Saturday, 30 January 2016

Blaster Rants: Localization vs Censorship

THEY ARE NOT THE SAME THING! THEY DO NOT MEAN THE SAME THING! I could end this post right there, but even then I know people will still keep interchanging the two, so let me explain why.

Right now, the current punching bag for this is Fire Emblem Fates, all three versions of the game (that part is something I want to save for if I review it or not), specifically, how parts of games are being changed in localization for a western audience. I will say that Fates isn't the only game I'm using for this example, I have a few more, but for now, let's start with the recent one, the petting mini game. Now I don't mind a petting mini game in games, I've played one in Nintendogs, in Pokemon Generation 6, and it's something common in anything that has some form of pet, so I don't see a problem in those examples. Petting an anime girl? That's creepy, and many in the west see it as disgusting and objectifying. Me? A cheep stunt as I hadn't herd of it before, and from what I've sen, it does absolutely nothing. I should say, all I've been able to find is articles saying "Why it should be removed" or "Why it should stay", which is why my knowledge of it is limited. I'm not here to come on a side, what I will say though is "If it has no purpose, why is it there in the first place?". Now as for the point I'm going to make, the reason why it's being removed is, in simplest terms, gender roles between the two demographics. The views of gender differ between Japan and the western world, in japan, something like that is seen as appropriate, normal (to an extent). In the west however, views on gender are very different, and are changing every day, even to the point where many can't agree on gender portrayal, most of it thanks to the portrayal of the genders over history. In a perfect world, this wouldn't be a factor, however we don't live in a perfect world, we live in a scrap world, where objectification of women in anyway is going to have negative repercussions. Now again, to state my personal view on the matter, if you can provide an in story valid explanation for a character looking the way they are, then I don't have an issue with it, as it is there to serve the story. This from what I've seen, is not serving the story, its a way of cashing in on the Japan Pop Idol culture, something that isn't a thing in the western world. So why would they keep it if

  1. There's no reason cuturally to keep it in thanks to a lack of Pop idol culture.
  2. There's no reason in terms of sales to keep it in because the moment obnoxiously loud people find out about it, your PR manager is going to be in tears because of all the abuse it would have gotten.
On that second point, let's bring out another game that isn't being sold in the west for that reason, Dead or Alive: Xtreme 3, I told you I'd be using a few examples. This one is a game not being sold in the west for a few reasons, but one that got the most attention was because they're afraid of the social backlash. What's the more realistic reason? The games probably haven't sold well here, as it is a very niche game made primarily for Japanese audiences because again, that's more acceptable there then it is here. The reason they gave, to put it in internet understanding terms, "they were afraid of Social Justice Warriors". I could probably go into a whole other rant on my views of that culture, but suffice to say, the one's I see get the most attention, don't deserve the attention as it comes off as more "doing this for personal gain". Most people, myself included, do see eye to eye with them on several points, however the culture has become so toxic, so overbearing that people stay away, see them as trolls, people just there to abuse people in the name of social justice. That community almost went to war with the companies involved by that statement, meanwhile all I could see was people who had no interest in getting the game or even caring about the game slamming it because of the game having girls in bikini's. My stance on that? "Wasn't going to get the game anyway, don't care, why bother getting angry about something like that?". Please note though its the same kind of people who got Target and K-Mart Australia to stop selling Grand Theft Auto 5, and in all the cases above, people called it censorship.

NONE OF THOSE ARE CENSORSHIP!!! And trust me, I can say that with a level of certainty as I live in a country THAT DOES CENSOR GAMES, its why I've been limiting my examples to games. Up until January 2013, three years ago, Australia didn't have an R18+ rating for games. For comparison, that means we didn't have an M or AO rating in comparison to the ESRB and a PEGI 18 for European readers. The most we had was MA15+, which as a base comparison would be about PEGI 12, maybe PEGI 16, and T by the ESRB. Anything higher was either censored, or not released here at all. Even games released after January 2013 were censored like Saint's Row 4 (which I think might be looking too deep but it was a simple change, changing drugs to caffeine) and South Park the Stick of Truth, yes there really are crying koala's. For more, and this yes I use Wikipedia, but I cross reference. Censorship is a government body saying "Either change this, or you cannot sell it here, at all"
  • IT IS NOT a company changing aspects to help the product do better in other countries, which happens both ways, the only reason you don't hear it as much going from a western to eastern release is because the US can't stand not being the center of attention (that was a joke).
  • IT IS NOT a company not selling a product in a country by their choice.
  • IT IS NOT a store refusing to carry a specific product because some people signed a petition.
Before I close, there is actually a difference between censoring and censorship. I told you what censorship is, censoring is changing something by one's own accord in order to, basically protect themselves from people who are offended. For example, I do things like "f#!@%(%" that, that's me censoring myself, in order to not have to deal with parents sending me angry messages about how little Jimmy learned about words like that from my site. The bleep censor is another case of that. Nothing is stopping me from not using those, I choose to use those as the majority of my reviews are on child friendly things, and if something is for a more mature audience, I use more "mature" language as I'm assuming that little Jimmy wouldn't be reading my first impressions of the red band trailer for Deadpool, for example. I will always try to make the use of "mature" language obvious before it's used, to cover myself. Again, this ISN'T censorship, no one is making me do it, and right now, no one cares, people have actually been telling me not to do it. I do it of my own accord, its not being afraid of something, its saving me from a headache.

If you're going to call foul on censorship, MAKE SURE IT'S ACTUAL CENSORSHIP!!! Localization and censoring one's self is NOT CENSORSHIP. See you all on Wednesday, as I need to calm down after this.

Post release edit: the feature from Fire Emblem fates was not limited to female characters. I was unaware of this at the time of release as I have not been paying attention to spoilers, and the only information I could get was focused more on the objectifying women side of it. I am aware of this now.

Also, I am aware of times when localization and censorship are intertwined, and I should have brought that up. The reason I didn't was because I didn't have any solid examples that blured the two, instead of just either one or the other.

Friday, 29 January 2016

Spaceballs:... I genuinly can't come up with something to say here

The short version of this review could be summed up to that as well. I'll try to go into detail, but its the main reason why I don't really watch spoof movies. Let's see how well this goes, Spaceballs.


"WHY ISN'T THIS SPACEBALLS!!!?!" That's still coming later today, however I felt that I needed to let you know what's happening with Youtube, not the business, channels are being taken down, I have no idea what's going on there, but what's happening on this side, for this site. The current channel,, is being phased out, to be replaced with a new channel, one that we can actually give it a proper name. Most of the content may not get carried over, those being the let's plays of Explorers of the Sky, Earthbound and the legacy kept part of Sonic Heroes along with the promotional videos I did because while I like the montage, the trailer sucks. I know it, you know it. The reviews and impressions will be carried over, and the old videos will stay on the channel unless something like what's happening now happens again, and the channel is affected.

Why are we doing this, well, a clean slate. You see while the current channel is in good standings, is a Youtube partner, can monetize ect, two videos are monetized, but the money doesn't go to the channel. Those are the Montage, and a part of Explorers of the Sky. Am I fighting them, no as those I am in the wrong for. You've got the Touch in the montage, which I'm fairly sure that one is a fan remake anyway, and the Trolololo song in the EOTS part, that one I had no idea was copyrighted. The money from those videos goes to them. Lessons learned. The channel hasn't been made yet, but when it is, I will be putting links to it on all the sites. PSA over, I'll see you for Spaceballs.

Wednesday, 27 January 2016

Tiny Toon Adventures: Back to school special

As I stated in the review, I really liked Animaniacs, so when I herd that a show prior to it by the same team, with inspiration from the Loony Toons, I had to give it a look. How was it? Well, one way to find out. Shall we head to school?

Monday, 25 January 2016

Star Wars Episode VI; Return of the Jedi, dumb characters, and a dumb plan

This week, we bring this marathon to a close. Two more movies left, as we come to the end of the original trilogy. When we last left our heroes, things had fallen apart, so now, it's time to put everything back together. Time to see the grand Return of the Jedi.

Friday, 22 January 2016

Star Wars Episode V; The Empire Strikes Back: Time to spoil the spoiler I and the internet already spoiled

So now we come to Episode 5. We're almost at the end of this. But first, we must come to the movie that, to my knowledge, is one of the most spoiled movies of all time. Chances are if you haven't seen this movie, you know what happens in it. So let's get to it, shall we?

Wednesday, 20 January 2016

Star Wars; Episode IV: A new hope for an end of the awful exposition

We're here, the original Trilogy, and I do mean it this time, although I could easily do a review of Star Wars Rebels, and here I will restate that I'm reviewing the Special Editions, and will do a retake review of the originals when I can do so legally and the majority of people can get it LEGALLY. For now, we do really have to go somewhere a long time ago, to the 70's in fact.

Monday, 18 January 2016

Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith (and plotholes)

Rejoice, for we're at the last of the prequel movies. That's right, after this we'll be in the original trilogy. But first, we must review the movie that exists to act as a bridge between older fan's love of the original movies, and the prequel movies that everyone hates. I've delayed this once, let's get this done. Star Wars: Episode 3: Revenge of the Sith.

Friday, 15 January 2016

Freedom Planet: "What's this? AN INDIE GAME REVIEW?!"

Yes, it's true, contrary to what I've reviewed, I do play other games, and I play indie games. Granted not as much as I'd like for indies, but I am working on it. I was first introduced to this game via an event called SAGE, the Sonic Armature Games Expo back in 2012, where this game was first shown off, and I had a blast playing it. It was a great demo and is one of the kickstarter projects I wish I had the money at the time to endorse. However, it was released to the world recently, and even got a WiiU Port (Which is the version I used for this review, however I do have experience with the PC version, and will be getting said PC version to let's play soon).

Wednesday, 13 January 2016

Yu-Gi-Oh Duel Monsters: This tutorial sucks

The joys of being a child in the 2000's, you couldn't escape anime. No, not the good ones, this was the era of 4-Kids, so this was the time when anime was like 80's cartoons in that they were there to sell products. Sometimes it worked, such as with Pokemon. Others... not so much. One of the reasons I started this site was an excuse to look back at my childhood, and see how well it holds up. Pokemon Emerald, that was rushed thanks to ORAS, as I was planning on reviewing it November last year, but that was one example of me doing this, another being Transformers Armada, Energon and Cybertron. So now we have another, being the Duel Monsters iteration of Yu-Gi-Oh. I have others that I'll  be getting to, but for now, let's take a look at the best example I have right now of what kids imagine when playing card games. Care to put your faith in the heart of the cards? (Of course I was going to have that somewhere).

Monday, 11 January 2016

Star Wars; The Clone Wars: Who needs a cast when you have CGI?

A common complaint people have with the prequels is the amount of CGI in use, barely any of the movie was actually on set. So a few years after the prequels had come out, and news of a new Star Wars movie was on the way excited people... until they herd that it was going to be all CG, and it was a prequel for a show by the same name, and that it was still during the prequels. Yeah, that went over well... Well, speaking from a more outsider perspective, as my knowledge of Star Wars is limited to the films, current shows, and The Force Awakens games, this was the first Star Wars movie I ever saw at the cinema, and at the time, I enjoyed it. Does it hold up? Well one way to find out. The focus of this review is the movie, however a lot of it can be applied to the show, and I will be covering aspects of the show, just not in as much detail.

Friday, 8 January 2016

Star Wars; Episode 2: Attack of the exposition... I mean Clones

Sorry for the major typo . I was tired, I don't know what I was thinking, even I know calling this movie "Star Wars: Revenge of the Clones" was stupid, and yet is probably the funniest thing about this.

Thursday, 7 January 2016

Super Mario Maker: "We give up, make your own"

So to celebrate the 30th anniversary of Super Mario Brothers on the NES, we got what can be described as a dev kit. Actually it was a dev kit until the team decided to merge it with the plans for a sequel to Mario Paint. To be fair, to those who hate it, it could be worse. There could be no mention of an anniversary, let alone a game, and trust me when I say that there are a lot of games that get that treatment. So now that the game has been out for a while, let's see what the community can do.

Wednesday, 6 January 2016

Worlds Collide: What happens when you mix the Blue Blur with the Blue Bomber?

This is something I get the feeling was being worked on while Archie was getting the rights to do the comics. Think about it, you're going for the rights of two of gaming's most iconic characters (that isn't named Mario), one of whom holds the record for longest running comic series based on a video game. Why wouldn't you bring the two together? Because they did, we get Worlds Collide, so lets see how this goes, shall we?

Tuesday, 5 January 2016

Animal Crossing; Amiibo Festival: "So I herd you liked Mario Party 10"

"Honestly, we just wanted Animal Crossing Amiibo. We wanted the company to make Animal Crossing Amiibo, so that's why we made a game that works with them." I herd a lot of backlash for this statement, and I mean a lot. I'm not going to summarize it, but my view on it is more pleasant then others. This was said by the development team, and more often then not, the development team doesn't have dollar signs in their eyes, and they've shown that they love all the characters they've made, why wouldn't they, it's Animal Crossing. To say that the characters are cute does them a dis service, adorable doesn't even come close at times. With that push, Nintendo had the ability to print money before they ran out of fighters in Super Smash Brothers, and giving them enough time to build up the RFID chips to back log for the inevitable mass producing of Pokemon amiibo, my wallet is already dreading that day. So with Amiibo Festival and it's sister game, Happy Home Designer, how well does the Animal Crossing Team impliment Amiibo. I will come back to Happy Home Designer, but let's get this done first.

Monday, 4 January 2016

Star Wars; Episode 1: The Phantom Menace: Let's get these two out of the way first, shall we?

One thing I've been saying to people I know is that this month, I'm kinda setting myself up to shoot myself in the foot with this, purely because of what the subject is. Star Wars is one of the most talked about things on the internet, and most of it is aimed at how bad the prequel trilogy is and that the original trilogy is seen as a masterpiece. Do I agree with those statements? Well, you'll see by the end of the month. Now before we go into the reviews themselves, I'm going to say this here and now. I am reviewing the DVD releases that came out in 2004, which means that yes, I'll be reviewing the original trilogy based on the "Special editions". Sadly I have not seen the original edits of Episodes 4, 5 and 6, let alone own a copy of them. All three are versions I want to see someday, and I want the rumors of the movies being re released to be true, but until then, these will have to do. I will say in advance, it is really obvious what's been edited in. But before we get to that, we have these to do, so lets kick off the Star Wars Marathon with what some argue to be the worst of the movies: The Phantom Menace.