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Thread: Kenji Watanabe on the creation of Omegamon Merciful Mode

  1. #1

    Kenji Watanabe on the creation of Omegamon Merciful Mode

    Interview time!

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    With the Ultimate Image figure of Omegamon Merciful Mode up for pre-order, Gashapon Blog has put up a new interview with Kenji Watanabe.


    Huge thanks to garm for translating this. She didn't have the time to do the whole interview, which gets into a number of things, but she did do the whole section that gets into the creation of Merciful Mode, his place in the story, and how Watanabe didn't initially want to have a new Omegamon in the story.



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    Please tell us more about Merciful Mode.
    Watanabe: Actually, there were no plans to even include such a Digimon in Digimon Adventure tri. in the first place. I was saying, "I don't want to make yet another new Omegamon variant!"; in fact, I turned down the idea.
    May we ask why you turned it down?
    Watanabe: I mean, if I had to give a reason, it'd be that everyone always ends up resorting to Omegamon in the end (laughs). That's why I suggested "come on, let's not do this again". However, we needed a character capable of surpassing and defeating Meicoomon, or in that case, Ordinemon. We had originally considered just doing a gold palette-swap of Omegamon, but felt that it didn't quite feel impactful enough for the finale. It seemed almost necessary that it had to be Omegamon to take on the "kaishakunin" [https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kaishakunin] role for Ordinemon, who was trying to reject its own existence...I thought that since it'll only be for that last moment, we could go through with it.

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    How did you come up with the naming of "Merciful Mode?"
    Watanabe: English doesn't have a word for "kaishakunin", so we ended up choosing to use "Merciful" in its place. Though, it's really not merciful at all...I'm still not entirely convinced that Merciful Mode taking on the role of Meicoomon's "kaishakunin" was the right way to go, either.


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    Did you draw inspiration from the "kaishakunin" when designing it?
    Watanabe: I did want to add in some Japanese elements, which was why I made its blade a Japanese-styled sword. At the same time, I drew inspiration from 'hero' characters as well. One of the reasons why I picked up drawing and grew to love manga was thanks to Ishinomori Shoutarou-sensei's influence. Of course, when you mention the word 'hero' [in a Japanese context], you immediately think of Ishinomori's characters: Kamen Rider, Cyborg 009, etc. And when you think of them, you can't help but think of their iconic scarves, right? I was inspired by them to model Merciful's wings after scarves. When I was still drafting the idea, I had drawn it with angel-style wings; however, I was requested by the animation director/Digimon animation designer Itou Kouji-san to "make it more 'floaty', like cloth". That was when I thought, "Alright, I'm definitely going with a scarf design!". The scarf ending in wing tips still retains that angel-like look, which I find interesting.

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    I'm surprised to hear that Digimon has been influenced by Ishinomori's heroes!
    Watanabe: See the "tear lines" below its eyes? Those were actually inspired by Kamen Rider and Kikaider too. By making the tear lines blue in colour and glowing, we could create the image of tears flowing, and from there its body gives off a fully white image. Ironically however, when I watched the movie, the wings didn't really feel like a scarf to me at all (laughs). Like, "they're totally just wings!". Even though Itou-san said he wanted it to be cloth-like (laughs).

    Big thanks again to garm for translating!


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    Ultimate Image Omegamon Merciful Mode is currently up for pre-order at Premium Bandai. Details can be found here.




    Also, the Gashapon page for Art Figurations was updated with Capsule Mascot series 5 and Omegamon Merciful Mode. We've updated the gallery with the new clean images. Our previous update on this can be found here.


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  2. #2
    There's some really interesting stuff here.

    The stuff most interesting to me personally...
    He personally doesn't seem to consider a color change upgrade as a new Digimon.

    I'd be curious to know his connection to the writing of tri., as the connection for Merciful Mode being 'merciful' seems reasonably clear in tri. Part 6, and despite his comments, even his own comments seem to suggest the character being merciful and fitting the role of kaishakunin quite well, so I'm quite interested to know if his response was cut down for publishing a bit, as it feels like there is something not quite 'there.' That combined with that at one point they weren't going to have a 'full' new form for Omegamon based on his input really makes me wish we knew just how much oversight he has. Did he simply say 'no' and that means a literal no? Or did he say no and they used his input and moved on, before swinging back around. Since as he mentioned even when there was no 'Merciful Mode' Omegamon was still going to get a new form.

    Merciful Mode's wings were inspired by Ishinomori style scarves blowing int eh wind.
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  3. #3
    I come from the net Muur's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MarcFBR View Post

    The stuff most interesting to me personally...
    He personally doesn't seem to consider a color change upgrade as a new Digimon.
    Recolours do suck. Just a gold omnimon would've been kinda annoying

    as for me, the most interesting was him choosing the name based on English, he could easily have just called it Kaishakunin Mode or whatever. also neat that I learned a new word

    I enjoyed the interview that was shown so far, the "it didnt end up as a scarf!" was a good lol

    also, even the designers think there's too many Omnimons lmao, they really have gone overboard lately...

    also, they seem to have been going over his head a lot, forcing a new Omnimon anyway, as well as "make Sakuyamon more sexy". whilst it might be because I haven't read many of these, but he seems to be mentioning stuff like this often (And of course, ideas will be rejected, etc all the time) but you dont really tend to hear about that

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by Muur View Post
    also, they seem to have been going over his head a lot, forcing a new Omnimon anyway, as well as "make Sakuyamon more sexy". whilst it might be because I haven't read many of these, but he seems to be mentioning stuff like this often (And of course, ideas will be rejected, etc all the time) but you dont really tend to hear about that
    None of his comments have suggested anyone has went over his head.

    His comments on Sakuaymon were unclear, but appeared to more be in reference to the design had simply changed inbetween the early art being shown, and the final art being shown (for example, the shikishi he drew weeks earlier seems to roughly be the final art.)


    As for Omegamon, he makes it clear that originally he didn't want a new Omegamon, and includes himself in the 'we were going to have a palette swap', and that the idea that they needed it to be something more for emphasis caused him to change his mind (in other words, the new Omegamon was decided on due it's requirement in the story, which caused him to change his mind and work with animation designer Itou on a new Omegamon.)
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    I come from the net Shadow Shinji's Avatar
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    I have my very issues with Omegamon MM for some reasons:
    1) Yet another (unnecessary) Omegamon. They could have gone with some fusions for other of the Chosen Children instead.
    2) His design is weird in a way I cannot explain, same as with Ordinemon. It looks like a cheap shinny recolour with a very weird wings (?).
    3) In the anime looks extremely awfully designed compared with, for instance, the recent announced figure.
    4) It's not Merciful at all. If you really want to end Meicoomon's suffering, you can do it in a very less violent way. That's mercy to me, not the opposite.

    Still really an interesting interviw as always coming from Kenji Watanabe. This guy seems like an endless source of interesting information regarding Digimon.

  6. #6
    Junior Commander frankiemon827's Avatar
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    To be honest, I'd rather want to see Omegamon Alter-S or Alter B appear in tri and really feeling that Merciful Mode was kinda lazy.
    At least after this there won't be any new versions of Omegamon for quite a while...

  7. #7
    I come from the net Muur's Avatar
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    Alter-S and Alter-B are "evil", though. Plus, Alter-S is Ces+Blitz, whist Alter B comes from S. I guess they could ignore it, but thats not really what they'd do. they could've done. they could've used X, and had him use All Delete I guess, though how would they get the antibody

    Quote Originally Posted by frankiemon827 View Post
    At least after this there won't be any new versions of Omegamon for quite a while...
    lol

    I'm sure we'd all like to believe that

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    Omegamon Alter S is simply new Virus version of Omegamon. But Alter B is pretty much unique despite being black counterpart of Alter S cuz its evo lines are Omegamon Zwart D is needed to evolve from Zwart instead of DNA jogress while the second line is Alter S with Black Digitron to evolve into.

    Quote Originally Posted by Muur View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by frankiemon827 View Post
    At least after this there won't be any new versions of Omegamon for quite a while...
    lol

    I'm sure we'd all like to believe that

    You really had to jinx it. WHY? ... Zeus Thrist you could tell those designers really had it enough even Kenji too lol

  9. #9
    I'm a Maniac DigiGrader's Avatar
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    I really respect his early decission to not make a new omegamon version. Too bad he eventually have to make one.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sparrow Hawk View Post
    But Alter B is pretty much unique despite being black counterpart of Alter S cuz its evo lines are Omegamon Zwart D is needed to evolve from Zwart instead of DNA jogress while the second line is Alter S with Black Digitron to evolve into.
    Alter-B isn't really a natural/conventional evolution to Zwart D though. In its original context of Next Order, it's an alteration of the program that evolves any Digimon into Machinedramon. Rather than a natural progression to Zwart D's line, Alter-B is a different Digimon that Zwart D could change/alter into, instead of Machinedramon, that just happens to be another Omegamon variant.
    Last edited by YongYoKyo; 11-08-2018 at 07:39 PM.

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