Phantom of Inferno: 12 Years Ago And Now

By Ishaan . September 14, 2012 . 1:10pm

Back in 2000, visual novel developer, Nitroplus, developed a game titled Phantom of Inferno. In 2003, the game was distributed in English by the now-defunct publisher, Hirameki International, and eventually in 2009, Nitroplus would partner with anime studio, Bee Train, to adapt it into an anime series.


Now, Nitroplus are coming full circle, remaking the original game in the updated style of the 2009 anime. Nitroplus’ remake of Phantom of Inferno is due out next month on the Xbox 360, and they’ve posted new screenshots showing what it looks like. Take a look at some of them below, along with a few screens of the original Phantom of Inferno that we tossed in, for the sake of comparison.














Phantom of Inferno will be released on October 25th for the Xbox 360 in Japan. The game will have a new voice track, an updated story inspired by the anime series, and Nitroplus even consulted firearms experts while modelling the game’s guns in 3D, to help ensure accuracy.


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  • Ladius

    The original PoI was fantastic, I really hope this remake can make its way to PC, since fantranslating a X360 game so far seems to be impossible.

    Having an official localization would be the best thing ever, of course, but seeing how Nitroplus and JAST are still stranded with Saya no Uta and Hanachirasu’s English releases (even if those games have been actually available in English since years ago thanks to their patches) I can’t really see it happening.

    • Morricane

      Oh yeah, PC version would be great…I love my reading before going to sleep, with laptop in my bed and automode on haha.

  • Victoria [Rokuso3]

    “Nitroplus even consulted firearms experts while modelling the game’s guns in 3D, to help ensure accuracy.” What? Even MORE accuracy with guns?

    BTW, I loved PoI. I prefer the older designs, but I’m curious about that updated story (I haven’t watched the anime)

    • Yerld_CK

      The anime is mediocre, so you aren’t missing much. I’d say that the story adaptation is decent enough, but the production suffers from typical Bee Train shortcomings (awful cinematography resulting in static, boring action scenes, plus overly deliberate pacing).

      The main addition is an extra assassination mission near the beginning of the series. Another big change lies in the final scene, which led to much viewer rage. It’ll be interesting to see if they go with the altered ending.

  • Historiata

    Yay, more Urobuchi Gen material!

    …Still waiting on Song of Saya (and to a lesser extent, Steins; Gate), Jast…

    • pothier.adrien

       Saya no Uta, such a great game :D

  • LynxAmali

    First game-thingy I played entirely in moon.

    It was awesome.

    Now, if I could own it in English however, specifically this version…..
    But alas, odds are slim.

    • PoweredByHentai

      I think there used to be an English release by Hirameki or something.

      • LynxAmali

        I know. I own it.

        I own the original japanese copy, the english release and the anime.

        I just really like it. It’s one of my favorite Nitroplus stories period. Well, next to Demonbane, of course.

        • PoweredByHentai

          Yeah, Demonbane surprised me a great deal largely because I had access to the CGs before I played through it.  But man, Nitroplus has a number of really good stories to tell.

  • Just Tim

    For some reason, the biker girl on the original CG set reminds me of Excellen Browning (to be fair, I still haven’t played Phantom of Inferno and already plan to get it in Steam, if possible).

  • ZEROthefirst

    Personally I prefer the original styling of it, and will stick to my copy of the original game. The new more anime (meaning anime shows aside from visual novels) version just makes it seem more like it’s an anime series and looks to meh to me. That’s just me though.

  • Quinton Cunningham

    EDIT: Nevermind, got my answer.

  • Wow. I can’t even put into words just how much better I think the original art is. It’s like night and day… the original is 80s-style awesome, and the new art is just… really ho-hum. It’s like they sucked all the Bubblegum Crisis out of it, and replaced it with… I dunno… stock CG, I guess? ;)

    • PoweredByHentai

      I dunno, I liked both the original and the new art.  I kind of lean towards the newer art but it is the rare exception that I would prefer older art like Masamune Shirow’s Intron Depot artbook.

    • kupomogli

       If the old art is the top picture, then yeah.  I thought the exact same.

    • Couldn’t agree more. The new art just looks so much more generic. A shame.

    • Ladius

      I think this is nostalgia speaking (not that there is something wrong with being nostalgic per se, of course). I loved PoI’s original release, but its artworks were somewhat generic in their own context, and one who never played the game’s first edition could probably mistake them for those of other vns of that decade from Nitroplus, C’sWare and other developers.

      This is not to say that the new CGs are incredible, but they do their job and are more refined than those you will find in lots of contemporary visual novels.

  • Budgiecat

    Visual novels need to be animated.  Toki Towa style preferred or motion portrait. No more still shots. Lets up the anty

    • MrTyrant

       And you pay the devs for the cost of producing animated visual novels.

      • Morricane


        • Budgiecat

          Okay where do I pay I have a few dollars

    • LynxAmali

      Static 2D > Moving  2D.
      There was one I played that was had moving 2D. and it was bad. Really really bad.

      Unless it’s MLA tier, with mouth movements and holy hell, sprite layers!

      • MrTyrant

         There are some visual novels with a similar style of MLA aside from age. I saw some and were pretty good yet they weren’t of the same quality narrative speaking.

        • LynxAmali

          The engine age uses can do some serious stuff. Then again, with each new title, they update it.

          But I mean, I’ve read a 2D VN that had the characters constantly moving and the animation was baaaad. It was either the frame rate was way too slow or the animation itself was wonky.

          • Budgiecat

            Technology in animation is improving rapidly. Youtube search to check it out

    • neogeno

       I dunno I think I prefer it with static shots. I’d rather have the scene play out in motion through my imagination rather than having it shown to me. IMO, when it comes to storytelling with images, less is more.

      • Morricane

        I think it all depends on whether the writer manages to write action scenes without dragging them out (…thus killing the pace that a fight scene would need to be efficient). If you read like 30 minutes about a fight that takes like 2 minutes “real” time then someone was overindulging himself…

      • Budgiecat

        An Anime or a movie is nothing but still pictures shown in succession after each other

        • neogeno

          Well yeah if you want to get all technical about it. But as the name suggests, VN’s are still novels or books. I think the use of imagination should be encouraged.

    • Suicunesol

      At that point it ceases to be a VN and turns into an anime with subtitles LOL. XD

  • Rentekabond

    Never heard of this before, but just by looking at the comparison screens, I’d take the old art style anyday. It seems like the newer version just made everyone have more exposed breasts and a generic anime look.

    • LynxAmali

       Considering the art is based on the new-ish anime…..

    • Noba boba

      -On a Visual Novel page
      -Complains about exposed chest

      *facepalm* Internet.

      • M’iau M’iaut

        Hi there and welcome to the site! Inferno certainly would not qualify, but I am sure you are quite aware that many VNs tell an exciting story and even allow for a ‘touch of ecch’ without a single breast being shown.

        • Noba boba

          Yes my good sir, i am quite aware of that, as a matter of fact i nearly finished Steins;Gate, No H-content but there is fanservice, but see’ing that the majority of Visual novels are 18+, complaining about breasts doesn’t sound that reasonable, does it?

          i may be wrong though, so i apologize if my comment was in anyway inappropriate.

          • EmmyG

            And the majority of pictures on the internet are porn, but that has nothing to do with whether or not any individual webpage is BOOBS AHOY or not.

            There are tons of visual novels that are not 18+. There are tons of visual novels that are not even aimed at men. Considering the current growth in western otome fandom it’s not at all surprising that you’ll have visual novel fans showing up and being annoyed by overly fanservicey designs.

            That said, none of the images on this page look too ridiculously fanservicey to me. Not like Demonbane!

          • Noba boba

            The vast majority of Visual novels are 18+.

            And there isn’t any “growth” really, the last Otome game they localized was Hakuoki, which sold around 4k or so, wouldn’t call that growth, and not so surprisingly, many of the buyers were male, Not even realizing what an Otome game is about.

            Anyway, my point is, only an immature person would complain about breasts, especially knowing Japan’s culture, it’s a Visual novel, if it’s not 18+ it’s bound to have fanservice, even those on consoles and handhelds. and even if it wasn’t a visual novel, breasts and fanservice is the last thing one could complain about.

            Also, Demonbane isn’t really a good example there, it’s a 18+ game, duh.

    • Ladius

      It’s funny, because even upon a close examination there isn’t any difference in the fanservice level of the two CG set. The old China dress in one cg is actually more revealing than the new one, too.

      Also, the old CG set was “generic anime look” when it came out, it’s somewhat tiring to see this kind of nostalgic bias everytime sometimes from the ’90s or early ’00s get remade (not saying that one isn’t free to prefere either style, of course: I’m only criticizing this kind of reasoning).

      • Rentekabond

        There is a pretty big difference in Fanservice levels between the old and new (That’s also not the only reason I like the older one better) and I’ll even go through each one for you.

        1. In this particular instance, I will say that I like the newer one better, though the 1st one blends and and 3d much better.

        2. In the first slide, I can get a much better gauge on what emotion she’s supposed to be feeling; she’s elated. I also vastly prefer the color selection and stances of the characters in the 1st slide than the second one (honestly, in slide 2, the schoolgirl looks like she’s about to drop her gun and fall asleep. How is anyone supposed to take her seriously?).

        3. Set 3 is where the blatant fanservice starts to kick in. In the 1st slide, she looks like a determined business woman about to blast on whoever she’s pointing that gun at. Note that her breasts are nowhere in the picture. In the updated slide 2, however, she looks like she’s about to fall asleep (I could see it as being an Icy stare though) and her huge bust is displayed heavily by her low neck line.

        4. In slide one, she looks like a coy, but proper business woman. In slide 2, her low bustline is heavily on display and her new dress has an entire segment cut out on the left revealing her leg. Then there’s her Heels, which look like something you’d wear to a club, not work.

        5. While I like the overall art in the second slide, Compared to the first one, where she has the extra yellow body armor that covers her chest and gives her the additional knife, whereas the second one loses the utility and instead chooses to emphasize her breasts.

        6. Similar scenario here. I think the vibrant colors of slide 1 work better to contrast the background than slide 2 and, in regards to her outfit, the new edition emphasizes her breast whereas the first one was formless and had the slightest outline of her breasts.

        tl;dr, I like the older version more because I like the designs better, not some nostalgia that I don’t have.

        • Noba boba

          Are you seriously complaining about fanservice?

  • tubers

    Like the new look overall but I wish the hair and face had a bit more detail.

  • Looking good =)

  • Personally I think the new art is dimensions better. It looks good just like the anime, while the old art just looks like poop. Don’t get me wrong, I totally love oldschool styles, I played many old VN’s that had cool old art, this one is just bad.

  • Mrgrgr and Unacceptable World

    Ohh, the new art here is taken from the anime huh?

    Well both of them had their own appeal for me lol. As the one that i played first is with the old art there and when i played them first, i immediatly loved the art till now lol.^_^

    While the anime art is also not really bad there.^_^ But i think the art is kinda light there while the old classic one there gives the vibe of the good old Urobochi there.^_^

    Uukhhh damn i thought i don’t want to get this anymore as i already had two of them for my P.C but this new art makes me want more Urobochi goodness.T_T

  • xXDGFXx

    OH cmon! Really? You used 3D models on still-shots for the guns?

  • Everyone calling the new art generic really needs to go look at anime from the late 90’s and early 00’s. The old art is just as, if not  ore generic for it’s time. If you just started watching anime or have some

    The complaints about the new art being more revealing is hilarious since the original release was an eroge.

  • OMG, 16 years old Cal always makes me faint. Too. Much. Hot. 

  • $36598391

    The screenshots from the Original version look better then the ones from the remake

  • Draparde

    There are aspects of both that i like, but overall i enjoy the way new one looks more. 

  • Locklear93

    Twelve years passed, and apparently one of their characters turned into Kirika Yuumura. <_<

  • Man I wish this would come stateside even though it never will. Might try and import it anyway!

    It is stunning to me how hideous the old art is. So glad they updated it with the anime style (which was an amazing anime btw)

  • りんごタルト@エスカのアトリエ

    That Cal.

  • Alexandra Cordes

    I want this in English… and I want to go for the Cal route. She’s the best girl. : (

  • Etopen

    Will this be 18+ like the original, or stripped of the adult content like the crappy western release?
    If it’s the latter, they’ll have to adapt the script.
    I remember the western release confused many people about certain relationships (mainly between Reiji and Cal) due to the adult content being crudely removed.

    • $36598391

      What do you mean? the version we got years ago wasn’t 18+?
      If the Xbox360 remake got an English release it would end up being ripped apart to get a M rating due to Microsoft’s BS policy against A rated games on their system

    • LynxAmali

      It’s an all ages version.

      If a game had content like the original release was on a console, it wouldn’t be able to be on the console period because of the policies Microsoft and Sony have.

  • SeventhEvening

    They updated the art, but still used the same crappy 12 year old CG models for vehicles and guns. I don’t see a huge benefit of the new art. Some of the old art I even like better. 

  • i think i like the old art style better, new one looks like from some generic tv series made by low quality studio like Gonzo or something

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