- Time for some GameSetLinks, then, starting out with a really excellent series of interviews on the Japanese game scene, thanks to the good Japanophile folks in the Ziff Davis Game Group, chatting to folks including the Monster Hunter (pictured!) makers.

Also in this compilation - the re-appearance of Rent-A-Hero No.1, a mash-up of Gauntlet and Bomberman, and George Lucas' appearance to not-promote Vampyre Story, some post-NGJ silliness, and quite a few other things.

Busted by the cops:

1UP: 'The Rise and Fall (and Rise) of Japan'
Completely vital Parish and Mielke interview series chatting to Famitsu, Monster Hunter, NCSX (!!), LocoRoco creators...

John Davison: Do game reviews help you?
Maybe game reviews, pre-Internet, were information and visual disseminators as much as reviews?

Lost Levels: 'English Rent-A-Hero No. 1 for Xbox Leaked'
Interesting - as a bit of a Sega quirk fan, I was looking forward to this.

Alex Litel's Lackluster Emporium: New New Post New Games Journalism Manifesto
“So essentially New Post New New Games Journalism is silver-tongued nonsense?” Litel goes wild.

IndieGames.com - The Weblog - Preview: Blast Passage (Notch)
A direct mash-up of Gauntlet and Bomberman - cute.

GameSpite: 'The Blink-And-You'll-Miss-It Files #2: Mazes of Fate'
The cosmically odd Patrick Dugan just started working for Sabarasa, actually - they seem to be mysterious Argentinian Japan-ophiles.

Shawn's 1UP Blog: Goodbye
Shawn Elliott was responsible for the 1UP feature content I was starting to dig a lot... oh well. He's off to 2K Boston, apparently. And the consumer game journalist position as the equivalent of the portal drug is increasingly the norm.

Bill Tiller - Interview - Adventure Classic Gaming - ACG
Aha, the Vampyre Story guy again, with hilarious 'not George Lucas really but actually it is' promo photo.

Opinion and Links - September 18 | Edge Online
Amusing Campbell meltdown on GI.biz's use of exclusive - and I agree with him, for what it's worth. We (at Gamasutra) do use exclusive a little bit too much, as is tempting on the web, but it's always when the article is actually, uhm, exclusive.

Games are serious business for Apple - Citizen Gamer- msnbc.com
Some neat quotes from Matt @ our new FingerGaming iPhone site in there.