Tomba creator Tokuro Fujiwara discusses the colorful side-scrolling game’s PlayStation legacy – PlayStation.Blog

Today was my lucky day because I got to talk about Tomba with legendary creator Tokuro Fujiwara. Before leaving Capcom to develop Tomba, Fujiwara worked on many games, including some you may have heard of like Mega Man, Resident Evil, and Commando.

Tomba is a colorful action platformer originally published by Sony Computer Entertainment and loved by avid PlayStation fans. In an era where side-scrolling games are left behind for polygon-pushing 3D gameplay, Mr. Fujiwara decided to do something different: a beautiful blend of old and new, something truly unique. unique.

Now, after nearly twenty years, Tomba returns to PlayStation on August 1st with new features as Tomba Special Edition

Alena Alambeigi: In 1997, when you created Tomba, most developers were focused on creating 3D games like Tomb Raider or Crash Bandicoot. Instead, you’ve decided to combine 2D sprites with perspective-shifting 3D environments. Why?

Tokuro Fujiwara: Tomba runs on 3D technology, with gameplay designed on 2D principles. This is why it is described as a 2.5D game. I think 2D games have a certain appeal that 3D games don’t have. I also want to push the limits of what’s possible. To realize my vision, I needed to use 2D principles along with 3D CG visuals. This allows me to create something new on PlayStation.

There was a time when I wondered if I should switch to 3D instead, 3D games have a very clear sense of space. In 2D, all the action takes place on one plane and multiple layers give a sense of depth. This means you have to design the game in creative ways so that different classes don’t conflict. This leads to something interesting that can only be achieved with 2D.

Alambeigi: What do you hope new players will learn from the Tomba Special Edition?

Fujiwara: Tomba has many side quests. They come in different types and are hidden throughout the game. I encourage players to seek them out. Various items allow the player to learn new moves, expanding how to pass levels. I hope players find and seal the Evil Pigs scattered around the world, this will unlock even more to see! There are many discoveries to be made. I hope players can relax and enjoy the world of Tomba.

Alambeigi: Talk about genre-bending gameplay. Tomba feels like an open world despite being described as a side-scrolling platformer. This is largely due to how non-linearly the levels can be played. Was this done intentionally or just something that happened during development?

Fujiwara: I envisioned the game having this open feel from the beginning. It’s all a blur when it all starts, but as development progresses, it begins to take shape.

You can think of Tomba as an open world game, a term that was rarely used at the time. There is a huge area with a lot of different content in it. You encounter, explore and collect many different things as you move. For example, you have to complete certain missions in Tomba, but you are free to go around and complete them however you want. Some main missions and objectives can even be skipped altogether. Many of the ideas I envisioned for Tomba back in the day are the same ideas we see in open world game design today.

I originally wanted to include 100 missions, but the game ended up exceeding that number. The team had to work very hard to put it all together on a timeline. What started as vague ideas in my head ballooned into such a large amount of content that it made me dizzy!

Alambeigi: The original PlayStation was a giant leap forward in gaming technology. What was the experience like at that time?

Fujiwara: Game development is an ongoing war against the advancement of technology. This was true then and remains true today. I feel the PlayStation is a huge improvement in terms of hardware, offering greater possibilities. The game switched from pixel rendering to CG. Game developers have had to learn many new skills. Expectations are growing along with the scope of game ideas. The development environment is ever-evolving, making things challenging yet exciting for developers. The birth of the PlayStation and advances from that time still impact gaming today.

Alambeigi: Finally, why do you think it’s important to bring Tomba back now?

Fujiwara: Tomba has been around for a long time but is still loved by many people. I’ve long wanted games to be accessible to more people on modern systems. Now that the opportunity has arrived, I think today’s PlayStation fans will get a lot of joy from Tomba

Tomba Special Edition will be available on PlayStation 5 on August 1, followed by PS4.


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