Interview: “Living Doll” who broke world record sets the record straight with Pixel Enemy
Authored by Rob Newberry
We previously reported on how Kinumi Cati, a “living doll” broke the world record (unofficially at time of press) for the longest videogame marathon on a Japanese-style role playing game by playing for 38 hours straight. We got the news tip, as did almost every single other outlet that covered it, from Metro.co.uk who claimed “one girl in Japan” broke the record “dressed as a ‘living doll’. After we did our own research, we realized that Kinumi is actually from Spain, speaks Spanish and broke the record dressed in a regular dress.
Pixel Enemy reached out to this interesting young lady to get her side of the story, ask a few related questions and we were pleasantly surprised when she replied enthusiastically.
What follows is the Pixel Enemy interview with Hecaterina Kinumi, also known as Kinumi Cati – unofficial Guinness World Record holder for playing Final Fantasy X for 38 hours straight.
Pixel Enemy: What was the inspiration for breaking the record? Did you know about it on your own or did someone tell you about it?
Kinumi: I was on the Guinness World Records Official website and I saw that record, so I thought it could be fun as something new to do. I told my producer about it, they liked the idea and then they sent a solicitude to Guinness – that’s how it all started.
I’ve read some people’s comments saying that I didn’t enjoy the game – LOL – that’s really wrong actually, I had a really good time and enjoyed playing a lot. In fact I was going to continue playing after I broke the record but I came two minutes late from the break time I took. So, it’s like “offically” record ended there, but in fact I continued playing after it…but because of being two minutes late it didn’t add more time to the record.
PE: Do you consider yourself a ‘gamer’? How much game time do you average and what are some of your favourite titles?
Kinumi: I’ve never thought about being a ‘gamer’, I’m just a girl who enjoys playing videogames…but I’ve never said, “Hey, did you know I’m a gamer?”…even though some people have called me ‘the videogame girl’. About game time, it depends…sometimes I can be playing for 12 hours a day or more, but I also spend many hours watching anime, so I have to make time for both. Maybe I’ll spend a whole day just watching anime, and the next one just playing videogames…but there are so many games I want to play, but I don’t have enough time. So, I’ve made a list of games I want to play in my life, and it includes a lot of old games too, because I don’t consider old games to be bad because their graphics might not be as good as a new title. I care much more about the story and not that much about graphics.
My favourite MMORPG is World of Warcraft, I’m from the Alliance and my main character is a Night Elf (feral druid). I also like Ragnarok, Final Fantasy IX, Zelda: Ocarina of Time, God of War, Dante’s Inferno, Pokemon, Nights Into Dreams and Devil May Cry – but I haven’t played the latest release yet as I wasn’t a fan of the trailer.
Kinumi: Many people had told me that my favourite Final Fantasy would be FFX, so I decided to give it a try because I had never played it before. After playing it for 38 hours, I think it’s an interesting game with a nice story, but it hasn’t become my favourite Final Fantasy release.
PE: Almost every news outlet (Metro, Yahoo, Business Standard) are saying you are from Japan, but we were thinking you are from Spain. Can you tell us where you are actually from?
Kinumi: Yes! I’ve read many news sites making that mistake when I’ve actually never said that I was from Japan – so that was kind of weird. I was born and grew up in Galicia, Spain, so yes you guessed it. I think many people thought that ‘Kinumi’ was my surname, and that’s why they started saying that I was from Japan – that mistake has happened to me before actually.
PE: Can you tell us a little about your name?
Kinumi: Hecaterina and Kinumi are my official first names. Can you imagine my teachers trying to call me that? When they tried to call me by my first names, they ended up calling me so many weird things lol really!! like “Pumuki” “Kinuki” and many weird variations! So they finally give up and just call me Cati, thats why my nickname is “Kinumi Cati” because everybody who can’t remember Kinumi just calls me Cati.
PE: What interests you in Japanese culture?
Kinumi: Well, I started watching anime when I was a little kid. First I watched it in Galician but then I discovered that Japanese versions were different – so I started watching anime in Japanese with English subtitles. Since then I’ve never watched anime in any other language except Japanese. I also started reading manga, and most videogames I like are Japanese. I also like to read about Japanese culture and I study Japanese by my own. I’ve had a big influence from my Mother, who also loves Asian culture - sometimes she travels to Asia and brings me beautiful presents and tells me about the places she visited.
I’d like to go to Japan and learn everything about the culture, I would also like to visit China and Korea one day too.
PE: Did you actually play 38 hours in your ‘living doll’ clothes? The video didn’t look like it…but it was hard to tell.
Kinumi: I played wearing a pretty simple dress, I like wearing “lolita” clothing but they’re not really comfortable if want to play a videogame for 38 hours – LOL.
PE: What do you think of the role women play in video game culture? There is a lot of dialogue recently about feminism in video games…what’s your take on the situation and how do you feel women are portrayed in video games?
Kinumi: I don’t know really. The role women play in videogames is usually the same I see on films and other places ^_^! Women’s roles in videogames have never made me feel bad or offended, I hadn’t really thought about it to be sincere, because I’ve never thought there was something bad about it.
Kinumi: I had no training at all. I think usually playing videogames for many hours was enough. It wasn’t a duty and I didn’t force myself to play.
PE: Did Phil Kollar (previous record holder) connect with you at all during this?
PE: How has your life changed (if at all) since the world record event?
Kinumi: Well many people I didn’t know have added me as friend on my Facebook, YouTube channel and Twitter, and I’m really glad because they are all really nice and seem to love videogames too! So I’m glad to have made new friends from other countries ^-^! I’ve had more press and TV contacting me, but apart from that I continue with my normal life as usual.
PE: What are you hoping will happen now that this is done? Do you have any other records you want to break? Are you hoping this impacts your music and blogging career?
Kinumi: I’m hoping that maybe someone will give me an opportunity as a singer and model, at least in Galicia. It’s really not easy to get known in that regard, and I would love to go to Asia which is even more difficult. My producer liked doing this event, so they have asked me if I would be interested in doing another one, and I said yes. I had a really good time doing it, and I met new people – because people who were with me during the record were actually complete strangers to me, not friends like some news sources said – that was actually mandatory, so after Guinness contact me back and certify my record, my producer will send another request.
PE: What do you want to do after you finish school?
Kinumi: After school I’d like to get more into my music career, but I’ll also continue to upload new stuff to my YouTube channel regularly, so stay tuned. ^_^
Note: We’re really not sure how Metro and other news outlets messed up the story so badly – it’s possible they thought it wasn’t interesting enough on it’s own and had to throw in the Japanese/living doll angle. Nevertheless, we are happy to share the story behind the story with you Pixel Nation, and thanks very much to Kinumi for taking the time to answer our questions.