The Children Program: Generation Z, known during development as Project "G" Crisis, is a Japanese role-playing game centered around the offspring of the Zaxinian Lifts' heroes and villains from far in the future, where they can look for others from their generation and form a resistance to battle the Mallorian Monarch forces emerging from times ahead of them. Heroes and villains from the future must team up and protect their wounded parents from the wrath of Mallory and all of her equally evil allies. The "Generation Z" heroes must move through chapters of gameplay to put an end to Mallory's forces, navigating around the majority of the Lifts' planets and hub world to break through as much evil as they can. Some of the gameplay is based on exploration as well as fighting, with the overworld filled with secret paths and rooms for the player to discover.
Following the multiple breakouts of chaos in the Zaxinian Lifts in recent times and the weakening of his entire army from experiences like General's Journey, Fandraxono sends new ally Minute to the future to analyse as much as possible and bring back children or young adults with him. During Minute's travels, he hectically throws timeholes all over the present timeline and drops whatever he can find through them, but he is quickly captured by the "Futureverse" Mallory and the future monarch starts invading the present very soon after present-day Mallory is convinced by Zodiez to think about her career choices more carefully. The "core four" children -- Asimi, Charmine, Dusty, and Alex -- must put aside their differences and locate all the children they can to form a resistance strong enough to negate the strength of the Mallorian Monarch and save the world from impending doom. Can they do it with Mallory and the Psycho hot on their trails?
In the vast overworld of Generation Z, players will be able to use a map system to navigate safely throughout the Lifts, with each new location the players enter being added to their map. Digital pins on the maps let players know where they can stop next story-wise (red pins), save their game (yellow pins), or take on side-quests (green pins). If they have the supplies necessary, characters can enter their inventories to heal up or equip/unequip weapons. Red dots on the map indicate enemies and blue dots on the map indicate allies, meaning that players can plan ahead to watch their step and avoid enemy contact rather easily if they're careful. If there is a child that can be recruited, Generation Z's map will highlight them with a yellow dot.
Compared to other role-playing games of its genre, Generation Z can prove to be a difficult game to play and master. While the player has plenty of characters to choose from, revival items are scarce and characters that are downed will have to sit the next dungeon out, meaning that the need to stay alive is greater than normal for this game. Moving around environments filled with enemies stronger than the player's team can be an absolute pain, so attacking enemies to gain as much EXP as possible is a must so players can quickly upgrade their team's stats. If an entire team faints, they will respawn at the last checkpoint with a fully revived team, but a lot of their non-key items will be missing as will cash and half the entire team's HP and MP together. Characters should play with care and switch characters when it's a necessity, as every person alive counts in the experience.
The map to Generation Z takes place over a set few planets as well as the general hub of the Zaxinian Lifts. The grey region is Fandraxono's Domain and is the starting point of the game, and is where many important story-related events take place. The region in green color is Zonar, which is considered the game's hub as well as largest region. About a third of the game's length is spent on that planet. The red region is Hisplit, the yellow region is Woodinn, and the blue region is the new planet Bitetach. It should be noted that these regions are still their own planets and are only bundled together on the map for convenience's sake.
Characters can choose between using Traditional or Real Time strategies to their preference at any time as long as they're not in a battle. Traditional fighting begins when coming in contact with an enemy on the field. A battle will start straight-away, with the enemy potentially calling in reinforcements to deal with the cast of children. These battles are done in a slower, turn-based format, where characters can choose between using Attacks, Summons, Tactics, Team Moves, Items, Info, and the ability to Flee in a battle. The team with the higher overall speed goes first, but in the case of a planned sneak attack, the initiators always go first. Players keep hacking and slashing at each other's teams until one falls. Fallen opponents occasionally drop cash or items and will almost always drop Experience Points, which can be used to raise individual stats when enough is earned. Enemies that are defeated do not respawn, but more enemies can come onto the battlefield with time.
The Attack command is as simple as it gets, with characters making use of any weapon they have equipped to launch a simple attack on the enemy. Using an action command at the specified times during an attack can power-up the attack and help raise the amount of money/experience points a player will get from battle. Occasionally, during an attack, the player will make use of a skill that will deal critical damage on the enemy at the expense of SP (Special Power) unless the character is set to be "conservative" instead of "active". "SP" is earned from landing Excellent/Perfect fighting combos in battle. Summons have the characters summon their most prized dreams from their minds, bringing their ideal selves out from their brains and having them lay out strong attacks against the opponents that sap away at that character's MP (Magic Power). Tactics allow the player to see what sort of miscellaneous actions they can do other than attacking, such as healing or buffing up stats. Characters can also be swapped out in the battle for other characters.
Team Moves allow two characters to partner up to use a special technique, with each character having three special moves that they can pull off with the use of a partner. These moves eat at MP and are generally used to either lay out attacks against the whole enemy team or support their team in massive, important ways that individual characters cannot do. Items can be used in battle for a versatile number of reasons, although their point is almost always to help the player out in a pinch. Players can carry healing items or enhancing ones into battle or destructive items that can hurt their enemies. Info allows players to see what their characters are composed of stat-wise and their individual bonuses, which can help players set up tactical assaults against their foes. Fleeing is a simple tactic that allows the players to flee the scene, at the cost of money. If the enemy is stronger than the player, they are unlikely to run away unless they are really lucky.
While attacks usually cannot be directly avoided, damage can be lessened by using Blocking Commands when an attack hits to have it deal less damage to the player overall, and if timing is perfect they won't take damage at all. As four characters are often out at a time, each is mapped to a different colored action button on the V² controller. Pressing the button corresponding to that character will allow them to block. If characters attack together or support each other via items, bonds can build over the course of time, and bonding characters are more likely to help their allies block or evade enemy attacks. This keeps their survivability up and gives a greater chance towards survival. All characters can bond, and unlike in General's Journey, no jealousy is felt by the characters if more time is spent towards one character than another. Individual bonds can level up and result in those characters becoming closer friends, and the characters are more likely to talk to each other in the overworld or during battle.
Real Time battles ditch the turn-based system in favor of characters beating the crap out of their opponents with real-time execution commands. The player controls one lead character while the others are decently controlled by AI, and depending on the lead character's tactics the partners will behave differently. Teammates can be commanded to strike a single enemy, multiple enemies, or play defensively, and they can also spend a bit of time charging up their MP/SP as they can in the tactics commands in the traditional style. The player can swap between leaders by using the shoulder buttons, and switch their equipped weapon by using the inner triggers. The red action button is used for attacking and the green one is used for blocking, and the blue action button allows players to quickly look through their tactics and navigate through them with the shoulder buttons. The purple action button is used for using summons, which they can again navigate with the shoulder buttons.
A lot of mechanics introduced in the traditional style of gameplay apply here, with defeated enemies dropping cash and experience points, and the occasional items. Real Time battles aren't restricted by "turns", however, so players can use time to move around the battlefields to evade enemies or seek out new ones, and can exit any battle without consequence, although quicker enemies can catch up to them quite easily. If a battle is re-initiated, the enemy will have just as much health as it did when the player exited the fight, and the player can still beat the crap out of them if they want. Team Moves can be initiated in the real-time formula by using the bottom triggers to navigate between partner characters. Pressing the attack button when one is selected will allow the two to do an attack together, which can deal lots of damage onto the enemies. While there are many advantages that come with real-time battles, enemies generally attack faster and can do a lot of damage if the player isn't careful.
At the cost of half of one's current health and magic power, characters will be able to merge with their dream selves to become exceptionally strong characters with buffed statistics and powers, able to dish all sorts of destruction while continuously draining HP from the user per turn or over time. The combined power of the user and the summon will be able to break immortal barriers and damage even Gods with the power of dedication and fierce determination. All stats, including general health, increase rather dramatically with the altered character, making them a force for enemies to fear. The longer one remains with their summon, the more health they lose over time, so the combined result of the user with their summon should only really be used in dire situations or against foes that can't otherwise be damaged. Any and all enemies will receive damage from a summon, but enemies who bestow the power to remove summons from one's body can do such in a turn or a matter of seconds assuming they're not already attacking in real-time gameplay.
Characters that combine themselves with their summons often have radical changes to their overall appearance, looking more stunning and complex than anyone else in the general roster of Generation Z.
Generation Z does not use a traditional level-up system, with experience points earned being used to upgrade individual stats or buff up bonus traits that characters have. Their Strength, Durability, Magic, and Evasion stats can be buffed altogether, or their individual components. Strength's divided into Melee Output/Ranged Output/Carry Weight, Durability into Melee Resistance/Ranged Resistance/Total HP, Magic into Magic Offense/Magic Defense/Total MP, and evasion into Speed/Evasion/HP&MP Regeneration. This gives players a lot of flexibility and their stats can be upgraded at any point -- even during battle -- as long as the players have experience points they can spend. Players that are experienced enough can equip stronger weapons or means of defense to cope better in battle. Leveling up is often done through the pause menu of Generation Z or through the tactics command in the menu. Stats raised are permanent and cannot be changed whenever the player ends up saving the game.
Case of death and fatigue
Should a player take the blow in battle, they will be knocked unconscious. For revival items and techniques are really rare in Generation Z, players will often have to swap them out for active partners. After a battle is finished, the character will be stranded with 1HP, giving the player a chance to heal them, but they won't be available after the dungeon's completion, wanting to spend time to heal their bodies based off of the disastrous dungeon trip experience they had. Players will need to go into their next dungeon without the healing characters unless they want to pay a high price that is more-than-likely not worth it for instant revival in a hospital. Once the next dungeon is completed, or when all current characters in the party have lost their way in a battle, the characters in the hospital will become available for usage again (although in the latter case, the last four members of the party will be hospitalized). It is important to play the game wisely and pay attention to how characters are handled, or the player will be punished for poor management.
If a character has fought an excessive amount of times over a moderate period of time without taking a proper rest, they will show signs of weakness and their stats will drop. If they're forced to keep fighting, they'll start losing it and begin daydreaming or blindly attacking what they see, disobeying player commands except for switch opportunities. This element is in place to encourage players to explore their entire cast and to not rely on just a few certain characters, and this will also make death less likely to occur due to the player focusing on their full team instead of just focusing on a single group of party membesr at a time. Characters directly affected by fatigue will have to sit out for ten turns or at least five minutes to gain the ability to properly fight again, and their total HP will recover by 30% by the time they've escaped the fatigue status condition.
As of now there are a total of 16 characters, each of them children. The total number is unknown, and it is known that there will be downloadable content. [adt] means the child was adopted, [dna] means it was constructed from DNA.
(Crymsia x Silver)
MGC +2, DUR +1
The grooviest and happiest child of the bunch, filled with an ego that allows her to endure the worst of situations with frightening levels of optimism and resistance. Bathes in her own ego and purchases really fancy clothes to make herself pop out. Asimi is a tricky devil to deal with thanks to her wide assortment of dark magic spells and unrelenting self-esteem, able to overcome just about any curse out there.
Attributes: Autoheal, Playfulness, Darkness, Taunter
(Oshelia x Scotch)
DUR +2, EVA +1
Charmine is well known by the other children for her unrivaled pessimism, making her an opposite of Asimi. Her attitude and behavior have granted her a reputation for being despicable and rather offensive, yet her sheer power means that there's nothing one can really do to stop a fatal blow emerging from her tomes. Her water-based techniques allow her to effectively shield herself and allies.
Attributes: Autocounter, Guilttripper, Infector, Swimmer
(Penny x Dustai)
STR +2, DUR +1
Dusty is an incredible tactician that usually sends his enemies packing with fear thanks to his aggressive and ultimately effective strategies. While known for having a big mouth that never shuts, he can operate the team with great confidence and induce foes with fear that least expect his strength as a team leader. Known for correcting grammar almost all of the time and making people look stupid.
Attributes: Pickpocket, Revenge, Emergency, Blind Rage
(Syande x Brook)
EVA +2, STR +1
A quiet assistant in the children's team that records the important moments and saves them up, and creates documentaries and the sort to log his team's adventures. Even as a vampire that can prove ferocious on occasion, he is the butt end of jokes thanks to his clumsiness and poor communication skills. In battle, he is very good at evading attacks and subsequently counterattacking with his sharp talons.
Attributes: Bloodsucka, Autododge, Allure, Backstab
(Valerie x Syi [dna])
EVA +2, STR +1
This young lady that takes after her sister’s beauty fashion will flinch whenever she’s spotted by anybody. She prefers to be alone and likes to be hidden from others -- and for good reason. Takeo is the type to spy on people and learn of their secrets, and then use their worst fears against them later on. She is especially good at whipping her enemies and evading attacks with her Crow-like reaction time.
Attributes: Attract, Appeal, Anger, Airing
(Valerie x [unknown])
MGC +2, DUR +1
|The all-new fashion model of the Lifts is truly obsessed with the world of art, painting things to life and making even the most ordinary of people look fabulous after just moments. With her ability to paint things to life, she can get minuscule allies molded off opponents in the game to aid her in battle. She is sweet, but is abrasive in her closest relationships, using her bluntness to control boundaries.|
(Clair x Pierce [adt])
MGC +2, STR +1
Adopted from an orphanage alongside Parrie, Temple is a gentle and loving child that loves to go out on adventures, and won't forget a single one thanks to his eidetic memory. He is unable to see the worst of others and instead tries to make the best of every human being he sees, and as such it's easy for him to make friends. But people should be careful around him, however -- his psychic mind can read attacks and block projectiles.
Attributes: Mind Reader, Manipulation, Disable, Lock
(Clair x Pierce [adt])
STR +2, MGC +1
Temple’s younger and also kind sister. Parrie is a bouncy and loving child that is pumped up to do anything to help her family and friends, doing just about any action on nature's call. She is optimistic, much like Asimi, and lays her faith in humanity. Parrie can alter the state of the environment around herself to benefit her team and hurt the enemy, although which environment exactly should be thought about carefully.
Attributes: Terrain Flipper, Survivor, Tough Stuff, Reflector
(Zodiez x Fandraxono)
STR +2, DUR +1
A very elegant dancer that lights up stages across the world with her deity-caused acts and behavior, and a true master at pleasing the soul and heart of those she sees. That said, her toxicity can make for a hell of a time with her teammates, flirting yet insulting them constantly. While ridiculously strong and good at resisting attacks, a lot of her attacks can cause friendly fire towards her teammates and put them at risk.
Attributes: Toxicity, Bad Impression, Devil's Dance, Explosive
MGC +2, DUR +1
A sickly, abused test subject created by Nightshade to follow in his footsteps, but their incompetence with typical air quality resulted in Gram needing a sentient mobile oxygen chamber to stay alive. They are often seen looking or behaving sickly and/or shivering, and have trouble communicating with the rest of the team. Their machine knows many magic moves that can generate high levels of pain in foes.
(Sentient x Raja)
EVA +2, STR +1
This shy child can speak multiple languages as well as replicate animals sounds as well. Sometimes, he speaks in different languages just to throw people off for the fun of it. Known for being a very effective prankster and also for speaking to animals to get them to help him both in battle and in general. These animals can help defend Brock and teammates from attacks and lay multi-hit damage down onto them.
Attributes: Mimic, Prankster, Sweeper, Healer
(Sentient x Raja)
DUR +2, MGC +1
A puzzle-loving brainiac that reads and understands just about any language, but has trouble pronouncing them. Wernera is very skilled with puzzles, often being seen solving something like a Rubik's Cube or oversized jigsaw puzzles. Wernera loves challenges, and her gameplay style in Generation Z reflects off of that -- Wernera's gameplay takes a lot of strategy and patience to perform properly.
(Glain x Nightshade)
STR +2, EVA +1
Ignis is this devious inventor / pickpocket that is surprisingly good at sneaking into areas where he doesn’t belong and creating little inventions to steal from wherever he wants. He is something of an ass, liking to throw out insults and offensive jokes without a second thought. Sometimes he sets up tiny shops and quickly robs others of money unfairly. Uniquely compared to other characters, he has four unique Defend set-ups.
Attributes: Construct, Command, Repair, Heal
(Ginger x Acebreaker)
STR +2, MGC +1
Snap is a nuclear-like giant that can snap the bones of anyone that dares challenge his unrivaled strength, borrowing the strength and intelligence his parents possess. He is quite feral and wild, but is stable enough to somewhat communicate with the rest of his team. With his Unorthodox Caduceus, Snap can fire poison-based magic to puncture holes in enemies and generate toxic fumes. This tall warrior of a monster has abysmal defense, however, and is easily to pick off even at moderate health.
EVA +2, MGC +1
A well-mannered, high-spirited girl that works with the daylight cycle with her master Aileen. Completely free of sin and consequence and by far one of the most well behaved children in the cast. She wasn't always that way, but became very devoted to the training that her master brought her under and worked her way towards being the best gal she could be. Lycoris utilizes light magic in battle, able to pierce through darkness and stun enemies that can't resist light well.
MGC +2, EVA +1
A night-based gal working under her master Iantha, who tends to be more negative and unenthusiastic when compared to her sister Lycoris. She's always behaved kind of strangely, straying away from social gatherings and getting slightly abrasive when approached in a non-careful manner. She is working her way towards becoming a master of the night, wanting to take powers from Iantha so she can better utilize her darkness-related powers in battle, which are supposed to be able to obliterate light-based foes.
This is where the characters reside. You can visit their rooms and see what they're up to. If two characters have a strong bond, there's a chance that those characters are hanging out in each other's rooms.
The storage is run by the one and only insane, explosion-loving chick, Keil. The characters can have her store whatever weapons or item they don't need. They can retrieve the restored items at anytime.
Hiss & Split Coffee
The shop has various items on sale. Malice can provide you with weapons such as swords, times, spellbooks, etc. Coffina sells defense items like armors. Kitty has items like healing potions and coffee.
Collin Max Dojo
Run by Epica and Sarona, the Dojo is where the characters can train to grow stronger. The characters can partake in minigames to increase their stats. Each stat can be increased by playing minigames. There are four minigames in total as each focuses on a specific stat: Evasion, Durability, Strength, Magika
- Evasion - Test the character's agility by dodging dodgeballs thrown by Sarona. You have to avoid them by either leaning left, right or standing upright.
- Durability - Swing your way into a breakout style game where you have to bat a ball to break bricks.
- Strength - Tap buttons in a particular order for the character to lift heavy weights. The higher their strength, the more buttons in the sequence. Epica will be spotting you as you go along.
- Magika - You have to match three magic symbols to earn points. The symbols being Fireball (Fire), Water Drop (Water), Tornado (Wind), Rock (Earth), Star (Light), Shadow Hand (Dark), Leaf (Plant), Eye (Psychic) and Poison Bubbles (Poison). If you match five together, they'll combine together and explode destroying blocks around them in particular patterns gaining the player more points.
- Fire - 5x5 Grid
- Water - 6x6 Triangle
- Wind - 6x6 Inverted Triangle
- Earth - 4x4 Hexagon
- Light - Complete Vertical & Horizontal Sweep
- Darkness - Complete Diagonal Sweep
- Plant - 7x7 8-Point Star
- Psychic - 6x6 Circle
- Poison - Complete Sweep Spiral
Want to save money? Give it to Valerie as she owns the Bank. You can deposit or withdraw the money you collected throughout the journey.
Bound Binding Building
When two characters achieve an "A" Bond, they can visit Silver at his building to receive a special gift called a Duo Attack. Duo Attacks can merge each characters' significant move into one powerful attack, depending on the characters who can reach the "A" Bond. These moves, however, can take both of the characters turns and a lot of time to recharge or use of MP.
Keen Eye Collectors
After exploring a dungeon and finding a relic container, the player can head to this building, which owned by adventurous siblings, Maddison and Odell. They can open the container for you, but it'll cost you. The player can retrieve what’s inside of the container once it’s open.
There are a total of 250 basic enemies in Generation Z, as well as a grand total of 30 bosses, making for a total of 280 entries of enemies for the player to find and discover. Enemies vary in type and design, with many being animals but many also being machines, and many are affiliated and not affiliated with Mallory's forces.
- Some of the inspiration for the time traveling concepts were taken from Fire Emblem Awakening, although aren't intended to be quite as broken.
- The map for this game was created by lovely friend Shadow Inferno (t∣b∣c).