GGB's Snowboarding and Christmas Weekend

There’s nothing like winter in Japan. Christmas lights, shopping, snowboarding, and hot Sake.

Happy Holidays and Merry Christmas to all Smash players and Japan aficionados alike. GGB had a great holiday weekend starting off with snowboarding at Koumi Re-ex Ski Valley (小海リエックス・スキーバレー) on December 23rd and ending with an all night Christmas party from the 24th to Christmas morning hosted by GGB Mr BC.

When it comes to snowboarding in Japan, the winter season can be pretty unpredictable. In 2017, we went as early as December 18th and had pretty good conditions (snow, weather, coldness). This year, we weren’t so lucky at Koumi. There were only two runs open, the snow was artificial (but not too icy luckily), and the weather went from cloudy to rainy. On the plus side, it was just a 3 hour bus ride and only cost 5400 yen (an extra 2000 if you needed rental equipment). As a first run of the season, it did its job of getting our snowboarding legs back, but not much else. Luckily, what Koumi lacked in snow and good weather it made up for with plentiful beer vending machines.

(For more pictures of the trip and of Japan in general, check out Dajare’s Instagram post.
For more indepth reviews about snowboarding in Japan and about specific Ski Resorts in Japan, check out our friend Simon’s blogs about that topic: 4corners7seas)

The next day starting at 8pm, the whole GGB crew met up again at Mr BC’s spacious abode to spread Christmas cheer… which mostly translated to us drinking beer, eating pizza and other snacks, giving each other gifts, and playing Smash Ultimate. Oh, and two 1000mL bottles of good ol’ reliable St. Charles Mulled Wine. Mr BC won Bursss’s quiz game (with chroMa coming in a tight second) and Bursss won our friend T’s Smash Ultimate competition. Merriment was had, movies were watched, and hangovers were made.

GGB wishing everyone a Merry Christmas, Happy New Year, and reminding you to check back in about a week when we’ll post another blog featuring our upcoming multi-day snowboarding trip to Hakuba!

GGB hits up Zenin Sansen (an Umebura tournament)

GGB found themselves in the heart of Tokyo to attend one of the biggest tournaments happening in Japan: Umebura. But this was not just any Umebura tournament lol no. This was Zenin Sansen. The be-all-end-all tournament as a veteran Smash game puts up his hat to make way for the young buck. This tournament was a glorious farewell to the legend that is Super Smash Bros. for the WiiU. I mean, you can still play it but now that Ultimate is out who will, next.

The place: Sunshine City. The city: Ikebukuro. And on the menu: A heavy dose of Smash 4 glory with a side of Melee (yeah that’s right folks, the legend that’ll never die had it’s own tournament as well). Smash 4 heavyweights, the greatest Japan has to offer, gathered to show their prowess one more time for the game that they love. We saw the likes of Abadango, Ken, Tea, Choco, Eim, and many more facing off in a no holds barred slugfest that would bring a tear to any man’s eye. GGB caught a glimpse into the eye of the beast as Eim took the Umebura crown in the end while over on the Melee side sanne took the W over a battle for the ages against aMSa. We are beyond excited to see what these titans of Smash will do with Smash Ultimate, and you bet your last coin GGB is gonna be there to see it. Make sure to check out the highlights of the tournament in video form here and in photo form courtesy of our own GGB Dajare (check out the full album here and the rest of his awesome instagram @genericd).

-GGB (Bursss)

GGB’s lovely but chilly December Hike!!

GGB’s Mr BC sets off for a nice lil’ hike near Tokyo. Of course to Takao lal笑 but starting at Mount Jinba…slightly further away from the standard Takao

Started off at the base of Mount Jinba at 9.15 am. About 1 hour to the summit. From Jinba’s summit, we walked to Takao, traversing Mount Kagenobuyama on the way. It was a nice, slow chuhike (chuhai + hike), and we reached Takao as the sun was setting. Perfect Mount Fuji views. Was legit.

Overall, not a bad hike and not too easy. The paths are super well laid out, so it’s easy to navigate, and the end result is about 23k hiked, and 2,300 calories less. Defo worth it ;)

Hit us up if you want more details on hikes around Japan! GGB loves to hike woo!

How to access / Extra details

GGB Attends Final Wii-U Weekly Smash Party

Bittersweet as it gets; the final iteration of the Weekly Smash Party with Smash 4 as the Main Event.

Last Friday (Nov. 30, 2018), GGBchroMa and GGB Bursss together with some very helpful friends (thanks T. and E.!) made our way to Nakano to attend the final Smash 4 Tournament for Weekly Smash Party before Smash Ultimate is released.

Check in was a bit crazy this time-around because the digital Tournament Bracket was completely wiped a short time before the tournament began and Tempura and Watch were working together to make a new one by hand (pen and paper!). The exciting event for GGB tonight was filming our video (EDIT: The video is now up, check it out on YouTube here!) related to a time-honored western tradition. I don’t want to give any spoilers, but let’s just say it was the end of an auspicious month.

Besides the video shooting, we got a few good (friendly) games in and got to watch Zackray walk away with a well deserved Tournament championship! Congratulations Zackray, I guess this means you’ll hold the Smash 4 Championship Belt from the Weekly Smash Party forever now ;).

Anyway, be on the lookout for upcoming video featuring some big names from the Japanese Smash community. GGB out.

Hiking in Yamanashi with GGB

Hiking in Yamanashi with GGB

On November 11, 2018 GGB (and our sometimes GGB-contributor Toru) decided to go on an improptu hike out in Yamanashi. There are a ton of great hiking spots in the Tokyo area, but…