The Pokémon Company and Bandai Namco are working together on the series’ first fighting game with Pokkén Tournament, which was announced earlier this year. Tekken series chief producer Katsuhiro Harada recently spoke with 4Gamer about why the game is releasing in arcades first.
During the interview, 4Gamer mentions that Pokkén is an arcade title, but when you think about the Pokémon series, family-oriented games come to mind, which isn’t exactly true of arcades.
“That’s something that got a big reaction, for better or worse [from the development staff],” Harada replies. “There are several reasons for this choice, one being that ‘if it were on arcades, it would be interesting to see fan reaction sooner’.”
“The other reason, which is something I always say, is that it’s important for fighting games to at least succeed in arcades once,” he continues. “With arcades charging 100 yen for a single play, if it’s a boring game, it will most certainly be dismissed. It’s really a harsh environment for [arcade games].”
4Gamer then points out that it makes sense that, if a game becomes popular in arcades, once it releases for consoles, fans can buy it without any worries.
“Pokémon definitely has a family-oriented image, but in addition to how we decided on developing [Pokkén] as a competitive game with depth, we must also be prepared to face such severe conditions,” says Harada.
“Once you have a title that can make it out of the lion’s den called arcades, it’s something you know you can be proud of for being the real deal. Additionally, there aren’t too many developers that take on these kind of challenges nowadays.”
Pokkén Tournament will release for arcades in Japan sometime in 2015.