kitsunebi

kitsunebi's talking to himself again

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Hey Wonderswan fans!!

<crickets chirping>

Ahem, HEY GUNPEI YOKOI FANS!  Here's a guide to a game about...uh...crooked lines or something.  I honestly only gave this a quick flip-through, so I have no idea.  But it could be one of those "so simple it's genius" games, I guess.  Anyone played this?

https://archive.org/details/gunpeyofficialstrategyguide

large.1058280329_GunpeyOfficialStrategyGuide.jpg

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I've played it! I own a few versions of it, WonderSwan and PlayStation. So thank you. 

It's no Tetris but it's a fun, well-received game released after Gunpei Yokoi left Nintendo and also after he was tragically killed in a road traffic accident. The game was named in his honour. 

Edited by gingerbeardman

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Just ran across an interesting "first-week" hardware sales chart while editing some pages.  This was printed shortly after the release of the GameCube.  I'm sure this is all documented elsewhere but...

010.jpg

Game Boy Color: 155,774

Dreamcast: 101,490

Wonderswan: 102,665

PlayStation 2: 630,552

PSone: 34,175

Wonderswan Color: 145,975

Game Boy Advance: 611,504

GameCube: 133,719

So obviously (and expectedly), the PS2 and GBA blew away everything else.  Perhaps slightly less obvious is that the Wonderswan Color's first week sales were stronger than either the Dreamcast or the GameCube.

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9 hours ago, kitsunebi77 said:

So obviously (and expectedly), the PS2 and GBA blew away everything else.  Perhaps slightly less obvious is that the Wonderswan Color's first week sales were stronger than either the Dreamcast or the GameCube.

The most significant factor is probably the fact that the Wonderswan Color cost around 7000 yen, while both Gamecube and Dreamcast were in the 25,000-30,000 yen area. WC was impulse-buy price, but for the big consoles lots of people waited for holidays or birthdays (or, since this is Japan, their bonus paycheck if they were buying it for themselves) to buy.

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I haven't scanned it yet, but I bought one of the guides for Lost Kingdoms 2 (I wanted some high-res scans of the cards, but the book is small... I should've bought the Brady guide or something). Can I just post it here when I scan it? It doesn't warrant a new thread.

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This week on Guides For Games Least Likely To Ever Be Released Outside of Japan come Terrors and Terrors 2, text based horror-adventure games starring a bunch of Japanese pop "stars" - released for the WonderSwan and WonderSwan Color, respectively.

Kudos to the second game's guide for acknowledging the only reason anyone ever actually bought these games by filling half of the book with photographs of the stars wearing bikinis and flirting with the camera.

https://archive.org/details/terrorsperfectguide

https://archive.org/details/terrors2officialguidebook

large.1029040624_TerrorsPerfectGuide.jpglarge.1188122019_Terrors2OfficialGuideBook.jpg

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10 hours ago, kitsunebi77 said:

Kudos to the second game's guide for acknowledging the only reason anyone ever actually bought these games by filling half of the book with photographs of the stars wearing bikinis and flirting with the camera.

Well, now I have to download it... :)

*huggles*
Areala

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I know some people more fluent in Japanese than myself follow this thread, so to them I pose this question: WTF do the editors of this UK Dreamcast mag think that they wrote on the right side of the cover here?  They're using obscure no-longer-in-use katakana to write "wiuwerawe."  Again, WTF?  Is this yet another case of foreigners just writing random shit because they think it looks cool, or am I missing something?

large.1355990349_DreamcastMagazine26(September2001).jpg

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8 minutes ago, kitsunebi77 said:

I know some people more fluent in Japanese than myself follow this thread, so to them I pose this question: WTF do the editors of this UK Dreamcast mag think that they wrote on the right side of the cover here?  They're using obscure no-longer-in-use katakana to write "wiuwerawe."  Again, WTF?  Is this yet another case of foreigners just writing random shit because they think it looks cool, or am I missing something?

No google results for ヰウヱラヱ so probably as you say (Pre WW2 kana) since WiiWare is ウィーウェア so your guess is as good as mine. Not a native speaker though.

https://www.google.co.jp/search?source=hp&ei=EWIiXu_HLOWh_QbUybc4&q=ヰウヱラヱ&oq=ヰウヱラヱ&gs_l=psy-ab.3...600.600..1092...0.0..0.0.0.......0....2j1..gws-wiz.yadVAxEeN88&ved=0ahUKEwivlKyngoznAhXlUN8KHdTkDQcQ4dUDCAU&uact=5

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3 hours ago, ml0045 said:

No google results for ヰウヱラヱ so probably as you say (Pre WW2 kana) since WiiWare is ウィーウェア so your guess is as good as mine.

Well it wouldn't be WiiWare anyway since this mag was published 7 years before WiiWare existed.

This isn't the first time I've seen a UK mag write Japanese nonsense on a cover for what must be aesthetic purposes.  Kind of odd that they used archaic characters, though.

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3 minutes ago, kitsunebi77 said:

Well it wouldn't be WiiWare anyway since this mag was published 7 years before WiiWare existed.

This isn't the first time I've seen a UK mag write Japanese nonsense on a cover for what must be aesthetic purposes.  Kind of odd that they used archaic characters, though.

Ah, never noticed the date and glanced over the fact it was a Dreamcast mag. 😁

Edited by ml0045
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19 hours ago, kitsunebi77 said:

Well it wouldn't be WiiWare anyway since this mag was published 7 years before WiiWare existed.

This isn't the first time I've seen a UK mag write Japanese nonsense on a cover for what must be aesthetic purposes.  Kind of odd that they used archaic characters, though.

This reminds me of that time infamous figure in the Transformers comics Pat Lee tried to write his name in Japanese and it ended up saying "Michiyamenotehi Funana".  You probably shouldn't try to write something in another language if you have no idea how the language works.

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7 minutes ago, mvangord said:

This reminds me of that time infamous figure in the Transformers comics Pat Lee tried to write his name in Japanese and it ended up saying "Michiyamenotehi Funana".  You probably shouldn't try to write something in another language if you have no idea how the language works.

That's interesting, since when he wrote that, he was using a WordPerfect font (or so I'm told), for which each alphanumeric key represented a kana character.  He just typed his name via the alphabetic keys, and so his name, Patrick Lee, being 10 letters long, resulted in a Japanese nonsense name which was 10 characters long.

Unfortunately, I can't find a WordPerfect Japanese font layout online, but it definitely differs entirely from an actual Japanese keyboard layout (which I can confirm because I'm typing on one).  So I can't confirm if a direct letter-to-kana input would reveal what was written.  And anyway, it would be an odd keyboard layout indeed that included keys for either "wi" or "we," both of which were used on the Dreamcast mag cover, since they went out of use 75 years ago.  So it seems unlikely that the Dreamcast cover was the result of someone trying to type a 5 letter word by typing the word in English while a katakana font was active.

I'm still inclined to believe that the cover designer was just an idiot, but I would be extremely interested to unravel the mystery of how they came to type those particular characters (no matter how dumb I believe they were, I can't accept that they simply mashed some random keys).

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I don't know about you, but when I think back to the original PlayStation, all I can think about is all of the VISUAL NOVELS.  Sure, a few people got their kicks from Final Fantasy Roman Numeral, Resident Evil Arabic Numeral, or Metal Gear Solid No Numeral Yet, but as for me,  nothing beats clicking the X button a million times to read a melodramatic story that is for the most part railroaded from start to finish, with only a few places where my choices have any real impact. 

Oh wait, that sounds kind of like Final Fantasy after all... giphy.gif

Anyway, for those of you who like reading but hate reading anything good or simply can't stand the smell of a book, Japan has got you covered.  Visual novels up the wazoo everywhere you turn.  But sometimes, you click dialogue choice #1 when you should have clicked dialogue choice #2, and now you'll NEVER get to invite Akari to the summer festival...  So to save you that agony, I present to you this "strategy" guide, which has been graciously digitized for your real-book-hating convenience.

https://archive.org/details/yukiwarinohanaofficialguidebook

large.1616376111_YukiwarinoHana-OfficialGuideBook.jpg

 

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You can have my Visual Novels when you pry them from my cold, dead hardware.

And by 'hardware' I definitely mean 'my video game consoles' and not, you know, anything actually relating to my personal body. No cyborgs, amirite? ;)

*huggles*
Areala

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I recognize that visual novels are obviously very appealing to large numbers of people.  I can still give them %$^& if anyone refers to them as games, though.  And honestly, a visual novel from 20 years ago and one from today are almost identical in mechanics and appearance, so I suppose I could also criticize them for having a completely stalled evolution in "game" design.  But it's mostly the storytelling itself that I find unappealing - an opinion I blame on my living here for so long, more than any fault of its own.

One of the more interesting things about being immersed in Japan for so long is that it becomes easy to identify things as Japanese on levels beyond the actual language.  Music is one of them.  I can hear the opening bars of a pop or rock song and almost unerringly tell if that song is Japanese or not.  There's a sort of unconscious musical rulebook that people of different cultures compose by - what chords typically follow others, as well as what rhythms might be used.  After being exposed to enough of it, you just know whether a song is Japanese or of Western origin.

The same goes for storytelling.  Whether video game, visual novel, manga, anime, TV drama, or mainstream film - Japan has certain tropes that almost all of their storytelling falls into that sets it apart as "Japanese."  A lot of foreigners celebrate that uniqueness, and indeed will unabashedly say things like "I play JPGS for the story," and true enough, when I was first discovering Japanese pop culture, long before ever coming here, I, too, fell under its spell.  It IS different from Western storytelling, and thus seemed new and interesting...for a time.  But in the years since, I've come to lose respect for it, and for the most part Japanese storytelling across those various media frustrates me with its sameness to the point that I prefer to avoid it for the most part.

I sometimes wish I hadn't reached that saturation point, since I feel I've been ruined on whole genres of entertainment.  I'm not gonna lie, though, there definitely is a certain sense of security and self respect that come from being a foreigner in Japan who can say with 100% truthfulness that neither their decision to come here nor their decision to stay has ANYTHING to do with any kind of otaku fandom.

Interestingly, this also works in reverse.  I've heard from many Japanese acquaintances about how they find entire types and genres of Western (which usually means American) entertainment to be unappealing to them.  Comedies of any sort seem to be unpopular, unless it's pure Tom & Jerry physical comedy.  And anything involving lots of complicated sarcasm or innuendo seems not to transcend the language/cultural barrier (a typical review of Game of Thrones here would be "too much nonsensical talking, not enough dragons, I have no idea who the good guys are.")

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Regarding the gibberish on the Dreamcast magazine, in the UK we have a clothing brand Superdry (no relation to the Asahi beer) who have a string of gibberish Japanese under their logotype. 

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2 hours ago, gingerbeardman said:

Regarding the gibberish on the Dreamcast magazine, in the UK we have a clothing brand Superdry (no relation to the Asahi beer) who have a string of gibberish Japanese under their logotype. 

Interestingly, I googled that company and tried to visit their website, but apparently Japanese IPs are blocked:

Quote

The Amazon CloudFront distribution is configured to block access from your country.

😆

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On 1/23/2020 at 5:08 PM, kitsunebi77 said:

(a typical review of Game of Thrones here would be "too much nonsensical talking, not enough dragons, I have no idea who the good guys are.")

This was basically my take on the show/books as well. People told me, "THAT'S THE ENTIRE POINT, AREALA! THERE AREN'T ANY GOOD GUYS JUST LIKE THERE AREN'T ANY GOOD GUYS IN REAL LIFE! SORRY YOU HAVE TO BE SPOON-FED YOUR FANTASY LIKE A CHILD NOW THAT THE ADULTS IN THE ROOM ARE FINALLY IN CHARGE!"

Strangely enough, nobody talks in Caps Lock about GoT any longer now that Season 8 has come and gone. Your move, internet. :D

*huggles*
Areala

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10 minutes ago, Areala said:

Strangely enough, nobody talks in Caps Lock about GoT any longer now that Season 8 has come and gone. Your move, internet. :D

I think this is more indicative of how fleetingly fickle people's attention spans are nowadays.  GoT (the TV version) is over, so people have simply moved on and can't be bothered to care about it anymore.

One month ago the Witcher was the biggest thing on the Internet, but everyone has watched it and moved on - even that damnable tune no longer rattles around in our brains.

I think entertainment used to have a longer shelf-life.  Movies stayed in theaters for a much longer time, there was a much longer wait before you had a chance to see a movie at home, and there were much longer waits between sequels.  Now, even waiting a year for anything is enough to kill all momentum  - something the Marvel films took advantage of by creating the semblance of an integrated arc between all of their films, with several released each year to keep the hype train running.

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You don't want this.  Really.  But here it is, anyway.  A 1989 strategy guide for Taiheiyou no Arashi, a Pacific War wargame released on Japanese computers in 1987.  It took me several tries to upload this, because every time I opened the file, it put me to sleep.  But maybe you like this sort of thing.  Heck, somebody does, because this series has been running for over 30 years - you can get the latest installment for the PS4, if you're so inclined.  So here's a heaping helping of hard cold data for you to strategize over.  But don't say I didn't warn y😴😴😴😴😴

https://archive.org/details/taiheiyounoarashicompleteguidebook

large.1127574808_TaiheiyounoArashi.jpg

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2 hours ago, kitsunebi77 said:

You don't want this.  Really.  But here it is, anyway.  A 1989 strategy guide for Taiheiyou no Arashi, a Pacific War wargame released on Japanese computers in 1987.  It took me several tries to upload this, because every time I opened the file, it put me to sleep.  But maybe you like this sort of thing.  Heck, somebody does, because this series has been running for over 30 years - you can get the latest installment for the PS4, if you're so inclined.  So here's a heaping helping of hard cold data for you to strategize over.  But don't say I didn't warn y😴😴😴😴😴

https://archive.org/details/taiheiyounoarashicompleteguidebook

large.1127574808_TaiheiyounoArashi.jpg

Two things. First, I think it's hilarious that the red planes (which, I presume, represent the opposing force to the gold planes) are simply the same sprite, just flipped upside down and re-coloured. Second, I never cease to be amazed at the Japanese fascination with simulating the War in the Pacific. It's one of the largest naval defeats their country ever suffered, but Japanese developers then make games like 1943, which are all about US war planes blowing up Zero fighters and sinking Japanese carriers and fighting the Battle of Midway. What's going on from a cultural perspective that keeps Japanese gamers buying these simulations? It can't all be "we're doing it for the larger international market", can it? :)

*huggles*
Areala

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1 hour ago, Areala said:

Two things. First, I think it's hilarious that the red planes (which, I presume, represent the opposing force to the gold planes) are simply the same sprite, just flipped upside down and re-coloured. Second, I never cease to be amazed at the Japanese fascination with simulating the War in the Pacific. It's one of the largest naval defeats their country ever suffered, but Japanese developers then make games like 1943, which are all about US war planes blowing up Zero fighters and sinking Japanese carriers and fighting the Battle of Midway. What's going on from a cultural perspective that keeps Japanese gamers buying these simulations? It can't all be "we're doing it for the larger international market", can it? :)

*huggles*
Areala

Every country tends to think of itself as the center of the universe, and Japan is no different.  A Japanese gamer interested in WWII aviation warfare is going to prefer a game set on the Pacific front over one set in the European theater, because it's part of their story - even if it's a story where they ended up losing.  It's the last modern war Japan played a significant part in, so if they ignore it simply because they weren't the winners, they're denying themselves quite a large chunk of history, and they'd probably have nothing but feudal warfare sims (WWI games are rare enough as it is - what was the last one you recall featuring Japanese forces?).  And besides, in games like this one, if they play well enough, they can always WIN the war.

PC wargames are generally geared towards people with an interest in history moreso than people wanting to stroke their nationalistic ego, anyway.  Many a wargame enthusiast will take up the cause of the Axis powers in a WWII sim simply because its the more difficult and interesting choice - likewise someone playing the side of the Confederacy in a Civil War sim.

As for simplistic videogames like 1942/3, however, you may be right that it was done at least in part to ensure that they could distribute the game worldwide without any changes - something that was done a lot back in the early arcade days, when most Japanese arcade games featured nothing but English text even though their native audience was unlikely to understand it completely.

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