Dragon Quest X localization not likely, but might happen with enough fan requests

The following information comes from Square Enix’s Noriyoshi Fujimoto...

- translating the game would be a very big undertaking
- from a business standpoint, it's hard to justify localization
- if fans speak up enough for localization, there's still a chance it could happen

Miyamoto on Super Mario Run - Making new Mario fans, working with Apple, embracing mobile & more

Coming from a Pocket-Lint interview with Shigeru Miyamoto...

Creating an experience for someone that's never played a Mario game before

"Our intent has always been that the side-scrolling new Super Mario Bros games would be simpler - games that more casual players could be able to enjoy. But what we've found is that even though they are designed to be simpler and easier to understand, the controls can still be difficult for some players and they have a hard time controlling Mario or making him run and jump at the same time. We wanted to ask how we can make the experience even simpler for somebody who had never played a Mario game before. That's been the focus with Super Mario Run: a game that's even easier to get into and play."

On embracing mobile

"For many years our mission in approaching hardware has been our goal of expanding the number of people playing games. Now, people are having these interactive experiences through their smart devices and so that's accomplished this great mission of helping to turn more people into gamers. We're using this opportunity to bring our characters to this audience and let them experience the fun of our games and hopefully bring them back to our platforms."

On wanting to incorporate GPS features/network connection aspects in DS games

"Even when we were working on the first DS system, we were thinking about opportunities to incorporate GPS or how to use a persistent network connection. We didn't do it then, but now with a mobile device we're looking into functionalities like the persistent network connection."

Sharing similar philosophies with Apple

"The iPhone and iOS are great to work on because it's stable. In terms of working with Apple, we found we shared a lot of philosophies and we found from early on it was easy to work with them. It's Apple's hardware of course, not ours, but that just means it's a framework in which you try to be as creative as possible - it's not a limitation, I look at it as a lot of fun."

Working with mobile, but staying true to traditional hardware

"We'll continue to look at the opportunities smartphones bring and when we see one we'll continue to design for that hardware in a way that takes advantage of the functionality there. But we'll keep designing for our own platforms as well."

LEGO Dimensions producer talks Supergirl going multiplatform, chances of Disney content

Coming from a Eurogamer interview with producer Mark Warburton...

On Supergirl eventually being available for other platforms

"I keep stressing it's a timed exclusive.... The exact specifics of that is something for [publisher] Warner Bros. I'm sure there will be more things to come..."

On Disney content coming to LEGO Dimensions

"We talk to them all the time - Lego Star Wars: The Force Awakens is out there, we just released new Lego Marvel DLC. With my Lego Dimensions hat on? We have two different streams on the go - Dimensions is one, then we have our Marvel game and Star Wars... We're happy with the trajectory of Lego Dimensions."

Warner Bros. soldiers on in toys-to-life sector after Disney departure

A portion of of a Gamesbeat interview with director Arthur Parsons...

GamesBeat: Do you feel like the sector is in need of a morale boost after Disney’s exit?

Parsons: As a developer I was more sad than anything else, yeah. A lot of people there lost their jobs. It’s an unfortunate part of the business. But for us, our plans weren’t affected. We had a three-year plan with Lego Dimensions. We’re just carrying on doing what we were going to do.

It’s always been about giving people that starter pack. They buy that and that’s all they need for their journey. Then they can pick and choose whatever toys they want. If they’re into Fantastic Beasts, they’ll buy that pack. Hopefully they’ll buy all of them. [laughs] But there’s no requirement. You buy whatever packs interest you.

You can see we’ve put a lot of effort into getting the minifigures as unique and authentic as possible. Gremlins might not be something eight-year-old kids know, but their parents will, and they can experience that with their kids through Lego Dimensions.

Gotta Protectors was localized by one person, dev talks staying true to NES limits

A portion of a Michibiku interview with localizer Brian Gray...

M: So was Gotta Protectors a solo effort, or were you part of a larger team?

BG: 8-4 had their usual — awesome! — team looking over everything and handling the bulk of communication with Ancient, but the translation was entirely me.

Gray also talked about how the game stays true to the NES limits and how that proposed an issue during localization.

BG: The game is designed to work within NES-era limits. That means the graphics are tiled. They’re on a grid. In the Japanese game, all the dialogue is spaced out as text, blank row, text, blank row. But we quickly realized we wouldn’t be able to fit the dialogue in the same space, so we asked Ancient if they could slide the rows around to make room for one more. But after talking it over, we decided keeping it true to the NES limits was better.

So we ended up putting the extra lines of English dialogue in between the existing rows of Japanese dialogue. (Where there were 2 rows in Japanese, we got 3. If they had 3 rows, we got 5.) Problem is, that meant there was no actual space between the letters. The tiles literally touch each other.

M: What was the solution?

BG: So I actually went back through the game and rewrote anything where a lowercase “g” or “y” was directly above a capital letter, for example. I’m not sure I caught them all, but that was a thing. (laughs) Honestly, it was a lot of fun. It’s been years since I’ve had to come up with that kind of puzzly solution in localization work.

Crash included in Skylanders Imaginators to introduce him to a new generation of fans

The following comes from a GameReactor interview with Toys for Bob's Paul Reiche and Vicarious Visions' Jennifer O'Neal...

"As you know it's the twentieth anniversary of Crash Bandicoot so what better time to reintroduce them to a new generation of fans [...] I can play as Crash or Neo and my kids can create their own character and play alongside me and that's what Skylanders is about, bringing families together, playing co-operatively and it's really fun. Crash and Neo have their own level, it's called the Thumpin' Wumpa Island. There's a lot of fun gameplay that's really nostalgic for the player that's played the original Crash Bandicoot games, there's Wumpa fruit you collect, there's crates you smash and bounce on and there's even a really cool area in the level that's like the old boulder chase levels."

Splatoon dev on the supporting the competitive scene, Callie vs. Marie

A portion of a Nintendo interview with Splatoon producer Hisashi Nogami ...

Q: What’s your opinion on the Splatoon competitive scene?

A: Splatoon appeals to people of all ages, including families with young kids. We’re very happy about that. On the other hand, we also believe that the game has enough depth to be played competitively. We’re looking forward to watching the competitive scene grow in the future, with this tournament [at Gamescom] as a starting point.

Q: Callie or Marie?

A: As a developer, the game’s characters are like children to me, so this is a very difficult question. It’s like asking which of my daughters I love more. However, I have to admit that I chose Team Callie during the last Splatfest. Unfortunately, that team lost.

Phoenix almost worked with the mafia in Ace Attorney: Spirit of Justice

A portion of a Siliconera interview with Capcom's Takeshi Yamazaki...

S: When creating the theme for Spirit of Justice, Yamazaki held a brainstorming session where the team felt that the weak defeating the strong was what made a good turnabout. What other ideas were discussed? Were there any case ideas that didn’t work?

Takeshi Yamazaki, Game and Scenario Director: There was one real sticking point while I was writing the design document for Spirit of Justice, and that was how were we going to put Phoenix in a corner, given that he’d become this legendary lawyer in the course of this series.

One idea was to have Phoenix stand as a lawyer in an underground court that served the likes of the mafia and other underworld inhabitants. That underground court would hold trials and render judgment on those who’d broken the rules of the underworld, meaning that even Phoenix would have a tough time believing in his own clients. Furthermore, everyone involved in the trials would be members of the underworld, including witnesses and prosecutors, so naturally, there would be false testimonies, forged evidence, bribes, blackmail, and other dirty dealings going on. Under those circumstances, we figured even Phoenix would feel incredibly like a fish out of water.

Shin'en on potential for more FAST Racing NEO DLC, not planning an NX port

A portion of a Nintendoomed interview with Shin'en...

Q: Can you tell us if you are thinking about developing other FAST Racing NEO DLCs in the near (or not) future?

A: We never did any DLC before so we first want to see how many people are interested in such additions before we make any further plans.

Q: What’s next for FAST Racing NEO since the only console it is playable on right now is supposedly going to be discontinued pretty soon? Could you decide to develop ports of this game for other platforms, like Nintendo’s very own NX (considering how much you feel close to this brand)? Or do you think that the game is better off left on the Wii U?

A: For the Wii U we think FAST + DLC is just perfect and certainly one of the best games you could get there. If we would do another FAST game on a new platform we would not simply do a port. We would try to look at the platform to see what could be done beyond the current game.

Mastiff talks Gurumin 3D localization, 3DS challenges

A portion of a MonsterVine interview with President and CEO of Mastiff Games, Bill Swartz, and David Bruno...

MV: Can you tell me the general process of localizing at Mastiff? What are some of the major difficulties that may arise when localizing a game?

Bill: That’s a hard one, because every project is really different. There are two BIG barrels, like how to deal with mass quantities. There are games with, effectively, 500,000 words, basically huge text novels. We don’t really do them, as there’s so much in them that we didn’t think we could do the translation at a cost-effective basis. The other issue is how do you go about quality?

There are lots of people who are okay with translated games sounding a bit funny, as part of the charm. I personally hate that view, as I love language, and want players to have an experience that’s as parallel to the original game as possible. The translated game experience should feel the same as the native game experience, unless there’s a character who intentionally speaks like that.

Translating a game into Spanish or French is like refining a suit, where you just fix up the suit a bit. From English to Japanese or vice versa, you’re kind of reweaving the fabric. There’s a practice that drives me bonkers, and it’s that you do a quick and cheap first translation, then have someone else rewrite it. The problem with that process is in that first translation, all of the meaning behind the original script is washed out. It’s like boiling a fruit, and trying to chemically re-flavor it. The fact is, all of the flavor is gone.

MV: What was the localization process for Gurumin specifically like? Was it standard fare, or was it a huge challenge?

Bill: It was fine, there were no curve-balls or anything. One of the big things is the quality of the original game. It’s tempting to look at Japanese games as some type of holy text, because it seems mysterious because you can’t read it. And sometimes it really is beautiful, but if you start with a crummy source, what do you do with that? So we try to pick games that are well-crafted.

MV: Outside of what you mentioned, were there more limitations with the 3DS that you had to work around with Gurumin?

Bill: The devil’s in the details. Everything falls into two buckets: controls and optimization. We tweaked it a bit and added a camera control and a better help system, but a game is a game. We spent a long time figuring out what to do with the lower screen, but it was really all about optimization. We could have just put it all in as-is so it ran at 20fps and was just “okay”, but I’m really proud of what we did. You have to make sure anything that’s graphically unnecessary has to be trimmed a bit, so polygons that aren’t seen on camera don’t need to be there unless they’re seen. We were really focused on putting this fantastic game out there, and we did it, and again, I’m proud of how solid it is.