07.31.12

Japanese company reveals new human-piloted, armed mech—then laughs at itself.

Perhaps foregoing the necessity of getting a native English speaker to translate the copy selling your cartoonish, human-scale mech toy, Suidobashi Heavy Industry has revealed to the world their diesel-powered, piloted robot via a public showing at Japan's 2012 Wonder Festival and several self-parodic (hopefully) commercials. The robot's name is KURATAS, and among dystopia-signifying features are 3G control, a gatling BB gun, and a rocket-launcher water gun, which will "from time to time hit its targets."

The BB gun is the most maniacal: "The system will fire BBs when the pilot smiles. Be careful not to cause a shooting spree by smiling too much."

Maybe we're lost in translation, but the How To Ride KURATAS video seems like a self-aware sketch about a birthday-party fantasy from a military-commerical police state, recalling the cutely humanized ED209 from Robocop. Maybe they just love Paul Verhoeven and are very disappointed about all of his movies being reformatted, rebooted, and stuffed into cultish time capsule.

Of course, the mech is built for one. "Buy Your Dream," the videos tell us. Over at Suidobashi, you can also customize the paint job and "weaponry."

You can buy your very own KURATAS, now priced at 1.27 million USD.