Producers Koji Nakajima from Namco Bandai Hisashi Koinuma from Tecmo Koei recently spoke to Japanese magazine Famitsu about One Piece: Kaizoku Musou. The issue of Famitsu was released this week in Japan, and while the scan hasn’t yet surfaced online, the team at 1UP has posted a translation in article format of the interview. Anime Games Online has organized and posted the comments made by the two producers based on question topics below.
How did the concept of One Piece: Kaizoku Musou develop?
“The idea sprung out from both sides,” says Nakajima. “There are lots of One Piece games, but none of them have hit the HD consoles yet, and we figured that sooner or later we had to make the leap. We realized that having this action game where Luffy was beating up lots and lots of sailors at once would be a lot of fun. When Koinuma and I met for the first time, it was amazing how quickly we connected. I read One Piece and played lots of Dynasty Warriors when I was in school, but I never thought I’d wind up working on both franchises at the same time!”
What factor(s) went into deciding One Piece: Kaizoku Musou’s graphical style?
“We wanted to express the charm of Oda’s art as much as we could,” Koinuma commented, “but at the same time, we wanted a look that worked well in the game, not just something that looked like the anime. We’re looking for a ‘game-like’ look because we don’t want people to think ‘Well, I read the manga and watch the anime, so there’s nothing new here for me.’ We haven’t done much with cel-shading in games historically, but we have run some tests along those lines in the past, so now we’re trying to use the experience we’ve gained from them.”
Are there any details that can be shared about One Piece: Kaizoku Musou’s gameplay mechanics?
“The primary aim of the Warriors series is to have an action game that anyone can enjoy,” says Koinuma. “Along those lines, we’re trying to make the controls as simple as possible here as well. The idea is to make it approachable while still allowing experts to put their own techniques into it. This being One Piece, I think we’ll see a lot of children playing it, so while I think our approach will be a little different from usual, it will definitely be Warriors in feel.”
Will fans feel this is an authentic One Piece experience?
“If you look at the project document for the game, you’ll really be able to feel the love for One Piece around the studio,” he said. “There’s a lot of stuff like ‘We have to put this or that scene in the game’ in there. The quality of a character game like this really depends on whether the studio really loves what they’re working with or not; having real emotions for the work definitely helps raise the quality.”
One Piece PS3, One Piece: Kaizoku Musou, is the first One Piece game on the Sony PlayStation 3. It will cover One Piece Part 1 as well as some of the story contents of the One Piece timeskip. The game is in development by Tecmo Koei and will be published by Namco Bandai Games in Japan in 2012. No plans have been revealed for a North American or European release.