It’s a well-known fact among Final Fantasy XV fans that the game’s multimedia storytelling approach is a hot mess.
Imagine having to scour other resources like movies, anime, and guidebooks just to have a full understanding of the story.
Yes, some of us are willing to go beyond the main game just to satiate our curiosity.
But for the rest of us, it’s just too much to ask.
It’s no wonder why so many of us seem to think that multimedia storytelling is an impossible feat.
That is until Girlish Number came along.
Okay, I admit that it’s unfair to compare it with Final Fantasy XV since Girlish Number isn’t a video game.
But Girlish Number isn’t the only one that managed to pull this kind of approach successfully, right?
Are there any other games out there that are successful with this approach?
Well, guess what?
If there’s one game that can make this approach work in its favor, it’s God Eater.
And on top of that, they’ve been doing it for a long time too.
The variety of mediums to explore the lore in God Eater
Just like Final Fantasy XV, God Eater also expands into multiple formats such as light novels and manga.
But what is more notable about God Eater is the anime.
Well, at least to those who are outside of Japan since the manga and light novels aren’t licensed in English.
What makes the anime notable isn’t so much to do with the anime having an interesting take on the original story in the game.
Rather, it has more to do with the anime being nothing like the game at all.
Not only that the story in the anime is different. But the main character is different too.
Only some parts of the story in the anime are the same as the ones in the game, though.
Things like Alisa’s past, Soma’s secret, and the real reason behind the Aegis project.
Other than that, the rest of the story in the anime is different from the game.
If you want to know more about the lore, then it’s best to have a look at the manga and light novels instead.
You’re not going to get that from the anime.
What Bandai Namco did right with the multimedia storytelling approach for God Eater
In God Eater’s case, these multiple formats only serve as a side story to the main story in the game.
They’re not there to complement the story in the game. The story in the game is already complete as it is even without the side stories.
Even with that, it’s not like these side stories came out of nowhere either.
Take a look at God Eater: The 2nd Break manga where the story takes place at the same time as the story in God Eater 2.
But this time around, the story revolves around another unit in the Far East Branch, the Cradle Unit, where most of them are former members of the First Unit in the Far East Branch.
And they’re the same characters from the first God Eater game, in case you’re wondering.
Just so you know that you do cross the path with the members of the Cradle Unit in the main story in God Eater 2.
They don’t just come out of the blue. You already know who they are in the main story.
It’s just that you don’t know much about their actual mission other than what the members of the Cradle Unit told you.
If you want to know more about their side of the story, then you can read God Eater: The 2nd Break manga.
As always, you can read the manga as it is since the story in the manga doesn’t relate that much to the main story in the game.
But it’s still best that you play the game if you want to have a better understanding of the story, particularly the characters in the Cradle Unit.
Don’t feel like wanting to play the game for whatever reason?
Well, you can always read God Eater 2 manga.
While some parts of the story in the manga are slightly different from the game, the rest of them are pretty much the same.
This is how it should be
Believe it or not, the multimedia storytelling approach isn’t that hard to do.
All you need to do is to pick which medium is the best for fleshing out the story and make it the main medium.
If you feel the need to expand the story, you can choose to stick with the same medium that you use previously.
Or you can choose a different format if you think that the story is a lot better being told in a different medium.
Regardless of the medium you choose, you need to be sure that the main story does cover every single plot point without leaving any stone unturned.
When you do that, you will make the multimedia storytelling approach a fun experience rather than an absolute necessity to get a full picture of the story.
That’s how you expand the story into multiple formats without turning it into a giant hot mess.
P.S. Just so you know that I also did the same thing for the story in my light novels, The Diary of Modern Cinderella and Twisted Destiny.
Yes, both of them are light novels, format-wise.
But some parts of the story in both books are related in one way or another.
Just so you know that you don’t have to read both books to have a full grasp of the story.
But if you find the concept interesting, you can take a look at them on my Payhip store:
Don’t forget to use the coupon code SEKINAMAYUBLOG during checkout to get 25% off on your purchase.
In case you’re wondering, my books are also available in print and on other retailers such as Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Kobo, and Apple Books.
But you can only get a discount when you buy on my Payhip store, though.
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