Xenoblade Chronicles 2: that waifu that you do


#1

The last Xenoblade Chronicles — it was numbered X, but it was really number 2, which makes this number 3, although it’s technically number 2 — built up to and was eventually based on a simple idea: wouldn’t it be cool if you could get into a giant robot and fuck shit up? There’s even a Japanese word for this concept: “mech”.

This Xenoblade Chronicles is also built on a simple idea: sexy dolls are supposedly sexy. And of course there’s a Japanese word for this concept: “waifu”.


This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at http://www.quartertothree.com/fp/2017/12/03/xenoblade-chronicles-2-waifu/

#2

I never did think I’d see the day when I would read words that Tom Chick wrote about waifus.

Xenoblade Chronicles 2 is on my list to pick up after Mario.


#3

I feel pretty safe in skipping this one.


#4

I guess the Tora incident is what you get when a game gives you a peek at Japan’s misoginy, something that a rational mind would rather think as something lost in translation?
Usually, the “adaptation” work is to raise coverfires to distract the Western audience - I put brackets in there because the recent trend of Sega and NIS works has been to basically rewrite game scripts. “Super adaptation” is the Japanese term for this practice.


#5

Isn’t “waifu” a bastardization of the word “wife” based on the pronunciation of that word by Japanese speakers? Don’t think it is a Japanese word at all.

(This is me trying real hard not to point out that I’ve never seen an anime that referred to giant robots as “mechs”)


#6

Correct on both.


#7

Yeah, I’m pretty sure it’s always “Mecha”.


#8

No, it’s typically something unique to the particular show, like Valvrave or Gundam or Megadeus or Knightmare or some incomprehensible German word. If you are watching shows dubbed in English, well, that’s probably not what they were called in Japanese.


#9

Wanzers and such, yeah. But the class of shows featuring these giant robots are called Mecha shows. Gundam is a Mecha show, for example.

I think. I gave up any pretense of being an expert when I stopped watching anime a decade ago.


#10

That’s how we refer to the genre, yes. Not sure Japanese speakers do, which was the original remark.


#11

They are simply referred to as “robot anime”. The word “mech/mecha” came from some early English translation, because robot didn’t work well with something with a pilot in the West, I guess?


#12

Yeah, you can perhaps make the distinction between real robot anime (Battletech, Robotech/Macross) and super robot anime (Mazinger, Gurren Lagann). Super Robot Wars is named such because of the genre, not because of the system -it was a Famicom game, not a Super Famicom game-.

Mecha perhaps maps better to real robot, but Mecha is a Western term.


#13

Arguing the taxonomy of anime? Y’all are a bunch of weeabos.


#14

I believe it’s “Animu”. ;)


#15

Well, I’ll keep using the term “Buster Machines”.


#16

Typo: one heek kicked up like a giddy cheerleader

I was just going to say this. I’m a lot easier on foreign stuff because I can at least imagine that in the native language it might not be so bad.


#17

Waifus are creepy as fuck, especially when they’re young. They are an ever present reminder that a major component of the audience for the game we are playing are people who see woman as objects, pedophiles, or both. I can’t play most jrpgs anymore. Once you notice it, you see it everywhere. Even in my beloved Etrian Odyssey, many of the portraits are disturbing.


#18

Yeah, I play Fate Grand Order on mobile. The game is fun, but some of the characters shudder

But (not directed specifically at you, Mark) let’s not act as if Japanese video games have the market cornered on depicting women as objects.


#19

I’m about two hours into this game and it feels too creepy for me to enjoy so far. Sounds like it doesn’t improve in the near future on that front…

So far, I very much agree with @tomchick that the writing was better in the first game. It was, wasn’t it? I hope those aren’t my rose-tinted glasses… I remember liking the characters and really caring about how the story was progressing then but I don’t particularly like anyone this time.

I think I’m going to try and push to around the 5 hour mark and if it doesn’t have its hooks in me, move on to something else.


#20

I think the specifically creepy part in Japan’s approach is that they try to fill, awkwardly, those empty women characterizations with some sort of obsessive emotional hooks.