Another day, another Akihabara moment. I know this isn't really bad English. I just read innuendo into everything.
I know it wasn't all that long ago but coming here is like a pilgrimage to me.
There was a store I was determined to find that I missed last time. It's called "Friends", and wouldn't you know it, the name is written in Japanese, not English.
The easiest way to find it is from the station head towards the Club Sega (you can't miss it), cross to that side and walk right along the road to the next major intersection.
Cross the road and you'll see a red Segafreda cafe. To the left you'll see a blue sign with 260 yen clearly displayed. On the RIGHT of that there's a small door leading up a stairway.
Here you'll find a treasure trove of old Nintendo goodness. It's like a small version of Super Potato.
Strangely, an old woman was in charge here. One thing you'll notice in all these retro "Famicon" shops is the endless sounds of 8-bit bleeping game music (it's an easy way you'll know you're in the right place). How anyone could stay sane listening to that all day is beyond me.
From there I went to Retro Game Camp.
It's not a large shop, but they have plenty of Famicon (Nintendo/Super Nintendo) and other carts for Sega etc.
Notice Super Mario Bros from the NES on the TV screen?
It's running on a "Famulator", a small licensed NES clone.
There's also a "Famulator lite", to hook it up to a Nintendo DS, but according to this review it ain't that good.Moving right along, I made my way to the king-size building of Mandarake.
Here's the view from the top, looking down towards Akihabara station.
Eight floors of manga, toys and video games. The "Game & Watch" offerings here are surprisingly light.
What they did have, like all the other Akihabara shops were overpriced examples of a few classic titles.
While I'd like this place to be my favourite in Akiba, it lacks the character of the other places.
Maybe it's the over abundance of comic books and not enough retro games for me, but the elevator has a particularly nice shade of yellow.
Finally I just want to mention it was SO hot today. For the first time I went out without any kind of jacket. This is the kind of weather I like. Time to bring out the T's.