Are There Studio Ghibli Cutscenes in Ni No Kuni 2?
Quite apart from just being a very good JRPG, Ni No Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch created a huge buzz around the gaming community as a result of Studio Ghibli’s involvement. If you’re not up to speed with what Studio Ghibli is, they’re the team behind some of Japan’s most iconic anime feature films and television series. Think the Disney of Japan: charming family-friendly stories animated with the most superb hand-drawn art-style you could possibly imagine. The studio has published countless on-screen productions, but Ni No Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch was the first video game it had ever been involved with. Naturally, then, whether Studio Ghibli would be involved in the second game was a hot topic in the build-up to the release of Ni No Kuni 2: Revenant Kingdom. Specifically, whether we’d get to see more of those glorious low-fps, hand-drawn cutscenes that were such a highlight of the first Ni No Kuni game.
There’s good and bad news in answer to those questions. Studio Ghibli was certainly involved in the making of Ni No Kuni 2, with key members of its production team working closely with Level-5. Specifically, former Ghibli animator and character designer Yoshiyuki Momose, and composer Joe Hisaishi, who not only composed the score of Wrath of the White Witch but also created the music for nearly every single Miyazaki film.
Unfortunately, there aren’t any of those signature Ghibli cutscenes in Ni No Kuni 2. This is because much has changed over at Studio Ghibli since the release of Wrath of the White Witch back in 2011. The studio hasn’t released a film since 2014’s When Marnie Was There, and iconic director Hayao Miyazaki has retired (and unretired) multiple times. The studio no longer functions as a traditional animation company that produces most work in-house. Instead, Studio Ghibli now often serves in a producer role on projects, while other studios handle the heavy lifting. Having them directly animate the cutscenes just wasn’t feasible because it’s not something they actually do anymore.
But don’t worry. We’re confident that once you’re playing Ni No Kuni 2, you’ll feel Studio Ghibli’s influence permeating through nearly every facet of its lush and gorgeous world. The game is still every bit as vibrant and charming as you’d hope.
For more information of Ni No Kuni 2: Revenant Kingdom, be sure to check out our ever-expanding wiki.