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Yoshiki Okamoto: Japan's Game Maverick Speaks


May 2, 2008 Article Start Previous Page 8 of 8
 

CN: You were involved in Street Fighter in the early days, and there have been a couple of things happening with the franchise that I'd like to ask about, like Super Street Fighter II HD Remix.

YO: I think I'm a little too close to this topic to really give any in-depth answers. Just quote me as saying that "I've seen it" and "I'm very interested." "I'd really like to play it." Let's just leave it at that.

YMG: Setting aside the fact that this is an interview though, how do you feel about it?

YO: It's just that I'm pretty well in the know on what's happening with the game. I tend to hear a fair bit about what goes on at Capcom. Also, Dimps is the company making it, and I share a pretty close proximity with them. Or rather, I should say that the president of Dimps lives in my apartment building, on the same floor, in the unit next to mine. (laughs)

Yuki: The two of you are neighbors?!

YO: Yeah. We're actually really good friends. We both originally worked at Capcom, though he'd been there a while when I started. We still talk all the time, I'll just say I know some things that I can't really talk about.

YMG: We're talking about SFIV, right? Not the SFII remake?

YO: Oh, that's what you meant. No, I actually don't know about that one.

Capcom's Super Street Fighter II Turbo HD Remix

CN: It's being developed in the U.S.

YO: Capcom did sell the development rights to it, didn't they? But no, I really don't know anything about that version. Also, like I said, I've graduated. You know, from the school of fighting games. I've got no desire to make them right now, so I haven't been keeping up with them at all. I don't even go to arcades anymore to play new fighters when they come out.

YMG: Is there any particular reason why?

YO: I got boooored. (laughs) But that's only natural. I mean, how many countless hours have I played fighting games? I've had calluses on my hands forever from using the controls, and I've finally managed to get rid of them! (laughs) I want to keep myself from returning to fighting games, if I can help it.

YMG: Even though you're sort of like fighting game royalty? And some people say there's another fighting game fad on the rise.

YO: Yeah, I guess there might be. But it just doesn't have anything to do with us, anymore. If I'm asked to help out, or if they want my opinion, I'd be glad to do what I can, but it's not something I want to pursue on my own time. If Sony asked me to be involved, for example, I'd do it because of all that I owe them. But aside from that, I don't have any intention of putting ideas together for any fighting games.

CN: I do have to ask, are you happy they're making a Street Fighter IV? Are you happy the series is still alive after all these years?

YO: I just don't have any feelings about it. It's like, "by all means. Have at it."

YMG: But you know, as the father of the series, aren't you curious to see where...

YO: That's just it, though. I'm not curious at all. I haven't read any articles about it, and like I mentioned, I don't know anything about this HD remake. I'm just over it. People do ask me about it all the time, and all I can do is repeat that I'm just not interested anymore, that I've left that stuff behind.

I feel like if I don't make a clean break, I might just end up dwelling in the past, and I don't want that. I want to keep moving forward. I can't go back to Street Fighter II. That would be like a regression of sorts for me. I mean, it's been how many years since then? Fifteen? It's got to be almost 20 years, now.


Article Start Previous Page 8 of 8

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