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Virtue’s Last Reward Director Says Anticipation Higher From Western Fans


Aksys have posted an internal interview conducted with Zero Escape: Virtue’s Last Reward director, Kotaro Uchikoshi, on the game’s website. You can read the full interview at this link, and here are  a few of the more interesting excerpts from it:


On western fan anticipation:

“Also, before the release of the Japanese version of VLR, we released our PV and OP videos on YouTube. Most of the comments we received on them were in English. We analyzed the access logs, and a mere 30% of visitors were from Japan. The remaining 70% were from the English-speaking countries. In the Japanese game industry it is extremely rare for such things to happen—especially before a game is even localized. This made us realize that 999 was a work that was loved not only in the US, but all over the world.”


On “Game Theory” in 999 and Virtue’s Last Reward:

“To the best of my knowledge, though, there’s no accidental intervention in game theory, which is—to me—the most charming thing about it. With roulette, or dice, or shuffled cards, the outcome is just probability. The fun in this theory comes from the logical prediction of an individual saying, “I think the other person is going to take this type of action so I’ll do this.” But at the same time, humans don’t always make logical and rational decisions, and if everyone aims for their personal gain and makes a rational decision based on that, not only will it cause a disadvantage for the group, it’ll also cause a disadvantage for them personally. This title depicts that dilemma, which is what I think is particularly interesting.”


On what to expect from Virtue’s Last Reward, puzzle-wise:

“In VLR we have various puzzles. There’s a slide puzzle, a code puzzle, a logic puzzle, a math puzzle, a panel puzzle, a line puzzle, a scale puzzle, a dice puzzle, an hourglass puzzle, a clock puzzle, a cocktail puzzle, a billiard puzzle, a dart puzzle, a jukebox puzzle, a DNA puzzle, a pH puzzle, a jellyfish puzzle, a Zero III doll puzzle, a slightly perverted puzzle, and several others. That is just a small portion of what’s inside. There are a lot more than just that. Escaping the escape part in and of itself is a big puzzle, and there are 16 of those. For those who like puzzle games, it’s a game you’ll drool over, guaranteed.”


Zero Escape: Virtue’s Last Reward will be released in North America in October. A European release from Rising Star Games will follow in November.

Ishaan Sahdev
Ishaan specializes in game design/sales analysis. He's the former managing editor of Siliconera and wrote the book "The Legend of Zelda - A Complete Development History". He also used to moonlight as a professional manga editor. These days, his day job has nothing to do with games, but the two inform each other nonetheless.