6/30: Greetings from Niinou Kazuya

This week’s update is entitled “Greetings from Niinou Kazuya”:http://jrpg.jp/voice/?vid=69.

In brief, he discusses the switchover to 3D and how they’re targeting a “PS1″ style of sorts, from the days when 3D was brand new to the world. Compare and contrast to the first installment, which was built around an SNES-styled world. That said, he doesn’t just want it to be retro–they are aiming for a game that players can enjoy. (No specifics–just says they’re working hard on it.)

He further adds that there are a lot of things he can’t talk about right now (Shirou’s art, Koshiro’s new style, the voice acting), but he hopes that you will take an interest in such a unique game.

Android dreaming

For the Android user with money to burn. It’s rare to find overseas apps that aren’t region-locked to Japan…

* “Touhou Clock”:https://market.android.com/details?id=jp.ne.biglobe.touhoupj_Vol1_G – now available outside of Japan, with recorded voices! Except I don’t really want to spend so much on an alarm clock… *¥600* (about $7.48)
* “Training with Hinako”:https://market.android.com/details?id=com.moonage.iTraining and “Sleeping with Hinako”:https://market.android.com/details?id=jp.createra.Sleeping – Expensive, but apparently full videos of the -indie film classic- fanservice fiesta. Gigantic, so I probably can’t fit it on my Nexus One. Also, expensive for an app, although I suppose it’s reasonable. *¥525* (about $6.55), *¥945* (about $11.78)
* “Moetan for Android”:https://market.android.com/details?id=com.moetan.android – I bought the iOS version and immediately regretted it, considering that it’s essentially just a quiz book at this point. Falling love!! *¥450* (about $5.61)

…Maybe I’ll try hopping on wifi next time I’m in the country and downloading some apps.

Weekly Update 6/23

Computer overheated, laptop is on its last legs D:

But it’s back up and running for now, so it’s weekly update time!

“Music update this week from Yuzo Koshiro”:http://jrpg.jp/voice/?vid=68.

When starting the composition work for 7D 2020, Niinou had a few ideas in mind.

Though the game is a sequel, because of the huge leap from 2D to 3D and from DS to PSP, he feels the music should make a similar jump. So along with the change from the world of Eden to that of AD 2020 Tokyo, Koshiro is going to have a more upbeat, techno soundtrack.

* It won’t be an orchestral +/- ethnic styled soundtrack like last time
* Things to avoid: touchy-feely music, lively upbeat playing style.
* They’re aiming for music more suitable for a club, with a ‘speed’ and ‘solid’ style (OK now it sounds like they’re just tossing out random music jargon.)

So essentially Koshiro is approaching this as an entirely new project, starting all over with a more urban style. Now it’s time for more music jargon: stylish with bits of hardcore, dub, and a taste of underground (_with a bouquet of cherries, charcoal, and moist underwear?_). Koshiro feels that this matches the intimidating environment of the dragon-infested game world.

But having said all that, there will also be a number of arranged tracks based on the original 7D music, so players of the last work will be able to feel the connection to the current game.

Finally, the update mentions the mystery question marks re: “theme song”:http://pent.semilunar.org/dragon/theme-song, and it seems that we’ll be seeing more info about both the music and the theme song in the next few updates.

Anyway I’m OK with all that. I really enjoyed the orchestral stuff last time (the two end-boss themes were incredible), but isn’t this essentially *Streets of Rage 2 x 7th Dragon*? And doesn’t that translate directly into *fuck yeah*?

Depository Renewal

* Added header so visitors have some idea of what they’re looking at
* Added sticky infobox and mini Japanese blurb at bottom for the same reason
* Widened X(|||_____|||) the main text box so I can fit screenshots in, finally!
* Front page now displays five entries instead of three at once
* RSS feed now working for the dragon depository

And we’re back in business!

Theme Song

Looks like the staff listing has an extra entry now:

!http://pent.semilunar.org/images/23.jpg!

*Producer*: “Kodama Rieko”:http://twitter.com/#!/phoenix_rie (Phantasy Star, 7th Dragon)
*Direction*: “Niinou Kazuya”:http://twitter.com/#!/Nino_Kazuya (Etrian Odyssey, 7th Dragon, Last Ranker)
*Sound Composer*: “Koshiro Yuzo”:http://www.ancient.co.jp/ (Etrian Odyssey, Y’s series)
*Character Design*: “Miwa Shirow”:http://mmm-gee.net/
*Theme Song*: ???

NPC introduction

“Weekly update 6/16″:http://jrpg.jp/news/?nid=124.

Starts with some stuff about character creation – same as before, no new news. You create your own party, this time any appearance can be matched with any job and (new to the series) any set of voices. And, some new screenshots. Take note that the screenshots are development versions and may not be consistent with the final products.

Some NPC introductions and character portraits:

*Hikasa Natsume*
!http://pent.semilunar.org/images/21t.jpg!:http://pent.semilunar.org/images/21.jpg
The president of Murakumo–the only organization capable of mounting a counteroffensive against the Dragons. She has devoted herself to development of the organization, and serves as a guide to the protagonist and the members of Murakumo.

*Kirino Ayafumi*
!http://pent.semilunar.org/images/22t.jpg!:http://pent.semilunar.org/images/22.jpg
A young man who works as Natsume’s aide. Although he lacks the special powers that the members of Murakumo have, he has remarkable talent as a scientist. He provides invaluable aid to Murakumo through his role in the study of Dragons.

New images?

Can’t recall if these images from imageepoch’s site jrpg.jp are new or not, but I don’t recall seeing the class description before, or I just never attempted to translate it. Either way it’s late so I’m gonna hold off on translating for a little bit…

!http://pent.semilunar.org/images/20.jpg!
短刀や銃器を用い暗躍戦術士
火力こそ低いものの、巧みなトラップで
戦場をかきまわし戦いを有利にする

_Tactical masters of trickery, wielding short swords and pistols. Though their firepower is low, through the use of carefully placed traps they cause chaos in battle to their advantage._

!http://pent.semilunar.org/images/19.jpg!

Half-year plan

Items on the agenda for this little site:

1. *7th Dragon 2020*. I’m not sure what I want to do yet — or rather, I’m not sure how involved I want to be, but at least I enjoyed the first game enough, I think it didn’t get enough attention, and it definitely didn’t get a localization! — and I feel like showing a little bit of support. So I’ll try to translate what bits and pieces I can and drum up a little interest. I note, however, that so far it doesn’t seem to be gathering as much interest as its DS precursor did. For now, all this means is that I’ll keep updating the depository with stuff semi-faithfully as more info comes along.
2. *Minor side projects*. TBD. I’ve been working on my Japanese a little bit, and I always need motivation to keep going. Playing a lengthy text-filled RPG is probably not going to cut it. I’ve been doing a little work with kdingo and perhaps we’ll keep the Mirakuru Fansubs name alive for a little longer.
3. *Site reorganization*. This is a maybe, depending on how much time I feel like devoting – I don’t feel that there is enough content on the site to warrant a full-scale reorganization.

Real Life does tend to take precedence, however, and I do plan on doing a lot of traveling, studying, seeing, and learning this year.

I do plan on continuing my little videogame and anime habit, but it’s just a question of how much more focused it has to be. Hanging out on yon internets and in IRC is a pretty surefire way to lose your concentration in six different directions simultaneously, and there’s no way I can make room for everything that I want to do all at once, and still develop my IRL career path and tackle research projects as I would like to.

As for recent habits, I’ve lately been enjoying XSeed’s English port of Wizardry: Labyrinth of Lost Souls on PS3, Okamiden on the DS, and oddly enough, I have taken to watching the Oreimo anime, which sounded initially like a premise full of ridiculous but turned out to be a delivery mechanism for an infusion of fuckwin.

Anyway, guess we’ll see how far I get with the above. It’s best to start small, right?