Cara Clegg

After discovering anime in her early teens, Cara decided she wanted to live in Japan. Of course her parents thought it was just a fad... but 11 years, a university degree in Japanese Studies, and a whole lot of culture shock later, here she is. She currently works a day job whilst writing and translating otome games in the evenings. Her hobbies include anime, manga, sci-fi & fantasy TV shows, and starting countless things that will never get finished.

All Stories by Cara Clegg

Controversial “little girl simulator” game pulled from Steam just days after release

Yohjo Simulator was released into the world this week, but it seems that the world might not have been ready for it.

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Professional manga artist creates stunning pop-up style artwork with just pencil & paper

One of the artists for popular light novel and manga series Gosick posted these amazing popup-style drawings on Twitter recently, where they were immediately shared hundreds of times by impressed otaku. Using just pencil, paper, and an open book they’ve been able to bring the characters into the 3D world with clever techniques. 

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Romance an ancient Egyptian god in the newest bizarre dating sim for mobile

The dating simulator scene is getting weirder and weirder, so it’s hard to be surprised by anything they come up with these days. Humans are already old news and we’re now used to romancing all manner of strange creatures. Even so, this mobile game for girls caught my eye with its unique character designs and by promising love with powerful ancient Egyptian deities.

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Force cute anime boys to crossdress in new mobile simulation game

Cross-dressing boys are becoming more and more popular with otaku these days, and games are starting to get in on the act now, too. Transform a cute sporty boy into your very own otoko no ko in this new (and free) mobile raising simulation game.

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“Loli-cute” Japanese idol turns 20, celebrates with playful swimsuit DVD

With its most famous idol groups being popular with both young girls and middle-aged men, Japan’s idol culture is a curious thing, There’s a juxtaposition at work here, with the young girls in these groups cultivating an image of purity and innocence while at the same time prancing around in bikinis and mini-skirts that so bewitch adult males.

Haruka Momokawa, one of Japan’s hottest new idols, has got this art down to a T, putting her adorably youthful look to coquettish use despite already being the ripe old age of 20.

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Cute but creepy exploration game set in Japan releasing in time for Halloween on PS Vita

Are you afraid of the dark? Most children are, but as we get older we get used to going out at night and start to realize that the world during the twilight hours is the same as during the day, only a bit darker.

But that lingering fear of the darkness often remains somewhere deep inside, forgotten but never entirely gone. Bring those fears back to the fore again this Halloween with Yomawari, a cute but creepy new game for the PlayStation Vita.

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Cardboard arcade cabinets could be the next must-have home furnishing for gamers

The company that brought us the Danbocchi—cardboard sound proof cubicles so you can karaoke to your heart’s content without annoying the neighbors—is back with yet another crazy cardboard creation we can’t help but find ourselves wanting.

Yes, gamers, now you can actually build a retro arcade gaming table in your own home!

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This cute kitty knows just how to work those selfie angles!

Selfies are a controversial topic these days with some groups arguing they’re evidence of this generation’s descent into self-absorbed vanity, and others saying they’re an expression of one’s self-identity. But whether you care about “selfie culture” or not, you’ll want to at least give this one a glance.

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Sweet high-school anime shows how learning kanji can be the key to getting a girlfriend【Videos】

Kanji characters are one of the most fascinating, but also the most troublesome, aspects of the Japanese language—and that goes not just for foreign learners but also for Japanese natives. The Kanji Kentei is a standardized test that you can take to prove your kanji knowledge, but after being drilled on the kanji throughout their school lives Japanese people might not be taken by the idea of sitting for even more exams on the subject.

That’s why the Kanji Kentei administrators, in an effort to encourage people to give up their free time to study kanji and take their exams, has fallen back on the failsafe go-to of Japanese advertising: cute, nostalgic anime.

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Splatoon’s squid vs octopus Splatfest asks deep questions, ruins marriages

Video games have the power to change people’s lives, inspiring creativity and bringing friends and couples together.

But they can also destroy relationships. And it turns out that even Splatoon, the cute, brightly colored squid-themed shooter from Nintendo, is a culprit—although not quite in the way you might be thinking…

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Train and transform your hero into a prime beefcake in otome romance game Muscle Paradise

Do you even lift? ‘Cos these macho guys certainly do! While the heroes of otome games, story-based romance games aimed at women, tend to err on the feminine side, the hunks in this mobile game cater specifically to women (or men!) who like their guys beefy. And when I see beefy, I mean ox-on-steroids beefy.

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Brighten your day with these 12 adorable photos of Shiba Inu being unintentionally cute 【Pics】

Shiba Inu are a breed of dog popular not just in their native country of Japan, but all over the world. Perhaps it’s due to the fame of the internet’s favourite doggie, Doge, or perhaps it’s just because they’re so darn smiley and adorable, but people just can’t get enough of them.

One Japanese site picked out their favourite photos of Shiba Inu living overseas, so join us after the break for a huge dose of Shibe cuteness.

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Yawning snake is surprisingly cute, hanging on your every word 【Video】

If you happen to be Indiana Jones or your oldest memory involves waking up in a giant garden paradise, there’s a good chance you find snakes quite repugnant. But even if you’d sooner take a kick to the groin than so much as look at a snake, we have a feeling you’ll find the squirmy little guy in this video quite adorable.

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PlayStation Japan’s Pro Evolution ad is actually pretty cool 【Video】

Japanese ads frequently miss the mark, often being overly bizarre or simply cringe-inducing, but sometimes the marketing gurus hit the back of the net, as with this latest TV spot from PlayStation Japan.

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Super Mario Maker level recreates intense Vocaloid hit with carefully positioned music blocks

Nintendo fans have been hard at work these past few weeks churning out all kinds of creative levels in Super Mario Maker for the Wii U. Even if you don’t have a copy of the game yourself, if you’re a fan of Mario you’ve no doubt had fun watching videos showcasing the mad-cap levels people have come up with and the rages of gamers trying to beat the hardest courses.

The level we’re showcasing today, however, focuses on not what an insanely tricky course looks like, but what you can do with music in the game by bringing Vocaloid into the Mario world.

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Internet amazed that beautiful woman exists, does something other than just be beautiful

It’s time for another installment of “Beautiful Women Doing Ordinary Things.” These shots of a teacher at an all-boys school in Korea have been setting more than just her students’ hearts racing now that they’ve hit the internet.

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Universal Studios Japan unlocks its haunted hotel rooms, has a special menu for Halloween

Japan has been gearing up for Halloween since the end of August, but now that we’re actually into the correct month, we feel it’s acceptable to start posting Halloween-related articles. Today we’re introducing the Halloween festivities going on at Universal Studies in Osaka, Japan.

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Free Zen-like mobile game about broken pots contains the wisdom of ancient Japanese philosophy

Do you think putting together broken bits of pottery sounds like fun? No, me neither. And I’d never imagine something that’s so tedious in real life would make a good basis for a game. However, that’s the theme behind this free Android app which draws upon an ancient Japanese philosophy and, after reading some reviews, I was convinced that I had to give it a go myself.

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Play with fluffy alpaca mascot Fuwapaca in two free mobile games【TGS 2015】

It wasn’t just gross and scary games on show at Tokyo Game Show this year; there were also some really adorable games to try out, too. When we saw this booth with its sweet, fluffy alpacas we made a beeline for the cuteness. We got to chat with the dev and try out their two alpaca-themed mobile games, taking some snaps of the alpaca-ified booth and merch as we did for you at home.

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Tokyo Game Show 2015 cosplay photo roundup

After enjoying the relatively slow pace of Tokyo Game Show 2015 on the press days, we headed back at the weekend for the madness that is the public days. We had to fight our way through the crowds before we finally reached the outdoor cosplay area, where the weather was perfect for getting some great shots of the amazing outfits on show. While there were plenty of video game characters striking their poses, there were also familiar faces from anime and movies, so even if you’re not into gaming you might recognize some of them.

The level of detail in some of these home-made costumes is astounding, and there was a great mix of the sexy and the totally kick-ass. Join us after the jump for a selection of pics and video of our favourites.

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