Advent Children Complete
- How as the fan reaction been to the announcement of the Blu-ray version of FFVII Advent Children (ACC)?
Tetsuya Nomura: It looks like they've taken it better than I thought. It seems that the people who have already seen AC are looking forward to the higher quality, the edited scenes, etc.
- I know there will be more language tracks included in addition to Japanese, but how many are you planning to include?
Nomura: English is a given, but how many we include also affects the sound quality, so we can't really just throw in every one we've got recorded now. If we used uncompressed nonlinear format for example, which gives the highest sound quality, that would limit the number of languages we could include. It depends on how much space we can divide between the audio and the video, and how much we can record while decreasing the compression. Just because we've moved to Blu-ray and have more space doesn't mean you can do anything. Uncompressed video and audio would be ideal, but that would take away anything extra we might want to do like including multiple language tracks. We're considering making allowances for that.
- Will the bonus features from the original AC be included in this version as well?
Nomura: It'd not definite yet, but we're planning to include new special features. As for what they'll be, you'll just have to wait and see. Some people who already own AC will probably buy it, so we're thinking about including something new for their sakes.
- What stage are you at currently with ACC's production?
Nomura: The finer adjustments are complete, and now we're working on the newly replaced bits and the music. With the music, we're not planning on changing the tracks themselves, but working on new arrangements to better fit the scenes. I think even just that will change the impression you get from them.
- How far is ACC to being finished now? And when can we accept to see a release?
Nomura: We're currently going on a policy of working over it whenever we have the time, so I can't give any definite statements about how far it is to being finished. We're doing to do what we can by the date we're aiming for. We showed some new scenes at this year's Tokyo Game Show, but if we can add more stuff like that, then we will. As for the release date, some time from the middle of next year.
- With AC, there was a special edition box set with figures and such included, as well as the limited and normal editions with different packaging. Will the Blu-ray version have variations like that as well?
Nomura: We aren't thinking about some expensive package like with AC. You can't have things that fancy all the time. There have been some people asking for a limited edition, even if it isn't as fancy as the Advent Pieces box set, but we don't really have any plans at the moment.
- Is ACC going to be released in Japan only?
Nomura: We'd like to look at the Blu-ray market in other regions before deciding about any other releases. If Blu-ray continues to expand in North America then we'll probably release it there too, but first we're going to start with Japan.
- Have you rerecorded any of the voices?
Nomura: Yes. Sephiroth had some lines that weren't in AC during the trailer shown at TGS. There aren't an awful lot of them, but we're planning on a couple of changes.
- With AC having received offers from film festivals worldwide, it looks like this will attract attention internationally again.
Nomura: Even now it's already been released, we're still receiving offers for AC. France especially seems to call with offers a lot. I think there were even some requests from China and the Middle East as well.
- So what's the present development status of Crisis Core?
Nomura: A lot of people are probably wondering what's going on, what with so little information having being released since its announcement, but development is going along nicely. The scenario is already complete, so now we're recording the voices and refining the battle system. We should probably be able to give people a chance to play a demo by the end of the year, I reckon.
- You showed video of the battle and movie scenes at TGS.
Nomura: There hadn't been any news for a long time, so we wanted to sent the message that we're still working on it. The TSG video use the one we showed at E3 this May as a base, so there's still a lot that we can't show. I think we'll be able to show those to everyone by the end of the year as well.
- There's still a lot of aspects of the game system we've not seen yet, but could you tell us what kind of things are in there?
Nomura: I can't really go into detail about it yet, but it has a really original feel to it. The other day I was talking with the other staff about the battles near the ending and it's really taking shape, [kind of makes you do 'oh, I get it.'] The battle system is linked to the story, and we're planning [dramatic] direction that haven't been done before. It's setting up to be pretty surprising, so I'm hoping people will look forward to it.
- Since it's been released on PSP, are you worried about the volume [disk space]?
Nomura: In the middle of development, we can't really predict how much [space] it will take up when it's finished. At the moment I can only really be certain about the scenario, but from that front it's rather long. We've even had a bit of a debate as to whether or not it will all fit onto one UMD. The scenario is really good, and we don't want to cut any of it, so we're working to fit it all in. I'm personally really looking forward to seeing the finished product.
- Some new characters have been added to Before Crisis now, haven't they.
Nomura: Yeah. A male wielding nunchaku, a female with knifes, and the character with the cigar who is known as the "Legendary Turk". We thought we'd add the Legendary Turk not just to have some cool looking character, but because we wanted an interesting character. The Legendary Turk is Reno and the others' senior, but we're going to go into why he hasn't appeared before in upcoming episodes.
- Legendary brings to mind a really impressive character, what kind of character is he?
Nomura: Calling him a legend wouldn't be an overstatement. You get people like that in every company, don't you? People who end up becoming legends there. Image-wise, he's like a popular member of the company.
- What type of characters are each of these new additions?
Nomura: The Legendary Turk uses bombs. It needs a special kind of control scheme, so he's more aimed towards advanced players. The man with nunchaku and woman with knifes are both aimed at beginners.
- And it looked like there's some new game modes added as well.
Nomura: We've started the "WEAPON-D (Dimension) Mode" and the "3rd Rescue Mission" which is quite difficult.
- Is the WEAPON-D Mode a continuation of the pervious "WEAPON Mode" where Turks from all over the world fought together?
Nomura: With WEAPON Mode, we were waiting to see when people would defeat Jade WEAPON. In WEAPON-D Mode, there's a hole in space-time left by the defeat of Jade WEAPON, and it's kind of created a place where you can fight against the WEAPON any time you like. BC's story itself is already concluded, so from now on where planning to add some things just for fun such as this. There's still a lot of people whole haven't complete the whole story yet, so I'd love it if those people would carry on playing the game. Now that we've expanded to other networks beside NTT DoCoMo, I hope that people who haven't played it before will give it a shot too.
DIRGE OF CERBERUS - LOST EPISODE
- "Dirge of Cerberus - Lost Episode" is going to be available on NTT DoCoMo's FOMA 903i mobile phones, but will that be the only phone it'll be on?
Nomura: It was originally made for North American mobile phones, but there aren't that many phones available in Japan which have the specs to run a 3D game well. Of course, phone specs are going to rise over time, so I think the number of compatible phones will grow as well.
- There's also a fully voiced version, that's quite rare for a mobile game, isn't it.
Nomura: This one time, I was checking over the game and I said to the staff working on it, "I think having voices would make it more fun, think we could add them?" And he was just like, "Sure we can." So we decided to add them (laughs). The detailed system explanations don't have any voice overs, but all the cut scenes are fully voiced. By the by, the full voice version will be coming a little later on, so I hope people will wait and look forward to it.
- How is the development of DCLE going?
Nomura: We're at the voice recording stage. Some of the characters also appear in CC, so they're recording their lines for both at the same time.
- The story is based on DC, but what kind of things is it going to include?
Nomura: It show the events that happened during a void between two of the chapters in DC. It's a little on the short side, but its contents is right deep and interesting. I think even if you get a game over, you'll end up sticking at it and trying over and over again. Even I've played it a load of times, all the while going "I can't beat this boss!" (laughs) The one I played used the gameplay balance from the NA version, so it was a little difficult, but the Japanese version seems like it is going to be a little easier to play.
- Seeing as it's a mobile title as well, are you planning to have extra missions like BC did?
Nomura: Not at the moment. But if there's a demand for it, we might. We may possibly use the engine again and make another game with it as well.
- You've still got a lot of other titles you're working on, but how are you holding up under the work load?
Nomura: People keep telling me I'm overdoing it, but I can still manage (laughs).
- What kind of titles are you going to turn your hand to in the future?
Nomura: With the PS3 the more you're able to do the longer the production time gets. In between I guess I'll work on mobile products, for PSP or DS or mobile phones, which take a shorter time to do in comparison.