Japan has been a source of endless entertainment and inspiration for our western culture, with the obvious being movies like The Ring or Battle Royale (which is thought by many to be one of the inspirations behind the Hunger Games series). Even video games such as Zelda and Final Fantasy have raised the bar for what is expected. Then we have the less obvious TV shows such as Wipeout and Hole In The Wall –  even the format for Dragon’s Den is taken from a Japanese show!

Finally, we have some items that are just so outrageous that it sadly looks like they won’t be influencing our lives anytime soon. This article, however, is a homage to them. Let’s take a look at 10 of the weird, wonderful and most insane Japanese video games of all time.


10. I’m Sorry


Released in 1985, I’m Sorry is a Pac-Man styled game that should ease you in to the mind-bending storylines and characters you’re about to witness. The game follows protagonist Tanaka, former Japanese prime minister (I’m Sorry being a play on words for ‘Sori’, the Japanese for prime minister), as he runs around courses gathering gold bullions. Pretty standard stuff – witty even if you think of it as a politically satirical Pac-Man – but that’s not why it made the list.

As the greedy politician runs around the environment, he’s confronted by an array of enemies, consisting of Madonna, Michael Jackson and even Carl Lewis, who will try to stop you in your tracks, in particular one suit wearing enemy will turn into S&M attire and begin flogging a half-naked Tanaka, should he be caught.

It’s refreshing to see someone being exploited via video games for their corruption. I can’t help but think what a UK version would look like though… Jacqui Smith trying to collect and hide her husband’s porn stash?

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This article was first posted on March 5, 2013