Banpresto has just announced their latest Pokémon Ichiban Kuji, and if you can’t tell already, this one’s a real doozy. The series is titled Pikachu Nebukuro (sleeping bag) Collection, and features pikachus in a variety of Pokémon-inspired sleeping bags. As if it weren’t cute enough, the website even opens with an adorable short story that shows how the pikachus ended up with such an adorable sleeping arrangement! Read More
Who doesn’t love a good sale? While some companies are dragging their feet more on the digital sale front than others (I’m looking at you, Nintendo), Sony has been doing a great job of offering a lot of great deals for PS3, PS4, and PS Vita on the PlayStation Store (aka PSN). The North American PS store yearly summer sale is generally no different, but unfortunately the first week was not the thrilling kickoff I was hoping for. Luckily, they’ve turned it around with week two, which is chock full of super discounts on some great titles! But money doesn’t grow on trees, so I’ve narrowed it down to five games I think are most worth picking up this week.
I’ve finally ventured into the world of video tutorials! I’ve been meaning to try my hand at recording games on my iPhone, and the newly-released free to play smartphone game Yowamushi Pedal: Puchitto Racers seemed like the perfect opportunity. Since I haven’t seen much discussion of the game in English, I thought it would be helpful to do a tutorial on how to play. Watch and learn!
If you want to download the game for iOS, I have a tutorial on how to easily switch your iTunes account to a Japanese one. Unfortunately I’m not very familiar with Android devices, but if you have one and know how to download Japanese games, please share your method in the comments!
I had a lot of fun doing this video but I’d really like some feedback as to whether or not this is something you’d like to see more of. Would you like more how to play videos or highlights of interesting apps available in Japanese? Let me know! Also, if you enjoyed this video, please share it with your friends! It takes hours to record and edit videos like these, so any support will be a major boost to my confidence and help me make more in the future. Thanks everyone!
Too often I’ve gone on a search for a rare piece of anime merchandise or a niche Japanese video game only to find that it’s not available anywhere that ships outside of Japan. Most fans of Japanese products that live anywhere but Japan itself eventually run into this problem – there are so many items that simply can’t be procured without a Japanese postal address. That’s where forwarding services like Tenso come in; for a fee, they provide eager shoppers with the Japanese address they crave and then forward any purchases to their final destinations overseas.
I’ve heard great things about Tenso from friends who’ve used the service for years, but despite the amount of Japanese products I import, I’ve never actually used a forwarding service myself. I’ve been blessed with having more than a few friends who’ve been willing to be middle men and women for my packages, but to be honest, I feel bad asking for so many favors! So, after many years of relying on friends in Japan to ship my purchases out for me, I’ve finally decided to give Tenso a go. Since I’ve received more than a few inquiries wondering if it’s worth the effort, I’ve decided to write up my complete experience purchasing a PlayStation Vita 2000 from Amazon Japan and forwarding it with Tenso vs. purchasing it outright from various importers.
A new month, a new theme! Point and click adventure games weren’t a particularly requested genre, but I thought they’ve been overlooked enough in recent years that they’d make a great theme for a slow release month. Bonus: it’s a genre I’m not really familiar with at all, so it’s all new territory for me!
In the first official episode in the new season 2 format, we reveal our first Manga Book Club pick, discuss the first two episodes of the summer anime we’re watching, and swoon over the new Odin Sphere HD remake (note: English version was confirmed after we recorded). The Death Note drama gets what might be its final update on the show, and Anne implores everyone with a Crunchyroll subscription to read the Princess Jellyfish manga. We even unveil a brand new segment, App Attack, where we gush over the adorable smartphone game Alphabear. As always, feedback is greatly appreciated! Send it on over to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Opening ♫ – “Kakusinteki☆Metamaruphooose!” by Aimi Tanaka
Closing ♫ – “WHITE ASH” by Insight
Nier is one of those titles that nearly everyone I know has recommended to me, yet somehow I’ve never managed to ever play it for more than a few minutes since it came out five years ago. With the double-whammy of Nier 2 getting announced at E3 and this month being JRPGJuly, it turns out now couldn’t be a better time for me to finally pick it up!
I joking mentioned on Twitter before I started playing that I preferred the young bishōnen protagonist Japan received in the Nier Replicant version, which unsurprisingly received more than a couple responses saying I would change my mind when I started the game. While I still think Replicant Nier has a more appealing character design, I have been finding the more haggard version of Nier in Nier Gestalt (which was the only version localized) equally appealing.
Both games are virtually the same except for the protagonists and their relationship to the sickly girl Yonah they are trying to save, but this relationship is quite central to the game, so I imagine it changes the tone somewhat. Replicant Nier is often just referred to as “Brother Nier” due to the fact that he’s Yonah’s brother, while “Papa Nier” is, as the nickname would suggest, Yonah’s father. Grouchy Papa Nier and his relationships with the various characters in the game have really stood out to me so far, and I’m really impressed with the snappy, sassy dialogue.
As of this post, I’m about 7 hours in and have just received my first party member, though as far as I can tell they can’t be customized in any way and are fully managed by the game’s AI and thus don’t really count as a “party” in the traditional sense. I’ve also been getting a lot of tutorial texts and am experiencing an overwhelming feeling of “maybe I should open the menu and read those,” but there’s nothing I enjoy less than reading through tutorials! I suppose I might take a look at them if I start experiencing difficulties with the combat…
Speaking of which, I haven’t actually read any of the negative reviews of the game (I’ve heard it received many when it first came out), but my overwhelming impression before I started Nier was that the gameplay was supposed to be pretty rough. It’s certainly nothing to write home about, I’ve found it to be pretty fun so far, and am particularly enjoying the different magical powers Nier learns with the help of Grimoire Weiss. That whole first fishing quest can bite me, though.
I don’t believe it’s too much of a spoiler for anyone who hasn’t played to mention that the game is notable for requiring players to go through the game multiple times. From what I understand, I’m nearing the “point of no return” where the game is later replayed from after it’s been completed once… But in the interest of experiencing the game as it happens, I haven’t really read into it beyond that. What I can say is, I’m really digging the game so far, and I fully intend to actually complete a JRPG for once!
Be sure to check back next Monday for Nier Diary no. 2 and see if I’ve made it past the halfway point!
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