For those of you who are here for the first time, it’s great to meet you all. For those of you who are back, welcome back. My name is Sakari “P,” and I’m the Director/Producer of Phantom Breaker: Omnia.
I apologize for keeping you guys waiting. It’s been a while since our last post. Likewise, I feel bad that we haven’t been able to update you all with the information you really want to know — like the release date.
We know. We hear you.
Everyone on the dev team is working really hard, but the Omnia Project has been a massive undertaking relative to the size of our team. I’ve also had to go to the hospital myself because of some health issues, which is another reason why it’s taking longer than I would like.
So with that in mind, I would like to talk a little bit about the development situation of the game.
Before I begin, however, I want to extend my deepest sympathies to those of you who were directly or indirectly affected by this unprecedented pandemic.
Although it didn’t directly impact any team members, COVID-19 has left its mark on our development schedule and plans, as well. We’ve recorded English voices for Omnia, but I was unfortunately unable to attend these sessions or the recording sessions for the Opening and Ending.
When we recorded the Japanese Opening and Ending theme songs, I was able to go to the Tokyo-based studio, but our American counterparts had to Zoom into the sessions. It was fresh in some ways but difficult in others. For example, all of our exchanges need to be done over the internet now, whereas if we were in the office, I could play the game and just turn around to tell the programmers:
“This is great!”
“What’s going on over here?”
“Why don’t we try this?”
Sadly, this was not possible for Omnia.
Video games are created by teams of people each fulfilling their role in a project. But no matter how talented a person is, if they cannot communicate effectively with the rest of the team, they are unable to realize their full potential. At least, that’s my belief.
And when placed in an environment where communication is more challenging, it weighs on the project. I’ve been in this industry for 30 years now, but it’s safe to say I’ve never experienced anything like this in my time.
Nevertheless, in spite of all the challenges we have faced, we are in the midst of debugging the game. Even with online matches, we gather the team and a few extra testers from around the world and have Closed Beta sessions to see how the game functions online. Certain issues that concerned me early in the game’s development are addressed with each iteration. From the perspective of those who have played EXTRA, I think you’ll see a drastic improvement in the online experience.
Which reminds me… To document the bugs, we’ve been recording some videos as part of these Closed Beta tests, but they also serve as pretty sweet combo videos. Hopefully, we will be able to share some of those with you soon and more often.
Disclaimer: Some of the videos you see circulating on Rocket Panda’s Twitter account (@RocketPandaEN) are a few months old, so the balance of the final game may be different from what you’re seeing now.
This brings us to the final and biggest challenge of this project: the console ports. As soon as we overcome one mountain, there’s another one waiting for us.
During EXTRA, I remember developing for the Xbox 360 and PS3 simultaneously, but this time we’ve got PC, Xbox One, PS4, AND the Nintendo Switch! Not only that, we need to make sure they also run on the next-gen consoles (Xbox X/S and PS5).
This is our attempt to deliver Phantom Breaker to as many fans on as many platforms as we can. If for whatever reason you decide to pick up Omnia on all the platforms, I will probably cry out of sheer joy.
That’s it for today, everyone.
Until next time.
PS: I almost forgot! We’re planning to show off some Phantom Breaker-related items for you guys very soon. It’s not much, but it’s something with which we can all spread the Phantom Breaker love. Please look forward to it.