Cho Aniki

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Cho Aniki (超兄貴 Chō Aniki?, lit. "Super Big Brother") is a Japanese video game series originally developed by Masaya and published by NCS Corp. The first game debuted in 1992 for the PC Engine system. The game's sequels and spin-offs later appeared on the Super Famicom, Wonderswan, Sega Saturn, PlayStation, and PlayStation 2. Mainly consisting of side-scrolling shoot 'em up in the vein of Gradius, the Cho Aniki series is best known for its homoerotic overtones, wacky humor and vivid, surreal imagery. Most of the games have never seen release outside Japan, but the series title loosely translates to English as "Super Big Brothers."

For various reasons, the popularity of the Cho Aniki games has endured since the series' debut. Depending on at which specific title one looks, highlights include in-game music, innovative control schemes or sheer kitsch value. In Japan, these games are examples of baka-ge, a type of kuso-ge. "Baka-ge" literally means "idiot game" while "kuso-ge" literally means "shitty game" or "shit game". Baka-ge's appeal lies in its campness. Indisputably, the game's aesthetic sense — semi-nude muscular men in suggestive homoerotic poses — is a unique one, certainly a quality that has given the series a cult popularity among Western gamers. Though the graphics are more risqué than pornographic, the series references homosexuality and gay sex more directly and more often than perhaps any other video game series in history.

Occasionally, the title is transliterated as "Choaniki", "Chou Aniki", or (erroneously) "Cho Eniki".

The rights to the series are currently owned by Extreme Co., Ltd., which had obtained the rights of NCS Corp. and Masaya products and trademarks.[1]

Video Games[edit]

Cho Aniki[edit]

Cho Aniki is the first game in the Cho Aniki series.

Ai Cho Aniki[edit]

Ai Cho Aniki
Developer(s) Masaya
Publisher(s)
  • JP Nippon Computer Systems
Platform(s) Super CD-ROM², Wii (Virtual Console)
Release date(s) Super CD-ROM²
  • JP February 24, 1995
Wii Virtual Console
  • JP December 18, 2007
Genre(s) Horizontal scrolling shooter
Mode(s) 2 Player
Distribution CD-ROM (PCE)
Download (VC)

'Ai Cho Aniki' (愛・超兄貴 Ai Chō Aniki?, lit. "Love Super Big Brother") was the sequel to Cho Aniki developed by Masaya and also released for the Super CD-ROM². In this game, players controlled Samson and Adon directly. A key difference in the control scheme of Ai Cho Aniki is that instead of rapidly pressing buttons as a means of firing at enemies, players now had to input intricate button combinations, Street Fighter-style. By and large, Cho Aniki and Ai Cho Aniki play very similarly.

In this game, Bo Emperor Conshyasu (BoteiConshyasu, a pun of "body conscious") raise the Neo Builder Army to fight Idaten and Benten. However, the two fall in love and elope. This leaves Samson and Adon to fight the new threat, Su Emperor Roido (SuTeiLoido, a pun of "steroid"). This time Taku Iwasaki scored the soundtrack.

On release, Famicom Tsūshin scored the PC Engine version of the game a 24 out of 40,[2] giving it a 7 out of 10 in their Reader Cross Review.[3]

The game was released on Nintendo's Virtual Console service in 2007 in Japan.

Cho Aniki Bakuretsu Ranto-hen[edit]

Chō Aniki Bakuretsu Ranto Hen
Developer(s) Masaya
Publisher(s) Nippon Computer Systems
Platform(s) Super Famicom
Release date(s)
  • JP September 22, 1995
Genre(s) Fighting
Mode(s) 2 Player
Distribution Cartridge

Cho Aniki: Bakuretsu Ranto-hen (超兄貴 爆烈乱闘篇 Chō Aniki: Bakuretsu Rantō-hen?, lit. "Super Big Brother: Exploding Brawl")A departure from the typical Cho Aniki formula has characters from previous games — heroes and villains alike — battling in one-on-one fights. Playable characters include the following.

  • Idaten, a warrior with long spiked hair who uses a variety of attacks with his body
  • Benten, who in this game is flanked by two cherubs who can transform into mini-hunks
  • Samson/Adon, attacks by gyrating and flatulating.
  • Sabu, a pagoda-shaped ship with an Elvis Presley-looking figurehead
  • Mami 19, a strange amalgam of a cute girl and a battleship transporting three naked, frolicking men
  • Adam, a naked man riding in half a moon. He is intended to resemble Adam from the The Creation of Adam portion of Michelangelo's Sistine Chapel.
  • Botei, a berserker, likely to be Bo Emperor (Botei) Bill from the first series
  • Uminin, an odd latex creature that resembles a condom

This game was the last of the series to be developed by Masaya. It was released in 1995.

Cho Aniki - Kyuukyoku Muteki Ginga Saikyou Otoko[edit]

Cho Aniki: Kyuukyoku Muteki Ginga Saikyou Otoko
Developer(s) Masaya
Publisher(s)
  • JP Nippon Computer Systems
  • JP Extreme
  • NA/EU MonkeyPaw Games
Platform(s) PlayStation, Sega Saturn, PlayStation Network
Release date(s) PlayStation
  • JP December 29, 1995
  • JP August 30, 2001 (reprint)
Sega Saturn
  • JP March 29, 1996
PlayStation Network
  • JP March 11, 2009
  • NA September 20, 2010
  • EU October 5, 2011
Genre(s) Horizontal scrolling shooter
Mode(s) 1 Player
Distribution CD-ROM

Cho Aniki - Kyuukyoku Muteki Ginga Saikyou Otoko (超兄貴 ~究極無敵銀河最強男~ Chō Aniki - Kyūkyoku Muteki Ginga Saikyō Otoko?, lit. "Super Big Brother - The Ultimate, Most Powerful Man in the Milky Way") was released for the PlayStation the same year as the previous two titles, this game features digital photography instead of the hand-drawn anime-style art from the other titles. It was released for the Sega Saturn a year later and the PlayStation Network in Japan in 2009. The subtitle of this game loosely translates to "The Ultimate, Most Strongest Man in the Milky Way" or "The Ultimate, Invincible, Most Galactically Powerful Man." The game is based on the engine of the first Cho Aniki. As such, Idaten and Benten are again the main two characters. The game is often derided as having the worst play mechanics in the series. Even some of the most fervent fans of Cho Aniki claim that the campy fun is inhibited by poor control and impossible difficulty. Koji Hayama returned to score a few songs for the soundtrack, along with Don McCow, Taku Iwasaki and Sanae Kasahara.

Newly formed publisher MonkeyPaw Games released this game on September 21, 2010 in North America[4] and on October 5, 2011 in Europe on the PlayStation Network.


Cho Aniki: Otoko no Tamafuda[edit]

Cho Aniki: Otoko no Tamafuda
Developer(s) Masaya
Publisher(s) Bandai
Platform(s) Wonderswan
Release date(s)
  • JP February 10, 2000
Genre(s) RPG
Mode(s) 1 Player
Distribution Cartridge

Cho Aniki: Otoko no Tamafuda (超兄貴 男の魂札 Chō Aniki: Otoko no Tamafuda?, lit. "Super Big Brother: Spirit Man Tag") is a video game in the Cho Aniki series. This twist on the Cho Aniki universe pits the heroes of the previous games on a role-playing video game quest in which battles are fought with playing cards. According to an article on the game at the Hardcore Gaming 101 website, the title of the game is a pun. The title translates to "Man's Tamafuda," with tamafuda being a portmanteau of tamashii — Japanese for "soul" — and hanafuda — a Japanese card game.[5] It is also likely that the pun extends to another meaning of tama, "balls".

The game was released for the portable Wonderswan system in 2000.

I (ai) chō aniki gekiretsu nawatobi-hen[edit]

I (ai) chō aniki gekiretsu nawatobi-hen
Developer(s) Masaya
Publisher(s) Mayasa
Platform(s) Mobile Phone
Release date(s)
Genre(s) Sport
Mode(s) 1 Player

Cho Aniki: Seinaru Protein Densetsu[edit]

Cho Aniki: Seinaru Protein Densetsu
Developer(s) X-nauts
Psikyo
Publisher(s) Global A
Platform(s) PlayStation 2
Release date(s)
  • JP October 30, 2003
Genre(s) Horizontal scrolling shooter
Mode(s) 1 Player
Distribution CD-ROM

Cho Aniki: Seinaru Protein Densetsu (超兄貴~聖なるプロテイン伝説~ Chō aniki: Seinaru Purotein Densetsu?, lit. "Super Big Brother: Legend of the Holy Protein") is the most recent of the Cho Aniki games. It was released for the PlayStation 2 in 2003. The game's subtitle translates to With Masaya now defunct, the game was co-developed by X-Nauts and Psikyo. This team also developed Sengoku Blade, and this game plays much like it as a result.

The plot of this game centers on the Holy Protein, a deity-like glob of what may be semen. Samson and Adon hover around the glob, absorbing enemy fire as they did in previous games. This game lacks characters from previous titles as playable, such as Benten, who only appears in some "stage complete" illustrations. Some of the enemies include a giant, cross-dressing man in an Alice in Wonderland costume and a Mona Lisa painting that fires lasers from its eyes.

Cho Aniki Zero[edit]

This is the first Cho Aniki title developed by extreme Co.,Ltd., who had obtained the rights of NCS Corp. and Masaya products.

Music[edit]

The first game was composed entirely by Koji Hayama, who states on his website that Cho Aniki is his favorite work to date. Numerous soundtracks from the various games have been released on CD, Maxi-Singles and even a live performance has been released on VHS. Later games in the series were composed by Taku Iwasaki, Isao Mizoguchi (under the alias Don McCow) and Sanae Kasahara.

Cho Aniki in pop culture[edit]

Appearances in other games[edit]

Masaya also developed the Langrisser series, where Samson and company make a cameo. A hidden level takes the party to an area called the Muscle Shrine, where they must fight Samson. If victorious, the party can then use the Aniki summon, the most powerful in the game. The cameo exists in the Mega Drive, Super NES and PlayStation ports of the game.

The Capcom video game, God Hand, pokes fun of Samson and Adon as powerless yet flamboyant drag queens who are the first boss of the game.

The Japanese release of the Game Boy Advance game Gem Smashers replaces the three playable characters with three differently colored versions of the Uminin (the original light blue Uminin, and a pink and green Uminin as well)

Samson and Adon[edit]

These series mascots are the personification of phallic imagery. For example, they shoot white energy beams from the holes in their heads called the "Men's Beam," which is charged up with every firing by both of them rapidly pelvic thrusting into the air. The pair are never specified as lovers or even necessarily homosexuals in the earlier series. However, in "The legend of Holy Protein", both Samson and Adon's preference are spelt out as "men".

Cult popularity[edit]

Few gamers outside Japan have played the Cho Aniki series, but many know of the game through articles written about it on such websites as I-Mockery,[6] Seanbaby,[7] and Something Awful.[8] The series is often mentioned in lists of outrageous, peculiar or sexual video games.

Some time around 1999, gaming magazine Electronic Gaming Monthly ran a passing comment about how the US was thankfully spared this homoerotic shooter (Referring to Cho Aniki for PS1, although the comment was followed by "Not that there is nothing wrong with a homosexual shooter"). For the next few months EGM's letters to the editor were dominated by remarks lambasting the editors at EGM for making fun of the game, even after the editors repeatedly told their readership that the game was horrible.

See also[edit]


References[edit]

  1. ^ メサイヤ
  2. ^ NEW GAMES CROSS REVIEW: 愛・超兄貴. Weekly Famicom Tsūshin. No.324. Pg.40. 3 March 1995.
  3. ^ 読者 クロスレビュー: 愛・超兄貴. Weekly Famicom Tsūshin. No.332. Pg.32. 28 April 1995.
  4. ^ [1] http://blog.us.playstation.com/2010/09/20/playstation-store-update-157/
  5. ^ "Cho Aniki". Hardcore Gaming 101. Retrieved 2010-02-02. 
  6. ^ "Sexual Moments in Video Game History". I-Mockery.com. Retrieved October 29, 2005. 
  7. ^ "EGM's 10 Naughtiest Games of All Time". Seanbaby.com. Retrieved October 29, 2005. 
  8. ^ http://www.somethingawful.com/d/rom-pit/cho-aniki-bakuretsu.php

External links[edit]