‘Pokken Tournament’ Interview: Game Only 30% Complete

The latest issue of Famitsu Magazine contains an interview between Pokemon CEO and president Tsunekazu Ishihara, Tekken series chief producer Katsuhiro Harada, and Soulcalibur producer Masaaki Hoshino regarding their thoughts about Pokken Tournament. As translated by Siliconera, the interview reveals the game is only 30% complete and that eventually, the game could see organized play at events like the Pokemon World Championship:

Pokken Tournament

During the interview, Famitsu ask Ishihara what parts of the game he personally thinks are its biggest highlights and appeal.

“I believe that this project’s most entertaining and refreshing aspect is about being able to move your own Pokémon and watch them react and pull off moves in full-frame, and the freshness of real-time. We’re working on making those aspects as enthralling and fun as possible,” Ishihara replies.

Famitsu point out that the trailer shows what appears to be Lucario changing his form with a Mega Evolution, and ask if the feature is in the game.

“Yes, Mega Evolutions are implemented in the game,” responds Hoshino. “I believe you might be able to tell just by watching the trailer, but when Lucario changes forms, that’s the Mega Evolution.”

Famitsu then notes that starting with Mega Evolutions, the game sounds like it’ll have plenty of Pokémon-like features.

“And that’s not all, we’re also adding things that would fit in well with this game’s characteristics,” says Hoshino.

“When you think about Mega Evolution, there are those [Pokémon] that do Mega Evolve and those that don’t, so you might wonder what happens to the ones that don’t,” says Harada. “We’ve already thought of plenty of things like that since the early planning stage, in order to make it more like a Pokémon game.

“That’s how we’re thinking of shaping this game into one with an emphasis on Pokémon’s way of playing, along with many of the game’s own ideas as well,” he adds.

Next, Famitsu asks about how many Pokémon can we expect to see participate in Pokkén Tournament.

“Over the 700 total Pokémon… is what I’d like to say, but the development wouldn’t be done on time by the time we decided,” responds Harada with a laugh. “We expect it to be a little more limited.”

“That said, I believe that the general direction that current fighting games are trending towards having more characters,” adds Hoshino. “I also believe that getting a grasp of how to play as all the characters is a big part of the fun, and as far expanding that goes, we’re thinking of starting with Pokémon that are easy to understand, and with a nice range of movements and ways to play.”

Famitsu then ask if there’s a possibility we could see characters from the Tekken series make an appearance.

“This time, it’s a battle that takes place in the world of Pokémon, so we’re not thinking about having Tekken characters appear. However, once you play it, then there might be some sort of hidden elements that could bring a smile to fans of the Tekken series,” answers Hoshino with a laugh.

When asked how far along the development is for Pokkén Tournament, Hoshino says that they’re currently at about 30% complete, and that they’re currently taking their time working on a new system, while putting their cultivated know-how to its full potential.

Harada also says that the game’s first demo will be sometime in 2015, as they’d like to take the rest of this year to work thoroughly on the game.

Famitsu ask Ishihara if he could share a little more on his thoughts of having a Pokémon title going into arcades.

“As far as it being an arcade game goes, my strongest hope is for it to be a high-end game where players can experience getting to play as Pokémon in full motion,” says Ishihara. “Again, the Pokémon World Championship that is held each year that focuses on players going against each other in Pokémon games, and I’d like to see Pokkén be added as one of the important titles to those Pokémon battles.”

A previous interview with Hoshino also revealed a couple of additional details about the game and bringing Pokemon to life:

Of course Pokkén Tournament runs at 60fps with smooth and dynamic action, as we especially put in efforts into its graphics.

We have seriously been thinking about ‘what would it look like if Pokémon existed in real life?’ while opening up our imaginations and thinking about the Pokémon’s fur, muscles, and even the scenery of the world they live in, as we develop the game.

We’re making [Pokkén Tournament] into a game that can be enjoyed by all Pokémon fans, and into something that has more depth the more you play it.