Interview: SNK Heroines’ Yasuyuki Oda and Kaito Soranaka on the game’s goals and influences
SNK’s next fighting game release, SNK Heroines: Tag Team Frenzy, is releasing later this year and headed West courtesy of NIS America. We were able to ask some questions to the project’s leads about what they’re hoping to accomplish and how the game will differ from a standard King of Fighters.
Michibiku: SNK Heroines: Tag Team Frenzy seems to follow in the footsteps of cult classic Neo Geo Pocket Color release Gals’ Fighters. Was this intentional? Will we see references to Gals’ Fighters in the new game?
Yasuyuki Oda, producer: The story is not necessarily directly connected, but the concept is quite similar. It’s a new title, but it’s unmistakably a spiritual successor.
What were your priorities when selecting characters for Tag Team Frenzy‘s roster? Will we see fighters who haven’t been in a core King of Fighters release?
Oda: We’re planning on having some unexpected characters participate, but because of all the requests we’ve gotten since the announcement in January, we’re considering adding an even bigger variety of characters.
What are you trying to deliver with SNK Heroines‘ gameplay that makes it distinct from a King of Fighters game?
Kaito Soranaka, director: This title uses a guard button. Also, we created a Spirit Gauge on top of the Life Gauge that’s used for special skills and Dream Finish. And even with the already announced characters, the knockback from their normal and special attacks are a little different than King of Fighters XIV and you can combine multiple special attacks to create combos.
What measures are you taking to make the game more accessible, and how are you balancing that with the need for strategic depth?
Soranaka: By using the directional pad with the special attack button, you can perform different types of special attacks. By simplifying attack and defense and adding battle items, players can weaken opponents’ guards. But becoming familiar with managing the gauges provides depth to the tactical aspect of the game.
Character customization has already been revealed, but will there be any items that have an effect on gameplay?
Soranaka: You can use the customization options in battle, but there aren’t any accessories that change skills or influence the battle. There are some accessories that change sound effects and react to taking damage, though.
What would you say to those who are concerned about the level of fanservice in the game?
Oda: We aimed for a balance of cute and sexy. I’m sure fans will like it.
What are you hoping to deliver to players through the game’s single-player and story components?
Oda: The story takes place after the events of King of Fighters. Playing this title will give you a better understanding of the characters.
How will online matches be handled? What steps are you taking to make sure the game’s netcode is in a better position at launch?
Soranaka: In Online fights, there are Casual Matches in which two players can battle and Lobby Matches in which up to eight players, including spectators, can create a lobby and play together. As far as the game’s netcode goes, we are putting an emphasis on checking for bugs that affect synchronization gaps, matching, and any other bugs that get in the way of creating satisfying online battles.
Thanks to the team at SNK for taking time to answer some of our questions! SNK Heroines: Tag Team Frenzy is slated for release this summer on Switch and PS4.
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