Run! Run! Run! Well loyal viewers it looks like I bit off more than I could chew this week. Note to self, when the sign says don’t pet the dogs, don’t pet the dogs. I didn’t know sick dogs like that could be so fast. It’s only a flesh wound Richard; we’ll buy you a new ankle. Yes, yes, yes, I know you’re attached to that ankle. No, you won’t turn into a zombie. They are sick, not dead...at least I think...What the hell is that? Could this interview get any worse? Hallucinatory ninjas to zombie dogs to this!? I don’t think the company likes me very much anymore. Stay tuned to see if we survive an inter-dimensional cataclysm of epically chaotic proportions in Episode 14: Stay Puft! Only in Japan, only in Japan will something like this happen. No wonder all the space aliens attack the US in the movies. The market here is too flooded. And what is this gooey substance on the bottom of my sneaker that looks like I stepped in someone’s melted smore?
Disclaimer: This interview is reproduced as written by the interviewee with the exception of spelling and some grammar corrections. Picture copyright of its artist/photographer.
Name: Jeff (JayHawk)
Gender: Male (I think)
Occupation: Veterinarian Nurse/Assistance
Lasombra: When did you start gaming?
JayHawk: I started gaming when I was about 3 years old. My cousin had an Atari and I was very curious about that red button. One day after my mom had picked me up from Pre-School, I noticed my cousin's Atari was in the floor, so I started pushing that red button and nothing had happened. I was getting upset (first ever gaming rage) I started to take it apart, 30 more seconds I would had seen the insides but my cousin had luckily stop me.
Lasombra: How did you choose your PSN name?
JayHawk: My PSN name came about through months and months of mental burn-outs. Jay because my nickname is Jay. Hawk because I am from Chicago and anyone from Chicago knows about middle of winter and also in tribute to Andre Dawson's nickname as a kid, "Hawk”, and I like the Blackhawks. Jay_Hawk because I am showing tribute to Wilt Chamberland when he had attended Kansas University. 12 because it was the first time I dunked a basketball.
Lasombra: What motivated you to become a trophy hunter? What was your initial spark?
JayHawk: I don't really have any motivation to hunt for trophies, it’s just something I do for fun, to unwind and laugh about.
Lasombra: Are you a trophy hunter, platinum hunter, or a specific hunter? (Example: All GoW games hunter)
JayHawk: I am not really a hunter, am more of a "Whatever" type of hunter if I could pick that choice but if I had to chose, I would say I am a sports game hunter.
Lasombra: How many hours do you dedicate to trophy hunting?
JayHawk: I can spend up to 15 hrs every other day if I wanted to due to my easy work schedule.
Lasombra: What motivates you to go for that next trophy? How do you stay motivated after a long gaming session, particularly with grinding trophies?
JayHawk: I need no motivation to achieve the next trophy. One way or other, that trophy "Will Get Got"- R-Truth
Lasombra: Have you ever gone through any burnout from your sessions?
JayHawk: No I haven't. I avoid those through not having too much on my plate at once. I don't suffer from that "Gimme Gimme" Syndrome.
Lasombra: What is your proudest platinum? Why? Was it your hardest?
JayHawk: That’s a tough question, I will have to say either Final Fantasy XIII or NBA 2K12. Final Fantasy XIII because I really hated this series since day 1. I laughed my butt off at people who liked these type of games but my wife gave it to me as a Xmas gift in 2010 and I enjoyed it very much. NBA 2K12 because it is the only NBA 2K game that I didn't boost, I requested it but couldn't do it, so as War would say "Men up" and got it all by myself.
Lasombra: Do you have a trophy goal for the year? If so, how far are you along in it?
JayHawk: I don't have a trophy goal, that is so much like work and when I start setting goals just to achieve trophies, I am calling it quits.
Lasombra: Do you believe gamers should be allowed to make trophy hunting teams? Why or why not?
JayHawk: Yes, It isn't hurting anyone or causing damage to anything. Who are we to say no? As long as they don't go bragging about having "X" number of trophies. Inflecting one's opinion upon another gamer should be considered "taboo”.
Lasombra: Do you think Sony should create a world database with every user’s PSN trophy info for all to see? Why or why not?
JayHawk: Me personally, NO. I could care less what jiggy-1233 has on his trophy list. When I had platinumed NBA 2K12, I had so many people sending me a blank friend request to view my trophies or a blank message. It is kind of disturbing if you ask me.
Lasombra: What tips do you have for someone trying to reach the next level and going after a difficult platinum?
JayHawk: Well, my advice would be to just focus. If you have gamer rage, just don't try it before you start. All that raging over a game isn't good for your health.
Lasombra: Regardless of the system, what pre-trophy game would you auto-buy if it was released on the PS3 with trophy support?
JayHawk: Easy answer, Dragon Quest. They released a new one on the 3DS, man I was mad.
Lasombra: Living in Japan now, you’re living the Japanophile’s dream. Can you fill in the viewers on what’s different with gaming in Japan compared to back home in the USA?
JayHawk: That is a good question. You know that gamer rage people get when they lose? Well, here in the game centers or in the homes, you will never see that. Seeing little kids playing their handhelds is a sight to see. Gaming is supposed to be about relaxing your mind and escaping from your stressful life for an hour at time, not sitting there trying to be the first to become number 1. When I was in the High School, I used to get so mad because I could not get pass certain bosses or do an easy combo. I get here in 2003 and I went to a game center to play something, think is was Street Fighter and I get my butt kicked by a little kid. I got pretty upset. No one wanted to play with me ever after that day. Even when I had left for a 4 month deployment, nobody wanted to play with me. There is more of a friendly surrounding. Remember the outage that happened last year? Well the game centers made a lot of money during those days. Playing online on a server is not really popular here as it is in the States or in other countries but going to your friend’s home or going to the game centers are a better choice. Seeing your favourite game character dancing around gets you so pumped.
Lasombra: Do you understand Kanji? Do you have a preference to play a game in English or Japanese, or does it matter to you now?
JayHawk: I do understand Kanji but my reading it is not where I want it to be at. I understand it enough to get my work done. Now if you ask me about Katakana, I am 100% pro at reading and writing it. Most of my Japanese friends are kind of amazed by my ability to read a menu but I do have my days when I may order wrong and the waitress will laugh and my wife will feel embarrassed when I get the words for "Suck" and "Drink" confused. I prefer my games in English with Japanese subtitles. Everything else I do in Japanese to keep my mind going first. When I would play Yakuza 3 or 4 and my friends were over, they were shocked that I could understand what I had to do.
Lasombra: From your experience being in Japan, are there a lot of games the Japanese market gets that the North American market does not get. What kind of genres do those games tend to be, or is it evenly spread out?
JayHawk: There are certain RPG's that will never be release in North America because of the nature of the game and vice versa. The Japanese government frown upon the violence in certain games that comes out of the U.S and the U.S frown upon the certain themes that Japan releases. Is it fair? No way. But it is what it is.
Lasombra: What are Japanese gaming stores like? Are there lots of big chain stores or is the market a mom and pop operation?
JayHawk: The gaming stores here are not what people expect in Japan. There will never be a mom and pop due to the price range on certain games. Here we have a place called Dorama. It’s a company that deals with the entertainment side of Japan. They are other shops like Yamato Denki or Big Camera that sells games as well but those are mainly electronic shops. Dorama does have smaller shops that sell games at a lower price. Walking in a gaming store here is like walking into a dream. Friendly costumer service even if you don’t buy anything. They don’t work on commission so getting that "May I help you" is not really an issue. They don’t make you buy extra if you don’t need it. I bought my PS3 in 2010 and I asked for a certain model and they asked if I had a LCD T.V. I said yes and they throw in a HDMI Cable for free. It is not about having you walk out the store feeling empty in your pockets but more of you coming back again and again.
Lasombra: Are there a lot of girl gamers in Japan from your experience there?
JayHawk: Not many but if you go by what ages and where in Japan the demographics play a major role in what females do here. I believe in Tokyo there are more female gamers then in Okinawa. Just recently I had a person that claimed to be from Japan and was a female add me on the PSN but the funny thing about it was the games that person had played. I don’t see a lot of 20 and up females playing games but more like working or clubbing. I do see a small range of 7 to 11 yr olds playing games but they grow out of it very quick. It may be lots of females here that game but are afraid to do it by themselves because of the social stigma that will be placed upon them.
Lasombra: Have you ever had the opportunity, or the inclination, to discuss differences between Japanese and Western games? What have Japanese gamers you’ve talk to thought about that?
JayHawk: On this site I have not because some of the people here only care about the trophy. If a game is hard, then others are not willing to open their minds about a different culture without uttering foul language or showing their e-penis with their platinums. There is a bias issue towards certain genres. I would like to have a discussion with certain people but I feel that would or may not end well. I do have a friend that works for Sony and she is on my FB page and once every month, we go for sushi and talk about games. Past, Present and Future, sometimes we talk about the effects Western and Japanese Media plays on certain releases. I sometimes print out some of these posts about certain games on this site and I throw them at my friend. The looks she gives me makes me scared. I tend to talk to her more about topics from here then I do on this site. With my friend, I don’t feel like I have to ingest some of the nonsense or walk on eggshells because I don’t like a game. I can go on for hours about sports games on every console and not get a "This one is better" from her. Then I have friends that the last game that they have played was Zelda on NES. Arguing a point of view with the yelling or cussing is a joyful thing when I interact with Japanese gamers.
Thanks for the Interview, I would like to give thanks to the following.......Hitman, CV, Helyx, Dare aka young Jedi, Feral aka Bender, Ps360(he/she knows why), those crazy Aussies, Jack, The Legend Killer, Nero, Connie, Lasombra, Kid(the 420 one), Gauss, War, Chambers, oogabob (I think I spelled it right) Artemis, Asuka( first person to say hi to me since my noob days) and sorry for making you last..........Trains.
1 Hour Earlier
Okay Richard I was told whatever we do we don’t pet the dogs. Got it? Good. This is Japan. Resident Evil was created here. We don’t need zombie rabies. Ah, this ominous, dark, deserted looking mansion must be the location. The company must be having budget cuts or something. Usually the worst they send us is the UK. Yes, Richard, I know you’re British. No, I won’t stop making Brit jokes. Are you afraid of the mansion? What’s going to happen to us, seriously? Do you expect us to be running for our lives from a pack of rabid zombie dogs and head straight into an inter-dimensional vortex of chaotically epic proportions that could sever the space-time continuum? I’m sorry, but I’ve already been on cocaine. That sounds like a cake walk after that episode. Up next viewers is Episode 13: The Dog House. What Richard, what!? It’s Japan. There is a brothel next door. Those are the moans your hearing.
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