Doublejump Books Guides

These things are just awesome. I finally received the SMT: Nocturne guide for my birthday. I had paged through it and the Phantom Brave guide at Cathcart’s place and was super impressed with the layout. Now that I own the SMT guide and was able to spend a lot of time with it, I want DJB to do ALL console RPG guides from here on out. These things totally blow away Prima’s stuff.

They’re just packed with info that you expect to find in a strategy guide but they also feature a lot of the gorgeous artwork that makes these RPGs so appealing to me in the first place.

If you don’t have the Phantom Brave guide but have the game, you can take the plunge on that one for just $9.99 now to see what I’m talking about. These things are superb. Can’t wait to see what they do next and I hope they’re selling well.


I know we’ve talked about this before, but man, I just have to throw in here. I got Phantom Brave for Christmas, along with the DJB guide, and man… it’s just awesome. So much stuff that I would never have found out on my own, and probably wouldn’t have looked up on Gamefaqs just because it’s not as convenient. From now on, I’m going to consider the DJB guide mandatory for any game they write one for.

Plus the Phantom Brave one (don’t know about the others) has an awesome flipbook in the upper right corner. Took me a little while to realize it.

DJB is freaking awesome. I recall when one of the writers was answering questions about Disgaea over at the gamefaqs message board for the title - really cool thing to do. The writing is fantastic, the presentation and informative content are topnotch, and I’ve yet to find a noticable error, unlike the rushed slop pushed out by Prima or Brady in past years. The highest praise I can give them is this - they are the first company since Versus to make me buy books for games instead of going to the internet - just because I want to read what they put out. Good show, guys.

What kind of info is in the SMT:Nocturne guide? I’ve been playing this satanic pokemon clone lately sans guide and the game has the maddening feel of having been designed specifically to sell strategy guides. So many demons, fusions, abilities etc that working out the possibilities via trial and error seems to take forever. If the guide has a list of all the demons with all the abilities they can learn, I might buy it.

All that stuff is in the book, yes. You’ll absolutely love it.


My one complaint is that (at least in the PB guide) the font is sometimes painfully small. Still, there’s so damned much information in there that it’s pretty understandable.

Since no one else said it yet…

Happy Birthday!

The SMT:N book is probably the best strat guide ever made in the US. I’m thoroughly impressed with DoubleJump’s stuff. Just wish they’d do more.

Thanks, Len! I don’t feel any older… yet. The actual day is on Wednesday next week.

Matt’s definitely right though. There are very few guides that could match the DJ books. I recall one of the FFVII books being pretty amazing too.


Thanks for the compliments, guys. We worked our asses off on those, and I’m glad you’re happy with the result.

We’re working on a few projects for 2005. Our preference is to go after a few really cool games and do the best we can, and it seems like the fans like that approach.

Thomas, can you address at all how successful DJB’s guidebooks have been? I guess it’s a good sign y’all have projects lined up for 2005, but do you know if you guys have been moving as many books as you’d like?

My concern is that there’s not enough demand for high-quality strategy guides like this and that Prima and Brady are making a killing hiring half-assed hacks to do their writing and then relying on the toadies at retail to help them shovel their crap onto consumers who don’t know any better.

(Although, I was pleasantly surprised when I bought Phantom Brave that the clerk asked if I wanted the strategy guide before I could request it. I had always wondered if EB just had some sort of deal with Prima and Brady, but I guess there’s enough of a profit margin on any strat guide to make pushing them worthwhile.)

I see the Stratos Group is still doing guides, but it looks like they’re not being too picky. Chrone and Prince of Persia walkthrus? It also looks like it’s just downloadable stuff. I seem to recall they’ve done a few manuals I liked, though.


We sold out the first printing of the Phantom Brave book, which made it hard to find for a little while, and it had a really good sellthrough rate at GameStop.

Nocturne, by comparison, has sold a bit more modestly, but it’s done well for itself.

You probably can’t say, but what kind of sell-through do you get compared to the game itself? 10%? 20% of all game sales?

Thanks for putting together such top notch stuff though. I love all the extras you pack in there. Character art especially really turns me on.


Thanks! Glad to hear it.

I’ll check and see if I can talk about the sellthrough rate and get back to you.

You’re thinking of the one from Versus, by Casey somebody, I believe. One of my eternal favorites, along with the RE2 guide by the same author. The utter irreverance for the characters was a big part of the charm - they really ripped whiny rookie Leon a new one. Of course, now he’s a super ninja badass…

You’re thinking of the one from Versus, by Casey somebody, I believe. One of my eternal favorites, along with the RE2 guide by the same author. The utter irreverance for the characters was a big part of the charm - they really ripped whiny rookie Leon a new one. Of course, now he’s a super ninja badass…[/quote]

Yeah, but you’ll notice he still gets ditched the same way by certain people, which was one of the best sources of snark in the Versus guide.

I’ve got that guy’s RE3 guide from Versus. I bought it after I’d mastered the game, simply because I enjoyed the snark factor. It isn’t quite complete and I question some of his strats (they really obviously ran out of time when they were covering the minigame), but it’s a really funny read.

I’m pleased to say that to this date, we’ve achieved a 50% attach rate on the Phantom Brave guide, according to our sales data.

We’re also hoping to broaden our pool of prospective clients in 2005, so please help put the word out about the books. If there’s an upcoming game that you’d like to see us do the guide for, or if your company’s got a great title that could use an equally great guide, please contact us.

Their site hasn’t been updated since 6/04. I think they went belly-up.

Thomas, that is incredibly awesome. I’m really glad to hear that you’re doing such great business! I’d really love to see you guys handle just about any of the big RPGs or SRPGs that come along, but I’d also buy guides for things like Resident Evil 4 done by Doublejump.

Is it possible to do unofficial guides these days? I imagine it’s not as viable financially but when the guides from the others always seem so incomplete and superficial, a great guide arriving a month or so later would be something I’d buy.

The biggest one I want is Final Fantasy XII but I doubt that will be easy to pull off.