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Media & Entertainment

Tale of 2 Tokyo 'otaku' cities: Gen Z saves one as other struggles

Fortunes of Akihabara, Ikebukuro show how young fans can make or break business

Businesses and organizations are coming together to support content creators in Akihabara through the new "Akiba 3.0" initiative. (Photo by Masaaki Morioka)

TOKYO -- Long synonymous with otaku culture, Tokyo's Akihabara district is starting to lose its luster as people obsessed with anime and manga increasingly go online to get their fix.

However, less than an hour's train ride away, another otaku enclave in Ikebukuro is thriving, showing that headwinds from e-commerce and COVID-19 can be overcome if Generation Z -- the generation after Millennials -- is on your side.

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