This morning I got mail from the U.S. He asked if I had written about the PS2 game "Katamari Damacy" before. "What is that? What is Katamari?" I was curious and checked, and now I can tell you I LOVE it! Since I have no PS2 or Nintendo, (because I know I would devote all my life to game if I got one.) I did not know that game, but it has really nice world. Please let me introduce.
Katamari Damacy 1 was released in Japan last spring and in the U.S and other countries later. Here is their English page. Please check "What is Katamari Damacy" ( I was knocked out by their Double bye bye) and a trailer too. A little peewee prince has to make a big Block (Katamari) to make stars in cosmos. Because his father the King broke up all the stars when he was drunk. The rules are simple. The little Prince rolls a ball and spool things up on the way, then makes it bigger than the specified size in time. At first he can only get small things only like caramels or paperclips, then when the block gets larger, he can spool people, cars, buildings and other larger items. He spools everything until his block is big enough to make each star. You may read the game review here. Yes they put a good rating on this game. Katamari Damacy will be enough fun for foreign people, but the game has a matter of mirth for Japanese especially...( I know these types of things are always very hard to explain and may not be funny for foreigners).
Tohoho Character (Weakness / faintness character)
I think Japanese love "Tohoho chara". A guy explains about tohoho here. When we say "Tohoho chara", we have a mixture image of "poor, pathos, harmless, sympathy, love, funny, laughing". For example, Pikmin( he has to be eaten). Pichon kun ( he has to be thrown away in humid wx), they are typical Tohoho chara. Gikoneko of 2channel is tohoho chara too I think. Prince is a typical Tohoho character who has to work because of his Dad. So I can tell this type of character tickles the Japanese heart most.
The title: KATAMARI DAMACY
Katamari Damacy is of course Japanese English. It should be written Katamari Damashii, it means "Block Soul". Very hot, passionate, enthusiasm, such a strong impression we have, for the word "Tamashii (Damashii)" and also Katamari is the chinese character which has very heavy and hard image. So the Gap between such a tough name and the Tohoho character is a good essence of this nonsense game.
A domestic and self-deprecating humor of Japanese
This Hoshino family travel reports pages is in Katamari Damacy 2 site (Japanese only). Mom's low-tension reaction and the family's nonsense conversations are a kind of Japanese self-deprecating humor . And also in the game, there are so many very very domestic things like a Japanese style toilet, a Kotatsu (kotatsu is Japanese electric heater table), and then on the Kotatsu, you can see a Nengajyo (New Year card). Each person, each item seems very Japanese. Actually this game seems to be good tool to learn more about Japanese life ha ha ha.
Crazy Sound track.
I suppose while you play this game you will not be able to stop humming "Na na na na na...". Anyway the producers of game enjoyed a mismatch in sound track too. This singer and this singer are typical Enka singer, usually young people have never heard Enka, Enka singers does not sing game music.
I can imagine if I had this game, I would return to my home after work late at night, eat a late dinner, take a shower and sit down in front of the PS2. Nothing on my mind, just humming "na na na na na" and rolling the ball bigger and bigger, make today's star, with a stupid name, then go to bed. Such a "one rolling before bed" would be my custom. :-p. I will download the wallpepr and screen saver (I like this most!). This spring, they will release Everybody like Katamari Damacy.(Katamari Damacy 2). Please wait for a little for the New one! Anyway the King looks like an American PRIDE fighter Herring, Heath to me, What do you think?