News Article

Nintendo Wants More Developers Like Retro Studios, Please

Posted by James Newton

Who doesn't?

We reported recently that Retro Studios thinks like Nintendo, so it shouldn't be any surprise that Nintendo is keen to find more developers on the same wavelength.

Speaking to Edge magazine, Nintendo's US liaison Kensuke Tanabe stressed the importance of fostering stronger relationships with Western developers, in addition to Nintendo's world-renowned Japanese teams:

I work with other development partners, such as Next Level Games Punch-Out!! in Vancouver and Monster Studios [Pilotwings Resort in Minneapolis. And they, much like Retro, really get our development philosophies. I want to find as many people as we can, as many great companies as we can to get involved with. I’m really looking for developers with a sense of craftsmanship.

Retro Studios' output is an exceptionally high watermark — Donkey Kong Country Returns scored 10/10, as did the superb Metroid Prime Trilogy — but it's this commitment to high quality that Nintendo is renowned for.

Don't be too surprised if Nintendo announces more partnerships at this year's E3 in June.


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User Comments (49)



zezhyrule said:

Retro isn't enough for you? Ooh then how about that one company... Rare is it? oh wait nm...



WhiteTrashGuy said:

Pull Silicon Knights back into the fold! Where the hell is Eternal Darkness 2 (on 3DS PLEASE - Camera Enabled Insanity Effects anyone)? Just because MGS: TWIN SNAKES did not sell enough units is no excuse. Silicon Knights has done their best work (sans Blood Omen) with Nintendo.



gingerbeardman said:

Monster Games can do no wrong in my eyes. Excite Truck, Excite Bots, Piltowings Resort. What next? Wave Race 3DS?



Shiryu said:

Go to n-Space! Talented guys there! Also Id like to buy more games from Monster Games on the Wii. I can't beleive I had to buy Excitebots from Play Asia, why was this never released in Europe? It's brilliant! With no F-Zero, both Excite Truck and Excitebot saw huge amounts of play time on my Wii.



TheBaconator said:

I miss Next Level Games. Now they are making games like that awful Ghost Recon on the Wii, and the new Captain America game on the HD consoles. I wonder what happened...



pixelman said:

Retro is amazing. I can't believe how well they executed two entirely different genres of games. I'm hoping they do a 2D Metroid next, but I'm sure whatever they do end up doing will be awesome. :3



Kid_A said:

Retro can take the wheel of any Nintendo franchise as far as I care. Zelda, F-Zero, Star Fox. I trust them with it all. And after seeing Monster Games' great work on the Excite and PilotWings series, and Next Level Games' amazing Punch-Out!!, I'm feeling pretty good about Nintendo's partnerships right now.



Terra said:

The more the merrier, right?

I want to see Retro do Star Fox next, that would be just so amazing.



Lotice-Paladin said:

Unfortunately, not many western Developers think Japanese ideas....but if we did, it wouldn't be as exciting.

Although I like the idea of Nintendo actually buying an External Studio like everybody else does, their ideas and the majority of western developers ideas are totally different...

Maybe Nintendo should buy Valve as they think a like (although I am not a fan of Valve).



Link79 said:

If more game developers would think like Nintendo the world would be a better place. If there's one company that really knows videogames it's them. Many of us wouldn't have found such joy in this hobby if not for them.



aaronsullivan said:

Cool to see some Excite Truck and Excite Bots love on here. Love those games. I wonder what old Ninty could do to give them a larger appeal.

As for these companies and Nintendo, I'd say modern game studios are under a ton of stress with acquisitions and withdraw of support going on all the time. Game studios are constantly ramping up hires for a single AAA title and going all in on hopes of success. It's hard to value craftsmanship in that kind of atmosphere. It's very cool that Nintendo is choosy about who it supports, I hope they keep spreading their cash around to invest in these companies.

I REALLY hope Retro gets to develop for some higher end hardware soon, though! Nintendo needs to do it's part.

Hmm, how about Wave Bots?



JebbyDeringer said:

Oh now Nintendo wants more development studios...I think another option would be to headhunt developers for a new studio. There are some good small studios but there are also a lot of good developers with good ideas starting out working at bigger studios Companies like EA are pretty corporate and while not a lot of creative new ideas can come out there many young developers start there.



Tails said:

Retro Studios is has and will always be one of the greatest developers for Nintendo. No matter what I believe that Retro is the new Rare. (Unless Rare finally comes to their senses and goes back to Nintendo which they should.)



Burny said:

Not going to happen.

Valve is gigantic. Aside from having some of the biggest Shooter franchises, they own the #1 digital distribution service for PC games. Gabe Newell said in an interview, that they generate more profit per employee than google. Plus, their style of game isn't complemented too well by Nintendo's philosophy of working with weaker hardware.

It would be totally awesome to see Valve games on a Nintendo platform though. Maybe in the next home console generation...



Incognito_D said:

Nintendo should buy back Rare! They're doing nothing of value at Microsoft. The time is right!



TKOWL said:

Nintendo doesn't need Rare anymore. Retro even did one of Rare's signature franchises (Donkey Kong Country) one better.



NintyMan said:

I hope Retro makes a new game soon, maybe even a Donkey Kong Country Returns sequel. But yes, Nintendo would hugely benefit from like-minded developers.



SullKid said:

Level-5. It's taking big steps to be the biggest favourite of mine. Simply great. AND making games to DS and PS3. What a shame



Punny said:

I would love to see more developers like Retro helping out Nintendo. Maybe one that will benefit making an F-Zero game. Hint, hint...



Slapshot said:

Monster Games and Retro Studios have been a huge successes for Nintendo

I hope to see Monster Games take on WaveRace and 1080, and Retro Studios to give us a proper sequel to Donkey Kong 64, and 3DS would be the perfect place for all of them!



Odnetnin said:

Retro can be trusted to make a new entry in any of Nintendo's series. They can make the next Mario for all I care!



Waxedfloss76 said:

the original donkey Kong country on snes was more fun. I've owned a wii for a long time now but i'm sad to say Nintendo NEEDS a bluray wii hd. the graphics on wii are not all that engaging anymore. They are detailed sometimes but too many 2d games....needs more originality. 1080p please...bluray n wii remote. then Nintendo will have more 3rd party developers. Hopefully stream will bring a new dimension to video games again in HD etc. etc.

like the wii u: thank u nintendo



SilverBaretta said:

What irken said, if not only because it would be both improbable and semi-impossible, but so awesome the universe would explode and Chuck Norris would die.



ChildishHero said:

Seeing a new developer like Retro would just be spendid. If they do find a brand spanking new developer that is at Retro levels of awesomeness, it would be a good choice for them to be the new F-Zero developers! Huh,



pixelman said:

^ Nah, I think Monster Games should be given F-Zero. Excitebots proved they can do breakneck-speed racers with online multiplayer. :3



Henmii said:

"Nintendo Wants More Developers Like Retro Studios, Please"

Hint: Then you should not have ditched Rareware, Nintendo!

But on the other hand: Retro is basically Rareware's replacement and they probably work more efficient (and maybe they are cheaper too). Rareware is almost dead now, sadly.



Snipes said:

@18 The same people don't even work at Rare any more. Them coming back to nintendo just solves copyright issues.



Scribbler said:

If the question is purely about design philosophy, then what about Curve? I mean, if they can make lightning strike twice like they did with Fluidity for WiiWare (brilliant Nintendo-like design IMHO), then they could be just as good for Nintendo's download services as Flagship was for the Game Boy Advance.



Vinsanity said:

Yeah well, wishful thinking ain't gonna cut it NOA. First off, you're going to have to make hardware that's competitive with contemporary consoles. Guys like Valve, id and Epic don't f*** with stuff "below them" apparently. Even though Epic had Unreal 2.5 running on Wii since Day 1 (Red Steel was powered by it), and id dabbled in DS and iphone development.

Secondly, you kinda have to support games on your console, as well as services like Wiiware and VC. Without an ad campaign, no one seems to care about the games Nintendo's bringing out. It doesn't matter if they're awesome or sucky, no one knows about them. They only know about the games that have ads (Carnival Games says hello).

Change the way you think nintendo, and more talented western guys will come aboard. Also, support the guys you DO partner with more. N-Space (Geist) and Next Level (Punch Out, Mario Strikers) have made their best games when working with Nintendo. But did Geist get any commercial time? Hell no. And it was awesome. The way NOA runs thing, I'm not surprised most western teams have an attitude of "fu** Nintendo". Compared to how Sony treats their teams, Nintendo's like some sort of...alien...creature that's only pretending to understand how things work on Earth. Or something.



JimLad said:

Hell yes.
I'm not really a fan of Retro's games, but I definitely recognise the quality.
Bigger projects for these studios please Nintendo. One of your many franchises that have been left for dead like Star Fox, F-Zero, Wave Race, Earthbound, 1080, Ice Climber...



Scribbler said:

@Darel Ah yes. Excitebike 64. I almost forgot about that one. They really let them slip through their fingers, didn't they?

I wouldn't trust SEGA itself with a Nintendo property, though. The team behind F-Zero GX/AX was Amusement Vision, a second party to SEGA. They were a top-notch development studio in their own right, but since then, they've been integrated into the main company, and the main company's track record isn't exactly stellar. Oh well. We'll always have that and Super Monkey Ball 2 to remember them by.



LittleIrves said:

Pilotwings Resort is freaking me out daily, in the best possible way. And Excite Truck is still the best non-Kart racing game on the Wii, 4 years later. Monster Games knows launch titles.
Whoever said 'Wave Race 3DS,' I want to hug you. Holy cow, imagine the depth of field with the undulating water, the splash up of water on the screen, the mega jumps with your racer hovering in the sky... Please. Please make it happen.



Raylax said:

"If you can make games this good, Nintendo wants to meet you"

And cancel all your projects, make most of your team quit, and then absorb what is left into a second-party group. Don't get me wrong, I absolutely love Retro Studio's games, but Nintendo don't exactly have the greatest track record when it comes to treating other companies with any kind of respect or dignity, even if (especially if?) they're working on Nintendo's IPs. I seem to recall the team behind the SuperFX chip being similarly screwed over for Nintendo's benefit back in the day.



Ultra128 said:

Even though I've only played one of their games (DKCR, though I haven't played Metroid Prime 3 which my brother has), I already love Retro Studios, because they took one of my favorite games I played back in the day and made it even more awesome (yes, that's physically possible). They're quite similar to Rare; they made a trilogy of awesomely epic games for a series that didn't see light for years, then they rereleased them again (Retro put all MP games onto one funtastic disk of epic amazingness with Metroid Prime Trilogy, Rare put the original DKC trilogy on GBA), and they both start with the letter "R". I hope Retro makes more great games, like a new Star Fox or even a new, butt-kicking IP that will actually be promoted and won't be a super-minor downloadable release, and be released worldwide! Retro rocks!



Incognito_D said:

@21 No, Nintendo don't need Rare anymore, you're right, but Rare need Nintendo. Imagine it. Nintendo wouldn't have them making dull Kinect sports games - they'd be allowed to work on Banjo Kazooie etc again!



Scribbler said:

@Raylax You mean Argonaut Games (ironically, another British studio)? Yeah, they got treated like dirt, IMO. StarFox 2 was finished and could've been released to critical acclaim a full year and a half before the N64 was launched. I guess that's how Nintendo treats the studios that practically saved their neck during the console wars.

It also reminds me of Gunpei Yokoi and the Virtual Boy. He tried to tell everyone that it wasn't ready for the world market, but Nintendo ignored him and pushed it out anyway. Then, when it flopped, they made HIM the scapegoat and demoted him to a pencil pusher.

I respect Nintendo as a group of talented artists and designers, but it's difficult to respect them as a company in the midst of things like that.



Pj1 said:

Would Nintendo trust a developer to do a Mario title? a remake of Donkey Kong 64 should be on......

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