Koji Igarashi, the mastermind behind the Castlevania series, has revealed that he would like to make his upcoming project Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night into a franchise should the title perform well.
In a brief interview with MonsterVine, Igarashi answered a series of questions, touching upon his expectations for Bloodstained and the inspiration behind his return to the genre, as well as the unique difficulties crowd-funding brings.
On crowdfunding, Igarashi was not keen to draw a line between major and independent publishing, stating that “there isn’t much of a difference [between them] when it comes to pressure.” Namely, the difficulties with indie development lay within marketing and resource management, with Igarashi expanding on the team’s reliance on outsourcing:
“Right now, we’re a very small team so we have to outsource to other developers and other studios in order to make such a big title. Another difficult part is that, in a larger publishing company, you have a lot of larger supporting teams for things like marketing. When you’re independent like this and working on a crowdfunded project, there is no other teams to help you out, so we have to do all that by ourselves, which is quite difficult.”
Crowd-sourced content has provided the industry veteran with unique interactions with fans, however, which has been “really helpful, and [Igarashi is] really grateful for that. Sometimes [he is] able to incorporate [player] feedback into the game.”
In terms of the developer’s sudden return to the genre, Igarashi stated that Keiji Inafune—of Mega Man and Mighty No.9 fame—and his return to old-school design inspired him. Inafune used Kickstarter to fund Mighty No.9 back in 2013, which was the turning point for Igarashi:
“It was very hard to prove that there is a demand for this old-school type of game, but during this time, I saw that Keiji Inafune was very successful with his Kickstarter campaign, and I was very inspired by that. That was the reason why I wanted to go back to it, because I felt confident that there was a demand for this kind of experience.”
Most revelatory, Igarashi finished the interview by explaining that Bloodstained may not be a one-off, stating that: “with such a high expectation for Bloodstained, if it’s successful we’d like to make it a franchise.”
The developer also teased that DLC may be an option, but he was not able to comment at this time. Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night is expected to launch some time in 2018 for PC, PlayStation 4, PlayStation Vita, Switch, and Xbox One. A spin-off game, entitled Bloodstained: Curse of the Moon, is currently available.