Thursday, September 15, 2016

Yu Suzuki Arcade Games at Retro Games Exhibition in Saitama, Japan

A retro games exhibition is currently being held at the "SKIP City" complex in Saitama which features arcade and home console (specifically, the Nintendo Entertainment System) games from the 1980s.

Note: a new video interview with Yu Suzuki has been released for the occasion! In it, Suzuki speaks about some of his arcade games at Sega like Hang On & Afterburner as well as game creation in general. This interview is in Japanese only, so I am planning to translate it into English. I will post it up as soon as it is completed.

Update: I have finished adding translated captions to the video. View it here.

The exhibition runs through to March next year.

Overview of the Exhibition

The following information is translated from the event home page.

Last year, "Stage One" of the exhibition was held, with multiple areas covering a diverse range of games representative of the era from the birth of digital games through to 1982. With the core of the exhibition displaying game cabinets that could actually be played, a great many visitors attended and had fun while learning about things such as the graphics technology and how the machines worked.

Now, "Stage Two" turns the focus to digital games from 1983 to 1990. A number of epoch-making digital games from this area will be featured in detail, including arcade games which were entering a golden age, the new era of the home console as represented by the NES, as well as the appearance of large ride-on style arcade games to oppose the home console threat.

Exhibition Highlights:

1. More than 50 games on exhibition. From revolutionary 1980s arcade games to big home console hits - all games playable.

Arcade games:

Xevious (1983 / Namco), Mappy (1983 / Namco), Mario Brothers (1983 / Nintendo), Major Havoc (1983 / Atari), Libble Rabble (1983 / Namco), The Big Pro-Wrestling (1983 / Technos Japan), The Tower of Druaga (1984 / Namco), VS. Wrecking Crew (1984 / Nintendo), Excite Bike (1984 / Nintendo), Ice Climber (1985 / Nintendo), TwinBee (1985 / Konami), Marble Madness (1985 / Atari), Gradius (1985 / Konami), Space Harrier (1985 / Sega), Gauntlet (1986 / Atari), Renegade (1986 / Technos Japan), Salamander (1986 / Konami), The Genji and the Heike Clans (1986 / Namco), Out Run (1986 / Sega), Karnov's Revenge (1987 / Data East), Super Hang-On (1987 / Sega), R-Type (1987 / Irem), After Burner II (1987 / Sega), Tetris (1988 / Sega), Night Striker (1989 / Taito), Darius II (1989 / Taito) + more.
On display until 11th December only: Excite Bike, Ice Climber, Salamander, The Genji and the Heike Clans 
On display from 13th December only: Wrecking Crew, Karnov's Revenge, R-Type, Tetris

Home console games:

Donkey Kong (1983 / Nintendo), Super Mario Brothers (1985 / Nintendo), Bomber Man (1985 / Hudson), Legend of Zelda (1986 / Nintendo), Dragon Quest (1986 / Enix), Star Soldier (1986 / Hudson), Nobunaga's Ambition (1986 / Koei), Ys (1987 / Nihon Falcom), Gradius 2 (1987 / Konami), Final Fantasy (1987 / Square), R-Type I (1988 / Hudson), Mother (1987 / Nintendo), The Super Shinobi (1989 / Sega), The Final Fantasy Legend (1989 / Square), Nam-1975 (1990 / SNK), Magician Lord (1990 / Alpha Denshi), Super Mario World (1990 / Nintendo), F-Zero (1990 / Nintendo), Actraiser (1990 / Enix) + more.

2. Special area for Xevious, Nintendo Entertainment System & Sega Ride-on Games

This area includes interviews with developers and valuable development documents. Naturally, all games displayed are playable.

Sega ride-on games
(Left) Xevious. (Center) Super Hang-On. (Right) After Burner II

3. A Detailed Look at How Game Music is Made

A hands-on display that explains how music is played on a digital game machine, with a focus on some representative game music of the 1980s.

Game music chip
Gradius II (1989, Taito)

Exhibition Details

  • Event name: "Asobo! Game-ten (Stage 2). Game Center vs Famicon"
  • Location: SKIP City, Kawaguchi, Saitama
  • Event duration: 10 September 2016 ~ 12 March 2017
  • Entry hours: 9.30am ~ 5.30pm
  • Entry fee: 510 yen
  • Official home page:

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