Left with half of your spending money bought over to Japan? Worry about the prices of otaku goods? Fear not!
Instead of spending most of the remanding amount of money over at Akihabara (Akiba), you might want to head down to Lashinbang (らしんばん) over at Ikebukuro.
Just look out of the blue signs and cute mascot character. There is even a sign that welcomes you!
If Akihabara is the place for the new stuff, Lashinbang (らしんばん) is known for it’s hard-to-find anime collectibles, doujinshis and also second-hand goods.
What’s so good about Lashinbang is that it’s second-hand doujins are a real steal. Don’t let the word “second-hand” turn you off. The doujins are kept at a very high quality and are usually sold at a cheaper price.
I didn’t really visit the 1st floor of Lashinbang at all.. but from the signs, it’s mostly girl-oriented goods, the normal manga and cosplay goods. You might want to take a quick look inside though. Girls might be more interested in them.
What most people are interested in, are the stuff that’s located on the second floor. The stairwell to the second floor is located right on the right-side of the main entrance. You can’t miss it! It’s just underneath the 「共永ビル」 sign in the first photo.
What’s on the second floor then?!
Take a quick glance at the poster on the right and take note of the words 「男性向同人読」. It roughly means “guy-oriented books”, which also implies that a whole lot of ero-stuff awaits there. Just a flight of stairs and you will be hit with a whole lot of ero-stuff. Besides the ero-stuff, there are also anime CDs and DVDs to grab. They are usually second-hand (I think). There are also figures sold there as well. I remember seeing that WF-limited Lucy Maria Misora going at 7,000 yen…
There are also limited edition phone cards which are stored in display cabinets. Just tell the shopkeeper “すみませんが、これ買えたいです…” (Sumimasen ga, kore kaetai desu | Excuse me, I would like to purchase this) while pointing to the display cabinet and they should come and assist you shortly. Not that I tried, but I’ve seen people doing that.
If you’re interested in doujinshis, do remember the names of your favorite artists and circle group as most of the doujinshis have been categorized into that. There are tabs which indicates the circle group followed by the artist name. I didn’t remember most of the artist names so I had to run through the whole doujinshi section ^^;
For those who are not too familiar with circle groups and the artist names, don’t fret as there’s a small section that has doujinshis categorized under anime titles. Lucky Star and Gurren Lagann doujins are pretty popular at the moment.
Like most anime stores, Lashinbang has a point card system as well. Spend and build up your credits. I remember maxing out one card after my second purchase ^^; Once you max out a card, you can use it to get a 500 yen discount off your next purchase.
How to I get there then, you ask?
From Shinjuku Station, take the Yamanote line (Pale Green) to Ikebukuro Station. Once there, head towards the East Exit. There’s a International ATM along the East Exit so you can withdraw some cash if you’re low on it.
Once you’re out of the exit, just follow the map to Lashinbang.
Below’s two night shots I took while in Ikebukuro.
If you’re hungry after all that shopping at Lashinbang, there’s a couple of food places where you can grab some grub.