games

Japanese farming simulator rewards players with actual crops delivered to their door

Remember back in the day when all of your older relatives and the kids you knew from school but never speak to any more would send you invites to play Farmville? Remember how seeing a new notification on your Facebook toolbar that just turned out to be yet another invitation to play f’$%ng Farmville would fill you with impotent rage?

Well think about how different your reaction might have been if your “friends” hadn’t been backhandedly asking you to help them raise their not-actually-existent virtual ducks and cabbages, but were in fact asking you to help them put real, actual food in their mouths.

One Japanese startup, Telefarm, is hoping that the future is online games that reward players for good performance with actual products delivered to their door. And they’ve been running a farming simulator prototype for a little over a year now to test that model’s feasibility.

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Enjoy the taste of 1-UP and invincibility stars with new Lotte Super Mario gum

Joining in the 30th anniversary celebrations for the Super Mario Bros. video game series is popular Japanese gum brand Fit’s. Thanks to this unique collaboration, we’ll now be able to chew our way into the game with the awesome-sounding tastes of “Mario’s Invincibility Star flavour” and “Luigi’s Infinite UP flavour“.

So what does invincibility and an unlimited 1-UP taste like? And what type of gorgeous inside packaging do we have to look forward to? We check out the details ahead of this much-anticipated release.

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Two wildly different characters, same voice actor. Twitter users share their shocking anime finds

Are you an anime fan? Do you watch Japanese anime in their original Japanese dialogue? If your answer is “yes” for both questions, then you’ve probably had the experience of picking up on a familiar-sounding voice in a certain anime, Googling to uncover the seiyuu (voice actor in Japanese) behind the character, and then realizing that you’ve actually seen quite a few titles he or she has starred in.

Twitter users in Japan have been digging through the Internet for some drastically different performances from the same voice actor/actress, and sharing their surprising finds on Twitter. Check them out after the break!

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Sodatete Nihon Ningyo app lets you raise your own Japanese doll! Results may vary…and terrify

Japanese dolls stand among the world’s best in craftsmanship and elegance. But how much do you know about the technique of actually making one? Luckily, there’s an app which simulates the experience of creating your own doll called Sodatete Nihon Ningyo (Raise a Japanese Doll)!

That might sound intimidating, but the developers have presented it with a simple interface much like Tamagotchi or Digimon so that anyone can join the traditional fun. Here’s a quick run down of how it works.

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Competitive zen garden-building board game looks awesome, despite conflicting themes

The Zen garden is probably just as important a Japanese cultural export as geisha and sumo. While Zen gardens are certainly less conspicuous than the other two – the whole point of them being to encourage relaxation and personal reflection and all – they’ve arguably had a bigger cultural impact abroad. A lot of major cities, like Chicago, feature carefully curated Zen gardens, after all, but when’s the last time you saw the local sumo club practicing in Central Park?

Westerners appreciate the more subdued, meditative qualities of “old Japan” culture, even though they wish they could find some way to appreciate it while also earning bragging rights by kicking their friends asses’ in a game of wits. That’s why we can’t wait to get our hands on this strange but awesome-looking competitive Zen garden-building board game.

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What wonders do a Super Potato Lucky Bag hold? Grab your retro gaming hat and let’s find out!

When you buy a fukubukuro (lucky bag) from a store in Japan, you can usually be sure that the value of their contents will surpass the amount you paid for the bag; it’s a guarantee, or else no one would ever buy them! But when you decide to buy a fukubukuro from a secondhand store, you certainly can’t feel 100% sure that you will get your money’s worth.

Are your secondhand items going to be in good condition? Are you going to be getting some good value? Or are you getting the games that even the secondhand store just wants to get rid of? Let Tokyo’s most famous used video game store Super Potato help you decide after the break.

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Help one-million-year-old hag get back her glamorous good looks in new app

Looking for a new app to pass the time? Why not give Hag of the one million-year-old a try! Tap the screen and work your magic to get the hideous old hag back to her apparently stunning good looks (unconfirmed) of yesteryear.

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Return to the golden age of arcade gaming at the Japan Game Museum

Located in the countryside of Japan’s Aichi Prefecture is a one-of-a-kind museum that houses an enormous collection of old-school video game cabinets and mechanical arcade games, not to mention what is purported to be the world’s leading pinball machine collection.

But the best thing about this museum is that you don’t have to just look at the arcade exhibits; you can also actually play them! And what’s more, the only price you’ll pay is the entry ticket, meaning you can enjoy all the machines to your heart’s content without having to carry a giant bag of change.

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Overall attendance down as number of games goes up at 2014 Tokyo Game Show

The Tokyo Game Show for 2014 closed its doors this past weekend, and a record number of game companies showed up to display four times as many titles as last year. As always, the ever popular cosplay was a big hit and thousands of people came to buy the unique goods sold there. But what about the show itself? Was it the best attended TGS in years? Did it smash attendance records all around the world?

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The cosplay of Tokyo Game Show 2014 【Photos】

The Tokyo Game Show opened up to the general public this Saturday, and we were right there in the midst of the crowds of attendees from all over the world.

With the event spread across the huge Makuhari Messe exhibition centre it was quite a workout getting from one end to the other while navigating meandering queues of gamers waiting for a chance to play exclusive demos, but somehow we managed it and lived to tell the tale.

While there were plenty of gorgeous booth babes around inside, I headed out to the cosplay area where amateur enthusiasts show off their home-made outfits, and often plenty of skin too.

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Terrifyingly terrific haunted house’s puzzles are so tough it has a continue system

A few months ago, we heard about a terrifying haunted house in Honancho, a neighborhood in western Tokyo. Unfortunately, our backlog of terror entertainment was a little jammed up, and we weren’t able to get to it right away, but this week we finally went to check out Obaken.

In addition to the horror movie-inspired creepy sights and sounds you’d expect from any decent haunted house, Obaken also takes a page from video games, with multiple levels, customizable settings, and even a continue system.

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Silicon cyber cats take over the gaming world, one Nintendo 3DS at a time

Cats, in all their various colours and sizes, are continuing on their path to world domination. Not content with the hours that owners spend lavishing attention on Nintendo 3DS consoles, their latest exercise in shape-shifting has them appearing as soft silicon sheaths designed to hug and protect your handheld system.

Not only will they keep your console scratch-free, these cats promise to keep your friends pleasantly amused, especially if you just have to take time out once in a while to reach that next level in the game. Best of all, anytime is playtime, as these feline companions will travel with you anywhere you go!

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Become an anime babe with amazing DIY jeans from Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel

Have you seen Nisha the Lawbringer? She’s tall and lean and rocks an awesome pair of skinny jeans. Only problem is, she lives in an alternate reality called Borderlands and spends most of her days fighting on the moon.

Your chances of meeting the animated babe just got exponentially better, as one dedicated cosplayer has revealed a technique to replicate the character’s trademark jeans. That’s right – the jeans above might look illustrated, but they’re absolutely real. Take a look at how they’re made after the jump.

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You go, girl! Ancient game of Go reaches out to Japan’s youth with trendy magazine

The Chinese strategy game called Go or Igo in Japanese has been around for millennia. The rules are among the simplest in existence but the underlying theory to winning is so vastly complex it takes a high degree of experience, patience, and observation to succeed.

Perhaps it’s that same complexity that’s keeping younger generations in Japan from picking a bowl of stones. However, that’s not stopping Igo associations who have developed the ultimate stratagem for hooking new players: a Go-themed free girls’ magazine with topics such as extreme go and finding your dream Go-playing soul-mate.

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Video game mash-up! What your favourite characters would look like in other games

Wouldn’t Nintendo characters look cool dressed up as other game characters? Take a look at these brilliant illustrations that prove just how great an idea it is.

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Do actually useful prizes suck all the frustrating fun out of those UFO catcher crane games?

Japanese UFO catchers give the best prizes – if you’re talented or lucky enough to grab them. (Personally, I think it’s all about luck because after many hours and probably hundreds of yen down the drain, I’m still not any better at winning.) But the euphoria of a win is usually quickly forgotten, and you’re left with one more piece of tat to cram into your room. So what about if UFO catchers actually dished out useful goodies? Wouldn’t that be a real win-win situation?!

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“Denki Anma”: The Japanese traditional torment that you’ll be glad stays in Japan

Kids find all kinds of ways to playfully bully each other that adults might shake their heads at. In the West, this might manifest as little mean-spirited pranks like nipple twisters, convincing a kid to eat a whole tube of toothpaste, or to run up and touch the creepy cat lady’s house in the middle of the night.

But Japanese kids tend to take a more sexually charged approach. We’ve already talked about the intricacies of the infamous kancho – that mighty, two-handed violation of someone’s hind quarters that happens to every westerner at least once and lingers in their psyche for decades, yet the Japanese shrug it off as just another schoolhouse (or workplace) prank.

But one you may not have heard about is the long-standing tradition of the “Denki Anma.”

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Sesame Street Fighter, the most badass children’s TV show ever (if only there were a show for it)

I grew up watching the characters on Sesame Street count numbers, spell words, and sing songs about goldfish and birds. Even after I had outgrown the long-running children’s series, I had to sit through it again while babysitting my little cousins. And my guess is that many of you out there went through a similar experience since the show has been on TV since 1969 and is broadcast in over 140 countries worldwide.

How many of you then subsequently got hooked on to the arcade game Street Fighter II in your school days? I definitely did, and this guy called gavacho13 on Deviantart probably did too, as he has been creating some awesome illustrations of the Sesame Street Fighters!

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Scout Corps now accepting recruits for upcoming Attack on Titan Real Escape Games

As its popularity continues to grow, Attack on Titan seems to be seeping into the real world more and more, whether with figurines (in both hyper-realistic and, well, potato versions) or replicas of the heroes’ 3-D maneuver gear. Soon, though, fans will have a chance to reverse the trend and experience the world of the hit anime first-hand at a series of Attack on Titan-themed escape games.

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Japanese game center turns bathroom breaks into potty play!

When spending time at the arcade, no one wants to put a pause on the virtual fun. But sometimes nature calls, and the arcade consoles must be temporarily abandoned before someone suffers a busted bladder or soiled shorts. Thankfully for visitors to one game center in Japan, there’s no need to leave behind all gameplay at the bathroom doors. The establishment has posted a set of guidelines which make every trip to the squatty potty into its own sort of mini-game.

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