rules? Winners must be located in the USA and age 18 and over. All you have to do is leave a comment on this page with your answer before September 25th has passed by. The winners will be announced the next day. Fill out your real email so we can contact you if you win (your email will be invisible to other readers, only the site staff can see it). Good luck!

Get hyped, watch a trailer for N+ on DS:

Published on August 25th, 2008 under , , , , , , , , , , , ,

N+ PSP preview: I’m a pixel ninja!

Source: videogamesblogger.com

N Plus PSP screenshot
N+ AKA “N Plus” is an update to the beloved and award winning N flash-game, N+ brings the action platformer to the PSP (at the same time there’s N+ on DS) when it’s released on August 12th, 2008, in America. Created by Metanet and developed by SilverBirch Studios, Atari will be publishing the game.

With all the features of the cult favorite and more added (full features list at the bottom), it’s faithfully translating the old-school look and fast & fluid action of the online game to the handhelds. N+ will have players leaping and avoiding obstacles using the excellent physics and collision detection while they scour each level for as much gold as they can reach before finding the switch and opening the door to the next challenging level.

N Plus for PSPHaving now played the nearly finished version 1.02 of N+ on PSP, I can fully endorse the game for fans of the flash N original or Xbox Live Arcade N+ game. This portable version has slightly different physics giving the game a bit of a controls-feel (re)learning curve compared to the other versions, but it works great in the end. The best news is that it has 350 all-new levels and a new music soundtrack. You’ve got all the simple-but-fast gameplay you want back (play with either classic / pure or enhanced / plus visuals) to perform amazing acrobatics that’ll make you feel like you’re on the top of the world OR you will die dozens of times in a row and are left nearly pulling the hair from your head! No matter the outcome, your skills will improve over time making it addictive as heck.

The final game will have full support for wireless multiplayer, cartridge sharing ability (upload levels that might get included on the levels DLC twice a week), unlockables, local level sharing, downloadable content — only the PSP has unlimited storage for the free weekly levels DLC compared to 8 save slots on DS — and community leader boards… meaning gamers will be able to settle, once and for all, who is the greatest ninja of them all. I don’t know if I’m the best, but by now I’m definitely feel like a badass pixel ninja!

If you haven’t played the flash original (link at the start of this page) you might want to watch the following N+ trailer for the platformer and action gameplay described in this preview to make sense.

Features for both the PSP and DS versions are:

* Hundreds of built in Levels: Conquer over 200 levels in single player or play with friends in over 100 Cooperative and 50 Competitive levels!

* PURE and PLUS modes: Play in PURE mode reminiscent of classic “N”, or try out the new enhanced PLUS mode only in the handheld versions!

* Ninja Techniques: Master stealthy Ninja techniques like wall-climbing and missile dodging to get past deadly laser drones, homing turrents, and other deadly enemies!

* Networked Content: Download new maps and replays from the N server. Design new maps or show off your slick ninja moves.

* Level Editor: Design maps and share them with friends or the world using the integrated level editor and the infrastructure modes of the PlayStation Portable system and the Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection on the Nintendo DS.

Published on August 6th, 2008 under , , , , , , , , , , , ,

N+ downloadable level packs coming to Xbox Live Arcade. The new DS and PSP versions now set for August 2008

Source: videogamesblogger.com

N Plus logoA blog post from the developers of N+ has revealed that they have submitted three downloadable level packs for N+ to Xbox Live Arcade and that one of them will be available for free.

According to the poster, the map packs will contain over 750 new levels! *gasp* He also says that the new multiplayer maps in particular (over 300 of them) are a lot better than than the ones that were included out of the box with N+, since they have had more time to find out what works and what doesn’t, and to further improve them. He also says they included even more co-op maps, since they are quite popular, and that they are harder than any of the ones before.

Finally, he teases us by saying, “There’s also a small bonus in each pack which will remain secret for now . . . or will it?!”

He also reveals the release date of the DS and PSP versions of N+ as August 2008.

Here’s the premise of N+ . . . You are a ninja. Your god-like speed, dexterity, jumping power, and reflexes are all the result of an amazingly fast metabolism; sadly, so is your natural lifespan of 1.5 minutes!

Like all Ninjas, you have an unquenchable thirst for gold and a natural propensity for exploring rooms infested by increasingly lethal Ninja-killing robots. N emphasizes pacifism, humility, and the need to traverse 5 rooms before the end of your lifetime; a feat known only as ‘beating an episode’.

In accordance with the teachings of N, it is your profound hope that one day you will develop your platforming skills, intelligence, and inexplicable ability to reincarnate to achieve total mastery of all 300 levels.

Game features for both DS and PSP include:

* Hundreds of built in Levels: Conquer over 200 levels in single player or play with friends in over 100 Cooperative and 50 Competitive levels!
* PURE and PLUS modes: Play in PURE mode reminiscent of classic “N”, or try out the new enhanced PLUS mode only in the handheld versions!
* Ninja Techniques: Master stealthy Ninja techniques like wall-climbing and missile dodging to get past deadly laser drones, homing turrents, and other deadly enemies!
* Networked Content: Download new maps and replays from the N server. Design new maps or show off your slick ninja moves.
* Level Editor: Design maps and share them with friends or the world using the integrated level editor and the infrastructure modes of the PlayStation Portable system and the Nintendo Wi-fi connection on the Nintendo DS.

Here are three new trailers for the DS version of the game.

Official: N+ is crack, check out these user levels

Source: thexboxdomain.com

If you haven’t already I highly suggest you at least give the demo for the XBLA title N+ a try. N+ perfectly combines platforming with puzzle gameplay and it even has a level creator thrown in the mix. Did I also mention it has four player versus and co-op? Anyway, K4n4ge and 007Craft made these cool looking N+ maps using the level creator and it makes me want to jump on N+ and create some masterpieces of my own.

-Michael “Thrills Killa” Pacheco-

Published on February 27th, 2008 under , ,

On Xbox Live Arcade today: N+ and new Rock Band tracks

Source: videogamesblogger.com

1600 Microsoft Points Card for use on Xbox LiveFrom today, at 9AM GMT (2AM PDT), you can play Metanet Software’s N+ on Xbox Live Arcade for Xbox 360. N+ will be available worldwide for 800 Microsoft Points (that’s US$10 / €9.60 / £6.80 / CAN$12.40 / AU$13.20).

Quench that aching thirst for more intense platformer action! N+ features more than 400 levels, a custom level editor so you can build your own challenges and share them with friends, access to leaderboards, achievements, the ability to upload your high-score runs, several delicious flavors of (2-4) multiplayer, several new enemies, and the ultimate test of your amazing ninja skill. Watch the “N+ Invades Reality” trailer:

Key game features include:
* Addictive gameplay: N+ features run-and-jump gameplay with hilarious ragdoll physics. It’s easy to get into, but challenging enough for the hardcore gamer.
* Many, many levels: Featuring well over 300 all-new levels, the game also includes a built-in level editor for players to create their own levels. Additional level packs, including the classic N levels from the PC version, and multiplayer level packs, will be available in the future.
* Multiplayer modes: Multiple cooperative and competitive multiplayer modes are included. Try survival, race, or co-op play.
* Replays: Each level can be replayed to see how fast you completed the level.
* Additional content: Check out additional ninja costumes for both single-player and multiplayer games, and skin your dashboard the N+ way.

Rock Band Special Edition for Xbox 360
Like every week, there were also various downloadable Rock Band tracks released for the Xbox 360 version of the game in addition to 2007’s downloadable Rock Band content. Below’s listings show the three:

Content: “El Scorcho”
Price: 160 Microsoft Points
Availability: Canada and United States
Dash Text: [ESRB: T (Teen) MILD LYRICS,MILD SUGGESTIVE THEMES] Build your Rock Band library by purchasing this song game track: “El Scorcho” — Weezer.

Content: “Sex Type Thing”
Price: 160 Microsoft Points
Availability: Canada and United States
Dash Text: [ESRB: T (Teen) MILD LYRICS,MILD SUGGESTIVE THEMES] Build your Rock Band library by purchasing this song game track: “Sex Type Thing” — Stone Temple Pilots.

Content: “Why Do You Love Me”
Price: 160 Microsoft Points
Availability: Canada and United States
Dash Text: [ESRB: T (Teen) MILD LYRICS,MILD SUGGESTIVE THEMES] Build your Rock Band library by purchasing this song game track: “Why Do You Love Me” — Garbage.

* PLEASE NOTE: Many Rock Band song game tracks are available as both a multipack and as a single game track. These song game tracks are exactly the same (unless expressly noted as a special version or remix). Be aware that it is possible to download the same song game track twice so please carefully consider your purchases. For music credits, visit www.RockBand.com.

Published on February 20th, 2008 under , , , , , , , , ,

Star Wars: The Force Unleashed gameplay wrapped into one bundle of joy

Source: thexboxdomain.com

Inside of me the hype I feel for Star Wars: The Force Unleashed is slowly reaching a boiling point which hopefully will explode this summer. After so many subpar Star Wars games could this new title be a wonderful next-gen experience wrapped in Star Wars lore?

The only thing that could possibly worry me is could levitating enemies get a bit boring once the novelty has worn off?

-Michael “Thrills Killa” Pacheco-

Published on January 29th, 2008 under , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

FIFA Street 3 demo now available on XBLM

Source: thexboxdomain.com

fifa-street-xbox360.jpg

In great wisdom raining down from the EA BIG overlords, FIFA Street 3 can now be tried out by way of a demo found on the Xbox Live Marketplace. As the EA BIG Street/Tour Series winds down its debuts on “next/current”gen hardware, there’s only one question left. Where is SSX? SSX will be seen in glorious HD, right?

Content: FIFA Street 3 Demo
Price: Free
Availability: All Xbox LIVE regions
Dash Text: [ESRB: E (Everyone)] Download the demo for FIFA Street 3 and enjoy the ultimate arcade football experience! Take the worlds best players to the streets and experience all the style, flair and attitude of street football like never before. Visit www.fifastreet3.com for more info.

[Via Major Nelson]

-William “thewilleffect” Bell-

Published on January 17th, 2008 under , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

FIFA STREET 3 video lot

Source: thexboxdomain.com

943743_20071022_embed003.jpg

The next in line of the EA BIG Street Series of games is FIFA Street 3. Interested parties most likely will want to see what’s in store. After critical disappointment when regarding NFL Tour, hopefully this one is a bit better. 2 new videos are after the break.

Release Date:
US: February 18, 2008
Europe: February 22, 2008

[Via Totally360]

-William “thewilleffect” Bell-

Published on January 16th, 2008 under , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

LIVE Activity for week of 1/7

Source: thexboxdomain.com

xbox_360_live.png

Xbox 360 Top Live Titles ( based on UU’s)
1 Halo 3
2 Call of Duty 4
3 Guitar Hero III
4 Gears of War
5 Rock Band
6 Assassin’s Creed
7 Madden NFL 08
8 Mass Effect
9 Forza Motorsport 2
10 FIFA 08

Top Arcade Titles (Full Versions)
1 Omega Five
2 Metal Slug 3
3 TRON
4 Bomberman LIVE
5 UNO
6 Sonic The Hedgehog 2
7 TMNT 1989 Arcade
8 Worms
9 Arkadian Warriors
10 Marble Blast Ultra
The above arcade list is based on full versions purchased.

Original Xbox Top Live Games
1 Halo 2
2 Battlefield 2: MC
3 Star Wars: Battlfrnt 2
4 Counter-Strike
5 Fable
6 Madden NFL 08
7 Call of Duty 3
8 Rainbow Six 3
9 Crimson Skies
10 Street Fighter Anniv.

Rhythm games it is. Rock Band and Guitar Hero III are in the top five. Aren’t peripherals supposed to be hard to sell? As far as Omega Five, has anyone bought and finish it here? If so, pat your self on the back. Ikaruga is up next whenever it releases if you haven’t already conquered that back on the Dreamcast or Gamecube.

[Via Major Nelson]

-William “thewilleffect” Bell-

Published on January 16th, 2008 under , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

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