Photo/Illutration People flock to the Tokyo Game Show, with booths promoting new games and the latest technology, in Makuhari Messe, Chiba, on Sept. 15. (Jin Nishioka)

CHIBA--Video game lovers are flocking once again to see all the latest products in person at the Tokyo Game Show, one of the largest in the industry, which has been held online the past two years.

More than 600 companies and organizations from Japan and abroad are taking part in the event being held at Chiba’s Makuhari Messe convention center, near Tokyo.

Gamers lined up at booths introducing the hottest new products and models on Sept. 15, the opening day of the show.

The event was held online in 2020 and 2021 due to novel coronavirus pandemic restrictions.

This year, a virtual reality space, where gamers can participate through a dedicated application, is being offered like last year.

The show is bringing new games using technologies such as the metaverse, a virtual space on the internet, into the spotlight.

The U.S.-based Meta company, owner of Facebook, exhibited its VR headset “Meta Quest 2.”

Quest store content sales surpassed $1 billion (143.33 billion yen), Meta announced in February. The metaverse market using VR is expanding.

One company presented a system in which players can buy and sell rare items in games as NFTs, or non-fungible tokens that are difficult to replicate, and earn money while playing.

From Japan, major game companies such as Konami Group Corp. and Square Enix Co. are attending the show.

Game console giants Nintendo Co. and Sony Interactive Entertainment Inc. are exhibiting only for business and online participants.

The show is open to the public from the afternoon of Sept. 16 and will run until Sept. 18.

Admission is 2,300 yen ($16) for a one-day ticket and 1,300 yen for an afternoon pass.

Participants must purchase tickets online in advance. Elementary school students and those younger are not allowed to attend.