Saturday, March 15, 2008

Bitten by Barbara the Bat

Via the Smash Bros Dojo blog, Nintendo has offered me a new character that I find immensely appealing, if for no other reason than the fact that she looks nothing like the rest of the skirts, sexpots and sissies Nintendo puts in its games. Meet Barbara the Bat.

She’s anthropomorphized, though she’s clearly leaning more toward the “anthro” side of the equation that the batty one. I can’t decide if she looks more like an extra from Fritz the Cat or something tattooed on the bicep of a guy who would beat the crap out of me. In any case, she presents more attitude than I’d expect from a family friendly company that has justifiably earned its reputation as the Disney of video games. Barbara hails from the “DJ-style music game” Daigasso! Band Brothers, which Wikipedia claims would have been called Jam With the Band had it ever been released in the United States. It hasn’t and neither has its sequel, so I can’t necessarily say that Barbara isn’t some horrible shrew. I’m hoping her series does eventually get ported over to at least one of the lands of English-speakers, perhaps so Barbara can get a chance of being a full-fledged playable fighter in the next Smash Bros.. According to Babs’s backstory, she resides in the new Nintendo location of Waru Waru Town, where she operates the store GB Music — the initials in which stands for “Great Barbara” but which also happen to offer a nod to Nintendo’s bygone portable system the Game Boy. The game offers her two sidekicks: the little brother bat Ting Tin and a strange Grim Reaper-looking thing called Pockin the Death.

Which is great. I believe they may be the whats-its appearing alongside Barbara in the below art.

Bizarre sidekicks notwithstanding, the whole package works for me in a major way.

Two more examples of Barbara the Bat artwork:

And here is the Nintendo DS version of the game in action. No, I don’t really get it either.

Barbara, may we soon see you again?

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