The day thousands of Japanese gamers have been waiting for has almost arrived. It’s now February 21 in Japan, and that can mean only one thing: PlayStation 4 is less than 24 hours away!
Earlier tonight, our reporter extraordinaire Mr. Sato headed over to Sony’s flagship store in Tokyo’s Ginza District to join the gamers who just couldn’t wait any longer to get their hands on the console and to document the special launch event Sony would be laying on in honour of PlayStation 4’s decidedly late arrival.
PlayStation 4 may have debuted months ago in other regions, but video game fans in Sony’s homeland were given a decidedly raw deal in having no choice but to wait until February 22 in order to get their hands on the console.
The Japanese electronics giant cited a desire to provide software that would “appeal to Japanese audiences” as the main reason for the delay, but a number of industry analysts and hardcore gamers alike interpreted the move as Sony opting to supply North America and Europe, where PlayStation 4 is in direct competition with Microsoft’s Xbox One, with as many units as possible. Knowing that it is in no danger of losing ground to Microsoft on its home turf any time soon and with competitor Nintendo floundering throughout much of 2013, Sony found itself in the rather unique position of being able to tell its home fans to sit tight while everyone else got their DualShock 4 on without fear of (too much) reprisal.
But tomorrow – February 22, 2014 – Japan finally joins the rest of the world and PlayStation 4 officially goes fully global. With a whopping 5.3 million units already sold, Sony is off to a phenomenal start with its newest home console, and if the vast number of preorders for PS4 are anything to go by, is set to clean in up in Japan too.
Ever the gamers, we sent Mr. Sato over to Ginza to check out the action and see how much buzz there was for PlayStation 4 now that it is finally arriving in Japan. According to our man, the mood in the waiting line is good, people are growing increasingly excited to get their hands on the new hardware, and despite Tokyo recently having some of the heaviest snow in decades, “it’s not all that cold” on the streets of Ginza right now.
At of 01:00 a.m. on February 21, still many hours before doors open, there were roughly 21 people waiting outside Sony’s flagship store, and Sony is promising 30 people entry to a special celebratory launch event, so if you’re hoping to take part in a little bit of nerdy history, we suggest getting down there sharpish! Plus, you’d get to meet Mr. Sato!
We’ll have more on the Japanese launch of the PlayStation 4 very soon!
▼ A sign tells buyers that a lottery would be held to determine the order in which they could buy the console.
▼ “First Limited Pack” purchasers get a free download code for 3-D platform beat-’em-up Knack