Given that Armored Core Verdict Day now somewhat resembles a RTS, there is the possibility of attracting new types of players and spicing things up. Unfortunately, those who were hoping for fixes of Armored Core V’s more glaring flaws will be disappointed. The frame rate is still quite sluggish looking, and anyone who has been spoiled by Hawken’s gorgeous visuals will be disappointed (perhaps such a comparison is equally unfair, but it will be made nonetheless). Regarding ACV, that’s where my questions for Armored Core producer Toshifumi Nabeshiba began…
What was the feedback like with Armored Core V, and how much did it influence the design of Armored Core Verdict Day?
Toshifumi Nabeshiba, Producer: Much of Verdict Day was based upon what players had to say about part five. Which was both positive, but of course, also negative. As a result, we completely redesigned the game design.
What is the biggest challenge when it comes to making an Armored Core game, especially after all these years and after so many installments?
Well, truth be told, I’ve only been involved in Armored Core since part three. [laughs] Though it’s always tricky trying to figure out what to focus upon next. Luckily, we have such a strong fan base that gives us insight and ideas. They give us a lot of motivation that we try out best to make them happy.
Have you been able to determine any differences between Eastern and Western players?
With the online data we have compiled from ACV, we are able to detect differences in behavior. And, believe it or not, both audiences are very similar.
Well, the reason why I ask is because the mech genre has become increasingly popular in the west. What do you think about Armored Core’s place in the overall genre?
Tough question! [laughs] You know Gundam, right? Well, we don’t have popular characters, so instead we must rely upon customization to attract fans out there.
But there’s been at least one in recent memory: the White Glint, from 4/For Answer. Has there been consideration into going deeper in that direction?
Well, sometimes the team considers creating another identifiable character. But their purpose is to help differentiate the games. It’s a case-by-case situation.
It’s very tough to create an identifiable character that fans will love for a long time, something like a Mickey Mouse, that will endure. So instead of spending too much resources on that end, the team would put its energies towards the customization aspects.
Online is clearly the focus of Verdict Day, but is there a single player mode as well?
The team is aware of fans who are used to and prefer the story mode, so we are working hard on the single player campaign.
Can you share any details?