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Arcade Games + Karaoke SUPER FUN PACK

What's better than devoting a night to a geeky Japanese hobby? Devoting a night to TWO geeky Japanese hobbies! Yes, December's dose of merriment will be initiated by a Friday evening romp through San Francisco's Japantown as we hit up a video game arcade, then hop across the street to a karaoke bar to croon the rest of the night away.

The opening event takes place at Playland Japan, a niche-y arcade specializing in games popular in its homeland (though there are some familiar staples like DDR). I've never been, but it's probably safe to expect a generous share of weirdness, complexity, and insanity... plus toy prizes that are way up there on the cute-o-meter. The Yelp reviews are favorable, aside from most games costing $1 and the claw machines being "rigged" :)

My casual suggestion is for every other person to buy $20 worth of tokens (that way you get a few bonus tokens), split em up with a partner, and then jump ship when we're fresh out of 1UPs. Which in my case shouldn't take more than an hour.

Destination dos is Milo Lounge, a public karaoke bar that also contains rentable private rooms. I don't think the play is worth the pay though ($347), so we'll be sticking to the public portion.
***UPDATE: Milo Lounge is out of the picture; see the comments below.***

For anyone who's only interested in half the evening, feel free to join us for either the button mashing or the caterwauling. But join us nonetheless.

-Koopa

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  • Dianne L.

    So great to meet everyone! Thanks for coming and see you at the next one!

    2 · 6 days ago

  • Christian R.

    Hey guys I am here at Playland Japan and I don't see you

    December 2

  • Christian R.

    Hey I am looking forward to this event! Where are we going to be meeting up at Playland Japan?

    December 2

    • Karaoke K.

      I'm trying to eat ramen downstairs at Suzu. Sorry if I end up a few mins late. Actually, let me stall the start time to 7:45 to prevent this, muhahaha.

      December 2

    • Karaoke K.

      I B here

      December 2

  • Dianne L.

    Down for anything! Thanks for the updates Koopa!

    1 · December 1

  • Karaoke K.

    Update: Playland Japan is still on like Donkey Kong, but Milo Lounge no workie.

    I gave all the Yelp reviews one more looksee and stumbled upon a crucial comment: on Fri/Sat nights in the karaoke lounge area, they DON'T TAKE REQUESTS, instead just putting songs on random play (I called in, and they confirmed). Kinda defeats the point of karaoke, eh? All nights also have a 2-drink/$20 minimum, so nevermind this place altogether.

    December 1

    • Karaoke K.

      The good news is there are EIGHT other joints within a quarter-mile! The best is probably Fillmore Karaoke, a collection of private rooms that run ~$6/hour/person. The others don't sound so great:
      -Playground; Do Re Mi; Town Music = all use that cheesy Korean system with MIDI instruments and random livestock footage
      -Dimples = a bar with private rooms, but Korean system again, and $75/hour
      -Level 2; Pagoda Cafe = each has few reviews and sounds weak
      -Festa; Mogura = two Japanese bars in the same mall as Playland. Festa is ok. Mogura might be cool, but they say it's too small for all but the tiniest groups.

      I think I'll shoot for getting us a room at Fillmore. The thing is, they take same-day call-ins but don't officially do reservations. It's a gamble.

      If Fillmore doesn't pan out, we can try our luck with one of dem other places, or head a mile east to Encore Lounge (a public bar). It ain't Japantown, but it's something.

      I'm doing what I can here...

      1 · December 1

    • Karaoke K.

      BTW if anyone has any strong preference between reserving a room at Fillmore vs. just winging it and trying out Mogura (probably the best of the rest), speak now or forever hold your peace!

      From what I can gather from the 41 reviews, Mogura is a tiny, cute, and [very] Japanese bar where you take off your shoes, sit around a shared counter, and karaoke (if you wanna). One-drink minimum (doesn't have to be alcohol); $2 per song. I'm curious, I must say.

      1 · December 1

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