The developers were originally planning a food-themed PlayStation VR game, but it was cancelled.
In 2018, the pair decided to make a game together, but would forget the ideas they discussed after getting drunk. During the live stream today, however, they were able to solidify their ideas live on the spot.
The collaboration will be a horror game. Suda came up with the title Hotel Barcelona in a half-hour brainstorm session before the live stream, as he would like the game to be set in Barcelona. However, he later said that it could also be set in a place like Tokyo, South Africa, or Venezuela.
As for game content, they want to make it light and easy to play—something that can be downloaded and picked up on mobile, Switch, Stadia, and the like. The idea for the story is that a magazine writer is visiting a hip new hotel, then the horror begins. However, this is not set in stone.
Suda mentioned Siren as a type of horror game he likes, where the narrative is pieced together by playing from the perspectives of various characters. In Hotel Barcelona, you would see different rooms, “each one which represents a different person, or a different dimension, or a different look at what happens in this period of time.” Suda texted Siren creator Keiichiro Toyama during the live stream, asking if he would like to get involved in the project. By the end of the live stream, Toyama had replied with a yes.
Suehiro added that players would be able to follow different “timelines” that are pieced together. While he himself is not into pure horror, he is into something more about “suspense, about uncertainty and nervousness.”
Suda added that he likes splatter horror, so perhaps the second half of the game can turn into something along those lines.
The two also discussed the idea of having an entirely evil character, which the player would be forced to control and do things they do not want to do. Suda said that the characters would include hotel visitors and staff. Characters could be sourced from pictures sent in by fans.
Swery also said he would like the game to be a side-scroller, because it might feel more like an indie game.
Both Suda and Suehiro have already spoken to Devolver Digital about potentially publishing the game, which gave them a rough estimate budget of 100 million yen (approx. $1 million USD).
At an event happening next week, Suehiro will come up with concepts for the game, while Suda will design a logo.
Update 11:40 a.m. Apparently, Devolver Digital may not be set in stone as the publisher. Or rather, the company may have never met with the two creators to begin with. Devolver Digital tweeted, “Gonna need @SUDA_51 and @Swery65 to pitch us this mysterious game we’re supposedly publishing. Name a time and place, gentlemen.”