Posts Tagged ‘simulation’

Fun for one, online and off

Wednesday, November 16th, 2011

While Japan’s konkatsu, or “marriage hunting” boom is into its third year, it seems that Japanese companies are embracing the fact that there are plenty of people out there who are rolling solo. Pulse has looked at a yakiniku restaurant that takes the embarrassment out of cooking meat by yourself, as well as places that serve ramen for one and cater especially to women looking to grab a solo drink and snack on the way home.

Dinner for two... sort of.

For the working woman who simply wants to have a relaxed meal at home with a little — and only a little — company, there’s the iPhone app Kare to gohan (Dinner with My Boyfriend). The English version is called PlusBoys. The app has photos of clean-cut young men who each have personality profiles and back stories: Biker and college student Tatsuya is “friendly, but a luck pusher. He likes going to rock festivals by himself.” There are photos of each of them whipping up a meal for two, accompanied by screens of cheerful “welcome home” banter. The instructions warn that checking on more than one character might make them jealous. (Is nothing simple?) As you proceed through the stories, you can buy new characters from within the app.

For guys, there are a handful of apps that will liven up a dinner for one – or make you seem popular with the ladies when you’re out with friends. That is, as long as your friends don’t see who’s actually calling: These apps send you “phone calls” from anime characters or, equally unlikely to actually call you, pop stars. A recent version of Dream Call requires you to pick up the phone and make appropriate “I’m listening” noises in response to the recorded pre-programmed chat and scores you on your “mm-hmms” and “I sees.”

And then, for the . . .  actually, we’re not sure who this is for. Hatofuru kareshi (pigeon boyfriend) is a dating simulation game where you are a second-year student at the St. Pigeonation high school, finding yourself increasingly attracted to your male classmates, who are all pigeons. If it comes to this, please, put down the iPhone and get out of the house.

While you’re out there, may we suggest checking out OneKara, the new karaoke place for soloists only? There’s no shame in a little hitokara. Rent a room for one and rock your own socks off.

3D marketing in motion

Tuesday, October 6th, 2009

As we all know, Madison Avenue and their international counterparts got hideously drunk on the coincidental cocktail of Mentos and Diet Coke, and marketing departments around the world have been trying to bottle that sensation and sell it to YouTubers ever since.

Some companies have simply capitalized on the organically grown fan love. Others have promised fame and fortune to tomorrow’s consumer-media stars, or even going so far as tutoring  would-be viral videomakers. But one fool-proof way to create buzz is to provide a prefab scenario starring you, the loyal consumer. Only need photo; no creativity required.

Take OfficeMax, which nailed it last holiday season with its Elf Yourself campaign, by teaming up with JibJab, makers of fine cheeky greeting cards for the YT generation.

But when it comes to generating a true wow factor, Japan’s Motion Portrait might have an edge over other cut-n-paste photo labs. As predicted on Pink Tentacle two years ago, Motion Portrait was seen a killer app for 3D-enhanced games, sites and services.

Continue reading about Motion Portrait →

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