Nobody really. I'm just a guy that's been living in Japan since early 2005. I've built a nice family in that time; my wife Ai, who helps out with the site, my son Ryu and my daughter Kairi. If you know me from CAG, then you know me as dv8mad. TOP
dv8CAG is a service I started performing for a small group of people over on CheapAssGamer. In the time I have been on CAG, I have made many good friends and, although I really liked helping them out, it also began to take up more and more of my time as they told their friends. More and more CAGs were asking for my help in finding them things. I had a CAG social group setup for awhile, but I found that doing things through a forum system was very difficult when I had to try to read every single thread everyday. Due to that, I decided to create a separate site to provide my services to all CAGs that would hopefully make the entire process simpler. Since then, the site has been opened up to anyone that is looking to import something from Japan. TOP
- Why should I order from you?
Why not? Frankly, you can get most, if not all, of the services I provide somewhere else. However, in most cases, going through me is cheaper and you can feel that you are giving back to the CAG community if that's your thing. If not, maybe you can just give yourself a pat on the back for helping the little guy and his family! TOP
Yes, you can and I would be very thankful for it! Below are some links for a few small pics you can use as banner and/or forum signature links. Simply grab what you would like and link it directly to http://dv8CAG.com. If you happen to be in need of a different or specific size image, just let me know and I will get something posted for you. Also, if you happen to run a website that is somehow related to gaming, anime, Japan or anything else in general that relates, I'm more than willing to consider linking to your site as well.
Maya - Small
Chloe - Small
Maya - Mid
Duo - 250
Duo - 400
Duo - 600
Duo - 800
- Is the site available only to CAG members?
While this used to be the case, since the system itself has been improved which, subsequently, made the job a bit easier for me, the site has been opened to everyone. However, I like the option of falling back on the CAG forums to communicate with people and to resolve any issues quickly in the event of a site issue, so joining Cheapassgamer is still highly recommended. I'm sure you would all like that much better than having to foot the bill for international calls! TOP
- What is the process to submit a request?
The fastest and easiest method is to order directly through Amazon Japan using the information provided to set-up your account in the Services tab. If, however, you cannot find the item you desire on Amazon, then you may make a direct request.
It's pretty simple if you follow these steps;
1. Submit a Request via the navigation tab at the top of the page. Give as much detail and information about your request as possible
2. I will review your request and give you some ballpark figures for the item(s) + my fee(s).
3. Once you have paid and/or given the relevant information, I will activate your request and begin the process.
4. Once I have your item(s), I will contact you with final pricing including shipping.
5. The final invoice will be paid by you, the item will be shipped by me and you are all set to receive your Japanese goodies! TOP
- How long does it take to fulfill a request?
That's a very good question! Unfortunately, there are too many variables to be able to give a very specific answer. Instead, I will lay out the process for you.
After a request is submitted, depending on what it is, it may take anywhere between minutes to a couple days for me to get back to you initially. (typically up to 2 days)
Once I have gotten information to you, I have to wait for a reply and payment. (unknown)
Payment then has to process through Paypal to my bank. (typically 4 to 7 days)
The next step will be to get the item(s) for you, which can be fairly quick if I am picking it up nearby, or it could take awhile if I have to order it. (typically 1 to 10 days)
Finally, once it's received, I will weigh it and get you a shipping quote. Once again, I then depend on you to respond and make final payment before I ship via the method of your choice. (unknown) TOP
- Will _____ play on my system?
Maybe, maybe not. Please do a little research via Google if you are unsure. For the most part, older games will only play on a system from the correct region or on a modified system. There are a few exceptions to this rule.
- Nintendo portables (Gameboy, GBA, GBSP, DS, DSlite, etc.) have always been region free. The 3DS is an exception to this rule!
- Sony Playstation 3 games are also region free and blu-rays share a region between Japan and North America.
- Microsoft Xbox 360 games are hit and miss. Some are region coded and others are not. Just to shake things up a bit, some have only one region closed and two open! Google is most definitely your friend when it comes to region coding for the 360.
Please do keep in mind that, although a game may play on your system, often there is a language barrier. Not much media released in Japan is English friendly! TOP
- Will I need to buy a power converter for _____?
If you live in North America, no, you will not. Western Japan (where I live) and North America have the same power requirements for their electronics. If you live outside NA, you should expect to need the same equipment required for anything imported from NA. TOP
- What condition should I expect used games to be in?
The best thing about being a gamer in Japan is that 98% of the other gamers treat their games as priceless heirlooms. Very rarely do I buy a used game with any kind of scuffing or even smudges on the disk. If you buy a used game, you can trust that it will be playable and, in almost all cases, that it will be in like new condition. TOP
- Can I see your inventory status? Also, what's up with the Amazon Japan stuff?
Not anymore! While there used to be an actual shop, the majority of the business coming my way was in the form of requests. Due to that, I decided to focus more on that end of things and the products page now takes you directly to Amazon Japan links thorugh which you may fulfill many of your requests very easily. Please visit the Services link at the top of the page for more information on how you can order directly from Amazon Japan. TOP
- Can you find ______ for me?
It's quite possible! I do my best to fulfill all requests, even for the hard to find and rare items. Please visit the Services page for more information on how the process works. Items not found on the first attempt will be added to my special list and may be found during a subsequent shopping trip. I will keep requested items on the list for a maximum of 30 days. After that, I would suggest keeping an eye on things yourself via Yahoo! Auctions for example. If you happen to see it come up somewhere down the line, you can always make a bid request. TOP
- I found (_____) on Ebay for much less. What gives?
I may not always have the best price although, I will do my best of course. One reason may be that an item has dropped in price since being added to my list. Another, and probably more likely reason is that what you are looking at is a Chinese/Hong Kong knockoff.
99% of figures are made in China to begin with. Once their run is complete the molds should be destroyed. But hey, they are China. Good luck with that! Often, the old molds are bought up by Chinese makers and they produce their own line of cheaper quality figures. These often include lower quality paint jobs and odd cutting/trimming patterns, not to mention lower quality materials. I can't prove it, but I have it on good authority that Chinese knockoff figures are made with shark teeth, platypus feces and coated sloppily with lead based paint. Please buy from me instead. All of my products are from right here in Japan and you won't end up getting a knockoff.
Don't be fooled! TOP
- What forms of payment do you accept?
I currently accept Paypal and, as of mid 2011, I have also begun to receive some payments through Amazon Payments. Not working out and you would rather pay via money order? That can be arranged via a partner in the U.S. Please let me know about this before I move forward with any request as, unless a very small amount of money, the payment must be received before the item(s) can be ordered/shipped. TOP
- How can I cancel my order?
Contact us as soon as possible with any order changes. Just like on CAG, once something has gone through, I would expect you to keep up your end of the deal. But, I will do what I can to understand your situation and look into canceling.
Service fees will not be returned, but the cost of the items will.
If an item has already been shipped to you, I will expect you to return it to me, at your cost, in the same condition it left here and, upon verification, I will process your refund.
Yahoo! Auctions are quite a different story. I cannot cancel a bid I have made so, in that case, neither can you. All we can do is hope that you are outbid on the item. In the event that you are not, depending on the item, condition and auction price, we may be able to work out a deal where a partial refund is given. This will be case-by-case as I will have to decide if it is an item I will be able to "unload" or if I will be stuck with it for a long period of time.
Canceling an order will put you on "probation" and canceling a second order will lose your ordering privileges on this site. Please do your best to ensure that you really want what you ask for. TOP
- How long will you hold my items?
Most items on the site are paid for upfront, so this typically isn't an issue, but in the event that I have not had contact and/or final payment from you for 30 days, I will contact you requesting payment once again. Items, that have been held for 90 days without attempted payment will be 100% forfeit even if only partial payment is due. I simply do not have the space to store your items for such a long period of time. Of course, I'm not unreasonable and can work with you to hold an item if something came up that you could not control. Items being held for unreasonable amounts of time (i.e. months) will be considered abandoned and may be sold off and refunded at 50% not including fees. Please work with me, and I will work with you. Non-communication should not be an option.
- What are the differences in shipping?
There are currently five regular shipping options through dv8CAG.
- EMS is the fastest method; typically arriving within 7 business days and sometimes as soon as 4 business days. It includes insurance on your items up to ￥20,000 (larger amounts may be purchased) and is trackable via the internet. Safest and most secure!
- Air (above 2kg) is a step under EMS. It's trackable and it will typically arrive within 7-10 days of shipment.
- SAL (above 2kg) is the method of choice when you want most of the benefits of EMS/Air, but don't really care about how long it takes to make it to you. SAL packages will typically arrive within 2 weeks of shipment but sometimes take longer depending on postal load.
- Surface Mail is the cheapest method for larger/heavier packages. Most of the journey is by boat and, although they advertise that it may arrive within 40 days, I can say from personal experience that it is very often closer to 90 days. Although technically trackable via the internet, expect to see it marked "In Transit" for weeks and weeks. dv8CAG is not responsible for "gorilla handling" of packages.
- Small Packet (Air/SAL) is a great option for smaller packages and lighter items. Although it is not trackable unless you spring for the extra fee, it costs quite a bit less than standard methods. The maximum weight for these packages is 2 kg (approx 4.4 lbs) and they must also fall within the size restrictions outlined by Japan Post. If your package is under 2kg and 90cm overall, the Air and SAL options you are given will automatically be these. The shipping times are the same as the above listed Air and SAL services, but they do not include tracking.
One rare occasions, other methods are used, most notably when shipping huge packages such as futon sets. I will provide a rough estimate to you before anything is finalized for items like this.
Also, in the event that someone orders ONLY printed materials such as books or magazines, there is a printed matter option. If it applies to you, we will give you the option during the final billing process.
- How do you determine shipping prices?
Shipping prices are based on item weight. There is a small percentage of "weight" added to each item in anticipation of packing materials. I feel that we have the best shipping prices around, as the goal is not to overcharge and make a few extra bucks (or yen!), but to get your package to you at an affordable price that meets your needs. While prices were exact cost at the beginning, they have since been raised a few yen here and there to help keep me in packing supplies. TOP
- Will customs go through my package?
Customs reserves the right to go through any package they desire. Everyday, hundreds of packages are randomly inspected. Usually, this is no problem, but there have been times when packages have been delayed for weeks even though they are just sitting in a customs container somewhere. Please understand that I cannot do anything about customs inspections or delays. TOP
- Will they do anything else?
They may choose to charge you a customs fee for your items. We will not be marking items as gifts in order to avoid customs charges. We can take it a little easy on the value though if your package is not insured to try and make sure you are not hit with any extra fees.
It should also be noted that you are solely responsible for knowing what you can and cannot receive in your country. I won't be responsible for your item(s) being confiscated if you order something you can't receive. That said, not everything gets checked, so if you are rolling the dice, that's up to you. TOP
- Do you have written Terms of Sale?
Not so much. I'm not sure that we need to at this point. It should be a fairly straight forward process. While not having a specific ToS page, everything is set up in a fairly logical way on the site in my opinion. But, if you ever have any questions, feel free to ask! TOP
- Do you have a Privacy Notice?
Yes, and this is it:
dv8CAG will never give, sell, lend or otherwise consciously allow your information to go to a 3rd party without your direct consent. In the event that we were ever to offer some type of service such as this, you could all expect direct emails BEFORE any changes occurred allowing you to opt-in. In the event that you did not respond to the email, we would assume you opted-out, not the other way around as many businesses do things. I don't want your personal information and, if there were a way to ship to you without it, I would be all for it. Your info is safe with me! TOP
If you have a question about a pending request, please use the "Submit a Request" link above to add a note to your existing request.
If you have any other questions, feel free to visit the forums and post a question in the Site/Order Discussion forums. If you'd prefer a more private way of contacting us, please fill out the form here
If you're looking to just chat with some of the regular visitors to the site, visit the Chat link at the top to introduce yourself to everybody.
Alternatively, you can often catch me on CAG as user dv8mad. TOP
- Are there any restricted items?
Unfortunately, yes. Items with batteries are currently banned from shipment to the U.S. and other countries have limited shipping options for items containing batteries as detailed in this news post.
Here is a link (in Japanese) from the Japan Post website for those curious.
Aside from those items, I don't care what you buy. If you can think of it, I have probably shipped it! TOP
- How do you feel about us using your service to "flip" products?
I didn't put much thought about adding this to the site, because I honestly thought it wouldn't be an issue. Unfortunately, it has become one recently and, of course, the response was "Well, you didn't say anything about us not doing it!"...
Yes, it's true, I didn't.
I also didn't say don't gouge your eyes out with the products I send you, so have at it.
Honestly, if you get items and you flip them, I can't stop you and, in most cases, I won't know. If you are going nuts and buying a dozen expensive figures to flip, I may inquire as to the reasoning and ask that you also recommend my service to the people you are reselling to.
One thing I REALLY don't like though, is buying or receiving items for you and then being asked to ship them to multiple people at multiple destinations.
Please do not ask me to do this as I am not comfortable being the 3rd (or,technically, 4th) party.