Falcom just released Ys Celceta: Sea of Trees for PlayStation Vita in Japan. The game is a reimagining of Ys IV and the first time Falcom themselves directly worked with the Celceta storyline. The previous Ys IV games Dawn of Ys and Mask of the Sun were developed by Hudson and Tonkin House. Think of Ys Celceta: Sea of Trees to Ys IV and the Oath in Felghana to Ys III.
"We’re proud of so many things it is hard to narrow it down to any single element. For one, there is a lot of great action. It’s faster than Ys Seven so we believe action fans will be pleased. Thanks to the high specs of the Vita and the powerful processor we can put lots of enemies on screen at one time, much more than Ys Seven," said Falcom president Toshihiro Kondo when we were talking about developing Ys Celceta: Sea of Trees.
"In terms of the story, we actually did find the old documents that gave the basic story to Hudson way back in the day for them to base their Ys IV game on," Kondo revealed. " We didn’t necessarily go off on that exactly. The basic story in this one is Adol has just returned from the land of Celceta and he has lost his memories. He doesn’t even know his own name. He returns to the land of Celceta and gradually regains his memories as he is adventuring. That is something we have never incorporated in another Ys game before."
Carna (TurboGrafx-16 on the left, PlayStation Vita on the right)
"In the Hudson version, Adol and Dogi arrive in Celceta together and that is pretty much the basic start of all Ys games. In a way, it is sort of what we promise our fanbase. They know any new Ys title is going to start like that. You can also say this time with just having Adol in the beginning we are sort of breaking that Ys promise to our fans. We like to think that is a good thing to refresh the series since it is the 25th anniversary of the Ys series," Kondo explained when I asked how the Ys IV story evolved over the years.
Kondo continued, "We knew that with Adol not having any memories if Dogi was there from the start, Dogi would just tell him everything and his memories would instantly come back. By doing it in this fashion, we are able to incorporate that part of the story where Adol is talking to people that have apparently met him before. He needs to judge for himself whether they are telling the truth or not in terms of what happened before."
I asked Kondo if or when we’ll see Ys Celceta: Sea of Trees released outside of Japan. This was like the third time I asked Kondo about overseas releases so he laughed and said, "We would love to release it as quickly as possible in English."