Nintendo DS is making (radio) waves in Japan

Nintendo, Nippon Broadcasting plan game-based music contest; more radio promotions are likely in the DS's future.

TOKYO--Nintendo has taken a unique approach to publicizing its DS handheld in Japan, including giving away free copies of Touch! Catch! Yoshi! during the morning news on a major TV station. Now, the company is going to invade late-night radio.

Nintendo announced yesterday that it will collaborate with Nippon Broadcasting (one of the most listened-to stations in the country) to run music played in the game Daigasshou! Band Brothers (known as Jam with the Band in America) on its station every Wednesday night for several weeks.

The company will hold a contest, starting in mid March, in which players can submit songs featuring instruments from the game. The contest is open to professional musicians and amateurs.

Songs will be judged on originality, humor, and anything else the judges deem interesting, according to the station. All submissions will be played on the radio, and selected artists will get to perform their music in a live broadcast using the DS and the game, along with their instruments. The winner will receive a free Nintendo DS and $100,000 yen ($975) as winnings.

This Band Brothers promotion may just be the beginning: According to retailer sources, Nintendo plans to continue bolstering the console's sales throughout Japan using the slogan, "Thanks for 1.5 million [DS] sales."

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