Friday, June 21, 2024

TBS Interview with Yu Suzuki: Arcade Game Development at SEGA (Feb 2022)

This post contains the contents of a TV interview held with Yu Suzuki and other guests on the Japanese TBS channel in February 2022. The interview was originally shown on TBS as an episode in a series called X年後の関係者達 ("X Years Later: Those Who Were Involved") where key figures reflect and comment on past accomplishments.

This time the episode featured Yu Suzuki, joined by three others from the game industry at the time, with the MC being Kazlaser, a Japanese comedian who is known for his love of Sega, who participated through a video link. Suzuki talks about the development of some of his hit arcade games at Sega in the 1980s through to the 1990s. (Shenmue also gets a mention!)

--- Start of transcript ---


Let's go back 37 years, to 1985.

In the world of arcade games, where tabletop cabinets once dominated, two revolutionary games emerged in succession. The world's first motion-sensing game, Hang On. And UFO Catcher, which still boasts immense popularity today. The name of the company reshaping the landscape of game centers with its ideas and development power was: SEGA.

What enabled Sega to consistently produce groundbreaking games one after another?

X years later, former members of Sega's arcade division gather for a reunion.

Yu Suzuki with the episode's participants
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Thursday, June 6, 2024

Poll Result: Patrons' Choice Topic for June 2024

Every month Phantom River Stone holds a poll among our patrons to choose a topic for the blog in the coming month. After tallying the votes (including accumulated votes from previous months), the winning topic that has been voted this time is:

"Weekly AM2: Translation of Next Issue (Vol. 12)"

The topic selected this time is a continuation of our translations of the official online magazine published by Sega's AM2 team back in the day, the Weekly AM2. This magazine published content about the Shenmue series from December 1999 through to around the release of Shenmue II in 2001, and a link to issues of the Weekly AM2 thereafter became a regular feature of the website.

This time we will be translating a further edition of the Weekly AM2: Volume 12, published online on 29th February 2000 (yes, it was a leap year!).

The highlight of Issue 12 is a detailed background about the character of Guizhang Chen from the first Shenmue game, as told by the AM2 developers themselves.

Questions the developers answer about Guizhang include:
  • How did the character of Guizhang Chen come to be created?
  • What do you think is the reason he is so popular?
  • Tell us about his upbringing.
  • What are Guizhang's favorite foods and hobbies?
  • What aspects would you like to draw players' attention to, when observing his character in the game?
  • What did you have in mind in the design of his facial features and his distinctive appearance dressed in a suit?
This edition will be translated in a future post on the blog.

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