Music of the Month; Barrelfire Desperado

After I hit that nine years of blogging anniversary few weeks back, I went back and looked back at the stuff I’ve written. Jesus Christ what drivel. I can’t deny that there aren’t any stuff I’d say I have a good feeling about. Proud is too strong a word, but maybe saying there’s worth in there works better. That’s probably something I need to work over for myself, that I try to be worth something to someone, but considerations what people consider worthwhile don’t match up with me (or with each other) all that often. Who would give a damn about archiving a random comic book from the 80’s nobody has never heard about? Well, that’s the point really, maybe archivists get it. Maybe they don’t, there’s so much data on the Internet and on physical archives already, and we just keep producing this stuff more and more every single damn day.

You’ve probably followed the advent of SARS-CoV-19 virus’ makings its ways in China, and then steadily spreading across the globe. I’ve found some kind of macabre interest in following the events through the eyes of leakers and individuals who get their message out through the Chinese Communist Party blocked Internet. It’s not exactly the most uplifting hobby, especially when it went from following how well everything was screwed up in the early phases, where travellers were allowed to move willy nilly around, to what we have now. Ever increasing amount of spreading across the world with mortality rate piling up. The sickness it causes, COVID-19, isn’t exactly a laughing matter, especially considering how long the sickness festers before symptoms pop up. I would wish all of my readers to take care of your basic hygiene and avoid travelling to areas with confirmed cases, as well as limiting your Internet purchases from foreign regions for now. I’d also recommend getting full eight hours of sleep as often as possible, as sleep is the best natural resistance against viral diseases. I don’t intend to make any posts about the virus or the disease it spreads, unless something highly significant comes into play. Spreading of this virus can only be curbed if people are willing not to travel.

That said, global recession is a reality companies and corporations have to consider. If worst case hits China, their economy will tank and cheap produce from them will trickle down. Global market probably will follow in suit and tank, meaning we’re going to be in a place where consumers won’t have as much cash at hand just to throw at something expensive they don’t need. The Wii was perfectly priced console for its period, something the 360 and PS3 had to fight against. People still joke about $599 price. Especially considering if China’s production will tank much further, production of electronics and whatnot will grind slowly to a halt. This is where digital distribution should start to shine like no other, but they still need to sway with significantly cheaper price tags than their physical counterparts. Think of how the Wii found the perfect spot with cheaper hardware, good enough visual presentation and games people wanted to play. At least during Wii’s first half of life.

That’s a thing I’ve been told for some twenty years now, that digital will take over physical. Every five years, physical will be completely phased out with digital taking over. We’re fifteen years later after the first given deadline, and physical media is still around. While its sales have been diminished for sure, it isn’t languishing and has found its own niche.

As for something lighter things, and more related to the blog proper, I’ve cued up a Monster Maker franchise as the next short introduction. This is a perfect example how you pick up something completely harmless, think it’s just a series of five games across different systems and don’t think any of it. Then you start reading more about, look more into what items there has been for sale, what sort of deals and promotions have been tied to the name and finally you have in your hands a well loved staple of Japanese fantasy genre that started as a 1988 card game with five different entries with own unique sets of rules and cards, Rance Quest Edition via a deal with Alice Soft, few Revised editions and a 2018 Remake edition with revised rules, dozens of spin-off tabletop board and other games, additional video and computer games that range from simulating the actual game itself to fully-fledged console RPGs alá Dragon Quest, different pen and paper RPG iterations, strategy boardgames, few model kit lines that not only featured the characters, but dioramas and enemies in more of the expensive boxes, comics of all kind, light novels and God know what I’ve missed. I could spend a whole year cataloguing all this and I wouldn’t be finished because tracking down even the most common of the games can get rather expensive. Not to mention all the fan produced stuff, which of course ranges from crude homebrew simulations to erotic adventures of the characters in the world. By 1991, the game already had seven mainline entries.

Be sure to check Kugatsuhime’s Twitter. We’ll talk about the author/s whenever I get to the series introduction post proper. Which probably will be a series of posts at this point.

Even getting started is a chore (a gross understatement), because in order to properly describe the base game, or the 2018 Remake and Rance Quest Edition for now, the rules had to be translated because only the original game has dubious rules translations around the net. Well, whenever we get to the post proper, it will be supplemented with a PDF file for the rules for you to use alongside proper description for the 2018 Remake. I would love to use the original for this and make a direct comparison between the two, but we are talking about thirty years old card game that’s not exactly the easiest to find, and needing to purchase it. I’ve seen it go for 1000yen at one time, and another time over 10 000yen. There’s also a Revised edition that was published in the mid-00’s, with option to create your own cards for the deck (they sold blank cards for that specific purpose) but the cheapest I’ve seen it go in public trading has been around 18 000yen. Hell, just writing this itself made me check few more sites and I found yet another set of five entries I’ve missed prior. This is how you dig yourself in a deep ass hole, finding something that seems interesting, getting few stuff just to get you started and you find out you got thirty odd years of expansive franchise very few in the English speaking world even knows exists and you’re adamant to make it known more. I can honestly say that if you want to hear more about the franchise with scans and stuff around, those Ko-Fi tips would come in handy. Otherwise I’ll be drudging through as usual, and just pick the more prominent examples that are around.

On the meantime, remember to sharpen and oil your kitchen knives. A sharper knife makes safer and more pleasant cooking.

 

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