October 18, 2011 9:00 AM | Danny Cowan
Game Center CX host Shinya Arino stormed the streets of Los Angeles and San Francisco last month, soaking in the atmosphere of local arcades and sampling American cuisine before encountering dozens of fans at a crowded meet-and-greet event. His misadventures were compiled in a two-hour special episode, "Game Center CX In U.S.A.," which the members of the SA GCCX Team promptly translated, subtitled, and released.
In short, the special is wonderful. It fully encapsulates what makes Game Center CX so great, and I'd recommend it as a good starting point for the series, if you haven't yet seen an episode. While the Robocop challenge segment isn't the greatest (the game is so bad that it soon becomes frustrating to watch), the bulk of the special involves Arino reacting incredulously to American culture while being his adorable doofus self, which is all I wanted out of it, really.
Personal highlights: the ancient arcade games at Musee Mechanique, the visit to a laundromat, of all things, and Arino preferring In-N-Out Burger to steak and seafood. Game Center CX historian Ray Barnholt even manages to grab a decent chunk of screentime during the fan meet-up. All told, it's heartwarming as hell, and it fills me with a weird sort of pride for both my country and my hobby. Come to Texas next time, Arino! Our steak is better!