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It’s tough to believe, but it’s been seven years since the release of Animal Crossing: New Leaf. It’s been even longer than that if you played the initial Japanese version. Animal Crossing fans have been clamoring for a new, proper entry for quite awhile now, and the wait was made especially tough since New Horizons was originally planned to launch in 2019.

But hey: the wait is finally over, and Animal Crossing: New Horizons has arrived around the world. Now that the game’s been released, we imagine that many of you have already started out on your island journey. Have you added it to your Switch library? What are your impressions of what you’ve played so far? Let us know in the comments below.

System: Switch
Release date: March 17, 2020
Developer: Nigoro / Playism
Publisher: NIS America

It seems like every other game released lately is a retro throwback to the golden gaming days of the past, just with all the rough edges smoothed out. La-Mulana 1 and 2 are a bit different. This infamous pair of puzzle games is designed in the vein of classic PC adventure and puzzle games on the MSX – rough edges included. Whereas most throwbacks tend to tone down the retro difficulty of their inspirations, La Mulana thrives on it. Make no mistake: La-Mulana 1 and 2 are perhaps two of the most challenging puzzle games ever created. While this will likely prove overwhelming for many players, those who long for the incredible payoff that come with overcoming the absurd challenges of La-Mulana’s puzzles will be more than satisfied.

Hello my lovely legos! This week on NEP, we’re tackling the sad news of E3’s cancellation as the corona virus pandemic grows globally. With E3’s cancellation, how will companies drive business strategies for this Summer and Fall? And how will this affect consumers? Will we see a Nintendo Direct and other such pre-recorded presentations this June? The sky is falling. However! We keep things light-hearted, too, as we talk about the recently released Kemono Heroes, Murder By Numbers, and the Animal Crossing: New Horizons special edition Switch console. Do you have a square to spare?

If you’re enjoying NEP, please consider giving us a 5 star review on Apple Podcasts, aka new iTunes. It’s incredibly helpful in getting us exposed to new listeners through algorithms, so we would greatly appreciate your help. Thank you for listening!

This was a big week for cancellations stemming from the coronavirus. Announcements were being made about the temporary closing of major events, sporting leagues, and venues. E3 2020 has also been impacted, as it’s been cancelled outright.

Not having an E3 this year is a pretty big deal. Yes, the conferences will go on, as the likes of Ubisoft and Square Enix are probably going to shift from live in-person conferences to digital events. Nintendo will likely have its usual Nintendo Direct as well. But it’s just not the same. Many gaming aficionados look to E3 as a Superbowl of sorts. It’s not just about the announcements, as we also get to see tons of footage of new games, learn about those games through interviews, and hear about how they’re shaping up in previews. Something else that isn’t widely discussed is that E3 gives an opportunity for all types of industry members from around the world to interact and connect in one central space.

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System: Switch
Release date: March 10, 2020
Developer: Chara-ani
Publisher: NIS America

Langrisser has always been a name familiar with the cultured strategy RPG player, but not one that may be globally known despite what it did for the genre way back in the 90s. When Langrisser debuted in 1991 as ‘Warsong’, it quickly became a juggernaut that gave the likes of Tactics Ogre and Fire Emblem serious competition, but with a lack of official localizations, it became an afterthought to those that didn’t seek out the series further. After the franchise was dormant for nearly two decades – and having not received a release outside of Japan longer than that – Langrisser I & II sees the series officially make its return after the ill-received Re:Incarnation -TENSEI- in 2015. The complete package of Langrisser I & II is an absolute treat with a fresh makeover that both honors and respects the game’s origins and tactile gameplay, providing fans and newcomers alike a reason to get familiar with Langrisser and why it should be on everyone’s radar.

Hello my beautiful materia! This week on NEP, we’re joined by special guest and JRPG expert: Barry from the Nintendo Fuse Podcast. This episode is all JRPG and Square-Enix focused, as we examine the more recent years of Square-Enix (with some love for the classics, too, of course!). Oni Dino also goes into his impressions at length about the demo of Final Fantasy VII Remake, sharing his love and frustration.

Topics include FFXIII trilogy, XIV, XV the Kingdom Hearts series, and more. We end up asking the question, “What can Square-Enix do to revitalize the series?” “What if the FFVII series of releases starts to underperform?” and “Are consumers giving this release structure a dangerous pass?” The main topic of the FFVII Remake demo leads us to talk about the issue of selling the game in multiple parts over multiple generations of hardware and over (presumably) multiple decades. We’ve got three very different, and very opinionated perspectives. Join us, as we take a very deep dive to examine the character writing, the battle system, controls, camera and more of Final Fantasy VII Remake’s demo.

If you’re enjoying NEP, please consider giving us a 5 star review on Apple Podcasts, aka new iTunes. It’s incredibly helpful in getting us exposed to new listeners through algorithms, so we would greatly appreciate your help. Thank you for listening!

A new month rolled right on in a few days ago. Now that we’re in March, we want to know what you’ve been playing.

Are you giving the newly-released Pokemon Mystery Dungeon: Rescue Team DX a shot? Playing something else on Switch or even 3DS? No matter the case, let us know in the comments below.

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This week on NEP, we’re all over the Yacht Club Presents video unveiling Shovel Knight Pocket Dungeon, and further details on Shovel Knight Dig, Cyber Shadow and more! Also, how about this new Samurai Jack game. Kinda… a few years late, no? Plus, we discuss the news of GDC 2020 being postponed, Platinum Games’ newest announcements, and so many more games to share our impressions. Come hang out.

If you’re enjoying NEP, please consider giving us a 5 star review on Apple Podcasts, aka new iTunes. It’s incredibly helpful in getting us exposed to new listeners through algorithms, so we would greatly appreciate your help. Thank you for listening!

System: Switch
Release date: February 25, 2020
Developer: SNK
Publisher: SNK

Two samurai silently face one another in a desolate field in feudal Japan. After a few seconds of tension, one of them suddenly draws his katana and strikes – yet his opponent blocks the attack just in time. As one samurai recoils, the other counters with a quick jab followed by a massive slash, slicing their enemy in half and concluding the battle in just a few strikes. This encounter is typical of Samurai Shodown, a gorgeous and gruesome fighting game set in feudal Japan that focuses heavily on strategy, timing, and making the most of every attack. After reviving its once-great fighting series on other platforms last year, SNK has finally brought this reboot of Samurai Shodown to Switch. So the question remains: can Samurai Shodown truly show up on Nintendo’s console?

A little while back, we had the pleasure of sitting down with some prominent figures behind the Langrisser I & II remasters for Switch. We discussed revisiting the series, the difficulties of the system’s card sizes, the future of the Langrisser universe and remaking other titles.

We spoke with game director Takayuki Akiho, Koichi Kondo (from Chara-Ani), and the legendary artist, Satoshi Urushihara, known for his work on the original Langrisser series, the Growlanswer series and much more.

To celebrate the upcoming western release, we’ve prepared our full interview below.