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As Japan's population greys, video games now target 'silver generation'

Published on Mar 6, 2014 1:03 PM
 

YOKOHAMA, Japan (AFP) - At a nursing home in suburban Tokyo, 88-year-old Mr Saburo Sakamoto darts his fingers energetically to catch characters that appear on a touch screen in front of him.

Peals of laughter erupt from the other side of the room full of octogenarians as they wallop plastic alligators that appear from little holes or wield foam hammers to crush frogs as they pop up.

"The ladies here are very agile, so it's almost impossible for me to beat them," says Mr Sakamoto as he catches his breath and watches several women easily outscore him on the game he is playing.

The nursing home is run by an offshoot of Namco Bandai, the company behind 1980s arcade phenomenon PacMan, whose pill-popping escapades helped bring video games to a mass youth market.

 
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