The view from the hotel window! I think I see a game shop in the distance..
For the second week of our trip, we travelled via the bullet train to a little place called Osaka (not little at all!! :O). Here I was surprised to find it had its own version of Akihabara, called Den Den Town, not quite the spectacle that Akihabara was but still full of great places to visit (once we managed to find them!) including THREE Super potato stores, although I think one of them might have closed down… And a few independent retro stores as well. I was on a mission to find some wires for my PC Engine and luckly, Den Den Town, after much trying to get the shopkeepers to understand what I was asking for, did not disappoint!
Super Potato 1.
This store was a smaller super potato, with only two floors. What I enjoyed most about this one was the good selection of Megadrive games on the top floor! (An uncommon system in Japan it seems) Here I picked up Monster World IV, a game that I have been after for a long time after really enjoying the translated release on the Wii Virtual Console a few years ago! This store also had a great selection of Wonderswan games along the wall upstairs (ad what awesome stairs they were!), I managed to pick up Klonoa Moonlight Museum! Downstairs was mostly new games which was a bit surprising for a Super Potato.
Super Potato 2.
This one was where I finally managed to find the wires I
so desperately needed for the PC Engine, as well as
selling all sorts of wires and controllers, this store also
had a great selection of GBA games and even had one
of several Famicom Gameboy Micro’s I was looking out
for! (Silly me for not buying one in the end, I regret it now!)
This store also had another gold Rockman 4 cart…
Just look at the price! :O
I was surprised that even a non assuming book store had a huge selection of retro games,(a surprising number of PC engine games) and several Taiko drum master games hidden away in a corner! Sadly I didn’t have enough space to pick up the Taiko drum games. (Except the DS one!) Unfortunately the shop was closing soon after we arrived so I didn’t get too long to look around although I did end up purchasing a few HU card games, including NEC’s quite polished answer to Zelda, Neutopia.
The final game shop I visited before the long journey home was a small independent shop, hidden away down a street in Osaka…
???? RetroShockedManWithScarfShop! (Game Tanteidan)
Sadly I have no idea what this place is called either! (edit- Its called Game Tanteidan!) It was a small shop but with a good selection, especially for Wonderswan and Saturn, It also stocked many hard to find soundtracks and strategy guides, I didn’t buy any games here but I did get the “We are Rockmen” album which I had been after for a long while! They also had a Famicom Gameboy micro but here it was way more expensive than the others, due to the fact that it was the extremely rare “Player 2” design of the console.
I hope this post was useful if you are planning a trip to Japan! Or if you were just curious as to what to expect when you go! The best thing to do is just go on Google Maps or Foursquare and search for nearby game shops and get some directions! It’s also worth picking up a map of the area or printing one off before you leave the hotel in case there is no wifi! (Or get a cheap phone and Sim card for 3 or 4G Internet! This will help with looking up the games too and if you download a translation app you can just point the phone camera at the Japanese writing to see what it says… It doesn’t always make much sense though…)
Hopefully next time I can find some even more amazing shops and surprises!
Here’s some useful links for shopping in Japan!