Talent: Hiroaki Yotoriyama

Talent: Hiroaki Yotoriyama

Talent: Hiroaki Yotoriyama

Designer of the highest calibur

With Soul Calibur II in our hot little hands, we’re inspired to pester its producer, Hiroaki Yotoriyama, and ask a few questions. Here for your perusal are thoughts taken straight from his brain:

GMR: What user feedback from the Dreamcast Soul Calibur did you specifically address in making the sequel?

Hiroaki Yotoriyama: The majority of Soul Blade (PS1) fans requested a mode in which they could collect various weapons, so we produced Weapon Master mode. In that mode, players choose a character to travel around the world, collect weapons, and unlock hidden game features by completing various missions. A variety of weapon types are available and players are able to use any collected weapons in other game modes. Weapon Master is a really fun mode that adds an almost RPG-like element to the game. This type of system is possible only in a console game.

GMR: Of the three system-exclusive characters—Link, Heihachi, and Spawn—which is your favorite and why?

HY: Each has unique strengths and weaknesses. It makes it impossible for me to pick one above the others. I see them all as fun to play for their own unique qualities.

GMR: Where do you see the series going from here? Is there any hope Siegfried can be saved from his madness and the Soul Edge, or is he doomed to eternal damnation?

HY: In SC2, Siegfried is still not released from Soul Edge’s curse. After collecting all the pieces of Soul Edge and brooding in his own guilt, he has decided to stay deep underground with Soul Edge. We would be happy if our fans are patient enough to wait for the next title in the series to find out what happens to Siegfried.

GMR: Please explain to our readers the decision to feature Heihachi as the PS2 version’s secret character. We ran a poll on our website to find out what other Namco characters they’d have liked to see as the PS2-exclusive character. Xenosaga’s KOS-MOS was the easy favorite, but a surprising number of people picked Dig Dug as their second choice.

HY: We were really curious to see how Heihachi, the strongest fighter among the bare-fisted fighters, could hold up against the weapon-wielding foes of the SC2 world. I really hope players enjoy seeing how Heihachi holds his own—there is something innately tough in a guy who faces a giant ax with nothing more than his hands. By the way, I also would like to see Dig Dug in SC2….

Copyright © 2004 Ziff Davis Media Inc. All Rights Reserved. Originally appearing in GMR Magazine.