Nintendo's game character Super Mario is displayed at Nintendo Tokyo. Reuters
Nintendo this week throws open the doors to its first bricks-and-mortar store in Tokyo, offering everything from Super Mario mugs to Zelda handbags as part of a new gaming complex in the heart of the city.
Set in a refashioned department store on one floor just minutes from the famed "scramble crossing" in Shibuya district, the giant retail space also includes shops selling merchandise from some of the biggest names in gaming including Capcom and Pokemon.
Nintendo's outlet is the game giant's first directly operated in Japan, and only its second worldwide following a similar New York shop.
"Young people and foreign people flock to Shibuya. We picked this location, aiming to attract a wide range of people," a Nintendo official said at a press preview before Friday's official opening.
Half its stock will be available exclusively at the store, with the 1,000 items on sale ranging from game hardware and software to clothing, mugs and stationery branded with Mario, Zelda and other characters from the firm's hit game titles.
On the same floor are several shops offering goods by other big-name gaming brands, in what officials hope will become a major draw for tourists and local fans of Japanese games and comics.
Next to the Nintendo store is a shop offering physical versions of items seen in the Touken Ranbu video game, including a silver hand mirror in a wooden box on sale for around $460.
Another store offers items from Monster Hunter and other Capcom games, while a third specialises in goods featuring heroes from "One Piece" and other manga comics that have grown from the popular JUMP weekly.
There's even a Pokemon Center shop, with swanky offerings featuring the game's famed star character Pikachu — including a statuette studded with Swarovski crystals.
Nintendo has had enormous success with its Switch console, and unveiled the pocket-sized Switch Lite earlier this year.
It has also seen brisk demand for its games, with this year's releases "Super Mario Maker 2", "The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening" and "Fire Emblem: Three Houses" all becoming multimillion-unit sellers.
Best known as a historic pastime among Europe's upper crust, croquet has found an unlikely fan base among Vietnamese retirees eager to fill their diaries and move their limbs.
They have few places to practise, no government funding and little public support, but Vietnam's first national skateboard team are carrying high hopes of winning medals for their country.
On wasteland once used for earthquake drills in the small town of Otawara north of Tokyo, Japanese giant Shiseido has built its first domestic factory in 36 years, hoping to capitalise on a boom for "Made in Japan" cosmetics.
The unsettling images, shared on social media by a local animal rights advocate, drew impassioned responses from thousands around the world. But it wasn’t enough to save two lionesses at the Khartoum zoo, said local activist Zuhair Al Sarag.
The footage showed the delivery man, identified as Burak S., spitting on the pizza and recording the moment on his mobile phone. His motive was unknown.
Considered one of the oldest comedians in the world, an 86-year-old Lynn Ruth Miller brings her audience into splits the minute she gets on stage.