This may be a very revealing post for me… because my favorite video game of all time is Street Fighter IV. I absolutely love zombies (agile zombies?) and Street Fighter. In an interview with 1UP, Takashi Nishiyama went on to describe his experiences and how he develops games, AGILE STYLE.
We’ve written a couple posts on games before:
- Gamification – Making Work a Game
- Monsters Built Using Agile
- Sunday Fun – Agile in Second Life Game
- World of Warcraft is like Scrum
[Takashi Nishiyama, who designed the original Street Fighter at Capcom before leaving to run SNK’s development division, putting games like Fatal Fury, King of Fighters, and Samurai Shodown under his belt. In 2000, he founded the company that would become Dimps, itself a below-the-radar team that’s worked on the Sonic the Hedgehog, Dragon Ball Z, and Street Fighter series, amongst others.]
1UP: OK, so in your SNK days, you’re credited with a lot of games. Which did you specifically spend the most time on?
TN: I was the head of development so I was involved with every title. I contributed to the initial concepts for the majority of them, like Fatal Fury, King of Fighters, and Samurai Shodown — Metal Slug less so. But I was able to manage the development teams the way I wanted. **I would discuss a game idea with one of the producers and hand off the development to them while checking in every so often to make sure it was heading in the direction I envisioned.** – YES!
1UP: OK, so when you came up with a game idea there, how much would you flesh it out before handing it over to the team?
TN: In that sense, the ideas were rather vague. I didn’t give specific ideas for the plot or scenario, but I gave ideas for characters and the general storyline — basically setting the game’s mood — and I would specify general mechanics. **I left the rest up to the teams, and I’d check in at various stages to make sure things weren’t deviating from the initial idea.** – SWEET!
As a development studio, we’re dependent on three things: The budget, delivery date, and timing. We need to receive a budget and a delivery date from the client and if the timing doesn’t fit with the schedule of our other titles, we won’t have the manpower to take on the project. So those three things have to come together and Mr. Tsukamoto had a difficult time trying to coordinate that.
**However, we were able to improve our quality control by utilizing a new project management system called Scrum while working on Street Fighter IV.** We actually gave a seminar at [Japan developer conference] CEDEC this year regarding our experience using Scrum to manage game production.
1UP: Did you put any personal Easter eggs in the game because of that?
TN: No. **I left the game’s development solely up to the team.** I don’t get involved in development at Dimps like I did at previous companies. There may be rare instances where I’ll say something, but for the most part I don’t give input on development these days. – LOVE IT