TGS2023: Yohane of the Parhelion from Bexide


Another small post regarding a great looking indie game from Bexide that we could see at the Tokyo Games Show 2023: 「幻日のヨハネ - NUMAZU in the MIRAGE - 」which roughly translates to Yohane of the Parhelion, Yohane being the game of the heroin. I was not aware of it, but it’s based on an anime series called Yohane the Parhelion: Sunshine in the Mirror that’s a spin-off from the very popular Love Live! franchise - they took the same characters from the Love Live! series and re-imagined them in a fantasy world context.

The game itself is a roguelite deck building game with magical girls as the main cast of characters. For an indie game (well Bexide is not that small with more than 80 people in their staff), it’s exceptionally well made. The art and animations is at the level you see from top tier Japanese game studios, which probably explains why they are going for a rather higher price for an indie game. Here’s the trailer:

It will be releasing in February 2024, on Steam as well as Nintendo Switch and PS5. It’s going to work on the Steam Deck as well, since it was demonstrated at the show using one. The game is made using Unity.

We had the chance to talk to the President of Bexide, 南治 一徳 (NANJI Katsunori-san), mostly focusing on the recent situation related to Unity. Here’s a part of our conversation below in video. Note that the timing matters, at the date when this was recorded, Unity had not yet announced the changes they were planning to make on their policy.

I was personally surprised that they were aware and already using Godot, while not for commercial games yet. The most insightful part was that in the Japanese game developers community, people are apparently starting to talk about Godot, and that he expects it to grow from there. Sometimes all is needed for a community to start is a trigger, and this may be just what was needed in the case of Godot. I still don’t expect Godot to become a major player anytime soon (it’s far away in terms of functionality compared to what Unity can offer right now), but for certain types of games it may be a very viable option.