Last month, hundreds of fans gathered in Tokyo’s Ikebukuro to say goodbye to an iconic arcade. After 28 years, Sega Ikekuburo Gigo called it a day. But this month, a new Sega arcade will open right across the way.
Covid-19 has hurt arcades in Japan, but as Kotaku previously reported, Sega Ikebukuro Gigo closed because its lease agreement ended. “If it were in my power, I’d want to stay open forever at this location and greet the happy faces of our wonderful customers,” the arcade’s manager said at Sega Ikebukuro Gigo’s closing ceremony. “Unfortunately, at this time, the way it turned out was, the arcade has closed.”
— セガ池袋 (@SEGA_ikebukuro) October 16, 2021
Fortunately, Ikebukuro will get a new Sega arcade that’s located right across the street from the old Gigo location — and it’ll get it soon.
Genda Sega Entertainment, the company created after Sega sold off 85 per cent of its arcade business, is opening a new arcade on October 22. Dubbed Sega Ikebukuro, the four-story building will be home to three fours of crane games, with a café on the top floor. Arcade games will be playable in the basement.
As you’d expect, the crane games will offer limited edition prizes among other game and anime-themed goodies.
It’s good to see a new Sega arcade opening, but Sega arcade fans might be disappointed that the distribution of space is overwhelmingly in favour of crane games. In traditional Japanese arcades, crane games take up one floor, typically the first, with the other floors dedicated to specific genres of arcade games.
The press release for the arcade mentions that Genda Sega Entertainment is preparing further development in the Ikebukuro area, adding that this is the first in the company’s “Ikebukuro Project.” This likely means there will be more Sega-branded arcade gaming coming to the area. If so, hopefully that means future locations will be focused on different styles of arcade games.