E3 2017 Interview: Natsume Talks about Harvest Moon, River City, and More

Thursday, July 6th, 2017

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OR (Quentin): Another one you have is River City: Rival Showdown. This was a remake of the first River City Ransom. [OR Note: This game was originally released for the Famicom and the NES.]

CeeCee: So it’s sort of a spiritual sequel and continuation from River City: Tokyo Rumble. It’s set in its own fantasy city, so it’s not Tokyo itself. And the premise of the game is [that] two things happen immediately: two guys jump and try to beat the crap out of you, and Riki’s girlfriend has been kidnapped – again. And so you have three days to try to figure out what the heck is going on. There are multiple endings that have a LOT of different events, and which event you choose to tackle will determine which ending you will receive. So the idea is that you’re going to play the game through more than once and get different sides of the story.

Natsume | River City Rival Showdown combat.

River City: Rival Showdown promises combat and action! (Image courtesy of Natsume, Inc.)

OR (Quentin): There’s local multiplayer in this title. Can you tell me about that?

CeeCee: We definitely heard the feedback of fans who played [River City:] Tokyo Rumble and were disappointed that they couldn’t throw down with their friends. And we definitely voiced that to Arc System Works, and they were planning on putting it in the game anyways. So hearing how many fans really wanted that in North America and Europe was the icing on the cake. So we’re really excited. This was the first Kunio game in North America that has multiplayer since, I think, the Gameboy Advance. So I’m pretty stoked.


Natsume | Multiplayer

Multiplayer makes it’s appearance in River City: Rival Showdown. (Image courtesy of Natsume, Inc.)

OR (Quentin): So I have to ask: River City Ransom: Legend of Riki – Are we going to be getting it?

CeeCee: You know, it’s something that we’ve definitely looked at. But nothing to announce at this time.

“Nintendo has always been a great partner for us[…]

Everybody in the office is a huge Switch fan.”

(Quentin): Lastly, we also have Wild Guns Reloaded here [at E3 2017].

CeeCee: Yes! We brought it out on the PS4, it was largely intended to be a PS4 exclusive, but massive fan feedback said that people really wanted to see it on the PC. And so we sat down with Natsume-Atari [OR Note: Natsume-Atari was formally known as Natsume Co., Ltd. and was the branch located in Japan that merged with their subsidiary Atari in 2013.] and said ‘Can we get it done?’, and they were like ‘Yeah, yeah, we think we can actually do that.’

Wild Guns Reloaded for the PC will be the same as the PS4 version. So four-player local co-op, leaderboards, mixed classic stages from the Super Nintendo [version] as well as new stages, new weapons, and of course, the two new characters Bullet and Doris.

Ntasume | Wild Guns Reloaded

Wild Guns Reloaded was demoed at last year’s E3, and has since been released on the PlayStation 4. (Image courtesy of Natsume, Inc.)

OR (Quentin): Is there any chance we will see this game come out for the [Nintendo] Switch?

CeeCee: You know, that is definitely something that is being heavily requested on social media. And we’re taking it into consideration.

OR (Benny): The Nintendo Switch has been out for three months or so, but going forward, is the [Nintendo] Switch going to be an important part of Natsume [Inc.]’s strategy?

CeeCee: Nintendo has always been a great partner for us. The Switch is doing phenomenally well in terms of sales. Everybody in the office is a huge Switch fan. We can’t say [anything about] any more specific games at this time.

OR (Benny): In a similar vein, as Wild Guns Reloaded being ported to PC, are we more likely to see more Natsume games come out on PC or Steam?

CeeCee: [Harvest Moon:] Light of Hope is coming to PC as well. It’s definitely something we’re exploring our options on.

Natsume | Wild Guns Reloaded for PC.

(Image courtesy of Natsume, Inc.)

OR (Quentin): I know we discussed this briefly last year [at E3 2016], but Medabots. Is there any effort to localize any new games?

CeeCee: We would love to work on Medabots, but it’s just something that’s not in the cards right now. It’s really out of hands, and if we get an opportunity to localize it in the future, we would be jumping up and down.

OR (Benny): Following up on that question – how has the Lufia series done for you guys?

CeeCee: The Lufia GameBoy Color sold fine, as far as I’ve been told. Lufia is ultimately owned by Square-Enix, they purchased Taito [Corporation] several years ago. Any new titles would come from them. But hey, if they came to us and said ‘We are thinking about doing a new Lufia, would you localize it for us?’, we would [say] ‘Yeah!’.

OR (Quentin): Another question about Harvest Moon: Light of Hope – [What are] the marriage options?

CeeCee: There are five bachelors and five bachelorettes. In terms of bachelors, there is: Dean, Gabriel, Cyril, Edmond, and Gareth the Wizard. Edmond is Tabitha and Gareth’s teacher – she is a witch, and he is a wizard. In terms of bachelorettes: We have Jeanne, Melanie, Elise, Nova, and Tabitha the Witch.

OR (Benny): With Harvest Moon: Light of Hope – how long of a gameplay are you looking at?

CeeCee: We’re still in development. I want to say an average Harvest Moon game, but that means something different for everyone. You can ‘critical path’ it fairly quickly, but it’s sort of a combination of task-driven and story-driven. So as you repair more houses and more people fill in, you’re going to have more story which will lead to more repairing of the lighthouse. And as they come along, they will have their own sort of needs and their own areas they will need to unlock.

OR (Quentin): Harvest Moon: Skytree Village for PAL regions – is it still coming?

CeeCee: It is available now. It launched on June 1st. It launched with both patches of the North American version, and the DLC is coming really soon. Rising Star Games will announce when they have the DLC ready. And of course, Rising Star Games is our partner on [Harvest Moon:] Light of Hope as well, so they will be launching the PS4 and Switch for us in PAL territories. And we’re going to try to launch them as close together as possible.

What is your favorite Harvest Moon title? Are you planning on picking up Harvest Moon: Light of Hope or one of the new River City franchise games?

Let us know in the comments below!

About Quentin H.

Likes pina coladas and getting caught in the rain. And video games. Cannot forget those video games. Anime too. Should not forget that either.

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