As a huge fan of the first Ni No Kuni game, the sequel was a bit worrying as I knew that Studio Ghibli wasn’t around anymore to provide support. The style of the original was very much built around the concepts forged by the legendary Japanese animation studio, even if the animated cutscenes were removed. Luckily, while Ghibli might have folded (and then possibly been resurrected once again), the people that originally gave the game its Ghibli charm have stayed on for Ni No Kuni 2 Revenant Kingdom.
As revealed in a behind closed doors session in the middle of Bandai Namco’s epic E3 2017 booth, at least two key Ghibli personnel are still working on Ni No Kuni 2. Joe Hisaishi will do the music once again, marking a very important part of the experience for fans of Ghiblis work. Joining him is Yohiyusi Momose, taking control of character design for the game. Momose’s credits include such Ghibli classics as Spirited Away, Porco Rosso, and the dreadfully impactful Grave of the Fireflies. Also sticking around from the first game is General Director Akihiro Hino.
Much has changed in regards to gameplay and story for Ni No Kuni 2, but the spirit definitely seems to have been carried over. That was the key element that created so many die hard fans of the first game, so while there’s still a lot to watch out for, it does look like this sequel will live up to the first in the most important ways.
I recently played Ni No Kuni 2 as well and will be sharing my thoughts a little later on. The demo wasn’t perfectly solid, offering a glimpse at combat, which has never been a huge draw for the series. Still, I came away from my time with Bandai Namco even more excited for the game.
Ni No Kuni 2 Revenant Kingdom arrives November 10th on PS4 and PC.