Digimon Adventure PSP – Hiroyuki Kakudou’s comment

A translation of original Digimon Adventure director Hiroyuki Kakudou’s comment on the voice direction for the PSP Digimon Adventure game.

One day in the spring of 2012, an incredibly thick script appeared to me with a bang on my desk.
After the last episode of Digimon Xros Wars had aired,
I’d thought, “I’m done with all my Digimon-related work, huh.”

But I was wrong.
Rather than the end, it was another beginning.

Up until then, when Digimon Adventure and 02 had initially ended,
then after I’d written the afterword for the novel version,
through Tamers and after Frontier when we’d finished four series,
or when we’d finished DIGITAL MONSTER X-evolution,
I’d kept thinking that this was the end, but…

The script that had arrived was, of course, for the PSP version of Digimon Adventure.
And just as the title said, there was a compilation of all 54 episodes of the TV anime, plus the movie!
This time, I was allowed to do a little bit of supervision for the audio direction.

We didn’t have the time to sit around gaping at whether we could record all of those voice parts,
and the recording process started.
This was incredibly difficult.
We had to relive the entire content of the 1-year-and-1-month program over such a short time.
We had to request as much of the original cast as we could.
Not just the ones for the eight Chosen Children and their Digimon, but even the guest actors who’d appeared in more than a few episodes.
Naturally, since you don’t have to have everyone recording together at the same time, we recorded them separately.1
With about 50 people, the total recording time probably exceeded 70 hours.

Moreso than resource requirements, I was worried if they could pull it off with everyone recording separately. But even though I’d been surreptitiously worrying about this.
my fears were completely unfounded.
The lines that they had once acted out, the story…I wonder if they remembered it with something beyond just the brain.
The regular actors reproduced their performances beautifully to the last detail.
Even though there were several voice actors who’d retired and said that they hadn’t stood in front of the mic in a long time, everything was fine.
And it wasn’t just the regulars.
The guest actors too, like Wizarmon and Etemon and Vamdemon and Pinocchimon and Piemon!
Of course, Hiroaki Hirata-san’s narration, and Gennai-san, too!
And this is a game, so this means that the player will really be able to be immersed in that world.

However, there was one role that we couldn’t ask to have the original actor for.
The problem was Takeru2, a major role.
So, whom should we ask to play him?
As the names of various candidates emerged, one of our criteria was “if we were making the show for the first time now, whom would we hire?”
Another was “a person who would understand each scene without us having to explain it to them”.
That is to say, it means we need “a person who enjoyed Digimon Adventure”…
The perfect person to meet this criteria was Megumi Han-san, who had appeared in Xros Wars.
As for how I’d discovered how enthusiastic she had been about Digimon Adventure during her childhood,
I’d heard how thrilled she was to be starring next to those who had played Taichi and the others in Xros Wars’ last episode.3
“I’m not necessarily looking for an exact imitation, so you don’t have to attempt the impossible and fake it,”
I told her during her consultation on recording day.
And she made a superb Takeru.
As expected, it wasn’t just Takeru; we had to ask people to fill in for other roles,
such as, of course, Devimon4 and Piccolomon5.
For those who are wondering who we got, please wait for a later announcement.

Since I didn’t get to see most of the game footage at the time of recording,
even on this official site, every time I see screencaps, I feel surprise and joy.
What great attention to detail in reproduction. The game staff’s earnestness and dedication.
There’s no way I could have known this when I’d received that huge script.
These images with those voices, being able to draw out the scene so well;
the people who were children at the time of the TV broadcast would really look forward this game.
But I don’t think anyone is looking forward to this game more than I am.

There’s only a few more months left until the day when that adventure begins once again.
I’m really excited.
Ah, I have to buy a PSP before then.

  1. Director Kakudou mentions recording everyone separately because the recording process is different between that of anime vs. that of games; anime like Digimon Adventure are recorded with everyone taking turns at the mic in one room, while games are recorded with everyone giving their lines separately one by one (as dialogue is significantly more spaced out due to how it’s presented in the game). []
  2. Takeru’s original voice actress, Hiroko Konishi, retired from the voice acting industry in around 2002. []
  3. Han had played Airu in Digimon Xros Wars; the last episode referred to is the one in which many of the prior Digimon protagonists returned for a crossover episode. []
  4. Devimon’s actor, Kaneto Shiozawa, passed away in 2000, and was played by Ryoutarou Okiayu for this game. []
  5. Piccolomon’s actor, Isamu Takonaka, passed away in 2010, and was played by Yuuji Mitsuya for this game. []

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