Games must pursue new frontiers, says Suda 51

No More Heroes designer Goichi Suda says games can become "culture and art" if designers do more than shooters and racers.

If games are to be thought of in the realm of culture and art, developers must do more than make mainstream titles like shooters and racers. That's according to Grasshopper Manufacture CEO Goichi Suda, aka Suda 51, who discussed in a new Edge interview why creating unique games is so important to the developer.

"So I think video games are becoming an important, and a dominant, form of entertainment worldwide. And in that landscape, I truly feel that our shooters, racers, and our mainstream games have been covered, checked off and done well," he said.

"To really push games into the realm of culture and art, I feel that only doing realistic mainstream games won’t be enough; we need to pursue new frontiers and new horizons with what we do, and the process of creation shouldn’t be contained," he added. "Therefore, I feel at Grasshopper one of our obligations--our duties--to the video game world is to create revolutionary titles that really push the status quo."

Also in the interview, Suda 51 discussed his new game Killer Is Dead's "Gigolo Mode," saying he is "not that concerned" about alienating female players. He explained that publishers have informed him that the mode will be "palatable" for audiences worldwide.

"It’s not that we depict the women in any derogatory way, so I’m not extremely concerned about the depiction of these characters," he said. "I think if you play this mode for yourself, [then] you will be able to understand the context."

Suda 51 previously described sexuality in games as a "touchy subject."

Killer Is Dead is due for release later this summer on Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3.

Written By

Eddie Makuch is a news editor at GameSpot, and is a big UCONN athletics fan.

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Discussion

110 comments
camichan
camichan

Suda has contributed heavily to the canon of genuine pop culture in his career. While some criticize the polish of his games, he certainly nails it on creativity. Killer 7 is up there with Shadow of the Colossus for one of most artistic games in recent memory and his recent games have developed a world of diverse characters (Travis in No More Heroes, Juliet in Lollipop Chainsaw, Garcia in Shadows of the Damned, and Mondo in Killer is Dead) and new original mythos for Gen Xers and Millenials. He is in my mind a true artist. 

drgribb
drgribb

Suda 51 would definitely be considered one of the leaders of the "surrealist movement" in video games if there was one.  Love his games and style.

Fursnake
Fursnake

I think Suda's games fall somewhere along the line of pop art.

AceBalls
AceBalls

Make interesting, intellectual, diverse games with important philosophical motivation and emotional grandeur.

With tits and ass and explosions.

Ikthog
Ikthog

I think we can all agree that the two words that came to mind immediately upon seeing Lollipop Chainsaw were "art" and "culture."

advancedcaveman
advancedcaveman

Games ARE in the realm of culture and art. They're mainly  pop culture and commercial art, but that's technically culture and art. What he should say is that games need to explore a larger spectrum of culture and art; go beyond the same old popular culture and popular art and do other things. I mean he made another zombie game. We're at the bottom of the barrel for standard issue popular culture here people; lets have games that are about something other than zombies. Come on. Please. For pete's sake!

The Last of Us, which people are currently declaring a tent-pole for the medium, is yet another zombie game. I feel like I've seen about a billion post apocalyptic/zombie movies & games in the past 3 years alone. Oh here's a game that looks extremely derivative of "The Road," a movie I've already seen, telling its story in a very typical movie-like fashion. Its doing this in a world where these same elements are done so frequently they've become almost incomprehensibly boring to me. There's such a tiny spectrum of subject matter for big games. What's the post apocalyptic/zombie quota going to be this year? How many other settings, characters, stories, gameplay ideas, and so on are going to be ignored in order to do the same thing over and over again?

jthotty
jthotty

Says the game developer with only a iconic chick, but not the game as its crap.  He should back up what he says and not complain about others.

Ryuuken27
Ryuuken27

How can you go far when you don't have talent? If you don't have the talent or imagination, you gotta keep doing the same thing over and over, you think Bungie, Activision, EA have talented people working on the inside, hell no! You have to do the same old thing, keep working inside the box, the outside is too scary and unpredictable. On the other side of that bridge there is a scary world where you have never sat your empty mind on, you wanna stay safe and ignorant, you gotta be on the same place forever, that's the only way. Why do you think religion is still around, the world is a scary place, make it smaller, make it silly, make it like it's meant for you!

isshiah
isshiah

Somehow, devs and movie directors can come across as unbearably arrogant when they talk about themselves being vanguards of their field, while simultaneously decrying the efforts of others. I'm not a fan of his gregarious style, but he obviously has fans that would be excited to hear this, whatever it means.

RatedSTARZ
RatedSTARZ

Suda 51 = Badass Game Developer xD

shalashaska88
shalashaska88

Less tits Suda, and more mindfuckings and making the games fun. Lollipop wasn't fun. Killer 7 was. 

hyksiu
hyksiu

They are art but they will become better art:)

da_chub
da_chub

suda, i love your games, but you are no better then Activision or Ubicrap.  They milk COD or AC each year, while you just milk your weird style.  Well, i love it, but its no different from game to game.  And where is No more hereos 3, you stopped supporting  the 1 company that made you, nintendo, and instead make Killer is dead which is NMH3 but not on wii u.

chapnzaba
chapnzaba

This article gave me a chuckle. "Games must pursue new frontiers," .....says the guy that made Lollipop Chainsaw

LE5LO
LE5LO

It's obvious Activision has been running the success of CoD into the ground like they did the Tony Hawk franchise for years now. After Ghosts is released I'd love to see them finally give Infinite Ward and Treyarch a break from the yearly milking to take their time on something new and at least spend a little longer in development. 

If they do take a break and they recycle code, maybe do something like FC3: Blood Dragon mixed with Zeno Clash. Just about anything sounds better than another CoD that plays identically to every one they've done since 2, adding minor additions isn't anything special if the core game play hasn't changed a bit after 8 annual sequels.

VGobbsesser
VGobbsesser

As much as I love some of his games, I do wish Suda 51 would take a little of his own advice; he hasn't made a game of the caliber of, say, Killer7 since Killer7, and the rest of his games since then have been watered down in comparison, suffered from a lack of polish, and/or have been similar in gameplay (even if just superficially).  Maybe Killer is Dead will change that, but we have yet to see much of that.


I'm not saying he doesn't have a point (or that he even does), but he really needs to look at what he's creating before making large statements about where video games need to go.

udubdawgz
udubdawgz

i could care less if video games are thought of in terms of culture and art.  in fact, that kind of attitude brings me a bunch of worthless games that focus on delivering "cinematic experiences" over gameplay.

however, OF COURSE, devs need to "pursue new frontiers and new horizons."

way to point out the obvious, suda.

Kyrylo
Kyrylo

Lol. from look of comments CoD fanboys are once again butthurt when they were forced to see truth. 

ejay_kain
ejay_kain

suda=game legend

bring the games i will buy it!

TVsportsCOD
TVsportsCOD

Suda 51 tells us how to make games unique whilst trying to sell us no more heroes 3, sorry Killer Is Dead. The guy's more or less a one trick pony, making shallow, superficial games. The world does not need another Suda, or 50 for that matter.

IanNottinghamX
IanNottinghamX

I know what he means...most people are failing to grasp this hes saying that the same bullshit game is getting old. Developers need to start making different KINDS of games. The industry can do without Cod number 4049,Battlefield 322 or Halo 78..something MUST change at some point..everything changes..there was a time in the 90s it was all about fighting games, just like back then we moved on and we need to move on NOW!

prideofNY
prideofNY

I agree with what he's saying but at the same time I can't enjoy games whose only appeal is being different, not when gameplay takes a back seat. Hell, 'Dark' is different and sounded cool in theory but we see how it turned out in practice.

Rod90
Rod90

Suda 51 rocks.

Adavanter
Adavanter

I really think some of the Oculus Rift ideas I've heard will really push boundaries. Such as simply walking around a historic landmark or the recreation of the aurora borealis. The theater experience with just a headset. Tons of cool yet simple ideas can really combine with games we already play to delivery some truly amazing moments.

ANUBISZER0
ANUBISZER0

Innovation is good but if you make a game that strays away too much from the usual formula then people start to bitch and moan about it.

LE5LO
LE5LO

@advancedcavemanGood point, but I guess these companies invest a lot in their tech they often need to find ways to recycle it, (ala The Last of Us being a very restrictive and reskinned Uncharted 3) Left 4 Dead 2, Black Ops 2 Zombies, Dead Rising 2 or...*shudder*...The War Z all come to mind as games that should've never been made due to how little innovation they've brought to the genre after their predecessors (except War Z...if that gets a sequel I will laugh pretty hard). 

Something like The Last of Us or The Walking Dead make a good exception to the genre though. I'm truly glad they exist. It's the previously mentioned sequels (and War Z) I couldn't care less for.

It's cliché, we all know that, the thing that matters is doing something no one else has done with it though.

Anyway, I know what you're saying, just vote with your wallet, if you want more interesting and unique AAA games, put your money behind the developers that are doing something new instead, and avoid the sequels and overdone genres entirely. If enough people think like us, they publishers will get the point eventually. ;-) 

kingnothing47
kingnothing47

@Ryuuken27 Being religious doesn't make you close minded. I live in a very socially diverse community and I don't go around telling my neighbors to stop living modern lives. 

ANUBISZER0
ANUBISZER0

More tits Suda, and more mindfuckings and making the games fun. Don't discriminate against tits.

Ryuuken27
Ryuuken27

@hyksiu There is no such thing as "better" art, art is art, and subjective to each individual perceiving it. 

Shadowdanc3r
Shadowdanc3r

@da_chub  Milks his weird style?  He just found his niche is all, like Tim Burton and Christopher Walken.  He's making games as who he is.  If you want variety play games from other developers and don't rely on Suda to fulfill all your gaming needs.  You may find yourself missing his style and return to his games.

If you want NMH3 pressure Ubisoft to hire him again as Grasshopper is just a developer, hired guns, not a publisher.  I wouldn't say any company made him, but if any company first shone the spotlight on him it was Capcom, before that I had never heard of him.

He was behind Liberation Maiden on 3DS.  If you haven't done so, vote with your wallet at the eShop or at a retailer that has a new copy.

19James89
19James89

@Pupchu We have a winner, please do pass go and collect $1000 instead of the usual $200 and treat yourself to DK:TF.

Erybdylvseggnog
Erybdylvseggnog

@chapnzaba Lollipop Chainsaw was a new frontier. It was different and fun. I don't know many games where you play as a zombie merking cheerleader with a chainsaw... Then again I don't know many games where you play as a cheerleader period.

cheto88
cheto88

@LE5LO They'll never stop until they run it to the ground like Tony Hawk or Guitar Hero. Thing is, CoD keeps breaking sales records every year, until that trend stops they won't change their strategy for it.

helldragonzer
helldragonzer

@Strider8009 Capcom has gotten a lot of hate lately with the RE mess they made for 6, and the fact that out of every game they still refuse to make a new Mega Man.

96augment
96augment

@Strider8009 " I've also seen RockStar gets some hate for GTA remaining good after all these years. Companies like Activision, EA, and Crapcom are often supported and defended". You can't seriously believe this. Who would insult Rockstar? 

Enforcer246
Enforcer246

@ANUBISZER0 Yeah, don't turn your back on the forever-alone virgins out there who only seen their mothers naked by accident.

ANUBISZER0
ANUBISZER0

Cheerleader Fantasy VII, best cheerleader RPG ever made. Lol j/k That sounds like the name of a porno.

Xily
Xily

@Erybdylvseggnog Lollipop Chainsaw didn't push the envelope, especially considering that it really isn't much different from Dead Rising. 

Dead Rising 1 & 2 not only had chainsaws but also a huge arsenal of crazy weapons to choose from. If you chose not to use weapons, you could suplex, piledrive, bulldog, etc. the zombies. You could also dress your character up with all kinds of outfits from bikinis to Mega Man.

All Lollipop Chainsaw did differently was put you in the shoes of a zombie killing cheerleader. It didn't really do much besides that. On top of that, it's another zombie game. For every 2 or 3 shooting/racing games there's a zombie game.

LE5LO
LE5LO

@cheto88 True, the multiplayer modes are what keep the franchise going year after year, it seems like that's not about to change anytime soon, too many people are foolish enough to keep supporting them. 

I'd say it's time we whip out the precision airstrike laptop and target wherever Bobby Kotick lives, but then we'll probably get a new CoD every six months so he can afford to repurchase the mansion and sports cars we've just destroyed... -_-

ComicAcer
ComicAcer

@helldragonzer The Megaman part is mostly because they also choose to create 50000 versions of the previous games instead of putting effort on something the gamers really want.

Culochilegge
Culochilegge

@kingnothing47 @Culochilegge @Ryuuken27 Hah, u blame the others for the grammar and u do not accept to be blamed for your own belief? Awesome!! And btw, "provincial atheist" make ypu look offended and snob at the same time.

kingnothing47
kingnothing47

@Culochilegge @kingnothing47 @Ryuuken27 Thanks for the laugh, maybe I'll take you more seriously when you can learn how to spell. In the mean time I'll write off every other belief in the world that isn't my own because being a provincial atheist isn't making my world smaller.