13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim Developer Interview Discusses Some of the Game’s Troubled Development

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As previously announced, this week’s issue of Weekly Famitsu magazine #1617 includes a 48-page launch feature on the Atlus x Vanillaware sci-fi dramatic adventure game 13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim.

This feature includes an interview with the development team, and some of the details within it have leaked. The first part of this interview goes over some of the development troubles that affected the game, over four years in the making since its announcement in September 2015.

The interview was conducted with Vanillaware director George Kamitani, artist Kouichi Maeno, character designer Yukiko Hirai, and Atlus project manager Akiyasu Yamamoto.

Early Development

  • Dragon’s Crown was a struggle as a global project, so the intention was for [13 Sentinels] to be smaller. However, when the plan got in motion, it became a global development.
  • It was a project that expanded into categories like plastic models and animation.

Characters

  • The developers thought it was really hard to separate the viewpoint of the 13 main characters in the last scene.
  • At some point, Yakushiji Megumi’s design was replaced with Ryouko Shinonome’s.

Scenario

  • One year had passed, and there was an issue discovered with an unknown cause. Later, it was discovered that there were problems with how things were arranged. Anime segments for the characters based on the scenario were not created, so it felt uncomfortable when they were put together.
  • The secnario was changed to match the poses. As elements that didn’t work were dug up, lines were changed or graphics were ordered. New commands were used and debugging was done, with a developer doing it all on their own.

Staff & Planning

  • When an attempt on establishing a deadline was made, that was unpopular with the staff.
  • “For the robot parts in the battle segments, it was a shocking fact that few of the staff members could draw the robots when it came to illustrating the scenes. (laughs)”
  • There was a small staff, so they tried to reuse backgrounds to make different scenes, but they had a hard time because things could not really be done that way.
  • “Is it acceptable for the battle part to appear on this screen? After looking at Gunparade March, I forced myself to move ahead.”
  • “The explosions are like Fantavision. If it’s beautiful, I’m sure the girls will play and enjoy it. (laughs)”

Weekly Famitsu magazine #1613—or the December 12, 2019 issue—will be released on November 28, 2019.

13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim will be released for the PlayStation 4 in Japan on November 28, 2019. The game was announced for English localization in June 2017. No Western release date has been announced as of yet.

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