Reflections On Record Of Agarest War

By Spencer . August 4, 2011 . 5:10pm

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While Spectral Souls and Generation of Chaos didn’t find a fanbase overseas, Record of Agarest War did. Aksys Games brought out Record of Agarest War and more recently Record of Agarest War Zero for PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360. With the Agarest series on the rise in the West, we spoke to Sugano Kenta, Director, about the next installment and if we’re ever going to see Neverland games again.

 

How do you plan a multi-generational game like the Record of Agarest War? Do you design the game from beginning to end and then fill in the branches in the middle?

 

Sugano Kenta, Director: I begin with the big picture for the story first. Then I’ll fill in details with each generation.

 

Going back to the beginning, why did you decide to make a multi-generational story a cornerstone of the game?

 

There was a series I liked where a kid was a character in the game and we came up with the idea it might be fun if there were multiple generations. Since it hasn’t been done before, we decided to make five different generations.

 

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Without saying any spoilers, going by the ending of Record of Agarest War it’s interesting that you made Record of Agarest War 2. Why did you decide to make a direct sequel to the series?

 

For the sequel, I saw it as a parallel world of the game world. That’s how in envisioned it as I made it.

 

The battle system went through some changes too. Why did you decide to revise it?

 

Since the game is set in a parallel world, I saw it as a new game and thought I would try something new.

 

[While Record of Agarest War and its prequel are strategy RPGs, Record of Agarest War 2's battle system is more like Cross Edge. These videos below should clarify.]

 

Record of Agarest War Zero

Record of Agarest War 2

 

Were there any ideas you tried before finalizing the battle system in Agarest 2?

 

There were many different ideas I had such as using the same movement system from [Record of Agarest War] 1 or adding in more RPG elements. There were many other ideas, but since the characters are 2D, I wanted to do something that would compliment that art style. If there were too many different perspectives like in a 3D game the title wouldn’t look as good.

 

How do you feel about the Record of Agarest War series now that it found success in the West?

 

I’m really happy about it. It’s shocking.

 

What’s your favorite interesting moment in the Agarest war series?

 

[Laughs] The scene where Borgnine eats Winfield is my favorite. [This scene is in Record of Agarest War, I can't seem to find a video to share it, sorry!]

 

image Out of all the characters, which one would be your perfect match from Record of Agarest War Zero?

 

Hirano Katsuyuki, Character Designer: For me, it would be Alice.

 

And the entire series?

 

HK: Hmm… Ellis or Victoria.

 

Since it’s already on PS3 and Xbox 360. Have you thought about bringing the Agarest series to other platforms like Vita or Nintendo 3DS?

 

SK: Hmm… personally, I’m interested in new hardware. It would be easiest to do with Vita since Idea Factory has experience with the PSP. I’d like to hear more about Wii U and then maybe we can work with that too.

 

blazin With Agarest on the rise, what happened to the Neverland series and the Spectral Souls and Generation of Chaos titles?

 

SK: It’s not that we’re not going to make anymore Neverland games. Because this series is important we need a lot of time to decide if we’re going to continue the series or not.

 

[Blazing Souls Accelate was the second to last game set in the high fantasy Neverland universe.]

 

Tomorrow, we’re going to shift to the business where we talk about licensing for Record of Agarest War 2, otome games, and… Infaune-san’s Neptunia Mk-2 cameo?



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  • HistorysGreatestMonster

    He’s wrong about being the first multi-generational game. I remember Phantasy Star III did it too.

    • EusisLandale

      It was actually the similarities to Phantasy Star III that drew me to the Agarest games in the first place. Wanted to see how well it’d work out when there’s not so great a limit that the generation system gets rid of, well pretty much everything else about the game.

      • HistorysGreatestMonster

        Personally, I’d love to see a game take the generational system and actually make it a HUGE difference, like the game totally changes, depending on the choice of who you ended up with. Different bosses, different storyline. An RPG where it would take you upwards of 150 hours to see all the branching storylines. 

        • EusisLandale

          That would be nice to see, but would take a considerable amount more space to the game. While I honestly doubt any game trying it would suffer for the endeavor as much as Phantasy Star III did, I could still see the game suffering a bit for spreading itself thin.
          One thing I would find interesting if they keep going with the series is a little twist on a new generation; Twins, as Phantasy Star III did for one of the generations. Fortune teller just provides details on the brother to keep it hidden and then BAM brother dies fairly early on, the sister was actually the main character of the generation. No real reason that every generation ever should have a male main character after all, but still play with the expectation that’s been built.

    • http://www.nisamerica.com NickyD

      The black sheep I love so very much.

    • http://www.siliconera.com Spencer

      He was saying that it was the first game with *five* generations, PSIII had three, if I remember correctly.

      • EusisLandale

        To be fair, the wording does leave it seeming a bit ambiguous as to whether he’s talking about a generation system in general or five generations.
        Even if he did think this was the first game with a generation system, it’s fairly understandable. Even Sega doesn’t seem to want to acknowledge Phantasy Star III, and I’m not even sure if there are other games that tried it between then and now. >_>;

        • Kibbitz

          Well, the only other one I can think of immediately is one of the SNES Fire Emblems. Only two generations though, IIRC, the parents and the kids.

        • http://otoboku.se manga

          Didn´t a early Dragon Quest game also have you start as a little boy, grow up, marry and then the game continued with the kid?

    • http://twitter.com/willofsilver Silver Lion

      Dragon Valor also done it before along with multiple brides, but then again that game was terrible and not well-known so i can see why he missed it…

  • nyobzoo

    got him and Katsuyuki Hirano to autograph on my copy of Agarest Wars Zero at AX :)

  • Dokurochan

    Actually Spectral Force Legacy was the last Neverland game.
    I really hope they continue the Neverland series as I loved, loved, loved Spectral and Blazing Souls. Heck I still play Blazing Souls quite frequently.

    • http://www.siliconera.com Spencer

      Ah you’re right! I thought Blazing Souls was the last one, but Spectral Force Legacy came out a few months later, I’m going to make an edit.

  • XxDestinyXx

    LOVE Record of Agarest War! The first game is my favorite. <3
    Hopefully, the US will get Record of Agarest War 2 with a LE. :D

    Oh yeah, and…
    "Tomorrow, we’re going to shift to the business where we talk about licensing for Record of Agarest War 2, otome games, and… Infaune-san’s Neptunia Mk-2 cameo?"

    EXCITED!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  xD

    • solbalmung

      Me too, playing through AGW now, midway in the fourth Generation and god, Im having a blast!!!!
      Hope Agarest 2 get localized too, it looks awesome!!!!

    • DanteJones

      Playing through Zero at the moment, and yeah I hope the Agarest War 2 comes over too. :D

      • http://wiredjungle.wordpress.com/ DrakosAmatras

        How were the previous games? I have my eyes on them, but I’m not confident enough to invest yet. I guess the “Idea Factory” label scared me away.

        • solbalmung

          To be Honest, I don’t like the idea factory games too, I never had a liking for the neverland series due to its complexe, grind heavy, gameplay. But surprisingly AGW picked my interest, playing it right now and I don’t believe I’ve alpready spent over 40h on it!!!

  • http://twitter.com/Megawarrior345 Elle

    I haven’t even beaten Record of Agarest War Zero and I have yet to play the original. xD

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Daniel-Morandi/100000837836996 Daniel Morandi

    As always they pick the default elf pink chicks D: I knew they like them too much, there is one in every version in every generation. It gives me headaches xD

    About the generational system, I have my complains because that system only change the look and stats of my main character yet one of the important things about decisions are the change in the story. How come the main character never mention his own mother? Why everybody talk about his father and not his mother? how come they always sacrifice someone, and not only the main character but the three posible girls too? and why there aren’t any racial comment in the story about your main character if he is half-whatever?

    • EusisLandale

      Well I think the biggest reason for not adjusting the story based around the choices is that it would take up a considerable amount of space. If I’m remembering right that would add up to around 81 different Rexes, throw in all the other generations’ variations and it starts to add up.
      The game also throws out a simple explanation as to why the unchosen women die as well, they had the blood of gods and it was needed.
      As for racial comments, short of Rex no other generation shows definite signs of being a mixed breed. And that particular Rex looks enough like a full-blooded harpuia to not really have attention drawn.
      Agarest Zero could probably have gotten away with three different characters as the second generation though.

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/Daniel-Morandi/100000837836996 Daniel Morandi

        You don’t have to mention his own grandmothers, just with Rex’s mothers is okay (only 3 variation) Is insane that they revived all your character in the true ending route but they don’t even shared a word.
        Zero is the same thing. I though that if they add less generation they would add more dialogue variations but no, they did exactly the same.

        The vessel thing is just an excuse, they could have said that the gods need only the father’s and mother’s blood but the others girls could have grow up more (is they are human) at least with a different design D: in Zero the funny thing is that general Anzest said that only Sieghart and only one companion is the sacrifice but the others girls sacrifice too lol

        About dialogue variation I don’t think it’s that hard, most of the dialogues could be the same indiferent from your character’s origin but when you take a decision in the previous Agarest you change a lot of dialogues (I want go to a, b, c or I want to help to a,b, c) even adding some route stages. If you could insert some variations taking your main character origins would be great.

  • AzureNova

    I have this game and love it.

  • http://tristsantithesis.tumblr.com/ Tsunayoshi Sawada

    Licensing for Record of Agarest War 2? Its coming over? 

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=592869044 Jassman Nioko

      I hope so!

    • DanteJones

      IT DAMN WELL BETT–er, ahem, I certainly hope so. *cough*

      • http://tristsantithesis.tumblr.com/ Tsunayoshi Sawada

        I hope so too. though the longer the better, since I still need to actually play my copy of Record of Agarest War 1. 

  • theworldofnoboundries

    Inafune Blade!!!!!

  • Astralwyrm

    Personally i found record of agarest war’s story badly written and i’m not even sure that it was necessarily because it was badly translated either. Its a budget game where every scene is pretty much left to your imagination and while it definitely takes a long time to complete i just couldnt find a reason to keep playing beyound about mid way through generation 3. I did enjoy cross edge for the most part though so i might like 2…. since the old battle system had a particular flaw in it that really got on my nerves.

    • raymk

      If your playing agarest war for a good story your playing it for the wrong reasons.  Well zero’s story isn’t bad and the dating/battle system with fan-service is what keeps many playing.

  • Souji Tendou

    So, when will we get Record of Agarest 2 in the west?

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Wayne-LaBranch/100002132711844 Wayne LaBranch

    Why does everyone used that screenshot…geez and hopeful Record of Agarest 2 for US? :3

    • EusisLandale

      Which screenshot? The “terribly pretty” one, or the one with the Arts being shown as Skills? The latter’s existance has always confused me personally.
      Agreed on the hoping for a Record of Agarest War 2 US release. Though, I do hope that either they get a 360 version made, or at least don’t go the route of “You can only start on Hard if you have a save from the previous game, if you don’t well hope you weren’t attached to your non-exclusive DLC at all!” like Zero did. >_>;

  • Wiccan1109

    Ah, forgive me, im just a bit confused. I dont know much about the series, as far as i know theres only 2 Agarest titles, the first one, and the second, Agarest Generations/Record of War: Zero. The second one, from what i see, is also out in NA regions right now, has been for a couple of weeks and is just about to come out in EU, so im a bit baffled as to why people are wondering about a localisation and release etc. I can already see them on Amazon and everything, am i missing something? Is there another Agarest title?

    • EusisLandale

      Record of Agarest War 2. 1, 0, 2 for the series so far.

      • Wiccan1109

        Ahh, i get it, thank you. :)

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Maria-Garcia/100002337521506 Maria Garcia

    you should have asked him what about agarest 2 on xbox 360.Its ps3 only or what.BTW i love the changes in agarest 2

  • http://www.facebook.com/danny.kriegbaum Danny Kriegbaum Laursen

    @facebook-100002337521506:disqus  Agarest Zero and War is out on Xbox 360 in US, but I guess you mean EU.

    To my knowledge is only reason Ghostlight, don’t have Xbox 360 version of Agarest and Zero, that they don’t have a license for Xbox 360 or something.

    • EusisLandale

      Things are a little different between 1&0 and 2 right now. 2 does not yet have a 360 version at all, anywhere.
      Both 1 & 0 were ported to the 360 a little over a year after the PS3 version, then released in the US a little over a year after that. If the trend were to continue, there would be a 360 version of Agarest War 2 out sometime this upcoming December or January, followed by a US release late 2012/early 2013.
      Maria Garcia was most likely just suggesting checking to see if the trend is going to continue, or if there were plans to speed the process up or just if the 360 is going to be skipped over this time around.

  • Crimson_Cloud

    You should have thanked the guy for making the fantasy game with dating elements. Seriously, it’s rare to see a chance to see a character merry an elf or a cat-girl in RPGs. :)

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