Shin-chan: Me and the Professor on Summer Vacation – The Seven-Day Endless Journey is an unusual game! I mean, for starters, it’s a Pencil Shin-chan title on several platforms around the world. Not to mention that it also draws signals from the Boku no Natsuyasumi series. Quite appropriately, whose creator developed it. To help better understand what happened in the game, as well as to talk about their past creations, Siliconera spoke with Millennium Kitchen CEO Kaz Ayabe about their latest creation.
Jenni Lada: How the conversation started coming up with the jumpsuit Shinchan pencil with a Boku no Natsuyasumi Game?
Kaz Ayabe: It was Mr. Nagashima, producer of Neos who first approached me. At that time he was already interested in creating a Boku no Natsuyasumi game based on Shin-chan.
I must point out that this is not an official collaboration, but rather a “Shin-chan summer vacation game” from the creator of ” Boku no Natsuyasumi.”
Think of it like Spielberg making a sci-fi movie.
When during development did you realize Shin-chan: Me and the teacher on summer vacation The Seven-Day Endless Journey would end up being a worldwide release? How did this influence the progress of the game?
Ayabe: I think we were talking about launching the product worldwide from the beginning. Shin Chan is also popular outside of Japan.
When starting development, what basic elements of Boku no Natsuyasumi have you prioritized getting into the game?
Ayab: A story where Shin-chan spends his summer vacation away from his daily life.
Compared to more traditional Boku no Natsuyasumi games, there is a bit more story due to the inclusion of Professor Akuno and Pencil Shin-chan element. How did you make sure there would be a good balance between history and enjoying a laid back, relaxed summer vacation?
Ayab: This is a difficult question. To be honest, my intention was to have fewer features that would require the user to participate or complete certain activities.
However, if I ever made a future title like this, I would focus on giving users a more relaxing experience to freely and openly explore the gaming world.
There aren’t really any games like Boku no Natsuyasumi available outside of Japan. How did this influence the development, planning and marketing of the global release?
Ayab: It’s true that before there weren’t that many games that looked alike, but I think that’s changed. Friday Monster Attack! A Tokyo Tale was well received by global audiences, so I wasn’t too worried about that.
Were there concerns that the humor and nature of Pencil Shin-chan maybe a little off? How did you make it pay homage to that series, while welcoming a total newcomer?
Ayab: I was worried that the humor would suit a wide audience, but I tried to make a game that would retain the original flavor.
If we had set the story in Kasukabe, Shin-chan’s hometown, I was afraid it would confuse newcomers, but since he is on a journey to discover a new environment, players can learn more about this world with him.
The Pencil Shin-chan “butt dance” appears not only as a nod to the series, but essentially as the “dash” button. What led to its inclusion?
Ayab: I intended to make the most of the butt dance from the start, and one day I realized that it could be used as a “dash”. Unfortunately, I don’t remember what prompted me to have this idea…
Are there other Pencil Shin-chan references that you wanted to insert, but did not have the opportunity?
Ayab: I wanted Shiro and the young lady from the original to appear more and have more influence on how the story unfolded.
What was the response to Shin-chan: Me and the teacher on summer vacation so far?
Ayab: I’m glad users seem to enjoy the game.
The only regret I have is that I wish there was a higher degree of freedom and exploration features that would make the game more appealing to open world players.
Now that your Boku no Natsuyasumi games have a “global” presence, thanks to Shin-chan: Me and the teacher on summer vacationWhat kind of dream project would you like to work on next?
Ayab: We are already working on different things, and I wish I could tell you more but it is still confidential. Personally, I would like to create a game about summer vacation in a space colony.
Your Friday Monster Attack! A Tokyo Tale was part of the Guild02 collection. As the 3DS eShop is about to close, have you considered looking for a spiritual successor for another platform to preserve its concept and gameplay?
Ayab: I would like to preserve it for future generations, but there are no concrete plans at the moment.
Do you have any good ideas?
Shin-chan: Me and the Professor on Summer Vacation – The Seven-Day Endless Journey is available for PS4, Switch and PC.