If Osaka is a miniature Tokyo, Den Den Town is the miniature Akihabara. The massive posters and murals of anime, videogame and film characters. The arcades, capsule toys and claw machines. The floors and floors of action figures, retro videogames, memorabilia and statues.
It doesn’t quite have the wow factor of Akihabara. Den Den Town is smaller and less showy, mixed into the other shopping districts of Osaka. This is no doubt more convenient, and means the prices are less exaggerated, but it doesn’t feel as exciting to visit.
There are far fewer arcades and novelty attractions, but there is plenty to find if one explores the nooks and crannies. Tiny arcades hiding in what appear to be garages, cute ranges of retro toys, a whole incredible second floor of Transformers. One arcade had a little museum display celebrating the Tekken series.
If you’re a geek in Osaka with some spending money to splash, I’d definitely hit Den Den up, but it doesn’t feel like somewhere I absolutely needed to visit in the same way as Akihabara. Maybe it was just being a nineties kid and constantly reading about the likes of Super Potato Tokyo in Nintendo magazines?