Bandai Namco aired a short video interview with Scarlet Nexus producer Keita Iizuka during its Play Anime Live broadcast, in which he discusses his inspirations for the game, how past experience on the Tales of, Code Vein, and God Eater have shaped it, the world, and character designs.
Get the full interview transcript below.
—Please tell us your inspirations Scarlet Nexus?
Iizuka: “Scarlet Nexus is based on our desire to tell a story about group members who have outstanding powers, who utilize their own individuality and characteristics to accomplish missions and reach a certain goal by cooperating as a professional team, as you will see in the game. And adding to that, we also wanted to use the ‘superpowers’ that most people have fantasized about as the main theme for the game. Combining the two concepts, Scarlet Nexus was born.”
—What experiences from the Tales of series are you applying to Scarlet Nexus?
Iizuka: “In Scarlet Nexus, the experience we have been utilizing from developing the Tales of series including techniques on storytelling and character development. Especially, in Scarlet Nexus we have constructed action battles to be intuitive and exhilarating. Moreover, the action battles are assembled in a way that players can feel their own steady improvements and growth throughout the game. All of these are what we’ve put into the development of Scarlet Nexus, based on the experiences from the Tales of series.”
—As we know that Mr. Iizuka has also developed Code Vein and God Eater, are the titles connected in any way? If not, how are you utilizing your experiences into Scarlet Nexus?
Iizuka: “Scarlet Nexus‘s universe is totally not connected to Code Vein‘s nor God Eater‘s in any way. However, the fact that players could become one of the fictional characters is what the three games have in common. This time in Scarlet Nexus, we are using “superpowers” as the motif and we hope that players could immerse themselves in the experience of using them.”
—Scarlet Nexus is clearly a futuristic game, but also seems to have roots in Japanese culture and mythology. Has it been difficult to balance the two? If so, what was the biggest challenge the development team faced in this regard?
Iizuka: “We have been creating Scarlet Nexus‘s world based on the imagination of how the future world would look like, especially Japan and Asia. That’s why we didn’t particularly feel difficulty in incorporating Japanese cultural elements into the game. Yet, if you look closely into Scarlet Nexus‘s world, you could see that apart from the futuristic looks, you can still identify 90s-like visual elements and retro atmosphere scattered across the landscape. To combine the futuristic looks of the streets and retro elements, and visually express them precisely to the audience would be one of the most challenging parts in developing the world of Scarlet Nexus. Sometimes you would feel that Scarlet Nexus‘s world is kind of on a different timeline from ours, where society and technology are developed in the ‘wrong’ direction. We can’t wait for everyone to experience the unique atmosphere on their own.”
—Please tell us your inspirations for the character designs.
Iizuka: “In Scarlet Nexus, we are always conscious about the fact that the characters are a team. That’s why we ensured to incorporate uniformity into their designs. All characters have parts that are arranged to reflect their own personalities and characteristics. Moreover, when they are using their superpowers, you can see them wearing their hoods or having other visual elements hiding their faces. They are enduring agony that is paid as a price for having extremely strong powers. By not explicitly showing the characters’ emotional expressions, we put the above designs into the game in hopes of constructing a dark hero visual in Scarlet Nexus.
“The Others are designed to be especially alien and foreign, even in a near-futuristic setting. Although its silhouette might still remind you of some existing biological being, the Others are designed by putting parts of living things and inanimate objects such as metal or cloth together, and combining them altogether skillfully. Also, as their existence is designed to be conceptually different from humans, they do not know our intentions nor our speech. So in order to combat them, the only thing you can use to fight back is by using your superpowers. We do think that the Others are designed to be very tempting, yet very uncanny, while also looking cool in the game.
“Scarlet represents a shade of red and can also refer to heroes. In Scarlet Nexus‘s visuals and designs, you could see red strings, which corresponds to the title. And for the game system and story, it also has a very important meaning hidden within, so please do look forward to more information that will be revealed in the future.
“We hope to further present you with information on Scarlet Nexus in the future, so please definitely look forward to that.”