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Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Feature: 2015 - The Year in Hindsight


With yet another 365 days-long circle coming to a close, it that time of the year for us to take a look at what has been of the Taiko no Tatsujin series in this ending year, both in its darkest shades and its shining hours.

Sit back and enjoy this recap read, as we venture once again into Taiko memory lane for the year 2015!

January 2015

This closing year's beginning on the Taiko side was the very definition of the "Cut with the past and go forward" mentality of the New Year celebration, as the loss of old services and games meant the hints to a brighter progression for the series.

With the iOS Taiko RPG Da-don closure announced and Kimidori Version receiving its last song-bringing update (together with the Taiko x Meiji collaboration feud's ending), last January also brought new collaboration announcements (with Im@s Cinderella Girls and Assassination Classroom) and the thrills of the Tokaigi '15 and the surprise reveals it brought for the franchise, with the first official reveal of Murasaki Version being the crown jewel.

We also had the last "conventional" song pack for the second 3DS Taiko videogame. Since pikaby had his spikes of frenzied excitement, we have a picture from said pack's exclusive song as a header for the page! We are truly thankful for those moments, indeed.

February 2015


While January had the Tokaigi '15, the following month had the yearly JAEPO to further plug the future inception of Murasaki Version in pre-existing Taiko arcades, complete with preliminary newcomer song lists and the Tenkaichi Otogesai event from the past year finally coming to a close.

The console front had less to look forward to for the very near future, but nonetheless interesting additions were made for the always-running Taiko Plus -grown bigger with more song packs and an Aikatsu collaboration shared with Shinkyoku Tori Houdai- and for the Japanese 3DS front with weekly-released songs and the first Taiko themes for the system's menus.

March 2015


Roughly half a month and an all-night livestream later, Murasaki Version finally became a reality for the Japanese arcade route (and for overseas Asian players the next month). Together with that, the announcement of an even bigger collaboration event with the Idolm@ster franchise -together with returning Touhou Arrange events- made the firmware's coming even merrier.

On a more negative side, March has seen the termination of Taiko Plus's first two Popular Song Pack as separate apps, together with Taiko-enriched Variety show Kanjani no Shiwake Eight ending its run.

April 2015


For those who survived Eto's Pre-April Fools scroll-based riddle challenge, the month of April was yet another galvanizing one in the side of collaboration efforts and console grounds, as popular Japanese personalities Sachiko Kobayashi and comedic duo Nippon Elekitel Rengo (pictured above) have joined the Taiko fun in a number of ways, together with the already-anticipated Idolm@ster 10th Anniversary event.

Not only that, on April we heard for the first time about Taiko no Tatsujin V Version, the first Playstation Vita title of the series! From here, there have been long months of waiting...

May 2015


The last month of May simply rode on the many events/DLC continuation being issued from the year's beginning, while keeping on the news delivery front for V Version and more Touhou magic at the annual Reitasai. This month is also notable for overseas Taiko fans due to the franchise spawning in unusual places, from Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate DLC missions to current-gen Taiko arcade models being spotted in Brazil and Kenya!

We also had the sad task to echo the saddening news about the death of Phenotas digital percussionist Sawa "sweets" Mikihiko (澤"sweets"ミキヒコ), who contributed in the making of the Namco Original Denshi-drum no Tatsujin.

June 2015

Collegamento permanente dell'immagine integrata

Compensating for the delayed Taiko Team livestream session from the last month, June had a double portion to compensate, starring the development team of Synchronica for the first time and fully explaining the plans for the Taiko 15th Anniversary celebration on the tournament side, with another huge competition being revealed (and beginning this coming year!) and paired with another CreoFuga song-making contest.

Together with the continued news support for V Version's imminent release month, the announcement of Taiko 3DS 2's localization was made for South Korean players, with their own version getting a 2015 release later in the year. More collaboration events have risen between other videogames, such as Chain Chronicle and the Ace Combat series.

July 2015


Last July has been one of the darkest months for the gaming world with the departure of Nintendo personality Satoru Iwata; yet, in the Taiko scope of things, this was also the month of the launch of what is probably going to be remembered as the most challenging console Taiko release ever made, with the elder gamer-centric V Version's song selection of generally-hard tracks and brand new inclusions. Not only that, the twin Idolm@sters Must Songs titles were announced in the same month as well!

Together with reporting the usual DLC/collaboration reveals in the other console fronts (as well as the return of the Tenkaichi Otogesai tournament action), we also started the Sympho-Neighbours feature in order to have a glimpse on how certain themes/tropes available among Taiko songs are developed in other rhythm games franchises.

August 2015


Yes, our humble blog turned 5 last August, and thanks to our loyal readers we had some fun with another kind of special quiz, this time around headed to us -the blog editors! You can still check it out on our Contacts section, along with the interviews to both current and old staff members.

On the news side, even more Taiko no Tatsujin collaboration content made it to the west with Puzzle & Dragons and Yakuza 5 (both for NA and Europe for the first time!), while the third Taiko game for Wii U was revealed in occasion of the last August's livestream session.

September 2015


Two months after V Version's release, the dual Idolm@ster Must Songs started to have a steady flow of updates regarding their respective content alongside with Taiko Wii U news, Taiko Plus's score attack events and the hint of something white coming our way!

Bad news, however, has been the first huge losses in form of simultaneous DLC content removal, including one song pack from the 2nd 3DS game and the entire DLC catalog for Taiko no Tatsujin Portable Deluxe. Topping that was the saddening news of Vocaloid producer Takayuki 'samfree' Sano's departure, which we documented the month later.

October 2015


After a few Twitter leaks from the Arcade Operator Unit, the 2nd edition of the Tenkaichi Otogesai cross-over tournament finally began, although in the end this is turning out to be a weaker edition due to the fact of no new song crossovers between the participating external publishers' rhythm game franchise.

Leading up the pile of the other Taiko games' DLC news and minor updates are the first tangible leakes of what the Murasaki Version firmware's successor looks like. The race for an end-year triple Taiko game release is about to come to an end!

November 2015


Before the end-year new games rush we have yet ANOTHER console Taiko release in form of Atsumete Tomodachi Daisakusen, the aforementioned third Taiko game for Wii U. The update flow of news for the other currently-active and going-to-be-released games ran with no other major surprises.

December 2015


For Taiko gaming, the year ended with a bang, thanks to three Taiko titles getting a simultaneous release on the same day: the twin Idolm@ster Must Songs Ps Vita games and White Version, Taiko Murasaki's arcade firmware successor.

The support for both the the latest arcade firmware and the former 2 console games for Wii U and PS Vita was also proved to be leading strong this coming year's opening, with even more DLC content being scheduled and a month-long arcade tournament in order to anticipate the big 2016 tourney's beginning.

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This was the year 2015 in a nutshell. By looking back it's been scarily frightening about what has been lost during the course of the year, as well as the overwhelming content the Taiko no Tatsujin franchise has acquired as a whole between collaborations, loads of new games and even leaks of attempts for a greater overseas recognition.

It's kind of hard for me personally (Lokamp) to draw the line in general, as it might have been my hardest year to live on for personal reasons; regardless, I hope that the personal experiences that you guys may have carried through this year -being either positive or negative ones- can help you on positively carrying your life forward as more resolute people in the years to come.

Can't wait to write more in 2016! I hope that by then I'll be making less orthographic errors...

3 comments:

  1. The June 2015 pic best :3

    I'm so sorry that I had to put both you and tetsu through so much work this year; the commitments and stuff I had really made it difficult for me to be constantly checking in and updating the blog like I used to do.

    I'm incredibly grateful for both your efforts; keep it up wherever you can for next year guys :)

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  2. And I lovingly nickname 2015 as "tetsu got too comfortable and started to mess with things", with the Lyrics Feature Poll, that prototype list thingy (both of which should be concluding in 2016) and many others.

    Like Lok and pikaby, I myself am also getting my hands full with IRL adulting and other commitments, but that doesn't mean we're stopping (just probably even less timely and more scheduled post-oriented)!

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  3. Well I think the overseas Asian version getting 段位道場 for the first time in Murasaki should also be mentioned...

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