GamersInfo.net: Touch Detective Osawa Rina was released in Japan earlier this year, how was it received? Do you anticipate the same reaction from the North American audience?
Kyle Mann: Japan loved Touch Detective. The unusual character art and off-the-wall episode concepts went over very well. We at Atlus love it because it is a good game, and it’s a different game, not quite like anything else out there. We feel that Touch Detective will do very well here in the states. We know that everyone will tell their friends after they have played it.
GamersInfo.net: The cute anime style has been catching people's attention. Who is the artist and why did they go with this particular style?
Kyle Mann: The artwork and character design are a product of a creative collaboration between Success and Beeworks. It has been compared to a Tim Burton esque feel. I think this is a fair comparison as it truly is unlike anything else. I think that was the main objective: to create an art and atmosphere that is compelling and completely original. The style fits the games objectives perfectly.
Kyle Mann: It’s safe to say Mackenzie couldn’t make it with out her trusty side-kick/ pet. Funghi is Mackenzie’s shadow and follows her around wherever she goes. Funghi will speak up from time to time, hinting at what you might want to do or go next.
Kyle Mann: Again, this was a creative collaboration from the developers. It’s a very upbeat form of electronic jazz. The music, along with the general atmosphere changes as you jump from location to location. Sometimes it puts me in a dancing mood.
GamersInfo.net: Atlus USA Inc has been known to bring rare gems over to the North American audience, why did you choose to work on Touch Detective?
Kyle Mann: We love to publish games that are different than anything else out there. While we definitely have our niche of publishing hardcore RPG’s for the true, dedicated, and most of all elite gamers, we also like to throw a curve ball every once in a while. If a game is good and we see its potential, we will pick it up. We saw the potential Touch Detective had, so we picked it up… really it was a unanimous decision. I mean c’mon: health-conscious undead nomads, a dry humored robotic butler, and an adorable mushroom pet who loves to say “nff nnf.” How could you pass that up?... really?
Kyle Mann: Hmm… that’s tough to say. Another reason we like it so much, because it appeals to such a wide range of gamers. I like to think of Touch Detective’s audience as the same as Shel Silverstein’s Where the Sidewalk Ends audience when I was a kid. Young ones loved the silly, bizarre stories no matter boy or girl. At the same time, adults were intrigued to the literature masterpieces as well. I love the game, and I would have loved it when I was a young lad too!
GamersInfo.net: Do the four cases that need to be solved relate to one another? Do they need to be solved in a specific order?
Kyle Mann: Yes and Yes. All four episodes relate to one another. You can’t reach the next case (or even know what it is for that matter) until you have solved the previous.
GamersInfo.net: Are most of the controls and actions controlled predominantly with the stylus? Do you find that it's easier than using the traditional control pad?
Kyle Mann: I like it! I get frustrated sometimes when you constantly have to be going between stylus and control pad. A good amount of the game is searching for clues by “touching” suspicious items. There is so much interaction during gameplay that it makes it easier by primarily using the stylus.
Kyle Mann: Each case takes approximately 4 to 6 hours to play. There’s also a Bonus Episode you can unlock after solving each case, which will provide the player with an additional 20 mini-quests, so there’s plenty of gameplay to be had. I would love to see a sequel. That being said, it is uncertain as to what the future holds!