While in the west the concept of “booth babes” has been reviled by the hostile media, in Asia and in Japan it’s still very popular. Tokyo Game Show is no exception, and pretty much every publisher has its booth ladies, or “Booth Companions” as they are named locally.
Some are in cosplay, while others wear outfits representing the brand. Some developers have just one or two, while the largest publishers may have a small army. Sony Computer Entertainment takes it to a whole different level.
Sony’s booth companions stand out from the crowd because of their dress style. While most publishers tend to go for the sexy impact, Sony aims for the stylish, with an outfit that could be worn with no shame on a catwalk, and somewhat calls back to the style worn by airline hostesses.
Which is why I used the term “lady.” They definitely dress the part, and their behavior is nothing short of ladylike. They’re the true Yamato Nadeshiko of gaming.
They’re also no mere eyecandy either. Behind the impeccable make-up and perfect hair, their job is to assist players while being unobtrusive. Their competence in the games on the show floor quite often puts to shame the journalists that have to play them. I lost count on how many times I saw a not exactly skilled journo subtly and kindly pulled out of trouble by the ever present lady manning the demo station.
Before, I talked about “small armies,” and Sony shows its “power” as one of the biggest publishers at the show even with the number of booth companions. There are 75 in total, and their closing parade at the end of the day is a spectacle in its own right.
They line in front of the booth facing the audience, they bow in a “wave” formation three times, while thanking the audience with a formal “arigato gozaimashita.” Then they file out, orderly and graceful like a military regiment on mid heels.
Since I like sharing, I filmed them for your perusal. Check it out below.