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Tokyo Game Show 2015, Japan’s largest gaming trade show event (think E3), has officially wrapped up for another year. Once again I made the long 13-hour flight from Toronto to the land of the rising sun to take part in this grand gaming spectacle where Japanese game publishers unveil their latest creations. The show floor was absolutely buzzing with excitement and I had my camera ready to capture all the incredible sights—let’s take a peak!

Dazzling, eye-popping booths

At Tokyo Game Show (TGS for short), the many participating game publishers go to great lengths to produce the most beautiful game booths you’ll ever see. From huge statues of iconic video characters, to gorgeous hanging artwork, to mesmerizing gigantic screens, TGS is an audio-visual sensory overload from the minute you walk in.

To give you a sense of just how massive this event is, it fills all 11 halls of Tokyo’s Makuhari Messe, the city’s largest convention centre with over 800,000 square feet of space, and total attendance this year came in at 268,446 (compare that to E3’s attendance of 52,200). With so much capacity, and so many people, game publishers go to great lengths to set-up stunning booths that attract as many eyes and foot traffic as possible.

Below are just some of the incredible booths from this year’s TGS:

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Left: Capcom’s Street Fighter V hanging art | Right: Bandai Namco’s huge Mobile Suit Gundam “mecha” helmet

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Left: Sony’s Gravity Daze (Gravity Rush in North America) statue | Right: Bandai Namco’s Entertainment Stadium

Hundreds of game stations

Of course it wouldn’t be a video game trade show without games to play, and TGS sure had games in spades. Of the 1,283 games at the show, 244 exhibited titles were for current-gen game consoles (Wii U, PS4, Xbox One, Nintendo 3DS, PS Vita). Most of these games were playable, with only a handful presented solely as game trailers.

What I find really exciting about TGS is that in contrast to E3, which tends to show games releasing this fall, games at TGS typically won’t see a North American release until the following year, or longer. That’s because a lot of these titles still release first in Japan, and are then localized for western audiences. In a sense then, TGS is an exciting window into the next year of gaming, and beyond. 

Great examples of what I mean are Gravity Daze Remastered (called Gravity Rush Remastered in North America) and Monster Hunter X, two games releasing this fall in Japan. We’ll be getting Gravity Rush Remastered here in Canada on February 9, 2016, and as of right now, Monster Hunter X doesn’t even have a western release date. It was amazing to have a chance to play these games, and many more, so early. 

Here’s a look both of these games on the TGS show floor:

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Left: Gravity Daze Remastered at the PlayStation booth | Monster Hunter X at the Capcom booth

Interactive areas

Another aspect TGS is famous for is its interactive booths. This year I got to participate in numerous fun attractions such as posing as a samurai warrior, and dressing as Link, both in the Koei booth, and wielding a giant God Eater sword in the Namco booth. Also, a highlight for me was having my face superimposed on a Titan from Attack on Titan!

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Left: Me pretending to be a samurai in the Koei booth | Right: a fan grasps a huge digitally created God Eater sword

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Left: me doing my best Link pose | Right: my face superimposed on a Titan from Attack on Titan

Awesome Cosplay

No TGS recap would be complete without mentioning the incredible “cosplayers” (a short-form for “costumed players”) on the show floor, and outside in a specially designated area. Take a look at these amazing outfits!

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Well, that’s a wrap! Hope you enjoyed the photos and stories; be sure to let me know your thoughts in the comments section below!

Click here to find all of the games that have been released and are available for preorder now. We’ll be sure to keep you informed as new ones get announced.