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Japanator Interviews: Space Station Osaka
Posted by News Fetcher on August 31 '13 at 05:00 AM
By Eric Koziol from Japanator:
Gaming is more social than many like to give it credit for. Arcades used to play a huge part of this socialization but now the majority seems to happen with screens between the players. Of course there are still some arcades and people will often get together with friends to play. You probably know of arcade bars where alcoholic beverages are served and arcade machines fill the place instead of just being one stuck in a corner.

In Japan there are game bars which eschew the arcade machines for the more Japanese-sized bar friendly consoles. Patrons are encouraged to pop a game into any classic or modern console and play solo or with friends as they enjoy a beverage and a snack.

Almost every single one are owned and operated by Japanese, but not all. Japanator sat down and interviewed Matt Bloch, owner of the Osaka game bar Space Station, to find out more about this unique bar.



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Kill la Kill 30 second CM is to die for
Posted by News Fetcher on August 31 '13 at 04:15 AM
By Elliot Gay from Japanator:


A few days back we posted a link to the latest Kill la Kill CM. It was only fifteen seconds long, but it was the first real look we've had at the series since it was first announced by TRIGGER.

Aniplex since has uploaded an extended version of the CM that runs a cool 30 seconds, giving us a much clearer look at the characters and general feel of the show. It's brief. It's glorious. It's Hiroyuki Imaishi.

The team behind Gurren Lagann have their work cut out for them, but I have faith. Check out the new CM above and sound off in the comments below.

Are you as excited as I am?



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Japanator Arena: Asura vs Gurren Lagann
Posted by News Fetcher on August 30 '13 at 07:00 PM
By Salvador G-Rodiles from Japanator:
*ding, ding, ding*

It's Over!

Well, Crono tried to alter the course of time to gain the upper hand, but Zoro's endurance couldn't handle the combined strikes of Guts and Saber. While Saber was facing some teamwork issues with Guts, she was able to whip out her Excalibur and Avalon combo fast enough to prevent Crono from going back in time. Saber and Guts win! (21 > 8)

We’re back to our usual versus matches this week, and I think it’s time that we change things up once again! Thanks to a suggestion from my local friends, we’re having a demigod that’s powered by his own rage against a machine that’s power by the hotblooded will of many individuals! Most would consider this battle to be random, but it’s not like we've had super beings go up against powerful robots in fiction before. So without further ado, let’s introduce our opponents.

He was one of the Eight Guardians at one point in his life, and his rage knows no bound. Despite his anger, his devotion to saving his own daughter is unmatched, as the amount of time he spent on this quest took him longer than our lifespans combined. Tonight he’s here to show us this power, so let’s step out of the way for Asura from Asura’s Wrath to enter the ring.

Simon and his comrades went through a lot to reclaim the freedom of mankind. In fact their own will allowed them to fight against all odds in Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann. Proving to everyone that the Spiral Energy can work in one’s favor, Gurren Lagann is ready to pull out the Giga Drill Breaker once again!

Both fighters have the ability to harness a great amount of energy, so we can expect to see the galaxy tremble in this fight. Just to be clear with everyone, both sides will be going all out in this battle, which means that no one is holding back.

< article continued at Japanator >

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Random Encounters! MangaGamer grabs 3 Stars of Destiny
Posted by News Fetcher on August 30 '13 at 06:30 PM
By Salvador G-Rodiles from Japanator:


I don't mean to sound skeptical right now, but the latest title that's joining MangaGamer's new shop doesn't seem to click with me that well. Sure, 3 Stars of Destiny takes notes from classic JRPG, but there's something about the game that gives off a messy presentation. While the sprites and environments give off a great sense of nostalgia, the battle menus and the coloring for the character portraits and monsters need to be improved.

Mind you, that doesn't mean that the game's story and gameplay will be terrible, so there's a good chance that Aldorlea Games's newest title will give off its own special charm. I mean, I had an issue with the character portraits in Dust: An Elysian Tail, but the game's gameplay, story, animations, and environments were enough to make it a great game. Hopefully, the same will apply to 3 Stars of Destiny when the game becomes available on August 30th.

For more information on Aldorlea's new game, you can check out the press release below. While you're at it, you can check out the game's images in the gallery as well.



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First official Space Dandy PV is live
Posted by News Fetcher on August 30 '13 at 05:15 PM
By Elliot Gay from Japanator:


Studio Bones has uploaded an official version of their first Space Dandy trailer to the Bandai Visual Youtube, and well... I'll just let it speak for itself.

Why is this something you should be excited about? Shinichiro Watanabe of Cowboy Bebop (and other great titles) fame is returning to space.

Space Dandy is... a dandy guy in the space.



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A Daily Dose of Music: Afilia Saga
Posted by News Fetcher on August 30 '13 at 05:00 PM
By Salvador G-Rodiles from Japanator:


Hiroko's having a busy week at work, so her schedule is random at the moment. Whenever her workload overwhelms her, I will snatch the Daily Dose from her when I can. Once again, I would like to apologize for being a bit late again. Unfortunately a few things got in the way, but I still managed to prevail! As we get ready to for the weekend, let's look at Afilia Saga's song that gives us the courage to progress in our video games!

Acting as one of the ending themes for the Neptunia anime, "Neptune Sagashite" reminds us of the great times that we can have when we jump into a random game. While it mostly focuses on Neptune's life as a goddess and a gamer, I think that we can relate to ordeals of managing our responsibilities with our gaming time. Thanks to the cute singing voices of the girls of Afilia Saga, I always feel rejoiced when "Neptune Sagashite" pops up as the ending theme while I'm watching the latest episode of Hyperdimension Neptunia: The Animation.

Due to the music video being a slight preview of the song, you can check out the full song in the Overdose of Music below. However, the overdose video is the song only.



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Kristina's Summer Vacation: #30 - View
Posted by News Fetcher on August 30 '13 at 03:00 PM
By Kristina Pino from Japanator:
Since I'm boring today and I had to go to work, I don't have an awesome picture freshly taken for your viewing pleasure. So instead, I'm tossing up another picture from last week's visit to Enoshima, this time a view from the top of the Sea Candle, which is a tower that doubles as a lighthouse.

[full image in the gallery!]



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Liberation Maiden goes to PS3 with Liberation Maiden SIN
Posted by News Fetcher on August 30 '13 at 12:00 PM
By Josh Tolentino from Japanator:


Ah, Liberation Maiden. At first it seemed like something of a throwaway novelty, a 3DS shoot 'em up designed by Level-5 and Goichi "Suda 51" Suda and part of the Guild 01 anthology of auteur-driven titles. And in some ways it was, being a pretty tiny game by most standards (and incidentally Suda's least objectionable title), but it had a premise none can deny, that of a schoolgirl becoming President of "New Japan" and fighting an alien invasion in a cool mecha-fighter jet.

Indeed, that premise won't be denied to home console players any longer, as Liberation Maiden is getting adapted for PS3, as the adventure game, Liberation Maiden SIN. And now it has a teaser trailer, narrated by Kana Hanazawa, the voice of President/schoolgirl Shoko.

It's nice to see more Liberation Maiden out and about for non 3DS-owners like yours truly, but I can't help but think that I'd have preferred to see this as an anime adaptation rather than an adventure game, if only because an anime has a better chance to get into English. Then again, Liberation Maiden's now a known quantity to English-speaking gamers and publishers, so there's a good chance either way.



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Making dinosaurs chase people is the cruelest joke
Posted by News Fetcher on August 30 '13 at 09:30 AM
By Josh Tolentino from Japanator:


No matter how hilarious it is on video, I always feel a little guilty watching a successful prank. Sure, it's fun as all hell to watch, but more often than not the victim of a prank is unlikely to find it very funny, except in retrospect.

Imagine then how guilty I felt when I saw this amazing gag a Japanese TV show pulled on various celebrities, including idol Haruka Christine and comedian Shinji Saito (below). Being scared half to death by a f*cking dinosaur chasing you down a hall when all you wanted was to get to work and sip your coffee has to be some kind of milestone in the history of prankery.

Glorious Nippon, I salute you...and then feel bad about it later.



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Superhero Time: The lone wolf is ready to shine
Posted by News Fetcher on August 29 '13 at 07:00 PM
By Salvador G-Rodiles from Japanator:
Due to a special showing of Super Hero Wars and Pretty Cure All Stars, Kyoryuger and Kamen Rider Wizard are taking a break. In other words, we don't have to deal with these kiddie hero shows that sugarcoat the true reality that comes from facing evil. Unfortunately, they picked a bad time too, as both shows were setting up for some spectacular scenarios.

I guess this means I'll have to wait a bit longer to see Daigo remove the chomping helmet that he has on. On the flip side, I can still shed light on my latest thoughts on Garo Season 3, so there's still something to cover for this segment.



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Square Enix announces Bravely Default: For the Sequel
Posted by News Fetcher on August 29 '13 at 05:00 PM
By Elliot Gay from Japanator:
Bravely Default was the best game I played last year. Nothing even came close to the amount of joy I got from it, and even now I get the urge to go back and do another play through.

The development team has been teasing a sequel for some time now, and while this isn't quite it, we're one step closer.

A Jump leak has revealed that Square Enix will be releasing an update called Bravely Default: For the Sequel on December 5. For those of you who already own the game, this will be DLC running you 2,900 yen, with the packaged version costing a cool 4,990 yen.

This new update adds more story events, modified controls, faster battle speed, difficulty options, and more save slots. The latter is especially big as the original game only featured a single slot.

Part of me wonders if the recent delay of the game's English language release is because of this update. I'd like to believe that you folks out west will be getting this new complete package.

Either way, if the naming is any indication (it is), we can expect a true Bravely Default sequel in the near future.

I'm very ok with that.

[via Destructoid]



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This new Kill la Kill CM has me hyped
Posted by News Fetcher on August 29 '13 at 04:15 PM
By Elliot Gay from Japanator:


One look at this 16 second Kill la Kill commercial tells me everything I need to know about the series.

Read as: I need this show in my eyes right now.

Trigger's (Little Witch Academia) first original TV anime series is looking every bit as crazy and dynamic as I had hoped. The Imaishi is strong with this one.

I'll let the commercial speak for itself. Feel free to leave your thoughts in the comments below.



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Spawn and Heihachi team up for Soulcalibur II HD
Posted by News Fetcher on August 29 '13 at 04:00 PM
By Chris Walden from Japanator:
When Soulcalibur II first arrived on home consoles back in 2003, gamers hotly debated which version they were going to pick up. See, Namco figured out this version exclusivity thing pretty early on, lumping in characters that best represented the respective platform.

Tekken was still "Only on PlayStation™" at this point, so Heihachi became the bonus character for the PS2. Nintendo got Link, the boy wonder from The Legend of Zelda, likely because he has a sword and Soulcalibur just wasn't ready for Mario yet. Xbox was best represented by comic book character Spawn, probably because there was a Spawn fan working at Namco at the time. Who knows.

Still, the chances are good that if you've ever played this game, you'll only have used one of these exclusive characters. My teenage self was quite happy with the Gamecube version of the game, because come on, Link is awesome.

However, the upcoming Soulcalibur II HD will come with both Spawn and Heihachi, regardless of whether you pick the PS3 or the Xbox 360 to play on. Pretty neat, right? We finally get to see those Spawn vs Heihachi fights, just like the one in the header!

There's absolutely no word of a Wii U version, which is rather unfortunate as it's the only platform that could viably have all three of these characters in the same game. Still, giving this game online support is still enough to get me excited for it. While we wait for a release date, why not check out some of the new screenshots in the gallery below?



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JX: An interview with Dempagumi.inc
Posted by News Fetcher on August 29 '13 at 03:00 PM
By Josh Totman from Japanator:


The fun loving group of Dempagumi.inc was kind enough to sit down with me and chat about some of the things that they like. I will warn you right now, the audio does peak when these girls get going. So if you have your speakers up or your headphones turned up, you might want to turn then done a notch before watching.

Other then that, the girls were a delight to talk to. Especially when we were talking about anime that we are watching and I brought up Ranma 1/2. The girls went a bit nuts about it because they are huge fans of it. So much so in fact that after the interview they started to sing a song from it. Don't worry gang, I have included it at the end of the interview for your enjoyment. It's only audio, but hey, its adorable.



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Shonen Showdown 8-29-2013
Posted by News Fetcher on August 29 '13 at 02:00 PM
By Josh Tolentino from Japanator:
Hello, and welcome once more to another installment of Shonen Showdown, the weekly fighting anime and manga recap that's secretly quite amused by today's lineup, which, thanks to Kristina's recovery from her summer vacation and a brief break in the Hunter x Hunter schedule, consists mainly of that classic pairing: Pirates and Ninjas.

Yes, though we're keeping a straight face to avoid being seen laughing at such a hoary old meme, the dynamic duo of One Piece and Naruto are here to entertain you!



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Tezuka's Buddha returns to enlighten us
Posted by News Fetcher on August 29 '13 at 01:00 PM
By Hiroko Yamamura from Japanator:


The second part of the film version of Osamu Tezuka's Buddha, finally has a release date and trailer. The incredibly deep and award winning manga first made its way to the big screen back in 2010, and the sequel will finally enlighten us on February 2014 in Japanese theaters. From what I can tell, it looks quite stunning.

Buddha was actually one of the first manga I had read as a child that covered a subject that wasn't robots, ninjas, or psychic warriors. Seeing the trailer for Buddha 2 makes me want to pick up the eight volume set again, and check out if its as moving as I recall, or if I just cried really easily back then. We'll let you know as soon a full trailer is available.

[Via ANN]



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Kristina's Summer Vacation: #29 - Horizons
Posted by News Fetcher on August 29 '13 at 12:00 PM
By Kristina Pino from Japanator:
The last time I was at a beach, it was kind of crowded and at Kamakura. The sand was different (darker), and there were lifeguards shouting things at everyone every 20 minutes. My local beach? A totally different story. I showed up at 3:30 PM and hardly anyone was around, so we had a peaceful afternoon with this lovely view.

Man I love summer.

[full image in the gallery!]



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Awesome Japanese commercial time!
Posted by News Fetcher on August 29 '13 at 11:00 AM
By Hiroko Yamamura from Japanator:


It's been a few weeks, but we finally have a new commercial compilation from our friend JPCMHD! I was starting to get scared that we were going to wait a while, but it was worth it, as he's rounded up for lovely advertisements. This time, the theme seems to be ways to beat the heat.

There's plenty of Kyary Pamyu Pamyu, Momoiro Clover Z, as well the always lovely Koda Kumi. Refreshing looking beverages and One Piece ice cream makers should help cool things off, but I sill refuse to accept the idea of iced instant noodles. Just the though of eating iced cup noodles makes my skin crawl for some reason. Even if there's a hot chick selling them.

I can pretty much feel the sweltering heat from Japan via these new commercials, but there has to be a better way than this. I've made the mistake of putting unboiled water in instant noodles before, and seeing how everything just clumped together made my appetite disappear.



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JX: An interview with 1000say
Posted by News Fetcher on August 29 '13 at 10:00 AM
By Josh Totman from Japanator:


The electro-pop band 1000say was kind enough to sit down with me and chat a bit about how they started and what 1000say means. We also talk about their tastes in music which was actually surprising. The range was quite large in what they listen to.

What was not surprising were how nice they were. I could feel their good nature shine through their smiles. The concert, like I said about earlier, was a great experience and wonderful to listen to. Personally, I hope that they can make it up to Seattle some time in the future. I told them I would cook them a good meal if they did.



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Review: Phi Brain volume 1
Posted by News Fetcher on August 29 '13 at 09:00 AM
By Jeff Chuang from Japanator:
Over the years that I've been an avid anime viewer, I ran across my fair share of strange shows. Some of them are very remarkable, in that usual freakish Japanese way that all of us are familiar with. Then there are the plain weird ones. Phi Brain is squarely in the second category.

This anime-original TV series is not your garden variety late-night TV anime, but a story about a young man and his love for puzzles--from keychain puzzles to jigsaw puzzles to word puzzles to anything vaguely resembling a riddle. How will he and his rag-tag gang reveal the mysterious puzzle of God and the equally puzzling story to Phi Brain?



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