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Working Designs almost published Phantasy Star IV, Sega of America wanted it to fail

vireland

Member
Jul 21, 2004
4,535
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I see Kelly Knight every now and then selling Working Designs merch on eBay. Still want to finish up my collection of WD posters, but they're so damn rare (and so awesome).

I don't suppose you have the original high resolution files saved somewhere?

I'm sure we do, but the licenses to make more have long ago lapsed.
 

xylo

Neo Member
Dec 26, 2014
47
0
0
Washington
I honestly don't know. Our relationship with Game Arts petered out and it's obviously not that strong since we still can't get the LUNARs on PSN. But if it had enough resources so it wasn't a hackey port, I'd love to have a crack at it. The PS1 localization was just a drag.
I would be more afraid that Lunar may be "damaged goods" brandwise after the fucking awful Lunar games that have be released in the last few years. :(

SCD Lunar 2:EB still the best TBH.  

Gungho did put out that survey that asked what Game Arts games people would like to see ported to the PC also. Lunar was on that so maybe some pokes could find out if they really would go through with it.
 

vireland

Member
Jul 21, 2004
4,535
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0
And now let me remind those of you that don't have the Summon Night 6 Wonderful Edition already preordered to get a regular copy of Summon Night 6 for PS4 or Vita preordered when they go up on Amazon, Gamestop, etc soon. You'll definitely want to be in the controlled first shipment for an extra successive shipments won't have.



Kyle is a very enjoyable character to read in SN6, BTW...
 

CO_Andy

Member
Dec 8, 2004
9,855
2
1,475
Jiyojaa
Thanks for answering all my questions. I know Game Arts got a gun pointed to your head, so i hope before you leave this mortal plane one day you'll spill the beans on whatever concept material there was for Lunar 3.
 

vireland

Member
Jul 21, 2004
4,535
0
0
Thanks for answering all my questions. I know Game Arts got a gun pointed to your head, so i hope before you leave this mortal plane one day you'll spill the beans on whatever concept material there was for Lunar 3.

You missed nothing. Trust me.
 

khaaan

Member
Sep 28, 2012
4,954
0
355
I would be more afraid that Lunar may be "damaged goods" brandwise after the fucking awful Lunar games that have be released in the last few years. :(

SCD Lunar 2:EB still the best TBH.  

Gungho did put out that survey that asked what Game Arts games people would like to see ported to the PC also. Lunar was on that so maybe some pokes could find out if they really would go through with it.

I'm going to need some clarification on that, lol. Outside of Silver Star Story Complete ports/remake, the last thing I remember happening was Dragon Song which was over 10 years ago.

I didn't hate it.
 
Hmm...this interests me a lot, since we always hear of how SOJ always tried to fuck with SOA (Sonic Xtreme and the Nights engine, for example)

And going beyond Mr. Ireland, anyone has any examples of SOA sticking it to SOJ?
Yeah, I'm interested in this too. The story always was that SoJ were the bad guys. Vic, you should write a book like Console Wars detailing this stuff. Seriously.
 

xylo

Neo Member
Dec 26, 2014
47
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0
Washington
I'm going to need some clarification on that, lol. Outside of Silver Star Story Complete ports/remake, the last thing I remember happening was Dragon Song which was over 10 years ago.
You're right I should have phrased that as "over" instead of the last few. Dragon Song was terrible and is a stain in my memory.  Xseed did a "ho hum" release of Lunar (Harmony) but there was nothing major here after that.

Honestly never did understand why GA did all the L1 reboots but never L2 which was the vastly superior game.
 

Gai Murakumo

Member
Jun 30, 2016
3,092
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Canada
Bernie Stolar what a fucking asshole. I do not get people like him who feel the need to control everything or if you do not go my way I will make sure you burn. Guys like him should never be given positions of power in any regard.
 

Nyoro SF

Member
Jul 5, 2011
11,408
0
585
Reading posts in this thread and the GW forums is really showing me that the Japanese business mentality of personal relationships being more valuable than financially intelligent ones is very alive and well, even at the macro level of purchasing whole businesses or licenses.

Would probably be hard for certain GAF posters to accept.
 

Hero

Member
Jun 6, 2004
14,960
2
1,360
You missed nothing. Trust me.

Man, that's so disappointing to hear. Lunar 1 and 2 are some of my favorite gaming memories of being a teenager.

Can you say anything at all about what was talked about or even rumored? Or do you think there's a possibility they'll ever revisit a Lunar 3?
 

NinjaCoachZ

Member
Feb 4, 2015
8,750
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www.youtube.com
Holy crap, I was thinking about this due to that other Nintendo VS Sega thread and thought this was bumped as a sarcastic response to it. This is so cool. Thank you for all these insightful posts, Vic! I love reading stuff like this!
 

vireland

Member
Jul 21, 2004
4,535
0
0
Man, that's so disappointing to hear. Lunar 1 and 2 are some of my favorite gaming memories of being a teenager.

Can you say anything at all about what was talked about or even rumored? Or do you think there's a possibility they'll ever revisit a Lunar 3?

I still have the synopsis and video for it somewhere, but I can't really talk about it. Just trust me that you missed nothing.

As one of the world's biggest LUNAR fans, I'm pretty bummed that there will probably never be another "real" LUNAR. Once Game Arts sued Studio Alex out of existence, they kind of ripped the heart out of the series, IMO. Kind of like cutting off your nose to spite your face, IMO. Without them, that certain something is always missing, and is probably why the "new" prologue added to SSH is so embarrassingly bad and out of place.
 

vireland

Member
Jul 21, 2004
4,535
0
0
The whole thing with them constantly doubting Kaliske's wisdom?

Kalinske was successful guiding SoA, but he was fighting SoJ a lot, and his exit was not entirely of his own free will (IMO). I would LOVE to read HIS story of that time. THAT man will have some STORIES, believe me.
 

vireland

Member
Jul 21, 2004
4,535
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0
Yeah, I'm interested in this too. The story always was that SoJ were the bad guys. Vic, you should write a book like Console Wars detailing this stuff. Seriously.

Meh. A juicy post here or there is probably tastier than the whole dish.
 

Draxal

Member
Sep 10, 2011
18,512
0
0
Hi Victor,

I just want to let you know I'm desperate for a grand strategy RPG like Dragon Force.
 

vireland

Member
Jul 21, 2004
4,535
0
0
Hi Victor,

I just want to let you know I'm desperate for a grand strategy RPG like Dragon Force.

I'd love another fantasy pseudo-RTS like Dragon Force, too! Haven't seen anything to fit the bill yet, though. Summon Night 6 should satisfy your strategy-RPG itch in the meantime, however. Almost done with the game and I still like it, so that's a good sign. Usually by this point I'm completely sick of whatever game were working on from being immersed so long.
 

Conezays

Member
Jun 13, 2013
3,119
0
0
Thanks for dropping by and sharing some stories, Victor. Evidently lots of stuff remains untold but grateful for what you've been willing to share with us. As a big fan of Working Designs' work, thanks.
 

Syril

Member
Mar 28, 2008
7,438
0
0
I have to know, is it true that the reason Shining Wisdom had all the direct Shining Force 2 connections in the script changed is because Sega wouldn't let Working Designs use the names from SF2?
 

vireland

Member
Jul 21, 2004
4,535
0
0
I have to know, is it true that the reason Shining Wisdom had all the direct Shining Force 2 connections in the script changed is because Sega wouldn't let Working Designs use the names from SF2?

It was a hassle we didn't expect, so I just bailed. The connections were tenuous, at best. I *heard* (can anyone confirm) that they used portions of our English localization for the European release without paying us, which is crazy since I think we were asking for less than a dollar a unit to use it legally.
 

vireland

Member
Jul 21, 2004
4,535
0
0
Console Wars is half his perspective.

I'd like a SEGA-centric version with all the stories he still thinks he can't tell. I know what I have, and he was at a whole 'nother level, so I'm POSITIVE he has some RIDICULOUS stories yet to tell.
 

LinkSlayer64

Member
Jun 8, 2016
1,756
1
0
I'm just reading some of this stuff and sorry if this is off topic, I love Grandia 2 for it's battle system, and I liked it's characters and story.

Would I like Lunar, since as someone said, Grandia is closest to Lunar 3?

Sorry to interrupt, this is all very interesting to read regardless. I never really read into why SEGA crashed, and I never realized that SoJ seemingly had little control over SoA.
 

tanooki27

Member
Dec 6, 2013
4,550
27
385
silver star story complete was the best. oh my god the packaging. I really dug the documentaries/interviews as well. thanks Vic!
 
May 18, 2012
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I'm just reading some of this stuff and sorry if this is off topic, I love Grandia 2 for it's battle system, and I liked it's characters and story.

Would I like Lunar, since as someone said, Grandia is closest to Lunar 3?

Sorry to interrupt, this is all very interesting to read regardless. I never really read into why SEGA crashed, and I never realized that SoJ seemingly had little control over SoA.

Same composer on both series (Noriyuki Iwadare).

Lunar's combat system is much less sophisticated, but it is a turn-based system where characters have to move for some attacks so it's kind of like a really rough prototype of Grandia there.

Grandia 1 & Lunar 1 have a strong focus on adventure. Grandia 2 & Lunar 2 have more of a "Defeat the ultimate dark force" premise.
 

vireland

Member
Jul 21, 2004
4,535
0
0
So what's stopping Game Arts from putting the Lunars on PSN?

They are missing some of the rights. They have most, but not all. Stupid thing is, I can round up what they're missing if they'd license it to us, but they don't want to.
 

Mr_Antimatter

Member
Feb 5, 2013
5,924
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0
Austin
I'll forever be sad that lunar 1/2 isn't on PSN. I own the ps1 versions of both, but well, they are ticking timebombs as media degrades and well, they aren't the best looking on a hdtv. woudl love to roll with them on my vita.

Thanks for tall the hard work, Vic!

Also i'm still kicking myself for not getting one of them galleon punching dolls back in the day. Coolest extra ever.
 

Jamesac68

Banned
Apr 15, 2015
137
0
0
I should look through my collection and see if I've still got more than one of Punching Ghaleon. The Electronics Boutique I worked at got more puppets than pre-sales, and after enough time had passed I rescued them. Gave 'em away to people who wanted one, due to still holding the job and not wanting to screw with what was a good position at the time, but no idea how many I have left.

Stuffed Nall and Goemon are never leaving the collection, though. :)
 

MrCunningham

Member
Jan 12, 2012
18,679
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865
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I'd like a SEGA-centric version with all the stories he still thinks he can't tell. I know what I have, and he was at a whole 'nother level, so I'm POSITIVE he has some RIDICULOUS stories yet to tell.

You might want to read: 'Service Games: The Rise and Fall of SEGA' from 2013. It is about the closest thing you will get to a Sega centric version of Console Wars. It is actually quite well researched too with a lot of information pulled from interviews that the writer conducted with key with people who worked at SOA. Isn't a bad read at all, though maybe a little dry in spots. It covers all of the Kalinske era of Sega and even gets into the console wars from an SOA point of view. It is on Audible too.


My new favorite Youtube reviewer disagrees:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UXLa_wjhpY4

I think this was a great localization from WD. It is honestly one of my favorite games on the Sega CD add on. Though I do think the boss battles were a little bit too hard. I remember using a few exploits in the game to beat a couple of them back in the day. You guys did a good job with the VO and dialog. It is up there with Snatcher and a few other WD games as far as VO work goes from that era.
 

Duderz

Banned
Sep 9, 2005
5,821
0
0
SoCal
jaleblanc.blogspot.com
I still have the synopsis and video for it somewhere, but I can't really talk about it. Just trust me that you missed nothing.

As one of the world's biggest LUNAR fans, I'm pretty bummed that there will probably never be another "real" LUNAR. Once Game Arts sued Studio Alex out of existence, they kind of ripped the heart out of the series, IMO. Kind of like cutting off your nose to spite your face, IMO. Without them, that certain something is always missing, and is probably why the "new" prologue added to SSH is so embarrassingly bad and out of place.

This will never not be disappointing to read.

Thanks for all that you do, Vic.
 

vireland

Member
Jul 21, 2004
4,535
0
0
I should look through my collection and see if I've still got more than one of Punching Ghaleon. The Electronics Boutique I worked at got more puppets than pre-sales, and after enough time had passed I rescued them. Gave 'em away to people who wanted one, due to still holding the job and not wanting to screw with what was a good position at the time, but no idea how many I have left.

Stuffed Nall and Goemon are never leaving the collection, though. :)

Plushie Nall is RARE. A few hundred is all that were made. I wouldn't let that go, either.
 

vireland

Member
Jul 21, 2004
4,535
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0
I have NPD data, Phantasy Star 4 sold roughly 50,000 in US.

Edit: 49,612

I don't have the NPD data anymore, but I remember being told from the SEGA side internally that it sold like 100k. I also know that NPD can be wildly wrong sometimes from personal experience of titles we did where I KNOW how many we sold vs what they vastly under-reported. Their system was not perfect back then and has gotten much worse now that digital is such a large part of things.
 

-shadow-

Member
Sep 22, 2015
5,496
3
450
What I wouldn't give for a detailed book with interviews of the people who were there about the relationships in Sega. I'll never understand it, but absolutely adore the pure insanity of it all.
 

Square2015

Member
Oct 10, 2010
1,694
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840
Texas
I don't have the NPD data anymore, but I remember being told from the SEGA side internally that it sold like 100k. I also know that NPD can be wildly wrong sometimes from personal experience of titles we did where I KNOW how many we sold vs what they vastly under-reported. Their system was not perfect back then and has gotten much worse now that digital is such a large part of things.

I have complete NPD back to '94, have you seen NPD data from before that time? It's incredibly illusive and of those who have it they wouldn't share any of it under old contracts (but it's been a good while since then). Would you happen to know where data from the early 16-bit (and 8-bit) data could be today (accounting/sales department people)?

Sales-age GAF has been on a search to the see that data from before '94, specifically we'd like to see the HW sales as they played out each month during the 16-bit war. If you have/had contact with internal side of SEGA etc. can you share what you might know?
Thanks so much.

And yes NPD captured 65% of the market and it's estimating of the remaining 35% could get way off in those days.
 
Sep 20, 2005
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And now let me remind those of you that don't have the Summon Night 6 Wonderful Edition already preordered to get a regular copy of Summon Night 6 for PS4 or Vita preordered when they go up on Amazon, Gamestop, etc soon. You'll definitely want to be in the controlled first shipment for an extra successive shipments won't have.



Kyle is a very enjoyable character to read in SN6, BTW...

I'm grabbing a digital copy the moment it appears on PSN to preorder.
 
Dec 10, 2014
11,098
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This story angers me so much and also brings back some personal anguish:

i left my lunar 1+2 maps/boxes at my parents home and for years they were untouched.
i randomly grabbed lunar 1 jewel case with me to grad school though i didn't take a ps1 with me. (alundra + einhander) released at the same time and i left them at a friends place never to be seen again.

i came back and my mom threw all my games away including lunar 2, all of lunar 1 Working Design box goodies, raystorm, ray crisis.

this is all i have of WD games. had to rebuy those shooters. thanks mom!
 

vireland

Member
Jul 21, 2004
4,535
0
0
I'm grabbing a digital copy the moment it appears on PSN to preorder.

Thanks for the support!

BTW, here are some clips of a couple characters and some outtakes from Summon Night 6 I put on our message board a few months ago:

http://www.gaijinworks.com/interact/showthread.php?1342-Summon-Night-6-Production-Bits

John Truitt's outtakes will have to be censored for the F-bomb to keep the expected T rating, but all the other swears in the almost 30 minute outtake reel are uncensored.
 

Man God

Non-Canon Member
Nov 2, 2007
70,821
1
1,260
Having played PS4 (in part due to this thread) right after the holidays again recently it has struck me that it's probably SOA's best RPG localization...and yet still wooden and stilted. It's not like Breath of Fire 2 which is incomprehensible at points nor is it something like FF III or Super Mario RPG where it basically reads organically.

It's way better than the other three Phantasy Star games though in that regard. 3 is even more wooden and parts of two dip perilously close to that Breath of Fire 2 zone.
 

vireland

Member
Jul 21, 2004
4,535
0
0
I have complete NPD back to '94, have you seen NPD data from before that time? It's incredibly illusive and of those who have it they wouldn't share any of it under old contracts (but it's been a good while since then). Would you happen to know where data from the early 16-bit (and 8-bit) data could be today (accounting/sales department people)?

I don't think I have anything from that time period anymore, sorry.
 

vireland

Member
Jul 21, 2004
4,535
0
0
This story angers me so much and also brings back some personal anguish:

i left my lunar 1+2 maps/boxes at my parents home and for years they were untouched.
i randomly grabbed lunar 1 jewel case with me to grad school though i didn't take a ps1 with me. (alundra + einhander) released at the same time and i left them at a friends place never to be seen again.

i came back and my mom threw all my games away including lunar 2, all of lunar 1 Working Design box goodies, raystorm, ray crisis.

this is all i have of WD games. had to rebuy those shooters. thanks mom!

Yeah, I've heard stories like this. Always kills me, regardless of whether the games are ones we did or not. RPGs from that era are so hard to come by in premium shape. To have them just thrown out. Yikes! You have my sympathy!
 
Thanks for the support!

BTW, here are some clips of a couple characters and some outtakes from Summon Night 6 I put on our message board a few months ago:

http://www.gaijinworks.com/interact/showthread.php?1342-Summon-Night-6-Production-Bits

John Truitt's outtakes will have to be censored for the F-bomb to keep the expected T rating, but all the other swears in the almost 30 minute outtake reel are uncensored.
You need to highlight his role on the back cover or something. "THE INIMITABLE JOHN TRUITT RETURNS!"
 
Dec 10, 2014
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Yeah, I've heard stories like this. Always kills me, regardless of whether the games are ones we did or not. RPGs from that era are so hard to come by in premium shape. To have them just thrown out. Yikes! You have my sympathy!

i'm going to check out Summon Night 6, thanks to your sharing on this thread =)