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Struggle for the Famiclone Sesh

Hi Beijing, how are you? I’m great doing thanks because after two years without a working Famiclone my life got totally fixed thanks to Concertina stocking mini Famiclones (in case you’re unfamiliar he’s 101 on what a Famiclone is:’s right people, a shanzhai NES, but slightly smaller and in a nice boxthat my cat is currently really enjoying. Yet the biggest win here and thepoint of this story is the 500 games built into the system: true, most of themare the same crumby games repeated over with vague changes like colour swaps,peppered with a bunch games you may have never played before like an oddly violent Hello Kitty game and 8-bit Plants Vs. Zombies. Yet then there is Alice Cooper Mario. I kid you not brothers and sisters. While it’s actually titled Alice Cooper it is just Super Mario Bros. except with Mario replaced with a gnarly looking dude dressed in black with wild hair. The power ups are a snake and aglowing sword, the turtles are replaced with nuns and I’m pretty sure the first boss is Ziggy Stardust. Guys, it’s not just a game changer, it’s a life changer, and it can be yours for 195RMB. Go. Now. 

In other news Genjing Records makes a return with their first release in a while,a split slab of wax between Struggle Session and Die!ChiwawaDie! which will bedropping Friday at School. We’ll get to that in a minute.

Today is Wednesday and I’ve been struggling with a Zombie Vs. Plantssession. I mean really struggling because this game sucks. Though I only played this on the iPad once I seem to remember the plants actually doing something like defending themselves from the stupid zombies. Instead they just get chewed up by the puke green undead hordes while the monotonous music just loops round and round and makes we wish a zombie would smash my skull open already. 2/10.Meanwhile the Floso workshop is going down tonight, detailing the joys of the Tim Oberheim OB- XA and RolandJuno 106 amongst other things including how to excel at the official version ofPlants Vs. Zombies on mobile devices from 7p.m. Down the street Temple’s‘Fresh Blood’ series continues, offering up the stage to psych rockers Widdo-Pofrom 10p.m. There’ll be some electro rock happenings at DDC with Shtuby from 9p.m. Jurassic.

Tomorrow is Thursday andI’ll most likely be struggling to tear myself away from my mini Famiclone andgo to bed in order to get at least four hours sleep before I have to go towork. Why? Contra, that’s why. That game just ages like a fine wine and if youdon’t understand that concept you’ll probably also think the Robocop reboot was better than the original.After playing this game for hours on end I’ve become convinced that no shirt Iown should involve sleeves of any kind as sleeves just hinder the slaughter ofbad guys. 9/10. At Temple time and space will warp and shift with At erlier II,ANXT, and Liane from 10p.m. At DDC Thomas Schoeffler Jr. will be singing theblues and moaning about trying to fit all his stuff in a matchboxfrom 7:30p.m. That’ll be followed by the KevinSun & Mark Bai Quintet, jazzing it up hard from 9:30p.m.

Friday,weekend o’clock. One session I won’t be struggling with are the Ghostbustersgames. Let me put this out there: I adore the Ghostbusters films, cartoons,comic books, all that jazz. As a kid I even adored the Ghostbusters game on theSega Master System. It’s an odd one to jump into as you have to first buy yourequipment and then drive around the city catching ghosts to pay back a bankloan before you even get to the bit with the Marshmallow Man. Yet it was oddlyrewarding. The Famicon port is just a flimsy apparition of what was already anoddball game. Ghostbusters 2…I’ve never even bothered clearing the first stage,where you just get bitten by rats and spiders until you die. 3/10. At ye olde School Bar you can get your greasy mitts on a coloured see-throughvinyl disc containing the music of dragcore heroes Struggle Session and electro emo villains Die!ChiwawaDie! all the way from Guangzhou. Support comes from XiaoWang and The Sino Hearts,and it’s going to be nothing short of insane in themembrane. 9:30 start, being a towel. Over at DDC they’ll be having their own slice of punk rawk madness with AcidAccident, TOSS,and Motorbike Girls from 9:30p.m. Dada willbe celebrating…five years of Dada...jesus.What can one expect from such a momentous occasion? Well, in their own words:"the DJs -- really, who cares? -- they'll be there, and they'll behorrible, and we'll figure the rest of this out later..." I think theynailed that one. 10p.m start. If you really don’t care about deejaysyou can go be one at the open DJ night at FRuityspace from 9:30p.m,and Pikey Mikey Zhang will be spinningtechno at Lantern and asking if youlike daaags from 11p.m.

Saturday! Which calls for a struggle-to-be-bothered-about-wearing-clothes-session. Infront of the TV. All. Day. Long. This Saturday I plan to tame theferocious beast know as Kitty, of Hello Kitty fame. As mentioned earlier thetitle built into my Famiclone is rather violent. It’s basically a platformerthat consist of Kitty jumping around attempting to water plant pots so flowersbloom, in between smacking people and animals with a hammer. It’s like GTAbefore GTA, with a cute bow on its little kitty head. 8/10.  Once I’m donewatering plants, hitting people with hammers, and playing that Hello Kitty gameI’ll head over to DDC for somedeliciously glitchy dance beats from CA1XR and lord of the chiptune, 4 Channels Club,from 9:30p.m. At Temple if youmissed Die! ChiwawaDie! at Schoollast night you can get another chance to dig their electro-clash/emo jams alongwith Boss Cuts and Underdogfrom 10p.m. At School The Beauty will be having their EP release with The Da Vinci and Brickberry in support from 9:30pm. At Yue Space Dream Garden will stop byas part of their current China tour from 9p.m.At FRuityspace y’all can get down to the fRuity groove with sounds from PeteChen, Marukaoo, Wootacc,DJ Fake, and DJ Endy, all thatfrom 9p.m. Finally techno music at Lantern(surprise!) with Jackson Lee, Huang Wei Wei and more from 11p.m.

Sunday:struggle-to-get-out-of-bed-session. For reals. Something that might convinceyou to over come this challenge is the knock-off version of Pokemon Red/Blue I bought a few years back. From the out set you’re greeted by an image of what looks like one of the characters from Aaahh!!! Real Monsters with downssyndrome. You know you’re in for a ride just from that title screen. One little over sight I enjoy is that when a battle initiates your trainer avatar never disappears, which gives the impression that it’s just a heartless teenager kicking his enemy’s Pokemon in the face. 10/10.  Once the afternoon arrives Borderless will be presenting a day long eulogy for all joy being bricked outof the hutongs with the aptly named ‘Wall’ at Yue Space featuring documentaries and music from Pacalolo,Dan Taylor, 4 Channels Club, The Peppercorns and more from 2p.m onwards. Die!ChiwawaDie! won’t be playing at fRuityspace but their label Qiii Snacks will be throwing a deejay party with the line up of Chenzaikaimen, DJ Fake, Jinbo, and shokichi from 8:30p.m. At School there’ll be some Brit pop/ indie tunes, perhaps inspired the recent visitationof some scraggly bloke in a parker jacket from some band no one has ever heardof. The Lake, Time Capsule, and Giant Saint will be ragging on The Beatles from 9:30p.m. Finally, it’s farewell to grunge rockers Pork(they became vegans?) at Temple along with Quick Shot and Shao Jiu Jun Tuan from 9p.m.

Next week: Sonic The Hedgehog, After burner, and Space Harrier. In that order. I already know all of these ports are going to suck, it’s just a matter of how much. Next Monday: open mic o’clock at Caravan,get on the stage for a free drink from 9p.m; Salvor Latino return to the newly reopened Murdernista to bring that salsa flavour to your collective ears from 10p.m. Next Tuesday:Jianghu jazz jammage all over your face from 9p.m. Next Wednesday:the Floso workshop on how toopen a can of corn by throwing it against a wall from 7p.m, and the DDC Grand Jam welcomes one and all to create so much feed back people actually bleed from their ears from 9p.m.

Mustdash, Alice Cooper Mario isn’t going to complete itself.