Dengeki Rankings I Nintendo DS Goes Goth I More Code Age Commanders Pre-Order Goodies and Video I Older Hudson Games Go Mobile Another Going XBox I Another Gundam RPG I Two More Characters for Devil Summoner: Kuzunoha Raidou I Square Enix Party Draws Large Crowds I Release Dates and Snippets Culture Corner: Ask Sensei I Sayonara
Tadaima August 29, 2005


It feels like ages since I last wrote Japandemonium. I said that I was going to take off a week to go to Houston to visit my fiancée and her family, but that turned into a much longer absence than I had originally planned. The reason was that my wonderful week ended with one of the most horrible things that could happen.

My last day in America was had a lot of ups and downs. For starters, when I got to the airport, I had been informed that I had missed my flight. My itinerary had me flying out on a flight that didn't exist. I had to pay 100 bucks to change my flight schedule, but I was allowed to upgrade to business class with my miles. Honestly, upgrading to business was worth 100 dollars any day. So I was flying in relative luxury and thinking that it was the perfect end to a great week when I landed at Kansai International in Osaka. I fired off a quick LJ post on my laptop, but I was in a hurry to catch a bus. I didn't pack my computer in its case. Instead, I opted for a plastic bag that I had my magazines in. This turned out to be a very big mistake.

While I was buying my bus ticket to get me from the airport to the Osaka bus terminal, one of the handles broke on that bag. It tilted to the side, and my computer fell out to have its fall cushioned by the concrete about two feet below. I picked up my computer and scurried to the bus. Chibi had a big dent in his case, but when I pushed the power button, it made the familiar Mac starting sound. Then nothing happened. I held the power button to turn it off and tried again. And again. Chibi was dead.

This nearly had me in tears. Not only did I lose my computer, I lost my connection to the internet. That meant no more talking to my fiancée, no more talking to my family, no more checking email, no more updating Japandemonium. The only internet I had was my PSP which was only good for checking email. I could read email but not send.

Upon reaching my apartment, I told my mother what had happened. She told me that I absolutely had to have a computer and to order one that night. I went to Apple's website and I purchased Chiyo, the wonderful machine that I am using right now. She is better in every way, and she came with a free iPod Mini! I'd honestly wanted a new computer, I just didn't know I'd be getting it so soon.

I also have a TON of gaming news to relate. I'll start by saying that I got to try Dragon Quest on a cell phone just before coming home to America. I didn't get to play very long, but I did show a few slimes a thing or two about taking on English-teaching adventurers. I will say it looks and sounds a LOT better than I remember it 17 years ago. And now I feel really really old...

In still more gaming news, I always buy a game before I fly home. This time, I picked up Taiko no Tatsujin Portable for the PSP. It is simply amazing. The shoulder buttons act as hitting the edge of the drum, and the face buttons are the center. The screen is very crisp and sharp, and the music is a nice selection. I am falling in love with the series, and I strongly recommend anyone that enjoys music and rhythm games to pick it up on the PS2. I plan on picking it up before I leave, and then buying it again in the States to get the drum controller.

In even more gaming news, I picked up Meteos for the trip back at the suggestion of many staffers and a couple readers. It's quite fun, but I don't think it's as polished as Lumines. The stages are over quite quickly, and the whole thing feels much choppier. I could sit down and play Lumines for over an hour in one game. You don't really get that in Meteos. You play it for maybe 30 minutes and you're ready to take a break, but you may have to play it longer to finish the thing. It can take a long time to finish the regular mode with all the continues.

And finally, I have been playing a LOT of Makai Kingdom. I love it. On the whole, the story is not as good as Disgaea's, but chapter 7 is the best chapter in any game. Ever. I haven't giggled that much in a LONG time. Currently, I am about to reincarnate my level 150 Carrot Monster of a leader into something a bit more powerful so I don't get destroyed by Laharl this time. I took him on, and he completely obliterated me. Next time Gadget! Next time!

And as per tradition, I'll explain the meaning of the title. 'Tadaima' means 'I am back' in Japanese. I thought that was the most fitting title after being gone for so long. It feels good to be writing Japandemonium again. I have missed this column a whole lot.

They say "Better late than never!" so let's get this party started!

 Dengeki Rankings

This is a great week for RPGs on the charts. There are 11 of them on it this week, but sadly the top spot is not among those. That honor goes to Naruto 3. It replaced Jump Super Stars, a game in the same vein as Super Smash Bros. on the DS with just about every Shonen Jump character from Son Goku to Yusuke of Yu Yu Hakusho, to Naruto, and so many more I can't even begin to name them all. It looks pretty spiffy, but I only know a fraction of the characters, so I'll pass.

So, let's see those numbers, shall we?

Position Title Publisher Platform
6 Mushiking: Battle of the Beetles Sega
7 Pokémon XD: Gale of Darkness Nintendo
8 Super Robot Wars Alpha 3 Banpresto
10 Grandia III Banpresto
15 Summon Night EX Thesis Banpresto
17 Sega Ages 2500 Series Vol. 18: Dragon Force Sega
20 Boktai 3 Konami
21 Naruto RPG 2 Tomy
37 Pokémon Emerald Nintendo
37 Megaman.EXE 5: Team Leaders Capcom
47 Shadow Hearts: From the New World Aruze

Source: Dengeki Online

 Nintendo DS Goes Goth
Idea Factory

The DS is getting a new gothic-horror dungeon crawler from Megacyber called Londonian Gothics. Set in 1800's England, players follow Alice, a young girl who is afraid of nothing and highly curious as she embarks on a quest to save her father, Nabocov, a genius chemist that was captured by demons.

With the help of Micheal, a practitioner of magic, Alice will attempt to get to the root of the dark and evil shadows that have begun to lurk in the corners of London's streets.

While Alice is only a regular human girl, she is able to fight demons by equipping different dresses. Something like a gothic Final Fantasy X-2, Alice's abilities will change as she equips 20 different types of dresses such as a 'Cannon Dress' or a 'Lightning Dress.'

Alice will explore more than 130 different 3D dungeons and mazes in search of her father when Londonian Gothics ships out on October 13.

Alice - Heroine of the story, she is a young girl, who has strangely red eyes. Somewhat imperious, she is used to acting instead of talking.

Michael - A highlander-Scotsman and praticioner of magic. Calm and collected, he's in such good control of his expressions that other people have a hard time distinguishing when he's serious and when he's not.

Nabokov - A Russian who left the mother country because of the beginnings of revolution, Nabokov practices a strange combination of chemistry and magic. A passionate person, he has a strong sense of justice. Unfortunately, his passion can also lead to him burying himself in research.

Sources: Softbank

 More Code Age Commanders Pre-Order Goodies and Video
Code Age Commanders

Last time I reported that those that pre-order Square Enix's Code Age Commanders would receive the "Code Age Commanders -Visual Code-" artbook and special case, but it seems that Square Enix wants to further sweeten the deal. People with the foresight to pre-order will also get a special first volume of Codeage Archive, the manga based on the Codeage brand. It will contain a full color version of the first chapter and a 'Chapter Zero' exclusive to the pre-order edition.

In more news, Square Enix has updated the official site with a new video showing off shots of the game set to the official Image Song, "Memory Pocket," performed by Shibasaki Kou.

Code Age Commanders is set for an October 13 release 7140 yen. Look here for more news as it rolls in.

Sources: Famitsu I Game Watch

 Older Hudson Games Go Mobile Another Going XBox

With the recent trend of putting older games on cellular phones in Japan, Hudson has jumped on the bandwagon. Several classics will soon be appearing on cellphones with EZweb access. Such classics as Aitsu and Au Lait WORST MEETS NUTS & MILK, Real 3D BASEBALL 2 and Salad Kingdom's Tomato Princess will join Dungeon Explorer for one-time download fee of 315 yen per game.

Dungeon Explorer was originally released on the PC way back in 1989. Players pick two of eight characters for some dungeon-crawling fun.

And in other Hudson news, the previously reported Tengai Makyou Ziraia is in fact a remake of the original that was released in Japan in the late '80s. As of yet, no date has been set for the release.

Source: Famitsu

 Another Gundam RPG

Much to my delight, Bandai is releasing another Gundam RPG. Gundam SEED DESTINY -Generation of C.E.- will follow the story of Shinn Asuka, Athrun Zala, and all the others in a parallel of the anime's plot. But after all the stages have been completed, parts of the original SEED's and SEED MSV's storylines will become available for play.

The game be a sim-RPG with battles taking place on a hex map. The game will feature many suits that appear in the two anime series and the MSVs. Missions will start on the deck of the Minerva, and after a short briefing, battles will begin. As mentioned before, the plot will follow the story of the anime series, but older missions can be completed again in any order for more experience points if needed.

Stay tuned for more details as they develop.

Source: Famitsu

 Two More Characters for Devil Summoner: Kuzunoha Raidou

Atlus has decided to shed a little light on two characters that will join the title Character, Kuzunoha Raidou, to to play a central role in the story. First up to bat is Narumi, Raidou's boss at the Narumi Detective Agency, a company famous in Tokyo for taking on occult cases. Mr. Narumi is a bright and cheerful person in his early 30s that likes to kick back, have fun, and take it easy in life. He frequently dumps his whole caseload on Raidou or only take enough to satisfy himself. But he is not so greedy that he will stand back and watch others that are truly in trouble, and he hates people that walk all over others for the sake of their own profit. Interestingly, Mr. Narumi has connections in upper ranks of both the government and the military.

The other new character is Asakura Tae, a journalist in her early twenties that writes for the "Teito Shimbou" newspaper under the pen name "Kichou." She forgoes using her real name because of the belief that women have no place in the workplace, a prejudice that irritates Tae relentlessly. Tae works to raise the position of women in society.

But that's not the only way Tae separates herself from what is generally considered normal, she investigates scenes herself to get her material, something the vast majority of other journalists do not do. Besides journalism, she is also working on becoming a non-fiction novelist on the side. She ties into the story by becoming a regular visitor of the Narumi Detective agency while investigating some of the occult incidents for her work.

Check back for continuing coverage as it is released.

Source: Famitsu

 Square Enix Party Draws Large Crowds
Square Enix

The recent Square Enix party was a smashing success. Some 24,922 people attended the show on Saturday, July 20, and 22,049 showed up for Sunday. All in all, it is a pretty impressive turnout for an event that is only hosting one company.

Source: Famitsu

 Release Dates and Snippets

The next two months will be good ones for RPG fans. Gamers can pick up Spectral Souls 2: Unlimited for the PSP from Idea Factory on September 15. Then, those looking forward to Konami's Rhapsodia will be able to pick up their copies one week later on September 22.

If anyone needs another Idea Factory fix in October, they will be in luck. Rebirth Moon will hit shelves on October 20. The Image song for this game was also recently announced. Harem Punch will perform "Megaphone" for the game.

And rounding out the release dates is Square Enix's somewhat vague announcement that Kingdom Hearts 2 Will be released in Winter 2005.

Turn to RPGamer for information about all of these games as they are released.

Sources: Famitsu I Game Watch I Softbank

  Culture Corner: Ask Sensei

It seems like even longer since I have done Culture Corner. I have missed this section greatly. It is and probably will always be my favorite. Due to some time constraints and the fact that I don't have everything set back up on my computer, there won't be a Japanese lesson this week. They will return next week.

Also to those of you that were worried about me, I appreciate it greatly. I got a couple emails that really made me feel good inside. I am glad people care enough about me to inquire by email. Japandemonium is back, and it's going to stay back for a while.

That said, let's get started!


dear sensei

heya, i was just wondering if all is ok over there with you, we haven't heard from u in a while now... take care



Yeah, having a busted computer is really a terrible thing to happen to me. When my internet went down, I just packed my computer and went to another connection. It didn't affect me so badly. But having the whole computer down totally disrupted my life. I am so glad to have it back and my life back to normal.

Thanks again for the email!


Heyya J,

First off I'd like to thank you for the time you take to write your column and answer our questions, I really enjoy reading it.

I forget if you had mentioned if you'd be away for a while, but either way your updates have been missed for the past couple weeks :)

I'm still strongly considering teaching in Japan once I get my degree out of the way (4 more months!) and so I have a few more questions for you. With your experience at GEOS, do you think it would be possible for me to come teach in Japan with a friend? As in, if we both get accepted in the teaching program, could we get a place together and teach somewhere relatively close to each other (or even the same place!). I'm also curious what things you brought over with you when you moved to Japan? I'm just realizing that I wont be paying rent here anymore if I leave for Japan, so I'm going to need to find a home for some or all of my stuff.

Thanks again,



Trying to go with a friend won't be easy. You may end up in the same city if you are in a large city, but unless you have a REALLY strong reason for being in one place over another, they can't really promise you anything. You get what is available.

As for your stuff, bring as much as you can in suitcases you can nest, and then ship the rest. It'll cost a fortune, but that's the best way to go. But be careful of the size of your suitcases. You have to maximize carrying capacity with space it'll take up in your tiny apartment. I live in an apartment that is 10 x 10 for the main living space.

Thanks for the email!

From the Duke

Howdy Jordan,

A little question about a Japanese battle cry I've heard in a few RPGs: what the heck does "EE-KAY!" mean? I've tried searching for it on the web, but I can't seem to find anything on it.


Jeremy, the Duke of Otterland


Hehe. It took me a second to realize what you were saying. It wasn't until I said it out loud a few times. You are referring to 'Ike!', the command form of 'Go!'. It does come up a fair bit. There you have it. I'll probably put something similar in the next Japanese lesson.

Thanks for writing!


There you have it. I am back, and boy does it feel good. I don't even mind that it took half my weekend to do it. I'm just happy to have my job back.

Catch you on the flip,

Jordan "Good to be back!" Jackson

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