Though I had an amazing time overall at PAX West 2017, there were a few stand out moments. This is one of them. I had the privilege to sit down with Goichi Suda, also known as Suda 51 and for his unique design style in games like No More Heroes 1 and 2, Let It Die, and Lollipop Chainsaw. He is revisiting the No More Heroes series and Travis Touchdown with Travis Strikes Again, which is currently in development for the Switch.
After a brief introduction and letting them know that our editor, Andrew Peggs, was jealous of my opportunity we started. We were joined by his translator, a crucial piece to this equation. The table was covered in concept art, and Suda lounged comfortably on the couch as he talked. All of this helped it feel much more like a casual conversation than it did an interview. It’s clear Suda likes games, and likes talking about them too. As he talked, he would add actions and sound effects to emphasize what he was getting across. Particularly when he’s talking about “the force” and the motion controls. You’ll hear it in the interview, when we all laugh about playing the game on the Switch on the bus, pretending to charge our beam katanas and how people around you may respond.
Listener note: The translation of what I’m saying into Japanese has been cut for time. However all of Suda’s answers and their translation are intact.
Following the interview Suda handed me a print of concept art from Travis Strikes Again. “This is a gift for you,” he said with a smile. He then signed it, leaving me with one of the most unique and amazing pieces of video game memorabilia I own. It also left me with a sense of dread as I realized I had to figure out how to get it back to Minnesota without damaging it.
Edit – 9/14/17 12:10 PM: After returning to Minnesota it occurred to me I was curious as to what games the man behind No More Heroes and Lollipop Chainsaw would be excited about. So I sent an email asking just that and got a response today!
Sorry about the delay. Suda-san said He is excited about Ape Out.
This is actually a game I got a few minutes with at PAX West and I can agree with him on this one, Ape Out is worth getting excited over!
I hope you enjoy the interview and draw some insight into Travis Strikes Again from Suda 51 before it’s release.