Tales of Team Leader Discusses IP Preservation & Staff Changes

The director of the Bandai Namco action JRPG Scarlet Nexus, Kenji Anabuki, was recently interviewed by the Japanese outlet denfaminicogamer about the title and tangentially related facets. This interview is lengthy, lasting a whopping two pages of in-depth answers.

Some of the questions had to do with the Tales of franchise, with one exchange, in particular, involving leader Kenji Anabuki, going into detail about the efforts to make sure that the IP is preserved even after the veterans leave the staff. Further, the changes to the team were also brought up.

You can read the summarized responses below, translated by our team’s Ryuji:

Anabuki: This reminds me of a discussion we were having in the Tales of development team, where we want to ensure that “Tales of” will continue to exist as an IP even after we are gone. We are currently working with staff members who have been involved in many past works, including myself, and I think we should avoid having the Tales of experience that we have cultivated become lost technology after we are gone.

I want to make sure that the group that develops “Tales of” within Bandai Namco will be able to preserve the charm and experience that we worked for years to cultivate.

(The Interviewer then asks him to further clarify what he means, and in short, he talks about the struggles of, say, someone developed a system that resonated well with fans, but then they left Bandai. How would they replicate what that person did properly? This is why he believes it’s very important that they find a way to keep records and data of the past, especially since he admits with a bitter smile that some features of Tales of were on the verge of being lost technology)

Interviewer: Just out of curiosity, how has the current “Tales of” production team evolved from the former Tales Studio (under Namco)?

Anabuki: Mmm, if my memory doesn’t fail me, from the perspective of someone from the former Tales Studio, it felt like “I didn’t leave the company, but the name of the company kept changing”? (laughs)

*The interviewer also laughs along with him*

Anabuki: Currently, I think there are about 50 members of the former Tales Studio left. Among them, there are probably less than half who are still working on “Tales of” because even if they are from Tales Studio, there are cases where they go to work on other series’ projects.

And it is rapidly evolving into a situation where the “Tales of” series is rapidly losing the “things we could do without saying a word to each other because we had the staff from the past.” That’s what we are trying to prevent. Of course, there is also the positive side the addition of new members brings, which is a lot of fresh experience and knowledge to the project.

What Anabuki is essentially saying here is that the Tales of team is doing its best to ensure that the IP is not neglected or forgotten when new staff is eventually what the entire team is comprised of.

Moreover, additional communication is needed for the new staff since they don’t have the basis for the silent understanding developed between those who have been in the studio for years.

You can view the full interview here.

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Orpheus Joshua

Random gamer equally confused by the mainstream and the unusual.

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