With a new development team at the helm and an emphasis on fluid action, Metal Gear Solid: Rising is being positioned as a new standard in the long-running franchise. Shigenobu Matsuyama, creative producer for Kojima Productions, told journalists at a Rising roundtable discussion during E3 that the game would be a counterpart to Hideo Kojima's Metal Gear Solid legacy, with possible future installments going "back and forth" between Rising and more traditional Metal Gear games.

"But for Rising, we're gonna position it where people might know Metal Gear Solid, but they were reluctant to buy it," Matsuyama said. "[They might say],'Stealth is not my style,' or they didn't have the hardware because they only had a 360. We would like to target this audience where it's kind of potential Metal Gear Solid users and again, as I said earlier, the story will be based between MGS2 and MGS4." He added that players who were not familiar with the franchise's Byzantine plot would still be able to become involved and have fun with the game's "Zan-Datsu" cutting concept.

"'Zan' means to cut, and 'Datsu' means to take," explained game director Mineshi Kimura. "We probably would offer a more wide range of play style so that you can aim where you want to cut and how deep you want to cut in order to achieve what you want to take. So, the play style will be quite in more depth than just cutting and killing."

According to Shigenobu Matsuyama, Raiden only became the game's star after the development team had toyed with the concept of being able to cut everything in the world. "And then we thought, okay, cutting, we should do a blade. Then, when we thought of blade, we thought yeah, we should do Raiden. So, we didn't have Raiden at first, we had the cutting technology of cutting everyone into pieces and came up with the concept of using Raiden." Progressing from the prototype stage to the final game will task the team with deciding what can and can't be cleaved apart.

"This is already in our prototype, and we can cut anything, to buildings and everything, but now we're at a stage where we have to figure a way ... because if we cut everything, it will not be good as a game, because it'll be just chaos," Matsuyama explained. "Therefore, at this stage, what we're doing is we're deciding what should we cut into pieces and parts, and what should not be cut into pieces and parts to construct a game." Kojima Productions isn't ready to discuss how far along that process is yet -- or whether Rising will offer any multiplayer components -- but believes the multiplatform project is proceeding well. "About the status of the progress of the game, we can't tell you exactly where we are at this moment, but what I can say is that we're proceeding very well on the project of Rising."

Matsuyama also addressed the level of violence on display in Rising's E3 2010 trailer, expressly stating that there would be no reward for cutting people into an absurd number of pieces -- well, no reward beyond the morbid amusement that results from cutting people into an absurd number of pieces. "And again, I want to emphasize we're not going to praise people or say to people, slicing to pieces is an incentive. You will not get rewarded for that, it was a demo that we kind of wanted to show off," he said. However, there are other conclusions you might draw from Raiden's behavior. "There was another hint in that scene that we implemented. In the story, Raiden becomes a little, kind of insane. And we wanted to kind of hint that. [To be precise], maybe he will be insane, but that's kind of a hint we wanted to put in the message."

This article was originally published on Joystiq.

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