Happy White Day

Art taken from the Anime Art Museum.

We can’t go full weeb unless we mention White Day. Japan has retooled the Christian holiday of St. Valentine’s Day into a day on which women give chocolate to men instead of the other way around. In 1978, Japan’s National Confectionary Industry Association created White Day as a day for men to reciprocate.

It is a tradition that you’re supposed to give three times as much on White Day as you got on Valentine’s Day. So be sure to do something nice for your magical girl today.

I might have a story about Jake giving candy to Dana … but I’m doing my taxes instead.

So, anyway, happy White Day. This holiday, I should note, is not only celebrated in Japan, but also in South Korea, though their tradition is different. Instead of having boys give girls candy, they lock students in a school and make them fight monsters and kill one another.

Jake and the Dynamo on the Periodic Table

I’m working on the next chapter of Jake and the Dynamo, which I promise will be a beach episode, and I thought I ought to give the story as it presently stands a check to make sure it’s on track.

By which I mean, on track to include every element in the Periodic Table of Awesoments, which is the goal for this, and indeed every, story.

Let’s see how we’re doing.

1. Bacon: Jake has it for breakfast most every morning.
4. Explosion: Obviously.
6. Beer: Jake’s parents allow him one beer when they order out for pizza.
10. Sniper: Briefly mentioned when Jake and Dynamo meet some military personnel.
13. Boobs: This is … well, this is a magical girl story.
15. Coffee: Mentioned repeatedly.
17. Zombies: Not only zombies, but zombies who appear during an invasion of robot dinosaurs from space, and I’d like to think that putting those together even makes sense, kind of.
24. Minigun: Appears in the very first chapter.
26. Kung Fu: Or at least cartoon-fu.
28. Helicopter: Mentioned several times.
31. Space: Tesla the lightning bug is a former space pilot.
36. Vampires: Briefly mentioned, and at least one magical girl is a vampire huntress as well as a metal idol.
39. Sword: As wielded by Lady Paladin Andalusia.
41. Nunchucks: This might be a stretch since she hasn’t appeared on the page yet, but Nunchuk Nun wields nunchuks.
45. Moon Jumps: Assuming this means making huge leaps rather than literally jumping on the moon, this is the preferred mode of travel for the ground-bound magical girls.
46. Mecha: Possibly a stretch, but I believe the Robosaurs count.
47. Internet: Matilda the witch-seer hacks into Magical Girl Grease Pencil Marionette using this.
48. Hyperspace: The villains travel to and from the city in something called “the stream.” Also, alien civilizations clearly have FTL.
49. Lightning: Pretty Dynamo’s Thunder Bolt attack is “lightning in a can.”
50. Fire: Not just fire, but the very fire of hell, which the city has weaponized thanks to a spacetime-ripping portal gun.
53. Robots: A magical girl robot, even.
57. Dinosaurs: Robot dinosaurs from space, even.
59. Dragon: Briefly mentioned.
74. Battle Axe: The preferred weapon of Chai Square, the tea-sipping statistical troll.
76. Rayguns: Sukeban Tsubasa includes them in her formidable arsenal. In fact, she will later probably fill out a lot of the weapon categories.
77. Video Games: I think we got that covered in the more recent chapters.
78. Teleport: The villains’ preferred method of travel.
78. Computers: Including a magical gynoid. Also, there are two element 78s, probably because the computer teleported. Or something.
80. Time Travel: They have faster-than-light travel, which necessarily means time travel.
83. Storms: In addition to opening portals to hell, creating zombies, and talking smack about your mom, the demoniac conjures a thunderstorm.
85. Aliens: Many of the familiars, including Tesla, are aliens.
89. Mustache: Jake shaves the fuzz off his upper lip in the morning, so he briefly has a mustache of sorts.
92. Skulls: Even better, Voodoo Queen Natasha wears skulls for a bra.
93. Scars: Jake is unreasonably concerned about Dana getting one of these.
99. Holograms:
 Including Marionette’s simulated familiar.
107. Fortress: The Dark Queen’s castle counts. Arguably, so does all of Urbanopolis.
114. Metal: Assuming this means the music, both Dana and Ralph are fans of monster metal, especially Lady/Killer and Magical Girl Metal Huntress Van Halensing.
115. Magnets: Pretty Dynamo’s Thunder Bolts, being supercharged, are powerfully magnetic.
116. My Money: What Jake has, briefly, until he pays to feed Pretty Dynamo.

Hm. Well, that’s thirty-nine elements. Pretty good so far, I think, though it’s rather shocking that we’ve had no tanks, grenades, or proximity mines. This should be easy to rectify. And I believe we’re on track to include (82) black holes, (51) liquor, (15) chocolate, (18) assassin, (25) sonic booms, (98) guitar solo, and of course (9) pirates. Magical girls’ familiars will likely fill out several of the animal-related elements.

I Just Magical-Girled Your Steampunkish Sword and Sorcery Game

Well, I mean, I didn’t do it, but …

As I’ve mentioned before, I’m not a gamer, so this escaped my attention until yesterday. The hugely popular multiplayer online arena combat game League of Legends has gone magical girl.

So I saw an advertisement for something called “Star Guardians.” The ad consisted of a brief but intriguing video involving lush artwork and decent animation depicting a team of five magical girls fighting monsters, followed by a website address. I said to myself, “What is this?” Then I followed the link.

And then, about thirty minutes later, I said to myself, “No, seriously, WTF is this?” In spite of the probably expensive advertising campaign, they didn’t exactly make this thing accessible to outsiders. Continue reading “I Just Magical-Girled Your Steampunkish Sword and Sorcery Game”

Magical Girl Dress-Up Games

Good grief, these things actually exist. What can’t you find on the internet?

While the rest of you are playing with your little Pokey Mans, or whatever they’re called, I’m over here designing magical girl outfits like a boss.  Yes, this is what I call a truly immersive video game experience.

Okay, not really, but at least these games aren’t encouraging me to trespass, walk into traffic, get mugged in back alleys, or give away all my Google account information.

So, in honor of dumb but addictive video games, I here present all the free online magical girl dress-up games that I was able to find just now. These games are pretty much like those old paper dolls your grandma used to play with, except now on the computer, and with magical girls. Such games prove, among other things, that I have no fashion sense. And also that I have too much time on my hands.

To test these games’ versatility, I decided my goal with each would be to get the character to look as much as possible like Pretty Dynamo. Let’s see how close I can get. Continue reading “Magical Girl Dress-Up Games”

A Brief Meditation on ‘Doom’

Well, yet another version of Doom is out, and everything I’ve heard about it is positive. The graphics are certainly impressive, but from what I’ve seen, I’m almost inclined to say too impressive. It reminds me of a claymation somehow.

Doom is one of those great titles that appear unpromising on the surface but have some je ne sai quoi that give them a compelling charm, so they simply won’t die. Like RoboCop. Or Sailor Moon. The game’s core concept is clever, and it is a concept to which, curiously, the video games have remained faithful whereas adaptations in other media have screwed with it and consistently ruined it. Continue reading “A Brief Meditation on ‘Doom’”