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Grasshopper's Suda On Parting Ways With Creators Of Harvest Moon, Little King's Story

Grasshopper Manufacture CEO Goichi Suda talks about losing two of its recent high-profile hires, the makers of Harvest Moon and Little King's Story, and how it has affected the culture of his studio.
In today's feature interview with Gamasutra, Grasshopper Manufacture CEO Goichi Suda talks about losing two of its recent high-profile hires, the makers of Harvest Moon and Little King's Story. Along with grabbing Silent Hill composer and producer Akira Yamaoka last year, Grasshopper brought in Harvest Moon creator Yasuhiro Wada and Little King's Story director Yoshiro Kimura, both veterans from Japanese publisher Marvelous, in October 2010. Shortly after joining the team, Wada told Gamasutra, "The reason I moved to Grasshopper is because what I wanted to do personally, and what Suda-san wanted to achieve, the goals were the same. That's why I decided to move to Grasshopper." By September 2011, however, both Kimura and Wada had walked away from the studio. "In a way, they didn't fit into the culture after about a year of working there. It's taught us that publishing companies really are different from developers," Suda tells Gamasutra. "Each have their own position in the business, and it usually works out well then they work within those positions, but if you put someone from the publishing side into a developer position, you realize how different the two entities really are." Suda remarked that the pair genuinely tried to find a place at the company: "[Kimura] did try really hard during that year-long period. It's a hard job, after all, trying to manage this huge mix of Japanese and foreign developers. He really did his best, and we're very grateful for that." He also explained that his team, which has released titles like Shadows of the Damned and the No More Heroes series, is a "very well-mixed culture," and that it looks for people who can work well within that setting and get used to the group's unique style. The complete interview, in which Suda also talks about how Japanese game developers are evolving and his company's social gaming future, is available now at Gamasutra.

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