GS: How do you feel about the fact that whenever a game comes out in the U.S. from Q Entertainment, they call it “Mizuguchi’s new game.”
TM: Yeah, sometimes it’s pretty uncomfortable. Because the other talents are making these games, but everybody wants to write, “oh, this is Mizuguchi.” It’s not truth, always. Some games I watch, very deeply. But some games just have my credit as executive producer. We have to change this. I want to change this situation. Please!
GS: Well I think it’s our fault [as journalists], really. It’s a lack of proper journalism. It’s easy to know if it’s “Mizuguchi’s new game.” All you have to do is check and find out. I think there’s a desire to associate a specific name with something to make it more exciting, and that could be a marketing decision [Q Entertainment public relations and events manager Kyoko Yamashita laughs], or it could be a journalist like me trying to drum up more interest in a given topic. But I think it’s irresponsible.
Kyoko Yamashita: Yeah, they have a lot of new talent working on Gunpey for example. It’s actually lead by the team that worked on Every Extend Extra. Lumines team is completely different, although that’s probably closest to being Mizuguchi’s direct team.
GS: What do you think we could do to change this?
TM: (laughs) I don’t know!
KY: I think it’s both ways, personally. I think Q Entertainment can start promoting new talent that they’ve found within the company. I got a close look at it when I was with them for the first time last week, and saw that they’re all working on several different projects at the same time, they’re all on different teams.
GS: So companies like Sega for instance have lost all of their name talent. All of the names are gone. Do you think these kinds of companies will be actively training up people for name recognition in the future? Because a name, regardless of whether it’s always properly used, is sometimes important. Are you actively trying to do that as well?
TM: Yes. Games are expanding, not only the console, PC, and mobile areas, but this is the contents era. There are so many platforms and delivery methods. It’s all about convergence of multimedia and multiple markets. I think we need new talent for this type of future. Traditional games like we make today, are getting old soon. Pretty soon everyone can get games from digital downloads, and everything is changing. It’s really fun to discuss with the network-oriented people now. It’s totally different as entertainment. But the new entertainment is coming from that kind of area, that kind of chemistry.
GS: Did you talk to some of those kinds of people at Phantagram?
TM: They have that experience, network RPG. Naturally Korean developers, and Korean people play network games. But we haven’t got any special details about projects or anything yet.