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Sunday, August 23, 2015

The Online/Offline Experience (21/08/15)

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The follow-up to the month of June's double portion of Taiko livestream awesomeness is a broadcast featuring a Test portion before the actual beginning, alongside with the reveal of new and exciting Taiko no Tatsujin content for the next few months. Let's begin!

As you may guess, the Test Stream corner has been mostly about the fans having some early chat with our usual Taiko Team stream hosts. Hi-jinxes ensued in more than one way, with the solitary Taiko 15th Anniversary poster behind the hosts' backs falling to the ground and weird polls concerning Masubuchi and his facial hair...

The composing drummer of the Taiko Team had to leave before the actual livestream portion could begin, but prior of that he asked to the streamers how to shave his beard. After the goatee initially winning the poll displayed (resulting in a reaction shot from Masubuchi some minutes later), he ended up with only light toothbrush mustaches, as also posted by Takemoto in the Taiko Team twitter account some minutes later (link).

The Test portion also featured the definitive sheet of comment goals for this livestream run, which -predictably enough- have all been reached during the 5-hour broadcast.

Now, on with the actual livestream run! The top-runner topic of the livestream has been the Taiko 2016 tourney talk.

The incoming Taiko tourney will have many ways to access for the most skilled players, and Etou revealed some of those for the Japanese audience! Once again, the main divisions for the tournament qualification are two: Middle School students and Up and Elementary Students and Under.

The former category will see the contestants play in Shop Preliminary contests and prefecture-grouping Area Preliminary contests for the Shop winners, with only one winner for each Area Preliminary to reach the World Championship 2016 finals.

The 3-arc structure is also applied for the kids-oriented Elementary School and Under division, with the only differences being a single Preliminary match instead of multiple Area Preliminary ones for the winners of each of the Prefecture Preliminary contests. It's also important that the kids have been authorized by their parents/tutors/guardians in order to participate!

As mentioned before, these are only two of the different ways that people can join the fun! It just happens that we have to wait a little longer for the remaining ways.

The tourney talk ends with the team highly considering the received tournament-related suggestions and a schematic rundown of the Finals, directly leading to one of the stream's guest hosts!

Composer/notecharter Kawagen Collagen joined the livestream as the new judge of the currently-running CreoFuga song-making contest for Taiko games, discussing the entries made by the independent Hall of Famers with their CF creations and commissioned works.

The hour-long talks with Kawagen escalates into a pretty interesting update for the current contest! Aside from the winning songs chosen by the Taiko Team, the common listeners are able to vote for their favorite song in the contest to become the winner of the 'Donder's Choice' award and join the songlist of Taiko games together with the other winners!

Votes will be gathered in a couple of ways: through Twitter votes and Banapassport user support, by spending special tickets that will be available by clearing other CreoFuga-spawn songs. Both the methods of vote above will start from October, with the details to be given out in a later date.

After a short break, the Taiko Team returns with a short bit of trivia about ≠MM, Taiko V Version's incredibly brutal boss track. All the speculation and facts we previously gathered about the song in one of our previous feature articles were proven to be right, as the song's actual pronounce is Dewanai Nisen (ではない にせん), with the two capital M letters standing for the Latin wording of the number 2000. Etou also confirmed that the song is NOT an actual 2000 song, despite the fact that Linda AI-Cue was somehow involved in its creation.

Continuing the news bombshell load, the boss song unveiling was followed by the reveal of Atsumete★Tomodachi Daisakusen, the third Taiko videogame for Wii U coming out in a few months this year. The reveal was also followed by the full-resolution picture of this cover, with what seems to be the main theme of this console game: companion animals!

Aside from the game in itself, the very first announced aspect of the game by the Taiko Team answers what has been the main complaints among players of Taiko no Tatsujin Tokumori: where are the brand-new songs? Why do we mostly get only recycles?!?

The picture above answers the worries for the incoming game with the shouting of many brand-new tracks of all kinds, and judging by the ones we were able to spot by squinting our eyes at the early boxart images, we can already say so for the licensed genres! The picture above, however, already tells us three more songs in the lower lines to join the game: returning songs Bolero and Soul Calibur II (for the Classic and Game Music genres respectively) and Namco Original song Issho ni Asobo♪ (いっしょにあそぼ♪, lit. 'Play Together♪'), possibly Wii U 3's theme song.

Taiko sibling Kat-chan will have its time to shine on this new console game, as the signature mode Buddy Attack will have the blue-faced drum as the main star! Nothing else has been said, but it's still heartening to see Wada Katsu having some share of glory. (now where are my Dondi/Calcutta and Yomogimaru again)

Being a 15th Anniversary title, the Game + Tatacon bundle version of the game will have some special goodies for the franchise's milestone, also hinting of the (still unspecified) support with amiibo, Nintendo's proprietary series of figure characters compatible with an array of Wii U software.

And above, here's a complete rundown of the 15th Anniversary goods: a Taiko Brothers mobile strap, a set of 2016 calendar pins, a Don-Chan Face Can, a Tomodachi Daisakusen seal, a Wada House wallpaper and five Taiko x Studio Ghibli magnets. Neat!

Although the game's website is still inactive with a teaser image, the presentation ended with a reminder of coming back on Monday 24th (tomorrow!), when it will be officially open for consultation.

Ending the the console side of the news, let's gear towards the arcade front, with Murasaki Version starting the month of September with a new update, adding (among the other things we'll about to discuss below) the song Dream Parade (ドリームパレード) from the PuriPara Anime series.

The monthly unlocks are next in line, featuring the brand new Namco Original Break Line (ブレイクライン) as September 2015's DonChare song. Next month's two-parter outfit is inspired to Kaguya-hime (かぐや姫), with the headgear awarded by playing once in September and the body gear being available as a Rewards Shop item for September only.

Etou also mentions the revival of the limited Summer Title Parts gacha, mentioning for the first time that said gacha will also have title parts that were NOT available last year!

Coming up next is the Touhou Project x NAMCO SOUNDS collaboration, which will also be introduced with the September 1st Murasaki update.

Wanna know what is this about? Here it is! ...

...yeah, the hosts' PC had a hiccup during this part, so have separate pages instead!

The collaboration will feature a special mixed gacha, in which Banapassport players are able to claim Touhou unlock through the use of event-linked tickets, gained upon clearing Touhou-related songs. Seven iconic character from the franchise can be unlocked this way, both as petit charas and as title parts!

Participating to the event are also the four NAMCO SOUNDS remixes of popular Touhou songs, which are FINALLY making their debut into publicly-accessible Taiko arcades!

For a more convenient browsing, the 'Touhou Songs' custom folder will make a comeback. The collaboration's first month is also more generous towards double plays, granting more tickets to 2-player sessions! The event will end on October 18th, as this banner shows.

In collaboration news we also have a reminder to the Chain Chronicle collaboration, which now has reached its last form on Murasaki arcades, with the Ura modes for the two medleys being unlocked last Tuesday.

What wasn't made clear about the arcade collaboration were the unlocks, which consist not only of the Phoena and Pirika outfit, but also of two limited titles, unlocked by respectively clearing and Full Combo-ing both the Normal Battle and Final Showdown medleys.

On the other side of the mirror, Chain Chronicle players are able to craft the A-Rank Don-Chan Hammer and to access a Taiko-themed dungeon until the end of this month, both for the iOS/Android and PS Vita versions. On Taiko, however, the collaboration content will last until October 13th, as this picture says.

Collaboration time continues with the Taiko V Version campaign, with a swift reminder to every content involved for the campaign that we already know about: Maple/Lira da Gamba coaster unlocks, outfit discount periods, the four Monday songs from V Version, the campaign's custom folder for V Version ticket farming (and 2-player play bonus), V Version's ticket gacha for the collaboration's outfits, title parts and secret song...

...wait, WHAT?!?

That's right: Murasaki Version players will be able to unlock Norudon 2000 from the next month's beginning! While the song can be unlocked with some luck through the aforementioned ticket gacha, it's also possible to score the unlock by clearing the Oni mode of the four V Version songs from the event, even after the V Version campaign's end. Said deadline is still issued for September 23rd.

In another stretch of collaborative effort, the two Idolm@ster songs set for an Autumn release have been introduced in the stream for the first Taiko-related source citing those, revealing the name of the Side M song coming to Taiko: DRIVE A LIVE. Teaser websites for both the Side M and Cinderella Girls mini-collaborations have been issued as well, shortly after the livestream's end.

Coming up next are the Synchronica Team devs, the stream's last guest who took some time to talk about something that should make Taiko fans gloat of joy...

After Saitama 2000, Bandai Namco's latest arcade rhythm game franchise is receiving a couple of Namco Original songs from Taiko no Tatsujin: Angel Dream and Uchuu SAMURAI! Both songs will be added on September 10th.

That's not all; achieving a Full Combo in these two tracks will bring more than mere bragging rights, as Banapassport players will receive custom Taiko skin, with the markers resembling the two Taiko Brothers and Taiko Cousins.

The Synchronica portion of the stream has also been a perfect time to remind the streamers about the arcade's summer-themed event, granting the unlock of two Bandai Original tracks and a custom remix of Pachebel's Canon.

With the Hogusenu (解せぬ) title part being decided for the 30k comments livestream goal (link), the stream ended with the promised "Super Chaos Time", featuring both the Taiko and Synchronica teams doing new interpretative dance moves under the notes of... Uuuh... A soon-to-be-announced t+pazolite song for Bandai Namco rhythm games?

Eh, whathaver- if that's the case, we'll know about it in the future. For now, however, our livestream adventures come to a close once again. I hope you've enjoyed the read!

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