The Untold History of Japanese Game Developers [Video Game Books]

I’ve been meaning to review these books for a while now, but it was only a few months back that I finally got around to picking up the third and final volume in John Szczepaniak’s trilogy. I don’t really buy video game history books but these have proven to be the exception to that rule and I believe that they deserve more attention. Back in 2013, John – backed by funds from a Kickstarter crowd-funding campaign – toured Japan for several months, interviewing Japanese game developers in order to obtain and preserve firsthand accounts of what it was like creating games in Japan in the 80’s, 90’s, and – to a lesser extent – the 00’s.

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Capcom Figure Builder Nurse Morrigan Figure Review (NSFW)

DSC_0084Manufacturer: Capcom (Capcom Figure Builder Creator’s Model)
Year: 2016
Material(s): ABS, PVC
Scale: Approx 280mm/10.92 inches (310mm inc. Injection Needle)

Darkstalkers‘ Morrigan Aensland is one of my favourite female videogame characters. I guess that’s a fairly unoriginal statement to make in 2019 but it was a different case back when Capcom’s Darkstalkers/Vampire fighting game series was a little more obscure and more the preserve of the genre faithful. Whatever your age or gaming experience, however, it isn’t difficult to fall for Ms. Aensland’s charms and so it’s no surprise that there are many figures and statues based on the sexy succubus.

There are only three that matter in my opinion though: the Max Factory statue (based on Kinu Nishmura’s Capcom Vs SNK 2 artwork), the reclining Yamato resin figure (with realistic feathers) and this nurse-themed figure from Capcom themselves, released under their Figure Builder line. The uber-talented Ms Nishimura was also behind the artwork that inspired this figure. Like the Max Factory statue (which I also have), I took one look at the preview pictures for this figure and knew I HAD to have it, despite the fact that I was adamant that my days of buying statues were over.


First of all…just look at it. Whoever sculpted this figure knocked it out of the park and dialled the sexy factor up to eleven. A lot of credit for the design must also go to Kinu Nishimura and her visual design of Morrigan’s nurse outfit. The metal bat incorporated into the stocking/garter is such a nice touch. Then there is the translucent ‘blood’ base with a cute lil’ bat popping up out of the blood. Morrigan herself is posed brilliantly, giving her patient a devastating view as she produces a thermometer.

Obviously, PVC figures can’t hold a candle to the vastly superior quality of the limited polystone statues that cost hundreds of dollars, but the finish here is still pretty damn good. If I have any criticisms then the first would be the inclusion of the oversized injection needle behind Morrigan. Yeah, it looks cool and fits the horror theme but I think the figure would have been just fine without it. Secondly, I’m not sure that her breasts needed to be so enormous. Don’t get me wrong, I’m certainly not complaining, but just a little bit smaller and they’d still be pretty damn big as well as better proportioned overall.

In conclusion, this figure is second only to the older Max Factory Morrigan statue in my opinion but that’s just because I love that particular pose and the artwork it was based on. On balance, this nurse edition of everybody’s favourite succubus is of better overall quality and pretty much essential if you are a fan of the character.

Some more pictures:

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MegaHouse Rainbow Mika Figure Review (NSFW)

RainbowResize1Manufacturer: MegaHouse   |   Year: 2008   |   Material: PVC   |   Scale: 1/8

Rainbow Mika is one of my favourite female fighting game characters. I don’t imagine that it’s difficult to guess why either. Unfortunately, there hasn’t exactly been an abundance of must-have figures based on the big-booty wrestler. As far as I am concerned, there are only two worth buying. One is the more recent effort by Kotobukiya, based on artwork by Shunya Yamashita. The other is this 2008 model from MegaHouse. For the time being, I own both of these but I will regrettably be selling the MegaHouse version very soon (as part of an ongoing personal project) so I thought I’d at least feature it here before it heads off to a new owner.

[For those who missed it, I’ve already reviewed the Kotobukiya version of Rainbow Mika here]

Anyway, what do I think of this figure? I think it captures what makes Mika, Mika I guess. She’s striking a pose with a curled bicep and one hand on her famous bottom. The quality of the figure in general is good though I think that the blue colour is definitely the wrong shade in the flesh and looks almost metallic. It’s worth noting that this costume is her original from Alpha/Zero 3 before it was updated for her return in Street Fighter V. I think I like this outfit more so it’s a shame that any future figures will likely use the SFV revision.


The question is: which is better, this one or the Kotobukiya version? I do really like this one by MegaHouse. They put Mika in a great pose and nailed her body and the way her dramatic curves are almost overflowing from her outfit. But the colours on the later Kotobukiya figure are better and I think that the pose of that figure is a little more dynamic. It has more detailed hair too which I like. It’s a close-run thing overall though with little to choose between the two. In an ideal world, I’d keep both Rainbow Mika figures but I only need one (and some would say there is an argument for having none at all). Finally, I only paid about £40 for this many years ago when nobody was really interested. Looking around on ebay, it seems to have appreciated in both value and scarcity since then. Budding investors out there should take note as buying the right figures does tend to pay dividends down the line.

I will leave you with some more pictures of the MegaHouse Rainbow Mika. Enjoy.

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Kotobukiya Rainbow Mika Figure Review (possible NSFW)

Guilty admission number one: today was supposed to be some sort of game review or write-up. I have a few in mind that I’d like to bash out for Darkstalker90 Gaming but due to being so damned busy, I’ve simply not had the time nor found that magical, sweet place that I like my brain to be in if I’m to feel anything like a semi-decent passable wordsmith.

Guilty admission number two: I have a weakness for PVC figures and statues, especially those that depict my favourite female fighting game characters. It’s the height of pervy nerdism (is that even a word?) but hey, it is what it is. I’ve never really owned more than five figures at a time so I can’t say that this particular collection has ever been excessive compared to those of others’ that I have seen (although some might fairly point out that even owning a single ‘sexy’ figure like these is one too many…). I always sell some in order to create space/funds for others but it has certainly been a while since my last acquisition and I was quite proud of that fact…until I happened across this dynamite Rainbow Mika figure from Kotobukiya’s “Bishijou” line.



It really was one of those “gotta have it” moments and I was hitting up ebay a few days later and slamming an order in. I’ve already got the Cammy figurine from this same Bishijou line and both are sculpted from the reference of an illustration by legendary artist Shunya Yamashita who is famous for drawing the ladies. One of the main draws of this particular figure is that it depicts Mika in her updated Street Fighter V costume. In general, there aren’t really any other worthy Rainbow Mika figures with exception to the Capcom Maniax version by Megahouse which is getting on a bit now but still a looker (I have that one too) and worth having as it is the character’s original Alpha 3 outfit.

Rainbow Mika is all about the outrageous curves and mega booty, two things that this figurine really nailed. I actually think that it is much better than the original illustration by Mr Yamashita so kudos to the sculpter. The downsides are pretty much the same for any figurine of this sub-£100 price point and relate to it being a “cheap” PVC job as opposed to a high-end ceramic or resin model but let me say from experience that this figure is very good in the flesh (or plastic as the case may be) and I have no complaints about the quality. There is an upcoming Mika figure from Pop Culture Shock which will be very high quality as usual but set you back hundreds and hundreds of dollars as well as being very limited if previous PCS figures are anything to by. Obviously your budget and standards will ultimately decide whether you want one of these Kotobukiya versions but I will just leave a few more snaps here to help you decide…