It’s already nearly Christmas — where has the year gone? What better way to remind ourselves of the impending chaos of the holiday season than by contemplating our favourite Christmas-related entertainment? Specifically, my three favourite ways to celebrate Christmas as an otaku gamer!
Christmas time can be enjoyed alone or alongside loved ones, so my three favourite ways to celebrate Christmas can also be appreciated with or without the company of others. Because ultimately, Christmas time is what we make of it!
Rewatching Tokyo Godfathers
It goes without saying that Satoshi Kon struck gold with whatever he got his talented hands on, so let’s keep this short: Tokyo Godfathers ranks as one of the finest, most brilliant and endearingly significant Christmas movies to have ever existed. Full stop.
It’s up there with the all-time classics that are usually the first to come to mind for the majority of people (If anyone says “Die Hard” I will cut them – Ed.), but if on the off-chance you’re unfamiliar, let’s take a quick look at the details.
Tokyo Godfathers is an unconventional take on a festive movie. It’s primarily a celebration of a theme that is always central to Christmas movies: the importance of family — both the family we are born into, and the family we choose for ourselves. The movie’s narrative is pushed forward through a series of happy coincidences that bring a series of miracles to the three central characters. As a result, transgender former drag queen Hana, runaway Miyuki and alcoholic Gin discover a baby, and have to figure out what to do next.
Deciding it is up to them to find the baby’s parents, their journey ends up making them reconnect with their past and lost connections, and they face their personal issues along the way on a symbolic journey of redemption. Ultimately, the result of it all is that they successfully find inner peace, and become the heroes of the day through being kind and selfless.
Ultimately, the movie is a journey of discovering inner happiness via the process of recovering from regrets, finding forgiveness, and connecting to others. With a universal theme, and a message anyone and everyone can take something positive from, Tokyo Godfathers teaches us to appreciate the everyday miracles that come in life, and see that happiness is within our grasp no matter who we are, and what our pasts paint us as.
Revisiting Animal Crossing (on the 3DS and Switch specifically)
I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again — Animal Crossing: New Horizons was one of my most disappointing video game releases of 2020. For me, its updates came far too late to be truly satisfying — however, I’m a sucker for winter festivities.
Despite the fact I’m still loyal to Animal Crossing: New Leaf on the 3DS, my favourite title in the series, I still flip-flop back and forth between this and the Switch version for the sake of seeing the winter season in all its glory on the big screen.
You can simply never go wrong in picking up any Animal Crossing title for Christmas. Christmas lights appear on trees to celebrate the season — and the depiction of a cold and snowy season is appreciated here in the UK, where a white Christmas is becoming an increasingly infrequent occurrence! Additionally, characters dress up in their festive clothes, including warm getups topped with adorable winter hats, and questionably designed Christmas jumpers. It’s somehow never a sight for sore eyes — we love it too much!
For the third time in the franchise, the Winter Solstice event makes a return, although things aren’t simply handed to the player this time around — damn Nook gets his paws on everything good in this world, doesn’t he? There’s also Toy Day, New Year’s Eve and Christmas Eve events all also making welcome returns.
Over the course of the winter celebrations, players are also able to catch Snowflakes, build Snowmen (or Snowboys as the game puts it), and receive Large Snowflakes for doing so. Also, there are igloos. That’s Winter Wonderland sorted for me.
The best excuse to experience Code Realize: Wintertide Miracles
Here’s to my personal favourite way to treat myself in conjunction to the festivity of Christmas – with my 2D husbandos, what else could it have possibly been?
Wintertide Miracles is the second fandisc to the Code: Realize otome franchise, and as a fandisc, its story is presented in bite-sized events explored via a super adorable and neatly designed Christmas tree as its main menu screen. What more could the game do to tell us to play this for Christmas, right?
Code Realize: Wintertide Miracles acts as additional, extra scenarios for fans of the franchise — it’s safe to say that you should not be starting with this fandisc if it’s your first time with the franchise, but as far as its festive content goes, it’s a fluffy time well worth exploring this December.
I can’t help but encourage it simply because it’s such a fun time! It’s worth mentioning that its longest content is in its two epilogues for the characters Herlock Sholmes and Finis, with a side-story for brand new character Cantarella. These parts obviously aren’t viable for new audiences considering the story-heavy nature of both, but arguably its other two sections are much more approachable for newcomers.
So while its first scenarios are Triangle Dates that pit two love interests against one another in a series of endearing attempts to capture main character Cardia’s attention, the main selling point is the considerably longer First Christmas section: a series of alternative stories where the majority of the festivities can be found.
These routes continue on from Finis’ route in Future Blessing, the first fandisc, and explore how things would unfold between Cardia and her various suitors if circumstances were a bit different to in the original game.
These alternative stories are the ultimate cosy experience as far as winter romance is concerned. The always darling Cardia being confessed to amid bright festive lights in a snow-covered land fills up our hearts even more so than the original game — truly a dream come true. And with humorous interactions between a cast of characters we probably all already know and love, plus the new perspective of romance blossoming between Cardia and the love interests during the festive season, Wintertide Miracles is my go-to activity as Christmas rolls by. It never fails to warm the heart and the soul this season.
What piece of entertainment makes you excited for Christmas to come sooner or later?
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