Boring boring boring, model companies are in the slumps in Japan, with the Chinese producing such cheap kits of all the popular subjects. So is Shizuoka going to be a complete flop?
Well, of course not, lots of clubs are present, leading to great exchange and the chance to view tons of excellent models. Even if you don't speak Japanese, modelers understand one another. Even the anal ones are welcome, flashlights, mirrors and all. There is a place for everyone.
That said, the news from the kit industry here really is dismal. Tamiya is set to release some Gundam.... bah :-)
Bandai is the only larger company doing really well at the moment.
Mind you, the 1/144 scale subjects are so well done these days, it opens up a whole new market to get people into modeling. And if they aren't attracted to models of military aircraft per se, well, there's always the lovely fantasy stuff mixed in, such as the 1/144 kits by SWEET which feature cute manga-style Japanese girls on the box, and a set of cute kittens as batmen and deck crew for the carrier deck features with their F4F, for instance.
The only positive news I have heard is that Hasegawa will likely release a next release in 1/32, following up their Fw190 A-8 and D-9 kits with Kurt Tank's Ta152 (C or H I know now).
I will be heading to Shizuoka on the 14th, stopping at Hamamatsu JASDF base to view the museum and the Zero fighter there, and then spending the 15th and 16th at the Hobby Show.
I hope to post some nice pictures when I get back.