Sword Art Online: Lost Song Producer Yosuke Futami Talks Battle System, PVP And Rei Kawahara’s Involvement

sword art online lost song producer
Sword Art Online: Lost Song producer, Yousuke Futami spoke with iDigitalTimes about the upcoming game. iDigitalTimes

Sword Art Online is one of the most popular anime out today. With the focus on video games seeped into the story, it’s a no-brainer to create actual video games set in the Sword Art Online worlds.

There have been Sword Art Online games already released around the world and Sword Art Online: Lost Song will bring players to the world of Alfhelm Online so they can join Kirito and his friends on a new adventure.

Lost Song has been out for months in Japan but is finally making its way to the Americas Nov. 17 bringing new play styles and game modes to the Sword Art Online video game franchise that will make both videogame and anime fans happy.

Sword Art Online Lost Song is unlike other Sword Art games, which focuses on sword skills,” Sword Art Online Lost Song producer, Yosuke Futami told iDigitalTimes through his interpreter. “In Lost Song, the story is based in Alfhelm Online where your avatar will be a fairy who will be able to fly in the sky, which leads to interesting elements. And now players can use magic to attack your opponents or healing to support your team. These elements were important to the anime series and we are integrating that into this game.”

When Lost Song was in production, the dev team had some crucial aspects it wanted to make this game different from previous incarnations, which they called “pillars.” One of the main pillars was allowing for players to choose who to play as. In previous Sword Art Online games, players were just Kirito but in Lost Song you have your choice of various characters from the SAO series, like Sinon, Asuna and Leafa.

But a crucial pillar for the Lost Song development team is the aforementioned ability to fly.

“When we started developing this game, because those who saw the anime and the fairy tale arc they enjoyed that characters could fly and battle in the air and that they can speed up while flying,” Futami explained. “So we wanted to bring those elements into the game. We also prioritized the sense of floating instead of just flying straight. You can descend and ascend allowing the players to feel like their character is flying in the game and have free movement. And we felt it [flying] was a main core pillar in this game and we talked to the dev team to keep this aspect and make it a pillar.”

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Air battles in Sword Art Online: Lost Song will be like the anime Photo: Bandai Namco

Sword Art Online: Lost Song is an action-oriented game. You’ll choose a team of three to travel and complete subquests and the main storyline. You’ll enter battles with monsters and other characters. And since the story takes place in Alfhelm, you’ll have plenty of diversity in terms of play styles and types of enemies.

Those familiar with the manga/anime know that in Alfhelm there are nine different Fairy races, each with their own special abilities and attributes. In Lost Song, the individual character’s fighting styles also shine and allow for differing teams and strategies.

“Each playable character has different attributes like an attacker or a defender or a support character,” Futami said. “So in Lost Song when you select a three-character team you can choose a team of all attackers to get more firepower or maybe you want to mix with a defender or supporter it’s totally up to you.”

Like any classic RPG, players can build their characters stats and abilities and tailor to their liking. Futami said while it was possible to have your character learn every skill in the game it would be cumbersome considering you will only be using only a few skills at a time.

You’ll want to focus on those few skills to get the most out of them. The depth of skills in Lost Song will allow for diverse teams.

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There are diverse weapons and play styles in SAO: Lost Song Photo: Bandai Namco

And for the first time in any Sword Art Online game, there will be a PVP online mode that will allow players to use their custom teams against others online. Teams up to four characters will compete against others for bragging rights.

You can have 4 on 4 or even 1 on 4 if you are feeling extra confident.

“This is the first time a PVP system is in a Sword Art Online game so if we hear the voices of the fans and they like it we’ll continue to include it,” Futami said. “And if they tell us how they like it and ways to improve we will listen for future games.”

But while Lost Song is very battle-driven, there’s an original storyline that fans of the manga/anime would appreciate because the team had Sword Art Online creator, Rei Kawahara work closely in development.

“This is an original storyline. We worked this storyline with Kawahara sensei, the original author of Sword Art Online, and he has supervised the game’s story,” Futami said. “Even core fans of Sword Art won’t feel any awkwardness with the story and there will be elements of the manga and anime in the story. So fans will appreciate the story.”

Kawahara not only supervised the game’s development but also made sure the “atmosphere” surrounding Lost Song was accurate. When the story was first being created he oversaw the final product until it was ready to ship to really make Lost Song as part of the Sword Art Online story as other media.

Sword Art Online: Lost Song will ship in North America on Nov. 17

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