Good time apparently had by all involved.

Last Thursday the TIF Gakuen Spring School Festival was held in Tokyo’s Harajuku neighborhood. A related event to the annual summertime Tokyo Idol Festival concert series, the TIF Gakuen Spring School Festival took place on the campus of the Belle Époque fashion school, with idol unit Shisso Crayon among the groups participating.

In addition to musical performances, the idols also had “class projects,” following the tradition of students in Japan running cafes, haunted houses, or other forms of entertainment in their classrooms during their school festival. So after Shisso Crayon finished their mini concert in the morning, they headed to the room they were borrowing to set up their project: a giant whack-an-otaku contraption.

If you’ve never seen a whack-an-otaku contraption before…wait, of course you haven’t, since as far as we know Shisso Crayon are the first people to build one. But odds are you have seen the classic whack-a-mole arcade game, where you smash a mallet down on moles as they pop up through holes in the machine, right? Whack-an-otaku is pretty much the same concept, except that instead of the targets being plastic mole figures, they’re the uncovered heads of living, breathing otaku.

For safety reasons, it looks like the hammers are the feather-weight hollow plastic types sold at 100 yen stores, the ones that make a little squeak when you hit something with them. Also reassuring is the fact that no one got tricked or forced into being a whack-an-otaku target, as participants had to purchase a supplementary 1,000-yen (US$7.65) ticket if they wanted to be on the receiving end of the idols’ blows, on top of the 4,000-yen general admission to the TIF Gakuen Spring School Festival.

Reaction comments for the video have been universally shocked, and also mostly positive.

“Insane. I love it.”
“Now this is living.”
“They’ll cherish those memories forever.”
“Total win-win.”
“God-tier event planning.”
“They weren’t kidding when they said they were doing a whack-an-otaku event.”
“I wanna get the chance to do this too!”

▼ Shisso Crayon, not in the process of whacking otaku

As one commenter pointed out, though, there’s a key difference between Shisso Crayon’s whack-an-otaku and orthodox whack-a-mole. In whack-a-mole games, a single player has to cover multiple holes that the moles can pop out of, and dividing your attention means that some of the critters are going to escape unscathed. The whack-an-otaku setup, though, is a one-on-one affair, with each idol focusing on just a single hole, which all but guarantees the otaku is going to get hit repeatedly.

But hey, if you’re the type of fan who’s willing to fork over an extra 1,000 yen to serve as a whack-an-otaku target, odds are the more whacks you get, the better you feel.

Source: Twitter/@sooyon__staff (1, 2) via Jin, Shisso Crayon official website
Top image: Pakutaso