Bayonetta And Wonderful 101 Creator Kamiya Details His Origins As A Director

By Ishaan . August 13, 2013 . 12:30pm

Hideki Kamiya, director of games such as Devil May Cry, Okami, Bayonetta and The Wonderful 101, says that he owes a lot of his success and growth as a designer to his ex-boss, Shinji Mikami, the creator of the Resident Evil series.


In an Iwata Asks interview for The Wonderful 101, Kamiya details how he was placed under Mikami’s guidance when he joined Capcom. The very first project he worked on was Resident Evil.


“Mikami-san was the one at Capcom who first created the style of team on which the director is responsible for the core of the game,” Kamiya reveals. “Until then, Capcom’s company atmosphere had been one of everyone making games together, and it still was when I first joined. So there was a backlash and shock from giving the director absolute authority, and I was often against it, too.”


Kamiya would himself be required to shoulder such responsibility, when Mikami later made him the director of Resident Evil 2. However, instead of taking to the director’s role as well as he would have liked, Kamiya says he “messed up in a big way”.


“As a result of saying okay to everything that came up, it turned out horrible,” Kamiya recalls. “We had to scrap what we had spent a year and a half making.” He adds that, despite this, Mikami allowed him to remain director, convinced that he’d learnt from his mistakes.


The same very nearly happened with Viewtiful Joe and Okami as well, Kamiya reveals, recalling that he struggled with trial-and-error on both games, trying to come up with a core concept for each one, but was unable to do so for a lengthy period of time. Ultimately, with the help of other staff members, the core mechanics of both games were fleshed out under pressure, which led to a drastic change in direction in Okami’s case in particular.


Kamiya ultimately credits the working environment at Capcom with why his games at the company turned out to be of such high quality.


Read more stories about & & & & on Siliconera.

  • MrSirFeatherFang

    I loved this interview. I wish there was more though.

    • z_merquise

      That’s the just the first part. I think the 2nd will be more about The Wonderful 101 though I really love to know more about his past experiences especially his time at Capcom.

      I hope they also talk about his Twitter obsession in the next interview.

    • AndyLC

      Bug him on twitter about it, hahah.

  • SirRichard

    I love the contrast between Kamiya’s past and a lot of people interviewed by Iwata; most of them did well enough for themselves in school, liked games and got their start as a programmer or something, having studied to do so. Kamiya? Failed his highschool entrance exam because he played games so much, got his job for being able to do storyboards.

    His game design approach is also rather interesting and kind of unique, from what we’ve heard of devs; just wing it until inspiration strikes and you get shouted at. While probably not to the same level, more games could do with more carefree development.

    • Brimfyre

      That’s why I think Platinum and Nintendo make a perfect marriage. Like order out of chaos. Nintendo knows what has to be done to make a game good and have a long tail, and Kamiya thinks outside the box in the way games should be played and made.

  • GriffithOfTheHawk

    Nice interview. Kamiya doesn’t fit in Nintendo philosophy where they think about the core of a gameplay idea first and foremost and then build around it. I’m not too surprised that they didn’t hire him at the time :)

    That’s a great partnership, let’s hope it translate in sales for The Wonderful 101 (no excuse for not buying it Day One it’s only 40€ here the price of a 3ds game).

    • Link

      But they do fit together nicely in the fact that they both want to focus on creating great gameplay first over everything else.

  • z_merquise

    Kamiya is so obsessed in playing games that he’s not really good in his studies but it seems he is blessed by the God of Video Games that he became a great game developer.

    I really like that his unusual style is what made him land a job as a game developer and that also reflected on his games since every games he made are very unique and different to each other.

    • I wouldn’t say his games are very different to each other. Bayonetta is pretty much a DMC successor, as is Wonderful 101 a Viewtiful Joe successor.

      • z_merquise

        DMC and Bayonetta, there’s a bit of similarity but for Viewtiful Joe and Wonderful 101, they don’t play exactly the same. For the character designs, yes but the gameplay mechanics are vastly different.

        • Personally, I hope his next project is another Shinto inspired game that will succeed Okami.

  • SunOatBoatMatadorQuattro

    That was a nice read. I came for Kamiya (that didn’t sound right) and I stayed for Mikami. It looks like when making Devil May Cry 1 Kamiya had no pressure because he barely mentioned it. Viewtiful Joe and Okami appear to be Kamiya’s first big projects probably because Clover Studios depended on them.

    Also, the comments about Mikami really make him look awesome. It’s a shame he left Capcom because it will be very hard for Capcom to replicate the success of Resident Evil 4 (RE5 and RE6 were more action focused and lacked any attempt to make look like survival game).

  • SupaPhly

    Hideki Kamiya – 20XX

  • Göran Isacson

    Reading Kamiyas answers to this interview gives even me hope that one day, ONE DAY, I might be able to get a job in the game industry even if I too played games so much that it didn’t always do my grades… good, to put it kindly…

Video game stories from other sites on the web. These links leave Siliconera.

Siliconera Tests
Siliconera Videos