Where to Play Crane Games In and Around Tokyo (and Win!)

Tokyo is a paradise for claw machine enthusiasts, offering a wide range of arcades and setups where you can test your skills and luck. Read this guide to get firsthand information on the best places to play crane games in and around Tokyo!

Best by area (number of arcades)

While there are at least one or two game centers around most major stations in Tokyo, the three areas below trump all others for the sheer number of them. For clarity, I only count arcades that have claw machines, and not just retro games or medal machines.

Leisureland Akihabara

Akihabara = 12 arcades

A mecca for otaku and pop culture aficionados, it seems Akihabara has the highest concentration of crane game arcades in Tokyo, which is not surprising given its reputation.

Of the 12 game arcades in Akiba that feature UFO catchers, four are run by GENDA (GiGO), three by Taito (HEY is affiliated with Taito), and two by Leisureland. The remaining arcades are Namco, GamePanic, and a small one called 遊戯場 (Amusement Space).

Ikebukuro = 11 arcades

Ikebukuro, at times referred to as the “Akihabara for female otaku,” doesn’t disappoint either in its range of game arcades. The home of GiGO, the main store was revamped and reopened in September 2023. It is a futuristic looking four story arcade with crane games on the 1F and 2F. However, plays for most machines are set at 200 yen, which is double the price of other arcades and even GiGOs you find in other areas. There are also two other smaller branches of GiGO in Ikebukuro.

GiGO main store in Ikebukuro

Other game arcades:

  • Plaza Capcom Ikebukuro – Opened in May 2024, this is the newest crane game facility in Ikebukuro. It features a wide range of gachapons in addition to crane games.
  • Tokyo Leisureland Ikebukuro branch
  • Adores x 2: Sunshine branch, Ikebukuro East Exit
  • Taito Station Ikebukuro Rosa
  • Round 1 Ikebukuro
Plaza Capcom Ikebukuro

Plus two retro game centers, which I have yet to confirm if they have claw machines:

  • Game Safari
  • Mikado Game Center

Shinjuku = 9 arcades

If you find yourself in the bustling district of Shinjuku craving some crane games action, you’re in luck. The busy metropolis is not only about shopping and nightlife, it also has a nice selection of game arcades.

Me Tokyo Shinjuku

Head to the dedicated blog post or watch the vlog to get more information on all the crane game arcades in Shinjuku.

Best by number of crane game machines

The 3rd Planet Yokohama Asobi Town

The current Guinness World Record holder for the most number of crane games in a single venue at 555, the 3rd Planet in Yokohama also has a nice festival vibe with its torii gates and lanterns. Most of all, it has the “Big Crappy” which hilariously cheer you on when playing the 10-claw machine. They also have 10 yen and 20 yen a play machines for kids.

Everyday

Everyday Tokyo main store in Yashio, Saitama Prefecture

My personal favourite and previous Guinness World Record holder, Everyday has three (soon to be four!) branches in Saitama and Tokyo. Its hook is that it is a crane game theme park in the middle of nowhere, and having customers leave happy is its the main goal. That means it takes some effort to get to the arcades, but it is more than worth it. There are a wide range of setups not often seen elsewhere, plus machines set at plays for 5 yen or 10 yen, or multiple plays for 100 yen.

Check out my writeup of the Everyday Tokyo branch in Yashio for more details, or check out the vlog of our visit to the Tamanokuni branch in west Tokyo.

Taito Station Fuchu

Another previous Guinness World Record holder, this is gaming giant Taito Corp.‘s biggest crane game arcade with over 400 machines.

Round 1 Giga Crane Game Stadiums

Round 1 Minamisuna, Tokyo

Hoping to capture the growing crane game market, Round 1 recently renovated a number of its leisure centers to create “Giga Crane Game Stadiums.” Stores with this section feature around 300 crane games, with some branches possessing even more. Check out the vlog of a visit to Round 1 Minamisuna, where I played for popular characters like Chiikawa, Yuji Nishimura’s Studio UG Friends, Pikachu and more.

See the official website for the full list of locations with Giga Crane Game Stadiums (Japanese only): https://www.round1.co.jp/service/amuse/news/crane.html

Best by ease of winning

Easy claw machine in Me Tokyo Shinjuku

While YMMV based on your skill level and the machines’ setting on the day, I have found the arcades below to offer a good playing experience and have always left with a bag of prizes. They also generally have friendly staff who are willing to assist you/reposition if you get stuck. This list is not exclusive and subject to change.

  • Everyday (all branches)
  • Me Tokyo Shinjuku
  • Tokyo Leisureland (for snacks)

If I missed any good places to play crane games in Tokyo or surrounds let me know!

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