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New Super Mario Bros. 2 was Once Called NSMB Gold

Posted by Mike Mason

Gold digger

The latest edition of Iwata Asks is out now, and it focuses on 3DS's next goldmine: New Super Mario Bros. 2. This time Nintendo global president Satoru Iwata is joined by director Yusuke Amano, art director Masaaki Ishikawa and, arriving fashionably late, EAD general manager Takashi Tezuka.

Apparently Mario's latest adventure is so fixated on gold that some members of the development team considered putting the word in the title. Ultimately, though, it ended up with that all-important numeral attached because Nintendo decided it held enough merit as an "orthodox" Super Mario game.

Amano: Because of the focus on coins, we considered including "Gold" in the title.

Iwata: New Super Mario Bros. Gold?

Amano: Yeah. But it has more stages than the Wii and Nintendo DS games, and a lot of new elements, so it holds plenty of fun as orthodox Super Mario.

The interview also reveals some interesting approaches that Nintendo took with the game. Level construction began before it became a full product, and staff from several other departments joined a Mario Cram School set up by series veterans Tezuka and Toshihiko Nakago. The plan was to spread knowledge of the 2D Mario basics throughout the company more readily.

As a result of this measure, plenty of new ideas came about; in fact, Amano and Ishikawa were the only two core members of the team that had any previous experience on 2D Mario titles. Staff more experienced in the art of side-scrolling plumbers are instead working on Wii U's New Super Mario Bros. U.

Amano: But Ishikawa-san and I were the only two core members of this project who had some sort of experience working on 2D Super Mario games.

Iwata: Developers with experience in 2D Super Mario are working on Super Mario for the Wii U right now. It was an unprecedented approach, even though Tezuka-san and Nakago-san were both working very closely to the development team, more than they ever had on a 2D Mario game, from the time they took the podium at Mario Cram School to the actual development phases of this project.

Amano: Yeah. A few people from the Software Planning & Development Department, in addition to their design staff, also joined.

Iwata: I believe quite a number of unique individuals with great dynamic range in term of capabilities came to participate from the Software Planning & Development Department.

Amano: Yes. Some knew a lot about games and some didn't, but the Mario Cram School we mentioned earlier came in incredibly useful. Participants got a firm grasp of the basic ingredients of what makes 2D Super Mario enjoyable and experienced actually making stages, so we were able to begin this project with a solid foundation.

There was also a desire to change some small elements to freshen up the formula. One example is that some levels now take place at night or dusk, replacing the eternal blue sky. Plus there are new enemies that appear familiar but act in unexpected ways, such as gigantic ghost Boohemoth. At first it acts shy and freezes like a regular Boo, then begins to creep forward whether you're looking its way or not. We suppose that one's not too unexpected any more.

Ishikawa: We thought it might be fun because people familiar with Super Mario games so far may be caught off guard and be like "Huh? Boo's sneaking after me!" You may be taken by surprise here and there in this game in a good way, and I hope that makes it feel fresh.

Iwata: I suppose many people may take a quick glance at New Super Mario Bros. 2 and think, "Oh, it's the usual Super Mario."

Ishikawa: Yeah.

Iwata: But I get the impression from when I actually played it that if you think it's the same and don't take it seriously you'll run into trouble.

Amano: That's right. The staff had a strong desire this time to think of tough things that people might even get angry about. And we've changed some things with regard to the setup to make a fresh impression.

Be sure to check out the full interview to read Iwata and company talk about downloadable content, new modes, co-operative play and how Shigeru Miyamoto nearly upended yet another tea table over the coin block power up.

[via iwataasks.nintendo.com]

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User Comments (39)

Gridatttack

#1

Gridatttack said:

NSMB gold...sounds like a name of a NSMB ROM hack (modified version)...
Actually, I'm glad they changed it.

GazPlant

#3

GazPlant said:

Interesting that they have split the dev team so decidedly. Wonder if NSMB2 will end up more creative with NSMBU being the classic style of level design...

GamerZack87

#4

GamerZack87 said:

I don't really get the '2' suffix at the end of the title; after all, isn't this technically the third New Super Mario Bros. series title? ;)

accc

#6

accc said:

I actually like that name a lot, plus it actually makes sense unlike calling the third NSMB game "NSMB 2"

NintyMan

#8

NintyMan said:

With all the gold featured in the game, they might as well have added it somehow, but how the title is called isn't a big deal anyway.

I like how they seem to be dedicated to do something different with this game despite the reused soundtrack and familar backgrounds. Playing some of the levels at night truly would be refreshing, and the twists to classic enemies like Boohemoth and the Dry enemies are going to be cool to see. It also sounds like this game will be pretty hard, which is reassuring since many people are concerned about getting so many lives in this game. A game can still be challenging even if you never get a game over.

"Mario Cram School" is interesting too. Training new developers how to make 2D Mario is a good idea in case the experienced 2D developers stop working one day. However, if the veteran 2D Mario developers are focusing on NSMBU right now, then that explains why I'm looking more forward to that game than NSMB2. But this game will still be fun, and it looks and sounds better with every new article and video shown.

On another note, I'm surprised one of them didn't say that they were thinking of a certain greedy man with a big, pink nose while developing the game. Maybe they're hiding something from us all?

Henmii

#9

Henmii said:

"But it has more stages than the Wii and Nintendo DS games"

That sounds good! Though they probably consider the Street-pass challenges as extra levels. I don't think that's fair. They are the same as the regular levels, right?

Anyway, while I am still not a big New super mario bros fan and still think this one looks more like a additional level-set instead of a truly new entry, I have to admit I did see some cool new things like the night-levels, gigantic boo, etc. That, plus the fact that we can play Racoon Mario again in a 2D Mario makes me just a little bit excited. But just a little bit!

Anyway, gonna buy it to see it for myself!

Capt_N

#11

Capt_N said:

I'll probably get this. The Nostalgia of Super Mario Bros. 3(my fav game of all time, & of course, my fav Mario game.); the raccoon tail, & some of the blocks wavy designs, very SMB3-ish. getting NSMU will obviously not happen, unless I get a WU(again, my abbreviation for Wii U), & i don't really know about that, yet.

iphys

#14

iphys said:

Gold would have been more descriptive and less bland sounding than 2.

sinalefa

#15

sinalefa said:

Damn, I keep going down the fence and back on it about this one. It sounds cool that each game has a team dedicated to it. So this one will have the least experienced team, but most likely the one with the wildest, freshest ideas. Funny to read about the night levels as something new, since that actually harkens back to SMB1

I will read the whole thing to see if I can pull the ladder from the fence once and for all.

grumblebuzzz

#18

grumblebuzzz said:

Yeah, I'd rather it had been called that than the name that stuck. NSMB2 just doesn't make sense since it's the third game in the franchise. I think they should have just dropped the "new" and the "2" and called it Super Mario Bros Gold.

MeloMan

#19

MeloMan said:

New Super Mario Bros. and New Super Mario Bros. Wii are spiritually the same game, obviously, but they are their own iterations. NSMBW was intended to be NSMB with a 4P spin and be for the console, so NSMBWU is it's direct sequel whereas NSMB2 is a direct sequel NSMB, which are both in the portable world.

shinpichu

#23

shinpichu said:

Gold would have made more sense than 2, since NSMB Wii was actually the second one.

Capt_N

#25

Capt_N said:

I just remembered something that I realized post-read, that I was gonna say, but I didn't, & you @sinalefa reminded me, (by) talking about the 2 teams. I notice that the team w/ (the) lower experience in 2D Mario has the game that utilizes nostalgia, such as the raccoon tail, while the team w/ (the) more experience handling 2D Mario, has the game that may be a part of the WU launch lineup, I don't remember if NSMBU is gonna be, or not. Now, I could be wrong, but that is an intelligent decision by Nintendo. In theory, it essentially means that the "new console"(WU, of course) coming out, has a game, a Mario game, of course(& we all know how well they sell!), coming out for it, by a team w/ a pretty established track record, in this particular/specific field of a 2d Mario platformer, almost guaranteeing the WU has a "hot title" that everyone will wanna own a console for. Again, I could be wrong, &/or reading into this too much. But, that's partially what I can get out of it. :) Edit: While the 3DS NSMB proverbially pays the park ride fare on it's nostalgia entirely(raccoon tail, Reznors/etc.).

bezerker99

#26

bezerker99 said:

Strange. I once imagined it was called New Super Mario Bros. 3. Boy, what was I thinkin?

Gridatttack

#28

Gridatttack said:

Its funny, because it IS the second game on the portable series, and the 3rd overall, so that's why it is NSMB2, because its the second on a portable system...

AcesHigh

#29

AcesHigh said:

I can't believe no one has said it yet... So I will,

"I love GOOOOOOOOOOOLD!!!!!!"

EvansLegends

#30

EvansLegends said:

Huh, we're getting Pokemon Black & White 2, and this was almost named New Super Mario Bros. Gold...

Hm... weird.

RedBlueSpot

#32

RedBlueSpot said:

THIS must be the NEW Super Mario Bros? And the other one is the OLD one?
Old Super Mario Bros.

SaSoBe

#33

SaSoBe said:

I believe this will be a good game! Maybe not the best ever in the Mario series, but still fun to play. I'm glad that there are more power-ups in this than the old DS game. Re-played that one just a week ago, and it was a bit boring with so few power-ups. You just use Fire Flowers all the time...

Can't wait to see it released!

rjejr

#36

rjejr said:

While I prefer the "Gold" in the title rather than the "2" I could see this causing confusion as people may have just thought it was an enhanced version of NSMB, the "Gold" edition. They could have called it "NSMB2: Golden Years" and had Bowie do the soundtrack, or at least the commercial jingle -

Golden years, gold whop whop whop
Golden years, gold whop whop whop
Golden years, gold whop whop whop

accc

#37

accc said:

@rjejr But if it was called "Gold" they could've gotten Spandau Ballet to perform the title song!

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