I’ve been buying an obscene amount of crap from Japan the past few months. Most of it is “research material” (Bomberman books, natch), but I also pick up toys, manga, magazines and other doodads; whatever I can get away with saying “it’s for the website, honest!”
Some of the most interesting buys are magazines, if just for the sheer variety of content in them. I may have bought four issues of Gamest just for the prototype Metal Slug coverage in them, but they’re full of great arcade games I’ve never even seen before. Likewise, I picked up an 1986 edition of CoroCoro Comic just for the rare City Connection manga in it, but there’s stacks of bizarre crap in it like old toy ads, Famicom Rocky, and an short-lived manga that’s never been collected anywhere else, Solar Dog Zero (太陽犬ゼロ). I’ve been sliiiightly tempted to track down the rest of it, but I’m juggling enough foolish endeavours as it is. (a Bomberman website, really?!?)
One of my current focuses is trying to track down all the Bomberman manga, seven of which have never been collected into volumes of any sort, so I have to track them down in the original anthologies or magazines. I picked up an issue of Dengeki Nintendo DS recently (which you’ll probably know the name of if you’re in the Pokémon scene, it’s usually plundered for screens and reveals when a new game is announced) just for the Bomberman story in it, but I was surprised by the number of game-related mangas inside, most of them I’d never even known of before! Full-page A4-sized manga, too!
I thought I’d look them up and see how many are catalogued or even recognised on English fansites. Doing so only made me angry. There’s nada! Not a blip of information on most of ’em! It’s like they don’t even exist! (which is a bit understandable when only one of them got a collected edition) So just for a larf, I want to spotlight the manga in Dengeki Nintendo DS’ March 2011 issue and take note of what coverage they have online.
Hoshi no Kirby: Pupupu Hero
A cheery bit of light-hearted Kirby fluff; in this story, Kirby teams up with Mr. Frosty against Dedede in a downhill bobsleigh race, though Lololo and Lalala block their path with an icecube maze. Kirby also makes these horrible kissy lips whenever he sucks stuff up and I hate it.
This ran from January 2008 to May 2013 [src], before reviving in Dengeki Bazooka!! as Hoshi no Kirby: Ultra Star Deluxe (星のカービィ ウルトラスーパーデラックス) for a run lasting October 2014 to April 2016. [src] It was also lucky enough to get its complete Dengeki Nintendo run collected in two volumes, though good luck finding them!
Kirby fansites have barely acknowledged this – Kirbytraum has a button for it but no link or info yet – though given how there’s eleventy-billion manga out there I can’t blame them. However, @hitotsunoneko‘s fansite Masked Knight steals the show – not only has it got scans of ten of the stories, it even has fan-translations for the first seven! This is a really good start for online recognition, but it’s gonna go downhill from here.