Training for Tokyo

Check out this sweet Google Maps street view of Akihabara. Saw it on Kotaku, who saw it on Gizmodo, apparently.

I didn't go to Tokyo Game Show last year, and I'm really looking forward to getting back to Japan later this year. The street view of the map is pretty cool, though it's probably only really cool if you've been there and sort of know how to navigate. If you head north from the starting position (which starts you out staring at the Club Sega arcade near the train station), you'll see most of what there is to see, including the Mister Donut. This is the same doughnut shop that caught fire a couple of years back and had to be rebuilt.

Super Potato is on a side street behind the Club Sega. If you head down the alley next to the arcade and hang a right onto the next street, you should see it on your right before too long.

Akihabara isn't quite what it used to be for a variety of reasons. For one, many of the great used game shops have shut down or reduced the amount of stock they keep in favor of more porn. Second, once you know where Super Potato is, it becomes less about finding obscure, rare stuff. Because they have it all. It used to be about scouring bins of random, awful Japanese Saturn games in search of something that catches your eye. But Super Potato is a one-stop shop, where the only thing holding you back is your inability to read Japanese and find the games you're after by looking at the spines of jewel cases.

I used to bring an extra, empty suitcase with me to Tokyo and I'd still have trouble fitting everything I picked up. The last few years, though, there hasn't been nearly as much to bring home. That's mostly because I've picked up most of the Japanese stuff that I'd want. I still keep my eyes open for Neo Geo carts when I'm there, but I have just about any AES cart that I'd ever want. For the past couple of years I've toyed with the idea of getting into arcade boards. I bought some CPS2 stuff there once. But I don't currently have any way to play any of that stuff, so I should really see about getting a versatile cabinet instead of buying more random boards. Either way, that won't stop me from visiting G-Front while we're there.

But really, I'm just excited to hook up a beef bowl and spend time in smoke-filled arcades. And, you know, go to TGS, of course.
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Skate 2 trailer

Here's the first gameplay footage from skate 2. Looks like IGN got the exclusive reveal on it on Friday. Everyone else is sitting on their skate 2 info until 3PM Monday, so check back then and I'll tell you what I thought about it!


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Bionic Commando Rearmed "delayed"

IGN's reporting that it was a "last-minute development delay" or something.

Something about all this seems fishy.

Anyone wanna take bets that this is all due to MS flipping Geometry Wars 2 up a week and delaying BCR with total disregard for Capcom's promise of a July release date? I've heard enough random gripes from enough different publishers to know that the XBLA process has been a real pain when it comes to planning release dates. Hence why you never see publihers promoting release dates for their downloadable stuff... instead they leave those announcements to Microsoft because they hold the keys. I suppose the short lead times involved when you don't have to press a bunch of discs after clearing certification could also play into that, but I've never heard anyone blame that as the reason before.

Anyway, just struck me as odd, that's all.
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