Thursday, November 10, 2011

Is it Possible to Stalk a Retro Video Game Store?

This is a question I`ve been worrying a bit about recently. Can a store have a stalker? If so, what is the borderline between `avid customer` and `creepy store stalker`?

These questions have been sparked by the fact that I`ve visited Omocha Souko pretty much everyday for the past month. The stream of amazing finds that I have been making (like this, this and this) have created in me this irresistable urge to stop for a visit every time I ride past on my way home at night. And about half the time these stops have actually paid off. I don`t always make amazing finds, but about 3 or 4 times a week I have been finding new Famicom stuff put out for quite reasonable prices. I`ve got about half a dozen blog posts worth of finds sitting around waiting for the time when I`ll have a moment to write about them.

The downside though is that I have been feeling a bit like a weird store-stalker lately. I`ve always been a regular customer, but until about a month ago I`d usually limit myself to once or twice a week. Now almost everyday I find myself going to see the same cashier with yet another pile of Famicom stuff fished from their bins. I get that look like they must be wondering what I am doing with it all.
Actually its a reasonable thing to wonder. What am I doing with all this stuff? Some of it has been filling in holes in my collection, some of it is just impulse purchases of cheap stuff, some of it is going straight onto my little sale thread at Famicom World. That pretty much covers it.

Incidentally, they recently re-did their Famicom section and it looks great again. About a year ago I wrote a post bemoaning the ratty look of their Famicom section. Since then they`ve managed to rebuild their stock and a couple weeks ago they put up new shelves to house them all:
They have a cool TV in the centre of it all which plays looped bits from different Famicom games beneath a giant picture of Arino san from Game Center CX:
All of which just feeds my obsessive compulsive store stalking. Sigh.


  1. Ha! Well, I think you answered your own question with this post, don't you? Regardless, it's OK. I understand completely. I'd do the same if such a store were near my home.

    BTW, what's the current tally RE: your collection? How close are you to completion?

  2. So, do you ever watch Game Center CX? I have to rely on fan subs and YouTube uploads... you live in the country it comes on TV in! Talk about lucky...


  3. Stores like this are heaven, in my country there are only gamestop stores...
    Back in time i was a stalker too of little store, i was friend with the owner.
    Passed long day talking about our favorite titles, bomberman and Resident Evil.
    Good old days...

  4. Sean, I wouldn't consider this as you being a stalker. It's more along the lines of being a committed and enthusiastic retro gamer. I'd do the same if I was finding stuff at the same place regularly.

  5. Bryan, LOL yes I suppose this post does answer my own question! My collection is up over the 700 mark with some recent acquisitions. Unfortunately I suffered a catostrophic loss when my checklist (I keep track of these on paper)was lost a few weeks back so I am kind ofestimating my collection size now until I get a new checklist put together.

    Skyrunner - I am like you, I watch Game Centre CX on Youtube or wherever I can find it! Unfortunately the TV stations I get don`t carry it. Love that show though.

    Pix4l - yes they really are heaven! That is cool that you could talk to the owner. The staff at Omocha Souko don`t really know anything about games so I almost never talk to any of them!

    Jason - YES! Committed and enthusiastic retro gamer is the way to put it. Not a storestalker....definitely not a store stalker....:)

  6. Like Bryan, if I lived near a store this awesome, I'd practically live there :| I noticed in the second picture that they have a Saturn steering wheel (or 'yoke' or whatever it is). Do these things cost much in Japan? They do here!

  7. I've found a good gauge of one's store-stalkyness is if the clerk starts making suggestions as you're browsing the aisles, like a personable version of Amazon's 'you might also like' sidebar.

  8. Simon - Yes, living there is basically what I do there:) That Saturn steering wheel is available for 100 yen (about $1.25). How much are they there?

    Jyr -That makes sense, though the clerks at Omocha Souko know nothing about retro games so they are pretty quiet with me. This is good because sometimes that behaviour is annoying. A Blockbuster Video I used to frequent years ago back in Canada had a guy who did that. I remember asking once:

    ¨I`m looking for this old Peter Sellers comedy from the 50s, the Mouse that Roared, do you have it?¨

    ¨Probably not, but we`ve just got 12 copies of Mask 2 in! If you like comedies you`ll love that!¨

    ¨Never speak to me again.¨

  9. Dammit, I need to get back to Japan. Was able to attend TGS back in 2008 and have been itching to go back for just this reason... sure it's cheaper in the end to import, but where's the fun in that?

    I still regret not buying any GCCX DVDs while I was over there. >_<