Friday, May 07, 2010

And the old-as-sin survey says ...

A few years ago (or so it seems), I posted a poll on the right side of this blog. I'm not sure why it's taken me so long to switch it out--I guess it just slipped my mind.

Anyway, before I post a new one, here are the results of the last:

Unsurprisingly, Nintendo's portables were the most popular among the 10 people who participated in this poll, with the DS/DSlite and the GameBoy Advance garnering 10 votes each and the original GameBoy garnering eight. Also unsurprising (unfortunately): Absolutely no one admitted to owning an NEC TurboExpress/PC Engine GT or a Sega Nomad.

The next poll will be posted shortly. Thanks in advance for participating!  

Curiosity of the day: Sega's Mega Jet

I remember reading about this sweet, semi-portable system in the pages of DieHard GameFan magazine back in the day.

Although initially produced for the folks at Japan Airlines, who rented the systems to game-starved passengers, the Mega Jet eventually (in early 1994) made its way into the public sphere, too--with a rather attractive price tag of about $123.

I'd actually buy one if I could find it at that price. (I'm a total sucker for small, 16-bit systems, after all--as evidenced by my many PC Engine posts.) Unfortunately, the cheapest the system is going for on eBay right now is $335. (Here's the auction, in case any of you are interested.)

Oh, well, maybe I'll buy a CDX instead...

Will it be another Wii Sports or another Wii Music?

Which is another way of saying, will Nintendo's latest Wii XX title--called Wii Party--be a massive success or a massive failure?

I'm guessing it's going to be another example of the former, but it's hard to say that with any certainty when I don't quite understand the focus of the game. I know it's going to be a "collection of party games," but the games mentioned during Nintendo of Japan's investor briefing yesterday are more than a bit incongruous. Bingo, "Compatibility Check," "Mii Allignment" and roulette (among others)? It's like the title is going to be one part Clubhouse Games, one part Wii Fit and one part Wii Play.

Don't worry, this screenshot doesn't make much sense to me either.

Considering Nintendo CEO Satoru Iwata told investors that the company is "developing [Wii Party] with the intent that every Wii player will be able to find a game that can be enjoyed," I guess the incongruity makes some sense.

Still, I kind of hope the title ends up having some sort of "hook" that ties together all of its seemingly disparate parts.


Thursday, May 06, 2010

'Do only fools use grammar rules where gamers dwell?'

That certainly seems to be the case over on NeoGAF, where I giggle every time someone mentions a "bran-new" or "up incoming" game.

Most of those "wreckless" writers would do well to acquaint themselves with the closest dictionary (or even listen to Palette-Swap Ninja's "Learn to Spell."


Wokka wokka wokka?

Are the folks at Namco Bandai prepping a new Pac-Man? I'd say the odds are pretty good, especially after reading (at that the company will be unveiling "the next evolution" of the iconic character at the upcoming E3 2010 event.

I'm hoping this "evolution" refers to a home port of the previously revealed Pac-Man Battle Royale. If not, maybe we'll see some sort of evolution of Pac-Man Championship Edition? (Seriously, I'd probably die on the spot if they announced a Ms. Pac-Man Championship Edition.)

See also: 'How did I miss this one? (Pac-Man Battle Royale edition)'

Wednesday, May 05, 2010

'Do a Barrel Roll!'

You know, if I were independently wealthy--and if the company's shirts actually fit me--I'd have a closet full of threadless tees. Oh, and a t-shirt featuring this Star Fox-inspired design, created by Joseph Baum, would be my latest acquisition (assuming the folks at threadless give it the green light, of course).

The best thing about it--well, other than the fact that it's inspired by one of the greatest games ever (that would be Star Fox)--is that you don't have to be a gamer to appreciate its crazy charm. I mean, who wouldn't at least chuckle upon seeing a shirt covered with space-helmet-wearing critters?


Tuesday, May 04, 2010

Raise your hand if you have a video game fetish

I'm the only one (sheepishly) raising my hand, aren't I?

Now, I'm not saying that I get some sort of strange, sexual kick from rubbing up against my Dreamcast or my copy of Space Channel 5; what I'm saying is that I enjoy looking at tastefully taken photos of said systems and games.

(Just so you know, there are multiple definitions of the word fetish: The most common relates to objects that cause "a habitual erotic response or fixation," while a lesser-known one relates to objects that "elicit unquestioning reverence, respect or devotion.")

So, what prompted this admittedly peculiar post? For starters, a few weeks ago I joined a Flickr group called "Video Game Fetishism." Members of this group post Glamour Shots® of their favorite games and systems. Here's a good example:

Also, I recently came across a site called Truth be told, I prefer a lot of the photos I've seen in the above-mentioned Flickr group to the ones on this site, but it's still an appealing resource.

See also: 'It's show and tell time!'

I think Burp'n'Shoot would have been a big hit in the U.S.

This is one of those days I look forward to all year: The day the latest "My Famicase Exhibition" creations are displayed on the Interwebs (courtesy of the folks at Meteor, a Tokyo-based "game culture shop").

Never heard of the Famicase exhibition? No worries. Basically, it's a collection of imaginary Famicom cartridge covers created by Japanese artists and designers.

One of my favorites is Burp'n'Shoot, which Boing Boing's Brandon Boyer says is a "fun lazy redneck experience" that involves "sitting on the backyard couch, drinking Budweiser and shooting at empty cans, watermelons and a broken TV" while avoiding the errant basket- and baseballs of the neighbor kids.

Unfortunately, unlike Boyer and the chaps at, I don't understand a lick of Japanese, so you'll have to go here or here to read translated descriptions of some of the exhibition's other entries.

Do kiwis dream in color?

When Yuji Naka's latest platformer Ivy the Kiwi? hit the streets in Japan a few weeks ago, it was a little slice of sepia-toned heaven. When the storybook-ish DS/Wii title hits the streets in the States (courtesy of XSeed) this summer, though, it'll have a shiny, Technicolor sheen to it.

What does that mean? Well, here's a screenshot from the Japanese version of the game:

And here's a screenshot from the North American version of the game:

Although I understand why Naka and his cohorts at Prope Ltd. added a bit of color to the title before bringing it to our shores, I personally prefer the subdued tones of the original--in part because the backgrounds of the new-and-supposedly-improved North American version seem to swallow up the titular Ivy.

See also: 'Screw Sonic, I'll take Ivy the Kiwi instead' and 'I still don't understand why there's a question mark in this game's title'

Monday, May 03, 2010

The 'Mother' of all novel translations

Reason #2,516 to be jealous of the Japanese: In 1994, not only did they gain access to Shigesato Itoi's Mother 2 (aka EarthBound), but they gained access to Kumi Saori's novel adaptation of the Super Famicom/SNES title, too.

Thanks to Lindsay Nelson, we may soon be able to scratch that reason off the list. Why? Well, the Wisconsin-born blogger has decided to spend this Golden Week translating (into English) Saori's 492-page paperback.

Although Nelson won't be posting the full translation on her blog--due to a pesky little thing we call "copyright law"--she will be posting "excerpts from the book that are really worth taking a look at."

Anyway, all of this is a rather long-winded way of letting you know that I heartily recommend checking out Nelson's blog if you have any interest in the Mother series whatsoever.

Finally! GiFTPiA in English

OK, so only the game's intro has been translated into English. You've got to start somewhere, though, right?

Anyway, the folks at translated this Animal Crossing-esque "communication adventure" game, which was developed by skip Ltd., into Italian some time ago.

If you'd like them to translate it into English, too, head on over to their site tout de suite and take part in their most recent poll.

(Via and