Anime Expo 2014 Day 1: Gen Urobuchi and Nitro+

At 7:00 pm there was a special event in the LA Convention Center’s Petree Hall, where AX Guest of Honor Gen Urobuchi hosted a panel with his friend and CEO of Nitro+ Takaki Kosaka. The panel unfolded as follows:

–       Urobuchi is ushered into the stage with the audience chanting “Butcher! Butcher!” (this is due to his habit of killing off beloved characters).

–       Kosaka is ushered in with cries of Nitro+! Nitro+!

–       The air is electric, these guys are super Urobuchi fans.

–       After an applause, Gen says in clear English “Thank you.”

–       Everytime Francis (the moderator) says Gen’s name, the crowd goes wild!

–       Gen is VP of Nitro Plus

–       Nitro plus makes games, visual novels, videos and other stuff.

–       They still make ero (pornographic) games (though  Kosaka says he can’t say that loudly because they make kids stuff too now).

–       Kosaka says that without ero games, Gen wouldn’t have been born. This is followed by much laughter from the crowd and Gen.

–       Video of all of Gen and Nitro’s productions is causing the crowd to break out into cheers at regular intervals. Video shows  such works as Madoka Magica, Fate/Zero, Song of Saya, Steins; Gate and Phantom of Inferno.

–       They’re still cheering.

–       CEO says it’s only a fraction of what we’ve done, but we wanted to show you what we do.

–       There are about 85 staff and 50 creators at Nitro+.

–       Kosaka says that they make games themselves, but collaborate with a lot of companies for anime and other products.


–       Basically they move to a brief look with comments from CEO and Gen of all Nitrop+ products

–       CHiral is going to be adapted to an anime premiering next week.

–       Kosaka officially hands the panel over to Gen.

–       Gen asks what are we going do to with Madoka next? He asks the audience to let him know what they think.

–       Fate/Zero: Gen says  Fate/Stay Night was more of a happy story

–       Gen says Gargantia was the first title that he worked on that was robot based. He feels that the story was getting too dark, but then he was able to make it healthy and happy in the end.

–       Psycho-Pass: Gen says first he was thinking this was a dark, sci-fi story, he wasn’t sure how it was going to work, but thanks to everyone the next season is in the works. He was worried about it standing next to respected series like Ghost in the Shell and Patlabor, but it all worked out.

–       Kamen Rider Gaim: Gen says this is the longest show’s story line that he’s worked on, he wrote the 3rd to las tand 2nd to last episodes on the plane ride, and is going to write the finale when he gets back to Japan.

–       Aldnoah. Zero: Gen says he wrote the first three episode but then is going to pass the baton to another guy (llook him up) for the rest. He saw some of it and it looks really good.

–       Trailer for Aldnoah Zero, looks interesting. Not much different than the typical giant robot anime, but I’d give it a look. It airs 33 hours from now (7:52 pm PST).

–       Expelled from Paradise: Gen says he wrote this script before Madoka, it’s a theatrical release, and he worked with the Gundam double zero director, from a development status it took the longest, but he feels that it’s worth the wait. It will be released in November of this year. Trailer shows it is mainly CGI, with skimpy clothing for the heroine.  Gen says this is using CG the same technique with Cyborg 009.

–       Q & A is now opened up, many people rush for the microphone. A long line instantly forms.

–       The first guy asks if there is a magical girl from Madoka Magica that most describes your personality and why? Gen says Out of the five Kyoko, Madoka and Homura, he likes all three. Gen says it is too difficult to pick just one.

–       Next guy asks about his writing, what other writings has influenced Gen? Gen says it is after he writes that he realizes he was influenced by something.

–       A woman asks if he have a philosophy of writing? Is it work or is Gen trying to send out some kind of information? Gen says most of the time when he writes there is no deep message  he’s trying to convey, he just loves writing, so he writes. A lot of the time character struggle, they try really hard, so that  itself becomes the message. So he doesn’t think about that much in the beginning, it just naturally becomes that way.

–       Another woman asks if there is difference in writing style between writing for Nitro+ or others? Gen says for everything he writes he wants to say something different, so it’s always a challenge. Kamen Rider was a big challenge, because it was a style he had never written, but he really enjoyed it.

–       Next guy asks about the mentions made in Nietzsche’s philosophy in the third Madoka movie, was there a a Nietzschean influence? Gen says he thinks that all the characters know their fate, they’re all doing it while knowing their destiny. It’s not sad, but they know what their fate is.

–       Last guy asks all three who their  wifu is. Gen says Yuta from the game Equal. Kosaka says it’s a secret.

–      Panel concludes with auctioning off of three signed Madoka Magica posters, which is determined by Gen playing rock paper sissors with the contenstants. It is amazing.


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