Facebook stickers have very bad reputation in Japan

Facebook released latest version 6.0 of the iOS apps and added a sticker function to chat & message. However, unfortunately Facebook lost an evaluation in Japan more. Facebook stickers looks VERY NERDY for a Japanese. Now, they become the topic by a reason not cute in Japan.

Japanese Facebook users said, "Terrible quality", "Very ugly", "Not cute at all. Is this the difference of the cultural sphere?", "These may not be popular in the Asian area".

When I say honestly, I am opinions same as them. I felt they are very poor when watched these. And I did not feel character characteristics. It is necessary for them to dig into each character more.

I realized the splendor of the character design of Disney. Characters of Disney fly over sex, age, a race, nationality and are loved all over the world. It is the universal design from U.S. Facebook cooperates with Disney right now and should release tie-up stickers. However, LINE has already done it.


GREE and DeNA fought about a mobile fishing social game, and GREE lost

DeNA fought against GREE at a trial about intellectual property until today. And DeNA won.

In September, 2009, GREE charged DeNA in an intellectual property theft. GREE ran fishing social game for mobile "Tsuri ★ Sta(釣り★スタ)" from May, 2007 , and DeNA ran fishing social game for mobile "Tsuri ge town2(釣りゲータウン2)" from February, 2009. GREE said that it was copied the design of the scene that caught a fish by DeNA and charged them. Actually, they were similar.

Source: http://jibun.atmarkit.co.jp/lskill01/rensai/law/03/01.html

This created a great debate in Japan. In the first place what is the copy? What is the difference between universal design and copy?

In February, 2012, the Tokyo District Court accepted a suit of GREE in first trial judgment and ordered DeNA to shut down a Tsuri ge town2 and pay 234,600,000 yen for GREE . Of course, DeNA appealed on the same day.

In August, 2012, the intellect fortune High Court canceled first trial judgment and dismissed request of GREE. the presiding judge judged that the design of Tsuri ge town2 was "common expression", and this did not correspond to an intellectual property theft. Naturally GREE appealed on the same day, too.

However, the Supreme Court gave decision to reject a final appeal of GREE today. A lost case of GREE was settled in this.

By the way, there is the problem that is more important than a trial in GREE and DeNA. Because their growth slows down. LINE's Game apps, Puzzle & Dragons, Nameko Saibai Kit series, Dark Summoner, etc... Many rivals appear now. In the first place,  "Tsuri ★ Sta" and "Tsuri ge town2" are popular games in a futurephone. In other words they are the old-gen social games. Next-gen social games appear in sequence now. It is useless to use time and a resource for a trial this situation.

Ateam's "Dark Summoner" was ranked No. 1 in free apps ranking of Korean App Store

Dark Summoner is popular game apps for smartphones which Japan's Ateam develops. It is JP-style card battle game, but the art are slightly different from JP-style. Because its motif is the dark fantasy. The art were received favorably by users of North American and European. Now, Dark Summoner has users more than 6M all over the world.

On the other hand, how about the East Asia? Ateam released a Korean version of Dark Summoner "다크서머너" at the beginning of this month. Then two weeks later, It was ranked No. 1 in free apps ranking of Korean App Store!

In addition, the Android ver. is brisk, too. It records 100,000-500,000 downloading, and users review is 4.5.

It is unusual for Japanese game apps to be accepted immediately by Korean users. However, a similar example includes Cygames's Rage of Bahamut. Possibly the Dark Fantasy may be advantageous in global expansion.


Japan is approaching to world of The Terminator

Where can the computer approach the human brain to? The computers fought against a human being with chess than before. Similarly, the Japanese computers fight against human beings with Shogi(将棋; also known as Japanese chess).

Dwango, administration company of video sharing site niconico douga holds the game "Denousen(電王戦)" that shogi software "Puellaα" fights against professional shogi players.

It was held 4 times until now. Match Results are professional shogi player 1 win, Puellaα 2 win, draw 1. Well, computer wins!

The shogi is slightly more complicated than chess. Because the shogi has a rule to be able to use the pieces of the opponent whom oneself got for as one's pieces. How much are there the patterns of the play? I think like astronomical figures! :0

However, Puella α developer Eiki Ito  said, "The software already transcended excellent professional shogi player". Development of the shogi software began in Japan and passed for about 40 years, and it evolved dramatically in recent 10 years. Even if the computer faces it for a long time, it not tired and do not feel the pressure either. On the other hand, the human being has feelings and is tired. Furthermore, most shogi masters are elderly people. It is an important point that shogi software does not have fatigue and feelings.

In addition, the 5th game is held on April 20(It's a last battle!). May the human being win?



Tie-up avatar of LINE Play succeeds; They started the collaboration with artists

LINE started the tie-up with companies in their virtual world apps LINE Play from the end of last month.

See Also:
LINE's mobile virtual world LINE Play starts the tie-up with the companies

It succeeded immediately. LINE users who visited the tie-up rooms in ten days since they began a tie-up with companies exceeded 10 million.

How can we visit the tie-up rooms?

*This is a Japanese region. At first we choose "friends".

We watch "friends request tab". Then official avatars of companies are added there.

OK, let's approve them from one end!

We become able to visit the tie-up rooms of companies.

We can play limited Gacha in these rooms.

Various tie-up items come out of limited Gacha.

This is general technique by the virtual world service. Probably every virtual world of the world conducts a similar business. The most successful virtual world was Ameba Pigg until now in Japan. However, LINE Play grows up rapidly.

In addition, LINE Play began a tie-up with not only companies but also artists. They opened the rooms of Japanee singer Ayumi Hamazaki and Korean singer BOM(from Korean girls band 2NE1).

The beginning of the end: Nintendo shuts down a part of the Wii network service

To be frank, Nintendo Wii U is the hard situation. In the first place the situation of Nintendo is hard, too. Meanwhile, Nintendo made a severe decision this week. Some of Wii network services are shut down on June 28.
  • Weather channel(お天気チャンネル)
  • Digital camera print channel(デジカメプリントチャンネル)
  • News channel(ニュースチャンネル)
  • Vote channel of all(みんなで投票チャンネル)
  • Nintendo channel of all(みんなのニンテンドーチャンネル)
  • Mii contest channel(Miiコンテストチャンネル)
  • Data exchange with the Wii friends in WiiConnect24(WiiConnect24でのWiiフレンドとのデータ交換)
Unfortunately these disappear from Wii menu after June 28. Originally the lineup of the Wii channel were 17. However, by this announcement, they decreased to 8. Less than half! Is this the beginning of the end?



Let's decorate Facebook message cutely!

Japanese company Pickles released the iOS apps "Stamp messenger" that could add a stamps(stickers) to Facebook message.

Why is LINE popular? One of the reasons is cute stamps(stickers). Stamp messenger applies it to Facebook message.

This is apps using Facebook API. When we log in to this using Facebook account, our Facebook friends are reflected. And we can talk with friends with these stamps.

All the stamps are free of charge and many kinds increase from now on.

Furthermore, we can exchange wall paper using photos. We can arrange Facebook message cutely if we combine stamps with this.

This is a very good idea. Facebook is unpopular with youths now. However, some situation may change if they use this.


Japanese old man draws a splendid picture by Excel

Are these pixel art? No. These are "Excel" art.

Mr.Tatsuo Horiuchi, 73-year-old living in Gunma, Japan draws a picture by Excel from 2000.

"I did not use Excel by work, but I watched that other people drew a graph neatly and thought that I could draw pictures by Excel". And he purchased a PC just before retirement at the age limit and challenged Excel art. Then, 10 years later, he became a painter as he participated in art exhibitions.

He is studded with auto-shapes in a worksheet innumerably and gives coloring. It is incredibly delicate that it was described in Excel.

Why will he draw a picture by Excel? He said, "Graphics software were expensive, but Excel was preinstalled in a PC. And it is higher-performance than paint and is easy to use it". He makes friends with oil painters and Japanese painters, and exchanges information now. Furthermore, he runs a Website and shows a method to describe Excel art. Unfortunately it supports only Japanese. However, we can watch his works here.


LINE became No.1 in free apps ranking of Chinese App Store

According to China Daily, Japanese messaging apps LINE became No.1 in free apps ranking of Chinese App Store.

LINE started Chinese support from December 12, 2012 and they cooperated with QIHU360. They entered the Chinese market and got No.1 in 4 months.

Of course China has WeChat. They have users more than 200 million and probably are the world's largest messaging apps. It is very important to LINE that they beat them. By the way, LINE has about 130 million users now.


Big news! LINE launched e-book business

Today, LINE started e-book service LINE Manga suddenly. But it is only Japanese support at present.

LINE Manga is e-book apps for smartphones that market place, viewer and bookshelf were combined. About 30,000 popular Manga such as "Uchu Kyodai(宇宙兄弟;Space Brothers)" ,"ONE PIECE", "Shingeki no kyojin(進撃の巨人;Attack on Titan" and "Kaiji(カイジ)" have been already sold here. Furthermore, they are going to add Manga more than 1,000 every month.

The biggest characteristic of LINE Manga is to offer a limited stamp(sticker) to users who purchased Manga. They apply the tie-up technique with companies, brands, artists and game apps to LINE Manga.

Users can share favorite Manga sold in LINE Manga in a timeline of LINE.

Because there is a trial reading function in LINE Manga, users can confirm contents before purchasing them.

This is a big menace for other Japanese e-book services. About 30,000 sale numbers are the hugest in e-book services of Japan. In addition, the publishing companies join in LINE Manga are more than 50. Furthermore, LINE has already had users more than 45 million in Japan. It is huge in all.

By the way, I think that LINE starts the social music service someday. e-book and the music are already virtual goods like a stamp(sticker). It is natural for LINE to treat all of them. Possibly the trial of the other day may be its sign. In Japan, LINE is already contents platform as well as messaging apps.


Manga of Nameko makes Japanese literature pleasant

I bought Manga "Nameko; complete series of literaturec".

The goods of the popular smartphone game apps Nameko Saibai Kit series overflow now in Japan. However, not only its goods but also Manga is published serially in Manga magazine for women Comic Spica. These Manga books are released to 2 volumes with the thing which settled it now.

The stories are not original. They arranged Japanese various famous novels by Nameko. Osamu Dazai's "The Setting Sun""Run, Melos!", Ryūnosuke Akutagawa's "The Spider's Thread", Sōseki Natsume's "Botchan", Ichiyō Higuchi's “Child’s Play”, Kenji Miyazawa's "The Restaurant of Many Orders""Gauche the Cellist", Atsushi Nakajima's "The Moon Above the Mountains", Takiji Kobayashi's "The Crab Cannery Ship", Kyūsaku Yumeno's "Girls' Hell"...etc... All of characters of masterpieces of various Japanese literature is replaced with Nameko!

It's humorous, funnily and very cute! and it has an effect to give friendly feeling to difficult novels. Furthermore, it derives readers to novels of the source.

1 Manga book is 650 yen(about 6.5USD). They already sold more than 250,000 books, and the release of Vol. 3 has been already decided, too.


Commemorative AR of Doraemon

Doraemon is Japanese popular Manga/Anime, and Movie of Doraemon is shown every year in Japan in March. The total audience mobilization number of them broke through 100 million people this year. This is a record more than the Godzilla series.

Therefore the commemorative AR contents of the Doraemon movie are shown now. AR apps for smartphones "mue Alive!" is necessary for watch this. Japan's Knowledge Works provides mue Alive! and is developed based on Aurasma.

At first, read Logo with a camera. Official Logo is here.

The first loading time is slightly long. We may wait for 1~2min.

Doraemon has begun to move!

And an commemorative video of Doraemon movie is played. *The sound is played, too.

Unfortunately only Japanese is supported, but it is very cute!