The theme for 2013's Tokyo Game Show is "Games: Limitless Evolution," so at an event that is giving the Japanese public its first look at the next-generation PlayStation and Xbox consoles, those in attendance could be forgiven for having high expectations. But with Japan getting short shrift from console manufacturers — neither the PlayStation 4 nor Xbox One will see release here in 2013 — the show has been low on true revelations.
Many companies have turned to Germany's Gamescom event in August as their platform for major end-of-year announcements, and earlier this month Sony chose to unveil its new PS Vita and PS Vita TV consoles at a dedicated event rather than TGS. That doesn't mean there wasn't anything to see on the show floor, however — take a look at what Japan's gaming industry had to offer this year.
Tokyo Game Show isn't actually in Tokyo — it's hosted at the cavernous Makuhari Messe convention center in Chiba prefecture. This poster guides the way from the train station.
Players of Otorenja, an iOS rhythm game from Capcom, were inexplicably egged on by men in insectoid suits and a cheerleader imprisoned in a cage.
One of the biggest booths at the show is occupied by Japanese social game company Gree, responsible for local smash hits such as Dragon Collection.
The Xbox may not have the presence in Japan that Microsoft might like, but this angular booth boasts easily the most impressive architecture on the TGS floor.
Sony, meanwhile, has gone for a more conventional array of flashing lights in PlayStation blue.
While many cosplayers can be seen on the floor, none are as heavily armed as these promoting Namco Bandai's God Eater 2.
Whoever was inside this strange bunny creature had limited visibility, as evidenced by the Sega staff required to guide it across the floor.
Although Capcom's Monster Hunter 4 was released in Japan last week, the hugely popular franchise is making a TGS appearance in the form of Monster Hunter Smart — a surprisingly impressive iPhone game due to be released soon.
Sony's ring-shaped PS Vita TV booth aims to showcase a different feature for the diminutive console in each direction.
A Dragon Quest Slime and Final Fantasy Chocobo help ensure that passers-by won't miss Square Enix's booth.
Hidetaka "Swery" Suehiro shows off D4 for Xbox One.
Handheld gaming remains far more popular in Japan than elsewhere, which explains why the TGS organizers set up this "Blue Square" for local multiplayer and 3DS StreetPass encounters.
Konami's Hideo Kojima and voice actress Yumi Kikuchi demonstrate Metal Gear Solid V at the Sony booth.
EA Sports plays to its audience in the FIFA 14 booth with this Southampton FC shirt signed by Japanese soccer star Maya Yoshida.
The history of TGS is catalogued on this long wall exhibit.
This year's TGS features a dedicated indie games area for the first time.
Done with cloud gaming and seeking a little more variety? TGS has you covered.
TGS isn't just about games. This "tablet cushion" is designed to provide optimum comfort for those times you're just too tired to lift your iPad.
Show attendees watch a big-screen episode of Game Center CX, the popular retro game challenge TV show.
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