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*COMPETiTiON NOW CLOSED! – Winners will be announced this week*
*EDiT* The closing time for ALL entries is 12 midnight GMT (London) on Christmas day.

It's coming up to that time of the year. The one that involves digging out Saturns and playing that certain Xmas edition of that one game. Therefore in the (preemptive) spirit of the season I would like to festively launch sparkly gifts at your heads in the shape of our newest competition 'NiGHTS' Festive Freestuff'.

I've been hoarding a few things away in case of emergency NiGHTS fan gift givage and I figured it'd make a nice little activity for us on the run up to Christmas.

SO, what can you win?

. : THE PRiZES : .


 . : Original Artwork  : .


. : Giant A1 Reala Poster : .


. : A2 NiGHTS Poster : .


. : NiGHTS: Lucid Dreaming music album : .


. :  Sonic Colors wrapping paper and SEGA Lanyard  : .

1. Grand Prize winner: 1 Giant A1 Reala poster. 1 A2 NiGHTS poster. The original Inked, signed artwork for the cover of my upcoming NiGHTS fan-comic 'NiGHTS: Descent into Dreams.' And a physical copy of the amazing OCR NiGHTS: Lucid Dreaming album.

2nd Place: 1 A2 NiGHTS poster. A copy of NiGHTS: Lucid Dreaming. Sonic Colors wrapping paper promotional item. SEGA ribbon Lanyard.

3rd Place: 1 A2 NiGHTS poster and a copy of NiGHTS: Lucid Dreaming.

Runners up: We have 7 more copies of NiGHTS: Lucid Dreaming to give away :)

 

. : HOW DO I ENTER? : .

What do you have to do in order to be in with a chance of winning one of these prize packs? Simple!
We want you to finish off the following line-
"In a dream I could see…"

See what? What did you see and how insane and creative can you get with this? You can answer by writing, drawing a picture, making a video, ANYTHING. If it makes us laugh it's a major bonus. People who put effort into their entries will be in with a better chance of winning – so make sure you get really imaginative with this. Make sure it's somewhat NiGHTS related though!
SEND YOUR ENTRIES TO: admin@nightsintodreams.com

. : RULES : .
The competition closes on the 25th of December. Prizes will be sent out after this date to avoid the xmas post. Winners will be notified via email and this website when the winning entries are publicly posted. Only one entry per person. Any fan created material used must belong to you – don't go stealing things from other fans without permission – be considerate. Prizes cannot be exchanged for other items or money. Contest not affiliated or endorsed by SEGA. Have fun! :)

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Taken from the original SEGA Facebook message:

"To our wonderful NiGHTS fans – we haven't forgotten that today is the 15th anniversary of NiGHTS, so happy 15th anniversary to NiGHTS and huge thank you! to everyone for supporting the character and game for all these years! How would you feel about seeing the original "NiGHTS into dreams…" being re-released? Also, if you think this is a good idea… which platform do you think NiGHTS should be released in? We'd love to hear your thoughts!"

 

Like I said. Nothing is impossible. SEGA themselves are now asking. And look at those numbers *lol* we hit over 6000 port votes today and Facebook is currently going crazy over NiGHTS.

Today is a good day to be a fan…

Get to it people : FACEBOOK. GO THERE. NOW

 

Happy birthday NiGHTS.

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Hey guys. Guess what's now online?



 

Fly faster to that download that you've ever flown before.

A new era of dreaming is about to begin~

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Level 99 sure looks happy about his physical distribution copies of NiGHTS: Lucid Dreaming finally arriving, doesn't he? That can only mean one thing. We are getting ever closer to the release date for the remix album.

In light of Lucid Dreaming's forth coming release, Level 99 has been invitied on to Radio Free Gamer to talk about the album. The interview is set to take place on Wednesday June 22nd, from 7 – 9pm EST. The show will be live so you can tune in during those hours to drop a comment for the man or check out the downloadable MP3 after the show has aired. Radio Free Gamer has also landed a little bit of an exclusive in that they'll be playing a tune from NiGHTS: Lucid Dreaming that has not been heard anywhere else yet. I think you'll be wanting to check that out, most definitely.

NiGHTS: Lucid Dreaming is set for release on July 5th. I know. You can't wait. Neither can I.

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Words fail me right now so I'll leave it to the MAN!LEGEND AAUK (forever our Owl!) to explain things in this open letter posted on his website:

 

Dear Visitors (NiGHTS fans),

Yes you. I’d like to talk to you for a minute so stop pulling funny faces at images of Will’s dad (hoot, terrible) and touching NiGHTS (if you like that sort of thing) and listen, as I want to tell you a quick little personal tale.

One of my best experiences when at SEGA was working on NiGHTS Journey Of Dreams because I got to interact with you guys. You’re perhaps one of the most loyal group of video game fans I’ve come across. I’ve always had a very good relationship with you lot and I’ve always been keen to try and help out NiGHTS where possible and keep NiGHTS alive. Be it a reference here, a nod there.

Which is why Summer Of Sonic will be paying tribute to NiGHTS’ own anniversary in a few very special ways. The merchandise cabinet will include NiGHTS stuff this year for a start, we will have a special community related reveal amongst other little flourishes here and there. SEGA may not be celebrating it (I’ve no idea why Puyo Puyo gets the anniversary treatment but NiGHTS does not) but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t.

What’s that? Have I heard about the NiD15 campaign? Why… yes, yes I have.

107322P_Race_12

Of course that brings me neatly onto my next subject and the main point of this letter. No one, but NO ONE has helped keep NiGHTS going more and fought harder than TRiPPY and DiGi over at NiGHTSintoDreams.com have. In recent years they have become known perhaps for more campaigns such as “Don’t Forget NiGHTS” for Sonic & SEGA All-Star Racing and the aforementioned NiD15 campaign, but people forget because of this just how long they’ve been in the community and how long they (and perhaps TRiPPY more specifically on this point) have been leading it. Celebrating a video game series that hasn’t had a game for a decade is HARD but they still kept things going.

They live NiGHTS, he is part of them. It has shaped them as people, inspiring both through art, music and their philosophy on life and they celebrate the fact it has done so. To dream,  be free and be true to yourself. If you cut them they’d bleed purple – except on April 1st when it’d be Reala red of course.

Over the years they have become good friends of mine, but I’ve always wanted to do something a bit more for them then I was able to. I filed in for them in 2007 for an interview with Iizuka-san and hand-delivered a gift to him from them in 2010 which was great but they’ve never been able to meet him. Something they wanted to do so badly.

In fact I have made it something of a personal mission down the years to try and arrange it, the one thing I really wanted to do before I left SEGA, but met with failure every time. I may have left SEGA now, but we had in fact set the wheels in motion before I did. This year WILL be different.

You see, we may not have announced Iizuka-san and indeed Naka-san until quite recently but we had in fact had them lined up for some time. The first thing that was put down for them when they are here? NiGHTSintoDreams.com will be having a private sit down with Yuji Naka and Takashi Iizuka at Summer Of Sonic to discuss 15 years of NiGHTS history, NiGHTS going forward and more. Best get to thinking up what to say you guys.

Lynne, Niyazi, thank you for all your hard work over the years for the NiGHTS fans. I’m sorry your ultimate reward is a little late, but I do hope you enjoy it.

“A tree that reaches all the way up to the heavens must be a sign of your heart’s resolve.” – Owl, NiGHTS Journey Of Dreams

- ArchangelUK -
http://www.sonicwrecks.com/news/community/sos2011intodreams
 

 

*runs around in circles* If you guys have any sensible -questions- for the pair (read as questions and not suggestions) then drop them here and we'll see if we can ask them. Can't promise anything but I'll do my best. We'll also hopefully have a full written transcript of the meeting, audio and photographs!

 

This Saturday is going to be… surreal.

*Achievement Unlocked ~ Life Complete*

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Today I'm very happy to report that our NiGHTS digital port campaign has reached 3000 fans. Thank you for all your support in spreading the word and getting people talking about NiGHTS again. When we started this campaign we weren't expecting so many of you to sign up. So a major thanks is due to each and every one of you who told a friend, posted a topic online, linked back or just simply clicked once on the button.

This number may seem like a lot but we need a lot more than this if we are to convince SEGA that a digital port of of NiGHTS into Dreams is worth their time and money. So keep all that NiGHTS attention coming our way and pass the link around your gaming friends. You don't have to have been around in 1996 to vote for this – if you have a genuine interest in the NiGHTS franchise and want to see it get more recognition then add your click to our page :)

Http://www.NiD15.com

Great work guys!

And in SEGA related news – I got the job at SEGA Europe as a games tester. To say today is a good day would be an understatement. So happy I could explode in raging-fangirl glitter lol. So I guess now I work for SEGA. How long did that take me? XD 17 years of my life! Never give up on your dreams kids ;)

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     Every Friday SEGA Europe and SEGA America host a big prize giveaway on Twitter. You can win all sorts of assorted gaming merch, games and very rare collectable things. THINGS! I know you all can't get enough of things.

So anyhoo, today a nice bit of NiGHTS Journey of Dreams merch has gone up for grabs. A signed CD music sampler from JoD. These CD's were made in a very limited quantity for SEGA Europe as a promotional item, so to own one of these SIGNED by TAKASHI IIZUKA is something you should be interested in :) It's been signed this year too ( so you also get the amusing knowledge that (probably AAUK) hounds the guy to specificaly sign NiGHTS merch for us XD ). Iizuka-san you can never escape the NiGHTS fans! lol :D

If you'd like to be in with a chance to win this, along with some other spectacular prizes like Amigo ASR concept art prints, just go to Twitter.com and follow the official @SEGA account and wait for further instructions. Remember that you have to be following them and they have to be following you in return. Direct messages only when taking part as regular replies don't count.

Best of luck!

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Aaaaaaand here it is! I was waiting for this one to appear!

Team collective BADASS.

Thanks for the great day guys, see you next year ;)

Top row from the left : (Just for Mr 99 down there in the comments) RubyEclipse, DiGi & TRiPPY, Urtheart, Blake, Vger, Nemain, Iceman, Echohawk, Gavin Storey, Graham Seward, John Finlay, James Zeach, Onikage Reaper.
Front row : Angie, T-Bird, AAUK, Johnny Gioeli, Jun Senoue, Dreadknux, Rory, Christophski, Darkspeeds.
Sorry to the few peoples names I don't know XD;

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Summer of Sonic 2010 - London. It's been well over a week now but I've been having a hard time trying to pinpoint everything good that happened on the day. I don't mean that in a generic way in the slightest, really, it was THAT good. I wish you'd all been able to attend, but to those of you who I did get the chance to meet and put in all that hard work – thanks for giving DiGi and I a perfect day :)

So where do i start exactly? Humm, well two days prior to the convention we had a lovely (stealthy- since him coming to SoS was a secret) evening meal in China Town with SEGA America's Ruby Eclipse. I've known Ruby for a good few years now since he used to frequent our forums long before he became a community manager at SEGA, long before any journeying of dreams, owls or other assorted bat-tights. Remember those days? Well Ruby's always been a big NiGHTS fan so it was great to finally just sit down and have a bit of chill-time. It's pretty interesting chatting to Aaron because he's like the SOA version of our AAUK (just without the hilarious Owl impressions). Perspectives make me smile. It makes me happy too that my own community members really follow their dreams. I'm a proud old admin ;-;

Reading the dinner menu was fun, we found you could actually order an ENTIRE roast pig (booked 24hours in advance mind!), but we settled for our regular fare, followed up by almost criminaly delicious deep fried icecream. Afterwards we took him on a bit of latenight sightseeing for photos. There exists a video of Big Ben bonging with DiGi cursing his head off in the background. All in all a great night out with good company.

The next day consisted of me running around doing everything I'd failed to do 3 days beforehand. This year we didn't want to be selling any Studio Imagni stuff at the con since last year was great but we were kinda stuck behind a table most of the time (well poor Jof was!) so this year we wanted to just mingle and enjoy the show. And boy what a show it was!

A few days prior to the convention DiGi and I had travelled down to AAUK's new house. You see, not only was Kevin doing his regular duties as community manager and running a huge fan convention – he was also in the middle of moving home! I'm not entirely sure how he managed to stay sane with all that going on at the same time, but a large box of plastic crabs may suggest otherwise. Kev, Becky and Blake were pretty much juggling home unpacking with Summer of Sonic delivery boxes. That takes some kinda madskills. So we just made it worse for them by handing them a stack of 600 NiGHTS campaign flyers, haha. Yeah the SoS crew were good sports and let us advertise our campaign by putting a flyer into every Summer of Sonic goodie bag this year. If you want to see my art up close you can check out my upload here:

Well after about 5 days of not sleeping due to some random insomnia I was suffering from… SUMMER OF SONIC – HAD ARRIVED!

Up at 6am we were determined to get to The Pavillion early enough to grab us some free swag, which included an amazing Metal Sonic figurine. We love collecting game and anime action figures and stuff so we had to get one of these. Actually we ended up with 2 of everything since we got a bag each. A funky exclusive Sonic print bag made especialy for the convention. If I'm feeling generous enough I might hold a mini competition later on where you can win my bag.

To cut a long story short, long queue was long and it started raining. We were also heckled by some drunken Kiwi's, Rugby fans, which DiGi took great skill in giving chatback to and banishing. Just standing in the line I had a lot of requests for photographs mostly from the general public (probably confused by my slightly mad hair, lol). The event was late in opening but from experience I've never attended any sort of convention where the thing opens on time, I didn't really mind waiting anyway since I knew it would be worth it. A few of the staff came up and talked to us personaly, letting us know something of the setup nightmare the crew were having to deal with inside. Problems with expensive computer equipment being stolen, excess furniture, capacity rules thrown in at the last minute and unhelpful venue staff were really pushing the team to the limit. But amazingly, despite all this, they took it in their stride and continued to give their personal best. I know the Sonic fanbase gets a lot of stick sometimes but when the staff work together to get stuff done they really pull a bit of a Sonic Heroes 'Team work' thing. It's all rather magical, lol. But I'll get into that more later. Standing in the queue we were approached by two lovely chaps from a website I follow on Twitter called Sonicitalia.net they recognized me because of the hair (yeah I get that a lot lol XD). It was at this point that I was told that a lot of attendees rather than wearing name badges have their forum/twitter/facebook avatars printed onto their T-shirts. Great stuff. Suddenly it was a lot easier to recognise folk I knew online!

Then like reaching some kinda spiritual (slightly more blue tinted) Mecca – we were IN. Just narrowly avoiding what became dubbed 'The Pidegon Panic Zone' we were handed two dayglow orange SoS goodie bags by the TROOPER OF A MAN ~ Urtheart. With our heads half in the bags and half remembering how to walk forwards we entered into the main hall which was something of a spectacle of Sonic goodness. My inner NiGHTS fangirl felt both a sudden twinge of jealousy and pride, haha. Nah, I'm just glad that our fanbase is always welcomed so warmly in the Sonic one. I guess we're like the really campy annoying spandexy cousins that only come around once a year to 'borrow' the lawn mower and never return it. But it's all good.

My memory fails me a bit here but i think the first person we bumped into was Dreadknux, telling us that we did indeed HAVE a Studio Imagni table (set up right next to STC's lovely Nigel D none the less), whoops, so if I wanted to use it to sell quick sketches or whatever I was free to do so. I considered making DiGi stand on the table and busk rap style for our lunch but I figured he wouldn't be too into that. So we left the table idea alone (for this year anyway!) and trotted off like ungrateful gits to enjoy the full awesome of the con itself :D

Something I will say straight away is that I was definately less shy with approaching people than I was last year. I've gotten to know a lot of the Sonic community better since then, especialy the staff, since we all went to Alton Towers and Expo together this year. Great bunch of guys and girls. This year we had tons of people come up and ask us for photos with them, knowing who we were. I guess hassling SEGA so much and being generaly irritating makes you some kinda fandom D listers, lol. We had a good few jokes about burning Sonic merch and campaigning for our own convention. It felt really nice to fit in and share in the laughs. After attending the hideously huge Expo this year I felt a lot more connected to the atmosphere of Summer of Sonic. I mean I might draw anime styled stuff but to be honest I don't really know a lot of anime things, I watch the odd DVD now and then but I wouldn't exactly say I'm a Otaku. Summer of Sonic was different, probably because everyone was there because they were fans of one universal thing – Sonic. Sure they might all have clashing opinons on what makes the series good or have website rivalries online, but for one day everyone just chills the hell out and gets on. It's nice. Very full of nostalgia too. When I was a kid I'd always wanted to go to the comic conventions down in England to meet the Fleetway bunch, but the distance made it impossible. Now I live in London this has been my chance to catch up on everything I missed as a Sonic obsessed teenager.

So many fans turned up! Something like well over 800 I think? After a while I lost count of the people I hugged to death and yelled hello at. We walked around taking in all the sights, eager to see what was to be seen this year. Firstly there was an ASR tournie happening on the second floor which DiGi took part in, good sportsmanship, even if some people were using the Tails boost glitch >___>;  ahem. The amazing rare merch cabinet made a welcome return, this year it had the actual Pixel Palace Sonic sketches on show from That Guy With The Glasses. Also the NiGHTS chao plushie and some amazing little Sonic plushies I'd never seen before. There was a crab in the cabinet… but somebody stole Kevins crabs! D: *lol* (that sounds so crazy but it really did happen). It's kinda sad how people will go to a convention and lift stuff like it belongs to them. I hope whoever was kind enough to steal things was jumped on the way home :]

Also two of the main events this year was the presence of both playable Sonic 4 and Sonic Colours. We stood in the line at one point to play Sonic Colours but after seeing how slow the line was moving we felt it best to give up our spaces to the hardcore Sonic fans and wandered on our merry way. From what we seen of other people playing Sonic 4 it looks great! I'm really looking forward to both games coming out. It's odd to say it but for once I'm actually properly excited. You should be too ;) This is Sonic Cycle combo breaking.

Wandering around the hall more we found the crazy mr Elson Wong selling his comics and art (DiGi's evil twin i think!), the STC online crew, Nigel being SWAMPED by adoring fans snapping up more of his original painted art that he was selling last year (I managed to get a quick wave in there), and a big area for people to chill and draw. That's one thing i definately liked this year, the amount of chairs and sitting spaces available. Very comfy sofas. Because it's all well and good walking about but with that many people in one place things get a little hot. Well actually quite a -lot- hot since there was no air conditioning, but to be honest i think it added to the experience haha. What's a real convention without sweaty fellow geeks? XD Other things I got to see was the AMAZING pixel/hama bead comic that Becky and Kev had created by hand. Dot by dot! I was so impressed they finally got it finished considering how massive it was. There was also a table with some neat Sonic customised dolls, backissues on sale and a mystical shop that i didn't get to even breathe on because it was so busy! There was a lot to see and do. This year we mostly hung out at the stage since last year we missed everything. At the stage we were treated to some hilarious animations, flat out comedy moments (come on Vger being forced to Caramel Dansen), Never Mind the Buzz Bombers – with the cutest littlest Sonic fan ever. I swear he knew more facts about Sonic than some of us older people. Which reminds me, DiGi and I had a few mumsy 'aww' moments upon seeing various little kids enjoying themselves on the day. It was a real reminder that Sonic spans real generations, from us kids in the early 90's to todays little guys. I really hope him and NiGHTS continue to be heroes for a new wave of youngsters discovering gaming. In a world full of grey and brown FPS games with not much but death and realism I'm glad that people can still appreciate the colorful imaginative fun games.

There was also a Kareoke singing competition Wrecks Factor Live! The guy who really stole the show was T-Bird's little brother who did a hilariously GREAT performance of the Sonic Underground themesong. Cosplayers were also out in force this year with the chance to win a trophy for best costume on stage. People kept asking if I was cosplaying as Knuckles…. what? XD I think it was my red hair and the goggles. My underlying Knuckles fanboyisms must still be apparent after over a decade, gosh! I kinda wanted to be cosplaying as NiGHTS but I'd have to remake my cosplay. Maybe next year. On my travels around the hall I came aross a BIG THE CAT COSPLAYER – who I promptly attacked for a photo. Just to prove the NiGHTS fanbase has no hard feelings at all towards the feline, even if he did get into ASR and NiGHTS didn't :p

Like I said I bumped into too many cool people to mention but an honorable mention goes out to Syaming-Li who not only is just badass but created the most spectacular Sonic custom converse shoes ever. So we stood there taking photos of his feet – because yes we're weird like that. No, really, look at his shoes:

Dude.

Another honorable mention, actually scratch that, HUGE GLITTERY SLOBBERING THANKYOU, goes to Nemain. She gave us one of the nicest moments of the con. We're just standing there chatting away to people and this girl of clearlyinsanemadness comes up to us brandishing a Christmas NiGHTS plushie. It turns out she won the recent Elliot/NiGHTS ebay lot and wanted to just GIVE us Christmas NiGHTS to keep. For nothing. What the hellllll! XD DiGi nearly cried, seriously. It was so sweet of her to come up and thank us for our campaign and stuff, never mind give us a damn rare as hell Christmas NiGHTS plush. Needless to say she is like my favourite person of the entire convention now and I can't ever thank her enough for the happiness she gave us :) It's stuff like that that reminds me why I'm a fan in the first place, no not because people sometimes give me free stuff lol, the fact that people love NiGHTS enough to do nice things for other fans. It just reminds you it's all worth it you know? If you can get reactions like that. Christmas NiGHTS was later seen gleefuly downing Baileys and Ice in a drunken binge that shall never see the light of day. As long as Kevin never uploads his photos haha.

Then convention ended on something of an insanely spectacular high with the famous Crush 40 doing a live show for us. Proper mosh pit. I could go on and on about how great it was but all you have to do is watch this video to see how electric the atmosphere was. Singing along with so many Sonic fans was just… wow!  Epic stuff. Jun Senoue and Johnny Gioeli.

 

After the crowds had left and things had closed for the night we got a chance to talk to Jun Senoue personaly. At the time I didn't realise he'd actually done some work on Journey of Dreams… gah! But he's such a cool guy ;_; So polite and insanely talented. Knowing that we were talking to the guy responsible for so many great melodies over the years just made me infinately happy. He stopped us as we were walking off to tell us that us fans are the reason he is here doing what he loves and DiGi and I kinda fangeeked in unison haha. We love ya Jun!

Then, bizzarely the strangest thing happened for me. We'd just experienced this amazing convention – but the most real fun I had was helping the staff close it up for the night. DiGi and I stayed behind to help out the Sonic lot and it was just… I can't really explain how I felt but, it felt good. These people who were left at the end were my friends. The people who had given their time and love to this convention and here we all were at the end taking down the posters, pulling sheets off tables and picking up litter together. Singing, joking running about like madmen trying to get everything tidy again. I even helped clean the Loo's! (Best way to spend a Saturday night! haha) It was at this point Elson Wong and DiGi really got time to chat and the pair of them were hilarious to listen to. DiGi and him cussing major profanity at the tables as they tried to pull the cloths off just made me lose it. At one point there was an impromtu sing along of Dreams Dreams that carried quite far up the hall. Kev was tired out his brains and STILL managing to give us orders. Me, Ruby Eclipse and Graham from SEGANerds were taking down all the fanart done by people and little kids and it was seriously one of the most blissed out moments of my fandom. Quiet, nice and prettymuch a joint feeling. Proper Teamwork. Eventually it came to an end and we all posed for a staff photo, I hope it appears online soon because I'm probably grinning ear from ear in it.

And then… well then there was a lot of this. I can't remember getting home very well, but that's the sign of a good night out!

Summer of Sonic 2011. You all have to come. Thank you SO much to AAUK and Becky firstly for putting in insane amounts of patience, stress and hard work, I only ever get to see a fraction of what goes on behind the scenes but I know it's more than an undertaking. Becky sista thanks for keeping our Kev sane and healthy :D Thanks to Dreadknux for being a hardworking cool dood and letting us in the front door (you always make me laugh too much). And to the rest of you ugly lot who put in your beans we love you all (yes even you Rory) and we hope you'll never give up your passion for the fandom. Thanks for the great memories.

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So, you know me.

I try my luck and sometimes I tend to push my luck a little, lol just ask SEGA. But on the rare chance, sometimes it pays off. Like this, for example.

Recently while on the NiD15.com bandwagon drumming up support,  I decided on a whim, to try directly contacting a certain Mr Yuji Naka. Yes, I know how unlikely that is, how famous he is and how rarely he gives interviews so I didn't think he'd have the time to reply to me. But I'd heard rumors about his total love for NiGHTS into Dreams, so I figured it wouldn't hurt to take a chance and ask.

Guess what? He replied. Very quickly :)

Saying that I was surprised to see the topic "Yuji Naka has sent you a message" waiting in my inbox is an understatement. I had a total surreal moment wash over me. There were language barriers though, with me not being able to write Japanese and him not being able to write much in English. I figured because of that then communication with the man would stop there. Still, I tried my luck further and asked him if I were to get a translator in to help us communicate would he still be down for doing an interview? I had my doubts. Yuji Naka has a lot going on at the minute with PROPE… and here I was asking for an interview about NiGHTS, a game that was released in 1996. I was ready to give up hope when I recieved another message saying that he would indeed love to do an interview on NiGHTS for the fans.

…wait, what? Really? o.O

Yes. Really. Yuji Naka has given NiGHTSintoDreams.com probably one of the best interviews we could have ever hoped to obtain. Aside from our translator, there was no other middle men involved in this interview taking place. It was just me and TRiP asking Naka-san about NiGHTS. You couldn't get any closer to the heart of NiGHTS than this. Direct from the creator to the fans.
True fact, Yuji Naka had sent his reply to our questions on NiGHTS' 14th Birthday but we were not able to have it translated in time. I always say better late than never though and this truly is one of those moments.

If there is one man that NiGHTS fans need to thank then it would be Yuji Naka. I sometimes think that as a fanbase we take for granted the person hugely responsible for us having this cherished game in the first place. True, there were a lot of other people involved in making NiGHTS into Dreams the classic it is today but as far as higher-ups go you couldn't get any higher than Yuji Naka. He envisioned so much and really gave his all to the game. Taking good care of the character while he was still head of Sonic Team. Now, over 14 years on the fans are still here stronger than ever. I'd like to think Yuji Naka succeeded in what he set out to do for us with NiGHTS.

We wanted to ask him questions that general gaming sites and magazines hadn't asked him before. The geeky fan stuff. Less about the technical side of things and more about the heart and purpose of the game. We had 24 hours to think of the things we wanted to know the most. In the end 18 questions were put forward. Things that had been picking our brains for a very long time.

The NiGHTS community is smaller than Sonic's and moments like this come rarely. However, I like to think that makes them all the more sweeter.
I'd like to thank Yuji Naka himself for answering every single one of our questions and I'd also like to thank Kichigai and her mother for translating this interview for us in the first place. Takashi Iizuka and Naofumi Hataya, thank you also for helping out ;)

 


 

Yuji Naka: Thank you very much for loving NiGHTS. Today (5th July 2010) is NiGHTS' 14th birthday.  Happy birthday NiGHTS.

Nidcom: NiGHTS resembles a jester and the Nightmaren are very darkly circus themed. Is there a reason as to why this specific design idea was chosen?
Yuji Naka:
When the idea of the Dream World was imagined, The Jester like character was created rather easily.  Their duality (cheerful and happy as well as, dark, evil and mean spirit) fit well to the theme of the Dream World.

Nidcom: Is it true that Cirque Du Soleil played a big part in the inspiration of the game design? Was there a show in particular? A NiGHTS Cirque Du Soleil show would be fantastic!
Yuji Naka: It was Cirque du Soleil that contributed the most inspiration for creating NiGHTS. At that time, Mystère was playing at Las Vegas' Treasure Island.  I was so overwhelmed by the imagery of the world of Mystère when I saw it for the first time.  Even to this day, that is one of my favorite shows. I hope that a lot of people will go to see that show. Cirque du Soleil is great.



Nidcom: Is it true that the very few character voices in the game were recorded anonymously by team members who were working late at night in the offices? Can you tell us a little about how the random dream language was created? Is it partially Japanese?

Yuji Naka: Yes, it was true. In every character, a few words from our team members’ voice over were used. We were recording at night because our office had no sound proof studio.
The word for NiGHTS, "Adeema", or the words for Reala, "Beadichnoa NiGHTS" were created by Mr. Iizuka after much reflection. 
Each word actually has a meaning. 
Adeema = abayo (which means good bye in Japanese slang). 
Beadichinoa NiGHTS = come on NiGHTS, Etc.

 

Nidcom: One particular thing NiGHTS into Dreams is always praised for is the music. You captured a lot of genre's of music in one game. Does the music in the game reflect your own personal tastes in music and what are your own preferred types of music?
Yuji Naka: The background music for NiGHTS was a magnificently composed piece. Of all the games I have created, the music of NiGHTS is my favorite. I remember that I had goose bumps when the orchestral recording was played.  Personally I like to listen to everything from pop music to movie soundtracks and stage musical scores.


Nidcom: One of the reasons NiGHTS into Dreams is very popular with female gamers is the character of NiGHTS erases gender stereotypes, which is rare in gaming especially today. Was this idea there from the beginning?

Yuji Naka:
Men or women, we all have dreams, so I thought that the residents in the dream world shouldn’t have a gender, rather, the form of the characters should be determined by the person who is dreaming.

 

Nidcom: Do you ever get tired of people asking what gender NiGHTS is? *lol*
Yuji Naka:
This setting was unique and never seen in any other game. It is understandable that questions about gender would arise, since European languages have gender specific words.


Nidcom: Is there meaning behind the lower case 'i' in the name NiGHTS? Some fans speculate that it may stand for 'imagination' or 'Id'  from Freudian research.

Yuji Naka: The "i" in the logo, was imagined from the gem on NiGHTS' chest. At first, the logo design was created to distinguish the word NiGHTS from Nights. NiGHTS was then used throughout the game.

 

Nidcom: NiGHTS into Dreams has a lot of symbolism, you and Sonic Team did a lot of research into dream studies and Jung's Dream Archetypes. It is speculated that each character in NiGHTS is influenced by a specific Archetype. What Archetype inspired NiGHTS,  if any?
Yuji Naka:
NiGHTS, a hero, originated in “Shadow” which means another side of the self as defined by Jung in his dream definitions. Elliot and Claris, who have strayed from the dream world, originated from Jung’s Animus and Anima. Persona items that appear in the Wii version originate from Jung's dream theory, too.

 

Nidcom: Other than NiGHTS, is there any other character in NiGHTS into Dreams that you really like and why? Jackle seems to have a large following, as does Reala.
Yuji Naka: Of course NiGHTS is my favorite, but Reala and Wizeman are two of my favorite characters because they contribute to constructing the outlook of the dream world.

 

Nidcom: Many years ago I read an interview with Sonic Team where the sources of dream research were discussed. Jung and Freud were mentioned but a third name 'Friedrich Holtz' was said to be central to NiGHTS into Dreams. Can you tell us a bit about this man and how his work influenced the game? We have tried to research Holtz for many years yet we have found little about him.
Yuji Naka: He is one of the psychologists who followed Jung's thoughts. He too defined dream elements as much as Jung, and showed us "another world" which we called the “Dream World.” NiGHTS also reflects the thoughts of scholars who researched these dreams.

 

Nidcom: It is now well known that there was an idea for a boss called Selph. What became of this boss, why did it not make it in to the final game and what did the boss look like?
Yuji Naka: Selph is one of the original types of Jung's theory. This idea was omitted since the production period was short on time. It was thought that it would be introduced as a concealed boss, as the one defined as "Myself I could never be exceeded". Visualization of this character was made to some degree.

 

Nidcom: Is it true that in the 1990's a PC version of NiGHTS into Dreams was planned? There was a rumour that it existed at one point and one of the new levels was called 'Sparkle Attic'? Can you tell us more about this, perhaps?
Yuji Naka: I thought production was completed. Wasn't the PC version put on the market? I actually participated in the release of the PC version of NiGHTS in Akihabara. So I thought it was on the market. But this is for sure, there is no new level.
See: http://game.watch.impress.co.jp/docs/20030321/sega.htm

Nidcom: (The above is news to us!) This means that non PS2 code exists to create a port!


Nidcom: Is it true that when developing the control pad to make flying experience as immersive as possible a NiGHTS-shaped controller was designed?

Yuji Naka:
Yes, it was true. We developed the control pad with the thought of the game player feeling NiGHTS' flying more realistically. The shape of controller was made the way it was after a lot trial and error. Most importantly the player's grip should be as natural as possible when they play.

 

Nidcom: NiGHTS is considered to be one the most magical, inspiring and mischievous characters Sonic Team ever created, continuing on through dreams long after the game has been won. Has NiGHTS ever appeared in your own dreams?
Yuji Naka: Of course. NiGHTS came from your dreams too. Being so, NiGHTS will keep living for a long time.

 

Nidcom: What do you think is the most important part of creating games?
Yuji Naka: Most importantly how much would customers enjoy playing. Especially in NiGHTS, how much fun the feeling would be when they played the game.

 

Nidcom: NiGHTS really has captured the hearts of many people. It is rare for a game to effect people in the way NiGHTS has been able to. Looking back, you said one thing you hoped NiGHTS would do is help people. Now, 14 years on, do you feel you had achieved that goal?
Yuji Naka: My initial goal has been reached and there may be more wonderful things happening. So many people loved NiGHTS for such a long time. I felt very happy throughout my career as a game creator, that the game influenced and touched the hearts of so many. Thank you so much for loving NiGHTS.

 

Nidcom: There had been talk of a NiGHTS sequel for many years after the Saturn game. The sequel, Journey of Dreams was made however you were no longer part of Sonic Team by that point. If it were somehow possible would you ever consider making another NiGHTS game, if you were asked to?
Yuji Naka:
I have been asked hundreds of times to make the sequel of NiGHTS, but have no desire to create one.
As I feel the same way that my beloved Mr. Steven Spielberg would never make a sequel to ET because it was his first work and such a fantastic film. I feel the same way about NiGHTS.
Oh, the first person to play NiGHTS, other than the SEGA team, was Mr. Spielberg. During the development of the NiGHTS game, he visited SEGA and we asked him to play with an experimental version of the new controller. Since then we called it the Spielberg controller.

Nidcom: We are hoping SEGA will listen to the NiD15.com campaign to have NiGHTS into Dreams ported to this generation of gaming consoles. Would you, the creator of the game, like to see the game ported so that this generation of gamers can experience the game too?
Yuji Naka: Creating an environment to be able to play the game for a long span of time, like a movie, would be very satisfying as a game creator.

Please continue giving your support for PROPE and SEGA.

中 裕司
Yuji Naka


 

So how's that for a trump card then? ;D NiGHTS fans- stirring the pot since 1996. Come talk about this interview in our [ forums ]


AND DON'T FORGET TO REGISTER YOUR VOTE AT NiD15.COM IF YOU WANT TO PLAY A PORT OF NiGHTS INTO DREAMS. Every vote counts.

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