The Senran Kagura series has stirred up a whole lot of controversy ever since XSEED decided to localize its games for western audiences. The thing about their localizations? By and large, they’re uncensored.
Why is this a problem? Well, it’s a problem for some and not for others. For me? I don’t care.
Senran Kagura: Bon Appetit! is a rhythm game for the PS Vita where girls in skimpy clothes compete to cook the best dishes for a single judge. During their cook-offs, which are basically rhythm games similar to Taiko Drum Master except with buttons, their clothing rips away.
That, you see, is what drives people nuts about this franchise. Senran Kagura is, on one level, about the slow exposure of attractive young women for the service of fans.
We spoke with Brittany Avery of XSEED, responsible for a bulk of the localization translations work in Bon Appetit, specifically about how she views this series and the odd rhythm game.
Avery recognizes that there are those who won’t like the product. She said repeatedly through our chat that she totally gets the sour thinking when it comes to these games. She said all this while cosplaying a buxom character on her own. You can guess her stance, then. Brittany doesn’t mind the absurd fanservice. She doesn’t mind it for the same reason that I don’t mind it.
Here we have a cooking game where female clothing rips away while food is prepared while button pressing to the beat. It’s so over-the-top that there’s no doubt that the developers were being exceptionally silly.
Now, I’m not here to say that this game is “right” or “wrong.” I don’t think Avery was either. Senran Kagura: Bon Appetit!, even beyond the undressing of its characters, looks like a funny game. It’s one that I’ll probably check out, as I love rhythm, cooking and hilarious titles.
I have a love for over the top Japanese reactions to food. What am I talking about?
There’s this manga and show that I’m familiar with called Yakitate Japan! It’s all about one young Japanese baker’s quest to make the first absolutely Japanese bread. When he produces his loaves, he gives them to family members and judges for consideration.
Their reactions are amazing. Here’s an example.
Senran Kagura: Bon Appetit! has the same type of reactions. They may be riddled with preposterously clothed women and absurd innuendo, but they’re there. They’re a large part of why I want to try this game.
It may not be for everyone, but it’s absolutely silly enough that I’ll give it a shot.
As for Japanese gamers’ reaction to the lewd nature of this game? As Avery put it during our chat, “they don’t care.” Should we?