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IGAVANIA (n): A gothic, exploration-focused action platformer, designed by one of the godfathers of the genre!
IGAVANIA (n): A gothic, exploration-focused action platformer, designed by one of the godfathers of the genre!
64,867 backers pledged $5,545,991 to help bring this project to life.

Development Update - Meet The English Voice Acting Team

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You can tell it's spring—the updates are in bloom! This month we've got a lot to talk about—SXSW in the recent past, the English voice acting team in the present, and the next chance to play Bloodstained in the near future. So let's get right to it!

Hello everyone, IGA here. This month we participated in SXSW, in Austin, Texas. I had never heard of it, but it’s a long-running event in the film and music communities, and while we were there I felt the energy from the entire city. It felt like a Japanese matsuri (festival).

Without thinking of it, I decided to wear my usual cowboy hat on my first trip to Texas. Wait a minute—Texas has real cowboys! I was worried that the people there would judge me, but everyone I met was really kind.

Of course, I didn’t really see any cowboys there…

We shared lots of new content during our SXSW panel discussion. First was a newly redesigned version of Vepar. After weighing a lot of community feedback, we decided to implement some of the changes you recommended and drastically improve the overall quality; now she looks more like a scary boss. My favorite detail is the seaweed.

We also showed a new feature—the crafting system with Johannes, which allows you to craft items and food. You still have to enter the alchemy room to craft foods, but it’s really just Miriam cooking. Food has always been used as a healing item, but we’ve added a new feature for Bloodstained. Now eating a new food item for the first time produces a permanent stat boost. Like weapons and armor, good food can make the player stronger.

While I was there I also met some members of the Official Bloodstained Discord server. For my birthday, I received a copy of the Ars Goetia book from several of you. It makes for really great reference material—there are symbols for each demon. Thank you very much! I promise to make good use of it. I met many new people, and it really made my SXSW visit worthwhile. I hope to go again someday.

This month we’ve been implementing the English voices into the game. Although there’s a language barrier, I know the actors did a great job and they sound very cool. I want to let everyone hear them soon.

Thank you for your continued support, and I’ll see you next time. - IGA 

It's time to introduce the English voice actors! First, let's introduce the whole cast:

Miriam - Erica Lindbeck
League of Legends - Taliyah, Zoe
Persona 5 - Futaba Sakura
Nier: Automata - Anemone
Street Fighter V - Menat

Zangetsu - David Hayter
Metal Gear Solid - Solid Snake
The Castle of Cagliostro - Lupin III

Dragon Age: Inquisition - Lieutenant Renn

Mobile Suit Gundam 0080: War in the Pocket - Bernard Wiseman

Gebel - Ray Chase
Final Fantasy XV - Noctis Lucis Caelum
Nier: Automata - Eve
JoJo's Bizarre Adventure: Stardust Crusaders - Rubber Soul
Tales of Berseria - Artorius Collbrande

Johannes - Ben Diskin
JoJo's Bizarre Adventure - Joseph Joestar

Naruto Shippuden - Sai

Mobile Suit Gundam: The Origin - Char Aznable

Halo 4 - Jared Miller

The Coachman - Fred Tatasciore

Overwatch - Soldier: 76

Starcraft II: Heart of the Swarm - Zeratul, Rory Swann
God of War III - Ares, Barbarian King, Typhon
Mass Effect - Saren Arterius

 Dominique - Fryda Wolff
Mass Effect: Andromeda - Sara Ryder
Fallout 4 - Vault Security
Octodad: Dadliest Catch - Stacy
Killer Instinct - Mira

Gremory - Kari Wahlgren
FLCL - Haruko Haruhara
Samurai Champloo - Fuu Kasumi
No More Heroes - Jeane
Eureka Seven - Anemone
Fate/Zero - Saber

 Anne - Rena Strober
Fire Emblem: Fates - Azura
Persona 4: Dancing All Night - Kanami Mashita
Sailor Moon Crystal - Esmeraude
Zero Escape: Zero Time Dilemma - Akane Kurashiki

Alfred - Christopher Swindle
Transformers: Robots in Disguise - Ragebyte
Lego Dimensions - Brain Gremlin / Betelgeuse
Disney Infinity - The Hoarder

 Mysterious Man - Robbie Belgrade
Castlevania: Symphony of the Night - Alucard
Tekken - Announcer
Mega Man X7 - Signas 
Shenmue - Pedro Warren

English Voice Acting Directed by Jamie Mortellaro
Halo 4
Silent Hill: Shattered Memories
Professor Layton and the Unwound Future
EverQuest II
Knack

Now you know the principal characters each actor will voice, but there are many more voiced characters in Bloodstained—each actor had the range to do multiple characters.

But still images can hardly do voice actors justice, right? That's why we're also including the first of three videos in which the team observed (and interviewed) the actors in the studio, their natural habitat. Take a look: 

Last, but not least, ArtPlay also sent along another piece of art to unveil in this update! Here's another enemy you'll be swarmed by before too long, the Gargoyle:

 project video thumbnail
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Didn't get a chance to see IGA at SXSW? Here's the next best thing—you can watch his panel right here. In addition to discussing (among other things) how the team has integrated feedback from the fans, and how cooking interacts with gameplay and leveling up, he also reveals a new familiar and discusses the transition from the old Vepar design to the new one. You're going to want to see it:

And here are some photos to document IGA's first trip to Texas and his birthday gift from a delegation of the Army of the Night. You can see the rest of the photos and join in the discussion on the new reveals in the SXSW 2018 post-action report on the forums. 

IGA and Mana, ready for their closeups
IGA and Mana, ready for their closeups
A look at the changes the team has made to Vepar
A look at the changes the team has made to Vepar

Members of the official Bloodstained Discord who came out to see the panel got the chance to join IGA and company for an exclusive cocktail hour afterward, where they presented him with the Ars Goetia he mentioned in the development update. 

(If that sounds like the kind of thing you'd like, click this link and become a member of the Bloodstained Discord yourself! It's the easiest way to stay on top of cool fan opportunities whenever they crop up.) 

In addition to your usual ration of amazing fanart from all over the community we've got a special multimedia tribute from Jeffrey Montoya and Junki Sakuraba. Jeffrey's music and Junki's art combine to dramatize Miriam's experience of falling into a coma only to awake to face the events of Bloodstained. Enjoy:

Akai Riot
Akai Riot
     
AlbertoV
AlbertoV
Dashfox1
Dashfox1

As always, if you're creating Bloodstained art and you'd like to be highlighted in a future update, make sure to tag it #IGAVANIA or #bloodstained so we see it next time we make our rounds! (While you're at it, show your work off on the Official Bloodstained Forums or Discord.) 

This month's last word comes to you courtesy of Roberto Piraino, Bloodstained's brand manager at 505 Games! Without further ado: 

Welcome to the update for March everyone! Wow. Just, wow. This is one of our biggest updates yet; a ton of work went on behind the scenes to bring it to you, during a very busy month no less…we hope you enjoy it! Please remember though, not every update will be as packed as this one, and that’s normal!

First off, David Hayter is Zangetsu! The team originally planned for him to be Gebel, but Iga made an executive decision and I’m very confident everyone will be happy with it. Both Zangetsu and Gebel now sound as if they existed in real life and came in to record their lines haha. (Well, that was a common sensation with our fantastic actors…but you know what I mean) :P

Secondly, we’ve seen some confusion out there regarding Bloodstained’s release date, based on speculation after Iga’s video about how the scope and timeline of the game have changed. We want to clarify that we have not yet announced any official release date for the game, but before apocalyptic panic and speculation ensues, we’re also happy to let you know that we will be announcing the release window very soon.

In the meantime, we’d like to officially announce that the “Beta Backer Demo” will be available June 2018. Every backer at the $60 level or above, regardless of chosen platform, will receive a STEAM code via email that will enable them to download the demo and play it on PC. In the time leading up to this beta, expect to hear more about what will be in the demo, how we’ll collect feedback, and of course, the exact details regarding what day and time it will be available for everyone.

Last but not least, in our ongoing quest to be open, honest and available to the fans, we will launch a “Communication Feedback Survey” shortly on all of our online platforms. It will be everyone’s chance to not only let us know how we’re doing with our communication to the fans, but also tell us what you’d like to see more of, done differently, improved or otherwise changed when it comes to communication. All constructive criticism is welcome, but feel free to give us a pat on the head too! :3

Look forward to the rest of the cast interview videos, and talk to you soon!

Fred? ... Fred! That's not how any of this works, Fred...
Fred? ... Fred! That's not how any of this works, Fred...
Kosmo Kramer, Zane, and 182 more people like this update.

Comments

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    1. Brent Taylor on

      Part 2 for the interviews!!!:

      https://www.youtube.com/watch…

      I haven't even watched it yet but I will devour it whole when I get home lmao

    2. Alessandro Carboni on

      Very excited for the demo (March) but will it be available also for mac user?
      Thanks :)

    3. Missing avatar

      -DarkWing- on

      @Jacob Patenaude
      Release date has never been confirmed, dunno who said march, anyway i'll kind of stop reading the updates as they usually contain nothing really relevant...

    4. Jacob Patenaude on

      Should we expect an other delay ? Because the last time I read about it ,the release date was end march.So here we are ...

    5. Missing avatar

      JeanTannen on

      I actually really like the boss design change, didn’t know there were concerns about the original design. The english voice cast also looks good. Looking forward to a demo and a release date.

    6. Jákup Fuglø
      Superbacker
      on

      Devin R. Lowe: Fair enough. May have been a bit harsh there.

      Roberto Piraino: There is absolutely nothing menacing or scary about her. I live by the sea and I loved how the original design was a mix of an angler fish, a monkfish and a crazy looking female figure on top. The new one does nothing similar to that. The woman part is more generic looking (compare her to the ship's figurehead) and the monster part is smaller and a lot less scary in general. The monster part doesn't even evoke the same images of angler fish and monkfish anymore (some genuinely creepy looking fish BTW).
      She's basically the same as before but smaller and with less of everything. Less intimidating, less striking, less fantastic, and has less presence, less personality, less originality, less impact and is simply more generic and drab looking. Your arguments about her being higher detail, higher quality and all that could've been applied to the original design rather than downgrading her like this.
      Sincerely hope there'll be a way to fight the original version or that someone mods her in at some point.

    7. Brent Taylor on

      *is passively assuaged by Roberto's huge comment*

    8. Trouserwitz
      Superbacker
      on

      Erica is probably my favorite English speaking voice actress. <3 The whole cast looks great!

    9. Bloodstained: ROTN - Roberto Piraino Collaborator on

      @Andromeda No Shun - Har har, thank you ;)

      @Joel Martinez - I'm sure I'm just gonna sound biased, but...she absolutey did!

      @DarkWing - Not sure what you mean about the state of the game, I think I've addressed this before, these updates are meant to reveal completed progress and talk about things in progress for the game. Even when we discuss specific in game systems etc. they will be previews and updates like how this month we revealed eating a food item for the first time applies a permanent bonus. We won't be discussing production details or revealing large amounts of content. Hope that makes sense. :)

      @Tyler Ferguson - We only promised we would "start talking about release dates and plans" which is what we're doing here in taking a moment to clarify all the confusion and misinformation out there. Unfortunately the internet is gonna do its thing, and take that original announcement as "oh boy release date!!!". :(

      @Eltanin - Yeah definitely, Iga made the right choice, Hayter was perfect as Zangetsu and Ray Chase IS Gebel heh.

      @Raul Rosas III - Thank you!

      @TheRealMalek - Agreed! :)

      @HoverGeek - Thank you very much for your faith and sentiment, but there's no need to delay to 2020! Everything is going along just fine, and even though quality is paramount for us, we still need to respect our fans' desire to have the game asap, and of course we need to make money lol.

      @Michael Toy - Thank you very much for your support! And that's a reasonable concern, I'm going to take the liberty of just pasting my reply from elsewhere when this concern has come up:

      "Whenever you see comments from us on our online platforms it comes (usually) from me, I'm Roberto Piraino, (Angel-Corlux) the brand manager at 505 Games responsible for publishing Bloodstained.

      I can personally guarantee everyone that both with the marketing/publishing (my domain) or the design of the game (Iga's domain) there is not a single decision that is made in order to pander to anyone with any kind of agenda. Whether it's social, religious, political or any kind of other activism or ideology, we avoid all of it like the plague. And consequentially, we're pretty deaf to any feedback that comes as a result of those/any agendas.

      The only thing guiding IGA is making Bloodstained the biggest, funnest, best looking game he's ever made, as HE envisions it. There are times when he brings stuff to me and is like "will we get in trouble for this?" and I'm just like "haha I don't care, I'll fight whoever, wherever to defend your artistic choices, you make your masterpiece".

      Now obviously that's within reason, and there are limits of course, but there hasn't been a single time where I even considered telling Iga "hey can we change/tone down x,y,z?", mostly because Iga doesn't work in the "extremes" of the artistic spectrum when it comes to things like violence or sexuality.

      Finally, specifically here with Vepar, there were a few major goals driving the rework effort, and some of them included things like making her look more menacing, more gothic/demonic (also due to fan feedback), as well as making her more attractive/seductive since her monster philosophy includes an element of functioning as a siren to lure sailors to their deaths. And making her more seductive also meant some changes to her face, it's much more detailed and realistic now if you take a good look. :)

      Obviously "more attractive" is always going to be subjective to the eye of the beholder (or in this case game creator) and at least personally I believe that there are tons of looks, archetypes and ways to be beautiful and attractive, but that's just a little context to assuage any concerns from anyone who thinks we're ever making any decisions based on external pressures related to any kind of agenda."

      @Keegan - I understand waiting is hard, but the original 2017 release date just wasn't feasible once the project blew up and became much bigger and better than originally promised. A release window announcement is coming soon though, hang in there. And the demo is for $60 and above backers because that was one of the promises of the original campaign, as an incentive to supporting the game more, those fans would get a chance to be more involved in the process. We care about every single last backer. :3

      @David Egea Bañon - This is just my personal opinion, but I feel like she's much more 'seductive' now and fits with her 'siren' lore. Hopefully you'll agree over time and when you see it in game.

      @Jákup Fuglø - Regarding your last concern, please feel free to check out my reply a bit further up. As for her being less intimidating and more generic now...sorry I have to whole heartedly disagree, everything about her now is more detailed, higher quality, refined and more menacing!

      @CJ - We're already communicating extensively on the state of the game, as mentioned before, we're not going to go into production status details or reveal large amounts of content for several reasons. Hope you understand. Happy to hear you like the new Vepar! :)

      @Kaori Dakrest - Yes, streaming is ok! We encourage it in fact! :)

      @Jeremy Mann - Holy butts indeed.

      @Tcrew - You will be able to choose to play with English or Japanese voice acting!

      @Robert Moran - As the brand manager for Bloodstained at 505 Games, I'm sure this will sound biased, but I promise I'm trying to be genuine. I can assure you that we're giving Bloodstained all the support it needs and I'm actually working very closely with my fantastic producer and the ArtPlay team to add in things to the game, both in terms of quality and actual content that the backers/fans don't expect!

      I can't talk for the Portal Knights team or any difficulties they may be experiencing with the Switch version of the game, but I'll definitely pass along the concern/feedback to them, I can guarantee you at least that they care a LOT about their game/brands just like I do!

      505 Games is actually pretty great and puts a huge emphasis on quality, I know that's like "ok c'mon" but it's true, if I didn't believe it I wouldn't say that and just leave it implied. :)

      @Mr_Skyfish - Glad you enjoyed it, and thanks for your support!

      @Mark - Happy to hear it, thank you!

    10. Missing avatar

      Devin R. Lowe on

      @Jaykup: It's okay to not like Vepar's new design, but it's another thing entirely to assume that the developers "gave into prudes".

      The design change has nothing to do with the demands of a vocal minority who aren't even going to play this game.

    11. Mark on

      I wish for Alucard or Dracula to appear :) I prefer the new design for Vepar, so much better, the coloring and the proportions. Well done!

    12. Mr_Skyfish on

      Loved this read and looks like you have an awesome cast of voice actors here as well. Really looking forward to playing this title when it hits store shelves!

    13. Missing avatar

      -DarkWing- on

      @Robert Moran
      Well most of that is up to the developer, not to the publisher, it has been implied that the IP belongs to iga and most likely the game too, distribution rights for this instalment are with 505, but i don't think they have much saying on the actual game.

    14. Missing avatar

      Robert Moran on

      After just realizing that 505 games is on this I'm now really concerned. 505 games butchered the living hell out of the Switch port of Portal Knights and refuses to do anything about it. It's littered with bugs that delete your progress, corrupt your file, and crash.

      While everyone is screaming for a release date, I'm going to assume the game won't even play properly.

    15. Imcorer on

      Woooo! Excitement! Such anticipation, much suspense!

      This looks like just a bunch more goody stuff. I never could and still can't wait for release date.

    16. Tcrew on

      any way just to toggle hayter to be in the japanese audio? that would rock

    17. Yig, The Frogdog Whisperer on

      I don't care about all that info I just want an estimated release date.

    18. giga-ganon on

      while i like the new design of vepar better, i feel we should have kept the old color palette! The new one is too dark...

      The 2D castlevania games were always colorfull, there was no need for them to be daaaaark

    19. Jussi Myllyluoma
      Superbacker
      on

      This "Mysterious Man" ... in a large-collared greatcoat (judging from the silhouette) ... that is voiced by Ryotaro Okiayu and Robert Belgrade ... I wonder -- with all these not-so-subtle clues -- is it Alucard, or are we just supposed to think it's Alucard, so that we all are surprised when it's actually an entirely different character?

    20. Missing avatar

      Jeremy Mann on

      OH MAN! I am so hype for Erica Lindbeck and David Hayder. Like holy butts.

    21. Dashaun Rutledge on

      This voice cast is looks top class I can't wait to play this game

    22. Kaori Dakrest on

      question, are we allowed to stream the demo? ~<3

    23. Missing avatar

      superdrw on

      No release date yet... OK. If I backed 2 platforms, how many demo download code shall I have?

    24. Missing avatar

      Brett S.
      Superbacker
      on

      That's a fantastic English voice cast! Can't wait.

    25. Missing avatar

      Hasan on

      @Jaryd Weiss they announced the jap voice actors in a previous update

    26. Missing avatar

      CJ
      Superbacker
      on

      I agree with Darkwing that I wanted to know more about the state of the game and what is happening. This isn't just because I want the game sooner, but because as a backer that's something I think is important.

      That said Vepar looks MUCH better now. Before with that coloring and and design she seemed so cartoonish and it clashed with the style created elsewhere. Now she fits much more and seems more like a threat (although I agree keeping the midsection large would have been a good move, it made that section more "monstrous")

    27. Jákup Fuglø
      Superbacker
      on

      That boss is so much less intimidating now (not to mention generic-looking). Much preferred the old design.
      Could've used the old design with the new colors at least.
      Video games are supposed to be fun and make-believe and are a form of escapism from reality so why not go all out and over the top?
      If I had known you were going to give in to the the prudes I would either not have backed this or paid at least $400 less than I ended up paying.

    28. Missing avatar

      Devin R. Lowe on

      This is a quality cast, I have to say.

      Can't wait to hear more of them!

    29. Missing avatar

      David Egea Bañon on

      Oh camon, the boss was perfect with those big tits.

    30. Missing avatar

      Keegan on

      Demo for $60 and above in June 2018? Yeah, fuck your other backers!
      It's been so many years I don't remember what I even pledged.

      Estimated delivery: Mar 2017

    31. Missing avatar

      -DarkWing- on

      @HoverGeek
      I can't really know if you are being sarcastic, but i'm pretty sure they can't afford 2020 as release date because of the following:
      - Every year that the game grows older the consoles that this is aimed to become a little bit more obsolete (and you can argue that pc won't be obsolete, but trust me, game developers now more than ever want their games on consoles since it is the higher revenue per copy).
      - Every year that this game grows older the genre itself becomes more obsolete
      - Every year that this game grows older there is a greater risk of konami actually releasing a new 2-2.5d castlevania (and if it turns to be good that would make kind of obsolete this game)

      So while i don't really mind delays, the publishers usually do care a lot about delays, that's why you get big names pushing unfinnished games that require day 1 patches.

    32. Missing avatar

      Michael Toy on

      Quite the impressive yet drastic change on the boss. I like the new art change but I really do hope that whatever heat came your way pushed you to change its characteristics. Can't say I'm happy people blow things up over something so little. Note that goes for any character design. I don't want to see you getting pushed around by people. Keep up the great work guys o/

      Also I'm happy with the cast. It really sounds like you guys put effort in choosing voices that fit with the characters personality. Can't wait to play. And thank you voice actors for all your hard work. \o/

    33. Missing avatar

      HoverGeek on

      Hey guys, just want to reiterate here in case you missed it: I just wanted to express my sentiment that you should push the game to January of 2020 and get the game absolutely right in every aspect before release. I know a handful of people will be disappointed, but tens of millions of people could love this game for a lifetime like they do SoTN if it comes out at full quality and with all the backer stretch goals having been met. While there might be a vocal and angry minority of internet people mad about having to wait until a 2020 release date, this game could stand as a testament to the genre and style of game long into the future, maybe well after all of us are gone. We're no longer on the hype train that got the game funded at this point. There's nothing to lose in waiting and making the best game you possibly can. You have my vote: Please push the game back until it's totally finished.

    34. Missing avatar

      John Ellis on

      Oh yeah Kari Wahlgren is it it:)
      Will the JP option be available? I doubt I will use it, but I always like it there as an option, who knows on a second playthrough I could try it.

    35. Missing avatar

      SoTNLover on

      Ahh yeah, Robbie Belgrade. The legend of Alucard. Man Alucard had the sickest voice acting, I’m excited to see who this mystery character is

    36. TheRealMalek on

      So happy with the boss change, it really looks menacing now without the baby blue color...

    37. Raul Rosas III on

      Seeing how things have come together since the start has been both exciting and very informational. I wish everyone success on this project and in the future.

    38. Sander Evers on

      This is looking and sounding really good. I can't wait for more ;)

    39. Eltanin on

      I'm happy with the boss battle update and the English voice cast is on point. On that note, I think the change of role for David Hayter was a great call; his voice definitely fits Zangetsu more.

    40. Tue
      Superbacker
      on

      Changes to the boss looks nice, but think I prefer the old version more - at least the mid section due to being larger and the smaller boss fight area. Unless you added more parts to the fight I guess.
      Voice actors look good too - allways impressive the range some people got.

    41. Missing avatar

      capnhuh on

      oh man, from my little point of view this game is turning out better and better every update. i gotta control my hype or i'll just burst lol.

    42. Rodrigo Hernandez Cruces on

      Hope you can give us the release date.

    43. Jaryd Weiss on

      Did we get a list of the Japanese actresses/actors? And will that be an option?

    44. Missing avatar

      Yarott on

      @Tyler Ferguson: We have known for a while that this update was only the reveal of the release date's release date: Soon™.

    45. Tyler Ferguson on

      So the promised info about release date uhhhh you didn't put that in this update like you said you would. Nice.

    46. Missing avatar

      -DarkWing- on

      Come on guuuuuuys i wanna now more about the actual state of the game it can't be that hard to give us atleast something :/

    47. Missing avatar

      Joel Martinez on

      Very solid english cast, im happy with Erica Lindbeck being the lead. Hope she can knock it out of the park.

    48. Andromeda No Shun on

      "Vault Security"

      Such a memorable role !

      Just kiddin' guise. Keep up the good work.

    49. Jedi Johnny on

      Come onnnnnn Robbie Belgrade's "Mysterious Man" to be a guest appearance by Alucard!