Posts Tagged ‘Love Plus’

Virtual karaoke dates, courtesy of Konami

Thursday, November 25th, 2010

loveplus karaoke

Need a karaoke partner? Rinko Kobayakawa, Manaka Takan and Nene Anegasaki are at your service.

For me karaoke is a really bad date. I mean who wants to hear the excruciatingly awful vocal stylings of your new beau, or indeed subject them to your own caterwauling. That’s why Konami’s version of the karaoke date ticks all the right boxes: your virtual reality partner sounds great, has a bunch of cute dance moves and won’t complain if you join in enthusiastically, even if you’re totally off key.

Karoke Date With Your Girl!” is the latest Love Plus spin-off project to capitalize on the runaway success of the virtual dating DS game. A collaboration between Konami and karaoke machine manufacturers Joysound, the Love Plus songs were launched on the Crosso karaoke machine on Nov. 19.  There are three songs to chose from, each featuring a different Love Plus character who is shown singing and dancing along to the music in front of a background that looks like the typical interior of a karaoke room. Manaka Takane sings “Lum no Love Song,” Rinko Kobayakawa does a rendition of “Sobakasu” and the popular Nene Anegasaki performs “MUGO·N . . .  Iroppoi.” If you’d like to check out the results have a gander at this YouTube video.

Continue reading about Love Plus karaoke →

Entame tours: Let us entertain and guide you

Tuesday, August 10th, 2010

KNT Entame tours

KNT! Entame tours


Ever dreamed of high-fiving your favorite J-pop star or hanging out in the woods with a dreamy Korean crooner? Travel agency KNT! has put together all its up-close-and-personal themed tour packages on one website: KNT! Entame.

Tours are divided into genres: Korean and Chinese pop culture; music; anime and games; and “others.” There are plenty of choices for the growing K-pop crowd. Trips to Seoul can include a “fan meeting” with boy band Big Bang, where participants can enjoy a private mini-concert, a chat with the guys in the band and a “high-five session” (less strenuous than a handshake, more intimate than a bow?). For more one-on-one time with a star, the “Summer Holidays with S.H.S” is a three-day getaway at a resort outside of Seoul with singer Shin Hye Sung.

The music-themed trips are pretty wide ranging, from a trip to Shizuoka for a show by Japanese band AAA to a flight to Los Angeles to see the Jonas Brothers. While AAA will pose for a picture and hang out a bit, fans of the Jonas brothers will have to settle for some concert swag.

That last “other” category includes more trips with event-themed giveaways and meet-and-greet components, like a bus tour to the WWE Summer Slam, which will include T-shirts that aren’t otherwise available in Japan and special to-be-announced events on the bus. Those who prefer to keep the words “surprise” and “pro-wrestling” as far separated as possible might prefer an overnight stay at an onsen in Kagoshima with former Takarazuka star Haruhi Ryouga. The actress, affectionately called Ahi-san, will take photos with tour participants, give autographs and stop by each group member’s room.

Then there’s the plan that’s getting all the English press: the Love Plus Plus tour, a romantic overnight stay in coastal Atami that seems like it was designed just to get people to say “Did you see what the Japanese are doing?” The bus trip for fans of the dating-simulation video game from Konami is pitched as “the first summer vacation with your girlfriend.” While it is possible to book the tour for two actual people, the “girlfriend” they’re referring to is the one in the game. Local shops and sites are participating, and the magic of augmented reality technology can put the digital girls into iPhone photos. The day when she can give you a high-five, though, is still to come.

Pulsations (7.22.10)

Thursday, July 22nd, 2010

Here are the latest Pulsations, links to fresh stories and visuals about Japan, shout-outs to fellow bloggers, and highly clickable stuff that we think you might enjoy.

In no particular order, they are . . .

Trends in Japan 2009: virtual love

Thursday, December 24th, 2009

Though we’ve not yet quite seen nanomachines building islands out in Tokyo Bay, William Gibson, author of “Idoru,” must have be feeling pretty smug last month when the news hit the Internet that a young Japanese man had married his virtual girlfriend.

But the prophecy of “Idoru,” which envisions a love affair between a rock star and a virtual celebrity, has not yet quite been fulfilled. The important difference being that the virtual character of Nene, created for the dating game Love Plus, is circumscribed by the bounds of her programming while the Idoru of Gibson’s novel enjoys free will.

That being said, Konami’s DS dating game Love Plus contained characters that were so life-like  some women complained their husband’s were neglecting them in favor of spending time with their virtual partners. Indeed, Sal 9000, the groom in the recent cyber wedding, felt compelled to broadcast his relationship to the Web. Though many have suggested that the marriage was simply a playful form of theatre rather than a serious gesture, it seemed that Western media were more tempted to ascribe deeper meaning to the event.

Continue reading about virtual love in 2009 →

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