Kisekae Set System implementation for the web
Haskell JavaScript C HTML Smarty CSS Shell
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I'm making a set of tools for viewing, converting, and creating KiSS dolls. KiSS stands for Kisekae (Japanese for "dress up") Set System. KiSS dolls have been around for a long time, but there's only one modern viewer (and it has some drawbacks) and no way to play with these dolls online. Many very talented artists spent countless hours making these fun digital toys. Some are wonderful examples of pixel artistry. It would be a shame for them to be lost just because technology has moved on.

I've added information about KiSS to the GitHub wiki, please check it out if you want to learn more.

I built a tool for converting KiSS cells (the individual graphics) to pnm format (which is then simple to convert to lots of other formats).

Now, I'm making a KiSS doll viewer for the browser.


To display a KiSS doll, an application has to do four things:

  1. Decompress the old, obsure Japanese compression format and extract the files.
  2. Read the specialized image files (cells and palettes).
  3. Read the configuration file.
  4. Display the sets so the user can interact with them.

For the second part I had kludge together some code from a couple different open source projects (GNOME KiSS and GIMP) in order produce something I could understand. Mark Dominus helped me a lot with this when he was a resident at Recurse Center. That part is cel2pnm and it's written in C. You can learn more about it in the "cel2pnm" directory's README.

The third involves parsing text into JSON, so I knew exactly what tool I wanted to use. Haskell has two awesome libraries for this: Parsec and Aeson. If you'd like to hack on the Haskell, check out the README in the "haskell" directory. The backend of the web app is also in Haskell.

The fourth part is where JavaScript comes in. If you want to hack on Smooch but don't want to mess with Haskell, try the "javascript" folder. It's not actually just JavaScript -- it's also the HTML, CSS, and all the images for a single doll ("Aurora" by Punky). I don't know JavaScript very well so if you can help that would be amazing.


I would very much appreciate input on how to make this program better.

Please let me know if cel2pnm doesn't convert a cell correctly and I will attempt to fix it. (If smooch doesn't display a doll correctly, that's because it doesn't display hardly anything correctly right now.)

If you would like to help with this or other tools for KiSS, please let me know! Email me at, submit an issue, or send a pull request. THANKS!! :D