NIS America held a press event last week in San Francisco at the Folsom Street Foundry. It was an entertaining night full of video games and energetic presentations. Attendees had the opportunity to play upcoming games spanning from a wide range of platforms and genres. The stage conference presented nineteen games that NIS America will publish throughout 2017, which is a mindblowing number of games by any measure. CFG Games attended to provide a general overview of the event’s exciting proceedings as well as impressions of the games on display.
NIS America’s striking displays captivated attendees. A 3D art piece featuring Birthdays the Beginning was placed next to a live game demo. The sculpture featured the game’s cartoon-like flora and fauna, which mirrors the game’s vibrant ecosystems. A giant plushie of Disgaea’s renown Prinny mascot also greeted attendees, which created plenty of photo opportunities.
It was fantastic experiencing the considerable variety of playable games on the floor. The Foundry displayed NIS America’s games in full force: its large scale projection screens constantly broadcast game footage, it allowed for numerous television and console setups, and it had plenty of space for attendees to socialize. NIS America’s set up included the Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, PlayStation Vita, and Nintendo 3DS demo units, which is an impressive diversity of game platforms. The units showcased a diverse selection of visual novels, action platformers, strategy role-playing games, and dungeon crawlers. It was also admirable how NIS America’s staff members were consistently engaging with players and willing to help as much as possible.
Some playable games featured whimsical takes on familiar mechanics. Touhou Genso Wanderer is a dungeon crawling spin-off of the popular Touhou 2D action shooting franchise. It utilizes established rogue-like mechanics in which the player navigates randomly generated dungeons filled with treasure, hazardous enemies, and traps. However, these familiar elements are filled to the brim with amusing Touhou characters, and the game also features lighthearted dialogue and skills. Another spin-off is Touhou Double Peace, which is an accessible take on the 2D action platforming genre. It features an expansive map full of vibrant areas to unlock and explore; it also includes fun ideas such as freely switching between two characters that attack and move differently.
God Wars features tried-and-true turn-based strategy RPG mechanics that are complex yet easy to grasp. It also features marvelously crafted anime cutscenes and lore inspired by Japanese mythology. Birthdays the Beginning is an entertaining ecosystem simulator in which players manipulate terrain and weather in order to encourage evolutionary patterns. Rose in the Twilight provides a entrancing and haunting take on puzzle platforming in which the pixie-like avatar manipulates surroundings and her hulking giant partner helps her navigate terrain.
The roster also included compelling entries in established franchises. Danganronpa 1•2 Reload is a PlayStation 4 compilation of the first two games in the Danganronpa series. Its visual novel adventuring suits the console experience well with marvelous character art and an interface that wonderfully utilize the screen’s space. The Silver Case is a remaster of Grasshopper Manufacture’s debut title and its stark visual novel experience was both entrancing and disorienting. The characters spoke with brutally straightforward phrases and the narration felt grounded in reality. Its stylized storytelling and unpredictable visual elements are compelling. RPG Maker FES‘ world building potential felt powerful and intuitive, and the expansive scenario and customization options are quite impressive. Disgaea 5 Complete felt like a fun fit for the Switch as it provides both prolonged and bite-sized doses of its humorous, over-the-top strategy gaming.
NIS America’s stage conference was full of energy and excitement. It was fun experiencing dynamic new announcements of games and release dates. The overall presentation was exciting as it was full of footage and upbeat presentations of each game’s features. Japanese guests Kazutaka Kodaka and Suda 51 shed insight on Danganronpa and The Silver Case respectively. Kodaka generated interest by speaking about how Danganronpa V3: Killing Despair features new characters and that the game’s ideas have evolved. Suda 51 brought dynamism onto the stage as he spoke about how The Silver Case‘s remaster features new music, remixed tracks, and new scenarios.
The announcements concluded with a stunning presentation video from Toshihiro Kondo, the President of Nihom Falcom Corporation. He announced that NIS America will release Ys VIII: Lacrimosa of DANA, the latest entry in the esteemed action role-playing franchise. The excited audience witnessed dynamic free-form combat and adventures across vast beautiful landscapes. The presentation also announced that the game will include English and Japanese voice audio with English and French text, which is highly welcome and appreciated. We hope Ys VIII: Lacrimosa of DANA will be a thrilling experience when it comes out in the fall of 2017 on the PlayStation 4, Vita, and PC.
NIS America’s press event provided an exciting look at forthcoming games, and its sheer diversity of genres and platforms was quite impressive. The lineup included something for everybody. 2017 looks like it will shape up to be a wonderful year for NIS America and its fans.