21st November: "Even just sitting here attempting to begin writing, I've had a free taste of home-brewed coffee, been shown a robot prototype, and almost given my own TV show. Good job I powered through that coffee’s bitterness because I'm going to need that energy."
The Tokyo Office
21st November: "When I came downstairs to start writing this in the coffee shop, I was offered some house blend by Joe, one of the early morning staff. He took an interest in the diary and we talked about trips, as well as some of the things we were interested in. He's a guitarist, and often goes cycling out and about Tokyo."
Long Live Love Live!
21st November: "It was also the first indication of how deep Love Live! has dug itself into the culture of this area, because at least two floors of this building were exclusively rhythm games and themed prize games, crane games etc. dedicated solely to Love Live!"
21st November: "We ended up joining Akihabara proper by one of the Sega buildings, which was quiet inside when we first arrived at about 11."
Every Part of This Production Looks Fun
21st November: "Despite this there was still one mad individual going crazy on one of the far too complex rhythm games, that was firing notes at a speed too fast for me to process, but easily enough for him to hit perfectly."
Starting to Get Lost
21st November: "There were so many shops that, on the surface, appeared to be the same in Electric Town and Akihabara proper that they all sort of blended into one."
Why Can't Shops Be This Interesting Everywhere
21st November: "There were a few cool little places that did some more nuanced things. For instance, there was one shop that sold brand new old game consoles like the Famicom and N64, factory-sealed."
"The whole shop, as you progressed up the building, came closer to modern day consoles, but still stopped at the PlayStation two and GameCube."
Aisles and Aisles of Hours and Hours
"Still, it was very cool to try and find games I recognised in their Japanese forms. The Japanese box art of Resident Evil 2 has the CG models of Leon and Claire on it instead of the eyeball, for example."
"Yoshi's island was playing on one of the screens and kept repeating the song the Yoshi's sing, which, as cute as it was at first, became a chorus of annoyance after 20 minutes."
Smash Bros. Reference
"Another shop escalated in a similar style, and then right at the top was a mini arcade with a life- size solid snake wearing a Mario hat. I've never accidentally stumbled upon so many arcades by just walking around buildings."
Streets of Ahikabara
The City of Posters
Gotta Love It
"I have never seen so many arcades in so small a space and time. But none of them had a single Soul Calibur cabinet! They were all Love Live! Rhythm games. Boo!"
First Bowl of Many
"Chung explained to me that they roll up the pork into a cylinder, tie it up, and marinade it overnight before slicing bits off to use in the dishes. Whatever they did to it, it fell apart easily and tasted amazing."
21st November: "Before we turned onto one of the backstreets, we got a view of the huge advertisements and shopping centres on the main road, and it was absolutely ridiculous, but it would get much crazier later on."
I Still Can't Believe This Was a Real Advert
I guess they knew their audience.
"Headed out to see Asakusa by night now, so I'll let you know how that goes when I get back."
"Behind it was a market (closed at the time) that extended all the way to the temple itself."
Old vs. New
"It was really interesting to see how different Japanese architecture is to the classic architecture I'm used to. There aren't any decorative friezes or ostentatious columns here, just cool curves and a lot of red."
"For Research Purposes"
"It took about two hours in all, and at the end they were very insistent on having reviews written on Trip Adviser about the experience, which slightly dulled the enjoyment for me since now I had to do the whole song and dance to get the app setup."
Couldn't Take Photos Inside, Sorry
"On the way we passed the shrine, or what may have been a memorial to those that died during a historical earthquake (depicted in startling paintings using dark muddied colours) and the aftermath of the firestorms during World War Two, which was displayed with harrowing pictures on the walls."
Tonkotsu Ichi Katsu
"We feasted on pork fillet and loin katsu with horse mackerel katsu on the side. It was a simple menu, which went well with the simple décor."