Back in August, I went to see the filming of Fuji TV's reality program Game Center CX. Saw the show filmed and spent the day with the crew and show's star, comedian Shinya Arino. For those not familiar with the show's premise, it's simple: Arino tries to complete vintage video games. These "challenges" are usually done in the span of a day. He's filmed playing straight through, and out of that a show is edited together. Arino is affable and pleasant — hence, the show's appeal. Watching him die over and over and over again makes you want to cheer him on. What happens when he can't finish a game? Arino says:
I don't throw a fit and smash my controller... Since the staff cheers me on, I hate it when I mess up. Like when I die, I can sense the mood in the room change, and I feel awful... When I get home, I just kinda sit there, zone out and wonder why I couldn't beat that game.
Fuji TV's Daisuke Nagashima, producer Tsuyoshi Kan, the entire crew and Arino himself were very generous with their time and with providing access. I've written up both articles for Wired on my visit and the show. Check 'em out. Marathon Man [Wired Mag] Visiting the set [Wired.com]