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    Weltall in upcoming mech shooter

    RadicalDreamer
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    Post by RadicalDreamer on Thu Feb 18, 2016 1:23 pm

    http://figureheads.jp/collaboration/xenogears/


    So, Square Enix is giving us Xenogears fanservice in a new mech game, Figureheads. I thought fans would be more happy that Xenogears get some attention from SquareEnix (like Namco does for Xenosaga and Nintendo for Xenoblade)... especially considered the Xenogears IP was left to rot in a corner for years (it wasn't the only one, alas).
    To me, more Xenogears fanservice could mean more interest for a potential remake one day. Or just... more Xenogears related stuff. It's always nice to get.
    But I've seen fans getting mad/disappointed instead... Sure, the trailer above can be deceiving if you believed it was teasing a future remake... but still... I think it's cool that Xenogears isn't as ignored by SE as it used to be. I wish Emeralda could be featured in a fighting game too.
    Yikari
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    Post by Yikari on Fri Feb 19, 2016 4:52 pm

    I think I can imagine at least some (somewhat) logical reasons why people might be prematurely mad about this announcement. Let's see if I can relay it coherently.

    XXX

    If I remember right, Jim Sterling did an issue or two of his youtube series on the topic of Square Enix and what they are doing with their IPs that may be relevant to this (be advised, NSFW vocabulary inside; skip to ~0:56):



    The overall manner of delivery is, IMHO, bombastic and perhaps overly caustic, but I have to agree on that bit about Bravely Default. Seeing the way Square Enix handled its IPs for the last, what, 16 years now and the way somebody up there in the company making decisions for all of them was 'surprised' about how a concentration of what made the Square part of Square Enix not fold back in '89 and its success and reputation skyrocket in the first place polished up to modern standarts (Bravely Default) could sell well...

    Well, seeing that, I am not sure that pulling out the big guns like FF7 and Xenogears is done for the right reasons and with right intentions in mind instead of a pressing financial necessity and putting a well-known brand name on the next round of who-knows-what that has very little to do with the originals beyond the veneer respectively.

    Also, Square Enix' choice of platforms and localizations for their games. Stuff like relegating important plot and character relevant information to mobile games that have very limited japanese-only releases (Ziggy's everything getting ripped out of the main Xenosaga proper because of such being a really good example), delaying foreign releases of games quite a bit of people in the rest of the world would've liked to play for long periods of time (Dragon Quest) and just plain not being released at all (Front Mission).

    And there is also the issue of, well, staff. How many people that were involved in making Xenogears are actually working in Square Enix right now? Would anyone even be able to crack an in-joke accurately? Xenosaga's plot relevance to its entry in Namco x Capcom was limited to making a single reference to Xenosaga Freaks, if I remember correctly. Will Xenogears be relegated to such a meagre lot as well?

    We don't really know how this will turn out, but I am afraid of Square Enix going through their remaining stash of well-known videogame names (adding things like Chrono Trigger and Parasite Eve to the list of teaser trailers, for example) and slapping them on a fresh wave of releases without changing their approach to what's under the hood, the meat of the game like gameplay, art design, narration, characterisation, etc, etc.

    XXX

    Hopefully that pointed out a few possible reasons as to why someone might be automatically negatively inclined towards any Square Enix announcement of them working on something relevant to one of their old franchises in the current situation. I am afraid I find myself agreeing with such a point of view until if and when Square Enix changes its practices.
    RadicalDreamer
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    Post by RadicalDreamer on Fri Feb 19, 2016 6:37 pm

    @Yikari wrote:
    Hopefully that pointed out a few possible reasons as to why someone might be automatically negatively inclined towards any Square Enix announcement of them working on something relevant to one of their old franchises in the current situation. I am afraid I find myself agreeing with such a point of view until if and when Square Enix changes its practices.

    I see. I'd still prefer to stay positive about what is, for now, just fanservice that would perhaps bring more fans to the (really quiet Crying or Very sad ) Xenogears fandom.
    It's like Dissidia and stuff for FF, Shulk in Smash, KOS-MOS (and Fiora) in fighting games... that's nice. It can bring new fans to their respective franchises. It's disappointing to see so much hate directed at Square the moment they give a sign that they remember Xenogears' existence (they didn't for years and I'm kind of happy it's changing). Especially since it was announced a few days after its 18th Anniversary date.

    It's kind of hard to be a (hopeful) Xenogears fan, these days. Feels lonely. I can't comprehend all the people who want it to stay dead or swear that there is NO WAY the original staff can work on a remake (Square/Nintendo collab ? Is it so hard to do ? Cloud made it in Smash, some SE games are playable on Nintendo handheld consoles... the only things that could really make it difficult would be Takahashi's stance on the idea of remaking Xenogears... and whether or not Xenogears would be judged worth spending money on... I don't know why Nintendo would be too adverse to risk money on it however... since the Xenoblade series never sold millions in the first place and Nintendo keep giving Takahashi the green light for it... and they're not small games).

    Okay, people don't trust Square with Xenogears (or any IPs apparently). Some others possibly prefer Xenoblade to continue over Xenogears coming back (if Takahashi was to come back to Xenogears for real, it would probably put Xenoblade on hold... but his Xenoblade games are filled with Xenogears tropes and themes anyway, so why would Xenoblade fans be against a modern revival of the original Xeno ? I'm sure the world would be Xenoblade-ish if there was a remake... big pretty maps, more action oriented battles... hopefully with better sidequest design than both Xenoblades). And people seems convinced that Square selling the Xenogears IP to Nintendo is the ONLY way to have the Monolith team work on a remake (I think there's another way for this to happen) and that it will never happen (there were lots of games announced last year I once thought would never happen too... and yet, here we are).

    Besides, I'm thinking that Square Enix may be trying to get back on tracks. At least, I hope so. We'll see how FF15 goes first, I guess (then, the FF7 remake). But I met people who do believe that Square is slowly "coming back". And I want to believe them. Maybe I'll regret it. Maybe not. I just want more Xenogears and more fans to have discussion with and share fanworks with.

    For now, the IP getting some innocent fanservice by SE is fine by me.

    Yikari
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    Post by Yikari on Sat Feb 20, 2016 12:04 pm

    @RadicalDreamer wrote:
    ...I can't comprehend all the people who want it to stay dead or swear that there is NO WAY the original staff can work on a remake...

    Theoretically, there is no reason for it to not work.

    It may or may not be possible to get original design materials and dev team staff together, it may or may not be possible to reconstruct what was supposed to happen and other such issues.

    But, for the most part, IMHO, it will hinge on a). the higher management being convinced that making Xenogears anything is worthwhile enough to justify giving the go ahead and b). actual time and effort being put in the work instead of slapping some visual filters and calling it a job done.

    Xenogears' actual 'meat' has some things that are in a sore need of fixing if it ever were to be re-released (IMHO), like the missing chunks of the story and less-than-good pacing in some stretches of it, jumping mechanics, enemy encounter rates and the like. But nothing truly insurmountable, I think.

    And if something completely new Xenogears were to happen? Religious references and overtones may or may not need to be toned down, but that's about the only problem I can see.
    RadicalDreamer
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    Post by RadicalDreamer on Sat Feb 20, 2016 2:14 pm

    @Yikari wrote:
    And if something completely new Xenogears were to happen? Religious references and overtones may or may not need to be toned down, but that's about the only problem I can see.


    Well, religious references and overtones in Xenogears were there for a reason. Unlike Evangelion, Xenogears' plot was about religion. It would be one of my biggest worries if the game was to be remade... that it would suffer censorship (things are more tense these days). However, there were some scenes in the game that were really gratuitous and ridiculous and I would't mind them getting executed differently (in fact, I'm only thinking of the gear + chuchu crucifixion scene on mt golgotha... this scene was embarrassing on multiple levels... a shame because the drama is good).

    On a side note. I just realized that the Xenogears x Figureheads trailer was posted the day I turned 27. My birthday. Thanks, SE Razz .
    alister
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    Post by alister on Sun Feb 21, 2016 8:14 pm

    I must admit I was expecting a bit more from that teaser, but - just as Radical Dreamer pointed out - I'm glad to see Square-Enix not longer ignoring Xenogears. I honestly doubt we will ever see a remake - things are rather complicated now, many years have passed and there would be a lot of work to do on a hypothetical remake - but among JRPGS Xenogears is really one of a kind and it surely deserves more recognition from Square, especially because it has a considerable fanbase who has spent years waiting for a sequel, a remake or whatever.
    RadicalDreamer
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    Post by RadicalDreamer on Wed Feb 24, 2016 1:46 am

    Can't post the new video right now. I just wanted to say hearing Fei, Elly, Citan and Bart's japanese VAs being back made me all tingly inside. That said, the Gears look like they need a sandwich (oh well, this is just fanservice to fit in an unrelated game with its own mech designs... of course our Gears are going to look different).
    Spoiler:
    And the reactions on the internet keep depressing me... This... isn't exactly doing good things to my shacky mental and physical health. Joke's on me for always falling in love with doomed/unpopular things, I guess. Feeling like Krelian right now. Repress, don't have feelings for anything anymore or you'll get burned eventually.
    Don't mind my rant... I'm not feeling well in general.
    opkij
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    Post by opkij on Wed Feb 24, 2016 5:53 pm

    Depressing and dangerous to the mental health indeed.

    Still, I suppose this is a good thing after all? Hmm.
    RadicalDreamer
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    Post by RadicalDreamer on Wed Feb 24, 2016 7:57 pm

    @opkij wrote:Depressing and dangerous to the mental health indeed.

    Still, I suppose this is a good thing after all? Hmm.

    Is this sarcasm ? Because if so, I find it highly uncalled for, to be polite. This isn't SE that bothering me right now, it's some gamers' attitude.
    opkij
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    Post by opkij on Thu Feb 25, 2016 10:14 am

    Sorry! No, no sarcasm and I was also referring to some of the comments I have seen and not the news itself. Or to be clear, the news are dangerous to the mental health, reading some comments are depressing.
    katimus_prime
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    Post by katimus_prime on Fri Feb 26, 2016 8:50 pm

    A coworker who recently became interested in Xenogears linked me to the thread going on on NeoGaf about this, and a lot of people over there are very negative about it. The first I heard about Figureheads x Xenogears was from when Soraya Saga posted the trailer on her twitter, and an initial reaction by another friend of mine (who was sourcing something other than Soraya) had a markedly negative opinion about it directly because Monolith was not directly involved or named in the project publicly.

    I don't think Xenogears has been so much ignored by SE as it has been resting peacefully out of respect. An 18 year wait from SE for anything Gears-related seems much more respectful of the property than what Namco continued doing with KOS-MOS after punting Monolith to the curb. Unless SE starts posting updated redesigns of existing characters by someone other than Kunihiko Tanaka, I don't see Figureheads as an affront to the original Xenogears.

    Anyway, I'm anxious but optimistic. One of the people on NeoGaf pointed out that many of the people who worked on Xenogears in the past are free agents now, so they could very well be working with SE on this, and working on this willingly and with pride, but under NDA and unable to clarify anything. Also in front of some language and culture barriers. That possibility cancels out some of my apprehension about this. All in all, I'm excited, and if I had more time, a better computer, and a better grasp of Japanese, I'd be trying to see if I could get into the beta to see this for myself firsthand.

    After fumbling around Figureheads' youtube channel, I found that someone named Taku Takahashi is working on music for Figureheads. https://youtu.be/dePkP7_NQZU
    The wikipedia article doesn't state if he's a relation to Tetsuya Takahashi, though.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Taku_Takahashi

    I will say that I don't like the way Weltall looks in this parts system, but the other mechs look all right? I know that there's a bunch of art limitations a game's infrastructure has, so I'm hoping the odd look to them is because of their pipeline, and that they look the best they can within Figurehead's current possible art set. What really excited me was the voices.

    Taking a look at Figurehead's official site, it looks like they're working with very present-day, realistic-looking mechs, which are a far cry creatively from the sleek, Crystal Dragon Jesus machines in XG. This looks to be a little on the hard scifi genre side, which is really cool because robots in hard scifi needs more of a push, but this genre is very different from Xenogears.

    Most of http://figureheads.jp looks to be made with images, so everything but the main page's footer wasn't translated when I tried to run it through Google Translate.

    Sorry if that was very fragmented. Overall, I'm anxious to express my excitement about this because of the dubious state of "is Monolith involved?", but if people like Soraya Saga and Kunihiko Tanaka are posting about it on Twitter unprompted, I'm seeing that as a sign that it's okay to like and be interested in this.


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    Post by Jintoki on Sun Feb 28, 2016 4:51 am

    I'm in the camp of "cautiously optimistic." As someone who has played many of the KOS-MOS cameo games, I love and loathe the fact Xenosaga lives on in such games. On one hand, it's incredibly fan service-y without much depth, but on the other hand, it keeps Xenosaga alive, albeit in a superficial manner. But, as Kat said, when Soraya Saga retweets stuff about this Xenogears crossover (and I do remember seeing her tweet a few times about Project X Zone 2), it makes me feel like the creators are okay seeing their babies get more attention. Heck, with cameos like this, people might get interested in the original properties. I know I am with some of the crossover characters in Project X Zone 2.


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