Welcome to Video Game Theme Week: Let’s Attack Aggressively!

As the collective domain of manchildren, Japanese cartoons and videogames have been working in tandem for years. From animated adaptations of 80’s classics like Salamander to Studio 4C’s work on Street Fighter IV, Japanese animation studios have never been averse to taking the game industry’s finest work and adapting it into middling-to-poor products for some quick cash.

As scholars and enthusiasts in both fields, we here at Colony Drop have taken it upon ourselves to venture into this vast, dessicated land and see what we can see. It won’t be easy: video game Japanimation has a well-deserved reputation in the fandom for being some of the worst, most phoned-in crap around. But we’ve covered wars— Psychic Wars— and if some bad cartoons could get us down, we’d just shut down the site every time a new anime season started.

Stand with us, dear reader, and fight. The boss rush starts tomorrow. Be praying. Be praying. Be praying.


  1. Please mention Ys. It wasn’t very good, but I do have fond memories of Adol actually choking a monster to death, Metal Gear-style. Pretty good for an adaptation of a game where you run into monsters to attack.

    I also thought the part where a girl was kidnapped by monsters, and Adol singlehandedly went into their lair and killed all of them was very true to the way video games work.

  2. Am eagerly awaiting some Tekken: the Motion Picture. “No son of mine will be this weak!”

  3. “Japanese animation studios have never been averse to taking the game industry’s finest work and adapting it into middling-to-poor products for some quick cash.”

    Though at least they don’t have a Chun-Li on their hands. That flick makes the Toshinden anime faithful in comparison.

  4. Sounds like fun…will be waiting to see what gets covered.

    True, there have been many video game to anime shows that have been God-awful, but there are a few diamonds in the rough–GUNGRAVE was definitely one of the best, and I even liked THE MARS DAYBREAK and the TSUKIHIME anime.

    But that’s just me.

  5. It has its detractors but I maintain that .hack//Sign was a pretty good anime. Great music, consistent atmosphere, some neat narrative devices going on, and with likeable characters just about outweighing annoying ones.

    Final Fantasy VII: Last Order is an entirely competent adaptation of one of the more dramatic elements of the game’s back-story. Infinitely better than the dreary Advent Children anyway.

    Also, let’s not forget that Serial Experiments: Lain, the best anime series ever made, was adapted from a Playstation game.

  6. I like Lain a lot too. I think, though, that it was a “multimedia project” (man, that sounds so 1998), so the anime series and the game were conceived at the same time.

  7. Wikipedia’s telling me that the Lain videogame was released after the series was finished airing. For what it’s worth!

  8. Released afterwards but developed concurrently. The idea and story for the game came first though. As Matt says, it would perhaps be stretching it to call either an adaptation of the other given the narrow timeframe in which they were developed.

  9. I think Lain was one of those mixed media releases like the .hack franchise, where it was planned as an anime and game from the start. Pretty certain Pioneer representatives mentioned both back when they were at a UK convention before its airing, and certainly both were hyped relentlessly in the Japanese magazines at the time.

  10. I might be preventing this from happening by just preemptively suggesting the idea, perhaps, but it would be interesting to bring up either of the two Dragon Quest (or Dragon Warrior if you prefer) anime series, particularly the first one and its rather ill-fated localization attempt.

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