Tomonobu Itagaki, creator of the Dead or Alive series, proponent for really hard games and former head of Team Ninja, is making the rounds to promote Devil’s Third, the first game from his new team at Valhalla Game Studios. Speaking to Edge Online, Itagaki shared some details on his approach to designing games. It turns out that drinking alcohol is plays an important role in the designer’s creative process.
When asked if he prefers to concentrate on the big picture or focusing on the player’s moment-to-moment experience, Itagaki replied: “It depends on the point of the production process. In the early days, I think about the strengths or weaknesses of the hero or enemies, things like that. It’s about slowly fighting a war that I think I can win so I can provide you with a war that you think you can win. So, at the early stage, it’s high level, and at this stage [with Devil’s Third] I go deeper and deeper into the moment.”
But let’s not forget about the booze. “ Ah! Another important thing is drinking alcohol,” adds Itagaki. “The love letters you write at night after drinking… they’re usually not that good. But you write them, and when you wake up the next day and re-read them, you find there are lots of beautiful gems there, and you rewrite them.”
Itagaki also goes on to discuss the dreary state of the games industry and the state of Japan in general. When asked if he would consider running for office, Itagaki responded positively. “Yes. There have been some offers for me to become a political candidate in Japan, and we do need a strong leader.”
Devil’s Third will be Itagaki’s first shooter, but he wants it to be much more than an average action game. “What I’m trying to do is make a world that describes war and conflict, and what kind of solution we can have. Something that is in and of itself a pure representation of fighting. Of ‘violence,’ says Itagaki.
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