Important Importables: Video game drinks

April 17, 2010 - 2:00 am No Comments

Hot Japanese Imports: Video game drinks

Section: Exclusives, Originals, Features, Columns, Japanese Imports, Gear, Gear-Other, Game-Companies, Developers, Publishers, Genres, Action, Role-Playing

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Video game publishers often team up with other companies for promotions to highlight their newest games, a practice that’s seen throughout the world. However, games and drink partnerships are much more common in Japan. They’re also more diverse.

Game and drink promotions in North America most often amount to a soda company, like Mountain Dew, teaming up with a developer. In Japan, coffee, energy health drinks and soda companies all work with publishers to get specialized products out there.

This week, Hot Japanese Imports is taking a look at some of the more notable Japanese video game and drink collaborations.

UCC Coffee Evangelion Cans

Neon Genesis Evangelion

Technically, the collaboration between UCC Ueshima Coffee and Neon Genesis Evangelion could be considered a partnership to promote an anime series, but there are enough Evangelion video games to mention it here as well. UCC Ueshima has been promoting Evangelion on it’s coffee cans for years, since 1997.

Over the years, special cans of coffee with Neon Genesis Evangelion characters or suit designs have constantly surfaced in Japanese stores. The UCC Coffee Evangelion Project‘s most recent promotion happened in 2009 to promote Evangelion: 2.0 You Can (Not) Advance. Those cans all also game with codes to get cell phone wallpapers and the ability to enter a contest for figurines. Also, the Evangelion UCC coffee and milk cans are almost always available in online stores when they’re released, so fans around the world can buy them.

The iFFVII/i potion with figure” width=

Final Fantasy

Suntory and Square Enix first teamed up to create potion energy/health elixers back in 2006 to promote Final Fantasy XII. The potions were limited edition items, and came in decorative glass bottles with trading cards. Since then, the two companies have joined forces multiple times to release new “potions” in different forms.

When Final Fantasy VII‘s tenth anniversary came around, canned potions with sixteen characters from the game were released, as well as a special edition potion that came in a deluxe bottle designed to look like the in-game potions and a Final Fantasy VII 10th Anniversary Ultimania booklet. In 2008, Dissidia: Final Fantasy potions were released in chaos and cosmos editions, each with a different flavor and characters from the game on the cans.

Most recently, Final Fantasy XIII potions have been released. A special edition was available in limited quantities and came with a can of the potion and a figurine. There were also standard versions released, which were plain cans that had portraits of the characters from FFXIII on them.

Metal Gear Solid Peace Walker Mountain Dew

Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker

The collaboration that’s been in the news most lately is the partnership between Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker and Mountain Dew. Konami and Suntory hope that their particular endeavor will sell a lot of PSP games and soda.

The drink isn’t anything special, it’s just your standard Mountain Dew. It’s the cans that are neat. There are eight different designs, each with a character from Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker prominently featured on them. If you’re in Japan, don’t start looking for them yet though! The ¥115 ($1.25) cans go on sale April 27, 2010. So far, no online stores are taking orders for them, but be sure to check online after they’re available in Japan if you decide you have to have one!

Luida's Bar logo

Dragon Quest

If you find yourself in Tokyo, you can visit a very special and unique location. Square Enix’s Dragon Quest series has inspired a real bar! Luida’s Bar is located in Roppongi, at the Karaoke Pasela Roppongi.

Perhaps a pub would be a better way to describe Luida’s Bar than bar, since both food and drinks are served there. The staff all dress in costumes that look like they’re taken straight from Dragon Quest games, and all of the food and drinks are inspired by items, characters and monsters from it. One of the house specialties, for example, is a meat bun shaped like a slime, complete with eyes and a smile.

If you’re in the area, Luida’s Bar is at 5-16-3 Roppongi, Minato-ku, Tokyo and is open every day. On weekdays doors open at 2pm and close at 11pm, and on weekends it opens at noon and closes at 11pm.

COMING NEXT WEEK: Hot Japanese Imports talks about how to build a trading figurine collection.

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT: Last week Hot Japanese Imports reviewed Hanagumi Taisen Columns 2 for the Dreamcast.

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Full Story » | Written by Jenni Lada for Gamertell. | Comment on this Article »

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