photos

Offstage: Take a peek into the real lives of cosplayers! 【Photos】

Cosplay is arguably the most popular subculture in Japan. While the costume play community has seen an explosive growth across the globe in recent years, many “normal” people still tend to look at those engaging in the activity with judging eyes; some even think that they’re “weird” for wanting to dress up like their heroes. But the truth is, beneath the elaborate costumes, cosplayers are just as normal as any one of us.

We’ve seen cosplayers without their costumes, but photographer Ching Yee Tan takes a step further by showing us a glimpse of their private lives. If you’ve ever wondered what a hardcore cosplayer’s room looks like, this is your chance to take a peek into one!

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Cosplayers pose, perform, and get a suntan at Singapore’s cosplay festival 【Photos】

Over the weekend, I stopped by the End of Year Cosplay Festival (EOY) held at Marina Barrage in Singapore. Although I love anime, I’ve never been to an anime convention or cosplay festival for one simple reason: I hate crowds. But this time around I had a friend, who coincidentally is a cosplay photographer, to show me the ropes of treading through a people-packed cosfest, so I braved the crowds to bring you guys (and girls) some fabulous cosplay photos!

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Yamanote trains become moving exhibition spaces

Weird and wonderful things happen on Tokyo’s Yamanote train line. From puzzle-solving challenges to weddings and men walking ears of corn, it seems the popular downtown route is a great way get on board with new trends.

From this month, Yamanote line trains will be continuing their tradition of innovation with a surprising collection of artistic photographs. Mounted at a perfect angle for the eye of the passenger, these photos will take you away from the discomfort of a crowded train and transport you to a much more beautiful place.

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Adorable zombie children take over Arakawa Amusement park, our hearts melt

Since its inception in Canada in 2003, Zombie Walk for Kids has spread to England, Australia, Mexico, and, at last, Japan. And, like a proper infection, it’s really catching!

Though still focused mostly on major cities like Sapporo, Osaka, and Tokyo, the events are growing and gaining lots of shuffling, moaning followers. Just a few days ago, one was held at the Arakawa Amusement Park in Tokyo–and we have the horrifyingly adorable photos of zombie kids to prove it!

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We visited the owl cafe in Tsukishima where the awesome never ends【Photos】

Japan, as you may have heard, has a lot of unique themed cafes. Of course, the cat cafes are the most well-known, having become a bit of a social and cultural phenomenon. Now, as we mentioned earlier this week, you can stop by cafes dedicated to everything from bunnies to maids to gyaru (basically young trendy women) and find an experience tailored to your desires.

However, there’s one new cafe that opened last year that really grabbed our attention: the Fukuro no Mise, or the Owl Store, located in Tsukishima, Tokyo. After hearing about all the cute owls to be seen, petted, and held, we simply had to give it a visit! Here’s your official RocketNews24 report and photo album!

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Hanging out with the monkeys at cageless Jigokudani Monkey Park 【Photos】

Now, you look like the kind of person who loves monkeys. How can I tell from the other side of the Internet? Simple: Everyone love monkeys! They’re cute, they’re human-like, and sometimes they’re just plain fun to watch.

Of course, anyone who’s visited a zoo has seen a monkey, but they’re almost always behind a fence or a window. Don’t you wish you could get just a little bit closer? Turns out you can do just that at Jigokudani Monkey Park in Nagano Prefecture.

We had a chance to check out the park recently and we brought back tons of pictures for you to enjoy!

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Cosplayers let loose behind the scenes before the World Cosplay Summit championships

Every year the city of Nagoya plays host to the World Cosplay Summit (WCS), a large-scale competition between cosplay representatives from around the world. Teams of two from 20 different countries are all brought to Japan to take part in this life-changing opportunity. The championship finals will be held on the outdoor stage of Oasis21 on Saturday, August 3, starting at 7 p.m. Japan time. Tickets are available, though they are not required to watch the event. In fact, you don’t even have to be in Japan to watch this year’s world-class cosplay performances. It’s been announced that for the first time Niconico Douga will be stream the entire event on the World Cosplay Summit’s official channel.

But you know, not everything to do with the WCS involves competition. Cosplay itself is about bringing together people of similar interests and building a sense of community between those who like to dress up as Japanese characters. These cosplay teams must prepare not only as performers but as representatives of cosplay culture in each of their respective countries. Before the finals even take place, teams must take part in a week’s worth of parades, photo shoots, and official meetings. it’s a good thing there are some opportunities to relax worked into the schedule as well.

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