Gamingring.com recently spoke with Hiro Fukuoka. He's Agetec's developer responsible for helping bring Fire Pro Wrestling Returns to the PS2 in the US for the first time ever.
One thing that was brought were any changes or enhancements made to the game, to which Fukuoka replied: “We're changing the controls to the American standard in the menu screens (X is move forward rather than back, and Triangle button is cancel/back), but other than that and translation we're leaving everything as is. We feel that Fire Pro Wrestling Returns is THE definitive wrestling title, and to do changes beyond that is a disservice to the game and to its fans."
So I think any of the skeptical fans that felt they were going to make stupid changes to muck up or make the game look stupid were dead wrong and can rest easy despite their initial ignorance. One other interesting topic brought up, if the game is successful could it lead to more popular Japanese wrestling games such as to debut over here, stateside?
“Fire Pro Wrestling Returns will definitely be testing the waters. Is there a market for a wrestling game that doesn't have a big league attached to it? We'll find out."
I think it would be pretty awesome if we could finally see the King of Coliseum series of wrestling games to the US.
Interestingly enough, Fire Pro Wrestling Returns is now officially set for the same release date as WWE Raw vs. Smackdown 2008. The sequel to the hit series will be released on all major gaming systems, 11/13/2007. The folks at Agetec definitely have their work cut out for them. This could be either a really good idea, or a really stupid one, we shall see.
The large amount of kids that will buy the WWE game probably won't be picking this one up. The demographic will clearly be set on the older, more hardcore wrestling fan. I wonder though if the fans that have already imported the game from Japan and most likely already own it would still want to get the official English version as well. And if maybe, just maybe some curious fans would also take a look at it.
Below we have a new video of Fire Pro Wrestling Returns for your pleasure.
Don't squint your eyes. Those guys are who you think they are, and yes they are in the game.