Tokyo Game Show 2015: Field Report/Photos

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Tokyo Game Show -Basic Information-

Founding:1996
When:September 17-20, 2015

(17 & 18 for business and 19 & 20 for public)

Length of Days:2 Days Business / 2 Days Public
Location:Makuhari Messe in Chiba, Japan

Official Website: http://expo.nikkeibp.co.jp/tgs/2015/en/

Price:The first two days are only open to those in the video game industry and require prior registration by employers along with business cards and IDs. For the public days, tickets can be purchased early online via the official website for 1000 yen beginning in mid July. Tickets purchased at TGS will cost 1,200 yen. Children that are elementary school age or younger are free. Tickets are only good for one day though, so if you are planning to attend both public days, two tickets must be bought.
Hotels:The actually site of TGS is a good hour and a half outside of Tokyo, but staying in Tokyo is highly recommended as there are limitless options for travelers in all price ranges. Hostels can cost as little as 2,000 Y a night and offer conveniences such as kitchens and information about the area. Hotels can be found in varying amounts of money depending on how fancy they are. Guesthouses or ryoukan can provide those more interested in a more traditional Japanese Inn a unique experience though they can be a bit pricey.
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Corporate Message

"To be Asian HUB event in the global game market"

Tokyo Game Show is the global trade show where a large number of key people in the game market gather from every corner of the world. We had 202 exhibitors from 31 countries and regions. 1,293 press people from 33 countries and regions covered the event. Tokyo Game Show has attracted international attention as the world largest scale GAME event.

On top of it Tokyo Game Show has been recognized as the international business meeting opportunity on Business Day with 12.8 % increase of 1,555 oversea visitors for two days.

Official Website: http://expo.nikkeibp.co.jp/tgs/2015/en/

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What to Expect:

First and foremost, expect LARGE CROWDS. The best day to arrive is Saturday as Sunday is the universal day off for the Japanese and the larger crowd can take away a lot of the fun. Other than this, there are plenty of games to enjoy and hundreds of demos to try.

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What to Bring:

Bring a backpack and load it up with water, snacks, and a portable game system. If available, pack several energy banks to prevent devices from dying while enduring the long waits in line. There are a few places on site to eat from but are often crowded, so it is much easier to snack throughout the day while waiting in the lines.

What is Available:

The purpose of the Tokyo Game Show is to showcase Japan’s gaming industry and so many AAA and indie game studios and developers set up shop in hoping of impressing their future customers. The bigger the developer, the bigger the booth. Square Enix, Capcom, and Sony had some of the biggest booths around and offered at least three or four games available for demonstration. The games come from various genres so there should be no problems finding something to play in the least.

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Many of the larger exhibitors also had live events scheduled throughout the weekend with various pop stars, voice actors, and famous developers to build up excitement for their games. The otome game maker Voltage had a rather elaborate stage set up and had its own male idol showdown where attendees could vote on who they felt was the most attractive.

Small studios weren’t left out though! They had their own section and proudly showed off their hard work. Many of these teams are foreign and only have a small teams consisting of two or three members. The games here were just as impressive as those found in the AAA section with the added bonus of being able to speak with the creators directly and giving immediate feedback.

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In addition to the games, there is also some sweet swag in the merchandizing area. Many of the larger developers bring booths with them to sell their franchise’s goods. Capcom had some amazing Monster Hunter hoodies while Square Enix had two booths. One was dedicated to music and the other sold shirts, plushies, and figures. Be sure to bring plenty of money as the items can be pretty expensive.

Cosplay

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Japanese cosplay is a tad different than European or American cosplay as it is mainly restricted to a few areas within the expo’s grounds and cosplayers must dress at the convention in specific trailers. They can NOT travel in cosplay as it is deemed distracting to others on the trains.
The designated cosplay areas are usually overrun with photographers as well, so make sure to get there early to ensure a great spot for photos. Many of the cosplayers who participate are pro or semi pro so the quality is something quite special.

Video Walkthrough: Tokyo Game Show 2015 Walkthrough - Honey's Anime-

Final Thoughts:

Tokyo Game Show is definitely a must for travelers who are in the area. There are many games to see and demo that may never be localized for western gamers, but the crowds and lines can be slightly unbearable so be sure to arrive early to maximize game playing times. Fair warning, Japanese conventions are very different than western conventions so it may take a while to adapt, but TGS can still be highly enjoyable. The key is to have a battle plan the night before. The official website has a list of exhibitors as well as a map which can help those attending come up with a timetable.

I highly recommending going to TGS at least once to get a feel for the Japanese gaming industry and how different it is in comparison the American and European industry. The swag alone is worth the trip as there are many items available that cannot be found elsewhere. Bring a friend and have some fun playing the best games Japan has to offer!

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Nikki Flores

Writer

Author: Nikki Flores

You may know me by my witty and excellent prose, but I assure you there is a real person underneath this brilliant exterior. As a graduate of Purdue University with a degree in English Literature and a minor in Medieval and Renaissance Studies, I traveled to Okinawa, Japan in search of the One Piece. Together my crew consisting of a white dog named Yuki, an evil cat named Kyubei, the wise feline Pickles, and my ever supportive husband Aaron, we travel the globe seeking life’s greatest treasures. Oh, and I’m sure one day I’ll eventually meet Trafalgar Law in the New World. I hope. Please? *pout*

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