For over 2 decades now, Bandai Namco (back then, just Bandai) has held the license to produce games based on the Dragon Ball manga and anime franchise. In recent years, two of the people in the company handling these games have been producers Ryo Mito and Masayuki Hirano. In a recent interview, Game Informer got a chance to talk to them regarding the process of creating Dragon Ball video games.
In the interview below, Mito and Hirano talks about how Dragon Ball has such a large following — and that this results in a playerbase with varied tastes. As such, their process for deciding what games to make involves making sure that they hit a large number of peoples’ “likes.” Based on this, they then go and look for a studio that can achieve that. Dragon Ball FighterZ is just one example of this, seeing as they knew that a competitive 2D fighter based on the franchise was something people wanted, and that Arc System Works was a studio they could work with.
Regarding future games — and continuing to experiment with the franchise and different genres — they acknowledged that games take longer (and cost more) to make nowadays. They need to look ahead 3 to 4 years when figuring out what to do with the next game, including considering out how the market will move in that time.
That said, Hirano does state the he still believes that their mission is to “elevate Dragon Ball games to the next level” — something he believes Dragon Ball FighterZ will do. Specifically, in regards to the game’s nature as a 2D fighting game (something Game Informer mentions being something more of the past) Hirano states that taking things to the next isn’t just about the games content, but also showing players new possibilities of what a Dragon Ball game can be.
Source: Game Informer