47 posts tagged guest
“You had a 50/50 chance. You weren’t even close.”*
[Including the Animal Crossing series’ “Villager” in the next Smash Bros. seems perfect, but Daniel Feit argues that Nintendo bungled a key aspect with the character in this reprinted opinion piece.]
I spoke out about this on Twitter, but I want to elaborate on how much it bothers me that Nintendo elected to include a generic male villager from its mega-hit Animal Crossing franchise in the next Smash Bros game.
The first objection is the most obvious: this is a game chock full of male characters. Obviously a fighting game based on a video game company’s legacy is going to skew male; Nintendo doesn’t have a time machine to undo decades of sexist choices. But just look at this list of Smash Bros. characters; you can count the number of women on one hand. This was an easy way to offset that M/F ratio, and Nintendo blew it.
Crossing a Line: Gender Identity in Animal Crossing
[Writer and game creator Anna Anthropy (Dys4ia) examines how Animal Crossing: New Leaf is the series’ most queer/transgender-friendly game yet, but also explains why she’s weary to applaud Nintendo for this seemingly progressive stance. Image above is via Derek Rose.]
animal crossing has always been ripe for queering. i founded my last animal crossing town — in city folk for the wii — with my partner and our mutual then-girlfriend (my partner took great satisfaction in demolishing her house after we broke up). there’s really no getting around the fact that animal crossing is a very capital-affirming, binary-enforcing game by a publisher that recently edited gay marriage out of one of its games.
player characters in city folk are born with gendered clothing attached to their bodies: BOYS get t-shirts and pants, GIRLS get dresses with poofy sleeves. the same piece of clothing magically transforms according to the body it comes into contact with: a flowery dress will become a flowery t-shirt, worn over shorts, the second a “boy” tries to put it on.
player characters are also born white: there are over fifty kinds of animals represented in the game, but all humans are pale and pink. for animal crossing, enforced whiteness is nintendo’s path of least resistance to the question of player race. you do get a choice of gender, but it’s between two identity-erasing extremes: do you want to wear a dress for the rest of your life, or never?
Animal Crossing vs Tomodachi Collection: Which is the better hang-out?
[Looking at Tomodachi Collection: New Life’s release in Japan last week, Daniel Feit compares the playful life sim with Animal Crossing: New Leaf in this guest article reprinted from his blog.]
Spurred by questions regarding Tomodachi Collection, I thought I would whip up a quick list of comparisons between it and Animal Crossing, the other 3DS game where you hang out in a town with no real purpose.
Please note the most important difference right from the start: Animal Crossing will release in English on 3DS this summer, while Tomodachi Collection may never leave Japan.
SIMILARITIES: Both games put your character in charge of a community. There is no story or “goal” other than to enjoy yourself. Both games have an economy (Bells in AC, Yen in TC) and you will need money to buy things and unlock more game options. Items for sale include clothing, hats, food, and materials for decorating your home.
[In the following article, guest writer Ray Barnholt, the Western world’s foremost authority on Game Center CX, explains why many of your complaints about the new Retro Game Master DVD set may be misdirected.]
Earlier this year, I stopped work on my Game Center CX Episode Guide, with a post there explaining why. Part of it touched on the fact that GCCX was getting plenty of new fans in the Western world over the past year, with tons of people discovering the show and talking about it all over the place without ever seeing my site.
What I didn’t mention was the other side of that fandom; a darker side that took shape last June, when GCCX arrived in America as Retro Game Master, exclusively on Kotaku. It was supposed to be good news, but when it started, people didn’t really like it. Hated it. Really, they wanted everyone involved to die — the regular reasonable Internet reaction. I hoped that people would continue to appreciate the show for what it was, but instead I observed a cacophony of upset fans condemning Kotaku in all sorts of ways, mostly through kneejerk sentiments and just plain made-up assertions to justify their anger over what they saw as a bastardization.
[Some doubted it would ever happen, but Solatorobo releases in the States tomorrow for the DS — Infinity Counter’s Francesco Dagostino provides us with this thoughtful guest review of the action RPG.]
Furry. Kemono. Call them what you will; associate them with the worst kinks on the internet. But anthropomorphic animals are also the symbol of a long-decayed video game era, lost to the encroaching desert of the medium’s Westernization.
They dwelt in an era made of happy-go-lucky worlds, now eroded by the obsessive pursuit of pseudo-Hollywood photorealism; creativity sacrificed as hypertrophic muscles contract, in response to the button-mashing of foolproof controls.
Obviously enough, there are still developers refusing to follow this sea change: software houses swimming against the current to preserve values that everyone else gave up on for the sake of easy revenues.
CyberConnect2 is one of these.
The faces of Iggy (click for a larger version), the small but fierce coffee-flavored chewing gum addict dog who has become one of the most cherished characters from the JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure series - you may know it from the several video game adaptations presented by Capcom and Namco Bandai [Editor: And the Japan-only Jump Super/Ultimate Stars fighting series on DS!].
During the latest edition of the AOU Amusement Expo, Banpresto has unveiled a series of top quality figures based on the protagonists from Hirohiko Araki’s twisted manga, whose outlandish plot is filled with references to North American and European rock music from the last four decades. In addition, the company is also taking the chance to release different items especially designed for collectors, from key chains to t-shirts and toys.
[Surprise! Bonus guest post! -jc]
Pix’n Love is a French publisher entirely devoted to videogame publications. Together with their regular volumes, blending the book and magazine formats, they’ve also specialized in the creation of works concerning specific subjects: such is the case of this “L’Integrale des Jeux: Nintendo DS”, a 2009 release covering the entire European DS games catalogue in alphabetic order, each title with its own release data and capsule review. According to the publisher, this book will be reprinted regularly so as to keep the games list updated. They also stated that the Nintendo DS platform is only the beginning as many other systems, including the beloved Sega Dreamcast, are planned to follow sometime in the near future.
Eric has returned from his vacation, meaning that our series of guest posts has come to an end. We’ve had some amazingly rad content on the site over the last two weeks, thanks to the diligent efforts of Matt Hawkins, Adam Robezzoli, and Bruno de Figueiredo!
I thought I would link to all our guest posts again, for those of you who are Eric and missed the last couple of weeks. Every link after the break goes to something wonderful that is absolutely worth checking out!
This is it; my two weeks are finally up. By the time this post is published, Eric will have either returned from his vacation or will be getting ready to do so. Before I check out, I just wanted to thank Eric and JC for the tremendous opportunity that they bestowed upon me; not only has guest blogging for Tiny Cartridge been an honor (all you readers out there know already that this here place is the best, pound for pound, video game blog out there, period), its also been TONS of fun. And I especially need to thank everyone for the kind words and support!
Well, I wanted to do something special for my final post, and originally was going to pass along the cover to my latest zine, which is set to debut in early April. BTW, if you haven’t had a chance to check out the first two issues, why not check out a copy? Sorry for the cheap plug once again, but hey, since I’m on my way out and all. Unfortunately, the artist is still working on it as I type, so how about this instead…
An old PSone ad from Japan, one that’s been a longtime favorite of mine, for perhaps obvious reasons!
On a side note, I still have a soft spot for Daily Radar; sure, the writing was nothing stellar, but it provided the pre-YouTube internet with plenty of wonderful Japanese game commercials like no one else at the time; this early, work in progress clip of Rez was what planted the seed in my mind for what would become a full-borne obsession.
Pokemon fashion guide. It’s still cold out, but winter won’t be here forever, so if you’re a woman looking for a new springtime ensemble — one who happens to have an affinity for Pokemon — Polyvore to the rescue!
Whatever Pocket Monster you choose, there’s sure to be an accompanying outfit, but expect to fork over a pretty penny; to exude the essence of Jigglypuff, for example, requires a $578 investment, minimum.
Guest post by Matt “Fort90” Hawkins
Care for a little trip to Japan and its peculiar formats of TV game show entertainment? Gyouretsu no Dekiru Houritsu Soudanjo (which I won’t even try to translate) is one of the most popular variety shows airing on NTV where serious legal themes are blended with popular comedy. Each night, new couples are invited participate and take the center stage, seeking legal help from a team of lawyers that informs them about divorce procedures or even monetary compensations for emotional damages. Hosted by the iconic Shimada Shinsuke (the man in the cover), the show often shifts the attention from the guest’s marital hindrances to a series of goofy games and activities that help alleviating the stress. Comic relief is also provided by the nonstop jokes and insults coming from Shinsuke, the foul-mouthed entertainer. The Japanese seem to laugh endlessly at this sort of exercise - please have a look.
The DS version is presented by Bandai, now part of the larger NBGI group, and features the voice talent from the actual cast of the program. As seen on the screens, the game is based on dialogue/consultation phases, with the big talking heads appearing on screen over a text box; but also on a far more exciting group of mini-games starring the hosts, advisers and regular celebrity guests.
These activities include a wall-drilling game using the head of Hoji Higashino (one of the hosts); a bizarre facial muscle exercise with Takashi Satoshi in which the player has to press screen buttons in timely manner; and a rhythm game where the lawyers dance to the tune of Taiko no Tatsujin’s lovely drums. Gyouretsu no Dekiru Houritsu Soudanjo for the DS will be released on February 25th in Japan, where it will most definitely remain for obvious reasons: even so, its very existence is highly reassuring as it proves that the Japanese game industry remains just as authentic and insane as ever.
For more information, please visit the game’s official website.
Guest post by Bruno de Figueiredo