Japan has never been one to shy away from incredible video game designs and massive publicity stunts, and it seems that the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games have teamed up with Google to get both Olympic fans and gamers alike excited for the upcoming events. Just in time for the Opening Ceremony for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, fans can hop onto the Google browser for an incredible, video-game-themed surprise!
Today’s Google Doodle, made in partnership with STUDIO 4°C, is a full-fledged JRPG video game that centers around a calico cat named Lucky the Ninja Cat who is on a quest to win seven Olympic-themed sports minigames to become the ultimate champion! There is so much to break down in the Doodle Champion Island Games minigame, so let’s dive in!
When players first activate the minigame via their Google search bar (or this link), Doodle Champion Island Games is prefaced with a brief animated theme song that welcomes the player to the world and characters of Champion Island. Upon their arrival, players can see an iconic 16-bit style and matching retro music, composed by Qumu, and can control Lucky by using W-A-S-D or the arrow keys. Champion Island itself is surprisingly large, with players beginning on one central island but being able to navigate a series of seven smaller islands as they complete minigames and take on side missions from the NPCs.
I was fortunate enough to be asked to make the soundtrack for “Doodle Champion Island Games”! ^^
It’s a sports game by @GoogleDoodles based around characters from Japanese mythology, and you can play it now at: https://t.co/q70WhXrc99
Hope you like it ;D#GoogleDoodle
— Qumu (@qumumusic) July 23, 2021
The premise of the game itself is for players to have Lucky join one of four teams: Red, which is headed by a crow, Yellow, which is led by a fox, Blue, headed by a cow, and Green, led by a turtle or kappa. Once the player chooses one of these teams, they become part of a global leaderboard where they’re connected to other players. Each player who completes a task for their team earns points for their global team leaderboard. As Google stated, this is the, “…largest interactive [Google Doodle] ever,” so a massive multiplayer global leaderboard is only the tip of the iceberg.
On Champion Island, it is Lucky’s job to beat the Grand Champion of each sporting event and earn scrolls to prove her worth. Players navigate Lucky through games of skateboarding, marathons, artistic swimming, rugby, table tennis, climbing, and archery. At the start of each game, players are presented with a set of simple rules and game mechanics that center around the use of arrow keys and the spacebar, so players can grasp the concept quickly. And, more than this, as players navigate the island, various NPCs will ask for Lucky’s help with small tasks to help relieve their inconveniences, similar to other JRPG games.
And for those of you who worry about playing a game in your search bar, fear not! Not only is the gameplay quality and audio incredible, but the game will save your progress, even if you have to click off your engine or close it.
So, if you haven’t yet, make sure to click open your Google search bar and join the action! Hop onto Doodle Champion Island Games as Lucky the Ninja Cat, sail off to Champion Island, and get yourself hyped up for the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games!