Coming from an EDGE interview with executive producer Steve Lycett and Design director Gareth Wilson...
“We could definitely do another one. For this one we’d just got into our stride in the last couple of months of production. We really knew exactly what the game was; we’d got all the tracks and all the tools.” – Wilson
“If we ever do another one, we should have a fighting game where the characters are inside mechs of themselves, so you’ve got Sonic pulling Eggman’s arm off and beating him to death with it.” – Lycett
“Yeah, that way you could do damage without damaging the character. Genius.” – Wilson
A portion of a Nintendo Life interview with Joe Zieja, voice actor for Fox McCloud...
NL: When did the opportunity first come up to play the role of Fox McCloud in The Battle Begins?
JZ: It's actually not that dramatic. I auditioned for a code-named project and had absolutely no idea what it was. I didn't even know it was anything big. The specs just described what they were looking for and asked that only talent in the LA area audition, so I did. I didn't hear about it for weeks (and I do so many auditions a day that my mental health demands I fire-and-forget). Then one Saturday I get an NDA from Nintendo, and I think "oh, cool. I probably got Shopkeeper #5 in something or other." Then the next email came with Fox's picture on it and I lost my mind.
A portion of an alistdaily interview with Reggie Fils-Aime, which was conducted at E3 2016...
A: How are you seeing things evolving in the console space with Sony and Microsoft launching new consoles this year and Nintendo NX coming out in 2017?
RFA: Nintendo has a quite appropriate reputation of doing its own thing, so whatever Microsoft and Sony decide to do, that’s for them to manage. From a Nintendo perspective, we are focused first on making sure that the consumer understands [The Legend of Zelda] Breath of the Wild and some of the other games that we’ve highlight here at the show, Pokémon Sun and Moon, Pokémon GO, Ever Oasis and Mario Party Star Rush. There was a lot of content that we wanted to showcase at E3. We’ve done that. Now, we’re going to start moving forward communicating more and more about NX as appropriate. For us, it’s all about the right communication at the right time. We believe we’ve got some games that are going to continue to drive our momentum this holiday, and we believe we’ve got a strong concept for NX that we’ll unveil in the future.
A: Many thought Nintendo was in dire straits after GameCube failed to find an audience, and then Wii exploded. Are there lessons learned from Wii U that are being applied to NX?
RFA: Every time we launch a new platform, every time we launch a critical new game, we always learn. We always do our breakdown of what worked, what didn’t, and certainly we’ve done that with Wii U, and we continue to believe that the innovation of the second screen was a worthwhile concept. The games that we’ve launched on the Wii U are hugely compelling: Splatoon, Super Mario Maker, Smash Bros., Bayonetta 2, the Super Mario game, The Legend of Zelda. Arguably, if you line up all of the single platform games for Wii U and the other two platforms, we have by far the most unique games that are highly rated by consumers and highly rated by the media. So those things worked.
One of the things that we have to do better when we launch the NX—we have to do a better job communicating the positioning for the product. We have to do a better job helping people to understand its uniqueness and what that means for the game playing experience. And we have to do a better job from a software planning standpoint to have that continuous beat of great new games that are motivating more and more people to pick up the hardware and more and more people to pick up the software. Those are the critical lessons. And as I verbalize them, they’re really traditional lessons within the industry. You have to make sure people understand the concept, you have to make sure you’ve got a great library of games, and when you do that, you tend to do well.
A: We’re starting to see a difference in the way theme park people create attractions because they know now everyone comes in with smartphones. What does that open up for Nintendo, now that you have mobile games and apps?
RFA: You hit the nail on the head. These theme park designers are considering that so many of their patrons have a smart device. They’re thinking about what that means to the overall experience. I’m not going to share anything in this interview, but certainly the Universal team is aware of it. Certainly it is something that they are considering as they work with us to create this theme park experience.
Satoshi Ishida from HAL Laboratory has once again conducted an interview with Kirby: Planet Robobot director Shinya Kumazaki to answer some Miiverse questions. This is part 2 of the interview, and it seems a third part will be opened up in the near future. Today's segment focuses in on storyline aspects of the game.
A portion of a Nintendon interview with dev Peter W. Meldahl...
N: What about the gameplay and the characters? How will we be able to use them?
PM: Every character has different abilities, and dedicated levels. At a certain point they will all meet, and from that point on it will be possible to choose which character to use, and it will be possible for the player to clear every level with every character, using their different abilities. Playing as a character you will meet the others as NPCs, and their plot will continue.
Coming from an NWR interview with Dan Adelman...
NWR: Thomas was asked this at E3 by my colleagues about the potential for a Nintendo 3DS release. Do you think it's possible at all?
DA: We would love to, but we're looking into the technicabl feasibility. Even though the graphics/artstyle is very retro-looking, there's actually a lot that's technically going on under the hood. It's always funny when people look at it and say "Oh, you could run that on the NES", and I laugh because there's no way you could run that on a NES. It really pushes the Wii U hardware. We're investigating what it would take to bring it to the 3DS. We probably wouldn't be able to, if we were able to do it at all, there would have to be some compromises made. We don't know what those compromises would be, and if it's not going to be a great experience we don't want to do it. We're looking into it now, if I had a magic wand and could make it play perfectly on the 3DS, absolutely we'd love to do it.
A portion of an NWR interview with Dan Adelman...
NWR: It has been quite a journey to bring the game to the Wii U - what were some of the roadblocks and how did you overcome them?
DA: So the biggest challenge was that when Tom started working on this game, and at this point it was six, nearly seven years ago, he started working in something called XNA which is actually a Xbox technology. It was a development framework, and Microsoft abandoned that. In its place, someone created something called Monogame, which is essentially an open-source version of XNA. Originally it was very easy to release it on say, the PC, and it's also available on the PS4 because PS4 got support for the Monogame framework on their console. But for the Wii U, since Monogame wasn't natively supported, we basically had to take the game and port the entire game engine to C++. We worked with a company called BlitWorks who specializes in those porting services and they were able to get the game up and running on the Wii U very effectively.
NWR: What makes the Wii U version special, and why should it be picked up on that platform specifically?
DA: In my opinion, it's the best version, and there's a couple of things that stand out about it. First of all, it's the only console version that has a leaderboard functionality for speedrunners. There's a dedicated speedrun mode in all of the versions of the game, but if you get a good time you basically have to record it yourself somewhere. On Wii U, you can compare yourself to the global leaderboard which is very nice for Nintendo fans. The other primary benefit of the Wii U version is that you can always see the map on the GamePad. The whole theme of the game is exploration, so this game compared to a lot of other modern Metroidvania games does not lead you by the hand and tell you where to go next. There's no arrows that point like "Next, go here!", you constantly have to be checking the map to see what have I explored, what have I not explored yet, and so having that always on the GamePad makes it very easy to keep playing without disrupting the action. And of course, the last one is that you have the ability to play off the TV, so if somebody else is using the TV and you still want to play, you can play in off TV mode.
A portion of a Nnooo interview with developer Librage...
Nnooo: What was Nintendo’s reaction to the game’s title and imagery and the fact that it is a homage to The Legend of Zelda?
Librage: This is just our subjective impression, but they seem to be very favorable about this game. We visited Nintendo headquarters for a meeting and explained our project. They said this game was easy to understand because the title and content are consistent, and praised us.
A portion of a NWR interview with Shin'en's Martin Sauter...
NWR: Why did you decide to release DLC? Was it the natural thing to do as a company?
MS: I said from the start we would love to support FAST Racing NEO in the future. We were discussing it in the office, and it was totally clear that when the game came out and the reception was good that we'd keep working on that. We started fixing issues, adding minimaps, adding stuff we found, it was pretty clear we wanted to go with DLC, make something because the demand was so heated. We were asked if there were new tracks coming, Nintendo approached us and asked "Is there interest in a physical release".
NWR: The game plus downloadable content is coming as a retail package to Europe published by Nintendo of Europe. How did this collaboration come about?
MS: I'm not from the business side directly, but as far as I know, Nintendo approached us and we have a great relationship with them. We always talk, and this was something that came from Nintendo, they asked us if this is something we could believe in. We said that's perfect - we're old school gamers and we know the digital market is a new market, but we come from the old school and we think having a game on your shelf is something special. When I went to the conventions last year, in talking to people I really often heard "Is there a physical release?" so I think there's demand. Nintendo knows that, and I hope this will be a success, because it maybe motivation for Nintendo to keep going on that track.