If you’ve ever been to Japan before, you know that crane games are quite hyped up around here. With limited edition prizes and exclusive merchandise that may only be available in limited quantities, it’s sometimes hard to resist in indulging in the crazy claw machine culture. But imagine if you never had to leave your house and wander through the busy streets of Tokyo to play them… With the power of technology, you can now control a crane game from your smartphone or tablet and have prizes from Japan shipped straight to your house! This is a relatively new project that I have been involved with CyberStep and I am excited to share the details about it! The name of our new application is Toreba, and is available for both iPhone and Android. “Toreba” is Japanese for “if you can take” and is currently the most profitable game at our company, available in Japanese, English, Chinese, and Korean!
My main project at CyberStep is localizing the MMO Onigiri, but I have also been a part of the Toreba localization team translating products for the prize list from Japanese to English. Our prize list is quite extensive and is updated monthly with hundreds of prizes including figurines, Japanese snacks, pizza-shaped cushions, and Evangelion tissues. Translating these lists is fun for me, because I know a lot of the anime and videogame series that the character goods are from and it makes me feel nostalgic! It also helps me discover new obscure Japanese products I never knew existed (every nerd’s dream). Check out some of our current prizes below:
The app itself features a real camera view, so it’s kind of like virtual reality because you get the same sensation as peering into the glass of a crane game in person. The interface is relatively simple and you can move the claw with the ease of touch screen controls. You can also see a preview of the prizes that you can win and their location in the crane game so you can strategize how to best to play. Another neat feature is that you can see replays of your wins and share them online with other players–the ultimate bragging right. Want tips on how to win? I can’t share any info, but this tutorial by Crane Couple Academy is pretty spot on.
The app is free to download and quite easy to play. You will need to purchase TP (Toreba Points) to try it out, but if you win the low shipping costs are quite worth it, and you will definitely find a lot of the Japan-exclusive products interesting if you are an anime/manga fan or collector! If you live in Japan, the shipping for one prize per week is completely free! In the future we hope to run more US campaigns and deals for it to help the players minimize the shipping costs. This game is already famous in Japan and I am really excited to watch it grow and become available worldwide!