Shinjuku is Inception come true for those looking to see into the future – skyscrapers touching the clouds, high-rise buildings so close that they’re almost touching.
But take a few flight of stairs up an old building in the sanchome district and you’ll find yourself transported to the 80s of gaming history – eight-bit pop songs quietly playing in the background as men in suits looking for a post-work break race each other in Mario Kart.
Both a daytime cafe and nighttime bar, it’s a cozy place, made even cozier by the sheer amount of gaming paraphernalia here. A tabletop arcade game. A Virtual Boy. A figurine of the boss from Dragon Quest. It feels like a museum, but unlike a museum, you’re free to touch and play with the stuff inside, as fits the motto: a place for adults to play after school.
The drinks list will delight any gamer, with names like Princess Peach (a sweet, nectary drink) and Dr. Mario (served in a beaker). You have the regular range of cocktails too, but if you want something with more of a punch, there’s Hadouken beer from UK brewery Tiny Rebel. The food is great for a meal or a snack if you just want something to nibble on as you browse (and draw in) the many guest books, read a few comics or play with new friends on the 10-player co-op game.
You’ll find people of all nationalities here from evening until morning, because it doesn’t matter where you’re from – everyone can bond over a little Mario Kart.