All posts filed under: Articles

SnapThirty Crowns Most Spiritually-Talented Youngster In Anime and Manga

  For years, pop culture fanatics have been at war with each other. Countless relationships have been ruined over talks of who is best this and who is best that. For example: While some of us tend to think Persona 4’s Chie is Best Girl, others may believe it is Sword Art Online’s Asuna. The problem with this ongoing debate is that it is one fought entirely on a biased foundation, meaning that there can never be a proper resolution. This conflict is one that seems as though it is never going to end, but us here at SnapThirty want you all to know that we will be the ones to bring peace back into the pop culture world…one character at a time. On episode 43 of the SnapThirty podcast, the boys decided that they were going to run a series of tournament brackets to decide once and for all who from Japanese pop culture truly are the best of the best. While Best Girl is indeed the most sought after title in all of …

Yo-Kai Watch 2: Bony Spirits and Fleshy Souls – Review

Think back to your Primary School days; it was a time in each of our lives wherein which making friends was as easy as sharing the same lunchbox contents. Perhaps you and your pal at the time had the same flavour of juice box which, for a pair of seven year olds, was more than enough to start what could grow to become a life-long friendship. One of my oldest friends and I have a relationship built upon what class we happened to be assigned to, and what desk it was that we were told to sit at. There was no preconceived notion of one-another’s character, there was no prejudice based on personal beliefs, it didn’t even matter that we came from vastly different home lives, all that mattered was our physical placement in the classroom and an inexplainable need for friendship. As a twenty-two year old, making friends is…much harder. Between my somewhat cynical outlook on life, and my constant quest for an easily-maintainable lifestyle, making friends as an adult doesn’t come easy. Now, …

Makoto Shinkai’s ‘Your Name’ Set To Hit Cinemas Across Australia, We Are Happy About This

After breaking countless records at the box office in Japan, Australia will finally get to see what all the fuss is about with Makoto Shinkai’s latest film ‘Your Name’ slated to hit cinemas on November 24th thanks to Madman Entertainment. The film is set for a massive release across Australia with many prime locations locked in already for screenings. Madman have opened an official website for the film with more specific details here. ‘Your Name’ follows two people whose lives become unexpectedly connected despite having never met and the great distance between them. It is classic Shinkai stuff and if what the Japanese audiences are saying is true, this may very well be his film yet. Check out the trailer below to get a glimpse at what’s in store with ‘Your Name’ before it hits cinemas across Australia on November 24th. -30-

New Pokemon Sun and Moon Trailer Officially Reveals Starter Final Evolutions

Overnight, the Pokemon Company International released a brand-new trailer for Game Freak’s upcoming Pokemon Sun and Moon that just so happen to ultimately reveal the final evolutions for this generation’s starters which, despite having been leaked quite some time ago, people continuously hope for with the release of any new Pokemon Sun and Moon information. As it turns out, once again, the famous “Chinese Leaks” are almost entirely correct, the only thing missing at this point in time is the Water-Type Arcanine featured in said leaks, but seeing as all other information has been correct up until this point in time, I have high hopes. Decidueye, the final evolution of Rowlet, is based on an Archer and is a combination of Grass and Ghost-Type. It has the ability Overgrow, and it’s signature move is Spirit Shackle which disables the enemy from leaving battle. Incineroar, the final evolution of Litten, is based on a Professional Wrestler and is a combination of Fire and Dark-Type. It has the ability Blaze, and it’s signature move is Darkest Lariat which …

Berserk: Complete Series (Limited Edition) – Review

Time, being an unforgiving element of existence, eventually swallows all. This is a strange yet indisputable law that goes unspoken yet is known to all. Human kind can retain knowledge of the past in various forms, but eventually time comes to take it all. In one way or another the past will be devoured, forgotten to many, altered to some, helplessly held onto by all. Thus is one burden of life, a component of reality that cannot be overcome, and so we learn to live alongside it. Kentaro Miura’s Berserk tells a story that, for all intents and purposes, should have been taken by the passage of time long ago, lost to modern minds, left only in the memories of those that once experienced it…but the tale woven throughout the cult-classic is one that defies what it is I’ve just detailed: Some things, though very much of this Earthly realm, remain even against the ruinous nature of time. While some memories fade, scars do not, and when the brand you bear is a constant reminder of the …

Rare and Expensive Nintendo Gems on the Virtual Console

It’s easy to take video games for granted when they’re on shelves and easily available, but next thing you know that once $10 copy of No More Heroes in the Wii bargain bins is no more! And finding a used copy $40 or so on a random Sunday trip to the mall is considered to be a lucky day. Same goes for video games available for purchase on digital outlets, sure the price never hikes and you can download any given time, but digital games do get delisted (I had no idea that Tetris of all games had been delisted from the eShop due to licensing issues!). Right now you can find some of the rarest and most expensive Nintendo games right at your fingertips on the Virtual Console. In the past you’d have to fork out hundreds, if not close to a thousand, dollars on these games, but thanks to the eShop you can download them right now for mere pocket change. Digital distribution has its blessings for sure. If you’re not fussy about owning …

Humble Beginnings – A Look Back At Naruto: Ninja Council

There is something to be said about the evolution of Naruto video games overtime. They sure have come a very long way, developing into the unrivalled spectacle they now are today, with every iteration playing host to crisper graphics and the ability to experience some of the more outrageous events of Naruto’s fictional history. There is something that modern Naruto video games lack though; arguably, they have lost what was once most important to the series these games were based on…heart. While flashy graphics and cinematic battles work wonders to immerse players in the world of Naruto and it’s follow-up series Naruto Shippuuden, it seems as though these games have had to sacrifice their charming nature to do so. That’s not to say the newer Naruto titles aren’t worth the money you pay or the time put into developing them, this is simply what time and exponential curve in popularity does to a series, and it is during periods such as this that I like to reminisce upon the past, thinking back on the days wherein which a …

Nintendo Switch – Switching Up The Future of Gaming

Snap Discussion is the weekly round table discussion on a topic relating to Japanese pop culture as selected by the almighty Snapodile. Each week the SnapThirty team will weigh in with their thoughts on that week’s topic all with the hopes of providing some interesting and perhaps even conflicting view points on the matter at hand. This week’s topic is Nintendo Switch – Switching Up The Future of Gaming. For this topic we all gave our immediate thoughts on the landmark announcement Nintendo dropped overnight of their upcoming console the Nintendo Switch. Without further adieu, strap yourself in and get ready for our collected thoughts on the future of gaming. Luke Halliday: Here I am 25 years old writing this as I wipe tears from my eyes, because Nintendo have done what they have always done better than anyone: make history. My first console was the Super Nintendo and soon after I got a Game Boy. I plowed hundreds of hours into games like Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past and Pokemon Blue. …

Home and Away – The NX is Now the Nintendo Switch

It’s been quite the wait, hasn’t it folks. From rumours, to hints, to secrets, mysteries and all manner of speculation, people the gaming world over have pondered what the letters NX will bring to the console realm. Well, now we have our answer; portability. Yes, rumours regarding this specific feature have been on the forefront of speculatory news for a manner of months now, but we have confirmation now, which makes all the difference. Trust me. The Nintendo Switch (nee NX) will centre around the concept of alternating between a home console and handheld gaming device. With the “console” seeming to comprise of a charging dock and relay point, the heart of this machine is a portable screen larger than (but still comparable to) the Wii U GamePad. It is this screen that seemingly holds the inner workings of the Switch, as the trailer showed brief focus on the insertion of a cartridge, which is the confirmd manner in which physical games will be presented. Digital versions of games are still said to be another …

Alola! Welcome to the Island – A Look at the Pokemon Sun & Moon Demo

Though the ever awaited release date of November 18th lies on the horizon still, this Halloween month has provided us all with the chance to briefly visit the brand new world of Pokemon. With a stealthy companion by our sides and a ukulele tune in our ears, let us all explore a fraction of the Alola region. That being said, given the nature of a demo, I’ll throw down a TLDR for all those who want the meat, without having to tolerate me chewing the fat. The city featured is known as Hau’oli City A Trial is tasked at Ten Carat Hill, in which you must photograph two Jangmo-o and two Hakmo-o (one of whom is a Totem Pokemon) Z-Move strength changes based upon its utilised move – Gigavolt Havoc is shown to posses a power of 175 (Thunderbolt), 160 (Electro Ball) and 100 (Nuzzle) – as does its position as Physical or Special Z-Crystals may be given to multiple compatible Pokemon at once Battle Bond is also increases the power of Water Shuriken (which is now …

Pokemon Sun and Moon – International Trailer Reveals Even More Unseen Evolutions

It was only but a few days ago that the world was blessed with the much-anticipated monthly leaks of Japan’s CoroCoro magazine. This latest issue gave us a look at Type:Null and Jangmo-o evolutions, as well as a quick glance at an Alolan Grimer, but The Pokemon Company international have just released an English trailer that shows us all that and much, much more! Silvadi’s English name is Silvally, and it’s ability was changed from “AR System” to “RKS System“, inching closer to speculation that it has something to do with the God Pokemon Arceus. Jangmo-o’s evolutionary chain also got a name change; it’s middle form is now Hakamo-o, and it’s final is Kommo-o. There is also now a vibrantly-coloured Alolan Muk! In regards to new Pokemon; evolutions for Cutiefly and Bounsweet were also revealed. Cutiefly will evolve into Ribombee, and Bouncesweet will feature two evolutions that go by the names Steenee and Tsareena. The latter will learn a move unique to it called “Trop Kick“; this technique lowers the opponents attack whilst also dealing …

Pokemon Sun and Moon – CoroCoro Leaks Reveal Type:Null and Jangmo-o Evolutions

Type:Null is, arguably, the most intriguing Pokemon since Mewtwo, and that is perhaps because of their similar backstories. While Mewtwo wasn’t necessarily created to destroy Legendary Pokemon, it WAS cloned with ultimate power as the basis. Type:Null, upon reveal, quickly rose to the top as favorite among fans anticipating the new game. Speculation developed regarding just what this creature is under that intense mask, and with the new CoroCoro magazine leaks, well…we finally find out! Yes, it’s that time of the month wherein which the news that is supposed to be broken with the physical release of Japan’s own CoroCoro magazine is instead leaked online thanks to an unknown citizen of the internet with early access to the new issue. This month’s is quite exciting considering it has not only revealed a new Alolan form, a Poison/Dark-Type Grimer, but the aforementioned Type:Null Evolution, Shiruvadi, and the entire Evolutionary chain of possible Pseudo-Legendary Jangmo-o: It’s middle Evolution is named Jarango, and it’s final is named Jararanga. The two latter Pokemon will be a mix between Dragon-Type …

Digimon Universe: Appli Monsters Heading To The West Courtesy Of Toei Animation

Ever since I was a child, stretching up to this very day, I have been in love with Bandai’s Digimon. The Anime series, the video games, the Virtual Pets, and even it’s Trading Card Game, it seems as though Digimon is just one of the few franchises that will stick with me for the rest of my life. Reading that alone, you can see why the next step into the Digital World, known as Digimon Universe: Appli Monsters, is so exciting to me, and people like myself, who simply cannot get enough of what the franchise has to offer. Until today, I was convinced that the new Anime series, accompanied by the Video Game and merchandise related to it, would never make it outside of Japan, but it is thanks to Toei Animations news that I’m able to toss those thoughts out the window, replacing them with some more positive than the last: Perhaps you’ve never heard of this, but there is a yearly convention called “MIPCON” which is, in basic terms, a tradeshow that …

A Second Trailer Has Been Released For Upcoming Digimon Universe: Appli Monsters Game

While many Digimon fans from across the globe are busy attacking and defending the new multimedia project Digimon Universe: Appli Monsters, many of us are just glad that such an addition to the long-running series exists. Scroll through any comment section of any given article regarding the new Video Game or Anime and you will understand just how divisive Digimon Universe: Appli Monsters is. There’s a clear three-way split in the fandom; a third of which will attack it for either been too different or not different enough, another that will defend it tooth and nail regardless of the facts, and a final that is simply happy that the franchise has yet to perish in the shadow of more popular franchises like Pokemon and Yo-Kai Watch. This particular piece of news goes out to the latter of the fanbase specifically: Bandai Namco Entertainment have released a brand-new full-length trailer for the upcoming Nintendo 3DS game, aptly titled Digimon Universe: Appli Monsters, that showcases many of it’s features, most of which have never been seen in previous …

What We Are Watching: Fall 2016 Anime Season

Snap Discussion is the weekly round table discussion on a topic relating to Japanese pop culture as selected by the almighty Snapodile. Each week the SnapThirty team will weigh in with their thoughts on that week’s topic all with the hopes of providing some interesting and perhaps even conflicting view points on the matter at hand. This week’s topic is What We Are Watching: Fall 2016 Anime Season. For this topic we each took a long hard look at the upcoming anime season and discuss our thoughts on what we are interested in watching and provide some of our ‘expert’ recommendations. Without further adieu, strap yourself in and get ready for our collected thoughts on the Fall 2016 anime season. Luke Halliday: Tell me I’m not the only one. Tell me that it isn’t just me. Tell me that it is getting mighty hard to keep up with all the fast paced goings ons in the anime world on a seasonal basis. I mean I still have shows from last season and the season before …

Making a Morning Impact – CardFight!! Vanguard G to Air on Toasted TV

Do you like Cardfight!! Vanguard? Are you currently living in Australia? If you answered no to either of these questions, then this article probably isn’t for you (though you are more than free to keep reading). If, however, you answered yes to both questions, then you’ll be happy to know that there is now an avenue through which Vanguard can be enjoyed; Toasted TV. I’m sure you’ve heard of it; morning show, plays anime and cartoons, bunch of stuff happens in between. Well, starting October 28th, Cardfight!! Vanguard will be filling in the 7am slot, the opener. The time in which series such as Digimon, Pokemon, possibly Duel Masters and definitely a rotating cast of Italian animated non-anime have lived in. Here’s to hoping that Cardfight!! sticks around for a while and similarly that its presence will inspire a future full of animated card games that are far more dramatic than what we have here in reality…last time I checked at least. If you know where to find some holographic, otherwordly card games, let me …

Pokemon Sun and Moon – Middle Starter Evolutions Finally Revealed

This is a crucial time in any Pokemon Trainer’s life; it’s the period prior to a new Pokemon video game being released, and it’s a point in each of our lives wherein which we live in a constant state of anticipation as we wait for more Pokemon to be revealed, periodically adding new ones to our, so far, fictitious team of six. Now, no matter how many Pokemon Game Freak reveals between the first trailer of the new game and it’s release, none will be more important than that of the starts and their evolutions. The starters were introduced to the Pokemon-loving world quite some time ago, which makes the reveal of their Evolutions as a part of this new trailer all the more sweeter. Yes, Game Freak and Nintendo have, overnight, released a new trailer for Pokemon Sun and Moon that finally reveals the middle evolutions of the starter Pokemon Rowlet, Litten, and Poplio. Their named are Dartrix, Torracat, and Brionne, and their designs somewhat match up with the final evolutions depicted in the …

Was It All Worth It? – 91 Days Episode Eleven and Twelve – Season’s Writings

This week-to-week rollercoaster ride has finally come to an end. Just on time, as well. Some series’ tend to stretch on for longer than they should, ruining the experience as a result, 91 Days ended when it should have, though perhaps five minutes longer than necessary, but in the grand scheme of things…that’s a blessing. It’s been quite a while since the ending to an Anime has sent me into a whirlwind of confusion and doubt, but the culprit seems to only ever be an ending as vague as 91 Days. For the most part, the final two episodes of this heart-pounding series played out exactly as you would have imagined: After Corteo’s death at the hands of Angelo, our “hero” begins his descent into madness and chaos as he throws away all humanity in a last-ditch effort to complete what had become his life-long mission. This all goes…wonderfully, actually. Making it out of what can only be called a “slaughter” with nothing more than a stab wound to the right shoulder and a voice …

Blue Exorcist Season Two Storyline Revealed, To Premiere In January

To those of us out there who’ve read Kazue Kato’s Blue Exorcist Manga series, the idea that it would be adapted into an Anime series excited is greatly, but unfortunately the writing staff of said series took certain liberties with the story that attempted to give the series an ending, unfortunately it was butchered, and what it left audiences with was little more than a bad taste in their mouths. You see, reader, the Manga continued past the point of the Anime and lead into an Arc that, I believe, serves to this day as the series’ most extraordinary. While Shonen Jump greats like Naruto and Bleach have their Chunin Exam Arc and Rescue Rukia Arc respectively, it is Blue Exorcist’s Kyoto Impure King Arc that stands with the aforementioned on common ground. It was announced some time ago that the Anime adaptation would be receiving a second season, which delighted some, but confused most because of the odd story shift towards the end of the first season. As it turns out, though, the writing …

Virtual Worlds Collide – Accel World VS Sword Art Online: Millennium Twilight Revealed

Avid readers of this site will know that I’m a sucker for crossover video game titles. Heck, crossover Anime, crossover Manga, crossover anything! So long as it has characters from different series’, different worlds, different realms, and different stories, I’m sold. Simple. Now, those same readers will also know that I’m not a fan of Sword Art Online, BUT that doesn’t mean I can’t appreciate a good combination like this: Bandai Namco Entertainment today released a teaser trailer for their upcoming game Accel World VS Sword Art Online: Millennium Twilight, a game that will bring together the virtual realms of Reki Kawahara’s two most popular Light Novel series’. In the past, these two stories have crossed over, several times actually, but never on a scale like this. The game is set for a PlayStation 4 and PlayStation Vita release sometime next year, that date has yet to have been released, and it’s genre is still yet to be outlined. Despite the fact that the two series’ are quite similar, they’re based on different video game …

Naruto Spin-Off: Rock Lee and His Ninja Pals – Review

In what may very well be the most bizarre entry into the iconic ninja series, Rock Lee and His Ninja Pals takes the world of Naruto and rings out every bit of humour it can from the legendary series. While it proves to be a hilarious romp and gives some of Naruto’s lesser known characters a chance in the spotlight, it is decidedly a series for Naruto fans by Naruto fans. Following Rock Lee, Naruto’s true forgotten hero, the series goes from one comedy skit to the next. Through the eyes of Rock Lee and his team mates Tenten and Neji we see a side of the Naruto world that the main series rarely explores, the trivialities of day to day life in the wild world of ninjas. Be it failed romantic conquests, dealing with trivial missions, trying to outdo Naruto or even just hanging out with friends, the series relishes finding the funny in Naruto in a way that the original series never could. It plays with tropes of the original series all the …

Psychic School Wars – Review

If you were to have one super power, which would you choose? This question, I feel, is one that continues to be asked long into our lives. It, like many other ice breakers, is a great way to loosen tension between strangers, and learn a little more about the person to which the question is directed. I, personally, have answered this question more times than I care to remember, and my answer is always the same; I would love to be a Psychic. Since a young age, I’ve always had this strange love affair with Psychic Abilities. There’s just something about the possibility of lifting something with nothing but your mind, or being able to control fire with your thoughts, or being able to understand another persons mentality without any verbal interaction that just deeply interests me. It’s my longing for this that draws me to certain things. Often, I am unable to control my action when it comes to the opportunity to experience something related to Extrasensory Perception, almost as if I am the …

Digimon Adventure Tri. D-3 Digivice Now Up For Pre-Order Courtesy Of Bandai

Heck, I could’ve been a Digidestined, you know? Had I believed hard enough…and taken enough mind-altering hallucinogenic drugs to the point wherein which I was locked in a perpetual state of disconnection from the real world. That could’ve been me saving the world, dammit! Still, despite my regrets, I do want to be a Digidestined, and thus I take alternative routes. Quite some time ago, Bandai released a “proplica” (prop/replica) of the original Digivices held by Tai and Matt of Digimon Adventure. These Digivices, different from the working video game Digivices, light up and play sounds recognisable from the original series and also, because of it’s release, from the new set of films; Digimon Adventure Tri. Well, because they sold so darn well, Bandai are planning on releasing another version of those Digivices, this time though they will be modeled after the devices seen in the series’ second season. You know, with Davis, and Ken, and Cody, and T.K., and Kari…again. That one! Those Digivices, also known as the D-3, have now been put up on …

Make Enough Noise And Square Enix May Just Localise Dragon Quest X

Now, you may not know this, reader, because up until about ten minutes ago…I didn’t know it myself, but the release of Dragon Quest VII: Fragments Of A Forgotten Past in Western regions was not done on a whim like other games. No way. Square Enix and Nintendo came together to localize the game thanks to the many fans outside of Japan who questioned whether or not it was going to be released outside of it’s home country. This, in turn, lit a fire under the arses of the companies in power and gave them quite an indication regarding how well it will sell outside of Japan. Interesting, right? We’ve seen this a few times in recent years. The biggest, in my opinion, being the Western release of Digimon Story: Cyber Sleuth which, like DQ VII, was practically demanded by Western audiences. At this year’s Penny Arcade Expo, a panel was held celebrating the release of Dragon Quest VII for the Nintendo 3DS, with Noriyoshi Fujimoto of Square Enix as special guest. After being questioned by …

A new ZOIDS project is coming soon and once again all is right with the world

Takara Tomy the masterminds behind the iconic ZOIDS mecha anime franchise and its various other media and merchandise have released a teaser today on their official website confirming the long awaited return of the franchise in a new upcoming project. While no major details have been confirmed about what we can expect from the project, they have released a graphic showcasing the Shield Liger ZOID and a mysterious soldier crouching besides it and the phrase “A new ZOIDS project is coming soon”. One could presume that this may be hinting at a future anime series, I for one would love to see that happen. That is all the information we have to go on for now but I am sure for ZOIDS fans like my fellow writer here at SnapThirty, Kane Bugeja, are incredibly excited at the promise of a new project in the ZOIDS franchise. Source: 4gamer -30-

The Heroic Legend of Arslan – Review

There are few anime that come packaged with such a ridiculous pedigree as The Heroic Legend of Arslan. Not only is it based upon the iconic fantasy novel series of the same name which is damn near paperback royalty in Japan, this anime series is based upon the fantastic manga adaptation by acclaimed author of Fullmetal Alchemist and Silver Spoon, Hiromu Arakawa. It is hard to get any more of a pedigree than that. That said it is a mighty reputation to live up to and fortunately for the anime adaptation of The Heroic Legend of Arslan it does just that. Following titular hero Arslan, The Heroic Legend of Arslan is a fantasy epic ala Berserk albeit significantly less gory. Arslan is the crown prince who must become the savior of his people after a skirmish gone wrong leaves the Kingdom of Pars overtaken by the cult-like fanatics of the Lusitanian army. With his father King Androgoras III held captive and his mother in the clutches of the mad leader of Lusitania, Arslan must gather …

The Fabled “Second Punch” – One-Punch Man Anime To Get A Second Season

The titular One-Punch Man, Saitama, has had quite a firm grasp on the Anime-loving community ever since the debut of the series’ adaptation last year. As with any popular Anime series, One-Punch Man’s television success trickled over and landed firmly onto the original Manga series which also gained quite a level of popularity. One-Punch Man is so beloved, in fact, that original creator ONE’s other Manga series, Mob Psycho 100, was also adapted into an Anime series. Thus is the sheer force of One-Punch Man. Literally the moment the final episode of what will now be referred to as “Season One” ended, fans demanded more from Saitama, to which Madhouse simply could not deny. It was obvious from the very moment this series hit the air, but it wasn’t just going to have the one season. No way. Over in Japan, a special event was held to commemorate all things One-Punch Man. This celebratory affair, titled the “One Punch Man Fall Festival“, featured many exciting things, but none more than the reveal that it’s Anime adaptation …

Dragon Quest VII: Fragments Of A Forgotten Past – Review

My level of historical knowledge is…trivial, to say the very least. It boggles my mind to think about the countless descendants of human kind, all of which made certain decisions that set our race on a path that lead us directly to this point in time and into the future as it continues ever on like a speeding locomotive. We, with the decisions we make in the present, will effectively become key factors in the world’s development, eventually become a historical point of interest for those in the distant future wishing to learn more about our time. There’s a saying that goes; “history is written by the winners“. As a result of my whimsical nature, this quote interests me to no end. Let us say that, yes, history is indeed written by the winner; the winner being the one to emerge victorious from, perhaps, a battle or farce that would have changed the records of time. One, when writing, has the freedom of interpretation and composition. They have the ability to delve into factual detail or, to …

Dragon Ball Fusions Confirmed For Western Release In February 2017

Reader, you’re very much aware of this particular video game, right? Us at SnapThirty have been following it ever since it was announced for Japan, and we’ve been hoping for a Western release ever since. Dragon Ball is one of the most popular Anime of all time in Western regions so most games based on the much-loved series does indeed make it to local shores, but when we’re talking about a strange game like Dragon Ball Fusions it’s always hard to determine whether or not the same can be said for it. If you’re not aware of this game; basically it’s an RPG set in the world of Dragon Ball, with a strong emphasis on “Fusion“, meaning that most characters you will be able to encounter and recruit throughout the story can be fused together. Exciting, right? Heck yeah, it is! Bandai Namco Entertainment, being such a great company, have done us Western Dragon Ball fans a huge favour by today announcing that they will be localising Dragon Ball Fusions and releasing it in Europe, …

Hideaki Anno Film SHIN GODZILLA To Hit Australia And New Zealand This October

Hmmm, there’s this strange taste in my mouth. It’s not a bitter flavour, it’s not a sour flavour, it’s not even a salty flavour, it has an almost…uncomfortably disappointing accents. It’s strange. It’s definitely left over from the last Godzilla film I watched, but it’s flavours are so subtle it’s hard to exactly define what it is I’m experiencing. I suppose this is much the same for many of you. It’s no mystery that the West cannot produce a Godzilla film. Period. Thankfully Japan still know’s exactly what it’s doing when it comes to The King Of Monsters, and it’s latest film, Hideaki Anno’s SHIN GODZILLA, is a testament to exactly that. Fans across the world have been anticipating this film ever since it was first revealed, and while it’s been released across Japan, it is the film’s Western audience that has yet to experience it. That’s where Madman Entertainment come in. The Australian distribution company, known for all things Japanese pop culture, have just announced that they plan on bringing this film to Australian …

New Pokemon Sun and Moon Trailer Reveals Passimian and Oranguru

Game Freak have today released another trailer for their upcoming Pokemon Sun and Moon duo of games that, as well as formally introducing us to two previously-revealed Pocket Monsters, give audiences a look at the Pokemon Passimian and Oranguru. Ever since the infamous “Pokemon Sun and Moon Chinese Leaks” fans have been waiting on bated breath to see just how accurate they are, and as more official information has been revealed it has begun to seem as though the details present in said leak are almost all correct. With the reveal of Passimian, the “rugby monkey“, just another feature of the “Chinese Leaks” is confirmed to be completely legitimate. Alongside Passimian, audiences are introduced to Oranguru, and both forms of Rockruff’s evolutions, now called Lycanroc. Passimian and the Midday version of Lycanroc will be exclusive to Pokemon Sun, whereas Oranguru and the Midnight version of Lycanroc will be exclusive to Pokemon Moon. The trailer also features a look at the game’s character customisation capabilities which are far more extensive than the previous games, and also …

Sins Of The Brother – 91 Days Episode Ten – Season’s Writings

The search for Corteo continues as the Vanetti’s ship Avilio off to Chicago to meet with Galassia representatives and to continue promoting Lawless Heaven. Little do they know that this mission will double as witness protection with Ganzo and Avilio now working together for the same cause; to kill the Vanetti’s. Sporting a new haircut, Corteo escapes alongside Avilio so as to lay low until this all blows over. Too bad it never will. Barbero, the single Vanetti to still be doubting Avilio’s allegiance, does everything in his power to prove that Corteo and Avilio are in cahoots, which he almost does…that is until Corteo makes a grand entrance declaring that it was he alone who fed information to Fango and that it is he alone who should be punished for it. “Kill him yourself” says Nero, handing Avilio a hot piece and leaving the room. The rest follow, but not before Barbero shoots Avilio one last judging glance. All parties know the unsavoury nature of this exchange, but at this point in time…nothing can be …

Log Horizon Season Two: Part One – Review

There is little difference between that of a good storyline and that of a bad storyline, but it’s success lies within it’s delivery and just how believable it can be whilst still managing to pique audience interest and flare the imagination. Whilst Log Horizon is a series, like many others, that has characters teleported into the world of their favorite video game, having to survive the perils of constant hoard combat and quest completion, it is unlike those that came before it in the way that it is heavily deep-rooted in the realm of reality. Intellectual, mature, and yet light-heartedly fun-loving, Log Horizon is, arguably, the pinnacle of it’s sub-genre…though many will choose an alternative like Sword Art Online instead of it. Madman Entertainment have just released the next for of the two season series, this time bringing the first part of season two to retailer shelves across Australia and New Zealand. I must extend a special thanks to Madman Entertainment for their continuous support and, once again, the opportunity to review the latest release of …

Psycho-Pass The Movie – Review

Psycho-Pass The Movie hit theatres across Japan in the January of 2015 to what can only be described as a resoundingly positive reception. Fans of the original series flooded the cinemas in droves to catch the film that was hyped to be the series’ resurrection, especially after the mythos-crushing events of the Anime’s second season. Gen Urobuchi, once again, returns as this film’s head writer to reclaim the series that many critics consider to be his best and, without giving too much away…I think he’s done exactly that. Funimation Entertainment acquired the wholehearted rights to the film some time ago but, due to mostly mysterious reasons, it was delayed for quite some time…though now it’s here, and it is solid proof that, sometimes, things truly are better experienced late than never at all. A special “Thank You“, as always, must be extended to Madman Entertainment for allowing us the opportunity to review one of modern day Anime’s most anticipated feature films. Psycho-Pass The Movie is set in a futuristic Japan. The Sibyl System is charged with …

‘Detective Conan’ anime celebrates 20 years of closing cases with TV special

Detective Conan (Case Closed in English localization) is one of the longest running anime series of all time, clocking in at 20 years this year after having begun way back in 1996. Over the 20 years since the anime adaptation began, Detective Conan has featured over 800 episodes, over 20 movies and even crossover specials with Lupin the Third. That’s just Conan in animated form, the manga has spawned 90 volumes since its debut in 1994 an incredible feat to be sure. In order to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the iconic detective anime, TMS Entertainment have announced they will be returning to the series roots for a special TV movie adaptation of the first few episodes of the series. It is set to be titled ‘Detective Conan: Episode “One” – The Great Detective Who Shrank’ and will of course detail how Shinichi Kudo was transformed into a child by the sinister Black Organization becoming the titular Conan Edogawa. The special TV event will run for 2 whole hours and is set to hit Japanese …

An Old New World – Digmon World: Next Order Set to Head Overseas in 2017

The Digital World, home to programs, annoying pop-up advertisements and an assortment of monsters who range from cute hairballs to titanic dragon knights whose very existence threatens the stability of whichever world it lives in. So, knowing that, of course you want to visit it…right? Of course you do, so let’s go! Back to a world we all (obviously) remember from the days of old when PlayStations had no number after their names and controllers had an option to turn off analog sticks. It was a weird time. Still, it was one that bore the original Digimon World, a game which allowed us to live our dreams of venturing into a plane unlike our own, travel with an ever changing friend and build an awesome city that absolutely had a shop that specialised in slabs of meat and another that was a tournament legal fighting ring. Every child’s dream. Well, get ready to dream again, because we’re going back, perhaps to the very same world which we once left behind. Having not extensively researched the …

Tokyo Game Show 2016 – Capcom Low-Key Announces Live-Action “Monster Hunter” Film Adaptation

I write articles like this all the time, with most of them beginning much the same way as this. I address how ridiculous the concept of a live-action film related to the specific subject is, I then discuss, simplistically, what a film of this calibre would be like, and then I make sure to reiterate that nobody saw this coming, and yet here I am legitimately baffled by the idea that Capcom have given a Hollywood film studio the rights to adapt this long-running series of monster-slaying video games in a live-action full-length film. Truly, we never saw this one coming. In all honesty, there isn’t a great deal of meat to this news considering, well…it doesn’t actually seem like it was meant to be revealed, at least not in this manner. Tokyo Game Show 2016 is currently being held and, like with previous years, each company has their time in the spotlight and is given a chance to excite crowds with news on upcoming games, by revealing new projects, by confirming release dates, etc. …

Beauty and the Ultra Beast – Pokemon Sun & Moon Trailer Details UB-02

Ultra Beasts; the new hotness that are taking the world of Pokemon by storm…maybe, I can’t corroborate that, but it sure does sound exciting doesn’t it? With the jellyfish/hat that is UB-01 already as revealed as mystery allows, it is time to numerically move on. UB-02, that’s where it’s at. That being said, this number is one that exists twice over and does so in two very different forms. Split between Sun and Moon as version differences, it seems as if the twain shall never meet and these two forms will retain plot device distance from each other. For the bright inclined, UB-02 takes the form of Absorption, a buff Mosquito man that looks as if it could punch through anything stupid enough to get in its way. For those leaning towards darkness, UB-02 appears as Beauty, a lithe mantis woman who is said to outrun lightning should it so be inclined. So pretty tough customers, not that you could gather that from a name like Ultra Beast. As far as their role in the …

School’s In for Summer – Pokemon Sun & Moon Anime Reveals First Trailer

Throughout the wonderful world of Pokemon, there exists an institution thats influence spreads far and wide…within a single town in any given region. I speak of course of school. Placed within the main series games as a source of knowledge, which is admittedly only useful if you have never played Pokemon before, these buildings are rarely story relevant and can often be skipped past entirely. However, this is no longer the case in the anime we all know, love and have watched at some point. Casting off his successes in the Kalos region, Ash has set his sights on the brand spanking new Alola region and all that lies within (or at least he will once the anime reaches that point). However, rather than continuing his journey as per the norm, our rambunctious, perpetually ten year old protagonist is picking up the books and entering the hallowed halls of education…or something. Look, it’s Pokemon, classes will most definitely revolve around battle theory, battle practicality and battle experience, considering how little else there is to do …

The Mysterious Pilot of Unit-02 – Interview with Tiffany Grant at MadFest 2016

During the first ever Madman Anime Festival (or MadFest as it is more summarily entitled), we we lucky enough to get the chance to talk to the one and only Tiffany Grant. Known the world over for her performance as Asuka in every rendition of Neon Genesis Evangelion these past bundle of years, this particularly joyous interviewee was more than happy to discuss the role, a fact immediately evidenced by her Unit-02 inspired wardrobe. That being said, discussion swiftly moved beyond said unbelievably successful anime franchise and turned to script writing, the rise of anime popularity and another brash, German, eyepatched mech pilot who just so happens to be voiced by one Tiffany Grant. I wonder who it could be…   -30-

Pokemon Company Reveals Youtube-Exclusive Anime Series “Pokemon Generations”

Three years ago, Pokemon Generations was seen for the very first time on Japanese television. Exploding in popularity, this short series reminded Pokemon fans of all ages just how epic and heart-pounding the events of the original games were, so it only makes sense that, a few years later, Pokemon would once again attempt to bring such events to the Anime medium albeit on quite a larger scale. The Pokemon Company International have just revealed their new Youtube-exclusive, for now, Anime series titled “Pokemon Generations” that will take key moments from the games spanning all generations and showcase them to anyone willing to watch. This series will consist of eighteen episodes, each ranging from about three to five minutes long, starting with events from the original generation of games and making their way up to the more recent titles. The Pokemon Company International had this to say: Pokémon Generations looks back at each generation of the Pokémonvideo game series, diving into the stories of the games more deeply and getting to know characters and Pokémon better. …

One Piece: Grand Pirate Colosseum and DBZ: Extreme Butoden Go Head-To-Head In Crossover Update

Because it was actually released outside of Japan, many people living in the West would have, at least, seen the Nintendo 3DS exclusive Dragon Ball Z: Extreme Butoden. It’s a fighting game developed by Arc System Works that is very much reminiscent of older Dragon Ball Z handheld titles. Well something you may not be entirely aware of is the existence of another Arc System Works fighting game based on another Shonen Jump staple of equal popularity; One Piece. This game, which is so far unreleased even in Japan, is titled One Piece: Grand Pirate Colosseum and features a similar gameplay design to that of Extreme Butoden. This game is also an exclusive for the Nintendo 3DS. Bandai Namco Entertainment Japan have recently revealed that, sometime in November, Arc System Works is set to release a free update for both games that will allow them to interact in huge ways. How huge? Well, huge enough that you will be able to cross-title battle, meaning Goku can go up against Luffy, Vegeta against Zolo, Piccolo against …

Naruto SUN Storm 4 Expansion “Road To Boruto” Set To Hit The West February 2017

I’ve said this countless times but some things truly never die, and one of them just so happens to be Masashi Kishimoto’s Shonen great Naruto. Despite the fact that the Manga ended quite some time ago, and the Anime is on it’s way out, people can’t seem to get enough of Naruto, and I totally understand why; it’s a pretty damn good series, despite it’s tendency to become too much of itself, but only in later story arcs…somebody stop me before I inject more personal bias into this article. The latest Naruto video game to be released was Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 4, also known as Naruto SUN Storm 4. This game, like it’s predecessors, came packed to the rafters with newly-added characters, story arcs, gameplay developments, and superior graphics, but the one thing it was missing was something many fans of the series truly hoped would be featured; Boruto. Now, before you begin attacking me; Boruto and Sarada were indeed released as playable DLC characters later on in the game’s early life, but that …

Yours Truly, A Regretful Old Man – 91 Days Episode Nine – Season’s Writings

What’s done has been done, and at the very epicentre of what is looking to become a great tragedy is mild-mannered Corteo. Though I would still consider him a mild and gentle man, descriptive words of that nature would have befit him more about two episodes ago. After killing Fango running on nothing but primal rage alone, Corteo is captured by the Vanetti family who have recently discovered that it was he who was working as Fango’s informant, albeit for only a short period of time. Episode Nine focuses on the “discipline” of Corteo for his action which, if not for some sort of miracle, would have been a swift death. Escaping from the Vanetti’s and now in the hands of another, more mysterious, third party; Corteo is forced to contact Angelo delivering to him only a verbal ultimatum; “Kill Nero, or they kill me“. The episode ends on quite the cliffhanger with [Insert Character Name Here] revealed to be the sender of that, metaphorically, bloodstained letter. Once again, 91 Days has undergone another huge …

[UPDATE] Pokemon Sun and Moon – September CoroCoro Leaks Reveal Rockruff Evolutions

Of course! Here we have another batch of leaks straight from the unreleased pages of Japan’s own toy and video game magazine CoroCoro. Before I officially move on to detail the contents of the most recent link, may I just mention that CoroCoro is the greatest source of any news, Pokemon or otherwise, because it’s most recent, unreleased issues clearly aren’t kept in as tight a vault as they should. Like water in a colander; it’s contents never stay contained. Ever since the introduction of the resent Alolan dog Pokemon, Rockruff, many news sources have explained that there’s much to be learned about it’s evolutionary tree, which today has been confirmed to have at least two branches, how about that? Yes, these particular leaks happen to focus on Rockruff and it’s dual evolutions; one which is altered because of the effects of the sun, and the other because of the effects of the moon. As many have speculated; Rockruff does indeed have a Werewolf-like evolution when exposed to the Moon’s rays, and a more “tame” …

The Fiery Rei Hino: Sailor Mars! – Interview with Cristina Vee at MadFest 2016

The inaugural Madfest Japanese Pop Culture Festival, run by Australia’s own Madman Entertainment, featured many guests. Out of them all, we at SnapThirty were given the opportunity to interview many, including the lovely Cristina Vee who, as you may know, is the voice of Sailor Moon’s own Rei Hino, also known as Sailor Mars. Alongside that huge role Cristina also lends her talents to Killua Zoldyck (Hunter X Hunter), Homura Akemi (Puella Magi Madoka Magica), Riruka Dokugamine (Bleach), Mamejiro (Blood Lad), Rei Hououmaru (Kill La Kill), Hawk (Seven Deadly Sins), and many, many more! We sat down to talk about all things Sailor Moon, Hunter X Hunter, and Pokemon as she attempted to catch herself an elusive Kangaskhan before leaving Australia, not knowing when she’ll next return. Spoiler alert: Sometime after the interview…she caught one! Woo hoo! Below is the video featuring the entire interview so sit back, relax, and enjoy our talk with the lovely Cristina Vee. -30-

New Pokemon Sun and Moon Trailer Features A Vacational Professor Oak

As of late, the Pokemon-loving audience have been forced to digest quite a lot of Sun and Moon-centric information, especially with the release of the last International trailer which introduced us all to Type: Null, Ultra Beasts, and the Aether Foundation; things never before seen in any other previous Pokemon title. Well, with so much information to store in your long-term memory, it’s sometimes hard to fully grasp all of what Pokemon Sun and Moon has to offer, at this point in time, so Nintendo have decided to release a new trailer that, more or less, revises everything we have seen up until this point in time. A fresh region, a lack of Gyms, a new team of antagonists, and a whole bunch of new Pokemon; Sun and Moon is set for a worldwide release this November and despite everything that HAS been revealed, we still have so much left to discover. Featured, ever so briefly, in this compilation trailer is a character yet to receive a formal introduction, but many of us veteran Trainers …

Talk Is Cheap, Like Your Loyalty – 91 Days Episode Eight – Season’s Writings

Last week disappointed audiences with an episode dedicated to recapping the series’ story events, but this week’s episode more than made up for the last’s lake of new content. Lawless is in grave trouble; this is something both the audience and the characters that make up 91 Days’ cast know is nothing less than an undeniable fact. While, before the beginning of the series, it was still a town filled with the utmost vile gangsters, it is now in a state of almost-war, perhaps being referred to as something along the lines of “the calm before the storm“. Episode Eight centres itself around the true beginning of a mafia war, with Corteo at the very centre. Having had enough of being pulled from left to right, time and time again, Corteo digs deep and gives in to his primal instincts to do something neither Nero nor Avilio could, setting into motion a series of events far more powerful than he has the ability to control. Corteo, despite being a pivotal player in the story of 91 …

Plus Ultra Beasts! – Pokemon Sun and Moon Reveal Some Interesting New Characters

Since its reveal, Pokemon Sun and Moon have been doing some new things with the tried and true formula of the Pocket Monster universe. No gyms, new forms and some of the strangest naming conventions to date have polarised Pokemaniacs the world over. However, in its latest release, Sun and Moon may have just one upped themselves. With a whole new faction joining the fray and two Pokemon who are tenuously described as such, this upcoming adventure in Alola may just be the strangest one yet. And there’s been a shapeshifting alien virus in the canon for years, so you know this is seriously off kilter. Alolan Raticate CATEGORY Mouse Pokémon TYPE Dark/Normal HEIGHT 2’04” WEIGHT 56.2 lbs. ABILITY Gluttony/Hustle Because urban areas are their main habitat, their diet is higher in calories than ordinary Raticate. As a result, they have become hefty. Alolan Raticate prefers to eat only fresh fruits and high-class ingredients. There are rumors that a certain top-notch restaurant takes advantage of Alolan Raticate’s taste buds by bringing it along when choosing …

Totally Ghoul – Wandering Through MadFest 2016’s Tokyo Ghoul Art Exhibition

If you have payed any degree of attention to the Tokyo Ghoul franchise, you have long since knows what goes bump in the night. Ghouls, unsurprisingly. Horrific offshoots of humanity that subsist by eating poor, innocent civilians and possess strength and abilities beyond the kin of mortal men. However, that’s not why we’re here. To showcase the series, MadFest 2016 decided to hold a little boothbound exhibition, one centered upon the artwork of the aforementioned ghoulish series. Character sheets, frame sketches, completed frames, there was more than a little art lining the walls for those who wandered into its walls. Now, I could go on and on about how neat the art was and how crowded the booth got with people stopping to take photos, but none of that will help you see the pictures for yourself. What will help you see them however is scrolling down slightly. Go on, it’s pretty cool…and I guess slightly spoilerish if you haven’t watched both series, so be careful. -30-

Interview with Shingo Natsume the director of One Punch Man

During the first ever Madman Anime Festival, we were lucky enough to get the chance to sit down with Shingo Natsume the director of the mega hit anime series One Punch Man. We discuss his work on the series and thoughts on Yusuke Murata’s original artwork in his adaptation manga as well as talking about the ins and outs of directing an anime series. Read on for our full interview with Shingo Natsume. SnapThirty: Given One Punch Man’s status as a fan favourite, what sort of pressures were involved in its adaptation? Natsume: As you can imagine with the quality of Murata’s art style it was hard to imagine how it would be in animation, however Kubota-san the character designer for the series did a really good job and was able to achieve the same quality of design. Also the animators were really great people. We were lucky to have such skilled and passionate people that were able to reflect the animation really well. SnapThirty: How much discussion went into creating the signature style of …

Interview with Tomohiko Ito and Shingo Adachi

During the first ever Madman Anime Festival, we were lucky enough to get the chance to sit down with Tomohiko Ito the director of series such as ERASED and Sword Art Online and Shingo Adachi the man behind the art design of Sword Art Online. We discuss all things Sword Art Online and ERASED as well as exploring the inner workings behind the scenes of an anime series at A-1 Pictures. Read on for our full interview with Tomohiko Ito and Shingo Adachi. SnapThirty: Sword Art Online has become one of the most popular anime in recent memory. Did you ever think it would become as popular as it has and what does it feel like to have worked on such a colossal hit? Ito: I didn’t think that it was at all and I’m really actually happy about it. Is it popular in Australia? SnapThirty: Very popular! Adachi: Really? How do people see it? SnapThirty: There is online distributors and its played on TV as well. Adachi: How do they analyze how many viewers …

Hands-On With Tekken 7 at MadFest 2016

For many fighting game fans there are two mega series that will duke it out for all of eternity, Tekken and Street Fighter. Both play differently and feature vastly different characters and worlds, but at their heart they embody the same spirit: the spirit of fighting. While Street Fighter has chosen to update itself countless times over with 5 main series games under its belt, Tekken has moved onto the next battle and putting all upgrades into a brand new full title with soon to be 7 games to its name. At MadFest 2016 we were able to get our hands on the upcoming installment of the iconic fighting game franchise thanks to Bandai Namco’s preview booth at the event. The demo didn’t feature a lot of different modes but we did get to try out the arcade mode and VS mode. We did however notice there was a story mode of some kind that will no doubt play a big role in the finished game. When I jumped into the arcade mode I immediately …

A Look At The Bushiroad TCG Battleground At MadFest 2016

Bushiroad are continuing to prove themselves as the global champions of trading card games with the ongoing success of franchises like Cardfight Vanguard and Weiss Schwartz alongside the newfound breakout hits of Future Card Buddyfight and Luck & Logic. At MadFest 2016, Bushiroad were one of the major sponsors of the event and even held the annual Bushiroad Global Championships right here at the event in Melbourne. The championships saw hundreds of cardfighters enter the fray with hopes of becoming the global champion of their respective TCG, be it Vanguard, Buddyfight, Weiss Schwartz or Luck & Logic. For those uninitiated in the variety of TCG that Bushiroad produce they also had a ‘how to play’ booth where experts from Bushiroad would teach you how to play any of the games you were interested in. The most popular game this time around seemed to be Luck & Logic which of course is coming hot on the heels of the brand new anime tie-in currently streaming on AnimeLab. Not only that but Bushiroad’s booth had a lot …

Taking On Madfest 2016’s One-Punch Man Experience

It doesn’t take a genetically-modified cyborg with heightened processing capabilities to understands that One-Punch Man has taken the world by storm, quickly becoming one of the most popular Anime titles in recent years, so it makes sense that, for the very first Madfest Japanese Pop Culture Expo, Madman Entertain would feature an incredibly unique “One-Punch Man” experience. As just a few of the many to attended the brand-new festival, we at SnapThirty were able to be a part of the four part One-Punch Man experience, and, for your reading pleasure, I’m about to take you through it one step at a time! The Titular “One Punch”: Chances are, if you’re reading this, you’ve been to an Arcade. Surely. Well as sure as I am of that, I’m just as sure that you’ve seen a machine titled “Dragon Punch“; a “game” wherein which you’re given the chance to punch a speedball a single time in an attempt to get the high score. Quite on the nose, don’t you think? You get literally one punch, so it …

‘Love Live’ takes over MadFest 2016

Love Live well and truly took over Madman’s Anime Festival this year with hundreds of Love Live fans attending the event in cosplay and spending hours lining up at Bushiroad’s booth for event exclusive Love Live merchandise. Not only that but Madman had two separate Love Live exhibit booths featuring cut outs of the girls of Love Live and Love Live Sunshine respectively with fans jumping in for a picture with their favourite idol or idols. Having popped over to the Bushiroad booth to see what all the fuss was about I was amazed to discover that within only an hour of opening time on the first day of the event most of the Love Live merchandise was now sold out. It was utterly incredible how many people were here for Love Live and it was almost impossible to not being bombarded with the happy go lucky school idol girls. Love Live was so present that it was almost impossible to not be greeted by the plethora of Love Live cosplayers who had come to …

Hands-On With Sword Art Online: Hollow Realization At Madfest 2016

As an experienced yet begrudging “follower” of the long-running multimedia franchise Sword Art Online, I have never experienced anything from it more than that of it’s video game adaptations. While the series, in my humble opinion, leaves much to be desired in terms of character and story development, the game’s allow one to create their own adventure accompanied by familiar faces from the series. Knowing how popular the series and it’s offshoots still are in recent times, Bandai Namco Entertainment, as a part of their gameplay area at this year’s Madfest, featured a short demo of the upcoming Sword Art Online: Hollow Realization PlayStation 4 title. A fitting addition to the showroom floor, this game was never without a player regardless of the time of day, and that also includes myself…of course. At it’s very core; Hollow Realization isn’t too different from previous Sword Art Online video game titles which, despite what you may think, is actually more a positive than a negative. Unfortunately no story segments were present in the demo featured at the …

Cosplayers of MadFest 2016

This past weekend for the first time ever Madman Entertainment held their Madman Anime Festival event or MadFest for short. The event as expected became the stage for many anime fans here in Melbourne to showcase their incredible cosplay skills. Be it characters from Sword Art Online, Love Live, JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure or even My Hero Academia, cosplayers brought their A-Game to MadFest and we were on the floor to photograph many of these cosplayers in action. You can check out our full gallery of cosplay photos below. Let us know what you think in the comments section below and stay tuned for more coverage from MadFest as we continue our rolling coverage of the event. -30-

Hands-On With Final Fantasy XV At Madfest 2016

It has been quite a while since Square Enix gave us the opportunity to preview Final Fantasy XV, and since then the game’s release has been delayed for seemingly unknown reasons. This, to all those who have been anticipating the game ever since it’s reveal, is something they hope does not plague them for longer than it has to, but Square Enix are doing everything in their power to expose it’s audience to FF XV in whatever form they can. At the inaugural Madfest Japanese Pop Culture Festival, Square Enix’s sizeable gameplay area featured several consoles running a brand-new build of the upcoming game, albeit only playable in twenty-minute segments. I can’t say that the game has changed too much from the last time I was able to get my hands on it, but certain tweaks and changes, though minor, are very much recognizable. Perhaps the biggest change that I was able to notice was that of the altered combat system. As a whole, it’s very much the same, but there was one key striking …

Poochy Takes Center Stage in ‘Poochy and Yoshi’s Woolly World’ for 3DS

When Yoshi’s Woolly World was originally released, the introduction of yarn version of that crazy doggie Poochy set aflame the Nintendo fandom as he became the unlikely breakout character in what was meant to be a game about Nintendo’s resident dino, Yoshi. Now with Nintendo bring the Woolly World series to the 3DS, they have also made quite an interesting announcement, that Poochy will be the star and get first billing in the title, Poochy and Yoshi’s Woolly World. Also set to feature in the game are the new ‘Poochy Puppies’ which are exactly what they sound like. Furthermore Poochy will also be getting his own woolly amiibo similar to that which Yoshi previously got. He is the underdog hero that nobody knew they wanted, Poochy the yarn doggie with an unbreakable spirit and true love of adventure. Check out the trailer for Poochy and Yoshi’s Woolly World below. -30-

Olimar is Back, Baby! Pikmin Side Scroller Heading to 3DS

During their 3DS Direct conference, Nintendo revealed a brand new Pikmin game for the 3DS, a first for the series which has traditionally been a home console game. On top of that, the game will also be challenging the formula of the series in a rather intriguing way. Unlike previous Pikmin games this title will be a side scrolling adventure game. It will still feature the core elements of the Pikmin series but it will now take place in a 2D field. You can check out the trailer for the new Pikmin game below. It currently has no official title with Nintendo simply referring to it as Pikmin for the 3DS. Let us know what you think in the comments section below. -30-

Rattata Embraces The Dark Side in Pokemon Sun and Moon, Munchlax Rocks Up

The allure of the dark side was too great for Rattata in Alola to overcome after the introduction of the Rattata killing Yungoos, sending Rattata fleeing into the dark of the night seeking salvation in the shadows. During Nintendo’s 3DS Direct conference they revealed that Rattata would be receiving an Alolan form much like other Kanto Pokemon that spread to the region. The Rattata will be dark type and will indeed feature a radical moustache. On top of that reveal, Nintendo also confirmed that earlier adopters of the Sun and Moon games will be able to receive a free event Munchlax with Snorlax Z stone held item. The Munchlax event will run through until January. No details were revealed on a dark Raticate but one would presume a dark Rattata wouldn’t evolve into any old normal Raticate. That said we may as well consider the supposed ‘chinese leaks’ to be gospel at this point. Bring on the rugby monkey! -30-

Interview with Hideo Ishikawa (石川 英郎) the voice of Itachi from Naruto

Recently at SMASH! Con 2016 at the Rose Hill Gardens, we were lucky enough to get a chance to sit down with legendary Japanese voice actor Hideo Ishikawa for an interview. Ishikawa is famous for his role as Sasuke’s brother Itachi on the Naruto anime series and has performed countless other iconic roles in series like Bleach and Slam Dunk. He even has some live action credits to his name having worked on tokusatsu series like Kamen Rider. In our interview we talked all things Naruto, Bleach and even explored his secret basketball obsession. Read on for our full interview with Hideo Ishikawa. At the time of the character Itachi’s introduction, the Naruto series was already a hit in Japan. It has of course since gone on to become popular around the world. Did you ever expect the series to become a global hit like it has when you first signed on to do the role of Itachi? I must say that it may be because Naruto is quite the same as Japanese culture. We …

Gunpla Championships at SMASH! 2016

In what has become an annual tradition Gundam fans have descended upon SMASH! con at the Rose Hill Gardens for some Gunpla building fun. Each year Bandai host a championship at SMASH! con with some pretty swanky trophies up for grabs for the winners. As expected the booth at SMASH! was jam packed with fans of the iconic mecha franchise and hobby enthusiasts alike. Not only were the championships held, Bandai also put some incredible Gunpla figures on display for punters to take a gander at. All in all Bandai put on a fantastic showcase of Gunpla and gave Gundam fans plenty of things to feast their eyes upon at SMASH! whether it be the championships itself or the stunning collection of figures they exhibited. Check out Bandai’s Gunpla booth and the championship in the gallery below. Be sure to let us know your thoughts on Bandai’s Gunpla championships in the comments section below. -30-

Anime Meets Fast and Furious With SMASH! 2016’s Car Showcase

I’m pretty sure Vin Diesel and the rest of his Fast and Furious gang would approve of SMASH! con’s choice to showcase some anime inspired cars at their event this year. Lined up by the JR Flemming section of Rose Hill Gardens, SMASH! con became the stage for several ‘hotted up’ cars on show. Now I am no vehicular expert, in fact I don’t claim to know jack about cars, but I must say that these ‘hot rods’ looked mighty fine. Each car was decked out in anime decals with characters from series like Love Live! and Neon Genesis Evangelion adorning the vehicle’s exteriors. It is a rare occurence to see anime crossing over into the world of cars, Initial D aside, so it was quite a treat to take a good ole’ gander at these impressive vehicular specimens. You can take a look at the cars for yourself in the gallery below. I must say I think Fast and Furious 7 would have been 10x better if they had a Nico Yazawa car jumping …

Bakuman Manga Exhibition at SMASH! 2016

Bakuman fans were in for a treat at SMASH! con this year. The Japan Foundation hosted a fantastic Bakuman Manga Exhibition at their booth which brought the manga of Bakuman to life. Bakuman is of course Takeshi Obata and Tsugumi Ohba’s legendary manga about making manga which has gone on to spawn an anime adaptation alongside a live action film. At the booth, fans were able to have a look at Weekly Shonen Jump issues as depicted in the iconic series as well as story boards based upon the actual story boards within the manga. Furthermore there was even a editor comment board for each manga showcasing how the actual Weekly Shonen Jump editorial team respond to chapters and provide feedback to mangaka. It was all fascinating stuff and you can check it out in the gallery below. Big thanks to Japan Foundation and SMASH! for putting together a fantastic exhibition. -30-

Attack On Titan: Wings Of Freedom – PlayStation 4 Review

Attack On Titan is, arguably, one of the most popular Anime series’ of all time, alongside that of Sword Art Online, Fullmetal Alchemist, and Shonen staples like Naruto, One Piece, and Bleach. While it’s original Manga began in 2009, it didn’t receive any kind of mainstream attention until the airing of it’s Anime adaptation in 2013. The Manga scaled the best-seller charts alongside the rise in the Anime’s popularity, eventually coming to produce a gargantuan audience of die-hard fans. As you could imagine; the more beloved this series became the more people wanted from it, which has lead to both a Manga and Anime spin-off as well as, at this point in time, a couple of games. The first game, Attack On Titan: Humanity In Chains, was released in 2013 to a heavily below-average reception. It is now 2016 and video game development studio Omega Force have just released their very own take on an Attack On Titan game, one that boasts an enjoyable yet intricate control scheme that will ultimately prove to the Attack …

Good Smile Company Showcase at SMASH! 2016

  At SMASH! 2016, Good Smile Company, famed Japanese anime figure manufacturer, made their Australian debut with an exhibit at the event showcasing several of the companies latest figures. Featured at the exhibit were figures from series such as Love Live! and Bakemonogatari. In conjunction with Anime at Abbotsford, punters were able to purchase some of these figures at the Anime at Abbotsford booth. Good Smile Company are renowned for their high quality hobby items and figures and this appearance at SMASH! 2016 was their first major step into breaking into the Australian market. Anime fans may know of Good Smile Company’s Figma and Nendoroid product lines, some of which were on show as the event. Check out the gallery below to get a gander at the Good Smile Company exhibit at SMASH! 2016. -30-  

A Death In The Family – 91 Days Episode Seven – Season’s Writings

Fango, now reigning over the Orco crime family, sits Nero down for a quick bit as he explains that the Vanetti’s are the next to receive a hostile takeover. Nero, after taking another of Fango’s jobs and meeting with his uncle, agrees to meet with Frate in an attempt to restore the, now broken, bonds that there family once held so dear. This…does not turn out well. Prior to this, Avilio and Volpe spearhead a hit on Ronald. Though a failure, Avilio continues to spin his webs of deceit by taking out Volpe and blaming it on the Vanettis. After three key deaths, the Vanetti family is in absolute ruin, and thanks to Fio’s assassination of her own husband there is now no point of contact between them and the Galassias. An extinction is on the horizon, and Avilio Bruno, or so he calls himself, is at the epicentre…just as he wanted. The first thing I’m compelled to mention regarding this episode is the visual representation of Fango’s shift from, essentially, hired goon to complete …

Pokemon Sun and Moon – World Championship Trailer Reveals Crabrawler

  Over in San Francisco, the Pokemon TCG World Championships have officially begun, and what better way to celebrate the start of such an event than with a lively opening ceremony featuring a brand-new trailer for Game Freak’s upcoming Pokemon Sun and Moon? The answer; there is no better way! This new international trailer features a few Pokemon that have been previously revealed through Japanese-only outlets, but alongside the reveal of their English name comes a Pocket Monster we’ve yet to see until now: Crabrawler is a Fighting-type Pokemon that is based on both a Crab and a Boxer, hence the name. It can be caught with either Hyper Cutter or Iron Fist as it’s ability. Both the sandcastle Pokemon now have English names; Sandygast and Palossand, both of which feature the ability Water Compaction which allows the user to double it’s defence when hit with a Water-type technique. The pre-evolution of Bewear now too has an English name, and it is just as cute as the Pokemon itself: Stufful. Judging by what looks to be …

Pokemon Sun and Moon – New Trailer Introduces Audiences To Turtonator

Thinking back on it, Game Freak’s long-running series of Pokemon video games actually feature many turtle-based designs. We have the Squirtle evolutionary chain, the Turtwig evolutionary chain, Tirtouga and it’s evolution, and Torkoal, though I’m sure I’m missing a couple. If you’re a fan of these armoured reptiles, than I’m sure you’ll be a fan of the newly-introduced Alolan-native Pokemon Turtonator, which has just been revealed to the world through Game Freak’s latest international trailer for the upcoming Pokemon Sun and Moon games. Oddly enough, this trailer focuses solely on the single Pokemon, and explains that it is a Dragon and Fire-type with the unique move Shell Trap that, when activated by an opponent landing a physical attack, dishes out devastating damage by detonating the explosive substance on it’s own shell. The Pokemon Company International also released quite a detailed explanation of Turtonator, which I have provided for you just below: Because Turtonator lives on volcanoes, feeding on sulfur and other materials found near volcanic craters, its shell has a layer of explosive material—mostly sulfur. When …

Tite Kubo’s “Bleach” To Receive Live-Action Film Adaptation

Dragon Ball, Death Note, Rurouni Kenshin, Attack On Titan, Fullmetal Alchemist, Naruto, and now…Bleach. Tite Kubo’s long-running Shonen Jump Manga is on the verge of ending, with one chapter until it’s finale, but like any popular Manga…Bleach has tenure, and isn’t truly going away anytime soon. Last week, within the pages of Shueisha’s Weekly Shonen Jump, there featured a pre-announcement announcement that told readers about some “special news” regarding Bleach being revealed alongside the series’ final chapter. Well, as these things usually go, an early copy of the issue has been seen by a mysterious citizen of the internet with the capacity to “spill the beans” and thus said beans have indeed bee spilled: Bleach will be getting it’s own live-action movie adaptation. Details like story, casting, director, and interesting factors of that kind have yet to be announced, the only thing we know about this film is that it will see a 2018 release. I’m sure that, once the news is made official, we will be hearing much more about the film’s intricacies, but …

Live By The Sauce, Die By The Sauce – 91 Days Episode Six – Season’s Writings

The plan to kidnap Orco is now underway. Fango, being as lazy as he is greedy, leaves the runaway Vanetti crew to execute their plan in any which way they see fit, and as it turns out…the success of their plan relies solely on the acting chops of each individual. Spearheaded by Nero and Avilio, the crew confront Don Orco at his very own restaurant in disguise as two mafioso ready to defect from their family and join another. The promise they make; full control of the production of Lawless Heaven. Booze is a huge blackmarket industry, and Don Orco wants to monopolise it, but he can’t without first owning the Vanetti’s own distillery. Taking he and his men to “The Lodge”, the boys plan to fake a death, earn a trust, and overpower their enemy in one fell swoop. Thankfully, this is executed by one Avilio Bruno; perhaps the most tactically-minded mafioso to grace Lawless with his two-sided presence, and it all goes swimmingly. Orco’s men are fooled and swiftly put to death, and …

UPDATE: Full Trailer Released – Pokemon Sun and Moon – Leaked Trailer Screenshots Introduce Us To MORE Pokemon

Hah! I bet you think that CoroCoro scans are the only Pokemon-related leaks to populate the web pre-new game release! Well, if that IS indeed the case, prepare to be surprised! As it turns out, Nintendo international are set to release a new trailer for the upcoming Pokemon Sun and Moon Game this weekend, but some lucky citizen of the world was able to get a look at it early. Instead of releasing the trailer early, which is what many others would have done, this mysterious person has simply taken a myriad of screenshots and posted them instead. The screenshots show Pokemon already revealed, alongside images of Team Skull, the new region’s antagonist team, but as well as what we saw in the latest CoroCoro leaks comes three new Pokemon; one of which is an Alolan Form of a Generation One favorite. It seems like many older Pokemon are receiving the “Alolan Form” treatment, with the latest being that of Raichu who has taken on somewhat of a surfing gimmick. Morelull is a Fungus-based Pokemon that …

Berserk: The Golden Age Arc Movie Collection – Review

Thinking back on this series, I have discovered that my relationship with Berserk is one filled with interest, fear, and contradiction. The stigma that surrounds this dark-fantasy story is one that delights me as a “Gore Whore“, as a dear friend of mine so eloquently put it, but one that frightens me in odd but overtly real ways. Dealing with themes of brutal death, decaying allegiances, and sexual domination, Berserk’s tale is not one for all viewers, but one that I find to be incredibly intriguing. Confusing in it’s layout, the Berserk: The Golden Age Arc Movie Collection is a compilation of three full-length feature films that details, as the title suggests, The Golden Age Arc of the series, which is the second arc of the long-running Manga but one that also serves as a prequel to the events of the most recent Anime adaptation. I must thank Madman Entertainment for offering us the opportunity to review this movie collection; something I simply could not pass up. Studying their on-site release schedule and glancing over …

The Enemy Of My Enemy Is My Friend – 91 Days Episode Five – Season’s Writings

Just as tension between the boys and this hideaway holiday grew to a boiling point, Nero received a call from his trusted ally Barbero who explains that the Orcos have had enough of Fango’s ridiculous nature and, much like the Vanetti’s, have attempted to assassinate him without success. As a cause of this, Fango has escaped to “The Island” alongside twenty or so of his closest men, transforming it into his base of operation until the heat dies down and he can strike back at those who’ve attempted to end his life. Barbero continues to explain that there’s a high chance Nero will be allowed back into Lawless thanks to Orco’s failed attempt at killing Fango which has now forced them into a ceasefire with both the Vannetti’s and the Galassias, not wanting to dig themselves any deeper. After meeting up with Barbero at “The Lodge”; a hidden moonshine production setup, both Nero and Avilio head towards the Vanetti mansion so as to join a meeting to be held between the heads of the three …

August CoroCoro Leaks Reveal More Pokemon And Region Antagonists

While seeing actual brand-new Pokemon is what keeps the fandom in a constant state of excitement during this pre-release period, there are a great deal of other interesting elements to a Pokemon game that make up the entire experience, and therefor are just as intriguing, if not moreso. The August issue of CoroCoro was set to officially reveal a batch of four new Pokemon, alongside two more Alola variants of first generation Pocket Monsters but, as usual, a great citizen of the world has gotten their hands on the issue early and posted pictures online. Nuikoguma (Japanese name): The pre-evolution of Beware. It is Normal and Fighting-type. Sunabaa and Shirodesuna (Japanese name): An evolutionary line based on sandcastles. They are both Ground and Ghost-type. Yowashi (Japanese name): An aquatic Pokemon that can change forms, joining with a school of other Yowashi to create a larger creature. It is a Water-type. Alolan Meowth: This particular breed of Meowth comes from a long line of royalty, and is now a Dark-type Pokemon. Alolan Marowak: This particular Marowak was …

Until The Last Sword Is Drawn – How Will Bleach End?

Snap Discussion is the weekly round table discussion on a topic relating to Japanese pop culture as selected by the almighty Snapodile. Each week the SnapThirty team will weigh in with their thoughts on that week’s topic all with the hopes of providing some interesting and perhaps even conflicting view points on the matter at hand. This week’s topic is Until The Last Sword is Drawn – How Will Bleach End? For this topic we each looked a long hard look at one of Shonen Jump’s biggest franchise hits which has long overstayed its welcome. That said, Bleach is set to conclude on the 22nd of August, closing the page on one of the longest running and most popular manga series in history Here are some of our own personal thoughts on how Tite Kubo should wrap things up on Bleach. Luke Halliday: For years I have slowly but surely fallen out of love with Bleach, a series I once held pretty near and dear to my heart. Heck, I still hold the first 50 …

First Promotional Video Released For Digimon Universe: Appli Monsters 3DS Game

Being one hell of a big Digimon fan, it’s days like this one that remind me it’s good to be alive. Waking up this morning to discover that Bandai Namco Entertainment have released the very first proper promotional video for their upcoming Nintendo 3DS game Digimon Universe: Appli Monsters signifies, to me, the beginning of what is looking to be a fantastic day. Up until this point in time, most of what Bandai have shown audiences around the world are teaser trailers, promotional images, and vague videos simply explaining that Digimon Universe: Appli Monsters is going to be a multi-platform project like no other. This has all changed with the release of a the game’s first sizeable promotional video. As you may already be aware; the upcoming game is a light RPG that revolves around building a deck of Applimon that can be applied in battle in several different ways. Choosing a main Applimon, players are tasked with building a deck around it so as to make it more powerful in-battle. As in Digimon fashion, …

‘Nisekoi’ Manga to Conclude August 8th, Who Does Raku Choose?

After 5 years Naoshi Komi’s hit romantic comedy manga series Nisekoi: False Love will reach its climactic resolution in next week’s mega combined 36th/37th edition of Weekly Shonen Jump for the year which is set for release on August 8th, 2016. While speculation has been running rampant since the series inception as to which character Raku, series protagonist and perennial love interest of many cute girls, will ultimately choose, the answer to that question has come out by way of leaks of the final chapter hitting the internet. For those curious highlight the bracketed section to see which girl he chooses: [Chitoge]. Komi is already planning his follow up work which is said to be yet another romantic comedy manga for Weekly Shonen Jump. Stay tuned for further details on the upcoming manga as it comes to light. -30-

Feeling Inspired – Characters That Changed Your Life

Snap Discussion is the weekly round table discussion on a topic relating to Japanese pop culture as selected by the almighty Snapodile. Each week the SnapThirty team will weigh in with their thoughts on that week’s topic all with the hopes of providing some interesting and perhaps even conflicting view points on the matter at hand. This week’s topic is Feeling Inspired – Characters That Changed Your Life. For this topic we each looked into our own personal lives and the characters from Japanese Pop Culture that changed it for the better. Be them inspirational, relatable or simply a badass, these characters changed our lives in immeasurable ways. Whatever reason it may be here are some of our own personal picks for characters that changed our lives. Luke Halliday: For me this was a pretty simple question to answer: Simon from Gurren Lagann. It’s the anime that really got me into what I’m doing now and I don’t think I would be running an anime website or calling myself an anime reviewer today if it …

Arslan: The Warriors of Legend – Review

Just when you thought that Omega Force couldn’t scrape up the rights to any more franchises and slap an anime styled coat of paint on Dynasty Warriors 8 again, here comes Arslan: The Warriors of Legend. Hang on a moment, The Heroic Legend of Arslan should in theory actually make for a pretty good Warriors game. It is about warring nations, epic horseback battles and sure as hell makes a lot more sense as a Warriors game than that Yo-Kai Watch one, right? Wrong. Not only does Arslan: The Warriors of Legend wind up being the single worst Warriors game ever cranked out of the Omega Force machine, it is quite frankly an insult to the fantastic source material upon which it is based. How could things go so very wrong when it could have actually been a legitimately good Warriors title? Well this game simply reeks of lack of care on Omega Force’s part. The game seems like a cheap re-skin of Dynasty Warriors 8 at times with many maps clearly recycled from past …

Rage Of Bahamut: Genesis – Season One – Review

If past experiences have taught me anything at all, it’s that worthwhile Anime adaptations of video games are few and far between. This “phenomenon“, if you will, is very much similar to that of live-action adaptations of popular Anime or Manga series’; often, they’re not worth glancing twice at, but, on occasion, one will come along that exceeds expectations and blows audience’s minds. The unfortunate truth behind this is that, most of the time, what audiences are delivered is nothing more than money-making drivel. Why watch the Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney Anime series when you could just play the wonderfully-fulfilling video game? Now, what’s harder than adapting a video game with a pre-existing story and characters to fill it? How about a mobile game with, arguably, an infinite amount of creatures and enough detailed lore to put Lord Of The Rings to shame? Some would say this makes an adaptation far easier, but if it’s me you’re asking; I feel as though it makes it much harder. Not only are you having to pay tribute …

Live Action ‘Sword Art Online’ TV Show Announced

Skydance Media have just announced that they have acquired the global rights to produce a live-action television series based upon the mega hit anime series Sword Art Online. For fans of the series this is either the greatest thing ever or the worst, as is often the case with the growing line up of live action anime projects. The live-action adaptation of Sword Art Online is said to be on the fast track for a launch in the United States, with Skydance Media’s Television division banking on the series sharing the baffling success of the original anime series. For those interested as to who exactly Skydance Media are, you may have seen a couple of the films they have produced such as: Terminator Genisys, Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol and World War Z. The adaptation is set to be penned and executive produced by Laeta Kalogridis of Avatar and Terminator Genisys infamy. Kalogridis commented on the project saying; “For years… I’ve been inspired by the inventive and masterful storytelling of the SAO franchise.” It is unknown …

Of Mice And Murderers – 91 Days Episode Four – Season’s Writings

Episode four marks the beginning of Avilio and Nero’s countryside “sabbatical” which, in true gangster fashion, is not without it’s fair share of illegality. The duo leave Lawless and head outwards, stopping over at roadside towns whenever they can, heading towards…wherever. With no real goal in mind, apart from keeping Nero safe, they keep on their feet, never staying in one place for longer than they have to, but that doesn’t mean they’re in the clear. Orco has sent a hitman their way; “a regular Goliath”, as he is described by Frate. With the nose of a tracker dog, and an actual tracker dog, at his disposal, moving from place to place is not what’s going to keep them out of harms way. The boys must pull together all their wits and weaponry, and take this guy out before he puts their vacation to rest for good, but with no money, no weapons, and nowhere to run, it’s going to take more than a slingshot to stop the rampage of this warrior…or will it? While I …

Pokemon Sun and Moon – New Trailer Introduces Alternate Versions Of Classic Pokemon

Unlike what many have imagined, Nintendo and Game Freak’s upcoming Pokemon Sun and Moon video games will not just be featuring brand-new Pokemon specific to the Alola Region. While these new breeds are the most exciting, Game Freak have decided that the resurgence of love for Generation One Pokemon is something that is just as important as building popularity for contemporary Pocket Monsters, not that the classics need MORE love. In a new trailer, released on the official Pokemon Youtube channel, the world is introduced to a new batch of Pokemon from the Alola region that have never been seen before, but they’re also accompanied by some familiar faces that have gone through certain changes thanks to this region’s tropical environment. The trailer is featured just below: While the new Pokemon Oricorio, Minior, Gumshoos, Fomantis, Lurantis, and Mudbray have already won over the fandom’s audience, they’re overshadowed by the alternate forms of Vulpix, Ninetails, Sandshrew, Sandslash, and Exeggutor, who have not only gone through a physical change but also a drastic Type change. This new …

Yo-Kai Watch 2 Hits Australia And New Zealand This October!

Yo-Kai Watch is one hell of a divisive franchise: You’re either unaware of it, or a die-hard fan. It’s quite rare to find someone who sits in-between. Not only has it taken over it’s country of birth, Japan, but it has now captivated the hearts and minds of many people from around the entire world. Despite the fact that many Western audiences negatively compared it to pioneering franchise Pokemon, the Nintendo 3DS video game and all it’s merchandise sold incredibly well in Western regions, especially SnapThirty’s home of Australia. Alongside great reviews, and even better sales, the Yo-Kai Watch Anime series, which airs on free-to-air TV, has also been quite well-received. Fans across the world still cannot get enough of Yo-Kai Watch, and being an audience dedicated to this franchise, many know that Japan is up to it’s third main Yo-Kai Watch game, not to mention it’s off-shoots. This is why Nintendo are excited to announce that Yo-Kai Watch 2: Bony Spirits and Fleshy Souls will be released across Australia and New Zealand on the 15th …

Level-5 Reveal New Cross-Media Project: Megaton Musashi

Overnight, Level-5 held a press conference titled “Vision 2016 -New Heroes-” wherein which they revealed to the world a couple of new projects that the company is currently developing, as well as brand-new strands of information regarding already-established franchises like Yo-Kai Watch. Level-5 attempted to break out into the mech market with their previous video game series Little Battlers Experience, and whilst it did quite well in Japan (yet not so much in the West) it was not the most well-received of their cross-media developments. The great thing about Level-5 is that they’re constantly changing, evolving, and developing, creating video games that blow audiences of all different ages away with just how engaging and enjoyable they are, so it only makes sense that they would, once again, try to take over a landscape such as science-fiction robot fighting. Revealed through their “Vision 2016 -New Heroes-” livestream is another cross-media endeavor titles “Megaton Musashi“. Revealed through a  thirteen minute pilot episode at their live event, Megaton Musashi that revolves around three young men piloting a robot …

Level-5 Deliver A Huge Snack World Update As Part Of Their Vision 2016 Livestream

Overnight, Level-5 held a press conference titled “Vision 2016 -New Heroes-” wherein which they revealed to the world a couple of new projects that the company is currently developing, as well as brand-new strands of information regarding already-established franchises like Yo-Kai Watch. Snack World, which has been in development for quite some time now, is arguably the most exciting new project to be spearheaded by Level-5 games in recent times. If I know one thing for sure, it’s that I’m absolutely enamoured by this game, the new information revealed at the most recent Level-5 livestream has only made me come to love it all the more. Alongside the screening of a brand-new trailer for the game, that adds on to footage released previously, Level-5 also revealed that Snack World will not only be getting a release on the Nintendo 3DS but also on iOS-run SmartPhones. The iOS version of the game, alongside the television series, are set to be released/aired (TV Tokyo for the series) in the April of 2017, followed up by the release …

Level-5 Reveals Inazuma Eleven: Balance Of Ares Video Game And Anime Series

Overnight, Level-5 held a press conference titled “Vision 2016 -New Heroes-” wherein which they revealed to the world a couple of new projects that the company is currently developing, as well as brand-new strands of information regarding already-established franchises like Yo-Kai Watch. As many of you may have guessed when, a few months ago, Level-5 CEO hinted at the development of a new Inazuma Eleven game, said game was revealed as a part of the exciting presentation. Titled “Inazuma Eleven: Balance Of Ares“, this game will be a direct yet alternate sequel to the original Inazuma Eleven game. Much like the chronology of The Legend Of Zelda, “Balance Of Ares” marks the first time that the series has branched off into another storyline, with this new universe never being confronted by the Soccer-loving extra terrestrials. Centred around new protagonist Asuto Inamori and his friends, the new game will, once again, take place at Raimon Junior High as the new cast of characters are forced to move from their home to play soccer after their local …

Resurgence of The King of Monsters: Godzilla

July 29 2016 marks the landmark release of Godzilla Resurgence, and in case you missed the memo, Funimation has picked up localisation rights which means we’ll get a subtitled release very soon in 2016… just in time for the Japan Film Festival in Australia if I am being realistically optimistic. It may be another few months for us, but it’s exciting to see a brand new Godzilla flick from Japan as a glorious reboot of the historic and iconic monster movie franchise. This is the first Godzilla film by founding studio, Toho, since 2004’s Final Wars. It may be some time before you see a review of Godzilla Resurgence grace front page of Snap Thirty, but in the meantime we’d like to present to you with a tribute to all things Godzilla: the movies, the video games, and the culture itself. Return of an icon: Godzilla Resurgence  Godzilla Resurgence looks to be the movie that fans always wanted, and it certainly has very high expectations to live up to. Billed as a reboot, everyone is naturally …

Where In The World Is Serpente’s Body? – 91 Days Episode Three – Season’s Writings

Episode two left us on quite a cliffhanger, but the start of episode three revealed that it was nothing more than a red herring. After confronting Nero about the death of his best friend Vanno at the hands of Serpente, or so Avilio says, it looked as though our “hero” wasn’t going to be put to rest somewhat prematurely. As it turns out, pointed a gun at someone’s head is just the Italian way of expressing anger, the grieving Nero was never going to fill Avilio with lead, but he did almost send him to his death at the hands of Fango after “requesting” that he finds Serpente’s body. Why is that so important? Well, the rest of the organised crime world doesn’t necessarily care about the details of this double murder, all they know is that a member of the Vanetti crime family killed one of the Orcos, which is more than enough to ignite the flames of war, turning Lawless from a simple corrupt town full of bootleggers and thieves into a battlefield…come to think …

Tokyo Mirage Sessions #FE – Review

Fire Emblem and Shin Megami Tensei are two long-running Japanese Role-Playing Game series’ that I never thought would meet each other in this capacity, and yet I’m overjoyed that such a conglomeration has taken place. I remember, in the May of 2014, it was announced that these two beloved series’ would come together to form a singular video game for the Nintendo Wii U. Simply called Fire Emblem X Shin Megami Tensei, my mind raced in anticipation of what this game would be. Alas, none of my assumptions lead me down the road of what we in the West now know to be a video game called “Tokyo Mirage Sessions #FE“. It has been a long two years since the announcement of Fire Emblem X Shin Megami Tensei but, like all of us, it is a video game that has come quite a long way. Now released worldwide, fans of both franchises are able to explore the combined wonder of both Fire Emblem and Shin Megami Tensei as they do battle with creatures who’ve come …

Vocaloid DJ Hachioji P To Perform At SMASH!’s 10th Anniversary Event

When you get to my age, you stop celebrating certain things. This is why I havn’t been to a proper party in over a decade. Oh, in my hay-day I was quite a sight to behold; I was king of the dance floor! They used to call me “The Charleston Kid“, and I would swing and bop my way through all kinds of musical tracks. T’was quite the time to be alive. Now, just because I’ve retired, and no longer have the strong enough bones to go to shindigs, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t! Listen up, kids, as Grandpa Frank let’s you in on something pretty cool that’s coming up this August. We all know what SMASH! is, right? Surely! SnapThirty has been attending the Japanese Pop Culture event ever since the sight started up, so if you’re a keen follower of us then surely you’d know. Well did you know that this year marks SMASH!’s 10th anniversary? Oh ho ho! Well, to celebrate said anniversary, SMASH! are preparing a few grand guests who will …

Digimon Universe: Appli Monsters – Bandai Namco Introduces The World To Two More Appli Monsters

As a twenty-two year old living in an age of cynicism, it’s not often that I wake up of a morning, catch wind of an exciting piece of news, and am rendered giddy in delight as a cause of it, but it is franchises like Digimon that have a certain grasp on me that I feel will never let go. Overnight, Bandai Namco Entertainment have updated the official Japanese site for their upcoming video game based upon the multi-media franchise expansion; Digimon Universe: Appli Monsters. This update, whilst insignificant to some, introduces audiences to two more Appli Monsters based on both Online and Offline gaming, whilst also re-introducing us to those who were first revealed alongside this cross-media project. The screenshots featured below are taken from the upcoming Nintendo 3DS title that will use the same name, Digimon Universe: Appli Monsters, but the Digimon shown will not be exclusive to said game, they will appear in every facet of the project. Onmon: Onmon is a Game-Type Appli Monster that adores not only online gaming but anything that …

Pokemon Sun and Moon – Game Freak Introduces Six New Pokemon In Latest Trailer

This article’s title is, unfortunately, a small lie. There isn’t six new Pokemon because, well, technically there’s only four, but that’s only because two were revealed through leaked scans of the latest issue of Japan’s CoroCoro magazine a week or so ago. Regardless, that doesn’t make this new trailer released by Nintendo and Game Freak any less exciting! Hitting the net overnight, this new English trailer for the upcoming Pokemon Sun and Moon games introduces audiences to some divisive new Pokemon in great detail as Game Freak also updated the game’s official website to include detailed explanation of just who these brand-new creatures are. Alongside information regarding the recently-introduced lineup, Nintendo and Game Freak have also taken the opportunity, through this trailer, to reveal a new mechanic that allows for players to host their own Global Link Competitions. Also returning to the upcoming games is the option to Hyper Train your Pokemon through fun mini-games. Below I have provided for you said explanations, followed up by the official trailer, so make sure to have yourself a …

Eureka Seven AO – Review

When you try to follow up one of the most innovative and ground breaking anime series of this century you will always struggle to replicate that kind of quality. Such is the case with Eureka Seven AO, a series tasked with following up the painfully underrated masterpiece that was Eureka Seven. In all honesty, Eureka Seven was never a series crying out for a sequel or follow up considering its truly conclusive finale, however that doesn’t seem to stop Eureka Seven AO disregarding that almost completely in favour of creating continuity contradictions and dispensing of the original’s environmentalism message and themes for schlocky action and a fluff filled plot lacking a modicum of the original’s creativity. What an unfortunate mess this series is, it is a classic example of a cheap cash in sequel that really has no right or reason to really exist. Even as a stand alone piece Eureka Seven AO ties itself too firmly to the original series to ever escape comparison or connection. The series follows Ao, a young boy who …

On This, The Day Of My Daughter’s Wedding? – 91 Days Episode Two – Season’s Writings

There are few things synonymous with mobster movies, and they conform to this across the board: Guns, Suits, Italian Sweets, and Weddings. The Godfather featured each of these four, and that is a film seen as the pinnacle of the sub-genre, so it only makes sense that an Anime series based upon films of this kind would also feature those same components. In episode two of 91 Days, “Phantom Of Falsehood“, the audience is taken on a wild ride as we follow the short-lived story of Vanetti mafioso Vanno Clemente who, at first introduction, quickly became my favorite character of the series. It’s just too bad that he, well…I really shouldn’t say. Opening up with a job gone wrong, episode two of 91 Days gives audiences a front-row seat to the inner-workings of the Vanetti family told in a way reminiscent of The Godfather, as mentioned above. It’s the wedding day of Nero’s little sister, and in true Italian matrimonial festivity a fight breaks out between our “hero” Avilio and the groom which, if it’s …

Sailor Moon R (Season Two) Part Two – Review

Like Dragon Ball Z, Pokemon, and Cardcaptor Sakura, Sailor Moon is a series that was enjoyed by many back in the later years of the 1990s. Driven by pure nostalgia, it is a series that, to this day, still retains the same fans it once had all those years ago, and for what reason? Well, there’s no denying that it is a groundbreaking series the likes of which changed both the Anime and Manga landscape, allowing for more contemporary series’ like it to blossom in the gardens it tirelessly developed, but it’s now 2016 and those same flourishing series’ are now Sailor Moon’s main competitors, so what has kept it afloat for so long, and what is it that will keep it high above the rest for years to come? As someone who uses nostalgia to fan the fires of past passions constantly, I very much understand that it is a power source unlike any other…but is it enough to drive an entire fandom years after a series’ peak? The answer is; yes, but does …

The Mikono Effect – When One Character Ruins It All

Snap Discussion is the weekly round table discussion on a topic relating to Japanese pop culture as selected by the almighty Snapodile. Each week the SnapThirty team will weigh in with their thoughts on that week’s topic all with the hopes of providing some interesting and perhaps even conflicting view points on the matter at hand. This week’s topic is The Mikono Effect – When One Character Ruins It All. For this topic we each looked back on series that were ruined by one problematic character. Maybe they were annoying or had no redeeming qualities. Perhaps they were.a frustration point that the series focused way too much on. Whatever it may be here are some of our own personal picks for character that ruined their respective show. Luke Halliday: For many in the anime community it has become almost a running gag that Shinji from Neon Genesis Evangelion is a terrible character. So at the risk of sounding cliche my pick for character who ruins it all is Shinji, a self absorbed depressive who only …