Jumputi 4th Anniversary Interview with Gamebiz

Jumputi is currently celebrating Four years of operation! Gamebiz has conducted interviews with the Jumputi team four times in these past four years.


  • LINE “Jumputi Heroes” ProducerSho Fujikawa [Left]
  • LINE “Jumputi Heroes” Assistant ProducerYurina Hamasaki [Right]

Sho Fujikawa joined the Jumputi team in November 2019 and became the Producer in December 2020. He works with the game’s developer, Wonder Planet, to set in place the overall plan for the game’s development, promote the game, and manage the budget. This is his third time being interviewed by Gamebiz.

Yurina Hamasaki joined the Jumputi team in May 2021. As the Assistant Producer, she supports Fujikawa to execute the overall game plan. She also acts as a site supervisor, which involves more detail-oriented duties such as proofreading texts and verifying designs before release.

[Gamebiz Interviewer]: Thank you for your time today. First of all, how does it feel to reach your 4th Anniversary?

Fujikawa: Of course, I’m very happy. Compared to Weekly Shonen Jump which has been running for 50 years now, the era of Social Media Gaming may seem quite short, but somehow we are already celebrating our 4th Anniversary. This is a very competitive and ruthless market to be in, I think the fact we have made it this far is proof that our customers love Jumputi.

[Gamebiz Interviewer]: Are there any events in particular that left an impression on you in the last year?

Fujikawa: The biggest event for me personally was the 100 series celebration, which we talked about in our last interview. Originally, Jumputi’s major selling point was the fact that you could play with characters from so many different Weekly Shonen Jump series. But as time went on, we heard the voices of a lot of people on this matter, not just customers but also mangaka, who said “Please include this series!”.

Among the numerous requests we’ve received, one that’s fresh in my memory is the Tweet by Oishi-sensei. He asked us to include his series “Inumarudashi” and in January 2022, we added “Inumarudashi” to the game.

We also had a similar request from Aimoto-sensei, she asked us to include her series “The Shinigami Infirmary” and we are working towards adding it in the future

I’m delighted to receive requests like this from the mangaka themselves, this is not something I could ever experience if I was working on a different game.

Another thing that I haven’t announced yet which I wanted to talk about, we have received numerous requests to add “Cascade” from “Midori no Makibao”.

This year we intend to add Cascade. The plan is to add him during the Arima Kinen which is one of Japan’s biggest horse racing events. This event is held on Christmas day so it’s quite a way off but I hope fans can still look forward to it.

Hamasaki: I was also impressed with the implementation of Inumarudashi as mentioned before. In particular, when it was announced on the Livestream that the series would be added. Players had seen Oishi-sensei’s tweets and so when we confirmed that the series would be added, they were very excited. I remember thinking “I’m glad we were able to meet expectations on this one”.

Oishi-sensei also released a special chapter of Inumarudashi on ShonenJump+ where Inumaru actually played the game! This is definitely something I’ve only ever seen happen with Jumputi Heroes. That moment made me feel like I was involved in something very big all of a sudden.

It’s been less than a year since I joined the Jumputi team, but straight away I could feel the enthusiasm of the team. When we reached 17 Million Downloads, we held the “Hunt Down the Mastermind” social media campaign, where users would try to unveil the hidden character from hints during the event. It was very well received by players and it got really popular on social media.

I was excited about it. A big part of our job is staying active on social media to promote the game. So getting that positive feedback and knowing that our efforts are reaching the players was very beneficial to our work.

[Gamebiz Interviewer]: Mr. Fujikawa, How did you select Ms. Hamasaki for the role of Assistant Producer?

Fujikawa: She was originally in charge of LINE casual games. She had created a good environment there, wherein the expectations of their casual players were considered carefully when moving forward with the game plan. So she was chosen to be appointed as the Assistant Producer for Jumputi.

We are thankful that Jumputi has developed such a diverse player base, we have a good balance of casual and hardcore players. This does pose a challenge though, it can be difficult to balance player expectations. The plan is for Ms. Hamasaki to focus on supporting our more casual players and then I can focus on the more hardcore side of our player base.

Also, since Jumputi has many female players (around 25%), I felt it was necessary for us to have a female perspective when making decisions for the game. When moving forward with development, there are certainly times when there is something I have not considered, in that regard, she’s my savior.

She has helped us make plans so that, in the future, we can do a better job of meeting the expectations of female players. For example, this year we have an Autumnal Sports event planned. She is a fan of the series “Haikyuu!!” and “Kuroko no Basuke” and she expressed to us that she feels characters from these series would go down well with the female side of the player base.

[Gamebiz Interviewer]: Ms. Hamasaki, what kind of work were you in charge of at LINE casual games?

Hamasaki: In terms of the responsibilities, my role at LINE casual games was similar to my role in the Jumputi team. The difference is, with casual games, they are developed to be something you can pick up and put down quickly and easily each day, rather than something where you really need to sit and think.

The casual players typically do not have much experience playing games, so I was helping the team develop the games with that in mind. On the Jumputi team, I bring that perspective with me, so that I can support the more casual side of the player base.

Unlike casual games, Jumputi has a lot of different gameplay elements and so many past events for people to play. It can be a bit daunting for someone who is just starting out. For example, if character abilities are only displayed in-game, it can be difficult for new players to know what makes the character good to play with.

So now we post the abilities of new characters on the blog with a little description of what makes them a useful character to have.

In regards to the UI and UX of the game, we are aware that it can be unclear and quite difficult for new players to know what to do, this is something we are considering carefully for future updates.

Fujikawa: The original plan was for the blog to make up for any missing information from the in-game news, but the implementation has improved considerably since Ms. Hamasaki joined. As we celebrate the 4th Anniversary, the elements of the game are becoming more and more complicated.

For our casual players, it’s good to have the more difficult-to-understand aspects broken down into more easily digestible chunks. We want to make sure that we carefully convey the important information in a way that is understandable at a glance, so that even casual players fully understand it.

Hamasaki: I think when you have been working on or playing a game for a long time, there are some aspects that you get used to and you may forget that it’s an element new players won’t be familiar with. I think, because I joined the team later into production, I was able to spot some of these elements and make sure we kept them in mind.

The blog includes more explanations and information than ever before, not just information on the characters but also full breakdowns of each event and explanations of how to play, so please make sure to check it out.

[Gamebiz Interviewer]: As the COVID-19 epidemic has continued, has there been any changes to your development process?

Fujikawa: At first, the situation was a little confusing, but as online conferencing has become more normalized, it has become much easier to communicate.

In particular, since the developer for this game, Wonder Planet, has their main headquarters in Nagoya, I used to have regular business trips there. But since the epidemic, they have created an environment where it’s okay for us to hold our meetings online. It’s definitely made communication a lot smoother and I feel that the measures put in place have allowed me to get more done.

Hamasaki: By the time I joined the team, the epidemic was well underway and a lot of these changes were already in place. So it wasn’t too difficult for me, actually, I’m happy to be able to work in an environment where online communication is the standard. I don’t need to make reservations for conference rooms every time we need a meeting and I feel like everyone has become more flexible because we can quickly and easily contact each other online.

However, I still haven’t visited Wonder Planet HQ, so I want to go there at some point and properly greet everybody.

[Gamebiz Interviewer]: So you guys found good points in both the online and the face-to-face approach?

Fujikawa: Well, I hope we can move forward with a hybrid model in the future. The online approach has allowed us to easily hold meetings and to do so more frequently as well so it’s definitely a positive system to have in place.

[Gamebiz Interviewer]: So, let’s move on to the main subject, the 4th Anniversary. What are your plans for this celebration?

Hamasaki: Firstly, we have a new mechanic called “Transformation”. When you think of Shonen Jump over the years, transformation is a very common thing to see and a key part of many series. The part of the story where the character’s appearance and techniques change all of a sudden, we wanted to reflect that in Jumputi.

“Transformation” allows the player to use two of a character’s different forms. The character also has access to different abilities depending on which form you use.

Everyone will get [Gear Change] Monkey D. Luffy from One Piece as a log in bonus reward during this celebration so all the players can try out this new mechanic for themselves.

Fujikawa: For anniversaries, we are very careful to try and capture the unique aspects of Weekly Shonen Jump and reflect them in Jumputi. For example, we all know that Jump is a magazine about working together with your friends, so during the 2nd Anniversary, we introduced Dual units for the first time.

After that, we had a meeting about the next big phase of Jumputi and the decision was that implementing characters that can transform would be the next step toward capturing the spirit of Jump. So we have begun implementation of this mechanic starting with the 4th Anniversary Celebration.

Hamasaki: Also, we are expecting a lot of new players to join during this celebration, so we have prepared 400 free summons, with the intention of helping players get a lot of characters to add to their team. Hopefully, the gifts we have prepared for this celebration will help new players become accustomed to Jumputi as quickly as possible.

A vital part of Jumputi Anniversaries is the introduction of a new Musou character and this time we will be introducing Gol D. Roger. It’s been rumored that he would appear as a Musou character for a long time and now he’ll finally be making his debut.

Fujikawa: When we decided to add the Musou rarity to the game, Roger was the first character nominated by the team. However, at the time, we decided to begin with characters whose feats of strength we had seen more of in the series, which is why we chose Hashirama Senju from Naruto and then Super Vegito from Dragon Ball.

Hamasaki: We will also be adding two new Hero Islands for the first time in half a year. This time, Black Clover and Dr. Stone were selected.

[Gamebiz Interviewer]: Jumputi works with so many series, what made you choose these two?

Fujikawa: The timing for the character selection in this event purely came down to what was happening right now in Jump. Especially in the case of Dr. Stone, which just ended the other day, it felt like one of the hottest series to choose for this celebration.

[Gamebiz Interviewer]: I heard a new feature called “My Ship” was planned to be implemented soon. Can you tell us more about it?

Fujikawa: When I started working on Jumputi, I was always concerned about the fact that Jumputi doesn’t have a proper player profile screen. It’s a social game so, as the name suggests, part of the game should involve communicating with other players on social media.

I feel that people want to talk about what they are doing in the game, how they have performed, and in some cases even brag about their achievements. But if there is no profile screen, we’ve made it difficult for them to do this. The social aspect is very important for Jumputi so we’ve been gradually working toward implementing a profile screen.

The new feature “My Ship” is our answer to this problem. The ship has always been a part of Jumputi Heroes ever since the beginning. The idea has always been that you travel from event to event on your ship with your favorite characters.

With “My Ship” the more you play Duels, Adventures, etc. the more experience your ship will earn. Over time, you will build your ship into a vessel of luxury. It becomes a good marker for players, you can look at their ship, and straight away you’ll see “oh, that person is playing a lot”. We are taking the time you invest in the game and making it visible through “My Ship”.

As you can see in the images above, by playing the game you can make your ship more luxurious.

Fujikawa: Of course, we are also creating a more detailed general profile screen, but this is something that will be coming later, please look forward to it.

[Gamebiz Interviewer]: So does the “My Ship” feature allow players to customize the appearance of their ship?

Fujikawa: At first, no. For this initial implementation, we focused on a more natural form for the ship, that will progress as you level up. But we think that moving forward, players will ask for the option to customize the appearance, so we plan to implement it in the future.

Ms. Hamasaki has more experience with games that have that sort of feature so we’ve been discussing how we will implement it in the future. It’s difficult because if it requires too much effort to make your ship look luxurious then it will discourage casual players from getting involved. We want everyone to experience the joy of making their ship Luxurious so I am carefully considering Ms. Hamasaki’s perspective on this matter.

[Gamebiz Interviewer]: What do you have planned for future updates?

Fujikawa: I want to make Jumputi feel like Weekly Shonen Jump.

As for what that means exactly, players often say “I want you to reprint events from this series”, but everyone likes different series. When it comes to manga, you can read whichever series you want whenever you want. So we want to reflect this experience in Jumputi.

I would like you to enjoy your favorite series at your own convenience but also to get an experience of the other series on offer.

The first step I want Jumputi to take in this direction is the “Log Book” feature. This is one of the features listed under my “Captain Plan”. The “Captain Plan” is the development plan we will be following as we move towards the 4.5 Anniversary.

The “Log Book” feature will allow players to challenge past adventures at their own convenience. We want it to feel like a bookshelf full of series, a player should be able to say “I think I’ll choose this series today” and have access to the events from that series.

Fujikawa: Up until now, our team would make events that essentially say to the player “Play this story from this series”. Moving forward, I want the players to be able to choose the stories they want to play and let them enjoy themselves at their own pace.

Some players tell me that they have discovered series by seeing them in Jumputi first, so I hope that we can continue to make that possible by making these past events easy to access. I hope that Jump and Jumputi can continue to reach as many people as possible.

[Gamebiz Interviewer]: I remember you mentioned wanting Jump and Jumputi to reach as many people as possible in previous interviews

Fujikawa: I wonder if the things we have been working towards for a long time like the “Log Book” will let us see that ideal slowly take shape. I hope so.

[Gamebiz Interviewer]: Finally, is there anything else you want to say to the readers?

Hamasaki: I’m honestly very happy to be able to celebrate Four years of operation, especially when you consider the rapidly changing social games industry that we find ourselves in.

This is the first Anniversary since I became a member of the team. But even after four years, Jumputi continues to tackle new challenges like the “My Ship” and “Transformation” features. I hope to enjoy a bright future alongside the players.

This is a game so entertainment is paramount, as much as possible, I want to make sure users are having a good time. So I would like to focus on creating an environment where new players can feel welcomed with open arms. I will take advantage of the casual players’ perspective on things that I can bring to the table in order to make this possible.

Please enjoy the future of Jumputi Heroes!

Fujikawa: This anniversary is a big moment for me, it’s been over a year since I became the producer. We have received plenty of criticisms for various things since I took charge but I want to focus on improving Jumputi as much as I can on the road to the 5th Anniversary.

We’ve been making many adjustments to make the game more welcoming to casual players and I think some of these changes left our hardcore players dissatisfied. So in the future, our focus will be on hearing out the opinions of all players. I want to make all our content enjoyable for as many players as possible.

Hopefully then, we can reach our 5th & 6th Anniversaries and players will say “It’s fun to play Jumputi now”.

I would like to express my gratitude to all the players who have joined us over these past four years. Thank you for loving Jumputi and I hope that you will continue to play in the future!

[Gamebiz Interviewer]: Thank you both for your time today.

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