Anyone who has heard “Suda51” and doesn’t think it’s the name of a video game studio is undoubtedly elated by the Western release of The Silver Case, which is finally coming to markets outside of Japan, remastered and all. It’s a wet dream for fans of obscure Japanese games. My only question is “Can we make it even wetter?”
It turns out that The Silver Case had a sequel way back when called Ward 25. (For those of you who have played the demo for The Silver Case HD Remaster, you’ll remember a reference to 24 Wards, leaving lots of room to speculate about this mysterious 25th). This one didn’t even get that much of a release in Japan, only coming out for mobile devices. But Suda confirmed for GameRevolution that his first ambition after The Silver Case HD Remaster would be to give the same treatment to Ward 25.
One caveat: The Silver Case HD Remaster has to sell well.
Yes, fans of Suda51 are currently licking their chops at the prospect of a Killer7 remaster, but the appeal of The Silver Case is that it’s an unknown commodity in Western audiences. Sure, you’ll find the occasional render of it streamed on YouTube, but still not in the English language. You can double that appeal with Ward 25.
The best part is that Ward 25 is guaranteed to be an easier endeavor than The Silver Case remaster, which went through a famously tumultuous development, starting out as a handheld port to the 3DS, before being canceled and finally resurrected in its current state. Suda said the translation was the hardest part of getting the game to Western audiences. Since The Silver Case is primarily a visual novel, it’s a huge bulk of text to wade through.
Then he found his translator, James Mountain. Mountain not only did all the work translating The Silver Case, but he also acts as Suda’s translator for interviews.
If The Silver Case HD Remaster is any indication of the potential quality of Ward 25, we’re in for a treat, should it sell well. All that’s playable at this stage are two half-chapters. While the first half-chapter has been playable on Steam for a fair bit now, the first half of the second chapter was playable for the first time at PAX West 2016, and I’m happy to report that it only gets more interesting.
Indeed, The Silver Case has the potential to tap into the current entertainment zeitgeist and suck people in the same way TV shows like True Detective and The Night Of did. A compelling crime mystery with sinister implications, The Silver Case HD Remaster is on my list of games to play this fall.