Archive for March, 2012

Important Importables: Sega’s Shining series

March 31, 2012 - 2:00 am No Comments

Hot Japanese Imports: Sega’s Shining series

JRPG series have become overshadowed in recent years, thanks to the success of western RPGs or RPG-hybrids from companies like Bethesda and BioWare. That doesn’t mean they’re gone though or that older series are disappearing. The classics still carry on. One of these series is Shining. I bet all you gamers who played Shining in the Darkness or Shining Force didn’t even realize they were part of a long running series, one that’s still going on today. They are and even though they haven’t been released overseas in a while, they’re still going strong in Japan.


Wasn’t the Shining series a bunch retro RPGs?

This may take you aback a bit, but the Shining series is still a very viable line in Japan. I know, I was stunned the first time I saw a recent RPG with Shining in the title from Sega as well. I think all gamers know by now that sometimes good games and series just don’t make it outside of Japan.

With Shining, it’s more understandable. The games cover a number of different RPG genres. The first few entries were strategic RPGs, some were turn-nased RPGs, there were a few action RPGs, and some melded a bunch of different RPG genres together. There were even a few that could be considered rogue-like. In all, there have been 30 Shining games. I bet you thought Tales was the most neglected Japanese RPG series from a major publisher until right now!

The Shining series originally began with the Genesis turn-based RPG Shining in the Darkness in 1991. Sega didn’t seem too invested in the series, as it initially only offered the minimum amount of resources to create it. Even so, Genesis owners responded positively to the game and the result was more Shining games. They were so beloved that many of the original entries were remade or ported between 2002 and 2006. The series still continues strong today with DS, PSP and even arcade games. Now the games are just as likely to be turn-based as they are to be action RPGs or strategy games.

One of the best things about the Shining series is something it has in common with Final Fantasy. While some entries do have ties to one another, perhaps are even direct sequels, they’re all stand alone adventures that typically focus on only one region or area in a fight that pits good against evil. So you don’t have to get involved in every single game to enjoy one game.

The shiniest Shining games.

As I mentioned earlier, there are about 30 Shining games. Most are original entries, but there are quite a few remakes stuffed in as well. I’d say about half have been released in English, give or take, which means there are plenty of opportunities to get acquainted with some of the better entries. So I decided to go through a few of the games I’ve played and would recommend trying out. Many of the original entries are available via assorted Sega Smash Packs or Genesis Collections, so you should have no trouble finding a Shining game for a system you own.

There’s just one thing to beware of when it comes to North American Shining PS2 releases – they’re known for their horrible voice acting. So while the overall experience may be good, you’re going to want to play with the sound off.

  • Shining in the Darkness (Genesis, Wii, PS3, Xbox 360) was the first Shining game and was originally released for the Genesis in 1991. It was a first person, dungeon crawler with turn-based battles and starred a young boy and two friends who were searching for a missing princess and the boy’s father.
  • Shining Force (Genesis, Windows, GBA, Wii, iOS, Dreamcast, PS3, Xbox 360) was a 1992 strategic RPG for the Genesis. Darksol wants to resurrect the Dark Dragon and use it and his Runefaust troops to rule the world. The GBA version is best as it has an additional storyline.
  • Shining Force Gaiden (Game Gear) was a 1992 strategic RPG that was a sequel set 20 years after Shining Force and followed a young man named Nick who helped the Shining Force protect the land from the dark intentions of Woldol. It’s only available in Japanese, but the Game Gear was region-free so anyone can play it.
  • Shining Force: The Sword of Hajya (Game Gear) is a strategic RPG from 1993. It’s a direct sequel to Shining Force Gaiden, which makes it ironic that this was released in North America and that wasn’t. Nick left to fight forces from Iom and left the Sword of Hajya and additional forces behind. Iom soldiers break in and steal the sword, so Nick’s friend Mayfair and additional warriors set out to reclaim it.
  • Shining Force II (Genesis, Wii, PS3, Xbox 360) is a 1994 strategic RPG set after the three Game Gear Shining Force Gaiden games. In it a hero named Bowie and his friends have to fight Zeon and his invading Gizmo army to save the world from the Devil King and reseal him in a tower.
  • Shining Force Neo (PS2) is an action RPG that came out in 2005. Max is a warrior who’s trained to become a Force, which means he has exceptional powers that help him fight against the Clan of the Moon and their Legions of monsters. Just as he finishes his training, the Clan of the Moon starts making a push to take over the world again. The voice acting is ridiculously awful, but the rest of the game is pretty solid.
  • Shining Force EXA (PS2) is an action RPG from 2007. Toma and Cyrille are both searching for the Shining Force. Players get to choose which one to control, with Toma being a warrior and Cyrille a mage. In this world, humans from Noswald and demons from Fyrlandt are pretty much always at war. This entry is especially neat because you also get a Geo-Fortress castle that you upgrade and maintain.
  • Shining Force Feather (DS) is a 2009 strategic RPG that was only released in Japan. (The DS is region-free though, so enjoy!) Players follow treasure hunters Jin and Bail, along with a newly found android named Alfin, as they hunt for artifacts from the Shining Force war 3,000 years ago. I’m sure I don’t have to tell you that they aren’t the only people after these treasures!
  • Shining Hearts (PSP) is a turn-based RPG from 2010. As you can guess, it’s a Japan exclusive. Rick the warrior lives on Wyndaria island and ends up finding an emotionless amnesiac named Kaguya on the shore. Pirates are after her necklace, so he saves her. He then works with his coworkers and friends to help restore Kaguya’s emotions and memories while also protecting the island. What’s neat is players’ choices influence the feelings of people in the game, releasing hearts to restore Kaguya’s mental state. Collecting hearts unlocks Heart Keys that advance the story.

In addition, a new Shining game was just released on the PSP this month in Japan. It’s called Shining Blade and follows Rage and his friends as they use attacks and songstresses to fight battles against the Dragonia Empire. If Rage and his team can find the Shining Blade and Loreley the songstress, they can stop the revival of the Dark Dragon.

COMING NEXT WEEK: Hot Japanese Imports will hopefully have a review of Idolm@ster 2 for the PS3, provided my copy arrived this week.

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT: Last week Hot Japanese Imports talked about Arc System Works

Follow Jenni on Twitter for more import game updates and general fangirl enthusiasm!

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Japan Import: Nintendo creating a 35th anniversary CoroCoro 3DS

March 21, 2012 - 2:00 am No Comments

Japan Import: Nintendo creating a 35th anniversary CoroCoro 3DS

CoroCoro Comic is a pretty legendary shonen manga magazine in Japan. It’s been around since 1977 and you better believe it’s going all out for its 35th anniversary. Nintendo’s stepping up to help make the event extra memorable with an extremely limited edition 3DS. How limited, you may ask? Well, we don’t even know yet!

CoroCoro Comics has only just announced it’s 35th anniversary celebration. The May 2012 issue will have all the details, but isn’t going to be coming out until mid-April. We do, however, have the picture at the right from the CoroCoro anniversary website. The 3DS will be a solid, navy blue system with gold etching on the top. It will proclaim it’s a 35th anniversary CoroCoro 3DS, as well as have images of the mascot and various icons from manga that have run in the magazine over the years.

I wouldn’t be surprised if this ends up being a prize in some kind of contest. Which would mean only people living in Japan would have any hopes of actually winning it. Unless one of the winners got it and immediately auctioned it off, but what are the odds of that happening? I guess we’ll have to wait a month for more information. Collectors may just have to content themselves with oogling this 3DS which will be another one of the many we will never see outside Japan.

It’s probably for the best anyway. I mean, the system is region-locked. So as cool as this is, you’d have to invest a lot more money in Japanese games to actually use and enjoy it.

Read [Coro Coro (Japanese)] Via [Andriasang]

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Important Importables: Arc System Works

March 17, 2012 - 2:00 am No Comments

Hot Japanese Imports: Arc System Works


There’s just something about a great 2D fighter. 3D fighters are great and all, but the look of a well animated and designed 2D game is just something special. A lot of companies still make these kinds of games, but Arc System Works is undoubtedly king of them all. The developer and publisher works on other kinds of games, but fighters are what set them apart.

So in honor of the recent release of BlazBlue: Continuum Shift Extend and Persona 4 Arena, Hot Japanese Imports is taking a look back at Arc System Works and recommending some of the company’s best games.

So what’s up with Arc System Works?

While mainly associate the name Arc System Works with fighters now, that’s not how the company got its start. When Arc System Works first began in 1988, it was developing action and racing games. It’s very first project was Rolling Thunder, a side-scrolling action game for the NES. It then went on to develop beat’em ups (Double Dragon for the Sega Master System), racers (Road Spirits for the Turbo CD), puzzle games (Minesweeper for Game Boy and Turbo CD), simulations (Wizard’s Harmony for Saturn and PS1) and even Genesis and GameGear ports of Battletoads.

It wasn’t until the release of the original Guilty Gear for the PS1 in 1998 that Arc System Works broke onto the fighting scene. The success and acclaim from that creation lead to 12 differentGuilty Gear games, counting main entries, updated entries and spin-offs. Arc System Works then took everything it learned from creating those PS1, PS2, PSP, Wii, Windows and Xbox 360 games and put it to work in its next major fighting series, BlazBlue. There are currently six BlazBlue games available worldwide, with many entries being updated ports the sequel BlazBlue: Continuum Shift.

Arc System Works does more than just develop games. It also publishes them in Japan. It began doing so with Exector, a shooter developed for the PS1. While it initially only published its own games, it’s since gone on to help other developers out. Some of its most recent endeavors include publishing Fishing Cactus’ Shifting World (3DS), Gaijin Games’ Bit.Trip (Wii) games and Killaware’s Another Time Another Leaf: Kagami no Naka no Tantei (DS).

These are the Arc System Works games you should be playing.

The good thing about Arc System Works games is that they’re very import friendly. That happens when a company tends to focus on fighting and puzzle games. As long as you can understand the basic premise or are familiar with the core mechanics of those genres and own a system that can play region-free games, you’re set. Of course, that isn’t too much of an issue since Aksys does a pretty good job of bringing over Arc System Works’ best.

Still, here are some particularly awesome Arc System Works games to try.

  • Arcana Heart 3 (PS3, Xbox 360). It’s a fighting game that was released worldwide in 2011. Arc System Works only published it in Japan.
  • BlazBlue: Calamity Trigger (PS3, Xbox 360, Windows). It’s a fighting game that was released in 2009 in Asia and North America and in 2010 in Europe and Australia.
  • BlazBlue: Continuum Shift Extend (PS3, PSV, Xbox 360). It’s a fighting game that was released worldwide in 2012.
  • Fist of the North Star (PS2). It’s a fighting game that was released in Japan in 2007.
  • Guilty Gear (PS1). It’s a fighting game that was released worldwide in 1998
  • Guilty Gear XX Accent Core Plus (PS2, PSP, Wii). It’s a fighting game that was released worldwide over the last few years. PS3 and Xbox 360 ports are supposed to be in development.
  • Hard Corps: Uprising (PS3, Xbox 360). It’s an action game that was released as a download worldwide in 2011.
  • Hoshigami Remix (DS). It’s a strategy RPG port of MaxFive’s Hoshigami: Ruining Blue Earth that was released worldwide in 2007.
  • Persona 4 Arena (PS3, Xbox 360). It’s a fighting game that will be released in 2012 in Japan and North America.
  • Shifting World (3DS). It’s a puzzle game that will be released in 2012 in Japan and North America.
  • Wizard’s Harmony (PS1, Saturn). It’s a simulation game that was released in Japan in 1995

COMING NEXT WEEK: Hot Japanese Imports talks about Sega’s Shining series.

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT: Last week Hot Japanese Imports looked at online Japanese shopping services

Follow Jenni on Twitter for more import game updates and general fangirl enthusiasm!

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The Idolm@ster Mobile i brings virtual idols to the iPhone

March 17, 2012 - 2:00 am No Comments

The Idolm@ster Mobile i brings virtual idols to the iPhone

The Idolm@ster is going portable again. Namco Bandai knows its virtual idol raising simulation is a cash machine and is going to use that to its advantage with Idolm@ster Mobile i. At the end of March, you’ll be able to take your favorite 13 idols with you and promote them as you go about your daily business.

The console and handheld Idolm@ster games focus on picking a girl or group of three girls and working with them to make them the most famous and successful singers in Japan. Players are a producer and basically make every important decision for the girl or group. You train them, pick their songs and outfits, send them out on interviews, talk to them, have them take part in auditions and direct their performances. The Idolm@ster Mobile i doesn’t do that. It’s more of a direct idol interaction sim.

You still want the idol you’ve picked to become famous, but you go about it in a different way. There are some AR elements as you must take the idol you chose to different areas for various meetings and promotional events. If you meet deadlines and get her enough exposure, her rank will go up. She’ll then become more famous and move up on the leaderboard. The app will also have a clock and allow you to photograph or socialize with the idol for fun.

Namco Bandai’s Idolm@ster Mobile i trailer does a prettu good job of showing how everything works.

The Idolm@ster Mobile i will be a free download. So if you’re daring enough, you can grab this for your iOS device no matter which region you’re from. It’s a nice thought, but in this case you probably won’t want to go for it. Part of the game is getting assignments to visit certain locations to have the idols participate in interviews or TV appearances. I doubt you’ll be willing to fly to Japan just to do well in an iOS app!

Read [Famitsu (Japanese)] Site [The Idolm@ster Mobile i (Japanese)]

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Vita gets Phantasy Star Online 2, will play nice with PC version

March 11, 2012 - 3:00 am No Comments

Vita gets Phantasy Star Online 2, will play nice with PC version


Vita owners have another game to get excited about, courtesy of Sega. The Phantasy Star Portable games did pretty well on the PSP in Japan, and so Sega has decided to take it up a notch by actually offering Phantasy Star Online 2 on the Vita. Well, when it’s finished being made, that is. It’s currently in development for both Windows PCs and the PSV, with the Windows version coming in 2012 and the Vita version scheduled for 2013.

It’s an exciting development because there will be cross-platform compatibility between the Vita and PC versions of Phantasy Star Online 2. It will be an online only game as servers will be shared, as well as characters. So you can start a mission at home on your PC. Maybe you decide you want to go out and get some air. Grab your PSV and you can continue with the same character on a bus or at a coffee shop. When you get home, you can pick up again on your computer in the exact same spot. You’ll also be able to play with other people regardless of what platform they are using.

Right now, Phantasy Star Online 2 only has Japanese release dates. We don’t know if or even when Sega would intend to bring it to North America. Part of me wants to reassure you and say that we’ll definitely get it. However, the Phantasy Star Portable PSP games weren’t nearly as popular in North America as they were in Japan. I think this will be one of those wait and see situations.

Personally, I want to see a true Phantasy Star reboot. Not one of these MMOs, an actual turn-based RPG or even action RPG that’s similar to Phantasy Star 3 or 4.

Read [Famitsu (Japanese)] Also Read [Phantasy Star Blog (Japanese)]

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Important Importables: Reliable Japan shopping services

March 11, 2012 - 3:00 am No Comments

Hot Japanese Imports: Reliable Japan shopping services


If you want to import games, consoles, accessories and other novelties, there are plenty of ways to get it done online. The first stop for most shoppers is usually a dedicated online import store, like Play-Asia, AmiAmi or Yes Asia. Sometimes, even eBay is your best bet. Very rarely though, those sites just won’t work for you.

People who purchase import games or collectibles know that sometimes even the best and most reliable online shops won’t have the items they’re looking for. That’s when you have to go a step further and use a more specific service. That’s when an online shopping service is the best bet. Time to look through some of the services that are available!

Which companies are ready to help you get your Japanese goodies?

The next four Japanese shopping services are all fairly well known online. If you create a membership with one and use it, you can shop from ordinary stores, take part in auctions and get your hands on other exclusives that might otherwise be hard to find in an online store or import. The services also can acquire ordinary items you can find in regular shops. That way, you could end up doing all your shopping in one place. Remember that you will pay a service fee in addition to the price of the item, to compensate the shopping service for actually, you know, getting the item for you. Also, only order if you’re absolutely sure you want an item, as most reputable shopping services do not allow you to cancel an order or return an item.

  • Goody-Japan: We’ll start with a shopping service I’ve actually used. Goody-Japan allows you to purchase from online shops or auctions. The preferred payment method is to go through PayPal, using either a PayPal account or major credit cards, but International Postal Money Orders and bank transfers are accepted. (Bank transfers have an additional ¥3,000 fee.) The Commission section of the site lists all the service fees. As an example, the lowest fixed auction fee is ¥600 if the item is under ¥3,000 and the lowest fixed shopping fee is ¥750 if the price is under ¥5,000. Other shipping and processing fees still apply.
  • Noppin: This shopping service will buy items from stores or online auctions for you. It accepts PayPal, most major credit cards, monkeybookers and bank wire. You have to handle the taxes and import fees. The service fee is ¥1,000 and 10% of the total order price.
  • Rinkya: This site has been around 10 years and used to focus on auctions, but now is offering to serve as a middleman for buying from stores as well. It accepts PayPal, most major credit cards and PostePay. You need to provide a minimum deposit to participate in auctions. If you’re using Rinkya to buy from a store, there will be ¥800 base fee and ¥100 additional for every ¥1,000. So if an item is ¥2,000, the fees would be ¥1,000.
  • Shopping Mall Japan: This shopping service also will help people buy from online auctions or stores. It also will let you buy from multiple places and have all the items shipped in one big order when it comes in. It is also paired with a search site that will help you look through stores and auctions to find what you want. It accepts PayPal and most major credit cards. Service and processing fees vary, depending on the price of the items you are ordering and having shipped to you.
  • Tenso: While I haven’t personally used Tenso, I have two friends who have and both had good experiences. Tenso will help you shop from online stores that normally only ship to people in Japan and even offers a list of sites that often works with. It accepts Paypal and most major credit cards. Service and shipping fees vary as with all sites, with the price going up depending on the package’s overall weight rather than price. The lowest fee would be ¥490 for a package that weighs under 1.0kg.

The most important thing is that you use a service that makes you feel comfortable. Look through the sites, read all the terms and conditions and don’t be afraid to email in a question before using a service. Also, be sure that you really want what you’re going to order, because there are no take-backs!

COMING NEXT WEEK: Hot Japanese Imports talks about Arc System Works.

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT: Last week Hot Japanese Imports talked about Love Plus

Follow Jenni on Twitter for more import game updates and general fangirl enthusiasm!

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DLsite now carrying Hatoful Boyfriend complete edition in English

March 9, 2012 - 3:00 am No Comments

DLsite now carrying Hatoful Boyfriend complete edition in English


You won’t believe it guys. Today is the day when the best news ever has been revealed! Remember Hatoful Boyfriend? How could you forget? It’s the dating sim where players help a young girl who’s pretty much a barbarian find love with birds while attending a high school just for birds. It was glorious, hilarious and the free demo made everything right in the world.

That was only just a demo. It didn’t detail all of Hiyoko Tousaka’s lovely adventures at St. Pigeonation’s Institute as she tried to make it as a human among birds and perhaps find love. Sure, it let you go through what seemed like a full adventure and get an end, but it wasn’t complete. That’s where Hatoful Boyfriend -Hatoful Complete Edition- would pick up with an additional character and extended storylines for all other characters. While an English patch was promised for the full release, people were left wondering how they’d be able to actually get the game to patch it. Worry no more, as DLsite is selling the full game in English! There’s no patching required.

All you have to do is head over to DLsite.com. It’s ¥420 yen there, which is currently $5.19/€3.96. Just pay, download and you’re on your way to loads of pigeon goodness. Well, pigeon, dove and partridge. It’ll be fun, I promise.

If you’re not sure about paying, the demo is still available. Just download it from here and patch it with the English patch from here and you’ll be fine.

Product Page [DLsite] Site [Hatoful Boyfriend]

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Japan Import: Sony defies the odds, releases marine blue PSPs

March 7, 2012 - 3:00 am No Comments

Japan Import: Sony defies the odds, releases marine blue PSPs


Even though the PSP is pretty much dead here in North America, it’s still doing really well in Japan. So well, in fact, that Sony thinks it’s time for a new design! I know, I’m amazed too. You think it’d want to work on getting the Vita out there, but instead it’s preparing the marine blue PSP for an April 26, 2012 launch.

The marine blue PSP is actually a two tone model. The front face of the system is a light blue, while the back, buttons and analog nub are all a dark blue. It’s a standard PSP-3000 model, which means there aren’t any revolutionary changes. All that’s different is the color scheme.

If you feel like you need a new, import PSP at this time in your life, you can get this blue PSP bundle in a ¥17,800 (~$220) value pack. That gets you the system, a carrying case, a screen wipe, a 2gb memory stick and of course the battery and power cord. It’s region-free and will play UMD and download games from any country.

Seriously though, don’t import this PSP. You can get a black PSP-3000 new for $129.99. Granted, it won’t come with a memory stick or case, but memory sticks are cheap now and you don’t really need some fancy case. You should also check GameStop or another local store that sells used games, as people are probably starting to trade in their PSPs now. I know I saw a few PSP-1000 and PSP-2000 models at my local Disc Replay going for between $89.99 and $109.99 a few weeks ago.

Read [4Gamer.net (Japanese)]

Popularity: 6% [?]

Important Importables: The allure of Love Plus

March 3, 2012 - 3:00 am No Comments

Hot Japanese Imports: The allure of Love Plus


Love Plus has turned into quite the profitable venture for Konami. The DS and 3DS dating simulation has fans worldwide, even with the language barrier. Which is probably quite confounding to people who have never played a dating simulation or have only heard the most sensational news stories about the games. I’m sure the series success is made even more surprising since it seems like every entry of Love Plus is exactly the same as the three same girls are always the only dating options. Hopefully, this brief overview will help you understand why people get so excited about Konami’s girlfriend simulator.

The Love Plus Saga

Love Plus is easy to heap into the category of dating sim. Mainly because yes, it does fit all the criteria and is technically one. It’s real category is much more accurate – girlfriend simulator. It also explains why so many people are willing to keep buying in to what seems like the same game. I mean, Love Plus, Love Plus + and New Love Plus? Those unfamiliar with the series would assume people double or triple dipping are getting ripped off.

It’s understandable. Each entry has the same three dateable girls – Manaka Takane, Rinko Kobayakawa and Nene Anegasaki. The player and all three of them attend Towano High School, with Manaka being in the same grade as the player, Rinko a year below and Nene a year above. Players get 100 days to get one of the girls as a girlfriend. After getting a girlfriend, the player can then play forever and continue to date her. The game can even be set up so each day in the real world corresponds to each day in the game, allowing players to date in real-time.

The girlfriend mode starts after players manage to get one of the girls to like them enough to confess their love. This is actually kind of challenging, since the game does have life sim elements and requires players to build up their avatars’ stats to the girls liking and trigger certain events. Even after entering girlfriend mode, a player must continue to go through a life sim during the days to keep stats up to impress the girl he’s chosen and go on dates.

So why do people like it? Well, Love Plus really is like having a virtual girfriend and some people like the idea of that. I suppose its comforting to know that every day an activity can be planned. There’s no threat of rejection and even though the player knows it isn’t real, the Love Plus games still provide an identifiable character with which to bond. The fact that the software has some minor voice recognition, allowing the virtual characters to recognize and respond to some phrases, helps.

In addition, a Love Plus player also gets to basically create his dream girl. While Manaka, Rinko and Nene have base personalities and appearances, Konami’s website and marketing also points out that their physical appearance can change based on input from the player, changing their hair color or style and clothing. Konami also gives players the option to shape the girls’ personalities by telling them what kind of girls they like.

Since players have already formed a bond with characters and transfer save data over to newer games, it’s more like Love Plus + and New Love Plus are expansion packs. Hopefully, that makes it easier to understand why players keep coming back. Newer games have more events, clothing options and date locations. Of course, the 3DS version also has DLC, a boyfriend lock feature that makes the girls only recognize one player and AR viewing. Unfortunately, foreign Love Plus players will encounter problems when upgrading from Love Plus or Love Plus+ to New Love Plus, as it is a paid data transfer and requires an additional machine.

Finding your own Love Plus love.

If you’re really curious about Love Plus, the next step would be to play it. The first two entries, Love Plus and Love Plus +, are region-free and can be played on any DS or DS lite unit. Love Plus + does have some minor region-locking though, so it will not work on DSi or DSi XL units from North America or Europe. Both games are very language heavy, requiring not only basic knowledge of Japanese, but also the ability to read kanji and even speak some Japanese lines for certain segments. People familiar with dating simulations, particularly Konami’s Tokimeki Memorial series, might be able to stumble their way through the game. Still, you’ll miss out if you can’t understand what’s going on. It is possible to do if you really want to try it or find a cheap copy of the game, especially if you consult a fan-made Love Plus guide.

Interestingly enough, a fan translation project was completed in 2011 for the original Love Plus. A group of people who enjoyed the game worked together to translate it into English and release a free patch online. It doesn’t translate the part where players have to say a certain phrase aloud to their girlfriend in a dream, but aside from that the entire game is fully playable. Considering the size of the game, it’s quite a substantial feat. Now, we all know piracy is wrong and a very bad thing, but it is pretty cool to know something like this is out there.

New Love Plus, the first 3DS entry, is region-locked. You can only play it if you own a Japanese 3DS. However, a 3DS regardless of region can play the first Love Plus without any problems so you can always fall back on that.

COMING NEXT WEEK: Hot Japanese Imports suggests some online shopping services to use to buy awesome stuff from Japan.

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT: Last week Hot Japanese Imports reviewed Mother 3

Follow Jenni on Twitter for more import game updates and general fangirl enthusiasm!

Popularity: 7% [?]

Japan Import: Dragon Quest Monsters 3D 3DS is slime-y

March 1, 2012 - 3:00 am No Comments

Japan Import: Dragon Quest Monsters 3D 3DS is slime-y


There’s something about the Dragon Quest slime. Maybe it’s his big, beaming eyes or his optimistic smile, but the mascot manages to be both slightly weird and utterly adorable at the same time. Admittedly, it probably has more fans in Japan. Those Japanese fans are going to be really excited soon, as a new 3DS is going to be covered in them.

Square Enix is remaking Dragon Quest Monsters: Terry’s Wonderland 3D, a Game Boy Color Dragon Quest spin-off. To celebrate its May 31, 2012 release, it will be available alone or packed with a custom slime 3DS. The 3DS in question is completely white, with a multitude of blue slimes and three metal slimes on the lid. It reminds people that Dragon Quest has been around since 1986.

As always, the 3DS is a region-locked system. If you want this Dragon Quest Monsters 3D 3DS, you’re going to pay a premium price of ¥24,980 (~$310) and only be able to use the system for Japanese games. While there is a slight chance Dragon Quest Monsters: Terry’s Wonderland 3D could get a worldwide release, as Eidos brought the original to North America and Europe, this 3DS will never be released outside Japan.

I think this is one of my favorite Japan-exclusive 3DS units so far. I really like how the slimes are arranged on the cover and that a few metal slimes were tossed in to make it more diverse.

Read [4Gamer.net (Japanese)]

Popularity: 5% [?]

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