YOKO TARO talks Voice of Cards: The Isle Dragon Roars

Actually, a better title would be ‘YOKO TARO doesn’t really talk about Voice of Cards and talks about kittens instead’.
By Duncan Heaney

If you’ve played the NieR or Drakengard series, you know that creator YOKO TARO doesn’t do things in a conventional way.

That same spirit is present in his latest project, Voice of Cards: The Isle Dragon Roars. This laid-back RPG presents an epic adventure almost entirely through the medium of cards. It may sound crazy on paper, but it works incredibly well thanks to tight mechanics, an interesting tale that goes to unexpected places and an utterly charming sense of humor throughout.

In other words, it bears many hallmarks of a YOKO TARO game. We recently had a chance to speak to the Creative Director about the game. In typical YOKO-san style, his answers were… well, see for yourselves:

Voice of Cards screenshot

Congratulations on the release of Voice of Cards: The Isle Dragon Roars!

Yes, Voice of Cards: The Isle Dragon Roars is now available. Don’t tell SQUARE ENIX, but I don’t think such a niche game will sell that well.

What would you say to people thinking about picking up the game?

Just imagine there’s a kitten shivering in the rain, but passers-by walk on by, ignoring it. The reason? Because it’s a mixed-breed kitten, which isn’t popular.

It lets out a whimper, barely making a sound, and that sound is erased by the noise of the rain. However, there appears a person who can hear this soft sound. Yes, that person is you - the one reading this.

You, and only you, can save the kitten. You don’t mind if your clothes get dirty - I’m sure you’re holding that kitten gently in your arms. And what a thoughtful person you are, taking the kitten back home, providing warm milk and a fluffy bed, and putting the kitten to sleep. You had a busy day today.

Though you have a video call scheduled for tonight, you want to skip it and just relax. That’s when you take your Switch in your hands or turn on your PS4 or PC. There are many games that look interesting, but one of them catches your attention. That game is perfect for your current state of mind - a game with a slow feel to it.

The name of the game? Voice of Cards: The Isle Dragon Roars. I hope you give it a try.

There are some awesome DLC bundles too. What’s your personal pick?

My favorite is the Replicant DLC… oops, I meant the pixel art set DLC.

When that was being created, I said, “Can’t we just simply shrink existing images?” but the pixel art artisans at the developer, Alim, were able to create all originals for the game. I’m more than thankful.

Incidentally, I’m hoping to create a 2D pixel art game, but SQUARE ENIX shows no signs of allowing me to do it. No… signs… at all…

What’s your proudest professional moment so far?

As with Voice of Cards: The Isle Dragon Roars, I’m proud when young people make something spectacular.

Well, that’s the public-facing reason. Actually, it’s become a daily routine for me to let out a “mwahaha” of joy as I look at my increasing bank account balance - the result of exploiting the spectacular work of young people and adding the profits into my savings.

Many thanks to YOKO TARO for sort-of-but-not-really answering our questions.

If you can take time out from rescuing kittens, Voice of Cards is out now on PS4, Switch, and Steam:

In addition to the standalone game, there’s also a special bundle set, which includes the game, the Pixel Art Set DLC that YOKO-san talked about, and seven more DLC themed after NieR Replicant ver.1.22474487139…:

  • Dress of the Bereft - Swaps the costumes of the protagonist, Mar and Melanie to the design of NieR Replicant ver.1.22474487139…

  • Emil’s Pattern - Swaps the reverse card design to a design resembling Emil’s clothing

  • Emil Avatar - Swaps the player’s avatar to a design resembling Emil

  • Emil Dice - Swaps the dice to a design adorned with Emil’s face

  • Grimoire Weiss Board - Swaps the battle board and accessories to designs patterned after Grimoire Weiss

  • Library Desk - Swaps the table design to resemble a certain library’s stonework

  • Devola’s Music - Swaps the general background music to a soundtrack that bring to mind the journeys of a certain young man who fought to save his sister.

  • Pixel Art Set - Swaps all character and enemy illustrations to pixel art

Of course, if you prefer these items are also available to buy separately.

To stay up to date with news and information about the game, make sure you follow us on social media: