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King’s Raid: From a “last-ditch attempt” to an upcoming anime adaptation

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King's Raid

(Lechería, June 4. O’kuroku).- In the light of the upcoming anime adaptation announced for King’s Raid, O’kuroku Webzine interviewed the people behind this well-known mobile game.

After deciding to go with this article we contacted Vespa, and after some talks we managed to interview King’s Raid PD Sean himself, who very kindly made a space in his tight schedule to give us this interview.

The story of a “last-ditch attempt”

After not getting the desired results in the previous attempts to develop successful casual games, PD Sean said: “around 2015, we got together and thought about what we could do best to turn things around pretty much a last-ditch attempt.”

It was at that moment when they started to put into practice the experience they had as PC MMORPG developers and tried to find ways of using their expertise on a mobile environment and that built up to King’s Raid.

Thinking of the players’ needs

When asked about the influences of King’s Raid, PD Sean answered: “we tried to analyze the popular games at the time in order to see what our future players might enjoy.”. It was then when they found out that “SRPGs were on the rise, taking the place of ARPGs.”

Taking that into account, they “tried to develop a game where there is a larger world and story where many unique characters could live in instead of simply providing a blank slate with just the characters.” That was pretty much how King’s Raid was born.

High hopes, but low expectations

While the team was developing the game, they did not expect it to become what is has become. Regarding that, PD Sean said: “Of course we thought that it would be nice if the game became a global hit. However, it was more of a whimsical wish of ours more than something we were aiming for.”

Now, when talking about their hopes it is clear that they were aiming for great heights. Pleasing a large community of players is a very difficult thing to do, but that did not stop them to have dreams. According to PD Sean: “we simply hoped that we could provide our players with a fun and engaging experience with what we knew how to do.”

Elaborating about the previous statement, PD Sean also said: “all of us enjoyed playing games since we were young and hoped to be able to provide such joy to the everyone playing our game.”

And then, the success came, and with it some storm clouds

King’s Raid became a big hit due to its amazing graphics, its well-built characters and its engaging story. It was not by chance for it to top 13 million downloads worldwide. Vespa finally had found the successful game they were looking for. Regarding that, PD Sean said: “we would like to offer our thanks to the players from all around to world that are playing King’s Raid.”

However, after some time some issues started to appear. The community began complaining about the lack of channels for interacting with the staff, some bugs started to appear, and some decisions about the game mechanics displeased a large amount of players. The future for the game did not look very good, but then a huge changed happened, and things started to fall into place.

When asked about those times, and how they realized what was happening, PD Sean said: “there was a lot of content still to be revealed around March, 2019 just after the 2nd anniversary of King’s Raid. We took the chance to check if the official communities were playing their various roles instead of simply being a way to announcing updates.”

After that process, they noticed they could do better when it came to communicating what their players wanted to know about King’s Raid and its story. Besides, as PD Sean said: “We wanted to make our communities places where our players could come to enjoy their free time instead of being announcement outlets.”

Finally, they realized they needed to try and connect with their players in ways more familiar to them instead of asking them to connect with them even if the community is based on King’s Raid.

As a conclusion, PD Sean added: “the changes in our approach all started from a resolution on our part to try and mingle with our players in more diverse and familiar ways thanks to the aforementioned reasoning.”

The community started noticing the changes in the approach, and King’s Raid received a blow of fresh air. To this day, its social networks especially Facebook and YouTube are very lively, and they even launched an official Twitter account for the game a few weeks ago.

PD Sean himself talked to the entire community through a video released in the official YouTube channel of the game a few weeks ago. In that video, he addressed all those problems, highlighted all the good things they had accomplished so far, and revealed the plans for this year.

Of course, after that, the response form the community was extremely positive and the storm clouds gave way to a clear sky. In regards to that, PD Sean said: “We are pleasantly surprised to see that our efforts paid off to the point where we now have a chance to talk about the changes in an interview. We are thankful that our players have seen the changes in a good light and wish to let everyone know that we are continuing to look at better ways to communicate and provide fun content.”

King’s Raid and the Spanish Speaking gaming community

When asked about the possibility of a Spanish dub for the game (which currently supports Spanish language), PD Sean began saying: “we always wish that we could offer King’s Raid in a more localized fashion to our players all around the world.” Sadly, his next words meant bad news: “there are many hurdles that are preventing us from realizing this wish. For example, we require many professional actors for each language in order to properly convey the story and characters. However, it is difficult for us to find the actors needed per language in Korea in order to do so.”

But not everything is lost, the bright side is that despite they ask for our understanding towards the fact of not being able to answer with a fixed date for the dub, PD Sean added: “we will continue to look for ways to do so.”

Let us talk about the auto feature…

It is not a secret a lot of players have been complaining about the IA used by the auto feature during battles, especially when heroes like Shea, Esker, Reina, Oddy (just to name a few) are being used, and we could not miss the opportunity to bring those thoughts to them.

About that, PD Sean said: “I would like to start off by saying that we’re sorry to see a lot of players being inconvenienced by this. To be frank, this is something that we had intentionally been avoiding while developing King’s Raid. Our intention was to remove the burden of having to manually control heroes in easier stages but make it so that manual controls would be more effective and efficient in order to incentivize players with good controls. However, we will try to look into things to see if we can’t improve some aspects.” So, there is still hope for getting an improved version of the auto feature in the future.

King’s Raid becomes an anime

Having an anime adaptation is the dream of many mangaka, writers, developers and creators in general. That is why when the anime adaptation for King’s Raid was announced we at O’kuroku Webzine knew this game had reached a new height, and the community came to the same realization as well.

King’s Raid: Successors of the Will” is the name of the anime series and the Japanese voice actors of the 4 main characters are reprising their roles: Kaito Ishikawa as Kasel, Ai Kakuma as Frey, Ari Ozawa as Cleo, and Kengo Kawanishi as Roi.

Makoto Hoshino (UtanoPrincesama Revolutions, DamePri Anime Caravan) is directing the anime at OLM and Sunrise Beyond, and Megumi Shimizu (Butlers x Battlers, My Next Life as a Villainess: All Routes Lead to Doom!) is in charge of the series scripts. Tatsuya Arai is serving as character designer and chief animation director, and Yū Yoshiyama is designing the monsters.

OLM is well-known for Pokémon and Cardfight!! Vanguard, and although Sunrise Beyond was established last year, it is still subsidiary of Sunrise, one of the most important studios in the anime industry. In short, this upcoming anime adaptation looks really promising.

When asked about how the idea of an anime adaptation appeared, PD Sean said: “Our CSO (Wonbba) had previously made an announcement saying that he wanted the anime adaption to be ‘A well-made anime series that can stand on its own merit and can be developed on’ instead of a marketing tool for the game.”

Of course, we took the chance to ask one of the questions the community has been debating since the very moment the teaser was released. Is the plot of the anime going to be an original one?

PD Sean’s answer was: “(Laughter) I would rather not answer this question as I could end up leaking something. However, I can say that you will be able to enjoy the anime even if you had never played the game”. Can you get some clues from it? Any clue? If so, please let us know in the comments below.

What he did answered was the number of episodes the anime adaptation will have. According to him: “It will be a total of 26 episodes divided into 2 seasons as previously hinted on certain media outlets.”

The second question many people have been asking was related to Dreamcatcher and its involvement in the anime adaptation. However, PD Sean said: “the anime world has its own unique set of rules and we intend on respecting their culture and expertise.”, but do not start crying yet, he also added: “while we can’t go into more detail, we are communicating with many musicians (including Dreamcatcher) and are excited about the soundtracks involved.”

The third question the community has kept asking is when will the anime premiere. In the previous days we have been informing all about the anime series that have been affected by COVID-19, so despite the announcement of King’s Raid anime adaptation being premieres in the upcoming fall season, we wanted to confirm the date with them.

Fortunately, we received very good news, PD Sean said: “We are saddened to see the amount of people around the world being negatively affected by COVID-19. We of course are not free from the effects either but are trying our best along with all our partners to keep the original schedule despite the unfortunate circumstances. We hope that by doing so, we will able to provide some entertainment to our fans during these troubled times.”

Finally, when asked about the possibility of a Spanish dub for the anime or the possibility of including Latin America in its initial distribution, the answer was not very good, in that regard he said: “We would love nothing more than to present and enjoy our anime series in as many countries as possible and will try our absolute best to do so. Unfortunately, we can’t really offer a concrete answer to this yet.”

After finishing the interview, PD Sean wanted to share a small present with us and the community as his final remarks, and here it is.

By Jacinto Muñoz (@shougoamakusa)

To visit King’s Raid Official Website click here.

For the full interview with GM Lakrak, GM Luna and CM Frey, where we talked about how it is for them to be part of King’s Raid and to interact with the community, click here.

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