Pachinko is a Japanese gaming device used for amusement and gambling. A pachinko machine resembles a vertical pinball machine, but with no flippers and a large number of relatively small balls.
The player shoots a ball up into the machine, controlling only its initial speed. The ball then cascades down through a dense forest of pins. In most cases, the ball falls to the bottom and is lost, but if it instead goes into certain pockets, more balls are released. Wow, how exciting 🙂
Because gambling for cash is illegal in Japan, balls won cannot be exchanged directly for cash in the parlor. Instead, the balls are exchanged for token prizes, which can then be taken outside and traded in for cash, separate from the parlor.
Pachinko parlors are a lot like casinos in Las Vegas and also often feature a number of slot machines.
The pictures in this post were taken in Ikebukuro, and of course you can find Pachinko parlors everywhere in Japan. I have never tried this game yet – anyway, Pachinko parlors are too noisy and smoke-filled for me. Do you regularly play Pachinko?