Short Mikami interview with NHK World TV

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Short Mikami interview with NHK World TV

Postby skytrot » Nov 19, 2014 8:27 am

Just watched a short interview Shinji Mikami had with NHK World TV's Imagine-nation program.
It's a pretty general interview but I just thought people might be interested in hearing what he has to say.
Disclaimer: I took some liberties and rephrased certain portions of the original transcipt so it makes more sense.
The interview is as follows.

---------------------------------------------------------------

Interviewer: Where did you get the idea for the original Resident Evil game?

Mikami: Well, I've liked horror films since I was a child, but with films you're just watching them and you cant really escape into them. With video games you can, so I guess that's how I got the idea to make these horror games.

Interviewer: The original Resident Evil game had a very slow feel to it...

Mikami: The pace of the game deliberately starts out slow to make players more attentive to whats going on around them and to build tension. But these days games tend to have a faster tempo so TEW, the new game that's just come out, revs up the fear factor faster than with previous games. But it's not just scary, it also has parts that make you feel good like when you're slashing your enemies. And that I believe, is the charm of the Survival Horror genre. I'm sure players will enjoy the game.

Interviewer: You were involved with the Resident Evil series up till the 4th game and since then you've left Capcom. Am I right to say to say that you're an independent creator now?

Mikami: I just don't have anything to do with the series anymore. Actually I haven't created anything related to Survival Horror for about 10 years.

Interviewer: Why did it take 10 years for you to return to the Survival Horror genre?

Mikami: It just turned out that way I guess. It's not that I didn't create games during this time. I was just making different ones. The thing is, I get bored easily. If I do the same thing over and over again, I lose my enthusiasm. Right after I've finished creating something, I forget all about it.

So if somebody walks up to me asks about certain portions of a game I've worked on previously, I wouldn't be able to answer them unless I refer to a guide of some sort. (laughs)

Interviewer: What was the hardest part about creating TEW?

Mikami: That would be finding the right balance between making the game scary and enjoyable at the same time. Since it is achieved through rigorous testing/trial and error during development, my staff complaints about having to do revisions all the time.

(Interviewer goes on to comment about how game development is similar to stage rehearsals of plays in that they are used to refine the actors' performances for the final show just like how a game is constantly tweaked, revised and has kinks ironed out so that the final product is as close to the director's vision as possible. Mikami agrees.)

If i could just give my staff instructions in cold hard numbers, it would be simple.
But, it's all about how it feels like for eg. how the enemy should attack faster or a little slower, that sort of thing. Pointing out the flaws on the spot is key.


Interviewer: You've just finished TEW. Are you already working on your next project?

Mikami: Well, I've just finished the TEW and my mind is kind of blank right now. I'm just absolutely exhausted, so I'm thinking of taking a break, maybe.

Interviewer: What do you do to re-energize/refresh yourself?

Mikami: Well lately, I've been taking long drives to relax.

Interviewer: With your family or…?

Mikami: Until a little while ago, I'd go with my family, but these days I seem to be going more on my own. I guess they don't want to hang out with me anymore.
They'd probably be happy when I get busy with my work again.
(laughs)

Interviewer: If you were to create a new game in another genre. What would that game be?

Mikami: You know when you have those drops of oil floating around in your bowl of ramen noodles and you drag them around with your fingertips to form bigger and bigger drops. I want to turn that into some sort of a mini game and play it all day long. (Mikami acts all dopey with his mouth opened, staring down at his left hand while doing some flicking motions with his right finger.)

Interviewer: I'll definitely be buying TEW. Maybe we can talk about it after I've finished playing the game. (laughs)

Mikami: Sure! But it will have to be at a bar. (laughs)

----------------------------------------------------------------

I really like that game idea of his haha! Would play it on my phone for hours.
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Re: Short Mikami interview with NHK World TV

Postby Nemesis85 » Nov 20, 2014 12:20 am

Thanks for writing down the interview, I assume it took a long time, cheers buddy.
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Re: Short Mikami interview with NHK World TV

Postby skytrot » Nov 20, 2014 6:08 am

Nemesis85 wrote:Thanks for writing down the interview, I assume it took a long time, cheers buddy.


Thanks! :D It's the least I could do for not having played TEW yet. I really want to play it but I'm pretty busy right now plus I kinda want to play it on the PS4, which I don't own just yet. Ahh...First world problems haha
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Re: Short Mikami interview with NHK World TV

Postby Lazarus753 » Nov 20, 2014 10:01 am

Thank you as well. I hope his mind doesn't stay blank very long. Actually, I'm hoping he starts to think about barbed wire again :)

And sky, do you have a good PC? Don't listen to the reviews, the PC version is superior
"Whoever first thought of killing someone with a chainsaw was a genius."
– Shinji Mikami
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Re: Short Mikami interview with NHK World TV

Postby skytrot » Nov 21, 2014 3:49 am

Lazarus753 wrote:Thank you as well. I hope his mind doesn't stay blank very long. Actually, I'm hoping he starts to think about barbed wire again :)

And sky, do you have a good PC? Don't listen to the reviews, the PC version is superior



Thanks! :)

Unfortunately I don't own a PC :(
I was close to getting a PS4 to play it, but since Bloodborne got delayed, I'm thinking of holding out a little longer. I think I might just buy the PS3 version as tbh I really can't wait to finish it and discuss the game with people in this forum. The urge to play it is starting get stronger and stronger as I'm typing this.

I haven't read any reviews for the game(or any other game for awhile now haha) but I've heard that it got pretty mixed reactions. The one thing I keep hearing about is how TEW seems to be a pretty hard game and that it requires players to be attentive to their surroundings as well as to play smart. If so, it's definitely right up my alley. :)
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Re: Short Mikami interview with NHK World TV

Postby Lazarus753 » Nov 22, 2014 12:16 am

skytrot wrote:
Lazarus753 wrote:Thank you as well. I hope his mind doesn't stay blank very long. Actually, I'm hoping he starts to think about barbed wire again :)

And sky, do you have a good PC? Don't listen to the reviews, the PC version is superior



Thanks! :)

Unfortunately I don't own a PC :(
I was close to getting a PS4 to play it, but since Bloodborne got delayed, I'm thinking of holding out a little longer. I think I might just buy the PS3 version as tbh I really can't wait to finish it and discuss the game with people in this forum. The urge to play it is starting get stronger and stronger as I'm typing this.

I haven't read any reviews for the game(or any other game for awhile now haha) but I've heard that it got pretty mixed reactions. The one thing I keep hearing about is how TEW seems to be a pretty hard game and that it requires players to be attentive to their surroundings as well as to play smart. If so, it's definitely right up my alley. :)


Meh. Take the mixed reactions with a grain of salt. Don't quote me 100% on this, but a lot of the time it's people whining about difficulty (which is actually a positive), or complaining about 30 FPS. I think people are pretty spoiled. The Evil Within looks and plays absolutely fine at 30 FPS, and the game looks stunning.

The black bars are a legit complaint, but people have blown it way out of proportion. They could definitely be reduced, but, in my opinion, they actually add to the experience. They make the game feel much more cinematic, and really, they'll only bother you if you're anal about that sort of thing.

Also, I don't buy into the complaints about the story. It was a thrilling, riveting experience. The problem is that the game leaves a lot of questions unanswered, and people don't like that. Personally, I think it's excellent.

One other valid complaint (this one is very legit) is that there is slowdown on the console versions of the game. But again, as gamers, we've all dealt with a bit of slowdown here and there, and I'm of the opinion that slowdown is largely ignorable if the game is fantastic.

And it is.
"Whoever first thought of killing someone with a chainsaw was a genius."
– Shinji Mikami
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Re: Short Mikami interview with NHK World TV

Postby skytrot » Nov 22, 2014 3:20 am

@Lazarus753 Yea, I haven't taken reviews by mainstream press seriously in awhile now. There are so many games I enjoy that don't get the press' love. Anyways, glad to hear the game is tough. I love challenging games. I don't mind black bars either and based on my experience with them in Dragon's Dogma, I agree that it makes the game feel more cinematic. With regards to framerate, I don't really care if it's 60 or 30 as long as it consistent most of the time. I'm sure I'm going to enjoy the game regardless of the "problems" people have with it.

The one thing I must say is that I think a lot of people(including a majority of journalists) don't understand what Survival Horror is. Way too many people assume Survival Horror=Pure Horror. Survival horror games like TEW, RE, Silent Hill, Fatal Frame and to a certain extent The Last of Us are aiming for a very different feel and approach when compared to Pure Horror games like Amnesia, Outlast, Slenderman and PT. The former gives players the tools to deal with adversity and to face their fears while not giving them too much power while the latter focuses on making players absolutely powerless, and encourages them to run, hide and escape. Ultimately, I really think misconceptions to what TEW is/was was another another huge factor that turned many players off. And imo the media is to blame for that.

But hey it's their loss. :)
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Re: Short Mikami interview with NHK World TV

Postby Rikitatsu » Nov 29, 2014 5:52 am

Thanks for posting this skytrot!

Well, I've just finished the TEW and my mind is kind of blank right now. I'm just absolutely exhausted, so I'm thinking of taking a break, maybe.

Does this mean he won't direct Tango's next game? I hope not...
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Re: Short Mikami interview with NHK World TV

Postby skytrot » Dec 02, 2014 8:06 am

Rikitatsu wrote:Thanks for posting this skytrot!
Does this mean he won't direct Tango's next game? I hope not...


No problem! :) Yea, hopefully this won't be his last directorial work but who knows... I just hope he helps nurture some fresh new talents along the way like he did with Takumi and Kamiya. Even though I have yet to play TEW, I look forward to seeing Tango's next project.
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