How Does Hamster Determine Their Release Dates?

Famitsu Translations
Satoshi Hamada (Hamster) - Title Image
Publish Date: 09/06/2018
Having begun releasing ACA Neo Geo titles simultaneously on the Nintendo Switch, Hamster hasn't missed a week since. Even though they're ports, how is Hamster's release schedule determined for them to get these titles out in such short periods of time?

Hamster Arcade Archives Series Producer Satoshi Hamada

A big fan of arcade games himself, he carries out his life's work by heading up the Arcade Archives and ACA Neo Geo projects, and also serves as the president of Hamster.

You need to obtain the original boards to re-issue arcade games!?

Hamster has been working hard to re-issue all of these games so far, but I was surprised when you started releasing Nintendo titles for Arcade Archives. What happened in order to make that possible? Continue Reading

Dracula Densetsu

Reviews
Dracula Densetsu - Title Screen
Hardware: Game Boy
10/27/1989 (Japan), 12/15/1989 (US), 09/28/1990 (EU)
ドラキュラ伝説
The Legend of Dracula
Castlevania: The Adventure
Support from Konami of Nintendo's handheld Game Boy console came quickly, and with titles from recognizable franchises early on. Castlevania was the first of such franchises, releasing right around six months after the platform itself.  Being the first real mainstream portable system, the early days of the Game Boy were a bit of a wild west. A lot of the releases tended to not be optimized for portable game play in one way or another. Castlevania: The Adventure/Dracula Densetsu didn't necessarily have that problem so much as it seemed to have been designed by people who didn't really understand what qualities made the previous Castlevania games good. Or at the very least, their appetite for trying something new and different with the series was just a little too great. Continue Reading

Akumajou Dracula

Reviews
Haunted Castle - Title Screen
Hardware: Arcade
02/1988 (Japan), 09/1988 (US), 11/1988 (EU)
悪魔城ドラキュラ
Devil's Castle Dracula
Haunted Castle
The era in which a popular game franchise practically had to have an arcade installment was coming to a close in 1988, but it wasn't over yet. It still was common for a game to establish itself as a hit in the arcade, and then have either a compromised or completely different game appear as the home console port. Castlevania/Akumajou Dracula was one of most notable exceptions that wasn't developed by Nintendo, having already had two successful entries on the NES/Famicom Disk System. That was apparently the magic number to make someone at Konami think that it was about time for an arcade game. Alright, fine...technically the first arcade Castlevania game was VS. Castlevania, which was released in American arcades in 1987. I'm not going to count that though, simply because it was just Konami test marketing NES games (there were other Konami VS. arcade games as well) in arcades before the home versions were released. It was the NES Castlevania game inside of an arcade cabinet, with some adjustments to make the game more difficult so that it could take as much of your money as possible. Continue Reading

SNK 40th Anniversary: Talking to the SNK Creators That Made History

Famitsu Translations
SNK 40th Anniversary - Group Shot
Publish Date: 08/09/2018
For the final part of this feature, we're bringing you an interview with four of the creators that worked on some of the best known Neo Geo titles. It's loaded with stories of hardships, secrets that can only now be discussed, and plenty of 100 Mega Shock! Naoto Abe (Designer): Mahjong Kyo Retsuden, Burning Fight, Savage Reign Kazuhiro Tanaka (Designer): Metal Slug, Metal Slug 2, Metal Slug 3 Nobuyuki Kuroki (Designer): Fatal Fury series, Art of Fighting series Hideki Asanaka (Sound): Real Bout Fatal Fury, Real Bout Fatal Fury 2: The Newcomers, KOF series

Anything But Metal Slug!

The Neo Geo Mini is finally on sale. So I'd like for all of you to talk about your memories of working on these well known Neo Geo titles as much as you'd like. (Asanaka) I think you're the one who started there the earliest, Abe? (Abe) I guess so. When I look back on it, the development environment there was really bad. (Kuroki) Everyone "burned", right? (Asanaka) I burned. What does that mean? Continue Reading

Neo Geo And Me File 2: Kenichiro Takaki

Famitsu Translations
Duck King
Publish Date: 08/09/2018
Executive Officer at Marvelous, President of Honey Parade Games. He develops games across many different genres for Marvelous, such as the Senran Kagura and Half-Minute Hero series.

A Genuine Neo Geo Fan Made Arcades His Home

So Mr. Takaki, I hear that you're the biggest Neo Geo fans in the game industry? (Takaki) I don't know if I'm the biggest or not, but I love the Neo Geo and I collect both the home cartridges and arcade boards. I have about 50 titles at home. Several years ago I was able to fix up my new house with a long held desire of mine: An arcade cabinet at the entrance! That's amazing! (Takaki) It's been my dream to have an arcade cabinet in my house ever since I was a kid going to arcades. Up until now I'd been renting places and didn't have enough space to have one, but I was finally able to make it a reality. Though I'd like to get a change machine now too (Laughs) Continue Reading