I heared once it being pointed out how marvelous and miraculous the technology of photographs are. That without what is now a common technology, we would never really know what things in foreign lands actually look like. Photos, and by extension video, allow us to see such things like the Pyramids -- to actually see the immense grander, unfiltered through description or drawing, what the Pyramids look like. This post isn't about the Pyramids, but that was the example that was used when I heard that saying about photographs. It's true, really - photos let us see amazing things from around the world. Coupled with the internet, there's almost nothing that you can't look up and see for yourself - things you maybe never could see in person. So it struck me how wonderful it was that photos on the internet where able to show me something I could never visit: a Dragon Quest Art Exhibit in Japan.
The Mori Art Museum, located in the Roppongi Hills Shopping Center, late last year had a Dragon Quest Art Exhibit. Besides the fact that it's since over - even if I had known about it earlier, there's simply no way I could ever visit such an event. Yet a wonderful article on Siliconera.com gave readers a tour of the exhibit. Dragon Quest is a huge franchise in Japan, and it's history with the country pretty much is the prime example of the Japanese's love of Role-playing Games (RPG). It's one of their pop-culture staples. It was a slow journey for Dragon Quest to gain some measure of acceptance in America (especially in favor of shooter games these days) - but it stands as one of my all time favorite series, stemming all the way back to my childhood and the original Dragon Warrior.
Anyway, the article I read had pictures and gave details to parts of the exhibit they weren't able to photograph. Some of the photos are blurry, but it nicely gave a look at what the museum had to offer. Statues of the famous monsters of the series, screenshots, memorabilia and behind the scenes displays where shown. Although it's something they couldn't photograph, I found it interesting that they had a display showing the gameplay balancing the designers went through, about how much experience and money defeating a monster got you, with them ultimately deciding to making the game more challenging -- little details like that just sound fascinating.
- You can read that article here: Let's Take A Trip To The Dragon Quest Exhibit
- This site also talks about the exhibit, with more pictures as well: Chronicle of a Quarter Century
- Here also is the main Japanese site advertising the event, here.
Looking at the photos from their main website, it looks as if Dragon Quest creators and developers made appearances.
They also had a restraunt serving Dragon Quest themed food, called Ludia's Bar. (A place in Nintendo DS Dragon Quest 9.) In the image above you can see some of the food they had on the menu. The Slime Meat Bun, though... Thinking of eating it sort of makes me ill. Ever since they started selling them as a novelty food, it immediately seemed like a ill-appetizing food to me. It's the idea of eating a cartoon character, I guess, that grosses me out! Plus I alway picture the usually smiling Slime not smiling anymore, scared of being devoured! But I digress...
Photos from the website also show cosplayers greeting visitors -- playing the roles of Ludia and Erinn, from Dragon Quest 9.
Anyway - while I could never have been able to see such a place first-hand, it was nice being able to investigate it through the internet.