I arrived early at Akihabara station and was browsing through my simple Japanese for beginners book when Bernard arrived at the station as well. As we had agreed to meet with Bas Vijfwinkel to go to Odaiba in 2 hours, we instantly hit the Akihabara streets. Although times were most certainly a lot better in the past, it still is an amazing experience to walk into a store and find a pile of MSX software on the shelves. We started at the shop with by far the largest MSX collection in Akihabara, Super Potato, where we spotted (and bought) a Japanese version of L'Affaire, released by Pack-in Video, of which we both didn't even know it existed. I got my hands on a nicely looking copy of Mr. Chin, a game which I played for many hours when I was young. We also spotted an ASCII game with a penguin of which we never had heard before, but the price was quite steep and the graphics on the back of the box didn't look all to promising. A short walk lead us to Trader2, who had some very nice titles (including both Metal Gear 1 and Metal Gear 2: Solid Snake) on the shelves. I spotted a Kings Valley 2 in mint condition and decided to take it home with me as well. Rieks will probably never forgive me I left the equally good looking Aleste 1 behind. At Softmap we received the bad news that they were to close their MSX section soon. The good thing about this was that the prices of their remaining MSX collection had dropped considerably, and I couldn't have lived with myself if I had not bought the good-looking complete 5th anniversary edition of Hydlide 3, which even included the original cassette tape, for only 480 yen. Afther that we headed back to the railway station where we met Bas Vijfwinkel. (Some of you might remember Bas as the editor of MCCM's Tech Talk.)

The three of us headed for Odaiba, a trip which lead us by computer-controlled monorail across the Rainbow Bridge (one of the many impressive sights of Tokyo). Right at the railway station is the beautiful building of Fuji Television and the Japanese statue of liberty. Unfortunately we had to change our plans of going to Sega's Joypolis, as this state of the art entertainment center was closed due to a lethal accident a few weeks ago. Supposedly one of the visitors thought it would be a smart idea to unfasten his seatbelts in one of the wild attractions. We wandered around in the Fuji Television for a while and then headed for Harajuku. The area around here is absolutely unbelievable. It's the playground for teens with an alternative edge. On the surroundings of the station you'll find teens in the wildest punk outfits and costumes whilst a shopping street that leads towards Shibuya (Takeshita-dori) is full with shops where those outfits and all the goodies and food that come with this lifestyle can be bought. The contrast with the Meiji Shrine and Yoyogi park, that are both located on the other side of the station, could not be bigger. At the end of the day we moved to Nakano, where Bas guided us to a warehouse full of 'Otaku' shops. From costumes to T-Shirts, from toys to laserdiscs, anything that can be collected can be found over here. Apart from MSX games, that is ;). After a nice 'western style' diner in a department store near the station, the time had come to go back to the hotel and prepare for the day to come: MSX World 2005.

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