“Pocky & Rocky” Sequel Coming to Switch
In the latest issue of Famitsu, publisher Taito and developer Natsume Atari announced that a new game in the KiKi KaiKai series is headed to the Nintendo Switch.
The unique, vertical-scrolling shoot ’em up series is known as Pocky & Rocky in the West, and the new game is tentatively titled KiKi KaiKai: Kuro Mantle no Nazo (whatever that means). Natsume Atari’s development team Tengo Project (The Ninja Saviors: Return of the Warriors, Wild Guns Reloaded) is being tasked to create the game, which is a great fit as many of the team’s staff worked on the 1992 Super NES original (aka KiKi KaiKai: Nazo no Kuro Mantle in Japan).
While KiKi KaiKai: Kuro Mantle no Nazo will maintain a 16-bit aesthetic, it is not a remake. It is being designed as a full sequel to the earlier games.
According to Tengo Project game director Toshiyasu Miyabe:
“We started work on a sequel with the thought that if we didn’t respond to requests for a remake now, we wouldn’t have the chance in the future considering the staff’s age… While you may think it’s a remake, it’s a completely new title. It’s loaded with new elements.”
A release date for KiKi KaiKai: Kuro Mantle no Nazo has not yet been announced, though you can expect a name change if and when it gets localized in the West (our money is on Pocky & Rocky 3).
If you want to catch up on the series, it’s going to cost you. Original cartridges of the first two games are a bit pricy, though you can still purchase the GameBoy Advance port of the first game, Pocky & Rocky with Becky, on the Nintendo Wii U eShop, for however long that lasts.