They’re claiming in-game transactions are being siphoned into funding China’s military.

Web browser battleship game Kantai Collection, known as KanColle, has gained immense popularity since its creation four years ago, spawning legions of loyal followers who are as interested in the strategic elements of the game as the anthropomorphized battleships themselves. Some of the fleet girls have become so iconic they’ve appeared as cosplay in every Comiket.

Azur Lane, a Chinese knockoff of KanColle, has just been launched this year, and it does seem like a straight up clone of the original battleship game at first glance.

▼ Ayanami pictured in the center here bears a striking
resemblance to KanColle’s Shimakaze.

However, it does offer a few new features absent from the original. Where KanColle’s combat was largely automated, Azur Lane’s requires players to manually take aim and fire at enemies, though the company claims such skills don’t factor much into the outcome of battles.

The game also has its own version of fleet girls, some of which sport much sexier and racier outfits than those found in KanColle’s.

▼ Here’s Javelin-class destroyer, Hamman

▼ Yudachi

▼ Takao

▼ Atago

▼ Prince of Wales

▼ Prinz Eugen

▼ Illustrious

The generous amount of eye candy and new gameplay mechanics has helped boost Azur Lane’s popularity in Japan, but not everyone is happy about it.

Japanese Twitter account @YugumoSendai was created by a KanColle loyalist who aims to root out “traitor illustrators”, doling out scathing words to fan-made illustrations of the fleet girls or any mention of the Chinese knockoff.

▼ An illustration of Atago is quickly admonished.
(Translation below)

“Sorry for disturbing you. Azur Lane is a Chinese knockoff of KanColle, and all in-game transactions go towards funding China’s army. You better stop playing this game. Thank you.”

▼ @YugumoSendai pounces on an artist who has acquired
rights to draw one of the fleet girls.

“When you play Azur Lane, the precious money of Japanese people is siphoned into China’s military. Rather than pour money into this game, contribute to Japan’s games like KanColle instead. I hope you stop playing this game.”

Despite @YugumoSendai’s harsh Internet policing, his actions has earned the approval of some supporters, but whether or not it has any lasting effect on the game itself remains up to speculation.

Given Azur Lane’s tendency to lean towards sexy costumes, it probably won’t be long before one if its characters helps show us how to measure bra sizes too.

Source: Azur Lane via Hachima Kiko
Featured image: Twitter/@azurlane_staff