Sentou Gakuen is the very first anime-styled Online Visual Novel that is combined with MMORPG elements.
You are free to choose your own path. You can work and study, be a delinquent, protect the weak or even exploit their weaknesses. Get a part time job for money, or steal exam answer keys and sell them. Spend money to help your friends, or horde it for your own well being. Defend yourself by equipping various weapons such as pencils, rulers, or pepper spray; and get a hold of armor for extra protection. You can form a club with a group of people for a common purpose, and become the most respected group of students in the school.
Make friends or foes, the choice is yours.
GamingClimax.com: Sentou Gakuen is the first ever anime-styled Online Visual Novel, combined with MMORPG elements developed by the PST Team. Can you give us a brief introduction to Sentou Gakuen?
As you already know, Massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG) is a genre of role-playing video games in which a very large number of players interact with one another within a virtual game world.
How about a Visual Novel? A visual novel is an interactive fiction game featuring mostly static graphics, usually with anime-style art, or occasionally live-action stills or video footage. As the name might suggest, they resemble mixed-media novels or tableau vivant stage plays. The genre Visual Novel, is not that popular among westerner players, I’m sure many of you never heard this before. But Visual Novel is very popular in Japan, which made up nearly 70% of the PC game titles released in 2006.
Sentou Gakuen combines these Visual Novel and MMORPG elements into one. This game will feature stats just like in any other MMORPG. The Story Mode is where the story and characters of the game will be introduced in a Visual Novel-way. The Story Mode is optional, and is similar to what would be called quests. The game itself is open-ended while the story is ongoing.
This will be the very first Massively Multiplayer Online Visual Novel to ever exist.
GamingClimax.com: Are there any specific challenges in creating an Online Visual Novel rather than the more common RPG type MMO?
There are a lot of challenges we face while developing this game, starting from game balancing, eliminating bugs, working on VN Framework, and so many more, moreover we are just small team filled with amateurs that is trying to realize this project. At the first, we kind have hesitations about how’s the game going to be. But as we progress, yes this is possible.
GamingClimax.com: What is the meaning of Sentou Gakuen?
GamingClimax.com: What types of scenery, characters and adventures can players expect to encounter in Sentou Gakuen?
Sentou Gakuen primarily takes place in a fictional school called Sentou High School, which is located somewhere in Tokyo. Most of the time players spend their time at the school, but there are also location outside the school where players can visit. Physical locales of Tokyo such as the dangerously Shibuya Scramble Crossing, Akihabara, and Wako Shop at Ginza can be spotted in the game.
GamingClimax.com: Sentou Gakuen’s characters are more like students in a typical school than fictional or fantasy characters. Can you give us some details about the characters and how players will be able to create their own characters in-game?
Yes, in here you won’t find Queen Something or King Something, like on your ordinary fantasy rpg games. But in Sentou Gakuen you will be able to face the weird principal Honoo Masato, tsundere class representative Matsumoto Fumiko, transfer student from Indonesia Widya Wulandari, Three Idiots, and so many more.
Sounds boring? Not really, each of them has unique personalities that will make you want to know more about them.
To create the characters, first they have to fill a Sentou Gakuen Admission Form, which will be available at Open Beta. Unfortunately there are no special things at the characters customizations in Sentou Gakuen, so there’s no many things I can tell you here. But don’t worry, we will keep developing it as the time goes.
GamingClimax.com: What kind of skills and special abilities can each player’s character acquire in-game?
There are no attack move skills, or spells, or etc like on ordinary RPG game. But in Sentou Gakuen, there are various kind of Actions that can be done by Players in order to earn Experience and money. The higher the level, the more Actions available to choose.
GamingClimax.com: Sound and Graphic design are essential to a game. Can you give us some information about the concept behind the style of Sentou Gakuen?
The graphics on Sentou Gakuen are done by Blue Forest for Character Graphics, NAOX and キュキュキュのＱ as for the Background graphics. And unfortunately this game has no sound effect.
GamingClimax.com: Guilds are present in the game. Are they likely to be school groups? What benefits can each player get when they join guilds?
Yes, in Japan it’s called Bukatsu (部活), or Club. Group of students that share same goal, vision, or any particular things are advised to form their own Club. Clubs are organizations that are organized by the students themselves. Each club will generally be assigned its own room or other facilities, and will have a powerful president and vice-president who’ll be a significant character of some sort. Clubs also have privileges to organize a club activities that would require participations from their members. Most of clubs give assistances, protections, and any kind of helps to its members. Joining a club, are the most important thing in order to survive on Sentou Gakuen.
And also, If there’s a conflict between two clubs, the president of the respective clubs can declare war on another club, it’s called “Club Wars”.
GamingClimax.com: What kind of weapons and items can players acquire in game? Are there premium items to be given after completing special quests?
Players can equip themselves with pencil, nail clippers, fire extinguishers, or etc as weapons. Sounds silly? No, but that’s how it is on Sentou Gakuen. Never underestimate the power of pencil!
Yeah, you will get sort of special items which can only be obtained through the Story mode.
GamingClimax.com: Will Sentou Gakuen feature an item mall? Are these items purely cosmetic, or do they have a large effect on a character?
Hmm, there is a currency beside money called Points to purchase items at Secret Shop. But unlike ordinary item-mall-currency that can only be obtainable through real cash, this Points can be obtainable in various way beside of getting it through real cash. Such as killing certain students, doing surveys, casting votes, trading, and many more.
These items, do have effect on characters such as giving faster regeneration rate, but it doesn’t affect the story, and these items are optional. Meaning, without them, you can still fully enjoy this game for free.
GamingClimax.com: What are the minimum system requirements for Sentou Gakuen?
Since Sentou Gakuen is a web based game, there are no need to download clients. Any devices that has internet connection should be able to access this game.
GamingClimax.com: Is there a messaging system in-game in Sentou Gakuen? How can players communicate with their friends and acquaintances?
Yes there is. Well just like ordinary messaging system.
GamingClimax.com: Is there a trading and crafting system in Sentou Gakuen? How can players buy and sell their items?
There is a Crafting Class, in here players can craft various items startng from Slingshots, Metal Bat, or even a Death Note! In order to craft, each item has IQ and Labor stats requirement. The more advanced the items, the higher IQ and Labor are needed in order to craft the items.
The trading, selling and buying can be done by using 2 currencies, Yen and Points. To do trading players need to visit Akihabara Item Market to sell or buy their items.
GamingClimax.com: What would you recommend that players definitely try out in the game once they start playing?
Probably the first thing that you need to visit. It contains a lot of guides, tutorials, and helps on how to get started on Sentou Gakuen. This will help newcomers a lot.
Visit this place if you have something to ask that is not covered on Library. Student Council is like Sentou Gakuen in-game forums.
The Dating System,.
The Dating System here is quite interesting. The player can choose whether they want to be in relationship with another students (another players) or NPC Characters from Visual Novel. This action can be done by confessing, putting love letter on shoe locker. However if you want to date NPC Characters you have to win their affection points, and how to raise the affection points? by giving items and or raising certain stats or etc. However, 1 NPC can only date 1 user with the highest affection points towards him/her, so for example you date with ‘Widya Wulandari’ this week (because you have the highest affection points to her amongst another players), then by the end of the week if someone else has bigger Widya’s Affection Points, she will broke up with you and confess to him/her instead. So you have to maintain your affection points even after you won her.
If you have Boyfriend, or Girlfriend, there will be a special menu appears where you can do actions towards your partner, these actions are special actions that can replenish some of your vitality, however it can only be done once a day. So use it wisely.
Hirose Entertainment Yard,
If you find yourself bored or has nothing to do, go visit Hirose Entertainment Yard at Taito Wards. It’s a game center, you can play tons of mini games there.
GamingClimax.com: Aside from daily quests, players are always watching out for special and occasional events that gives a lot of experience and special gift items. What kind of events can players expect in Sentou Gakuen?
We haven’t held a lot of events since it’s not open beta yet. But Halloween last time, there was “Zombie Attack” it was like sort of survival game where zombie infection began spreading over Shibuya. Everyone who is still a human gets a prize, and the zombie with the most kills get prizes. It was quite fun! Just like anime High School of The Dead where zombie players go rampaging to other students.
But, do expect a lot of events to be happened after open beta! I’m sure there will be a lot of interesting event happening later on!
GamingClimax.com: What is your favorite thing to do in Sentou Gakuen and what would you recommend all players try at least once in the game?
My favourite thing to do is playing prank and using Death Note on principal. Even though it quite costy to craft, I think it’s quite fun to hospitalize someone for 30 minutes straight. Hahaha.
GamingClimax.com: What is your favorite class to play and why?
In Sentou Gakuen there is no class separation like on your traditional RPG, there are no Mages, Warriors, Cleric, and so on. But, if I can say, the players are mainly divided into two type. Good Student and Bad Student. Bad Students, are geared towards more money, Good Students are geared towards exp, thus making them faster on levelling. Both of them has advantages and disadvantages. My favourite is the Good one,
GamingClimax.com: Is there anything else you want to tell us about the game?
There are still many fun things that you can do over Sentou Gakuen that haven’t covered on this interview, so go check it out. I’m 100% sure Sentou Gakuen is not as boring as your school. I’ll be waiting there!