Score a real gem in this high-class crane game.

A unique UFO catcher in Saitama where you have the chance of winning real gemstones has caught people’s eyes after it was featured on Japan’s Monday Late Show (Getsuyou kara yo fukashi) on March 21.

The game center it is located within, Everyday, is already famous for having a whopping 309 “UFO catcher” crane games, has made frequent appearances on Japanese TV, and has also been visited by Japanese YouTube superstar Hikakin. With so many units to fill with prizes, it’s no wonder they’ve expanded beyond the usual scope of stuffed toys and plastic figurines.

The reporters for the show went to check out the center’s current biggest earner, a UFO catcher which offers real gemstones, including rubies and diamonds – if you can grab them, that is. These two cute ladies from YouTube channel BonBonTV also went along and tried their hand at the famed crane game, and you can see for yourself what it’s all about in the video below.

So the big question is: how hard is it to win one of these precious stones?

As you can see in the video above, the gems are buried in a tray of a pink sand-like substance, and are stowed safely inside little boxes with plastic tags by which the hook can catch them. When the Monday Late Show presenters went to check it out for themselves, they were armed with 5,000 yen (US$44), with one try on the machine costing 100 yen (around 90 cents). After 500 tries, they were able to scoop up a grand total of… six gems. Sure, that’s not so many, but they then took the stones to a gem expert who verified and valued them at a whopping 46,000 yen (US$405)!! This would imply that, given extreme patience and skill, you could potentially turn playing this particular crane game into a full-time job?!


The YouTubers here also had suspiciously good luck, winning a blue sapphire apparently on their first try. However, as anyone who has ever tried a UFO catcher knows, this is highly unusual. I’m not immune to the “just one more go” phenomenon myself, and am certainly guilty of frittering away a ridiculous amount because I’ll definitely get the item I’m aiming for on the next try… Probably… Maybe. Those 100-yen coins add up quickly! The moral being, you might want to take this supposed evidence of easy wins with a pinch of salt.


That being said, it’s potentially worth wasting a few thousand yen on this machine if you end up hitting it big with an elusive diamond or a ruby. Just make sure you set yourself a hard spending limit beforehand!

If you’re in the Saitama area, go ahead and check out UFO Everyday at the location below. They provide an English-language website, and at the center they have “Crane Game Advisors” certified by the Japan Crane Game Association on standby to help you out with your technique!

With all those crane games to choose from, there’s bound to be something that takes your fancy, and who knows – you might even win something!

Arcade information
UFO Everyday
Address: 644-1 Shimooshi, Gyoda, Saitama
Tel: 048-598-8649
Open: Weekday 12:00 – 24:00, Saturday 10:00 – 24:00, Sunday 10:00 – 23:00
Website [English] Website [Japanese]

Source: AOL News JP
Images: BonBonTV on YouTube