The ground-pounding 2D-3D side-scrolling platformer Smol Ame has again “ruffled the feathers” of the Hololive community with a new update, featuring Shuba Duck from the dancing duck meme as a new playable character. While most virtual influencer fan games usually offer less than ideal gameplay, Smol Ame‘s features tight controls, challenging levels, and an undeniably cute and quirky charm that the fanbase has come to adore. Created by KevinCow, this Hololive fan game originally dedicated to Watson Amelia (Ame) has become a well-deserved fan favorite.
For those who aren’t familiar with Shuba Duck, the character is from an animation of a duck in a backward baseball cap dancing alongside Hololive JP member Oozora Subaru. The bubbly, tomboy-ish VTuber is known for her raspy voice that fans likened to the sound of a duck quacking. To comically portray this comparison, fan artist Suzuki Kenta created a comical animation that quickly became a popular meme. Hololive fans nicknamed the duck “Shuba Duck” or “Shubaduck,” which comes from Subaru’s habit of regularly saying “shuba” when excited.
As for the origin story of Smol Ame, the platformer’s central ground-pound mechanic refers to Amelia’s most notorious joke, “ground-pounding your mom,” which she made during her Super Mario Odyssey stream. This witty remark has since then become virtually synonymous with her character. That being said, Smol Ame was not only well-received by the fans but was even able to gain the attention of the Hololive EN gamer goddess herself. Recently, Gawr Gura has also fancied a playthrough as KevinCow has been diligently adding more playable Hololive members like Cat Gura as well as exciting new levels.
It is quite a wonder to see such a niche mix of virtual creator and fan-made content coming together to create a virtual intersection of multimedia that everyone can enjoy. Smol Ame is the kind of fan-influencer meta-interaction that embodies what Hololive is all about, and this new Shuba Duck update definitely “fits the bill.” You can play Smol Ame for free here at Itch.io.
Have you played Smol Ame or any other Hololive fan games? Which fan-made content do you think best synergizes with the virtual influencers of Hololive? Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments!