CC2 President Hiroshi Matsuyama Talks Naruto, Asura’s Wrath

It’s been a week since the 2012 Paris Manga & Sci-Fi Show took place, but the Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm Generations news from the event just keeps on coming in! The team over at SuperSoluce had the opportunity to interview to CyberConnect2 (CC2) president Hiroshi Matsuyama at the 2012 Paris Manga & Sci-Fi Show. The main topics of discussion? Naruto of course, along with CyberConnect2’s Asura’s Wrath! As you can see from the video, the interview was conducted in French, but no worries as Anime Games Online has, to the best of our ability, translated it into English!

Question: Let us start off by congratulating CyberConnect2’s work on Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 2 and 10 million Naruto video games sold worldwide by Namco Bandai Games! Word on the street is you will run with joy in Paris come April? Can you explain future?

Matsuyama: Yes! I will participate in the Paris Marathon on April 15 and of course, I will be dressed as Naruto! It’ll be very funny. On the downside, if I feel a little tired I’ll use a jutsu to exile my fatigue to clones which will allow me to keep going!

Question: All eyes are now turning to the future with the imminent release of the next installment – Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm Generations. One has to wonder how a game can be even more faithful to the series then Ultimate Ninja Storm 2. Will Generations be a simple update to the previous Shippuden work or will it be something new?

Matsuyama: We are very pleased with Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 2, since it is sold over a million copies worldwide. This success motivated us to make an even deeper and more beautiful game with Generations. You know, we are very responsive to feedback from our fans and they have shown the urge to play with as many characters as possible. Generations will have over 70 playable characters, a volume never reached thus far.

Second important point: The story mode of Generations is Less RPG and adventutre than Storm 2. The Story Mode of Generations will focus on over ten characters. The interesting thing is that each character has his own view of history through exclusive cut scenes and dialogues. Fans can thus discover novel situations thay may not have been shown in the anime.

In terms of gameplay, we improved the substitution jutsu system through a meter that limits the technique a bit and have incorporated cancels, which was missing to the series before. The latter will allow players to protect themselves when performing a combo against attack immediately after.

As for online, among the modes will be ranked matches, custom ranked matches which allow players to customize their characters, and a tournament mode.

Question: You have created many games under the Naruto license for the PSP. Now with the PS Vita as it’s successor, have you are you interested in developing Naruto games for that?

Matsuyama: Indeed, it is a machine that has been studied for quite some time. We are analyzing its potential, but don’t have a project underway. That will depend largely on the expectations of fans and applications that we can draw.

Question: And what about WiiU?

Matsuyama: No plans on WiiU for now …

Question: Have you thought about or were you asked to adapt any other famous manga video game in the style of Naruto?

Matsuyama: Indeed, we had a lot of requests from other publishers, but at this time we do not have plans to work another franchise because Naruto is the series that is most preferred.

Question: Another big project will soon be released in France, Asura’s Wrath. You had expressed the desire to make a hack-and-slash different from God of War and Bayonetta. Do you think the dominance of Quick Time Events give players what they expect from an app like that?

Matsuyama: With Asura’s Wrath, the goal was really to make an action game in which players can immerse themselves in a story while participating in an active way rather than doing a conventional hack-and-slash. The choice of Quick Time Events, in our opinion, would best help in achieving this result.

Unlike most action games, we like to intertwine the story with the gameplay. That way the gameplay is the story and not the reverse. Based on this principle, we have integrated quick time events, and other elements to best present the game.

Question: When creating Asura’s Wrath, you have developed animations only “by hand” without the aid of motion capture. Why make this choice?

Matsuyama: We appreciate motion capture technology, but it does not always reproduce what we want. This is the same for Naruto: when you utilize animated sequences that require a superhuman flexibility, you can not use motion capture. For Asura’s Wrath we have sought people who had six arms, but have not had any success. You understand that we had to find something else to transcribe most of these animations.

Question: We know that CyberConnect2 is working on a top secret project. Feel free to tell us about it, we are friends!

Matsuyama: You know about Naruto Generations and Asura’s Wrath. There are indeed some additional projects on our plate. With that said, I can not tell you for now, but there will be one or two major announcements during the year 2012. Stay tuned!

Question: Do you have any last words to share with French fans?

Matsuyama: Thank you very much, dattebayo!

Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm Generations is a 3D fighter in works by CyberConnect2 for the Sony PlayStation 3 and Microsoft Xbox 360. It will have a revamped online mode, 75 playable characters, and at least 38 stages. The game is scheduled to be published in Japan on February 23, 2012, North America on March 13, 2012, and March 30, 2012 in Europe. For more information, please visit the Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm Generations section.