Japan

252 Pocky lovers gather in Shibuya to set a world record 【Video】

252 Pocky lovers gather in Shibuya to set a world record 【Video】

Who hasn’t had a daydream about being the best in the world at something? Unfortunately, most of us have already missed our chance to set the Guinness World Record for youngest professional drummer, yet are still a couple decades away for breaking the mark for oldest competing gymnast.

Thankfully, there are accomplishments that aren’t age sensitive, such as the world record for longest relay of people feeding each other, which is exactly what a group of teamwork-minded snack food enthusiasts got together to attempt in Tokyo.

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We check out Patlabor’s giant robot, plus cosplayers and anime booze galore, at Anime Japan

We check out Patlabor’s giant robot, plus cosplayers and anime booze galore, at Anime Japan

Last weekend the Tokyo Big Site convention center hosted the inaugural Japan Anime animation exposition, which combines the previously separately held Tokyo International Anime Fair and Anime Contents Expo.

We were drawn to the show by the promise of being able to see the giant Ingram robot being used in the upcoming live-action Patlabor motion picture with our own eyes, so we headed for Big Site and dove headfirst into the crowd of fans and exhibitors, where aside from giant robots we found amazing cosplayers and anime-themed edibles, not to mention hordes of ravenous anime song idol fans.

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Looking for places to visit in Tokyo? Check out this trendy new website, 100 Tokyo!

Looking for places to visit in Tokyo? Check out this trendy new website, 100 Tokyo!

With the rise of “Cool Japan” as a major part of both the Japanese economic and governmental policy, it’s hardly surprising that so much effort has gone into encouraging tourism. But really, they don’t need to focus on getting people to come…after all, who hasn’t watched an episode of Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex and not wanted to come to Tokyo!?

But once you’ve settled into your hotel room and slept off the jet lag, then what? Sure, you could just go outside and wander around until you stumbled over a cat cafe, but if your time in the city is limited, you want to do your sightseeing (and souvenir purchasing) efficiently. And for those of you who already live here or are planning for an extended stay, you might be looking for something new to do on the weekend. If so, it might be time for you to check out this new website called 100 Tokyo!

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Battle of Gods airs on TV — scenes from the movie anger Frieza, and he tweets to let us know!

Battle of Gods airs on TV — scenes from the movie anger Frieza, and he tweets to let us know!

The latest movie in the Dragon Ball series, Dragon Ball Z: Battle of Gods, which was released in Japan about a year ago, was aired on Japanese national TV for the first time over this past weekend. Judging from all the tweets and comments on the Japanese Internet, it appears many fans were waiting for the broadcast in anticipation, and to our delight, we were even treated to some scenes that weren’t included in the original theater-released version.

One special viewer, though, has attracted particular attention with one of his tweets, as the tweet seems to have come from none other than the main villain from one of the earlier Dragon Ball story arcs, the evil Frieza himself!

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McDonald’s Japan celebrates cherry blossom season with new cherry frappe and mocha drinks

McDonald’s Japan celebrates cherry blossom season with new cherry frappe and mocha drinks

With certain varieties of sakura trees already covered in pink blossoms, Japan has got cherry trees on the brain. Everyone is looking forward to go out and see the flowers that’ll only be here for a short time, but why settle for one Japanese tradition when you can have two by combining it with limited-availability fast food, in the form of cherry mochas and frappes from McDonald’s.

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Attack on Pomeranian! Owner creates awesomely cute canine cosplay set 【Video】

Attack on Pomeranian! Owner creates awesomely cute canine cosplay set 【Video】

Right now there’s no anime series with a wider fan base than Attack on Titan, and while that mainstream appeal has translated into merchandising such as fashion accessories and giant hamburgers, the truest testimony to the fans’ love for an animated series is cosplay of its prominent characters.

Japan’s pet owners can be just as passionate as its anime fans, though, and are just as enthusiastic about dressing their pooches up in eye-catching outfits. So perhaps it was only a matter of time until we saw Pomeranian Attack on Titan cosplay.

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Want to be in I Am Legend? Website uses Google Street View to show cities after the fall of man

Want to be in I Am Legend? Website uses Google Street View to show cities after the fall of man

Have you ever watched a sci-fi movie or played a video game and wondered what your home and neighborhood would look like if the human race were wiped out? If so you might want to seek counseling, or you can visit this website to seek closure on your thoughts of inevitable doom.

It’s called Urban Jungle Street View and it makes use of Google Maps interactive Street View system but decorates everything to look as if it hadn’t been touched by human hands for decades.

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From Tiffany to misspelled mugs: The best and worst of Japanese graduation memorial gifts

From Tiffany to misspelled mugs: The best and worst of Japanese graduation memorial gifts

Graduation is often the most memorable day of a young person’s life. It represents the culmination of years of hard work, while also meaning that, in some cases, it’s time to say goodbye not to just a long chapter in our lives but people we have become close to. It’s certainly a day fraught with emotion!

While some may say that education is the best gift you can receive, Japanese schools like to give something a bit extra in the form of actual presents. Of course, you probably wouldn’t expect much–maybe an inkan with the school and student’s names or a cute little teddy bear. Either way, getting a bag full of Chanel makeup is the last thing you could imagine getting. Unless you’re one of these lucky students!

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Video of dancing girls reminds us of Japan’s weird ’90s street fashion

Video of dancing girls reminds us of Japan’s weird ’90s street fashion

Once a common sight on the streets of Tokyo’s Shibuya youth district, women decked out in the alternative ganguro style are now rare…which makes it all the more strange that an online video of five ganguro girls dancing in a classroom has recently popped up!

Apart from its randomness, the video is actually pretty fun and infectious, and makes us nostalgic for other wacky Japanese street fashions. After seeing their moves, you might even want to get up and dance, too!

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Prepare to be blown away by Gundam projection mapping in the palm of your hand

Prepare to be blown away by Gundam projection mapping in the palm of your hand

Projection mapping is a big hit in Japan. Used at festivals and big events, the colourful and creative light shows project moving images onto buildings and objects, bringing them to life with accompanying music and drawing in adoring crowds.

The latest object getting the laser treatment in Japan is a life-size Gundam figure in Odaiba, Tokyo. While the figure has travelled around and been subject to projection mapping over the past few years, a new tie-in promotional product that has crowds going crazy. It’s a simple little box that, when used in conjunction with your smartphone or PSP, fills up with lasers, sparks and music in an amazing 3-D light show you’ll have to see to believe.

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Amakusa Airlines: Japan’s smallest airline with one adorable dolphin turboprop plane

Amakusa Airlines: Japan’s smallest airline with one adorable dolphin turboprop plane

If you are still mourning the loss of Japan’s Pokémon jumbo jet and prefer to fly the friendly skies in something overbearingly cute, look no further than Amakusa Airlines and its dolphin-themed airplane. Although the Kyushuu-based company is the smallest airline in Japan, Amakusa more than makes up for its size with a strong social media presence, a unique all-day flight challenge and its lone Bombardier Dash 8 turboprop plane painted up to look like a dolphin mother and two dolphin babies. Click below to find out why this tiny airline has captured the hearts of aviation fans in Japan!

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Japanese TV and movie star Mihiro reveals her secrets to younger looking skin

Japanese TV and movie star Mihiro reveals her secrets to younger looking skin

In Japan, there is a saying that goes, “25 years old is the turning point of the skin.” As you might expect from a nation with a multi-billion yen beauty industry, many Japanese women, especially those who are past 30, are in a constant battle to preserve their aging features. Of course we’d all like to stay young, but how does one go about keeping their skin looking fresh and youthful? We asked a 30-something Japanese TV and movie star to reveal her tips to better looking skin. Read on to learn her beauty secrets!

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Where to find the “ultimate melon bread” in Japan

Where to find the “ultimate melon bread” in Japan

Just the thought of melon bread (or meronpan, as it’s called in Japanese), is enough to make my mouth water. It’s got to be the combination of that fluffy, sweet interior and the crispy, thin cookie dough outer coating…not to mention its heavenly aroma. Whenever I go to a new bakery in Japan, I always try out the melon bread first, and that inevitably sets the standard for me (by the way, plain old 7-11 melon bread is one of my favorites – who else agrees?!).

While it may seem contrary to fact, not all melon bread is actually made with melon flavoring. The name has more to do with the fact that its round shape and exterior grooves resemble a melon. However, we here at RocketNews24 have recently discovered an authentic, “ultimate melon bread” to beat all the rest! If you’re as big of a melon bread fan as us, keep on reading to find out where you can buy this little bun of happiness.

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Top 10 souvenirs from Japan, as chosen by foreign visitors (and not a folding fan in sight!)

Top 10 souvenirs from Japan, as chosen by foreign visitors (and not a folding fan in sight!)

Earlier in the year we brought you Japanese people’s best souvenir recommendations for foreigners, in which items like folding fans, Japanese wagashi sweets, and even traditional swords were featured. But what do visitors to Japan themselves choose as the best things to buy as a memento of their trip, or take back for their friends at home? The answers may surprise you!

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Hikaru Cho’s ‘optical illusion’ body art, round two

Hikaru Cho’s ‘optical illusion’ body art, round two

Back in June 2012, we ran a short piece about university student Hikaru Cho, whose bizarre yet captivating body art takes the meaning of “face paint” to a whole new level. Her works involve visual mind-bending trickery, including several recurring motifs like extremely realistic zippers and eyes seemingly integrated into the skin of her subject. This time we’re back to share a whole new slew of images of Hikaru’s masterpieces. Creepy? Awesome? Disturbing? Inspirational? You decide!

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These cat-laden sweets are too cute to eat…but we still want to!【Photos】

These cat-laden sweets are too cute to eat…but we still want to!【Photos】

We’ve found the perfect snack to go with those cat marshmallow lattes! The best match for a cup of hot coffee or cocoa with a cute cat floating in it has to be hotcakes loaded with little wandering kitties! The best (or worst) part is, those cats aren’t just decorations, they’re completely edible! More pictures after the jump!

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Expat blogger dishes on her favorite foods to bring back to Japan after a trip home

Expat blogger dishes on her favorite foods to bring back to Japan after a trip home

It doesn’t matter where you are in the world, if you’re an expat, there’s something from home you’re craving. Whether it’s chips and salsa or a good, strong beer, not having easy access to your favorite foods can put a damper on even the most enthusiastic of world travelers. That’s why knowing what to bring back after a visit home is so important, and Sharla, a university student living in Tokyo who makes videos about life in Japan, is here to help. Take a look at her video titled “What to Pack for JAPAN 日本に持っていくべき物!” and be prepared to take some notes. As an added bonus, Sharla speaks in English but includes subtitles in Japanese so anyone studying either language can get some extra practice.
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AQTAS: the deep fryer that not only is safe to add water to, but uses it for better frying

AQTAS: the deep fryer that not only is safe to add water to, but uses it for better frying

In Japan, there’s been a lot of talk about a new deep fryer developed by Noritz called AQTAS. Traditionally deep frying involved using oil and oil only. Adding water to the equation would often lead to destruction to property and/or serious bodily harm.

Then there’s AQTAS which somehow not only is able to take in water and ice without an explosion but all of the oil in the fryer is actually swirling directly atop a layer of water. We’re not really sure exactly why it works, but it does and there are a bunch of other benefits to it as well.

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Japanese netizens get creative with custom iPhone unlock screens

Japanese netizens get creative with custom iPhone unlock screens

With the advanced state of the technology at our fingertips these days, our tech lives have never been so customizable. But one thing users may have never thought to get creative with is the iPhone’s humble lock screen. The most a typical user will ever aspire to is replacing the standard background with a picture of their cat or something. Or so I’ve observed of my more technologically inclined friends; I still use a rotary phone.

But did you know that with a little creativity and a photo editing tool, you can actually make some pretty cool custom unlock screens? Just ask these Japanese netizens that squandered their creative talents making anime characters say appropriately anime-ish things on their unlock screens:

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AKB48 producer Akimoto to produce 2020 Tokyo Olympics opening ceremony

AKB48 producer Akimoto to produce 2020 Tokyo Olympics opening ceremony

Yasushi Akimoto is a nationally recognized figure in Japan’s music industry as both an accomplished songwriter (he wrote Hibari Misora’s famous swan song, “Kawa-no Nagare-no You-ni”) and producer behind the vast girl group AKB48 and its predecessor, Onyanko Club. He is even reported to be friends with Japan’s prime minister, Shinzō Abe. On March 17, the 2020 Tokyo Olympics Committee acknowledged his prowess by naming him a member.

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