Category Archives: video games

Exclusive Interview with Britton A. Arey | Voice of TESS in Jak II and Jak 3

The following MAY contains spoilers from the Jak and Daxter video games series


We’ve all been there before, we’ve all at some point had a crush on a video game character, whether it was Lara Croft or Chung Li. Maybe some of us still have virtual waifus and/or husbandos. The Jak and Daxter series is one such game of the early 2000s, in which some of us discovered our very first video game crush. Many fans of the series were automatically hooked on the game’s expansive fantasy world, its plot and the game’s impressionable femme fatale characters.

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Who doesn’t love girls and guns? | Kiara, Ashlien & Tess

One such character was Tess. Tess is a character that was featured in Jak II and Jak 3, Initially introduced as a supporting character, she would gradually play an essential role in the storyline, helping Jak and Daxter through their journey. Tess also served as a love interest for Daxter.

 

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Jak II rated T for Teens: Suggestive Themes

During the events in Jak II, Tess was a rebellion spy (or Underground agent in the game) working at a local bar, gathering intel from the enemy. By Jak 3 she becomes a weapons expert, developing high-grade weapons. Although many who have played the game, know of Tess’s background story, not many are aware of the person behind the voice of the hyper-active, cheery character.

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‘Its a hobby’

Tess is Portrayed by Dr.Britton A. Arey MD, now working as a psychiatrist in Orange County in California, Britton once pursued a career in acting and in the years prior to Jak II, Britton had auditioned for a role in the hit movie Hook which features the late Robbin Williams and veteran voice actor, Dante Basco.

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Credited as Britton A. Hill in Jak II,  later to Britton A. Arey in Jak 3 after her marriage to then Jak and Daxter writer, Daniel Arey.

Join us in this exclusive voice actor interview! For the very first time, Dr.Britton Arey speaks out about her involvement in Jak II/Jak 3 revealing behind the scenes stories during the production of the game and much more!

 

Click here for a shorter version of the interview!

Stick to the end of the interview for details on how to win an autographed print signed by Britton Arey (voice of Tess) and her husband Daniel Arey, Former creative director and writer of the Jak and Daxter series!

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Scan of actual autographed print

Winner will be chosen and announced on April 1st, 2020, visit our website for our giveaway terms and conditions, https://thekitsunetwork.net/giveaways/!


Click here for more voice actor interviews!

COVID-19 Coronavirus outbreak effects on Conventions

Japan’s biggest anime convention of the year, AnimeJapan was canceled four days before the event was set to take place. Prior to that, the city of Osaka canceled its annual anime festival, Nipppombashi Street Festar which draws over 200K+ people to city’s Denden Town neighborhood. All this in fear of spreading the COVID-19 virus.

Taking the seriousness of the situation into consideration, Olympic 2020 travelers have been wondering if the 2020 Olyimics will suffer the same fate. On March 3rd, an International Olympic Committee spokesperson stated, that there are no plans to postpone or move the Olympics, adding “We made a decision and the decision is the Games go ahead”. The 2020 Olympics is set to take place from July 24th to August 9th 2020 in Tokyo, Japan.

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In the U.S., the first confirmed case of the COVID-19 coronavirus disease was announced on January 21st, Since then there have been over 230 cases reported and growing. Due to fear of infection, popular industry expo, Game Developers Conference was postponed to the Summer of 2020.  GDC was supposed to take place at the Moscone Center in San Francisco, CA.

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California’s biggest anime convention Anime Expo is scheduled to still take place in July of this year. The SPJA (Society for the Promotion of Japanese Animation) released the following statement regarding Anime Expo status:

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With the community taking its precautions, are guest cancellations are unavoidable? For now, we’ll have to wait and see.

We encourage our viewers/readers to take precautions and help reduce the spreading of the COVID-19 virus by washing your hands and keeping general germ reduction in mind when going out in public. The following are prevention guidelines by the CDC:

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
  • Follow CDC’s recommendations for using a facemask.

For more information, please visit the CDC website.


Sources: Link 1, Link 2, Link 3, Link 4, Link 5

Interview with: MIKE POLLOCK

Voice actor Mike Pollock has been in Radio, eBooks, and commercials, but you might recognize him in animation. He’s the Narrator of Pokemon and the notorious Doctor Eggman in the Sonic The Hedgehog franchise. He’s also done numerous other characters in anime such, Meat from Ultimate Muscle, Deus Prometh in GKid’s Promare, and most recently, Yasui in Weathering with You. 

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Subscribe to our channel to updated on upcoming interviews, such as:

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This interview will be recorded live during Ronin Expo’s Otaku Market Gathering at the source OC. For event information Click here.

Interview with voice actress, Dorothy Fhan voice of  Naru Narusegawa in Love Hina, Meryl Stryfe in Trigun, Chihiro Fujisaki in Danganronpa and much more!

Furthermore, we’ll be interview a VERY special guest at the end of this month, her voice was featured in only two games, Jak II and Jak 3 as Tess!

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We’re pleased to announce, former voice actress, Britton Arey will be on our upcoming interview list, if you have any questions for her, please submit them by commenting below or by contacting us using any of these platforms!

Sonic The Hedgehog Trailer | Easter Eggs & Cameos That You Might’ve Missed

Dr. Robotnik & Grounder

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Those who watched Saturday morning cartoons (aka SatAM) in the ’90s may remember Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog and Sonic Underground. Garry Chalk was one of many voice actors from these shows, voicing Grounder in Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog and Dr.Robotnik in Sonic Underground, a dystopian version of the Sonic the Hedgehog TV universe.

Garry can be seen among the government officials sitting down during a meeting discussing the ‘anomaly‘ detected. It is unclear if Garry Chalk’s character in the film is more than just a minor cameo, or if there’s more than meets the eye.

Hill Top Zone

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A road sign with ‘Hill Top Zone‘ can be seen seconds into the trailer. Hill Top Zone is the fifth Zone in Sonic the Hedgehog 2. The level is most notable for its geographical location, amidst the high peaks of West Side Island, which makes one wonder of its location within the film.

Green Hill Zone

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This one’s pretty in your face. Right at the beginning of the trailer, Green Hill Zone can be seen right before Sonic travels into our world. It is unclear if the film will explore more of this zone (or any other) as a setting.

Sonic The Hedgehog Title Screen Emblem

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The title screen emblem from Sonic The Hedgehog can be seen on Sonic’s headband. The game was originally released in 1991 for the Sega Mega Drive (Japan) and quickly became one of the most recognizable logos among hardcore Sonic fans.

Warp Rings

Many who played Sonic The Hedgehog may remember the giant ring that would appear at the end of a level and teleport the player to special stages. The film drew inspiration from this, having sonic apparently teleport from one part of the world to another. Variations of this ability have been shown throughout the games and TV series.

Misa Amane (Death Note) and Fabiola Iglesias (Black Lagoon)

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Among voice actor cameos is Shannon Chan-Kent, a Canadian based voice actress, who has voiced numerous notable characters such as Misa Amane from the hit anime series, Death Note and Fabiola Iglesias from Black Lagoon: Roberta’s Blood Trail.

She is also the singing voice of Pinkie pie, Sonata Dusk and speaking voice of Silver Spoon in My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic.

Jeff Fowler’s Gopher Broke cameo

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This film will feature the theatrical, directorial debut of Jeff Fowler, who previously worked on Gopher Broke, a 2004 short, animated film written and directed by Jeff Fowler.

The short film follows a hungry gopher who hatches a clever plan to get a quick snack but discovers that even the best-laid plans can go udderly awry. The opening title can be seen during Sonic’s exploration of the motel room.

Egg-O-Matic

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A more modern and more ‘realistic‘ version of the Egg-O-Matic can be seen through half of the trailer. Although it has not been confirmed that this is, in fact, a representation of the Egg-O-Matic, it does share some similarities.

Blur Studio

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Blur Studio, although its name is not a direct reference to Sonic’s nickname “The Blue Blur“, the studio has had ties to the Sonic The Hedgehog games before the film. Blur Studios produced several CGI animated cutscenes for Shadow the Hedgehog and Sonic The Hedgehog 2006.

According to an interview, by Di-O-Matic, Inc, with then Animation supervisor Leo Santos, “One particular challenge we had on the Sonic opening cinematic (and the Shadow the Hedgehog cinematics) is the fact that Sonic’s mouth is sometimes on the side, sometimes on the middle.” With Blur Studio’s experience with animating Sonic in the past, why was there a need to redesign?

Doctor Ovi Kintobor or Dr. Ivo Kintobor

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This one is probably a long stretch but, Jim Carrey’s portrayal of a ‘thin‘ Robotnik is similar in appearance (somewhat) to that of Doctor Ovi Kintobor, a character that appears in the Sonic the Comic series published by Fleetway Editions in the UK. The character served as a background origin story to the present day Eggman. In other comic series published by Archie Comics, Carrey’s portrayal is similar to that of, alternate universe Robotnik, Dr. Ivo Kintobor, who is kind, generous and friendly.

Needless to say, there will probably be more hidden gems within the movie. Be on the lookout and mark your calendars for February 14th, 2020! Watch the newly released trailer here:



Sonic X Complete Series Blu-ray

Spot more easter eggs? Let us know by emailing us at, Contact@TheKitsunetwork.net.

Officially Licensed, KFC Dating Simulator Game! | no really…

Earlier this month we mentioned, Domino’s Pizza newest menu item, the TSUDERE PIZZA. Now KFC is giving the anime, and the video game community alike, the opportunity to calm your cravings with the very first, officially licensed dating video game, I Love You, Colonel Sanders! A Finger Lickin’ Good Dating Simulator!

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From the same people who brought you the bucket of chicken, comes the world’s first Colonel Sanders dating simulator.

You now have the chance to impress Sanders-senpai, by cooking your way to his heart! Developed by indie game developer, Psyop and published by KFC, the game is set to be released on Steam on Sep 24, 2019. Watch the trailer:

 

Featuring cute characters and delicious food!

 

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Just look at that! Finger Lickin good!

According to a press release provided to us by KFC via email, the soon-to-be-released and free dating simulator game follows your journey as a promising young student through the University of Cooking School: Academy for Learning as you navigate relationships and manage social challenges that the fast-paced life in the kitchen can bring.

I Love You, Colonel Sanders! A Finger Lickin’ Good Dating Simulator, or ILYCS for short, goes through three acts in which gamers are given options that affect the outcome of the game. Gamers will have the chance to date the one and only, Colonel Sanders, who also joins the culinary school to embark on his journey of becoming the world’s greatest fried chicken salesman, adding to your list of challenges.

The game will be available on Steam starting Tuesday, September 24 at 8am ET, but you can add the game to your wishlist to be notified when it goes live.

The game will include:
– 9 lovable characters
– Multiple hours of play-through
– Dateable Colonel Sanders
– A secret ending! Shh!
– Secret recipes! Double Shh!
– Cooking battles
– Battle battles
– Earn a degree from a fictional culinary school
– 11 Herbs and Spices
– Cute miniature food
Officially created by KFC. No, really

Game Credits

Production:
Production Company: Psyop

Follow Psyop on Twitter

Directors: Alexei Bochenek (Creative director at Psyop) & Trevor Conrad

Follow Alexei Bochenek on Twitter

Executive Producer: Matthew Seymour

Producer: Caroline Castro

Trailer Animation:

Shotopop

Audio:

Hexany Audio

For full credit list, please visit click here.


UPDATE #1: Article was updated to reflect new or improved information directly from KFC’s press release provided to us. The article was updated to include some of the game’s credits and update the cover picture.

Ronin Expo 2019 Interviews | Hiroshi Nagahama & Reuben Langdon

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We had the honor of interviewing actor Reuben Langdon and famed anime director, Hiroshi Nagahama during Ronin Expo 2019 in Little Tokyo, California. Ronin Expo is an annual anime festival located in the heart of the Los Angeles Japanese community, Little Tokyo!

Hiroshi Nagahama, began his career at Madhouse Studio as a mechanical designer for ‘The Cockpit’, after leaving Madhouse, he became a freelancer. He later went on to direct the highly acclaimed anime series, Mushishi. In recent news, Nagahama was working alongside writer Stan Lee to co-create, The Reflection an anime series surrounding individuals who have superpowers after coming in contact with a mysterious light. More on this in our interview with Hiroshi Nagahama below:

Reuben Langdon is known for voicing Dante (Devil May Cry series), Ken Masters beginning with Street Fighter IV various others. Aside from voicing characters, he’s also a well-known motion capture actor, doing motion capture for Chris Redfield in Resident Evil Code Veronica, 5 & 6. In addition, Langdon is also a stuntman, filmmaker and on-camera actor, working on well-known film titles such as,  The Medallion, Spider-Man 2, Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End, Night at the Museum 2, Ant-Man, Scott Pilgrim vs. the World and Avatar. In recent news, Langdon was involved in a life-threating armed assault, earlier this year, while filming a documentary in Guatemala, Mexico. This and more in our interview:

We would like to thank Ronin Expo staff for providing the services we needed to execute these interviews. Special thanks to Lisle Wilkerson for interpreting our interview with Nagahama.

We’ll see you at Ronin Expo 2020!

For our 2018 Ronin Expo coverage click here. For updates on Ronin Expo please visit, https://www.ronin-expo.org/

 

Resident Evil II REmake Interview with Nick Apostolides and Jolene Anderson

Anime Pasadena returned for its 2nd run, Anime Pasadena 2019, held on April 20th at the Pasadena Convention Center in Pasadena, CA!

 

During the convention, we had the pleasure of interviewing voice actors, Nick Apostolides & Jolene Anderson the voices of Leon S. Kennedy and Ada Wong in the Resident Evil II Remake.

 

Watch as Nick and Jolene tell their stories from their time filming and recording their lines for the game!

The Kitsune Network would like to thank YouTube user, Story Mode for providing the in-game footage and game cut scenes for this interview.


GIVEAWAY

We are giving away an (1) AUTOGRAPHED Resident Evil II Remake print signed by Nick Apostolides (Leon S. Kennedy) & Jolene Anderson (Ada Wong)!

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ACTUAL PRIZE PRINT (Print size Approx.: 11×8.5’in)

HOW TO WIN?

Good luck to everyone who enters, you have till May 19TH to enter. Winners will be announced on MAY 20TH!


Photo gallery from Anime Pasadena 2019 held at the Pasadena Convention Center in Pasadena, California.

 

 

Kingdom Hearts III Interview: Bill Farmer & Quinton Flynn

A week ago we celebrated the release of the long-awaited video game, Kingdom Hearts III at Game Realms, a video game store located in Burbank, California. We had the chance to speak to voice actors, Bill Famer (Goofy) & Quinton Flynn (Axel) and ask them about their experiences playing their roles in the Kingdom Hearts series, this and more in our interview below! Enjoy!

 

Note: 

We apologize for the lighting in our video, due to extreme weather conditions and time restrictions, we were unable to set out lighting equipment, furthermore, the monitors in the background did not help with this situation. We hope that you were still able to enjoy our video!

Photos

Indivisible: First Look

Teaser Animated trailer released during Anime expo 2018. Animation by Studio Trigger known for Kill La Kill.

Indivisible is an upcoming, fighting RPG game made by Lab Zero Games, the same developers who made Skullgirls. Although Skullgirls focuses on mainly on fighting skills, Indivisible expands to the platform/RPG genre.

Indivisible produced by 505 Games

Indivisible was initially announced back in Anime Expo 2015 during a Skullgirls panel. On October 5th 2015, Lab Zero Games launched a crowdfunding campaign for $1.5 million dollars to produce an entire full game. Then on November 23, 2015, the Indivisible demo was released on Steam, generally receiving positive reviews and by December 2nd of that same year, the crowdfunding campaign was reached its goal of $1.5 million.

Screen shot from the demo. Download the game on Steam here.

Being a huge fan of the artwork that Lab Zero Games produces in their games, I decided to try the demo out myself. Just as their previous game, Skullgirls, Indivisible was produced using 2D, hand-drawn, techniques. Which in MY opinion Indivisible has one of the best hand animations, it has a art style that is more modern, and unlike other games such as, Cuphead which was meant to mimic the 1930s art style, Indivisible is a more modern rendition of that concept. Of course Cuphead is different genre. In comparison, Wakfu, produce by Ankama Games, is another game that is similar to Indivisible in that they both have similar art styles, though have very different gameplays:

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Left: Wakfu (Produce in Adobe Flash); Right: Indivisible (Produce using hand drawn 2D traditional animation)

There are many things about Indivisible that I loved, however its art direction and its gameplay is what got me mesmerized. The mixture of beautiful natural artistic direction, the detailed characters & the energetic cast alongside the dynamic Lab Zero Games team make the game a remarkable experience to play.
Unfortunately, Lab Zero Games fans will have to wait a bit along as the game’s initial release date, January 2018, was pushed back to some time in mid 2019. Although a specific date hasn’t been set yet.

Delayed set back to 2019 confirm by Lab Zero Games

For now, the demo is available on steam for FREE download and you can visit the game’s official website to be updated on its process here.

GIVEAWAY!

In honour of Indivisible, we’ve are giving away an official Indivisible Original Soundtrack CD brought to you by Lab Zero Games. Indivisible’s in-game music is composed by Hiroki Kikuta, who has worked in Super Nintendo’s Secret of Mana, Seiken Densetsu 3, Soul Calibur V & Koudelka.

 

How to win:
Like our facebook page here & Share this article via Twitter or Facebook using the #TKNIndivisible tag. You’ll automatically be entered to win this exclusive Indivisible Original Soundtrack CD. You have until August 11th 2018 to enter! The winner will be announced on August 12th 2018 via our facebook page. Good luck!

ANIME EXPO 2018

Anime Expo 2018 was a complete success!

AX18Day1.jpg For the 27th time, Anime Expo came back with full force from July 4th – July 8th drawing fans from 70 different countries. This year over 110,000 people attended Anime Expo, thats 2,342 more attendees than in Anime Expo 2017, making a local economic impact of $100 million to the city of Los Angeles.

Although Anime Expo went off without a hitch, there were a few slight inconveniences.

Before Anime Expo even began, they were altered to a possible threat made against AX and its attendees. According to Anime New Network, the threat was made by a man who allegedly stated via text, “These cons are due for a high school shooting, by a high school kidd [sic]. I’m working on a case at the moment. Shit u [sic] not.” although he did not specifically stated Anime Expo as a target, Anime Expo responded by promptly by ‘alerting local law enforcement to take appropriate actions in accordance with their procedures.‘ in a statement the Promotion of Japanese Animation (SPJA) said:

“Just as in 2017, we are working with security teams and local law enforcement, including K9 teams and traffic control officers, to maintain the safety of our event. Additionally, as previously announced, we are utilizing RFID badges for AX this year and will have security checks at each entrance. We encourage attendees to check our mobile app and maps to get familiarized with the various designated entrances.”

Thankfully, AX came and went without incident. Although the seriousness of this threat wasn’t felt among con goers; With public shootings happening all over the country on a daily basis, ‘indirect’ threats such as these, should NOT be taken with grain of salt. Though it may be a slight inconvenience, security checks at AX do their job by preventing such incidents to ever happen. If you would like to read more details on this situation please read Anime News Network’s article here.

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Moving on to more lighter but heated topics:

Los Angeles suffered a huge heat wave during day 2 & day 3 of Anime Expo with temperatures reaching up to 108°. Although the convention center had functioning air conditioning, outside the heat was unbearable. Mailing AX badges eliminated “LineCon” or the long tedious, on-site registration line. Attendees were still not happy about waiting in line to get inside the convention center due to bag checks. Attendees also took to social to suggest that Anime Expo should cap their tickets due to overcrowding.

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Do agree that Anime Expo should cap their badges? leave a comment below, we’d love to hear your opinions.

Be as it may, the heatwave was no match for hard working, determined cosplayers, whom in the middle of the scorching sun, went all out in their cosplays. Check these awesome cosplays:

We interviewed some of these wonderful cosplayers and this is what they had to say, about why they attended Anime Expo 2018 and how we dealt with the heat weave:

Before I jump on to a different topic, a HUGE  shoutout to these guys at Alove yogurt, who, in the middle of the scorching sun, passed out these delicious yogurts to con goers

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Thanks guys! (Peach Flavor was the best!)


In addition to the 110K attendees,  over 150 guests and industry made appearances including, Go Nagai, Hiromi Wakabayashi, Mari Okada, Sean Danconia, Santa Inoue, and SUSHIO. Booths also held guest appearances as with, Project Sekai who had Nekopara’s creator, Sayori in attendance for fan autographs.

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Since taking photos of Sayori was prohibited, here’s her signature dedicated to me, Krystal.

The Exhibit & Entertainment Halls also featured more than 524 Exhibitors (74 Exhibitors more than AX 2017) Among them was AnimePls, a new Anime brand that is dedicated to bringing you exclusive merchandise from various anime series including: Hatsune Miku, Attack On Titan, Yugioh, My Hero Academia & Aggretsuko! Check their booth from AX 2018.

Near the end of Anime Expo; Funimation and LootCrate collaborated on an AX Afterparty held at the Globe Theater in Downtown Los Angeles during the night of Day 3.

Attendees able to receive a free goodie bag which contained Loot Crate exclusives

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There were so many things that went down at this year’s anime. From newly produced anime series to exclusive Anime Expo events and merchandise. If you missed out this year, don’t worry, Anime Expo will be back in 2019! Tickets are now on sale! For now enjoy our entire Anime Expo 2018 photoset:

Special Thanks to:

  • Anime Expo & Anime Expo Press Staff
  • The Anime Pls Team
  • Cosplayer, Mystic Taku
  • Luis Alexander &
  • My wonderful assistant, Vincent Reyes