[R] [  ] [P] [  ] [F] [F]: Um, I’d like to solve the puzzle.

While legalized gambling looms of the horizon in Japan, quasi-legal forms of it still exist such as the many brightly-lit pachinko and slot machine parlors that dot the urban landscape.

A key marketing tool of these businesses it to appeal to the nostalgia of middle-aged men in the prime of their degenerate gambling years through popular franchises of our youth such as Gundam, Metal Gear, and Captain Tsubasa. It would seem that almost every anime, manga, and game under the sun has been given a gambling adaptation, with noticeable holdouts being the games of Square Enix.

With the exception of relatively smaller titles like Star Ocean, the company has never seemed willing to lend its signature series such as Dragon Quest and Final Fantasy to slot machines or pachinko games. However, according to a tweet by a trademark bot (@trademark_bot) one slot maker isn’t going to let that stop them.

▼ A trademark application by Kita Denshi for a slot machine called Wheel of Fortune

Fans of role-playing games and video games in general ought to recognize that layout as the logo for the classic Chrono Trigger. Released in 1995, this game combined the great art of Akira Toriyama, compelling characters, a branching story with multiple endings, and an organic-feeling battle system to create what could be considered a perfect video game.


The fact that this slot machine was named after a long-running American game show is forgivable since Wheel of Fortune is virtually unknown in Japan. Also, some were quick to point out that the general layout of the logo isn’t uncommon and could be coincidental.

One example of a more murky case is the Grand Cross Chronicle token-dozer game which is also quite similar to Chrono Trigger (and sequel Chrono Cross) in both name and design.

But the design similarities between Wheel of Fortune and Chrono Trigger are so frequent that there is no way the similarity could be coincidental.

Even really subtle details are shared such as the half circles in the background in which only the upper half has little things sticking out, as well as the top words being in a straight sans-serif font and the lower words having serifs in a wave distortion.

It would certainly appear that, unable to get a license for Chrono Trigger, Kita Denshi decided to keep on trying to exploit people’s love for the game by creating a logo as similar to it as possible. Of course among video-game-loving netizens, they weren’t fooling anyone.

“Nope, that’s not going to work.”
“I guess they got turned down by Square.”
“I don’t think that trademark will be granted, but I guess it’s worth a shot.”
“It is a common design style though….”
“The font is kind of like the Tales series too.”
“Ah, let them steal it. Square won’t give us a decent sequel or remake anyway.”
“It’s more similar to the Chrono Trigger logo than the Chrono Cross logo was.”
“It’s like Chrono Trigger with a JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure feel to it.”

The trademark application was filed on 14 November, and its still unknown whether it was or will be accepted. Either way, considering we’re talking about slot machines, it’s not really shocking that such a company would try something like this. After all, it’s not like they’re the Tokyo Olympic Organising Committee or something.

Source: Twitter/@trademark_bot, Afternoon News, Hachima Kiko
Featured image: Twitter/@trademark_bot
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