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Klonoa (クロノア, Kuronoa) is a video game series created by Namco and Klonoa Works, as well as the name of the titular character of the series. The character and series were launched with the release of Klonoa: Door to Phantomile for the PlayStation in 1997.
Klonoa is described within the games and manga as a "Dream Traveler", who is fated to travel to various places where the state of dreams is in danger, but he himself is not aware of that. His traditional voice actor is Kumiko Watanabe, he is voiced by Eric Stitt in the English version of the remake of the first game. He has Namco's mascot Pac-Man on the side of his blue hat. Wanting to be a hero, he is young and good-hearted, and is willing to go against all odds to make sure justice is served. He is easily able to befriend characters along the way who support his cause. His attitude is innocent and even a bit naive, as shown in Klonoa 2: Lunatea's Veil.
Klonoa was designed by Yoshihiko Arai. Arai's first design, "Shady", had a shadow-like appearance. However, he felt that the lack of color did not seem tasteful, and dropped the design. His next design was created with characteristically animal eyes and long ears, as Arai felt that a person's eyes and silhouette are the features noticed when they are first met. He added a large hat with a Pac-Man emblem on it and collar to give the character a childlike and energetic quality. The design was kept and used for Klonoa.Contents
Klonoa: Door to Phantomile was released in late 1997 in Japan and was critically well received by numerous gaming publications and magazines. It was one of the first PlayStation platform games to feature two-dimensional character artwork on a rendered, three-dimensional backdrop. It was described as 2.5D to distinguish it between other games that relied on one or the other. A remake of Klonoa: Door to Phantomile, Klonoa, was released on December 4, 2008, in Japan for the Wii console. It features revised graphics and voice acting, as well as many unlockable bonuses that were not in the original. These include new costumes, Mirrored Visions, and challenge areas. It was released in North America on May 5, 2009, and in Europe on May 22, 2009.
Klonoa's second appearance, Kaze no Klonoa: Moonlight Museum was released solely in Japan for the Japanese-only WonderSwan handheld system in 1999. It is Klonoa's first handheld appearance and his first fully two-dimensional one. Despite lacking the artful style of the first game, Moonlight Museum set the standard for the approaching Game Boy Advance titles like Klonoa: Empire of Dreams, which came out two years later.[original research?] Though it was very similar in style and execution to the previous game, it was developed for the more sophisticated Game Boy Advance hardware and was also available in North America and Europe.
Klonoa 2: Lunatea's Veil was released for the PlayStation 2 with moderate success in 2001. It returned to the series' roots and had more in common with the original game than the other titles in the series.[original research?] This game used a cel-shading method for the characters and also marked the first appearances of several prominent Klonoa characters, such as Lolo, Popka, Leorina, and Tat. It has been stated in many game magazines[according to whom?] that it is "the most underrated game of all time". It is a very child friendly game and has a story line that younger players could easily understand,[according to whom?] but at the same time has more powerful messages going through various points of the game which the older audience would comprehend and enjoy, thus reflecting the first game's premise of being appealing to children and adults.[original research?] Its different types of gameplay includes a standard set of platformer levels in the "2.5D" style, hoverboarding down snowy mountains and water parks, time-attack challenges, puzzle solving, and boss fights, introducing the "360 degrees" system.
A third handheld title, Klonoa 2: Dream Champ Tournament, was released for the Game Boy Advance in Japan in 2002 with a heavily belated release in North America three years later. Utilizing the same game engine as Empire of Dreams, Dream Champ Tournament was a similar gaming experience that benefited from more sophisticated puzzles and featured a newer cast of supporting characters.
A sports title, Klonoa Beach Volleyball, released for the PlayStation in Japan and later Europe, featured Klonoa and his friends in a unique version of volleyball. A North American version was not released.
Klonoa Heroes: Densetsu no Star Medal was released in Japan in late 2002. Taking a unique twist on the series, the game is an action role-playing game rather than a platformer and is played from a top-down perspective.
A webcomic adaption of the series made by Namco Bandai subsidiary ShiftyLook, called Klonoa: Dream Traveller of Noctis Sol, began publication on September 26, 2012. It was illustrated by Hitoshi Ariga, with new pages being published every Wednesday. The webcomic came to an abrupt end following the shutdown of ShiftyLook in late 2014.
On August 7, 2014, Games.it published a rumor that a new game in the series was in the works.
On October 27, 2016, a Klonoa film adaptation was announced, and was in development under the animation production company Henshin. In January 2019, the film was officialy confirmed cancelled.Gameplay
The games are set in different worlds, though the primary and known ones are Phantomile and Lunatea. It revolves around Klonoa and how he, the Dream Traveler, must save whatever world he is in from peril. Along the way he makes new friends and enemies, some of them becoming recurring characters. The game is an early example of a side scrolling 3D game. It is an adventure and puzzle type of game. The main gameplay feature involves using Klonoa's ring and "Wind Bullets" to inflate enemies, which can be thrown at other objects or at the ground, giving him a boost upwards allowing him to double jump.Cameos
Shippuu Tengoku Kaze no Klonoa is a two-volume long comedy/slapstick manga that, unlike the somewhat more serious tone from the video games, features Klonoa as a good natured, clumsy and dim-witted kid obsessed with being a super hero. His attempts to make good deeds tend to fail or cause the opposite effect, due to his being overly enthusiastic, his habit of jump to conclusions and, sometimes, just because of bad luck. The volumes were released in 2002 and 2003.
His patient sidekick is a Moo, who is the postman of Breezegale. Garlen is the main villain, trying to scam or catch Klonoa but failing every time, making a fool of himself in the process.
The manga borrows characters, villains and locations from most of Klonoa's games, such as Lolo who makes an appearance in almost every comic, but instead of following any canon personality or storyline, it simply puts Klonoa and Moo in lots of everyday situations that quickly snowball into huge confusions or spectacular (and painful) accidents.
The first volume mainly takes focus on Klonoa's actions and morals as a (stupid) hero, which often turns out to be turned upside down, and the Moo's responsibility as he has to stop Klonoa from doing something idiotic.
However, the second volume's story is mainly about Popka who is looking for the "Legendary Hero". Baguji told him that the hero could be recognized by a "Hot Spring" icon somewhere on his body. Only the Legendary Hero can stop a disaster that may blow up the world.Webcomic
Klonoa: Dream Traveller of Noctis Sol was a webcomic series published by ShiftyLook, written by Jim Zub and drawn by Hitoshi Ariga. It began in August 2012 and lasted for two seasons with new pages being released every Wednesday, later Wednesdays and Fridays, before abruptly stopping in mid-late 2014 with the closing of ShiftyLook.Cancelled animated film adaptation
On October 27, 2016, it was announced that a film adaptation is under pre-production at Henshin. It was announced on January 10, 2017 that Hideo Yoshizawa had joined the project as executive producer. Ash Paulsen of GameXplain also joined in as a associate producer.  After two years with no updates, writer Hitoshi Ariga confirmed the project was cancelled on January 4, 2019.References