Photo/IllutrationA scene from “Dragon Quest: Your Story” ((c) 2019 Dragon Quest Your Story Production Committee)

  • Photo/Illustraion

“Dragon Quest,” a household name in role-playing video games, has finally reached the silver screen in a long-awaited 3-D CGI animated film.

“Dragon Quest: Your Story,” released Aug. 2, is based on the fifth installment in the original RPG series. For fans, “Dragon Quest V: Hand of the Heavenly Bride” is the best loved title.

To meet the expectations of fans, the film features an epic story full of ups and downs.

Chief director Takashi Yamazaki also wrote the screenplay.

Yamazaki said he wanted no part of the project when he was first approached about it.

“Because the player is the hero and immersed in playing the game in a subjective manner over a long period, the emotional involvements are crazy,” Yamazaki said. “I thought it would feel odd with the hero moving around on the big screen and impossible to get rid of that feeling over the course of two hours.”

Despite rejecting the offer, the filmmaker had a sudden flash of inspiration.

“I didn’t want to make a movie like it was a game novelization, so I came up with a way to deal with video game culture itself and the relationship between video games and players,” he said. “It was an idea that could only be utilized for a major video game like DQ, so I felt motivated.”

The original “DQ V” video game was released in 1992 and revolves around three generations fighting to defeat the lord of evil and monsters along the way. The story is intertwined with dramatic scenes of joy and sorrow.

An in-game event in which the hero (the player) is faced with the choice of marrying his childhood sweetheart or the daughter of a wealthy man, is still much talked about among fans. One scene in the movie revolves around the protagonist's anguish in deciding who to wed.

“I interviewed 30 or so hard-core fans to write the screenplay. I felt like a war correspondent interviewing veterans,” Yamazaki said. “In the end, I wanted to make it a coming-of-age movie and show the hardships that youngsters face as they grow up. I hope audiences will enjoy the movie and find similarities with their own lives.”