A few years ago I made a post about my love for Japanese arcade posters for Capcom video games. Street Fighter and Rival Schools: United By Fate and, most importantly, Marvel Super Heroes vs Street Fighter. I finally got a few framed and hung in the studio, and I wanted to talk a little about it.
More after the cut:
It started back in the mid-90’s on a place called Usenet – thousands of discussion forums where like-minded individuals could go and talk about anything: video games or sports or stamp collecting or hobby horses or thimbles or anything. I used to hang around the video game areas and talk about Sony Playstation and Sega Saturn and Nintendo games. One of the groups I liked to hang around is was a import video game area (alt.games.import – or something like that) and talk about importing Playstation or Saturn games and what the best import retailers were in the US. Somebody that lived in Japan was part of that group, and he would post pictures of all these gorgeous posters that were hanging in Japanese arcades.
One day he had some for sale. He didn’t have anything that caught my eye, but I asked if he took requests, and he said he did. I told him I was strongly interested in Capcom fighting games and if he ever came across any, if he’d maybe let me know because I’d be interested in them.
I was really into Capcom’s “versus” games: X-Men vs Street Fighter and the sequel Marvel Super Heroes vs Street Fighter. Those two games were what got me into importing video games. Then, a few weeks after making my request, I got an email from this guy saying he could get ahold of a few Capcom posters: Legion of Heroes (Rival Schools: United By Fate) and Marvel Super Heroes vs Street Fighter. Um, yes, please.
The mid-to-late 90’s were a blur for me of video games and electronic music and importing and game collecting and ordering imported posters off some guy in Japan on usenet. This was all before standard websites and stuff existed, and it was a gamble at the time to wire money to some guy across the globe and him shipping large paper posters back to the US. But, somehow it worked out.
For that period in the late 90’s I grabbed one when I could and later started working at an Electronics Boutique and I snagged a few promo posters here and there.
And then they kinda got rolled up and stored in hopes that someday I’d put them in frames and display them.
That was 21 years ago.
Back in 2015 I dug them out and I had a local framer dry-mount all of them. So that when I did get them in frames, they’d be a lot easier to frame since they were already mounted to stiff foam core.
After I moved into the new studio in 2016 and my studio-partner for that year moved out at the end of 2017 I had all these empty wall space suddenly and I knew. I knew I had to get a few of these out and hung. It had to happen.
So, using some Christmas money that Santa brought me, I grabbed my two oldest posters; MSH vs SF and Rival Schools, and I ordered some basic frames from American Frame and hung the two of them here at the studio right above where I do all my image processing.
I’m a big believer of feeling no shame or embarrassment in showcasing what you love; the things we cherish are what helps us make us who we are as individuals. If you love cats, or thimbles, or cheese, or chopsticks – share that stuff and let how it makes you feel wash over you.
I am so happy that I can look up from my computer and hanging there on the wall is a giant graphic of MSH vs SF. I love that illustration so much. It makes me so happy just looking at it.
I also have a smaller version of this illustration as a promotional poster for it’s Japanese Sega Saturn release, and I have that now hanging in our apartment:
These posters have waited a little over two decades to be displayed. I still have more (lots more – not only game posters but movie posters, and artwork, etc), but I finally was able to get at least two framed and displayed somewhere I can see them every day, and share with visitors my love for them.
Got any favorite things you like to display? Share in your comments. Tell me their story.