Friday, March 16, 2012

Toilet Kids for the PC Engine: Greatest Creation Mankind has Ever Produced?

Just when I thought my days of finding hidden gems at Omocha Souko were finished, they go and surprise me with the most amazing thing I have ever found. Ever.

Allow me to introduce my latest acquisition: Toilet Kids for the PC Engine!!

If there ever was a game that would make the perfect poster child for the `Weird Japan-only releases that you MUST have right NOW` genre then Toilet Kids is that game. Because you MUST have this game right NOW. Seriously. Go on Ebay and buy it. In fact - buy two.

It is a shoot-em-up game that takes place entirely within the confines of a toilet.

Need I say more?

Well, I will anyway. The game`s title screen introduces you to who I assume to be the nemesis, the King of Poo:
You know he is the king of poo because his hat is a pile of poo and the kanji written on it means king.

After that you get a cut scene in which the hero enters the bathroom, pulls down his pants and exposes himself to the audience (I`m not kidding), sits on the pot and gets blasted by the exploding toilet which subsequently sucks him in:
Then the game play starts within the toilet, which for some reason looks nothing like a toilet but whatever. The gameplay is exactly like Twin Bee. It is a vertical shooter, you have both a forward firing gun and a bomb sight to hit ground targets, most of which are coiled piles of poo:
You start off from your home base, which is a Japanese style squat toilet:
TANGENT: If you are a foreigner living in Japan like me you probably already hate these squat toilets. They are just the worst. I estimate that I probably spend about 3-4 hours every year trying to find a public bathroom that does not have these squat toilets. When I first came to Japan the office building that I worked in only had squat toilets. My American co-worker and I, after comparing notes, concluded that the KFC around the corner had the best non-squat option in the neighborhood. That KFC ended up selling an inordinate quantity of small sodas (cheapest menu item) that year.

OK, back to the game now.

Basically most of the enemies attack you by throwing poo or pee at you.

Points are measured in piles of poo:
And so on and so forth.

I wouldn`t rate this particularly highly in terms of game play. It plays a lot like Twin Bee but isn`t quite as fun. It has a cooperative 2 player mode but like an idiot I sold my PC Engine multi tap and extra controller a few months ago because at the time I didn`t have any 2 player games. I really wish I had those back.

Anyway. My only regret with this game is that it was never released on the Famicom. It would totally knock Yume Penguin Monogatari off its perch as the king of weird Japan only releases.

12 comments:

  1. Ha! I love that you picked this up. I have to admit that I don't like the game much -- and you know I like some truly weird games. Actually, I think the reason I don't like it much is that it's not weird enough. I mean, it's a game about poop and pee and toilets -- it should be balls-to-the-wall weird, don't you think? As it is, though, there's a bit of poo here and there, but that's it -- and even the poo is cute (which is weird to say). So, although I agree with you that it's a curiosity, I personally wouldn't call it a must-have game unless you're a huge PCE fan or if you have to have every odd Japanese game out there.

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  2. I agree that it would have been better for them to have gone all-out weird with the poo and pee. It did feel a little restrained at times, particularly since the boss on the first level (which is as far as I have gotten so far) was only vaguely toilet related.

    I still say it is a must-have though. I mean come on! You get to drop bombs on poo! Poo! What other retro game can you do that on?

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  3. I knew there was a reason I had to have a PC Engine.

    I'm with you on the traditional Japanese toilets, too. I've never actually attempted using one, and I understand how to use them, but at the the same time, I still don't quite understand how to use them without *ahem* complications.

    I'll be moving to Japan next week, and apartment hunting the week after that, and the top of the list of what I'm looking for, is a place that has a western toilet. I can deal with anything else really, but if it doesn't have a western toilet, it's a no go.

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  4. Nate - yes, get one of these!!!

    Good luck with the move, BTW. Fortunately most Japanese homes and apartments come with Western style toilets so you shouldn't have any trouble there unless you move into a place more than 40 years old or so!

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  5. lol! When i thought i have seen enough... Gotta love the japanese!

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  6. What a steaming pile of... Haha! Awesome review, leaves no questions as to why this classic game was never released outside of Japan!

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  7. Thanks, Adam! As you say, quite self-explanatory:)

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  8. I have a PCE collection of more than 200 Japanese hucards, and I still hadn't even heard of this game!

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  9. 200 is pretty impressive. I only have about a dozen or so. This seems to be a somewhat hard to find game, I had never seen it in any shops before (there are some on Ebay but they are pretty expensive).

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  10. This game has been on my radar for a long time, due mainly to its weirdness, obviously. It's awesome that you've got a real copy though! Was it complete?

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  11. Yeah, you should definitely have a look at this one. My copy isn`t complete, just the Hu card. I would love to have the whole thing though.

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