With Contra: Rogue Corps, Konami is bringing back a franchise that hasn’t seen a new game since Hard Corps: Uprising in 2011. Director and producer Nobuya Nakazato, who has been working on the series since Contra III: The Alien Wars, gave an interview where he talked about bringing the series back in a new form. [Thanks, 4Gamer!]
Here are the highlights:
To think that a new Contra game would be announced.
Nobuya Nakazato, director: “Currently, it’s in fashion to make mini game consoles, so it’s started a bit of a retro game boom.”
Right. There have also been many collections that collects the series’ greatest hits into one package.
Nakazato: “I’ve always been involved in Contra, so I’ve always wanted to do another one, and I saw this retro game boom as a chance.” (laughs)
To make a Contra game in the current age, I believe there are parts you’d need to change and things you must keep the same. What did you keep in mind in this regard?
Nakazato: “When I ask others what makes Contra fun, it’s always “I played it with my brother, “I played it with friends”, and the like, as in that it’s the co-op aspect a lot of the time. To recreate that in this age, as we are now able to play it online as well, I thought that we had to strengthen this aspect.
However, if you are to play it with multiple people, a sidescroller presents certain problems to the gameplay, so things like a change to a top-down view were things we had to change.”
I see. So it’s a game that is meant to be played with multiple others.
Nakazato: “The ‘Corps’ in the title is the same as Contra: Hard Corps on the Genesis, and is meant to evoke the co-op aspect.
Another thing about the Contra series that must be preserved is the easy-to-understand nature of the gameplay, that you can pick up and immediately understand what to do. While games that require you to sit down and get in the mindset for are fun too, Contra is a game with a low mental barrier of entry, which you can enjoy while eating chips, and immediately stop when your phone rings… that sort of game.
Also, we are aiming to bring back the run-and-gun shooting experience of ‘dodging and hitting’ in the form of a modern game, something which is hard to experience in the FPS genre.”
What was the reason for increasing the hack-n’-slash elements in the game?
Nakazato: “As Contra was originally an arcade game, it was made so that you’d clear each stage then beat the game, but we wanted people to play more and get more out of the game. Also, with the increased focus in multiplayer, we also wanted to capture the fun in showing off new weapons to others.”
Regarding the lack of microtransactions…
Nakazato: “We wanted to make a game you could have a rowdy good time with without needing to think too much, so we didn’t add them. If we’re able to get people to just shoot and have fun, then that’s fine. (laughs)
Controls-wise, it’s become a twin-stick shooter, so you might think it’s different from previous Contra games, but unlike others of the genre, there are different levels of elevation, and you can use the famous flipping jump to fight. Classic bosses also appear, so please look forward to it. For those who can’t wait, there’s also the Contra Anniversary Collection that’s now available!”
Contra: Rogue Corps releases for Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC on September 24, 2019.