Tag Archives: Saturn

X JAPAN Virtual Shock 001

Reviews
X Japan Virtual Shock Title Screen
Hardware: Saturn
10/20/1995 (Japan)
If you're reading this article, there's a good chance that you already know who X Japan is. But if you don't, they're possibly the most internationally popular Japanese rock band. Though they weren't signed to CBS Sony records until 1989, they'd already built a name for themselves on the indie scene long before. And they took the world of rock music by storm in Japan by basing their sound around power/speed metal, with a lot of symphonic influence (from Yoshiki's classical music background, no doubt) that would follow later as they turned into more of a prog metal band. The lineup at the time of this release was Toshi (Vocals), Yoshiki (Drums and Piano), hide (Guitar), Pata (Guitar), and Heath (Bass). Not only was their sound different, but their look as well. Like most successful visual kei bands, they'd eventually switch things up to a more standard rock band look. But they were one of the pioneers of the visual kei movement for much of their earlier career. This made them stand out quite a bit before visual kei really took hold, so their fans (who often mimicked their style) naturally stood out too. To help them feel better about this and thank them for their support, vocalist Toshi would often shout "mune hare!" ("Be proud!") repeatedly to the crowd at the end of their early gigs. Continue Reading

Sakura Taisen: Hana Gumi Taisen Columns

Reviews
Hardware: Saturn
03/28/1997 (Japan)
Sakura Wars: Flower Division Battle Columns
A mere 6 months after the release of the original Sakura Taisen on the Sega Saturn comes the Sakura Taisen series' second piece of spin-off software. Whereas the first piece was a somewhat odd digital newsletter, making the second piece a Columns game made all the sense in the world since Columns is also a Sega property. A gut reaction may be that this is going to be a lazily put together game, crossing the two franchises in the most basic ways possible. I would urge anyone who feels this way to suppress this opinion and actually give the game a try though, as it ended up being quite surprisingly good. Continue Reading

Sakura Taisen

Reviews
Hardware: Saturn
09/27/1996 (Japan)
サクラ大戦
Sakura Wars
It's often the case that popular anime or manga franchises are adapted into games, but not as often do you see a game franchise turn into popular anime and manga. Sakura Taisen is one of the best examples of this phenomenon, and given the pedigree of its creators it was probably destined to become a media franchise from the beginning. The creator of the series was Ouji Hiroi, a manga creator who is probably best known for the creation of Sakura Taisen. The scenario writer was Satoru Akahori, a scriptwriter, manga author and novelist best known for such 90s staples as Saber Marionette and Bakuretsu Hunter (Sorcerer Hunters). The character design was done by Kousuke Fujishima (he's certainly best known as being the creator of Ah! My Goddess!, as well as his involvement as a character designer in the Tales series of games) and Hidenori Matsubara (he did the character design for Fujishima's original designs in the various Ah! My Goddess! anime adaptations, and has also been involved as a key animator in many other big animated features). Last but not least, the music was composed by Kouhei Tanaka (a composer of more game, anime and tokusatsu theme songs than I can count). Continue Reading