Steven Simonitch

Writer / Translator

Though a native of the San Francisco Bay Area, Steven currently resides in Nagano, Japan, where he is known by the old lady at the supermarket as "the white guy who always buys 2 packs of natto." Having finished a 2 year stint teaching English with the JET program, Steven now spends his days writing silly things about Japan while vainly insisting to his parents that he's a "journalist" working for an established "newspaper."

Aside from writing banal stories about hot Asian women and cheeseburgers, Steven is also working with dojin circle Creative Freaks to localize their fitness app/ Japanese dating sim series, Burn your fat with me!! (known as Nensho! in Japan).

Posted by Steven

Beautiful 16-Year-Old Ukrainian Girl with Disproportionately Long Neck Teaches Internet About Marfan Syndrome

The girl to the far right in the photo above is Lyudmila Titchenkova, a 16-year-old living in the city of Nikolaev, Ukraine.

After she turned 10, Lyudmila’s parents noticed that their daughter’s body began developing at an accelerated growth rate. She was taller and had longer arms than other children her age, but of particular concern was the length of her neck and abnormal curvature of her spine.

As it got to the point where Lyudmila began feeling embarrassed to go out because of her appearance, her parents took her to the hospital, where she was diagnosed with Marfan Syndrome, a rare genetic disorder of the connective tissue that can affect many parts of the body, most often the heart, blood vessels, bones, joints and eyes.

Read More

Jackie Chan Weighs in on China-Japan Island Dispute: “Definitely Belong to China!”

Who doesn’t love Jackie Chan? His movies are entertaining, he does his own stunts, he’s a great role model and he’s got a smile that could tame a lion. The 58-year-old entertainer is one of the most well-known and well-loved stars in the world, and Japan is no exception.

Which is why it must have felt like a roundhouse kick to the face when he officially threw his weight behind the home team regarding the Senkaku Island dispute on Monday.

Read More

Japanese Men Arrested for Murder, Confess to Making Curry From Victim’s Dismembered Remains

After more than three years of searching, Tokyo police thought they had finally gotten a lead on the whereabouts of Kazuyuki Kobayashi, a male restaurant owner who suddenly went missing in May 2009, when an investigation led them to three men who were said to be acquainted with Kobayashi before his disappearance.

The men, who had been arrested on separate charges of fraud earlier this year, were brought to the Tokyo Metropolitan Police Department for questioning on Sept. 27 and were immediately suspected of murder after it was found that Kobayashi has come to them demanding the repayment of an unspecified amount of money he had lent them earlier.

The case then took an even more gruesome turn when, on October 1, two of the suspects confessed that they had stewed the pulverized remains of Kobayashi in a pot of curry.

Read More

Pepsimaaan! How Japan’s Thirst-Quenching Superhero Started a Bottle Cap Figurine Craze

Anyone who frequents the Japanese convenience store beverage case has probably noticed that some bottled drinks occasionally come packaged with collectible figurine, some of which double for actual bottle caps.

“Japanese people love figurines, so what?” you say. Well did you know that the first character to ever appear atop a Japanese bottle cap was the thirst-quenching superhero, Pepsiman?

Say it with me now: ♪Pepsimaaaan!♪

Read More

These Adorable Japanese Curry Dishes are Sure to Curry Your Favor

The curry and rice combo is to Japanese college students what spaghetti is to their American counterparts. It’s cheap, tasty, easy to make, and you can throw in lots of veggies so the next time your mother asks if you’re eating healthy, you can answer “yes” with a clean conscious.

But just because curry is simple to make, that doesn’t mean it has to look simple as well. Below is a collection of quirky Japanese curry arrangements that turn Japan’s go-to meal for the cheap and lazy into (for the most part) adorable platters of art.

Read More

The Question Dividing Japan: Which Girl Would You Rather Date?

I don’t know about other guys, but even if I’m in a healthy relationship I will sometimes encounter a girl who completely grabs my attention and doesn’t let go.

Maybe she’s stunningly beautiful, maybe she exudes charisma and style; whatever it is, there’s just something about her that captivates me—but that doesn’t necessarily mean I’m romantically interested.

It’s like I’ve been trying to tell my wife for the past three hours while she’s locked herself in the bathroom with my wallet and phone: there are some girls you want to date and there are some girls you just want to look at.

Just take a look at the illustration above, which sparked an online debate over ideal girlfriends vs. ideal eye-candy after being poster to Twitter earlier this week.

Read More

Hello Kitty Gets Naked with Giant Anthropomorphic Mushroom on Your Chest

From baked goods to blue hedgehogs, there’s nothing international superstar Hello Kitty won’t do to make a quick buck.

And now, ladies and gentlemen, our beloved “Kitty of All Trades,” the face of untainted feline innocence herself, has gone full-frontal.

Read More

Japan Starts High Seas Squirt-Gun Fight With Taiwan, Pushes Fishing Boat Flotilla Out of Contested Waters

Alright, let’s recap.

Last Tuesday, a flotilla of Taiwanese fishing boats was rumored to have set off for the disputed Senkaku islands, located near the Japanese islands of Okinawa, seeking to assert their ownership among China and Japan.

At around 6 a.m. on Sept. 25, the 50-strong Taiwanese flotilla arrived in the disputed waters. At least eight patrol ships were sailing alongside the fishing vessels and many of the boats were displaying banners reading “We swear to defend the Senkaku islands!”

Japanese coastguard patrol boats moved in to intercept the tiny fleet and warned them to vacate the area. However, the Taiwanese boats maintained their position, asserting that they were in Taiwanese waters and their presence perfectly legitimate. Tensions were running high and it seemed only a matter of time before the conflict turned hostile.

And that’s when Japan decided to bring out the big guns.

Read More

Ten Reasons Why Iranians are the Kindest People in the World (to Foreign Tourists)

Iran has always fascinated me. A rich history inherited from one of the world’s oldest civilizations, cities filled with beautiful Islamic architecture, delicious cuisine—and the people!

Okay, while my acquaintanceship with Iranians has been limited to a few Persian friends back home in America, they’ve always been some of my favorite people, which is why it’s a shame our respective countries just can’t seem to get along.

Japan, on the other hand, has maintained a favorable relationship with Iran over the years and travel to the country is perceived to be easier for the Japanese than it is for Westerns. Our own globetrotting Japanese corespondent Photographer Koach recently wrote to us about his recent travels in the country, in which he affirms my positive impression of the people with a list of ten reasons why Iranians are the kindest people in the world.

Check his report below! Read More

【TGS 2012】 How Booth Babes Made Me Feel Better About Myself, Part 1 (EX Troopers)

This year’s Tokyo Game Show was the first major gaming event I’ve ever been to, and honestly, I don’t even consider myself a “gamer.”

Sure games a formative part of my childhood, but the last home console I owned was a GameCube and now my gaming activity is limited to quick bouts of Team Fortress 2. And since Valve wasn’t at the show, there weren’t really any titles I was interested in checking out from the beginning.

So I spent most of the show wandering from booth to booth with very little to no knowledge of what each game was about, eventually deciding to allocate my precious time among the numerous titles in the only way that seemed fair: visiting the booths with the cutest girls.

Interestingly enough, this strategy led me to one of the two games that gave me my most enjoyable Tokyo Game Show experiences: EX Troopers.

Read More

【TGS 2012】 Where Have All the Chinese Gone?

Over 200 companies from 19 countries are said to be operating booths at this year’s Tokyo Game Show, but visitors to the four-day long event may notice that one major world power turned out to be a no-show.

Read More

【TGS 2012】 WeMade Entertainment Impressions: Farmville-Meets-Final Fantasy App “Hero Square,” Mobile MMO “Arc Sphere” and Social Game Clones for All!

Social and mobile games are enjoying a strong presence at this year’s Tokyo Game Show, with social game giants GREE and gloops occupying some of the largest exhibit spaces in the venue.

But it’s not just Japanese companies throwing their weight around on the mobile floorspace: Korean online game developer WeMade Entertainment, known in Asia for their popular MMO series The Legend of Mir, is showing six new Japanese-language titles for iOS and Android devices to build anticipation for their full-scale entrance into the Japanese mobile game market later this year.

Bored of the repetitive tap-based social card games, I decided to spend some time with WeMade to see if the Korean developer was bringing anything new to the table.

Read More

【TGS 2012】Cosplay and Booth Babe Photo Round-Up, Day 1

If you haven’t gotten the memo, RocketNews24 is at Tokyo Game Show this year and we’ve been busy taking lots of photos of pretty girls in colorful outfits.

With the first day over, we’ve decided to unload a batch of our favorite cosplay and babe booth photos for your viewing pleasure. We’ll be back tomorrow and Saturday with camera in hand, and who knows, we may even write about games at some point too!

Check the photos after the jump!

Read More

【TGS 2012】 Brain Kiss or: How I Neuro-Cheated on my Wife at Tokyo Game Show

Now don’t get me wrong. I love my wife and wouldn’t trade her for anyone in the world. But my brain is telling me that I just met the girl of my dreams at today’s Tokyo Game Show, and how can you argue with your own brain?

She’s a booth girl at Brain Kiss, a “neuro-diagnosis” app for iOS that tests the compatibility of two people by analyzing their brainwaves.

All you need to do is put on a special brainwave-reading headset developed by NeuroSky and stare deep into the eyes of the person in front of you for 15 seconds. Brain Wave then presents you with your results, divided into five different “levels of affection.”

It sounds like a fun little app, but be careful who you use it with: if you’re like me, love may be staring your straight in the face.

Read More

  1. 1
  2. 2
  3. 3
  4. 4
  5. 5
  6. 6
  7. 7
  8. 8
  9. 9
  10. 10
  11. 11
  12. 12