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NEWS: Balan Wonderworld's Yuji Naka leaves Square Enix




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Ryuji-Dono



Joined: 26 Apr 2018
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 06, 2021 4:13 am Reply with quote
He should have picked in developing an RPG in the first place...
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Sheenoobuu



Joined: 17 Sep 2019
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 06, 2021 4:21 am Reply with quote
Well I've seen some interesting Balan Wonder world explanation videos on YouTube and it sure sounds like he made the game he wanted to make in the way he wanted to make it.
While it didn't sell, like at all, at least he will likely retire after making the type of game he wanted to make. Probably should've used a few more conventional ideas in his design though...like having the characters speak a real language so the story would be clearly understood...
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MarshalBanana



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PostPosted: Sun Jun 06, 2021 5:10 am Reply with quote
Given the very poor reception Balan has had, maybe not retire as it's not a good look to go out on. 55 Isn't that old either, I'm sure there are people working in the industry older than that.
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Silver Kirin



Joined: 09 Aug 2018
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 06, 2021 9:25 am Reply with quote
Haven't played Balan so I cannot judge it's quality but after watching some gameplay clips, reviews and video analysis it doesn't look particulary great, it kinda of looks like a smartphone game that got ported to consoles, especially since it only has one action button.
I don't know much about Naka apart that he programmed the original Mega Drive Sonic games and worked as a producer until he left SEGA in '06. This situation reminds me a bit of what happened with Mighty No. 9 (though it's development was more problematic). Balan felt like a game that should have been designed with the Switch in mind, with ports for more powerful systems coming later and more development time.
If this is Naka's final game before he retires it's not the best ending for his game development career.
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OjaruFan2



Joined: 09 Jul 2018
Posts: 464
PostPosted: Sun Jun 06, 2021 9:52 am Reply with quote
He's worked in the video game industry for a long time, so I wouldn't mind if he decides to retire.

Ryuji-Dono wrote:
He should have picked in developing an RPG in the first place...

Why?

MarshalBanana wrote:
Given the very poor reception Balan has had, maybe not retire as it's not a good look to go out on.
Silver Kirin wrote:
If this is Naka's final game before he retires it's not the best ending for his game development career.

But he's made some great games in the past, so fans could always look back at those.
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BadNewsBlues



Joined: 21 Sep 2014
Posts: 4498
PostPosted: Sun Jun 06, 2021 1:34 pm Reply with quote
Ryuji-Dono wrote:
He should have picked in developing an RPG in the first place...


Too lazy to check but I’m pretty sure Square-Enix doesn’t exclusively make RPG’s plus Naka isn’t known for RPG’s anyway.


MarshalBanana wrote:
Given the very poor reception Balan has had, maybe not retire as it's not a good look to go out on. 55 Isn't that old either, I'm sure there are people working in the industry older than that.


His last game prior to this was Rodea Sky Soldier don’t think he has any potential in him to make something better.
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Yuki_Kun45
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 06, 2021 4:39 pm Reply with quote
Quote:
Too lazy to check but I’m pretty sure Square-Enix doesn’t exclusively make RPG’s plus Naka isn’t known for RPG’s anyway.


It is true Square isn't exclusively RPGs but maybe an RPG would have been up his alley so maybe he should have considered it or maybe they should have assigned him to a Tokyo RPG Factory to produce a small enough title. Naka did cut his teeth on the original Phantasy Star after all.
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BadNewsBlues



Joined: 21 Sep 2014
Posts: 4498
PostPosted: Sun Jun 06, 2021 6:27 pm Reply with quote
Yuki_Kun45 wrote:


It is true Square isn't exclusively RPGs but maybe an RPG would have been up his alley so maybe he should have considered it or maybe they should have assigned him to a Tokyo RPG Factory to produce a small enough title. Naka did cut his teeth on the original Phantasy Star after all.


Naka by the time he worked on the first Phantasy Star game had already worked on three games none of which were RPG's. And the bulk of his work (unsurprisingly) were platformers with some weird stuff like Samba Di Amigo, Chu Chu Rocket thrown in there.

Maybe he could have struck gold working on a RPG but between how oversaturaed the genre, is on top of being a crapshoot, & him probably being more comfortable making his specific style of game.....
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ZakuConvoy



Joined: 16 Mar 2013
Posts: 8
PostPosted: Mon Jun 07, 2021 6:37 pm Reply with quote
There's a pretty good episode of What Happened about Balan.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YuRl_AOe57w

And, yeah, it sounds like the company started development with smart phones in mind. The biggest problem seems to be that they contracted making the actual game to Arzest (Hey Pikmin, Yoshi's New Island). Naka's company only came up with the concept.

I mean...deciding to leave the story completely out of the game and only leave it in a digital-only novel was...a choice. But, this game is full of...choices. LIke locking the English version of the songs behind getting every single statue in a world (a lot of them require quick time events). Even the 80 costumes concept could have been salvaged if they didn't disappear in one hit, meaning you have to grind to store up costumes, making the whole mechanic feel like something out of a gacha game.

And it's too bad, because it really has the feel of a classic magical girl anime. But now, it's just going to join the ranks of Voodoo VInce and Blinx.


Last edited by ZakuConvoy on Mon Jun 07, 2021 7:04 pm; edited 2 times in total
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Break Xerxes



Joined: 16 Dec 2014
Posts: 190
PostPosted: Mon Jun 07, 2021 6:50 pm Reply with quote
The idea of Yuji Naka retiring makes me sad.
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