Archive for the ‘Gurugumawaru’ Category

Tekkenulture

Posted: August 22, 2011 in Gurugumawaru, Tekken

Growing up with two brothers has exposed me to different kinds of games throughout the years. And though I never became a fan of almost half of the things they do, there was something that has always intrigued me. My brothers’ have a certain addiction. Every time we go to a mall as a family, they will always find a reason to sneak into an arcade. And no, they’re not there to play basketball, DDR or any of the other games there. My brothers and a lot of other people go there for just one reason, Tekken.

Some Background Info

It’s been around 15 years since Namco released this arcade type fighting game. Ever since then, there have been 5 sequels, and the number of characters and the plot has expanded thoroughly. If you watched the movie, you would know that the plot revolves around The King of the Iron Fist Tournament. This is a fictional tournament that is supposedly hosted by the Mishima Zaibatsu. And when a character is able to win this competition, he/she is given the opportunity to control the company.

If you play Tekken in a gaming console such as the PS3, you have the option of playing the story mode. In the story mode, one will be able to see the character’s reason behind joining the competition, and what would happen if that character were to win everything.

What Makes Tekken Different

These features are things that are very common with other combat games. However the Tekken franchise has a very interesting interactive aspect that is available for both the arcade and console version.  Imitating real life martial arts, the Tekken franchise gives the player an opportunity to prove their skills and raise their ranks.  They begin with the 9 levels of Kyu, 5 levels of Dan then they become Shihan, Expert, Master, Virtuoso, Champion, Legend, Sage, Warlord, Conquerer, Diety and finally if they’ve passed all of these, they can become Tekken Lord. There are two ways to raise your rank. For arcade players, they can purchase a Tekken Card from their local arcade. The card will give them the opportunity to choose a username, purchase a costume for the character that they use, and it will also record data about that person’s gaming stats. By using this card when they challenge other players, they will be given promotion opportunities. The conditions will change depending on your current rank. For people using console, they can improve their ranks by challenging other players online.

So What?

This type of system has given the Tekken series a number of very loyal followers. They have developed their own form of dedication, a certain culture. This is particularly true for the Tekken players who go to arcades. If you search the Internet, you would be able to see recordings of battles of some popular Tekken players that normally come from Japan or Korea. I’ve seen people who hang out in Timezone just to watch other people play. And the players aren’t limited to teenagers and young adults. There are a couple of working class people as well.

It’s interesting when one starts to notice how committed some of these players are. They have platinum membership cards for the arcade. They always seem to be in the arcade either playing the game, or watching from the sidelines. When they lose a game, there are occasions when they take a peek as to who that person is. They talk to other regulars. They battle each other; learn from one another, and ultimately, they form a community. They’re a bunch of regular folk trying to get as close to the exhilaration of martial arts as they possibly can, minus the broken bones.  And hey, what’s so wrong about that?

For more information about Tekken, click the image below!

The Ultimate Tekken Resource

And, a new Tekken movie is coming up!

Hopefully, this one won’t disappoint 🙂

That’s about all from me today, see you guys next time!

❤ Gurugumawaru

Last week, the final installment of the Harry Potter movie series was released. For an entire generation, it marked the end of their childhood. And now, Potter fans (myself included) from all over the world are facing a form of depression. And in an attempt to recapture my youth, I stumbled upon a game that not only personified childhood but also continues to remind me of those carefree days. And I was pleasantly surprised to find out that it was still in existence. It is not a game with a single premise and goal. Rather, it is a world where you are able to discover different kinds of game. And the best part is, you never do it alone, you will always have a companion with you, a pet. Your pet will be by your side as you discover the world of Neopets.

Neopets is a website wherein a user is able to create his/her own virtual pet. Users are able to take care of their pet by customizing them, feeding them and playing with them. To be able to earn the currency (or Neopoints) a user has the option of playing an array of different games and through the other features of the virtual world Neopia. Neopia is divided into 19 lands. By exploring these lands one is able to go to places like the Money Tree where the phrase “one man’s trash is another man’s treasure” is brought to life everyday. You are able to get different daily freebies such as omelet and jelly to feed your adorable pets. You can even get the chance to battle with other pets in the Battledome. Aside from all of these features, Neopia has its own bank, calendar and time. It is an interactive world just waiting to be explored.

Aside from all of the fun things that you can do in Neopia, Neopets also has the Game Room. The Game Room is a collection of free online Neopets-based games that will never leave you bored. With more than a hounded games with different levels of difficulty, there will always be something that will entertain you.

A recent visit to the Neopets website showed me how much has changed in the past few years. I opened my old account and found out that my former Neopet does not exist anymore. I played the old games that I used to play and found out that they are more difficult now. I can’t even get past some of the simple games I used to play everyday. But then, some games came naturally, I didn’t have to figure out what to do when I start each game, I just go. And that really made me feel like a child again.

What makes this game so special is not its spectacularly exciting games or well thought out gameplay, it is the memory of childhood that one gets from it. The designs of the pets themselves show that they are geared towards a younger demographic, but that will never stop those kids at heart from exploring this world. It is an experience that makes you feel nostalgic, because when you’re in Neopia it would seem that nothing else really matters

During hot summer nights, it is Japanese tradition to tell horror stories to take their minds of the heat. All of these stories have similar elements: girls with long hair, Shinto priests and/or bizarre rituals.  And though none of us (the people who own this blog) are, or ever will be Japanese, the chill from being immersed in an authentic Japanese horror story isn’t exclusive to the Japanese anymore. It has been almost 10 years since the first release of the console game Fatal Frame, and since I’m in the mood for some horror, I’ll give you a snapshot of how this game will make you scared to look into a camera frame.

There are 4 games included in the Fatal Frame series, and all of them are available in Playstation 2  and Xbox Gaming Consoles.

They all follow the same premise — The main character comes to a desolate haunted location in search of something, or someone; they slowly discover the secrets of where they are and they fight of their enemies with a camera, the Camera Obscura. The camera has the ability to capture images of beings from another dimension (or ghosts) and prevent them from harming you any further than they possibly can.

Despite having similar premises, each game has its own captivating plot. And because I haven’t played the other two yet, I will only post the trailers for some of them.

 

Fatal Frame

 

Plot: Mafuyu Hinasaki has not returned home for 9 days. Because of this, his younger sister Miku decides to follow him to Himuro Mansion to check up on him. The Himuro Mansion is a secluded mansion deep in the forests that was built during the Edo era. As she enters the mansion, Mafuyu is nowhere to be found, but she does find their mother’s antique camera, the Camera Obscura.

As she continues to search around the mansion, she finds out that that her mother’s camera has the ability to harm and capture the ghosts that are trying to attack her. By using the notes from different people, her brother included, she slowly pieces together the mystery of the Himuro mansion and why it is the way that it is.

 

– – –

 

Fatal Frame 2: Crimson Butterfly

 

Plot: Mio and Mayu Amakura are twins who have an affinity to the unknown. While they were visiting the forest where they used to play in when they were younger, Mayu follows a crimson butterfly and disappears deep into the woods. Mio hurriedly follows her and they find themselves in a mysterious abandoned village.  There, they find the Camera Obscura and learn about the Crimson Sacrifice Ritual.

Using the Camera Obscura, Mio must save her sister from being possessed by a vengeful spirit and get them out of the village before they become the next sacrifices.

 

– – –

 

Fatal Frame 3: The Tormented

 

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Fatal Frame 4: Mask of the Lunar Eclipse

 

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What I Didn’t Like About the Fatal Frame Series:

While I was typing the premise of the whole game, I had to stop myself for a bit because the premise really did sound stupid: “Take good pictures and the ghost will disappear.” Though I personally think the game play is exciting, I have to admit that using a camera as a weapon doesn’t really make for an exhilarating gaming experience; it’s kind of anti-climactic.

What disappointed me the most about the game was the minimal improvement in the game graphics through the 4 games. In terms of game play, there’s not much difference between the first and the fourth one; there’s also minimal improvement in character design. Though Mayu and Mio are supposed to look alike, it doesn’t make sense why Miku, Rei and Ruka all look the same. There must be another way to portray a Japanese girl with a sixth sense right?

 

What I Liked About the Fatal Frame Series:

Though all of the background stories included rituals for human sacrifice, the main plot per game was highly varied. All of them were interesting enough to keep me hooked despite the fact that all of the games were dark and terrifying. I’ve onlyplayed the first 2 games of the series, but I was still very curious as to what the other stories were about.

Another thing that I appreciated was the fact that the gaming area expands per game. The first game was set in a mansion, the second one was in a village, and the third one has a complex setting wherein you are exposed to two different worlds.

The thing I liked most about this game was the entire gaming experience. Yes, it was frightening but it was just enough to give you the chills without the nightmares. There’s minimal violence because of the weapon used in the game, and it’s just an entirely different experience from just shooting zombies. There’s really something about how the story combined with the game play that created something entertaining and unique.

Ultimately, I like Fatal Frame because it sparks a certain interest in me that probably won’t be achieved by a horror movie with a better plot. It really takes you into the world and makes you experience it in its full glory — isn’t that the reason we play video games in the first place?