Introducing YashaFox all the way from Poland. One of the nicest individuals I’ve been able to meet since becoming an im@s fan. YashaFox is not only a Producer for Takane but also Ranko. He’s also done a lot of work with translations into English especially with Cinderella Girls. Go Poland!
1. How did you first learn about “The iDOLM@STER”? What were your first impressions?
Back in the days when The iDOLM@STER anime was yet about to be aired, a friend of mine, Gurutsu, sent me a YouTube video of GO MY WAY! (Yayoi, Haruka and someone I can’t remember now).
To be honest, it didn’t leave that much impression on me (I was only like “That’s pretty cute and slightly catchy”), but it made me interested to check more iDOLM@STER music and as a result, watch anime when it aired.
2. Have you played any of the idolm@ster games? Which is your favorite?
Till now (April 2015), I have played The iDOLM@STER arcade version (just a few times in Japan), The iDOLM@STER 2 (only completed Takane’s story), Shiny Festa (a little), One For All (several tens of hours) + both mobile games. Oh, and made a several hundreds photos in Gravure for You! when Landro left me at his flat with his whole G4U collection for a few hours. w
My most favorite one is definitely One For All, because of the insane amount of story content it has and how easy it is to access it. (You don’t need multiple runs like The iDOLM@STER 2). The gameplay does become repetitive if you play in long bursts, but the narrative experience alone is definitely worth it. If you want to get to know 765Production’s better and enjoy spending time with its members, that game is sure to take a looot of your free time. And you’ll thank it for all the feels it will give you.
Also, even though those DLC are stupid expensive, but do get those Extra stories. They are just so incredible you won’t regret the money you’ve spent on them.
3. Which idol is your favorite and why?
There are actually two. w The first one is Shijou Takane (from 765Productions) and the second one is Kanzaki Ranko (346Productions).
I must admit that when I was listening to iDOLM@STER songs for the very first time, Takane’s songs did not really caught that much of my attention. However, when anime started airing and I’ve heard Takane’s non-singing voice for the first time, it felt like a strike of lightning and from that moment I’m constantly under her spell! At first I just liked her ceremonial way of speaking, her powerful and beautiful voice, her composed behavior, the way she looks, the mysterious aura surrounding her… Then, mainly through her The iDOLM@STER 2 and One For All stories, I’ve learned that she actually is much more similar to me than I thought, starting from the amount of food we eat to the same doubts and fears we have. That and her made me very bonded with Takane and cemented her position as my ultimate number one!
Kanzaki Ranko is my much newer favorite. Same as with Takane, I was fascinated with her unique way of speaking and her style, and the fact that she resonated with my inner chuu2 made her even more appealing. However, when I’ve learnt that she is afraid of people (the feeling I knew for too many years) that made me realize how similar she is too me and that feeling is what truly made me into a RankoP. Having devoted my soul to the archfiend, I shall follow the fallen angel to the other side of the horizon!
4. What is your favorite idolm@ster song and why?
I have three, one for 765Pro, Cinderella Girls and Million Live.
In 765Pro’s case, it’s 自分rest@rt, since for me, this song symbolizes my internal change when I’ve become a P, my own rest@rt.
In Cinderella Girls case, it’s Nation Blue. I consider myself a CoolP (from Cool type of idols in that game) and I think this song truly is an anthem worthy of my beloved Cool Cinderellas (electro iM@S songs are just too good). Also, the fact that I was able to hear it live at Super Saitama Arena in February 2014 only made me love it more.
When it comes to Million Live, it’s 瞳の中のシリウス (Hitomi no Naka no Sirius). I’ve always considered it a song too beautiful to comprehend, but after hearing its solo version performed by Hara Yumi (Takane’s seiyuu), I just cannot pick anything else for that slot.
Special mention also goes to Ranko’s anime song, which is all I could have ever hoped for as her Producer. It’s basically the treasure of every single RankoP out there for so many reasons.
5. What’s your favorite aspect of the idolm@ster series?
It’s that The iDOLM@STER series is about constant improvement, always looking forward and overcoming everything that stands in your way. For me, iM@S is the force that drives me to improve every single day.
That and the fact that this series has the best fandom in the whole universe. The fandom that has truly changed my life.
6. When and how did you become a “Producer”? That is, when did you consider yourself an idolm@ster fan?
Although I’ve been a fan of iDOLM@STER series from the time the anime first aired, I’ve only started calling myself Producer after my one-year-long exchange in Japan. In the most fortunate turn of events that has probably happened in my whole life, my Japanese University (Doushisha in Kyoto) had the iDOLM@STER research club. It was those people and later other Japanese Producers that taught me the true meaning of what it is to be a P. And I will never thank them enough for that.
7. Have you ever been to an idolm@ster live concert? Please share your experience or any particularly special memories if so.
Till now I’ve been to M@STERS OF IDOL WORLD!! 2014 LIVE at Saitama Super Arena, live viewings of both Cinderella Girls and Million Live 1st solo lives and attended two of 9th tour We Are M@STERPIECE lives (Osaka and Nagoya).
Each live fills you with some many unforgettable moments that writing just some of them is nearly impossible. Still, the moments that has probably hit me the most happened during Nagoya’s live in the 9th Tour. As a TakaneP I’ve awaited this live as it was my first during which I could listen to so many of her songs. The three highlights were first and second day’s Next Life, second day’s ふるふるフューチャー(Furu Furu Future), during which we were called Anata-sama live and second day’s 瞳の中のシリウス (Hitomi no Naka no Sirius), which is the most I have ever cried during a song.
The most amazing thing about iM@S lives are people. Not only those people on stage, those who bring tears to your eyes and joy to your hear, but also all the Producers around you. The time you spend with them before, during and after the live is as valuable as the songs you’ll listen too. Before the live you’ll all share your expectation and excitement with them, during the live you’ll all become one and after the live you’ll share the most precious of memories.
I wish every single P could attend at least one live. It’s such an amazing experience.
8. Do you play any of the mobile game series such as Cinderella Girls and Million Live?
I used to play both Cinderella Girls and Million Live, both of them in a really casual way. Now I’m having a break (blame them ships w).
I have my share of fun from playing them, which is mainly due to the fact that I play it together with other members of HPT. The hype during those Production battles is definitely real! Not to mention all the help I got from HPT members in those games.
9. Are you watching the Cinderella Girls anime? What are your thoughts?
At the moment I’m writing this, it hasn’t been just two weeks from when the last episode of the first season aired. Let me share some of my impressions. I’m sorry, it can become long. w
This anime holds a very, very special place in my heart.
I remember that few days before the 1st solo live of Cinderella Girls (April 2014) I was talking with my Japanese P friends and I told them “If they’ll ever going to announce the anime, it will be during this live. Believe me.” Then on the first day of that show… Never have I seen in my life a cinema room filled with so many people going so insane from the immense amount of happiness that was just too much for all of us to comprehend. “WE DID IT!”
I was closely following all the announcements, getting more excited with every single one. Then finally the long awaited 9th of January 2015 came.
[This section contains mild spoilers for those who have not watched the full first season yet.]
I think that although there are certain things that did not sit that well with some (like basically zero presence of Karen and Nao – although they do seem to take more active part in second season), the anime not only gave us what we’ve been asking for, but actually much more.
Since compared to 765Pro games, Cinderella Games the mobile game is relatively story light, we’ve been expecting characters to get their own development they needed so much, but the way some of characters (like Miku) were completely reinvented for the anime is just mind-blowing. Not to mention the unexpected combinations of characters that nobody every predicted and then was amazed how well they go together!
Although some new songs were expected, if someone told me before the anime that we’ll get a new song for numerous units, OP, ED and JibunREST@RT style season climax song… I would tell them to cool their head and don’t say things that will never come true.
This anime gave Cinderella Girls so much it cannot be even said in words. Probably even more than anime did to 765Pro girls.
Personally, I had the greatest of expectations towards how the anime will handle Ranko, one of my two mains. And as her Producer, I have to say that I would have never asked for this amazing things I was given. Her very own episode, solo song, the development she went through… Thank you, Cinderella Girls anime, thank you!
10. Do you have any favorite seiyuu related to the idolm@ster series?
Hara Yumi (Shijou Takane’s seiyuu).
Even though a year and a half before I didn’t even knew who she was, Harami (her pet name) is definitely my favorite not only in iDOLM@STER, but overall among all seiyuus.
Having said that, more than a seiyuu, I adore her as the singer with the most beautiful voice I’ve ever heard and her, Hara Yumi, herself. Her solo songs are of truly an exceptional quality and her attitude toward her fans is just amazing (she actually remembers people by their faces even if they went to her fan event only once). During 2014, I was able to attend many events in which she took part (which only made me like her more), but it is the fact that I could attend her 1st solo live that makes me the most happy. The live that I consider the most meaningful evening of my life, topping even iM@S concerts.
Also, she eats a LOOOT. Which is awesome.
11. Shout out your love about the idolm@ster series, say anything you’d like!
Takane, Ranko, Harami, Producers… All the other cast, idols and everyone contributing in any way to the amazing thing that The iDOLM@STER and its community is… Thank you from the bottom of my heart! Whenever there is a time when I need someone, suddenly Producers surround me to pick me up again!
iM@S 最高！ NEVER END IDOL!
12. [From KenP] if by whatever miracle Takane or Ranko (or both) ended up in your hometown in Poland for only one day, how would you entertain them for that day, and how would you convince them to never leave?
Since my hometown was built purely as a sleeping place for people working in heavy industry, this would be really hard…
“Food is the center of each culture, its very roots.”
(Takane, episode 19)
With Takane, I would take her to the restaurant really close my home that specializes in the traditional food of the region I was raised it. Since she would probably want to taste everything it would probably take a lot of time, but I bet that would make her the most happy, which is the most important! Despite city itself not being that pretty, the forests around it are actually really nice and give off a different feel than those in Japan, so I would like to let her see how Spring feels in those. For the evening, I would show her around one park that has an enormous lake inside it. Looking at the moon, which mirror image appears on the surface of the lake has been a custom among medieval Japanese aristocracy, so I hope she would enjoy that view.
With Ranko, things would be a little more complicated, but I think I would take her to one town pretty close to mine. In the middle of it, there is a baroque palace that was in possession of Prussian nobles, that is open to visitors. Its fully furnished in the authentic style of that time, so I hope it’s exquisite interiors, giving of the feel of baroque fairy tale would be to Ranko’s liking. Another part of our tour would be some old churches, with their fine altars and beautiful figures. Of course we would also rest from time to time, so that Ranko’s legs could rest from those high heels she always wears. Also, all those places would give her new ideas to draw in her grimoire, so I would buy her a new one with a whole drawing set too.
Convincing them too stay would be a totally different issue. The thing is that I plan to move out of my country (at least temporarily), so it would be about convincing them to stay with me until I can go back with them (which actually wouldn’t be that long)!
I study in a different city than I was born in, so I would try to tell them its strengths, which hopefully would convince them. Cracow (the name of the city) is a big metropolis, having restaurants representing (or at least being inspired by) national cuisines of many countries around the world. It’s a city of high culture (with a Centre of Japanese Culture near where I live, so that Takane could keep in touch with art of her homeland), but let’s not forget that Takane also enjoys casual entertainment, which there is also plenty (like amazing zoo full of fluffy cuteness ;-;). Also, I sure hope that the trip to the planetarium not that far from my hometown would make our silver-haired stargazer happy too! Cracow is also the city of old Polish kings, castles, palaces, churches and all those places that hopefully would appeal to what Ranko is fond of. Not to mention there is actually a shop of occult and magic things that I know of, which i would definitely introduce her to!
13. Say something about the next interviewed person (omo), also please ask them a question.
I have not yet met omo in person, but I’m really looking forward to hopefully doing so during 10th! From what I’ve seen so far, omo is a really patient person that will always explain to you everything in great detail and is generally a really helpful and methodical person. Also, seems amazingly chilled in the best of ways!
So when it comes to my question… Imagine you are a producer of a TV show that stars seiyuus. Every episode exactly two of them have for one day engage in some kind of profession. Of course the show has cameras on the all the time and there are also special challenges that seiyuus must face, which they are of course not aware of.
So my question would be: who would you choose (one of them must be Mocho, because (○・▽・○)), what would be their profession for your show and what would be the challenge they would face.
You can follow YashaFox on Twitter @yashafox
<Better Know A Producer>