Category Archives: NeoGAF

The Arcades of Japan Though Pictures

What is it about an arcade that just makes one come alive with youthful spirit? Is it the bright lights glaring off glass monitors. The buzzing and beeping electrical sounds that loop endlessly throughout the air, aggressive on the ear drums, but rememberable long after you leave. And oh yeah – the games are also pretty fun to play.

Arcades were the birth place of the gaming community, or at least where most people, myself included, who began their interest in videogames, started out. On a Friday or Saturday, you and a couple of your friends would journey on out to your local mall or pizza joint, and begin a long night of quarter-spending amusement. And whether that night ended with you wasting all your weekly allowance, or getting your rear-end beat thoroughly at Street Fighter II, it was still a fulling experience.

Turn now to 2010, and the Arcade experience is rare and limited one. Where the only places left to go seek such a thing is at a place that serves beer and buffalo wings. And even there the choices are slim pickings; unless you like racing simulators. (Of which I do, but that neither here or there.)

No, perhaps the only lasting presence of what a true arcade feels like is still kept alive by our friends in Japan. There, multi-storied buildings dedicated to spending your saved up quarters (or in this case Yen¥) on fighting games, 2D-based shooters, or whatever genre your heart’s desire are in quite abundance. You can play modern games to even classic machines, that should have their own display at a Smithsonian’ exhibit, are all there for your enjoyment.

In Japan, arcades populate in places where commuters are in high numbers. This is how the arcade scene there is kept alive, by people, who after a busy day at work, kill some stress for an hour or two before going home.  And while that trend today has been steadily going down hill, forcing some arcades to close in numbers, the state of things over in Japan are at least better than here in the states where arcades are pretty much extinct.

It sounds like a true gamer’s paradise, and it is, or at least that’s how it looks like. But sadly you have to either 1) Live in Japan, or 2) cross the Pacific just to take an active part in. Always a catch… always a catch.

Well thankfully a NeoGaf user, by the name of DCharlie, has uploaded a hearty sum of pictures he/she has taken of arcades in Japan, and has blessed us poor souls by sharing them with us. And when I mean a hearty sum, I mean it; this gallery has a large variety of images taken from Club Sega in Akihabara (Anime nerd central of  Tokyo, Japan) to the legendary Shibuya Kaikan Monaco arcade near the Shibuya Station in Tokyo.

What I love the most though, is that the overall collection of photographs isn’t just a slide show of arcades, but also of living life in a city as unique as Tokyo. So thanks to DCharlie for allowing us a peek into his world, and some awesome arcades too.

Collection: Arcades of Japan – DCharlie

What An Nintendo Employee’s Workstation Might Look Like

Nintendo and a top secret government agency. What do they have in common? One enforces well elaborate measures to ensure absolutely nothing leaks to the press or public, and the other is a top secret government agency.

Joking aside, it can be pretty evident when working within the video game industry how tightly lipped and secreted the Big N can be. At one point, Nintendo put a stop to all media interviews with Mario creator Shigeru Miyamoto; fearing that any information about future projects would be learned.

So when any tiny morsel of insight of what goes on in Nintendo’s walls is shown it’s a pretty joyful event. Kind of like getting a sneak peek at how chocolate is made at a chocolate factory.

Now thanks to some inquisitive folks down at everyone’s go-to gaming forming, NeoGAF, we get to see some awesome pictures of what an Nintendo employee’s workstation might look like. Check some of them out.

Is that a different version for the box art of Super Mario Bros. Wii I see my little eye?

Tingle?! Ahh! Get it away! Get it away!

Where do they get all those wonderful toys?

Wii Sports Resort anyone?

There is a lot more where that came from – all really incredible, but I don’t want to take up the whole web page (or this site’s bandwidth,) so you’ll just have to take the jump in the link below.

A NeoGAF forum member, by the name of mehdi_san, clues us in to the origin of the images above; posting that they might be from an Nintendo recruitment book made to attract university students.

It is a standard Japanese practice done by every company in country to entice would-be graduates to apply for a job at their company. In fact if you continue your search through that forum thread you will find other pictures from said mentioned book.

Nintendo fans (or 2ch reader), do you know where are these stuff come from ?? [NeoGaf]

Pach-Attack! And Other Awesome Links of the Day

Everyone’s favorite (or not) neighborhood friendly analyst Michael Pachter is getting the spotlight in a new video segment on GameTrailers called Pach-Attack!

And indeed that is what you will get in these short bits staring the Wedbush Morgan Securities forecaster; who has also guest stared in other GameTrailers’ programs like the Bonus Round.

So if you are like me, and enjoy Pachter’s insightful and funny outlook on the game’s industry, check out the first episode below where he lists his biggest winners and losers of 2009. And if you’re one of those people who don’t… well there’s a NeoGaf forum thread for you somewhere to vent your nerdy disgust.

Pach-Attack! Episode 1 [GameTrailers]

In other video game related awesome links of the day: an airport in Hong Kong have partnered up with Sony to install PlayStation 3 kiosks, Microsoft of Japan is launching a bunch of new commercials, and a Bitmob contributer argues for the use of Quick Time Events (which will make someone here angry and comment below.)

Plus you can also check out the discussion of the challenge of blending both game play and narrative with Rainbow Studios senior game designer Ara Shirinian on Gamasutra, and lastly, coming to Japanese theaters later this year (and a DVD rack at a Best Buy near you) is a live action movie based on Capcom’s Dead Rising series.

While this might not be Burger King, these awesome links are still flamed broiled hot – hot – hot!

Hong Kong International Airport Gets PS3 Kiosks [Joystiq]

New Xbox Japan Ads Are Reminiscent of Old Dreamcast Ads [Kotaku]

Quick Time Events When And When Not To Use Them [Bitmob]

The Uneasy Merging of Narrative and Gameplay [Gamasutra]

Capcom Making a Dead Rising Movie [GoNintendo]

Reading the GAF. Download or Disc?

I was browsing NeoGAF today, and I found in interesting thread.

Someone asked Gaffers if they would rather have a hard copy of their game or download their game.

Have a look: NeoGAF

Let me ask anyone who happens to stumble on this blog.  What do you think?

GAF’er Hates Announcements of Announcements

I cruise the NeoGAF a lot for news and stories (I doubt many people read my blog, but it is fun to work on anyway) and I came upon an interesting thread.

Read more after the cut Continue reading