The internet lit up last week when news came of Namco closing a bunch of their arcades and news sites were quick to jump on the news that between the Nintendo Wii and high gas prices people have decided to stay away from arcades. Well I didn’t buy that story – I mean I like the Wii but I don’t think that it’s an “arcade-killer” by any means. High gas prices I can understand as that has affected a number of businesses but a business run smart will find ways to overcome these problems. I don’t believe that Namco has been doing that well and as some proof to that argument comes this news that Taito is expanding their arcade business in Japan. As usual the Japanese to English translation is a little unclear in a few parts and it does appear that while Taito did have a bumpy ride in the arcade sector last year, they are not planning on folding. Of course with the success of AOU I imagine that operators in Japan are a little more optimistic about the future of arcades in that country, especially where Taito/Square-Enix had a pretty solid showing at the show.