Let's talk Poupée!
A popular browser-based Virtual Paper Doll game, poupéegirl (commonly shortened to "Poupée") is also a personal fashion blog, since players can upload the items they own in real life. It can be considered a Fashion Magazine thanks to the site's recommendations, and a social network, since players can befriend others with similar interests.
When users sign up they get to customize the physical features of their "poupée" (French for "doll"), who will become their avatar on the site. Poupées are Always Female, and outside of generic starter outfits, clothes for them to wear are earned by uploading photos of the user's real-life wardrobe, redeemed through cashing in the "shells" (collected by exploring poupée profiles), or bought with "Ribbons" (free virtual currency) and "Jewels" (cash-based virtual currency) from other poupées or the site's matriarch Katharine.
The site is based in Japan, though it has millions of users worldwide, and most of the site has been translated into passable English. If you can withstand the bugs, a fan-made tool called Pupemodel is available, which lets you create and dress a doll with any item you wish for free without a poupéegirl account, if you have the codesnote .
The poupéegirl website contains examples of:
- Betting Mini Game: Both the Shell Spring and the Piyo Catcher, where you have a chance of winning a selection of either really cute or really dumpy items, and nothing stopping you from getting doubles.
- "Blind Idiot" Translation: Everywhere. The site is full of Engrish, be it the instructions, the item names or Katharine's posts. Some members of the English LiveJournal community actually tried contacting Katharine for amnesty from brownboxing (being disallowed from showcasing your Closet due to rulebreaking) because the English translation of the rules is so confusing.
- In-Universe Game Clock: The view of Poupée Town and the window in your poupée's room changes according to the time of the day and the season.
- No Bulk Discounts: You never get these at Katharine's Shop or the Poupée Market. Averted by the Piyo Catcher, where you can get a discount for going for three items instead of one.
- No Export for You: Pupegirl DS, which is available only in Japan.
- Reality Subtext:
- More seasoned poupées and those that read Katharine's blog are very familiar with Ken, her ex-boyfriend. Ken has appeared as a bonus in several event backgrounds, and Kath sells Ken-themed items around April Fool's Day.
- Kath admitted to gaining weight on her blog after her break-up with Ken, which was followed by a wave of candy- and sweets-themed items in her shop.
- Scoring Points: The Suteki feature for both your poupée and the items you post. There are even daily Top 10 rankings with prizes for them.
- Series Mascot: The Piyos are small, colourful birds.
Daily Dress-up and its related mechanics can provide examples of:
- Anime Hair: Averted, despite the cutesy anime style of the poupées themselves. All of the hairstyles are possible in real life.
- An Interior Designer Is You: You can change the wallpaper of your poupée's room, and if you're a Jewel user you can also purchase flooring.
- Barbie Doll Anatomy: Poupées wearing nothing have brown undies by default, but even if you glitch them into nakedness they don't have anything to hide.
- Bishie Sparkle
- For Ribbons users, animated face and body sparkles are possessed by a lucky few, as they were sold as limited-edition unsellable items, meaning that they are unobtainable if you didn't buy them during the event.
- For Jewel users, there are several animated sparkle items available on the "Effect" floor of Katharine's Shop. As long as you're willing to dish out 200-400 jewels each.
- First Person Snapshooter: You update your poupée's status by taking snapshots of her. There isn't much variety in the result, unless you catch her blinking or are wearing an animated item.
- Everything's Better with Sparkles: Certain items sparkle, as well as the otherwise invisible body glitter that results in the Bishie Sparkle described above.
- Little Bit Beastly: Most of the early animal-themed items took the form of ears-on-hairbands, but as time went on Katharine's items evolved into legitimate animal ears and tails. Gloves and boots that look like paws are also available.
- Only Six Faces: Averted. Taking into account all the possible options for eyes and mouths, there are 108 possible faces!
- Palette Swap: Many dress-up items fall into this category, known colloquially as "colorways".
- Panda-ing to the Audience: One of the "Character Motif" sets was panda-themed, as well as a panda catcher game.
- The Tetris Effect: If you play for long enough, prepare to get confused momentarily now and then about what accessories and items of clothing you actually own and what ones only exist in the website.
- Yamato Nadeshiko: Kimono and other Yamato Nadeshiko staples are some of the most valuable items on the site, and Katharine frequently holds events featuring items for traditional beauties. "Yamato Nadeshiko" is actually the name of an item (a fan).
- You Gotta Have Blue Hair: Surprisingly averted; all of the available hair colours are natural with the exception of dark pink.