Escape from the real world into one of pigeon peace.

Japan seems to have a strange fascination with pigeons (“hato” in Japanese). From the pigeon dating simulator Hatoful Boyfriend to our own reporters’ bizarre pigeon pooping experiment, stories about pigeons seem to pop up more often in Japan than elsewhere.

Now, Tori (“Bird”) Games has gifted us with another entry to add to that list — Hatoverse, the world’s first pigeon metaverse, available as of April 7 as a mobile app for iOS.

Recent years have seen a proliferation of metaverses in various media, so we guess it’s not a complete surprise that something as oddly specific as a pigeon-verse would one day be born in Japan. The app’s release was commemorated in a bizarre way (even by Japanese standards) by one mysterious pigeon-mask-wearing gentleman at the 2022 Hatoverse Conference.

▼ Where or when the 2022 Hatoverse Conference took place remains a mystery.

▼ The Pigeon Gentleman

The game’s basic premise is that you can transform into a pigeon and communicate with multiple other humans-turned-pigeon in real time. You can walk around, jump into the air, make pigeon cooing noises, and do whatever else a pigeon does.

In fact, there’s no purposely no voice chat or text chat functions at all — chat could lead to arguing, and the Hatoverse has no place for such rude human behaviors.

▼ Standard pigeon play

Strangely, taking it a level further, there are are also no in-game purchases, avatars, differences in pigeon appearances, scores, leveling up, or even game objectives of any kind.

The Pigeon Gentleman joked that even he got bored of his own creation within two minutes since there’s not much of anything to do except fluff your feathers and mingle with other birds of a feather… but maybe that’s exactly what the modern worker needs as a form of therapeutic escapism.

As one special plus, the game was designed to include a see-saw that you can jump up and down on, with possible future plans for a slide and swing as well. There are also three chickens planted somewhere in the virtual world for you to search out if you desire, but what happens when you find them remains to be seen.

▼ The see-saw is the one major reminder of humans in this game.

It’s unclear yet if or when the Hatoverse app will be released for Android, so at the moment only iOS users can experience the magic and mystery of the pigeon metaverse. Regardless, we’ll try not to pigeonhole anyone as a particular kind of birdbrain while waiting.

Source: Tori Games via NetLab
Images: YouTube/ハトジャンプ公式YOUTUBEチャンネル
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