Interview: Developing the SPY x ANYA SPY x FAMILY Game
Image via Bandai Namco

Interview: Developing the SPY x ANYA SPY x FAMILY Game

It can be a really big deal when an anime series ends up inspiring its first game. Especially when it is a Shonen Jump series and the ensuing title doesn’t end up being something like a fighter. But that’s exactly happened with SPY x ANYA: Operation Memories, the first SPY x FAMILY game. It’s more of a relaxed, slice of life affair with Anya Forger as the focus. To learn more about its development, Siliconera spoke with Producer Yuri Kishi about the title.

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Jenni Lada: When did you start working on the SPY x ANYA: Operation Memories SPY x FAMILY game? 

Yuri Kishi: The project started several years ago. When we started, the anime series had not yet been broadcast even in Japan, but the manga series had begun, and we were confident that the game would become even more spread in the future. Many of us in our office are also fans of the manga, and the project began with the desire of a fan to enjoy the world of the Spy Family in the form of a video game as well.

How influential is the SPY x FAMILY manga and anime on SPY x ANYA: Operation Memories, and which arcs can we expect to see events from in the game?

Kishi: In the game, the player assumes the role of Anya and collects photo memories of her daily life to complete a photo diary assignment from Eden College. During the day, players can go to school, and by night, they can spend time with the Forger family. On days off, players can go on family outings to the ocean, the aquarium, and other places to collect photo memories to put in Anya’s diary.  

The game also features more than 15 unique mini games that are specific to SPY x FAMILY. For example, you can avoid a ball when playing Dodgeball by using Anya’s Telepathy during mini game. In addition, the four Forger characters can enjoy more than 80 different dress-up options, including costumes from the anime as well as game-original clothing, accessories, and hairstyles that can only be found in the game.

There are 10 types of outings the Forger family can go on in game. How many different kinds of outcomes and experiences can we expect to experience at each location and place? How valuable will it be to return to the same spot multiple times?

Kishi: Depending on the progress of the game, the number of places you can go out will be unlocked. There are 10 locations in total, including the aquarium, museum, castle, and beach. Once you have visited a destination, you can go there as many times as you like and can decide where to go. At each destination, there are many things that Anya likes, such as butterflies and swings. When you find them, take a picture of them. If you take nice pictures, you will be able to collect memories to fill the diary. The “Super Cool! items” will change each time you visit a destination, so try going again and again and taking various photos. Once you have taken all the pictures, you will be able to see the wonderful event of the Forger family.

Which SPY x ANYA: Operation Memories outing was the most fun to implement?

Kishi: There are a total of 10 outings in the game, and the places featured in the anime, such as the museum and castle, are particularly impressive. Players can actually run around in the world of the anime. In addition to the destinations, the game offers the unique experience of running around as Anya in the Forger’s house, Eden College, and other familiar places and interacting with characters like Loid, Yor, Damian, Yuri, and Fiona.

Appearances from SPY X FAMILY characters Damian, Becky, Yuri, and Fiona are already confirmed, but are there any other major characters we can expect to see in SPY x ANYA: Operation Memories?

Kishi: At Eden College, you can interact with Anya and her friends’ homeroom teacher, Henderson, as well as Damian’s friends, Emile and Ewen. You can participate in various mini-games with them, such as playing cards, attending Henderson’s class, competing in evaluations, and even playing Dodgeball with Bill, who also appeared in the anime.

When picking out minigames for SPY x ANYA: Operation Memories, what kinds of activities and experiences did you try to prioritize?

Kishi: SPY x FAMILY incorporates unique characters, an outlandish yet heartwarming story, cool action, and comical story, making it popular among a wide range of customers, across all ages. We aimed to captures the essence of Spy x Family and can be enjoyed by anyone who loves the series by game which can be interactive entertainment. After thorough discussions within and outside the company, we developed the gameplay and style for SPY x ANYA: Operation Memories. In this game, players can enjoy unique mini-games based on anime, such as using Anya’s telepathy to avoid a ball in Dodgeball, or reading your opponent’s thoughts when playing cards. Additionally, there are mini games where players control Loid as “Twilight” to complete missions, Yor as “Thorn Princess” to defeat bad guys, and to run on a Bond.

Now that you’ve made a sort of life sim based on SPY x FAMILY, is there any other type of game based on the series you’d like to create?

Kishi: Currently, there are no plans for another game. However, as mentioned above, the world of SPY x FAMILY is so rich, I am sure there are other ways to adapt it into another game. We incorporated a lot of the charm of the work into SPY x ANYA, so I hope you will play this game!

Spy x Anya: Operation Memories will come to the Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, and PlayStation 5 outside Japan on June 28, 2024, with the PC version showing up on Steam on June 27, 2024. The Spy x Family game is immediately available on Nintendo Switch in Japan, with PS4, PS5, and PC versions following there on June 27, 2024. The anime is streaming on Crunchyroll, while Viz Media handles the manga.

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Jenni Lada
Jenni is Editor-in-Chief at Siliconera and has been playing games since getting access to her parents' Intellivision as a toddler. She continues to play on every possible platform and loves all of the systems she owns. (These include a PS4, Switch, Xbox One, WonderSwan Color and even a Vectrex!) You may have also seen her work at GamerTell, Cheat Code Central, Michibiku and PlayStation LifeStyle.