Saturday, October 4, 2014

News: Fifth Season Cardfight!! Vanguard G Announced, Harmonics Messiah Mechanics Detailed

Left to right; Kiba Shion, Shindou Chrono, Anjou Tokoha
A broadcast from Bushiroad's special conference today has announced the start of a new season of Cardfight!! Vanguard on October 26th, Cardfight!! Vanguard G. Coming alongside the introduction of a new separate product line for the multimedia franchise, G offers to both wipe the slate clean for newcomers and build on the material familiar to older fans of the series.

Taking place after a three-year timeskip, the series will follow Shindou Kurono, Kiba Shion and Anjou Tokoha as the new protagonists of G, with returning cast Katsuragi Kamui and Tokura Misaki serving as supporting characters. A website for the season went up shortly after the broadcast, describing the new characters introduced by G. Kurono is a protagonist who "lost his parents at an early age and relies on his own power," while Shion is "both the class clown and a cool young man, educated in fencing." Tokoha meanwhile is "a true Tokyoite girl with a graceful appearance." Kurono uses the never-before-seen clan Gear Chronicle, which brings together the destinies of these three towards an "impossible future, an impossible self signifying 'Generation.'"

Principle protagonist Shindou Kurono's name is a dual-language pun on the word Chrono "Time," while the kanji for his surname 新導 approximate the meaning "New Lead" in contrast to preceding Sendou Aichi's 先導 "Forward Lead." Returning character Kamui will be working part time at a second Card Capital location, while Misaki inherits the chain as a whole and serves as its owner.

Miyano Mamoru will be returning to voice Ibuki Kouji as a key supporting character, and to sing the new opening theme for Cardfight!! Vanguard G. Notably, Miyano's introduction in the stream doubled the number of viewers and caused a suddenly influx of Premium NND users to join, kicking out non-Premium members for the limited seating available to the livestream. The stream ultimately garnered a 72% approval rating with an audience of more than 22,000 viewers and more than 5,000 comments posted within the hour.

Starting with G the previous director and series writer Tsuji Hatsuki and Urahata Tatsuhiko will be departing from the franchise. These two have served as director and writer for Cardfight!! Vanguard, Asia Circuit, Link Joker and Legion Mate. For G their roles are filled by Yoshimura Kyoko (吉村清子) and Umemoto Yui (梅本唯.) Yoshimura is known for her work on Final Fantasy Unlimited and Witchblade, as well as serving as the co-director to Vanguard's Link Joker arc, while Umemoto is already well-appreciated for her contributions to the first season of Cardfight!! Vanguard. She has both storyboarded and directed Suzugamori Ren's introduction to the series in episode 23, the battle between Kai and Ren in 47, and the masterpiece episode 62, better known as the first instance of Tsukuyomi being used to stack the deck.

G will make use of the new Stride mechanic introduced earlier by the Neon Messiah movie promo card, Harmonics Messiah. Each of the main characters of G will be featured using a Stride unit, cards which are kept outside of the main deck and used after the ride phase of the turn; by discarding cards with total of 3 or more grade from the hand while the vanguard is at grade 3 or greater, a Stride unit can be placed over the vanguard until the end of the turn. So far this has not been treated as a ride, and according to the stream can be performed after a normal ride, meaning that break ride skills will not activate, and the Stridden card retains the names of both itself and of the base form it has Stridden over. The power of the unit Stridden is added to the Stride unit, however. The introduction of a "G-Assist Step" will see further interaction with Stride, allowing it to be performed to cope with being gradelocked.

Of the revisions made to the TCG by G, the upcoming trial decks for the season will contain four copies of their RRR-rarity card instead of just one, as well as two perfect defense cards and two copies of their cover card each. The products for the new season will also partially reset the set order, reflecting the divide between Cardfight!! Vanguard and Cardfight!! Vanguard G. On November 21st the first trial decks of the new season will come out, VG-G-TD01: Awakening of the Interdimensional Dragon and VG-G-TD02: Divine Swordsman of the Shiny Star. These will be followed on December 5th by VG-G-BT01: Generation Stride. (時空超越/ストライドジェネレーション Jikuchuuetsu/Sutoraido Jenereeshon "Space-time Transcendence/Stride Generation.") VG-G-TD03 and 04 will follow in January, then VG-G-BT02 in February, and the first extra booster set of the season will be released in March. TD01 will support the new Gear Chronicle clan, while TD02 will support Royal Paladin, and BT01 will contain cards for Royal Paladin, Gear Chronicle, Kagerou, Nova Grappler and Oracle Think Tank.