Silk Hat Arcade in Japan to Officially Close its Doors Next Year

Silk Hat Arcade in Japan to Officially Close its Doors Next Year

Silk Hat Ikebukuro revealed the devastating news on Twitter. The famous arcade will be sorely missed by many.

Silk Hat Ikebukuro, the famous Japanese arcade that has been an integral part of the shopping district’s landscape, will be officially and permanently closing its doors on January 11th, 2021 according to a status update made on their official Twitter account. The status, posted below, states:

“Thank you always for your patronage. We sincerely apologize, but Silk Hat Ikebukuro will be permanently closing on January 11. The entire staff would like to express out heartfelt appreciation to all of our customers who have lovingly supported us for so long.”

Silk Hat Ikebukuro is a large-scale Japanese arcade with a lineup of joystick-and-button video games, crane games/UFO catchers, interactive card games, music/rhythm games, and sticker picture booths. Unfortunately the seemingly evergreen Japanese arcade industry (at least compared to the US market) has been suffering even before coronavirus hit, as the rise of PC and online gaming has eroded the market audience for years. But the pandemic seems to be the final tipping point for many of them.

Silk Hat isn’t the only major arcade that met the same fate. On August 30th Sega previously closed down its iconic arcade in Akihabara, the famous “electronics and otaku mecca” of Tokyo.

Previously they announced that it would shift a significant part of its arcades game development staff to consoles. Famitsu then reached out to the company regarding the news of Sega Group selling 85.1% shares of Sega Entertainment to Genda. The shares transfer, happening on December 30th, 2020, means that most of over 200 Amusement centers and Game Centers owned by Sega in Japan will now be owned by Genda. Most likely many shops will be closed as the sale was decided on due to the crisis many shops are facing with said pandemic.

For more of an in-depth look into the ins and outs of the arcade business and why Sega made this decision and its consequences, check out this detailed breakdown from our Senior News Editor Iyane Agossah.