Youtube is a place where everyone can express themselves. From gamers, to vloggers, and even some animals almost everyone can achieve Youtube fame, so perhaps it was not so surprising that the new kid on the block, Kizuna Ai has become a viral hit since she started uploading videos on the network.
Kizuna Ai is Japan’s first Virtual Youtuber, supposedly an Artificial Intelligence or AI, many have speculated that she might be anything from a person behind a webcam with face rigging technology, to a meticulously animated Miku Miku Dance(MMD) model. The most likely explanation seems to be a combination of motion capture technology and the MMD model, as her reactions often have her arms flailing around. She even played a Virtual Reality (VR) enabled version of SuperHot recently.
Ai regularly uploads videos on her channel, A.I.Channel, in Japanese focusing on vlogs, and let’s play videos. She was also temporarily banned for a short period of time when she joked that because she was a hologram, she was technically naked. Even if you do not understand Japanese, there is a certain allure to watching a virtual character chat about hot button topics, and playing video games.
While Ai has garnered a large following of over 600,000 subscribers through her antics online, her creator(s) has remained rather elusive. Her character design, however, has been credited to Tomitake. We still have much to learn about Kizuna Ai, but for now, let’s just enjoy the quirky virtual character and her shenanigans.
A.I. Channel is a YouTube channel hosted by the animated character Ai Kizuna, a Japanese “virtual YouTuber” who is best known for uploading various Let’s Play and vlogging videos. Her character model was created by Project A.I., Morikura Yen (森倉円), Tomitake (トミタケ) and Tda.
On November 29, 2016, the first video was posted on the A.I.Channel YouTube page, in which the host Ai Kizuna announces the creation of a Twitter account (shown below). Around the same time, the website KizunaAI.com was launched, featuring news, videos and a downloadable character model. As of February 2018, the AI Channel YouTube page has over 1.5 million subscribers.
During AnimeJapan2017 that was held last March, visitors could come and interact with Kizuna Ai, a virtual YouTuber that has gained a rise in popularity a few months ago. This video was uploaded by Yealwoo Sung showcasing the public talking with the virtual A.I (pun not intended) where you can greet and talk to her. She talks back too! asking you questions and even doing impression requests for you! Sadly, this is the only chance you could get this experience unless there are more events in the future that will have Kizuna Ai meeting everyone again in this way.
For those who are in the dark, Kizuna Ai is a 3D generated anime girl A.I who is a YouTuber, who aims to reach out humanity with her vlogs. She does random talks, streaming games and Q&A sessions with a cheerful and somewhat cheeky but still making viewers go “Kawaii~~” with her actions as her cute (and sometimes awkward face recognition glitches) expressions are very entertaining to watch. The channel she is hosting is called A.I Channel on YouTube so if you are curious, do check it out!
Kizuna Ai uploads her videos daily and if you worried of not understanding her don’t fret! contributors began subbing her videos regularly so wait for a few hours and just click the caption button on the player and choose English (other languages are available too depending on country, with their respective proper translations). She is hilarious I’d say, especially when she smug and overreacts at some point. “OH MY GOD” and “water~” are my favorite quotes from her mostly. Let me know if you’re hooked to her after watching her videos in the comments section!