Great interview, drop a bus on if old.
Credit to Gematsu for the translation:
Credit to Gematsu for the translation:
It seems like the announcement that your company has acquired the IP and selling rights to the Disaster Report series has been met with a lot of fanfare.
Kujo: It has. The response we got was more than we were personally expecting. In fact, we were really surprised to see so many people happy about the announcement. Its been about four years since development was cancelled for Disaster Report 4: Summer Memories, making it six years since the series has had a proper game come out with Zettai Zetsumei Toshi 3 [the Japan-only PSP installment]. On a personal level, we were just glad to have the rights as a matter of principle, but knowing that we still have so many patient fans waiting for us is something that feels really great. At the same time, I hate that things have been drawn out for so long, so my feelings on this are all a little complicated.
Could you talk a little about how you ended up with these rights?
Kujo: Sure. So one of the original goals we had when we founded Granzella was to put out another disaster game. That sort of subject matter makes for a risky proposition, so we set out to make a company where we could assume that risk and the administrative responsibilities that come with it ourselves. Knowing that, if it was at all possible, we wanted to realize that vision with Disaster Report specifically. When we approached Irem about it, they were really understanding and things progressed well from there. And then last year, our talks wrapped up and we made our announcement at the end of last year in the midst of the usual holiday chaos.
And now all eyes are on where the Disaster Report series goes from here. How are you thinking things are going to proceed from here?
Kujo: At the outset, right now we want to revive interest in the series again, so by the time this interview is published, we should have the first two games, Disaster Report and Raw Danger for the PS2, available for download as PlayStation Classics [on the Japanese PlayStation Store]. And then from there, were working on getting out Zettai Zetsumei Toshi 3 out again as a downloadable PSP game, too.
Tells us a little about the state of Disaster Report 4 because it was well into development and the standard media blitz when it was cancelled. Will the game you guys put out just be a continuation of what you worked on previously or will it be something completely new?
Kujo: What we accomplished with Disaster Report 4 originally is still something I want the world to see, so its not like we plan on scrapping everything and rebuilding it from square one. Things like the basic themes, the summertime setting, the situations that the protagonist finds themselves [the original version allowed for selectable gender] in, I figure those will more or less remain intact. But a lot of time has also passed since we first worked on the game and the industry is in a different place now; the ways games express themselves, the technology they use, we have to incorporate those things now to make it all work.
Its unfortunate it all has to come to an end for sure. If I can ask, have you decided what platforms Disaster Report 4 will come out on yet?
Kujo: Were not quite ready to talk about that yet. Check back in during the fall later this year and well be ready to talk about that.
Disaster Report aside, do you have word on any other Irem properties like R-Type and Steambot Chronicles?
Kujo: Weve definitely had people asking us in the wake of the Disaster Report acquisition whether there would be more stuff coming from R-Type and the return of Steambot Chronicles II. Believe me, I have a great deal of love for those series, too, but right now I can only guarantee that weve got Disaster Report.
Oh, actually, one more thing. Do you plan on still doing something special for April Fools Day this year?
Kujo: Yes, of course! Weve been hashing those details out since May last year! (Laughs) So look forward to that, too.