Dengeki G’s Magazine has been steadily releasing new information on the Angel Beats! game, and this month we’ve got a lot. Below are translations of posts compiled from 2ch and various blogs.
From last month’s Dengeki G’s November
Vava: “We call it the split approach.”
Maeda: “I told them over and over again that I didn’t want to make it a split release…”
–On the AB! game:
Na-Ga: “I’m grateful for having so much work to do.”
Tonokawa: “I look at Maeda and think, he’s got it tough…”
Itaru: “The AB game… Hmm, it would have been nice if they could’ve gotten it out sooner.”
–So it’s a split release?
Maeda: “I’m worried… it might get flamed.”
Vava: “That’s how big it is! I wanted split volumes no matter what.”
Maeda: “I’ll make AB! my best work yet!”The AB! game will be all-ages.
From this month’s Dengeki G’s December
Q: The reason behind the split volumes
-AB! has many characters and is set on such a large scale, so releasing it as one game would take at least another 5 years.
-And if the game is that big, it’ll take a long time to play. We considered how the current market trends are “inexpensive” and “simple” products, but AB isn’t of a scale that can be done “simply”. Our compromise to that was the split approach.
Q: Have you considered the growth of the smartphone market?
-We can’t imagine that the smartphone market will overtake the PC game market in 5 years, so we have no plans to release it on mobile.
Maeda: “Though I thought it should be released on the Vita…”
-I had accumulated a good bit of writing ever since the project was announced in 2010, but I didn’t want to focus all my efforts on something that had yet to get a green light by the company, so I put priority on other projects.
-The current plan is 6 volumes total. All members of the SSS will appear in volume 1, and it will comprise episodes 1 – 9 of the anime. That will be the common route and after that, 3 character routes.
-We plan to release volumes 2 and on at half-year intervals.
We want to completely finish volume 1 first and use that as a basis, then release volumes 2 and on at fixed intervals as cheaply as we can.
-Volume 1 will be the largest. If you install volumes 2 and up on the same PC, certain character dialogues from volume 1 will change.
-Volume 1 alone looks like it’ll have more CGs than all of Clannad.
-In addition to the common route, volume 1 will tell Iwasawa, Yui, and Matsushita’s stories. Iwasawa and Yui are both popular, so they’re a given. Matsushita’s character has a certain “gimmick”, so we made him the only selectable male character to make volume 1 a little more interesting.
-All the male and female SSS members will have routes.
We’ll slowly include male characters throughout the first half, or else the latter half will become a sausage fest.
-The heroines will not necessarily be intimate with Otonashi.
No one’s looking forward to OtonashixYui romance, right?
-President Vava rejected having mini-games at first, but somehow we got permission to put them in.
-AB! is the most RPG-like work among Key games, so we wanted to make it as an RPG at first. But that would have taken 10 years to complete.
-The character designer is Na-Ga, but he will supervise the artwork over a few other CG artists. Na-Ga himself may be in charge of the art for a few characters.
-The scenario writers are Maeda Jun, Kai, and Kashida Leo.
We’re using a method we’ve never used before. Maeda will touch up the scenarios written by the other two writers. Rather than saying he’s the supervisor, it’s more like a joint work with him at the lead.
-The music will be from the anime.
The TV anime’s ED, Brave Song, is written from Yuri’s point of view, so the game will have a new ED.
If we had more time we would have liked to release a new album by Iwasawa along with the game, but our schedule is jam-packed even into the weekends right now so that’d be tough.
-The game will be fully voiced with the same seiyuu from the anime.
During the auditions for the anime, we told the seiyuu that it was a “work with a game adaptation in mind.”
Otonashi will not be fully voiced. He will only be voiced when the story changes perspective to another character.
-Of course, depending on the choices you make in the game, the story will diverge from the anime’s story.
For example, the scene where everyone descends down to Guild in episode 2 – you can choose to get Otonashi caught in a trap and drop out, and then when he wakes up the next day the Guild is gone all of a sudden.
Of course you can still continue the game after that and reach an ending.
-Clannad had several minor scene branches, but AB! will take that even further.
We don’t like choices that have no meaning (no effect on the story branching), so every choice will result in some sort of branch or scene variation.
-At the beginning of the game, Otonashi’s tastes are plain. But depending on your choices, Otonashi can become a homo who crushes on Hinata or Noda, a yuri-lover, or incredibly idiotic.
The other members will have unique reactions to each of Otonashi’s personalities.
-They won’t be in the first volume, but we plan to have original characters designed by Na-Ga appear later. They will support Otonashi in his efforts to make the other members graduate from the afterworld.
-As a “visual novel by Maeda Jun”, this can be considered his posthumous work.
The first volume will be out spring 2014. If everything goes according to schedule, we’ll get the final volume late 2016 or 2017. It’s gonna be a long ride!