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The director of upcoming action RPG Stellar Blade says it's a "great honor" for the game to be called "Korean Nier," a common sentiment in viewer discussions of the game, because he's a big fan of Yoko Taro, the Nier man himself.
In an interview with GamesRadar+, game director Hyung-Tae Kim (via translator) shed more light on Stellar Blade's influences and inspirations, specifically the Nier series. He says he's enjoying the comparison, even if it isn't a perfect match for Stellar Blade's gameplay.
"Nier was very important for inspiration when it came to developing our games," he says. "It's a wonderful title that we've been inspired by, and the director, Yoko Taro, I'm also a big fan of his script. I'm a big fan of Yoko Taro."
That said, it's important not to go into Stellar Blade thinking it'll be a Nier lookalike. "If you actually get to play Stellar Blade, you'll see that the gameplay is not too similar. They're pretty different," the developer adds.
"We pay homage to the games that we've played, but when you actually get to play you will see a few differences there," Kim continues. "But to be called Korean Nier and to be influenced by such a title, it's a great honor."
This isn't the first time the Shift Up boss has mentioned other games that inspired the upcoming PS5 exclusive. Earlier this week, he revealed that games such as Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice and Bayonetta also shaped the studio's latest game, as well as the post-apocalyptic manga series Battle Angel Alita and '80s sci-fi flick Blade Runner. When asked about Bayonetta and Sekiro's contributions, he again stressed that "I don't think they are necessarily very similar to each other," but rather, "we took the strong parts of those two games and kind of put them together and implemented that in Stellar Blade."
Elsewhere in our chat with the developer, Kim discussed Stellar Blade's distinct visual style, which in some ways echoes the likes of Black Desert Online: "Because we are a Korean developer, we can't deny the fact that we were influenced by that Korean style. But at the same time, we try to always find our own style somewhere between realism and a more deformed style of characters. And in the process, we always try hard to find our own unique charm."
The developer says the team taps into media like K-pop, Korean movies, and K-dramas in its search for "our own attractive character design," adding to Stellar Blade's "somewhat Korean-like charm." But more than anything, Kim says he's always applied his own unique aesthetic, which "has progressed and evolved, and that has been implemented in Stellar Blade."
Find out what else is on the way with our upcoming PS5 games list.