First look at dialogue in Project Phoenix
posted on 04.15.14 at 11:28 AM EST by (@salromano)
Marcus and Sylrianah have nothing to say to each other.

Creative Intelligence Arts has shared first screenshots of dialogue in Project Phoenix, its upcoming Kickstarter-funded Japanese strategy RPG for PlayStation 4, PS Vita, PC, iOS, and Android.

Project Phoenix Project Phoenix

“Conversations that your characters will have within the party and with NPCs will be what drives the story forward, allowing you to be invested in the characters and immersed in the game world,” the studio said in an update.

“Many JRPGs have provided us with ways in which to implement this, and to make it easy, we settled upon a system in which you’ll see the character portraits accompanied by a dialogue box, with the super-deformed characters in the background.”

The developer notes that the illustrations shown in the images are “general examples” that should “hopefully get the point across.”

Outside of dialogue examples, Anton, a member of the game’s story team, has provided an update on the title’s story development.

“This week, I have been expanding existing side quest chains in the first three acts of the game,” Anton said. “I have also been going back through past readings from a Psychology degree I completed in Sydney some time ago. This is in an effort to flesh out the main characters’ personalities and really bring them to life, complete with strengths, weaknesses and fears.

“Nobody is perfect, life imitates art imitates life. The story arc and story engine is crucial to making a connection with the observer, and this is what I am devoting the lion’s share of my time to on Project Phoenix: the psychological makeup of the characters, their choices and motivations, their secrets and their internal battles. All that is required to make them whole.”

Project Phoenix is due out in mid-2015.

  • Zackasaur

    I love the art.

    I’m having a hard time choosing between PS4 and Vita! I believe they had confirmed having a publisher for a physical release, so I’m hyped for that.

    • http://www.cubiz.tk/ Auragar

      The art reminds me of something… like FFXII something… hmm.

      • almostautumn

        12 was ultra realistic— I think you mean Tactics, which utilizes the same moody color palette. The characters are a bit more realistic than FFT here, but the color and shading is the same.

        • http://www.cubiz.tk/ Auragar

          Well FFT is part of of 12.

          • Solomon_Kano

            Eh, I wouldn’t put it like that. In the same world? Yes. “Part” of it, no. Unless you mean part of the whole “Ivalice Alliance” deal, then yes. Specifcally, the War of the Lions re-release.

            • http://www.cubiz.tk/ Auragar

              I meant exactly as you said Solo. Thank you.

              • Solomon_Kano

                No prob.

      • Tetsu

        Same artist. The feeling is correct.

  • https://www.youtube.com/user/GamingHeroTetsuya TetsuyaHikari

    That’s some deep dialogue. Glad to see our money is being put to such excellent use.

    • 罪罰

      dots take a dedicated core to be rendered.

      • https://www.youtube.com/user/GamingHeroTetsuya TetsuyaHikari

        . . . . . . . .

        • Zackasaur

          Gematsu has dedicated cores, confirmed.

          • 罪罰

            。。。。。。。。。。。。。。。。。。。。

            • https://www.youtube.com/user/GamingHeroTetsuya TetsuyaHikari

              Silly. That one is only used once, unlike mine :3

              • 罪罰

                Never.

            • Zackasaur

              .˙ ̣ ﮲ ﮳ ˙ ̣ ﮲ ﮳ ˙˙ ̣ ﮲ ﮳ ̣ ﮲ ﮲ ﮳ ﮳ ˙ ̣ ﮲ ﮳ ˙˙ ˙ ̣ ﮲ ﮳ ̣ ﮲ ﮳˙ ̣ ﮲ ﮳ ̣ ﮲ ﮳

              Behold the complexity of dot-speech.

    • DesmaX

      … whatever

    • Duo Maxwell

      It’s almost on the level of Final Fantasy VIII.

      • https://www.youtube.com/user/GamingHeroTetsuya TetsuyaHikari

        I would give you a Squall response, but DesmaX already beat me to it, so I won’t say it again to avoid redundancy, lol.

    • http://www.youtube.com/user/playstationunity DXVII

      Pokemon trainer “RED” has entered the building

  • shogunknight

    NIce, cant wait to see more

  • http://Gematsu.com Vayne

    Will be located in the West?

    • DesmaX

      Yeah

    • shogunknight

      Definitely

    • Kevadu

      It’s located in a fantasy world…

      Did you mean ‘localized’? That actually isn’t the right term in this case because the dialogue is being written in English to start with. This is an east-west collaborative project.

      • Budgiecat

        why is the dialogue in Japanese?

        • Kevadu

          …….. is universal!

          Seriously, though, this is obviously just a placeholder. The game is still *very* early in development, I doubt much of the real dialog has even been written yet. And it’s not like there aren’t Japanese people on the team. There will be a Japanese version too.

  • http://youtube.com/miyabigaming 武神水樹

    It’s nice that people get to make their own games and all just that the overall quality and finish isn’t there.

    Ya it’s great they can release their games on the PS4 and Xbox One but this isn’t a game I’d expect to see on either system

    and this is a Japanese strategy game, art in other Japanese indie games are better than this :/

    • Kevadu

      What’s wrong with the art? I like it.

    • Zackasaur

      Yeah, I’m confused. This game has pretty exceptional art. Have you not paid attention to all of the other info surrounding it? Perhaps a look at the Kickstarter page would help.

    • https://www.youtube.com/user/GamingHeroTetsuya TetsuyaHikari

      Yeah, I get what you mean, man. The portraits are nice and all, but there are super deformed characters and we’re supposed to be running on PS4 hardware with this game? What are you using, like 5% of the total resources or something?

      • Elvick

        Sarcasm? Or…

      • http://youtube.com/miyabigaming 武神水樹

        I don’t know if they have the budget to make a quality game for all those systems. This looks passable for an android game but not a PC or PS4 title

        Indie devs should focus on one platform first and give gamers a solid experience instead of trying to use all the money they received for multi platform

        They may not even have the right resources in place and are just using the android models for everything. They should look at first party and third party devs and see how it’s important to deliver a solid experience on one or two systems. Skyrim is a bad example, the PS3 version had so many issues while the 360 and PC were flawless

        They have a million dollars, don’t think that’s enough to announce releases for 5 systems. The budgeting for great games these days are way over that

        • Kevadu

          You are making so many assumptions and misconceptions here I don’t even know where to start untangling it all, but I’ll try…

          First of all, I think you’re really overestimating how much additional platforms cost. Particularly when you’re *not* pushing the envelope technically so optimization isn’t a big deal. If you write portable code from the start then the same code should be able to run just about anywhere. Which is why hitting a lot of platforms is pretty much the norm for most indie projects these days. You’re acting like this is something exceptional but it really isn’t.

          You’re also constantly confusing ‘art’ and the technical aspects (engine, etc.). This game is certainly not trying to do anything fancy technically, but I have to completely disagree with you about the ‘art’ being bad. I love the art. I think the overall design aesthetic is great, certainly much better than most indie games. (Sorry indie game community, but I’m sick of seeing pixel art in everything. Please do something new.)

          That said, even on a technical level it really doesn’t look bad at all for an indie game. I have no idea why you brought up Skyrim. Nobody was talking about Skyrim. Are you seriously comparing an indie game to Skyrim? I would much rather they focused on trying to make a fun *game* than tried to mimic what “triple-A” devs are doing graphically…

          The budget for this game is *not* a million dollars. That’s just what they raised on Kickstarter to cover various expenses. The core team working on the game is doing so completely without pay (naturally with the expectation that once the final game is released they’ll get a portion of those sales). The game is still years away from completion and everyone working on it already has a day job. That’s what it means to be an indie game.

          • http://youtube.com/miyabigaming 武神水樹

            Lol thanks, I brought up Skyrim cause I made a random segway cause I’m random.

            I see, well I didn’t know that about the code and yes this does look better than you’re average Indie game.

            I guess what threw me off was I was expecting the same quality I’d see in another PS4 game from a third party since I thought technically Indie devs were third party companies

        • https://www.youtube.com/user/GamingHeroTetsuya TetsuyaHikari

          Well, I think it looks fine for a PC title too (and by this, I mean you see a lot of doujin titles on PC, not that it couldn’t handle better graphics, lol), but I guess I just expect a little more out of the graphical performance of a PS4 title, lol. I mean, if I was developing a game for PS4, you’d better believe I’d be tapping into that potential for greatness.

          • http://youtube.com/miyabigaming 武神水樹

            Yep I agree 110%

        • Ladius

          Again, it seems you’re making lots of assumptions while ignoring the context of this release, as the comparison with first party games and Skyrim shows. Low budget jrpgs (or games in general) have always existed on every platform, and there’s no reason to expect every developer to be able to use even half of a console’s power.

          This has been true for a long time (roughly speaking, you will find games on every console, especially since the fifth generation, that could have been released on previous gen hardware with minimal differences, including lots of PS3 jrpgs like the aforementioned Disgaea 3 and Agarest games), and there are even less reason to criticize this phenomenon once you consider we’re talking about a multiplatform Kickstartered “indie” game by a new team rather than a PS4 exclusive by a major studio.

          Thankfully we live in an age where indies are increasingly multiplatform affairs, and games are valued for their contents and art direction rather than their sheer budget. AAA games aren’t the only ones who belong on next gen hardware, be it in this generation or in the last, and expecting every new development team to follow the steps of some of the biggest, more costly teams in the industry is really unrealistic.

    • DesmaX

      The way it looks now it reminds me of The Witch and the Hundred Knight.

      But, hey, it’s still early in development, so this is far from the graphics. And I’ll bet there will be PS4 JRPG’s that’ll look worse than this

      • https://www.youtube.com/user/GamingHeroTetsuya TetsuyaHikari

        >And I’ll bet there will be PS4 JRPG’s that’ll look worse than this

        Natural Doctrine for example? Just because something can look worse doesn’t make this suddenly go away. I could just as easily say “And I’ll bet there will be PS4 JRPG’s that’ll look better than this.” too. I’m kind of torn with this game at this moment because some parts of it shine while others fall short of my expectations.

        • DesmaX

          I was just saying an opinion, not trying to make a point.

          Even though people will say that they’ll wish every game would take advantage of the hardware, it really isn’t the case. Developers will do what is best for them

          • https://www.youtube.com/user/GamingHeroTetsuya TetsuyaHikari

            Well, when you go multiplatform with a game, it’s going to get shafted one way or another sometimes. For example… If a game is released on PS3/4 and Vita, then you know that the Vita probably held back the PS3/4 version in some way or another.

            Sometimes the developers don’t even know what is best, I think. It should always be part of your agenda to make the game while putting as many resources of the hardware to use in order to excel in performance.

            • DesmaX

              Well, this was a game backed with kickstarter, so it was bound to have multiple ports (You know, people tend to back games that they’ll be able to play)

              • https://www.youtube.com/user/GamingHeroTetsuya TetsuyaHikari

                It wasn’t bound to have multiple versions. There are plenty of Kickstarter projects that are PC only. Secondly, it only has “multiple versions” because it reached a certain goal in funding. If they hadn’t reached it, it wouldn’t be on multiple platforms, so your point is moot.

                Besides, just because something isn’t coming to multiple platforms doesn’t mean people won’t support it. I don’t know why you think people only play multiplatform games. It could have done just as well on PC alone.

                • DesmaX

                  Well, it did start as a PC only game (And maybe on Mobile, but I think that one is a spin-off); but hey, they put the console milestones and people back them enough to have those ports

                  Sure, it coud’ve been PC only, no problem (Broken Age, despite all it’s success, don’t really have console ports for them), but it is the type of game that’s more popular on consoles.

    • Elvick

      Nothing looks bad about this…

      • http://youtube.com/miyabigaming 武神水樹

        Well it’s not bad just not what I’d expect

    • http://www.psvitadirect.com/ Kurisu Makise

      I think the character art for the dialogue looks fine but I share a bit of your opinion about the character models on what I’m presuming is the map/town. I was expecting something…hmm a bit more I guess? SD for sure but…it’s hard to put my finger on it.

      • http://youtube.com/miyabigaming 武神水樹

        Well in my opinion when you show a game to the public and even if it’s due out in 2015 it’s best to put your best foot forward and I don’t think this game did that

        If it did then yea, not what I expected

        • Kevadu

          They *have* to show the game. It was a Kickstarter project. Kickstarter projects are generally expected to give updates so backers know that they’re working on something with the money they donated and not just taking an extended vacation in Cancun or something. This story isn’t coming from a press release or demo or something, it’s just coming from one of their regular Kickstarter updates. They have at least one a week.

          I agree that if this wasn’t a Kickstarter project they probably wouldn’t be showing off anything this early in development.

          • http://www.psvitadirect.com/ Kurisu Makise

            A very rational response, nicely said Kev. Though I’ll admit it’s early days still, I’m personally more not fond of the direction it’s in currently. While I expected SD, I kind of wanted a bit more in terms of how the models are portrayed in the town/map segment.

    • Ladius

      Most tactical jrpgs are low budget affairs, and most low budget jrpgs never push their hardware’s technical capabilities. Were you also against Disgaea 3 or the Agarest games releasing on PS3, for example?

      I really don’t think console development should be reserved to AAA developers or franchise, nor do I think Project Phoenix has done anything to deserve this kind of negativity, especially considering how big indie support is on PS4 (and really, a Kickstartered rtsjrpg isn’t that different from other Kickstarters coming to PS4, like Hyper Light Drifter).

  • Ace

    Yo.

  • OverlordZetta

    Wasn’t Project Phoenix the codename for an imageepoch game at one point?

    That aside this looks pretty rad.

    • http://www.psvitadirect.com/ Kurisu Makise

      I dunno about imageepoch but I know Capcom used to use a code name that was similar, with Project Dead Phoenix. Cancelled of course, part of the “Capcom 5″. Didn’t bring up any results for Imageepoch though =O