Tokyo’s Pokémon Centers already keep up a strong trade among tourists, but Nintendo is about to add one more stop to the itinerary. In a corporate management briefing on Feb 1, president Shuntaro Furukawa announced plans to open the company’s second store in the Shibuya Parco building, set to re-open in fall 2019 as part of the Udagawacho 15 District Redevelopment Project.
Nintendo New York began life as the first Pokémon Center outside Japan, opening in 2001. It was rebranded in 2005 as Nintendo World, then to its current name in 2016. But while there have been Pokémon Centers around Japan since 1998, we’ve had to wait until now to find a general Nintendo store on its home turf.
Nintendo is hoping its store will be more than just a place to try out consoles and games, hoover up merch and bask in the glory of childhood dreams realized. In his statement, President Furukawa said:
“We are hoping it will be a new point of contact between consumers and Nintendo that a wide range of people, regardless of age, gender, or experience with games can enjoy.”
“In addition to selling products such as video game systems, software and character-based merchandise, we plan to host events and offer opportunities to play games, and are preparing to make this shop a new base for communicating Nintendo information in Japan,” he added.
Nintendo Tokyo isn’t the only building project on the horizon. As well as Nintendo Labo exhibits at two Kidzania amusement parks, the company is working with Universal Studios Japan to bring its Super Nintendo World to the masses in time for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.
With all this going on, it’s probably best to book your tickets to Japan and start queuing ASAP. Let’s-a-go!