Shin Megami Tensei IV Final devs – elements that define the series, considered older cast, music, more
Famitsu: Is there anything on your mind when designing characters for SMT4F?
Doi: In the prequel, we wanted to have a realistic gap between cultures of Tokyo and Eastern Mikado Kingdom, so the art style was more realistic. Here in SMT4F, since we lowered the average age of the main characters, and it takes place more in Tokyo, we’re making it more pop-like, and make children look more like [actual] children.
Yamai: Actually in the early phases of planning, we planned to have the main character to be even older than SMT4’s. The first thing we already decided early was that considering Nozomi and Navarre already appear from the start, we have the main character travel together with a special demon, but all the other contents were totally different after we finished planning. Related to past discussions, if we’re making a simulator based on current era, rather than an adult with an almost complete self, it’s much better for a main character of a current-era Megaten to be incomplete children with some doubts in their hearts.
Famitsu: I think the party in SMT4F would crumble from the beginning if there was nobody to unite them like Nozomi.
Doi: Nozomi in SMT4 was more like a mischievous sister, but she grew a lot after she became the Fairy Queen. But she still lacks experience compared to veteran Inhuman Hunters, and if there’s a situation where even she would be put into danger… uh oh, you’d better check the game for yourself on this (laughs).
Famitsu: I see. So please tell us about these ‘incomplete children’ like the main character and Asahi.
Doi: In order to emphasize that these two are children, we designed them to have received lots of love from their parents. Asahi’s father named her as such because he wanted to show his children a Morning Sun (which is asahi in Japanese). Asahi’s pilot-like equipment is worn because her father wants a bright Tokyo in the future where people can fly freely. Asahi’s father also adopted the MC, so the NO WAR text on MC’s clothes is because their father wanted them to live in a world without war.
Famitsu: Anyway Mr. Doi is also in charge of drawing new gods and demons here, so what about them?
Doi: Each god and demon’s descriptions depend on their region, era and religious background. But if we only base on those it’ll be hard to make them fit into Megaten’s concept and originality. So like many folklore in the world, I tried becoming the “observer” and designed the gods and demons based on my own memory.
Famitsu: So how’s the music aspect?
Kozuka: I first participated in the Megaten series from SMT4, and I set to myself things to do and not to do that relate to the likeness of this series. I put extreme caution in the atmosphere of tones and phrases. For example, battle BGMs should normally be zealous, but if it’s too hot-blooded it might lose the Megaten feel, so the emotion have to be lessened to an extent. In SMT4F I basically took the same stance too, but I put in new colors to visualize these young protagonists.
(Another question is what’s the hardest song to make? Yamai said the BGM for Heretic Mansion is done the very last, because it’s the music for Demon Fusion which represents Megaten, which always puts pressure on composers.)
(Yamai then made a mention that if you like the new songs, an OST disc will be available on February 24)
Yamai: If you have interest in any of this game’s features, like world setting, characters or music, please do play the game. Even if you haven’t played past games it’s no problem at all. We’re aiming so that there will be something remaining in your minds after playing this. So please use this chance to enjoy this “dangerous story”.
Thanks for making it to the end of this post! If you use any of this translation, please be sure to properly source Nintendo Everything. Do not copy its full contents.
Note: this translation was intended to be more of a summary rather than a word-for-word translation due to the interview length and terminology involved.