Moe Shrine Game Offends Japanese Religious Groups


Kantai Collection


Touken Ranbu

If there is something, Japan will cast the Japanizing Beam to anthropomorphize it as a really cute or sexy person.

DMM Games is known for hit browser games Kantai Collection (which moefies warships) and Touken Ranbu (which bishounenifies historical swords), but their latest project is offending some of Japan’s religious population.

Titled Yashiro Nihoeto, the game is set to turn to turn Shinto Shrines into moe girls and can draw fortunes from them. Each shrine has a good and bad fortune associated with it, which people are claiming is an insult to Shinto shrines and is crossing a line. In fact, the Iwashimizu Hachimanguu shrine in Kyoto is demanding their shrine be removed from the game.

Katsuji Iwahashi, the head of International Foreign Relations at the Association of Shinto Shrines, said, “I’ve never seen anything like this. As someone with religious faith, this isn’t something that evokes good feelings. What on Earth was their basis for doing something like this?”

Yashiro Nihoeto

Iwahashi was concerned that the shallow and disrespectful representation of Shintoism would lead to people disrespecting the actual shrines when people visit them. He noted that the concept of good and bad fortunes being drawn is an oversimplification of the actual fortunes that are drawn at the real shrines. It was also pointed out the in the game, the Kashima Shrine and Kasuga Grand Shrine are depicted as two characters when in reality they share the same deity.

Iwahashi summed up the group’s problem with the game with a simple comment, “People with a shallow understanding of shrines and Japan’s deities may be able to genuinely enjoy this game. However, my fear is that such people will come to shrines thinking of them just as a setting or character and will act disrespectfully while others are trying to visit the shrines.”

Yashiro Nihoeto

DMM Games fired back saying that the fortunes in the game have nothing to do with their real life counterparts and that the game is fictional, with the characters not meaning to have a connection with the shrines that they are named after.

Yashiro Nihoeto launches this summer, with hopefully no shenanigans happening at the real life shrines.

I really like to look at the darker side of things, like a shadow following you at night...or maybe I'm just trying too hard? Anyways, Persona is my life!
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