Goichi Suda's Grasshopper Manufacture studio, responsible for the No More Heroes
series, has hired Yasuhiro Wada and Yoshiro Kimura, formerly of Japanese publisher Marvelous Entertainment.
Wada, credited with being the creator and head producer of the farming-cum-dating sim Harvest Moon
, will serve as Grasshopper's chief operating officer. Kimura, whose most recent credit is producing the critically-acclaimed Nintendo Wii RTS Little King's Story
, has been appointed chief creative officer.
Grasshopper Manufacture's director Goichi Suda told Famitsu (translated by 1UP
): "This move will help us produce games in a more stable manner. We haven't released a single [original] title in the past year, which is something that caused a lot of regret in my mind. Having these two people join Grasshopper will make us a more sturdily-organized company, and it'll improve our development, technical, and release skills."
While Suda declined to say what the pair would be working on, he hinted that it may be a more family friendly title than the studio's traditional output.
"We've been known for specializing in action games," said Suda, "but I'm positive this will help drive us to explore other genres as well. One of my goals is to make a game for all ages, and I think we've got the foundation for that now."
Suda went on to explain that he wants his games to continue to appeal to westerners, something he feels the studio has already achieved despite not necessarily being developed with this goal in mind.
"Grasshopper's games are enjoyed by people around the world, but they aren't necessarily geared toward the overseas market," he commented to Famitsu "They just happen to resonate with oveaseas audiences as well. I think that's because this company plays home to a great deal of different cultures that all come together to discover types of fun that everyone can share. It's not a matter of marketing toward individual countries; it's about finding the inner antenna that tells you what's fun and what isn't."
Suda is currently working on Shadows of the Damned
for EA in conjunction with Shinji Mikami, the XBLA/PSN shooter Sine Mora
with Digital Reality and survival horror Codename D