How to Open a Gachapon?
Japan's love of toy capsules is undoubtedly a cultural phenomenon that makes it even more fascinatingly distinct and expand from kids and high school students to older men anxiously twisting a knob as their spouse waits in excitement alongside them. It has grown to be a well-liked hobby among collectors and fans everywhere. In contrast to toy capsules in other nations, gachapon in Japan is known to release high-quality, licensed, and limited-edition gremlin with images from anime, video games, idols, manga, trinkets, or specialized interests.
It goes without saying that there will eventually be a gachapon that piques everyone's interest, which explains how successful it is in persuading people to open their wallets and grab a coin. However, you should be careful before you feed your coin to the machine because it can be difficult to determine which machine will release your favorite plastic ball. After all, they are all lined up together and practically look the same. Bear in mind that the money slot and handle are underneath the box that contains your reward and that the balls fall into the hole. Here's a guide to the rich gachapon culture in Japan, from how it started to how you can open gachapon.
What is Gachapon?
Gachapon is a colorful, coin-operated vending machine stocked with capsule balls, each with a different prize inside. These can be found lining Tokyo's streets, eateries, and shopping centers. Essentially, gacha is a game of luck. Players cannot predict what toy they will receive until they open the plastic capsule ball containing each machine's prizes. These gashapon or capsule toy machines are entertaining ways to spend your spare change. Offering something adorable or uncommon is the core concept behind gachapon. The gifts found inside these plastic "eggs" frequently make for excellent keepsakes, whether tiny figurines of the newest or classic anime characters or incredibly intricate collectibles you can't live without, including kid-friendly knickknacks, small artwork, cute animals, and even face masks.
How do Gachapon Machines Get into Japan?
Gachapon is the name of both the machine and the toys that pop out of their capsules. The word gachapon comes from a distinctive Japanese onomatopoeia. The sounds of the machine handle being cracked and the toys emerging from their capsules are referred to as "Pon" and "Gacha-gacha," respectively. It was first made accessible in Japan in the 1960s. Ryuzo Shigeta, widely known as Gacha-gacha Ojiisan or, roughly translated, "Gachapon Grandpa," purchased a coin-operated reward machine resembling those found outside of supermarkets in 1960. He then loaded it with capsule balls and created the first Gachapon machine in Japan. Shigeta set out to improve the American gashapon machine he had purchased. He finally settled on putting everything in a plastic bag or capsule. Since then, the gachapon concept has grown to such an extent that several department stores have set aside areas for it, and even well-known companies like Bandai Co., who licensed the term "Gashapon," created stores just for the toy capsules. In fact, there are currently more than 360,000 gachapon machines, and new collectibles are released every month.
Where to find Gashapon Machines and Toys?
Although there are gachapon locations all across Japan, you might want to visit some of the larger centers, airports, and department stores, if you're looking for more distinctive toys. Tokyo Station is home to the Tokyo Gashapon Street, which features more than 50 distinctive capsule machines featuring everything from stationary and furnishings to odd toys and anime and manga characters. You may discover any subject you choose right here, from distinctively made gashapon to anime and manga characters.
Akihabara is another must-see gachapon location if you're an anime or manga enthusiast. You may anticipate a broad gachapon variety at numerous shops, such as Akihabara Gachapon Kaikan, with 500 capsule machines, given that the region is already a sanctuary for all things anime. The largest selection of gashapon toys in Tokyo can be found at this specialty shop, and they receive a ton of fresh, in-demand merchandise each month. Another well-known spot is the Akihabara Radio Kaikan. One of the most well-known manufacturers of anime figures, Kaiyodo, is located on the fifth level of Radio Kaikan. The store has more than 60 gashapon machines and offers both one-of-a-kind items and collaborative products.
Moreover, the new Gashapon Department Store in Ikebukuro's Sunshine City shopping complex currently has 3,000 capsule toy machines, making it the largest collection of gashapon machines ever gathered in one location. Despite not being the first Gashapon Department Store, it presently holds the title of largest thanks to its enormous 1,256 sqm of floor space. With the help of these 3,000 machines, you may pick from an incredible selection of toys.
What Kinds of Gachapon Toys to Expect?
The sheer quantity of gashapon available for collectors is a little intimidating because fresh and limited runs are released virtually every month. The toys within are all different, from random to practical to just for fun. There are anime miniatures of characters from programs like Pokémon, Gundam, Ultraman, and Doraemon available alongside lifelike food replicas. Nonetheless, there are a few standout sets that have won the hearts and minds of many over the years and continue to be popular today.
With hundreds of small figures available covering every phase of the anime's history, Gundam gashapon may be the king of all gashapon. Some of the earliest figures ever sold inside a gashapon were these Gundam figures in different styles. Nowadays, one brand-new but massively popular gashapon series developed to bring life to social media food photographs and is available in various positions, Fuchico on the Cup.
Aside from these classic and trendy gachapons, there are many more options, including food, insects, dinosaurs, animals that act oddly, like bowing or acting like office workers, and even tiny, lovely household appliances and various device. Moreover, there is a theme of eating. They'll amaze you and are always changing. One appealing aspect of gachapon is that the present you'll get depends on the machine, the season, and the machine's location. The fact that the prize you receive from a gachapon depends on the machine, the time of year, and the machine's location are one of its enticing features.
How to Open Gachapon?
One of the simplest games to play in Japan is gachapon. The first step is locating a Gachapon machine with the item you're looking for. Although you'll likely get something you don't enjoy, this heightens the game's suspense. Once you have the money in your hand, you must choose the toy you desire. After selecting your favorite gachapon machine, insert the required number of coins into the machine's coin slot. Then, crank the knob a few times until you hear the sound of the toy dropping. Take the gachapon prize by putting your hand through the opening. Usually, a trash basket for Japanese capsule toys is nearby. Remember, these gachapon toys are inside a circular plastic container.
Now to open the gachapon toys. Surprisingly, opening the circular capsules is incredibly easy once you've mastered this simple technique. First, do not remove the center wrap of the capsule. Squeeze by placing your thumbs and index fingers on either side of the gachapon capsule center. Then pull the cap's central seam, and you may now remove the surprise toy inside.
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