The latest PlayStation 4 ‘Conversations with Creators’ interview hones in on Goichi “Suda 51” Suda, boss man at Grasshopper Manufacture and head of the studio’s upcoming PlayStation 4 game Lily Bergamo.
Suda doesn’t share much on the new game during the interview, but he does talk a bit about its companion app, extreme action, and ease of development on PlayStation 4.
Watch the video interview below, with an English transcript following.
—To begin, what kind of game is Lily Bergamo? Can you give us a brief outline?
Lily Bergamo is an action game, the hero of which is Tae Ioroi, a woman with a slightly difficult name. Although one might say the action is not ordinary action. It’s “Extreme Action.” E-x-t-r-e-m-e a-c-t-i-o-n. And with a grand scale “Companion App,” we hope to challenge ourselves.
—Why do you plan to release Lily Bergamo on PlayStation 4?
Grasshopper Manufacture is a member of the GungHo family now, and with Grasshopper and GungHo together GungHo’s (Representative Director Company President CEO) Morishita said, “Let’s make a game that leverages the inherent flavor of both companies.” And so Lily Bergamo was born. Also, because we took notice of PlayStation 4 from the beginning, when we played with the platform, we decided to develop it on PlayStation 4.
—I think the ‘Extreme Action’ you mentioned earlier is a keyword of this game, but could you concretely say what kind of action this means?
To define “Extreme Action” is very difficult, but… how should I put it—to be honest, I don’t even really know (laughs). First, it thoroughly incorporates the elements of “hack and slash.” In short, within the action, there is an element of growth included. By accumulating experience, the player’s data is updated more and more rapidly. This is the type of action game I want to create, and development is advancing.
—It sounds like you’re aiming for an amazing action game that exceeds all other action games Grasshopper Manufacture has handled so far.
That’s right. Games like Shadow of the Damned, Lollipop Chainsaw and Killer Is Dead that we worked hard on on PlayStation 3 are completed, but of the accumulated action cultivated in these titles, we want to put the best into Lily Bergamo. Action… especially slash action, is our strong suit, and we are very confident.
—The character design is being headed by Kozaki Yuusuke, isn’t it?
Kozaki has been working with us since No More Heroes, and is like family. As a member of staff he’ll work together with us creating things. Thinking like this, we are having him participate. Of course, Kozaki’s artworks are firmly featured in Lily Bergamo.
—I’m looking forward to seeing what form Kozaki’s characters will take on PlayStation 4. To continue, I want to ask about this title’s big feature, the “Companion App.” Have the contents of the app been concretely decided?
The companion app is continuing development for smartphones. This is the component we want you to pay the most attention to. I can’t talk about the details yet, but please look forward to an announcement.
—You’ve said before that you’re stressing the smartphone version’s “asynchronous online…”
As far as GungHo is concerned, “online” is its forte, and so the team is being made to cultivate ideas. Because of this we’d like you to keep notice. But this is also something we ask you to wait to hear more details about.
—In that case, how will the functions of the DualShock 4 be put to use in this title?
We want to make use of the touch pad. Grasshopper’s talent is in cooking up devices and doing game design, so we want to try out a lot of things.
—How about the Share button that will allow players to upload screenshots and other things?
Whether we will implement the functions of the Share button or not is undecided, but personally I’d like to try to use them. I feel like this is my game, so I want to share it.
—The PS4 has five keywords: “Simple,” “Immediate,” “Social,” “Integrated,” and “Personalized.” Of these five, is there one that is particularly in your mind?
The most impressive one to me is the word “Immediate,” because I felt it’s the most committed point of PlayStation 4 as a game console. We are a game company, and so at any rate making interesting games, making fascinating games, is what we want to focus on. For the sake of this we need hardware that acts “Immediately.” When making a game, this “Immediacy” is an ingredient that gives the most peace of mind. Sure enough, as we develop now, we are feeling the response of this “Immediacy.”
—Many saying that PlayStation 4 is hardware that is easy to build with, but does Grasshopper feel the same way?
It is easy to build with. I’m not sure if it’s fair to compare, but if I were to compare to PlayStation 3, it really is easy to build with! This is surely something that all developers are feeling, I think.
—Since it’s easier to build with than any other hardware to date, you must be able to use a lot of time to pursue the things you want to do.
That’s exactly right. I think that’s the point that is directly connected to the word “Immediate.” Being able to relax and develop is the best thing for us, so it’s very exciting.
—I’m sure that the release of Lily Bergamo is still premature, but how is the current development situation?
The quickest way for us to deliver a game to you is to lay the bricks one day at a time. Now, the team is laboriously building and lifting Lily Bergamo day by day. We are kneading interesting ideas, making reliable data, making adjustments… and valuing the time we use to work. So please keep notice.
—We’re looking forward to it. Lastly, is there a message you could leave for game fans?
February 22, 2014 is a day that I am personally looking forward to very much. If I could meet PlayStation 4 even one day early—this is a feeling I’ve longed for. Dare I say I think there are many players anticipating PlayStation 4 even more than we are, but for those players we want to work hard to be able to deliver Lily Bergamo even one day sooner. Please support Grasshopper Manufacturer’s new title Lily Bergamo!