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 Post subject: Ketsui is officially cancelled for the PS2
PostPosted: Sun Jan 28, 2007 12:09 am 


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From Mihara's blog:

http://mihara.sub.jp/top/blog/sb203/log/eid796.html

He says Arika's PS2 port of Ketsui, and Arika's relationship with Cave, is now officially over. Apparently they did the port but couldn't get the slowdown in the 5th stage right (he doesn't specify first or second loop), no matter what they tried. He says otherwise the port was pretty much "perfect". He apologizes many times throughout the message.

He also mentions that Ikeda told him some secret about how he's going to reveal some info about this situation soon? With something planned for Christmas? I just read through it quickly, so I'll have to go back and try and read between the lines. The end of it is rather cryptic.

Thanks to Danmakugata (as usual) for pointing this out.


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 28, 2007 12:19 am 


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Nooooooo. :(


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 28, 2007 12:24 am 


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ah fook

At least there is some closure to this whole thing, but damn it was done. Really disapointing news to say the least. Now my chances of playing this game have greatly dropped for the time being. :(
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 28, 2007 12:26 am 


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Well, there is the end part where he mentions Ikeda has some secret plans for Christmas. Ikeda could be referring to Ketsui 2 for the Arcades to be released around christmas 2007. Especially with the arcade show coming up next month, as Mihara says Ikeda plans to "give a glimpse (of this) soon".

However, Mihara says at the end "don't get your hopes up", which sounds like the news might not be anything exciting. We'll see.

This blog post is revealing in many ways. It tells us Arika have been working on a Ketsui port for awhile (which would have surprised just about anyone), and since they couldn't get Ketsui to "fully" run on the PS2, I'd bet a good sum of money that that's also the reason why we aren't seeing Espgaluda 2, Pink Sweets, or Mushi Futari PS2 ports. The PS2 just can't handle these games properly.

You have to hand it to Arika though, they have standards of quality and they stick to them. Mihara wrote that even though Ikeda forgave them for not being able to get Stage 5 'perfect', and gave them permission to release the port anyway, they still wouldn't allow it. Perfectionists! Stark contrast to Cave's porting philosophy, which is basically "if it looks and plays somewhat like the PCB, print up a bunch of copies and stuff it on the shelves for 6000yen a pop". As we saw with their lousy Mushi and Ibara ports. :?


Last edited by EOJ on Sun Jan 28, 2007 6:37 am, edited 3 times in total.

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 28, 2007 12:40 am 


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Damn. :( This almost bites even worse than if they had never started working on Ketsui. I think the stage 5 slowdown thing could've been nailed with a little more time.

Arika's relationship with Cave coming to an end does not bode well. Who is going to port their games now?
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 28, 2007 12:51 am 


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Outta curiosity, did he mention the nature of the "slowdown problem?" In the two non-Arika Cave ports, the consensus among those who have played the arcade versions seems to be that the PS2 versions have less slowdown than the arcade versions: I don't know much about programming, but I'd always been under the impression that when a system's "limitations" came into play, it usually resulted in more slowdown than the original version. I've only played a bit of Ketsui, but it would seem odd that the PS2 could pull off Mushi's Ultra mode with less slowdown and somehow be unable to handle Ketsui. Is "adding" slowdown that taxing for both the system and the programmers? As I said, I'm not a programmer, and that aspect of the whole thing has always confused me.
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 28, 2007 12:56 am 



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While this sucks from a 'not getting a ketsui PS2 port' perspective; it has to suck really really bad for Arika. They've essentially thrown away tons of time on this, that has to hurt for a smallish developer like them.

Someone should point out to him that if people bought the sub-par Cave ports, they'll certainly buy a nearly-perfect-except-for-some-slowdown-in-the-last stage port. And be much happier about the quality, too. Oh well.

edit: does he say why the Cave relationship is over?
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 28, 2007 1:04 am 


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Bulletmagnet: I read it again, he mentions the main obstacle was the "tate-ana", which translates to "pit; hole; mine shaft". Is there a level with mine shafts in Ketsui? I'm not all that familiar with the game. Anyway, around the area of this "tate-ana", he says the game was "lethal", and no matter what they tried they couldn't fix it.


Last edited by EOJ on Sun Jan 28, 2007 1:05 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 28, 2007 1:04 am 


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The problem is not that he couldn't emulate that slowdown.

"No matter what, we couldn't re-create the 5th stage. Sorry. You can call me a braggart, but other than that, it was 'perfect'. The problem was on the 5th stage tate-ana. No matter how hard we tried, there was deadly, warping slowdown."

Tate-ana is where the screen scrolls backwards, and you have the appearance of going down a shaft. (ESPGaluda II has one as well). Warping meaning not slowdown, but actually dropping frames. Apparently it killed the gameplay.

I wonder how playable the copies Mihara is hoarding at his home are.
[breaks out Ketsui PCB]
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 28, 2007 1:06 am 


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Thanks for that info Gaijin Punch! I was clueless on what "tate-ana" referred to in this context.


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 28, 2007 1:11 am 


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Mihara being his usual geek self, used a different kanji. 縦穴 is the 'correct' one.
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 28, 2007 1:15 am 


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GaijinPunch wrote:
Tate-ana is where the screen scrolls backwards, and you have the appearance of going down a shaft. (ESPGaluda II has one as well). Warping meaning not slowdown, but actually dropping frames. Apparently it killed the gameplay.


Now that would suck. I'd imagine that would be the primary problem with a potential port of Espgaluda 2 and Mushi Futari (and in some alternate dimension, Guwange) as well, since those games have reverse scrolling of some kind. It's disheartening to hear that the port was actually worked on besides the problem of reverse scrolling, but that just makes the PCB even more desirable now.

Thanks for the info guys.
Shame to hear Arika have nulled all ties with Cave now. ;_;
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 28, 2007 1:18 am 


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I think it would be easier to just program in new non-warping backgrounds for these spots in the games. Sure, it wouldn't be arcade-perfect, but it's better than no port! Oh well.


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 28, 2007 1:19 am 


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That sounds really weird...somehow the way the screen scrolled messed with the framerate or something? A shame that the whole port went to pot for something like that...
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 28, 2007 1:21 am 


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Well, he doesn't necessarily say it's because of the reverse scrolling... just that it happens "around there". In all honesty, it could be before, after, or even during. There's some pretty intense bullet spewing in that spot. Even the PCB drops a few frames in the section just before it (right after the 5th stage midboss).

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Shame to hear Arika have nulled all ties with Cave now. ;_;


This may not be the case. The direct translation is:
"As for the Arika PS2 port of Ketsui, we have officially finished with Cave."

Take it as you will. Mihara is known for very round-about talking. It could very well mean they were both working on it, and have both officially stopped working on it. Apparently someone from Cave explained the low-level assembly to them as they were working on the Galuda & DOJ. Anyways, He doesn't specifically say they're relationship is over.... although I guess you could take it that way.
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Last edited by GaijinPunch on Sun Jan 28, 2007 3:18 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 28, 2007 1:29 am 


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GaijinPunch wrote:
This may not be the case. The direct translation is:
"As for the Arika PS2 port of Ketsui, we have officially finished with Cave."

Take it as you will. Mihara is known for very round-about talking. It could very well mean they were both working on it, and have both officially stopped working on it. Apparently someone from Cave explained the low-level assembly to them as they were working on the project. Anyways, He doesn't specifically say they're relationship is over.... although I guess you could take it that way.


I'm not Japanese literate so I can't read the comments for myself, therefore I'm taking both twe's and your translations as 'gospel', so to speak. If it's been said that Mihara mentions their relationship with Cave being ended in some fashion, either regarding their involvement with a Ketsui port, or completely broken off, then I'll have to take your word for it. ^_-

I hope it isn't so, and that only their involvement with the Ketsui port is ended, but time will tell if that is the case, or if it went a little further than that.
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 28, 2007 1:33 am 


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GaijinPunch wrote:
Well, he doesn't necessarily say it's because of the reverse scrolling... just that it happens "around there". In all honesty, it could be before, after, or even during. There's some pretty intense bullet spewing in that spot. Even the PCB drops a few frames in the section just before it (right after the 5th stage midboss).

I still find it weird that the system could do Mushi Ultra (about the most bullet-saturated experience a console game has to offer, at least that I can think of offhand) and not handle Ketsui...again, I haven't played that far into the game, but whatever happens there I doubt it's in Ultra TLB territory...and even if it is, if Mushi's any indication, bullet count shouldn't be an issue anyways.
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 28, 2007 3:03 am 


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GaijinPunch wrote:
The problem is not that he couldn't emulate that slowdown.

"No matter what, we couldn't re-create the 5th stage. Sorry. You can call me a braggart, but other than that, it was 'perfect'. The problem was on the 5th stage tate-ana. No matter how hard we tried, there was deadly, warping slowdown."

Tate-ana is where the screen scrolls backwards, and you have the appearance of going down a shaft. (ESPGaluda II has one as well). Warping meaning not slowdown, but actually dropping frames. Apparently it killed the gameplay.
]


I've seen that little bit of "warping" on the PCB, albeit in brief spurts- yes, that was in stage 5. It isn't really bad enough to be a problem. Ketsui is no Mushi Ultra in terms of bullet count. Not even in the 2nd loop.

I wonder if I'm taking "As for the Arika PS2 port of Ketsui, we have officially finished with Cave" the wrong way. I hope it merely means Cave just got done helping them with a Ketsui port.
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 28, 2007 3:20 am 


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Quote:
If it's been said that Mihara mentions their relationship with Cave being ended in some fashion


Yeah, the word relationship is never used. Then again, it's Japanese. They imply just about everything.
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 28, 2007 3:21 am 


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Taito just wants to make a port of two arcade games.

Arika takes it a step further and trys to make it perfect.

My hats off to them.


Hey, what the hell happen to SPS, the people who ported Donpachi and DoDonPachi onto the PSX?

They sure did a hell of a better job than Atlus on the Saturn.
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 28, 2007 4:11 am 


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 28, 2007 4:14 am 


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That's a bummer... a Ketsui port would have been all kinds of ass kickery.
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 28, 2007 4:48 am 



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I don't think bullet count has much to do with the limitations. In any case, Stage 5 URA mode is up there (someone take a DVD screenshot of the tunnel sequence or something).

I said it some time ago, but I knew Stage 5 would have given them trouble. That stage has 7 different backgrounds and at least 30-40 different enemies in it.

I would think he means that the game went to shit during the tunnel sequence and stayed that way until the very end.
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 28, 2007 5:21 am 


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Valgar wrote:
I don't think bullet count has much to do with the limitations. In any case, Stage 5 URA mode is up there (someone take a DVD screenshot of the tunnel sequence or something).

I said it some time ago, but I knew Stage 5 would have given them trouble. That stage has 7 different backgrounds and at least 30-40 different enemies in it.

I would think he means that the game went to shit during the tunnel sequence and stayed that way until the very end.


Gotta agree. The multiple swapping backdrops are probably the cause. I guess the only plausible solutions would be to either have mid-level loading (which would be grossly disruptive to play) or simplify the backgrounds. Neither of which is a path that Mihara would wish to take.

Come to think of it... they could do some sort of FMV integration... although, that would contrast pretty heavily with the traditional sprites.

Hopefully, they won't just toss away all this code. Maybe consider porting it to another console?
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 28, 2007 5:54 am 


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Heh...makes me wonder if any betas will be showing up online.


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 28, 2007 6:14 am 


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Damocles wrote:
Heh...makes me wonder if any betas will be showing up online.


Highly doubtful. Damn Japanese worth ethic.
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 28, 2007 6:34 am 


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Bummer. At least Mihara is passionate about his work and it's nice to have closure on what was going on with the port all this time. If the last sequence was unbearably slow it would have simply made everyone want the PCB instead so it's just as well.
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Last edited by Dylan1CC on Sun Jan 28, 2007 6:39 am, edited 3 times in total.

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 28, 2007 6:35 am 


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What a burn. That would have been a hell of a surprise if Arika suddenly told us we'd be getting Ketsui on PS2. Fuckin'...

Go get a PS3 dev kit or something, guys, shit.


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 28, 2007 6:41 am 


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Heh, if they released it as-is, I would never know there was a problem since I've never made it to stage 4, even....


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 28, 2007 6:41 am 


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NTSC-J wrote:
What a burn. That would have been a hell of a surprise if Arika suddenly told us we'd be getting Ketsui on PS2. Fuckin'...


It would have had true low-res in the TATE mode as well.
Dammit. I'd still buy it for $60 if it were just the first 4 stages (with two loops), as apparently those were perfect.

Quote:
Go get a PS3 dev kit or something, guys, shit.


Yeah, really. But the TATE mode wouldn't be in low res as the PS3 can't output that. :( So we'd get another blurry mess. Still better than nothing though.


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