Grasshopper doesn't intend to offend, but isn't changing either
Grasshopper Manufacture's titles oftentimes exhibit suggestive material and the studio's latest effort is no different. Killer is Dead features gigolo missions wherein protagonist Mondo Zappa flirts with women whilst attempting to discretely ogle them with x-ray glasses. It's bizarre, puerile, and exactly the type of thing fans have come to expect from the developer.
Outlandish ideas may be Grasshopper Manufacture boss Goichi Suda's calling card, but this particular example seems to provide more fuel to a fire that's burned especially hot as of late. However, Suda and his team seem cognizant of the problematic portrayals of women in games and aren't looking to offend anyone with his work. First and foremost, the studio aims to create something fun that will make people laugh.
"I think in a way when you get criticism, that means people are paying attention to your work," Suda told GamesIndustry International. "Any kind of artistic value, anything you create, there's always some kind of criticism behind it. Which means we're making an impression and an impact.
"So I think we'll stay with what we're thinking and just keep going with that way of thinking ... And when I say that, sexuality is a touchy subject. We don't want to make people offended, but we're trying to create something that makes people laugh a bit because we're [dealing with] that topic."
Grasshopper Manufacture has touched on edgy or provocative topics before, doing so with more care and social introspection than a moment's glance would initially indicate. Lollipop Chainsaw featured commentary on objectification wherein the developer subtly highlighted the issue by reversing traditional tables with an emasculated male lead and an empowered (though scantily clad) female protagonist, oft dismissive of her counterpart's wishes and feelings of discomfort. Perhaps Suda and company have something similarly analytical in mind with Killer is Dead. One can only hope.
Sexuality a touchy subject - Suda 51 [GamesIndustry International]