Sega Akihabara 2nd, the multi-story port full of arcade cabinets and gacha games, closed in late August after being open for 17 years. The building was perhaps the most recognizable landmark in Tokyo's vibrant, gadget-filled Akihabara center that draws many tourists. If you've played any of the great yakuza games, chances are you've spent time playing Sega arcade games in a virtual version of Sega's Akihabara 2nd, or something that reminds you.
The closure of this building is not a sign that Sega arcade cabinets and the like will be disappearing from Japan – just from this building. As so many on Twitter have noticed, it's just another log in the already too long book "2020 Sucks". Hideki Naganuma, the Japanese composer who created the popular Jet Set radio soundtrack at Sega, appeared to be praising the closure of the building in a cryptic tweet shared earlier today.
I was fortunate to have visited the building on my honeymoon in Japan in 2017. The intersection in front of Sega Akihabara 2nd was filled with YouTubers b-roll for what I think was a delicious video compilation. I liked the bold orange colors of the building, but it was more fun looking around, which felt so far from anything I could experience in the US – even when I was looking for it.
A view of the first floor at Sega Akihabara 2nd.
Photo by Cameron Faulkner / The Verge
Having visited only once for a short time, I am not qualified to tell you about the impact of this building's closure on Akihabara. However, you should visit the area anyway if you get the chance. I promise it will be unforgettable. And if video games are your thing, Super Potato is still out there, along with a number of other mom and pop game stores. Hopefully what ultimately takes the place of this Sega building looks just as cool.