Hironobu Kageyama, Attack on Titan's Hajime Isayama, Koda Kumi and Granrodeo Celebrate âge's 20th Anniversary

Hajime Isayama: "I wanted to make Shingeki no Kyojin as intricate as Yoshimune san's stories, but I gave up."

Japanese studio âge held on October 22 the “âge 20th Anniversary broadcast [still breathing]” live stream. Besides revealing a Muv Luv Alternative anime, Muv Luv Integrate, Project Mikhail, and a KimiNozo reboot, âge also shared video messages from various personalities linked with their games. We saw messages from Hajime Isayama, Koda Kumi, Granrodeo and Hironobu Kageyama. Personalities such as Takeuchi “Bamboo” Hiroshi appeared on stream as well. They all congratulated âge for its 20th anniversary and celebrated Muv Luv‘s 15th anniversary.

First was Isayama. Note that the person in charge of the display PC accidentally activated Siri at first, so they restarted the message video. The event was full of small happenings like that as âge actually didn’t script every single thing like the usual Japanese stream. Mafia Kajita didn’t know beforehand what they’d do on the stream either.
Hajime Isayama started by mentioning something everyone bothering to read this already knows: playing Muv Luv Alternative is what inspired him to make Attack on Titan. The first âge game he played was the PS2 port of KimiNozo when he was in high school after a friend recommended it. When Alternative released, Isayama remembers playing the whole game in two days. He particularly remembers the shock he felt when seeing you know who’s death. He believes it was the only time in his life he was so engrossed in a game.

Since then Isayama often hangs out with Kouki, and considers him a “strong” otaku with how he manages to build intricate worlds and stories. Isayama feels he himself and most otaku nowadays don’t possess this strength anymore. He ended the message saying that he wanted to make Shingeki no Kyojin just as intricate, but couldn’t, and gave up, making the audience laugh. Lastly, he thanked Kouki and âge and said he’s looking forward to their future works.

Koda Kumi said she remembers how Kouki asked her directly if she could do a song for Total Eclipse, which resulted in its opening song Go To the Top. She mentioned it was a really great experience. Koda Kumi will also be reaching her 20th year debut anniversary at the end of 2019, so she’s happy to be sharing this anniversary year with âge. She also hopes to make a new song for Muv Luv one day.

Next was Granrodeo, Kishō Taniyama, and E-Zuka. Granrodeo spoke about how they’re pretty happy the songs they did for Muv Luv are still so popular. Kishō Taniyama also mentioned it’s thanks to Muv Luv‘s connection that he got to voice Jean in Attack on Titan. He continued, jokingly saying “Probably everyone knows by now, but Isayama sensei just ripped off Muv Luv“. Granrodeo is grateful to âge as it’s thanks to them they got so popular. They ended the message by jokingly calling themselves “one of âge’s products”.

The final message was from Hironobu Kageyama. He first listed the various songs himself, Masaki Endoh, or JAM Project all together, did for âge games. He mentioned how working with âge’s staff is particularly pleasant as an artist because they always have a strong objective in mind. For example, when he wrote the lyrics and music for Alternative‘s opening Asu e no Houkou, he knew exactly what âge wanted to do, was moved as well, and he worked on it while crying. It’s an experience he still remembers vividly to this day. Kageyama thinks starting a collaboration with âge was one of the best things which happened to JAM Project, as the group was trying their best to get bigger in early 2000 (technically each member separately was already hugely popular though). The group will be reaching its 20th anniversary as well in 2020.

At the end of the message segment, Kouki asked people to please not reupload the video messages.

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Iyane Agossah

Living near Paris, Iyane is the head of Japanese content at DualShockers. You can reach him on Twitter at @A_iyane07

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