Watched the first episode of Japan Sinks. I'm gonna keep going for now, but I'm not really sure if it'll be worth it. It really lacks the charm and style present in all of Yuasa's other works. It just gets straight to the gruesome darkness that made parts of Devilman so unpleasant to watch, but without any of the character development or subversiveness that made that series feel worthwhile. Probably doesn't help that Kyuushuu is experiencing historic flooding right now, so some of the imagery is pretty raw. We'll see how things go from here, but I'm tempering my expectations.
Posts made by naltmank
RE: Anime! Who's watching what?
RE: Fast and filthy bets: Ubisoft showcase edition.
Will there be a new Nintendo crossover game or partnership? (Mario + Rabbids, Star Fox in Starlink, etc.)
Will Ubisoft acknowledge the recent sexual misconduct accusations in any way during the main show?
Across all videos for Assassin's Creed Valhalla, which version of the main character will be featured the longest (male or female)?
Will Rayman reveal himself?
Will there be MORE than 20 cannons be fired across all Skull & Bones videos? (so if 10 cannons fire, reload, and fire again, that's 20)
NO, this game is extremely dead
Will a new Far Cry game taking place in Europe be shown?
Will we hear Michael Ironside's voice?
Will there be MORE than 4 separate Tom Clancy titles individually featured on the show? (recap montages don't count)
Will there be MORE than 2 different planets shown across all Beyond Good & Evil 2 videos?
Will a brand new IP be revealed?
Will Trackmania be featured for MORE than 3 minutes? (gameplay, trailers, interviews all count)
Will Yves Guillemot wear a shirt or a suit or neither?
Shirtless, with tassels tastefully placed over his nips
Will a new game where you control a car (or any racing vehicle) be revealed?
Tie-breaker: How many kills will be shown across all HyperScape videos?
RE: Xbox Games Showcase quick and dirty forum bets
1: Will there be any spoken or on-screen appearance of Master Chief's full name, "John-117" during the presentation? Partials such as "John" or "117" do not count.
2: The words "World Premiere" will appear on screen MORE than 9 times.
3: Will a new Fable be shown?
4: Will the word "Batman" be spoken?
5: There will be a celebrity presenter. (I will count any real life person that does not work for Microsoft that has a wikipedia page, Tim Schafer does not count)
6: Will the price be revealed?
7: There will be a self deprecating joke about "showing real gameplay this time". It has to be an attempt at a joke and not an apologetic statement. I will consult joke experts if necessary.
8: Will a demo for any of these games shown off in the 1st showcase be shadow dropped during the second showcase? Assassin's Creed Valhalla, Dirt 5, Yakuza: Like a Dragon, Madden NFL 21, Chorus, Scarlet Nexus, Bright Memory Infinite, Call of the Sea, Scorn, Second Extinction, The Ascent, The Medium, and Vampire: The Masquerade-Bloodlines 2.
MUST BE SHADOW DROPPED and not made available earlier in the week!!!
9: "Ray Tracing" will be said more than 4 times.
10: The game that The Initiative is working on will be announced.
11: Halo, Forza, AND Gears will all be present. (montages count)
12: The Xbox Games Showcase will be longer than 75 minutes.
Tie Breaker: Total number of times the phrase "Game Pass" is spoken aloud.
I've got a bad feeling for this one, but I hope I'm wrong
RE: The EZA Community Top 25 Best of 2010!
Not much to say about the top 2 other than what's been said. I consider Mass Effect 2 a masterpiece and wish I could play it for the first time again. Nothing has really captured that beautiful feeling of an interactive Space opera ever since, IMO.
Also, y'all are a bunch of Castlevania: Lords of Shadow haters. In hindsight, I should've put it higher. It was originally my number 2, but then I looked at my list and realized there were games that I've played much more and are pretty objectively better than it, so I dropped it to 4. It's so dang good, though. Forget the license it's attached to and just enjoy the utterly bonkers story, killer boss fights, and legitimately / incredible / score.
- Mass Effect 2
- Pokemon HeartGold and SoulSilver
- God of War III
- Castlevania: Lords of Shadow
HM: Heavy Rain, Super Mario Galaxy 2, Enslaved: Odyssey to the West, Red Dead Redemption
RE: The EZA Community Top 25 Best of 2010!
@hazz3r The remakes have a story sequence where you fight Lugia/Ho-oh, whereas they were entirely missable in the original games. IIRC, those moments didn't start until Gen 3 with Kyogre/Groudon. The Suicune encounters are okay in my book because outside of the first couple encounters, you could still miss moments if you don't explore somewhat thoroughly. That has always been what I want from the newer Pokemon games: missable encounters due to crit-pathing. My absolute favorite addition to the game is the Moltres encounter, since it's completely new and surprising while echoing Gen 1's placement in Victory Road.
RE: The EZA Community Top 25 Best of 2010!
I've missed a few:
Limbo is a game that I loved for the mood and atmospheric storytelling. I held it in super high regard when I finished it, largely because of how it ended, but I'm not sure if I'd enjoy it as much if I played it today.
Pokemon HGSS are probably the best games in the series, objectively speaking. They're also essentially perfect remakes, taking the body of the original game, updating the visuals and mechanics, and expanding on areas to make the world more cohesive and fulfilling. My main issue with it - and the reason I actually almost prefer the original Gen 2 over their remakes - is that it borrows from the "mandatory legendary story moment" that began in Gen 3. I really dislike the fact that you're forced to battle the cover legendary, as opposed to stumbling upon it. The trope raises the stakes in a way that I feel has hurt the series ever since it was introduced. That said, the way this game expands Kanto and implements new legendary encounters is genuinely fantastic. This is the last game that I feel had a sense of discovery and adventure from beginning to end, and it's something I hope returns to the series soon.
God of War III: I almost didn't put this on my list, since I'm not sure I'd like it nearly as much if I played it today. It really capitalizes on the gruesome and gratuitous "hardcore-ness" that plagued M-rated games and R-rated movies until... actually it's still there and I hate it. I can't deny how much fun I had with this game, though. The first two thirds of the game are just the perfect blend of massive set-pieces and impactful, thrilling action gameplay. I do think it runs out of steam near the end, though. It hurts seeing how cool some of the cut content is, but what can you do.
RE: Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles Remastered Edition (Switch, PS4, Phone)
@dipset ... I used to choose to play games on the portable gamecube screen, even when I had the option to use the TV. I don't remember why.
RE: The EZA Community Top 25 Best of 2010!
Heavy Rain was legitimately in my top 5 games of all time for a few years. It was doing really cool stuff with choice/consequence while maintaining a very cinematic presentation. I even like the way it played. However, as time went on, I started noticing all the flaws and holes in the actual story, and the rough edges present throughout the game only became more and more noticeable. I still think there's a lot to enjoy here, but it's aged pretty poorly overall, which is why I could only put it in my HMs here. Great soundtrack, though.
RE: Friend Code - Official Discussion Thread
@damianicus Thanks for the response, Damiani. I also want to reiterate that I think the conversation that followed regarding black representation in video games was absolutely worthwhile. I think those instances you bring up of Nintendo learning and growing in response to outside input are also representative of a broader cultural/generational shift, and are why I'm optimistic about the future of representation in games and media in/from Japan.
Also, to be clear, I wasn't really trying to blame/shame anyone in particular. I know everyone involved was well-intentioned. Rather, I just wanted to shed light on why I feel some pervasive viewpoints that were represented are problematic. It just happened to be sparked by that question.
RE: Friend Code - Official Discussion Thread
I know this wasn't the intent, and I think there were great points that ended up being made throughout the discussion about representation in video games in general, but the discussion about diversity and inclusion in smash bros and Nintendo as a whole on the most recent Friend Code really irked me in a way that I feel warrants some discussion. Please note that I'm not trying to call anyone out or condemn the conversation as a whole; I'm just trying to shed some light on an issue and educate as best as I can from my perspective as a mixed-race and third culture kid. Mods, if this sparks a discussion that gets out of hand, mute/delete this thread.
This has come up at least once before (in the initial BLM discussions, I remember Damiani noting that it took Nintendo and The Pokemon Company too long to make a statement), but I think it's important for people to understand that you can't apply American perspectives to a company as uniquely Japanese as Nintendo, and Japan has a long and troubled history with racism, sexism, and general bigotry. A recent example is in the ongoing BLM movement in America: I didn't start seeing widespread news coverage of it here in Japan until over a week into the start of the protests, and even then it was in the context of the spread of COVID. Then, when it did start gaining more coverage, this was the video NHK produced to try and explain the situation to a broader audience on a family-oriented news show:
Beyond the gross reliance on stereotypical depictions of black people, it claims that people are looting (and justifying looting) because of economic/wealth disparities between black people and white people, noting in particular the fact that black people are suffering the effects of COVID to a much greater degree than white people. It never once mentions police brutality. NHK pulled the video and provided a lengthy apology a few days later, but it belies the general ignorance most of Japan has about international issues regarding race and prejudice. This in and of itself has its roots back in the days of Sakoku, and I'd argue that that sentiment of isolationism has persisted due in part to the deeply traditional and hierarchical culture that permeates all corners of Japanese society. In other words, there is very little cultural exchange that has broadened Japanese perspectives in a meaningful sense in regards to many of these issues. While much could be said about the problems individualism has caused for problems America has been grappling with, Japan still struggles with a collectivist mentality where those that are "other" are largely ignored or seen as lesser. Discrimination is still prevalent in a way I think many people aren't aware of, perhaps due to the fact that it is (thankfully) almost never violent the way that it is in America. An easy example to point out would be the incident of a train announcer apologizing to his passengers for the amount of foreigners on the train, but people in the west are rarely taught about the general mistreatment of people with disabilities or other conditions, such as the treatment of the hibakusha and their descendents . However, the fact that discrimination isn't violent doesn't mean that it doesn't affect the mentality of many Japanese people and companies, and that includes Nintendo.
I've had this discussion before on the forums, but Nintendo is probably the least global video game publisher/console manufacturer, and by extension is the most Japanese in terms of overall philosophy. By saying something along the lines of "I don't get why they don't just have a minority as a main character" or "they should know by now that this is what's expected by people," you're ignoring the fact that, in Japan, that's simply not an issue that has been a priority. I'd argue that Nintendo, and especially the Pokemon Company, have done a far better job in terms of representation than just about any other primarily Japanese developer. I of course hope that they continue to improve, and I'm not trying to excuse the lack of diversity. I'm simply saying that even though the sentiment is just, applying western philosophies to Japanese companies without a greater understanding of the cultural and historical background behind their decisions is inherently flawed.
This is not really my main issue, though. What did bother me was that this discussion of diversity in Nintendo was triggered by the announcement of Min Min as a fighter. I don't think this was the person's intent, but the question of "why aren't there minorities in Smash" after a Chinese person was added to the roster reminded me of the kind of tokenism I've been grappling with my whole life. It reminded me of when, after Scarlett Johansson was cast in the lead role of Ghost in the Shell, people decried the lack of representation and then - often in the same sentence - said that they "should've at least cast Contance Wu."
The hypocrisy of people championing anti-racism and then promoting (or, in the case of Min Min, bemoaning) "just another yellow face" has always astounded me. There is an astounding amount of cultural diversity just within China (seriously - look at how many dialects there are, and then listen to them and realize how different they are), not to mention the vast differences between entire nations. However, I also recognize that, unfortunately, in a country where so much depends on the color of your skin, the relatively similar features of people from east-Asia makes it easy to gloss over these differences. However, conflating these nationalities and cultures as a single "Asian" race is deeply troubling, especially given the frankly horrific history of Japanese colonial rule. Much of this starts earlier than people realize - the treatment of the Ainu people and the Ryukyu Kingdom are largely analogous to America's history with Native Americans and Hawai'i, respectively. Most of what Americans know of starts with WWII. The Japanese Empire often championed brutal and efficient methods of capitalizing on their territories, and in the process committed countless war crimes and atrocities. The Nanjing Massacre and the use of Comfort Women throughout the war are probably the most widely publicized of these, but the scars run much deeper than just that, and with a much greater reach. It is for these reasons that there is so much tension between Japan and the rest of Asia, particularly China and Korea. Relationships are improving (for the most part), but I've still been told multiple times by Chinese and Korean friends that "if my grandma/grandpa ever found out I was dating a Japanese person, they'd probably disown me." For what it's worth, the sentiment is largely reciprocal among older generations here in Japan; my grandma (and even my mom) have both casually dropped sentences like, "yeah, I don't trust the Koreans," or, "I don't like Chinese" before like it's nothing. I try to ignore it because they're old and reticent to change, but it highlights the far-reaching consequences of this history. I know this is long, but I want to leave you with one final story, the reason I feel it's important to address these issues with care and grace: I don't remember much of high school - blocked most of it out - but it's made the news several times for its lack of diversity. In a school with ~900 kids per grade, over 70% of them are Asian, the majority of whom were Chinese or Korean, and sometimes still lacked American citizenship. One of my only memories is from sophomore year, walking down the hall and being accosted by dozens of classmates screaming, "APOLOGIZE!" before they giggled and ran away. The first few times didn't bother me too much, since I've dealt with much worse, but as the day drew on it grew tiring. Eventually I asked one of my friends what was going on. Apparently, one of the history teachers had reached the Japanese history part of the World War II unit. At the end of class, he had made the sole Japanese person in the section stand up and individually apologize to their Chinese and Korean classmates in front of everyone. The anger I felt in that moment shook me out of my "I don't see race" philosophy. It made me realize that it doesn't matter what I see - it only matters what other people see. I'm not trying to say that I've experienced anything on par with what black people and other BIPOC have had to deal with every day of their lives. I'm just saying that, by lumping Asians together in calls for diversity, you're writing over generations of tension and wrongdoings, perpetuating the problems you're trying to solve.
I'm not trying to say that you shouldn't criticize Japan or Nintendo. You absolutely should. The issues of diversity and representation are only a small fraction of the problems that need to be addressed. My goal isn't to start a flame war, or invite people saying things like, "tHis iS tHE pROBleM with SJW CULTURE," but bring to light what I feel are some of the issues I wish people were more aware of. I'm only bringing this up now because, after biting my tongue over the rampant fetishization of Japan by the gaming and nerd community at large, it's frustrating seeing these issues finally being acknowledged without what I feel is the proper nuance or perspective.