Monday, June 30, 2008

How Permanent Is My Residency In Japan?

To: Crecente From: Bashcraft

Ahoy! Welcome back from you boating adventure.

Today, I went to the immigration office to see if I got permanent residence. The way it works here (and other countries, too, I guess) is that you typically get a one-year or a three-year visa from your employer, who sponsors your visa. If you are married, then your spouse is your sponsor. That’s kinda worrying if you’ve got a family — like, what if you don’t get your visa renewed? (It happens!)

What’s more, for me, I can’t qualify for a home loan with a spouse visa. Banks just won’t lend money! They got burned lending easy money during the Bubble Economy are are extra cautious. Want to buy a house? Most foreigners need that governmental Good Housekeeping Seal of Approval that is permanent residency. To apply, I had to fill out a bunch forms, stating why I wanted residency, divulge personal info. like how I met Mrs. Bashcraft and include pictures of us together over the years. She was my sponsors for my application, and her parents, my in-laws, were like the back-up sponsors. The government checked my tax record, blah, blah, blah, to see if I was being a good foreigner. We’ve been on pins and needles, ’cause we are too ready to buy a house, sick of paying rent, whatever. And today, we went to the immigration office and learned that, yes, I am officially a permanent resident of Japan. Yay!

What does that mean? Pretty much that I don’t have to renew my visa and can stay here as long as I want, but do have to get re-entry permits for my passport when I leave the country (which is something every foreigner has to do — maybe except for Korean-Japanese, not sure). Can’t vote with permanent residency, though, you gotta be a citizen for that. In the past, it’s been somewhat challenging to get permanent residency, though it probably was much easier for me as I am married and do my part in increasing the shrinking Japanese population.

What you missed last night Rock Band 2 announced 2.40′s In-Game XMB Walkthrough “Major Retailer” Confirms 360 Price-Cut DualShock 3 Finally Dated for Europe Metal Gear Online Stand Alone Confirm, Access Numbers Announced


Mega Man 9 Coming For XBLA, PSN As Well

A retro-themed Mega Man 9 is a surprising move by Capcom! You know what’s less surprising? The news the game won’t just be appearing on Nintendo’s WiiWare service. Really, why would Capcom turn down free money? Turns out the game’s also destined for the PlayStation Network and Xbox Live Arcade as well, making Mega Man 9 the first game (I can think of) to be released across all three current-generation platforms. Megaman 9 to be the first game to hit Wiiware, XBLA, and PSN [Ars Technica]


PS3 2.40: Available July 2 (ie Wednesday)

Wonder about firmware release dates no more, PS3 owners. The console’s 2.40 update – which will bring trophy support, in-game XMB access and limited custom soundtracks – will be out this Wednesday, July 2. That date comes straight from Sony. We suggest you spend those two days wisely. Spending them copying your entire CD collection over to your PS3 is not – as any 360 owner will tell you – spending it wisely.


Crecente, Croal and Totilo Pre-3 Talk Part 2

More talking! Newsweek‘s N’Gai Croal, Stephen Totilo from Hogan Knows Best, Brian Crecente and Brian Crecente’s hair are back for another pre-E3 chit-chat. This time around, the fellas talk about Sony’s E3. Insights abound — especially from Crecente’s hair.

If you missed Part 1, click here.


PS3 2.40: First Screens

Bless him, Eric Lempel did his best, but standing in front of a TV on a low-resolution web clip was never going to really capture what the PS3′s 2.40 firmware update was all about. No, for that, you’ll need pictures. Big pictures. [via Game|Life & PS3F]


Nintendo Push Back Relase Of DVD-Playing Wii

While it’s never been given an official, bells-and-whistles announcement by the company, they’ve made it clear enough in the past that Nintendo will some day release a Wii that’s capable of playing DVDs. It was meant to be in 2007, but that obviously didn’t happen. Our advice is not to expect one in 2008, either, as Nintendo president Satoru Iwata has said “With supply constraints [of the Wii]continuing worldwide, the priority is on the current model”. The 0.3% of the population with a Wii but without a DVD player must surely be distraught.

Nintendo Holds off on Wii DVD [IGN]


2.40's Trophy Walkthrough

And the 2.40 good times just keep on coming. Everyone’s favourite 2.40 video spokesman, Eric Lempel, now brings you the skinny on just how the PS3′s achievement trophy system will work. Enjoy.


List of First PS3 Trophy Supported Games

The 2.40 firmware is bringing in-game XMB and trophies. The first games getting trophy support include BUZZ! Quiz TV, LittleBigPlanet, MotorStorm Pacific Rift, NBA 09, PAIN, PixelJunk Eden, Resistance 2, SOCOM: U.S. Navy SEALs Confrontation and Warhawk. Some of those games (like PAIN and Warhawk) require a game update for trophies. More info is detailed in the presser. That, after the jump!


Europe Gets Rock Band 2 In September As Well

The first Rock Band’s European roll-out was…less than ideal. So news of the sequel’s announcement earlier today will, for a lot of Europeans, bring more questions than excitement. Questions like: what about a European release date? Wil it be released outside the UK, France and Germany? Will it be released in Europe at all? Well, yes (to one of those questions). No firm date as of yet, but EA have confirmed to VG247 that the game will be released in Europe in September, same month as it is in the US. Much better. Rock Band 2 release is “the same for Europe” [VG247]


Metal Gear Solid 4's Nude Actor Motion Capture

Metal Gear Solid 4 is a sexy game. It’s got it all — sexy posing, sexy stone penis grabbing, sexy skin-tight outfits and sexy nard punching. At the recent MGS4 signing session in Tokyo’s Shinjuku, Metal Gear creator Hideo Kojima joked that it sure seems like, with what Snake’s arse-clenched sneaking suit and the Beauty and the Beast Corps tush-hugging outfits, there was a “butt depiction obsession”. Sure seems like it! Kojima continues, “Originally, we were planning to have the Beauty and the Beast Corps appear buck naked”. Character designer Yoji Shinkawa, who was also at the Shinjuku event, added: