Engadget has been speaking to Metroid Prime: Federation Force producer Kensuke Tanabe about the game, its origins and how it plays. While the title has gained a lot of hate from various parties online, it's actually shaping up to be a very interesting team-based shooter - and it would appear that its inception can be tied in directly with a recent Nintendo hardware launch.

Tanabe explains that the idea to create Federation Force happened when he saw the New Nintendo 3DS system:

The last game in the Prime series was in 2007. It's been a while. When I heard about the New 3DS, with the C-stick, it would be ideal for a shooter. I thought: "It'd be great to have a Prime title to launch alongside the new hardware."

The idea to develop a new Metroid Prime title came along with the New 3DS, with controls suited to the title. Ideally, the plan was for the game to arrive alongside the hardware but, well, it's a little late!

It would seem that while Federation Force uses the C-Stick, it's not exclusive to the New Nintendo 3DS console - Nintendo hasn't said so in any of the press materials relating to the game so far. Presumably the Circle Pad Pro will be supported, or there will be alternative control methods - such as using the touchscreen for aiming, for example.

Metroid Prime 2's multiplayer was another inspiration, and Tanabe answers that most burning of questions: why isn't famed bounty hunter Samus in the game?

In Metroid Prime 2, we included multiplayer, but here we wanted to focus on the co-op aspect. But then, if we have four "Samuses", that would be odd. And that's where the Galactic Federation came in. Controlling the game, and in terms of how it feels, it feels like a Metroid Prime game.

He also goes into a little more detail about how the game works, and talks about the weapon load-out system:

However this time there's a "load-out" system: players start with a basic mech [the controllable robot suit in Federation Force] But before a mission starts, you can choose what weapons to load into it. There are certain powerful weapons you can bring, like a "super missile" which comes with a heavy weight penalty. We tried to create a balance with these load-outs that would decide your role in a squad, similar to a role-playing game, with wizards, warriors and healers. [As you play, you can collect] mods for these mechs. Even if you fail in a mission, you'll receive some of these upgrades.

Finally, the producer reveals that at one point, a Wii U version was on the cards, but limited development resources meant that idea had to be shelved:

If I'm honest, we did look into a Wii U version. However, we had to consider the resources it would take, what teams to devote for a Wii U game.

Are you still angry about Federation Force, or have Tanabe's words soothed you a little? Let us know by posting a comment.

[via engadget.com]