shimozuki no yokka

I am annoyed this week. My favorite pair of cargo pants, bought only last June, has been ripped in an unfortunate location. This wasn't just a regular rip, though. There's one particular section of fabric that wears thin on practically every pair of pants I have ever bought in this country. It doesn't happen at the seams. It doesn't happen at the joints. It happens on the inside of my pants legs around the upper thigh area.

This is just plain ridiculous. The pants in question are otherwise perfectly sturdy and should have lasted me for a few years more. I guess eight or nine kilometers a day really is too much walking... At least it is for Japanese pants.

Just yesterday I happened to be in the big Tsutaya games store downtown, and I saw the main promotional trailer for Dragon Quest Heroes 3: Of Pirates and Plob. After that, I just knew I had to track it down on Youtube to show it to you all. Here it is.

Seriously, if Ninokuni weren't coming soon, I'd make this my monthly purchase. I think it was the funny, demonic Statue of Liberty that really sold it. It's cool to see that the scope of the game expands to slimes all over the world.

10/17 ~ 10/23 Up / Down Title Publisher Platform
5 New Arrival! Dead Island Spike
12 New Arrival! Deus Ex: Human Revolution Square Enix
13 New Arrival! Dead Island Spike
14 Last seen at 13 Legend of Zelda - Ocarina of Time Nintendo
16 Last seen at 10 Dark Souls From Software
19 Last seen at 16 Monster Hunter Portable 3rd (PSP The Best) Capcom
20 Last seen at 12 Dragon Quest I-II-III 25th Anniversary Edition Square Enix
22 Last seen at 5 Class of Heroes Final Acquire
27 Last seen at 23 Super Pokémon Scramble Nintendo
29 Last seen at 17 Legend of Heroes: Ao no Kiseki Falcom

Back in early September, I found some pages in Famitsu concerning Maple Story DS, the portable single-player version of the popular MMORPG. Unfortunately, it was around that time that my computer bit the big one, so it took me a while to get back to this.

I'm not sure what the background plot in the MMORPG may be, so I'll just talk about what's on the DS game's homepage. For the longest time on Maple Island, mysterious portals connected the cities and there was peace and prosperity for all. Then one day, out of the blue, the portals began failing. In their place appeared Red Portals, which connected to new, mysterious, and probably dangerous places. No one knows exactly why the portals are malfunctioning, but it's likely that it has something to do with the Goddess Clock Tower that stands at the heart of Maple Island.

While Dengeki only had these three screenshots to show, a little digging resulted in a Youtube promo video. In it, the four principal characters are introduced, a lot of gameplay aspects (such as an NPC support system) are shown, and some surprisingly decent FMV sequences can be seen.

Maple Story DS is due out on November 17th.

Source: Dengeki Online

It's time for some more cheesecake, which means more Code of Princess screens and art. To start off, we have some sketchy art and battle screens for the game's protagonist, Princess Solange.

Solange isn't alone in this endeavor, though. Three other characters are ready for action. The first of the three is Ali Vava, a free thief. She's not too happy to team up with the princess at first, it would seem, and has her own goals that she has to pursue.

The next major character is Lady Zozo. She is apparently gaga over zombies, enough so that she turned herself into one to expand her necromantic powers. If she seems a little distant and untalkative, that's mainly because her tongue fell out some time ago. She relies on her staff for casting magic.

The last character is Allegro Nantabile Cantabile. Cantabile is an Italian musical term that means "to play an instrument in a song-like manner," while Allegro's full name plays on the Japanese expression nantoka kantoka ("something or other"). It's hard to tell if Allegro is a boy or a girl, but this funny little elf is willing to help Solange as long as she helps look for healing herbs in return.

I'm still trying to figure out how the developer got Agatsuma Entertainment to publish this, as it does not seem to be that company's style at all.

Source: Dengeki Online

As I was looking through my docket, I saw that I had a couple of videos left to use, but not much else to go with them. So it's time to go to the movies! If you like robots, then this will be a good time.

First up is the trailer for Super Robot Wars OG Saga: Masou Kishin Revelation of Evil God. It shows most of the things we saw in last week's JP, only in full motion. I can't comment on all the new/recurring characters that pop up, however.

We looked at Little Battlers Boost two weeks back, but again it's nice to see it all in action.

Finally, we have a silly video from Ninokuni: Wrath of the White Witch. Two of the new fairy characters are performing a manzai act, sort of a two-person standup comedy routine that is really only funny if you understand Japanese and are in a mind to find it funny. I'm kind of hoping that it's actually included in the game, as that would just be awesome. This does establish that all known fairies in the game speak with a pronounced Kansai accent, though.

The funniest part is, this is part of a series, and I just laughed at all of them.

Title Publisher Release Date Platform
Dragon Quest Heroes 3: Of Pirates and Plob Square Enix 11.2.11
Ore no Shikabane wo Koeteyuke SCE 11.10.11
Meiro Crossblood Reloaded Kadokawa Games 11.10.11
Fable 3 (Xbox 360 Platinum) Microsoft 11.10.11
Poké Park 2 ~ Beyond the World Nintendo 11.12.11
Ninokuni Magical Edition PlayStation 3 Sony 11.17.11
Ninokuni: Wrath of the White Witch Level-5 11.17.11
Maple Story DS Nexon 11.17.11
Seventh Dragon 2020 Sega 11.23.11
Valkyria Chronicles 3 Special Edition Sega 11.23.11
The Little Battlers Boost Level-5 11.23.11
Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword Nintendo 11.23.11
Source: Dengeki Online

From time to time it is necessary to upgrade one's hardware. That's a fact of life. It's good to know that this holds true even in the future. The Gundams, for example, have just successfully been updated to the latest specs, including the full range of Level 5 Protocols.

In other words, we have actual screenshots of Gundam Age, the game. Not the anime, but the game. It's still listed as being for the PSP, and is due out next summer.

Source: Dengeki Online

Thankfully I have more than two pairs of pants to my name. It's getting cool enough that I can probably even break out the corduroys. Still, I should visit the new low-price clothing store downtown soon.

And that's the news from Hi-no-Kuni,

Your man in Japan,

Gaijin Monogatari

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