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Bitsosan Ke toys from TOMY encourage you play with their nose hair

Posted in Toys by Conner Flynn on March 2nd, 2010

I’ve never heard of ‘Bitosan Ke’ either, don’t feel bad. Apparently he’s a little character that has just a few strands of hair on his head and a few strands sticking out from his nose. The hairs are made of static carbon fiber and when touched, they signal him to talk.

We aren’t sure what he actually says, but our guess is he isn’t too happy with having his nose hairs played with. Bitsoan Ke and five other characters will say different things. They’re powered by a LR-44 button cell and I’m not sure they qualify as cute. Just weird.

Space Invaders retro tabletop game bank

Posted in Games by Conner Flynn on January 15th, 2009

Space Invaders retro tabletop game bankThe Japanese love banks. Like us, they also love them some Space Invaders. This latest offering from Takara Tomy may look like an actual sized tabletop Space Invaders game, but it’s really a miniature replica bank. It’s a unique take on the whole bank concept. It features an LCD screen that unfortunately is not playable, but acts as coin counter.

It will take up to 80 100 yen coins, and each time you drop a coin in, another invader lights up. So, basically you are playing the game in reverse. In this case, it pays to have more invaders on screen. It makes saving money not only fun, but retro and geeky at the same time. It will help you save up for those Space Invaders headphones or that Space Invaders Keyboard you’ve been wanting.

Tomy Hi-Kara portable Karaoke box

Posted in Karaoke by Conner Flynn on December 23rd, 2008

Tomy Hi-Kara portable Karaoke boxThe Japanese love gadgets. They love Karaoke even more. It’s almost as if Karaoke keeps Godzilla from attacking. Probably because his ears can’t take it. If that’s the case, they have another salvo in their Godzilla war. The Hi-Kara portable karaoke machine from Tomy. You get a 2.4″ LCD display that dsplays the song’s lyrics, while a headset can be used by a pair of singers at the same time.

All of the songs will need to be downloaded onto a proprietary cartridge from the Hi-Kara website though, so that limit the number of duets that you can actually perform. The Hi-Kara portable karaoke device will retail for about $180. Available in white or pink colors.

Tomy Xiao TIP-521 poops your photo prints

Posted in Cameras by Conner Flynn on December 9th, 2008

Remember the Tomy Xiao TIP-521 digital camera with built-in Zink printer? It’s available in Japan now, and the above video illustrates how they’re trying to convince you to buy one.

Have you watched it yet? Good. Still want to buy one? If the commercial has sold you on it, the Xiao will be available for $350 in the US in Q2 of 2009. I don’t know. He seemed to be struggling a bit there. He might need some fiber.

Tomy xiao digital camera with built in Zink printer

Posted in Cameras by Conner Flynn on November 6th, 2008

Tomy xiao digital camera with built in Zink printerMany of us miss Polaroids. They weren’t all that great, but they did provide a strange sort of instant gratification. Sadly, Polaroid is dead. But it keeps coming back in other forms. You might remember Zink, that company whose technology prints digital photos on the spot without ink.

Well, they’re back, this time with strange bedfellows. They’ve been rolling around in the sheets with toy-maker Tomy to make the xiao TIP-521, a digital camera with a printer built in. The xiao has a five megapixel resolution, so you may want to wait a bit. The point is they are on it people. Polaroid lives on.

Tomy unveils world’s smallest walking robots

Posted in Robots by Conner Flynn on October 13th, 2008

Tomy unveils world’s smallest walking robotsThe Humanoid shaped Robo-Q from Tomy, measures just 3.4 cm high, no bigger than a thumb and has been released in Japan. This world’s smallest robot does more then just walk. It plays soccer and will dodge unexpected obstacles and even find its way out of a maze. All this in robots the size of a thumb. What makes it possible is that Robo-Q is fitted with artificial intelligence that lets it navigate and play games and use built in sensors.

The robot is available in four different colors and will be sold in Japan starting February for $35. After that it will hit other Asian countries soon afterwards as well as the United States and Europe. This little guys just plain look awesome. I can’t wait to get one.

Tomy RC R2-D2 becomes see-through D2

Posted in Star Wars by Conner Flynn on July 30th, 2008

Tomy RC R2-D2 becomes see-through D2For some reason Tomy decided to release a new See-through R2-D2 with lightsaber remote. I guess they like their droids looking like ice.

R2 does everything that previous models have done, like move forward or turn on command, rotate his dome as he rolls, beep and whistle, and illuminate his photoreceptor “eye”. All while looking “chill” this time. This version should probably be serving drinks on Hoth. Well, it is a Star Wars item, so you might want to buy one or two less comics this month with your allowance.


Bank Quest: Tomy’s bank with built-in RPG

Posted in Toys by Conner Flynn on June 21st, 2008

Bank Quest: Tomy’s bank with built-in RPG
I guess it isn’t easy being a Japanese geek. Not that it’s easy being an American geek, but the Japanese have so much more cool stuff to tempt them out of their savings. That’s why Takara Tomy has made a new kind of piggy bank. One with an RPG game built into it. It’s called Bank Quest.

Not very original, but appropriate. You can buy weapons and armor for your character from the savings you place inside the bank. Where have I seen this before. Oh right, it was called an arcade, where you put your money in played. Except you get to keep the money with this bank. Improve the graphics and gameplay, you might just have a bunch of gamers saving their money for once.