GS: Did you see the Sony U.S. press conference at E3?
HT: No, I didn’t…
GS: Just wondering if you knew about the whole ‘Riiiiidge Racer!’ thing?
HT: Oh, that! Yeah, I’m happy people are saying the game’s name so much.
GS: Well actually it’s a bit of an ironic meme, as Kaz said he loved the game, while grinding against the wall as he played.
HT: (laughs) Oh…well I’m not as happy with that! But hey, if he’s having fun with it, that’s ok, even if he can’t play.
GS: Not sure if you can answer this, but I heard a rumor some time ago that the Ridge Racer model Reiko, who changes with each game, had her face modeled after one of the male producers. Is there any truth to that?
HT: Totally not true! She’s an original character completely, always designed by the same guy, just changing with advances in technology.
GS: Well her fashion has been progressing very well.
HT: (laughs) Yeah, I guess so!
GS: How do you feel about the PS3 having only two [Namco-Bandai] games in the lineup for launch?
HT: Well, I’m sure other games may be announced before launch.
GS: So you’re not concerned?
HT: Not at all.
GS: How long have you been at Namco?
HT: Ten years now.
GS: And what games did you work on previously?
HT: As far as the Ridge Racer series, I worked on RR4, 5, Ridge Racers, Ridge Racer 6 and 7. I also worked on Klonoa and Time Crisis.
GS: I liked the Wonderswan version of Klonoa a lot.
HT: Well, I didn’t work on it!
GS: That’s ok, I liked it anyway.