It's official, VF4 is sequal to VF2!!! not 3!!!!!!

Discussion in 'Junky's Jungle' started by Cause, Apr 11, 2001.

  1. Cause

    Cause Well-Known Member

    Shadowed only by famed director Yu Suzuki, AM2 coordinator Daichi Katagiri has been responsible for some of Sega's biggest titles. Currently working on Virtua Fighter 4, Katagiri-san recently sat down with Arcadia in Japan to reveal some interesting new details regarding Sega's long awaited fighter.

    Arcadia: Why was there such a gap between Virtua Fighter 3 and VF4?

    Katagiri-san: The main reason was we couldn't get the staff together. Everyone was working on different projects, and we didn't want to start until we had the right people. Personally, I thought we had done everything we could in Virtua Fighter 3, so I was focusing on Outtrigger. But after a while there was clearly a need for a new fighting game, and when we finally got the staff together, the timing was right for VF4.

    Arcadia: Can you give us some background details on the staff currently working on Virtua Fighter 4?

    Katagiri-san: Our two main programmers previously worked on Virtua Fighter 1 and 2. Another worked on the Saturn versions of VF2 and Fighting Vipers. Our main designer previously worked on Daytona USA and Outtrigger.

    Arcadia: What sort of improvements can we expect in VF4?

    Katagiri-san: We're thinking of Virtua Fighter 4 as more of a sequel to VF2 than VF3. Which means the game will take a completely different direction than VF3. I'm proud of the work we did on Virtua Fighter 3, but we're getting back to basics.

    Arcadia: What's the main theme in VF4?

    Katagiri-san: We're trying to give the characters more personality. Depending upon the style of the character, their attacks will be light and quick, or slow and damaging. Virtua Fighter 3 focused on balance between characters, and VF4 will bring back their personalities.

    Arcadia: In VF2, it seemed very hard to beat players who were more skilled. In Virtua Fighter 3 though, even beginners could beat experts through escape techniques. How will this change in VF4?

    Katagiri-san: Many people complained about the difficulty level in Virtua Fighter 3, and how easy it was. But that wasn't our goal. We've always tried to make the series accessible to novices, but we reward players who practice and increase their skill level. We realize, if there's nothing in the game to master, nobody will play it.

    Arcadia: The costume designs shown so far look reminiscent of Virtua Fighter 2, don't they?

    Katagiri-san: Yes, we've intentionally designed them like that. In Virtua Fighter 3 we paid attention to costume design, but more-so the little nuances like how they move. Now we're thinking about how they should look overall.

    Arcadia: Have you done any motion capturing for VF4?

    Katagiri-san: Yes, we've done a lot of motion capturing to add new moves, and entrance poses. We even tried dumping the raw motion capture data onto the character models, and it produced surprisingly realistic results. Of course, it looked even better when we touched up the animation.

    Arcadia: Virtua Fighter 3 used a four-button setup, but in VF4 you're going back to three?

    Katagiri-san: We want to go back to using the joystick strictly for movement and the buttons for actions. In Virtua Fighter 3 we had a problem how to let players dodge attacks, so we dedicated a button to 'evade.' But for VF4, we thought a three-button setup would make the most sense.

    Arcadia: So all movements, including avoiding attacks, will be done through the joystick?

    Katagiri-san: Yes. In Virtua Fighter 3 dodging became almost a normal movement. We think it would be more natural to do this through the joystick rather than a button.

    Arcadia: VF4 will use an eight-way run system similar to Namco's fighter, Soul Calibur?

    Katagiri-san: Yes, Virtua Fighter 4 and Soul Calibur are similar in several respects. You can move around freely, and avoiding attacks will require precise timing.

    Arcadia: At the AOU show earlier this year, AM2 unveiled VF4 and confirmed plans for six characters. You also confirmed plans for several new characters, can you tell us about them?

    Katagiri-san: Generally speaking, the new characters will focus on usability. Like in Virtua Fighter 2, the ability to control the characters was easy. I can't get into specifics regarding the new characters yet. All I can tell you is, they won't have traditional martial artist styles or backgrounds.

    Arcadia: Have you created any new characters that won't be used in VF4?

    Katagiri-san: Yes, we created a character who was a master of Kenpo, Pai's style of fighting. He was an extremely well made character, but we had to drop him. If this were a Fighting Vipers sequel, he probably would have made it. [laughs..] We decided what new characters to use after consulting the entire staff and hearing their concerns.

    Arcadia: In previous Virtua Fighter games, characters strong in punching techniques and combos seemed to dominate. Will the new characters have strong hand-fighting techniques?

    Katagiri-san: Some will have strong hand-fighting techniques. Other new characters will have completely new fighting styles. Something for your readers to look forward to.

    Arcadia: Players will be able to save information regarding their performance in VF4 to external memory devices?

    Katagiri-san: Yes, players will use this information outside of the game itself. With games like this, I think it's most fun to play against people within your skill level. If you had a device or system that would let you find players like yourself, I think that would be interesting. I can't go into specifics about this, because we haven't made any firm decisions yet.

    Arcadia: You're thinking of offering an info exchange network or Internet site for VF4 players?

    Katagiri-san: Something like that, yes. We want people to use the network to enjoy Virtua Fighter in new ways.

    Arcadia: What about changes to the in-game fighting system?

    Katagiri-san: We're adding walls to some stages, but there will still be ring-outs. What we're trying to do is decrease ambiguous background action. In Virtua Fighter 4, what happens onscreen will be a direct result of the players actions.

    Arcadia: Are you adding any other new elements to the gameplay system?

    Katagiri-san: We're trying a number of things, but I'm not sure what we're going to use yet. For instance, whether a character stumbles and recovers or falls when he's hit a certain way. Suffice it to say, we're spending plenty of time tweaking the new system.

    Arcadia: You mentioned walls will be added to some stages, will players be able to incorporate them into attacks?

    Katagiri-san: Many things are being done with the walls, but yes, players will be able to do attacks with them.

    Arcadia: Do you think there will be a Virtua Fighter 5?

    Katagiri-san: Its already been proposed. I'm not sure if it will happen, but it would be nice. Right now, we want to push Virtua Fighter 4 as far as we can.

    Arcadia: What are your thoughts on network play?

    Katagiri-san: Everyone seems obsessed with network play, but I haven't given it much thought. We're still thinking about network ideas for Virtua Fighter 4. It would be interesting to incorporate cellphone devices, somehow. [laughs..]

    Arcadia: Thanks for your time, any message to your fans?

    Katagiri-san: We're very thankful to everyone still playing Virtua Fighter 3. VF4 will offer a completely new experience, one that you can enjoy for a long time to come. -- Translation Asst: Walt Wyman

    - The VF Student -
  2. adamYUKI

    adamYUKI Well-Known Member

    Many people complained about the difficulty level in Virtua Fighter 3, and how easy it was. But that wasn't our goal. We've always tried to make the series accessible to novices, but we reward players who practice and increase their skill level. We realize, if there's nothing in the game to master, nobody will play it.

    Ha! The game wont just be a big "newbie" fest - as mentioned by a few people here, just cause Yu was targeting the masses. Im glad at the prospect of some kind of steep learning curve that rewards players who practice and get better.

    Looking forward to it even more...

    <font color=red>Jyunen hayaindayo!</font color=red>

    <font color=white>adam</font color=white><font color=red>YUKI</font color=red>
  3. ice-9

    ice-9 Well-Known Member

    Damn it, I sucked in VF2...!!! I hope that one guy who claimed that VF3 players can still do well in VF4 wasn't kidding (re: Shota's thread).
  4. Drunken_Master

    Drunken_Master Well-Known Member

    i think the 3d button made virtua fighter 3 diffrent from other fighters. i love the fact it was easy to move about in 3d, and the fact i find soul cailber hard to move about in 3d worrys me.

    'Strong body but a weak mind' Sam Seed from Drunken Masters
  5. Guest

    Guest Guest

    accept the fact that the evade button is GONE. just because the old system has been replaced by 8-way movement doesn't mean you have to be worried.
    you'll adapt.
    you'll move on.
    eventually you find out things that you like about the new system. The VF series has shown that in time you'll pick up a technique you didn't think existed.
    change is inevitable. the evade button is GONE.
  6. SummAh

    SummAh Well-Known Member

    ""Many people complained about the difficulty level in Virtua Fighter 3, and how easy it was.""

    Dude..I don't quite understand that line...
    So is he saying the game was too easy to master and play at high lvls?

    Or just too easy to escape?

    <font color=red>SummErs' 'enemy SPODED, enemy DOWN'
  7. Guest

    Guest Guest

    It almost sounds like VF3 was a mistake .....
    Such 'huge' changes and still an ultra crisp gameplay, I don't think that will work well. I prefer progresses on a solid basement , not such huge changements. Well, certainly it will surprise us(+/-). I loved the dodge button.. Now during dodge movement I can't even imput moves (for example Akira's Mountain of steel), because the stick is beeing used for movement. Maybe dodge-attacks will be like in SoulCALIBUR.... hold Stick df press Punch and you get Akira's Mountain of Steel or hold Stick down and Punch and you get a Shoulder Ram move. That would be awful..........I hope VF-3D movement will have more 'deep gameplay' then SC's...

    not sure where this game is going....solid VF system getting raped?!?!?

  8. AlexMD

    AlexMD Well-Known Member Content Manager Lei

    I think the guys at Am2 just figure the dodge was too powerfull so that's why all the seemingly weird decisions are being made regarding 3d movement.

    Using double button taps for example,we're all going WTF! that'll make it harder to avoid stuff without stopping to think that maybe that's the point.

    To tell you the truth I would prefer the escape played a smaller part in VF,I myself kinda look for moves that give me the option of escaping afterward but I think It was way more intense in VF2 when the only thing you could do against someone trying to ring you out was to PUSH BACK OR DIE.

    In the end I think less emphasis escaping is a smart move and welcome it with open arms (despite my GREAT love of kstepping) /versus/images/icons/laugh.gif
  9. Hayai_JiJi

    Hayai_JiJi Well-Known Member

    Does any one know if the movement will be VF dashes just in 8 directions or will it be that gay ass Soul Caliber slow walk thing?

    Under the surface of the most jaded cynic lies a dissappointed idealist- George Carlin
  10. AlexMD

    AlexMD Well-Known Member Content Manager Lei

    I'm shocked there's seems to be no footage of VF4 on the net,IGN took their "spy cam" all the way to Japan when bloody Gundam battle online was on test but it seems VF4 isn't worth the effort to them./versus/images/icons/mad.gif
  11. Guest

    Guest Guest

    Katagiri-san: Many people complained about the difficulty level in Virtua Fighter 3, and how easy it was. But that wasn't our goal. We've always tried to make the series accessible to novices, but we reward players who practice and increase their skill level. We realize, if there's nothing in the game to master, nobody will play it.

    I thought this little quip was pretty funny. VF3 is known in America as "that fighting game that's too damn hard," and now AM2 thinks it was easy.

    It's encouraging to hear that the never-ending learning curve that defines Virtua Fighter will still be there. I can't help but feel a little disappointed as the prospect of a simplified, dumbed-down VF4, but if the final game matches the Pai/Lau fight at the end of that video, I'll be happy.

  12. Yamcha

    Yamcha Well-Known Member

    WTF is what came to my mind. Good point made, by the time you actually input the dodge motion the circumstances might have changed considerably in that short amount of time so that the dodge wasn't as useful anymore. Who knows.
  13. AlexMD

    AlexMD Well-Known Member Content Manager Lei

    Were Pai and Lau fighting?,I thought they were practicing their dance moves : P
  14. Chanchai

    Chanchai Well-Known Member

    3d movement

    This is what I gather, and I feel it's been backed up by "current" information.

    VF4's movement system is reminiscent of Soul Edge combined with Soul Calibur (except you press UU to dodge into screen, not DU). Dodges will sorta be the same as VF3 in the sense that they are a quick little dash in and out of screen. However, like SC and DoA2, continue holding the direction and you'll move around slowly. I think this sort of dash approach is fine, I still prefer the E button, but they decided to take that out. The dash approach is imo better than Tekken's DN (down, neutral) or UN dodges, so it shouldn't feel as laggy as that since it should feel more "on command" as opposed to "off command."

    Crouches will be the same. Jumps will be more like jump attacks if I only base perspective on current information. I don't see why DU or du won't work like in VF3, because dodge inputs are DD or UU.

    As the interview seemed to imply to me, they feel that for novice gamers, leaving movement to be a "stick only" function is more natural. VF4 seems to be going for a feel that is sort of more "intuitive" than function oriented. Smaller characters moving faster with weaker attacks, bigger characters hitting harder with slower attacks. IMO, this doesn't really go with the basic definition of force, but that's okay--it's the common assumption for people "intuitively." They should just have the big guys pound harder with (relatively) fast attacks but cause major pain with grappling. I figure that is what they are doing/versus/images/icons/tongue.gif

    VF3 is actually pretty easy to pick up and play, given you're in the right mindset. I think the difficulty people in the US have with the game is that they try to play the game like Street Fighter or even Tekken. Either that or the game is too slow for them, as a lot of casual gamers who love VF2 feel. The block button seems non-existent to the casual US gamer (except in Mortal Kombat anyways).

    I'm hoping they don't sacrifice too much of what I consider to be the "excellent functionality" that was in VF3.

    On a side note, I think SC's movement system is fine. It's second to VF3's in my book (which means, for those who can't tell for whatever reason, that I do think VF3 has the best 3d movement in a fighting game). Where Tekken's 3d movement is laggy (because it's making sure you want to just dash) or Dead or Alive 2's movement is JUST WALKING... Soul Calibur's 3d movement actually has dodges. Not only does it have dodges, but you can repeat these dodges like crazy (we discussed it a long time ago and one SC player pointed out its usefullness). As far as I can tell, you don't get the nice zoning maneuvers (in and out) or K-stepping variations as VF3. But you do at least get circular movement at a good speed (you can zip a full circle around an opponent so quickly in SC, given you don't get hit by a horizontal or circular attack). Upon reflection, this might do more to encourage "in-fighting" than VF3's approach. I admit, I really like the "in and out of range" fighting that you can do in VF3 (though some hate it, if not most). A circular movement system is probably more restricting since dodges would be much better up close (yeah, I know, they are in 3) and to a pretty good degree.

    Oddly enough... Where VF2 seemed so linear... VF3 seems triangular and perpandicular to me (in terms of movement)... and though VF4 is focusing on the kind of combat that VF2 had, it sounds like the action will be more circular if 3d movement proves effective in the game.

    Who knows, if the 3d movement is good enough in VF4, okizeme and ura might be beyond evil. It might even dominate quick recovery (quick recovery-->opponent zips to backside with time to spare, if it's that fast).

    Of course... wait and see... wait and see. But I guess I'm starting to accept some of what they are doing with VF4. Not like I have any power of their decisions.


    P.S. Keep in mind that this is all speculative talk, especially "circular" approach. Also, there is an advantage to SC's U is dodge, down neutral is dodge system... it's Guard cancellable and with those few inputs, that's how fast movement is possible and easy in that game (D,G,D,G,D,G,etc...). In VF4, if such a thing exists, it might be DDGDDGDDG... who knows, we'll see/versus/images/icons/smile.gif

    One more thing:
    I'm gonna miss the dash variants or possibilities which were explored in VF3's E button. Gave you more options (though small options) on how you wanted to engage or retreat conflicts, and each side sort of had their own plusses and minuses. Of course b+E was annoying me for a little while with Kage.<P ID="edit"><FONT SIZE=-1>Edited by Chanchai on 04/12/01 03:36 PM (server time).</FONT></P>
  15. AlexMD

    AlexMD Well-Known Member Content Manager Lei

    Now that I think of it most of the time I dodge It's after I use a move with say a couple of frames recovery as a bait,in which case you could just buffer in the escape in VF4 during the lead in moves execution and it would come out as fast as a normal escape (in VF3)

    This makes me wonder if they want the VF4 escape to be something used more in flowcharts instead of just a move to randomly throw out while dashing in and such (as it would take longer)

    This escape method means that while someone who is attacking and buffers in the escape during another move has the advantage as it will come out immediatly,on the other side of the coin you have people who turtle up when they attempt to escape, they have no move covering them so they have to suffer the lag between input and execution and if they are attempting to buffer in say an escape into the screen while holding G they would be quickly bobbing down which would totally give away what they are trying to do.(of course they could fake it so you throw out a crecent or dash in for throw)

    I'm hoping you can't buffer escapes during guard so it will force people to attack a lot (VF2) but also have room for smart escaping strategies mostly set up with the aid of other moves.
  16. Kruza

    Kruza Well-Known Member Gold Supporter

    Re: It's official, VF4 is sequal to VF2!!! not 3!!

    This interview sounds encouraging and all, but I still have my worries. Now I know it's way too early to be assuming things or asking for more concrete gameplay details, but I still have major concerns about a few things (the stuff listed below isn't everything I'm concerned about):

    First of all, what exactly does Katagiri mean when he says, "back to basics"? He has to expound more on this issue in later interviews while the creation of VF4's combat system progresses along. Next, will the crouch dash exist for VF4? If so, how is it going to be implemented in this revamped combat system when all movements are said to be done using only the joystick? Is the superbly-done throw & throw escape system for VF3 going to be retained for VF4, or will this system be scrapped entirely in favor of the relatively less-impressive throw & throw escape system for VF2? And what exactly does Katagiri mean by this statement:

    "Virtua Fighter 3 focused on balance between characters, and VF4 will bring back their personalities. "

    Uh, is he indirectly stating that VF4 will be a more of an overall imbalanced game than VF3 for the sake of "bringing back their personalities"? Or is he trying to say something else that I'm just not catching on to? I really don't get this quote at all.

    As for the part I liked the most... I like what Katagiri said in this reply:

    "Arcadia: In previous Virtua Fighter games, characters strong in punching techniques and combos seemed to dominate. Will the new characters have strong hand-fighting techniques?

    Katagiri-san: Some will have strong hand-fighting techniques. Other new characters will have completely new fighting styles. Something for your readers to look forward to."

  17. Chanchai

    Chanchai Well-Known Member

    Re: It's official, VF4 is sequal to VF2!!! not 3!!

    Hi Kruza (it's nice seeing you post on here/versus/images/icons/smile.gif).

    I can't tell you anything as a fact, but I can tell you my interpretations (obviously).

    I interpretted using just the stick for movements meaning, "anything but attack." I believe that P+K for jump was a misunderstood statement, as I implied in citing a Japanese forum. How regular jumps without attacks are handled, I don't know, but I don't see any problem with that being done the VF3 way (du DU). I think the main point about the stick was that in VF3, using a button for dodge seemed weird to the extremely casual gamers and so they're using a stick approach for it (since you move a stick, it should handle movements I guess the logic is--since you hit/tap a button, it should hit or tap. something stupid like that).

    I have not heard of dashes being done with df, df. Given this, I think crouch dashes can still be done the VF2 way. It's dd that you worry about dodging. However, if df df is a dodge, then they'll probably make the crouch dashes like df, d, DF. I can see it still working that way. I have not heard anything about crouch dashing, but more importanly, I have not heard of it NOT being in the game (it seems to be one of those things that people would mention).

    Crouching is simply a matter of pressing or holding d. dd is the 3d movement thing (think of Soul Calibur).

    I'm still wondering about the throw system. Like crouch dashing, I've heard nothing of it. However, I'm glad I haven't heard rumor of it NOT being similar to VF3. I'm guessing that they're still experimenting with throws.

    VF3 focus on balance, VF4 focusing on personalities... My guess is kind of like the example he gave. Big guy big power (but slow), small guy weak but agile. I'm taking this as sort of a, we're going for the look and "feel" of the game, but not worrying so much about function (until probably a revision). Basically, as I mentioned in another post today, I think he's going for a more "intuitive" (so-called anyways) feel for the newbie to clue in on how they use their characters. I thought VF3 was pretty straight forward in generally figuring out how your character plays from looking at them, but I guess they mean to go further than that. Sounds like they want beginners to look at the character and say, "ah, I know how to use this character." Basically, I guess they're trying to kill a lot of the trial and error process to getting to an intermediate level of play. Again, interpretation. Essentially, they want VF4 to appeal to things that Tekken supposedly appeals to.

    Maybe he's implying that they won't be focusing on balance right now. They'll design the characters in quote, "cool ways" for the mass appeal regardless of whether or not a character is rendered completely useless (but they probably will leave it on faith that the game is balanced). Maybe in a revision they'll tweak the game within an area of "keeping the cool factor."

    As gamers, sounds lame to us probably. It almost sounds like there's even more characters popping out. If I see an Arnold ripoff or even a Rutger Hauer (ie. Bryan Fury), etc... I don't know what to think anymore. I like Rutger Hauer and all, but I think VF needs its own personalities like it has. But that's me and I'm obviously a biased VF fan. As long as it plays well though.

    Another interpretation of "personalities:" We're under a timetable, wanna give Sega a boost of funds, we're gonna cram and flush this baby with a team of artists so the game is definitely pretty. What that says for gameplay, we'll see, but we're at least working on it.

    Suspense is killing everyone huh?/versus/images/icons/smile.gif

  18. ice-9

    ice-9 Well-Known Member

    The buffering issue probably explains the "dodge attack" (dodge -> P+K+G) as a way to attack immediately on an escape. Still though, this sounds so much more limited than what we have in VF3. Kinda reminds me of KOF95.
  19. ice-9

    ice-9 Well-Known Member

    Re: 3d movement

    Nascar writes:
    It almost sounds like VF3 was a mistake .....

    This is exactly how I feel while reading the interview. As a VF3 player more than a VF2 player, I must admit I do feel a little bit betrayed by the implication that 3 was an abberation.

    But then when I think about the economics of it all, it doesn't sound so implausible. On a worldwide basis, it's pretty obvious that there are a bigger base of VF2 players than VF3 players and it's in Sega's interest to appeal to that larger demographic of loyal players. Plus the fact that a lot of VF3 players reminisce of VF2's system and it's not surprising that Sega is "going back to its roots."

    As for the new system of 3D movement, I'm not as worried about it as I used to be. Yes, escaping wouldn't be as easy as 3 but come on, is "d, d, b,f,f+P+K" impossible to do? This will give players with superior motor control an advantage over lesser players in terms of buffering attacks from escapes.

    The only thing that concerns me is the u,u to dodge into the screen. u,u is a pretty awkward movement; I'm not sure I'd ever get used to it but heck, I got used to the crouch dash so I guess it's possible. Still though, I could see how SE went with the d,u input instead.

    If there's one thing that Sega can do to convince me that they are fully aware of what they are doing and are aspiring to higher things, that's if they could make a method of crouch dashing up. I.e., if you can crouch dash with d/f,d/f I hope you can also crouch dash with u/f,u/f. This will address what is in my view the primary design flaw in VF's current 3D system.

    Finally, as mentioned before, I also hope Sega will have special universal commands for certain 3D movements. I.e. maybe d,d,d/f would be an automatic escape crouch dash. Or maybe d/b,d/b and u/b,u/b would be some sort of a backwards sway (a la Paul's QCB). Stuff like that.

    <P ID="edit"><FONT SIZE=-1>Edited by ice-9 on 04/13/01 00:55 AM (server time).</FONT></P>
  20. nascarbryant

    nascarbryant Well-Known Member

    ARCADIA: At the AOU show earlier this year, AM2 unveiled VF4 and confirmed plans for six characters. You also confirmed plans for several new characters, can you tell us about them?

    KATAGIRI-SAN: I can't get into specifics regarding the new characters yet. All I can tell you is, they won't have traditional martial artist styles or backgrounds.

    What does that mean: "several new characters", as I know there are only(as always) 2 new characters planed(male,female)...........or did I miss something (Rutger Hauer guy ,huh). The question refering to the 6 characters , are those who were first shown on the VF4 Homepage, right

    and what does this mean "they won't have traditional martial artist styles or backgrounds. " ,This Shaolin Rakan-Ken guy, he does perform a traditional fighting style, doesn't he?!?!

    And who is this Katagiri-san , never heared something from him before, probably he took the place of okayasu-san who left AM2 (was the Number 2 after Yu).........coordinator hmmm.

    still hoping that VF4 will still be worthy of it's name....

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