Indirectly of course, the actual toy couldn’t save a life to save its life.

Sometimes I feel capsule toy designers have both the best and the worst jobs. On one hand, they can come up with wild ideas, like underwear for bottles and tuna can rings. On the other, it seems like everything’s been done before, like miniature “working” air conditioners and literal pieces of crap.

Despite the difficulty, a particularly brilliant concept was recently released by toymaker Bandai and medical equipment manufacturer Nihon Kohden. Gachapon Miniature AEDs are highly detailed small-scale automated external defibrillators (AED).

These are the boxes you see hanging in places like airports and shopping centers to be used in the case of a heart attack emergency, but how many of us actually know how to use one?

Sure, they’re designed to be easy to understand so anyone can do it, but in a situation where every second is precious it would be really helpful to at least know what the inside of one looks like beforehand.

And since, public spaces tend to frown upon people taking AEDs out and poking around inside them, and most people are too preoccupied to just google it, the next best thing is to distribute a model in the fun form of a capsule toy.

Our writer Tasuku Egawa went to his nearest row of capsule machines to find some but was shocked that they were already almost sold out. There were only four capsules left in the machine, so he bought them all for 300 yen (US$2.84) a piece and pretended he couldn’t hear the crying child standing behind him.

There were four types available: The Prevalent Model AED, Bilingual AED with color LED display, ECG Bilingual AED with color LED display, and Mobile Type AED. Tasuku came out pretty lucky, having scored three of them with only one double and missing the Mobile Type AED.

They came with a sheet of stickers and paper showing where they go. However, the paper was really small and some of the stickers were so small it was too hard to see where he should put them exactly.

Luckily, Tasuku could go the official website (linked below) where they had larger pictures. Even then, it took about ten minutes to transfer the delicate patterns.

With everything set, it was time to take a look at how an AED works. Once you pop open the lid, there’s a secondary translucent lid that is used to hold the electrode pads.

Just like in a real AED, the pads are kept in a sealed pouch and have a diagram of where they should be placed on the body with the cover peeled off and on exposed skin.

Then, on the main unit there is a button to administer the shock as well as a toggle switch to set the current for adults or children. To add to the realism, the button and switches can be pressed and moved on the toy too.

With only that Tasuku felt pretty confident he could use an AED in real life but just in case, he once again consulted the official website for the proper instructions.

1 – Open the lid and the power automatically turns on
2 – Apply electrode pads to the chest
3 – Press the shock button

And that’s it. It’s extremely easy but had Tasuku not known that, he might not have attempted to use an AED in an actual emergency. Now, that fear is completely gone and he wouldn’t even hesitate to employ an AED when needed. It’s a very small amount of confidence but just enough to potentially save a life.

▼ The exact model designs can vary quite a bit, but the basic principles of use are the same

It’s an added value to these toys that really goes a long way, but hopefully Tasuku will never have to use it. For now his new AEDs can sit on his shelf in the event his other figures need it. It’s not something we like to think about, but capsule toys are at a very high risk of heart attacks. They’re extremely inactive and sometimes drink heavily.

Source: Gachapon Miniature AED
Photos ©SoraNews24
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