Space Invader Treasure Hunt in Tokyo


2020.03.11

NAVITIME TRAVEL EDITOR

Space invaders, Tokyo is still under attack from the blast of the past that still inspires many fans. Hunting down its pieces can be one fun way to explore a city. It may seem prehistoric nowadays, but its games are still on hit, most recent one to be launched in March 2020. As part of the mystery Frenchman’s “attacks”, he has pasted a wide variety of Space Invaders-themed mosaics in Tokyo. Let’s see how many we can spot…

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    Space Invader Treasure Hunt

    Taking the Tokyo Invader Map found online, it was a challenge to hunt down many of the Space Invaders pieces scattered around in this labyrinth of small streets with a collection of vintage and secondhand boutiques and shops in Harajuku. Of all, this was far most the easiest to spot.

    On the far end of the street on the right side, can you detect the mosaic art?

    On the far end of the street on the right side, can you detect the mosaic art?

    TK80 Space Invader Street Art, found it!

    TK80 Space Invader Street Art, found it!

    Having heart palpitation from finding the first ever Space Invaders mosaic street art, with excitement to find more, the map took me to the next place. The only clue other than the map was a picture of the art so the only way to discover this hidden invaders was to match it with the actual scenery you are standing at.Many of these mosaic streetarts are pasted up on buildings high above street level or below hidden in a place where you wouldn’t think to look, so don’t forget to stop and take a 360 degree turn around. And when you do find it, you’re rewarded with a random little Invader surprise. (Maybe there is a better map that is more up to date however, the one I used only had a tiny picture of the art and not much surrounding so I had to use my imagination to visualize)
    After hunting down one, comes the rush of addiction to score high to capture as many as possible, however, my heart was torn apart when I finally arrived at the site to see some of the art was demolished.

    bottle (top left),TK35 (top right),TK69ABC(bottom right) and TK43 (bottom left) were all gone but the remains were barely visible

    bottle (top left),TK35 (top right),TK69ABC(bottom right) and TK43 (bottom left) were all gone but the remains were barely visible

  • Better luck next time, all in all it was a new fun way to see the town from different perspectives. Within just 90 minutes, many of the pieces that were centered in Harajuku/Omotesando area was easily found if familiar with the area and have a good map to guide you. Because of the never ending evolving city, many of the buildings that supposed to have had the mosaic art, were gone, making it super hard to visualize and search through its remains.
    My urge to tracking them were causing irritation and after sundown, I’ve decided to restart my hunt, this time in Shibuya. From the rumors, mosaic art may be themed and adapted to a particular location; in Japan probably being the Astro Boy by Osamu Tezuka.

    Under the elevated rail tracks of JR line hides Astro Boy

    Under the elevated rail tracks of JR line hides Astro Boy

    Tower Records Shibuya
    place
    Tokyo Shibuya-ku Jinnan 1-22-14
    phone
    0334963661
    opening-hour
    11:00-22:00
    View Allarrow

    For this hunt, one crucial item to make the search even exciting and competitive is the FlashInvaders app, free to download on your smartphone. This connects worldwide hunters to show off how many you’ve found by allowing you to snap a photo of each invader. You can zoom in while using the camera on this app so even if the mosaic art is high up, you can still be able to capture it. Once captured, it will show the catalog number, date of creation and the name of the piece. And what’s great about it is that you can score points for hunting down the invaders.

    Ta-da! I got you Astro Boy!

    Ta-da! I got you Astro Boy!

  • One final catch of the day was just a minute walk from Astro Boy. There seems to be a lot more in Shibuya and its surrounding areas so my hunt shall continue…
    Happy hunting everyone!

    Can you see where the invader is?

    Can you see where the invader is?

    Cute little red guy kind of camouflaged on the wall

    Cute little red guy kind of camouflaged on the wall

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