Marvelous AQL is about to bring Half-Minute Hero to PC as a Steam download. Half-Minute Hero: Super Mega Neo Climax Ultimate Boy is based on the Xbox 360 re-release, but has different gameplay modes like Princess 30 from the PSP version.
"The Xbox 360 version was actually created to be more appealing to the West. Since its largely based on the 360 version [Half-Minute Hero: Super Mega Neo Climax Ultimate Boy] is a good fit for the PC," producer Keinchiro Takaki said to Siliconera. I asked Takaki about the art style and if it was influenced by Western media like South Park.
"When we first started working on Half-Minute Hero for Xbox 360, when we did the prototype we tried to ape an American comic style. We looked at games like Castle Crashers and animation like South Park. Those were a big influence," Takaki replied.
While the market for PC games has surged in the West, it’s tiny in Japan. Falcom used to be one of the big players, but even they shifted to releasing PSP and Vita games only making PC ports for the Chinese market. Step into one of Akihabara’s PC stores and you’ll typically see shelves lined with doujin software or adult visual novels.
"The PC market in Japan is rather small," Takaki said when we were discussing if PC would be major platform for Marvelous AQL. "It’s a changing marketplace with consoles being more competitive and the market shrinking, we are definitely interesting as the PC as a platform moving forward. Half-Minute Hero is a step in that direction." Takaki is excited that the PC has a huge user base that dwarfs the PSP and Xbox 360.
What’s next for Marvelous AQL’s Steam plans?
"First of all, we would definitely like to put the second game out," Takaki answered. Half-Minute Hero Second was only released for PSP in Japan and so far has not been localized. "If that sold well then we would want to make another game in the series."
"If we were to make another game in the series I would like to try something else, maybe Unreal Engine for Half-Minute Hero," Takaki laughed.