Cygames Celebrates a Decade of Mobile Gaming Goodness with a Tech Demo

Cygames

As a small part of its 10th year anniversary celebration, renowed mobile game studio Cygames unveils to Japanese gaming magazine Famitsu its current “metagame” technologies.

These tech helped create and develop the famous mobile games that are well-loved by its ever-growing dedicated fanbase.

『グラブル』や『ウマ娘』など“最高のコンテンツ”を生み出し続けるサイゲームスの最新スタジオ&アニメ・マンガ制作現場に潜入!

Oh, Not Familiar With Cygames Yet?

Cygames is a game development studio established in 2011, with a focus on creating mobile games for the Android and iOS platforms. They might not be the biggest in Japan, but they have quite a good selection of very popular IPs, a few even spawning different sequels and spin-offs. If you have played any of the following popular mobile games, then you are most likely already familiar with what they do:

  • Rage of Bahamut
  • Granblue Fantasy
  • Shadowverse
  • Dragalia Lost
  • The Idolmaster Cinderella Girls
  • Princess Connect! Re:Dive
  • Uma Musume Pretty Derby

Uma Musume Pretty Derby, in particular, is currently one of Cygames’ most recent and most popular games. Formerly beset with scheduling issues, the game was finally launched last February 2021 after almost two years of delay (from the originally planned release date).

Within the short months following its release up to today, the game has been downloaded more than five (5) million times, and is currently the hottest mobile game being streamed amongst regular vtubers in Japan.

Sixty-Seven Snapping Lights: Motion Capture Technologies

[Model Picture] [Created Face CG]
In 2017, Cygames has built its own photogrammetry studio for the purposes of developing highly-detailed 3D data, particularly that of human models. While it was obtained at a significant cost, the drastically reduced time and manpower needed to create 3D models was a boon for the company for many of its games and related promotion material. In particular, fans of Cygames’ titles would often see 3D motion capture technologies being employed to represent specific series characters. This is mostly to promote their respective games through officially established YouTube channels.

This was upgraded even further in 2021, with the use of Esper’s Light Cage system. Today, Cygames’ 3D development studio uses an array of 67 cameras working together with properly timed flashes to create 603 ultra-high quality images in a single session.

At Home As You Should: Sound Technologies

[Studio C] [Stereo Optimized Studio]
A year prior to the development of the 3D studio in 2016, Cygames’ Tokyo office branch established its sound studio. From a technological standpoint, it doesn’t offer anything too revolutionary. The main theme is that it should simply be practical to use and thematically aesthetic (to the room). One primary studio would usually be equipped with 7.2.4-channel sound speakers, while other sub-sound studios would be installed with 5.1-channel surround speakers.

More importantly, the sound studios have adopted the modern concept of no longer making it look like a sound studio. As the sound department manager describes it:

“It feels like some sort of vacation villa from somewhere out of town.”

As you may have guessed, the idea of this popularized concept is to let both the sound engineers and the recording guests to feel at home with the studio. It is expected that the relaxed atmosphere would help them consistently perform at their best, minimizing the amount of stress that is induced by each session.

Of course, for more dedicated sound sampling sessions, the department still has a few actual sound stages that are traditionally designed. But these are usually reserved for sound editing tasks.

Cygames and Manga Publishing?!

[I’ll deal with all the fights you throw at me!] [I won’t deal them to you myself, though.]
Yes, for those who are a bit more familiar with Cygames and their subsidiaries, the company also has its own manga publishing division. CyComi, as it is known, don’t just create spin-off material for its primary mobile games, but are also responsible for the continued publication of a number of original titles, such as Tsuyoshi, Dare mo Katenai Aitsu ni Wa, Forward!, and Anata wa Watashi ni Otosaretai.

Because it is mobile-based, it has also adopted the same webcomic format of other mobile-based manga publishing companies. In any case, the division remains a valuable alternative avenue of Akiba-kei stuff, with it is purely promotional or not.

Traditionally Updated: Animation Studio Highlights

[Animation/Art/Filming/CG]
Cygames Pictures is the technical brainchild of every single notable cutscene from every single mobile game that the company has developed and published. For example, if you have ever seen any of Princess Connect! Re:Dive’s story animations (of the game, NOT the TV anime), you’d immediately feel astonished at the level of quality, which technically could even surpass that of a single dedicated anime studio. This is especially evident in crossover events, where collaboration characters from other series are also incorporated into the cutscenes, making it like a seamless official anime episode aired somewhere locally.

There is a distinct focus on traditional animation techniques for the studio, or at least that is what the crew of Cygames Pictures claim. At the very least, they still combine a number of older (but still effective) animation techniques to modern ones in order to recreate a scene as perfectly as it can be compared to the original storyboard.

Because most of Cygames’ best titles are gacha format mobile games, they can be hard to get into to someone who’s not into lootbox-type gameplay. But, you can at least check out the lore and stories of each individual title. Online activities of each series, especially on their official YouTube channels, should prove to be equally interested as well.

Sources:

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