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Manga artist Masashi Kishimoto’s ninja saga Naruto finally came to a close last month. But after 15 years of being on the receiving end of the awesome artwork and heartfelt words of the Naruto cast, fans now have a chance to send some of their own with a nifty message-writing tool on the franchise’s official website.

Unfortunately, it isn’t very user-friendly. But just like how Naruto’s titular blond ninja never gives up in the face of adversity, so too have fans found a way to work around the clunky interface and come up with some powerfully cool creations.

If you’re looking to leave a message, your first stop is here, the top page of the event, which is called the Yosegaki Project.

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In the background you can see messages created by other fans, and scrolling down will reveal even more. To get started creating one of your own, though, just click the central “Join in yosegaki” button towards the top of the screen. That’ll take you to prompt asking if you want to send the message through Facebook or Twitter, or if you’d rather do so without directly connecting it to your social media accounts.

After making your selection, you’re presented with the message-making tool. While you can upload images directly from your own PC, there’re enough options to play around with to make a pretty cool card just with what’s provided. Aside from drawing lines and adding text, there’s a collection of stamps featuring the primary cast, and you can also select one of four background colors.

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Okay, let’s get started on ours. First, let’s type in the text of our message.

▼ Otsukare is such a handy phrase.

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That’s kind of plain-looking, though. Let’s add in a stamp of Naruto giving an approving thumbs-up.

▼ Oops.

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Kind of covered up part of our message there, didn’t we? No problem. We’ll just hit the undo button and…

There is no undo button.

There’s a reset button, which will dump all the work you’ve done and put you back to square one with a blank slate. There’s also an eraser, but since the stamp and text are now occupying the same space, we can’t get rid of one without also erasing the other.

Hmm…maybe we can drag and drop the stamp. That makes sense, right? There’s no way they’re expecting people to get everything just right the very first time.

Okay, so click on the image, and…

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Nope, no dragging and dropping allowed here! At the same time, though, there’s no limit to the number of stamps you can drop into a single message.

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Since the stamps are so big, it’s tough to estimate exactly where the edges are going to land before you click. Once you’ve put one down, you’ve got a pretty good baseline for where the next would land, but there’s no way to undo just that first errant attempt. In response, fans seem to have come to the conclusion that there’s no point in stopping at an awkward-looking two copies of the same picture, when you could add in dozens in cool patterns.

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▼ Well, bunshin, or Naruto’s Shadow Clone Technique, is a pretty common ninja trick.

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If you’re committed to keeping your message tastefully understated though, we recommend planning your layout in advance and dropping in all the stamps you want to use first. Save any text for last, since the ability to hit backspace and erase everything from the text box before it gets added to the image is really the only pseudo one-step backtracking the system allows.

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But hey, even if you screw up along the way, just take a page from Naruto’s playbook, and focus on what’s ahead instead of letting the mistakes of your past darken your future.

Related: Naruto Yosegaki Project
Source: Alfalfalfa
Images: Naruto Yosegaki Project