Scarlet Nexus is a shiny new anime and manga-influenced IP that’s on its way to PlayStation and Xbox this month. We asked some questions of the game’s producer, Keita Iizuka, and director, Kenji Anabuki.
Can you please give us an idea of the story of Scarlet Nexus?
KI: The story begins with the main characters of the game, Yuito and Kasane, joining the Other Suppression Force (OSF) as new recruits. While they spend all their time training and doing missions with their friends and allies, one incident leads to a split in their respective positions and circumstances. Their paths diverge and they move forward based on their own beliefs. A dramatic story and several mysteries unfold afterwards.
Can you please tell us more about the OSF?
KI: The Other Suppression Force is a group of people who fight against “Others”, which are entities that rain from the skies and are hunting for human brains. Every single member of the OSF is an expert, having outstanding powers and the use of SAS (Struggle Arms System) to connect their brains in order to borrow other character’s powers to fight. The system is something that we have implemented in order to have players be able to feel the powers from other characters, thus reinforcing the link between the game’s characters.
Players will be able to become one of the members, using different powers according to their character and defending Earth in exhilarating battles.
Can you please tell us more about the Others?
KI: The Others are entities that have been raining from the skies since a long time ago, and their true origins are unknown. Although the OSF have been saving ordinary people’s lives from these creatures for a long time, they are still completely shrouded in mystery. Why do they rain from the skies? Why do people with powers exist? Those are all the mysteries players will be able to solve as they progress along the story.
What are the advantages and disadvantages of creating a new IP from scratch?
KI: I think the advantages of a new IP is that it can be delivered to everyone as a new form of entertainment without being limited by systems or DNA from an established franchise. The challenge is that with so many attractive IPs coming out all the time, it requires a really good game to attract players to try something new.
What do you think is the coolest weapon that the OSF has to use against the Others?
KA: Each of the characters in this game handles a weapon that is best suited to make the most out of each one’s powers. For example, Tsugumi uses her gun because of her clairvoyance that lets her see an enemy’s location and fire a hundred precise shots. It’s hard to choose the coolest one, but if I had to, I’d have to say it’s the metal rod that Shiden holds in both his hands. Not only is it is electrically charged, but it also acts as a lightning rod so he can both stab and electrocute his foes.
Can you please tell us more about the stunning art style/animation?
KA: The artistic direction of Scarlet Nexus is influenced by Japanese animation and game works of the 90s. In the design of buildings and vehicles, the Japanese taste of the ’90s is incorporated and mixed with modern design. On top of that, we have introduced a sense of “strangeness” or “otherness” in many places to add a different feeling to the game world. The abnormally tall towers, complex and unstable buildings, and the red neon lights in various locations are intended to express such “foreignness”.
What anime or manga would you say have inspired Scarlet Nexus the most?
KA: I think it will be Cyborg 009. Scarlet Nexus was planned on the idea of a team with individual special abilities, and we wanted to turn this concept into a game using the latest technologies available within the game industry. Also, for SAS cables, there were some inspirations from Overman King Gainer and Gantz.
What do you most wish to highlight for players of Scarlet Nexus?
KA: If I have to pick, I think it will be the psychokinesis and power action. The player’s psychokinesis experience is particularly important. The button holds and vibrations are made so the players feel as if they are really picking up objects and slinging them around. As an example, the pressure applied to the triggers is synchronised to the movements of the objects, so a light press will make it move slightly, and putting the trigger fully down will send the object flying in the air. Also, assigned controls and the object movements are also synchronised for a very immersive experience. The game experience has been very carefully designed, and the fluid combination of psychokinesis and weapon attacks makes for really cool and action-packed battles.
The SAS (Struggle Arms System), a system that allows you to borrow the power from your allies, is also an important part of the game. Its use in battle will be important, as it offers some advantages as enemies have been designed and balanced according to this system and capability to use different powers. We have also put a lot of focus into making the powers look as stunning as possible.
Scarlet Nexus releases June 25 on PS5, Xbox and PS4. Pre-order now at JB Hi-Fi.