Aksys’ Interview with the Man Behind Zero Escape: Virtue’s Last Reward

Monday, October 1st, 2012

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Virtue's Last Reward

Aksys has published an interview with Kotaro Uchikoshi, the director and lead writer of Zero Escape: Virtue’s Last Reward on the official Zero Escape website. The interview is free of spoilers, but does give some insight into the game.

Starting the interview off, Uchikoshi informs us that the main reason for Virtue’s Last Reward’s entire existence is its fans and the success of 999: 9 Hours, 9 Persons, 9 Doors. It’s always a pleasant surprise to find out a game you love is getting a sequel precisely because you love it! “‘999’ received great reviews in the US, and that was the direct reason why we started production on Virtue’s Last Reward.”

When asked about the themes prevalent in Virtue’s Last Reward Uchikoshi responds, “The theme of VLR is of course global warming and environmental destruction. Just kidding, ha ha ha. But you see? Humans can lie without breaking a sweat. ‘Lying’ and ‘betrayal’…these are some of the major themes in this title.” If you’ve seen the 13 minute promotional video for the game (embedded below), you can attest to this. If you haven’t seen it yet, it’s worth watching.

As you may know, “Game Theory” plays a key role in VLR. Particularly what’s commonly known as “The Prisoner’s Dilemma.” Uchikoshi aptly describes it as a game in which “you and your opponent have to pick ‘Ally’ or ‘Betray.’ If you both choose ally, you both get two points. If one allies and the other betrays, the one who chose ally will have 2 points deducted. And when your points reach 0, then you will die.” Conversely, anyone who reaches 9 points will get closer to an escape in truth.

If ever you were worried the puzzles in VLR wouldn’t stand up to the puzzles in 999, don’t be. “There’s a slide puzzle, a code puzzle, a logic puzzle, a math puzzle, a panel puzzle, a line puzzle, a scale puzzle, a dice puzzle, an hourglass puzzle, a clock puzzle, a cocktail puzzle, a billiard puzzle, a dart puzzle, a jukebox puzzle, a DNA puzzle, a pH puzzle, a jellyfish puzzle, a Zero III doll puzzle, a slightly perverted puzzle, and several others. That is just a small portion of what’s inside.” A small portion? Puzzle fans will surely not be disappointed!

If you enjoyed the minutes provided by Oprainfall, but want to read the full interview click here. Click the Interviews folder and click on “Interview 1: Behind Zero by Kotaro Uchikoshi.”

If you still haven’t seen the promotional video for Virtue’s Last Reward here it is (with English subtitles). This video will give you a good idea of what to expect, and leave you counting down the days to the game’s release!


  • Damn that ally/betray mechanic sounds really amazing. I am so hyped. Hope I do not get spoiled. 

    • Yea the betrayal mechanic has me very interested. I can see how that along with its 26(?) endings would make for great characterization too. I just hope this game sells very well. From what the interview said 999 seems to be very popular in north america which is strange for a visual novel.

    • I remember having an extremely difficult time finding 999 at a decent price after it had been out for a while.  They always seemed to run out of stock right away, so it seems to have exceeded Aksys’ expectations, at least.

    • Its interesting that they are reprinting 999; thats another good sign that the game sold well. Why reprint something that didn’t sell? I really want this game to sell well. Most people have only said good things about 999 so I’m sure VLR will sell too.

    • Sniper D. Luffy

      not to mention the preorder bonus from Amazon, they had to do a 2nd batch…that really is something…i had to double check mine to ensure that it’s the one with the preorders… just a few more weeks left till the game release. 

  • This has gotten me really excited for this game.  I can’t wait!  The Prisoner’s Dilemma piece could be really interesting and potentially lead to more replay value than 999 even, and I ran out of breath reading the different types of puzzles they have out loud…Oh yeah, this is gonna be fun!

  • Uuuggggh… I don’t want to dip into the birthday money fund again, but I might have to for this one…

  • Sniper D. Luffy

    i just know one thing: this game gonna rock…and i’ll end up spending a good chunk of time to get all 24 ish endings…