Virtual Reality Event
Image from the official website
The Visual Museum in Kawaguchi is part of the larger Skip City, a venue with a number of attractions, particularly learning attractions, concentrated in the one area. The “Visual Museum” was the first of its kind when it originally opened. According to its English language webpage is “an interactive museum of the history and principles of image and process of filmmaking”. Whatever you want to call it, it is great interactive learning fun for young children and adults alike.
They run events or “exhibitions” periodically. The current event which has just started is of particular interest to children of school going age; a rare chance for them to experience and use VR and AR and play Virtual Reality (VR) games. It is quite a small exhibit, but there is enough to keep the kids entertained. The museum itself will keep them entertained for hours, particularly if you opt to make a DVD for an extra 500 yen. (More on that to come on the blog in the next week!).
Virtual Reality Experiences:
The Virtual Reality exhibits include a a 360 degree Virtual theatre attraction and a dinosaur VR activity. The latter is only available in the afternoons on weekdays, but is available all day on the weekends. This was the most popular attraction the day we visited and we had to queue for a short time to try it. I didn’t actually try this one myself, but the kids did and loved it.
Trying the VR Dinosaur World
I did try the 360 degree virtual reality activity and was suitably impressed. It is the first time I had experienced 360 degree virtual reality and tested it to its limits! You really can see up, down, around and even into corners.
2 year old tries virtual reality for the first time
The games include a “Hado Shoot” a type of aim and shoot activity. Please note that this attraction is limited to the afternoon only and is for over 7s. This is one of only two attractions with an age limit. It is also the only attraction that has a charge: 100 yen for 2 ninja masks that are useful for the game.
Hado Shoot popular VR game
There is also Pac Man and a selection of games on handheld devices such as phones and laptops.
There are a couple of exhibits with projection mapping activities and in interactive augmented reality activity with a book “The Little Mermaid”. There is one exhibit where you can play a piano and it shows as “Metamorphosis Hands” on projection mapping. In total there are eleven experiences for the event, plus all the usual activities available in the museum.
The virtual reality event is running until March 11th, but the museum is closed on Mondays
or Tuesdays when Monday is a bank holiday.
The event is included in the museum entry cost which is 510 yen for adults, 250 yen for children of school going age. Children under 6 years old are free.
VIRTUAL REALITY EVENT ACCESS
From Kawaguchi Station East exit get a bus from either bus stop 7, 8 or 9 to 総合高校. Skip City is a 5 minute walk from the bus stop.
Plenty of underground parking available, both under the Visual Museum and under Kawaguchi Science Museum. It is charged at 200 yen per hour. Coming from Western Saitama using the Gaikan Expressway Kawaguchi Nishi is the exit. Unfortunately, Skip City is not very clearly signposted until you are right at it, so it is a little tricky to find. A sat nav or directions from a convenience store clerk in the area might be the easiest way to find it!