In Search of Treasure

Geek culture is alive and well in Japan and this more than anything has made me feel at home in this country.  Video games, manga, and anime are all pretty hot over here and I’ve had a great time sifting through a sea of the stuff, searching blindly and illiterately for gems of new interest. 

Before I left the good old U.S. of A., Randee burdened me with a task:  to find an awesome figurine–preferably something of the Neon Genesis: Evangelion or Megaman varieties (aka Rockman in Japan) for his desk at work.  The only real limitation he imposed was that it be appropriate for the office, which I took to mean, “no titties.”   Should be a piece of cake, right? 

Eh…

My first thought was to snatch something out of one of the UFO catchers.  America has crane games, and UFO catchers are like their cool older brother.  It costs about a buck per grab, or three tries for $5, but if you can find a good machine the cost is totally worth it because the prizes can be pretty amazing.

I know next to nothing about Evangelion, BUT I WANT THIS!

It turns out that finding Evangelion figures which adhere to the No Titties rule is pretty difficult.  In Japan, it seems people are less interested in the giant robots than in the cute girls piloting them.  I tend to agree, but I’m shopping for Randee here.

My next big lead was some place called…well, actually I can’t read the sign, but it’s an otaku’s wet dream come true.  TONS of tiny statues.  Literally thousands of pounds of plastic; awesomely detailed and sculpted into the liknesses of Godzilla, Ultraman, Evangelion, Dragon Ball, and a bunch of other cool stuff I’d never heard of but couldn’t help but admire.

They had a pretty great Neon Genesis mech for about fifteen bucks, but it was gone by my second visit.  And sadly, no Rockman.  The hunt continues!

I was tempted to call it quits and walk home with this bad boy, but I stuck it out in hopes of finding Rockman.

After hitting most of the geeky hotspots, hope was starting to run dry.  Aside from a couple Nintendo DS games, I’d had no luck finding a single piece of Megaman merchandise.  The Blue Bomber’s just not as popular as he used to be, I guess.

A couple days ago I spotted a Toys R Us down the road, and finally got a chance to visit last night.  Not as big and crazy as the ones I’m used to, but they still had a pretty crazy assortment of toys and knick-knacks.

It's like an Easy Bake Oven, but this thing makes tasty, meaty gyoza.

 The star of the show here were the Ultraman figures.  Again, I don’t know much about Ultraman except that he fights guys in rubber suits and smashes through cardboard buildings and omigod who cares those are the coolest f*$%ing toys I have ever seen!!!

"I want, I want! I NEED, I NEED!"

I can only pray that before I die, I will have an entire room in my house dedicated to collecting garbage like this.

Oh, and before I forget…they also had a 1/10 scale plastic model of Megaman… 

…which I then did purchase.

Now, whether or not my American counterpart ever receives this miracle gift will depend entirely on how frequently he visits the blog he supposedly contributes to.

Randee:  If you choose to contribute something to Split Screen within one week, CONGRATULATIONS!  YOU ARE THE PROUD OWNER OF THIS FINE, COLLECTIBLE EMBLEM OF JAPANESE GAMING CULTURE!  ROCKMAN WILL BE SHIPPED TO YOUR HOME FREE OF CHARGE.

If not, I will assemble Rockman myself and place him on my own imaginary work desk.

Best of Luck!

Clock’s ticking.

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  1. I think tomorrow I’ll buy some super glue and an exacto knife.

  2. ROCKMAN UPDATE: I’m going in today for a job interview. If I get the job, I’ll mail off Rockman ASAP. If not, I’ll just bring him home with me when I return to the states on February 17 and save a few bucks.

    Thanks for your patience, amigo!

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