Slitterhead: Bokeh Study on gameplay, structure and inspirations, between Silent Hill and Siren

Slitterhead: Bokeh Study on gameplay, structure and inspirations, between Silent Hill and Siren


Bokeh Game Studio, the new independent team founded by some of the authors of Silent Hill and Forbidden Siren who left Sony with the closure of Japan Studio, took part in a question and answer session from which various information on gameplay, structure and inspirations of Slitterhead, their new game in development.

From Slitterhead we saw a first presentation trailer at The Game Awards 2021, on which we also built a preview. Some other information we can get from this interesting video interview, which was attended by the CEO and creator Keiichiro Toyama (also author of Silent Hill), the CTO and game director Junya Okura (one of the creators of Forbidden Siren) and the COO and producer Kazunobu Sato (another prominent member of Sony's old Japan Studio).

In the interview, we learn that the main inspiration for the creation of Slitterhead came from the knowledge of the city of Hong Kong and its peculiarities, as well as from the experiences gained with Forbidden Siren. As for the structure of Slitterhead, it will be a third-person action game, as reported precisely by the developers.

The third person is not in question, while as regards the general address, Bokeh Studio did not want to follow the path of psychological horror more based on adventure, despite being one of the initial ideas. Something closer to Silent Hill, in terms of game structure and even deep psychological introspection, had been examined, but the team at the moment has a more action-oriented experience and Slitterhead's structure has been thought of on these skills, which falls more precisely into action-type horror, even if according to Toyama it is not just about eliminating enemies.

Looking at Forbidden Siren, the authors reported that the idea of ​​different points of view will somehow fit into the new game as well, albeit in a different way than the sight-jack system experienced in the PlayStation title. . As for the enemies, the idea of ​​"legozu" was linked to the fact of wanting to include creatures that feed on human beings, but the authors wanted something different than usual and that was rather far from traditional zombies, which has led to a reworking of the concept.

In Slitterhead, the combat system has canonical elements for a third-person action but will present some surprises. The developers are focusing particularly on this feature, but they do not yet intend to talk about it in more detail. As for the distribution system, the game should not be split into episodes but should be presented as a compact and complete package, reportedly.

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Slitterhead will span 'multiple genres' and appeal to 'players who don't usually play horror games', says developer

Slitterhead developer, Bokeh, has shared more details about its upcoming action-horror game.

Responding to questions posed by fans via social media, the team - consisting of CEO and creator Keiichiro Toyama, game director and CTO Junya Okura, plus COO and producer Kazunobu Sato - offered some tantalising teases about the new title, including the hope that it will appeal to 'players who don't usually play horror games'.

'The game doesn't fully enter the horror genre. It spans over multiple genres where horror is expressed. From there, I wanted to widen the player base who could access the game, including players who don't usually play horror games,' Toyama said, as transcribed by PC Gamer.

'I wanted a game that could be enjoyed for its action, yet whose concept doesn't solely revolve around killing enemies. It conflicts the mind, making the players reluctant to enter certain fights. I want to achieve both action and drama with this game.'

That said, it won't be entirely without it's surprises - even in the 'slower parts'.

'There is a terror aspect that I want to include even if the game lays more towards action,' Okura added. 'There are some slow and fast moments as well. I'd like to include some horror elements in the slower parts, balancing with the frenzy action moments.'

And for all the Silent Hill fans, Toyama may not have plans to revisit that kind of game just yet - but he does want to revisit psychological horror 'someday'.

'I want someday to do something with some classic psychological horror themes like I did with Silent Hill,' Toyama said. 'However, I'd rather do that when working with really limited resources, such as budget or having to focus on one individual. Right now, we have staff with the ability to work on action. I want to leverage their skills to go in another direction. Still, I also want to make something more personal someday.'

You can watch the Q&A session above, and English subtitles are provided (as well as Arabic, Japanese, Portuguese, Spanish, and Russian).

Keiichiro Toyama - the creator and director of Silent Hill, Siren, Gravity Rush, and more - unveiled his latest horror project, Slitterhead, back in December. It's the work of Toyama's new studio, Bokeh, which he founded after departing SCE Japan Studio at the tail-end of 2020.

Bokeh, which is also home to several other SCE Japan Studio alumni - including Gravity Rush lead designer Junya Okura and Kazunobu Sato - confirmed its first project would see Toyama return to his horror roots back in February 2021.

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