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Moranbong Is North Korea’s Answer To The Nintendo Wii

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The Nintendo Wii is one of the most successful consoles in history. The combination of the unique Wii Remote and titles such as Wii Sports and Wii Fit, made it a joy for people of all ages to play, with the beauty of each game being that you didn’t have to be a gamer in order to understand how to engage with a game. Now it seems as though North Korea has taken a leaf out of Nintendo’s book with Moranbong, a suspiciously familiar motion-controlled console.

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Originally reported on by North Korea Tech, Mornabong was detailed briefly in Arirang Meari, a state-run website. While the coverage for Moranbong was small, a few images of the console were shared, which you can see scattered throughout this article. The original report also described how users can experience a variety of physical activities through Moranbong which are great for physical fitness, whole body workouts, and obesity. One image in particular shows a floor mat being used for a running game and a shooting game. The matt appears to offer similar functionality to the one used in conjunction with Wii Fit, though this one looks to be much larger.

Arirang Meari gave no details about Moranbong’s manufacturer. It’s likely that the console was acquired in China, and has been branded by a North Korean company, although there is some speculation that the device could originate from North Korea. The site did report that Mornabong is receiving critical acclaim in the region, which is a fantastic start to their games industry.

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Judging by the images of Mornabong alone, it seems as if the camera is both just that, and the console itself. The device is mounted on top of a television, and the motion controllers are then used to interact with it. Apparently Moranbong comes pre-installed with a number of games, many of which are fitness oriented, so there’s no need to purchase any new ones for it.

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Drawing From the Best

Moranbong may seem like a bit of a joke to the rest of the games industry, but really it’s a console that draws from some of the most successful features in current generation consoles. While the motion controllers are straight from the Nintendo Wii, the Nintendo Switch still has detachable Joy Cons today that work in the same way. The Moranbong camera is reminiscent of Kinect, or the Playstation Eye, both of which work well for the games designed to use them, with the possible exception of Kinect.I’d also go as far as saying that the floor mat uses the same technology as the dance mats for Playstation 1, but I’m no expert and I haven’t seen the physical item myself.

The existence of such a console shouldn’t be a surprise. After all, we have 1000 in 1 game units that you can purchase from Ebay or a car boot sale, and no one is ever surprised by the fact that they work, or their shoddy construction. Moranbong could be the start of games becoming more well known and popular in North Korea, it could even become the biggest console the region ever sees. Whatever the outcome, we’ll keep you updated here.

Let us know in the comments if you’d like to see a Moranbong review on the site.

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