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Hello Kitty will deliver your messages as part of a special campaign…from space!

Hello Kitty will deliver your messages as part of a special campaign…from space!

Sanrio’s beloved character has embarked on a special mission this year–all the way to space!  

The “Let’s Send a Message from Space! Campaign” (「宇宙からメッセージを送ろう!」キャンペーン) is part of the festivities to celebrate Hello Kitty’s 40th anniversary in 2014. Our favorite feline friend was even launched into space back in June, and her makers are now taking applications from anyone in the world to display messages on the digital display board inside her satellite. Wouldn’t it be cool to see your very own message delivered from space?

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Godzilla fights around the world in these rare vintage European posters

Godzilla fights around the world in these rare vintage European posters

Ever since he attacked his first village in Japan in 1954, Godzilla has been broadening his horizons. Seeking out mightier foes and playing to bigger audiences, the giant monster has done what other beasts could only dream of – garnered a following as huge as himself, with fans still spreading across decades and continents around the globe. An impressive feat for a beast.

One continent certainly went above and beyond when welcoming the giant to their corner of the world, as these vintage posters show. From Poland to France, we take a look at some of the most amazing Godzilla artwork from Europe. We’ve never seen Godzilla look so different!

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Hideo Kojima’s Silent Hills might just be the horror game we’ve been waiting for【Videos】

Hideo Kojima’s Silent Hills might just be the horror game we’ve been waiting for【Videos】

Those who owned an original grey PlayStation back in the day will no doubt be familiar with Silent Hill, the survival horror series that went on to spawn a host of sequels as well as a questionable feature film of the same name. The series has had its ups and downs over the years, and many feel that it has lost much of what made it so great to begin with, but it looks like the newest instalment is set to bring back what gamers loved about the originals: the kind of tense, tortuous, genuinely horrible horror that makes you consider keeping the lights on at bedtime.

Don’t believe us? Check out these reaction videos from makers Konami.

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Attack on Titan editor: Manga to end in 3-4 years

Attack on Titan editor: Manga to end in 3-4 years

The University of Tokyo Newspaper posted an interview with Shintarō Kawakubo, the editor of the Attack on Titan manga, on Wednesday. In the interview, he discusses the popularity of the series, “The serialization is slated to end in three to four years, but Attack on Titan is a work that will be passed down from generation to generation for a decade — no, five decades.”

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Space retro to steam punk: Sailor Moon girls get awesome makeovers

Space retro to steam punk: Sailor Moon girls get awesome makeovers

They might appear cute and doe-eyed in the original Japanese animated series, but we all know Sailor Moon girls are bad-ass. From a girl who throws flames to a chick with the power to annihilate an entire planet or star system, this is definitely a group you don’t want to mess with.

Fans are now taking the warrior characters out of the Japanese school yard and re-designing them with costumes, expressions and rendered environments that portray them as alternative, post-feminist, pop culture heroes. Take a look at the team as you’ve never seen them before – bruised after a battle or hanging out in cyber worlds, these are girls who fight, love and never run away.

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A collection of 20 creative ‘sushi’ rolls that were invented outside of Japan

A collection of 20 creative ‘sushi’ rolls that were invented outside of Japan

Love it or hate it, every country has their own take on sushi. While some of the creations, such as the California roll, are fairly tame and are now accepted as part of a normal sushi menu, we’ve also seen some of the odder versions out there, such as Hong Kong’s ‘killer sushi’, Nutella sushi in France, and my personal favorite–the absolutely adorable but sadly inedible cat sushi!

The quintessential component of sushi is vinegared rice, so while these creations can’t technically be called sushi, they’ve definitely taken a stylistic cue from the rolled shape of makizushi. And we have to admit, some of those fillings do look tasty…

Which of the following creations do you find most intriguing?

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Sushi-inspired wooden building blocks & other stylish, whimsical toys even parents would want!

Sushi-inspired wooden building blocks & other stylish, whimsical toys even parents would want!

In an increasingly digital world where toddlers and pets alike develop their hand-eye coordination with Fruit Ninja and Ant Crusher, it’s undeniably important to let kids experience the pleasure of tactile toys and natural materials. I still have the tsumiki (wooden building block) set that my brother and I used to play with; now worn around the edges but with the same nostalgic smell, the pieces still make a delightful and distinct clacking sound when they hit each other.

And so, after coming across a unique build-a-sushi set that has been garnering attention in Japan for its sleek minimalistic design, we rounded up a few timber toys from Asia that not only would spark children’s imagination, but would also look right at home at Anthropologie or the MoMA gift shop. With their chic sensibilities and innate warmth, even adults would love to have these playful objets d’art in their home!

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Here’s what $5 million buys in housing markets across the globe

Here’s what $5 million buys in housing markets across the globe

If you’re looking for a pricey vacation home for the end of summer, we’ve checked out what $5 million can get you in real estate around the world. Our friends at Point2Homes helped us find everything from a tiny apartment in Monte Carlo to a 16,000-square-foot mansion in Qatar. Needless to say, $5 million should get you pretty far no matter what city you live in.

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Pic of the Week, Round 1: WINNER!

Pic of the Week, Round 1: WINNER!

Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, you have done us proud. Last week we asked you for your funny, cute, beautiful and inspiring photos from Japan and Asia, and by the beard of Mr. Sato did you provide!

Join us after the jump for our pic of the week, plus three honorable mentions!

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Fighting like cats and dogs? Not these cute little guys! 【Photos】

Fighting like cats and dogs? Not these cute little guys! 【Photos】

Sometimes just keeping up with the news makes you despair for humanity. Between all the war, racially motivated killings, ethnic strife, and general meanness, you have to wonder if we will ever be able to get along.

It’s been one of those days and I needed a pick-me-up, so here is a collection of photos of dogs and cats getting along. Because if they can manage to overcome their differences, maybe we can too.

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Geopolitical dictionary: Japanese net users turn countries into verbs

Geopolitical dictionary: Japanese net users turn countries into verbs

You know how in English you can take pretty much any noun and make it a verbderivation for the cunning linguists out thereby adding to to the front? For example, how the search engine Google has become to google, as in, “Why the hell are you asking me? Go google it, you twit!”

Well, you can do the same thing in Japanese by adding -ru or a handful of other suffixes to the end of a word, and some Japanese net users recently had some fun with this by turning country names into some very non-PC verbs.

Have a look at our geopolitical dictionary and see how your country fared.

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What’s this little green dinosaur’s name? If you said “Yoshi” we’ve got news for you…

What’s this little green dinosaur’s name? If you said “Yoshi” we’ve got news for you…

Nicknames can be confusing things, especially when they’re the only name by which you’ve ever known someone. I can clearly remember the moment when my friend’s Japanese wife looked at me with a mixture of surprise and betrayal, for example, when she found out that Phil (or “Firu” as it’s awkwardly pronounced in Japanese) is in fact short for Philip.

But after learning that the same green dinosaur that I’ve traversed hundreds of levels, raced go-karts and carried baby Mario back to his parents with since I was about 10 years old isn’t actually called Yoshi, I can kind of understand why she was so shocked.

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These kids’ driving simulator toys still work decades later! …kind of

These kids’ driving simulator toys still work decades later! …kind of

The names of the toys – Turnin’ Turbo Dashboard; Fun-To-Drive Dashboard – might not ring any bells. But the boxy red plastic exterior, the click of the gear stick and the repetitive roar of the engine that drove parents to distraction? Yep, you know this game.

One Redditor recently pulled his Dashboard out of storage and was delighted to discover that it “still runs like a dream”. Cue reams of nostalgic commenters flung back into their playground days, when kids could be kids and sit alone all summer playing 100-mile-an-hour driving simulator without prompting any hand-wringing or moralistic wailing. It’s time to raid your stash of enormous dry cell batteries – we’re going for the drive of your life.

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Nintendo’s Mercedes-Benz for Mario Kart 8 is actually kind of depressing

Nintendo’s Mercedes-Benz for Mario Kart 8 is actually kind of depressing

Nintendo’s business is in dire straights, and has been for three consecutive years. Perhaps that’s why the company let Mercedes-Benz sponsor three new cars into its cartoonish racing game for the Wii U, in the form of a free downloadable content (DLC) package set to release at the end of the month.

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Share your photos with us! RocketNews24 is now accepting submissions for Pic of the Week

Share your photos with us! RocketNews24 is now accepting submissions for Pic of the Week

Hey, you! You like taking pictures don’t you? Well how would you like to have your best snaps up on RocketNews24 for all the world to see?

Every Wednesday, we’re running a fun little contest called Pic of the Week. All you have to do to enter is send us an Asia-related photo that you’re especially proud of or think your fellow readers would enjoy. If we like it, we’ll feature it on our site and maybe even say nice things about you.

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Dead or Alive 5 achieves new level of creepiness with “Bath and Bedtime” costumes

Dead or Alive 5 achieves new level of creepiness with “Bath and Bedtime” costumes

It should come as no surprise to learn that the fighting game series that spawned a bikini-packed beach volleyball spin-off and whose developers included the option to change how much female fighters’ breasts jiggle likes to get sexy. Dead or Alive has always been about scantily clad females, enormous boobs and gratuitous close-ups and poses; it’s not especially tasteful, but to each their own.

But the latest round of downloadable costumes for Dead or Alive 5 Ultimate, called the “Bath and Bedtime” series, seems to be confusing “sexy” with “creepy”, as it pits female martial artists against each other while wearing naught but their jammies and bath towels.

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Not as easy as it looks! The making of viral video “Mario Jumps into Battle”

Not as easy as it looks! The making of viral video “Mario Jumps into Battle”

Just under a week ago, a fan-made video featuring Nintendo’s Super Mario appeared online. Titled “Smash Bros. Mario Jumps Into Battle”, it showed the portly plumber doing a bit of shopping in a real-life Tokyo store before realising that he was late for his appointment in Nintendo’s upcoming brawler, Super Smash Bros. for Wii U and 3DS, and dashing across the capital city.

Due to its incredible animation and clever blending of real and computer-generated images, the video was quickly picked up by a number of gaming news sites (and shared on our own Facebook page) and scored thousands of hits in the blink of an eye. But even short videos like this don’t just pop out of question-mark blocks; they take weeks of hard work…

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Amazing aquatic artwork transforms water into sky, aquariums into fantasy realms

Amazing aquatic artwork transforms water into sky, aquariums into fantasy realms

Compared to cats and dogs, fish do have a couple of undeniable drawback as pets. You can’t really play fetch with them or take them on walks, and while there’s nothing physically stopping you from holding a goldfish on your lap and petting it, the sight of it desperately flopping around makes it far less relaxing than petting a purring kitty.

That’s not to say fish don’t have anything going for them. For example, they’re far less likely to pee on the sofa or cough up a hairball than a dog or cat. Plus, since they live in the confined space of a tank of water, you can create amazing scenery for them, like these amazing artistic aquariums.

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What’s that emoji? Let’s take a look at Japanese culture with these texting emoticons!【Part 2】

What’s that emoji? Let’s take a look at Japanese culture with these texting emoticons!【Part 2】

In Part 1 of this article, we learned some fun facts about three iconic foods so beloved by the Japanese that they, yup, became icons—how an old lady and a samurai gave birth to the first rice cracker; what it means to be called a pudding-head in Japan; and how a classic 1960s manga cemented the way oden would be illustrated for decades to come.

So get ready for Part 2, in which I’ll attempt to sift through millennia of history and get you further acquainted with three more emoticons!

First we’ll look at the mythical tengu, a complex, multifaceted creature that in modern times pops up in things like Digimon and the Mega Man series. Then we’ll check out a New Year’s decoration that may have originated from taketaba, a shield made from bundled bamboo that became necessary once firearms were introduced. To close, we’ll explore the customs and lore surrounding the Tanabata festival, including the romantic legend of Orihime and Hikoboshi, who are both star-crossed lovers and actual stars in the sky.

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Moon prism power-up your balloon art with Princess Serenity and Queen Elsa

Moon prism power-up your balloon art with Princess Serenity and Queen Elsa

We’ve all seen our fair share of balloon art—dogs, mice, maybe a princess hat or two. But Sailor Moon fan and self-proclaimed balloon artist Robin Trout is giving the craft a royal makeover, successfully twisting balloons into two familiar princesses.

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