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Cheddarchet Blog

(Region) Locked Out: A Gamer in Japan

Hello World,

Been awhile, hasn't it? Almost five years since I've made a single blog post, in fact. Quite a bit's changed since then, I might add. I'm just a little over a year away from becoming a college graduate now, and I've been living in Japan for about ten months. I no longer have to scour the internet in order to find old anime CDs, and buying obscure Japanese games for my game collection has gone from being a lengthy shipping process to a simple train ride into Akihabara. And yet, as my wonderful study abroad experience in Japan quickly draws to a close (I return home this Friday), I find there is one thing that, despite having lived with the reality of it for ten months, still constantly urks me.

Region locking.

At first, it was a non-issue. I was in a new country, who cares about a few games I can't play? There are plenty more out there for older systems I'd never touched, particularly for the original DS. No reason to be upset that my 3DS might have a more limited selection. Before coming to Japan, I'd never even touched a DS Tales game, for example, and I couldn't resist picking up the original Ninokuni or Soma Bringer either, even if I knew my reading level wasn't at a point where I could hope to play them at (this is still difficult, even now). Then, Bravely Default: Flying Fairy and Fantasy Life both came out, and I became irritated. In Japan, where streetpassing someone new every five minutes is the norm on a 3DS, I came to constantly see updates from people about both games, with the process repeating once again for Animal Crossing. Soon, my friends here purchased their own Japanese 3DS' so they might join in on the fun as well. Being a poor college student, however, I found myself out of luck. Granted, I hadn't even finished all my old games, but that didn't mean I didn't want to try the new releases I saw appearing on shelves. Say what you will about Square Enix, I'm extremely interested in Bravely Default, and Fantasy Life looks like a blast. The people I know with the game all agree with this statement as well, and regardless of whether or not it's true, it's still frustrating to be unable to even try out some of these titles for myself.

So, why do companies bother with region-locking in the first place? Specifically, why does Nintendo continue to region lock their own consoles, despite the removal of such a function from the upcoming Microsoft and Sony consoles? I realize that, in most cases, it won't make a difference. Many of the games I'm pining to play will eventually trickle to the States, and thus become available for my own little 3DS. Even if this is the case, however, I have a hard time believing that region locking is still necessary in this day and age for game consoles. Once upon a time, we saw many arguments that it was necessary to help companies maintain profit when dealing with the various currencies, age ratings, and other restrictions, but it's hard to believe this is truly relevant now, in an age where anyone can order from across the seas with a simple trip onto the internet (even if you might have to do a little more digging). Especially in the case of a portable console, is it really damaging to a business if someone, hypothetically, takes their 3DS with them on a trip overseas and decides to buy a game from a different region for their 3DS? In most cases, the same price is being paid in each countries' currency, so it's difficult for me to see how it really damages a company's business.

And if the policy still isn't going to be changed in the near future, any chance someone could hurry up with that Bravely Default localization? ... Just saying.

Air Original Soundtrack!

Whooo! It finally came in the mail after a week (that seemed like a year) of waiting! Seriously, I've been wanting this for a while now, and it was pretty hard to find on the internet. :| Pretty much makes this the best day of the year for me so far :) Ah, sorry, just felt like spreading my joy to all those around ;). Anyone else bought/downloaded some good anime soundtracks lately? I really love them, pity they're so expensive, but I'm fine with Air for now :D

Xbox 360

So, my brother just got one of those for his birthday a few days ago, along with the games Oblivion and Halo 3. While I'm not a Halo fan, I love Oblivion. 8) Seriously, it's awesome. Sadly, my brother's system, so, I haven't gotten to play a whole lot yet. I usually play at night since I stay up a bit later, but even that probably won't work now that his basketball training is over. :( Alas, life is hard. :P

Finally, School's Out!!

Well, as you may have guessed, I had my last day of school today! Wooooooooooooooooot!!! Geez, today seemed to take forever, so it's nice to know that I'm finally done with the year, especially since our school was the last in the district to finish, so cruel. >.<

Unfortunately for me, I have to wake up tomorrow at 3:00 A.M. and go on a 14-hour car drive, go figure. Still, it's fun to visit different places as long as you can tolerate the car long enough! And now.. I must be going. :P

Jazz Band Trip

Well, I have just returned from my Jazz Band trip today. It was really fun, but I hated the return bus ride (14 hours)!:? Especially since I can't sleep on buses... but anyway! As I said before, the trip was pretty fun, and I did get to hear some pretty cool bands play, as well as get to know my peers better (still kinda new to where I am now). And my hotel roommates were pretty interesting as well, so I'm glad I met them, seeing as I didn't even know their names before...-_-. Anyway, that's how my weekend went!

Whoa... I leveled

Wow, I actually leveled! I suppose level 7 isn't that big of a deal, but since I almost never level anymore, I'm kind of happy about it. :)

Onto other things, I recently started learning Chinese! I'm having fun, although it's taking awhile to get used to writing the characters. At the moment, I can only write two from memory. :/. I'll probably get the hang of it eventually though. At least I hope so..

Wow... Long Time No Speak, Huh?

Geez, my last post was April?! I knew I hadn't said anything in awhile, but still... I pretty much made this just to let people know that I'm still alive, then. Other than that, not a whole lot to say. Well, not entirely true, seeing as my break has officially started today!:D Hurray for Christmas!(And my upcoming birthday, too!)

By the way, does anyone have some sort of anime to suggest watching to me? I like watching different kinds, but I'm never really sure where to start my search. If you've got any ideas for me, I'd appreciate it!

sorry I haven't posted in awhile...I hate bad news...

First off, to everyone, sorry for being dead, pretty much, on the site. I've just been feeling lazy lately. :P

Well, I found out a couple months ago I'm moving, and personally, I hate moving. :evil: All that packing and unpacking, pretty much kills my summer, you know? Plus, I'm gonna leave all my friends again. :( Moving is lame.... So, how is everyone else?

Eragon Movie

I've finally seen it! It was pretty good, actually. But I thought they rushed the story way too much. :? I guess that happens when you make a 500 page book into and an hour-and-a-half long movie. They also drifted off from parts of the story, in some cases in not as noticable ways as others.

Still, all things considered, it was a pretty good movie. :)

Missing icons?

What happened to all my icons? They're all x'd out except for the turkey one! O_O Is it just my computer, or is this happening to everyone?:?
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