Over on Reddit, Harvest Moon (now Story of Seasons) and the upcoming Birthdays creator Yasuhiro Wada recently took part in an Ask-Me-Anything where fans were able to pose a number of questions to the veteran game director, designer, and President of TOYBOX, Inc.
First off, Wada was asked about his personal approach to creating games, noting that developing unique and interesting titles seemed to be the focus of his career. Wada replied, citing that, in Japan, the current state of the gaming market features the otaku market as its main focus. Because of this, he explains that his fear for the gaming industry is that developers who don’t create AAA titles or indie titles will eventually disappear. Wada’s full response is as follows:
“The number one important thing for me is to provide users with a “new” experience. The game scene right now is lead by the super big AAA titles and indies games. In Japan, the domestic otaku market has become the center of game-developing attention. For the game industry I’m really concerned that those developers who aren’t really indies but also not big are slowly disappearing. Which is why someone in the middle ground, like us, would like to show the world that games that aren’t indie or AAA can still be fun. I think that the more people there are developing games the gaming industry well evolve into an industry enjoyed by more and more people.”
Wada was also asked what kind of experience he hopes Birthdays the Beginning will bring to players.
“I really want people to have a brand new experience that is unique from anything before this game. What’s really important to me is creating a chemistry where people can experience the three things I mentioned above with a brand new game mechanic.”
Lastly, the subject of the “4:44 glitch” in Harvest Moon: More Friends of Mineral Town was brought up. The glitch features the television in the game displaying a time of 4:44 repeatedly when check at a certain time. When asked if this was simply a mistake overlooked in the US version of the game, Wada was able to clear a few things up about the “glitch,” replying with the following:
“This is not a glitch and is working as intended. Originally we wanted to incorporate a “horror” aspect to the game but removed it when we localized the game, due to it not translating well into English.”
For a little more insight, the number 4 is considered very ominous and even bad luck in Japan, since the number 4 shares the same pronunciation as “death” in Japanese.
Birthdays the Beginning will launch physically and digitally for PlayStation 4 and for PC via Steam in North America on March 7th and in Europe on March 10th, 2017.