Virtual Shibuya is a Virtual Reality (VR) platform officially recognized by the city of Shibuya. It was opened in May as a form of support for Shibuya’s creative and commercial culture, which has been suffering from the economic effects of COVID-19.
Hachiko, the famous Japanese Akita dog known for his loyalty, was chosen to be Virtual Shibuya’s mayor because his statue, situated near Shibuya’s Scramble Crossing, is considered an integral part of the city. Neon Genesis Evangelion and Summer Wars character designer Yoshiyuki Sadamoto is designing the dog’s virtual avatar.
Virtual Shibuya is part of the Shibuya 5G Entertainment Project, which seeks to modernize Shibuya’s technology. The project is being supported by the You Make Shibuya crowdfunding campaign, which will run on Campfire until September 6. The campaign incentivizes people to financially support the city of Shibuya by offering them the right to participate in limited-time virtual events such as the ambassador’s inauguration ceremony, along with Hachiko-themed merchandise.
“I am am very happy that Hachiko, who has continuously watched over this city, is going to be the mayor of Virtual Shibuya,” said Shibuya mayor Ken Hasebe, who is also acting as Virtual Shibuya’s second-in-command. “Thank you to everyone who has participated in the You Make Shibuya crowdfunding campaign. Let’s become first-generation citizens of Virtual Shibuya together. I humbly ask for your support.”
Virtual Shibuya can be accessed through the VR social media service Cluster via VR headset, smartphone, or computer.
Source: Comic Natalie