VTuber bars are opening in Japan

Vliverlab Bar

A new type of bar is opening in Japan, where patrons can buy a drink and chitchat with VTubers thanks to a screen built into the wall.

The new bar is reminiscent of Japanese hostess/host clubs, where patrons come to buy drinks and enjoy the company of women and men, although the company has compared them more to “con cafes”.

You can check out the inside of the Ikebukuro store below.

VTubers, broadly speaking, are streamers who use a virtual model to represent themselves. In recent years, these models have grown increasingly complex and expressive, allowing for more immersive fan interaction.

Companies such as hololive have taken things a step further and using VTubing technology to allow their streamers to be “virtual idols”, complete with full body tracking, choreography, and voice training in order to perform in concerts.

These new VTuber bars opening in Osaka and Tokyo take things even further, giving patrons a more intimate experience with VTubers. While technology will allow fans to have closer contact with their virtual idols, some have been critical about how VTubers and “idol culture” in general may encourage parasocial relationships.

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A basement-dwelling ogre, Brandon's a fan of indie games and slice of life anime. Has too many games and not enough time.

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