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Old 08-21-2012, 10:59 AM   #1
Talon87
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GameCenter CX


GameCenter CX is a Fuji TV television series starring comedian Arino Shinya in which Arino, playing the part of a section chief for a fictional company which tasks him with playing video games, tackles one retro video game each episode. His usual task is to complete the game in one shoot which is pretty impressive considering he has usually never played the games before, is not what you'd call a very good gamer ^^; (aside from puzzle games at which he's above average), and has to complete them all in one sitting with only small breaks taken for meals and occasionally shooting other segments of the show that same day. The most frequent outcomes are (1) successfully beating the game in a single shoot (~14 hours or less), (2) forfeiting the game after a grueling single shoot, or (3) requesting a second day in which to try and beat the game, which usually results in him beating it but not always iirc.

If you're looking for a good episode to start with, then even though it's out of order I'd highly recommend the Ninja Gaiden 1 episode. Unfortunately, it's impossible to find streaming copies of the Japanese version so I'll have to link you to the English-narrated version instead, but tbh that was the very first exposure I personally had to the series and since then I've watched dozens and dozens of these episodes, so yeah. Give it a look if you have some free time. If you like that episode, then I can recommend a few others:

Mighty Bomb Jack (Season 6; Episode 39) (Kotaku English narration dub)
The Mystery of Atlantis (Season 2; Episode 1)
Prince of Persia (Season 2; Episodes 7 & 8 )
S.O.S (Season 6; Episode 43)

If you like these, then you can go back to the start of the series and watch in order if you like. Or you can watch out of order, picking the episodes which sound most interesting. Either way works. Watching in order means you'll meet the assistant directors (ADs) in order and see how Arino's relationship with each of them naturally evolves over time. Watching out of order means you can avoid a lot of episodes that might be duller to you for various reasons and can soak up the best stuff first, circling back around to watch the other episodes once you've run out of things to watch.

For more information, check out the Wikipedia page. However, be careful! The tabulation of episodes includes a column on the far right listing the results (failed, cleared, etc.) so try not to read too closely or you may cheat yourself out of some of the most exciting episodes' excitement!

Finally: I would personally encourage you to hold off on watching the following episodes until you've watched ten or more of the other episodes and begun to develop an appreciation for who these characters are:
  • Super Mario World (and subsequently Super Mario 64 since it flashes back to this episode)
  • ActRaiser
  • Kai no Bouken: the Quest of Ki
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Old 08-22-2012, 09:34 AM   #2
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I lol'd when he kept clinging to the wall during boss fights, and his assistant blocking the sunlight. That's an amusing show, but not as good as Angry Nintendo Nerd for recalling an era past where game developers had to make the games exceedingly difficult to extend the playing time.

The Ninja Gaiden trilogy is indeed highly difficult. I was never able to beat any of the games as a kid, but I revisited the series after becoming older and smarter, and I was finally able to beat them all. I basically had to devote an entire day to each game. In terms of absolute difficulty of the levels, Ninja Gaiden 1 is the hardest by far, but the fact that it has unlimited continues is a big help. You can just grind away endlessly until the pattern of the enemies is drilled into your brain. You think it's bad that you have to start the last level all over again if you die to the final boss? Try starting the WHOLE GAME OVER AGAIN, as Ninja Gaiden 3 forces you to. There are no continues! And the levels are still pretty damn hard on top of that, so it edges out the original for title of Hardest Game I've Ever Beaten. How did I resist the urge to use save states instead of painstakingly starting the whole game over again after dying? Easy, because if I cheated, I wouldn't have had the satisfaction of knowing I beat the game fair and square!
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Old 08-22-2012, 10:32 AM   #3
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I think AVGN and GCCX bring different things to the table. AVGN is more about reviewing shitty titles (with only occasionally a famous and popular title) whereas GCCX is more about famous titles period, both the good and the bad. (So like, both series do Ninja Gaiden because it's so notorious but only GCCX does fun games like Super Mario World and Mega Man whereas only AVGN does shitty rare titles like Little Red Hood and The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.) AVGN is more about reviewing games in somewhat of a documentary style whereas GCCX is more about playing through the game. In AVGN, the focus is on comedy, not on beating the game. (In fact, judging from his videos, user commentary, and his own admissions, James doesn't seem to be very good at many of the video games he plays.) GCCX, on the other hand, also stars someone who isn't terribly good at video games but he, unlike the Nerd, actually tries his hardest to beat them. That's ultimately the biggest difference of all: AVGN is about laughing at terribly coded or terribly designed games with a focus on James' angry antics whereas GCCX is about cheering on the everyman, Itou Kaiji Arino Shinya, as he desperately attempts to complete all manner of video games in 1-2 days.

I like both series. They each bring something different to the table. Personally, I've come to enjoy GCCX more than AVGN. I still watch AVGN but I feel like the latest review (Schwarzenegger games) is a bad sign that AVGN may have jumped the shark. The video lacked the charm and better writing of fellow big production reviews like Ninja Gaiden and R.O.B. the Robot; and it also lacked the comedic punch of reviews like TMNT or Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde Revisited. What it had instead was an overabundance of James trying to impress the audience with all his newfangled film techniques (not to mention an upgraded camera, good lord!) that he acquired while shooting his movie. GCCX's only problem is that the newer ADs are a lot more forgettable than the older ADs and that once you've seen Arino play a hundred games it's no longer as new and exciting as it once was. But that's true for just about any series of its kind and, like I said, if I had to pick which one I liked more today my vote would go to GCCX.

Last edited by Talon87; 08-22-2012 at 10:34 AM.
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Old 08-23-2012, 09:13 AM   #4
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I judged the video mostly on its comedy value. I gave the turbo controller a pass, but it's not much of a challenge anymore when he lets his assistants play through the difficult parts of the game. Then they showed him exactly how to beat certain bosses. They handed him the final (final) boss on a silver platter! Maybe he only indulged in such blatant cheating for that one game due to its notorious difficulty, I don't know, but I would much rather have seen him admit defeat in despair after two days of hardship than have other people play for him.
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Old 08-23-2012, 10:15 AM   #5
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In most episodes, the ADs either do not play at all or else they ask to play for only one life -- and they usually do that only when he's been stuck for like 3 hours or when it's a game with few or no continues and he keeps getting sent back to the start. I can see your point about it not really being his own 100% accomplishment in that episode, but that was a sort of special case where, when they filmed the episode, Arino had had three ADs (the tall guy Toujima from Season 0, the handsome guy Sasano from Season 1, and the other guy Urakawa from Seasons 2 and 3) and so Ninja Gaiden was sort of an epic family reunion where his old allies all came out of the woodwork to help him conquer one of the most difficult video games in history. I'd liken it to when Charizard, Squirtle, and Bulbasaur all came back for Ash at the end of Johto to help him out.

If you want a video where he gets little or no assistance, try Prince of Persia.
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Old 08-23-2012, 10:21 PM   #6
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Oh man, I forgot how hysterical his Street Fighter II playthrough was! It might be boring to you to watch if you didn't care much for Street Fighter as a kid or ever play it, but if you did love it and play it as a kid, this is one to enjoy. He uses a ... shall we say, somewhat unorthodox and yet all too well-known strategy to advance in this game. What is that strategy, and how far does it take him? Well, you'll just have to watch the video to find out!
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Old 08-24-2012, 09:04 AM   #7
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Watched Prince of Persia. I also played this game as a youngster, but the PC version. I couldn't even make it out of the prison levels. Then I remember being offended when they announced a Prince of Persia movie, and the star wasn't even an actual guy from Iran!

GameCenter CX is a good show, but I wish it wasn't so damn long! Each episode is a full length movie.
...... or a sports game, which would actually make it a better allotment of time. I like sports and all, but I haven't actually sat down and watched a game from start to finish in years.

Is the trick he uses to advance through Street Fighter II pressing start on controller 2, bringing up "Here comes a new challenger!", then beating up the defenseless player 2, which counts as a win? That's what I did! Only problem is you have to beat M. Bison legit.
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Old 08-24-2012, 09:26 AM   #8
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No, it's not. It's ...

(SF II episode spoiler)
Spoiler: show
... spamming projectiles (specifically Yoga Fire).
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Old 09-11-2012, 03:54 PM   #9
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Look what's finally English subbed. Probably relevant to just about everyone here's interests. It's not every day you get to see a candid interview with Mr. Tajiri.
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Old 09-28-2012, 01:51 PM   #10
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Heh, I like this series, and I've seen him play a Legend of Zelda and a Sonic game. The Punch Out playthrough is probably the most memorable out of it, though; I like it when Arino-san gets the AD to "coach" him through it. lol
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Old 10-31-2012, 04:08 PM   #11
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"Kachou Shachou", a tag team between Arino Shinya and Iwata Satoru

You can tell Arino is pretty starstruck. And it's pretty incredible, love him or hate him, to see Iwata being so personable.
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Old 01-12-2013, 06:10 PM   #12
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Not exactly GCCX-related, but ... I watched this Downtown meets Yoiko video this morning on YouTube. The number of times I've watched Arino Shinya perform in his role as the Kachou on GameCenter CX far and away outnumber the number of times I've seen him in his Yoiko combi, so it was pretty neat to see this crossover meeting between the two comedy groups. TBH, I was astonished by just how friendly both Arino and Hamaguchi are with one another. With Downtown, it's very, very easy to see who is the boke (Matsumoto) and who is the tsukkomi (Hamada). With Yoiko, I gotta say that even though one does lean towards assuming Arino is the boke, there were just so many moments in this where a) Hamaguchi was so goofy himself or b) he was so kind towards his partner, and vice-versa. They ... seem to have a much healthier relationship than Downtown, perhaps. ^^;;

Spoiler: show
Also, I agree with the YouTube commenter who notes that that cafe was less a tsundere cafe and more a tsun-bitch cafe. Where was the dere? I saw no dere. Even the "tsun" doesn't mean "heinous bitch." Good lord at that girl. She felt less like a tsundere and more like "teenage female Hamada the super sadist".
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Old 03-09-2013, 12:18 PM   #13
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This is why I could never get into Fire Emblem. Far, far too frustrating of a waste of time to try and clear stages without incurring any casualties, and yet at the same time you can't possibly be happy with allowing story-relevant characters (which they all pretty much are) to die.

But if you love Fire Emblem, then I recommend checking the video out.
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Old 03-19-2013, 01:17 PM   #14
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Blargh. A day or two ago, the entirety of the English fansubbed GCCX presence on YouTube got banhammered. retroclone1, pzetler, biohazardguild, and Gaming CX all got banned on the same day. The first two hadn't updated in months (the first in almost a year), but the second two were the big channels that the SA GCCX fansub team used to get their stuff out there on YouTube. In fact, after formally creating a channel around the show (their Gaming CX one), the team member behind biohazardguild quit uploading episodes for the better part of the past year ... but then out of nowhere started uploading the entire backlog to his channel over the past two weeks.

I'm still trying to figure out what exactly is going on here since:
  • SA GCCX, despite being the fansubbing team, also appears to be the legal license holder for the North American DVD rights to Retro Game Master (GCCX's North American name) or is at least heavily invested in promoting the sales of said DVDs. So I kind of wonder why they'd be targeted by either the Japanese or the American license holders considering they appear to be very much batting for them.
  • SA GCCX seems to be talking about the series moving to a video on demand (VOD) model, to which I say blegh. This might suggest that they took down their videos on their own ... except no, their accounts were all banned for "multiple third-party infringements" by YouTube, so.
  • You'd think the Japanese would be pissed at us if they're the ones who got all these channels taken down ... but apparently they're holding an English-language Facebook event even as we speak reaching out to the fans, so that's not it either.
So I dunno. Guess we'll find out in the coming days whether the channel got reported by Fuji Television in Japan, by the North American DVD license holder (if not SA GCCX), or self-reported by SA GCCX themselves. Still. No more GameCenter CX on YouTube.
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Old 03-20-2013, 08:50 PM   #15
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I regret not watching the Fire Emblem episode before it was taken down. Maybe some day he'll play Fire Emblem 5: Thracia 776, which is widely considered to be one of the hardest games ever made. As a fun fact, it was also the last game ever made for Super Famicom, released in 1999. Intelligent Systems either struggled with or hated 3D, which is why they ignored the N64 and Gamecube for so long in favour of the handhelds. When they did make a game for the main system, they were pseudo 2D, like Paper Mario.
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Old 05-21-2013, 11:15 AM   #16
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Not sure how long it will last, but someone's registered an account on YouTube as GCCXKachoOn and has uploaded both the entire archive of previously-fansubbed episodes and specials (and mostly in chronological order, too) as well as some newly-fansubbed episodes.

For starters, here's the reupload of the Pokémon special in which he interviews and games alongside Tajiri Satoshi. Here's a sample quote to whet your appetites, fellow Pokémon fans, from 59m22s:
Announcer: Something else helped inspire Pokémon. That hint was hidden in Tajiri's childhood.
Arino: Your childhood bug-collecting hobby served as inspiration?
Tajiri: That's exactly it. I collected them obsessively to the point where I was like a bug professor.
Arino: Ah, before video games, there were bugs?
Tajiri: That's right. If you read educational books and guide books about bugs for children, it'll say things like "Spread honey on trees to catch bugs." But the honey thing ... it didn't seem realistic.
Arino: The honey?
Tajiri: Yes ... Well, for one, we didn't have honey in our house.
Arino,Tajiri: *laughter*
Arino: No honey?
Tajiri: Even if I was told to use honey, I'd think, "Does spreading honey really attract bugs?"
Arino: That's true.
Tajiri: I had that kind of doubt. And so what I did was, I'd place rocks at the foot of a tree. Slightly large ones. When I did that, later I'd lift them and find a stag beetle underneath.
Arino: In between them?
Tajiri: Right, right. So, with a single idea, you can catch bugs. As a grade schooler, I thought, "Hey, I can do it if I try ..." Around the time I had my fill of chasing after bugs, that's when the Invaders boom hit. I recalled back to those times, when my gaming days merged with my childhood days, ... as a result, the game Pokémon was born, you could say.
The bug catching serving as inspiration for Pokémon is nothing you haven't heard before, but I did find it interesting how specifically honey, trees, and stag beetles tied together in Tajiri's memory. It certainly explains why we see those three intertwined in Generation 2. In fact, it kind of begs the question why that mechanic didn't show up in the original games, given it's such a clear memory of Tajiri's from his childhood and is something he points to in an interview when asked about the origins of Pokémon.

Anyway, be sure to check out the entire playlist. There are a few things that were uploaded out of order, like Puyo Puyo 2 (Episode 102) or Ninja Spirit (Episode 112) which show up way near the beginning of the list, and there are a few new things from after the big YouTube purge of GCCX videos happened.

Also, Mcsweeney? Fire Emblem video right here.
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Old 05-21-2013, 09:19 PM   #17
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>Honey in the original games

There exists some dummied text in GS where Sweet Honey was supposed to be used much like how it is in DPPt. It appears to have supposed to have been given out by the lady in the Ilex/Goldenrod gate who gives you the Sweet Scent TM.
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Old 05-24-2013, 02:27 PM   #18
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For Kaisa and Meetan, watch here from 12m55s through to 15m10s for some AKB48 stuff. Some background information: in AD Takahashi's debut episode, we learned that his favorite member of AKB48 is Ooshima Yuuko, a.k.a. Korisu, and that Arino's is Mayuyu. (Takahashi is the man you'll see on our right; Arino is the man you'll see on our left in the pale blue-green work outfit.)

Spoiler: show
Both times I've watched this scene -- first last night, second just now -- it's gotten laughter and thunderous applause out of me at the climax. "出た~!" indeed. Arino's hands flying to the front of his face in embarrassed surprise just seal the deal. hahaha
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Old 05-24-2013, 02:39 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by Talon87 View Post
For Kaisa and Meetan, watch here from 12m55s through to 15m10s for some AKB48 stuff. Some background information: in AD Takahashi's debut episode, we learned that his favorite member of AKB48 is Ooshima Yuuko, a.k.a. Korisu, and that Arino's is Mayuyu. (Takahashi is the man you'll see on our right; Arino is the man you'll see on our left in the pale blue-green work outfit.)

Spoiler: show
Both times I've watched this scene -- first last night, second just now -- it's gotten laughter and thunderous applause out of me at the climax. "出た~!" indeed. Arino's hands flying to the front of his face in embarrassed surprise just seal the deal. hahaha
Maybe I missed it somewhere, but where the hell did the nickname "Korisu" come from? Subtitles say it means Baby Squirrel but it still makes no sense to me.
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Old 05-24-2013, 03:05 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kaisap112 View Post
Maybe I missed it somewhere, but where the hell did the nickname "Korisu" come from? Subtitles say it means Baby Squirrel but it still makes no sense to me.
Are you asking about the Japanese word or are you asking why they named her after a squirrel in the first place?

The Japanese word:
Risu is the Japanese word for squirrel. When you place a ko in front of near about any animal name, you get the baby version. So like ...
  • cat : kitten :: neko : koneko
  • dog : puppy :: inu : koinu
  • bird : chick :: tori : kotori
So the nickname "Korisu" translates into common English as "Baby Squirrel" since, in common English, we don't have a special word for squirrel babies. (I'm sure we have a term for it in extended English, but your average English speaker isn't going to have any idea what to call a baby squirrel other than "a baby squirrel".)

Why a squirrel?:
I have no idea. I don't follow AKB48. My guess would be that she got the nickname either because her behavior struck someone as squirrel-like or else because her physical appearance did. It has no connection with her name. Actually ... I went ahead just now and Googled for it, and here you go:
Quote:
Q: AKB48の大島優子さんはなぜコリスと呼ばれているんですか?
ニックネームのルーツが知りたいです。

A: 小さいから、リスに似てるから「コリス」だそうです。
大島麻衣さんがつけました。
The questioner asks, "Why is AKB48's Ooshima Yuuko called Korisu? I'd like to know the roots of this nickname. The respondent then answers, "I hear her nickname's Korisu because she resembles a squirrel because she's small. Ooshima Mai gave it to her."

Some other people weigh in here and here explaining that when Yuuko joined AKB48, her name resembled that of another Yuuko in the group, so she was given the nickname Korin which was an abbreviated form of the longer nickname Yuukorin (which, apparently, was the nickname that the other girl got to have). Then at some later point, I guess Ooshima Mai was said to have been like Yuuko's owner/master, and she Mai's pet squirrel? So the nickname evolved from Korin to Korisu since it both fit that idea as well as was only a one-letter mutation from her previous nickname.
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Old 05-27-2013, 01:13 AM   #21
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The part where he recruits the guy who says he's only in the enemy army because he needs to buy medicine for his sick mother reminds me of a hilarious level in Fire Emblem 7. In one of the first tutorial chapters, you have to defend an injured woman who's holed up inside a building being attacked by bandits. One of the bandits is named Dorcas, and he's only participating in the raid because he needs money for his wife's operation. Unbeknownst to him, the woman inside the house is actually his wife! The tutorial forces you to go up to Dorcas and talk him into joining your army, but on hard mode, the game doesn't force you to do anything. If you don't talk to him fast enough, he'll actually run into the house and kill his own wife! He kills his wife so he can save up money for his wife's operation. Brilliant plan, Dorcas.
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Old 05-27-2013, 01:17 AM   #22
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I've played that mission. (Just recently, too. March 2013.) I should finish that game. *put it down in March three to six missions into what's-his-name's story (not Hector)*
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Old 07-17-2013, 02:55 PM   #23
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I've been watching all of Season 17 raw over the past few weeks, but I just finished this one and feel like it's worth sharing here since it's largely intelligible even without speaking any of the language. Not only that, but it's a physically exhausting challenge that makes use of the NES's touch pad controller (the last time they did one of these was back in like Season 1, 2, or 3!) and it's also ...

(middle of the episode spoiler)
Spoiler: show
a team effort episode, which we also haven't seen to quite this degree in quite a long while. That made it so much fun to watch. You didn't know whether Arino was going to win or lose, but either way you were cheering for him and his assistants so, so hard.

Something worth checking out for any of you who think you've got the heart and the stamina to march in place for approximately 3-5 hours in one day. (Cutting out the rest of the hours because of breaks taken, the skateboard item, etc.) The fact that Arino did as well as he did at age 41 is damn impressive. GO KACHOU!
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Old 08-07-2013, 11:04 PM   #24
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An interview with Arino circa 2011. I intended to only watch for a few minutes but ended up watching the first nine and a half with a huge grin on my face before finally feeling like taking a pause and posting here to share the link. The one host who does the most talking is a little obnoxious with just how enthusiastic he is ^^; , but overall I think it's a fun interview for newcomer and veteran fans alike. (Before submitting this post, I watched up thru 18 minutes. Still enjoyable, will probably finish it all.)
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Old 12-23-2013, 06:49 PM   #25
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Found out there's a group fan-translating this show for non-Japanese viewers and it looks pretty promising. Probably not the first group to do this, just thought this thread could make use of a site like that.
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