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The Santa Claw

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Rating: 4.5/5 (55 votes)
Comments (40) | Views (7,185)
TrickyThe Santa Claw[Please note that an account is required to play. You can use Twitter, Facebook, or just sign up fast and free with your e-mail address.]

Good evening, and welcome to JiGNews 5's ongoing coverage of webtoy The Santa Claw. I'm your anchor, Tricky.

It's a story as old as "X-Mas" itself. Once the Twelve Days are over, all the unwanted gifts are forced out of Santa's workshop and into bargain bins world-wide. However even they have met a brighter fate than the merchandise which is the topic of tonight's top story. For these remaindered gifts are trapped in plastic balls, confined within a clear plastic cage. But thanks to the fine folk at the Real Art Design Group, people around the world have a chance to mechanically assist in freeing these brave commerce spheres. It will truly be an inspiration to our ratings.

Senior JiGNews 5 Claw Machine Correspondent Chiktionary is on site and in line, awaiting her turn. Chiktionary, what is the atmosphere like out there?

Chiktionary"Hi Tricky, Yes and Good Evening! Chiktionary here reporting live from the Real Art Design Group site of The Santa Claw.

The atmosphere here is electric and the excitement almost palpable. I've been here waiting in line with close to 500 other people and it's now just a little under 3 hours until I take my chance on The Santa Claw. We're watching live as each competitor takes their turn hoping to take home something special, and in just the last few minutes we've seen some awesome prize-winning happening. A large pink ball has been won by one lucky player. And believe it or not, a large blue ball has gone to another lucky contender! There are no losers here tonight Tricky, I can tell you! It's a great carnival atmosphere, and around me people are represented by a multitude of avatars, including pickles, baubles, cacti and penguins.

So Viewers, if you live anywhere in the general vicinity of The Internet, you too can come on down, any time, and take a chance on the Claw. You never know what you might win, even if it means losing your dignity in the process. I'll be back very soon with another update."

TrickyThank You, C. For those of you now turning in, we're discussing The Santa Claw, a claw crane machine played for free online. Let me tell you, the day you're not thrilled to manipulate a mechanical claw over the internet is the day that you're not thrilled with life... Wait, it seems that we have a development down at the scene. Chiktionary, Tell us what's happening.

Chiktionary"Yes, this is exciting stuff! Just moments ago a man in a floppy, yes that's right, floppy, hat entered the booth and is adding more prizes to the already enormous pile! And as we speak he has just generously placed a prize in the claw for some lucky player! It's all happening here at The Santa Claw!

Otherwise, Tricky, it looks like the thrill is getting to most people here, their eyes are glazed over with anticipation, and speech seems to be lost to most.Next update will be a live commentary while your loyal JiGNews representative takes her turn at The Santa Claw"

TrickyAll right C., I'm contractually obligated to say that I'll be waiting with bated breath. As for you at home, stay tuned to JiGNews 5 for all up to the minute coverage.

The Santa ClawAnalysis: ...Tricky here with a JiGNews 5 late breaking announcement. It seems that Chiktionary has indeed made her way to the front of the line. Let's go down to her now.

Chiktionary"Well Tricky, it's been 7 corn-dogs and a giant cola slurped since my last update and I can now see the giant Santa Claw booth from where I'm standing, and it's immense, to say the least. The whole area has been cordoned off with thick red ribbons, as I make my way into the booth.

Okay in front of me I have controls looking suspiciously like [arrow] keys, so I can move the claw up, down, left and right. There's also a button marked Grab. I've got two views, one from inside the claw looking down into the booth, which will help me aim for something in particular. The other view is from the side looking into the massive pile of gifts just waiting to be won. Oh Schnitzel! I've only got about a minute to do this!

Now I'm scoping the prizes using my arrow keys, and I can see it! I want that skateboard! Okay I'm directly over it now, so using my mouse I click the Grab button, a siren is sounding... The claw is now moving down to the skateboard... c'mon...c'mon...c'mon... it's now lifting back up, the skateboard appears to be in the grip of the claw... OH NOOO!!! SO CLOSE!!!!

Sorry Folks, no skateboard for the JiGNews team tonight. Let's hope it finds a home very soon. But I have to say it's been worth the wait. Playing an online claw game live has been an amazing experience and one I'll never forget. Back to you to wrap it up Tricky. I'm heading to the end of the line..."

TrickyWell, it may require registration, the line may be long, and the chances of victory are the same as its real life counterpart, but The Santa Claw is not to be missed. The developers have confirmed that it shall be up indefinitely, and while there have been issues with the observation cams, the actual gameplay cams are solid. So from all of us at JiGNews 5: Good night world, and play nice!

Play The Santa Claw


The small print says that they only ship prizes to continental US, so if you're anywhere else in the world (like I am), it's not worth registering.


This is... WEIRD. seriously one of the most bizarre things I've seen in a long while. It's like, there's nothing you could possibly want in there, really, but it's too bizarre NOT to want to play.

sunnylauren January 28, 2011 11:32 AM

I agree with Coldfrog. Does anyone think that it's a scam to get a bunch of people's addresses?


The big blue button at the end of the review says "Klaw" - the review's article and the screenshot say "Claw"

No big deal, just thout I'd let you know.



Why don't they save my place in line? with such a long wait (8 hours now) accidentally closing the tab or something is an enourmous setback.


there is no novelty in waiting 8+ hours. Heck, I saw the reviewer had almost a 3 hour wait. How is this entertainment?

This isn't a shot @ JIG, but just in general. No idea who would wait that long.


I plugged it in when I started work - I'm going to be able to do it just before I leave. I just love claw machines, to be honest. I could care less if I actually win anything (and would probably rather not for that matter).

jamesdesilva14 January 28, 2011 3:39 PM

I'm actually really intrigued by this, even with the 8+ hour wait. But I have a spotty wireless connection, and if my computer disconnects for even a second, it makes me take a place at the back of the line. Quite unfortunate, really, as this seems like something i might enjoy.

Wildbreeze January 28, 2011 4:41 PM

What an absolute waste of my time. 6 hours, SIX HOURS I was in that line. And when my turn came, the screen went black. No video at all. About a minute later... "Sorry, it looks like the Santa Claw was too much for you. Post to Facebook? 'The Santa Claw kicked my butt!'"
I didn't even get to DO anything. It's not fair to have to wait all that time for their thing to load slowly and take up the entire minute that constitutes a "turn".


I'm still waiting to play, but it seems like fun.
I am in Canada, so sadly, no prizes for me, but it looks like a fun experience, considering it is only about 5 more hours. :)

TEEDUB0210 January 28, 2011 7:03 PM

It is possible to win!!! I put myself in line, went to class, got back to my computer and I was 3rd in line! the guy 2 in front of me won a prize, and by-golly, I grabbed that damn orb right up!

Be sure to survey the game before you go in, as you get a different view when you actually do get to play.

And finally, come back about an hour and a half earlier than you expect to be first in line, people in front of you will drop out.

Procrastinateher January 28, 2011 7:44 PM

Yes, the fact that they only ship to the US makes it less exciting for players outside the country - though I have US friends I'd gladly ship my prize to if I could be bothered waiting more than 20 minutes.

It's an interesting art concept though. I read a review that somebody who lives around the corner from the actual place it's in wrote about it. Would be worth the eventual wait.

But maybe some sort of "register here and we'll email you with a link for your play time/when there's 1 hour before your turn" policy will help both consumers and the people trying to manage the site.
Sure it takes away from the anticipation of waiting in line, chatting to people near you in the line and watching other people play... but you would be able to do that if you chose.

I'd prefer to go to the building and play it in person though.
Or maybe even set up and play a crane game using an actual crane... let's get to it people!


Not that I can win anything because I don't live in the US, but how can you tell what prize you're going for (or can't you) and who is paying for it all? I can't see any logos, sponsorship or advertising, and even if the prizes were free, there's still the postage?


are we really controlling a real live claw at their office?


Yes, it is an actual claw machine game. :)

Also, I finally got in!
I actually left to watch a movie, and when I came back, it was literally counting down from 5!!! I was amazed and enjoyed the fun experience, and although I didn't win anything, it was a good time anyways. I would love to see it in real life and watch strangers from Japan play it!


WOW, I just saw someone grab two balls at once! I hope they mail him/her both of them despite the "one prize for household" rule.

Anonymous January 29, 2011 2:43 AM

I think it's funny people are complaining about the wait. You can just minimize and mute it, and how else would they manage an online real claw game, for free? And less than 3 hours, recent complainer? You got lucky!

Anyway, i have yet to play. but i'm in line and don't mind.


How much data does this game use? Where I'm from internet isn't exactly cheap so can anyone give me a rough idea on what the damage to my cap will be?

BuenoCabra January 29, 2011 3:23 AM

This is possibly the single greatest use of the Internet ever. Hope I get the leather chaps!

I've already seen four people win in less than an hour. So freakin' cool. Thanks, JiG!

LarryWashington January 29, 2011 9:35 AM



I decided to give it a shot after hearing about it just a few hours ago. I waited in line for just over 2 hours and won a blue ball on my first try! And I never win at crane games! I wanted a pink ball, but at least I won something.


Where is this machine really located?


i played about an hour ago.

directly signed up with the site (not a fan of sites becoming attached to facebook or twitter), then got in line. i had about a five hour wait, but i had things to do, so it didn't bother me.

i watched the few before me, trying to work out where the claw was/should be/etc by looking at the reflection off the glass.

didn't realise that the gamecam is actually a different angle. thanks to many things, including a fourth grader flailing around, i actually won something. i've no idea what, but although i live in the UK, i have sent it to a friend in the US, and will eventually get it, when they are next over.

@Shala: legal looks like Ohio.

maryann matthews January 29, 2011 4:24 PM

I Won a Pink Ball!

BuenoCabra January 29, 2011 6:09 PM

I finally got to play earlier today and lost. :( That kid was no help to me. Also, my internet connection keeps going out (as it frequently does), and I keep having to go to the back of the line. Currently 8 hrs, 21 minutes away. :\


OMG I hope I win a ball!! They look like good bouncy sparkly ones 8) 5.5 hours to go!

monjebleu January 30, 2011 1:27 AM

YES! I just grabbed 3 balls at once, first try!


Having just completed the game not too long ago, after a few mishaps and several hours waiting in line, I am curious to know whether anyone who has won has received a confirmation email.
It was a tense few minutes and since my internet disconnected before I am anxious to know whether the form I filled out was sent successfully.


You actually expect me to wait over 7 hours to play a claw machine game to win a prize which I won't be able to even receive because I don't live in America? Ok, I'll pay for your brain surgery.

I'm not saying that there is any better way to execute this...but maybe have 4/5 machines rather than just 1 to speed things up? Maybe have some sort of sound play when there's a short amount of time left until the person's turn? People keep saying "Just minimize and mute it!" but then there's quite a big chance that I'll over-estimate and miss my turn completely.

I do like the idea of a game were you control an actual claw machine, but it's far too difficult an idea to execute very well, and I think the ridiculously long waiting times have ruined this game somewhat.

Lookwhoshere January 30, 2011 7:09 AM

Wow. I just got on and i just have to wait 1 hour ! Probably because i am in a different time zone.

Anonymous January 30, 2011 8:15 AM

The actual machine is located in Dayton, OH. I went and checked it out in person yesterday. The kid trying to help seemed to be a bit of a distraction though it was funny, I hadn't seen that on the internet, but saw him in person and thought that I would be upset if he directed me and I didn't get anything. Someone at a nearby bar told me that the colored balls don't have prizes in them and that you literally win the ball and that the clear ones with the prizes are the only ones with actual prizes, but I haven't received mine yet, so I can't confirm that. During the 5 second countdown you should start pressing arrow keys to gain control or you will lose your turn which was really disappointing my first time. The short wait times are around 8 a.m. EST in the US. It is too fun not to try once :-)

The Banker's Nephew January 30, 2011 9:59 AM

:D YES! Can you say "Two prizes at once?"


Yay yay yay! I won! I was aiming for a present capsule but I got a giant purple ball instead. Woo!

Papachabre January 30, 2011 2:03 PM

@Complainers - What is wrong with you?! You obviously missed the point of the game. This is one of the absolute coolest things I have ever seen. Who cares how long the wait is, or what the prizes are, or even whether you live in the US? You have the opportunity to remotely control an actual machine - a physical, real-life thing. And as far as I know the people who are producing this have nothing to gain but the joy of seeing it work, so if you don't like it then don't play it. The rest of us don't really want to hear your opinions.

I think this is an amazing, fun and innovative invention. I read that the machine is in Dayton which is about 3 hours away from me. I might just make a trip to the site just to see it in person.

glowtmickey January 30, 2011 6:41 PM



I picked up a pink ball. Idk if I get a pink ball or a different prize. But I dont care too much what I get. Controlling a crane machine like that was amazing.

Anonymous January 31, 2011 6:20 AM

Ugh, the line has not moved at all in nearly an hour.
There are the same number of people "past this point", and my estimated time remaining has not gone down one minute.
Did they shut down for the night or something?


I played santa claw at about 3 am one night AND WON! I got a prize in the mail today actually. There were only about 20 people in line, so it wasn't too long of a wait. About 15 minutes. It was super fun to play.

My prize was a plastic blow up ball - although i'm not really sure how to blow it up. It has nubs on it. It came with a hand printed card telling me what the gift is. The package itself cost like $2.50 to ship, which I think might be more than the value of the gift. I will probably keep the ball for sentimental purposes - it made me feel special :(

DragonDame February 3, 2011 2:22 PM

Finally won last night! It is just a blue inflatable ball, but it was so much fun anyway!


I just received the giant purple ball in the mail :D
Woo hoo!


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