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Yes, Believe It or Not, VOCALOIDs ARE Similar

OtterJiang December 24, 2014 User blog:OtterJiang

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I know what you’re thinking. This is probably another weeaboo story about how I think “ALL VOCALOIDS ARE DE SAME DURR!!11!1!!!1!”

This is probably because a) I’ve only been here since October and b) barely any of you know me here and c) I don’t write/produce/publish any music onto YouTube, or upload any art. So far all I do is translate Korean stuff and add input here and there when I feel the need to speak, which can sometimes come off as rude or noobish, thanks to my recent arrival to the Wikia scene.


However, I beg to differ. I’ve really been in the VOCALOID fandom since late 2008. I still remember the first VOCALOID song I ever watched (Honey Honey).


I know full well how different VOCALOIDs are from each other in design. I flew into a rage on multiple accounts when I heard how everyone was calling SeeU a “Miku Clone”, like dozens of other VOCALOIDs accused of the same thing.

But you can’t help but wonder; If this is totally untrue and no two VOCALOIDs are alike (save for twins and mirrors and those meant to look alike), why do people keep saying they look alike?

Well, that’s because they do.

NO, they don’t look like Miku and Rin and Len and Luka. No, I’m not saying they’re right in claiming all new designs are copying the Crypton VOCALOIDs. But yes, they are right in this one instance; a lot of VOCALOIDs share some similarities. Enough to be accused of being clones of other VOCALOIDs, or that they’re copying other companies and their designs? Absolutely not.


But I figured I’d at least attempt to defend these mindless weeaboos and otakus who can’t help but point out what they think is right.


See, all VOCALOIDs share similarities with one or two others. If it’s an accessory, a tie or a boot, there’s something that links them all together. Well, besides sharing the same software.


And so, I have created, through meticulous browsing of photos on Google, Wikia, Pixiv and the official sites, a list of things that VOCALOIDs share with each other. Please, do enjoy. I hope at least one of you finds this amusing.


Disclaimer Some names listed will be there because I counted alternate designs (i.e. Miku V3, Engloids with their E-Capsule designs, etc.) I was going to list them all out separately, however this proved for a lot of extra reading, so bear in mind I’m trying to save your eyes a little spare time.


Sleeveless Top: MEIKO, Sweet Ann, Hatsune Miku, Kagamine Rin, GUMI Megpoid, SONiKA, sf-a2 miki, Lily, Utatane Piko, Mew, SeeU, IA, Aoki Lapis, Luo Tianyi, MAYU, AVANNA, KYO, MAIKA, Merli, Macne Nana, kokone, anon & kanon, v flower, Rana, Chika, Yuezheng Ling, Akikoloid and ONA


Ribbon/Necklace/Necktie/Scarf: KAITO, Sweet Ann, Hatsune Miku, Kagamine Rin, Kagamine Len, GUMI Megpoid, Kaai Yuki, Hiyama Kiyoteru, BIG AL, Tonio, Ryuto Gachapoid, VY2, Mew, SeeU, OLIVER, CUL, IA, Aoki Lapis, Luo Tianyi, MAYU, YOHIOloid, MAIKA, Merli, Macne Nana, kokone, anon & kanon, v flower, Rana, Yuezheng Ling, Zhanyin Lorra, Masaoka Azuki, Kobayashi Matcha and Anri Rune


Detached Sleeves: Hatsune Miku, Kagamine Rin and Len, Megurine Luka, Ryuto Gachapoid, Utatane Piko, IA, Luo Tianyi, Merli, Macne Nana, kokone, anon & kanon, v flower and Zhanyin Lorra


Glove/Cuff/Arm Accessory: Sweet Ann, Megurine Luka, GUMI Megpoid, SONiKA, sf-a2 miki, BIG AL, Lily, Nekomura Iroha, VY2, Mew, SeeU, Tone Rion, Yuzuki  Yukari, IA, Aoki Lapis, MAYU, AVANNA, KYO, WIL, YANHE, YOHIOloid, MAIKA, Macne Nana, kokone, anon & kanon, v flower, Rana, Yuezheng Ling, Zhanyin Lorra, Akikoloid and Anri Rune


Belt: MEIKO, KAITO, Sweet Ann, Hatsune Miku, Kagamine Rin, Kagamine Len, Camui Gackpo, Megurine Luka, GUMI Megpoid, SONiKA, sf-a2 miki, Kaai Yuki, BIG AL, Ryuto Gachapoid, VY2, CUL, Yuzuki Yukari, Bruno, Luo Tianyi, galaco, AVANNA, KYO, WIL, YANHE, YOHIOloid, MAIKA, Merli, Tohoku Zunko, Yuezheng Ling, Zhanyin Lorra and Anri Rune


Skirt (above mid-thigh): Sweet Ann, Hatsune Miku, GUMI Megpoid, sf-a2 miki, Kaai Yuki, Lily, Utatane Piko, Mew, SeeU, Tone Rion, Yuzuki Yukari, IA, Aoki Lapis, Luo Tianyi, galaco, AVANNA, MAIKA, Macne Nana, kokone, anon & kanon, v flower, Tohoku Zunko, Rana, Chika and Zhanyin Lorra


Shorts: Kagamine Rin, Kagamine Len, Gachapoid Ryuto, SONiKA, OLIVER, CUL, Clara, YANHE, Merli, Yuezheng Ling (not as plentiful as others, granted, but still enough that you link the similarities)


Stockings: Sweet Ann, Hatsune Miku, Megurine Luka, Prima, SONiKA, sf-a2 miki, Kaai Yuki, Utatane Piko, SeeU, Tone Rion, CUL, Yuzuki Yukari, Clara, IA, Aoki Lapis, Luo Tianyi, MAIKA, Merli, Macne Nana, anon & kanon, v flower, Rana, Yuezheng Ling, Zhanyin Lorra, Akikoloid, Anri Rune, Masaoka Azuki and Kobayashi Matcha,


Boots: Sweet Ann, MEIKO, Sweet Ann, Hatsune Miku, Kagamine Rin, Kagamine Len, Camui Gackpo, Megurine Luka, GUMI Megpoid, SONiKA, Tonio, sf-a2 miki, BIG AL, Lily, Gachapoid Ryuto, Utatane Piko, VY2, Tone Rion, CUL, Clara, IA, Aoki Lapis, Luo Tianyi, galaco, MAYU, AVANNA, MAIKA, Merli, Macne Nana, anon & kanon, v flower, Chika, Yuezheng Ling, Zhanyin Lorra, Akikoloid and Anri Rune


Long Hair: MIRIAM, Sweet Ann, Hatsune Miku, Camui Gackpo, Megurine Luka, sf-a2 miki, Lily, VY1, Nekomura Iroha, Mew, SeeU, Tone Rion, CUL, Yuzuki Yukari, IA, Aoki Lapis, galaco, MAYU, MAIKA, Merli, Macne Nana, kokone, kanon, v flower, Tohoku Zunko, Rana, Chika, Yuezheng Ling, Zhanyin Lorra, Akikoloid, Kobayashi Matcha, Anri Rune and ONA


Headphones: KAITO, Sweet Ann, Hatsune Miku, Kagamine Rin, Kagamine Len, Camui Gackpo, Megurine Luka, GUMI Megpoid, sf-a2 miki, Hiyama Kiyoteru, BIG AL, Lily, Ryuto Gachapoid, Nekomura Iroha, Utatane Piko, VY2, SeeU, Tone Rion, CUL, Yuzuki Yukari, Aoki Lapis, Luo Tianyi, YANHE, YOHIOloid,  MAIKA, Merli, Macne Nana, kokone, anon & kanon, Rana, Yuezheng Ling, Zhanyin Lorra, Akikoloid and Anri Rune


Microphone: MEIKO, Sweet Ann, Tonio, SONiKA, Lily, Bruno, Clara, AVANNA, YOHIOloid, Chika, Zhanyin Lorra and ONA


Fair Skin: MIRIAM, MEIKO, KAITO, Hatsune Miku, Kagamine Rin, Kagamine Len, Prima, Camui Gackpo, Megurine Luka, GUMI Megpoid, SONiKA, sf-a2 miki, Kaai Yuki, Hiyama Kiyoteru, BIG AL, Tonio, VY1, Gachapoid Ryuto, Nekomura Iroha, Utatane Piko, VY2, Mew, SeeU, Tone Rion, OLIVER, CUL, Yuzuki Yukari, IA, Aoki Lapis, Luo Tianyi, galaco, MAYU, AVANNA, KYO, YUU, YANHE, YOHIOloid, MAIKA, Macne Nana, kokone, anon & kanon, v flower, Tohoku Zunko, Rana, Chika, Yuezheng Ling, Zhanyin Lorra, Akikoloid, Masaoka Azuki, Kobayashi Matcha and Anri Rune


For those of you who prefer numbers/statistics (like me):



  • 30 VOCALOIDs wear sleeveless tops.

  • 35 VOCALOIDs wear either ribbons/necklaces/ties/scarves.

  • 16 VOCALOIDs wear detached sleeves.

  • 30 VOCALOIDs wear either gloves/cuffs/arm accessories.

  • 33 VOCALOIDs wear belts.

  • 26 VOCALOIDs wear skirts above mid-thigh.

  • 10 VOCALOIDs wear shorts.

  • 29 VOCALOIDs wear stockings.

  • 37 VOCALOIDs wear boots.

  • 33 VOCALOIDs have long hair.

  • 37 VOCALOIDs wear headphones.

  • 12 VOCALOIDs have microphones.

  • 54 VOCALOIDs have fair skin.


So, as you can see, my claim that many VOCALOIDs share similarities, is pretty well grounded. There are 62 VOCALOIDs in total, and a vast majority of them share very similar traits. And you’ll notice, a lot of them have more than one thing in common.


Statistically speaking, 46% of the VOCALOID characters have 6 different things in common. 76% of them have 11 things in common. And 90% of them have fair skin.


NOW.


Considering the fact that of these 62 VOCALOIDs, 45 of them are female. This just adds a whole new perspective.


Of the 45 female VOCALOIDs,


62% wear sleeveless tops,

60% have something around their necks,

64% have something on their arms,

58% wear skirts above mid-thigh,

62% wear stockings, etc., etc. You get the idea.


Altogether, it’s fairly safe to say that many VOCALOIDs share many different similarities. We’re not talking just five or six of them having a belt and a skirt, but 10. 15. 37. Bigger numbers.


Of course, these facts aren’t without reason. It’s fairly obvious that they’re designed with similar assets and accessories for a reason; It sells.


Those who have multiple similarities, or many things in common with Crypton VOCALOIDs (i.e. GUMI, SeeU, Aoki Lapis, Luo Tianyi, sf-a2 miki, IA, MAIKA, etc.), are all following a similar design formula because this is the formula that garners the most success in regards to the design portion of a VOCALOID being sold. We’re not even talking about the voicebank portion, here.


Whereas those who stray too far from this formula (i.e. Sweet Ann, Kaai Yuki, VY1, VY2, Chika, etc.), follow the pattern of selling less than those who do.


Now, bear in mind, the design’s only half the battle. I always keep this in mind when I’m looking at a new VOCALOID. To be honest, I barely pay attention to these similarities because they’re executed uniquely, and while they do follow this similar formula, these pieces to the puzzle that are shared between VOCALOIDs, are all worn differently.


The whole point of a VOCALOID is that it is a voice program. So regardless of whether or not the design is cool, the success of the VOCALOID depends mostly on the quality of the voicebank, and the sound it produces.


So, if the point of the VOCALOID is to sell the voicebank, why does it even matter if the design’s cool/cute enough,  if there’s a design at all? Why would I, OtterJiang, spend multiple hours scowering and scrutinizing every little detail and technicality of VOCALOID designs, if they aren’t even that important in the first place (allegedly)? That’s just it: They are important.


No matter what you think, say, or do, you have to admit at some point that the design plays quite the role in the success of the VOCALOID being sold.


While there are many other factors in deciding the success of the VOCALOID units, it’s rather apparent that design is definitely one of the major ones.


Before we go, let’s take a look at successful vs unsuccessful VOCALOIDs:


Successful:

Hatsune Miku (10 out of 13)

Luo Tianyi (9 out of 13)

IA (9 out of 13)

GUMI (8 out of 13)

-no, this is not all of them. I am aware.-


Unsuccessful:

Hiyama Kiyoteru (3 out of 13)

Ryuto Gachapoid (7 out of 13) -an outlier, something I could get to in another blog or maybe even a video, because this is definitely turning out to be video-esque material.

Bruno (1 out of 13)

Clara (4 out of 13)

-no, this is not all of them, either. Unfortunately.-


I hope that this massive essay of numbers, words and facts have convinced you that maybe, just maybe, the newcoming fans who don’t know any better are sort of, kind of on to something.

Granted, after six years of hearing the same thing over and over again, you’d think we’d have gotten the basic idea.


The fact of the matter is, there’s a system, there’s a formula, there are elements to a design that help sell a VOCALOID. While sometimes they try to hard, and sometimes it doesn’t end the way you’d hope it would, it’s always very interesting and fun to see what kind of a spin companies put on these elements to give their VOCALOID their own unique flare, while recycling similar pieces.


I for one, am always excited to see a new VOCALOID, and give it a chance, regardless of similarities shared. Because, like I said, it always comes down to the voice behind the character.


I hope you enjoyed!! ^^

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