I’ve been on the move for about a year and a half now, but I’ve finally found a place to put my feet up and call home. This means it’s time to unpack all the junk I’ve been lugging around with me and add a little bit of flavour to my abode. Or just pop it away in drawers until I find it again on a rainy day.
Why should this be of any interest to you? Well, I used to live in Japan and, magpie that I am, I bought just about every shiny game-related item I spotted during my five year stint there.
Over the coming months I’ll be looking through boxes, uncovering and rediscovering goodies I’ve most probably forgotten about. I’ll inform you about some of my favourite curios – let me know which you find most interesting!
Final Fantasy VII pins
I picked these up in Nakano Broadway just before leaving Japan in ’13. Nakano Broadway is the grottier alternative to Akihabara, known for its endless figure shops.
These were ¥500 apiece, and the only remaining five. Official too, judging from the “スクェア” (Square) marking on the back. My second-favourite team combo too: Cloud, Barrett, and Red XIII.
I’m a big SEGA fan, so I nabbed these three tees without any hesitation – ¥3,000 each. The leftmost chronicles the history of SEGA hardware, only available from the Tokyo Game Show ’12 SEGA shop.
The centre and rightmost tees are SEGA Sound Unit [H.] merchandise from Japan Game Music Festival 2013. SEGA Sound Unit [H.] are SEGA’s in-house band, responsible for some truly classic tunes.
Moleskines are my go-to notebooks. While I mainly use the pocket versions, these full-sized ones are good to keep by your bedside to write nonsense you’ll never be able to read come the morning.
These limited edition Pac-Man Moleskines were released to celebrate the yellow puck’s 30th anniversary. In the top left there’s a lovely ruled notebook, a pack of four blank page exercise books below, and a hard case in the top right to keep them all in good nick. I also have a small ruled notebook (not pictured) that I used in 2011.
Each notebook comes with a set of Pac-Man stickers. Bought these off Amazon US at launch. There was also a yellow pocket notebook available, but I didn’t grab it in time, dagnabbit.
Clear files + book covering paper
Clear files are very popular for promotional goods in Japan. The two Evangelion ones were given away for putting ¥500 in a UFO catcher machine – the one in the centre shows Mari, Rei, and Asuka outside one the Akihabara Station SEGA arcade.
The two clear files on the left are from the Konami and SEGA Tokyo Game Show ’11 shops. Sdatcher is Hideo Kojima’s radio drama prequel to Snatcher; the Sonic file celebrates the blue blur’s 20th anniversary.
Bottom centre is a promotional file from one of Grasshopper Manufacture‘s infamous pre-TGS parties. Probably the one where I drank so much I stared at Akira Yamaoka all night and ended up missing the first day of TGS. Good times.
Last is my favourite pickup from Comiket 81: fan-made book covering paper displaying all the masks from my favourite game, The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask. I don’t know why, but covering up whatever you’re reading is a widespread phenomenon in Japan.
Prinny hat + Ace Attorney buttons
Dood! I really need to wear this hat at a future event to express what a loon I am. I recall this being quite expensive at one Tokyo Game Show… I’d guess 2011.
Nippon Ichi Software have never had their own merch stall at TGS, but one pop-up shop would always sell Prinny plushes, hats, and edible omiyage.
Capcom, on the other hand, always have the biggest shop with the most goods. I’m too afraid of losing my Godot badge to wear it out!
What are your most prized pieces of tat? Let me know in the comments below!