Phantom Breaker Battle Grounds, a new retro-style brawler, arrives on Xbox Live Arcade today, bringing cooperative side-scrolling gameplay for four players, and light RPG elements. It looks very Scott Pilgrim-esque.

Like the Scott Pilgrim game, Battle Grounds is an adaptation based on another work, in this case the 2D fighting game Phantom Breaker. While this spinoff is coming today, that source game's status is something of a mystery. Originally announced for release early next year, the downloadable fighter is nowhere to be found.

A status update on the game's Facebook page says that "The current boxed game business model and shifting digital gaming trends have made it difficult to bring this game to market as originally planned." Publisher 7sixty says the game has not been canceled, but offers "a heads-up that it is at a point where it is difficult to release the game as planned."
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MAGES AND DIVISION2 LAUNCHES PHANTOM BREAKER: BATTLE GROUNDS

A Retro Styled Beat'em Up for Anime Fans Now Available on XBOX LIVE® Arcade

Tokyo, Japan – February 27, 2013 - Today, Mages, a publisher of interactive software announced the release of Phantom Breaker: Battle Grounds on Xbox LIVE® Arcade for the Xbox 360® video game and entertainment system, their first game to be released in North America. A spin-off to the 2D fighting game "Phantom Breaker", "Phantom Breaker: Battle Grounds" is a cooperative, side-scrolling beat'em up that hearkens back to the glory days of the 8-bit era, but using modern game development techniques.

Story
A mysterious man known as the Phantom has awakened and hatches a plan to unseal his dark powers. By giving ancient weapons known as the F.A. (Fu-mantion Artifacts) to youths with special abilities, he convinces them to battle each other with the promise to grant the wishes of the victors. However, each time the Fu-mantion Artifacts, are used in battle the space-time continuum is weakened. This creates a rift between two parallel worlds, which will inevitably unseal the Phantom's powers.

Waka, the daughter of the Kumon Family, a clan waging tasked with protecting the world from the Phantom, and her friend Mikoto, attempt to stop him. However, the Phantom manages to escape and kidnaps Waka's younger sister, Nagi. Waka and Mikoto, along with Itsuki, self-proclaimed "Ally of Justice" and Yuzuha, a ninja unpersuaded by the lure of the Phantom, set off to rescue Nagi and stop his nefarious plan.

Key Features

- Combines the best 8-bit retro aesthetics with modern 3D technology.
- Fight as Itsuki, Yuzuha, Waka and Mikoto, each with their own signature moves and attacks.
- Team up with up to 3 of your friends online or locally in Co-Op Mode or see who's the greatest warrior in Battleground Mode.
- Earn experience as you battle through the enemy horde to unlock devastating new skills and build up your attack strength, defense, and speed.
- Battle against ginormous, screen-filling enemies!
- 4 different modes of play: Story, Arcade, Co-op and Battleground.

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About Mages
In a time of rapid technological development, MAGES strives to provide the appropriate contents to the appropriate audiences on the most suitable platforms. With a strong focus on visual novels, 5pb has developed and created several well-received IPs including the Steins;Gate and Chaos;Head in its native country of Japan.

Publisher: MAGES
Developer: Division2
Street Date: February 27, 2013
Price: 800MSP
Genre: Action Beat'em Up
ESRB Rating: E10 (Everyone 10+)

This article was originally published on Joystiq.

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