In a recent interview that celebrated Makai Wars’ first anniversary, Nippon Ichi Software president Souhei Niikawa talked about the release of the game, the pressure faced by Nippon Ichi with this being their games as a service title, and more. [Thanks, Famitsu!]
Here are the highlights:
Tell us about something you were especially happy with over the first year of service.
Souhei Niikawa, president: “For me, basically I was happy that we were able to release a game with Asagi as the protagonist. We said we’d do it, but was never able to turn Makai Wars and Asagi into an actual game, and I wanted to release it somehow.”
Did you feel pressured?
Niikawa: “That’s right. Releasing the game is fine and all, but I was worried about what to do if it turned out fans didn’t actually want the game, and it didn’t do well. Up until the release I was worried, but looking back at our results so far, the number of people playing and the pace of increase far exceeded our expectations, and the sales we wanted to get by the 10 months mark was reached in 1.5 months.”
For Nippon Ichi Software, this is the first time you’ve done a game with an ongoing service. How was it?
Niikawa: “For our company, we’ve done several games that were smaller in scope than this one, but Makai Wars is our first time doing a legit game with an ongoing service, and personally this is also the first time being involved with this type of game.
For games released commercially, you just develop a game then have people play it, but an ongoing service game is something like managing a theme park that’s open 24/7, so in terms of business it feels completely different. That said, the consumers’ feelings of wanting to have fun, and our feelings of wanting to provide a fun game haven’t changed, so if we are able to understand the differences in business model, there’s nothing a console game maker like us can’t adapt to.”