If you like anime or Japanese culture in general and live in the UK, Hyper Japan is a highly recommended event. The event was executed far better than last year, opting for a more open-spaced venue that was packed with Japanese things, like food (takoyaki is DELICIOUS by the way), manga, anime DVDs, artwork, and some live performances.
Being from Japan itself, Nintendo played a big part, with quite a big section dedicated to the gaming giant there. There were many games for attendees to try out, ranging from recently released titles like Yo-Kai Watch to those yet to arrive, like Dragon Quest VII: Fragments of the Forgotten Past. In addition, there was the Nintendo Official UK Store, where I was able to get a sweet Splatoon plushie. Splatoon and Pokkén Tournament were also on display, and whilst these are not as recent, the titles were certainly welcome given the social atmosphere they bring.
One of the bigger areas was for 3DS Adventures, showcasing upcoming and recent RPG and adventure games coming to the Nintendo 3DS. From the amazing Fire Emblem Fates to the hack-and-slash Hyrule Warriors Legends, you are guaranteed to find something to suit your taste. I was able to play some Monster Hunter Generations too, and I quite enjoyed my short time as a Palico. Yo-Kai Watch had its own exclusive area, with various stations to play the game, a neat cinema area to watch the show, and the chance to perform the Yo-Kai Watch dance with a green screen. Along with other games like Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney: Spirit of Justice, Kirby: Planet Robobot, and Azure Striker Gunvolt 2, there was no shortage of games to get your hands on.
Speaking of games, I didn’t have to chance to play many games Nintendo had on display. One of the few was Tokyo Mirage Sessions #FE, and despite not having a clue where I was going, I found the combat system to be quite enjoyable. Another I played was Rhythm Paradise Megamix, due out in Europe on October the 21st. It seems to carry on the same charm and fun that it is well-known for, but if there had to be one bad thing about the demo, it was that Ringside was only playable as a tutorial.
So I didn’t actually do that much playing, compared to last year at least. But, the stage show more than made up for it. The presenters did another amazing job at bringing excitement to Nintendo fans with the games they were talking about and their pure enthusiasm. The audience were able to get involved, and special guests like reps from SEGA, Bandai Namco, Square Enix and Capcom to battle it out in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U or Monster Hunter pros from Arekkz Gaming. To top it off, The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild was put on show, which explored some Bokoblin hideouts and the Magnesis rune. If there was one highlight, it was the amazing stage show.
And that was just about my experience with this year’s Hyper Japan. All in all, it was a great event. It didn’t feel excluded like at the O2 last year, and there was a lot more going on. Nintendo UK had a wonderful show there, and time will tell how it can potentially top this.