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TGS 08: LocoRoco 2 and the curiously embargoed trailer

Strangely, only one thing we reported on at Tokyo Game Show this year was under embargo. And that was this LocoRoco 2 trailer. Why? We don't know. If you read our hands-on impressions, you'll know that we're absolutely in love with this rather substantial sequel. Take a watch and see if you can find all the new gameplay features and enemies.

TGS 08: LocoRoco 2 grabs us with cuteness and depth

"Sorry it took so long," LocoRoco designer Tsutomu Kouno told me. In spite of the original's high-profile and well-received launch on the PSP, it's been over two years since we saw these lovable blubbers hit Sony's handheld. The silence around the long-rumored sequel is a bit baffling, as getting our hands on with the upcoming PSP title revealed a disarming amount of new content for the sequel.

It's undeniable that the original LocoRoco charmed hardcore gamers, thanks to its lovable style and rather unique design. However, it couldn't keep the attention of these gamers, as it was perhaps a bit too simplistic. While children and casual gamers were enchanted, hardcore gamers needed substance beyond tilting left and right.

So perhaps LocoRoco 2 is Kouno's attempt at bridging the gap between hardcore and casual audiences. The upcoming PSP-exclusive sequel maintains all the saccharin sweetness of the original, but adds new gameplay features that add a tremendous amount of depth to the experience. The sheer amount of content found in this UMD/downloadable game is staggering.

Gallery: LocoRoco 2

Continue reading TGS 08: LocoRoco 2 grabs us with cuteness and depth

LocoRoco 2 trailer is predictably adorable

Download to PSP

This new LocoRoco 2 "special movie" found on the official Japanese website shows us just how cute things on the PSP can be. The art direction looks about the same in this highly-anticipated sequel, along with some kawaii music that can get a little annoying if you listen to it more than once. The cute little blobs demonstrates some of their new skills here, such as swimming and biting. Stay for the end, which makes us wish there was a LocoRoco TV show.

[Via NeoGAF]

PSP software support way down, recovery is likely

We knew software support for the PSP was relatively dire but this chart says it all. According to Siliconera, who've compiled a comprehensive analysis of publisher support, 2006 was the peak while 2007 saw a huge decline. The top six contributing publishers to the PSP's software library have all taken a considerable dip in scheduled titles, but Siliconera also points out that 2008 is actually starting to curve upward.

Does that mean we're on the cusps of a healthy and steady recovery? Possibly, as games like Dissidia: Final Fantasy and LocoRoco 2 are on the way this year, and future titles like Resistance: Retribution and The 3rd Birthday are also on the way. The report is a very good read; we suggest you check out the whole thing at Siliconera for an in-depth look.

Check out these E3 LocoRoco 2 screens

We knew it! We knew we'd be seeing LocoRoco 2 at E3. We even made the prediction before the game was shown for the first time in Famitsu.

Now that Sony's press conference has passed, it's time to check out all these tasty new screens. It should get you excited for all the glorious gaming to be had soon.

Gallery: LocoRoco 2

LocoRoco 2 official site opens, includes screens

The official Japanese LocoRoco 2 site has opened, and it includes the very first screenshots of the recently announced sequel. Unsurprisingly, the new LocoRoco looks exactly like the original. For those that were captivated by the charming style of the first game, that's far from a bad thing. Those that play close attention will see some of the LocoRoco's abilities (like swimming, pictured above). Stay tuned, because a game as big as this one will obviously garner a lot of attention.

LocoRoco sequel already 75% done

While LocoRoco 2 was only officially announced yesterday, it's been in development for quite some time. According to Famitsu (via 1UP), the title is already 75% complete. The sequel will feature the return of the original's Moja Troop, but this time they have some tricks up their sleeves. They'll be after the adorable LocoRocos with the power of music. Uh-oh! "The Moja Troop are back with some new bosses, but this time they've also learned some songs," director Tsutomu Kouno says. "They've been practicing as hard as they can, and they've learned how to use music to sap the energy out of everyone. Now nobody feels like doing anything, so the LocoRoco have to go around the world and pep everyone back up again."

According to Kouno, the game will retain the same simplistic charm of the original. "We've tried our best not to change the core gameplay too much," he says. "We're being careful to keep it from getting too complex, and in addition to that, we're putting in lots of new features for people who played the first game to enjoy." But, expect new moves, such as the ability to go underwater and the ability to bite things.

Will we get to play it at E3? We hope so. Sony plans on showing new PSP games at E3, undoubtedly. This would be an ideal candidate.

LocoRoco 2, Patapon 2 both revealed in this week's Famitsu

According to PSPHyper, this week's issue of Famitsu is going to be all about PSP. Sounds sweet. Even sweeter, is hearing that in this issue, LocoRoco 2 and Patapon 2 are both confirmed. Well, for Japan anyways. Patapon 2 is set for Japanese release this Winter 2008 while LocoRoco 2 does not have a date.

Now now, don't worry folks; we're sure both titles will make State-side appearances soon. We're positively sure we're going to be seeing these titles at E3 this weekend. Stay tuned to PSP Fanboy, we'll have something up soon that'll help prepare you for all the exciting, upcoming E3 goodness.

LocoRoco 2 due out sometime 'this year'

The only issue with our subject line is that we can't discern the context of "this year", as quoted by SCE UK's product manager Claire Backhouse, when it comes to the release of LocoRoco 2. In addition to talking about the busy summer ahead for the PSP, whether it be increased incorporation with the PS3 and Remote Play, or the new Go!Range set of utilities adding GPS and voice video calling among other things. She says that "The key software titles we have coming out this year for PSP include Echochrome, Buzz The Master Quiz, Secret Agent Clank and LocoRoco 2." Whether this means 2008 or the fiscal year which ends at the end of March 2009, we don't know. But expect an announcement soon for your favorite rolling blob.

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