Konami partnered with Rebellion to make the head-rolling, limb throwing, third person shooter NeverDead. It’s quite different compared to Konami’s other staple franchises – Metal Gear Solid, Silent Hill, DanceDanceRevolution, and Pro Evolution Soccer – and the bizarre concept for NeverDead originated inside the Japanese publisher. The new intellectual property is the brainchild of Metal Gear Ac!d director Shinta Nojiri.
"After I made Metal Gear Ac!d for PSP, I worked on Metal Gear Solid 4 as other staff. After that, I’m not sure when, I moved to another division and started several projects, but they got canceled unfortunately. I started this project in 2009 and finally we started development in 2010. Now were are making steady progress," Nojiri said speaking with Siliconera.
"Why do you think NeverDead was greenlit while your other projects were not," I asked.
"My current boss misunderstood. ‘I heard you could speak English’, he thought, but I could not. I lied and pretended. At least at the beginning of the project, I could not speak English or understand at all. I could only say ‘hi’, ‘how are you doing?’, or ‘bye.’ But, I lied because he said here is a chance to make a new IP if you speak English," Nojiri answered.
Out of all the interviews I’ve done, I think that may be the most shockingly candid answer I heard. I think I should mention Nojiri’s English proficiency must have improved greatly, we did this interview entirely in a language he couldn’t understand two years ago.
"I had meetings with overseas developers in Sweden, Germany, and Holland. And they realized, ‘Oh, he cannot speak English’. I finished my planning and achieved my goal of starting this project. It’s a long long story because I failed so many projects. To be honest, I thought I would make a DS title because I love handheld games."
NeverDead is a console title in development for PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360. The game feels like it’s wrapped in dark humor since the lead character, Bryce Boltzmann, often cracks sarcastic jokes. You follow the demon hunter who has been cursed with immortality over 500 years ago when he failed to defeat a demon king. NeverDead takes place in modern times where Bryce and private investigator Arcadia team up to stop a demon invasion.