New Nintendo 3DS system headed west in February

Nintendo announced during its Nintendo direct presentation on Wednesday that the New Nintendo 3DS XL will ship in Europe and North America on February 13. The regular size New Nintendo 3DS will also ship in Europe on the same day.

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We have a situation here! Plastic cat found in military model kit

Plastic modelers revel in the realism; they build their models and then painstakingly paint and alter them to look like the real thing in miniature scale. It takes a keen eye to blend just the right kinds of paint to achieve that dinged up metal look of a vehicle that’s been through real combat. And the right accessories will transform plastic toys into a scene of army veterans hard at work.

Model kits like to include little extras like shelves, tools and other related things you would expect to find. But sometimes the kits include an extra that seems so out-of-place that you call up the company to figure out if they made some sort of mistake. You’ll never guess what was included in this plastic model kit for a German ammo-loading crew from Tamiya. The answer is going to be meowtastic.

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Great deal on “thing that lets you make a USB into a plug,” ask for it by name!

The other day while out shopping for computer parts like that-thing-that-connects-an-old-type-iPod-to-a-PC, one Twitter user stumbled upon a truly great deal. For only 200 yen (US$1.70) you can get…um, you know…one of those “things-that-let-you-make-a-USB-into-a-plug.”

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Chibatman speaks! Costumed superhero addresses crowd at Chiba’s Coming of Age Ceremony【Video】

Last Monday in Japan was Coming of Age Day, the national holiday which celebrates everyone who’s reached the age of 20, and thus legal adulthood, during the past 12 months. 20 is also the drinking age in Japan, and while safeguards against minors getting boozed up are pretty lax in the country, many people decide to exercise their newly acquired legal right to get as tanked up as humanly possible, which probably had something to do with the childishly inconsiderate behavior and scuffles with the police that broke out during some of the festivities in Okinawa.

Not every part of Japan was marked with lawlessness that day, though. As a matter of fact, a coming of age ceremony in Chiba Prefecture featured a special appearance by Chibatman, who showed that he speaks Japanese in the same extra gravely voice heard in the English versions of his most recent movies.

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Chinese iPhone smuggler fails to deliver illicit goods, does deliver laughs with his crazy outfit

With his stylishly coifed hair, affected pose, and outlandish outfit, you could at first mistake the man in the above photo for a model. And given how ridiculous his getup is, you might find it only natural that his face is concealed, because honestly, even if you were getting paid for it, it’d still be kind of embarrassing to be seen dressed like this.

Except, that’s no fashion shoot, but a photograph taken by Chinese customs authorities who caught the would-be smuggler trying to sneak a huge quantity of smartphones into mainland China in one of the clumsiest ways possible.

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A little sweet with your spicy? Tokyo restaurant serves curry with strawberries and ice cream

One of the great things about curry is how versatile it is. The standard way to eat the spicy dish in Japan is with carrots, potatoes, onions, and pork, but you can also toss in chicken, shrimp, beef, or tuna. Things are wide open when it comes to vegetables, too, with some people opting for eggplant, spinach, or tomatoes.

But why limit yourself to just meats and veggies? One curry restaurant in Tokyo feels its menu should be inclusive of the entire food pyramid, and will fix you a plate of curry rice that represents the fruit and dairy groups in the forms of curry with strawberries and even ice cream.

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Super-rare factory-sealed NES game emerges on eBay, bids currently at $99,600

If you grew up playing video games, you’ll understand something that modern day kids with their newfangled graphics and gameplay streaming antics don’t get – the power of nostalgia! Nostalgia is what makes us dig up landfills full of buried cartridges, and waste hours of our lives watching old videos of NES start-up screens. It’s why we still want to play the classics, so we can remember the good times, when being able to navigate an entirely different world through your TV screen still seemed like magic. It’s no wonder that rare old retro games can still sell for a pretty penny, although most often they’re snapped up by collectors who want them for their rarity rather than to add lovingly to their own game collection. Because, while nostalgia can be a powerful emotion, we mere mortals couldn’t even contemplate dropping around $10k on a mere video game. Yet that’s exactly what the owner of a rare, factory sealed copy of NES game Stadium Events can (at the time of this writing) expect to bring in from the eBay auction that’s currently in progress.

So just what is Stadium Events and why is it worth so much darn moolah, anyway?

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Around Japan in 22 days…on a bus! (Yes, it has a toilet.)

One of the hardest parts about visiting Japan is deciding where to go, especially if you have only a limited time. Obviously, everyone wants to hit up Tokyo, Osaka, and Kyoto, but that often means missing out on places like Nara and Aomori. If only there were a way you could get on a bus and just let someone take to every prefecture in the country…

Well, if you have about US$5,000 and 22 days, pack your bags, because that’s exactly what Club Tourism is offering this year!

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Japanese youths celebrate reaching adulthood with outrageous outfits and Elvis hair

Monday was Coming of Age day in Japan, an annual celebration held on the second Monday of January where those who have turned 20 over the past year come together to celebrate while everyone else gets a day off work. There are ceremonies (seijin shiki) held at local and prefectural offices and of course many after-parties where I’m sure everyone acts as maturely as befits a young adult. In Kitakyushu things got a bit wild, with a substantial number of kids turning up with crazy pimped out outfits and hair.

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‘Josou’ specialist Naoko Tachibana opens crossdressing photography retrospective in Tokyo【Photos】

Naoko Tachibana is a photographer and professional ‘josou’ specialist who has helped over 1,000 men to try out crossdressing, giving styling and fashion advice as well as shooting stunning photos of the completed transformation. And josou itself – male to female crossdressing – is the theme of a new solo exhibition of Tachibana’s photographic work, which opens at the Vanilla Gallery in Ginza, Tokyo this month.

Join us after the jump for a peek at the promotional shots for the exhibition, featuring Ladybeard and more!

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Man detained for 2013 Hakata Station threats now filming himself sticking toothpicks into snacks

Back in June 2013, RocketNews24 ran an article about the threats of attack on Fukuoka’s Hakata Station. The perpetrator was subsequently caught and sent to a juvenile detention center, but now less than two years later, he’s back to making YouTube videos of himself stealing from stores and destroying merchandise.

His latest “prank” video shows him sticking a toothpick inside some unsuspecting customer’s snack and is currently under investigation by Tokyo police.

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New smartphone game allows you to date the man, monkey, or dessert of your dreams

A common element in Japanese dating simulator video games is that they all feature an extensive cast of potential romantic partners. Still, there are only so many characters the designers can cram into a single game, and some gamers find that the available roster of would-be boyfriends just doesn’t measure up to their preexisting celebrity or anime crush.

Seeking to solve this problem is mobile game developer GimmickPlus, with a new smartphone title that lets you drop pictures of your favorite actor or girls’ manga character straight into the game. But as we’ve seen before, when you give users a template to create romantic tension with you also give them the means to craft bizarre humor, and Fantasy Condominium-You Can Fall in Love with Your Ideal Boyfriend is no exception.

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“100 Sizzling Japanese Maids in Action” video is less sexy yet more awesome than it sounds

Japan has a long-standing and highly publicized infatuation with maid outfits. As such, it’s really not much of a surprise that you can find a video on YouTube that bears the English title 100 Sizzling Japanese Maids in Action.

The 100-second video isn’t a contribution to Japan’s highly specialized pornography industry though. Rather, it’s an ad for something altogether less prurient, as its true theme isn’t so much “hot girls” as “hotcakes.” It is, nevertheless, extremely compelling viewing.

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Heads up Aussies, Shinjuku’s insane Robot Restaurant is paying you a visit next month!

Shinjuku’s Robot Restaurant is the stuff of legend the world over. An epic music and light show with a dash of burlesque flair featuring enormous robots, exotically dressed dancers and more neon than the original and 2010 sequel to Tron put together, it’s a must-see for anyone visiting Tokyo and looking for a dose of quintessential “WTF Japan?” weirdness (no, seriously, just check out its website).

But what if you’re not a trust-fund Toby or a highly successful business magnate with the cash to splash on weekend trips to Japan? Those plane tickets don’t come cheap, and Tokyo is known for being on the pricey side, so short of a wealthy aunt popping her clogs or your idea for edible cutlery coming to fruition, you may never have the chance to see this baffling spectacle of awesomeness. If you happen to live in or near Sydney, though, your feet won’t even need to leave terra firma for you to experience it, thanks to a unique event coming up in February.

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QR codes and pop culture, what are you doing in my textbooks?

Textbooks are boring. There is too much text, few pictures and back in our school days you had to accept whatever was in the textbook and struggle through it. It was an uphill battle…both ways! But with all the advancements and conveniences of technology, why not bring a little of the 21st century into the classroom?

Textbooks around Japan have been incrementally upping their game with QR codes, “hip” songs and whatever else to keep students entertained and excited about learning. But sometimes these advances in textbook technology don’t provide any benefit, and actually confuse more than they teach.

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French artist alters Japanese street signs to make people “more observant”, police not impressed

Some rather peculiar, sticker-altered street signs have been popping up in Osaka or Kyoto over the last month. The eye-catching addendums are the work of French guerrilla artist Clet Abraham, who has done similar projects around the globe. While local residents are largely bemused, the police are not at all amused and are investigating whether charges can be filed.

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Chinese teenager wows the Internet with his awesome fight-scene animation【Video】

Kids these days! They’re all attached to their technology, fiddling around on social media, playing games and reading all of those awesome RocketNews24 articles. One 19-year-old in China, however, is putting all other teenagers to shame by making incredible animated videos all on his own. 

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Three-armed Peach, two-headed Marth join the parade of factory defect Amiibos

After one lucky shopper made $2,500 from his factory defect dual-wielding Samus Amiibo, others have been pouring onto eBay in the hopes of making a quick buck.

One seller’s three-armed Peach reached $365, although it wasn’t enough to meet the reserve price.

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Internet ready to shut up and take your money as preorders finally start for Cat Ear Headphones

Last summer, were you one of the many people who screamed “Shut up and take my money!” when we brought you news of the prototype cat ear-shaped headphone/speakers from recent startup AxentWear? If so, your harshly worded enthusiasm has been rewarded, as preorders have at last begun for the futuristically feline gadgets.

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This special noodle for hard-core Youkai Watch fans is full of Jibanyan … literally!

Love noodles? Love Youkai Watch? We’re guessing that there are plenty of people out there who would answer yes to both of those questions. It then shouldn’t come as too much of a surprise if someone decided to combine the two in a tasty-looking original creation.

Well, that’s exactly what Twitter user @takusan_neru did with the unique bowl of noodles in this picture she shared. And just what makes the noodles so special? Well, as you can see, the bowl is filled with … smiling Jibanyan faces!

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