Plastic models of robots from "Mobile Suit Gundam" are on display on the counter in the Axis Iolite bar in Osaka's Chuo Ward. (Mashio Takeda)
35 years since debut, 'Gundam' continues to attract legions of new fans
OSAKA--On the second floor of a multi-tenanted building in the city's lively Dotonbori district, a unique bar welcomes aficionados of "Mobile Suit Gundam."
Soy sauces from Wakayama Prefecture are made with unique processes and high quality ingredients. From left, Ki-Ippon Kuromame, Nigori Hishio and Mitsuboshi Shoyu soy sauces. (Chae-soo Choi)
OMIYAGE FROM JAPAN: Home of soy sauce, Wakayama offers numerous varieties
Editor's note: This series showcases various kinds of "omiyage" (souvenirs) from around Japan. We introduce you to "must-buy" items that you can get at prefecture-operated shops for promoting local tourism products in Tokyo. The series appears on Saturdays.
(Illustration by Mitsuaki Kojima)
ASAHI HAIKUIST NETWORK/ By David McMurray
A daring spirit
Cosplayers dressed as anime characters take pictures of themselves at Hanahaku Commemorative Park Tsurumi Ryokuchi in Osaka on May 24. (Nahoko Kyotani)
Rules set to prevent clashes between cosplayers, general public
The scenic Tsuruma Park in Nagoya’s Showa Ward was once a battleground of sorts, where a civilian population was pitted against an elaborately dressed foe.
The cover illustration of the "O-shikujiri" (Major fiasco) volume of "Tank Tankuro" (Provided by eBook Initiative Japan Co.)
Gajo Sakamoto's 'Tank Tankuro,' other prewar manga go digital
"Tank Tankuro" and three other prewar comics by Gajo Sakamoto (1895-1973) have been reworked in digital format, providing a rare glimpse of the manga that laid the groundwork for subsequent robot cartoons in Japan.
"Kusudama" buns filled with bean jam and tied to a tree branch with a string are cut down with scissors and placed on a leaf instead of a typical "kaishi" paper. Participants at this tea party in Kyoto's Nakagyo Ward tasted the joy of picking the sweets from a tree. (Kyoko Tanaka)
Japanese sweets with cuteness in full bloom in Kyoto
KYOTO--"Kawaii wagashi" (cute Japanese sweet) such as "namayatsuhashi" cinnamon cookie dough shaped like roses are popping up, adopting a new aesthetic while preserving tradition.
Ume Power Plus, a snack that is made from pickled Japanese apricots, comes in various flavors. (Photo by Chae-soo Choi)
OMIYAGE FROM JAPAN: Wakayama Prefecture offers more than just 'umeboshi' pickled apricots
Editor's note: This series showcases various kinds of "omiyage" (souvenirs) from around Japan. We introduce you to "must-buy" items that you can get at prefecture-operated shops for promoting local tourism products in Tokyo. The series appears on Saturdays.
Male and female visitors play a first-person shooter (FPS) game at the E3 trade fair for video games in Los Angeles on June 10. (Tetsuya Kasai)
Western video gamers crave violent titles while Japanese prefer fantasy RPGs
LOS ANGELES--Black smoke rolled through city streets as a burst of gunshots could be heard. A figure swayed as a fierce gunfight ensued. Splatters of blood and the severed left arm of a soldier could be seen lying on the ground. Then a roar of excitement erupted from spectators watching the screen.
Participants of a tour observe wheat before a harvest in Memuro, Hokkaido, on July 15. (Eiji Hori)
JOY OF HOKKAIDO FOOD: Farmers dream of creating 'original bread' from locally grown wheat
OBIHIRO, Hokkaido--Masanori Sugiyama has always dreamed of making all the bread at his bakeries with flour made from locally grown Hokkaido wheat, a wish that his father started.
Shimonoseki Sauce is available in three varieties. From left, "tonkatsu" sauce for deep-fried pork cutlets, Japanese-style Worcestershire sauce and curry-flavored sauce. (Chae-soo Choi)
OMIYAGE FROM JAPAN: Spicy Shimonoseki sauce brings back old memories
Editor's note: This series showcases various kinds of "omiyage" (souvenirs) from around Japan. We introduce you to "must-buy" items that you can get at prefecture-operated shops for promoting local tourism products in Tokyo. The series appears on Saturdays.
(Illustration by Mitsuaki Kojima)
ASAHI HAIKUIST NETWORK/ By David McMurray
Surfacing
Ryokujuan-Shimizu offers "konpeito" sugar candies in a wide variety of flavors and colors. (Mihoko Takizawa)
KYOTO GOES KAWAII: Specialty shop's 'konpeito' candies take two weeks to make
Editor's note: This series showcases what we are calling "kawaii" (cute) items made locally in the iconic Japanese city.
Jimmy Choo with a shoe made with materials including Aizu lacquerware (Natsuki Edogawa)
Jimmy Choo promotes Fukushima traditional craftwork with original shoes
World-renowned shoe designer Jimmy Choo's latest "Fukushima" brand name footwear incorporates traditional craftwork from the struggling prefecture.
A bottle of natsumikan-flavored salad dressing (Photo by Chae-soo Choi)
OMIYAGE FROM JAPAN: Refreshing taste of 'natsumikan' orange makes great salad dressing
Editor's note: This series showcases various kinds of "omiyage" (souvenirs) from around Japan. We introduce you to "must-buy" items that you can get at prefecture-operated shops for promoting local tourism products in Tokyo. The series appears on Saturdays.
Yamatonadeshio offers a wide variety of "furoshiki" wrapping cloths. (Mariko Nakamura)
CRAFTED IN TOKYO: Regional craftsmanship puts modern twist on 'furoshiki' cloth
Editor's note: This series showcases cool and special souvenirs made in Japan's capital of Tokyo, formerly known as Edo.
The wood paneling of the new Daiwa Ubiquitous Computing Research Building on the Hongo Campus of the University of Tokyo undulates to create 3-D-like waves. (Wakato Onishi)
University of Tokyo research building explores world of 'ubiquitous computing'
Designed to be a hub for exploring the smart and accessible environment created through "ubiquitous computing," the Daiwa Ubiquitous Computing Research Building is the newest edition on the Hongo Campus of the University of Tokyo.
Spectators throng the Ofune Hoko float on July 20, its first appearance in the streets of Kyoto in 150 years. (Noboru Tomura)
Historic float from Edo Period makes 'comeback' at Gion Festival
KYOTO--A replica of a historic float that was destroyed by fire in fighting that brought the Edo Period (1603-1867) to a close is wowing crowds at the ancient capital’s famous Gion Festival.
Hanayome ningyo doll (Makiko Kawamura)
Museum marks century of Seto ceramic novelties with exhibition
SETO, Aichi Prefecture--An exhibition currently being held here at the prefectural Ceramic Museum is celebrating the 100th anniversary since the production of novelty porcelain figures started in the city.
A "fuku" blowfish lantern (Photo by Chae-soo Choi)
OMIYAGE FROM JAPAN: Poisonous blowfish can be a decorative lantern
Editor's note: This series showcases various kinds of "omiyage" (souvenirs) from around Japan. We introduce you to "must-buy" items that you can get at prefecture-operated shops for promoting local tourism products in Tokyo. The series appears on Saturdays.
An employee puts sea urchins in a wooden box at Hadate Suisan Corp. in Mori, Hokkaido, on July 2 while its president, Teruko Hadate, looks on. (Eiji Hori)
JOY OF HOKKAIDO FOOD: Popularity spreads for sea-urchin sushi as transport methods improve
The painstaking work to perfectly arrange delicate sea urchin roe in wooden boxes is one of the reasons it has become a top-class ingredient for sushi.

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