Saturday, October 11, 2014

A very special delivery from the proprietor of the Japanese 3DS tumblog

A few months ago, Brian, the proprietor of (seriously, start following it today if you aren't already doing so), asked me if I'd like a few free Japanese GameBoy cartridges. Apparently he won a lot--and by that I mean a collection or set, not "a bunch"--of such carts recently via an eBay auction and a handful of the titles that ended up making their way to him were duplicates.

I've never been one to turn down a free game or two--or 15, in this case--so I cheerfully informed Brian that I'd love to relieve him of said dupes. They arrived on my doorstep a few days ago, and of course I snapped some photos of them (a couple of which can be seen below).

The shot above is of the aforementioned GameBoy carts cosily encased in bubble wrap. That yellow cartridge in the middle is Donkey Kong Land--or Super Donkey Kong GB, as it's known in Japan.

A bunch of my favorites can be seen in the photo above--namely, Hoshi no Kirby 2 (Kirby's Dream Land 2), Tenjin Kaisen (Mercenary Force) and the Japanese version of Revenge of the 'Gator.

A closer look at that last title's colorful cart label can be seen above. The game is known as Pinball: 66 Hiki no Wani Daikoushin in its home region, by the way. No matter what it's called, though, it's a fun little HAL Laboratory-made romp--or at least that's been my experience with it so far.

I'll play the rest of Brian's offerings soon and then publish my impressions of them here. In the meantime, feel free to share your own thoughts on these titles in the comments section below.

Friday, October 10, 2014

I'm pretty sure this new Captain Toad (Wii U) trailer couldn't be more precious if it tried

Nintendo of Japan just released a new trailer for the title that's known to folks in the English-speaking world as Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker (its Japanese title translates to March Onwards! Captain Toad), and it makes the game look so darn adorable that I'm once again feeling like an idiot for not (yet) owning a Wii U.

Anyway, enough whining. Instead, let's focus on the fact that this trailer reveals that Toadette will make an appearance in Treasure Tracker (and even will be a playable character, I think). Oh, and the finished product--due out in Japan on Nov. 13, North America on Dec. 5 and the rest of the world sometime in 2015--will feature more than 70 stages.

Thursday, October 09, 2014

Five favorites: Japanese Dreamcast box art

This recent post got me thinking about Dreamcast box art, and anyone who has visited this blog for any amount of time knows that when I start thinking about box art, a post like the one you're reading right now is sure to follow shortly thereafter.

Anyway, as I'm sure you can tell from the headline above, this post is about five of my favorite examples of box art that was produced for the Japanese version of Sega's Dreamcast during its amazingly long lifespan.

D2 (Bliss Edition)--I've yet to play this survival-horror game, one of the first Dreamcast releases in Japan, but I'm seriously considering picking up a copy of it soon thanks to the brilliant cover (above) of one of its three limited editions. The other limited-edition covers are known as "Eclipse" and "Hope," by the way. Oh, and the cover of the "normal edition" can be seen here.

De La Jet Set Radio--A pretty fitting cover for this cell-shaded, graffiti-focused action game, don't you think? Too bad it's supposed to be kind of rare. Oh, well, I guess I'll have to stick with my comparatively boring North American copy.

Mr. Driller--Admittedly, most folks who come across this post are likely to deem this piece of box art to be the least impressive of the bunch. Regardless, I've long considered it a favorite thanks to its eye-popping colors and its overall adorableness.

Napple Tale--The cover imagery seen above makes me think of Christmastime as a kid--specifically, the "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer" TV special that is known and loved by most Americans my age and older--and for those of you who don't know me all that well, I can assure you that's a very good thing. Even if that weren't the case, though, I'd still praise it for its use of color and space.

Power Stone 2--Gee, do you think I like colorful box art? That's not the only reason I like Power Stone 2's addition to this little manual-cover-focused soiree, though; I also like its rather daring composition and its general style.

Do you have any favorite examples of Japanese Dreamcast cover art? If so, let me (and everyone else) know about them in the comments section of this post.

See also: previous 'five favorites' posts

Wednesday, October 08, 2014

The only 'animated EarthBound tribute' video you ever need to view

I was going to publish a post about an entirely different subject today, but it's going to have to wait until tomorrow because the awesome "animated EarthBound tribute" video that can be viewed below (or here) deserves your undivided attention for the entirety of the next 24 hours.

Do you think that if Shigesato Itoi took a couple of minutes out of his surely busy day to watch this sucker he might be convinced to give the world another entry in the wondrous Mother/EarthBound series? Yeah, I doubt it, too. (Insert sad-face emoticon here.)

Monday, October 06, 2014

Manual Stimulation: Bubble Bobble Junior (Japanese GameBoy)

Last week, I published a "Manual Stimulation" post that focused on this game's predecessor. Would you believe I prefer that manual to this one? I ask because that's pretty much the only thing related to the first Bubble Bobble GameBoy title that I prefer to its sequel.

That's not to say Bubble Bobble Junior's manual is a total stinker. On the contrary, some of it is rather nice--with the cover (above) being a prime example.

Unfortunately, it doesn't take this manual's designers long to pass up some golden opportunities. The right-hand page above is a case in point, with Bubble Bobble Junior's backstory being relegated to a third of a page of text. Would it have killed someone to come up with a few doodles to accompany it?

The next few pages aren't much more appealing, I'm afraid, as the high point (if it can even be called that) of this section of the manual is two shots of the game's title screen.

At least the next few pages showcase a few photos of the game in action, although I doubt anyone would describe them as thrilling.

Now we're getting somewhere! Kind of. I think. Oh, well, at least we get to look at an adorable illustration of Bub (or Bob) on the left-hand page below.

Just like the manual produced for this game's predecessor, Bubble Bobble Junior's saves its best pages for last.

In fact, I think the enemy drawings above are even cuter than the ones that can be found in the first Bubble Bobble's booklet. If only there were a few more of them...

See also: previous 'Manual Stimulation' posts