News: Thompson versus EA

Miami attorney Jack Thompson, out to make a buck, was one of the persons responsible for the GTA hot-coffee mod controversy. Not content to bring videogames down to the level of toys for tots, he’s taken aim at EA’s Sims 2, which through skins, can be made to have nudity (though he presumes it’s in-game, which seems incredibly unlikely coming from EA). This gamespot article has quite a few interesting comments from the brilliant man. EA’s Jeff Brown said: “If someone with an extreme amount of expertise and time were to remove the pixels, they would see that the Sims have no genitals. They appear like Ken and Barbie.” To which our friend Thompson responded: “The sex and the nudity are in the game. That’s the point. The blur is an admission that even the ‘Ken and Barbie’ features should not be displayed. The blur can be disarmed. This is no different than what is in San Andreas, although worse.”

Let’s read that again. It’s no different – but it’s worse. Clever.

Play Asia: Nanostray and others

There have been rumors of a Nanostray cancellation, and it has missed its ship date to Gamestop, and EB will not be carrying it. Should the game not actually turn up in normal retail channels, you can order it here. In related shooter releases, Mushihimesama is out, along with assorted limited goods. You can preorder Raiden III now, and Jump Superstars for DS, which already has 200k+ preorders in japan, rather shockingly. Lastly, the Minna Daisuki Katamari soundtrack is out. Good stuff, that. Naturally, don’t forget the deal of the week – Gladiator: Road to Freedom asian version for $9.

News: Moe (萌え) Defined?

Kabudeikou.jpgA little bit of cruising around the anime blog circuit sent me to an interesting analysis (posted 7/18) of moe by mangaka Ken Akamatsu (of Love Hina and Mahou Sensei Negima fame). For the more linguistically challenged, check out this helpful translation and comments section, courtesy of Matthew Whitehead.

<Brandon’s notes:> First off, if you don’t want to click – the general concept of ‘moe’ is the feeling of affinity for a cute (cute like a kitten is cute) young girl, with non-sexual implications. It’s particularly relevant now, because the market for moe-related goods (posters, figures, anime, manga) in japan is increasing among adult males. Next, speaking of moe, Zepy has a the scoop on Kabudeikou, a humorous stock-trading book by the guys that made Moetan (see nov. 23). I’ll copy his words here.

Basically, the 2D moe industry is going to collapse in 10 years and the guy has to become a top trader to become influential enough to save moe. Or everybody will become ugly american comic women. Also of note is the happy trading section of the site, where they talk about trading little sisters for money. (The kanji for stocks and little sister is similar)

News: Bandai Bubble

bubble.jpg
Engaget points out a new edutainment system from Bandai, called the Bubble. The system uses a pad, simlar to, but more advanced than Sega’s pico, and interacts wirelessly with any DVD player, which actually drives the software. Popular licenses such as Teletubbies and Thomas the Tank Engine will be the focus of this toddler-ranged product. Bandai admirably refuses to stop releasing obscure hardware into the world, and this is the fifth from the company, unless I’m counting wrong (ignoring the variants of the Wonderswan). The Bubble is closest to Bandai’s Playdia console from 1994. Simple interface, wireless control, blue casing, all similarly themed. via ffwd

News: Colorful Notes

CNsam7.gif Vector reviewed a nice bity of freeware for Windows titled Colorful Notes, created by Maruchu. The game consists of joining colored tiles together by swapping them. There are a few intricacies due to the presence of specific tiles such as those that can’t be moved, and others that are limited in their moves (the number of moves allowed is indicated on the tile). The game has been around since last year, and you can download the recent v1.20 updated version here. Colorful Notes’ overall design is simple yet classy, and the game also features a fitting drum’n’bass score. Actually, Maruchu seems proud enough of his musical works to have a dedicated BGM download page as well as some remix tracks on Muzie.

News: CD-i emulator

cdi.gif
A new CD-i emulator is undergoing closed beta currently, and there will be a limited free demo in a matter of course. Unfortunately you need an extra cable, and a bit of work to get it going, which seems a bit prohibitive for a cost-related release, but still quite interesting to see a project such as this moving forward. Soon you too could be playing the CD-i mario beta!