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Sakamoto would love to make another 2D Metroid as long as fan support is there

Coming from a Game Informer interview with series producer Yoshio Sakamoto...

“Through the development of Metroid: Samus Returns, I was able to really grasp the possibility and fun of a 2D Metroid. Like when I finished the first game, if there is another opportunity to make another Metroid, that is something that I would love to do. Of course, that really depends on how much people really want to buy a 2D Metroid.”

Obviously you can show your support for a 2D Metroid buy buying Metroid: Samus Returns. I'm guessing plenty of you are looking to do that!

Zelda: Symphony of the Goddesses producer on bringing the show to Southeast Asia/Singapore for the first time

A portion of a NintendoSoup interview with producer Jason Michael Paul...

NintendoSoup: I believe this is the first time the Legend of Zelda: Symphony of the Goddesses will be performing in Southeast Asia and Singapore, what influenced the decision?

Jason Michael Paul: This is indeed the first time performing The Legend of Zelda: Symphony of the Goddesses in Singapore and Southeast Asia. I have performed other VGM concerts with PLAY! A Video Game Symphony and I was very encouraged by the fan response so I assume that there is a strong Video Game community there. I am also keen on taking Zelda Symphony to everywhere in the world!

Full interview here

Quest of Dungeons dev discusses the Wii U, 3DS and Switch porting process

A portion of a NindieSpotlight interview with David Amador of Upfall Studios...

NS: Having ported Quest of Dungeons to so many platforms did you do a good job of writing your initial code to make moving it around as easy as possible or was that not necessarily a part of the original plan and you've gone to some trouble to get it working everywhere?

DA: I have a clear distinction between the engine code and the actual game code, as far as the engine code goes, I made it flexible enough to support adding the other platforms, and never got into much trouble. I would say the Nintendo 3DS version was the most problematic one but mostly due to the hardware specs. The other ones were relatively smooth.

As for the game code, well that was a bit more "nightmarish", as I mentioned before I initially thought the game as touch only, that meant all UI had to be remade, but I still needed to support game controller and touch because of existing platforms. I realized that what made the mouse/touch work wasn't exactly ideal for controller and vice versa. I spent nearly a year rewriting a lot of stuff and adding a bunch more content to the console release, and now it's much better but it's still something I feel like I planned poorly. But after that it's not relatively simpler to make a port. I got the Switch version running in less than 2 weeks (not optimized or 100%), I just spent the rest of the time optimizing, tweaking and adding more content.

NS: Having released the game previously on other Nintendo platforms would you say you've seen anything different in Nintendo's approach with the Switch overall with you as an indie developer? What are your thoughts on the tools and mechanisms for developing on the Switch in general in comparison to the DS and Wii U platforms?

DA: Yes, I think having worked with Nintendo helped as I could skip the introductions step and I already knew the process. I'm very impressed with the tools they are making available for devs, from early stages they are already better then Wii U and 3DS, I can't get into details but let me tell you there is a big difference, and I'm not just saying this to sound good.

Musuda explains why Pokemon Grey never happened after Pokemon Black/White

Many people thought Pokemon Co. would release a Pokemon Grey title as a follow-up to Pokemon Black/White, but that never came to be. Now we've find out why that is, thanks to Game Informer's chat with Junichi Masuda...

Somewhat related – they did talk about why Pokémon Grey wasn't a thing after Black and White. Masuda said thematically, the game is about the opposition of good and evil, black and white, yin and yang, etc., and to have a Pokémon Grey would have been in opposition of that theme.

Game Freak how Pikachu's popularity being related to his prominence in the anime

Coming from a Game Informer interview with Junichi Masuda...

On why Pikachu is so popular

"Probably thanks to Pikachu being in the anime and being Ash’s partner. That was a decision, or rather a suggestion, from the company that made the anime. They originally came to us with the idea that they wanted to feature Pikachu, because Pikachu at the time was really popular amongst kids in school. It is a hard-to-find Pokémon, so kids knew about it.

They actually had [Pikachu's] voice actress, Ms. Ikue Ōtani, do a take on the voice and they showed us a clip of it and we listened to the sound of it saying its name over and over in a really cute way. We weren’t really sure about it, but it worked out."

EA VP was puzzled by Switch when he first saw it, but now says it's a "pretty special machine"

The following comes from Electronic Arts Worldwide Studios executive vice president Patrick Söderlund...

“It’s doing really well, which I love. But I’ll be honest, when they first showed it to me years ago, I didn’t get the concept, I was puzzled by it. But then I was like, it’s Nintendo. They probably understand something that I don’t [laughs]. They usually do. I have a four-year old son and it’s like it’s connected to him. He will use it as a portable machine, he will plug it into the TV, but more importantly, he uses it like, ‘Do you want to play with me?’ Then he takes off the Joy-Con and we play Mario Kart together. He’s using it as intended, which just tells me that it’s working right. I think it’s a pretty special machine because it’s not just more of the same. I looked at it and thought, why would you play on that instead of this? But now it’s crystal clear to me why. That’s the Switch.”

Fire Emblem Echoes dev team on revisiting abandoned ideas, creating the main theme, and more

The following comes from a Nintendo Dream interview with Producer Hitoshi Yamagami, Director Kenta Nakanishi, Director Toshiyuki Kusakihara and Producer Masahiro Higuchi...

On things abandoned for Awakening/Fates, but could implement into Echoes

Yamagami: Basically, if you repeatedly make games for the same hardware, methodologies and technology progress and you are able to do things that you weren’t able to before. So, things we had to abandon for Awakening were able to make it into Fates. So, as technology advanced during Fates‘ development, there were things we wanted to implement but couldn’t fit by the time we got near the last stages of making the game. As such, it came down to “There’s still something we want to make.”

Kusakihara: Things like dungeons. You could walk around “My Castle” in Fates in full 3D, for instance, but it was very rough and difficult to implement at the time. Things like that eventually led to being able to walk around the dungeons in this game.

Nakanishi: The truth is all the fields were made to be walked around in. When you enter a battle, the camera simply zooms in on where the character is.

Kusakihara: Other than that, we were able to make character proportions look slightly more natural this time around, thanks to the Motion Design crew. With the experience and “know-how” gained from Awakening and Fates, we attempted to make [the people] in both this game and the next one on Switch closer to realistic proportions and movements.

On why Alm is left-handed

Kusakihara: There are various reasons. One reason is that there were little variations in poses characters could have. That’s when we got a proposal from the motion team that we can make plenty of new poses and patterns if the character was simply left handed. Another reason was to make Alm better resemble a hero with the strength to overcome any enemy. Alexander the Great was said to be left handed, so we wanted an image along those lines.

Nakanishi: Alm being left-handed also helped give better contrast to Celica’s brand, so it worked out nicely.

On the main theme

Composing the main theme

Q: So Janis Crunch sings the ending theme?

Nakanishi: The truth is, I only learned about this song when it was prepared to be inserted into the game (laughs). But when I heard it, it was a really nice piece. It was put it in because the staff heard me thinking “It’d be nice if we had another ballad like Fates did.”

Q: A part of it is also used for the title screen. Tell us what the main theme behind “Heritors of Arcadia” is.

Kusakihara: Mila’s death and rebirth. It is the theme of Echoes as a whole, the Age of Gods is coming to an end by man’s own hand, and they shall be the ones to inherit the world from the gods. The lyrics express that kind of sentiment.

Higuchi: It is meant to feel like Mila singing to the humans who shall inherit Valentia from her with references to stars like orbs across the sky.

This is a small snippet of the full interview, which has all sorts of interesting info. Check it out here (thanks Lightchao42!)

Sonic Mania devs on making sure the game was right, working with Sonic Team

The following comes from a Gamasutra interview with Simon Thomley at Headcannon and Tom Fry at PagodaWest Games...

TF: “I've pretty much been researching for this project for the last 26 years. The wealth of knowledge amongst our team is so vast that between us, we have the entire tapestry of Sonic on the back of our hands.”

ST: “For our Sonic remakes, it was important that anyone who has ever played the originals notice as few differences as possible based on gameplay input. The result of any action must match the original result of the same action.

We worked with Takashi Iizuka and Kazuyuki Hoshino of Sonic Team to keep things in line. But for a project of this scope, we were met with surprisingly few objections.”

Check out the full interview here

Ubisoft's Davide Soliani details the state of morale following the leak of Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle

Coming from an MCVUK interview with Ubisoft's Davide Soliani...

“The leak did not impact the reveal, as we were taking our time to make sure the game was good and satisfying. For sure, the leak affected the morale of the team. After three years of silence and the commitment of the whole team, seeing the leak all over the internet was quite discouraging, but we kept our focus and we worked hard.

Finally, at E3, with the first real reveal of the game, we had a very good reaction from the audience. It was a big reward for the team. When I returned from E3, I returned to a completely different mood. The team was so proud of the general reaction and their individual contributions. They could not wait to keep working. The positive energy that players can create is something that can really drive teams to do their best.”

Full interview here