Retro Game Shopping in Nagoya, Japan

Nagoya, Japan
That’s nice, but where are the games?

I’ve going through the dreaded visa renewal process so I had to make a couple of trips to my nearest immigration office which means hoping on the train and going to Nagoya. Nagoya is Japan’s 4th largest city, but doesn’t really seem to have a claim to fame, at least as far as I can tell after some low effort Google searching. I think it’s actually a great place to make a day (or two) trip out of though so that’s what we did!

I’m in Game Boy Mood

For some reason the Game Boy has been on my mind lately. I’ve been sifting through crusty looking carts at my local Book-Off every few days trying to find some gems, but haven’t had much luck. Shopping in Nagoya was a different story. I didn’t get any absolute steals except for maybe the boxed copy of Kirby’s Dreamland 2, but the carts were pristine and the prices were fair. We had the best luck in the Osu shopping district where there is a Super Potato (yeah, like the one in Akihabara (Woo!)) and a store a couple of doors down that… Probably has a name too? The place didn’t look fancy and ojisan that runs it was smoking and watching Netflix behind the counter, but if you’re willing to dig, you’ll find slightly better prices than Super Potato (which you should absolutely visit).

Anyway, let’s get to the games! I managed to stay under 5000 yen (~$50), but didn’t find a donor Game Boy Color for a backlight mod at a price I was willing to pay. They ran from 4000-9000 yen depending on the condition and store. Okay, now onto the games! For real this time.

Japanese Game Boy Color games
Fun for the whole family.

I really wanted to get my hands on the Donkey Kong and Kirby games, but I couldn’t pass up Wario Land 3 or Mr. Driller. I’ve always had a soft spot for Mr. Driller since playing the arcade cabinet at a hotel in Florida (us midwesterners can’t get enough of Florida) so when I saw there was a GBC version in hidden gems video by Radical Reggie, I went on the lookout. And Donkey Kong Land 3 is a GBC game in Japan. Very neat.

Kirby's Dreamland 2 Japanese version
This is what fun looks like.

I was able to pick this up for 1200 yen (around $12) and was pretty happy with that price. I believe it was around $30 at Super Potato which probably isn’t that high all things considered, but I’m glad I found it cheaper because I probably would have bought it either way. Let’s take a look at the backside.

Kirby's Dreamland 2 back of he box Japanese version
Mm mm mmm

I didn’t find everything I wanted at prices I was willing to pay though. I don’t think there was single Mega Man game for GB or GBC under 1200 yen and I didn’t find any King of Fighters games or DuckTales , but I think I got my hands on some good stuff. I’ll wrap things up with a couple pictures from around the city as it gets ready for Christmas time.

Oasis 21 Nagoya, Japan
I like to imagine she was smiling like this as I crawled on the floor looking for Game Boy games.
Nagoya Station Christmas tree
Very jolly

Until next time!


If you want to play games in Japanese, you’ve come to the right place. Check out the vocabulary lists to get tons of words pulled from games or the Let Me Introduce You to series to see text from games with side-by-side translations. Happy studying!

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