"While we have seen more shoot ’em ups developed on consoles this generation, the market for shooters has been shrinking. Cave, makers of Akai Katana and Deathsmiles, is going through a transition. G.rev recently released Kokuga in the West and Siliconera asked Hiroyuki Maruyama, the CEO of G.rev, his thoughts about the state of the shooting game market.
"Yes, the current shooting market in Japan is at a very difficult crossroads. I am certain that the genre will not fade away at the dojin level, but in terms of an incorporated studio, to put it bluntly – you are not able to make a living on just making shooters," Maruyama said. G.rev’s history is in arcade games and shooters. The company co-developed Ikaruga with Treasure and also made Under Defeat HD and Mamorukun Curse! which were also released here.
"With that in mind, you can say that we made Kokuga to target a more general audience. Since you can play with up to four people with only one copy of the game, we hope that established shmup fans will use the game to promote the genre to new gamers," Maruyama added.
G.rev’s next project is developing a new Game Center CX or Retro Game Challenge title with Namco Bandai. I asked Maruyama about transitioning to other genres and what kind of game he would like G.rev to try. "Actually, we have developed quite a few titles outside of the shooting genre. Most of those projects were contracted work, so the G.rev name was not featured on those games. So, as in the past, we will continue to develop games across a variety of genres in the future," said Maruyama. "We would be interested in developing games in a number of genres. Personally, I would like to try to make a multiplayer action title. We will, of course, continue to make shooters as well."
We will have more discussion about G.rev’s shooters on Siliconera soon.