The one that caught my eye encapsulated all the danger and excitement of Pachinko’s shady underbelly. The box encourages this; a man with a gun, with a title for the game suggesting rival pachinko gangs fighting for control. When I see ‘Pachinko Wars’ on a box, I imagine part bouncy ball emulation, part shooting. The title sequence continues this idea. It’s either a rip off of Cowboy Bebop’s introduction or a homage to a seventies style cop show. Either way there's flashy music, trendy split screens and guys with guns.
His shift ends and after flirting with a co-worker and sharing his true angry feelings with his boss (or so I imagine) this wild rouge is free to roam the streets. With luck on his side and a disregard for the law there's only one place he's heading- he's going to bounce some tiny balls around.
There’s always a danger of feeling 'Gaijin' when playing un-translated Japanese games. You can’t understand the menus, so often there is a great deal of hope selecting from options that it will progress the game. The NPCs are either giving me hints, advancing a rich involving narrative or insulting me – it’s impossible to tell. Fortunately I do have knowledge of how Pachinko works to fall back on. Without it this game would be impenetrable. I head to the back of the hall, there’s a girl behind a desk. After exchanging money for ball barings, I guide my little Link-esque avatar around the Pachinko parlour and select a machine. Now the fun really begins, it’s the moment I bought this game for having been too scared to do it in real life. It’s time to Pachinko.
|REACH ! (I of course started singing S Club 7 when it happened!)|
To import games from Japan, eBay isn't your only option though. I always check on sites like Solaris Japan as often they have a game in stock cheaper than the final price it goes for on eBay. The also have a few gadget that removes any worry of getting charged extra at customs, so they're worth a look.
I must again stress that I played an Untranslated version of this game, so if I have missed anything through not undersatnding it properly I appologise. I would love to know more from anyone who does understand whats going on. My knowledge of Pachinko is based soley on what I have read in books or online and my person experience in Japan. To help explain this, I have included a link to my Travel Vlog which shows some hot Pachinko action. Hopefully this helps anyone who has never had the opportunity to witness the madness themselves!