Hiring Italian-born artist Roberto Ferrari to do the character design for Death by Degrees was without a doubt an extremely wise decision on Namco’s part. Ferrari, who had previously worked at famous Japanese animation studio Tatsunoko Production, was to provide character designs with that sort of authentic western look Namco was looking for. As Death by Degrees Producer Yozo Sakagami explained, the team at Namco thought a Japanese artist might struggle emulating said look, and worried about Japanese features sneaking their way into the design of the game's female Irish lead.
What Ferrari ultimately brought to the table wasn’t only beautifully hand-drawn drafts of an interesting cast of characters, but also extremely sophisticated and borderline-ingenious costume designs for the famous female assassin in the title role.
Roberto Ferrari moved from Rome to Tokyo in the Mid-90s to fulfil his dream of working as a character design artist in Japan. He was part of the design team at Tatsunoko Production of Gatchaman fame and worked on titles for some of the video game industry's leading companies, including Namco Bandai Games Inc. and Square Enix, such as The Last Remnant, Moon Diver, Song Summoner: The Unsung Heroes - Encore and Death by Degrees.
Images were scanned from the Japanese Death by Degrees Perfect Guide (Softbank Publishing) and the Japanese Death by Degrees Official Guide (Enterbrain).