Last Bronx


Saturn, August 1997 (Japan)

First off, if you’re curious about what Last Bronx is, or why it’s cool, check out this incredibly definitive article about the game over at Hardcore Gaming 101.

OK done? Cool. I’m going to talk a bit about the Japanese Saturn version, which I recently acquired for 20 yen (yes, about 20 cents) at Super Potato in Akihabara.

The game sports some pretty great packaging, full of goodies.


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Falcom Classics

Saturn, 1997

Three years ago, I wrote a bit about Falcom games on Sega platforms. Today, I have something to add to that write-up, as I recently purchased a copy of Falcom Classics!

Here’s a look at the packaging:

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Phantasy Star Online Blue Burst RAcaseal Redria Model Kit by Kotobukiya

My first experience with Japanese model kit building was over a decade ago, when one day Gundam Wing models showed up at my local Toys R Us. The kits were the most basic available, but I still snatched up every one I could and completed them all. From that point on, I’d grab a Gundam kit every few years, whenever the mood struck me.

This RAcaseal kit was my first attempt at a non-Gundam model, and it was initially a bit overwhelming.


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Differences Between the Saturn and PlayStation 2 Sega Ages Phantasy Star Collections

Last year, I wrote about the Sega Ages Phantasy Star Complete Collection for PS2 (which had recently been made available on the Japanese PSN for PS3). After years of pining for the Saturn Phantasy Star Collection, I recently, while on my honeymoon in Japan, found a complete copy for a cool 1300 yen…

IMG_2429[1]Turns out, there are a few differences between the Saturn and PS2 collections. First off, the obvious- the PS2 collection is far more fully-featured. The options M2 added are simply staggering. Take Phantasy Star I for example. On Saturn, your options are, well, hiragana or katakana text.

IMG_2422[1]On PS2 however, you can choose the Mark III (Japanese) or Master System (English) version, and tweak the difficulty, gameplay, and performance. Continue reading

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Japanese Phantasy Star II Futabasha Hint Book

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Purchased at Super Potato in Akihabara for 880 yen last week, this hint book/mini strategy guide is one of the coolest Phantasy Star items I own. Continue reading

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Shopping for Sega Saturn Games in Japan

The Sega Saturn was a great system with an incredible library of games. Unfortunately, many of the best games never made it to the west, or were released in limited quantities and are now prohibitively expensive. In Japan however, it’s a different story. In its prime, while the Saturn couldn’t compete directly with the Playstation, it had a solid amount of retail presence thanks to its somewhat niche library of arcade, fighting, and dating games.

And now, those games are available in used stores, and the majority of them are dirt cheap. For example, yesterday in Akihabara, I spent 6000 yen (roughly $60 USD) solely on Saturn games, and this is the haul I walked away with:

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The Hazuki Diaries Part Four – Let’s Get Sweaty

“The Hazuki Diaries” is a project in which I chronicle my replay of the original Shenmue on the Dreamcast. Check out part one here.

After asking around a bit, I learned that Charlie often hung out at a tattoo parlor in an apartment complex (and that Charlie was a total low-life). I tracked down the location of the tattoo parlor, but it wasn’t open yet, so I decided to train to kill some time.

I found an abandoned parking lot and “got sweaty.”

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The Hazuki Diaries Part Three – Kickin’ Ass and Feedin’ Cats

“The Hazuki Diaries” is a project in which I chronicle my replay of the original Shenmue on the Dreamcast. Check out part one here and part two here.

If the previous day was one of sloth and distraction (paralleling my own real-life Sundays), I made up for it today.

Upon learning that the men in suits and Lan Di were Chinese, I sought out other Chinese people in Dobuita for clues. Kinda weird to assume that every person of Chinese descent knew all the other Chinese folks, but everyone seemed to be cool with it.

I was pointed in the direction of a 2nd generation Chinese barber…


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Dangerous Business

I randomly stumbled across this review of Bust-A-Move 4 on Dreamcast:


…which inspired me to create this, in the style of Jack Chick Publication tracts:

chicktractIt’s important to be able to amuse yourself, I think.


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The Hazuki Diaries Part Two – I’ll Find Lan Di, Just Hang-On

“The Hazuki Diaries” is a project in which I chronicle my replay of the original Shenmue on the Dreamcast. Check out part one here.

I left my home in search of anyone who knew anything about the people involved with the incident at the Hauzki Dojo on “that day.” I followed the timeless RPG adage of “talk to everyone” and gathered some clues about the “men in suits” who “drove a black car” and set off towards Sakuragaoka with vengeance on the brain. My mind was racing with thoughts of the sweet roundhouse kicks I would use on those suited suckers when…



I entered the shrine to find a little girl hovering over a cardboard box. The girl’s name was Megumi, and she was caring for the sick kitten inside the box, whose mother was run over by the black car. Another orphan from that day…

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