Archive for Games

PC Gaming in Japan

I would consider myself a PC Gamer. I like the idea of having a dual purpose machine, a computer that I can do work on and play games when I’m done (or near done) working. In Japan this is not the case, most people consider a computer to be for work and not play. Even playing internet games online is less popular because of the advanced cellular technology available. There are many websites and games specifically dedicated to cellular phones. So when I went to find PC games, when comparing to finding games in America, I was surprised by two things. The first thing was the cost, there was significant variance of price and none being cheap. The cheapest game I found was Braid for 2500 Yen or approximately $25 which you can buy for like $20 cheaper in the US. The most expensive was Age of Empires III Gold Edition for 17800 yen or approximately $178! That’s completely ridiculous, in the United States most all games that come out are $50 unless they’re a collector’s edition or something. The second thing I found that surprised me which may have something to do with the price was the lack of PC games available. I only found 2 stores in Osaka that even had PC games and one store had one game while the other had like 30. Just a poor selection and high price for games that aren’t even that good and were made several years ago. PC Gaming sucks in Japan.

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Mobile Gaming

Japan is crazy about mobile gaming. With the Nintendo DS and the PSP (Playstation Portable) series from sony, Japan has all the right conditions for mobile gaming to flourish. The DS and PSP have a vast selection of games to choose from and developers are continuing to develop more and more games. Japan, being a small but densely populated country, has the ability to communicate with millions of people in a small area. Some of the games on the DS and PSP are multi-player and can play games with other players by connecting wirelessly. Along with the competitive aspects of multi-player the ability to communicate with other players is also attractive. Many people in Japan are always on the go, whether in the subway on the way to some other destination and carrying around something large is just unreasonable.  The PS3 and Wii are still popular in Japan but not as much as games that are provided on the DS, PSP, and cell phones.