Sunday, October 17, 2004

Katamari Update

It took me awhile to warm up to Katamari Damacy, since I had to get past all the hype and evaluate the experience for myself. Was I really having fun? After realizing I’d spent several hours rolling things into a ball and didn’t want to stop, I suppose I can say that I was. Right now I’m on Star 6, but I haven’t played since Tuesday and Wednesday.

I actually like that the people and animals look blocky and fake, since it makes the world more abstract and you don't have any virtual guilt about rolling them into a ball as they scream and flail. I also like the surreal cut-scenes with the creepy kids and their mom, and how even they are drawn in the blocky style to match the human appearances within the gameplay.

The film school at USC has a new Interactive Media division, created three years ago out of a huge grant from EA. I was talking to Doox, an Interactive Media student, at a party on Friday and he was really excited that I knew what Katamari was. Apparently it’s all the rage among the IM students. One guy even bought five copies because he wanted to give it as a gift but feared it would sell out. How is Katamari doing sales-wise, anyway? Is it really in short supply, being a more obscure title?

Doox hasn’t gotten his copy yet, but he has played it and was very enthusiastic. Doox is from Korea, and he’s actually very enthusiastic about pretty much everything, like learning to shotgun a beer.


lydia said...

The kids really are creepy. I think that's how kids in our non-Katamari world look through Cynthia's eyes.

Katamari Damacy is sold out at the regular game stores around here... It was back-ordered on EB when I checked last week for a friend who wanted to play it. But you managed to buy it, right? Maybe there's just more demand for senseless rolling in the Bay Area.

Zack said...

Katamari Damacy was in extremely short supply when it came out. In the SF area, I think every available copy was preordered. I think the situation is better in other markets. Retailers didn't order enough because they didn't expect it to sell. Namco's in the process of making and shipping more, but in the meantime, I'm told that the only retailer smart enough to order and stock a bunch was the EB Games website.

My source:
This-a-here Gamespot articleTell Doox his name is awesome.

Kenny said...

I got Katamari at Best Buy in Westwood. It was the only copy they had, so maybe the rest had sold out and I just got lucky. I went to EB in Westwood before that and they didn't seem to stock it at all.

Christa said...

Oh man, Katamari Damacy is ridiculously addictive. Of course, SOME of us sporadic-type KD-ers can't get past Star 8, since it begins so farking smallishly. And I haven't yet figured out the combo for kicking that useless and Siegfried-like king right in the face ... but boy howdy would I like to. Whadda bastard. His pint-sized princely son's doing all the work, gathering up sumo wrestlers and the like, and getting none of the glory.

In any case, nobody seems to have heard of Katamari Damacy around here. I had to order it from some random place online. And Amazon was sold out, which kind of amused me. That place is one giant lie anyway. They don't have ANY warrior women on their payroll.

Zack said...

Shit, I always thought it was called Amazon because of the diversity of products. You know, crazy rainforest stuff, big-eyed monkeys and frogs that bleed maple syrup when you sing to them. And are you sure there aren't any warrior women? Have you looked into this? Certainly they are unrepresented. That I will agree with. But maybe they've got a mascot? Some freakish, one-breasted, nine footer who eats maple frogs for breakfast?

Christa said...

If there truly are frogs that bleed maple syrup, the amphibian kingdom is now officially 99.9% cooler.

I didn't know Wonder Woman had one breast. Gee, golden armor really CAN hide anything.