Koei Tecmo and Gust were criticized for the Western box art for the upcoming ATelier Lulua: The Scion of Arland. Both the Nintendo Switch and PS4 versions of the box art were modified from how they appear in Japan, with the horse and carriage being cropped out of both versions of the art in the West, but the PS4 version in particular not only cutting out the horse but also cutting off the art so that you can’t see Lulua’s legs. Well, one gamer managed to get a response from Koei Tecmo’s support to possibly explain why they had to cut off the image where they did.
In a Twitter DM with Koei Tecmo America, use Jeff shared the following image on April 24th, 2019.
According to KT, it’s so that they could move the title to the top. pic.twitter.com/MFTL3AVAco
— ジェフ (@thrash242) April 25, 2019
If you’re unable to read the message, it states…
“No content has changed to my knowledge. I believe the reason for the box art change was because in the west the title had to be on the top of the box. In Japan, they put the title on the bottom. If the image wasn’t adjusted the title would be in Lulua and Rorona’s face and of course, that wouldn’t be acceptable. (If the titles I on the bottom, most western retail shops would have that title covered.)”
The response looks like it makes sense prima facie.
However, the more you begin to look at the original art for the boxes, and how the image is cropped specifically on the PS4, there are a couple of things that don’t add up. For instance, on the PS4 the title is pasted in the sky area just above Lulua’s head. However, in the original art there’s room both in the empty sky area or over by the carriage above the horse’s head where the logo could have been placed, and they wouldn’t have had to crop out the horse or Lulua’s legs.
In fact, they could have plastered the title over the horse’s head.
Now some people have said that the reason they had to crop out the horse and cut off Lula’s legs so you couldn’t see her thighs was that the PS4’s box size was wider than the Nintendo Switch’s box side, and therefore there was no room to show her legs. Although, technically, again, they could have simply zoomed out for the extra height and width and neither Lulua nor the horse would be cropped out of the image.
As you can see, the Switch version shrunk the title logo and squeezed it over into the sky above Lulua’s head while still giving viewers a look at her thighs.
In the Japanese box art they simply kept the proportions the same as the original art and put the logo at the bottom of the box.
What’s odd is that had they kept the PS4 box art identical to the Japanese box art, they still could have squeezed the logo up in the empty space by the carriage while putting the Gust and Koei Tecmo logos at the bottom.
I did reach out to Koei Tecmo to find out what was going on with the box art, and they mentioned that they would forward the query to the appropriate department to get an answer, but as of the writing of this article there hasn’t been a response.
If what the technical support mentioned is true, then apparently they just didn’t know how to fit the title logo on the box art and decided to crop out a large part of the artwork itself to make it fit. If Koei Tecmo decides to respond to the inquiry we’ll find out if that’s the actual truth.
(Thanks for the news tip Jeff)