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Forums - Gaming Discussion - The core teams of both WILD ARMS and SHADOW HEARTS come together for a double KickStart! Successors to both WILD ARMS and SHADOW HEARTS announced! ARMED FANTASIA and PENNY BLOOD funded in just 19 ho

Wild Arms and Shadow Hearts creators to launch Double Kickstarter campaign for spiritual successors Armed Fantasia and Penny Blood

Kickstarter campaign to launch on August 29.

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Nice find, great thread. We'll see greatness from these developers.

Cute and honest Sega Saturn fan, also noone should buy Sega grrrr, Sega for life. The reason I'm chaotic to few 3rd party developers is because I'm protecting Sega and also I lack skill to get really hot girl I really want. also few devs deserve it for making bad game's personal experiences, looking at Ghost Blade HD the shmup or Fighting EX Layer. My standards are too high for genres I play. KOF 13 > Fighting EX layer gameplay.

■ About

Armed Fantasia: To the End of the Wilderness tells a dramatic story that unfolds in a world hurtling towards destruction. Players take the role of a group of Pathfinders and, with trusted ARMs in hand, embark on a perilous journey across a sprawling Westernpunk wilderness.

In a far flung corner of this world lies the land of Londenium, where a young man named Ingram loses his grandfather; the final tether binding him to his hometown. With no other reason to stay, and in hopes of reconnecting with his childhood friend, Ingram sets out on a new adventure as a Pathfinder, a branch of adventurers that utilize the powerful ARM (Aether Reaction Maximizer) weaponry to dispose of Anomalies that ravage the land.

Ingram’s journey will lead him to cross destinies with many a new friend and foe, and become embroiled in a monumental battle that’ll strike through Londenium’s past and its future.

Armed Fantasia: To the End of the Wilderness allows players to experience the spirit of a large-scale party-based Japanese RPG adventure—crossing the great expanse and using their wits to overcome any obstacle in their path.

Featuring a gigantic World Map, players will race, leap, solve puzzles, and feel the momentum of crossing the land, sea and air in high-speed vehicles as they explore and follow the story. The World Map of Armed Fantasia will be packed with things for players to do, rendered with a unique look not seen in other titles.

Dungeon exploration focuses on utilizing each party member’s unique Gadget. Players must switch between Gadgets to solve obstacles standing in their way, embracing the sense of victory when they finally open a particularly tricky path. Traps and treasures lie in wait across both the World Map and its dungeons, requiring both the characters’ skills and the player’s wits to solve and escape in one piece.

Battles in Armed Fantasia: To the End of the Wilderness will be turn-based but maintain a quick tempo, based on the Cross Order Tactics system. Successive character actions play a key role in the Chain Order, and disruptive Force Breaks interrupt enemy turn order, creating engagements filled with tension and suspense that will push players to carefully consider their battle strategy.

“I was charmed by the fact that something like a Double Kickstarter could be a new option for game development, so I decided to lead a new team. But in order for us to pave our way forward, we need everyone’s support!” says lead game designer Akifumi Kaneko.

With a team of veteran creators from the Wild Arms series, Armed Fantasia: To the End of the Wilderness aims for an expansive Westernpunk RPG experience with a modern look… and whistling!

■ Background Art

The Distant Land of Londenium

The majority of the ground is dried up and barren, and what little water or plant-life that is left is slowly fading away. That is the world of wilderness known as “Londenium.”

A millenium ago, civilization thrived all over Londenium. However, civilization collapsed and decayed and now humanity re-uses relics from previous ages and gathers in small settlements and villages to survive. Technology is still in its infancy.

The sole governing body that has led them is known as the “Order of the Sacred Key.” They want to take back the world for humanity. In order to achieve this goal, they develop and work together with adventurers known as .

■ Characters

Ingram Goodweather

“We’ve got a saying in my family. ‘Get mixed up with the Order and you’ll die a miserable death.'”

At 17 years old, Ingram is an up-and-coming Pathfinder. He grew up in a town filled with people trying to make it rich which helped him develop street smarts, giving him an air of someone wise beyond their years.

Ingram specializes in gun-type ARMs, utilizing speed to confuse his opponents and gain the upper-hand. He has a propensity for flashiness, dealing rapid damage to individual or multiple targets.

Alicia Fairhead

“We must be the vanguard that absorbs the headwind. That is the role of the Order, and my duty.”

19 years old and daughter of the leader of the Knights of the Order, Alicia is steadfast in her duty as a knight to protect the peace. Her bright and cheerful personality gives her an air of , but in battle she is a force to be reckoned with–using tall spear-type ARMs and shields to deal serious damage.

Euclid Sturges

“I figured that out a while back. There is no ‘end’ to the wilderness in this world.”

Ingram’s best friend who winds up moving because of family issues, leaving their childhood promise unfulfilled. In order to fulfill said promise, Euclid becomes a Pathfinder. 18 years old. He tries to handle everything intellectually if possible. He wields staff-type ARMs allowing him to fire magical energy and take advantage of enemy weak points.

■ Enemies

An outbreak of bizarre creatures known as the has spread across the world, becoming the main threat towards humanity in Armed Fantasia.

Though their origin is shrouded in mystery, Anomalies are believed to be a mutation of living creatures native to Londenium. However, some have since transcended their original nature, showing there is still much about them left to learn.

Not only is communication with them impossible, but their extremely hostile nature towards humans makes the Anomalies a menace that must be defeated at all costs.


With its four wings, the Gwiber slices through the arid skies. It has oppressive maneuverability, but even more dangerous is the poisonous stinger on its tail.

The number of victims of its high altitude hit-and-run tactics or succumbed to its excruciating venom are beyond count.


The Kongamoto is a ferocious predator of all living things, but with a particular predilection for human flesh. So rabid a creature it is that it’s even been rumored to feast on its own kind should starvation strike.

Records show occasions where the beats of its powerful wings have capsized merchant ships navigating the inland sea, making it deeply feared among sailors and seafaring folk.


In Armed Fantasia there are weapons constructed from corpses, created using prohibited magicks defiling the sanctity of life. Aptrganga is one of the strongest.

The Order once exposed a horrifying factory known as the Anomaly Cemetery where such impure creatures were being produced en masse and falling into the hands of evil men.

■ Weapons


“ARMs” are a secret weapon used by humanity in their battle against the “Anomalies” that roam the wilderness and dwell in the darkness of ruins.

ARM is short for “Aether Reaction Maximizer,” and is the name most people use to refer to them.

ARMs are machines that react to Aether (the source of magic within all living things), amplifying that power in order to drastically strengthen the user.

■ Screenshots

World Map




What makes Penny Blood a spiritual successor to Shadow Hearts? What major elements does it carry over?

Matsuzo Machida, Lead Game Designer: “The fact that it’s a game set in modern times that deeply explores the shadows of history, and its horror aspects such as black magic and creepy creatures are two major elements that PB has inherited from its predecessors. The detective aspect of investigating and solving bizarre murder incidents, on the other hand, would be one new major element.

“The game will also have a very sad, tragic story that overarches everything, but this is an element that represents my own thoughts on life and the world rather than something I’ve carried over from a previous work.”

The protagonist Matthew is an investigator cursed with transformation abilities inherited from his father, which he must use to vanquish creatures and uncover the truth behind a bizarre incident. What elements of cosmic horror can we expect to encounter in this story?

Machida: “Matthew is an Inheritor—one who has inherited “Old Blood.” In his case, the power of his blood allows him to transform into fusion monsters.

“As he goes on to solve various bizarre incidents, Matthew will close in on a criminal hiding in the shadows who is slowly becoming a threat to all of the human race. He’ll also run into a slew of other monsters… And maybe even some from the Cthulhu Mythos which you might be familiar with.”

Matthew has a complicated relationship with his abilities, hating them, but using the gift he despises to defeat evil. Will that relationship be reflected in the gameplay at all?

Machida: “I designed the game systems of my previous games in a way that they would reflect the main character’s psyche, and it’s become a large characteristic of the way I approach game design.

“The same is true in Penny Blood. Matthew, the main character, will wander through the ‘Graveyard’—the abyss of his own heart. To Matthew, it looks like the creepy traveling carnival that his father took him to when he was a child. As Matthew experiences the different attractions, he’ll face his trauma and all the anguish that comes with it. This is a path he cannot avoid if he wishes to unlock new fusion monsters.”

The Graveyard will also hide great mysteries and affect which ending each player unlocks.

Can you tell us more about Matthew and companions Emilia and Suseri? Who are they and how will their paths cross?

Machida: “At first, Matthew prepares to dispassionately complete his new job just like every other one that’s been assigned to him… But as he proceeds with the investigation, he starts searching for Emilia, a woman who went missing while in Japan. Matthew’s meeting with Emilia will greatly change the course of his life. Suseri is someone who helps Matthew out while he’s in Japan. No… perhaps ‘surveillance agent’ is more accurate.”

Like the Shadow Hearts series, Penny Blood will have players exploring multiple locations across the world, including New York, Japan, China, and Europe. Given the variety of locations, what can we expect in terms of the scale of each new place we visit?

Machida: “I’m very interested in the world of 100 years ago, and overjoyed that I can set Penny Blood in that time period. The same countries still exist in our time period, but their cultures and relationships have changed a great deal. I hope to depict these elements in a fresh manner through a visual story.

“The size of each town will depend on its location, but my aim is to make them each ‘just the right size,’ and of course fill them with unsettling and striking landscapes.”

The overworld map is described as a bird’s-eye view-style display. Does that mean we can expect a more traditional-style method of traversal (e.g. Wild Arms 1, Final Fantasy VII), or is it selection-based?

Machida: Penny Blood will be a game where you dive deep and explore a cramped, yet profound world, rather than one where you adventure across a vast world map.

“Our current plan for the world map is that it will be selection-based and displayed from a bird’s eye view, but we plan to create it in 3D so that players can change the perspective to find hidden landmarks or new routes that can lead them to important evidence. We really want players to become immersed in the detective / special agent role, even when they’re on the world map!”

Besides the story, what other activities can players look forward to doing in Penny Blood?

Machida: “Aside from the overarching story of Penny Blood, which will be its main focus, there will also be several sub-quests (side stories) that the player can engage in.

“The sub-quests will solving cases by using technology that had just been introduced at the start of the 20th century. This includes fingerprinting, voiceprint profiling, mental profiling such as Rorschach tests, and other pioneering methods of criminal profiling that rely on science to nail criminals. Through Matthew, players will be able to experience what it’s like to explore the world of Penny Blood as a professional investigator.”

Can you talk about the turn-based Psycho Sigil battle system? How does the twitch-trigger reaction strengthen attacks and keep the player more involved compared to traditional turn-based battle systems?

Machida: “The original idea for the Psycho Sigil came to me when I was trying to imagine a way to depict a character’s soul—an otherwise invisible thing. I needed a way to graphically display a character’s lineage, personality, and trauma, and also in a way that would allow it to transform as the story progresses. I thought it’d be a great way to depict the unique aspects of each character.

As for how it works, each sigil contains shining dots that represent spots the player is supposed to hit. The player’s goal is to hit the button when the “moving light passes over each spot at the proper timing. The Psycho Sigil will serve as an important tool for succeeding in both battles and events.

“Attaining a perfect with a Psycho Sigil input during an attack will allow you to do things like kill a normal enemy in one hit or perform a combo attack. For the latter, there will be a randomness to it. Combo attacks won’t simply link up separate attacks from different characters – they will each have their own animation, where characters gang up on the enemy together. Discovering the hidden combo attacks for each of the unique characters will be part of the fun of Penny Blood‘s battle system.”

The Fusion system from Shadow Hearts returns in Penny Blood, allowing Matthew to utilize monsters in battle. How has that been enhanced or changed this time around?

Machida: “The concept I used in my previous series was “devils,” which was influenced by Devilman, a personal favorite of mine, but this time I’m focusing more on myths and legends. With Matthew, I wanted to focus on the ‘holy’ nature of heroes that appear in fairy tales, so I decided to go with knights. But they aren’t just normal knights—they’re spectral knights. I really put a lot of care into each of their designs. I wanted to make each knight unique, with equal helps of style and creepiness, in order to turn them into special creatures you can only see in Penny Blood.”

Sanity Points also return, which keep your party members in check from succumbing to darkness. Can you tell us more about that? Does this have any consequences outside of battle?

Machida: “The aspect of the battle system that evolved the most for Penny Blood is actually how the Sanity Points (SAN) affect things.

“In my previous series, when a character’s sanity points reached zero, they would go berserk and the player would no longer be able to control them. In Penny Blood, the player will be able to go on controlling characters with zero sanity. Characters who go mad will receive attack boosts and become stronger, but if they take any damage, they’ll gain sanity points and become sane again—just like when you slap someone who’s gone berserk in order to help them get a hold of themselves. In order to defeat powerful foes, players will need to strategize and constantly dance back and forth between the realms of sanity and madness.

“We’re currently investigating how to use sanity points outside of battle. They may be involved in certain events, such as performing black magic rituals…”

We’ve talked about the similarities between Penny Blood and its predecessor, but what are you doing this time around that is all-new or that you were not able to do before in Shadow Hearts?

Machida: “By setting this game as a product aimed for adults (18+) from the start, I aim to restore the creepiness and grotesque atmosphere that gradually faded out from my previous series and see how far I can really take things. Of course, I don’t intend to just make this some messy splatterfest. No matter how grotesque a scene gets, I still want it to excite players and give them an exhilarating feeling.”

While you (Shadow Hearts creator Matsuzo Machida) are of course helming Penny Blood, what other key staff from the series is returning for the spiritual successor?

Machida: “Currently, Kato-san, the character designer and art director, and Hirota-san, the main composer, have been fully involved in the game’s production. There is a high possibility that several other people who worked on my previous series will take part in this project as well. However, you can trust that every staff member of my current team is amazing in their own way, and that Penny Blood will be a completely new creation that can stand on its own.”

For our final inquiry, please use this opportunity to share a message with the fans.

Machida: “It’s nice to meet you, everyone. I am Machida, the general director and scriptwriter for Penny Blood. We’re deeply grateful for all the passionate support fans all around the world are giving us as we embark on this new challenge of ours.

“A new type of RPG filled with love, tears, and laughs is about to resurrect right here and now, wearing a newly-polished dark horror dress! Please give us your support!!”

@Xxain Is the composer with them from Wild Arms 3? I loved the song Wings.

Cute and honest Sega Saturn fan, also noone should buy Sega grrrr, Sega for life. The reason I'm chaotic to few 3rd party developers is because I'm protecting Sega and also I lack skill to get really hot girl I really want. also few devs deserve it for making bad game's personal experiences, looking at Ghost Blade HD the shmup or Fighting EX Layer. My standards are too high for genres I play. KOF 13 > Fighting EX layer gameplay.

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Armed Fantasia looks genuinely really interesting to me.

Now I'm curious. Hoping for the best.

Look great and they're planned for Xbox, I'm in.

Shadow Hearts is one of my all time favorite franchises, so I'm very happy to hear that like Suikoden, this one is getting a spiritual successor.
I looked at some of the names involved, and it is indeed the director/writer from the first two games, returning composer and character designer, etc.

It's funny because recently I asked myself "where the soul of Shadow Hearts went?" when I saw that so many people involved in the first two games split up and joined different companies.
But this looks like a pretty ideal team in charge of this one.

I'm also a fan of Wild Arms, though not quite to the same degree as Shadow Hearts, and I'm very much looking forward to that one as well.

I wonder if they couldn't have liscensed the rights to the Shadow Hearts and Wild Arms IP though? At least Shadow Hearts, but I'm not sure who owns that any more since I think the original publisher disolved into another company and stopped making video games.

Both games are now funded hitting the goal of £616k in just 19 hours.