Inside a Book-Off in Shibuya
Book-Off is Japan’s largest chain of used bookstores. They have over 850 stores and they all sell books, manga, CDs, DVDs and video games. You can find great bargains here and they usually have what you’re looking for, even new music for a couple of hundred yens less.
So I got my friend Shiranwa to go take a few pictures of the inside of a Book-Off in Shibuya for you all, as I was too busy looking for good 80’s J-pop last time I was there.
The Book-Off stores usually have several floors, it can be a bit surprising because they often look rather tiny from outside!
Games for all sorts of consoles available, but lots and lots of DS games especially.
Gotta love that neon yellow color.
Before you buy any games, I recommend checking whether your gaming device is region locked or not. You wouldn’t want to end up with a pile of games you can’t play!
The music section is like heaven, you can find all kinds of cool obscure stuff that you’d never find at Tower Records or HMV. It can be a little bit difficult to find what you’re looking for unless you know the artist’s name in kanji. There’s usually a “foreign music” section which is sorted alphabetically, but the Japanese sections are usually sorted by hiragana, so you should at least know that, unless you dare to ask the staff of course^^
Books, books, and more books…
They also have Blu-rays, but I don’t have a Blu-ray player so that’s just a section I pass by. I never really got the idea of Blu-ray and HD-DVDs, the discs are dying, long live streaming!
Some really cheap manga to be found in the Book-Offs!
In the same building, on the fourth floor is CLUB QUATTRO, I much rather go there than to a Book-Off :P
And on the basement floor you’ll find used clothes, I’ve never been there myself but it’s probably worth a try.
They’re usually not very crowded which is pretty nice.
Especially manga is something I wouldn’t buy new in Japan, unless we’re talking about erotic manga… Although I wouldn’t buy erotic manga in the first place xD
And what’s any Japanese store without these little toy vending machines?^^
Nearby Book-Offs, in case you didn’t find what you were looking for.
And that’s a Book-Off! Let me know what you think about this chain if you’ve been there. I personally love it, although I don’t really like CDs that much, you just can’t find certain things anywhere else!