Gaijin Goombah (real name Michael Sundman, born September 5, 1984) is a video game analyst who focuses on culture, especially (but not exclusively) Japanese culture. His main show is Game Exchange, though he also does Gaijin Gamers Play, GG IRL, and Goombah Rage, and his videos appear both on his own YouTube channel and on the Game Theorists channel.
Originally, he appeared as a cartoon Goomba (though keeping his glasses and beard) with his voice altered. He then split himself between his real-life self and his mascot version, especially as he started collaborating more with Team Four Star, culminating in their creation of a channel focused primarily on anime coverage, Four Star Bento.
Gaijin's videos provide examples of:
- Author Appeal: Ninja, to the point where he even created a show called Which Ninja, a show that specifically analyzes certain fictional ninja to see how accurate their ninja traits are.
- Cool Hat: His IRL self wears a brown skullcap with his logo on it.
- Darkness-Induced Audience Apathy: He explains during his review of Undertale that this is why he tends to avoid AAA games."One of the big reasons I tend to stay away from triple-A games is their dark, gritty, and hopeless nature. These games are constantly showing you just how worthless, evil, and monstrous humanity can be, and in many circumstances, there's no hope for them, or even you. There's simply the somber and sobering story of 'life is cruel, then you die'."
- Decomposite Character: As stated above, he originally presented himself as just his Goombah ninja avatar, but has since started appearing as his human self (re: IRL) while the avatar serves as a co-host to play off of. In essence, though, the two are still the same guy. Best seen in his Which Ninja videos, the two serve as Devil's Advocate to each other with regards to how accurate the character they're analyzing is as a ninja, where one will point out the positives and giving the higher score to accuracy and the other with the negatives, and therefore giving a lower score.
- Mascot Mook: A Goombah, obviously.
- Ninja: His avatar's design since its first Art Evolution and his Author Appeal in general.
- Shown Their Work: His entire schtick, showing what aspects of cultural influences that are present in games. In the process, he himself shows this when it comes to anything Japanese, owing to his many years in Japan as a student and then English teacher.
- Played-Straight with The Lonely Goomba.
- Take That, Critics!: The video "Goomba Got Back" makes fun of the people who hate Aki's design.
- Tranquil Fury: He made a vlog where he calmly and furiously deconstructed Logan Paul's controversial video where he recorded a corpse of a suicide victim and showed his overall inappropriate behavior in Japan. He states that Logan might have just ruined the lives of a lot of foreigners visiting Japan or living in Japan by promoting the boorish stereotype that all Americans are all self-centred jerks who have no respect for other cultures. Gaijin makes a point of how it took 17 years to earn the smallest amount of respect in Japan and how he had to endure severe isolation during this time.Gaijin Goombah: Like I said Logan. If you want to make your distracks, fine. You want to manipulate the YouTube system, fine. But you have some goddamn respect for yourself, for Japan and for the dead. What you did was inexcusable.
- Values Dissonance: In-Universe He covers this, and is quite familiar with it. Particularly with Japan-American Values Dissonance.
- Weapon of Choice: At least in Pokémon GO, Exeggutor. His Goombah avatar, meanwhile is armed with a ninjatou with a tsuba shaped like a D-pad, called the Pixel Cutter.