Virtual Economy of Oshogatsu (Japanese New Year) in Ameba pigg

In Japan, New Year's Eve and New Year holidays are biggest event in a year. It is similar in the virtual world.
CygerAgent's virtual world "Ameba Pigg [J]" sold a lot of virtual goods on the end of the year and the beginning of the year.

The Japanese eats "Toshikoshi-soba" on the night of the New Year's Eve. (soba is thin Japanese noodle made from buckwheat flour)

CyberAgent sold 150,000 virtual goods of this Toshikoshi-soba in Ameba Pigg. However, this doesn't become the profit of CyberAgent because it was sold with a free virtual currency.

On the other hand, the Fukubukuro's profit is awesome!

Fukubukuro is the bag which unknown items were filled with. They are sold with a discount price than the actual value. The Japanese purchases these at various shops on New Year.
CygerAgent sold virtual Fukubukuro limited quantity only 2011 pieces. There were only female avatar's items in them. However, virtual Fukubukuro were sold out in several hours on January 1.
The price of this virtual Fukubukuro was 2011 yen each. Then …

2011×2011=4,044,121 yen!! (about 48,000 USD)

It's almost the same as the profit of real Fukubukuro.

In addition, 18 kinds of Oshogatsu(Japanese New Year) virtual goods were very popular, too.

These Oshogatsu virtual goods were sold about 480,000 during January 3, 2011 from December 31, 2010.
The most popular item of them was "Kadomatsu".

"Kadomatsu" is a traditional Japanese decoration of the New Year. It's made from bamboo, pine, straw and plum. Any home decorated the entrance with it in old days.
Virtual Kadomatsu was 200 yen, and they were sold about 16,000!

200×16,000=3,200,000 yen!! (about 3,8000 USD)

These Oshogatsu items are becoming outdated in the real world. However, they are still popular in the virtual world.

According to CyberAgent, about 2.4M users logged in to Ameba Pigg for a period of January 3 from December 31. This number is almost equal to real world's "Hatsumode(first Shinto shrine visit of the New Year)".

Current Ameba Pigg have more 5M users. The women are 65% and men are 35%.


Japanese 72years old gamer said, "Game has the effect to reduce crime"

I wrote the article of Japanese 72 years old gamer Shiro Suzuki in February of the last year. He is a famous announcer, but is known as "Expert of the [BIOHAZARD]" in Japan.

He appeared in a game program of Japanese video sharing site Nico Nico Douga on January 8. Therefore he told it about game "Mass Effect 2" for Xbox360. He makes a superior play by the game except BIOHAZARD.

He said, "I think that fighting and winning are one of the instincts of a man. ". Moreover, he quoted "GRAND THEFT CHILDHOOD(Kutner,Lawrence;Olson,Cheryl K.)" and said, "Young violence and sexual crimes decreased at the same time as games were popular in U.S.A.
Therefore the games have the effect of canceling a bad desire."

Furthermore, he said that the games were good for health. "
The action games should pay attention to my environment as well as driving the car. Moreover, it's necessary to move by under 1 seconds. Cars are duller than they. So, driving became easy since began game play."

The archive of the program of Nico Nico Douga to which he appeared is here.(The account of Nico Nico Douga is necessary.)

He will become 73 years old next month by February 10.

See also these articles:
Nico Nico Douga News [J]
Kotaku Japan [J]

The iPhone game character became a real toy

I found such a Bulk vending  the other day at Shibuya Station. These are toys of Japanese iPhone game "TUMINEKO". This is the first time that a character of application for iPhone became the real toy.

TUMINEKO is very popular game application for iPhone.This is used for a demonstration in Apple Store of the all over Japan.

TUMINEKO means "piling up cats" in Japanese. According to the title, users can piles up a cats of various size. The cats are very cute for physics operation quaking!

You can do Tweet of score.

Please download "TUMINEKO 2" if you want to challenge in world ranking. and I recommend "Real TUMINEKO" if you have iPad.

Why they say "real"? Please look at this image and this page [J].


Let's study arithmetic with poo!

Japanese startup KAYAC released mixi [J] application "Unko Enzan [J]" for education. This is application of the primary-school's arithmetic. However, there is funny characteristic in it. It is that poos are used for all problems.

"Unko Enzan" means "Poo Arithmetic" in Japanese.

Can you solve this problem?
"A diameter of rolled poo is 16cm. To calculate an approximate size of rolled poo, rolled poo is assumed to be a circle. How many cm is the perimeter of rolled poo? Pi is 3.14."

The answer is........


How about this?

"Toru's weight is 47.5kg, and his poo is 230g. How many Toru's poos are the weight of him equivalent to?"

The answer is........

About 206.5!

There are ten problems about once. After an answer, a title is given by the number of the correct answers and time. I was able to answer only six problem correctly! Primary-school's's arithmetic is difficult! :D

According to the KAYAC's web page [J], "Poo is a magic word for primary-schoolchildren. It is a motif that is universal and passes in 100 years.".
It was developed as application for iPad at first. However, because a lot of poos had been too used, it was rejected to the examination of AppStore(So, they released in mixi).

This application does not have the support of other languages only in Japanese now. In addition, a Japanese mobile(future phone) is necessary for user's registration of mixi. I wish this supports a multi-language and becomes the Android application.


"Social Network" preview

On January 9, I went to see "Social Network" preview. It will be in theaters in the Japan on January15.

Japanese ver. poster image.
It's written  in this way...



Dangerous guy


Japanese version of "The facebook Effect"were sold at a 10% off price in the place.

Facebook How to book is released on February 2, too.

Before the screening, a talk show of Zynga Japan GM Shintaro Yamada was held. He did the Japanese subtitles supervision of this movie.
Yamada-san said, "Facebook is more easily than mixi usable SNS. Why was Facebook able to become the best SNS in the world in a lot of SNS? It's because it took in other interesting service immediately. When Twitter began to become popular, Facebook cooperated immediately. However, mixi was delayed."

The movie was very exciting and interesting! Everyone seemed to have enjoyed it though there were some elderly persons who would not know Facebook in the participant. Especially, Bill Gates's scene was laugh out loud!

I wish this movie becomes the topic in Japan.


Hamburger steak, Voice actress and AR

Japan's Denny's is executing the campaign for the hamburger steak using AR and popular voice actress Aya Hirano.

Aya Hirano is very popular voice actress(seiyū) and J-Pop singer. She is known by the voice of Haruhi Suzumiya from "The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya".

Denny 'Management company SEVEN & i Food Systems released two AR application for this campaigns.

D Gold AR and GAME

D Silver AR and GAME
*There are not only the iPhone application but also the Android application

 When you read a menu, you may find the AR marker there.

Then, let's use "D Silver AR and GAME".
 Start screen of application

Let's start the camera.

CG animation of Aya Hirano appears when you photograph an AR marker with the smartphone's camera.

 Afterwards, the screen changes into the menu introduction.

While you watch AR contents in this way, the hamburger steak food which did order arrives. (I forgot to take the hamburger steak!)

And you get such an AR card when you pay the bill.

Then, let's use "D Gold AR and GAME".

Then, Aya Hirano's different version of CG animation appears. She moves and talks!

After this, the application changes to the serial code input screen.
When you input the serial code described in the AR card...

You can watch a special movie of Aya Hirano. The special movie has four patterns in all, but the AR card is distributed at random. If you want to watch all movies, it's necessary to go to Denny's a lot, and collect cards.

The distribution of the cards are carried out until January 23. And, the limit of contents is January 31. Hurry up!


Tsukuba University's Second Life Machinima

It's cool works!

Japan's Tsukuba University Computational Intelligence and Multimedia Laboratory shoots a PV with 3D virtual world Second Life.
Akira Yamamoto shoot a this works(He is a movie director at real life).

Akira Yamamoto's website

This PV is used for student invitation and a demonstration of Laboratory.


A lot of Tablet in Comic Market

I went to world's largest self-published comic book fair "comic market(Comiket)" at the end of last year.

What comic market ? via Wikipedia

This event is a sacred place of the otaku. And it's the place that can know the most tip of the Japanese contents industry.

I was able to watch the "change" that was here this time. It is that a lot of creators were using the tablet. iPad, Kindle, galaxy Tab......(and a little PSP, too). There were a lot of people who were using iPad.

In last summer, there were a few people who used tablet. Main users were the people who wrote a novel as the people who made a game. But, I was able to watch tablet with every genre this time. There was even Cosplayer which showed a collection of own Cosplay photographs on iPad.

The e-books correspondence of the publisher in Japan is much later than foreign countries. But Japanese creators begin to make e-books steadily.