If Versus XIII Fails, Does Nomura Fail As A Director?

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#1 Posted by KaosAngel (13765 posts) -

There have been many polarizing views on Nomura, some people will worship his style while others will hate it to the very core.   Some people have said Nomura can't write, direct, and produce for shit...despite having one of the top selling games from Square Enix and the most loyal fanbase.   
 
Nomura has been working on Versus XIII since 2005, and he has been on record with saying this is his dream project.  The game he always wanted to make.  With Agito XIII coming out in 2011, it's more than likely that Versus XIII will be out in 2012, as Square said only one XIII game would be out in a year.   
 
That's 7 years in development.  7 years Nomura has put his skills as a director, producer, writer, and artist into one game.   Versus XIII is showing signs that he's dropping the kid act and going full gear into what might be the most mature story to come out from a Squaresoft employee.    
 
If Versus XIII fails, what does that show of Nomura's character?  This is pretty much his game, and his project.  His name is plastered all over the credits in the trailer, and he's been very blunt with saying he's in-charge of every aspect of the game over his Twitter. 
 
What say you lot?

#2 Posted by TheBlindChessman (241 posts) -

I guess it depends what you mean by "fails". Lots of people considered 13 to be a failure, but that was nothing on the scale of 14's failure.
 
I think the larger implication is for the Final Fantasy franchise as a whole, I think the value of the brand name is really in trouble if the next console game doesn't connect.

#3 Posted by 02sfraser (847 posts) -

I don't think you can class him as a failure based on this project. Yes he has poured his heart and soul into this game but it might have a very niche market which would make it a 'failure' in terms of sales and accessibility. Just have to wait and see what story, characters and game mechanics it will have. Although I might be biased since I love most of his work...

#4 Posted by NekuSakuraba (7241 posts) -
@02sfraser said:
" I don't think you can class him as a failure based on this project. Yes he has poured his heart and soul into this game but it might have a very niche market which would make it a 'failure' in terms of sales and accessibility. Just have to wait and see what story, characters and game mechanics it will have. Although I might be biased since I love most of his work... "
#5 Posted by ImmortalSaiyan (4690 posts) -

I want to know when we can know some details about the game. Five years and nothing.
#6 Posted by NoelVeiga (1102 posts) -

I say that the sooner you stop using the word "fail" the sooner you'll start asking questions that make sense.  
 
I mean "failed as a director" sounds like a line from a bad manga. If the game doesn't sell maybe he'll get kicked out (although in the current Japanese industry, not selling a lot is hardly a symptom of a lack of talent) and if he doesn't get high scores in the west maybe he'll still sell ten million and be considered a saviour in his company (alhtough getting low scores in the west is pretty much a given for any JRPG these days).  
 
He may have something to prove, and I wouldn't be surprised if Square was reconsidering the future of the Final Fantasy franchise after XIII sold around the middle of the pack of the franchise and XIV bombed. Where they would want to take it will have a lot to do with what happens on the hardware market, probably, considering that the Japanese industry has been focused on two handheld platforms that are about to be phased out.

#7 Posted by Brendan (7843 posts) -

I can agree with the OP to an extent.  FF13 sold a bunch, but largely because of it's name, and with the gripes about it from all but the hardcore fans I think that the FF brand won't be the only thing able to carry the product upon release. 
#8 Edited by Jeust (10738 posts) -

 What say you lot?    

If the game fails, Nomura fails.  
 
Chop his head!
#9 Posted by Catolf (2653 posts) -
@NekuSakuraba said:
" @02sfraser said:
" I don't think you can class him as a failure based on this project. Yes he has poured his heart and soul into this game but it might have a very niche market which would make it a 'failure' in terms of sales and accessibility. Just have to wait and see what story, characters and game mechanics it will have. Although I might be biased since I love most of his work... "
"

#10 Posted by ryanwho (12082 posts) -

It'll succeed in Japan no matter what, so at least he has that. He has the beffling nationalistic loyal support that's also responsible for Gundam games selling.

#11 Posted by Hailinel (25179 posts) -

Seeing as how Nomura is the creative director of the Kingdom Hearts series, which is highly successful, I don't see how a failure of Versus XIII would instantly peg Nomura as a bad director.  Also, where in the world does it say he's been working on Versus since 2005?  Or to be more specific, that active development of Versus started in 2005?
 
@ryanwho said:

" It'll succeed in Japan no matter what, so at least he has that. He has the beffling nationalistic loyal support that's also responsible for Gundam games selling. "

Gundam is a geek institution over there.  It's like Star Wars.  There are people out there that bought Masters of Teras Kasi and The Force Unleashed II just because they have Star Wars in the title.
#12 Posted by KaosAngel (13765 posts) -
@Hailinel http://ps3.ign.com/articles/710/710761p3.html

He had that mapped out for years. His last real game was Kingdom Hearts II final Mix+, and that was early/mid 2000s.

He's also said it on his quaterly Fami interviews. It's over 2channel, don't you read that stuff?
#13 Posted by KaosAngel (13765 posts) -

Edit: I'm on mobile ATM, no where near my laptop.

#14 Posted by benjaebe (2783 posts) -

If he fails his only choice is seppuku.
 
That being said, I'm really looking forward to it.

#15 Posted by Grelik (150 posts) -

Provided there's no teenage angst, or amnesia of any kind. I'm sure it will do alright.

#16 Posted by KaosAngel (13765 posts) -
@Grelik There's no teens in the game, so it should be good.
#17 Posted by Hailinel (25179 posts) -
@KaosAngel said:
" @Hailinel http://ps3.ign.com/articles/710/710761p3.html He had that mapped out for years. His last real game was Kingdom Hearts II final Mix+, and that was early/mid 2000s. He's also said it on his quaterly Fami interviews. It's over 2channel, don't you read that stuff? "
You sound like you're accusing me of being ignorant.  Not everyone browses 2chan.  Also, your link doesn't state anything of substance.  Only that "true development" had only just started.  That could literally mean anything from scenario and character design to active coding.  It also doesn't state how involved Nomura or any other individual is involved with the production at that point.
 
Nomura might be working on Versus XIII the most, but he still had a hand in the direction of the recent KH portable titles and The World Ends With You, not to mention his normal contributions as a character designer to other projects.
#18 Posted by SSully (4231 posts) -
@Grelik said:
" Provided there's no teenage angst, or amnesia of any kind. I'm sure it will do alright. "
You do know this is a FF game right? Those are some of SE's best themes. 
#19 Posted by luce (4045 posts) -
@KaosAngel said:
" @Grelik There's no teens in the game, so it should be good. "
 
 
It's Nsync all over again
#20 Edited by Grelik (150 posts) -
@luce:
So... Is that a screen from the game?  Cause I can now see why JRPG's have fallen out of grace.  I just can't take that stuff seriously anymore.  
 
[Edit: Not trying to say that I'm above the stuff.  More just like most of the audience over here, it has lost most, if not all of it's appeal to us.]
#21 Posted by Hailinel (25179 posts) -
@SSully said:
" @Grelik said:
" Provided there's no teenage angst, or amnesia of any kind. I'm sure it will do alright. "
You do know this is a FF game right? Those are some of SE's best themes.  "
Hmm?
 
Most of the Final Fantasy games are lacking in that department, actually.
#22 Posted by KaosAngel (13765 posts) -
@luce They're mid 20s, it's my aged. >.>
#23 Posted by WilliamRLBaker (4778 posts) -

Nomura was a failure as a director long before Versus... Versus will just be par in course for his idea of what a jrpg should be.

#24 Posted by Godwind (2597 posts) -
@KaosAngel: 
 
Quit riding that Nomura cock!
#25 Posted by Hailinel (25179 posts) -
@WilliamRLBaker said:
"

Nomura was a failure as a director long before Versus... Versus will just be par in course for his idea of what a jrpg should be.

"
And you base this on...?
#26 Posted by KaosAngel (13765 posts) -
@WilliamRLBaker

Nomura was a failure as a director long before Versus... Versus will just be par in course for his idea of what a jrpg should be.

What? KH2FM+ and TWEWY is amazing.
#27 Posted by imayellowfellow (558 posts) -

Nomura puts out the worst of japanese game development in my mind. Characters that have hundreds of hours of render time put into their hair and no develop time in their character. Story that is put out through cutscenes instead of interactivity. 
 
If this game progresses like ff13, where linearity is the point of concern so i can get from point a to point b and watch a melodramatic cutscene, then i really don't care for it. they need to set up some kind of antagonist and point to the game in the first few hours, at least like a mcguffin or something. They had no idea where ff13 was going well into the 11th chapter

#28 Posted by Hailinel (25179 posts) -
@imayellowfellow said:
" Nomura puts out the worst of japanese game development in my mind. Characters that have hundreds of hours of render time put into their hair and no develop time in their character."
Now this is just silly.
#29 Posted by imayellowfellow (558 posts) -
@Hailinel said:
" @imayellowfellow said:
" Nomura puts out the worst of japanese game development in my mind. Characters that have hundreds of hours of render time put into their hair and no develop time in their character."
Now this is just silly. "
funny, that's what i thought when i got to the ending of ff13
#30 Posted by HitmanAgent47 (8576 posts) -

Yeah, however he will be probally demoted back to being a character designer from director. He's responsible for square enix iconic final fantasy characters so they can't fire him. They will lose alot of money without his designs.

#31 Posted by Hailinel (25179 posts) -
@imayellowfellow said:
" @Hailinel said:
" @imayellowfellow said:
" Nomura puts out the worst of japanese game development in my mind. Characters that have hundreds of hours of render time put into their hair and no develop time in their character."
Now this is just silly. "
funny, that's what i thought when i got to the ending of ff13 "
You're not really helping your flimsy argument out with snide commentary.
#32 Posted by JJOR64 (19023 posts) -

No.  He has already made some great games.

#33 Posted by imayellowfellow (558 posts) -

Explicitly: The render times for the cutscenes (collectively) probably did take longer or comparable to the time spent writing the script. I mean they had 900 intel pentium 3's render the hair in spirits within, and that looks pretty weak compared to the cutscenes in ff13.
 
Figuratively: What i mean is they put an emphasis on the way these characters look compared to actually making them like interesting and have some meaningful development.  I mean yeah they "develop" i saw the cutscenes of people screaming and yelling before their eidoleans came too. 

whatever, if you like nomura's games go ahead but honestly i think some people have grown out of this kind of storytelling.

#34 Edited by Dallas_Raines (2188 posts) -

I can't stand his character designs, and I hated what he did with the Kingdom Hearts franchise after the first game. So I can't say I'm especially optimistic for Versus, but I'll try it out. Also, I don't think he'll fail, because it's already destined to be a major success in Japan.

#35 Posted by RaccoonusDoodus (324 posts) -

No.
Even if this is the worst game of all time, his past work would do more than make up it.

#36 Posted by Catolf (2653 posts) -
@imayellowfellow:  Most of the designs are (so i've heard rumor wise) inspired by Gackt, and during the CGI faze his face was used a few times.
 
If I'm wrong then fine but you can't say Gackt dosen't look like a few of the characters, let alone the voicework he supposedly did for Genesis in Crisis Core.
#37 Posted by Icemael (6339 posts) -
@KaosAngel said:
" @WilliamRLBaker

Nomura was a failure as a director long before Versus... Versus will just be par in course for his idea of what a jrpg should be.

What? KH2FM+ and TWEWY is amazing. "
He didn't direct TWEWY.

And if Kingdom Hearts is any indication of his directorial skills, thank fucking God for that. I haven't played the second, so I don't know if he's gotten better since, but the first was unbearable.
#38 Posted by Catolf (2653 posts) -
@Godwind said:
" @KaosAngel:   Quit riding that Nomura cock! "
wanna add something to the conversation besides that or are you good?
 
@RaccoonusDoodus said:
" No. Even if this is the worst game of all time, his past work would do more than make up it. "

Pretty much.
 
@Icemael: Kingdom hearts was far from unbarable unless your talking about the english voice acting or namely Haley Joel Osmonds voice acting. The fights were fun, it was nice to travel to iconic disney worlds though I really did and still do what to shoot Donal Duck in the face.
#39 Posted by Cornman89 (1579 posts) -

I don't know what to think about Nomura. Considering his integral role in the KH franchise, I'm not very confident in his ability to tell a story on the terms that Versus is being described. But who knows. Maybe he'll wow me.
 
At the very least, I'm digging it from a design standpoint. The character designs remind me of Nomura's FFVIII glory days, when he knew the meaning of the word "restraint". Good boy, Nomura.

#40 Posted by Icemael (6339 posts) -
@Catolf: The voice acting was torturous, the controls were shit, the graphics were ugly and the fights were stiff and boring.
#41 Posted by Vorbis (2750 posts) -

I think at this point there is no way he can make a game that will be widely loved, too many people want too many different things. Does that mean he has failed? no, it will be a great game to some.
 
When you look back at all his past games every one of them has a hater crowd and every game also has people claiming it's their favourite, can't see Versus being any different,

#42 Posted by KaosAngel (13765 posts) -

My only problem with Nomura is that he can't draw for shit, yet I see people claiming he's the best Square has ever had.  It's a shame Amano quit making stuff full time for Square Enix...and it's a shame he no longer does the character stuff.  Once they shifted to Nomura from FF7...I think that's when people started to feel the change of Square in general. 
  
When you compare how Amano drew the FF cast, and then look at Nomura...you have to wonder just what the fuck Nomura was smoking or what anime he was watching at the time.



#43 Edited by ryanwho (12082 posts) -
@Hailinel: You're trying really hard to credit Nomura for the success of games he had minimal involvement with. That undercuts the teams and talent that actually made some games work, because you want to turn this guy into a superstar by undercutting the other staff's contributions. Pathetic.
#44 Posted by Hailinel (25179 posts) -
@KaosAngel:   I'd dare say that picture of Cloud contains more artistic skill than most people are capable of.  It's a different style than Amano's traditional style, certainly, but it doesn't make it inherently bad.
#45 Posted by Hailinel (25179 posts) -
@ryanwho said:
" @Hailinel: You're trying really hard to credit Nomura for the success of games he had minimal involvement with. "
Like which ones?  It's easy to snark when you're vague.
#46 Edited by Catolf (2653 posts) -
@Icemael:  We'll have to agree to disagree here, i thought the controls were fine other than sometimes not being able to jump on something at first but it's later fixed with a double jump, I liked the battles, as I stated i thought they were fun and towards then end downright brutal (I'm talking to you riku!) the only issue was the english VA which did improve a bit in 2.
 
@Hailinel said:
" @KaosAngel:   I'd dare say that picture of Cloud contains more artistic skill than most people are capable of.  It's a different style than Amano's traditional style, certainly, but it doesn't make it inherently bad. "

Agreed, what the hell are you smoking Kaos! XD I like both styles and neither of which are bad, both are gorgeous. Just because of a style change dosen't make it shit. I'd love to see what would happen if they came together on a project.
#47 Posted by ryanwho (12082 posts) -
@KaosAngel: You also have to wonder if Amano knew what the fuck concept art was. Remember that game where Amano's art made a faithful transition to the game? Me neither. They're just paintings. Nomura's a hack but at least he knows how concept art works.
#48 Posted by KaosAngel (13765 posts) -
@ryanwho: It's so hard to make Amano's art into a game though!  When I saw his stuff for FF6, that's how I saw the game.  I guess it worked in the NES and SNES days, but it's harder to pull off now. 
 
I think Nomura is a decent writer, and his FF8 stuff is still amazing.  When he controls his excitement he can do wonderful stuff, and then when he goes nuts like he did with the first KH...you start to doubt him.  I hope, and I really really hope that Nomura understands how lucky he is to be making the game of his dreams with Versus XIII, and I hope he understands just how much money Square is sinking into him.   
 
If he can stay focused, I think Versus will be the best game from Square since FF6.
#49 Posted by ryanwho (12082 posts) -
@KaosAngel said:
"  If he can stay focused, I think Versus will be the best game from Square since FF6. "
Building expectations like this really worked out for you with FF13.
#50 Posted by KaosAngel (13765 posts) -
@ryanwho said:
" Building expectations like this really worked out for you with FF13. "
Meh, I think they'd fuck up so bad.  I can't believe it was this time last year when I finally put it in.  You have to give them a chance though, it was Square's first real next-gen game, and it was done by a crew that isn't their top tier.  >.>

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