When I was writing my post about gesture recognition I was not expecting, that this new technology could be used for such crazy things I read about on my trip to China two weeks ago.
The newspaper China Daily reported about a new hobby of Japanese men, using their iPhnes and Nintendo DS consoles to to build virtual relationships with women. Thanks to “augmented reality” (AR) software, the object of their desire is brought to life. The game is called “Love plus”, a dating simulation. It creators Konami Digital Entertainment, have a long thrilled young men obsessed with high-thech, manga and anime, known as “otaku”, by letting them chase virtual girls in the alternative universe. It as a hit videogame, which made headlines, when a 27-year-old Japanese man staged a tuxedo wedding late last year, which was watched by thousands online, with his favorite cartoon girl, Nene Anegasaki.
Now the makers of this game went a step further. They have selected 13 romantic locations which can be overlaid with images of their “virtual girls”. At each place you can find a barcode panel, which thanks to “augmented reality” software beems the woman of your dreams into pictures you are taking with your smartphone. The local Ohnoya hotel even offers traditional rooms, which feature two sets of futon beds and also a barcode panel that allows men to visualize their girlfriends in a flattering summer kimono.
The new game has become Japan’s most popular datimng game since its release last September. The specialty of the game is, that it goes step beyond the genre’s usual boy-meets-girl script. It asks the players to build long-term relationships. “The goal is to see how good you can be to her and to build a relationship”, said Konami spokes-man Kunio Ishihari to the China Daily. The game features voice recognition, a screen clock and the girl can get moody when neglected by a player who is not sufficiently committed. The girl even demands attention, when she doesn’t feel well.
I find this really crazy and it shows how much the new technologies of the online world can influence someone’s real life. So far the game has no sexual content. Let’s see how long this will last ….
Love plus trailer: