Suda51 Hopes 'No More Heroes 3' Will Be the Game Fans Want

Suda Goichi, known online as game developer Suda51, is a really weird dude. His studio Grasshopper Manufacture developed oddities like Lollipop Chainsaw, Killer7 and the bombastic franchise No More Heroes. Starring the assassin Travis Touchdown, No More Heroes has players hack and slash their way through hordes of enemies, assassinate high profile targets and pee sitting down. No More Heroes 3 was recently announced at E3 2019, the first numbered release in the series in nearly a decade.

no more heroes 3 e3
Travis looking good in No More Heroes 3 Grasshopper Manufacture

Newsweek spoke to Suda51 through a translator about what to expect in No More Heroes 3, how he writes humor and mowing lawns.

How do you feel about the fan reaction to the No More Heroes 3 announcement?

I haven't really had a lot of time to get online and see it, but I'm super happy to see it trending it in the states.

Why create the third entry in the franchise?

The fans have been asking for it and I've wanted to make it for awhile. After Travis Strikes Again, which was a side thing, I'm finally able to get back to making a game in the number series, which is what I've wanted to do for awhile.

When did development on No More Heroes 3 start?

We started working on No More Heroes 3 six months ago, when the team finished up the master of Travis Strikes Again. It's the same core team working on both games. and when they saw the reaction to the game and how people wanted the official third installment in the franchise, they decided to make it.

Travis Strikes Again is very different than No More Heroes, how was the team able to adapt to a new style of game?

Since TSA and No More Heroes 3 are made in the Unreal Engine, there was a bit of a learning curve when we first started development on TSA. Luckily, they were able to learn all the stuff they needed to for NMH 3 while working on TSA. With all the know-how they've learned from working on TSA and other titles, NMH 3 will be the game where we answer a lot of the fans questions and requests. We will be able to provide the game that we want to make and the one that the fans have been asking for.

What kind of game do you think the fans want?

I don't really know to be honest. If I had to guess, NMH 1 was a dumbass open world game. Travis goes into his serious missions but also does part-time jobs to make money and screw around. Proper missions mixed in with a lot of dumbass stuff that Travis does, stuff that doesn't really need to be there but I like to put them in and the fans like to play them.

Will Travis pick up trash again?

Probably yes (laughs)

How will No More Heroes 3 compare to other AAA titles?

Looking back on NMH 1, the open world system that it had compared with the open world games of AAA titles now, the scale is completely different. They don't have 1,000 members on staff, there are less than 100 people working on NMH 3, so creating the massive open world titles popular with AAA titles isn't feasible, or the game they wanted to make.

In modern gaming, grim, dark, sadness and brooding are common themes. Your work tends to take a lighter approach with potty humor and jokes, why is that important to you?

Travis is in a serious world with death and murder. Instead of having him take everything very seriously, we found a way to have him unwind and blow off steam. Travis just happens to do a lot more of that than people realize, precisely because he's in this heavily themed world. He needs those extra screwing around moments in his life. I feel the same about my own job; I go to work and balance it out by screwing around. That's relatable to fans and hopefully having that balance between the heavy, dark stuff and screwing around with light-hearted humor.

What were some jokes that you fell in love with but didn't work in the Western versions of your games?

In No More Heroes 2, Henry, Travis' brother, takes on a cute little girl as an enemy where we parody a scene very closely with the third Gundam movie. It totally fell flat and a lot of people didn't seem to get it.

Your games can tend to be hard to understand for those out of your loop. Who do you make games for, especially when you know you have a product that you need to be commercially successful?

The first person that plays the game is me and that's who I'm trying to make laugh. When I'm thinking of jokes or stories, I view myself as the gamer and see if this gag will go too far over the line for me. If I like what I'm making, hopefully the fans will as well. I need to make sure the games I'm making are entertaining or I can't be behind it.

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Travis has his light sword again Grasshopper Manufacture

You're the main driving force behind the world of No More Heroes, has there been an instance when others disagreed with your vision and demanded change?

People on my team (at Grasshopper Manufacture) want to get the game complete so there really isn't a lot of friction there. When making TSA, right up to the very last minute, I was constantly making changes to the game. There were definitely a few people around the back end development of TSA who were like 'dude come on, you've got to stop adding stuff.'

If you could work on any game, what would it be?

I'd like to work on something that's photo-realistic, something only Grasshopper could make and most likely about killing and murdering.

The original No More Heroes tried to innovate by including Wiimote functionality, will NMH 3 use the joy cons in unique ways?

We can't get into specifics, but we want to have something that isn't just holding the controller and pressing buttons. There's definitely something about that in the new game.

In the trailer, Travis is fighting against what looks to be aliens. Can you tell us a little bit about who they are?

Travis is fighting these funky dudes who came from somewhere and he assumes they are aliens who came from outer space.It's Independence Day stuff happening, stuff that's coming out of the sky and messing shit up. Travis somehow has to take them down and they aren't the usual enemies he is used to going up against.

The dudes Travis has to fight in the next game are Thanos level dudes, these are hardcore. He's going to need powers and abilities he hasn't had until now. He's going to need the Death Drive from TSA to back him up.

No More Heroes will release on the Nintendo Switch in 2020.

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