The Past, Present, and Future of Cotton thumbnail

The Past, Present, and Future of Cotton

An interview with SUCCESS Corporation and Studio Saizensen

A.J. Maciejewski

Written by for Interviews on 🧚‍♀️

The iconic shoot 'em up franchise Cotton is becoming more popular worldwide and I had the honour to discuss the series with its producer as well as Cotton Fantasy's director. If you love Cotton as much as I do, stick around and learn some interesting tidbits.

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Cotton Fantasy Character Select screenshot
It looks like Cotton will be joined by a few of her genre contemporaries

First, I discussed the history of Cotton and potential future releases with Shinya Nagatomo (Producer, SUCCESS Corporation). v1d30chumz 44-192-38-248

A.J. ▸ Over the years, not many Cotton games have been made available in the west and now that the series is becoming more popular worldwide (especially with the release of Cotton Reboot), how does it feel knowing that more shoot 'em up fans are enjoying the series than ever?

Shinya Nagatomo ▸ After 20 years of waiting, I am relieved to receive such a high evaluation. I hope we will be able to pass the IP to the next generation of gamers and also the next generation of my colleagues at SUCCESS.

A.J.Cotton has gone through many iterations since its inception yet each game manages to remain true to the series. What core aspects do you emphasize when creating a new game in the franchise?

Shinya Nagatomo ▸ The characteristics of Cotton are met if she hits fire dragon and acts greedy. The Cotton series was created to fit the period, but I think this new Cotton is able to fit the present as well.

A.J. ▸ Besides Cotton, SUCCESS has made some other top-notch shoot 'em ups such as Guardian Force and Psyvariar. Now that Guardian Force is available via its Saturn Tribute release and Psyvariar Delta debuted a few years back, would you like to see the previous Psyvariar games re-released for modern audiences?

Shinya Nagatomo ▸ It's not that it is not a possibility, but Psyvariar Delta is from another team, so it depends on what they will do. However, if you're asking me if I'd do it, I think it's unlikely. On the other hand, with Cotton's revival, other teams are working on HD versions and remakes of various past titles, so there may be an announcement out of the blue.

A.J. ▸ SUCCESS Corporation released KASIORI last year which I absolutely loved and it featured both Cotton and her fairy friend Silk. Are there plans to create any similar games or perhaps a sequel?

Shinya NagatomoKASIORI is another of my creations. This as well took me over 20 years to commercialize since the first proposal (I was trying to make it for the PS1). KASIORI is a popular arcade game in Japan, so I'm hoping to make another similar puzzle game. Cotton on the other hand will continue to make guest appearances in a variety of games.

Cotton Fantasy gameplay screenshot with photo of Toshinobu Kondo
Toshinobu Kondo directed Cotton Fantasy and it looks quite cute and action-packed

Next, Toshinobu Kondo (Game Director, Studio Saizensen) answered some questions regarding what it takes to create a Cotton game.

A.J. ▸ Japanese fans have been enjoying Cotton Fantasy: Superlative Night Dreams for a couple of months already. What sort of feedback have you received so far?

Toshinobu Kondo ▸ Whenever I see people talking about how cute Cotton is, I feel happy. I'm also glad to see that everyone is enthusiastic about the Score Attack.

A.J. ▸ Speaking of which, this new Cotton game brings many exciting gameplay elements together. Which aspects are you most looking forward to western gamers finally experiencing?

Toshinobu Kondo ▸ If you change the character you use, it's a whole different game. I'm sure there is a character that suits you the best, so I look forward to see you find your favorite character and also for you to discover the hidden elements in the game.

Cotton Series Review

A.J. ▸ During the development of Cotton Fantasy, which design decisions stood out as particularly exciting? Also, were there any ideas that were scrapped?

Toshinobu Kondo ▸ It may be too detailed to tell, but I changed the design of Cotton's hair a little from the past series, so that at the start of the game her hair flows in the wind. There were so many ideas that were discarded that I don't remember most of them (laughs).

A.J. ▸ As I understand, the guest character of Kawase Umihara will be included who has her own sea creature theme. Are there any other guest characters that you would be happy to have join the cast?

Toshinobu Kondo ▸ When it comes to Cotton Rock 'n' Roll (AKA Cotton Fantasy), I'm very happy with the characters we have now. I have nothing left to say.

A.J. ▸ Finally, are there any easter eggs or secrets that you're eager for fans to discover?

Toshinobu Kondo ▸ There is a secret that has yet to be discovered in Japan as well, but I can't tell you or it wouldn't be a secret. I'm dying to tell you, so please, someone discover it soon!

Cotton Fantasy Review
Cotton Fantasy screenshot of Silk teasing Cotton
Why can't Silk just give Cotton what she wants?

Thank you very much to Shinya Nagatomo and Toshinobu Kondo for answering my questions. I hope you had a fun time reading all about what makes Cotton special and I hope you're looking forward to Cotton Fantasy as much as I am. See you on the leaderboards! 😊

Official trailer for Cotton Fantasy thumbnail
Official trailer for Cotton Fantasy
Capcom Shoot 'em Ups Trivia

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