Grasshopper Manufacture

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Grasshopper Manufacture Inc.
Native name
株式会社グラスホッパー・マニファクチュア
Kabushiki Gaisha Gurasuhoppā Manifakuchua
TypeKabushiki gaisha
IndustryVideo games
Founded
FounderGoichi Suda
Headquarters,
Japan
Key people
Goichi Suda (CEO)
Products
Number of employees
20[1] (2019)
ParentGungHo Online Entertainment (2013–present)
Websitegrasshopper.co.jp
Supertrick Games
Native name
スーパートリック・ゲームズ株式会社
Sūpātorikku Gēmuzu Kabushiki Gaisha
FormerlyGrasshopper Manufacture Inc.
IndustryVideo games
Founded
FounderKazuki Morishita
Headquarters
Chiyoda, Tokyo
,
Japan
ProductsLet It Die
ParentGungHo Online Entertainment (2013–present)
Websitesupertrickgames.com

Grasshopper Manufacture Inc. (株式会社グラスホッパー・マニファクチュア, Kabushiki Gaisha Gurasuhoppā Manifakuchua) is a Japanese video game developer founded on March 30, 1998 by Goichi Suda. They are well known for creating titles such as killer7 and the No More Heroes series.

History[edit]

The company was founded on March 30, 1998 in Suginami, Japan. Its founder, Suda, gave two reasons why he chose the name "Grasshopper:" The first being a reference to the song of the same name by UK band Ride, which he was listening to on repeat when forming the company.[2] The second reason is that originally he wanted to use a Japanese word "battamon" as the company name. "Batta" means "grasshopper" and "mon" is "a thing" and when you put the words together, it means "copy or fake." However, he later changed his mind and stuck to Grasshopper instead. The word "Manufacture" was added in because his game company was about "building things."[3]

Grasshopper gained mainstream attention in 2005 for the GameCube and PlayStation 2 game killer7.[citation needed] In addition to killer7, they have developed Michigan: Report from Hell (released in Japan, Europe) and a number of Japan-only titles. Grasshopper Manufacture was also responsible for the Nintendo DS game Contact, the Wii game No More Heroes and its sequel No More Heroes 2: Desperate Struggle, and Shadows of the Damned. The company is headed by Goichi Suda, also known as Suda51, and is noted for its original and imaginative titles - ones that are also fraught with financial risk. Potential losses are often made up by the development of games based on popular anime franchises, such as Samurai Champloo: Sidetracked, Blood+: One Night Kiss, and Rebuild of Evangelion: Sound Impact.[4][5][6]

In May 2007, Suda announced during a speech at the 2007 Game Developers Conference that Grasshopper was at the time working on three titles for the Wii, two of which have now been released: No More Heroes and Fatal Frame IV.[7] There is no information on the status of the third Wii game in development then.

Grasshopper was said to be working on an Xbox 360 title, and have presented a concept for a PlayStation 3 game called Kurayami, a non-linear action adventure inspired by the worrying and confused universe of the Czech writer Franz Kafka, whom Goichi Suda admires.[8] This was later cancelled and reincorporated ideas were put into the game Shadows of the Damned.[8]

In 2010, Yasuhiro Wada joined Grasshopper Manufacture as COO. He then left Grasshopper, and founded the company Toybox in 2011.[9] During development of Shadows of the Damned, the employee count of Grasshopper would double to 140.[10]

On 30 January 2013, Grasshopper Manufacture was acquired by GungHo Online Entertainment.[11] Their first title released under GungHo was Let It Die. In 2018, the company would post a notice of an absorption-type split over issues in management, confirming that new Grasshopper Manufacture, Inc. would now operate independently of GungHo and work on their own intellectual property such as No More Heroes under Goichi Suda's management. The old Grasshopper Manufacture, Inc. (currently Supertrick Games[12][13]) would retain a majority of Grasshopper staff at the time, which would be assigned to work on GungHo-owned IP such as Let It Die.[14] Grasshopper Manufacture would subsequently downsize to a more indie scaled studio, hosting 20 employees as of 2019.[1]

The company's first title developed after the split was Travis Strikes Again: No More Heroes, a spinoff entry in the No More Heroes series marketed as a return for the franchise, a tribute to indie games and a commemorative title for Grasshopper Manufacture's history. The game is being followed up with No More Heroes III, the first proper mainline installment for the franchise since 2010. The game retains the core development team from the previous title and is being developed in collaboration with outsourced staff, being self-published by Grasshopper Manufacture, with physical distribution assistance from Nintendo. Both games mark Goichi Suda's return to a directorial role, who hadn't directed a game since the original No More Heroes in 2007.[15]

Games developed[edit]

Year Title Publisher Platform(s) Notes
1999 The Silver Case ASCII Entertainment Linux, macOS, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation, PlayStation 4, Windows N/A
2001 Flower, Sun, and Rain Victor Interactive Software PlayStation 2
2002 Shining Soul Sega Game Boy Advance Co-developed with Nextech
2003 Shining Soul II
2004 Michigan: Report from Hell Spike PlayStation 2 N/A
2005 killer7 Capcom GameCube, PlayStation 2, Windows Co-developed with Capcom Production Studio 4
The 25th Ward: The Silver Case Genki Linux, macOS, Mobile, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, Windows N/A
2006 Samurai Champloo: Sidetracked Namco Bandai Games PlayStation 2
Contact Marvelous Entertainment Nintendo DS
Blood+: One Night Kiss Namco Bandai Games PlayStation 2
2007 No More Heroes Marvelous Entertainment Amazon Luna, Nintendo Switch, Wii, Windows
2008 Flower, Sun, and Rain: Murder and Mystery in Paradise Nintendo DS Co-developed with h.a.n.d.
Fatal Frame: Mask of the Lunar Eclipse Nintendo Wii Co-developed with Tecmo and Nintendo SPD
2010 No More Heroes 2: Desperate Struggle Marvelous Entertainment Amazon Luna, Nintendo Switch, Wii, Windows N/A
2011 Frog Minutes Grasshopper Manufacture iOS
Shadows of the Damned Electronic Arts PlayStation 3, Xbox 360
Rebuild of Evangelion: Sound Impact Namco Bandai Games PlayStation Portable
2012 Sine Mora Digital Reality Android, iOS, Ouya, PlayStation 3, PlayStation Vita, Windows, Xbox 360 Co-developed with Digital Reality
Diabolical Pitch Microsoft Studios Xbox 360 N/A
Liberation Maiden Level-5 Nintendo 3DS, iOS
Lollipop Chainsaw Kadokawa Games PlayStation 3, Xbox 360
No More Heroes: World Ranker Marvelous AQL Android, iOS
Black Knight Sword Digital Reality PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 Co-developed with Digital Reality
2013 Killer Is Dead Kadokawa Games PlayStation 3, Windows, Xbox 360 N/A
2014 Ranko Tsukigime's Longest Day Bandai Namco Games PlayStation 3 Co-developed with Crispy's!
2016 Let It Die GungHo Online Entertainment PlayStation 4, Windows Co-developed with SUPERTRICK GAMES
2017 Sine Mora EX THQ Nordic Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, Windows, Xbox One Co-developed with Digital Reality
2019 Travis Strikes Again: No More Heroes Grasshopper Manufacture Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, Windows N/A
2021 No More Heroes III Nintendo Switch

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Company Fact Sheet". Grasshopper Manufacture. Archived from the original on 4 July 2017. Retrieved 21 April 2018.
  2. ^ GameSpot. "Suda51 Breaks Down His Iconic Career". GameSpot. Retrieved 22 June 2020.
  3. ^ Archipel. "SUDA51, Game Creator (No More Heroes, Killer7) - toco toco". YouTube. Retrieved 22 June 2020.
  4. ^ Samurai Champloo: Sidetracked - IGN, retrieved 27 November 2019
  5. ^ McCarthy, Dave (22 September 2006). "Blood+ One Night Kiss". Eurogamer. Retrieved 27 November 2019.
  6. ^ "Grasshopper Manufacture Developing Evangelion: Sound Impact, A Rhythm Game". Siliconera. 15 June 2011. Retrieved 27 November 2019.
  7. ^ Kohler, Chris (31 January 2008). "Nintendo, Tecmo, Grasshopper Team Up For Fatal Frame Wii". Wired. ISSN 1059-1028. Retrieved 27 November 2019.
  8. ^ a b Haske, Steve (22 July 2016). "Discussing 'Let It Die' with the Architects of Grasshopper Manufacture's Overdue Comeback". Vice. Retrieved 27 November 2019.
  9. ^ "Yasuhiro Wada On How Happy Birthdays Is More Game-Like, And Why He Left Grasshopper - Siliconera". Siliconera. 14 April 2018. Archived from the original on 12 August 2018. Retrieved 27 August 2018.
  10. ^ Guarini, Massimo. "Shadows Of The Damned And The Global Revamp Of Grasshopper Manufacture" (Interview). Gamasutra. Archived from the original on 22 April 2018. Retrieved 21 April 2018.
  11. ^ Spencer. "Grasshopper Manufacture Acquired By GungHo Online Entertainment". SiliconEra. Archived from the original on 4 June 2016. Retrieved 13 September 2016.
  12. ^ スーパートリック・ゲームズ株式会社の情報 (in Japanese), National Tax Agency
  13. ^ 第22期定時株主総会招集ご通知 (in Japanese). Gungho Online Entertainment. March 5, 2019
  14. ^ "グラスホッパー・マニファクチュア、ガンホーグループ外からの受託業務を新設会社GhMに移管 GhMは須田社長のプロジェクトや社外案件を手がけることに". 27 April 2018. Retrieved 10 July 2020.
  15. ^ Suriel Vasquez (12 June 2019). "Suda51 Tells Us What To Expect From No More Heroes III". Gameinformer. Retrieved 14 June 2019.

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