Author Archives: Raizen

Do the Upcoming Pokémon D&P Remakes Spoil a Future Nendoroid Line?

Considering that our freedoms are being screwed over along with whatever solutions that could make things any better, I’ve been dwelling on the graphical style of the upcoming Pokémon remakes quite a bit.

But after a while, I came to notice that the overworld models in Pokémon Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl look kinda reminiscent of something: Nendoroids.

If you’re wondering what a Nendoroid is, it’s a figurine line that originated in Japan. It’s basically like Funcopops, except Nendoroids make Funcopops look like smoldering crap. They are massively more expressive, and usually come with accessories like faceplates and exchangeable limbs for posing.

Here’s an example:

There are already Nendoroid figures of Pokémon trainers, such as this familiar character:

Even the champion from Diamond and Pearl, Cynthia, has been featured:

Could it be that the upcoming D&P remakes are providing strong hints of an upcoming line of Nendoroids? If so, perhaps ILCA are brilliant marketers, after all.

GameFreak must be well aware that most of the revenue that the Pokémon IP generates comes from merchandise. By making a game’s characters look like the merchandise, the interesting aspects of the franchise are being integrated in an intelligent way.

What a brilliant move.

The Pokémon DP Remake Art Style Needs to Improve

When I first saw the art style for the upcoming Pokémon games, Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl, I was warm to it. But since then, the artistic direction hasn’t been sitting well with me.

If you’re wondering what I mean, check out the character model in this picture:

I think that would look awesome on a keychain (Etsy artists, you’re probably well ahead of me). But for a core Pokémon title released in the year 2021? It kinda seems like the Nintendo Switch isn’t being pushed to its limits.

I know that GameFreak could do better. But this time, it wasn’t them. The company has delegated work on the D&P remakes to ILCA, which is short for I Love Computer Art.

Among their accomplishments include Metal Gear Rising: Revengence:

Yakuza 0:

Dragon Quest XI:

NieR: Sutomata:

Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown:

And now Pokémon: Brilliant Chibi and Shining Smol:

They may “love computer art”, but it’s plain to see when they’re not putting their hearts into it. Unless you can look at this battle scene and really think this is current gen:

So, who gets the blame: GameFreak or ILCA?

The answer is both. Whether it’s GameFreak for delegating work on their most beloved IP or ILCA for not taking it seriously, both are at fault for apparently not caring much, in spite of the fact that the games in question are ones that gamers have wanted to see for years.

Looking at the art for the D&P remakes, it’s obvious what little more could be done to make the games presentable: outlines and cel shading. And Pokémon fans are well ahead of the game in providing examples:

Just the outlines alone would do it. But check out what cel shading could do for, you know, an anime-style game:

And as if that weren’t enough, here’s more simple outlining at work:

Oh, hold on… That screen was from a Pokémon game released back in 2013. My mistake.

Still, they’re excellent examples of what you can do when you actually love computer art.

On top of the lazy look, there’s the fact that the remakes are made out to be faithful to the originals. Depending on how true that is, there might not be much point to them. After all, we already have the original Diamond and Pearl games. Other Pokémon remakes justified their existences with the presence of additional content, and it would be sensible if the D&P remakes did the same.

Comparisons have already been made between the D&P remakes and the recent Link’s Awakening remake for Switch. While a nostalgia trip could potentially justify that game’s purchase, the original is already available to play on 3DS. There didn’t seem like there was much new to it to justify the $60 tag when money was tight, so I didn’t purchase it.

That brings up a question that’s likely making more than a few Pokémon hardcores a bit uncomfortable: “Do I really need either of the upcoming Diamond or Pearl remakes as part of the core experience?”

This isn’t just a spin-off we’re talking about here, it’s a core installment for the single highest-grossing intellectual property of all time. If GameFreak wanted to, they could produce a polygon-pusher of immense scale. It’s hard to imagine that budget would be a limiting factor, especially considering that they work with Nintendo, a company that’s so rich that they could finance their own projects without turning to a lender.

But instead, they outsource their big game to a different company, and accept their half-baked effort to present to the world as part of their big presentation. Those don’t seem like the actions of a company that strongly cares.

Don’t worry, I didn’t forget about Pokémon Legends: Arceus. That’s evidence that GameFreak is capable of making a great-looking game. It’s obvious that that’s the one that GameFreak was more passionate about.

Whether it’s GameFreak or ILCA, it’s obvious that they can do better.

The New York Times Asks Why Japanese Animators Are Underpaid

The famed Akihabara area in Tokyo, Japan is famous for manga and anime. Picture credit: Kanpai-Japan.com

Ealier this month, I pointed out that Americans wouldn’t likely take interest in becoming animators in Japan, seeing as how they get paid very little. Since then, the New York Times has published an article examining the difficult life of Japanese animators.

As the article points out, animators in Japan can make as little as $200 per month drawing up anime frames, which obviously is far beneath what one can realistically expect to pay for an apartment in urban Japan.

Not that many of them even bother renting an apartment, as many studios allow their workers to sleep at their desks after working shifts as long as 16 hours. If you think that sounds insane, then you apparently don’t have a Japanese animator’s tenacity.

You might wonder just why a Japanese man would accept such conditions. There’s a few, so let’s go over them.

For one thing, the anime market is flooded with young men who have long dreamed of making an anime of their own, and would happily accept working long hours for little pay, for a chance to make it happen. When many employees are willing to accept extreme conditions for the few jobs they want, there’s a lot less pressure on the industry to provide work environments that are much better than what they’re willing to settle for.

Here’s a sweet anime GIF to take the edge off. It gets harder from here.

Another point to consider is the principle of supply vs. demand. I know that there may be a lot of poorly-paid service industry employees out there that might not like hearing it, but if anyone could do what you do for a living, to the point that people could be easily taken from the street to do your job, there’s not much expectation of making a lot more than minimum wage to do it.

What does this have to do with Japanese animators? While it may be hard work, the fact is, it’s low-qualification work. And it’s easy to find many, many young people in Japan who are willing to do it. And it so happens that many people in Japan are willing to settle for less money.

For the employer, if someone could do the same job as someone else, but for less money, to hire the one that asks for less money would be a more practical choice. In some cases, the stakes are high, as many smaller animation studios in Japan make this choice because their budgets aren’t that great.

One might point out that if a person works long hours, day after day, with little rest in between, a person could easily wind up in the hospital. This happens frequently in Japan. In fact, the Japanese consider it a badge of honor. When a person works so hard that they end up at the hospital out of sheer exhaustion, the Japanese consider it a sign of just how dedicated that worker is.

So, do I have a solution to this problem? Not really. When so many young people are so eager to get involved in anime that they’re willing to accept the difficult life that comes with producing it, it’s hard to discourage them. What they produce makes people happy, they know it, and they are willing to put the work in to make that happen.

In time, however, they may come to more strongly want a house, a car, and to start their own family. When it comes to that point, a person may come to realize that throwing themselves at burnout for a pitiful amount of money doesn’t seem like it’s bringing them to their goals.

Here’s another kawaii booster. Hang in there.

While life is somewhat easier for a mangaka (Japanese comic artist), the fact is, producing Japanese manga comes with challenges of its own. I’ve heard stories about mangaka who worked a month to just to produce what they pitch to a publisher, and if the publisher accepted, they usually wanted a comparable amount of content on a weekly basis. The author of Naruto, Masashi Kishimoto, has gotten so tired from his art that he actually hired someone to help him with it.

So no, taking the manga route doesn’t guarantee an easy life.

But then, the makers of video games have it difficult, too. The fact is, most outlets that produce entertainment in Japan aren’t held in as high regard in Japan as we might imagine.

The Japanese have a culture that’s so career-oriented, and they value hard work so much, that anything that comes with the risk of being called frivolous (such as entertainment) has a high likelihood of being underrepresented in the culture. While people in the west identify themselves with their favorite movies and shows, the Japanese are hesitant to bring it up at all, due to the perception that if anyone consumes any amount of entertainment media, they’re likely fanatical about it to the point that they allow it to consume their life.

While an American who works at Pixar might proudly tell their family about it, those who watch anime in Japan usually just keeps it to themselves.

Considering this, one might think that the animation industry in America hires on teams of animators that are paid a decent living wage. There might be some that do, but largely, if an American media company wants something animated, they’d just send their storyboard to Asia, where they can get the animation done cheap.

I doubt that you’re surprised.

Considering all this, it’s important to remember that the reason why so many Japanese people accept the difficult conditions associated with the Japanese entertainment industry is because they decide to. They’re not compelled to do it, and those who make manga, anime, and video games generally enjoy doing so.

With how challenging it is for them, it’s hard to imagine that they don’t.

Thanks for hanging in there.

The Right Way to Play Pokemon Diamond and Pearl

This guide is intended to help decide the best pokemon you could choose for a playthrough of Pokemon Diamond or Pearl.

This isn’t like a speedrun, which takes advantage of exploits, nor is it a competitive team-building guide. This guide’s team is intended to be the best selection of pokemon that players can reasonably be asked to assemble to get them though the game with a reasonable playtime, and with little to no grinding for levels.

Many players have attempted guides like this, but usually make mistakes like including competitive builds, which aren’t reasonable for simple playthroughs, or they forget to include HM users, leaving anyone who attempts them to backtrack and find for themselves the pokemon that can get them past roadblocks.

A word of advice, before continuing: Pokémon Diamond and Pearl have caves in them, including Mt. Coronet. These places are pretty cool, but not everyone likes them because it’s in caves that wild Pokémon could interrupt your progress every few steps. Here is what you can do about that:

Buy Repels, and Super Repels. When you enter a cave, activate one. If your lead Pokémon is higher in level than wild Pokémon in that area, they won’t interrupt your progress until you’ve traveled the distance it takes for the Repel to wear off. Repels are cheap, so don’t be afraid to spend a little bit on them to save you some aggravation.

With that explained, on to the team selections:

Any of the three Sinnoh starters are a great choice, and picking between one to compliment this team was hard. But the nod goes to Turtwig, which eventually evolves to Torterra. Torterra takes care of the Ground types that can give this team trouble, particularly Bertha’s Quagsire and Whiscash, which are only weak to Grass. Torterra does great against the first and last gym, but is especially notable in that it’s the only fully-evolved Sinnoh starter that isn’t weak to anything Cynthia’s Garchomp can do.

There’s a couple catches, and that’s that Torterra doesn’t handle Ice, Flying, or Fire-types very well. Worse, these are often fast enough to score the first hit on it. If this is enough for you to consider another starter, none of the other two are a bad choice. Just know that fully-evolved forms of the other two might result in Ground types giving this team problems.

Starly becomes an excellent attacker, and it’s available on Route 202. The first time it evolves at level 14, it gains the super-useful Intimidate ability. If you let it evolve at level 34, it gets the opportunity to learn Close Combat, and it gets great Flying moves throughout its moveset, including Brave Bird at level 49. Even better yet, it gets great Speed and Attack stats, with which to use those attacks.

Staraptor works surprisingly well against Candice, the Ice gym leader, because of the secondary typing of her pokemon. But because Staraptor is weak to Ice, it’s a risky play.

Besides its attack moves, Staraptor has room for a couple HMs, namely, Fly and Defog.

You can also catch Shinx on Route 202. You’ll want one with the Intimidate ability. You’ll know that it has it because it will activate as soon as it appears. Having two pokemon with Intimidate is great, because it makes it so it’s hard for the many physical attackers you’ll encounter to do anything to your pokemon.

Shinx evolves to Luxio at level 15, and again to Luxray at level 30. It’s a powerful physical attacker that gets strong Electric and Dark moves, giving you an answer to Crasher Wake and Lucian.

Bidoof is also available on Route 202. It’s not going to be a battler for your team, it’s instead there to give you mobility with the HMs it learns, keeping moves free for your primary battlers. The HM moves that Bidoof learns are Cut and Rock Smash.

Bibarel is available later on, at Route 208. Its purpose on your team is similar to Bidoof, except Bibarel can learn four HMs that Bidoof can’t, which are Surf, Strength, Waterfall, and Rock Climb.

You meet one of the two cover legendaries as part of a scripted event, and they are Dialga (Diamond Version) or Palkia (Pearl Version). You encounter one of these two on the summit of Mt. Coronet, late in the game. The catch rate is low, so you might want to save the game before attempting to battle it (Palkia, being a Water type, is easier to catch in a Net Ball than an Ultra Ball). They may be a few levels behind your team’s battlers, but leveling them up isn’t much trouble, and their stats, typing, and movepool more than make up for it.

Dialga’s typing lends it many resistances, and it’s only weak to Fighting and Ground. The idea of a move that requires recharging might not sound appealing, until you consider that Roar of Time comes off Dialga’s super-high Sp.Atk stat!

Palkia’s typing means it’s not weak to any type in particular, except to Dragon (remember that in the DP days, Fairy wasn’t a type yet). Palkia’s signature Spacial Rend is very spammable, but strong Water type moves aren’t a bad thing to have!

Once you have the Beacon Badge, you’ll be able to find the Adamant Orb and Lustrous Orb in a room in Mt. Coronet, with the help of a pokemon with Waterfall. Waterfall can be obtained from Jasmine in Sunyshore City after beating Volkner. By the way, is something going on between those two?

How to beat Cynthia’s Garchomp

Cynthia is considered by many to be the hardest champion in any Pokemon game (though Iris seems to be a handful). Cynthia has a diverse team of top tier pokemon, among the most problematic of which are her lead pokemon, Spiritomb, which doesn’t have a weakness (pre-Fairy type), and Milotic, which can use Mirror Coat to retaliate double for Special attacks.

But the hardest pokemon on her team, by far, is Garchomp. This has left many players scrambling to add a fast, hard-hitting Ice type to their teams.

Except you don’t really have to, because of what this team can do.

When Cynthia sends out Garchomp, shift to Luxray (if your battle style is set to Shift, which it should be). “But, Luxray is weak to Garchomp, so why?” you might be asking. This seems crazy, but it’s actually not. When Luxray is sent out, Intimidate activates, lowering Garchomp’s Attack stat. Garchomp is a physical attacker, so this makes the battle much easier. Then, switch Luxray out for Staraptor immediately. Staraptor’s Intimidate goes off as well, and if Garchomp is (predictably) going for Earthquake, it wouldn’t work on Staraptor.

The idea is to swap between Luxray and Staraptor for as long as you can get away with it, or until Intimidate has activated 6 times, bottoming out Garchomp’s Attack stat. At that point, there won’t be much that Garchomp could do to you. Go after Garchomp with strong attacks, and if things go well, that should finish it. Then, you’ll have beaten a pokemon that’s been a nightmare for many, many trainers by being clever.

But what about…

There are a few pokemon that some might have wanted to see on this team, but for some reason, weren’t. Here are a few of them:

Piplup or Chimchar are both great starters. The choice between these was very close. For this team, the choice was made for Turtwig because it rounds this team out just a bit better.

Abra and/or Azelf are both hard hitting and fast Psychic types, but it’s not a great defensive typing, and becomes especially glaring considering their low defensive stats. What’s more, Abra needs trading to fully evolve, so if you go with Kadabra, eventually replacing it with Azelf might not be a bad choice.

Gible can be found at Wayward Cave, but in Diamond and Pearl, the area you find it in requires Strength to access. By the time you can get it, it’s somewhat late in the game for a pokemon at that low of a level.

So, what do you think? Can you think of some ways to improve this team? Are you thinking of trying it for yourself? Or are you looking for some team ideas for the upcoming remakes? If it turns out that a different team might work better for the remakes for some reason, I might make a separate guide for those.

Pokémon Legends: Arceus: First Impressions

I liked the Diamond and Pearl remake announcement. But I get the idea that Pokémon Legends: Arceus has Pokémon players really stoked.

I’m not even trying to avoid the obvious comparison: Pokémon Legends looks like Breath of the Wild. Not that that’s a bad thing.

Pokémon Legends takes place in a feudal Japanese setting (remember that Sinnoh is based on Hokkaido). The game shows a young boy or girl (your choice), likely in their teens, as they journey out with a starter Pokémon (Rowlett, Cyndaquil, or Oshawott), with no evident boundaries as far as travel goes.

The Wild Area in Sword and Shield were merely a taste, as there doesn’t seem to be any on-the-rails elements to Pokémon Legends, so far.

The movement of the protagonists seems to have leveled up, as the trailer shows a trainer diving into a roll. Pretty sweet!

Not only that, the trailer shows the main character stealth-catching a distant Pokémon while hidden in grass, like some kind of ninja. Awesome!

The mythical Pokémon Arceus is to be featured in the game somehow, though in what way remains to be seen.

Pokémon Legends looks great, but there is a catch: you have to wait for it. The game is scheduled to be released in 2022. Before then, we’ll have those Sinnoh remakes we’ve been waiting a long time for.

I wonder whether those are Lucas’ and Dawn’s ancestors.

Pokémon Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl: First Impressions

Today’s Pokémon Direct has revealed upcoming Pokémon games, and it’s Sinnoh confirmed!

The new Pokémon Brilliant Diamond and Pokémon Shining Pearl versions are heading to Nintendo Switch this fall.

The overworld art features the characters in a chibi style reminiscent of the characters in the original versions.

While this was a surprise, it grew on me pretty quick. In a sense, it’s kind of like Link’s Awakening for Switch, in that its style isn’t dissimilar from the original. It’s a heartwarming look.

However, once the scene shifts to battles, the style more closely resembles recent Pokémon games.

The wild battles seem as though they’ll resemble the traditional wild battles, rather than the Let’s Go style that was featured in the Yellow Version remakes.

Until we see otherwise, it seems safe to assume that the upcoming remakes will be similar to the originals. There would be some understandable differences in terms of battle mechanics, which have changed slightly since the originals.

They seem to be bringing back the underground, which was a feature a lot of players liked. Perhaps this time around, it will be much easier to meet up with other players. Or perhaps it will be implemented differently, allowing you to play with other players online.

Diamond and Pearl were the first games in the series that used the system’s wi-fi to implement internet connection features for battling and trading. Perhaps they’ll implement the GTS as an in-game feature as it was in the originals, rather than implement it externally through an app like Pokémon Home.

Another neat feature that was in the originals was the Pokétch, which shows that Pokémon was really, really early to the smart watch dealie.

Obviously, they’re bringing back the character of Hikari/Dawn, who is a well-admired character. But you might have already known.

It’s a tad obscure, but I remember a special Manaphy egg as part of my early Pokémon Diamond experience. The Manaphy egg has a distinct appearance, and when it hatches, out comes the mythical Pokémon, Manaphy, at only level 1.

How or whether this special egg would be implemented, I don’t know. But it was a special part of my Diamond version experience.

My first ever import game was a copy of Pokémon Pearl from Japan. I was able to beat the game, despite it being in a language I didn’t know at the time. Considering this, I’m considering learning a bit more Japanese and playing one of the upcoming games with a Japanese-language setting.

I’m looking forward to Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl, though I’m still not sure which version to get. Are you looking forward to them, too?

Yearly Pokémon Popularity Poll Results Are In: Dedenne Wins?!

Each year, a poll is conducted to determine the most popular Pokémon. The results for this year are in, and you may be surprised to learn that Dedenne has taken top honors.

This year, the poll was conducted in Japan alone, putting aside a few clever people who found a way to vote anyway. Because of this, Japanese sensibilities dominated the poll.

As it turns out, the Japanese have different sensibilities than we expected. The top Kanto Pokémon wasn’t Pikachu (at #7), it was Magnemite (at #5). The runner-up was Cincinno (#2), and after that was Sableye (#3). Barbaracle (#22) and Spheal (#24) also placed, which seems kinda odd.

Come to think of it, it’s possible that the poll was rocked by troll votes.

Dedenne is a small Electric/Fairy Pokémon. It bears a resemblance to Raichu, and considering that, I think I understand much of its appeal. It spent some time among the cast of main characters in the anime during the 6th generation of Pokémon games. It was caught by Clemont, a member of Ash’s group, who then allowed his sister Bonnie, another of Ash’s group, to care for it (Bonnie was not old enough to catch her own Pokémon).

To be honest, Dedenne doesn’t seem to have much competitive value. Though that’s not preventing some genius player from finding a way to become world champ with the little guy on their team, as Se Jun Park did with Pachirisu.

These may not be the poll results we were expecting, but it’s still great to see something different get the spotlight. Are we months away from seeing more Dedenne merch?

From ryanthescooterguy on DeviantArt

Congratulations, little guy.

Lawmaker Targets Games Like GTA Because of Real-Life Carjackings

I don’t know why it is that the anti-free-speech crowd insists on fighting the same battle, over and over again, regardless of the fact that they’ve lost it, every single time.

And what do you know, it’s the same group of people who are obsessed with the idea of entertainment media as influence, and are intent on reining it in when they perceive that it might influence people in a way they don’t like.

Chicago lawmaker Marcus C. Evans Jr. has called for a ban on games like Grand Theft Auto in light of an increase in carjackings in the city of Chicago. In Chicago, carjackings have increased 135% last year.

You know what else happened last year? The government lockdowns over COVID. Did it occur to Evans that when people lost their jobs in great numbers, they might turn to crime to make ends meet? Because there’s a lot of precedent for it. When manufacturing left Camden, it wasn’t a pretty sight.

Evans also seems unaware that a lot has happened since the nineties. Video games have long-since gone mainstream, and there are no longer as many people who misunderstand video games, whose ignorance he can prey upon.

Or there’s his own ignorance of the studies that found that video games don’t cause violent behavior.

Considering all that must be overlooked in order for Marcus to arrive at his non-sequitor, one would wonder whether there’s an ulterior motive, or if he’s really that ignorant.

As things are, the United States protects expression as a right. Because of this, efforts to snipe video games have never worked. Considering the relative lack of the number of people who view video games as “weird” or “strange” (as compared to the nineties), it’s unlikely that any legislation targeting them would get very far.

Because it’s axiomatic at this point, it doesn’t seem like it needs to be said, but some people are so far behind that they’d be surprised to learn it: people don’t play GTA to learn to steal cars, they play it because it’s escapism.

Normal people are aware that most video games are fantasy, and with the exception of educational games, aren’t intended to inform a person’s perspective of reality. Most abnormal people are aware of this, too. In the rare case that a person acts out what they see in a video game, the game itself is not held accountable, it being an object without agency, intended for entertainment.

It’s so obvious, that when a lawmaker proposes a ban on certain video games, I wonder what’s really going on. Could a Chicago lawmaker be do dense that he has no idea that mass unemployment due to government lockdowns is the cause of a spike in automobile thefts?

Or is it about control? With these kinds, it usually is.

Sharing From My Playbook: How I Argue Against Idiots

Sometimes, you get into an exchange with someone who is trying as hard as they can to justify themselves. The effort is there, but the capacity is not.

What does one do when they are arguing against someone who is plainly an idiot?

I can tell you what I do. Normally, it’s not a great idea to share from your own playbook, but I think that this approach is so effective, that the benefit to be had outweighs the setback that comes from putting it out there.

When I argue against an idiot, what I do is I allow them to take the floor. I ask them to explain their position, and allow them to spend as much time as they wish to do so. But as for me, my participation in the exchange is minimal.

This works well due to the misconception that if only one person is participating, then the one person who is contributing wins by default. That very assumption is simply not true.

Simply put: The more time a fool spends with his mouth open, the greater the potential for him to put his foot right in it.

Because you’re allowing the idiot to ramble on and on, you’re giving him more opportunity to slip up. There’s no need to call him out on it, either. The foolishness of their position and every blunder that they make are all immediately evident to anyone who is of at least average intelligence.

And what makes this work so well is the fact that, when you allow an idiot to speak to his heart’s content, he’ll think you’re doing him a favor.

When you allow idiots to argue long enough, you tend to notice a few things about them. For one thing, they tend to be characterized by illusory superiority. From what I’ve seen, they tend to be proud of whatever accolades they have, such as a college education. Most of us know that the hard part of most degrees is paying back loans afterwards, and most college programs amount to just showing up and wiping from front to back. Yet, an idiot would proudly boast of their accomplishments in an obvious effort to validate their superiority.

They also tend to appeal to authority quite a bit. Often times, they’ll think that their position is the pro-science position, and assume that any idea that’s scientific (by their reasoning of how science works) must be universally accepted by anyone who is of a sound mind. In many cases, they’ll get their “scientific” ideas by reading about studies on some content-aggregator website, not aware that what data that was trickled down to them was what made it through the filter of the aggregator’s biases.

They’ll let other people do the legwork for them, unaware that they’re merely being served a narrative under the guise of science.

Another thing you’ll notice about them is that they tend to simultaneously hold conflicting viewpoints. That’s not that unusual for people, but the nature of the conflict tends to be more egregious among those who think too highly of their own brilliance.

A notorious example is among intersectional feminists. They claim that they are about women’s liberation, but at the same time, they insist that all women do things their way. If a person insists that an entire category of people must march in lock-step with them because they believe that their ideas are better, they’re not about liberation, at all.

In other cases, it’s the ironic atheist who fancies herself a non-mystic, has plenty to say about your religion, but still attends dormroom seances and checks her daily horoscopes.

Another way that an idiot shows their hand is through psychological projection. This is particularly the case among the intersectionalists, or really just about anyone who tends to assume that the worst qualities are an innate feature among all human beings.

Often, the idiot would assume that if given the opportunity to commit a crime and get away with it, most people would go ahead and commit the crime. When you understand how idiots tend to project their shortcomings onto others, it becomes clear that the idiot is revealing more about themselves than other people. This is particularly revealing when it comes to the people who assume that people are inherently racist, or, more alarming still, those who believe that humans are rapists by nature. And it pretty much tells you what you need to know about those who believe that strangers are child-abuse waiting to happen.

What they fail to comprehend is that not everyone has their sensibilities, and the real problem is with themselves, and not so much with the people that they observe.

As I’ve pointed out before, those who virtue-signal the hardest usually do so with a guilty conscience, often because they themselves have committed the crime they speak so vociferously against.

There’s an expression: Never correct your enemy when they are making a mistake. In time, you learn to recognize those who err the most (and the hardest). In many cases, they’ll attempt to speak over you. But what they don’t realize is that, when you allow them to do so, you’re really not doing them any favors.

The surest way to expose a fool is to permit him to speak.

Burkas in Final Fantasy? Why is Saudi Arabia Investing Billions in Gaming?

Saudi Arabia has just invested billions of dollars into gaming. In particular, the middle-eastern country has purchased millions of shares in Activision-Blizzard, EA, and Take-Two.

Because of this, gamers the world over are wondering to what end the country is investing in American game companies, with emphasis on those having published big-budget titles played by many gamers the world over.

If one wanted to be suspicious, they might suspect that it was a cultural power-play. Game companies tend to try to avoid upsetting investors, especially those with large stakes in the company. To this end, the game companies may feel a stronger inclination to avoid publishing content that would be insensitive to their investors. That connotation of self-censorship would likely impact any creative works the companies might produce, and there may even be added pressure to present Saudi Arabia in a more positive light.

What may also be relevant is that Saudi Arabia has a rocky relationship with Iran, to put it lightly. Considering this, it’s possible that game companies may feel an inclination to publish content portraying the Iranian regime negatively.

Of course, it’s also possible that Saudi Arabia is merely interested in increasing its wealth through investments, and has observed the gaming industry as it has been growing. Saudi Arabia is an oil-rich country, and this commodity has long been a source of its wealth. However, western countries are more aggressively pursuing renewable energy sources, and seeking to decrease dependence on fossil fuels. In light of this, investments may be a practical choice for Saudi Arabia to maintain its wealth.

It might just be another case of people who are already hugely-rich finding ways to make piles more money, without having to work.

If the games offered by the publishers that Saudi Arabia invested in (Activision-Blizzard, EA, and Take-Two) don’t interest you, this news might not be terribly relevant to you. This holds especially true if your primary source of games is from Japanese companies like Nintendo and SquareEnix.

It doesn’t seem likely that the women of Final Fantasy would be redone by SquareEnix to depict them in burkas. If that’s your concern, you can rest easy.