NieR:Automata at Jump Festa 2017!

Just a couple days ago (maybe yesterday, even? I’ve lost track…), Producer Yosuke Saito posted a couple photos of a sweet hoodie with the YoRHa logo and 2B, but we’ve just learned more about it.

Apparently, will be featured at the Jump Festa on December 17 and 18! They will be releasing a new trailer as well as offering this cool hoodie for 4,200 yen at the official SQEX Goods Shop! But be prepared… it’s only available in one size: Large! I don’t really know why they couldn’t offer other sizes, but…. 😛 The hoodie will eventually go to the e-STORE after this event.

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sweat-design-back sweat-design-front

If you’re curious what other Square Enix goods that will be available at the Jump Festa, you can see the full list of items here.

YoRHa Themed Sweatshirt in Production!

According to Producer Yosuke Saito, there is a newly designed sweatshirt in the works!! It looks gorgeous!

It features the YoRHa name and insignia along with the tagline: “For the Glory of Mankind” (人類に栄光あれ). The back features a sweet shot of the main heroin, 2B!

sweat-front sweat-back


Source: Yosuke Saito on Twitter

Thou Shalt Not Die / Kimi Shi ni Tamou Koto Nakare ZERO Video Comments

The production company behind the new Thou Shalt Not Die / Kimi Shi ni Tamou Koto Nakare ZERO stage play just released a bunch of fun videos tonight. The promotional video is nothing special, but it gives us the first taste of what sort of music to possibly expect from it.

PV Song Credits

  • Composition: Mukai Kenji
  • Lyrics: Fujikawa Michiko
  • Vocal: Kuryuu Mina (Botan)

The following are short comments from all of the cast members, asking everybody to come and enjoy the show at the end of December! I can’t wait!!

Special Interview Comments

Sakura

Hakuji

Botan

Usuki

Kuchiba

Mizukaki

Hajizome

Tsutsuji

Sumi

Kouji

Akasumi

Susutake

Kariyasu

Urumi

Kurenai

Chigusa

Togusa

Araigaki

Suou

Shinbashi

Watanabe Kazuhiro

Omori Masashi

Message from Final Fantasy Director Tabata Hajime

To all FF fans and NieR fans:

To celebrate the release of FFXV, we’ve decided on a collaboration with! Noctis’ “Engine Blade” will appear in ! It will be really interesting to see what sort of moves it will have! Actually, not even I know everything about it yet, but I’m sure it will be awesome. Just like all of you, I’m really looking forward to it.

And also, FFXV will get “something” from! But we’ll talk more about it later! So, while you’re having fun playing the soon-to-be-released FFXV, I hope you also look forward to Tabata Hajime


Translation by Fire Sanctuary
Source: Famitsu

NieR:Automata Updates – Famitsu No.1460

There were a couple new updates this week for . Check out the new pages that were published in this week’s issue of Famitsu!

famitsu-no1460-01 famitsu-no1460-02

The two new titles by Square Enix, Final Fantasy XV and have just been revealed to collaborate together. Noctis’ Engine Blade will be an available weapon for 2B! FFXV will also borrow something from, but exactly what that will be has yet to be announced!

 
famitsu-no1460-03

FFXV will be out soon, huh? I’m so happy for them! I thought it was very “NieR” like to have to ride such a big wave as this, so I asked Taba-chan for a favor. “Gif us some cool weapon from FFXV!” And what did he cough up–? The actual Engine Blade!! How sweet is that!? Taba-chan’s the man! FFXV is the best! So, please, look forward to the release of ! ーSaito Yosuke, Producer

Since the release of FFXV is quickly approaching, I wanted to congratulate them & this has been something I’ve been hoping to see for a long time! ……I’m really glad the release date for doesn’t overlap (seriously). We were also very lucky to introduce the Engine Blade into the world of. We were able to borrow not only the weapon design but also the special effects and the unique damage indicator displays as well! The director involved said, “We had a look at FFXV and visually copied it.” I was also able to include a Weapon Story for it. I thought, “Is this really going to be okay?” but the FFXV supervising team gave us the OK, so… I guess it’s okay……probably. ーYoko Taro, Director

Equipping the Engine Blade will alter the evasion effects.

The numbers indicating damage will also change to be more like FFXV.

What is the Engine Blade?

The Engine Blade is one of the single-handed swords that Noctis uses. It is the sword that is given to him on his 16th birthday from his father. The blade features a unique mechanism at its hilt. As the blade is swung, the mechanism activates and gives off a distinctive “engine” sound. As enemies are defeated, the engine absorbs energy from their elements.

 

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Hi, I’m one of the Environment artists, Kouda.
9S is pretty cute, huh? Despite being something seldom seen, I thought that showing off his kneecaps was a must. I’m really glad I suggested it to Yoko that one night out drinking that we have a cute guy in the game (I doubt he remembers this, though). Actually, one thing that sticks in my mind is Yoshida-san’s rough sketch of him in a sailor uniformーit’s unfortunate nothing became of it……
I sort of got off topic there, but it’s thanks to the background team that the environments turned out so beautifully. Of course, there will be plenty of exhilarating action, but it’s also fun to stroll through gorgeous locations like this, right? ーKouda Kazuma, PG Environment Concept Artist

 Forest Region

Running along a quietly flowing river, a luscious green forest rich in nature opens wide into a expansive field beyond. Deep within the forest lies the ruins of a gigantic castle that holds the remains of an ancient, lost civilization. There’s even the figure of a run-down Bio-machine standing in the middle of the road as though it were protecting the castle.

 
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Top Image: Further in the distance in this picture of 2B and 9S running, you can see something that resembles a reindeer. Perhaps it can be ridden, too!?

Main Art: It’s now become known that the location depicted in the very first promotional illustration is actually of this Forest Region.

Production Notes: I’m Mashiba, the Environment Artist in charge of the background development. The one known as Kaji (Kaji Yasuyuki) used to be the background team leader, but now this responsibility was passed to me.
The expansive world in ruin is turning out to be much larger than originally imagined. I was in charge of the maps in the Bunker and the Factory Ruins among others, but since he stepped down halfway through development, the remaining work fell on me to complete. Although you may thing “Why was this world made so huge?”, we’re working on increasing the quality, so we hope you look forward to it! ーMashiba Junpei, PG Environment Artist

 
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The Bio-machines that appear in the Forest Region have a very medieval feeling to them with their heavy armor; there’s something about it that seems rather humorous. The one who appears to be the leader, the one in command, leads some sort of battle exercise, and fight in large formations.

Bio-machines in hardened medieval armor

Bio-machines fighting in formation

 
famitsu-no1460-07

Weapon Intro: Spear

Up until now, we’ve introduced the single-handed sword, double-handed sword, and gauntlet weapon types. Next up we’ve got spears. Compared to other weapon types, the spears are average class, but they make up for that in their power and reach. However, since they’re mostly a thrust weapon, they can become a disadvantage when many enemies rush you at once.

First Edition Release Bonus Items

It has been announced that the first edition release will come with special bonus items as well as purchasing the game from various store locations. The first release will come with a production code to change 2B’s Pod into Weiss from the previous game. Other bonus items include Pod variants from the SQEX e-STORE, Amazon.co.jp, Tsutaya, PlayStation Store, Geo, and Lawson.

Tokaigi 2017: The Music Concert returns!
Tokaigi is a somewhat scaled-down version of TGS that will take place on Saturday and Sunday, February 11 and 12 at Makuhari Messe. This will be the second coming of the “White of Destruction, Black of Rebirth” concert that was held earlier this year in April. More detailed information about this event will be released at a later date.

 


This issue of Famitsu also featured a nice ranking of the best, high quality PS3 games as chosen by gamers. See the translation below the picture.

top-30-best-ps3-nier

Player’s Choice of High Quality PS3 Games – Top 30
#6 Replicant (197 Votes)

NieR is an Action RPG that puts you into battle against “Shades” in order to save your little sister inflicted with an incurable disease. For every main boss you defeat, you collect the “Sealed Verses” that act as power-ups for your weapons and magic, all within a story torn between themes of love and despair. Especially with that shocking B Ending; perhaps it has been seared into your memory!?

Players’ Comments

  • This is a game that you can experience so many things that you normally wouldn’t, and even long after its release, I feel like so much of it has stayed with me, in my heart. (30s / Male)
  • My heart was throughly ripped out from the second play-through. (30s / Female)

 


  • Images and Translations by Fire Sanctuary
  • Famitsu

FFXV and NieR:Automata to Collaborate Together

Word has just dropped today that both Final Fantasy XV and will collaborate together to offer in-game items or other related materials. Exactly what they intend to take from has not yet been stated, but we’ve just learned that 2B will get to use Noctis’ “Engine Blade”.

noctis-eb03 noctis-eb01

The weapon will come with some unique dodging effects when it’s equipped. Not only will the model be directly imported from FFXV, but the inside scoop suggests that its effects and damage numeric value will transfer over as well. Additionally, since all weapons in also come with a Weapon Story, the import of the Engine Blade will be no different. Just imagine what stories it has to impart with us!

The December 8 Issue of Famitsu magazine to be published on Thursday, November 24 will have more information regarding this breaking story. Here’s a little teaser image that they posted:

na-weapon-engine-blade

 


Sources and Special Thanks

Special thanks to Extrain from GameFAQs for linking to some nice images of the Engine Blade.

Fan Illustrations by Character Designer Yuya Nagai

Character Designer Yuya Nagai has recently posted a couple un-official fanart illustrations of characters he designed for to his Twitter account. Although they are not official illustrations, they are still beautiful works of art for these characters.

adam-and-eve-161112 commander-161119

The first illustration is of the mysterious twins, Adam and Eve. The second is an intense look at the YoRHa Commander. I especially like that image due to her distant looking gaze that seems so deeply sorrowful. If she is the same “Commander” from the stage play, I can entirely see why… and how very heavy her duty and obligation to her job actually is…

Edit: November 26

operator-161126

Yuya Nagai has just uploaded a new illustration to his Twitter account tonight. This time he choose to do the Operator characters. Gorgeous!

Lost in Translation and Design

Making translations from Japanese to English is a massively cumbersome and exhausting task. Going further to localize the vernacular and cultural ideology is even more difficult. I do not envy the people whose job this falls upon, but on the other hand, it gives them a very unique level of creative license.

They are able to sculpture a unique voice and overall feeling for whatever they’re working on. Exactly how drastic this leeway may turn out to be depends on a multitude of variables from the actual script translation and editing to voice actor casting and directing. There are so many things at play when any game is brought over from Japan that it’s almost impossible to guage what the final product will look like in the end. I’m always brought back to the idea of author’s intent. As long as the heart, the core of the project is left intact, the rest is fair game.

Now, this is a completely unnecessarily long introduction to an even more unnecessary editorial on the official NA website. In this post, I take a closer look at the design of the website and how it shapes up to the original Japanese site. This has turned into a rather long post with some [hopefully] interesting speculation thrown in, so buckle up and enjoy the read!


It’s been a long time since I went over to the NA page. I usually tend to avoid such sites due to my irrational abhorrence for translations and the unavoidable changes made between the lines. I am by far fluent in Japanese, but I would rather accept my insufficiencies and merely work harder to understand and learn the original Japanese, unfiltered and untampered by the localization process.

So, on to the website! The first thing that actually surprised me was the front page of the site:

official-site-01

It appears very similar to that of the original Japanese site…but If you look further and compare the two…

official-site-01-b

They both have the same basic design, but it’s very obvious that the NA version has the annoying menu floating freely over the background image, whereas the Japanese version is positioned in place and the menu doesn’t obscure any part of the background image.

The title is also centered better whereas the NA version looks like it’s trying to split the screen into two. I believe this is due to the particular design that they’re using, which (as far as I know) is a sort of template that is used on many other websites because it’s easy to design, but I think it loses a lot in the overall aesthetics of the page.

The NA version also appears to be much darker and uses too much black compared to its original counterpart. The Japanese site seems much brighter with its vibrant colors. The really nice catchphrase from the Japanese site is also missing on the NA page:

Is this a curse? Or is this our punishment?

…and what’s the deal with the Facebook icon sticking out like a sore thumb at the top of the NA page? Really? Was it really necessary to put that there? orz

official-site-facebook-icon

Moving on… There’s not much of real content available on the NA site right now, with just three categories available: Story, Trailers, and Gallery. The categories on the Japanese site includes the following categories:

  • World
    • Story
    • Location
  • Characters
    • 2B
    • 9S
    • A2
    • Pod042 / Pod153
    • Commander
    • Operator 6O / Operator 21O
    • Adam / Eve
    • Pascal
    • Devola / Popola
    • Emil
  • System
    • What is “
    • Open World
  • Battle
  • Movies
  • Blog
  • Store

The NA site is really lacking a ton of information right now, but let’s take a look at what’s there anyway. Since I have quite a lot to say about the Story section, let’s take a look at the Trailers section first. Here’s what it looks like:

official-site-02

The first thing I think that’s important to note with this design is that… those darn menu icons overlap whatever’s beneith them, whether it’s one of these trailer videos like you can see above or even the image of 2B below.

official-site-03-b

Maybe people are okay with this style of design, but I really dislike it. Why would you want to cover up ANYTHING like these key visuals on the page? This is especially evident when you try to click on the third trailer video (or the photos in the gallery section below). You have to be careful to put the mouse cursor on the trailer image so that it lights up in more vibrant colors. Otherwise you’ll click on one of the menu options. Maybe this image will help illustrate what I mean:

official-site-trailers

As for the trailers themselves, there are only THREE trailers listed on the page:

  1. E3 2016 Trailer
  2. Paris Games Week 2015 Trailer (the link on the site didn’t even work!!)
  3. E3 2015 Trailer

The Japanese page lists FOUR other important videos. I’ll post them below incase you haven’t seen them.

  1. TGS 2016 Trailer
  2. PlayStation Conference 2016 Trailer
  3. Boss Battle
  4. Character Introduction

Now, I can understand why these videos aren’t included on the NA site because that would require them to have the English translation with voice acting completed. Thus far, there has been absolutely no word on the English release date… but I’m going to guess that they’re holding off posting these videos until they can post them ALL AT ONCE for maximum impact. If that’s why the videos aren’t included on the NA page, then I suppose that’s okay… but… there really isn’t any Japanese in the Boss Battle video, so why couldn’t they at least post that one, too?

As for the Gallery section, there’s really not much to say about it other than it’s quite bare. There are only SEVEN photos listed and I’m pretty sure they’re relatively old by now, too. I’m sure anyone who’s following this game has already seen them. Why don’t they include the new photos that the SQEX PR department just released a little while ago?? Doesn’t the PR department work with the website team… even remotely??

And now on to the Story section. I’m using a funky new spoiler tag for this portion because I do go into some detail regarding the story text on the NA page. I don’t discuss any major spoilers, but I do talk a bit about the YoRHa stage play and how it may relate to the story in, so if you want to remain completely spoiler-free, then perhaps skip this portion.

I also talk a bit about the English name for the machine enemies that the YoRHa team is fighting against. I’ve seen multiple different names for them, so I’m curious to know which name you like the most. I have a Twitter poll for this listed within the spoiler tag below, but if you’d like to see the actual post on Twitter, you can find it here.

Spoiler

Second to last thing to discuss here… I started a poll on Twitter to ask fans which English name they preferred the machine enemies to be called in. Here are the results:

twitter-poll-161114

Mechanoids won out but only 3% more than Bio-machines. This is quite stunning since it appears as though the least favored machine lifeforms will be the official name for these beings… But we’ll see, things could change in the meantime. xD

And that’s about all I’ve got to discuss about the NA website right now! Please let me know what you think of the two sites and what you’d like to see them do with the NA site!

NieR Music Concert at Tokaigi 2017!

tokaigi2017

It was just announced on the official NicoNico Douga Live Broadcast regarding Tokaigi 2017 tonight that will return for a musical concert–which will include — sometime that weekend.

This is a sort of “revival” of the Music Concert & Talk Live that took place this past April, so it is more than likely to feature some of the themes that were performed during that concert. Since will also be featured, such talents such as Nakagawa Nami, Emi Evans, and J’Nique Nicole may also be involved in this show!*

* We don’t know any detailed information regarding a specific timetable or who might make an appearance, but this is still some really awesome news!

tokaigi2017-nier

Tokaigi 2017 is scheduled for Saturday and Sunday, February 11 and 12 at Makuhari Messe. –> Tokaigi Official Website

We don’t know whether the concert will be on Saturday or Sunday yet, but I’m hoping it will be on Saturday because I’m already scheduled for choir practice with Gametakt on Sunday. And here’s something a little more positive that may somewhat semi-confirm this:

Good morning. Over here*, it’s 10 o’clock in the morning. We’re working on being able to publicly release which day the concert will be held. It’s still being worked out, but you can imagine that it will be on Saturday. ーYosuke Saito, November 11, 2016, 3:01am

* Saito recently went to San Francisco, possibly to oversee the event for journalists to get a test run of the demo there and maybe at Square Enix EXP in Mexico.

 

What is Tokaigi?

Tokaigi is an event gathering for all video game enthusiasts, not just for home consoles or mobile devices. This event was originally created in 2015 by DWANGO, whose subsidiary Niwango runs NicoNico Douga, a popular video sharing website in Japan.

Much like with their popular “Kaigi” or “offline meeting” for NicoNico Douga, they wanted to have a similar event for video game enthusiasts of all kinds, and this is what became known as Tokaigi -Game Party Japan-.

  1. January 31-February 1, 2015
  2. January 30-31, 2016
  3. February 11-12, 2017, Joint event with JAEPO (Japan Amusement Expo)

Tokaigi 2017 will be jointly run alongside JAEPO, which may effectively combine these two separate events into one huge gaming party. JAEPO mostly exhibited arcade games and attractions.

I went to JAEPO in 2015 to check out the arcade game School of Ragnarok by Square Enix. Here are a few photos that I took then.

jaepo-04jaepo-05   jaepo-06jaepo-08   jaepo-09   jaepo-10jaepo-14 jaepo-15 jaepo-16