I appear to have had a different experience than many people during the Tokyo Marathon.
Pre-race/traveling abroad - I got in through the Run as One program. I recommend doing this if you're a little speedy! Helps you bypass the lottery! Once I got in, registering was easy and everything was mailed to me in good timing.
Expo - terribly disappointing. I didn't get to try as many new/unique products as there just didn't seem to be that mentality at the expo. It just wasn't as fun as many others I've been to.
Start line - I stayed at Shinjuku Main Hotel which was 2 blocks from the start. SUCH a great idea. Finding my way into my gate was a little difficult but I got there. I waited quite a while at a bathroom, I should have moved over to the Western Style Toilets line because it was shorter and moved quicker. The start line was not very warm, I was chilly and we had to wait there for a while. I think you had to be at your start area 45 minutes before the race started. There was a lot of standing around, unfortunately, unprotected from the cold and this didn't help me start well. The people I got to talk with were lovely though!
Course - The course was new for 2017 and, in all honesty, I was not terribly impressed with it. There were a lot of out and backs. It didn't feel like I was seeing very much for a while, just talk buildings. I wasn't as blown away by the scenery as I have been for other majors and definitely not as excited to see the area as I was just walking around Tokyo. There wasn't much elevation, mostly just a few bridges. The beginning of the course appeared to be slightly downhill, in and out of shade (don't take off your warm gear too quickly!). There were a LOT of bathrooms, some were right off the road and some were FAR!!!! I rarely stop but I got sick and the first one I went to was at least half a kilometer's worth of extra running. There were a lot of very good big stations, Pocari Sweat being the electrolyte drink. The course is lined with people cheering, which was uplifting! When I got sick and had to walk they cheered me on, which was nice.
Finish - everyone went off into a different chute so it was a bit easier than I have experienced before. Make sure that if you are meeting someone after the race you view the finish area and set a location!
Race swag - I love the shirt, I've worn it a bunch. They also gave a one-day unlimited metro card that you can use but not at all of the stations!
Overall - I'm glad I ran the race. It was a unique experience and I have many memories from it that I'll carry with me for a very long time. But I'm not so enthused that I want to run it again. I think it's probably a very good PR course and I'm disappointed I didn't get to take advantage!