Suda51 blasts publisher 'wall' for poor game sales

Lollipop Chainsaw developer Grasshopper Manufacture found difficulties in relationship with small studio and big publisher.

Lollipop Chainsaw developer Grasshopper Manufacture has pointed the finger at publishers for poor sales of the studio's games.

In an interview with GamesIndustry International, studio boss Goichi "Suda51" Suda complained of a "wall" between creativity and sales, and that the differences in size posed challenges.

"Grasshopper does have a very strong base; it's just that because we were so indie, publishers were always [treating us] differently," Suda said.

Grasshopper has worked with Warner Bros., Capcom, Ubisoft, and EA, amongst others.

"Each publisher operates a different way, has different strategic ideas, so in terms of sales, what they did, was they kept creating what they thought was good. But in terms of publishing, it was a different company's strategic choice.

"So we believe that back then, when we were completely indie without a group company to be together with, we weren't able to translate our creative directly into sales because that was the part where there was always a wall between creative and sales transition wise," argued Suda.

Grasshopper says it will have more impact on the publishing of its unannounced next game, due after the upcoming release of Killer Is Dead, now that it's been bought by Japanese publisher GungHo. Suda believes that being part of a bigger group will allow for a more consistent strategy between creativity and publishing.

"Now that we're one big group together and we'll be publishing our own titles as Grasshopper, we believe that the creative side and the sales side will have a better connection," he added. "We definitely believe that it will transfer to good sales because we will be able to choose our own strategy," concluded Suda.

Grasshopper Manufacture's next game, Killer is Dead, is scheduled to be released this summer and will be published by Xseed Games in North America, Deep Silver in Europe, and Kadokawa Games in Japan.

This story was amended on May 3 to correctly reflect that Killer is Dead is not being published by GungHo.

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