Dragon Quest: The Adventure of Dai
Dragon Quest: The Adventure of Dai (ドラゴンクエスト ダイの大冒険, Doragon Kuesuto: Dai no Daibōken, lit. Dragon Quest: The Great Adventure of Dai) is a Japanese manga based on the video game series Dragon Quest. It was written by Riku Sanjo and illustrated by Koji Inada and serialized in Shueisha's Weekly Shōnen Jump from October 1989 to December 1996.
The Adventure of Dai
Cover from the first volume of the manga series Dragon Quest: The Adventure of Dai, published by Shueisha
(Doragon Kuesuto: Dai no Daibōken)
|Written by||Riku Sanjo|
|Illustrated by||Koji Inada|
|Magazine||Weekly Shōnen Jump|
|Original run||October 23, 1989 – December 9, 1996|
|Anime television series|
|Directed by||Nobutaka Nishizawa|
|Written by||Junki Takegami|
|Music by||Koichi Sugiyama|
|Original run||October 17, 1991 – September 24, 1992|
|Anime film series|
|Written by||Junki Takegami|
|Music by||Koichi Sugiyama|
|Released||July 20, 1991 – July 11, 1992|
|Runtime||31 - 40 minutes (each)|
|Anime television series|
|Original run||2020 – scheduled|
The manga was adapted into an anime series, produced by Toei Animation and broadcast on TBS from July 1991 to July 1992. It is the second anime adaptation based on the Dragon Quest franchise after Dragon Quest: Legend of the Hero Abel. A new anime adaptation has been announced, and is set to premiere in fall 2020.
The story begins with a young boy named Dai remembering a story told to him by his adoptive grandfather, the monster magician Brass, about the defeat of the Demon King Hadlar by the hands of a hero known as Avan. After the defeat of the Demon King Hadlar, all of the monsters were released from his evil will and peace reigned supreme around the world once again for ten years. Some monsters and demons moved to the island of Dermline to live in peace. Dai, the young protagonist of the series, is the only human living on the island. Having been raised by Brass and with his best friend, the monster Gome, Dai grows up dreaming of becoming a hero.
The true story begins when Avan, an instructor of heroes, comes to the island to teach Dai, by request of Leona, a princess who was previously saved by the boy. Avan offers Dai a full week of training which would create a hero out of him. Just after learning the second of Avan's three secret sword techniques, Dai's training is interrupted by the return of Hadlar. Hadlar announces to Avan that he had worked for an even more powerful evil king, the Great Demon King Vearn, who has resurrected him. Weakened by the spells he used to help Dai on his training, Avan nevertheless confronts Hadlar. To protect his students and destroy Hadlar at the same time, he casts a spell called "Megante" (Sacrifice) which requires the caster's own life force to be used. The spell does not destroy the Demon King as Avan had planned, and Dai, Pop, Brass, and Gome are left to fend for themselves. Only the awakening of a hidden power within Dai, symbolized by the appearance of a strange mark on his forehead, leads them to defeat Hadlar and cause him to flee. Dai decides to leave the island with Pop to avenge Avan and defeat the Demon King and his master to bring peace back to the world.
Disciples of AvanEdit
- Dai (ダイ, Dai) Voiced by: Toshiko Fujita – Twelve years old, Dai grew up as the only human on Delmurin island. He gains some fame after defeating a group of fake heroes who had kidnapped his friend Gome. When the Demon King Hadlar is resurrected, the previous hero, Avan, comes to help train him to be the next hero. Dai possesses the ability to gain super strength and a better control of magic when the emblem of the dragon appears on his forehead (or later in the manga on his hand). This strength is because he is the son of the Dragon Knight Baran. Dai managed to learn the Earth and Wave Slashes with Avan, but had to acquire the Sky Slash on his own. Notably, Dai can infuse his weapon with magic (Raidein or Mera) to create more powerful sword techniques, such as Flaming Earth Slash. He can do the same thing with his Draconic Aura, but ordinary weapons cannot take the strain; Hyunckel's Demon Magic Sword breaks after Dai performs a crest-assisted Avan Strash. To suit this ability, Dai acquires an orichalcum sword from the legendary swordsmith Lon Berk, which can take the pressure.
- Pop (ポップ, Poppu) Voiced by: Keiichi Nanba – The son of the weapons merchant Junk, fifteen-year-old Pop left his home in Lankarks village and decided to become an apprentice of Avan, training to become a magician. He is a specialist in fire spells, mainly those of the Mera type, but as the story progresses he learns more powerful spells such as a gravity pressure attack. He can use Megante and Hyado type spells as well. Later on in the series, Pop becomes a Sage, one of the highest class of magicians who can use both attack and healing spells. Throughout the series, Pop uses various weapons, but later on in the series he acquires a staff from Lon Berk with the same power that rivals Vearn's staff, the ability to turn magic power into attack power. In addition to this, Pop's staff can transform to any shape.
- Maam (マァム, Maamu) Voiced by: Miina Tominaga – Sixteen years old, Maam is the daughter of Leyra and Loca, the priestess and warrior who helped Avan in the original fight against Hadlar. Maam trained under Avan and is proficient with healing spells (Hoimi), but never could successfully learn any offensive ones. Avan gave her a magical gun that shoots magic spells, which helped her compensate for her lack of expertise with any of the other schools of magic. When the gun gets destroyed she decides to change to another class, fighter, and temporarily leaves the party to train under Brokeena, known as the God of Martial Arts. Under Brokeena, Maam learns one of her ultimate techniques: the refractor fist, an attack that mimics excess use of Mahoimi, which results in the degradation of the opponent's body. Later on in the series, Maam acquires a transforming armor weapon from Lon Berk, which allows her to increase the destructive power of her techniques.
- Hyunckel (ヒュンケル, Hyunkeru) Voiced by: Hideyuki Hori – Twenty-one years old, Hyunckel's parents were killed in a monster attack, but one of the monsters took him in and raised him like a son. When Avan killed Hadlar and Hyunckel finds his adoptive father dead, he secretly holds a grudge against Avan, whom he believes killed his father. Hyunckel then becomes Avan's first pupil but, after graduating, unsuccessfully tried to kill his teacher with a technique he invented himself, Bloody Scraid. He was then taken in by Myst-Vearn who brought him up to be General of the Immortal Army, one of the six main armies under Hadlar and Vearn's control. After discovering that Hadlar had killed his adopted father instead of Avan, he joins Dai's party. Hyunckel originally used a demon magic sword that could transform into armor (Amudo), but it is broken when Dai fought Baran. Thereafter, Hyunckel has been using a spear with the same properties and created by the same person. Hyunckel can use all the basic Avan techniques also in addition to Demon Puppet Grab. Due to changing his weapon from a sword to a spear, he had to learn Avan's elemental techniques for spears.
- Leona (レオナ, Reona) Voiced by: Aya Hisakawa – Fourteen years old, Leona is the princess of Papnika. She is training to be a sage and is well-versed in the magic arts. Her country comes to near destruction after the return of Hadlar by the hands of Hyunckel, whom she forgives and sentences to become a "true disciple of Avan". Her father is missing and presumed dead, leaving her in control of rebuilding her kingdom and helping in the fight against the Ultimate Demon King. She is friends with Dai, although it is hinted Dai feels something more for her. Leona is proficient in both Mera-type spells and Hyado-type spells; however she is best at healing spells such as Behoma, which she uses effectively in the fight against Baran. She was never taught by Avan; however later on in the series, she becomes an official member of Avan's disciples when she inherits the 5th mark of Avan from the Queen of Carl, Flora.
- Avan (アバン, Aban) Voiced by: Hideyuki Tanaka - Thirty-one years old, Avan De Ziniur III was the previous hero who defeated the Demon King Hadlar. When he was younger, he befriended princess Flora, the ruler of the kingdom of Carl, and Loca, the general of Carl's army. He usually spent time goofing around while wearing thick glasses to hide his true power from everyone. When Hadlar tried to murder Flora, Avan decided not to hide anymore and protected her and the whole kingdom from the Demon King. After temporarily defeating him, he embarks on a journey with Loca where he would meet with Leyra, Maam's mother, and Matoriv, a powerful magician to finish off Hadlar for good. After their victory, he decided to become a trainer for a future generation of heroes. When Hadlar is resurrected and comes to defeat him, Avan casts the self-sacrifice spell Megante to protect Dai, Brass and Pop. It is later revealed that Avan had worn a protective talisman (given to him by Flora) that saved his life from the effects of Megante by taking the damage on his behalf. Having survived, he then chose to level up to be of more use to Dai and his other students in their fight against Vearn.
- Gome (ゴメ, Gome) Voiced by: Touma Yumi - Gome is a one-of-a-kind creature, a Golden Metal Slime. Dai's first friend, Gome produces small miracles throughout the story that help Dai and his friends. In the end it is revealed that Gome is a wish-granting item created by God to help pure-hearted people.
- Crocodine (クロコダイン, Kurokodain) Voiced by: Ginga Banjou - Thirty years old, Crocodine is a massive anthropomorphic crocodile who used to be the general of the Hundred Beasts Army. After having been defeated by Dai and Pop's teamwork, he is inspired by Pop's courage and joins the party. He has many beasts still under his control, despite Hadlar's influence throughout the world. He has a powerful weapon called the "Void Axe", which allows him to cast Bagi, one of the two wind spells available. He later acquires an even more powerful axe from the legendary swordsmith Lon Berk when the Void Axe is destroyed in the first fight with Vearn.
The Demon Lord's ArmyEdit
The Demon King Hadlar's army is split into six different groups so as to maintain control over their vast numbers. Every group is used to conquer others with the exception of the Sorcerer Regiment, which exists more for studies and experiments to help further the Demon King's plans. This army was created by the Demon Lord Vearn to conquer the surface world of humans.
- Hadlar (ハドラー, Hadorā) Voiced by: Takeshi Aono - 357 years old, the leader of the Great Demon King's Army. Hadlar was the previous Demon King until he was defeated by Avan. Hadlar was resurrected by the Great Demon Lord Vearn, and thus turned to serving him. Two of Hadlar's strongest spells are Ionazun and Begiragon, the highest level spell of the two respective types. After Hadlar was killed by Avan, Vearn resurrected him into a stronger body that could be revived countless times by Vearn's magic, with each revival increasing his power. This body proved to be too weak in the face of Dai and his companions, so Hadlar uses Zaboera to transform him into a hyper demon, which allows him to acquire a massive increase in power and gives him regenerative properties. When Hadlar uses this newfound power to defeat Dai, Vearn rewards him by giving him 5 Orhicalcum chess pieces, which Hadlar uses forbidden magic on to create his Orhicalcum Royal Guard warriors. Hadlar was killed when his body was too damaged to regenerate anymore after his final fight with Dai, and turned into dust.
Hundred Beast Regiment: (Animals type, Plant type, Insect type, etc.) A tribe of complete abominations, wielding unfathomable power.
Leader: Beast King Crocodine (see above)
The Undead Knights Regiment: (Skeletons, Zombies, Undead, etc.) A legion of soldiers who have transcended death.
Leader: Leader of the Undead Knights Hyunckel (see above)
Ice and Fire Demon Regiment: (Flame, Blizzard, Lava Men, Glacier Men, Bomb Rocks, etc.) Frightening destroyers who burn everything and freeze the soul.
Leader: Fire and Ice Commander Flazzard
- Flazzard (フレイザード, Fureizādo) Voiced by Ken Yamaguchi - Flazzard was created by Hadlar using forbidden magic. His body is a combination of fire and ice and he can uses both elements to attack. Flazzard cares only for glory and winning, doing whatever to achieve it and taking no interest in fair fights. Because he was created and not born like other beings he takes to living in the moment since he feels a long life without glory is meaningless. He was killed by Myst-Vearn after failing to defeat Dai.
Sorcerer Regiment: (Mage type, Madou Savoru, Druid, Mad Hand, Devil's Eyeball, etc.) A regiment of mages proud of their immense magic power.
Leader: Ghost Bishop Zaboera
- Zaboera (ザボエラ, Zaboera) Voiced by: Tatsuta Naoki- About 800 years old, one of the Commanders of the Great Demon King's army, Zaboera is small and highly intelligent, relying on trickery to get what he wants. He does not care for anybody and regards everyone as his tools, including his son Zamza, who he used to acquire essential information on the development of hyper demons. He has his troops fight for him since he does not like to get his hands dirty. He hides in the shadows and will claim anyone's accomplishments as his own if it helps further his plans. He can cast Zaraki, which can cause instant death to a group of opponents, and Moshasu, which can assume the form of anyone. He also has poison related arsenals. He was killed by Crocodine in one of the last battles in the series.
Super Dragon Regiment: (Dragon, Sky Dragon, Snake type, etc.) A regiment of the largest monsters, their battle power is the highest of all the six regiments.
Leader: Dragon Tamer Baran
- Baran (バラン, Baran) Voiced by: Unshou Ishizuka - The commander of the Super Dragon Brigade, Baran is a fierce fighter with strong morals. He is the true Dragon Knight of the era and in his youth he defeated Velther. After the fight he was mortally wounded and would have died if not for the help of Soara, the princess of Alkeed who nursed him back to health. The two fell in love, but when her father the king discovered that Baran was not human he was thrown out of the castle (after being accused of being a follower of a demon) only to be followed by Soara, who announced to him that she was pregnant. Some months later, Baran and Soara lived happy and without concerns, taking care of baby Dai (whom they named Dino). When the king found the two, Baran voluntarily gave himself up to protect his wife and child. He was brought back to Alkeed and sentenced to death. When Baran was to be executed with fire spells, Soara jumped in the way to protect him and was fatally wounded. Soara's father claimed her to be a disgrace, and in a rage Baran destroyed the entire kingdom of Alkeed. He then desperately tried to search for his son but was unable to find Dai. Having lost his wife and his child by the hands of humans, whom he was tasked to protect, he decided that all humans should be exterminated. He was later reunited with Dai as enemies. Upon seeing Dai's dragon knight symbol, he realized that he is his son and wipes Dai's memories. He tried to persuade Dai to join him but Dai refused to believe he is Baran's son. Pop sacrifices himself to return Dai's memories during the second time they fight, but fails to scratch Baran with Megante. Later, Baran joins with Dai to fight against Vearn but is killed when he shields Dai from the explosion of a Black Core Crystal when fighting Hadlar. Baran has a high mastery of his crest and can transform into a Ryuumajin, the ultimate form of a Dragon Knight, which is a combination of a demon, human, and dragon. In this form, he is unable to discern between friend and foe until everything is dead. He also has Giga Break (a powerful move utilizing the ultimate electricity spell, Gigadein, and his legendary sword, the Demon Dragon Blade), Raidein type magic, and Draconic Aura. Baran's ultimate spell is Draura (Dragon Touki Cannon). This spell channels Draconic Aura into a cannon blast that can annihilate a whole country, and can only be used in his Ryuumajin form.
Shadow Regiment: (Shadow Knights, Wraiths, Wandering Armor, Smoke, etc.) Shadow attackers who attack their enemy without revealing their form, animated by a soul they received from the demon lord.
Leader: Shadow Fighter Myst-Vearn
- Myst-Vearn (ミストバーン, Misutobān) Voiced by: Nanba Keiichi - One of the Commanders of the Great Demon King Vearn's army, Myst-Vearn was Hyunckel's evil teacher. In one of the twists near the end of the manga it is revealed that Myst-Vearn is really a ghost-like being inhabiting one half of Vearn's body while at the same time protecting it. While he has no physical fighting ability of any kind in his true form, he has the ability to possess anyone and turn them into his puppet (Shadow Puppet Grab). He is possibly one of the oldest creatures to exist. Was killed in Hyunckel's body during an attempt to possess him.
Hadlar's Guardian Knights (Shinei Kidan no Hadlar)
The personal bodyguards of Hadlar Leader of the Demon Lords army. Hadlar created them from chess pieces made of orihalcon (a substance that is resistant to magic and can only be damaged by something also made of orihalcon). They serve as replacements for the defeated leaders of the six regiments. Since they were created like Flazzard their core must be destroyed in order to defeat them, which is located in the left chest just like a human's heart.
- Pawn Warrior Hym - Since he was created from a pawn piece he fully understands that there will always be someone better than him. He, like the rest of the knights, fight fairly and praises worthy fighters. He mostly seems to live by the concept of "an eye for an eye" since he said he would not be satisfied until he punched a hole in Hyunckel's forehead as Hyunckel had pierced a hole in his. He had his own arm cut off after it became limp since he believed it would become a distraction during a fight, and has shown that he is a bit of a hot head getting lost in the heat of battle and not wanting to stop even if it was not his prime objective. He is an expert in mera (fire) spells but only uses them to increase the power of his fists. In the final part of the story, Hym discovers he actually is the reincarnation of his master, acquiring Hadlar's silver hair and the ability to generate Touki as an organic being.
- Knight Warrior Sigma - He has the Mirror of Shahal on his chest this object can repel enemy spells and Sigma can also use as a shield. With his horse legs he has the highest speed and jumping ability of the group, which also allows him to perform a double jump in any eight directions. He attacks using a lance. He is also very perceptive to the point of pointing out the flaw in any action someone may take against Hadlar. Sigma was killed by Pop.
- Bishop Warrior Fenbren - He calls himself the prefect hunter this is because his body is made of eight bladed sections. He has mastered all bagi (wind) type spells. He is unlike the rest of the knights since he himself stated that he is cruel in battle. He can use his sword like arms as drills to tunnel underground to avoid attacks but he will not use it to attack from behind. He lost his eyes when Baran attacked him but afterwards he gained the ability to sense where his enemies and other objects of orihalcon are. He was cut in half by Dai while guarding the underwater door to the Demon Lord.
- Rook Warrior Block - The physical strongest of the group, he can't fully speak so he relies on the others to speak for him the only thing he can say is "buroom". To protect his fellow knights he threw himself over them to take a powerful magic attack, his strength surpasses Crocodine's. His one technique comes from the castling move in chess which causes him to split in two revealing a more human like body underneath that can quickly switch places with the king (Hadlar), the one time he used this move was to save Hadler from Vearn then transporting Hadlar and his fellow knights to safety but not before saying his first and last words "Everyone take care of Hadlar-sama".
- Queen Warrior Albinass - Albinass is who coordinates the group's attacks, she acts as the group's voice of reason and to remind them that they fight for Hadlar. While she is considered the only female of the group she has stated that the group members have no gender and that each is powerful in they own way. She treats every battle as a game of chess going as far as calling those fighting "pieces". She attacks using needles (called Needle Thousand) which are hard to dodge since they cover a very large area; the only flaw is that Albinass cannot or does not move when using it, making her a sitting duck for anyone lucky enough to escape her attack. She normally keeps her arms and legs sealed under her metallic cloak, when she does use them her speed and strength increase dramatically. Additionally with her arms unsealed she uses her magic in a compressed ball (called Thousand Ball) for more precise attacks in place of her normally wide range needle attack. Her loyalty to Hadlar is second to none, even to the point of being mistaken for loving devotion. Albinass was killed by Maam.
- Kill-Vearn (キルバーン, Kirubān) Voiced by: Hideyuki Tanaka- Called the shinigami, Kill-Vearn's job is to assassinate members of the Great Demon King's Army that have betrayed Vearn. He is accompanied by his small helper Piroro. In the end it is revealed that Kill-Vearn was actually working for Vearn's rival, Velther. His job was to kill Vearn if there was a good opportunity. It is also found out that Kill-Vearn is just Piroro's mechanical puppet, and that behind Kill-Vearn's mask is a Black Core. Piroro was killed by Maam while the Kill-Vearn puppet was destroyed in the Black Core explosion triggered by Piroro.
- Vearn (バーン, Bān) Voiced by: Kenji Utsumi- see Vearn. The Great Demon Lord Vearn is the supreme leader of the demon army and the main villain. The Great Demon Lord Vearn calls himself the god of the mazoku. Vearn hates that the gods gave humans the surface world to live while the mazoku have to live without the sun. Thus his goal is to blast away the surface using a hexagonal Black Core explosion field to both rid the world of weak humans while also giving the sun to the mazoku. Near the end of the manga, it was revealed that in order to achieve immortality, Vearn separated his body into two parts. The body he directly controls retains the intelligence and magic power, while the body that was given to Myst retained his physical strength. The second body became Myst-Vearn. Vearn used his great magic power to use the spell of Frozen Time on Myst-Vearn. As Myst is a unique case of being able to manipulate a body that is affected by that spell, Myst-Vearn's body effectively acquired immortality, while Vearn's body, while growing in intelligence and magic power, kept aging. After being defeated by Dai, Vearn decided to restore his original body and became more powerful than ever. He was defeated again with great difficulty by Dai and turned into stone. Vearn has the ability to cast almost every type of magic available, including one of his strongest types: Mera type magic (his Mera is stronger than Pop's Merazoma). Because Vearn can also cast healing spells, he is considered a Sage class, one of the highest class of magicians. Vearn also had a staff given to him by Lon Berk, which can turn magic power into physical attack power, though it eats power at an immense rate. Vearn's most powerful attacks are a phoenix-shaped Merazoma, Kaiser Phoenix, and Calamity Wall, a wall of rushing energy created by his legendary staff weapon.
Dragon Quest: The Adventure of Dai is written by Riku Sanjo and illustrated by Koji Inada. A short story Derupa! Iruiru! (デルパ!イルイル!) was first released in the 25th and 26th issues of Weekly Shōnen Jump in 1989. Issues 35–37 included the short story Dai Bakuhatsu!! (ダイ爆発!!!). The serialization of The Adventure of Dai began that same year in the 45th issue of Weekly Shōnen Jump, published on October 23. It continued on for seven years before ending in the 52nd issue of Weekly Shōnen Jump on December 9, 1996. The manga was collected into 37 tankōbon volumes published between March 9, 1990 and June 4, 1997. It was later released into 22 bunkobon volumes published from June 18, 2003 to March 18, 2004.
First series (1991)Edit
Produced by Toei Animation and Nippon Animation, the anime adaptation of Dragon Quest: Dai no Daibōken premiered in Japan on TBS on October 17, 1991 where it ran for 46 episodes until its conclusion on September 24, 1992.
On January 6, 2020, the whole series was released in Japan for distribution on several video on demand (VOD) services, the first time the series has become officially available after the VHS release of the 1990s. In March 2020 it was announced that the 1991 anime will be getting a Blu-ray Box for the first time, and will be released on July 3, 2020. The set will contain all 46 episodes, and the 3 Jump Festa short anime films, (including the first film never released on home video until now) which have been scanned from their original 35 mm negatives with high resolution and recorded with high-quality full HD remastered images.
Second series (2020)Edit
It was announced during Jump Festa 2020 that there will be a new anime adaptation that will premiere in fall 2020. The anime will be produced by Toei Animation and will be a hybrid of 2D and CG animation.
Three theatrical movies were produced based on the Dai no Daibōken TV series, all which premiered at the Toei Anime Fair film festival.
|1||"The Great Adventure of Dai"|
Transcription: "Gurēto Adobenchā" (Japanese: グレート アドベンチャー)
|July 20, 1991|
Transcription: "Aban no Shito" (Japanese: アバンの使徒)
|March 7, 1992|
|3||"Six Great Generals"|
Transcription: "Shinsei Roku Daishōgun" (Japanese: 新生６大将軍)
|July 11, 1992|
Dragon Quest: The Adventure of Dai is one of the Weekly Shōnen Jump's best-selling manga series of all time, with 50 million tankōbon volumes copies sold. The series also had a total estimated circulation of approximately 2 billion copies in Weekly Shōnen Jump magazine between 1989 and 1996.[a]
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