This collection of interviews first appeared in a Japanese book called “Introduction to Game Design,” published in 1994. Although featured as interviews, these are more like testimonials and are directed at aspiring young game developers in Japan. Each interviewee talks about how he got into the industry, his experience developing games, and what qualities he thinks a good developer should have.
This fun little questionnaire was featured in the October 1985 edition of BEEP! magazine, an early video game publication in Japan. The fifty-nine (!) developers interviewed here all went on to have long careers at Namco, Capcom, Nintendo, Square, Enix, and elsewhere. It’s a charming time-capsule view of this period.
interview with several early game music composers was first featured in the 6/86 issue of Beep Magazine. It features an extremely young Yoshiki Okamoto and Capcom’s early composer star, Ayako Mori (of Ghosts and Goblins fame). The phenomenon of game music was just starting to take off, and popular songs like the Mario theme feature in the discussion.
These interviews with the composers and developers of Capcom’s famous arcade shmup 19XX were sourced from the liner notes of the official ost and the secret file. The interviews include a track-by-track commentary for the stage bgm, as well as design details and anecdotes from the other programmers and planners. Finally, I’ve also included a funny development diary, full of the usual grumbling about crazy deadlines and crunch time.
Originally printed in the March 2000 issue of Arcadia, this interview with director Tatsuya Nakae and producer Yoshihiro Sudo covers the making of Marvel vs. Capcom 2, the final 2D iteration of Capcom’s beloved series of crossover fighting games whose over-the-top “hyper” game systems, tag-team mechanics and detailed renditions of popular and obscure Marvel and Capcom characters bore heavy influence on fighting games and comic book illustrators alike.
There are a number of interviews in the shmuplations archive which, while too short or slight to be featured on their own, nonetheless contain interesting tidbits of information that merit translation. In many cases, these are the only developer comments that exist for these games. In the future I’ll be aggregating these shorter interviews here, beginning this month with Soul Blazer, Crusader of Centy, Final Fantasy III, and King Colossus.
Originally published in the Japanese Dreamcast Magazine, this 1999 interview saw Treasure alum Mitsuru “Yaiman” Yaida and Koichi “Kafuichi” Kimura discussing the conception and development of the frenetic side-view omnidirectional 2D shooting game Bakuretsu Muteki Bangai-O, with a particular focus given to the game’s deliberately classic and unadorned game design, as well as the inspiration behind the game’s notoriously off-the-wall characters and tone.
This assortment of Final Fantasy X developer interviews originally appeared in a special edition of V-Jump magazine in 2001. These interviews mainly cover the art and design side of FFX, with a special focus on the novel south asia aesthetic and the new opportunities presented by the PS2 hardware and voice acting. I’ve also included a selection of concept art with accompanying commentary from other designers.
This Time Crisis interview from 1997, which mainly focuses on the Playstation port, was originally featured in The Playstation magazine. In addition to the challenges of porting a System 22 game to the considerably less-powered Playstation, the team also discusses at length the design of the console-exclusive special stage and some of the tweaks made to the gameplay.
This 2001 interview with Nintendo Dream magazine saw Camelot Software Planning co-founders Hiroyuki and Shugo Takahashi discussing the creation of Golden Sun, a Nintendo-published RPG for the Game Boy Advance whose unique “psynergy” system and cutting-edge visuals drew great acclaim from players and critics alike. In the interview, the Takahashi brothers cover, among other topics, their prior experience working on RPGs like Dragon Quest and Shining Force, the concept of centering an RPG on “super powers” and their desire to buck the conventional RPG template.