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  • Kantai Collection, abbreviated as KanColle, is a Japanese free-to-play online card game

  • developed by Kadokawa Games. The game was launched on April 23, 2013. As of May 2014,

  • the game is available in Japan only and has 2 million registered players. The game has

  • developed into a much larger media franchise; various media including multiple manga series

  • and light novels have been released, in addition to an officially licensed tabletop role-playing

  • game. A television anime series and PlayStation Vita game have been announced.

  • Gameplay

  • The gameplay is centred upon a mobage-like card battle game, with individual characters

  • represented by various cards with different attributes. Each of the characters are moe

  • anthropomorphisms of World War II naval warships which are depicted as cute girls, known as

  • "Fleet girls". These personified warships are based on real-life vessels which are explained

  • in detail within the game; the physical characteristics, appearances and personalities of each of the

  • girls correlate in some way to the real-life vessel. The player takes on the role of an

  • admiral and organises their fleets in battle in order to win. Combat is largely automated,

  • and manual actions by the player include micromanagement such as building and repairing. The player

  • can organise up to four different fleets. The player progresses through the game by

  • advancing through maps, gaining experience points through grinding, obtaining new fleet

  • girls whilst repairing and resupplying existing ones, and fulfilling quests to obtain resources.

  • New equipment can be crafted, allowing the fleet girls to equip different armaments depending

  • on the situation. Acquisition of new kanmusu by the player can occur via drops on map or

  • via crafting, and is heavily RNG-based; randomisation is also a key component of the battle mechanism,

  • map progression and equipment development. Construction, resupply and repair of ships

  • is reliant upon four types of resources, namely fuel, ammunition, steel and bauxite; these

  • supplies will gradually increase automatically as time passes. Players can choose to engage

  • in expeditions, sorties and quests to further increase their supplies as well.

  • Ships can be customised through the addition of various equipment within their empty slots,

  • which add attribute bonuses and even provide special effects in some cases; such equipment

  • include naval guns, anti-aircraft guns, torpedoes, torpedo bombers, dive bombers, fighter aircraft,

  • seaplanes, recon planes, radars, steam turbines, special artillery shells, depth charges, sonars,

  • drum canisters, searchlights and anti-torpedo bulges. The effectiveness of ships in combat

  • depend on its attribute parameters, namely hitpoints, armour, evasion, aircraft capacity,

  • speed, attack range, firepower, torpedo, anti-air, anti-submarine, line-of-sight, and luck.

  • Kanmusu are capable of becoming stronger as they gain experience and level up after battles,

  • and can also be remodeled into more advanced models once they reach a certain level. Unwanted

  • kanmusu can also be "fed" to other kanmusu through a process known as "modernisation",

  • which grants attribute bonuses to one ship in exchange for losing another. Ships can

  • become fatigued once it accumulates after sorties; fatigued ships have decreased attributes,

  • whilst sparkling ships have increased attributes. Fatigue can be alleviated by allowing ships

  • some time to rest, or by recovering the fleet's morale using Japanese food supply ship Mamiya.

  • As ships become damaged, their icons begin to blow off smoke and their clothing become

  • visually torn and battered; in the event when a ship's durability drops down to zero, it

  • is considered sunk, and the player will lose the fleet girl. Players cannot resurrect fleet

  • girls that have been lost unless they are in possession of an emergency repair item,

  • and are only able to re-train ships that have been lost from scratch.

  • Whilst the game is free-to-play, special premium bonuses can be obtained through prepaid game

  • money and credit card micropayments, such as repair dock expansions, home shipyard furniture

  • tokens, ship possession limit increases and special consumable items. Although each ship

  • in the game has an experience level cap of Lv.99, the player is able to obtain the "marriage

  • papers and ring" item with a monetary purchase priced at 700 yen or via a one-time special

  • quest, which allows the player to "marry" the girl, thereby breaking the original level

  • cap and allowing a new maximum of Lv.150, in addition to other perks such as stat boosts

  • and decreased operating costs; this process can be repeated as many times as the player

  • wishes, and there is no limit to the number of girls that can be "married".

  • Players can choose to battle against the fleets of other real-life players on the same game

  • server via the exercise maneuvers menu. Players are also able to compete with each other's

  • scores via in-game ranking boards, with periodical prizes for top ranking players. As of June

  • 2014, there are 18 servers that can be played on, each named after a World War II-era Japanese

  • naval base. The game is currently intended to be played by a Japanese domestic audience

  • only, with the interface exclusively in the Japanese language. As of present, the game

  • cannot be played outside of Japan without the use of a VPN; utilisation of such methods

  • to circumvent country IP restrictions and access the game breach the DMM.com online

  • game terms of use, however. From August 2013 onwards, new player registrations are only

  • available via periodic lottery, due to the servers being overloaded by large numbers

  • of new registrants. Ship types

  • Battleship: Have strong power and defense, whilst requiring large quantities of resources.

  • A battleship on either side grants a second attack turn for both the player and enemy

  • fleets. Aircraft carrier: Allows for preemptive aerial

  • strikes before battles. Have long repair times, are expensive to maintain, and the planes

  • require bauxite. Cannot attack at night. Light aircraft carrier: Have better fuel consumption

  • than standard aircraft carriers and are able to damage submarines, however have lighter

  • armour. Cannot attack at night. Armored aircraft carrier: Capable of combat

  • operations even with medium damage. Seaplane carrier: High enemy formation detection

  • stats. Largely weak. Can be equipped with midget submarines and seaplanes, and can attack

  • submarines. Can also be remodeled into light aircraft carriers.

  • Heavy cruiser: Able to deal significant damage, and are fuel efficient. Have decent overall

  • stats, however does not excel in any particular areas.

  • Light cruiser: Strong anti-submarine type, effective during night combat. Have low endurance,

  • and serve as a support role. Though slightly stronger than destroyers, firepower and armour

  • is still limited. Cheap to maintain. Destroyer: Good for night battles and anti-submarine

  • warfare, in addition to being cheap to maintain with their good fuel and repair rate. Boasts

  • a high evasion rate, however also have low armour and firepower.

  • Torpedo cruiser: Remodeled from certain light cruisers. Capable of deploying midget submarines,

  • allowing a preemptive torpedo strike. Submarine: Have low health and limited damage

  • output from its torpedo attacks, however use very small amounts of resources, and can only

  • be attacked by certain ship types. Have a high evasion rate, however are weak against

  • ships equipped with depth charges or sonar. Capable of attacking preemptively.

  • Submarine aircraft carrier: Capable of carrying seaplanes.

  • Aviation battleship: Remodeled from certain battleships. Deals less firepower than standard

  • battleships, however can equip seaplane bombers which are able to attack submarines.

  • Aviation cruiser: Remodeled from certain heavy cruisers. Can equip seaplane bombers which

  • are able to attack submarines. Amphibious warfare ship: Largely useless during

  • combat. Autogyros play an anti-submarine role, whilst equipped landing crafts add a resource

  • bonus to expeditions. Repair ship: When placed within a fleet, gradually

  • repair other ships within the fleet over time, similar to a repair dock.

  • It is planned for coastal defense ships to be eventually added to the game in future;

  • the developers anticipate that these ships will play an anti-submarine role, and will

  • feature a more cute and childish character design, reason being that coastal defense

  • ships are smaller in size compared to destroyers. Fleet girls

  • Upon the debut of the game, there were a total of 94 different fleet girls available. Within

  • an update introduced May 15–17, 2013, additional fleet girls were added. On September 11, 2013

  • the first non-Japanese vessel, Soviet destroyer Verniy, was introduced into the game. There

  • were plans during the early stages to eventually bring additional ships from other countries,

  • and in March 2014, three German Kriegsmarine vessels were added. Presently there are 135

  • original girls in addition to 45 upgraded variants, bringing the total number of fleet

  • girls to 180. The game currently holds spaces for 200 different types of fleet girls. Different

  • fleet girls are illustrated by different artists; artists involved in the drawing of various

  • characters include Shibafu, Shizuma Yoshinori, Konishi, Kūrokuro, Mikoto Akemi and 9 other

  • artists. Fumikane Shimada, who was previously the lead character designer for Strike Witches

  • and Girls und Panzer, created the designs and illustrations for Japanese armored aircraft

  • carrier Taihō and the three German vessels. The traits of each fleet girl are based on

  • aspects of the historical ship they are based on; for instance, Japanese battleship Kongō

  • frequently adds English words and phrases into her dialog as a reference to her British

  • origins, whilst Japanese aircraft carrier Akagi is depicted as a glutton and Japanese

  • destroyer Shimakaze is depicted as a speedy girl in artworks and official print media,

  • since the Akagi consumed large amounts of fuel and the Shimakaze was one of the fastest

  • destroyer ships of World War II. Characters which share particular links also have similar

  • physical traits: ships of the same class may have similar accessories or clothing, whilst

  • all submarines are depicted as wearing sukumizu. Voice actors have been employed to voice the

  • fleet girls, with anywhere around 10 fleet girls being voiced by one actor. The complete

  • list of voice actors involved has not yet been published.

  • Voice actors Development

  • Prior to Kantai Collection, the majority of games published by DMM.com were R-18+ adult

  • online games. In an effort to attract customers from a wider audience, DMM.com experimented

  • with Kantai Collection in partnership with Kadokawa Games; by November 2013, Kantai Collection

  • accounted for 30-40% of DMM.com's total online game business.

  • Media Print media

  • A bi-monthly online web manga by Momoi Ryōta began serialization from April 23, 2013 in

  • the Famitsu Comic Clear. The manga follows a 4koma format, and features a storyline with

  • the fleet girls enrolled in schools, where senior girls teach battle techniques to their

  • juniors. Momoi Ryōta's 4koma manga will be released in print book format under the title

  • KanColle: Fubuki, Ganbarimasu! beginning from December 14, 2013. Famitsu Comic Clear has

  • introduced an additional manga adaptation by Shōtarō Harada under the title Naval

  • Base Communications. The Famitsu website also hosts a web comic by Mizutaki which focuses

  • on gameplay aspects of Kantai Collection. In addition, another manga series by Sasayuki

  • featuring the title KanColle side:Kongō was serialized in Comptiq from December 2013 onwards,

  • with a story based on the adventures of battleship Kongō. A manga illustrated by Sakae Saitō

  • titled KanColle: Someday as the Seas turn Calm began serialisation in Monthly Comic

  • Alive on November 27, 2013, with a focus on an original story revolving around Tenryū

  • and Tatsuta. A manga titled KanColle: Torpedo Squadron

  • Chronicles and illustrated by Yasuhiro Miyama began serialisation in the November 2013 issue

  • of Comp Ace, with the plot focusing on the Akatsuki sisters. Age Premium will feature

  • a manga publication by Nanaroku titled KanColle: nanodesu. starting from January 2014, with

  • Inazuma as the main character. A manga series titled KanColle: Shimakaze

  • Whirlwind Girl by Yamazaki Kazuma is planned to begin serialisation within the Dengeki

  • Maoh magazine in February 2014. A manga series by Hiroichi titled KanColle: The perched naval

  • base will begin serialisation in the July 2014 issue of Dengeki Daioh, and will focus

  • on a storyline revolving around the heavy cruisers Kumano and Suzuya. Kadokawa has also

  • announced a manga series titled Kantai Collection Black Order, created by Ōto Taguchi who was

  • previously responsible for the Mobile Suit Gundam 00 manga.

  • A light novel based on the game has been announced under the title KanColle: Kagerō, Setting

  • Sail!, written by Tsukiji Toshihiko and illustrated by NOCO. It was released on November 30, 2013.

  • A short story series featuring aircraft carriers Zuikaku and Shōkaku written by Hiroki Uchida

  • and illustrated by Mataro, titled KanColle: Bonds of the Wings of Cranes, will begin serialisation

  • within the January 2014 issue of Dragon Magazine. A novel project featuring aircraft carriers

  • Kaga and Akagi involving the illustrator Koruri and the authors Siidekei, Kazuyuki Takami

  • and Bakagane has been announced, with the title KanColle: A day at a certain naval base.

  • Comptiq, Dengeki Comics, DNA Comics and Famitsu Comic Clear have also published numerous series

  • of comic compilation books which each contain a collection of various one-shot manga.

  • Publications KanColle Kai

  • A PlayStation Vita game titled KanColle Kai was announced during Kadokawa Games' 2013

  • Autumn media briefing, and is due for a 2014 release. The game will be the second title