The Last Story Prototype Version Had Tofu Characters And Enemies

By Spencer . December 9, 2010 . 2:03am

image In the latest Iwata Asks column for The Last Story, Hironobu Sakaguchi discussed the origins of the Wii game. Takuya Matsumoto from AQ Interactive (specifically Artoon before the studios merged into AQI Group) worked with Sakaguchi on Blue Dragon. The two met frequently at an izakaya to discuss games.


Reflecting on Blue Dragon and the game’s reception around the world, Sakaguchi felt they were making the same style of game. Satoru Iwata, President of Nintendo, says that awareness of making the same kind of title was the start for The Last Story. Much to Sakaguchi’s chagrin, a video seen at a video sharing site for "a certain game" shocked him and Matsumoto.


The two developers wanted to create something new and started making a prototype for The Last Story. Instead of characters, this extremely early build was populated with Tofu-kun. Matsumoto decided the game needs a new type of battle system. By changing the rules, this game wouldn’t repeat past mistakes.


imageAn early prototype of the game had three heroes represented as blue tofu characters. Enemies were red tofu-men and enemy leaders had glasses. Matsumoto created an option that let players instruct allies to target the leader first, eventually this became a core part of The Last Story’s battle system.


Another significant change, Matsumoto mentions, is normally games use objects in the background as decorations. Sakaguchi was playing with collision and designed fields with interactive objects. Players could push doors open with their hands, squeeze into tight spaces by turning horizontally, and hide in shadows.


image Terrain became an important element in the game and led to the creation of complex maps with spaces to climb and hide in. Sakaguchi requested to use the terrain during event scenes, as well, leading to Matsumoto creating scenes where Yuris kicks open doors. The other characters make fun of him for doing this, a trait that Sakaguchi liked so he kept it into the game.


During dungeons, characters in The Last Story talk, which makes the game, in Matsumoto’s opinion, feel more alive. Thanks to Matsumoto, Sakaguchi says, the level design and character conversations makes the game feel more interesting.

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  • I’ve always liked games that really feel ‘alive’ and has depth in its contents; story, characters and the world.
    Unfortunately, many JRPG (that i’ve played) feels kinda ‘dead’, ‘artificial’, and lacks that ‘epic’ feel to them.

    Examples include: Star Ocean Last Hope (initially looks epic, but huge disappointment, but awesome battle system), Tales of Vesperia (sooo simple towns and environments).

    Oddly enough, Ar Tonelico uses 2D but I feel that its a whole lot more satisfying than others, especially the 2nd game.

    But that’s just my opinion.

  • Would be a cool unlockable, after you completed the game, if you could have The Last Story displayed like this :D

  • krokounleashed

    So they played many Bioware Titles I guess. Really sad there is now Lost Odyssey 2, yet.

  • I can has Tofu-mode?

    • You can has Super Tofu Boy.

  • PrinceHeir

    can’t wait for this game :D

    that’s a nice way to demo the game.

  • Jaxx-Leviathan

    Character conversations is definately one of my fave parts in RPG’s that incorporates this and takes it seriously. I think that I agree on the idea that those conversations during exploration will help with immersion and interest in the plot and characters.

    • vadde939

      Very true. Just like the skits in Tales games I like it when the characters can have conversations not related to the main story. It makes the game alot more interesting.

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