When making and playing this game, did each of you experience a change in the real world the way that Tsujii-san did?
I stopped being afraid of the sales floor in department stores. I always thought, “If a salesperson gets hold of me, I’ll never get away!” and approached them with fear. For that reason, I would always look in from outside the clothes section (posing as if peeking) so I wouldn’t make eye contact with the salesperson! (laughs)
There are even “enemies” in real stores! (laughs)
Well, ultimately if a salesperson talked to me, all I would do is take out my wallet. That was my attitude before, but since becoming involved with this game, I can casually say things to the shop assistant like “This is different from what is in fashion this year,” and I’ll try something on and be like, “Do you really think this suits me?” I guess I’m more comfortable now. (laughs)
You gained confidence.
Yeah. I learned a lot of fashion words through this game, got a grasp of good and bad colour combinations and shapes, and while looking at girls’ clothes, naturally came to understand that when it comes to the basic way of thinking about clothes, men and women aren’t so different. As a result, I learned how to communicate with shop assistants, and even if they aggressively push something, I can easily say, “I don’t really like it, but maybe next time.” Going to buy clothes used to be such a gloomy affair, but now I’m much more likely to think, “I think I’ll go shopping!”
Ah, now that’s progress!
Yeah! That’s a result of striking all kinds of bargains with customers as a salesperson in the game. I think that I’ve picked up a certain eye with regard to real clothes as well. It’s a side effect I never expected, which I think is great.
I’m the same way. It isn’t such a pain to talk with salespeople anymore.
When I hear that, I’m struck by what an unusual game it is.
Really, each person…
Each person interacts with it in his or her own way.
I think this game is an extension of real life since it’s based on fashion, a real life substance. And when you play the game for a while and then return to your everyday life, the real world is like an extension of the game. When you see people in the streets, you’ll be like, “That outfit is a bit iffy.” (laughs)
I’ll think, “That pair of shoes doesn’t match well.”
Me, too. I look at the people I pass in the street and think, “That’s kind of girly.” I think my interest in fashion in real life has really increased.
It’s an occupational hazard! (laughs)
And like Yamagami-san said, when you actually buy clothes for yourself, you can use the knowledge you have accumulated in the game as feedback.
It’s much more than a “dress-up” game. It extends into real life.
Yes. It isn’t locked up within itself. Everyone gets up in the morning and thinks, “What shall I wear today?” So you can coordinate your clothes each day as if playing the game. It can be enjoyed a number of ways depending on the person.
Nintendo presents: New Style Boutique has plenty of “dress-up” moments for girls, but it also has aspects that don’t settle into that category. Why do you think that is?
Right when we began making the previous game, Yoshida-san, President of Syn Sophia said, “We need 10,000 fashion items”, and I think that was the biggest thing.
Usually, you might start with about 50 items and go up to about 3,000.
Right. But Yoshida-san said we absolutely had to have 10,000, and I’m still thankful for that. By increasing the number of item variations, we raised the number of combinations you can recommend to near infinity, making it feel new every time you play it, so I think each person will be able to find their own way of enjoying it.
And people who are knowledgeable about fashion, even if they don’t have much experience playing video games, will be able to draw on their existing fashion knowledge to try various ensembles and make progress from there. On the other hand, people who don’t know much about fashion but are good at video games will be able to make progress game-wise to beat the game.
You can conquer it like Yamagami-san! (laughs) Even though fashion isn’t usually about victory in battle.
To finish, I’d like to ask you something, Tamura-san. As a fashion producer, what did you think when you saw this game?
Something that occurred to me as I listened to us today is that if you played this game from the time you’re in primary school, you’d pick up the know-how to run a shop. At an interview, you could say, “I know how to sell!” and get the job right away. (laughs)
And the next step is Style Boutique 3.
Huh? You’re already talking about the next one?! (laughs)
But we will hold fashion shows within the next year and the year after with that in mind.
When we make the third one, I suppose we’ll call in some charismatic and successful salespeople to get data so the game can be used as educational software for floor sales. I think calling in popular models and stylists and girls who don’t play video games and all sorts of professionals would make it more fun. But the more opinions there are, the harder it gets for the developers.
Yeah, you’d be like, “Gyaaah!” (laughs)
And by using the communication features of Nintendo 3DS, we can add new clothes later, right?
The technology does allow that.
I thought we could do some interesting things like going to a shop in the game and actually be able to buy the newest items, or cooperating with real shops so that you can go to them in real life and buy the clothes you like that appear in the game. Doesn’t that sound fun? (laughs)
This title has so much potential that even Tamura-san, whose criteria is whether something is fun or not, says it sounds fun.
Yes, I really think so.
But first we need lots of people to enjoy Nintendo presents: New Style Boutique.
That’s right. (laughs) Thank you for today, everyone.
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