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Power-Up: How Japanese Video Games Gave the World an Extra Life
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Power-Up: How Japanese Video Games Gave the World an Extra Life

3.76 of 5 stars 3.76  ·  rating details  ·  124 ratings  ·  10 reviews
BradyGames' "Power-Up: How Japanese Video Games Gave the World an Extra Life," by Chris Kohler, is a unique book that gives readers an entertaining and authoritative look at the indelible influence the video gaming, particularly, Japanese gaming, has had on the world."Power-Up" is the first English-language work of its kind to examine the reasons behind the success of Japa ...more
Paperback, 302 pages
Published August 1st 2004 by Bradygames
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Kohler investigates the influence that the Japanese industry has had on the video game. He covers most of the expected areas: the beginning rise with arcade games, Miyamoto and the creation of Mario, the JRPG, music games, and Pokemon. On a basic level, I enjoyed the book, and it provided a lot of interesting trivia facts--for example, Kohler recounts how Space Invaders was so popular in Japan that the government had to quadruple production on the 100 yen coin. But I think there were some defini ...more
Oct 30, 2007 Shanna rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Video Game Fans, Japanese Pop Culture Enthusiasts
When I first started reading this book, I could not believe that this man had actually written his thesis on video games. But the further I got into the book, I realized how much research had actually gone into each chapter. The chapter on RPG's alone had enough information to be expanded into an entirely new book.

However, the chapter on where to find games in Akihabara seemed to be more like a chapter out of a travel journal.

Even more dissapointing was the chapter on video games translation/l
Power Up is a fun read. It gives a lot of background into why the visual story telling style from Japan really helped re-ignite video games in America.

It is a little slow in the middle when talking about soundtracks, particularly the section on the Final Fantasy Soundtrack Discography. However, this was the only part of the book where it wasn't a fascinating and enjoyable read to me.

Kohler is an obvious enthusiast who anyone that grew up in the states during the 80's will be able to relate to.

Even though this book read like the author's master's thesis (because in part, it is), his enthusiasm for the subject has a way of overpowering the countless citations.

If you have ever wondered how the video game industry came to be and where it is going, this is book is the best place to start.

It also made me want to hop on a plane to Japan and blow my life's savings on used video games.
All I really have to say about this is that I love the fact I had to read it for work. It reminded me of the time I was assigned to read Pride & Prejudice for a college history class. It's just awesome when something you're really interested in becomes required reading.
Fantastic for anyone who cares about video games,
as in, really cares about them as an art form with cultural significance.
Maybe it would be interesting if you don't care about video games, but I imagine this is a prerequisite.

Looks interesting, a discussion on how Japanese art & culture have effected the development of video games.
Joshua Martin-Corrales
Alright, basically pretty basic stuff...basically.
A very good read if you like playing video games.
Ikhlas's Mcgrath
gamer must be read this book
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