NieR: Automata's Success And Future Plans Laid Out In New Yoko Taro Interview

There is absolutely no denying that NieR: Automata was one of the biggest hits in 2017. The game [...]

taro yoko interview-1200x675

There is absolutely no denying that NieR: Automata was one of the biggest hits in 2017. The game itself was an oddball mixture of perfection, pair that with the eclectic leader at the helm - Yoko Taro - and you've got the perfect recipe for success. Taro himself recently sat down for an interview with Game Informer, and it was the perfect time to get inside his head and learn his thoughts on the whirlwind success and what's next in line for the creative genius.

A solid place to start is to learn about how the surprise hit came to be in the first place - what was the driving force behind its creation and evolution?

"After we released Drakengard 3, I think everyone was well sick of all the games I made by then, and I really didn't really want to work anymore. I was thinking I'd probably just go and hide in the mountains and live out the rest of my life as a hermit or something. It just so happens at that time Mr. Yosuke Saito, [who] was obviously a bit tired after his work on Dragon Quest and was not thinking straight, decided to give me another chance with something like NieR. That's how you saw a new NieR; I'm still not sure how that happened."

Taro also delved into his thoughts about the title's success, despite there being such a large gap between the 2017 hit and its predecessor:

"Certainly from my perspective and from the fan's perspective, I think everyone thought NieR was a very dead IP at that point, so I was very surprised when they started talking about doing another one. I [thought] it would be very interesting when I heard that Platinum would be developing another one. I didn't think it'd be a hit, though; I [thought] probably it'd be a very niche game. But no, there was certainly potential there. Looking back on it, I think the kind of games that Platinum makes are very much for those action-game maniacs, and it's a very closed-off area, but it seemed like an excellent fit with the kind of really geeky worlds that Square Enix makes. I think overall, they became a great combination together."

It has been said that the overwhelming support for NieR: Automata is what "saved" Platinum Games. Taro shared his thoughts on this notion, as well as discussed what the future looks like between himself and the studio:

"What I think of Platinum [is that] they are a very talented, very unique kind of studio in their own way. […] There's a lot of really passionate, really skilled young staff directors. And obviously, they go off the line, they give their opinion about what they want to do and how they view games to the top, and then it's those guys at the top who manage that. It's a great company.

The other part of your question there about Mr. Kamiya's announcement that NieR: Automata saved Platinum, I think in part, that's just him being nice to us and talking us up. I think we've got a lot to thank them for as well — certainly all the young development staff I talked about. It really was a great opportunity for them to show what they've got and it brought them up two or three levels higher. And as a whole, I think that's something [the whole NieR team], myself included, really have to thank them for. I think they did a really brilliant job on that.

It's not that we've got anything lined up immediately, but certainly. I discussed a lot with the young staff on the Platinum team and it would be really great to work with them again in the future. I spoke with our producer at Square Enix, Mr. [Yosuke] Saito as well about doing that in the future. Of course, the other thing is that if Square Enix provides the money, I'll always make anything they ask for."

It wouldn't be a Yoko Taro interview if things didn't escalate to a philosophical level. To read more about his thoughts on booze, life, and more, you can check out the full interview here.