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Mother Coming to Lock City CC

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Been putting together some Mother 25th Anniversary carts to come with me to the Lock City Comic Con in CT this July. Hopefully a Slurpee will be coming with me as well. Mother 25th Anniversary Edition is basically a big overhaul of the Mother/Earthbound Zero prototype that was never released for the original NES.

Come check out the GamesquadSquad booth if you happen to be in the area. I’ll have this and a bunch of other NES repros, custom cases, and perler art and hopefully a special guest with some hand-made, knitted, wearable nerdery.

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X

I’ve been playing Xenoblade Chronicles X a lot lately and I think it’s a great game, though not without its flaws. But that’s not what I’m here to talk about today. Today, it’s about censorship. There’s really no point to anything I have to say. It’s just some stuff that crossed my mind, so if you’re busy, or looking for a more socially relevant story, feel free to go read something else. But if you came on the internet today, like so many others, to waste time, then please, read on.

Now when a game gets localized here from Japan, I expect there to be a good deal of changes and aspects censored because of this country’s outdated puritanical beliefs that the human body is shameful and that seeing any parts of it exposed is a corrupting force.

Typical mother of an 11 year-old boy – “Oh no way! This game has nudity in it. You can’t play that. What about this one though? This just has offensive language and mindless violence. That is far less offensive than the body nature gave us”

Anyway…the 2 main things that I discovered they censored are what drove me to write this.

1) During character creation of a female avatar, in the Japanese release, aside from changing their height, you can also adjust their bust size. Why remove this? Why have it in there in the first place for that matter? Well that one I can answer rather easily – It’s either fan service or if you’re creating an avatar for a game where you have a ton of customization options, why not have a wider range of options you can customize? But in this case, since there are really not too many options for character customization I would say it’s purely for fan service. Still though, why remove it? Probably because someone out there would complain that it “gives girls an unrealistic image of what the female form is supposed to look like,” or some other BS like that. Whatever. Get over it. It’s a video game. It’s a fantasy world where people can escape to. If some lonely, “hopeless romantic” gets his or her (let’s not discriminate now, women love tits too) jollies by running around an alien planet as a big busted bombshell, then let them have their fantasy.

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Japan – that 2nd bar is for the bust size

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America

2) The female characters in the game all have “armor” sets that are basically strips of fabric passing for underwear. One of the main characters in the game, Lin, is a 13 year-old, young girl. In the Japanese version, she, just like the other female characters, has this revealing armor. Her avatar was censored so that when equipping these particular pieces of armor, it would have a more modest appearance. As much as I think that censoring things is stupid, I also think that sexualizing 13 year olds is awful. I don’t see the point in censoring something in a video game, but then again I also don’t see the point of programming young girls to have sexy clothing unless you’re a sick pervert….but #japan

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Homemade Mother 3 carts for GBA!

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Decided that I wanted to make some GBA repros as well. There’s a few GBA games that never came out here that I’d like to have a cart for; not too many, but enough to make me interested in the endeavor. What better one to start with than Mother 3.

That being said, they’re kind of a pain in the butt to make and I don’t think I’d ever really do this in any sizable quantities, unless of course someone has a stock of blank GBA PCBs out there.

So obviously Mother 3 is one of the hot ones, but what’s next? Anyone have any suggestions? Anything they know of they’d like to see in cart format? There’s a Suikoden card game I was thinking of doing…

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Sweet Home Japanabama

Made this cart awhile ago but just finished a playthrough. Did not complete it. Got killed pretty horribly. This is pretty much the first survival horror game, or at least the first one that introduced many common elements of the survival horror genre. Resident Evil owes its existence to Sweet Home as it borrows many of the concepts that were originally introduced in 1989.

A noteworthy accomplishment, which is nearly unheard of even to this day, was it’s success as game as it co-launched next to its movie counterpart.

If you are interested in purchasing this cart, send me a message. You can click on the image for more details and check out the gameplay video.

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Bring Dragon Quest X to USA

But not in the US. See that release date? 2012! Could have been localized by now!

But not in the US. See that release date? 2012! Could have been localized by now!

Since I’m a huge fan of Dragon Quest, possibly my favorite RPG series ever, I was having a hard time waiting for Nintendo to localize Dragon Quest X here. I see dates on a few websites referencing a 2014 release date for Dragon Quest X on the Wii U, but I don’t believe it. It wasn’t even mentioned in passing at E3.  I think I’ve finally come to terms that they will NEVER bring Dragon Quest X to America. I don’t understand why not. Were the sales on the DS titles really that poor? You would think a game that’s primarily online would do well here considering, on average, Americans do more online gaming than Japan especially since playing video games as an adult in Japan isn’t as socially acceptable as it is here.

I hadn’t bothered to mod my Wii yet, even though it’s relatively easy. I just never really saw the need. I don’t particularly agree with pirating games and there were no import games I thought were interesting enough to make the purchase. So I grew tired of waiting for Dragon Quest X and conceded to grabbing an import and mod my Wii. Then it became abundantly clear to me this wouldn’t be a simple matter. The 2-disc Dragon Quest X doesn’t run off the discs, they are simply for installation. But as you are all aware, the Wii has a “fun sized” hard drive. So aside from just modding the Wii to play import games, you have to install the game onto a USB flash drive. Minor inconvenience, whatever, pressing on. Now I come across the really bad news. The game isn’t just region locked, it’s ISP locked. In order to play this game, you need to be on an Japanese server provider. Yeah well, I dunno how to do that and I haven’t been able to find information on how to do that and even if I did, I think the hassle would be too extreme. You know what I think would be easier? LOCALIZING THIS FRIGGIN GAME IN AMERICA!

Now for some good news. Apparently that might happen? Square Enix is toying with the idea of expanding the game outside of Japan. Doesn’t necessarily mean we’ll get it, or even get a full version of it if we do. It’s possible we may only get an offline only version, WHICH WOULD BE TOTALLY OK! I Just NEED this game. What do you want me to do? I will suck your dick for this game! Two girls one cup? Is that what you want me to do? I’ll do it…I won’t like it, but if it gets me this game, I’ll do that….

Who wants to start a petition? Not the sucking thing. I don’t think anyone wants to see a petition for that. I mean a petition to localize this game. It worked for Xenoblade after all, right? Anyone know how to get one of those rolling?

Cthulhu Saves the World

First off, you have to love the box art, reminiscent of Capcom’s NES days. I’m immediately reminded of Little Nemo the Dream Master, though Cthulhu and Nemo have naught in common. Cthulhu Saves the World is the second game developed by Zeboyd Games. Much like its precursor, Breath of Death VII (also an awesome game to check out), Cthulhu is imagined in amazing 16-bit graphics, taking us back to a time when RPGs ruled the home gaming console.

Games don’t really seem to fit cleanly into one specific genre anymore. Call of Duty is the most popular FPS ever, but it does have RPG elements to it. You level up, acquire new skills and weapons, gain experience points. Then we have the biggest RPGs like Fallout and Mass Effect, which are basically RPGs turned shooters. The line that used to so clearly define the genre of a game has been blurred, almost completely erased even. Not that I have anything against any of those games, but I like my turn based RPGs dammit! Alas, they are a dying breed. Developers don’t really make them for consoles anymore, because unless you’re a Square Enix fanboy/girl, you want immediate action and swift gratification, which has been the standard for this generation of consoles. I get it… I mean there’s a completely valid reason; video games are more of a “business” now than they’ve ever been so they only push what sells. But that’s exactly why I wanted to review indie games in the first place; As much as I love video games, the artistic endeavor is often cast aside for the commercial product. Over commercialization of anything will ultimately cheapen it.  It’s all about how much money they can squeeze out of a franchise. How many Tony Hawk games are there? How many are actually any good? So where have the good traditional RPGs gone? They’re out there, just not so mainstream as they used to be.

Cthulhu has definitely been one of the most undersaturated monsters in the media. Vampires and Zombies are so commonplace, they might as well be a friendly neighbor. How many about Cthulhu? Aside from that one South Park episode, I can’t think of any. Though he has been a familiar face in the gaming culture for years. There have definitely been games about him, but never with him as the star. Cthulhu could not slumber forever. Through the unfathomable power held by the Great Old Ones, Cthulhu has risen from the murky depths and stepped into the limelight. I think once you have a plush novelty doll of yourself, you’ve made it.  Would H.P. Lovecraft approve of this game? Is this a bastardization of the Cthulhu mythos? Yes, and it’s good.

The first 5 minutes of the game introduce you to one of the most ingenious plots a god could muster..but not really. Allow me to explain. Residing in his underwater realm of R’lyeh, Cthulhu finally awakens to embark upon his destruction of the world. His plans are immediately thwarted as a mysterious stranger appears somewhat arbitrarily and easily strips Cthulhu of his power. Only by becoming a true hero and saving those in need will he be able to regain his lost power in order to destroy the world. Sounds kind of counter productive doesn’t it? Anyway, thus we are thrust into the game. I really don’t want to give anything of the story away because afterall, RPGs are mainly about the story anyway. Trust me, it is truly entertaining, humorous and just a solid good old school RPG. The dialogue is particularly light considering the cosmic greatness that is Cthulhu, and consists mostly of witty banter. So don’t expect a convoluted adventure, question the meaning of ones existence,  like most of the Final Fantasy games. Gameplay is pretty much straight out of NES and SNES Dragon Quest, though with more leveling up options. Depending on your playing style, the game will take somewhere between 6 – 10 hours.  Also, it seems a main battle mechanic is to make things insane. I for one am totally for anything that promotes insanity.

I would also like to quickly address the games credits.  In the “special thanks” section of the credits, they list Kainazzo, a boss from Final Fantasy II, and the lowercase letter ‘e’. Maybe they thought they could sneak those in there because no one ever reads the credits. But I do!

Available for XBOX Live Arcade at 240 MS points, or on Steam you can get the Breath of Death VII and Cthulhu Saves the World bundle for just $2.99. You cant go wrong. So do it. If you don’t, you’re basically admitting that you don’t like good games.

Of course I wouldn’t leave you without a chance to see the amazing theme song trailer.

As always, please don’t forget to share this post.

Thanks for reading!

Dragon Quest 25th Anniversary – Dragon Quest X?

Dragon Quest, my favorite RPG series of all time, celebrates its 25th anniversary with oodles of goodies. This is the best Dragon Quest news I’ve heard since they announced they were finally porting Dragon Quest VI to America. Much of the 25th anniversary information is already common knowledge with fans, but apparently on Monday, Square Enix is going to be dropping a bombshell. This Monday, September 5th,  Square Enix will be unveiling a new entry into the Dragon Quest Franchise! Popular speculation believes this will be the big reveal of Dragon Quest X, which has been in development for the Wii for some time. With Nintendo publishing the last few Dragon Quest releases, this makes the most logical case. It’s also no secret there is a 3DS Dragon Quest title in the works, so maybe even both will make a showing.

The press conference begins at 2pm Japans time, which is 1am eastern for us. You can watch the action unfold live on Square Enix’s USTREAM Channel

Other Dragon Quest releases on the way:

Dragon Quest Monsters: Joker 2 – Like Pokemon, but with Akira Toriyama‘s monsters. Release Date: Sept 19

Dragon Quest Collection – Containing both the NES and SNES versions of Dragon Quest I, II, and III, unmolested and unchanged, in their original form.  Set to release this Sept. in Japan, but still no word if it will ever hit us stateside.

Fortune Street – Not really a Dragon Quest game per se, but it has Dragon Quest characters in it. Itadaki Street in Japan, this series has never been released in America before. Plays like the bastard child of Monopoly and Mario Party. Release Date: Holiday 2011

There’s also a handful of Dragon Quest swag to pick up, including this cute little guy; a 1/1 scale of a King Slime. Unfortunately you’ll most likely have to end up importing these as well. Check eBay because these will probably never show up on our shelves.

I’ll be sure to drop an update once Square Enix makes their announcement.

Finally, I leave you with the Japanese trailer for the Dragon Quest Collection.

Don’t forget to share this post!

And thanks for reading!

For the Emperor!

Just finished downloading and playing Warhammer 40k: Kill Team.  It was only 800 microsoft points on XBLA. Simple, straightforward, fun gameplay. Smash TV style controls with some RPG elements thrown in such as added power-ups and perks.

I’ve been waiting for this since I played it briefly at E3. It will tide me over until Space Marine comes out in September. Added incentive to download, they give you a power sword in Space Marine for playing Kill Team.

Mike, this is for you more than anyone else. Download this immediately!

Analysis so far: AWESOME

More to come!

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