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The Devil Laughs: A Chat With Capcom Producer Hiroyuki Kobayashi
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The Devil Laughs: A Chat With Capcom Producer Hiroyuki Kobayashi

December 12, 2007 Article Start Previous Page 2 of 5 Next

Some of the team members who worked on this game have not worked on Devil May Cry before, and some have. With such an important sequel within Capcom, how do you go about forming a team that will end up taking on the title's development?

HK: The core members of the team are the people who worked on Devil May Cry 3. We do have some people who worked on Devil May Cry 1, but there's not that many people who worked on that game still at the company. We try to concentrate on people who have experience working on the series.

Having said that, there's probably twice the amount of people who have never worked on the series before working on the game than people who do have experience. Really, we have to get them to know the game, and just go through and develop it together and develop it together as a team, concentrating on the people who already know about the game.

When I was at Capcom in February to play the game, when we were playing the game, a whole bunch of team members came down from the development studio and observed the reactions of the press. I remember also at dinner that evening, you and [director] Itsuno-san were asking our opinions of what we played so far. Why is that kind of feedback important for you in the development process?

HK: At that time, in February, it was actually the first time we had the foreign press playing the game, and we were able to see what they thought of it. We had shown it at TGS before the previous year, but of course that's mainly a Japanese event, though some members of the foreign press played it there. We do concentrate on the Japanese media at that event.

So it was the first opportunity we had for us to see what the foreign press would think of the game, to see what they would think of the [new gameplay mechanic] Devil Bringer and that kind of thing. When we actually have people there at the company, it's easy to see what they think of the game and what they're playing for once they're playing it. It's easy for us to see what they think of it.

I remember there was a specific focus on asking what we thought of the boss battle with Berial, and what we thought of the balance. Did that affect any of your thoughts on game balance? I remember that was a real issue with DMC3 as well.

HK: Actually, before we showed it to the press at that time in February, I played that boss battle with Berial myself, and I found it to be really difficult. Because we had issues with Devil May Cry 3, I decided that before we showed it to the press we would make it a little bit easier. We just did this directly before we showed it.

At that stage, having had played it, I really wanted to know what you thought of the choice, and that's why I was asking so much about it. I think it was a good choice to have made it a little bit easier. Of course, it's very important, and it does have an influence, when we get people to play the game to see what they think of it. But yeah, ultimately, I think it was a good choice to make it a little bit easier and to tune it down like that.

Devil May Cry is a series that is popular in all three major territories, whereas I would say Lost Planet or Dead Rising are more targeted toward the western territories and less toward Japan. How do you do the balancing act of making the game popular? How is that influence the development of the game?

HK: Yeah, that's something I've often asked, having worked on this series and Resident Evil as well. But we don't really pay that close attention to satisfying the tastes of people in different areas. We just make the game that we think will be interesting -- the game that we want to make.

We do want to check some things in the game -- the characters speak English, so we have to get people who are native speakers of English to make sure that what they're saying isn't unusual, or the way that they move or their body language or their gestures or that kind of thing aren't things that would only make sense in Japanese. That is one of the things that we have to change, but in terms of the game development itself, we don't really pay that much attention to one geographic area or another.

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