During PAX West 2016 we had the pleasure with speaking to Hideyuki Shin, the director of the upcoming action survival game Let it Die.

Dan Thompson: What’s up ladies and gentlemen, my name is Daniel Thompson here with the one and only Shin, Director of Let it Die. It is the new Grasshopper manufacturer game coming from Suda51 and his development team. So starting off, where did you get the aesthetic inspiration for Let it Die? It’s very punk, very grim, and very bloody.

Shin-san: As it is the style of the game, there is of course going to be a large amount of blood because it is Grasshopper. If you’re going to kill an enemy there’s gonna be a ton of blood that comes out.

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Dan Thompson: Alright, so I played a little bit of it, and I’m getting the feel that it is kinda like an action RPG like the Souls games (Dark Souls, Demon Souls) or Bloodborne, where everything is heavy and difficult. Also in those games they force you to have to think very methodically about your timing. Are those main inspirations for you?

Shin-san: Well with regards with our game being compared to stuff like Dark Souls, we can’t say we are influenced by it, but there are definitely things people have noticed here and there. However, if you play more into the game there are just so many more different equipment and weapons you can pick up. Each weapon has a very different play-style by which you could be fast, quick, or strong but slow. Also, when you have a play-style you like, you can find these weapons and equip yourself with them, tailoring the game with the way you want to play it. So there is a lot for you to explore and discover with how you want to play the game in a sense. There is also a lot of action and we hope that you will enjoy it as well.

Dan Thompson: In the first fifteen minutes that I played there were weapons everywhere, is that how the game is basically gonna play?  The player will just be constantly grabbing better weapons, better loot, stuff like that?

Shin-san: Yes, in the main game it will be quite similar to that. Like you noticed in the beginning, you only start with your underwear, pretty much nothing, but as soon as you are able to defeat an enemy you’ll be able to pick up some armor and weapons. So you’re just going to be picking those stuff up as it is a very heavy element of survival. You need armor to protect yourself, you need weapons to defeat enemies, as long as you have this equipment, you will have the ability to survive. Also I’m not sure if you noticed in the game, there is also durability for your weapons and armor. If you use your weapon too much it will break, take too much damage and your armor will be destroyed. You must constantly pick these things up so you can survive since it is the key here.

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Dan Thompson: So when you mean that the durability is going away is there no way to repair a weapon? Do you guys want people to keep choosing different weapons as they progress through the game?

Shin-san: Yes, you did notice that you aren’t able to fix anything or restrengthen anything; it’s especially prevalent since weapons and armor that are dropped by enemies have already been used! So it might have already lost some of its durability and will continue to break off bit by bit. You don’t see it in the demo but we do have something like a home base in the full game, located there is a shop where you can actually craft weapons. If you’d made something at the start on your own it’ll have a lot more durability, especially if you keep strengthening these things. In the event that you do decide to make your own stuff, they will still eventually break, so you’re gonna want to keep picking things up because once you have no weapons or armor you’re really left out in the open. Of course to survive you’re gonna need to continuously think about obtaining equipment by either picking them up or making them. It’s all a part of survival.

Dan Thompson: So Let it Die has been in development for a very long time, and many are surprised that it’s free to play. There’s a huge stigma about free to play because many times games will let you reach a certain point and then force you to pay to progress any further. How are you guys going to be handling that with monetization and the such?

Shin-san: So it’s been very challenging as the game will be free to play, but we can guarantee that there aren’t going to be pay walls that will prevent progression in the game, we don’t want that. Also, making it pay to win is also off the list. We’re really trying to consider a multitude of aspects to make the game fair and even give to the people who don’t monetize. Of course if you do it does favor you in a sense by making things more easier in terms of having to grind or really making tasks faster that would take lots of time to complete. We’ve made a game that is full of action and full of content that you don’t actually have to pay for, and we don’t let you get restricted because you’re not paying. Although, we really haven’t done this before, in the past we’ve really only made packaged action games. Maybe we aren’t doing this right, but we do really hope that we are. We just want to give the full experience to all of our players.

Dan Thompson: Yeah that’s amazing. From what I have played it seems very fleshed out and there were very little restrictions I could see. It’s great to make grinding the aspect that people have to pay to get over, especially for those of us who don’t have as much time on their hands to spend grinding. That’s really great that you’re thinking of other ways of getting money in a non-restrictive fashion. Also, besides that you mentioned a hub world, is there anything you can mention about that?

Shin-san: So we obviously can’t say too much, but there is of course a hub world you go to as you climb the tower, since as you collect experience and other resources, you’ll want to go to the hub world to save because if you die you lose everything. So when you come to the hub it’s there where you’ll be able to raise your level and craft weapons. There’s kinda a save point where you can preserve your progress so that you don’t lose entirely everything, but we can’t reveal anymore about that right now.

Dan Thompson: Okay, so is it possible to maybe mention a release date or projected window for when the game releases?

Shin-san: Sometime this year.

Dan Thompson: Alright wow, so Let it Die is a free to play PS4 game coming out sometime this year so make sure to check it out.

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Games have always been an inspiration for me. Seeing what can be done and expressed through experiencing each game is what makes me want to write about video games, to share those moments with others.