If you are one of the super fans of Evangelion who have previously made “pilgrimages” to the City of Hakone in Kanagawa Prefecture, Japan, where the fortified Tokyo-3 was set, well, we have good and bad news.
The bad news is, I am afraid you will have to make the trip again. Previously, what fans saw were just the city itself as it is in real life. There’s no hint or whatsoever that it is the place where Tokyo-3 was set.
The good news is, that has changed between, or at least it has from now and June 30, 2020. The town has been transformed into Tokyo-3 of sort. It now has hints of it lineage, so to speak, with the anime series then it had before.
Odakyu Group has teamed up with travel company Fujita Kanko to “Evangelion-ized” Hakone as part of the Evangelion x Hakone 2020: Meet Evangelion in Hakone project. The “Evangelion-ization” is pretty major.
It includes decorating buses and trains with graphics and images from the cult anime series and giving the Togendai Station the alternative Tokyo-3 Station name and transforming it into a NERV base. The latter includes a 2-meter (6.6 feet) EVA Unit 01 statue, Evangelion-themed signs replacing the usual signs, graphics across the walls and even lift doors and stairs, and more.
The transformation is so extensive that it is not possible for anywho to step into the resort town and not feel the Evangelion atmosphere and the immersion. You will not spare of the reminder even when are enjoying some sundaes:
Images and source: nippon.com.