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Game Center CX


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#1 hankwang

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Posted 09 January 2012 - 03:39 PM

Of course, everyone knows what Game Center CX is. It's that retro style game that was translated and released as Retro Game Master in the US by Xseed, right? That one that was based on a TV show?

Well, sure. But have you seen the TV show? Basically, it's Top Gear for video games. Each episode follows the exploits of Japanese comedian Shinya Arino of the comedy duo Yoiko as he attempts to clear either a classically hard or really shitty old game in a certain time limit (usually 12 hours). There's two... minor problems that face him with each episode.

#1: He's shit at games.
#2: The games picked for him are some of the hardest and most frustrating ever set loose on the public.

Cue much hiliarity as Arino and his dedicated, long suffering backup crew try to complete the challenges laid out before them. Adding to the show are regular features where Arino visits a Japanese arcade somewhere in the country and looks at old hardware or plays through a game with the assistance of the viewers as they phone in from home.

Arino's supported by the Producer Kan (who knows nothing about games and frequently only steps in to tell Arino this is his last chance), the Cameraman Abe (a former deliquent who's hairstyle is screaming to be grown out into a teddy boy), and the Assistant Directors who are not hired specifically for their gaming prowess but are the unfortunate lackies who have to step in and help Arino out when he can't progress in a game. Three of the several ADs have been legendary gamers, but some... are not.

Around mid-2011, a team of goons from Something Awful picked up on some previous half hearted translation attempts and have since fansubbed several episodes. Around the same time, Kotaku licensed the show (again, under the Retro Game Master name) and subtitled/dubbed 12 episodes of it. So there's plenty of material to watch.

The first series is yet to be fully translated and Arino's challenges formed a very small part of what is an hour long show. However, those challenges have been subtitled.

I've seen MOST of the subbed episodes to date, so I'm in a place to guide on some of my favourites at least. It's very fun, very nostalgic and for us pretty apt subject matter. I've placed it in Classic Gaming because it usually deals with Classic Gaming laugh.gif Kotaku's dubs are cut to ribbons and only feature the challenge portion of the show. They also leave out a lot of references and it's no wonder the show bombed when it was licensed - it's just not handled with care at all. Still, worth watching when you run out of subs still.

Good places to start (all YouTube links. There are torrents and direct downloads available elsewhere):
Takeshi's Challenge. The very first episode, this challenge is only 13 minutes long. The game is the legendary "kusoge", but Arino takes it pretty seriously! As it's short it's probably the best place to start to see if you like the style of the show. Everything else below is 1 hour.

Tokimeki Memorial. Filmed shortly after Arino's wedding, the crew on Game Center CX want to know all about his dating technique and demand he play Tokimemo.

Quest of Ki: Part 1 and Part 2. Both hour long episodes, Arino does battle with this spinoff of Tower of Duraga. At first, he makes very quick progress, but as he starts to hit the final levels he starts spends literally hours on them...

SOS. Hands down this is one of the shittiest SNES games I have ever seen in my life due to the best pathfinding in all of video game history. And now Arino gets to go one on one with it!

Bonk's Adventure. One of Arino's most outstanding mistakes in this episode when he hits the bonus stage for the first time. Also contains the concluding part of the Quest of Ki challenge, so you know... be careful of spoilers'n'stuff.

ENJOY!

#2 Mr Sands

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Posted 10 January 2012 - 12:58 PM

There is quite a lot of random games related TV but it almost always is to do with the Famicom. It's like nothing else has happened since. Most of the shows are all random celebs playing games and people bet if they will be able get through the level or whatever. I once turned the channel to be greeted with a picture of a whole audience wearing Mario hats waving mushrooms around.

I've stumbled across Game Center CX show too but on ANA in flight entertainment, I think. Will check out your links, will be nice to be able to understand everything they are saying for once.

#3 uiruki

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Posted 10 January 2012 - 02:06 PM

Great show - very addictive to watch, mostly because of Arino's personality. Even Japanese-style TV production can't overpower it! Used to rent the DVDs when I was in Japan. The TV-Nihon or whatever subs are appalling, though - oftentimes either wrong, or betraying the lack of any kind of knowledge of the subject matter. I can understand not knowing what some of the games are (except Famista - if you don't know what that is, you should find out) but they make lots of elementary Japanese mistakes, including misreading Japanese characters.

The more recent subs are by a team called SA-GCCX, and they are far better. They do things like match up titles with the Western releases (especially vital given how much companies fiddled with games coming out of Japan around then) and what mistakes they do make are ones which just look like time pressure - mishearing particles in spoken sentences, and so on.

I'd watch the raw footage if I could, but I don't know where to get it and Fuji TV are usually super sharp at taking down Japanese stuff from Youtube.

#4 hankwang

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Posted 10 January 2012 - 02:33 PM

QUOTE(Mr Sands @ Jan 10 2012, 12:58 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
There is quite a lot of random games related TV but it almost always is to do with the Famicom. It's like nothing else has happened since. Most of the shows are all random celebs playing games and people bet if they will be able get through the level or whatever. I once turned the channel to be greeted with a picture of a whole audience wearing Mario hats waving mushrooms around.

I've stumbled across Game Center CX show too but on ANA in flight entertainment, I think. Will check out your links, will be nice to be able to understand everything they are saying for once.


I'm convinced everyone and their dog owned a Famicom in Japan in that era, so I'm certain it's just the culture of the thing - such an established piece of history that cannot be let go. I do find it curious that the Japanese seem to tie so much to it - we don't seem to show the same kind of venerations for, say, the Spectrum or BBC Micro.

QUOTE(uiruki @ Jan 10 2012, 02:06 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Great show - very addictive to watch, mostly because of Arino's personality. Even Japanese-style TV production can't overpower it! Used to rent the DVDs when I was in Japan. The TV-Nihon or whatever subs are appalling, though - oftentimes either wrong, or betraying the lack of any kind of knowledge of the subject matter. I can understand not knowing what some of the games are (except Famista - if you don't know what that is, you should find out) but they make lots of elementary Japanese mistakes, including misreading Japanese characters.

The more recent subs are by a team called SA-GCCX, and they are far better. They do things like match up titles with the Western releases (especially vital given how much companies fiddled with games coming out of Japan around then) and what mistakes they do make are ones which just look like time pressure - mishearing particles in spoken sentences, and so on.

I'd watch the raw footage if I could, but I don't know where to get it and Fuji TV are usually super sharp at taking down Japanese stuff from Youtube.


Interesting on the TV-Nihon side of things. Obviously I have no clue, but in that case I'm pretty thankful they've only done a handful of episodes (as I understand it they only originally had involvement for the two tokusatsu episodes since they specialise in translations of those shows).

As for raws, this list is pretty complete (including the Kotaku messes). All downloads from Megavideo, but I have no idea what quality they will ultimately be, mind.

Perhaps you should get in on the translation effort for us Uiruki laugh.gif

#5 uiruki

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Posted 10 January 2012 - 04:33 PM

Cheers for that! It looks like they remove the raws when they get subbed, but it's still better than nothing - and less dicking around with Youtube.

I'm watching through the first series, where they only bothered to do the challenges. TV-Nihon apparently decided that a better name for Steel Battalion is "Iron Ride". It's just off-putting!

#6 hankwang

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Posted 12 January 2012 - 11:45 AM

New episode!... from TV-Nihon!? Two years after their last effort. lol.



Still, more Arino is a good thing, even with a crappy translation.

#7 Mr Sands

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Posted 16 January 2012 - 02:55 PM

Just watched the one where he takes of the JPN ver of Super Mario 2. Was epic and really makes me want to play it again. I think I finished it back in the day but only by using saves on the All Stars version, which I guess is cheating.

I hope it comes out on the 3DS virtual console soon, is it available on the wii's one?

#8 hankwang

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Posted 17 January 2012 - 02:39 PM

QUOTE(Mr Sands @ Jan 16 2012, 02:55 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Just watched the one where he takes of the JPN ver of Super Mario 2.


"Arino, did you use warps?"
"Er, yes?"
*kid mashes reset button*
"WHAT ARE YOU DOING!?"

laugh.gif


#9 E. Randy Dupre

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Posted 17 January 2012 - 09:13 PM

Just watched the Umihara Kawase episode:



Pretty much exactly the same as my own (repeated) experiences with the game laugh.gif

#10 hankwang

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Posted 18 January 2012 - 12:51 AM

His way of building confidence by rewatching the saved replay data laugh.gif

#11 Mr Sands

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Posted 21 January 2012 - 07:34 AM

As soon at I actually start using megaupload for something the feds shut it down. UNGGGHARGH.gif

#12 E. Randy Dupre

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Posted 22 January 2012 - 01:31 AM

This one's particularly good:




#13 hankwang

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Posted 30 January 2012 - 06:52 PM

New episode! Bomberman! on NES!



This is one of the best I've seen for a long time laugh.gif

"Then let's... move on."

"GODDESS... DESU"
"Goddesses?"
"No, Goddess... desu"

laugh.gif

#14 uiruki

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Posted 30 January 2012 - 07:24 PM

I'm watching the 24 hour live Lemmings thing. Even after 12 hours or so he's missing obvious stuff just because he's so tired! Also, the SNES version had some really, really terrible versions of the original Amiga music.

#15 E. Randy Dupre

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Posted 05 February 2012 - 12:21 AM

This one's dead good:



The game itself looks like a strange mix of fun and outright frustration, but on top of that there's the brilliance of Space Invaders CX and the sound effect every time the AD nods his head laugh.gif




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