Pachinko is the Japanese electronic gambling game of chance equivalent to western slot machines. It is basically a vertical pinball machine (without flippers) that shoots a large amount of metal balls from the top by turning a lever, into a sea of metal pins that bounce the balls in all kinds of directions. Finding the perfect position for the lever aims the balls perfectly towards the target at the bottom.
Getting a certain amount of balls into a specific area opens bonuses and special features…..and this is where the excitement begins. Getting these features gains you more balls to play with and eventually collect and exchange for prizes or golden coins (which can be exchanged for money away from the pachinko hall, as gambling is illegal in Japan).
Make sure to wear your ear plugs though if playing for a long time, talking from experience. The whole place is a sensory overload of flashing lights beeping, tunes and of course the sound of metal balls moving around in hundreds of machines.
I played recently for the first time and found it so much fun, I just played on the cheap ball machine but kept getting features which even though I didn’t understand what was happening it kept me wanting to play on. Defiantly recommend trying whether you like gambling or just a bit of fun.
Qoo is non-carbonated fruit drink made by Coca-Cola. Released in 1999 in Japan it was released aimed at the child and teen market.
It is available in a number of yummy flavours including grape and orange, with white grape being the most popular, being available in McDonald’s outlets. The name Qoo comes from the reaction the mascot has from tasting the beverage.
A Ryokan is a Japanese traditional inn (originating from the Edo period). This type of in features all kinds of traditional features such as tatami matted floors, communal baths and lovely gardens and usually set in beautiful places. Guests wear traditional clothing and can experience lovely foods put on by the owners.
Ryokan tend to be located outside of the major cities and tend to be a lot more expensive than normal hotels but if you wish to experience something a bit different this is the best place to stay.
The decoration is very traditional with sliding doors and communal areas where guests can interact with each other. The sleeping arrangements will consist of a futon which you unroll each night, directly onto the tatami floor.
Although the price is high usually the scenic locations and traditional way of living is very appealing to all kinds of guests.