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I’ve been told the story more than once, and always in the same way. Every time a Dragon Quest game is released, thousands of children will be caught playing truant, and as many grown workers will take a sick day, leading to a measurable drop in productivity across Japan. Don’t forget, there’s no such thing as mandated sick pay in Japan – people were losing money to pay money for a game, just to play it on launch day.

The story continues that this phenomenon became so predictable that the government was forced to step in. The “Dragon Quest Law” was passed – Enix’s games now had to avoid a weekday release and arrive on a Saturday instead. It’s a perfect encapsulation of how popular this series had become – a simple RPG turned legitimate cultural phenomenon.

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Posted on Mar 28, 2018

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