M2 has released the first key visual, prologue, and player aircraft details and artwork for Ubusuna, the upcoming shoot ’em up from Radiant Silvergun and Ikaruga creator Hiroshi Iuchi. A 14-minute “Soundtrack EP” video was also released.
The game’s prologue and aircraft details are as follows:
Genhō-no-kuni—a peaceful republic that has worshipped the divine bird Hōō as its presiding deity from time immemorial.
Chief Mishinagi governs the country on a principle of pacifism, with three Wingbearers—the defenders of the land and chosen holders of the divine relics Hōu-kesshō—at his service.
However, for the past eight years the country has seen repeated aggressions, purportedly by the forces of its neighboring country.
The Wingbearers Gashujō, Shinogami, and Amakaze have only narrowly been able to hold their ground against their opposer’s military technology of heretofore unseen refinement, such as high-mobility weaponry and aerial fleets.
The attacks, in truth, have been instigated by the military of Genhō, in a plot to induce political upheaval.
Finding its recent activities suspicious, Mishinagi launches a covert investigation, but is assassinated by its Intelligence Agency shortly thereafter.
The news of his death triggers public outrage; the citizens of Genhō have tolerated the neighboring country’s aggressions out of their respect for the pacifist doctrine, but now their resentment and their disillusionment with the weak-kneed government erupt, causing further turmoil on both sides of the border.
In the absence of a Chief, Parliament is left to address the chaos—but its members are divided into those who advocate delegating more power to the military, and those strongly opposed to this idea.
Furthermore, it labels the members of the opposition as traitors, and starts taking them into custody on its own authority.
Now with the pro-military faction prevailing, Parliament declares Gashujō, who is the leader of the Wingbearers and a younger brother to Mishinagi, to be a Possessor of Higher Knowledge, and elects him as new Chief.
Unaware that he is being manipulated, Gashujō makes a speech to the public, and succeeds in temporarily quelling down the civil unrest.
Still, Parliament and the public keep pressing him for a quick resolution to the border conflicts, which leaves him no choice but to give increased power to the military.
Meanwhile Shinogami and Amakaze, who are still under the false accusation, infiltrate the official residence of the Chief, in the hope of contacting Gashujō to plead their innocence. But the Intelligence Agency quickly detects their plan.
Sensing that they have been discovered, the two Wingbearers hasten to evacuate the site. To fight off the pursuers, they activate their Hōu-kesshō and enter the air combat mode—.
In the distant past, a crystalline object that held great power descended from the sky. It was named Ubusuna, and Hōu-kesshō derive from this mysterious object.
Like many cultures, Genhō has its own myths of world creation and of salvation. They sometime mention Ubusuna—but it is unknown how much, if any, of them are based on historical facts.
To the present day, Hou-kesshō have been passed down through generations of Wingbearers.
As the extent of their power is revealed orally by Wingbearers to the succeeding Wingbearers only, for the rest of the world much of their nature is shrouded in mystery.
Today, Hou-kesshō are seen almost exclusively in times of emergency, used defensively in their air combat mode.
The key to their activation is an ancient relic shaped like a feather of the Hōō.
In the hands of a Wingbearer, the Feather can conjure an annular device called Kinkoji into the air.
When the Wingbearer dives through the Kinkoji, flight equipment outfitted with powerful weapons is transferred upon them.
There are three extant Hou-kesshō, each entrusted to Gashujo, Shinogami, Amakaze—the three incumbent Wingbearers.
Shown here are TYPE-1, the Hou-kesshō held by Shinogami (PLAYER-1), and TYPE-2, which is held by Amakaze (PLAYER-2).
In a message during today’s M2 ShotTriggers Broadcast 2 #1, Ubusuna director Hiroshi Iuchi said that development on Ubusuna is steadily progressing, but there was another big change earlier this year in that the game shifted designers. Additionally, the game’s mechanical design, modeling, and so on have all been completely redone from the start.
In the 4Gamer.net article that hosted the exclusive reveal the new Ubusuna images above, Iuchi added the following:
Late last year, I was having trouble finding designers and modelers. So I put out a call for designers on my personal website, which was then published as an article on 4Gamer. The person who saw that article and reached out to me was Kususaga Rin, who is now handling the art direction, mechanical design, and modeling. You may have heard of him.
While I have worked at the same company as him before, this is the first time we are working together on a project. I knew he was a hard worker from back then, but it’s taken about 20 years for us to start working together.
And so, through his introduction, we have assembled a team of outstanding designers to create Ubusuna. Our development team is a matter of luck, including time and circumstance. And so I am grateful for the good fortune that led to our current team through 4Gamer.
Watch the 14-minute “Soundtrack EP” below. View the images at the gallery.