Tokyo Trip (15 December 2013 to 18 December 2013)–Akihabara on 17 December 2013 (morning to noon)

This is it – the pinnacle of my trip to Tokyo. I’ve planned this for 5 years. 5 freaking years! I dreamt of getting a Sega Dreamcast console from this electronic town as it is one of the most reliable places that one could go for just to lay hands on a working model. Consider this  as a pilgrimage to a special place where video game fans could revel in all its splendors…

I’m not there for the otaku culture, though but am curious nonetheless to see what I may find there!

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Getting to Akihabara is easy. The hard part is getting around Akihabara to those not-so-obvious places that sell used video game consoles. There are plenty of those shops around town but the trick is getting one working copy that is well worth your money. I’d explain as we go along.

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Oh and this is a selfie in my hotel room to start the day. Fully equipped to resist the chilly weather and ready to go! See my new Uniqlo coat? Don’t look at my face too much – admire the new navy blue coat!

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Confusing guide map mounted on the walls of the JR station.

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Remember to get hold of one of these guide maps. These aren’t very descriptive but you’d have a better idea of the district layout.

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I’m ready to raid the Electronic Town!

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One of the many ubiquitous Sega outlets dotting Akihabara.

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Akihabara Gamers. More manga than you could ever read in your lifetime.

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A maid café. 450 yen could get you a cheap decent meal, as seen on the posters outside. The maids are rather attractive too – but I’m generally cautious of flirty behaviour unless you really mean it, of course Winking smile

I can’t get the part on the obsession with maids, though.

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Look – Colonel Sanders is also garbed for the season! KFC is hot in Japan too during Christmas season – 24 December here is celebrated with good old piping hot buckets of fried chicken!

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Alright – enough sidetracking already.

This is Super Potato. The famous potato shop every classic video game fan should pay pilgrimage to! This branch is just some ways away from the KFC branch pictured above.

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Inside Super Potato: these are Famicom cartridges. I’m not in Japan for a Famicom console, but it’s nice to see these nostalgic baubles still around!

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I’m here for these Dreamcast consoles.

To my disappointment, they don’t come packaged with the power supply, which is a big red flag. How would I know which cables to get then? My limited conversational Japanese won’t work here – I’d have to look elsewhere.   

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There are plenty of Dreamcast games at Super Potato, sure – but what’s the point of getting software without the machine to play it with?

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These are Sega Megadrive carts (Genesis in the USA). These come ‘loose’ – i.e. without the original plastic black box and game manual. Do not presume that the prices are also easy on the wallet because of this.

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I wanted to get that Sonic 2 boxed! But I was here for all three of them and since I could only get hands on one, then it’s ok.

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Playstation 2 accessories on the top floor.

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I don’t know about you, but when I was browsing through these stuff, I got this irrational fear of being hit by a massive earthquake that would cause these games to literally bury me alive. To be killed as a result of (over)playing video games is heard before – but to be slain by a cascade of video games is not.

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Wow – cute Game Boy carts! These are the ones primary school pupils fight over to get a chance to play TMNT in black and white.

Since Super Potato didn’t give me what I want, I’d also return the favor – I’ll get my goods at some other place.

My next stop – Liberty.

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Not suitable for persons below 18 years old. Since my brain may also intermittently be below this age limit, I also made a mental note to stay clear.

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Hmm – more videos than video games. My mood turned south after visiting this sad joint. At least the place is clean and tidy.

It’s already close to noon by the time I headed for Trader, so there was this growing expectation that I must seal the deal for the Dreamcast console soon.

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Much better – so much better! These are what I’m looking for! I quickly reserved the middle Dreamcast console for myself. A feel good grin stole across my wicked face.

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I also wanted to get a Super Famicom console but logic quickly decided that my rather small luggage bag would suffer for it. Stuffing it inside is one thing – it’s another thing to ensure that all that bumping around town and in the airplane compartment doesn’t cause damage to it! I intended to bolster my Dreamcast console with plastic bags and other Japanese snacks.

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It is already 1 p.m. when I left Trader.

The next stop would be to Tam Tam Hobby which is also not far down the main street. This mammoth store encompasses about four floors of hobby stuff (gundam), scale model kits and other interests – even air rifles. Pretty serious stuff this. 

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There is a good selection of Fujimi kits available. I’d want that Hosho kit! Who’s gonna get it for me?

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These, my friends, are the air rifle and other weapons on sale. See that sniper rifle at the middle tier? Pity that my stupid country doesn’t allow me to bring these in. Stupid lame country sitting at the end of the Asian main continent.

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Anyway, this is not all for Akihabara. What I’ve covered so far is only the retro gaming stuff, but there is also a snack review and a religious trip in the next entry!

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By the way, this is my haul from Akihabara. Not bad for a 5-year plan, if I may say so myself.

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