Store sign for Role & Roll Station

Farewell to Role & Roll Station

View of a store isle, the majority of which is empty. Some TRPG books are visible on the right.

Sadly, Role & Roll Station in Akihabara closed its doors on May 29th, 2022. It was my gateway to analog gaming in Japan, and I have many fond memories of the time I spent there. Thanks to their events, I was able to make a lot of new friends. I made two pilgrimages before it closed.

A Bit of Luck

Sealed fukubukuro

My first trip was during Golden Week. I usually don’t purchase fukubukuro (lucky bag), but Role & Roll Station offered a “final” bag, so I decided to test my luck. Lucky bags contain items the store has selected and placed in a bag you buy for a set price. The contents are worth more than the price paid, so you get them at a discount. Some stores let you know the exact contents, but in this case, it was a completely blind buy.

The bag cost 10,000 Yen and contained about 15,000 Yen worth of games. The games in my bag were: The Refuge: Terror from the Deep, Pirate Legends, Super Strongman XX, and Sokushinbutsu! (即身仏になろう). That last game is about an ascetic practice of self-mummification (sokushinbutsu), and was a submission to a game contents held by Group SNE.

Contents of the fukubukuro.

A Final Adventure

My second trip was on the shop’s final day to participate in an Adventure’s League D&D game Peril at the Port. It was my first D&D game in over a year, and my first offline session since before the pandemic. It was fitting that both the first and last events I participated in at Role and Roll Station were AL games.

Map of D&D combat. Initiative cards on the left and dinosaurs mixing it up with various miniatures in the center.Being a special event, the staff went all out, coordinating the four tables that worked to solve the same mystery. After the main session concluded, all the tables shared information and selected a course of action by voting. The room was full of exuberance as the event built to its climax, with the players barely succeeding. The store manager concluded the event with a speech.

The Adventure Continues

Role & Roll Station is gone, and on top of that, the Japanese version of D&D discontinued, but there’s talk of the Adventurer’s League continuing at a new venue in the future.

5 thoughts on “Farewell to Role & Roll Station”

    1. Not sure of the exact reason. They moved locations in November, 2020, and then this year shutdown, so it’s plausible the pandemic had some effect.

  1. Giant Hobby in Koenji has closed, so you might want to update your Tokyo shops post to reflect this …

    1. Thanks for the heads up. Looks like they moved to Bunkyō-ku. Glad that they’re still around. They were really nice helping me get started painting miniatures again after a long hiatus. Will update the shop list and double check all of them to make sure they’re all up to date. Thanks again!

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