Some of you might have already heard about this, but Japan had its big election last week. Every seat on the Diet was in contest, with the majority winning control of the Diet and the right to name a Prime Minister. For the first time in a long while, the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) failed to get a majority. In fact, for the first time ever, the LDP got massacred in the polls. This is the party that has led Japan, in good times and in bad, through 54 and 1/12 of the last 55 years.
Japan is effectively beginning its first major regime change since the end of World War II, making this election about as historic as can be. The Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ) has been the main opposition party for a decade, and was formed from the merger of several older, smaller opposition parties. Whether it's up to the task of running and reforming the Japanese government is the big question these days. Only time will tell.
For a good place to start reading about the election and the situations leading up to it, try this blog.
The DPJ and LDP may be divided over a lot of things, but there's one thing on which they can agree -- online gaming! Or so CJ Internet Japan, developers of the online strategy RPG Chaos Lord would have us believe. A recent event promoting the game featured professional impostors of Junichiro Koizumi (former PM), Taro Aso (now-former PM), and Ichiro Ozawa (retired leader of the DPJ). The three "politicians" claimed to have come together to found the new "Chaos Lord Party", and presented their manifesto in typical Japanese political fashion.
I forgot to list Tales of Versus on here since its release. True, it's not an RPG but it's definitely a Game of Interest for the Tales fandom, so starting this week we're fixing that problem.
Here's a series I never thought would pop up again: MedaBots. Eight years after the last game in the series debuted, the medal-powered model kit robots are back in a re-mastered and re-imagined version of the original video game for the GameBoy Advance. There are still two versions of the game available, following the adventures of Metabee and Rokusho, and the Rubber Robo Gang is still the principal set of villains, so I'm not sure if there have been any real changes made to the game besides the graphics. At least, nothing like that is mentioned on Famitsu.
Most of what needed to be said about the upcoming 3D Dot Heroes was in last week's column, but there were a few screenshots that appeared on the net afterwards. I hope you all enjoy them.
The redhead with the sword is the game's second hero, the Prince of Dotnia. As a bonus, we get a peek at two more of the game's bosses, the Kraken and the Killer Bee.
Okami, the beautifully artistic action-RPG for the PS2 and Wii, now has a sequel, and it is cute. Due out on the DS sometime next year, Okami Tales - The Tiny Sun features a "Chibiterasu" (miniature version of the first game's heroine, Amaterasu) as the main character.
The peaceful land of Nakatsukuni is once more threatened as evil Yokai run roughshod over the countryside. One day, a small wolf pup appears before the tree spirit Sakuya, who names him Chibiterasu. But where is Amaterasu in this time of trouble? How can a little wolf like Chibiterasu save the day?
I have no idea. I guess we'll just have to wait for the next batch of propaganda info.
Ten days and counting until the release of SaGa 2!
And that's the news from Hi-no-Kuni,
Your man in Japan,