Remember when you used to go to the grocery store with your parents, and after checkout you would beg them to let you buy a little toy from those 25 cent machines? Yeah, those capsule machines were really cool when you didn’t know any better. However, once you hit a certain age, you realized that the toy inside sucked. It sucked big time.

When I went to Japan a few weeks ago, I discovered that feeling as a kid all over again. Capsule toys are huge in Japan, and some of those capsule toys are really cool. There are literally thousands of different machines to choose from, so the chances are you’ll find a machine you like and pump a couple hundred yen into one.

Honestly, before I went to Japan, I think I finally managed to squash my need for wanting toys. I had told myself that they are a waste of money, and that I simply don’t have the room for them anymore. The truth is, they are a waste of money and garbage, but when garbage is as cool as this stuff, it’s hard to resist.

In Japan, capsule toys can range in quality and price. The machine range is usually between 100 – 300 yen per toy. The 100 yen machines will net you something smaller, while the 400 yen machines spit out miniature action figures that actually require some assembly. (more…)

Its time for another edition of Tuesday DVD Releases. Lets cut all the jibber jabber and get right down to the nitty gritty. Below I have listed the cover art for some of the major releases coming out today. See for yourself….

The DepartedMarie Antoinette
The QuietSchool For ScoundrelsZoom: Academy for Superheroes

Additional releases are Infamous which is the same movie as Capote with different actors, Half Nelson which I hear includes a stellar performance by Ryan Gosling, Man About Town with Ben Affleck and Rebbeca Romijn-NoMoreStamos/Katsopolis, a couple documentaries like The U.S. vs. John Lennon about the Beatle and his involvement in politics and F**K about the naughty word we all love to use. Some seasons coming out are Golden Girls Season 7, Picket Fences Season 1, and All in the Family Season 6. And a show I just started getting into, Reno 911: Reno’s Most Wanted. A nice bulk of media to satisfy the masses this week.

If I had to choose one movie to buy it would, without a doubt, be The Departed. Its one of Martin Scorsese’s finest films in years and has a all star cast of great performances. It may have been my favorite movie of 2006 but I can never decide on stuff like that. Marie Antoinette looked like horse crap, I have no further comment on that movie. I don’t know enough about the Quiet to comment on but I heard it has some sexy action with Kim Bauer herself, Elisha Cuthbert. I saw School For Scoundrels and it was pretty funny. Billy Bob and Napoleon worked well together. And Zoom… Tim Allen… Superheroes… Enough said (which means it had to be AWESOME).

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Kid Icarus

Kid Icarus TitleI told myself that I wouldn’t write about video games on here for the next few days, but then Nintendo decided to release Kid Icarus on the Virtual Console, and I feel compelled to write about it.

Kid Icarus, is without a doubt, one of my all time favorite video games. I have already played the game to death on the NES, and it’s one of the few I still pop into the machine from time to time. Even though I already know the game inside and out, it doesn’t make me any less excited about it’s new re-release on Nintendo’s retro service. Needless to say, this is going to be one of the few games I already own that I’m buying again.

For those who don’t know, Kid Icarus is unlike many games you have played before. Yeah, it’s a 2D platformer, and yeah, you shoot stuff with arrows, but there is much more to it than that. First off, the overall design of the game is genius. The whole point of the game is to go from hell, to the heavens. The first “world” has you, as Pit, trying to escape from the depths of hell. In true Greek mythology fashion, hell is under the earth, so you spend the first few stages literally climbing out of it. Once you worm your way out of there, you travel the earth for a bit, and eventually climb your way up into the clouds. For an old NES game, it’s really awesome to see the care and thought that went into the layout of the entire quest.

Correct me if I’m wrong, but this is also the first game I can think of that requires some stealth on your part, even before Metal Gear. See, there is this awesome Grim Reaper litered throughout the game. He slowly walks back and forth “looking” for Pit. Your best bet would be to leave him alone and sneak past him when he has his back turned. If you’re snagged, he flips out and calls his little cronies to come and attack. Being caught is probably one of my most memorable video game moments (as you can see, I used the caught situation as the graphic for 8-Bit Music Trivia on the podcast). It’s hilarious to watch and hear the Grim Reaper running around, and the music that plays is awesome.

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If I could be accused of being a fanboy about any one thing, it would probably be Naruto. Long have I waited with my fellow Narutards for the fillers to end, and by god… end they finally shall. For those of you that bravely labored through the last hundred episodes of fillers, my hat is off to you. I, on the other hand, skipped them and read the real story in the manga instead. But even though the events are nothing new to me, I still wait with bated breath to see them unfold in full living color.

So, if you’re a fan, head over to Dattebayo Thursday night and join in on the torrent fun. Throw those guys a donation too because they do great work and all they get are angry 12 year olds spamming their IRC channel about why the episode wasn’t up 3 minutes ago.

If you’re not a fan, sorry, you just wasted a few minutes reading this shit. If you want to be a fan, but you’re afraid your friends will laugh at you (Naruto is like banging a fat chick in that respect) head over to Naruto Manga Returns for an extensive archive of the manga, it’s a quicker read than you might think (and PM me if you think sakura is teh cute, lol j/k ^_^).

Believe it!

Anyone who got March’s issue of EGM probably read their article, “BattleStation!”. To put it mildly, this article incensed me. It outlines the troubled launch of the PS3 and interviews Sony’s CEO, Jack Tretton. Mr. Tretton’s response to the very first question posed to him by EGM clearly underlines Sony’s arrogance. When asked where the negativity surrounding the PS3′s launch came from, Tretton replies. “The problem we have…its society in general.”

What??1?

You mean to tell me that the reason the PS3 had a rocky launch isn’t because of its exorbitantly high price tag, or the feeling that the PS3 is a Trojan horse for Blu-Ray, or that there really isn’t any seriously compelling software titles to warrent an immediate purchase is because there’s something wrong with me?

Sony has clearly lost its mind. They have lost touch with what their consumers want, and just how much one is willing to pay for what in reality is expendable. For example, if the whole video game industry magically dissappeared tomorrow, we would all be fine and we’d spend our money elsewhere. This is not that far fetched…the early 80′s saw the bust of the video game industry until the NES brought it back around again.

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VC Registered Games
As you know, I’m a big fan of Nintendo Wii, and for the most part I love its Virtual Console (VC) service. However, I can’t help but feel I don’t actually own the products I’m purchasing through the VC store. Each downloaded game is attached to that specific Wii. Meaning, the game can only be played on that Wii console. So if your system breaks, what do you do? I recently found out that you can register your VC purchases through Nintendo’s website by linking your MyNintendo account from Nintendo’s website to your Wii Store. I thought that by registering the games, it would maybe act as proof of owning them, so that if my Wii console ever broke I would be able to download these games again onto my new system without a problem. However, after sending an e-mail to Nintendo, I can’t help but think that we really don’t really own these games, and that worries me.

First off, if you bought a bunch of VC games before linking your MyNintendo account, you’ll notice that they won’t pop up on your registered games list. I had to e-mail a Nintendo rep and ask them to add the games to my list, which was slightly embarrassing when I have Altered Beast on that list (which is hilariously bad in case you didn’t know). The following is part of the e-mail I sent to the Nintendo reps.

“I was also hoping that you could answer another question. I mainly want to have my VC games registered as proof of me owning them. Since VC titles are basically tethered to the Wii, I’m afraid that if the Wii ever breaks, I’ll lose my games. By having VC titles registered, would this act as a way for me to be able to re-download them if they were ever lost on a broken system?
Thanks for your time and help. Have a great day.”

About a week later I received this response back.

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Shamoozal Radio #05

8-Bit Music Trivia Banner

It’s time for Shamoozal Radio #05, and we hope you’re ready for nearly an hour and a half of news, banter, trivia, and everything else we managed to cram into the show. We kick off with our Shamoozal News segment and learn a bit more about the Nerdlog straight from the horses mouth, and also read some “feed back” from Ninja, along with a few hints at the next Shamoozal cartoon and even an announcement for the return of another Shamoozal series.

Then the crew looks back at the last game console generation and picks out their favorites, along with some listener feedback. After that, tune those ears in for our 8-Bit Music Trivia segment hosted by yours truly. If you grew up in the era, you’ll be sure to enjoy it, as I promise nothing but pure NES nostalgia.

After that, it’s pretty much on as we go through some “Nerd News” and rant and rave about our own personal “Whore Daddies” for this edition of the podcast.

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GamingFM may not be the only Internet Radio station to broadcast Game Music, but they’re certainly my favorite. They’ve got an amazing selection of songs and a user-friendly web site that allows you to make requests and keep track of your favorite songs. If you listened to Episode 5 of the Podcast, then you already know that it’s already become a bit of a ‘phenom’ amongst the Shamoozal crew. By having 3-4 of us logged in making requests we’ve been able to pull off some excellent ‘Workforce Blocks’ featuring the music of Ikaruga, Metal Gear Solid and plenty of others.

The station was founded a few years ago by some former editors of Electronics Gaming Monthly and features 4 channels of music to choose from. Theres classic console which includes the NES, SNES, Sega Master System, Genesis and others. Then theres Modern Console, made up of Playstation 1 and 2, Xbox, Dreamcast and the Saturn. Total PC, is just that… all PC game music. My favorite as you may be able to tell from the photo above, is Complete Selection. It’s a taste of everything and gives you the most choices when you’re setting up your requests. Good times.

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