Yuru-kyara are the cute and sometimes creepy mascots that Japanese people love. They are notable for their “kawaii” appearance and simple designs, the most famous ones being Hikonyan, Kumamon, and Funasshi.
These adorable fuzzy guys have memorable cameos in all types of media. From the anime Full Metal Panic: Fumofu? to video games like Saints Row, yuru-kyara and mascots get up to all sorts of mischief. Here are some of the best, and often scariest, cameos of mascots!
Genkibowl Mascots- Saints Row III & Saints Row IV
Saints Row III is an irreverent and ridiculously fun game to play, one of the funnest parts of it the Genkibowl, a mini game which uses mascots extensively. In Saints Row III the Genkibowl VII has you battle mascots with guns, baseball bats, and other weapons. You face off against eye patched cats, kittens, and pandas who are bent on killing you. One game in Genkibowl even has players base jump and shoot at mascots on rooftops!
In Saints Row IV the mascots come back to play in the fourth game in the series (due to their popularity). Except now players have superpowers to throw the mascots into the sky and turn the fuzzy costumed enemies into fireballs. This game is definitely not for children.
Fumoffu- Full Metal Panic? Fumoffu
Full Metal Panic? Fumoffu is the comedy spin-off of the Full Metal Panic! anime, based on the popular manga. The main character Sousuke, a teenage soldier sent to protect the high school student Kaname, has a running gag of dressing up in a furry mascot costume when he wants to go undercover.
This cute little mascot from a local amusement park is called Bonta-kun and only says “fumoffu” when speaking. Sousuke upgrades the costume to be ready for battle with guns and hidden pockets. It’s hilarious to see this cute costume throwing grenades and chasing down bad guys while yelling “fumoffu.”
Freddy Fazbear, Bonnie, and Chica-Five Nights at Freddy’s
Voted as one of the scariest games to play, Five Night’s at Freddy’s takes mascots (animatronics) and turns them into your worst nightmare. This game was a surprise success, it’s point and click gameplay simple, but effective in scaring the pants off of many people.
In Five Nights at Freddy’s the player is trapped inside a pizzeria where murderous animatronics roam. Players must avoid being killed by the fuzzy characters Freddy Fazbear, Bonnie, and Chica. Who knew that animate animals could be so frightening?
Melon Kumar- John Oliver’s Take on Mascots
John Oliver is a British presenter who reports news of the week satirically. He famously does a story on Japanese mascots. In this video he wishes that the United States followed this trend and loves the antics of Funasshi and Kumamon.
This video made many Americans aware of the mascot culture in Japan and also brought the lighter side of it through comedy. The funniest part if when the scary mascot Melon Kumar makes a visit to a school and scares the children by accident because of his appearance.