The week of Dreamcast alumni news continues. After yesterday’s word that Phantasy Star Online 2 would be free to play when it releases on PC and Vita in the next year comes today’s news about Takeshi Hirai’s new Vita game Orgarhythm. Who is Tak Hirai and why should you care about his game? Hirai was the lead programmer on Sega’s family drama and martial arts epic Shenmue. Not only that, but he was a team member of Q Entertainment’ Tetsuya Miziguchi, working on Space Channel 5 and even the HD remake of Dreamcast original Rez.
Orgarhythm will be the first game by Hirai’s studio Neilo. Like his work with Q Entertainment, Orgarhythm will be a rhythm-based game but also a strategy game according to Sinobi’s (via Andriasang) report on the game. Hirai said that the game is at first glance very difficult to understand, and that even people within his own studio don’t know how to react to it. When you’ve made something that confounds people, you’re usually on the right track.
The game will also have competitive and cooperative multiplayer when it comes out this summer in Japan, very unusual for a rhythm game.
Tak’s resume with Q Entertainment goes deep into great rhythm game territory. He worked on DS rhythm puzzler Meteos as well as the PSP’s Lumines and Lumines II. It’s certainly interest piquing to hear his latest will involve strategic elements. Nothing quite like grooving while thinking.