Quantcast

DestructoidJapanatorTomopopFlixist



    New     trending       featured       controversial       weirdest       by author       freebies       |       following





It Came from Japan! Pepsiman photo
It Came from Japan! Pepsiman
by Allistair Pinsof

[It Came from Japan! is a series where I seek out and review the weirdest, most original and enjoyable titles that never left the Land of the Rising Sun.]

Before there was Nathan Drake, there was Pepsiman, a hero's hero who spends every waking second bringing delicious Pepsi refreshments to thirsty consumers, often putting himself in peril in the process.

While most may think of Destructoid Editor-in-Chief Dale North, lover of corgis and Pepsi, as Pepsiman in the States, the legacy of Pepsiman can be traced back to this audaciously bananas Japanese game that is sure to put a smile on any Pepsi-lover's face. Well, at least until they reach Stage 4, that is!

view full story + comments




It Came from Japan! Shadow Tower Abyss photo
It Came from Japan! Shadow Tower Abyss
by Allistair Pinsof

[It Came from Japan! is a series where I seek out and review the weirdest, most original and enjoyable titles that never left the Land of the Rising Sun.]

Along with churros and KFC, dungeon crawlers are one of those random Western creations that Japan seems to like a lot more than Americans. Although the more traditional, stat-heavy brand of dungeon crawler (Wizardy, Etrian Odyssey) has had the most influence overseas, From Software (Dark Souls) carried the genre torch by bringing it into 3D with the atmospheric King's Field series.

In between King's Field entries, the Japanese developer put out an overlooked dungeon crawler by the name of Shadow Tower in 1998. It would come to the States a year later with little fanfare, which is too bad because it paved the way for its superior Japan-exclusive sequel.

view full story + comments




It Came from Japan! Clock Tower photo
It Came from Japan! Clock Tower
by Allistair Pinsof

[It Came from Japan! is a series where I seek out and review the weirdest, most original and enjoyable titles that never left the Land of the Rising Sun.]

The key to eliciting fear has little to do with dogs that jump through windows or monsters that magically appear behind the player. These are jump scares that merely offer a temporary glimpse at the thing that makes us truly unnerved: vulnerability.

Whether it's running down a corridor with no ammo left in Condemned, being limited to a wheelchair among ghouls in Silent Hill: Shattered Memories, or the entirety of Amnesia: The Dark Descent, feeling powerless against hostile, supernatural forces can really disturb a player. Being alone in a hostile world is one thing, but having no means of defense is what separates the Clock Tower series from other survival horror titles.

view full story + comments




It Came from Japan! Sweet Home photo
It Came from Japan! Sweet Home
by Allistair Pinsof

[It Came from Japan! is a series where I seek out and review the weirdest, most original and enjoyable titles that never left the Land of the Rising Sun.]

I love haunted house films. I hate haunted house games. They scare me a bit too much. Okay, I guess I love them too!

Sweet Home is ideal for a genuine Sissypants McGee such as myself. Spooky but not terrifying. Gruesome but not disgusting. The limitations of the NES keep it from being truly horrific, but Capcom still managed to design a game that gets under your skin. However, the reason you'll remember Sweet Home long after you play it has more to do with the quality of the game itself. More than being just an early example of horror tropes in gaming, Sweet Home is one of the very best games ever made -- RPG, adventure, Nintendo, Capcom, whatever.

You need to seek this one out. The nightmares will be worth it!

view full story + comments




It Came from Japan! Boku Dracula-kun photo
It Came from Japan! Boku Dracula-kun
by Allistair Pinsof

[It Came from Japan! is a series where I seek out and review the weirdest, most original and enjoyable titles that never left the Land of the Rising Sun.]

It's still the first week of October, so it's not quite time yet for the really horrific stuff. No, these are the days for Dark Souls, features about wizards, and late, drunken nights of cheesy, B-horror movie viewing. Now is an ideal time for a look back at a little gem that never came to the States called Boku Dracula-kun.

Konami's adorable Castlevania spin-off is a charming, well-designed platformer that lets players take the role of a preteen vampire. Although small and offensively cute, Kid Dracula (Dracula-kun) could easily put the hurt on Spike McFang. Despite being the distant spawn of the grim, unforgivingly difficult Castlevania series, Dracula-kun is a lighthearted and brief Konami classic that is highly recommended to anyone looking for an early-October Halloween game or Nintendo platformer.

view full story + comments




It Came from Japan! Super Back to the Future II photo
It Came from Japan! Super Back to the Future II
by Allistair Pinsof

[It Came from Japan! is a series where I seek out and review the weirdest, most original and enjoyable titles that never left the Land of the Rising Sun.]

Games based on films have a perceived stigma that indicates they are, more often than not, an utter waste of time. The games made under the Back to the Future license are partly to blame. Most likely, your favorite memories with the franchise have something to do with the films or Universal Studios ride -- far away from the abysmal Nintendo platformers by Beam Software and the Commodore 64 adventure game.

Telltale has done much to change this perception with its recent adventure series, but maybe they wouldn’t have had so much stacked against them if Toshiba-EMI had released Super Back to the Future II outside of Japan. Instead, it’s become an import novelty and a curiosity to fans of the franchise. It might not be a great game, but, in comparison to the grade-A crap ones that reached the West under the film’s title, it’s damn-near miraculously good.

view full story + comments








It Came from Japan! Rhythm Tengoku photo
It Came from Japan! Rhythm Tengoku
by Allistair Pinsof

[It Came from Japan! is a series where I seek out and review the weirdest, most original and enjoyable titles that never left the Land of the Rising Sun.]

Japanese games often possess a delirious quality that leaves some people scratching their heads and others delighting in the madness. Rhythm Tengoku, filled with characters and personality that are uniquely Japanese, is one such game.

Yet, all the quirky characters and scenarios feel like they occupy a coherent world, one where the offbeat antics of the WarioWare series successfully merge with the rhythm genre to form a portable classic that never made it to the States. Although many have heard about it and may have played its sequels, it remains an obscure gem.

view full story + comments




It Came from Japan! Harmful Park photo
It Came from Japan! Harmful Park
by Allistair Pinsof

[It Came from Japan! is a series where I seek out and review the weirdest, most original and enjoyable titles that never left the Land of the Rising Sun.]

Shooting killer clowns with cream pies. Exploring a haunted mansion to a smooth jazz soundtrack. An ape going apesh*t on a COW TRAIN. My dreams may not come true in reality, but at least Harmful Park makes them somewhat tangible!

For this introductory episode of It Came from Japan! -- and all following entries, for that matter -- we will pretend that money and region locks are not an issue. This will leave the door wide open for me to gush about this PlayStation classic and for you to play it, however you can.

view full story + comments