I think of Cave Story as sort of the first -- I'm sure it wasn't, literally -- the first indie game. It was the first time I just downloaded a random game off the internet and just tried it, ever.
TR: How did you find out about it?
I don't even remember. That was years ago.
TR: It's been a long time. It's been over ten years since he started working on it! It's kind of scary.
DA: Thank you so much.
So is this what you do as a full-time job right now?
DA: I actually work for a printing systems company as a programmer, and I have to find my own time to come and work with Tyrone for this project. I talked it over with the president of the company I work at, and I explained to him my circumstance. I work at home a lot of the time. So I'm a half-on-the-job salaryman.
Do you aspire to be a full-time game developer?
DA: I do.
Do you have a plan to make it happen?
DA: I'm still thinking about it.
(Laughs) Didn't the Nigoro guys go full-time?
DA: I haven't thought about actually going to a company to work. If I have to do it, I would rather just do it on my own.
You see that a lot in the West; you see people doing that more and more -- starting up development of games, doing it on their own, and selling it to Xbox Live or PlayStation Network or WiiWare or whatever.
DA: Yeah, probably something like that, I think.
TR: He didn't think he could before. He didn't think there was enough interest in his games.
When you released the game for WiiWare, what were you expecting in terms of recognition, sales, and that kind of stuff? What did you get? Was it more, or was it less?
DA: In regards to expectations, I was very unsure about a lot of things; but by selling it on DS or WiiWare or all the other distribution methods, people with or without computers will now be able to play it. I am just very happy that I will now receive feedback from those people.
What about reviews? Did the game get reviewed a lot, and were you able to see what people had to say about it?
DA: In regards to the American and European sites that talk about WiiWare or DSiWare, I can't really read English, so I don't really see them. But seeing sites that have rankings on them and seeing my game that high up -- I'm very happy to see that.
It seems like it's your time now. You were ahead of your time, and now could be your time to actually catch and ride the wave of what's happening.
DA: I also think so, but it's not like I'm creating the wave or anything. It's the game itself that has that wave, and I'm riding on top of it.
Do you think that it'll take you five years next time to make a game?
DA: It did take me five years to create the original Cave Story, but then I wasn't working on it full-time. In actual work time, it was more like two years. I was also doing it alone.
TR: And if he wants to now, he has help. (Laughs)
I know you don't really watch the games industry right now, it sounds like, but it does seem like you're hitting it at the right time to now make this happen.
DA: I also think that it is a very nice time that the 3DS would come out, at this period in time.
Are you interested in the 3DS particularly?
DA: In old 3D games, or anything like that, there is the perception of depth, but then the actual distance can't be gauged. You try to move this amount, but it's actually always trial and error. With the 3DS, at least in theory, you should be able to get a very accurate depth perception, and I'm really looking forward to seeing that happen, and seeing how that's going to be implemented. There have been a lot of concepts and ideas for 3D games in the past, but not with this hardware. They can actually start all over again, and use the ideas in the past, which can be made again.