Jump Force producer Koji Nakajima recently held an interview with Bahamut, where he explained the background of the story, as well as how the look of the Jump characters were altered to seem more ‘realistic’.
Here are the highlights:
GNN News: So how did the plans for a new Jump game come up in the first place?
Koji Nakajima, producer: “Hmm… It started a long time ago, around three years ago. The biggest factor was that the ever-popular Weekly Shonen Jump was nearing 50 years old, and in order to celebrate this monumental occasion, our company met with Jump in order to discuss a high-quality console game to celebrate the 50th anniversary.”
GNN News: What engine does Jump Force use? The textures on the characters, and the sound effects, all look and sound great.
Nakajima: “Our goal this time was to combine realistic scenery with manga characters, so making 3D models of manga characters that wouldn’t look out of place in realistic environments was a hard task. If something wasn’t done, they’d look too cartoony and fall into the uncanny valley.
The way we thought of was to enhance the texture for the clothes and hair of the characters, in order to stick closer to reality. We did a lot of experimentation and threw in a few new things so that they wouldn’t stick out like a sore thumb. For example, Luffy’s shirt is made of simple cloth in the manga, but has a leather texture in this game so that having lighting reflect off wouldn’t look as weird.”
GNN News: Other than the Big Three, didn’t we see Death Note characters at the end of the trailer?
Nakajima: “Ryuk from Death Note isn’t a playable character, because if he writes names into the Death Note, people die, right? He’d be too strong. (laughs)
The background of the story is that the real world and Jump’s world is merging together for unknown reasons, and the heroes need to stop this from happening. The Death Note characters have to do with this background, which also means they will show up in the story.”
GNN News: Any other hints [for upcoming characters]? Will some sports manga characters join the fray?
Nakajima: “This story is set in New York, so adding in sports manga characters is a bit difficult… it’s mainly battle manga characters. I can guarantee there will be characters that will surprise everyone.”
- You can technically play just one character, but this puts you at a disadvantage because of different character matchups. Eg. Goku can use ki attacks, Luffy is a close-range fighter, etc.
- While it hasn’t been implemented yet, there will be a ‘Clothing damage’ feature in the full game.
- Development is currently at around 60% completion. Nakajima confirms that the AI was set to be weaker for the E3 demo.
- The Traditional Chinese version of the game will simultaneously release with the Japanese version of the game.
Jump Force will come to the PlayStation 4, Xbox One and PC in 2019.