RPGamer Feature - Atelier Ayesha: The Alchemist of Dusk Localization Interview
Atelier Ayesha: The Alchemist of Dusk
Publisher: Tecmo Koei
Localization: NIS America
Developer: Gust
Release Date: 03.05.2013

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Atelier Ayesha: The Alchemist of Dusk's English release is just a little over a month away now. Though Tecmo Koei is publishing this title, NIS America has handled the localization. We were able to chat with Script Editor Steven Carlton and PR/Marketing Coordinator Ryan Phillips about their time with the title and what happened during the localization process.

Michael A. Cunningham (RPGamer): Greetings! Thanks for taking the time to chat with us about Atelier Ayesha. Could you start off by giving us a brief rundown of the game?
Steven Carlton (Script Editor, NIS America): This game starts off with the main character, Ayesha, visiting the grave of her sister, Nio, on the third anniversary of the day she went missing. While she's there, Ayesha sees a ghostly image of Nio that quickly vanishes. An alchemist from another land, Keithgriff, happened to see Nio and tells Ayesha that her sister is definitely still alive and that Ayesha must learn alchemy in order to rescue her. So she does.

MAC: How does combat work in this one? Crafting and alchemy?
SC: Ayesha can recruit up to two friends to join her. All characters can do basic attacks, and while Ayesha can use items from her Item Bag, her friends can use skills and eventually super moves. During battle, there are four areas around the monsters that your characters can be in, and each character can jump in to block for their friends, or attack along with them when it's not their turn. If you can attack the enemies from behind, you'll do better in battle.

As for alchemy, this time around, as Ayesha's alchemy levels increase, she'll learn new skills that she can use while synthesizing to better control which properties and traits her items might get.

MAC: Many here at RPGamer are huge fans of the Arland trilogy and would like to know how it differs from those three games.
SC: The main differences in this game compared to the Arland trilogy is the addition of the alchemy skills while synthesizing, the multiple areas you can move to during battle, and the addition of a diary system (in addition to the standard Journal for saving and whatnot), where Ayesha can spend Memory Points that she earns throughout the course of her adventure to write down what she remembers in detail, which will improve her stats or give other benefits.

MAC: Are there any ties into the Arland trio? Should RPGamers play those first to really get the full experience with Ayesha?
SC: Atelier Ayesha takes place in a whole new world, so first time players can jump right into this game without having to worry about not knowing who these characters are and what their backstories might be.

MAC: NIS America has gone from publishing to just doing the localization now that Gust is owned by Tecmo Koei. What exactly is NIS America doing as far as the localization goes?
SC: We handled the localization (translation/editing) of the game text and the English voices for the game.

MAC: How has this transition impacted working on Ayesha? Were you in the middle of working on the game when this happened or did you know what was going on from the start?
Ryan Phillips (PR/Marketing Coordinator, NIS America): When the announcement was made that Gust was purchased, we had already started on the localization process. We knew at that point that we would be continuing to localize the project, but when it came to who would publish, that was a bit later.

MAC: So with Gust now in the hands of Tecmo Koei, is this likely the last we'll see of NISA working on Atelier games?
RP: We love working with the series, but to be honest, at this point it is still up in the air whether or not we will have a hand in future Atelier games. As soon as we know anything about future titles, we'll definitely let everyone know.

MAC: Fill us in on the audio situation. What's the final word on the English and Japanese voice acting and why has this all taken place?
RP: The final word on the audio situation is that it will only have English voices. As for the specifics as to why it is English only, we unfortunately are unable to comment as that is more of a question for the publisher.

MAC: There was an announcement of future DLC, including new characters and costumes. Could you give us a little more detail about that?
SC: Two of the characters that you meet during the course of the story will be recruitable into your party through the magic of DLC, and three characters will have bathing suits as alternate attire. If you choose to have them wear the swimsuits, they will wear them in the scenes, as well as in battle.

MAC: There are now Vita ports of Atelier Totori and Meruru. Any plans for those in North America or is that no longer in your hands?
RP: We unfortunately haven't heard any news in regards to any of the PSVita ports at this point.

MAC: Any other NISA game announcements you can tease for us? Disgaea D2 maybe?
RP: At the moment we are still waiting on news for Disgaea D2, but we are hopeful that we can bring the title to North America and Europe. As soon as we have any news, you can bet we'll let all the fans know ASAP, dood! We will have a busy year for sure with plenty of things planned!

MAC: Thanks again for chatting with us. Is there anything else you'd like to share with our readers about Atelier Ayesha or NISA?
RP: We had a blast working on Atelier Ayesha and hope all the fans of the series will enjoy it! Stay tuned for awesome announcements soon from NISA!

Many thanks to NIS America for talking to us about the localization of Atelier Ayesha: The Alchemist of Dusk. It will be out on Mar. 5 in North America and Mar. 8 in Europe for the PlayStation 3.

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