Reflections On The Class Of Heroes II Campaign With Gaijinworks And MonkeyPaw

By Spencer . May 25, 2012 . 5:33pm

MonkeyPaw and Gaijinworks’ Class of Heroes II Kickstarter campaign didn’t spark enough interest to get funded, but the game will still come out in North America as a PSP download. However, some of the features that Gaijinworks CEO, Vic Ireland, hoped to add to the English version won’t make it in and retail copies brimming with trinkets won’t be made either.


In this interview, Ireland and John Greiner, CEO of MonkeyPaw Games, talk about their future plans, digital PS2 imports, and a tiny bit about Goemon, which is localized, but lacks a publisher.


Since the Kickstarter campaign failed, what kind of localization can we expect? Items like extra save slots, enhancements, and an English song were mentioned earlier. Will we see any of these features?


Victor Ireland, CEO of Gaijinworks: We’re going to try to give the game the best localization we can given what we have to work with. There will be some improvements, but nothing like what we had planned with the Kickstarter funding. Many of the ideas for improvements that we had before that will be too time consuming or expensive to implement we have to forget about, but the ones that we can do without a lot of cost we’re going to try to do.


Is Gaijinworks and MonkeyPaw eyeing the new Class of Heroes title, Chrono Academy, as a future pickup?


John Greiner, CEO of MonkeyPaw Games: We first want to see how Class of Heroes 2 performs. We are taking an estimated gamble with a game in which the first title was not well marketed or received. It shows we firmly believe in the second game.


We know our fans will appreciate where Acquire takes the sequel and the series, not to mention Chrono Academy. So we hope to be successful and produce an excellent localization to an already excellent game.


What has Japan’s reaction been to the Kickstarter campaign now that it’s complete? How has the JRPG audience evolved from your days at Working Designs to now?


JG: The Japan reaction has been muted. It would have been the talk of industry had it funded. In my opinion, the first title that succeeds in crowd funding will open the floodgates just as it has done in America. And then those gates will close and the phenomenon will be over.


VC: There’s definitely a smaller active JRPG fanbase now than when Working Designs was around, but I’d like to think that was due to a combination of that fanbase aging into grownup lives with less time for it and the game industry not handling the transition well of the next generation of fans that came up.


I think we can help reclaim that base and help grow it again. Of course, we need content from Japan to localize, but despite what’s been released in the US, there’s still a decent amount of product still stranded in Japan that would really appeal to JRPG gamers. We want to get that over here. We have to have a long-term vision to grow the base, and that’s one reason why we’re sticking with CoH II despite the lack of Kickstarter funding—we believe in the game and the series, and think that fans will, too, once they have a chance to play.


Can you tell us what’s going on with Goemon? How are discussions going to bring it over as a future project as digital downloads on PSN?


JG: There is no news on Goemon unfortunately. You can imagine how difficult those licensing conversations are to raise in times where digital downloads are still a fraction of large publisher’s revenue. So there will come a time when tables turn; it’s just not yet.


VI: I love Goemon. The hope to get it over here one day will never die.


MonkeyPaw brought over a bunch of un-translated PsOne classics from Japan. Are you looking at publishing PS2 imports? Maybe even English localized titles like Sword of Etheria (Oz from Konami) or D3’s translated Simple Series games like the Onechanbara titles?


JG: We have created a niche where we can bring some unique Japanese games that were lost in the gold rush days of the console wars. I think Japanese companies like the fact that we are a US company that can position their games with effective local marketing. By creating an Import destination on the PlayStation Network, fans know they can get odd and original games from Japan and backed by our guides and support.


We don’t have a long list of PS2 imports yet, but those have been on our radar. Konami and of course Hudson have so much great stock to offer, not to mention Square. I think as more companies bring back older licenses (most recently Activision and Diablo III—yet another dungeon crawler like Class of Heroes 2), you’ll start to see the original digital releases from all publishers. Fans want it and the releases help build recognition for the brand and the company.

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  • … Oh, so they aren’t bringing the PS3 version?

    • Ryos

      Last official line I heard was that it hadn’t been approved yet like the PSP version has but that they were pursuing it too.

      • Testsubject909

        Best of luck to them. For the moment, I’ll be sticking with Wizardry, though I’ll be sure to pick up Class of Heroes 2. I enjoyed the first one alright, so taking the later iterations to see what’s been changed and enjoy it is what I’m going to do.

        That said though, I just remembered I didn’t finish Etrian Odyssey and the second one is still waiting in it’s wrapper… Hmm…

  • M’iau M’iaut

    I consider the untranslated imports another miss on these guy’s ledgers. They overall just aren’t as user friendly as MPs original presentations made them appear.

    I’m also really still feeling the ‘1337 Japan ruulz 4eva’ attitude — the smack in the face that was kickstarter and the associated negative public fan response has not changed the public line any. I’m sorry but COHII is never going to bring lost souls back to the niche or feed the rebirth of a new old-skool community. The game just is not that good, and titles such as Etrian Odyssey and Disgaea are already in the marketplace.

    • Ryos

      Yeah, I don’t think this gamble will pay out personally.  It’s not because of the poor marketing that CoH failed, it’s because short of the fanatical diehard Wizardry-style dungeon crawling fans, it was a mediocre game at best, awful at worst.  I’ll pick it up (probably anyway, depending on the price) because I happen to love those sorts of games (even though I didn’t care much for CoH at all), but how many Joe Sixpacks are going to pick up CoH II because of more advertising? It sounds like they didn’t learn anything from the failure with this Kickstarter.

      • Everyone knows that Joe Sixpack wouldn’t have picked the game up, regardless.

        The question you should be asking is, “how many Johnny Sushiramens are going to pick up Class of Heroes 2 because of more advertising?”

  • kool_cid414

    I would have supported the kickstarter if it had two conditions : 1. I had/have money. 2. It was a different type of rpg. I love Jrpgs but I don’t like that wizardry type of gameplay not being able to see the characters fight with the exception of Earthbound and SMT is off putting and doesn’t make it feel like there are real characters. 

  • Thanks for doing the interview, Spencer.  I was really interested to see their reaction, but I am disappointed that they refuse to acknowledge the most glaring error – 500k for a first time Kickstarter for such a niche genre is WAY too much!  If they had set the bar lower, then they could have the possibility of going over their goal, but a lot of people looked at it and saw it was nowhere near goal, then gave up.  (While Kickstarter doesn’t take your money unless the project reaches goal, it DOES put a hold on your credit card for that amount and even if the project fails to fund, the hold sometimes takes a bit of time to fall off.) 

    CoH II is not the kind of JRPG I’m interested in, but I don’t mind pitching in what I can to help the cause.  They just have to be reasonable with expectations.  I hope for their success and I plan on buying CoH II to give it a spin.

  • neo_firenze

    Big name console JRPGs that get marketing still sell (see FFXIII and XIII-2), and the more niche titles that are marketed correctly with proper expectations of sales seem to be doing just fine (Disgaea 3 and 4).  Another factor is that the releases are heavily weighted toward the portable systems in recent years, which may or may not have the same appeal to a wide audience as a full console experience.

    I’m not sure the market for JRPGs really was that much stronger in the older days.  FFVII and VIII definitely crossed over into mainstream success, but for the most part even in the PSX and PS2 generations JRPGs were still mostly for the niche audience.  For every FFVII, there were a dozen considerably more niche games like Star Ocean 2, Brigandine, Vanguard Bandits, Arc the Lad, Wild Arms 2, etc. 

    The difference is that the games market as a WHOLE was smaller then and made less money, and JRPGs made up a larger percentage of the overall pie.  Now that video games have exploded into something more accepted by the mainstream audience (who comes for the Madden, Call of Duty, Kinect type games), those people don’t care about JRPGs.  It may make JRPGs LOOK less accepted when you see blockbuster non-JRPGs regularly selling millions of copies and getting mainstream recognition, but I suspect that there’s not as big a difference from the PS2 days as Vic is implying here in terms of the amount of people who are supporting localized JRPG releases and actual number of copies sold of games with similar scale marketing.

    Maybe I’m wrong, but this whole Kickstarter effort was so misguided that I don’t really trust Victor Ireland’s judgment here.  People not supporting bloated “deluxe” collector’s edition packages with cheap physical trinkets… And releasing on UMD when PSN is playable on the older PSPs AND new Vitas (while the UMD is PSP-only)…  And knowing that whether the Kickstarter succeeded or not they were planning to do a PSN release in either case…  Well, I see the Kickstarter failing not necessarily due to people not supporting JRPGs, but that people just might not have liked that particular badly conceived Kickstarter project.

    • M’iau M’iaut

      I appreciate that vic is still trying to fight, but he’s got to put better dogs into the pit, or at least accept he’s brought some real mongrels to the battle.

      He claims an interest in VNs and then gives us Miami Law? Was that done just so he didn’t need to hear folks continue to recommend looking at that genre?

      Hell during those PS1 glory days he speaks so passionately about, the rogue likes were barely touched stateside. Azure Dreams is the only one I can remember getting any notice, AND THAT WASN’T EVEN A WD game. It’s selling point in the states was the proto-dating element with the village girls.

    • Luis Edgar Flores Gutierrez

       Not to mention Japanese dislike that kind of funding since it’s technically begging…

  • Brandonmkii

    I pledged a fair amount, so I’m sad that it didn’t get funded. I love Wizardy type games, so I’ll still play the sequel when it comes out. Mr. Ireland still has my support. He should really think about getting 7th Dragon, or 7th Dragon 2020 out here ;)

    • Ryos

      I’d love that but since Sega’s involved, the only way we’d see those is if Sega brought them here, which isn’t ever going to happen.

      •  which in my opinion, dey might want to change dat stance an’ try to make a profit wit anythin’ dey can, no matter how tiny da profit.

    • neo_firenze

       Oh, I plan to buy Class of Heroes II on day 1 in PSN format and play it on my Vita.  I’m actually quite glad the game is coming. 

      But I’m not interested in useless physical trinkets, nor do I
      particularly want the game on UMD since I’d rather have the option to play it on my Vita OR my PSP.  I just didn’t care to pledge to support this particular Kickstarter project that could be easily misinterpreted as me voting that I’m support the idea that JRPGs become more viable if it’s a premium priced “Collector’s Edition” style release with physical items that would end up gathering dust.

      • Brandonmkii

        I know where you’re coming from, believe me. I love crazy expensive limited editions though. The amount of money i’ve spent on such things make the average person think i’m crazy! But if a digital release is the only way I can play something, then i’m not going to complain. Among all things, enjoying the game itself is the most important.

  • Rollersnake

    It’s a RPG in a niche subgenre on a niche system, it’s fairly well-known that there’s a better version of the same game on PS3, the first game in the series got poor reviews, and the Kickstarter’s minimum was $100,000 more than Double Fine’s.  I am a fan of dungeon crawl RPGs and play my PSP more than anything else nowadays, and even I did not offer to contribute any funds—because I don’t particularly want Class of Heroes 2, and even if I did, it would be the PS3 version.

    There never was and never will be a time when fan funding for THIS PARTICULAR TITLE would have worked, especially the way Gaijinworks handled it.

    •  it iz zoggin’ crazy ta ask for more money for a niche genre den Schafer askz for anythin’.

  • 9thsage

    I would have pledged if it had been on a system I care about.  I appreciate what he’s trying to do, but I can’t justify pledging money to it when I don’t even own a PSP.

    • Arrei

      Ditto. Not only that but the PSP is going out the door. Everything just seemed stacked against the effort from the start. A niche game, a system on its way out, and only a month (was it?) to fund a very lofty goal. And the game just didn’t look very interesting in the first place, to me.

      I think part of the decline of the JRPG market is owed to the fact that so many of them have crowded aboard the PSP and are refusing to abandon it when new tech is coming out. A PSP game, and a niche one to boot, was just not a good choice for this kind of effort.

      •  Yeah, but remember that the PSP sells like hotcakes in Japan. It is one of the most popular (if not the most popular) handheld there and so making a ton of RPGs for that system was only a good business move. Over here, the lack of quality games in the early going and then the fact that the PSP’s biggest seller in Japan has yet to hit it off over here haven’t helped it in the slightest. It kind of stagnated until the games of 2008 and even then it couldn’t pull itself out of the fire.

        I do agree though that using a PSP game as their attempt to gain more interest back in the Japanese made RPG market was not the best idea, but at least they were trying. Too many companies tend to just ignore that fanbase and leave us to pine for games that will never reach these shores. A PS3 game would have been the best idea, but when that market is cornered by Atlus and NISA it’s kind of hard to get stuff to localize and many of the major companies won’t allow their stuff to be localized by anyone other than their American branches. 

      • Vampiric

        there has been no decline

    • Nemesis_Dawn

      I have to admit, I would have pledged if it had been the PS3 version. I don’t own a PSP, even though I do own a Vita, so there’s no reason for me to pay for a game I wouldn’t own.

  • Ryan Baer

    I think one of the main reasons JRPGs aren’t doing as well over here these days is how moeified they’ve become. I can’t go on any forum without people complaining about all the moe in JRPGs these days.

    • CirnoLakes

       You can’t count me among them, I love adorability.

      Also, doing that alienates the Japanese audience.

      •  ta be fair, how often do da audiences of da West an’ Japan like somethin’ equally?

        i fink if dey know it iz gonna be localized, dey need ta try to appease both an’ not just one or da other.

    • ShinGundam

      The characters in most of JRPGs are in chibi style.
      Chibi = Moe.

    • Morricane

       At least they don’t all have all-female main casts like anime nowadays…yet.

    • Vampiric

      they are doing well…………

      and there are no more or less moe rpgs than there ever were

  • solbalmung

    I wonder, if they chose a better looking game (like Dragon Shadow Spell as a PSN Download)
    , for their kickstarter with a reasonable goal (100k) and proper advertising (DSS is an excellent Tactical RPG made by Flight Plan as mentioned in the link). Would the kickstarter have been successful? 
    I kinda think yes, with DSS being one lost gem in the PS2 era, many JRPG fans would have answered the call.
    Maybe it falls down to the the game they chose in the end.

    • Vampiric

      dragon shadow spell and its 2 other games in the same trilogy are amazing

      dragon blaze and dragon requim

  • Chris Hansen

    More like, I wouldn’t pay 60 for a psp game unless it was an import

  • I personally pledged for the soundtrack level. I am saddened that the kickstarter didn’t succeed though, since a lot WOULD have happened if it had.

    Not even just in terms of the Class of Heroes 2 special edition, but it could have essentially motivated other companies (Atlus, NISA) into bringing over other games they have decided to pass over, especially in terms of the PSP. Wouldn’t it be great to have Makai Kingdom on the PSN? Or maybe Criminal Girls having an appearance? Why not import titles of the other Marl Kingdom games? And that’s just NISA.

    Atlus taking notice of it could possibly motivate them more into bringing their PS2 titles to the PSN finally. Or, if I’m gonna reach out a bit: Them bringing over a digital version of Princess Crown, a game that was once on the Saturn, but then was ported later to the PSP. Maybe Gloria Union? There’s quite a few PSP games even just between those two companies that they could be interested in, if a big JRPG Kickstarter ever succeeds. Then we even get a company like XSeed into play, and we could get a very bolstered RPG PSN library.

    After all, you have to show the demand, guys! Something that can be massively gauged like Kickstarter would certainly help, and I hope that there will end up being more opportunities in the future to be able to show that support.

    That said, they really really should’ve added a lower Digital Game tier to the Kickstarter. They might’ve added it to the $100 tier, but that was too much! Consider your audience guys! 

    • Vampiric

      i pledged at the 500 level

    • Roubjon

      I don’t think I should be forced to buy a game I’m not at all interested in to get more JRPGs localized.

      • Testsubject909

        Yet somehow a lot of people still buy games they don’t have 100% interest in, with the hopes that it’ll help the company fund other games.

        But a lot doesn’t mean you, so eh, just saiyin.

  • $500k for a PSP, first-person dungeon crawler with a generic anime art-style. What the hell did they expect? It’s not even an RPG but a sub-genre, an incredibly niche sub-genre and one that I personally find terrible. I personally thought the way they ran the kick starter was a bit…offensive for a lack of a better term. Asking us to put our money where our mouth is and support them and JRPGs? Bring over games worth playing MonkeyPaw and you know…actual JRPGs and maybe I would.

    In truth I’m not even a fan of JRPGs that much but Japanese games in general. Localize some Code of Princess, Senran Kagura, or New Love Plus and I’d donate in a heart beat. Actually no I wouldn’t I’m broke but I’d support you somehow!

    • Ryos

      Dungeon crawlers like this are RPGs too even if they’re a sub-genre.  They might be light on story and lighter still on characterization, but those technically aren’t requirements for RPGs.  

      • Testsubject909

        Actually, some would argue that the first person dungeon crawler is a part of the original RPG genre and that our current day RPGs are what evolved from that, making the dungeon crawler the originator while every other RPG genre is more of a spin-off, thus putting to question what exactly is the sub-genre.

    • Vampiric

      its still an rpg dude

  • That was a textbook case in how not to do a Kickstarter. At the very least, Japanese audio should have been the default, with an English dub as the stretch goal.

    • Hraesvelgr

      Isn’t there, like… almost no voice acting in these games? I don’t think any sort of audio should be a major selling point in that case.

      • I have no idea. I can only go off what the Kickstarter campaign said, and that was sort of a red flag that they were doing things back to front.

  • Brimfyre

    I don’t think I’ve faltered one bit in my love for JRPGs but when I heard he was doing this game I was like “huh?”.

    I know Ireland has gone on and on about how awesome this game is compared to its crappy predecessor.  And maybe it is the only game he could get the rights for, but he needs to stop acting like the fans aren’t there any more.

    No, there are dozens of games I want to see brought over here that aren’t.  Class of Heros didn’t even come close to registering on any list whatsoever.

    It’s not about bringing any random JRPG game to the states.  It’s about brining good ones.  You know… like what you did with Lunar.  Now get your game face on and get back in there and try again.  I know you can do better Vic.

    Valkyria Chronicles 3 is looking for a home.

  • Such a shame as i wil never buy there digital games:( i think the media should have gotten more involved in the kickstarter funds  sites like ign and gamespot  then they WOULD have succeded…i wanted to give 200dollar…but ow well.:(

    • Barrylocke89

      You wanted to give 200 dollars for a physical copy of the game but you aren’t interested at all in a digital copy. Out of curiosity, was the money amount supposed to be more of a statement, or was it also out of interest in the game? (This isn’t meant to be insulting or anything btw, I’m genuinely curious)

  • Barrylocke89

    Ok, I’m personally interested in this game and there’s a good chance that I’ll give the PSN version a shot (I love Etrian Odyssey and The Dark Spire so this happens to be right up my alley)… but I agree with a lot of the other posters. This is NOT the sort of game that you do a Kickstarter for to prove to the world that the West still loves JRPGs…especially with a $500K in one month goal. Niche sub-genre within a relatively niche genre, on a dead system. This is why XSeed only localized Corpse Party for the PSN.

  • Hraesvelgr

    Yeah… I’m not really sure I can agree with anyone saying the JRPG fanbase is smaller than before, considering they sell more than they did 15 years ago. I think it has more to do with the fact that they made an incredibly poor game choice, coupled with the fact that it’s for a widely considered dead platform and a ridiculous goal.

    Nothing against the game, necessarily, but there’s not too many games they could’ve gone with that would’ve been worse. Plus, the localization of a first-person dungeon crawler somehow needs more than numerous other games being made from scratch. I’m sure that absurd and unnecessary LE they were trying to go for had a lot to do with it.

    Of course, considering who said it, I don’t even know why I’m giving it a serious response.

    • Vampiric

      they all basically sell more, i agree

      it was the game, price, and the fact it was getting localized anyway

      platform had nothing to do with it

  • Paradox me

    I’m not sure what they were thinking. You can’t talk about saving a genre (that doesn’t necessarily need “saving” per se) and bring a game like Class of Heroes II, regardless if it’s just a starting point.

    That’s not going to do anything for the genre in the eyes of most Western gamers, especially the more mainstream audience that was originally brought in by Final Fantasy at its prime who are waiting for the next Final Fantasy VI/VII on HD consoles.

    And really, when we talk about the JRPG’s declining popularity in the West, its these people who are being left behind. The people that would be donating to a CoH2 Kickstarter are most likely having their needs met by the countless other niche publishing houses, while next to no developers are releasing HD JRPGs that aren’t up to their necks in J-Pop, fanservice and tired anime tropes. Heck, I think the last JRPG that fits the bill on HD consoles was Lost Odyssey, wayyy back in 2008.

    There have got to be better titles out there that they can license, even from a niche perspective.

    ..most recently Activision and Diablo III—yet another dungeon crawler like Class of Heroes 2..

    I really don’t know what to say to that.

    • Vampiric

      there has been no declining popularity

    • “while next to no developers are releasing HD JRPGs that aren’t up to
      their necks in J-Pop, fanservice and tired anime tropes. Heck, I think
      the last JRPG that fits the bill on HD consoles was Lost Odyssey, wayyy back in 2008.”

      dis humies, iz wot me an’ da boyz iz talkin’ about.

      Me an’ da boyz iz tired of Fan Service, it can be dere, but we iz numb to it now. Me an’ Da Boyz NEVER LIKED J-Pop, nearly ever zoggin’ song soundz da same! Occasionally dey find one dat ain’t (which iz usually in Kingdom Hearts or Persona franchises) but it iz zoggin’ rare! An’ da tropez………even da Gretchinz, no let me take it a step further, da DUMBEST gretchin can point out nearly every zoggin’ Trope in modern JRPGs cause dey iz so zoggin’ predictable! iz why we like da Suikoden franchise, even da Spin Off on da DS wozn’t dat predictable an’ trope filled!

      Humie Translator Robot: let’s just say he completely agreed with you, then went on a rant so none of us sit here for more then 5 minutes reading that.

  • I find it incredulous that they would mention Diablo and Class of Heroes in the same sentence, on the basis that they’re “both dungeon crawlers”. That’s the most ridiculous thing I’ve heard.

    •  dey play nothin’ alike!

      Sometimez i wonder about some o’ you humiez.

  • Hours

    I appreciate their intent, but they really missed the mark by going with Class of Heroes II. If they wanted to start off with a bang, they should of chosen something that had more than a smidgen of interest. The first Class of Heroes game was really rough around the edges, and add to that the fact that they are going with the PSP release was another mistake.

    I’m still personally interested in the game and I love my PSP, but realistically CoHII was not the right choice. I think they thought that they’d get more buzz just off Vic’s name alone, but I think you need to start with a product people want first.

    Anyway, I hope they keep trying to support the JRPG and niche market in the US, but hopefully with some stronger titles and a more careful strategy.


    • I agree with both points. Maybe if they had started with a solid outline with what they were going with it, ’cause what I got from how they handled this in the middle of the program was with the tone of, “Well, yes and no, and maybe…”, and a lot of people got confused and lost interest. 

      Still, I supported them in hopes of what it could have lead to, but hope be gone, I guess. It’s great that they were thinking big, God knows I love seeing people with big ambitions in this industry, but if they wanted to show companies in Japan what what fans overseas wanted they should have probably have had a more narrow scope, like platforms. Being a PSP title, uh… I think it’s bad timing on that part. And if they wanted to give something fans really wanted, …yeesh. It doesn’t seem they could have wanted it both ways here.

      Maybe with E3 on the way they can talk with some Japanese companies and cook something up good.

  • CirnoLakes

    I’m kind of sad it failed. Even if it didn’t support things I necessary support. It supported enough things that I really, really wanted it to succeed.

    Well, at the very least, it did pretty well. It got a lot more money than a lot of Kickstarters that did succeed. It makes me feel good, to know that something like that, did what it did. Well, at the very least, I’ll be buying the game when it comes out.

  • majestix1988

    maybe do it with it like xseed games do it for Corpse Party(that game more scarier than Fatal Frame 1 or 2 even its to 2d but it original feeling due japanese original is more like a original game)

    but oh well they tried it & more happy because a new game will be release for psp/Psvita

    maybe change their apporach on Europe Territories first then US (for more understanding) due US market are more aimed for FPS or Fast-paced gaming

    while Europeans are more like……random

    if you are planning for retail edition(just do it for Limited Edition only) then other things will be DL version only

  • The fanbase is smaller? Nonsense. Sales trends show the niche market getting bigger, if anything. The CoH2 Kickstarter was just a horrible idea, front to back. It didn’t fail because the fanbase is smaller, it failed because the fans know when they’re being given a bad deal.

    • Vampiric

      your right

      tales, pokemon, disgaea, legend of heroes, dq, ff, and more have all sold more worldwide this gen

    • FStubbs

       Yeah. CoH3 appears to be a vastly superior game so he might have had more luck with that one. Niche jRPGs are some of my favorite games, but they have to actually be good games.

  • Wafflenaut

    I hope it’s released on the Vita store as well, I’ve been dying for the CoH sequel, and Lord knows there’s next to nothing for the Vita at the moment.

    • Testsubject909

      CoH 1 is on the Vita PSN Store, I don’t see why CoH 2 wouldn’t be.

  • SirRichard

    Thing is, they went for the gold right away. It’s good that they want to aim high, great that they have the ambition, but the pair of them don’t see to know what they’re on about when it comes to the market and this side of the industry, really. The Diablo III comment is a good indication of this; they do know that game was in development for 11 damn years, right?

    People have covered their choice of game and the platform it was on, but that’s just proof of it; they put all their hopes on a sequel to an unpopular game on a long-dead platform. To be fair, they have a lot of competition; anything remotely big or known in the niche over here is practically destined to get snapped up by Atlus, Aksys, NISA or XSEED, leaving little else for them. But even in the sea of stuff left behind, Class of Heroes II was a pretty poor choice to stack your hopes on.

    They needed a game with an interesting selling point, be it the story or a gameplay element or some sort of charm. Demon’s Souls exploded because of its difficulty, Xenoblade was one of the last boons for a console on its way out. Being on a more lively platform would’ve helped wonders, too.

  • EvilRedEye

    It’s worth remembering that some of the audience for JRPGs and similar games are in Europe, which is problematic when it comes to Kickstarters like these. An expensive physical edition becomes even more expensive when you add international shipping. A not-that-text-heavy game that might have been translated into different languages if handled by a European publisher will only have English, as it will be an imported American release. If you’re offering digital codes, how do I know you won’t send me a code for the American store by mistake?

    There’s an even bigger issue than all of these going forward, which is that the 3DS is region locked. You can do a Kickstarter for a PSP game and say it’s inclusive of Europe because the console is region-free, but now the dominant current-gen dedicated handheld is region locked.

  • Vampiric

    I want to make a point. I am seeing all this psp is dead nonsense or the psp is the reason why this failed, it isnt

    1) it was 500k in less than a month, it was an absurd goal
    2) dungeon crawlers have always been niche, and people remember the first title which wasnt very good
    3) It was getting localized anyway

    Those are the reasons

    • SirRichard

      It being on the PSP is also a large factor, though, because the PSP is, well, dead outside Japan. There’s no other way to put it, both the US and EU only have two releases each scheduled for the rest of the year, and one of Europe’s is a re-release of an older game.

      Sure, the PSP being the platform isn’t the sole reason for it failing, but you can’t deny it had an effect.

    • roboattack

      Point 3 was the biggest factor for me. The localisation was already funded, what they proposed on kickstarter sounded, in harsh words, like a scam to me.

      However if they said that it was used to fund a PS3, PC or IOS port that would be a different story. But they way they used kickstarter sounded like they were trying to claw-back their own invested money through donation by fans, and basically making money without any own investment.

      • GGear0323

        i completely understood why they did it the way that they did. what people really want is to kickstart an actual localization process. they want a campaign where the point is “help us raise [x] amount of money and this game will get localized.” the thing is, unless you work out some crazy deal with the Japanese publishers beforehand, they can’t do that. you can’t ask for money for a game license that you have absolutely no guarantee of getting even if you do get funded. i am not sure if you are allowed to publicize the localization of a game like that unless you have the license first and if you have paid for that already, you are pretty much obligated to release the game in some form no matter what. 

        now, if you could work out a deal where the Japanese publisher is working alongside you on the kickstarter or, crazy idea, the japanese publisher itself, speaking directly to a foreign audience, is the one asking for funding to initiate a localized copy, then you have a shot but someone needs to have that first success story for them to get on board with that idea. i don’t see them being too happy to get on board only to be embarrassed by the failure of that campaign. 

  • cj_iwakura

    Part of the reason this failed was because they put very little work into the KS presentation. They didn’t release a video until AFTER IT LAUNCHED, then teased things after the fact like John Truitt as a voice actor! It’s all about the initial momentum, and they botched that, hard.

    Also, not a game people wanted. If this had been for, say, Growlanser PSP, this would have sold like gangbusters.

  • Reno Evangelista

    I remember playing the first CoH and thinking how a lot of the systems it had in place were unwieldy and cumbersome. The whole permadeath seemed like a bad attempt to recreate the difficulty levels of older dungeon crawlers and the crafting system was convoluted and boring. You never felt like you were getting anywhere, the environments and monsters were uninspiring and the “college” setting seemed entirely vestigial.

    500k in a month seems like quite a lot of support to expect for something with so much inherent mediocrity.

    It’s hard to sympathize with them when Etrian Odyssey both came before
    CoH and did a much better job of renewing the 1st person dungeon crawler
    as a more commercially available genre rather than the niche that it mostly still is. Grimrock is a more recent example of a very high quality, approachable dungeon crawler, while taking a rather different approach from EO.

    TL;DR: All this talk about localizing niche JRPGs. Where is my Mother series?

  • SetzerGabbiani

    I don’t like the idea that everything was riding on a game like COH 2 to reach $500,000 in funding.  That was a pipe dream to begin with.  The fact that it reached over $100,000 is still amazing to me.

    • Yeah $100,000 in a month for a kickstarter on a game no one really asked for is pretty big.  I wonder how much they’d get if they put up the new CoH game, or maybe Aquire’s Akiba’s Trip with a crazy LE?

      …OMG I just gave myself a nosebleed…

  • RupanIII

    Let’s revitalize the genre! Let’s bring back the PSX glory days! All we need is …$500k! For… Class of Heroes 2!

    Project fails.

    Well, it’s just that the market is smaller and JRPG fans don’t have time anymore.

    lol, sorry not buying it. This KS failure says nothing about the JRPG market or fans imo. If this was a really desirable game, maybe with a toned down goal, I think it would’ve made it. The fans are still here, and we are desperate, but we still want solid games. I don’t want to judge it without having played it, but from what I hear CoH is not exactly Lunar caliber :P

    Don’t get me wrong, I don’t mean to sound harsh. I like and support Vic, and WD was totally awesome, but asking half a million for a sequel to a game that got mediocre scores to start with was probably not the best way to bring back the good ‘ol days. Even the import section on PSN I was really hyped for all the great J-PSX games that didn’t make it over, but the selection so far has been disappointing. I know licensing is expensive and stuff, but you still need a strong product to rally the troops. *Dr. Evil voice* throw us a frikkin’ bone, here.

  • kupomogli

    Without the fact that it was a PSP game.  I’m sure this
    would have failed anyways.  It needed just under 10,000 people to throw $60 on a game that most people are already not interested in.  I rarely pay $60 for games I’m actually interested in.

    When a well known niche series on the PSP like Ys sells less than 100,000 for each title, Ys 1 and 2 selling less than 50,000 because of piracy and everything, it’s quite obvious a game that next to no one is interested in will fail to sell.

  • Ravage27

    JRPG is my favourite genre but i didn’t pledge $ to the KS for 3 reasons
    1. I’ve little love for dungeon crawlers (yes that includes D3)
    2. with 1st person view (in RPGs especially)
    3. released in UMDs (unplayable on my Vita)
    I think its obvious, but my wallet will open as long as you guys release content that appeals to me.

    • Testsubject909

      Well, if you checked their kickstarter, it didn’t take a lot of money to get both the limited edition retail version + a free voucher for a digital copy.

  • I love the fact that he absolutely refuses to say that the Kickstarter was a terrible idea and even worse in it’s implementation. There was no reason for people to pledge unless they were super-hardcore fans or people who really, really like all the extra physical stuff. Those people aren’t going to raise 500k especially given we’re getting the game anyway and the majority of fans are happy to digitally acquire the games. :/

  • Man, now I’m sad. Sad that some (potential) titles are now sailing back in oblivion and that Vic still doesn’t quite see what the problems were.

    They could have taken this in a few directions with possibly better outcomes, but they spread themselves so thin and lacked clarity from the get-go, of course it would go bust. One thing that’s pretty clear was that this was garnered more as a business deal than a fan favor. Does anyone else get that feeling? 
    If they want to try this again, making corrections where needed, I’ll still support them. 

  • They shot for the moon, but they didn’t even get to land among the stars. I think Vic’s ego is really starting to get worse and worse as the years go on. To put all of this hope into a poorly constructed, mediocre dungeon crawling game with an archaic, first person perspective, it’s like they were destined to fail from the get-go. I’ll disagree with the naysayers who claim that JRPGs are dead, but games like CoH are not a good representation of the genre. That’s when critics swoop in and bash the genre. This is what baffles me the most: of all the amazing games they could have focused their efforts upon, they pick this of all things. Adding insult to injury, they mask the crappy game with a bevy of extras. It’s just frustrating.

  • ‘facepalms’
    Oi, Robot, you explain it ta da humiez fer me.

    Hujmie Translator Robot: fine, hes ranted to me about this before, but here are the reasons he believed it failed.
    A. PSP game, though he believes that it wasn’t the largest reason.
    B. alot of the JRPG fans really didn’t like the franchise to begin with, he theorized alot of the Western JRPG fans might not be huge fans of Dungeon Crawlers though he admitted it was a theory with no info backing it up, so he admits him being wrong is likely.
    C. he claimed they requested FAR too much money, and i’m inclined to agree on this one.
    D. it was being released in the West regardless, usually kickstarters involve getting the game released, end of story, meaning no funding no game, but people were gonna get it digital no matter what, so alot less people were inclined to even bother with it.
    E. He claimed this reason was minor but he claims that it might have had a better chance if they advertised it more, which he also claims more JRPGs in general need to do in the West if they want to succeed, claiming that he owns many game that hardly anyone has heard of, citing Okage as a example……..again im inclined agree with him here.

    He claims there were other reasons but he couldn’t think of any more at the moment.

    Fank ya robot, now get me an’ da boyz some nachoz!

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