Suikoden Revival Movement

A forum for all general Suikoden related topics.
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Rooks
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Re: Suikoden Revival Movement

Postby Rooks » Wed Aug 15, 2012 9:19 pm

Well, in terms of Konami's social-gaming and digital distribution: That is all handled by Konami San Fransisco now. But they are focusing on games like "Frogger", because they still believe that there is a hard, clear line between casual gamers and hardcore gamers. Don't get me wrong, I would buy a smartphone just to play an online Bomberman Tournament game, but they do not realize that "hardcore" gamers can play on Android and iOS too.

Ouya is a huge question mark. No doubt about it, but at the same time, it will run on Android, thus it is not likely to have console-certification requirements and other costs associated with consoles. I would not characterize it as "high-risk" because as far as I can tell, they likely will not require much in the way "brand loyalty" like Sony and Nintendo do.

You may be completely right about the PSN. I have heard the same thing, but who knows if the rumors are true? Meanwhile, Indie developers are getting scared of Windows 8, and these problems could bleed over into the next-gen Xbox, assuming it runs many of the same protocols that Win8 does. Steam is busy turning their library over to be Linux-compatible, while Nintendo is allegedly having a fire-sale on its WiiU digital platform.

http://www.escapistmagazine.com/news/view/118706-Gabe-Newell-Thinks-Steam-Can-Help-Mainstream-Linux

Sony knows that the PSN has fallen well behind XBLA and Steam, maybe its recent sales are a sign they are loosening the reins a bit.
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Xelinis
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Re: Suikoden Revival Movement

Postby Xelinis » Wed Aug 15, 2012 9:39 pm

Rooks wrote:Well, in terms of Konami's social-gaming and digital distribution: That is all handled by Konami San Fransisco now. But they are focusing on games like "Frogger", because they still believe that there is a hard, clear line between casual gamers and hardcore gamers. Don't get me wrong, I would buy a smartphone just to play an online Bomberman Tournament game, but they do not realize that "hardcore" gamers can play on Android and iOS too.


Suikoden is such a major brand that I don't think Konami would ever let their San Francisco (San Mateo really) branch handle it. That office mainly caters to the very casual crowd.

Ouya is a huge question mark. No doubt about it, but at the same time, it will run on Android, thus it is not likely to have console-certification requirements and other costs associated with consoles. I would not characterize it as "high-risk" because as far as I can tell, they likely will not require much in the way "brand loyalty" like Sony and Nintendo do.


The risk I'm talking about is the scenario where the actual Ouya hardware and operating system turn out not to be up-to-snuff. A while back, there was a lot of hype around Notion Ink's Adam Tablet, which many billed to be the iPad-killer. As soon as it was released, it was criticized for its clunky user interface and awful build quality. Opened up, you actually see a lot of circuitry soldered on by hand as well as a number of components being held together with scotch tape. After the backlash, Notion Ink pretty much faded from the public eye and has barely been heard from since.

I'm not saying that Ouya is definitely going to suffer the same fate, but let's at least be wary until the first units ship and we get a better idea of the final product's quality. Suikoden needs to be handled delicately right now, we can't afford to let the effort of porting it to a brand new console go down the drain.

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Xelinis
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Re: Suikoden Revival Movement

Postby Xelinis » Wed Aug 15, 2012 9:42 pm

Antimatzist wrote:Thanks for that overview. I'm a "classic" console-gamer, so I am not up-to-date with this stuff (really, I'm a tech-idiot, hehe). So would you recommend to advertise for a more general digital distribution and name PSN just as an example?


Yes, absolutely. But quietly focus your efforts on iOS and Steam, which are the most successful and profitable markets for DD right now.

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Re: Suikoden Revival Movement

Postby LanceHeart » Fri Aug 17, 2012 4:51 am

I'd like to point out that PSN is the only platform Konami can release Suikoden 2 onto without actually having to do any development whatsoever. PC, iOS, Android and others (except feature phones) actually require porting the game, which can cost quite a bit in the end. With the Vita getting PSOne Classics soon, that guarantees that PSN won't just drop support once the PSP and PS3 are out of Sony's console rotation.

Let me go through the list of platforms, for fun. Keep in mind that I'm only talking about re-releases, not new games.

Xelinis wrote:1. iOS
Apple has a painless licensing model, which is why so many independent games thrive on it and many small developers do well. Bigger developers as well, as Infinity Blade, a project from Epic Games, was deemed the most profitable project in the company's history. (Remember, this is the company behind Unreal and Gears of War.) Adding to this is the very, very low rate of piracy on the platform as most users don't want to go through the trouble of jailbreaking. With those points in mind, as well as the massive user-base, this should be the top priority.

iOS requires that you relinquish 30% of your sales gross to Apple. While that's not a problem for indies who don't particularly care since they're looking for all the money they can get, many larger (mostly Japanese) companies find it unacceptable, to the point where they price their games way over expectations. Also: RPGs on iOS don't seem to fit the platform well. I've tried a plethora of them and they're particularly hard to control since menus have tons of options and very small hit boxes.

As for Infinity Blade, remember that Epic said it was their most profitable. They never said they made the most money with it. It also helps that they were the first ones to bring detailed 3D models and animation to a game and it was prominently featured on the App store and iPhone ads worldwide. Suikoden would get no such treatment.

Xelinis wrote:2. Steam
Another fairly painless licensing model. While the profit margins are usually not as high as iOS, it is still very easy to get a game on this content platform and make a strong profit off of it. The hugely successful Recettear: An Item Shop's Tale is a great example of this. Of course, releasing Suikoden on PC does introduce a far higher risk of piracy as opposed to iOS. However, Steam makes the buying process so painless that many don't even bother.

Recettear didn't really do that well, nor did any of the other Carpe Fulgur games. They didn't even make enough money to license the full-voice version of Fortune Summoner for its localization. It's still a good platform to aim for if Konami is looking at porting the game, but temper your expectations.

Xelinis wrote:3. Android
Android's large and still growing audience makes it an attractive place to bring the franchise. The licensing model is non-existent giving it the highest profit potential. However, Android also has the highest piracy rate out there, high enough to make me wary. Piracy has always hit the series hard, I don't want to add more to it. Suikoden Tierkreis on its own was deep into the six-digit count in terms of how many people downloaded it. Additionally, as a developer myself, I can attest to the high degree of hardware fragmentation that can make some titles very difficult to maintain.

Fragmentation means nothing when you can just base yourself on the lowest vertical/horizontal resolution and allow scaling or framing. However, this platform also requires that you relinquish 30% of your gross and your point of piracy is pretty much right. The only way an Android release could work is if Konami opted for releasing the game on Playstation Mobile, which requires a non-rooted normal PS Mobile-compatible phone (for now).

Xelinis wrote:4. PSN
In a lot of ways, PSN makes sense since the core series has always belonged to Sony. However, I've heard nothing but horrifying things about the PSN licensing model in terms of approvals and profitability. I'd label this as a nice-to-have.

It's the only platform where Konami can easily release Suikoden without having to worry about much more than approval from SCE*, ESRB/PEGI/CERO/etc. and licensees. PSOne Classics are literally PSOne ISOs repackaged in a PSN-locked format. PS2 Classics seem to require some testing and maybe some porting, but nothing has actually been said nor revealed about the process yet. I'd be surprised if the effort was anywhere near porting games to PC or iOS/Android, however. It should be lower.

Xelinis wrote:??. Ouya
The big question mark. Ouya became the darling of the internet's eye when the Kickstarter first appeared. However, until the hardware is actually released and we get a better idea of how sustainable the platform is, I believe it to be too high-risk. I'll be very happy if it does well, but it's still plagued by too many "what-ifs."

Ouya is basically an Android console and should be able to play touch-screen Android games, so this platform doesn't even count unless Konami *really* wants to incorporate button controls. Even then, the Android API already allows button mapping. (remember the Xperia PLAY?)
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Xelinis
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Re: Suikoden Revival Movement

Postby Xelinis » Fri Aug 17, 2012 12:09 pm

I'd like to point out that PSN is the only platform Konami can release Suikoden 2 onto without actually having to do any development whatsoever. PC, iOS, Android and others (except feature phones) actually require porting the game, which can cost quite a bit in the end. With the Vita getting PSOne Classics soon, that guarantees that PSN won't just drop support once the PSP and PS3 are out of Sony's console rotation.


In regards to rereleasing old titles, you would indeed be correct about PSN. However, the scenario I'm talking about here is if we want Konami to remake those titles.

iOS requires that you relinquish 30% of your sales gross to Apple. While that's not a problem for indies who don't particularly care since they're looking for all the money they can get, many larger (mostly Japanese) companies find it unacceptable, to the point where they price their games way over expectations. Also: RPGs on iOS don't seem to fit the platform well. I've tried a plethora of them and they're particularly hard to control since menus have tons of options and very small hit boxes.

As for Infinity Blade, remember that Epic said it was their most profitable. They never said they made the most money with it. It also helps that they were the first ones to bring detailed 3D models and animation to a game and it was prominently featured on the App store and iPhone ads worldwide. Suikoden would get no such treatment.


Unless a major company wants to setup their own online store, 30% of profits is more than acceptable. It's either that, or spend potentially even more on manufacturing flash cards or discs as well as instruction manuals and boxes.

And I agree, there have been a lot of shoddy iOS ports of RPGs, such as Crimson Gem Saga and Shining Force. However, some relatively recent RPGs that were designed with the platform in mind have been a joy to play, such as the Chaos Rings franchise.

Unless Konami really wants to go all out, a 2D Suikoden remake would not exceed the high budget of Infinity Blade.

As far as getting awareness of the game out there, that's something the series has always suffered from. Both Konami and the SRM are going to have to do some work on this.

Recettear didn't really do that well, nor did any of the other Carpe Fulgur games. They didn't even make enough money to license the full-voice version of Fortune Summoner for its localization.


No it didn't, but it did more than well enough for the company to stick around and keep pushing out new titles. For an indie company trying to sell a game aimed at a very niche crowd, that's a major accomplishment.

Fragmentation means nothing when you can just base yourself on the lowest vertical/horizontal resolution and allow scaling or framing.


This is an oversimplification of the fragmentation problem Android is facing. Minor differences in graphics hardware and drivers can mean wildly different results such as incorrect scaling, clipping, washed out renderings, missing pixels, etc. You can even have a function that works perfectly on one device but be a complete power drain on another. Even if most of the industry is adopting Tegra, you can still experience these issues in newer revisions of that hardware. Outside of that, there are also issues around touch-screen sensitivity, which is not well enforced and can be wildly different across different devices.

And don't even get me started on the proprietary patches that many companies apply to their Android devices!

It's the only platform where Konami can easily release Suikoden without having to worry about much more than approval from SCE*, ESRB/PEGI/CERO/etc. and licensees. PSOne Classics are literally PSOne ISOs repackaged in a PSN-locked format.


Correct, but again, the scenario I'm talking about here is if we want Konami to remake those titles.

Ouya is basically an Android console and should be able to play touch-screen Android games, so this platform doesn't even count unless Konami *really* wants to incorporate button controls. Even then, the Android API already allows button mapping. (remember the Xperia PLAY?)


Since Ouya is seeking to establish itself as a much more standardized device, the fragmentation argument applies less to it (but is still not exempt). However, my earlier point was that we don't know how robust and polished the final platform is going to be. If these consoles start catching on fire within three weeks of purchase, this company is not going to be around for very long. That's why we should wait and see how it turns out first.

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Re: Suikoden Revival Movement

Postby RevKoden » Fri Aug 17, 2012 4:32 pm

Offtopic:BTW, if you want to revive Suikoden Series, dont forget to revive shadow hearts...legaia...BoF...chrono series wow there are really many games that needs to be revived..especially Chrono series...which can serve as a "substitute" for suikoden series...but now it's also dead...

Ontopic:Oh yeah if SUikoden 6 is gonna be made, i wonder how the gameplays gonna go?? I kinda wish it to have a real time combat ala Star ocean but,umm...then the old-school type rpg will be gone...

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Xelinis
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Re: Suikoden Revival Movement

Postby Xelinis » Fri Aug 17, 2012 5:11 pm

RevKoden wrote:Offtopic:BTW, if you want to revive Suikoden Series, dont forget to revive shadow hearts...legaia...BoF...chrono series wow there are really many games that needs to be revived..especially Chrono series...which can serve as a "substitute" for suikoden series...but now it's also dead...


You're going to have to find other movements if you want those franchises back, it's not a good idea to spread this one out too thin.

Also, anyone wanting to revive Shadow Hearts is going to have a tough time. The development studio responsible for those games was dissolved and its parent company, which owns the Shadow Hearts IP, has no more interest in the console gaming market.

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Re: Suikoden Revival Movement

Postby JanusThePaladin » Fri Aug 17, 2012 7:49 pm

Chrono will never have a sequel. The creator (who's name escapes me) refuses to make another game without the original crew, most of whom have had falling outs with Squarenix

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Xelinis
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Re: Suikoden Revival Movement

Postby Xelinis » Fri Aug 17, 2012 9:09 pm

JanusThePaladin wrote:Chrono will never have a sequel. The creator (who's name escapes me) refuses to make another game without the original crew, most of whom have had falling outs with Squarenix


I know the quote you're referring to, and that's Hiromichi Tanaka, who's not the creator of the series but is the producer of Chrono Cross.

...it's very difficult to be able to reunite the original team, to be able to make a sequel to the Chrono series...because if we don't try to reunite these people but take other people instead, we will find ourselves at that point with a game which will feel different, since there would be different persons in charge, and we would possibly lose the Chrono spirit.


The creative lead of the Cross team, Masato Kato (who served as the writer of the Zeal portion of Trigger) is currently working as a freelance writer and most recently contributed to the FFXI expansions. However, this freelance status makes it difficult to serve as a director. The two other major players are Yasunori Mitsuda (series composer, currently freelance) and Yasuyuki Honne (a map designer on Trigger and the lead art director on Cross, currently employed at Monolith Soft).

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Re: Suikoden Revival Movement

Postby JanusThePaladin » Fri Aug 17, 2012 9:33 pm

Well, consider me schooled

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Re: Suikoden Revival Movement

Postby LanceHeart » Sat Aug 18, 2012 6:09 am

If you're going for remakes, remember that the code base of Suikoden 2 has already been translated into Java via the feature phone port that came out a while back. That makes PC and Android relatively easier platforms to move toward if you're looking for cost-effective remakes.
I also get what you're saying about Android fragmentation, but since Samsung has now become the de facto leader in the field, aiming to support their Galaxy line should cover a vast majority of Android users in the first place.

I'm somewhat wary of asking for remakes or even ports, though. Konami already dipped its foot in the water with the Suikoden 1 + 2 package on PSP and got severely burned in Japan, which could explain why we haven't seen any other initiatives on that front since then. Then there's the Silent Hill HD fiasco which proved that some groups at Konami just don't do proper archiving. That means Suikoden 3 through 5's final source code and assets could very well be lost forever and we don't know it yet.
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Xelinis
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Re: Suikoden Revival Movement

Postby Xelinis » Sat Aug 18, 2012 2:12 pm

LanceHeart wrote:I also get what you're saying about Android fragmentation, but since Samsung has now become the de facto leader in the field, aiming to support their Galaxy line should cover a vast majority of Android users in the first place.


See, that's where you get into trouble. The Android market is constantly evolving and the de facto leader is changing all the time. Suikoden needs something with easy long term maintainability.

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Re: Suikoden Revival Movement

Postby LanceHeart » Sat Aug 18, 2012 7:24 pm

Samsung has been widening its lead in the Android market over HTC, Sony and others for at least two years now. If that's not a sign that the market is stabilizing when it previously changed every three months, I don't know what is.
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Re: Suikoden Revival Movement

Postby Piisuke » Fri Aug 24, 2012 5:58 am

Xelinis wrote:Suikoden is such a major brand that I don't think Konami would ever let their San Francisco (San Mateo really) branch handle it. That office mainly caters to the very casual crowd.


As much as I like this comment, let's not delude ourselves into thinking that Suikoden is a major brand. If it was, Konami would have taken better care of it. Metal Gear Solid is a major brand. Pro Evo is. At the moment, Castlevania is. Suikoden? Sadly, Konami cares very little about it.

What we need is Suikoden I&II to be released onto the PSN, worldwide. Two birds with one stone. I don't even understand how Konami managed to completely screw this up. Suikoden I is released onto the American PSN. That's it. Nothing else. Not even Japan's PSN has Suikoden. Sure, Japan has Suikoden I&II, but no digital release. Completely missed the boat here.

Europe? Well, we just got the short short end of the stick. No digital releases for any Suikoden game, already missed out on Suikoden III and of course, like our American brethren: the games you guys missed out on as well. We usually have to wait forever as well for a new Suikoden to be released onto our shores.

Call me cynical, but that's the kind of stuff we get from Konami when it comes down to Suikoden.

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Re: Suikoden Revival Movement

Postby Antimatzist » Fri Aug 24, 2012 6:04 am

@Japan PSN: I always thought they have the PSP-Port of the first two games there?

Well, Konamiscrews up a lot. Symphony of the Night isn't on PSN, either (at least Europe).

I know that Konami doesn't treat is as a major brand, but I think the Suikoden series is one of these series that a lot of people know and many of them love. Of course it's lacking in numbers, a FF side-game still sells better than a Suikoden main game, but nonetheless I think Suikoden could very well sell a lot more than it does now (and even the last maingames). Iirc, the sales went up with every game until IV, so they missed their chance at that time (+ not releasing III in Europe, that was stupid.)


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