Takuya Matsumoto has worked on some high quality SEGA titles in the past, such as NiGHTS and Sonic Adventure on Dreamcast, and was the development lead on The Last Story, the excellent Wii RPG that finally arrives in North America on 10th July.
In an interview with Gamasutra, Matsumoto discussed the development processes and design choices that were put into the adventure. He also shared insight into the work of the famous Mario Club, Nintendo's testing team, and how it demanded high standards from the developers.
There were a whole lot of requests from Mario Club. All the requests that we got were spot on. They really know what they’re talking about, because they have a lot of skill and knowledge.
In a way, what we created was fine, but it was still rough around the edges. But I think by going through Nintendo, it really took out the unnecessary parts and refined it as a game.
Refinement is one of the most important aspects. The Nintendo influence was big, in a good way; at the same time it gave me confidence that if I really pushed my boundaries harder, then I can get to this level on my own.
It's not uncommon to hear third-parties that have collaborated with Nintendo discuss the exacting standards that are placed upon them. Takuya Matsumoto, for one, clearly thinks that it helped to deliver a stronger game, so are any of you North American gamers planning to track this down for another Wii RPG hurrah?