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Kamen Rider Ex-Aid is here!

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Ex-Aid

EX-Aid Promo Poster

Hello! Aldo The Fox here, I am one of the admins of Kamen Rider Wiki and I have good news!

Get Your Game On! The next Kamen Rider series is almost here!

Kamen Rider has had a busy year, with 2016 being the franchise's 45th anniversary and several projects tied to that celebration. Such projects include a recent Battride War game, multiple events in Japan such as displays of the props and suits at a museum for a special exhibition and the return of Hiroshi Fujioka as Kamen Rider 1 in a recent film.

But the party is soon going to end for Ghost, as on October 2nd, the hoodie wearin' spook who uses historical figures and emotions for his powers will go off the air and let his successor take the wheel.

Traditionally in the recent entries of the Heisei Era of Tokusatsu, it is customary for us fans of Kamen Rider to get a glimpse of the next hero around late summer/early fall via magazine scans leaked on the internet by eager fans in Japan/Asia or released via Toei's official website or social media feeds.

This is because planning and production usually has just started for the upcoming series and patents are filed to Japan's Patent Office registry beforehand in late spring/early summer to trademark the hero's name and toys/weapons and trinkets the hero will use.

The next series motif is a fun one: Video Games! Video games are a big part of Japanese culture as it not only is a staple of some of Japan's most recognizable businesses, but also has had a lasting impact on the world at large. There are even areas such as the fabled Akihabara dedicated to being a mecca of otaku gaming culture with dozens of arcades that dot "The Electric Town's" landscape.

Back on topic for the motif, it is specifically themed after retro gaming and its genres. This is evident in the look of the belt, the Gamer Driver, the source of Ex-Aid's and other Riders powers in the show. It has a very 1980s and early 1990s look to it with bright neon colors most would associate with toys from that era. The game motif is also a loving homage to the Famicom and Super Famicom (NES and Super NES to the western world) as the chest plate has multicolored buttons on one side and the weapons have "A" and "B" buttons on them.

The heroes of this show and a villain will utilize game cartridges that give them access to different forms and powers based on game genres. The main hero is based on fighting games like Street Fighter (Very fitting as Kamen Rider has always had martial arts as one of its traits as a show). The second hero is based on RPGs and DDR rhythm games. The third is based on shooting games, both side-scrolling Shmups like Contra or vehicle ones like Gradius or Ikaruga. The motorbike in the show is a Kamen Rider as well and he is based on racing games and samurai/ninja games. One of the villains is also a Rider with an alternate sports game form and seems to be a virus version of the hero, a reference to palette swap characters in fighting games.

In addition, all the forms the Riders use are referred to as "Levels" and seem to operate on RPG logic as each level is stronger than the last with the max so far being three. (though given Kamen Rider and the revelation of the eventual Final Form, that won't last long).

Whatever comes of this series, we can look forward to a pixelated time for 2016-2017, as the series Super Hero Time partner Doubutsu Sentai Zyuohger has a Rubick's cube/pixel motif and the eventual 2016 crossover with Ghost at Christmas time with the upcoming Movie War!

Wanna know more about Kamen Rider? Head on over to Kamen Rider Wiki and read about stuff like motorcycles that can fly into space, Kicks that make monsters explode and weapons themed after fruit!

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