The [email protected] will celebrate its 15th anniversary with a shot of 15-year-old whisky. On Wednesday, Bandai Namco announced that they will begin taking reservations for the commemorative whisky and rocks glass. The whisky will be released around March, according to the website.
According to the bottle, the whisky is genuine Highland single malt scotch whisky, aged 15 years. It was distilled and bottled by J&G Grant, Glenfarclas Distillery in Speyside, Scotland. The website describes it as a ‘mellow drink derived from long-term aging and a flavor like dried fruits.’
The rocks glass has THE [email protected] 15th anniversary logo on it.
About [email protected]
The [email protected] franchise got its start with its first arcade game in 2005. An Xbox 360 version of the arcade game was released in Japan in 2007. (Technically, 2021 is too late for the 2005 anniversary, and too soon for 2007, but we’ll split the difference.)
In the game, you play a producer in charge of training or ‘raising’ pop idols. You do everything from arranging their schedules to training them in voice lessons, dance lessons, or improving their visual image. You can also change their costumes, songs, and accessories.
As they train, you have to help your idols improve their skills. The choices you make can also increase their enthusiasm or popularity. As time goes on, the producer can also form a good relationship with the idols. Eventually, an idol can attempt to pass an audition, which can lead to a performance.
Sequels and Anime
That first game led to quite a few sequels, a couple of anime series, and a handful of other media formats. Most of the anime series stuck to the ‘training idols’ theme. Although oddly enough, the first anime series in the franchise, Idolmaster: Xenoglossia (2007) decided to change the idols into robot pilots. Other [email protected] series were a bit more typical.
You can find the The Idol Master (2011), THE [email protected] Cinderella Girls (2015), and the gender-flipped THE [email protected] Side M (2017) on Crunchyroll. They also have two spin-off gag anime series: THE [email protected] Cinderella Girls Theater (2017) and Side M Wakeatte Mini! (2018).