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The Wonderful 101's Original Concept Included an "All-Star Cast of Nintendo Characters"

Posted by Thomas Whitehead

The Bayonetta series was on the "brink of disappearing"

Hideki Kamiya, the director of The Wonderful 101, has been in Cologne, Germany to meet fans and the press ahead of the game's release in the region. Naturally, he's also taken the opportunity to talk about PlatinumGames' other Wii U exclusive, Bayonetta 2, which is due to arrive in 2014.

Speaking to, Kamiya-san explained that The Wonderful 101's features, which make use of the GamePad in various ways, was put together with the Wii U hardware in mind once its exclusivity was confirmed, and admitted that sales are a concern for the new IP — "there's always that worry in the back of your mind whether users will be a bit too cautious and might not have the courage to play the game and pick up the game". The most fascinating comments about the title, however, related to its original concept when assigned to the team.

Originally I got an order from the president of Platinum games asking me to create a game idea that had an all-star cast of Nintendo characters plus characters from other games and that's how the project started. When you try and incorporate many characters with high popularity, there are fans who like certain characters more than others. I thought how I could satisfy everyone and make everyone happy and I came up with the idea of why not having everyone displayed in the game at the same time. That's where the idea was born.

When I submitted this idea, it was put on hold for a while and when we revisited it, we decided to change the idea to an all hero game and that's what you see with the final product.

On the subject of Bayonetta 2, Kamiya-san reflected on the danger, before Nintendo stepped in, that the franchise would have died away; he also admits that the reactions of fans upset at its Wii U exclusivity were an unfortunate clash with his own excitement.

Honestly, the consoles that users can own is limited. They can only have so many. Not everyone can own everything, so it's fair to say that users would be upset that they wouldn't be able to play [Bayonetta 2] on a console they already own. That I very much understand. But at the time our team and our wish was to revive and create Bayonetta 2 and when Nintendo offered to support this project, and leading up to the announcement of the game, and when it was made, we were all extremely glad. Because of this, the happiness, I was slightly disappointed at the gap between my feelings and the fans' feelings.

We suspect that the revelation of The Wonderful 101 being originally pitched as a game featuring various Nintendo mascots may excite some, but perhaps it's a game that's best served by its own cast, especially as a new IP. A lot of the wackiness on display in the title may have been dialed back with Nintendo characters, and the storyline and scenario suits the superhero setup that Kamiya-san clearly enjoys.

Let us know your thoughts on these comments, for both The Wonderful 101 and Bayonetta 2, below.


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User Comments (30)



Alshain01 said:

I'm certainly glad it ended up it's own independent game rather than multi-franchise game. Aside from Super Smash Bros, those types of games don't usually go very well.



element187 said:

the game might be more commercially successful with an all Nintendo cast, but I'm glad its a new IP.



cdude said:

Im actually glad that its one of the few bigtime games that doesnt feel like it needs a crutch-like mario reference, honestly. Platinum is far from my favorite developer, but theyre definitely one worth keeping an eye on and everytime a dev puts in a warp pipe mechanic, overalls or a slew of nintendo characters it just, to me, ruins the games credibility.



The-Chosen-one said:

and i think that the Wonderwull 101 character will be a playable character in Smashbros ''i think''



FiveDigitLP said:

I'm really looking forward to this game. I hope I can afford to buy it as soon as possible so as to support Platinum.
I'm really afraid this is going to turn into another ZombiU. It gets a good amount of critical acclaim, but no one ends up buying it because they're unsure about it. (And the idea that third-parties can't do well on Nintendo consoles persists.)



fzerroo said:

No need to be sorry or understanding about bayonetta 2 exclusivity. Too many games skipped Nintendo's console it's good that some will skip others.



ricklongo said:

W101 is definitely better of as a fresh IP with new characters. I love Nintendo franchises, but Chase McCain recently made me rediscover the joy of getting to know and love new faces in my games.



C-Olimar said:

He shouldn't be worried about consumers being too cautious to buy Wonderful 101, I think. It has the potential to be very appealing to the market.
He should be more concerned about Nintendo's efforts to market the title. They couldn't market the cure for the common cold.



rjejr said:

@C-Olimar - Nintendo has marketed this game like no other. It got it's own Nintendo Direct and - bless my heart - a demo on the Wii U. And a 4 page ad in GameInformer magazine. And a 30% discount eShop w/ a Pikmin 3 purchase. I blast Nintendo alot for all their Wii U miscues but they actually are getting this one right. Still don't know if a new IP will sell but at least they are trying.

This game w/ Nintendo properties might have made SSB look old dull and boring. Well more than it already does. It would have sold like mad though. It is very nice to be excited for a new IP. People can buy the barely advertised Winter Olympic game to hold them over until SSB.

As for his comment - "there's always that worry in the back of your mind whether users will be a bit too cautious and might not have the courage to play the game and pick up the game". - he's spot on, but I already commented on that at length about 2 hours ago.

I'm surprised he's so worried about PS3/Xbox360 owners not getting B2 but he never once mentioned Wii U owners not getting Bayonetta. So maybe there's still false hope for a port? (The PS3 version was a mess until the patch, but the extra oomph in Wii U should clear that up though.)



nisshoku said:

I'm glad it didn't end up using them. God knows Nintendo needs to create some new characters.



Shambo said:

The weird thing is that a Platinum Games game was either Wii exclusive, or only on ps3 and 360. This probably divided their fans. And Bayonetta switching 'camps' because it was Nintendo that helped turn this awesome game into what will definitely become an awesome series, could indeed have been an odd move from the standpoint of ps360 fans who don't know the game wouldn't even exist without Nintendo.
But worry not, I'm a fan of the first game, and I stick with just Nintendo this 'generation'. So I'm very excited as a fan!



flummerfelt said:

The idea of an all star Nintendo cast is exciting, but this new ip is really growing on me. I really should invest more time in the demo since I know I'll be getting this within a few months.



sinalefa said:

I like to see a new IP too, specially this one that pays homage to their viewtiful past.

And ironic how the "kiddie" company was the one to save an M rated franchise. Unfortunately, it seems that most PG projects tend to undersell, which is a shame.



Alshain01 said:

Being someone who never owned a Playstation or XBox, I for one can't seem to find interest in Bayonetta 2. It is unlikely I will be purchasing that one, unless maybe there is a Wii U port of the first one that sells relatively cheap on the eShop. If so then I will decide after trying that one.



FiveDigitLP said:

Sure that hurt ZombiU as well, but that was just an example. My point is that there are often games that are really good, but because they're not an established franchise, no one buys them. Unfortunately, it happens quite often.



Daggo said:

I like W101 as it is now, but because it's a brand new Nintendo IP most people are going to ignore it.

Sad part is, taking the route "Smashing 101", it would have sold better.



nisshoku said:

I think Ninty need to take the sales hit involved with making a totally new IP so that in the future they can make it one of their classics.



R_Champ said:

New IPs are really needed in this market saturated by rehashes, ports, and sequels. I love Mario...but I think we have enough with Smash Bros., Mario 3D Land, and Mario Kart.

And I understand Kamiya's disappointment with negative fan reaction to Bayonetta 2. So many people are acting like Kamiya is betraying them when, in fact, it's their precious favorite game companies (Sega, Sony, MS) who refused to pick it up are to blame. All Kamiya and Nintendo did was save it. Be happy, or go back to Neogaf and brood.



JaxonH said:

hahaha, "or go back to Neogaf and brood"

ZombiU is solid, and a fine example of a 3rd party Wii U game worth buying.

I have already pre ordered both Wonderful 101 and Bayonetta 2. Both games deserve success, and are definitely worth buying at full price.

I'm just one gamer and I know purchasing these games day 1 won't really make a smidgeon of a difference sales-wise, but I will do my part and support them. I'm not going to cheap out and wait for prices to drop or anything like that, because Platinum has earned my money- every last cent of MSRP, and that's exactly what they're going to get from my end. Besides, I love buying games day 1- it's just so much funner when everyone's talking about the game and hype is sky-high...



Technosphile said:

I'm imagining The Wonderful 101 as an army of Nintendo heroes, and it is awesome to think about.



Marshi said:

Ok im on e shop,i bought pikmin 3 digital so I can get 30% discount for w101 but its not showing.wth?!



Henmii said:

I am happy that the game has new characters, instead of Nintendo characters! Now it's a new IP! Something fresh for once!!



Araknie said:

New IP is better don't worry Kamiya, haters hate everything. Not only in Nintendo town.

There's actually people hating on Watch Dogs because it's a multiplatform, on Destiny because it's an exclusive and so on.
There will always be people that can understand but they don't want to.

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