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Thread: Ordering from Suruga-Ya: The good and bad from the Neo perspective

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    icon33.gif Ordering from Suruga-Ya: The good and bad from the Neo perspective

    I'm doing this write up because I know there are members here who have ordered from, or are have considered ordering through Suruga-Ya. I feel like there's a lot of "baggage" when it comes to buying games, especially Neo Geo AES games, through Suruga-Ya.

    For those who don't know, Suruga-Ya is a very large chain of hobby type shops in Japan with stores nationwide. They sell all generations of video games, manga, DVDs, CDs, figures, model kits, general consumer electronics, and porn. They started in 1998, and have quickly grown to be one of the largest online retailers in all of Japan.

    I'm going to be talking in terms of Neo Geo games, but the following good and bad points apply for every console they carry games for.

    What's good about them? Their prices are pretty fair for common games. You can find great deals *IF* the condition is nice. I've gotten some great prices on games in excellent condition, cheaper than anywhere outside of Japan. The selection of games that they have in stock is massive. When it comes to Neo Geo AES some games can be tough to track down. Suruga-Ya has most games that one would want, having most of the AES library in stock, ready for purchase. They also have good stock of MVS and Neo Geo CD games as well.

    What's bad about them? A lot. A lot more than the good, that's for sure. Condition is a big one. Suruga-Ya doesn't ever post pictures of the actual item with the online listing. It's always a stock photo. You don't know what condition the item is in when you purchase it. For some consoles, game condition doesn't mean a difference of hundreds of dollars in value. For the Neo Geo AES, it can.

    I have personally seen missing manuals, ripped inserts, water damaged inserts, noticeable yellowing on the insert, serious sun fade to where most color was gone, tears in the soft case, cracks/missing pieces in snaplock cases, mold damage to where the insert and manual had to be thrown away, ect... Most of these examples were close to full retail prices.

    Another gripe is the serious wait time from ordering to receiving the item. Whether you're in Japan or ordering through a proxy, the wait can be the same. You can normally expect two weeks to over a month before you or your proxy gets the item you ordered. This can be really annoying, especially with expensive orders. When shopping online, you can see the stock that their physical retail stores have. You can cut down on the wait time if you order your item from the stock of one of their stores. When ordering from a physical store location, it normally takes two days to a week at most for you/your proxy to receive the item.

    The last gripe I have with them is the problems in ordering. I have had several orders canceled due to the items being out of stock and them not having updated their site. I have also been sent the incorrect game and lost good money with no ability to return the item or get any refund.

    Basically, you can get royally screwed when buying from Suruga-Ya, or you can get a great deal. It's like playing the lottery: You can win big for what you paid, or your money can be long gone. I've been getting items from Suruga-Ya for nearly six years now, and I can say all of their issues have gotten extremely worse in the last couple years. Now you can make an informed decision when ordering, with my experience of buying hundreds of games through them. (multiple platforms, not just Neo.)


    http://www.neo-archive.com

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    How concerned are you with the likelihood of inauthenticity when placing orders?
    Last edited by andsuchisdeath; 07-28-2020 at 10:02 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by andsuchisdeath View Post
    Is inauthenticty not much of a concern when placing an order?
    In my experience, no. I haven't ever gotten a bootleg. While condition can vary wildly, I haven't had or seen any issues with the authenticity of their games.


    http://www.neo-archive.com

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    useful info but for me , i dont think it would be worth it the long wait , no ability to return / refund and possible wrong item is too much

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    I was talking to Dig about this the other day. I played my first large order from Suru in early July via the ZenMarket proxy. I'm not new to proxy buying from Japan through Zen, but I've never ordered via Suru before. It took 3 weeks for Zen to get the first of the games, and I'm still waiting for them to get the other two. These are bare carts, so I'm not concerned about condition so much - but to Dig's point, if you're looking for CIB or Mint games they probably aren't the best way to go.

    Basically, I doubt you'll be shafted, but go in knowing that you'll have to wait over a month to get your games and don't order from them if you want a pristine copy of a game.
    Last edited by yagamikun; 07-29-2020 at 05:30 AM.

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    I am a buyer from Surugaya directly since more then 6 years...

    like you mentioned stock pictures and them beeing a big chain means having to play the condition lottery...


    you might get a mint and CIB product, you might get a CD with literal hair and shit stuck to the case...



    which is why I stopped buying heavy hitter products from their site.



    for some high-level AES games they do mention the conditions or damages though.

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    I've been lucky but I've only bought 6 games from them. All have been either accurate in condition description or better.

    They can take a fucking week to get shit shipped out though, slow ass bastards.

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    Funny you mentioned them, I justed placed an order with them the other day. I've used them on and off for probably 6 years or more, and I have never had any problems from them. I've never order any homecarts from them, but have ordered Neo Geo CD games. Wish they still sold on rakuten, it was even easier back then.
    Last edited by snes_collector; 07-29-2020 at 06:37 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by snes_collector View Post
    Funny you mentioned them, I justed placed an order with them the other day. I've used them on and off for probably 6 years or more, and I have never had any problems from them. I've never order any homecarts from them, but have ordered Neo Geo CD games. Wish they still sold on rakuten, it was even easier back then.
    Oh are they shipping to the US now? There was a few things I wanted to grab. Iíll be checking that out later.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ChopstickSamurai View Post
    Oh are they shipping to the US now? There was a few things I wanted to grab. I’ll be checking that out later.
    Nah I had to use a proxy. They haven’t shipped to the United States for a few years now. I wish they’d open it up for us, but it probably does keep prices down

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    Quote Originally Posted by snes_collector View Post
    Nah I had to use a proxy. They haven’t shipped to the United States for a few years now. I wish they’d open it up for us, but it probably does keep prices down
    They opened a dedicated website for international sales, including the US. I’ve always used a proxy though, so I don’t know if they’re continuing shipping service to the US or not as of now.

    I will say, most of the issues have been from their Neo Geo games. I ordered a Real Bout Special, and I got a Real Bout for instance, with no way of recourse. I’ve basically lost over $100 in value due to that mistake that Suruga-Ya made, not to mention other condition issues which caused the games to be overpriced due to poor condition.


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    That does suck about those issues- especially on real bout special. It’s too bad they don’t list spine issues on listings

    I did not realize their dot com website was shipping to the United States now (though it looks like things will have to wait until shipping starts again) Thanks for the heads up on that
    Last edited by snes_collector; 07-29-2020 at 08:47 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by snes_collector View Post

    I did not realize their dot com website was shipping to the United States now (though it looks like things will have to wait until shipping starts again) Thanks for the heads up on that
    I just recently discovered this myself. Itís killing me not being able to order right now.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ChopstickSamurai View Post
    I just recently discovered this myself. It’s killing me not being able to order right now.
    You can use a proxy company like FromJapan or ZenMarket to buy from their Japanese website, which has more stock available than their international website. These proxy companies ship through other companies like FedEx, UPS, and DHL so you can still get packages.


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    I would be pretty anxious buying a AES game without seeing actual pictures of the item.. I do see they have the memory cards that I’ve been looking for around 30 usd which is temping.

    After hearing they sent you the wrong real bout game I think I will spend my money else where. Which Japan online shops other then yahoo auctions would you recommend?
    Last edited by MetalSlugVet; 07-30-2020 at 03:44 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MetalSlugVet View Post
    I would be pretty anxious buying a AES game without seeing actual pictures of the item.. I do see they have the memory cards that I’ve been looking for around 30 usd which is temping.

    After hearing they sent you the wrong real bout game I think I will spend my money else where. Which Japan online shops other then yahoo auctions would you recommend?
    Nin-Nin-Game is my usual go-to. You can also try the Emporium.

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    Do they actually have the stuff in stock? I've heard about Nin-Nin not actually having anything in stock. When you buy from them, they just send some guy to find a copy from a local store..
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shuri View Post
    Do they actually have the stuff in stock? I've heard about Nin-Nin not actually having anything in stock. When you buy from them, they just send some guy to find a copy from a local store..
    I imagine it is in stock but seeing as there are a network of Suruga-ya stores they just take from whatever store has it in stock. Though considering how long they take to ship out I wouldn't put them past this.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Shuri View Post
    Do they actually have the stuff in stock? I've heard about Nin-Nin not actually having anything in stock. When you buy from them, they just send some guy to find a copy from a local store..
    Nin-Nin is legit. I order from them often - from Neo games to figures to other console stuff. I've never had an issue. I've always gotten what I've paid for and shipping has never been an issue. My partner got me a copy of KOF99 (hole in my KOF collection) for my birthday this past weekend from Nin-Nin and it got here in 8 days (to Ohio - in the pandemic).


    Quote Originally Posted by lachlan View Post
    I imagine it is in stock but seeing as there are a network of Suruga-ya stores they just take from whatever store has it in stock. Though considering how long they take to ship out I wouldn't put them past this.
    Suru takes a million years to ship because of this, yes. I placed an order via ZenMarket on July 11 and while one item I ordered has arrived at their warehouse, I'm still waiting on the other two almost a month later. The products are secured, and Suru does update the listings once they have sold the product (the listings for the games I got were immediately marked out of stock when Zen secured the product). The deals, though, are well worth the wait. Edit: Just got the notice that all of my items came in! Thank god.

    The Suru online store that can ship direct to multiple countries is a bit different. Their Japanese only store (you have to use a proxy) is where the deals are, but as we've all stated, will take a while to get to you and they sometimes get the item wrong. You can pay some Proxy services to take a picture of the item when it arrives to their warehouse for a small fee (300 yen for ZenMarket) in order to ensure you got the right product before it ships from Japan, so there are some options to mitigate some of the risk of getting the wrong product.
    Last edited by yagamikun; 08-04-2020 at 08:17 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by yagamikun View Post
    Nin-Nin is legit. I order from them often - from Neo games to figures to other console stuff. I've never had an issue. I've always gotten what I've paid for and shipping has never been an issue. My partner got me a copy of KOF99 (hole in my KOF collection) for my birthday this past weekend from Nin-Nin and it got here in 8 days (to Ohio - in the pandemic).




    Suru takes a million years to ship because of this, yes. I placed an order via ZenMarket on July 11 and while one item I ordered has arrived at their warehouse, I'm still waiting on the other two almost a month later. The products are secured, and Suru does update the listings once they have sold the product (the listings for the games I got were immediately marked out of stock when Zen secured the product). The deals, though, are well worth the wait. Edit: Just got the notice that all of my items came in! Thank god.

    The Suru online store that can ship direct to multiple countries is a bit different. Their Japanese only store (you have to use a proxy) is where the deals are, but as we've all stated, will take a while to get to you and they sometimes get the item wrong. You can pay some Proxy services to take a picture of the item when it arrives to their warehouse for a small fee (300 yen for ZenMarket) in order to ensure you got the right product before it ships from Japan, so there are some options to mitigate some of the risk of getting the wrong product.
    Hearing all this from Surugaya is a bit scary. If i decide to buy more games from Japan, I might try nin nin. The site looks good. Otherwise, it's been ebay hell for me...
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    I also ordered lots off stuff from Nin Nin. Games or new stuff were all ok.
    Last order was a PC-FX and it was defective. Customer service is terrible, as a compensation they offered ~10 € store credit. They didn't even add the store credit but I won't order from them again anyway.
    When you need customer support you're pretty fucked with Nin Nin.

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    Appreciate this review as I have considered purchasing from them previously.

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    So peeps don't feel so timid ordering from Suru - here's my just received my first big order from them.

    Gotta say, I'm doubly impressed. Yes, it took a month and a half to get here (not the proxy's fault, but Suru - took them a month to send my stuff to the proxy). That said, my patience paid off. For less than $800 I got the following: An Excellent+ condition copy of Mutation Nation (complete, hardly no scratches or marks, manual, and the tray isn't even broken), a bare copy of Last Resort with a surprise amazing condition manual (seriously, this thing is crispy - game has one, small, insertion mark), and a bare copy of Last Blade 2. I got some cases/inserts from the Old Store for those.

    117726096_782447492524492_5193825235975166660_n.jpg
    Last edited by yagamikun; 08-18-2020 at 05:22 AM.

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    Hell yea! Nice pickups.

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    Very nice!

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