I’m often asked by people of what is the establishment with the Space Invaders character (more of a pop culture icon) in Japan.
The store is called Taito Station and Space Invaders was a Taito arcade video game created by Tomohiro Nishikado back in 1978. The game was a major success worldwide in the arcades and was also even more popular for the Atari 2600 in 1980.
While Taito was a popular corporation back in the ’80s, Taito is now a subsidiary of Square Enix Holdings, its parent company. The company continues to be a video game developer and publisher of arcade hardware and mobile phones, but also an operator of many video arcades known as Taito Station.
According to Taito, “TAITO STATION is one of the leading names in Japanese arcade gaming. Featuring the latest selection of arcade games, prize games boasting popular anime and manga memorabilia, ultra-realistic and high-tech virtual games, photo sticker booths and more! A fun, uniquely Japanese experience is guaranteed!”
Taito Station is often seen on television as variety shows, dramas or even video games, showcasing people trying to play old school video games or taking part in a UFO catcher game (claw game where you try to pick up an object or stuffed animal and drop it into a slot) and more. Many people venture to Taito Station also for the purikura booths and it’s a popular area for teens or families to visit.
Here are a few examples of people at Taito Station.