PlatinumGames’ Hideki Kamiya on Bayonetta, Project GG and Elon Musk’s Twitter

PlatinumGames is known for its sharp and edgy action games like the Bayonetta and NieR: Automata series. IGN Japan interviewed Platinum’s outspoken vice president and veteran creator Hideki Kamiya about his reaction to bayonet 3his ambitious Project GG follow-up game, his thoughts on Elon Musk’s Twitter, etc. Strap on and read on!

Hideki Kamiya about the future of the Bayonetta universe

IGN: Bayonetta has become your longest series. How do you feel about it now?

Kamiya: “The Bayonetta series has been going on for 13 years now. This is the first time I’ve been involved in an intellectual property for this long. I’ve been involved in games not only as a director, but I also write their stories and oversee their creation in general, so I feel like I’ve been able to protect and maintain the entire Bayonetta world in my own way.

“One of our most fundamental values ​​at PlatinumGames is that we make games for players. However, I’m starting to notice that as a series like Bayonetta and other game series follow Continually, what players wanted started to differ from what its developers offered.Even then, we couldn’t add anything that the majority of players simply wanted to our game. . I’ve always believed that developers need to have their own beliefs as creators when they make games, but I’m starting to feel that more than ever.”

IGN: Where does the difference between players and creators show up?

Kamiya: “You see that when it comes to the story, and there are a lot of opinions even regarding the mechanics of the game. Take Bayonetta’s IP as an example, while I have a structure in mind about it. where the story will dive into the future, players can only make judgments about the story they have at the moment they will say things like the series is coming to an end because the creators don’t love it it. I want everyone to know that it’s clearly not like that. I love Bayonetta more than anyone. How could I not love Cereza and all the other characters I’ve nurtured?”

IGN: Is there any chance we’ll see Bayonetta 4 or Bayonetta 5?

Kamiya: “Personally, I can’t imagine the Bayonetta series ending. I want to make Bayonetta 4 and Bayonetta 5, and I plan to recommend them to the company. We often talk internally about doing so. I want people who love the Bayonetta series to believe me when I say, ‘I won’t do anything to betray the player’.”

IGN: Is there a chance you’ll make spin-offs instead of just the mainline games? (Note: The Bayonetta Origins: Cereza and the Lost Demon side game was announced after this interview, during The Game Awards.)

Kamiya: “I wanted to do a spin-off. It’s an established part of Jeanne’s character that she also works with as a superhero named Cutie J. I even wanted to make a spin-off. Story for that.Continuing the Bayonetta series is what’s most important to me, so I’m not fixated on the numbers tied to the game’s title.I want to be able to describe the Bayonetta world at large. big in my head.”

IGN: Have you ever felt like making games for high-end hardware aka AAA games?

Kamiya: “I have. We’ve heard from players that they want to see PlatinumGames titles as premium AAA games. There’s one title we have that hasn’t been announced yet and I’d like to say that now we do. are not necessarily developing it as a Nintendo-exclusive platform.”

IGN: About when can we expect to learn more about this unannounced title?

Kamiya: “I can’t discuss that yet. As a developer, I’m extremely interested in high-end game development and that’s exactly what I’m dealing with right now. Stay tuned for more information. for more information.”

Hideki Kamiya in his next brand new game, Project GG

IGN: Even though you announced a new IP with the codename Project GG, there’s still a lot we don’t know about the game. Can you tell us a little bit about the gameplay or mechanics of the game?

Kamiya: “I can’t say anything yet. I’m pretty sure that (studio chief) Atsushi Inaba will kill me if I talk too much, haha. Let’s just say we’re working on developing everything from the front end. play to the mechanics of the game and beyond.”

IGN: Project GG has been announced as a self-published game that PlatinumGames will take from development to sales. What do you think about self-publishing this way?

Kamiya: “When you self-publish a game, you end up needing staff to exceed requirements during development. That’s something I’ve learned with our previous self-released titles. me like The Wonderful 101: Remastered and Sol Cresta In addition to our creative team, we’re also working on expanding our sales and PR staff. A recent development is Takao Yamane, formerly of Nintendo, joined PlatinumGames.”

IGN: What kind of scale are you aiming for when it comes to Project GG?

Kamiya: “It’s going to be so big that you won’t even be able to compare The Wonderful 101: Remastered and Sol Cresta to it. So we need to become a company capable of publishing at that level, not at that level. just developing strength.”

IGN: In terms of platforms, what hardware will Project GG be released on?

Kamiya: “I hope we can release Project GG on all systems. Although next-generation hardware will be the main focus, we are also looking to release Project GG to other hardware as well. The hope is that we can maintain a high level of quality while pursuing a unique appeal to those systems.

“Unrelated to Project GG, I have no objection to games being ported from next-generation hardware to other platforms. For example, even if a version of a cross-platform game somewhat degrades performance. performance on Nintendo Switch, it still has the benefit of being the only piece of hardware that lets you play while lying down, which is really cool.”

Hideki Kamiya PlatinumGames’ new studio in Fukuoka

IGN: PlatinumGames recently opened a studio in Fukuoka. Why create a location in Fukuoka?

Kamiya: “We needed more development staff. We wanted more people to work at PlatinumGames, so we built development facilities not only in Osaka but also in Tokyo and Fukuoka. No where is more concentrated in Japan than in Tokyo , and Fukuoka is gaining attention as a place for game development We are working to secure talented personnel through these additional locations and by how to make working remotely possible.”

IGN: What kind of projects will PlatinumGames Fukuoka be involved in?

Kamiya: “The location of the studio won’t affect the type of projects the teams working there are involved in. We’re allowing remote work during development on the latest PlatinumGames title, Bayonetta 3.

“This is our first time trying this, but Yusuke Miyata, the game’s director, has done a great job of allowing work from home. I think it also helps our young staff grow more. I was concerned that we might lose some of our employees who are better at the creative side of the development, but now I feel more confident that we can take on that challenge. the Osaka, Tokyo and Fukuoka offices are all involved in a project I’m leading codenamed Project GG.”

IGN: You have announced that you are also considering opening studios abroad. Where are you looking specifically?

Kamiya: “Of course we’re looking at creating a base for overseas development. If anything, I’d almost like to ask you for advice on where we should go, haha. Of course there’s North. America and Europe, but Southeast Asia also looks promising.Malaysia is a popular outsourcing destination for many big games.I’ve even heard there’s currently a shortage of workers.Industry the game is currently suffering from a worldwide labor shortage.”

“I have a feeling that 1,000 people won’t even be enough if PlatinumGames decides to do everything we really want to do.”

IGN: How many people does PlatinumGames need?

Kamiya: “Inaba, the head of the studio, said he wants 500 people three years from now. We have about 300 people right now, so we’ll need more. Really, I have a feeling. feeling that 1,000 people wouldn’t even be enough if PlatinumGames decided to do everything we really wanted to do.Through Bayonetta 3, we learned that development can work even in offices. Ours is geographically isolated, so I doubt we would be hesitant to establish any new locations in the future.”

IGN: What kind of developer would you like to apply to work at PlatinumGames?

Kamiya: “People with pride, and people who can get rid of their obsessions and express them in a creative way. People who feel a sense of responsibility to put their names on the credits. Example , if I ask someone to come up with a character dressed in black, I don’t want them to approach that job the assembly line way.

“I want them to suffer for it, to question why it has to be black, to think, ‘Is black right for this character and this story?’ I want someone capable of grappling with those kinds of questions only to conclude, ‘I know that’s not what you’re asking for, but I brought you a character dressed in red because I think it works better’.”

Hideki Kamiya on his future as a game developer

IGN: Game development takes a long time. Looking at your life as a developer so far, is there anything left on your to-do list?

Kamiya: “Personally, I try not to think about it. I’m about to turn 52 and I don’t know how much more I can do as a developer. Lately, I’ve been involved in various titles developed by PlatinumGames, not only as a director but also as a lead game designer. A similar approach to Sol Cresta, where I start the project and pass the rest to another employee who acts as the director. I see positives in working on different titles that way.”

IGN: Have you ever benefited from developing a game as the lead game designer, instead of the director?

Kamiya: “For example, if I had directed Bayonetta 3, I might have missed out on trying out a new title and even made myself more stressed. I’ve come to enjoy controlling the development process from a broader perspective as a lead game designer. I now have Project GG and I feel like I can maintain an objective, tolerant eye as long as I have a place like that where I can unleash all my passion. At the end of the day, all I really need to be satisfied is getting things into the hands of players that make them happy. I want to turn as many of my ideas into reality as possible and give players quality titles.”

Hideki Kamiya on Elon Musk’s Twitter acquisition

IGN: As a heavy Twitter user, do you have any concerns about Elon Musk’s company acquisition?

Kamiya: “Nothing specific at the moment. My impression is that someone with a clear idea of ​​what he wants to do with Twitter now owns the company. I heard he’s also an executive. move.”

IGN: How do you feel about the blue ticks on Twitter? Now that they can be paid, would you consider buying one?

Kamiya: “I think it’d be more interesting if I didn’t have any checkmarks. Even if that means a lot of accounts pretending to be me spring up, haha. I have no intention of getting one at all. , whether you have to pay for it or not. I think Twitter is like a pub or a bar where you say what you want to say and everyone is equal. I often see criticism that says I don’t should be on Twitter or my account needs to be taken from me, but please, just give it all to Elon Musk!”

Daniel Robson is the Editor-in-Chief at IGN Japan – you can follow him without his checkmark Twitter account. This interview was transcribed by Ryuichi Kataoka and translated by Ko Ransom.


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