During my last refuel stop at the Fujiya Japanese Market, I picked up a card for a store called Gamer Zone. They’re located in Gilbert, a fair distance from the market located in Tempe. I figured I would hit them up whenever I was out that way.
I found the store in what seemed to be a deserted strip mall. There were a few main stores, but a lot of the spaces were available for future storefronts. I wasn’t impressed with the exterior, but I was in for a surprise.
The interior of the store was very impressive, the store looks like it might have been a FuncoLand in the past. The racks were full of all the game goodness of yesteryear. In addition to games, they carried a good amount of similar nichey items like figurines, and plushie toys. There was a good anime presence as well, even though a lot of their stuff was older, they still had something to offer.
I remember way back in the day, Gamestop / EB Games use to offer used DVDs. Now, you only find this at independently owned stores. They also had an interesting set of wall scrolls available. These were mostly Naruto scrolls, but I did happen to find an old school Ghost in the Shell scroll.
In addition to the wall scrolls, various soundtracks were being sold. In the mix of these CDs, I found a good number of jpop and kpop albums. I picked up Hamasaki Ayumi’s White album, another one to add to the collection. After comparing prices online, I saved about $30.
I checked the other side of their case, it was full of import games, mostly Dreamcast and Mega Drive games. They had a pretty decent selection, and I was really impressed to see that they had a copy of Shin Megami Tensei for the Mega Drive CD, I have never seen that copy in existence before.
Don’t you just hate it when you by a used game and the instruction manual is missing? Same here. I had to laugh when I saw that they had containers with all types of instruction manuals being offered for a few cents.
The staff were very friendly, and knowledgeable. They were fairly humble and didn’t have the elitist attitude I have encountered at other stores.
I have to say overall, this is a very cool place to check out. They offer a great game selection, and yet its one of the only other stores I’ve seen to try and offer other niche products like Japanese candy, anime, wall scrolls, apperal, etc… I feel that if this place updated its anime selection, and wall scrolls, it would be the near perfect one stop shop.
If you are ever in the Gilbert area, I highly recommend checking this place out.