Beginners’ Luck – Game Market 2009

About six months ago, close friend Sankaku-san invited batsu to a game event, and batsu obliged last weekend at the 2009 Game Market.

Game Market is an annual event centered around board games, including but not limited to table-top RGPs, featuring new, classic, and original games.  The first day was dedicated to actual gaming, and the second for buying and selling.  Not really sure what I was getting into, I agreed to tag-along Sunday to see what a Game Market was all about.

Held in a convention hall with the all the austere ambiance of an abandoned warehouse, Game Market had… well, games.  A lot of them; stacked up on folding tables with price tags.  Admittedly, most of this had no meaning to me but it was still pretty awesome to see people excited, toting around impossibly full bags of board game boxes.  There were a few people in fancy costumes – of note, a potentially cross-dressing willowy Victorian maid – but for the most part just back-pack toting types.  In another area, a group of old men in happi were educating con-goes about a mostly forgotten Edo-era game consisting of hand symbols.  This was particularly appropriate given the stone’s throw proximity to Sensoji Temple.  And even more appropriate given the aforementioned maid’s dedicated study with one of the old guys.

I walked into the con with absolutely no expectations, but somehow from a distance spotted a board covered in tarot shaped cards.  The details were fuzzy, but rounded lines and a predominance of black and white indicated cute maids graced some of the cards.  A closer look only confirmed suspicions.  Of course, I bought it immediately without thinking.

The cards turned out to be DEARS Tsundere Tarot, scheduled for release June 12.  It has cool art, but otherwise a bit more contrivance in history than I care to recognize.  There were two varieties, and choosing the more “moe” of the two, I inevitable ended up with the “guys” version.  Which is fine.  It has better character design and none of the “fujoushi” connotations.

Tsundere means something like “prickly,” and is used to describe a character that inappropriately enacts intent – for example expressing affection in an antagonistic manner.  The tsundere in this instance is hopefully not the cards nor the fortune teller, but rather the enclosed CD voiced by the “Queen of Tsundere,” so styled because of her predominance of tsundere type voice acting roles.  Looking at the art style, tsundere seems only a projected gimmic to appeal to a larger audience.

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