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Japanese AOU Arcade Show Highlights New Titles

A number of new Japanese arcade games were revealed at the 2006 Amusement Operators Union Show in Japan, particularly from arcade stalwarts Sega, Konami, and Namco. Some ...
A number of new Japanese arcade games were revealed at the 2006 Amusement Operators Union Show in Japan, particularly from arcade stalwarts Sega, Konami, and Namco. Some of the games had been seen in location tests around Tokyo previously, but the AOU was the formal unveiling for many of the titles. Sega had a strong presence at the show with several new cabinets. Most prominent was Virtua Fighter 5, a new entry into the respected fighting series. VF5 introduces two new characters, a Mexican wrestler and a Kou-Ken-style female, as well as a new VF Terminal unit to complement the game cabinet. While playing VF5, players will be able to use the Terminal to customize their characters in real time and import the data back into the game while still at the arcade. In addition, Sega featured House of the Dead 4, Virtua Striker 4. Other companies had smaller line-ups, but showcased big games nonetheless. Konami's main attraction was Winning Eleven 2006 Arcade Championship, an arcade update to its hugely popular soccer game. In addition, Namco had the arcade version of Soul Calibur III, previously a PlayStation 2 exclusive, as well as Time Crisis 4. Taito was in effect with Half-Life 2: Survivor, an arcade version of Valve's FPS, as well as War of the Ring a co-production with Capcom. Due to the expense and size of most of the cabinets compared to waning popularity of arcades in the U.S., it's unlikely that most of these highly complex cabinets will ever come to North America, but the AOU show makes it clear that the arcades are still alive overseas.

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