Check out the incredible futuristic gear at Japan’s 2015 Good Design Awards 【Videos】

Every year since 1957, Japan’s Good Design Awards have honored products which are designed in such a way to have a positive impact on people’s lives. The award system, which is now operated by the Japan Institute of Design Promotion, has recently released their list of 2015’s Good Design Best 100 award winners.

With such innovative ideas as LED jump ropes and basketball courts, these awards are truly the best place to catch a glimpse of athletics equipment of the future!

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“My son didn’t look back when I waved.” Toyota ad will leave you choked up, wanting to call home

You might think that Japanese advertisements are all Hollywood celebrity endorsements or surreal tales of busty schoolgirls with nose rings, but when it wants to, Japan can make commercials that yank on the heartstrings as strongly as anywhere else in Asia. Getting the waterworks flowing today is Toyota, asking the question, “Do you care about your parents as much as they love you?”, and while the video is short on cars, it makes up for that with plenty of tears.

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This precious kitten’s “squeak” is making us all squee! 【Video】

Not another cat video! …said no one ever. We here at RocketNews24 know just as well as anyone that nothing does cuteness more purrfectly than cats do. We’ve found one kitten, though, that’s people in Japan mad, and absolutely killing us with its most adorable, squeaky meow.

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Street proposal between two Chinese women goes viral, gains support 【Video】

It looks like 2015 is proving to be a defining year for LGBT couples and rights around the world. In Japan we’ve already seen same-sex marriage certificates extended to Shibuya Ward despite interference, not to mention public support from the government of Osaka Ward. Now it appears the acceptance movement is spreading to other East Asian countries as well.

Recently one woman in China decided to publicly pop the question to her female partner in public, and a video of the proposal soon went viral. Get ready to break out the tissues.

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“Miyako” – one of the most beautiful, feels-inducing Japan videos you’ll ever see【Video】

If you’ve ever visited Japan, chances are your first stop in the country has been a big, bustling metropolis like Osaka or Tokyo. While the enormous flat screens, heaving intersections and impressive skyscrapers make for some memorable photo moments, it’s the serene, picturesque country towns that really hold the true essence and beauty of Japan.

For those of us who can’t make a trip out to soak in the serenity of the countryside, there’s a short, three-and-a-half minute film that will transport us there. If you loved Chihiro’s tranquil train ride in the Studio Ghibli movie Spirited Away, you’ll love this touching video, which introduces us to a stationmaster called Miyako, who waves at all her departing passengers—and keeps waving until they disappear into the horizon—showing us just how moving a simple gesture can be.

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Japanese restaurant makes awesome anime and game character pancake art, takes requests 【Videos】

Even if you’re not ordinarily a very artistic person, we bet you get a spark of inspiration when you’ve got a pancake on your plate. Who hasn’t drawn a doodle or sketched a smiley face in maple syrup, or at least initialed their flapjacks with the sticky, tasty condiment?

After all, tasty as they may be, pancakes look pretty dull if you don’t add any decoration…unless you’re dining at this restaurant in Japan where the pancakes come pre-decorated with images of Pikachu, Mario, and dozens of other anime and video game characters.

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Japanese coffee maker’s commercial is dark, milky, and udderly crazy 【Video】

Not everyone loves Japanese TV, but we have to admit that one thing it has going for it is absolutely bonkers commercials. You can find weird, unsettling, funny, emotional, or even just hilarious commercials the world over, but it sometimes seems that Japan has a particularly high concentration of them. Maybe there’s something in the coffee…

And speaking of coffee, Japanese coffee brand Blendy has produced one of the most bizarre commercials we’ve seen to date, mixing absurdist comedy with unsettling, dark undertones. Oh, and milk. Lots and lots of milk.

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Roll cake-headed town mascot character attacked by group of men, woman inside injured

Upon arriving in Japan, one of the first things you’ll probably notice is the large army of characters being used to sell anything from services to stationary to automobiles, or giving tips on being a good citizen like when it comes to separating your trash or picking up your dog’s poop after it finishes doing its duty. Most of them are cute, but some are downright scary.

In recent years, yurukyara, literally “weaker mascot characters”, have slowly been taking over the country, with more and more cities and businesses allocating funds to coming up with the prefect representative character costume each year. Aside from being hot and stuffy inside, being a yurukyara seems like a pretty awesome job. Kids are happy to see you, people are clamoring to get a picture of you, and generally everyone loves you…

Or at least that’s the impression we got until news of a mascot character in a small Ehime Prefecture town getting attacked.

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Japanese chef shows off amazing cooking skills with high-flying omelettes 【Video】

If any of you have ever tried your hand at making omurice– a Japanese rice omelette- then you’ll know it can get a bit tricky when trying to plate up. This chef, however, not only makes the process look super quick and easy, but he even turns the process into a mini performance as he shows off his skill!

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Video of Japanese cats relaxing with chill snail friend will make you feel purr-fect happiness

Do you need a one-minute escape into pure cuteness bliss? Perhaps you had a terrible day at work or a really bad hair day?

Well don’t worry; it’s going to be all right. We have the cure for your stressful day: two Japanese cats hanging out with their snail friend. These laid-back cats and their chill snail buddy are one of the most relaxing videos we’ve ever seen.

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Japanese gamer beats insanely hard Mario course, goes insane with joy and breaks down in tears

Well, that didn’t take long. It was just a couple of days ago that we took a look at Mario Maker user PangeaPanga’s course titled Pit of Panga: P-Break and shook our heads in awe at its diabolical difficulty. While it’s true that Nintendo doesn’t allow you to upload Mario Maker levels unless you can prove they’re beatable, we wouldn’t have been surprised if no one other than PangeaPanga himself was able to clear his creation.

But in less than a week, the hardest of the hard-core have risen to the challenge, and while this video of a Japanese gamer finishing the level is a display of some impressive platforming skills, what really makes it worthwhile is the surge of adrenalin that sends him shouting his victory to the heavens, and how it leaves his body in pain and his psyche tattered as he breaks down in tears of joy at his gaming accomplishment.

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Prepare to be outraged: Japan votes for its “100 Best World Class Songs” 【Videos】

The long-running Japanese music program Music Station recently held a nation-wide survey polling 10,000 people on what they thought were Japan’s most world-class songs. Respondents told the TV show which songs they felt best represented Japan, throwing up popular artists such as Arashi and Mr. Children, and the results were aired on 23 September.

As with any music ranking, the results are open for debate, and this list is certainly no exception. However, looking at the top 10, it’s hard not to wonder where Music Station found the people who were asked to name Japan’s greatest ever song, and many Japanese netizens are calling the list “a national embarrassment”.

Are they right? Let’s find out by kicking things off with the 10th Best World Class Song: “Koi Suru Fortune Cookie” by AKB48.

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Mobile Suit Toyota – Japanese automaker makes awesome anime ad for new Gundam-themed car

We’re sure everyone’s first choice for mode of transportation would be giant robot, but there are times when you need something more practical to get from Point A to Point B. Being behind the wheel of a four-door hatchback doesn’t mean you have to give up your mecha jock daydreams, though, thanks to the newest collaboration between Toyota and anime franchise Gundam.

The automaker has just released not only a special model inspired by charismatic anime villain Char Aznable, but also an awesome anime commercial for it that has higher production values than the original Mobile Suit Gundam TV series.

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An end to high heel pain? Japanese designer offers revolutionary and stylish footwear redesign

I’ve always been a little confused by high heels. It’s partially because I’m not so tall myself and don’t really have much of a height advantage to spare (even if my date is wearing flats), and partially because if I’m looking at a woman there are probably enough other things that are going to attract my gaze that she’s likely to ask me to stop staring at her long before I get to her shoes, no matter how nice they may look.

High heels seem like an even odder choice in Japan, where the reliance on public transportation means walking around for long stretches of time in shoes where comfort and mobility seem to have been afterthoughts in the design process. Still, many women in Japan step out in high heels as part of their plan to present a femininely fashionable or snappy professional image. Now, one Japanese designer is trying to help those women not only look good, but help their feet feel good as well with a revolutionary ergonomic redesign of high heels.

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The latest in Japanese iPhone security: using your butthole to lock your phone 【Video】

So everyone knows you can lock/unlock your iPhone using your thumbprint. Sure, that’s great and all, but what if you want to be even more secure? After all, what’s stopping phone thieves from stealing your fingerprints and snooping through all of your secret selfies?

Have no fear, RocketNews24’s Japanese-language writers have the perfect solution: getting your iPhone to recognize your butthole. A member of the same incredibly mature team that researched how to flavor food with burps now brings you the latest in iPhone security and will show you how to make your own iPhone something that no one could ever, or would ever want to, break into.

It probably goes without saying, but this technique is a little NSFW, so be sure no judging eyes are around before you read on.

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Ready for a dose of feels? Grab the tissues because this daughter’s love is beautiful【Video】

We here at RocketNews are a soft bunch at heart. We’ve been affected by tear-inducing, feel-good videos from countries like Japan, Hong Kong and Thailand, and now it’s Singapore that’s got us by the feels with a touching new clip.

Based on a true story, this commercial plays more like a short art film, with atmospheric shots and superb acting that seems too real to be rehearsed. Come with us as we take a peek into the life of a graduating high school girl who looks after two younger siblings and her widowed, wheelchair-bound father, as she sacrifices her education and future for her family. Oh, and bring that box of tissues with you – you’ll be needing it!

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Thomas the Tank Engine’s video visit to Japan is more Japanese than life in Japan

Being that he’s a train on an island, you wouldn’t expect Thomas the Tank Engine to do much international traveling. However, thanks to a bit of clever storytelling (and Thomas’ absolute lack of compunction about stowing away on freight ships), the beloved locomotive has embarked on a globe-trotting tour in an ongoing video series.

In one of the most recent episodes, Thomas even arrives in Japan, where he takes in the local sites in a whirlwind visit that’s more Japanese than actually living in Japan.

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Sweet bunny pals relaxing in cups make us genkier than coffee ever could!【Videos】

Sometimes waking up is hard, especially when the seasons change and bed starts to feel snugglier than ever before. But wake up we must, and many of us have invented little tricks to make the process easier, such as blaring out our favourite songs, sucking down industrial-sized cups of coffee, and cooing over cute animals on the internet.

For your consideration today, we’d like to present a menagerie of of baby bunny rabbits twitching their little pink noses at you over the rim of a couple of coffee and tea cups. Pick your choice of bun “to go” and go get ’em, tiger. After you’ve watched the cute videos, of course…

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Man At Arms is back, forging the epic Excalibur from Fate/Stay Night【Video】

Two weeks ago, we were blown away by the Oathkeeper Keyblade created by the talented blacksmiths and craftsmen over on the YouTube show Man At Arms: Reforged. After binge-watching all their previous episodes, we drummed away at our keyboards, waiting for their next beautiful piece to show up, and when it finally did, we weren’t disappointed.

This week the team crafted the holy sword from the mega-popular series Fate/Stay Night.  Spoiler alert, the finished Sword of Promised Victory looks absolutely stunning and incredibly deadly.

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Which anime fighting techniques would win in real life? Fans give their answer with comedic video

A couple of American anime fans (well, at least one of them is anyway…) recently released a YouTube video that imagines a super obsessive anime enthusiast trying out his favorite techniques from the anime worlds he’s grown up watching.

Most of the techniques provide less-than-stellar results (spoiler: writing a person’s name in a “Death Note” doesn’t work), but a surprise last-ditch attempt proves much more successful. Let’s watch:

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