Japanese video game industry veteran Keiichiro Toyama has teased his upcoming game through a number of frightening concept arts.
Keiichiro, the mind behind SCE Japan Studio’s Silent Hill, Siren and Gravity Rush, worked for Sony as a creative director. In 2020 he left Sony and founded his own studio that he named Bokeh Game Studio. He was joined by The Last Guardian and Puppeteer’s Kazunobu Sato and Gravity Rush lead designer Junya Okura.
“Regarding our first game, I have multiple directions for my works. The one I took is quite dark, far from my more recent titles. It’s like I am coming back to my roots, for example towards horror,” Keiichiro shared via a YouTube video, hinting that he will be returning to making horror games in his own style.
“The view I have of horror is the everyday life being shaken. Rather than showing scary things, it should question our position, make us challenge the fact that we’re living peacefully. I like bringing this type of thoughts in my concept. I would like that to be the theme of my next game.”
However, he also said that rather than making something that is deeply rooted in horror, he wants to make the game entertaining. Just like he wants players to feel afraid, he also wants them to feel exhilarated.
“I often read comics as a form of entertainment, recently you see a trend for ‘death game’ type of content. These works tend to add entertainment to somewhat brutal worlds. I enjoy these works and I often read them. I naturally took that approach,” he said.
He explained that the game’s plot will likely focus on regular characters who are driven into irrational situations. These are characters who are constantly “on the edge emotionally” while dealing with action or drama. “This influenced me and I think it will show in my next game,” he added.
For Keiichiro, the location, the setting and the depth of world building are important factors. He was inspired by locations this time as well, he said, and has been exploring various methods to construct a meaningful world that is inspired from real life destinations.
“One trigger was a trip I took in my private time. My family and I went to visit a city in Asia. It had this dynamism proper to Asian cities, keeping an exotic touch mixed with a feeling of modernity. I started to imagine a setting that kept that feeling and the energy of the people. I thought it was a good theme to include in the game.”