Saturday, March 31, 2012

Google Maps uploads "Quest" View

This morning, I saw that Google has changed their Maps to include a "Quest" view that looks like something a la the early Final Fantasy Dragon Warrior/ドラゴンクエスト games: boxy, low resolution, and "cute".

For example, this is the view of Mt. Fuji:

Was there more to this new view than a world of heavy pixelation and occasional interesting hits? Well, many of the largest cities in Japan and the US did have some interesting special graphics. Kyoto had some, Tokyo had some, San Francisco had some, Washington DC had some, etc. However, there often seemed to be a pair of guys in beanie caps that would show up in some random places. What were those beanie guys?

In Ann Arbor, the beanie guys showed up at the corner of Washington and Division. What is at the corner of Washington and Division that would be relevant to Google Maps? Well, it's Google's Ann Arbor office!

Ah ha! If Google's office in a moderately sized city would occasion the use of such a symbol, then surely Google's headquarters ought to be AWESOME! Well, in all of early Final Fantasy Dragon Warrior/ドラゴンクエストesque glory, here is what Google's headquarters looks like:

At least Google hasn't gotten personal with this map view. It hasn't, for example, made fun of Apple, Microsoft, or Facebook - the headquarters addresses for these companies merely show up as green plains.

Hopefully, it's not only for April Fool's Day. However, it does seem to be a PART of Google's annual April Fool's Day pranks:

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