Replaying Japan 2024 – Conference Information

Keynote Speakers

The Ritsumeikan Center for Game Studies (RCGS) was established to cater to the growing interest of overseas game researchers in Japanese games and to promote insights from game researchers in Japan to a global audience. They have been collaborating with overseas research institutions such as the University of Alberta and now with the University at Buffalo, SUNY, to host the international conference on Japanese games called Replaying Japan. Since the conference’s inception in 2012, there has been an intentional effort to share industry insights in an academic context. The conference has hosted keynote lectures, featuring prominent individuals who have been at the forefront of the Japanese gaming industry, sharing valuable insights into their experiences developing games and related hardware. This tradition continues to this day. RCGS itself was launched in response to an initiative by Mr. Masayuki Uemura (1943 – 2021), the chief developer of the Family Computer (Nintendo Entertainment System), who began teaching has been teaching at Ritsumeikan University since 2004.

Over the years, Replaying Japan has hosted influential figures like Mr. Masayuki Uemura, Mr. Tomohiro Nishikado (Space Invaders), Mr. Toru Iwata (Pac-Man), Mr. Masanobu Endo (Xevious), Mr. Hironobu Sakaguchi (The Final Fantasy Franchise), Mr. Thomas J. Kalinske (former SEGA America), and Mr. Hirokazu Hamamura (Famitsu Group). These individuals have played a significant role in the Japanese game industry, along with game designers such as Mr. Masaya Matsuura (PaRappa the Rapper) and Mr. Toru Kawakatsu (Gnosia), who introduced unique games to the world.

Mr. Taro Yoko

For the 2024 Replaying Japan conference, we are proud to welcome Mr. Yoko Taro as part of this esteemed list of game industry legends, with a focus on the theme of A.I. and Creativity. His work Nier Automata (2017), which has achieved a global circulation of over 7 million copies and received numerous accolades, is renowned for its focus on AI-themed storytelling, making him a perfect fit for the conference’s theme.

Tentatively titled, “World Building in an AI-Integrated Society from the Perspective of Japanese Game Creators,” Mr. Yoko’s presentation will explore various aspects of his creative process in relation to topics such as how AI became a central theme central themes in game experiences long before technology became as ubiquitous in our daily lives as it is today.

Dr. Jon-Paul Dyson

In celebration of the conference, which will be held in tandem with the Video Game Preservation Conference happening at The Strong National Museum of Play, we are thrilled to announce another prominent keynote, Dr. Jon-Paul Dyson, who is the Director of the International Center for the History of Electronic Games and Vice President for Exhibits at the Strong National Museum of Play in Rochester, New York. 

As Director of ICHEG, Jon-Paul has supervised the growth of the collection to more than 65,000 video games and related artifacts and hundreds of thousands of associated library and archival materials, the most comprehensive such collection in the world. He is also in charge of the research, development, fabrication, and maintenance of highly interactive, artifact-rich exhibits at The Strong that explore the past and present of play and are visited by nearly 700,000 people a year. In 2023, the museum opened a 90,000 sq. ft. expansion that included Digital Worlds, a series of exhibits on the history of video games.

Venue and Dates

Monday, August 19 (Center for the Arts, University at Buffalo, SUNY, North Campus)
Tuesday, August 20 (Center for the Arts, University at Buffalo, SUNY, North Campus)
Wednesday, August 21 (The Strong National Museum of Play, Rochester NY)
Tickets are required for anyone not presenting at the Save the Games: A Digital Preservation Symposium at The Strong National Museum of Play.
Purchase your tickets here.


The program can be accessed here.

A .pdf version of the programme will soon be made available.

For all non-presenting guests and non-student volunteers, please fill out this form to help us keep tabs on the number of guests attending the conference.

Dinner Reception and Coach Service

Purchase your ticket to the dinner reception or coach service here.
Note: There are limited seats available for the coach bus.
For all presenting participants, your purchased tickets will be placed inside your nametag holder, which you will pick up during registration (Monday, August 19 and Tuesday, August 20, from 8:30 to 8:55 a.m.).
For non-presenting participants, tickets can be picked up during the registration period (8:30-8:55 a.m.) at one of the registration tables in the lobby area of the Center for the Arts (University at Buffalo, 100 Coventry Rd, Amherst, NY 14228, United States).

of guests attending the conference.


For those traveling to the conference venue by car, we have three lots available.
Slee A, Slee B and Baird A. These lots do not require a parking permit. View the lots here.


  • The Mosey: ($174 USD per night plus tax) – Reserve by July 14, 2024

    5195 Main Street, Williamsville, New York 14221 USA
  • The Fairfield: ($164 USD plus tax per night) – Reserve by July 14, 2024

    3880 Rensch Road Amherst, New York 14228 USA
  • The Hyatt Place: ($139 USD USD plus tax per night) – Reserve by July 19, 2024 \

    5020 Main Street Amherst, New York 14226 USA
NOTE: The Hyatt Place is the only hotel that offers free shuttle services from the airport directly to the hotel. Guests should call 716-839-4040 and select option 0 (zero).
For those staying at The Mosey or The Fairfield you may consider taking an Uber, Lyft and/or a taxi service. It will take around 20 minutes from Buffalo International Airport to the hotels. Below, you will find links to Google Maps, should you want to take public transit to your hotel. Please be sure to update the time/date:

The Prince Takamado Japan Centre Essay Contest

The Prince Takamado Japan Centre (The University of Alberta) will be awarding two essay prizes (2000 words) to the best student presentations on Japanese games. Cash prize amount TBD.

Contact Information

This year’s conference is made possible thanks to members, collaborators, organizers and/or cosponsors from the following institutions and organizations:

From the University at Buffalo, SUNY

●      Asian Studies Program

●      Asia Research Institute

●      College of Arts and Sciences Events Team

●      Department of Media Study

●      Department of Art

●      Department of Linguistics

●      Department of History

●      Department of English

●      Institute for Artificial Intelligence and Data Science

●      Level Up

●      Red Jacket

●      Buffalo Esports

●      Center for the Arts


The Strong National Museum of Play

Rochester Institute of Technology

RIT Esports

Ritsumeikan Center for Game Studies (Ritsumeikan University)

Prince Takamado Center, University of Alberta

Japan Culture Center of Western New York

Visit Buffalo

Visit Rochester


Questions regarding the conference should be directed to Dr. Mimi Okabe ( with the subject line: Replaying Japan 2024 – xxxx