Trials of Mana Interview: The Developers on Topping the Fan Translation and the Possibility of New Mana Games

Trials of Mana Interview: The Developers on Topping the Fan Translation and the Possibility of New Mana Games

"[T]he localization team took a look at the translation and the first thing they said was, 'We're going to show them up.'"

Trials of Mana is certainly shaping up to a sublime remake of the original Seiken Densetsu 3, which originally released all the way back in 1995. It's looking like a far cry of the Secret of Mana remake from last year, which was widely panned for the soundtrack, visuals, and gameplay in particular.

At Gamescom 2019 in Germany this week, I had the opportunity to talk with Mana series producers Masaru Oyamada and Shinichi Tatsuke. Here's what they had to say about their time working on the series so far.

Is there anything that you've taken and learned while doing the Secret of Mana remake last year, and applied it to Trials of Mana?

Masaru Oyamada, Producer: Yes and no. Trials of Mana is based on a completely different concept from Secret of Mana, but one of the things that we put a little bit more attention into this time around was that the motions of the lip syncing weren't quite what they should have been. But aside from that, when it comes down to something like the battle system, that's changed quite a lot.

I think you've said previously that there'll be an expansion on the stories told from the original game in the Trials of Mana remake. Can you elaborate on these expansions at all?

Oyamada: So one of our goals was to really strengthen and deepen the characters, but as for how that's happened, you'll have to play the game for yourself to find out.

I remember reading that the development team found a fan translation of the original game before the remake was greenlit. What was the general reaction of the team to the translation?

Oyamada: Well, the localization team took a look at the translation and the first thing they said was, "We're going to show them up." I'm sure that the people that worked on the pirated version worked with the best of what was available to them, but we really wanted to do as good of a job as we possibly could.

We haven't seen a mainline, 3D Mana game since 2007. Why do you think it's been so long, and could you see the series getting a new, original Mana game depending on how this performs?

Oyamada: I think one of the reasons why there were no games for so long was because the original Mana creator left Square Enix. There was a lot of time spent trying to figure out what the next Mana game would be and what it would look like, and nobody could really settle on an answer.

So that's why we've seen a number of remasters and remakes, and finally arrived here with Trials of Mana. Of course I'd really like to see this series continue based off of fan feedback, but when it comes to if any fan out there really passionately wants one of the games from that era to be remade, there's someone in the company that also passionately wants that game to be remade.

We seem to be getting a lot of games remade from this certain era at the moment. What do you think it is about these games that makes them so beloved?

Oyamada: This is mostly just my personal opinion, but I think a big part of it is that the generation that grew up with the game industry, that grew up with these games are now in a position where they remember these things and go "oh wasn't that great," and are now in a position where they can bring them back about.


The Trials of Mana remake will release for the PC, PS4, and Nintendo Switch in early 2020. You can read what we made of the recent Trials of Mana gameplay footage for details on the improved battle system, and more.

Sometimes we include links to online retail stores. If you click on one and make a purchase we may receive a small commission. See our terms & conditions.

Hirun Cryer

Guides Writer

Hirun Cryer is by far the most juvenile member of USgamer. He's so juvenile, that this is his first full-time job in the industry, unlike literally every other person featured on this page. He's written for The Guardian, Paste Magazine, and Kotaku, and he likes waking up when the sun rises and roaming the nearby woods with the bears and the wolves.

Read this next

How the Z-Axis Changes Trials of Mana's Remake

A change in perspective opens up new doors for the Seiken Densetsu 3 remake.

Trials of Mana Release Date, Gameplay, Trailer - Everything We Know About Seiken Densetsu 3

Here's everything we know about the western release of Seiken Densetsu 3, known as Trials of Mana, including a release date, trailer, and more.

Kunai Is The Best Feeling Platformer I've Played Since Dead Cells

This tiny robot samurai wins with precise platforming action.

More

The Coolest, Most Badass Guns of Borderlands 3

Crack open those chests and see some of the fantastic weapons in Gearbox' latest.

Phantom Brigade Is a Fantastic New Spin on the Front Mission Formula

Brace Yourself Games is bringing the mech strategy genre back in a big way.

Raids, Loot, and Balance: Ubisoft Massive on The Division 2's Challenges Six Months Later

Ubisoft Massive is beginning to firm up the ongoing foundation of The Division 2.

Thinbloods and the Politics of Living Forever: An Interview with Bloodlines 2 Writer Cara Ellison

We talked love, loss, and lots of blood with one of Bloodlines 2's writers.

More on PC

Kunai Is The Best Feeling Platformer I've Played Since Dead Cells

This tiny robot samurai wins with precise platforming action.

FIFA 20 Review: This Year's Version Takes to the Streets, But It's Strongest on the Pitch

A brand new mode and some much-improved gameplay highlight an ambitious update for FIFA.

Spiritfarer's Art Director on Encouraging Relaxation, Exploration, and Just Chilling on a Boat

How Spirited Away led to a cozy management sim about the afterlife.

Borderlands 3's First Limited-Time Event Will Be a Free Halloween Ghoul Hunt

All Borderlands 3 players will have a few weeks to scoop up some creepy loot and take down a boney boss.

Apple Arcade Brings Game Pricing Concerns Back to the Forefront

THIS WEEK IN BUSINESS | Will successful subscription services turn into their own walled gardens?

Untitled Goose Game Review

What if Agent 47 was a rude goose who was down to clown?

More Role Playing Games Games

Apple Arcade is Way Cooler Than You Think. Here are 10 Games to Check Out

Apple Arcade has dozens of neat games, so we highlighted 10 from its launch lineup that are a bit under the radar.

We Dare You to Eat This Pile of Ancient Pokemon Food

Expiration dates are just suggestions.

The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening Review

Come sail away with Link. Again.