A Grasshopper Manufacture marevel.
Grasshoppers Manufacture and GungHo Online Entertainment America's 'Let It Die' is both and marvelous and surprisingly adroit at hooking players who are searching for an action challenge. (See the review here.) But going way back to the game's development phase, I had a chance to chat with Game Director Hideyuki Shin about the game. (In this case, I'm using "chat" in the translated pen pal sense.)
And now I finally have the answers. With the aid of hindsight, the exhcnage could have been more purposeful, but I present the Q & A below as exhibit of 'Let It Die's strange allure.
Brian Hoss, High-Def Digest: I understand that beating enemies and player ghosts is important and key for getting new gear, so what should a 'Let It Die' player be primarily concerned with when playing? Surviving? Getting better gear? Having fun?
Hideyuki Shin (via translated relay): Players can acquire strong weapons from enemies and use it temporary; however players need to find blueprints to develop and strengthen weapons and their equipment in order to make their fighters stronger. Players might find enjoyment from different aspects of LET IT DIE, but the purpose of the game cycle is to be the best fighter, so I hope players enjoy becoming stronger each time they play.
Should a player mainly seek out gear that makes them stronger, or should they try to equip their character with cool-looking gear?
LET IT DIE has a large variety of equipment comparing to other action titles. I hope that players will enjoy crafting their own weapons, wearing unique armor, and showing off their collection to others through PvP mode. Weapons will get stronger through R&D processes.
What does the "It" in the title stand for? Effort? Spirit? The enemy? The player character?
I will leave this up to players' imagination! I think players should be able to tell through the gameplay.
Will the player get to know anyone in the game? For example, will players get to know the "Death" character?
Players can fight with other players' fighters in this game, and players can also send their fighters to other players' worlds with expeditions to raid for a variety of items, along with hunting down the selected opponent. This mechanism is an important element of the LET IT DIE game cycle.
Can the Insurance Girl be bargained with? To what end?
Insurance lady: Kiwako offers players insurances/services for players to purchase Death Metals or to continue (by consuming Death Metal).
When not fighting or looking for a fight or new gear, what can players do? Are there leisure pursuits a la Travis Touchdown? Are the non-combat moments just as fulfilling as the combat moments?
Players can collect different kinds of mushrooms and animals in the Tower of Barbs. There are numerous ways to use them, which will greatly support your gameplay. There is also a mushroom store where players can purchase skill decals, which add passive skills and enable players to create their own battle styles with these combinations. There won't be an appearance by Travis in LET IT DIE.