Play Mighty No. 9 with Creator Keiji Inafune at Waku Waku +NYC!

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Ever since we announced that Keiji Inafune, Mega Man co-designer and current creator of Mighty No. 9, would be at Waku Waku +NYC, we’d been eagerly awaiting the next exciting piece of news. Now though, it’s gotten even bigger than we originally expected!

At first, we were just going to say that there’s going to be a playable demo of Mighty No. 9 at Waku Waku +NYC two weeks before official release. You can get a regular ticket just for that, and eagerly wait in line to try out this fantastic new game that draws from both the classic platformer and modern gameplay refinements.

However, with a VIP Pass you can skip the line and play Mighty No. 9 before anyone else at Waku Waku +NYC! What’s more, if you’re one of the next 10 people to buy a VIP Pass you’ll be able to play with Mr. Inafune himself! Keep in mind that Mighty No. 9 is not a multiplayer game, but Inafune will be there to hear your thoughts, cheer you on, and maybe even show you how it’s done.

So whether you want to brave the line or skip to the front to be with the man himself, Waku Waku +NYC is the place to be for both fans of retro gaming and those who appreciate newer fare as well. Check it out!

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What Does “Insight” Mean in “Gatchaman Crowds Insight?”

Gatchaman Crowds was one of the most bold and creative re-imaginings of an anime series in a long time. Taking a classic 70s anime, Science Ninja Team Gatchaman, and bringing it into the current age in terms of themes, aesthetics, and more, Gatchaman Crowds asked what it means to be a hero in an increasingly digital world of crowd-sourcing, instant communication, and more, Now, Gatchaman Crowds is getting a sequel starting this July: Gatchaman Crowds Insight. While the show has no real details so far aside from some promo images, I do want to talk about one thing we know about, which is the title of the show. In particular, what I find interesting about this title is that it’s actually a further reference to the dynamic landscape of internet communication.

Thanks to my current position helping out Waku Waku +NYC, I’ve learned the meaning of insight in an internet marketing capacity. Essentially, it refers to taking a closer look at the demographics of your user base in terms of location, interests, habits, and more, so that you can grow your user and customer base, and increase the success of your company or business overall.

By referencing this idea of “insight,” the Gatchaman Crowds sequel is perhaps going to address the fact that people are often viewed on the internet as masses of information to be targeted, examined, and marketed towards. This potentially provides an interesting contrast to the notion that heroics can indeed be a crowd-sourced activity in spite of all of the potential dangers, as expressed in the first anime. When taking the fact that “insight” has this implication of businesses which tend to want their secrets kept secret, and “crowds” in the context of this anime is all about an almost open-source, sharing-oriented philosophy to life, the main conflict of Gatchaman Crowds Insight may lie in this tension.

The original Gatchaman Crowds is available for free to watch on Crunchyroll. It is highly, highly recommended.

-Carl

Waku Waku +NYC is an upcoming Japanese popular culture convention located in Brooklyn, NY that will combine anime, fashion, food, and more. Why not take a look?

“Fist of the North Star: Strawberry Flavor” Parody Manga is Getting an Anime and the Official URL is Hilarious

Fist of the North Star is everyone’s favorite classic series about a lone warrior punching post-apocalyptic thugs so hard that they explode into a million chunks. Now, the parody manga Fist of the North Star: Strawberry Flavor is getting the anime treatment as well.

As shown on the official site, the character “Holy Emperor” Souther (one of protagonist Kenshiro’s toughest opponents and my personal favorite) features prominently in the series. It even features a picture of Fist of the North Star artist Tetsuo Hara alongside Souther voice actor Banjo Ginga.

Actually though, the real reason I wanted to write this post was because of the website’s URL, which is amazing if you get it. The official site is:

 http://www.hikanukobinukaeriminuteiounitousouhanainodaaaaa.com

This is actually the entirety of one of Souther’s most famous lines. In fact, if you type the first word in Japanese into google, it auto-completes the rest of the first sentence.

Breaking it down in full, it’s “Hikanu! Kobinu! kaeriminu! Teiou ni tousou ha nai no daaaa!”

In English that’s, “No retreat! No begging! No looking back! To an emperor, there is no such thing as RUNNING AWAY!”

Truly one of the greatest lines in all of anime and manga.

Hope you enjoyed this little lesson on the Japanese language. If readers are interested I can do more!

-Carl

This blog is run by Waku Waku +NYCan upcoming Japanese anime and pop culture festival in Brooklyn, NY. For more information, check out our Facebook page and our official website!

This Pokémon Might Be the Unofficial Mascot of Waku Waku +NYC

I recently realized that there’s something of an unofficial Waku Waku +NYC mascot in the Pokémon universe!

In a previous post, I wrote about how Lolita fashion has quite a presence in Pokémon. In particular, we have Gothitelle.

Now think about this:

  • Gothitelle, of course, represents Lolita fashion, one of our big attractions at Waku Waku +NYC
  • Pokémon is a symbol of Japanese gaming and how Japanese pop culture has spread around the world
  • The game Gothitelle comes from, Pokemon Black and White, is based on New York City (seriously, compare it to a map of Manhattan!)

Who better represents what Waku Waku +NYC is all about? Gothitelle is awesome!

-Carl

PS: We have a Lolita fashion modeling contest for Waku Waku +NYC! Like us on Facebook, and then enter! 

E3 2015: Is it Hip to be Square (Enix)?

E3 2015 was in full swing today, and not only does that mean paying attention to the games, but also paying attention to how companies big and small present their games. The history of E3 is full of cringe-worthy moments (“giant enemy crab” is now in meme Valhalla), but it’s also interesting to look at things from the companies’ perspectives. They have to simultaneously present themselves as familiar and accessible to their audiences, strong and authoritative to their investors, and simply superior to their competitors. It’s one thing to be part of a three-ring circus, but when one performer is in all three acts, it’s easy to see why sometimes an attempt to be “hip and cool, like the kids” might go a bit south.

Last year Nintendo really showed up the competition. Rather than making a big spectacle as would be typically expected of them, all they did was do one digital announcement and then show their games off through their “Nintendo Treehouse.” No bells or whistles; gameplay was their philosophy, and their “simple is best” approach made a far bigger impression than any other company.

So that brings us to this year, as each game developer tries to determine their particular balancing act between fun and serious. Nintendo used Muppets and emphasized their Wii U gamepad as a new way to play games, all while continuing to abandon the traditional live presentation. Square-Enix utilized straightforward business suit talk that relies on the strength of their properties, and reversing the disappointments of their fanbase. Gamers of all types exist in this current space, and companies have to figure out who is their audience, across not just various age groups but also cultures. After all, E3 is as much about the world as it is the United States or Japan, even when Japanese companies are presenting.

So who do you think “won” this year’s E3? Is it even possible to truly win something where so many disparate values are being poured in? Does it ultimately come down to the bottom line months later when the games come out, or is there something more ethereal, like the pure desire to enjoy a great game?

-Carl

By the way, did you see Keiji Inafune’s new game, ReCore? Well, he’s going to be a special guest at Waku Waku +NYC! Get your special VIP Pass today to skip the line and meet one of video game industry’s greeatest creators!