The 2019 Dragon Ball World Adventure, a touring pop-up celebrating the legacy and future of Akira Toriyama's globally beloved Dragon Ball franchise, officially kicked off at Comic-Con International in San Diego. The event provides fans of the enduringly popular manga and anime series with an advance look at upcoming video games and collectibles, exclusive merchandise, and a forum to show off their deep appreciation for the franchise as it celebrates the 35th anniversary of the long-running manga written and illustrated by Toriyama.
The pop-up's location was set up at the Marriott Terrace, directly adjacent to the San Diego Convention Center, with a dedicated area filled with to-scale sized statues of fan-favorite Dragon Ball characters, a pavilion designed after the franchise's most prominent in-universe company Capsule Corp, and a replica of the futuristic motorbike ridden by Bulma when she first met the franchise's main protagonist, Goku.
Lining virtually every inch of the pop-up were cases of highly detailed Dragon Ball figures from the franchise's many series, including Dragon Ball, Dragon Ball Z, Dragon Ball GT, Dragon Ball Super, and its subsequent video games and animated films. In addition to the wide line of statues and action figures, the pop-up also featured a line of exclusive figures, including pieces by S.H.Figuarts of Goku as he first appeared in Dragon Ball, Ultimate Gohan from Dragon Ball Z, Golden Frieza from Dragon Ball Super, Super Saiyan Rose Goku Black from Super, and Super Saiyan Blue Gogeta from Dragon Ball Super: Broly from the company's Figuarts Zero line along with Figure-rise Standard's exclusive Super Saiyan Gogeta from Z.
The pop-up also included dedicated gaming kiosks, where visitors can play against each other in the popular fighting game Dragon Ball FighterZ, with all the downloadable content preloaded and at the players' disposal. More intriguingly, there are gaming kiosks that allowed players first access to a working demo of the upcoming action RPG Dragon Ball Z: Kakarot. The game features third-person action, as Goku navigates the world at the start of the acclaimed anime series and engages familiar enemies in high-flying combat, intuitively accessible to new players. Additionally, there was a seated area where players faced each other in the Dragon Ball trading card game, with decks provided to attendees.
The first day of the San Diego event opened with fans participating in the Guinness Book of World Records-breaking event, gathering the largest number of people to perform a Kamehameha Wave, the signature special move of the franchise, at the same time. As a representative from Guinness observed the proceedings, fans were joined by Goku's English-language voice actor Sean Schemmel and representatives from longtime Dragon Ball animation studio Toei Animation, English-dub studio Funimation, manga publisher VIZ Media, and video game developer Bandai Namco. Together, they reenacted the energy attack, smashing the previous record and officially launching the tour.
With newly translated episodes of Dragon Ball Super continuing to air every week on Toonami, the manga adaptation of Super still releasing all new stories, and this year's Dragon Ball Super: Broly posting the biggest global box office and some of the greatest critical acclaim in the franchise's entire history, Dragon Ball's future seems brighter than ever. The Dragon Ball World Adventure provides fans with an immersive experience to celebrate Toriyama's popular franchise with exclusive access and plenty of merchandise to bring the anime world home with them.
The Dragon Ball World Adventure continues in Mexico City from August 2 to August 4 for the Unboxing Toy Convention, Shanghai from August 2 to August 5 for ChinaJoy Digital Expo & Conference, Hong Kong from August 8 to September 1 for Dragon Ball Docks in Hong Kong Times Square, Cologne from August 20 to August 24 for GamesCom, New York City from October 3 to October 6 for New York Comic-Con, and Barcelona from October 31 to November 3 for Salon del Manga de Barcelona.