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Seiji Aoki Interview with Katsuhiro Harada on 4Gamer

Discussion in 'News' started by akai, Jul 7, 2021.

By akai on Jul 7, 2021 at 2:26 AM
  1. akai

    akai Moderator Staff Member Bronze Supporter

    Akai JC
    4Gamer, Tekken producer Katsuhiro Harada, and VF5US producer Seiji Aoki talks about a variety of topics related to past, present, and the future of Virtua Fighter. And yes there is a lengthy discussion related to netcode.

    Here is a link to the 4Gamer article in Japanese. Depending on your browser, the article can be translated into a different language. Just note some aspects of the article may be misinterpreted in the translations. In addition, an excellent translation by gosokkyu through twitter. Main points of interest that I got from the article:

    - According to Aoki Virtua Fighter 5 Ultimate Showdown development began February 2020. Some conflicting information with the My Navi News interview, since Hiroyuki Miyazaki mentions September 2020 date as the start of the project.

    - Harada mentions creating an international esports competition requires a strong connection within the community and sponsors. Aoki responded that within Japan and Asia it can be accomplished quickly. With Europe and United States, he mentions gradually working with the existing VF community in those regions "これから" (in quotations "from now on").

    - Aoki considered AM2 and players feedback such that changes in the remake of Final Showdown graphics are not too dramatic. Ultimate Showdown hit effects were toned down based on an older VF player's opinion. Mentions issues between AM2 department "who knows Virtua more than anyone else" and the high technology department "that lacks a deep familiarity with Virtua." Amusingly, there was a lot of "it does not look like Akira..." comments.

    - A longer discussion about netcode. This includes Sega of America asking Aoki's team to include rollback repeatedly. Differences between 2D and 3D games use of rollback netcode and why Aoki believed they chose the best option for Ultimate Showdown. He is aware of people without a good stable connection and is considering different options Sega can try to improve those players online experience.

    - Harada reminisce that during the Sega Dreamcast era there was a possibility of Virtua Fighter x Tekken collaboration. He believed the idea likely failed since Tekken was associated with Sony while Sega had their own game console system.

    - A hindrance for Virtua Fighter 6 to be made is the requirement of new "innovation" by some within Sega. VF2 had texture mapping, VF3 introduced uneven stages and lateral movement, VF4 had VF.net, and VF5 had VF.TV. If VF6 was approved to be made, there will be some new innovation and it will take at least 3 to 5 years.
    Last edited: Jul 7, 2021
    Chanchai, Shinobi, nou and 1 other person like this.


Discussion in 'News' started by akai, Jul 7, 2021.

    1. Mr_X
      Sonic The Fighters likes this.
    2. faster 10 lightning
      faster 10 lightning
      VF = innovation, I agree.
      But I hope the VF6 "innovation" would not be esport...

      We need gameplay innovation. something that evolve the entire genre.
      beanboy and Sonic The Fighters like this.
    3. Sonic The Fighters
      Sonic The Fighters
      I hope VF6 is already in the SEGA's plans.
      SSfox and faster 10 lightning like this.
    4. nou
      "Innovation" execuse. Yet it's staring them right in the face as seen in the next quote...

      gido likes this.
    5. SSfox
      For VF6 with power of new generation hardware i want more details on Shun, like actually you see the drink coming out from the bottle to go into his mouth when drinks, that would be neat.
      Sonic The Fighters likes this.
    6. smbhax
      Some things I found interesting (via Google translate https://translate.google.com/transl...www.4gamer.net/games/572/G057225/20210622081/ ):

      The interview was "Recorded on May 25, 2021."

      On the game having a different title in the west:

      Mr. Aoki:
       That's not the case. I was worried about whether to put the three letters "First" in the copy. The reason is that the community's awareness of e-sports is different between Japan and overseas. Games that advocate e-sports are not uncommon in Japan nowadays, but overseas, I hate being able to say "this is e-sports" before it goes on sale.

      Mr. Harada:
       I understand that. Esports is something that the community creates, not the manufacturer's decision.

      Mr. Aoki:
       So, I decided to separate the names of the domestic version as "Virtua Fighter esports" and the overseas version as "Virtua Fighter 5 Ultimate Showdown". I don't use the word e-sports overseas, but there will be a spontaneous movement toward e-sports ... In that sense, the word "first from Japan" was used.

      Mr. Harada:
       But wasn't it good that the "Ultimate Showdown" was held in Japan as well?

      Mr. Aoki:
       We prioritized the aim of making people inside and outside the company aware that it is an e-sports title that follows "Puyo Puyo e-sports." However, I am not so particular about it. If the title is different, the number of ROMs to be submitted will increase, which is difficult (bitter smile).

      On the hit FX:

      Mr. Harada:
       It's also interesting that the hit effect has been enhanced.

      Mr. Aoki:
       This is an element added from an e-sports perspective. Virtualer is required to have the ability to understand "what is happening now" on the side of watching the game, so I wanted to make it intuitive and easy to understand. We aimed to make it stand out so that it wouldn't feel strange, that is, something that would be accepted without the player's knowledge.

      Mr. Harada:
       Did you have any opposition?

      Mr. Aoki:
       There wasn't. However, at first, the effects were in full swing, so there was an opinion from an old player that it was "in the way", and I adjusted it many times to get the current shape.

      Mr. Harada:
       I didn't feel any discomfort when I played. After playing up to about 3 stages, I finally realized that "Oh, by the way, a hit effect was added."

      Mr. Aoki:
       I made careful adjustments so that I wouldn't overdo it and be told that it wasn't this. Katagiri (Mr. Ochi), who was involved in the previous work, also supervises it from the player's perspective.

      (^ Perhaps not surprising Harada didn't really notice, given that his Tekken games have always had huge over-the-top hit FX. : P)

      On adding new moves or characters:

      Mr. Harada:
       There are no new characters or new techniques.

      Mr. Aoki:
       Not included. I haven't adjusted anything other than the appearance, so the game balance remains the same.

      Mr. Harada:
       Is there any possibility of adding it in an update?

      Mr. Aoki:
       Since it is based on "Final Showdown," which is the final adjustment version of "5," I don't think we should mess with the balance anymore. If you add a new character or new technique, you will break it, and you will move in a more maniac direction. That makes it difficult for new players to enter.

      On the internet play:

      Mr. Harada:
       This is P2P communication, isn't it? Is there a rollback method?

      Mr. Aoki:
       Basically, it is P2P, but rollback is not currently included. Sega of America repeatedly said, "Put in a rollback anyway!" (Bitter smile).

      Mr. Harada:
       Yes, that's right. It's easy to imagine that you would have been told.
       However, compared to 2D fighting, introducing rollback into animation-based 3D fighting such as Virtua Fighter has various trade-offs and there are many issues . Because the affected areas are not widely known.

      Mr. Aoki: When
       the Xbox 360 version and PS3 version of "Virtua Fighter 5 Final Showdown" were released, the concept of rollback was not well known, so we developed our own mechanism to absorb the delay. I was implementing it. This time too, we follow this.

      (So in a previous interview, when he said they had implemented their own method to "absorb the delay," did he just mean it used the same networking code as FS?)

      More on networking:

      Mr. Aoki:
       At "Virtua Fighter esports", we conducted communication tests with overseas on a weekly basis, and in the case of this work based on "Virtua Fighter 5", I think this choice is the best at the moment. I will. Even more if you sing e-sports on the premise that there is an audience. The staff of Sega of America was surprised and convinced that the environment was comfortable when they actually played.

       But when it comes to battles between Japan and the United States, or between the west coast and the east coast, isn't it really tough?

      Mr. Aoki:
       No, as long as the line is stable, you can go without problems.

      Mr. Harada:
       For fighting games, geographical distance has a big influence, of course, but packet loss has a bigger influence than that. If you have a line with little packet loss, you can play at a considerable level even over long distances.

      Mr. Aoki:
       I understand that there are many people who want to roll back in areas where the line conditions are not good. I hope that the world's line conditions will improve in the future, but that is not the case, so I would like to consider various things.
      Last edited: Jul 7, 2021
      SUGATA and complexz like this.
    7. smbhax
      They haven't had him act drunk--or even put the bottle to his lips in intro or win poses--since VF4 vanilla.
    8. smbhax
      VF5US version 1.04 update notes (English language toggle button on page to right of update title): https://www.virtuafighter.jp/vfes/ps4/update/


      On July 8, 2021, update file Ver.1.04 was released.
      This update must be applied to play the online mode

      ■The invite feature was added for Room Match.
      ・Users can now invite a friend or a specified user from within the room.
      ・Private Slots can now be set which are available only for users who receive an invite.

      ■Host migration is now supported during an ongoing Tournament or League match.

      ・If the host leaves the room or is disconnected from the internet during a Tournament or League match, one of the remaining players can now take over as the host and resume the match.

      ■Additions and changes to Stamp display settings

      ・Below are the additions and/or changes made for Stamp display settings:

      Only While Spectating / Always / While Spectating & Before/After Match Only (New) / OFF (New)


      ・Tips were added.
      ・When spectating, the guide buttons at the bottom of the screen will now become hidden if no input is made after a certain period of time. They will reappear if an input is made.
      ・Adjustments made to the Replay content displayed on the Main Menu.
      ・The “+1 rule” in Tournament Match now also applies to semifinals.
      ・Current version will now display on the Title Screen.

      ■Issue fixes
      ・Fixed an issue that was causing unintended matching to occur in Ranked Match.
      ・Fixed an unintended display issue that would sometimes occur for connection status in Ranked Match.
      ・Fixed an issue where the Genesis data was not being reflected correctly for Stage Win Rate in Player Data.
      ・[DLC] Fixed characters whose P1 and P2 versions of their VF costumes were swapped.
      ・Improved the stability of online matches.
      ・Other minor issues were fixed.

      ■Known Bug
      •In a normal Room Match, if the countdown ends and one player does not have their status set to OK, the other player who did have their status to OK may be removed from the next match.
      If this issue occurs, please wait until the next match begins or allow the countdown to end without either player setting their status to OK. Subsequently, the players will be able to enter a match as usual.
      This issue will be fixed in the game's next update.
    9. break
      Hmm...so first DOA-DLC rumors
      And now Tekken-DLC rumors ?
      Looks like Virtua Fighter 6 may be the new Smash Bros ^_^"
      Maybe in 3~5 years we can get VF on STEAM/PC ?
    10. Shinobi
    11. JCnextinc
      I think The best way to put some more effort and Push AOKI to inprove the game is to see MASSIVE downloads , and then see people dropping the game and not playing it anymore.

      It's the proof that people were super hyped for VF's comeback but that VF deserves better.
      Aoki has to understand that VF shouldn't be be just like Puyo puyo E sport.
      It's not only a Game.
      It's SEGA's History. it's also VIDEO GAMES HISTORY..!
      SEGA's technical showcase. Always ahead of it's time.
      And a gorgeous and elegant game compare to other 3D fighter. (that's why it didn't need galaxy explosions on hit or copy other cheap effects from other games, because VF was always innovative ELEGANT and more realistic.)

      Such an impressive game each time it came out. Ultimate Showdown will not look as impressive as in 15 years like VF 5 does.
      It's even not impressive for a 2021 game.

      Old Yakuza Games or Tekken 7 has more modern visual than this game and it's unfair.
      And please fix these PS1 hit effects , please.. :cry:
      Last edited: Jul 10, 2021
    12. gido
      You've been dormant for 15+ years and want innovation now? Ohhh please...must've been really brainstorming all this time :rolleyes:
    13. JCnextinc
      VF was also innovative on a technical level.

      Realism. But combined with gorgeous STYLIZED art. (Not rough gta realism)
      Wet clothes after you fall into water or roll into puddles.
      Water effects during moves near puddles.
      Fights in a non rigid snow that changes its shape.
      Modern facial animations.(in 2005)
      Steam coming out fighters' mouth while they're breathing.
      Saliva drops and sweat effects during counter hits.

      Just continue this tradition of being ahead of its time.
      No need gameplay innovation or new mechnanics, the game is deep enough an already amazing.

      Remember that the risk is that they could water down the game to try to appeal mainstream .
      Maximilian dood said that casual and mainstream who like to play fighting fighting games just play it 2 weeks and then drop the game.

      It's perfectly find but don't change the mechanics or don't betray old fans just appeal casuals .
      All they need is a game technically impressive ,
      Good visuals ,
      and story mode or solo content way more than Yakuza/Tekken OUTDATED hit sparks ! (this is not the solution)

      There are still a lot of ways to be innovative in that sense.
      SEGA AM2 had a long tradition of cutting edge technologyies and STYLIZED realism.

      They should continue that way.
      Never betray their DNA and legacy like AOKI Seiji just did :(
      Sonic The Fighters likes this.
    14. shad
      The lack of ambition in the responses given by Aoki makes me a little bit upset...
      It seems he don't want or can't do anything risky with the franchise... I don't buy the innovation exscuse to not release a new game. There is a world of innovations that can be implement right now to Virtua fighter ! I can understand it's a wise strategic market plan to wait 2023 to release a ambitious game in a wide market of new console systems, but 2026, no fucking way !

      Also about the updates of VF5US :
      I really don't want waiting more additionnal years till VF6 to see just a damn new technique from characters in the franchise.

      For the balance issues excuse, well they have one job... And for the fact it would discourage newscomers, that's actually the opposite ! Because when you have new balance and new moves or characters, everybody has to start in a new and fresh vision of the game, explore his creativity again. It would restore the enthousiam of bored veterans, not speaking of the hype it could generate... It would also allow to set up a transition to VF6, experiment some design moves which could still be put in the sequel...

      That interview is somehow a bit old now, may 25 if i'm not wrong, so MAY BE the success of the game will make Sega think again about gameplay seasons upddates in the future.

      To conclude, I'd like to special thank Harada to be so cool and supportive about the game, a trustly passionnate man of first class.
      Vive Virtua Fighter, vive Tekken !
      SSfox and Sonic The Fighters like this.
    15. SSfox
      I hope VF6 will come in 2023 MAX and with rollback.

      EDIT: Funny Haha

      Last edited: Jul 12, 2021
      Shinobi and Sonic The Fighters like this.
    16. faster 10 lightning
      faster 10 lightning
      VF6 in 2023 is impossible, they have nothing ready, it's not even in pre-production...

      Also if Sega didn't found any good idea to innovate the series in almost 10 years, what make you believe that now they have a great idea to evolve it?

      I just fear they will water down and ruin the series just to appeal to the masses, just like every other fighting games already did.
      And if that's the case I prefer NO VF6.

      If they want to do more casual things, make a brand new IP instead, or bring back Fighting Vipers and Fighters Megamix.
      Sonic The Fighters likes this.
    17. Sonic The Fighters
      Sonic The Fighters
      They still can upgrade and keep making updates for VF5US, before 2023 and the 30th Anniversary of Virtua Fighter.

      First they should make VF5US multiplatforms with cross play, and make a next gen patch with 4k.

      SEGA can announce a new project development about VF6 late 2023, just like they did with the 30th Anniversary of Sonic this year.
    18. OniwabanCL
      The best option in marketing terms is continue with VF5US support, new DLC, patches, etc. Meanwhile AM2 could start working on VF6 because of the long development times. A hypothetical VF6 will take a long time to create, maybe 3 years.
      VF5US is gorgeous, I know there are some things that Am2 could fix like some faces (little tweaks on proportions and occlusion specially with Lion) light effects on some stages, and clothes/hair/stuffs physics (but I think it's a minor request) AND update some animations, PLEASE!
      Overall VF5US is one of the most beautiful FG right now, the "realistic" art style could confuse some players "look the muscle and characters textures aren't so defined like tekken" but the Tekken's art style isn't near to the realism. The best example is El Blaze, the anatomy and texture is really great, so realistic for his body type.
      AND obviously, we need more network patches, I don't know if they can bring us the roll back (maybe technical difficult) but who knows
      Sonic The Fighters likes this.
    19. faster 10 lightning
      faster 10 lightning
      I guess rollback is out of discussion for VF5US.

      But if they really want to use VF5US to gather and warm the audience in preparation of VF6 (next 3-4 years), than some network fixes is not enough.

      They need to give us more content, and we return always to the same points:

      -Quest mode
      -Score attack
      -More VS offline option
      -Revamped dojo modes (at VF4 Evo level)
      -Replay save (both online and offline)
      -at least all Final Showdown customization item
      -Item poses, new poses etc.
      -extra game modes
      -Dural playable offline
      -PS5 upgrade patch

      and pack it in a real physical edition to sell on stores for both PS4 and PS5.

      Then VF start to have a real chance even as a paid game.
      and we will have a complete game that players can enjoy for years while we wait for VF6.
      Last edited: Jul 13, 2021
      Sonic The Fighters likes this.

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