Today, Kadokawa Games announced Root Film, their latest mystery visual novel that carries over gameplay elements from Root Letter. [Thanks, 4Gamer!]
Root Film is being headed by producer Yoshimi Yasuda, like Root Letter, and is being written by Hifumi Kouno, who wrote the story for Clock Tower and more. Tarou Mino returns as character designer.
Aspiring filmmaker Rintarou Yagumo joins a mystery drama TV project that’s set in the Shimane prefecture, which is also meant to act as tourism PR. The project began ten years ago and while a pilot was made, the project was cancelled for unknown reasons before being revived now.
One of the main points of this project is a competition between three filmmakers, with each of them working with a different actress playing the protagonist. When finding out that the other two filmmakers are famous directors, Yagumo gets excited for the project.
For pre-location hunting, Yagumo and the staff head out to the filming location, but what awaited them was a murder incident…
Rintarou Yagumo (CV: Wataru Komada)
A poor filmmaker who works at his own small studio, Studio Yagumo. He’s managing to make ends meet with small commercial video projects and DVD videos about seedy supernatural incidents, but isn’t satisfied with his current life and works hard at improving his skills.
Recently, he managed to win awards at the ‘6 Minute Video Festival’ and ‘Asia Movie Competition’, and has gotten some attention as an up-and-coming filmmaker.
Riho (CV: Himika Akaneya)
The other protagonist of this game, who’s cheerful and laughs often. She was scouted by a talent agency in high school, and transferred to a Tokyo high school. While studying, she learned the art of acting, and made her debut at 17 years old.
Although that debut was quite overlooked as she worked as part of the Jakushou Agency, she’s currently slowly becoming more well-known in the industry thanks to her acting skills.
Aine Magari (CV: Yuu Serizawa)
A foul-mouthed assistant working at Studio Yagumo. Her skill at editing and filming equipment is quite high. She’s uncouth and is suspected to be a former delinquent, but is a good person at heart. She’s also pays attention to detail, and often looks after Yagumo.
Hitoha Amakata (CV: Miyu Kubota)
An idol working for the Jakushou Agency. She’s one of the three actresses chosen for the Shimane Mystery Drama project. Yagumo chose her as his partner, and now they are touring Shimane together in preparation.
Kyouichi Kanade (CV: Azuki Shibuya)
A cameraman who often works together with Yagumo. He’s still in training, but has the courage and willpower to be a cameraman, and is a saving grace for Yagumo, as he’s quite lenient when it comes to payment.
Mie Aoto (CV: Yuuki Wakai)
A freshman at Shimane University, and a friend from Riho’s high school days, and studies Koizumi Yakumo’s works. She took the opportunity to move and live in Shimane for her studies. She loves her father deeply, and speaks up a lot on certain points.
While she has a cute face, she doesn’t really have a fashion sense.
Ayane Kotoshiro (CV: Saki Yamakita)
A young woman from the Kotoshiro family, a renowned family in Shimane. She’s quite pure and easy to get along with, but can be strong-minded and selfish. She’s dating Kazuya Makita, a person working for her, and her feelings for him are so strong that she wants to marry him.
One of the game’s distinctive systems is the Synesthesia Mode, where during conversation, keywords that must not be forgotten in your subconscious are visualized on the screen. These keywords can be used as your ammo in ‘Max Mode’.
Max Mode are debates between the protagonist and other appearing characters that occur as you go along the story and try to solve the mystery. It’s a system that is returning from Root Letter, but has been remade to look something like a fighting game.
The game’s UI, text, and overall design is stylized around the film theme, under the supervision of Hifumi Kouno.
Kadokawa announced that the game will have a first-print bonus with the i☆Ris ×Root Film Treasure Footage Collection, which is a bonus DVD containing a recording of the live event by i☆Ris at the Kadokawa Games Thanksgiving Festival, and the behind-the-scenes footage of the making of the theme song of Root Film.
Root Film Theme Song ‘Utakata no Hikari’
J-pop idol group i☆Ris is voice-acting for the key characters in the game, and have created a theme song for the game, ‘Utakata no Hikari’.
Check out the reveal trailer below:
Root Film will release for PlayStation 4 and Nintendo Switch in Spring 2020.