Why Japanese Mobile Games Are So Addictive

Why Japanese Mobile Games Are So Addictive

A look at the most popular mobile gaming market in the world.
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If you've ever played a Japanese mobile server-based game like "Puzzle & Dragon," "Brave Frontier" or "Love Live! School Idol Festival," you'll know that the Japanese versions of the games are a lot more generous than the English or global versions. They're always the first to get updates, hold limited time game events and gift player rewards while the English-speaking world gets the short end of the promotional stick. The reason for this is rooted in Japan's massive market for mobile games.

Japan's mobile game market is teeming with new RPGs, rhythm games, puzzles, action shooters, even dating simulations – you name it. In fact, mobile game spending is higher in Japan than in any other market. With such a solid market and player base, Japanese game companies go to great lengths to ensure the best player experience possible for every single potential source of revenue. This is why you'll see frequent events giving away rare in-game currency or merchandise or holding promotions that drastically reduce the cost of in-app purchases for periods of time. Apps that don't hold these frequent "sales" will soon see shrinking playerbases and frustrated fans.

However, the rest of the world is not as lucky. With a significantly less competitive mobile game market, many game developers don't see the need to give away a large chunk of their revenue to global or North American players.

Despite Japan's seemingly limitless potential for game development, foreign games have never made it big in Japan. From 2001 to 2013, all of the titles on Japan's Top 100 games list were local games. Only in recent years, after enormous marketing efforts, have games like "Clash of Clans" and "Candy Crush" successfully broken into the Japanese market, staying within the Top 30 mobile games in Japan. Because the Japanese game market is already so saturated with apps that are developed locally and know how to appeal to their respective demographics, Japanese gaming appears impenetrable from the outside. For example, "Little Noah," pictured below, is a popular Japanese game very similar in graphics and mechanics to "Clash of Clans" but with stories and designs characteristic of modern Japanese culture. Thus, "Clash of Clans" offers nothing better to draw Japanese players in.

Now, if you're curious about trying out some Japanese apps, I have some of my recommendations for their English versions below, and if you already play on the EN server of these guys, I urge you to give the JP server a try, too. I guarantee, you'll love the loads of free stuff they gift you with.

Town/Army Building Games

Ritoru Noah (Little Noah) a.k.a. Battle Champs

Android | iOS

A game similar to with similar mechanics to "Clash of Clans."



Fighting RPG Games

Puzzle & Dragon

Android | iOS

The most popular and highest grossing mobile game in the Japanese market. Features a unique battle system incorporating match-3 gameplay.



Fate/Grand Order

Android | iOS

A classic RPG on mobile with good character design and developed plot.


Rhythm Games

Love Live! School Idol Festival

Android | iOS

The game that accompanies the famous "Love Live!" franchise, complete with the anime, music and movies.


Deemo

Android | iOS

Deemo is actually developed in Taiwan, but it's beautiful music and charming storyline make it a popular rhythm game in Japan, too.

Cover Image Credit: Serkantoto

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21 BuzzFeed Quizzes To Take When You're Trying To Procrastinate

Why study when you could be on BuzzFeed?
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According to my previous article, 12 Things That Are Only Acceptable In College, spending 2.5 hours taking BuzzFeed quizzes is completely acceptable if you're in college. With it being that time of the semester when the list of things to do is never ending, sometimes it's easier to just ignore your problems and spend your studying time procrastinating. If this sounds like something you need to do, here's the ultimate list of quizzes to waste your time on.

1. Reply To Your Crush's Texts And We'll Reveal Your Future

Wondering what you're going to do with your life since you're probably going to fail that exam that you have tomorrow? After all, you are taking BuzzFeed quizzes right now instead of studying. This quiz will answer that question for you.

2. Which "Gossip Girl" Character Are You Based On These Random Questions?

This one's a classic that you just can't possibly skip.

3. Build A School Uniform And We'll Guess Who You Were In High School

If you're like me, you always secretly wished you had a uniform in high school so that you didn't have to pick out an outfit every morning. Now you can live out that dream and find out what it says about you.

4. We Can Guess Your Age After You Build Your Own Dream Home

If I got 70's, does that mean I have timeless taste or terrible taste?

5. Pretend To Go Shopping And We’ll Figure Out If You’re More Ann Taylor Or Ann Taylor: Loft

Ladies, this is an important one.

6. Plan Your Day And Find Out Which "Grey's Anatomy" Girl You Are

Maybe if whatever you're doing right now isn't working out, you could become a doctor...

7. Create A Makeup Look And We'll Tell You Which Hogwarts House You Truly Belong In

Or you could become a wizard.

8. Pick An Outfit And We Will Tell You What You Do For A Living

And if neither of those work out, this quiz will tell you exactly what you should do.

9. Spend All Your Money At This Drug Store And We'll Tell You What You Should Be Doing With Your Life

And in case you didn't like either of the previous suggestions, you can see if this one is any better.

10. Build A Dream Castle And We'll Tell You What Type Of Unicorn You Are

Since unicorn everything seems to be the rage right now, you'd better keep up.

11. This Reverse Word Association Test Will Uncover Your Personality Type

This one's for those of you who don't have the patience to get through the Myers-Briggs test.

12. Design Your Future Backyard And We'll Reveal How Many Kids You'll Have

If you're going to have more than 2 you better get back to work so you can support them.

13. Pick An Outfit From Patagonia And We'll Tell You How Long You'd Survive In The Wild

Find out if running away to the wild is really a better option than struggling through that 10 page paper that's due at 8 am tomorrow.

14. Which Character From "The Office" Are You At YOUR Job?

Let's hope you don't get Kevin.

15. Which Meryl Streep Character Is Actually Most Like You?

Are you as mean as Miranda Priestly?

16. Take This Picture Test And We'll Tell You Your Best And Worst Qualities

No need to prepare for your next interview, just give them these answers.

17. What Kind of Bathroom Guest Are You

Are you actually a terrible guest?

18. What % Gross Are You Actually?

Or maybe you're just gross in general.

19. Your Food Preferences Will Reveal Which TV Character You Are

Are you more Blair Waldorf or Michelle Tanner?

20. What Grade Are You Getting In Life?

Are you literally failing at life right now?

21. What Type Of Emoji Are You?

Instead of a signature scent, you can have a signature emoji!

And if these didn't take you long enough, you can always check out BuzzFeed for more.

P.S. Good luck studying for that exam. Maybe you can find a quiz that tells you how to ace it.

Cover Image Credit: Julia Waterbury

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Media Literacy Is Crucial In 2018

Among the world of "fake news" and unrestricted publishing platforms, media literacy is more than just important – it's crucial.

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No concept is more relevant in modern-day news media than the concept of "fake news." While it was originally coined by President Trump referring to a number of liberal media organizations, the term has now been adopted by many Americans when speaking about the phenomenon of factually inaccurate or falsely skewed articles, broadcasts, or any other form of news information.

As a journalism major, the threat of fake news and other challenges to the free press are given as warnings quite frequently. It's a concept my classmates and I are constantly on the lookout for in every piece of news disseminated, whether it comes from CNN, Fox News, Buzzfeed or anywhere else. However, I've learned that others not affiliated or familiar with the press aren't as concerned about fake news – or even just dishonest news – as we are. And that ignorance can pose a huge risk.

Take, for example, "Pizzagate." A series of absolutely fabricated stories in 2016 claimed the Clintons were housing a child sex trafficking/pedophilia ring in the basement of a Washington, D.C. pizza restaurant, causing a man to barge in the restaurant and fire gunshots to save the made-up victims. No one was hurt in his "raid," but the debacle proved that the dissemination of fake news has real consequences.

Illiterate media skills can not only instigate crimes and violent acts such as the ones mentioned above, but they also disadvantage citizens on a much more personal level, too. Most people don't even stop and question whether their source of news/information is credible, much less accurate – they just see a compelling headline or one that supports their beliefs and they hit share, risking spreading false facts, inaccurate information, and skewed biases around their community. The information produced by news media organizations on television, print, and online all plays a drastic part in how someone shapes their worldview, personal beliefs, political opinions, and even more.

Advances in technology have made it so basically anyone can produce media and disseminate it to the public, regardless of whether the information is true or false and what ulterior motives they might have. This means that that article you shared on Facebook last week could come from anybody – not someone who's an expert in the subject discussed or a real reporter. Just your average "Joe Schmo" could be telling you about the government, public issues, or foreign affairs. That person can make up an entire story, event, quote, or belief for any reason at all.

Developing media literacy skills goes further than dispelling fake news – it helps people critically think and analyze stories, helps them express their own opinions, and satisfies everyone's civic responsibility to make well-informed, well-represented decisions. (Not to mention, it also saves us from the embarrassment of sharing an article/piece of information only to have someone comment that it's not true.)

So do all journalists a favor and stop to think after you read an article before you share or comment. Make sure you're being informed by an objective, credible source. Confirm that the news presented is of factual basis, not just of someone's opinion or retelling. Think about that source's intent or purpose behind sharing the particular piece of news. Try and realize the source's and your own point of view in relation to the story. Asking yourself these questions when analyzing pieces of media reassures that you're not being swayed or fooled by "fake news" and prevents your community from being affected, too.

Don't be afraid to fact-check what others tell you or content shared by your friends online. I'm proud to admit that I have been that annoying individual to comment and let someone know that what they've shared is fake, or at least inaccurate.

The role of news media in society is to empower the informed through accurate, fair, and responsible reporting that is free from commercial or government censorship. Many refer to journalism as the "voice for the voiceless" that has a duty to express all aspects of our society and make sure citizens are aware of their rights.

"Fake news" is a major threat to the media's responsibility to the public. Any form of dishonest reporting, whether it's falsifying facts or quotes, intentionally leaving out a side of the story, or publishing information with an ulterior motive or agenda – ALL of this poses a great threat to not only the media but to every citizen as well. And in this day and age where anyone can produce content, true or false, it's more important than ever to learn how to critically consume the news. Media literacy is not just a good skill to have or important – it's crucial.

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