90s Sonic in Funabori

This is a wise old man of a Sonic, with stories to tell.

The years have peeled, curled, flaked away at him, sun-bleached him to pastels. Original hot-orange background still clinging on in the traced-out shadow of the overhanging gamezone on level 2.

He was young in the 90s. What sights must he have seen? How sublime the dreamt-of treasures whose contours met his eye? Reebok Pumps? Large T-shirts? Luxuries the world may never know again.

Sega has forgotten its elders. An unstoppable purge of ancient arcade signs has swept Tokyo and will take him soon. We must hang on his words until then.

Let’s have fun!! ON TIME!!


[Update July 2018: this beautiful billboard has been removed since I photographed it in 2017. Sad news – glad it made the Arcade Tokyo archive.]

Photographer and writer covering Tokyo arcade life – the videogames, the metropolis and the people