Switch dev talk - 50,000 yen for a kit, Capcom wants to make AAA games, much more - Nintendo Everything

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Switch dev talk – 50,000 yen for a kit, Capcom wants to make AAA games, much more

Posted on February 18, 2017 by (@NE_Brian) in News, Switch

Earlier today, the Game Creators Conference was held in Japan. At the event, Nintendo’s Masaru Mitsuyoshi held a joint session with Capcom’s Masaru Ijuin about Switch.

One big thing to get out of the way: Switch development kits. These are planned for a cost of roughly 50,000 yen. If you’re doing a direct conversion, that’d be about $450 / $500.

Originally, the Joy-Con controllers were still in the research phase and weren’t included in the explanation document. Ijuin from Capcom said that there was only a touch panel form factor and nothing like the Joy-Con. Because of that, he wasn’t sure in what way the device would be portable. Then after the Joy-Con appeared, he thought “I got it!”.

Hardware specs for Switch focus on high performance and low power. It means you can achieve nVidia GeForce’s high performance capability in TV mode, and you also can use the same device running with a battery in tabletop mode and portable mode.

There was also some talk about how Nintendo achieved high performance and low power in portable mode and how it differs from smart devices. Nintendo is adopting an original operating system. You can use plenty of hardware resources for gaming apps and it can secure enough memory space for these apps as well.

Nintendo is putting a high priority on wireless. Even if you go from TV mode to portable mode with Switch, it transmits without a disconnection.

Next, the talk shifted to developing games while hardware is also in development. Capcom had been working on Ultra Street Fighter II for the new system. They are using their original engine MT Framework for the time being. The engine has plenty of actual results already and it had previously run on Nintendo hardware, so it made sense to use the technology. Lots of staff at Capcom are used to the engine as well.

To implement Switch compatibility with the MT Framework, Capcom begin to develop an environment to quickly examine the hardware right away. They initially excluded support of hardware-specific features and also excluded sound and network support. After this, Capcom began to develop a PC emulation environment in parallel. Nintendo provided a GPU emulator which is capable of recreating the same shader of the actual console on PC. The Switch version of the GPU emulator is enhanced, so it was easier for Capcom to create a PC emulator. It’s very easy to do iterations on PC, so the advantage of preparing a PC emulator is quite big.

One month was used to understand tools, development environment, and the SDK. Since they had been busy working on other titles, they only could secure two programmers. But with only one month with two people, they could port basic engine features.

The reason why it only took a couple of months was because the staff were accustomed to porting. Previously, they developed a Wii U version MT Framework. Also helping the situation was how the hardware structure was easy to understand, and they could use experience of creating conversion process from HLSL to GLSL.

The port process was overwhelmingly faster than 3DS or Wii U. On 3DS, it took four months with four people. On Wii U, it took three months with five people. The hardware structure was very easy to understand and it also had similarities to Wii U, so that they could achieve it in a month with two people.

About main memory space, Capcom had told Nintendo that the initially planned space wasn’t enough. If you are comparing to what’s inside other current-gen systems, it definitely wouldn’t be enough. In the end, Capcom’s request was accepted and the memory capacity became as per to their expectation.

There was some talk about whether they should go capacitive or pressure sensitive with the touchscreen. The situation was considered based on the associated costs. Of course, it’s difficult to build hardware while making the right balance between feature and costs. As we know, ultimately Nintendo decided to implement a capacitive touch screen.

To examine the situation with the CPU clock and power consumption, it is necessary to have a high-load application which is close to the product level. During the early development stage, there are not many environments which fit that need. But since Capcom was able to get a grasp on Switch in just a month, Nintendo offered Capcom to work on the task.

In order to polish up the hardware, Nintendo and Capcom collaborated using each other’s specialties. It wasn’t a one direction collaboration, but rather a two way interactive collaboration. Nintendo and Capcom built up a trusting relationship while going through a trial and error process.

Another part of the session was about issues to examine for the future. Since Switch’s SOC power consumption takes a bigger toll on the GPU than the CPU, Capcom asked Nintendo about implementing a feature to adjust the GPU clock corresponding on scenes (note: this is a development term), but Nintendo said that even if you lower the clock, the overall processing time will be longer and it won’t necessarily give an advantage in the end.

Finally, Capcom is looking into having the RE Engine, made specifically for Resident Evil 7 (and likely to be used in future titles) to be compatible with Switch. The company also wants to develop AAA titles for the platform.

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  • ForeVision

    Capcom, MH for Switch, when?

    • F$^#$ MH i want something more then MH from capcom… MH is all they give us

      • Roto Prime

        But, but MoHun so good!! I would love some RE/0/4 HD!!

        • MH is a single player MMO ………. nah i’m good i do not want to touch that..

          • amak11

            No, that’s Monster Hunter Online dumbass

          • they are all the same….

          • Roto Prime

            You need to touch it and play with me <3

          • that sounds really gay..

          • Roto Prime

            giggity <3

      • metalpants

        Not that I disagree, but many of us MH players got hooked on MH Tri on Wii simply because it was a console MH. Most of us will probably shut up about MH once we see it on a proper console instead of the usual portable, PS2-esque MH yearly iterations.

        Ever since Tri, I only got MH4U on 3DS (while skipping all the other ones), and never got to finish it because I dunno… it didn’t quite feel the same.

        • ForeVision

          Plus Switch has the handheld crowd have their handheld, and the home-console crowd their home-console. Everybody gets what they want, so why not?

          • metalpants

            Exactly. MH is one of the most played portable games in Japan… so making it for Switch just makes too much sense (if such a thing can be said, lol). Home console gamers get their HD graphics treatment, and gamers on the go get a version that’s like 100 better looking than previous MH entries (if Capcom decides to give MH the HD treatment that is…). Nobody loses here… unless they don’t own Switch.

          • ForeVision

            The only barricade I can see, is that 3DS is still supported, and that’s where all the MH’s go right now. Will that change with Switch, as in, will the series “Switch” to a different platform? I’m guessing that will have to do with sales figures, so if it does happen, we’ll probably have to wait until they have such figures, and they’re to Capcom’s liking.

          • KnickKnackMyWack

            I can see Capcom doing another 3DS MH before they do a Switch one. Cheaper development costs and all that good stuff.

          • ForeVision

            A realistic expectation, but I’d like a Switch one nonetheless. I don’t have one of those extra sticks on my 3DS XL, and I’d really like a bigger screen once again.

  • Exy

    $500 sounds astoundingly cheap for an SDK. Where can I buy one?

    • Roto Prime

      I thought it was 3K+ this s good!

  • Jaxon Holden

    That’s what’s up.

    So they were just unsure cause they thought it didn’t have controllers lol. Ok that’s cool. Glad to see them come around! Love Capcom. Them, Square Enix and Nintendo are the OGs of video games. Time for a joint effort and give it their all for the Switch.

    • Eddie

      I just wish Square made a main Final Fantasy port for the Switch for a change. Btw, Crystal Chronicles and Crystal Bearers don’t count.

  • donzaloog

    Capcom, I’m begging you. Release a new Breath Of Fire game for the Switch. Or at least give us the classic SNES ones on the VC. I’d buy them all.

  • Lord Ozzie

    Monster Hunter and Ace Attorney, do it Capcom, as long you bring those games to the Switch, I will be a happy man.

  • theFooFighter

    It’s interesting that they’re working on making the re7 engine compatible even though re7 isn’t coming over. I feel like a lot of games aren’t coming over because their development simply started before the switch stated being sent out. We honestly might see really good support around this time next year assuming the switch is successful

    • Exy

      Watch them port Resident Evil 6 to Switch while denying us 7 just to mess with us.

      • SpectralDynamite

        I don’t even care for RE, but don’t give them any ideas!

        • Humoeki Humoeki

          Lool

    • R.Z.

      Which makes it really baffling that Nintendo sent out its kits so late, like they barely cared about what would be available in the first year.
      :-/

      • theFooFighter

        No matter when they sent out the kits there would still be something that stated development before. Switch devs kits could have been sent out early last year or late 2015 but if re7 was in development during 2014 then there’s not much they can do if they’re trying to make a certain deadline

  • Stuart

    500 dollars is almost 1/10 what costed a Wii U dev kit. Extremely cheap. Indies will have a blast with that console.

    • DeltaPeng

      The NS dev kit is looking quite affordable, which would be fantastic for drawing in dev interest and making it a low risk investment.

  • metalpants

    As I read the interview, my eyes kept getting bigger. Then when they got into the RE Engine and AAA titles part, my eyes just rolled off my face.

    Capcom games were a pretty huge part of my childhood with the SNES… if they return to form on Switch… this would be arguably one of the best times to be alive.

  • awng781

    Sounds like Capcom had a pretty substantial impact on the Switch’s hardware.

  • Kumomeme

    so it safe to say MT Framework already compatible with the console…just port Dragon’s Dogma on swith then

  • Shad Stewart

    Mega man legends 3 Capcom….. Don’t make anymore shameful excuses

  • R.Z.

    I’m really looking forward to see the results of this deep cooperation, because what we got so far from Capcom … isn’t exactly exciting.

  • Diogo Zacharias

    A NEW ONIMUSHA ON SWITCH!!!
    AND BRING OVER THE DEEP DOWN SINCE IT IS NO LONGER ON A CONTRACT WITH SONY.

  • raith

    “It wasn’t a one direction collaboration, but rather a two way interactive collaboration. Nintendo and Capcom built up a trusting relationship while going through a trial and error process.” Nintendo, just buy Capcom already! Hahaha. Anyways, It sounds like Capcom are ecstatic about the NS. Not only did they have a hand in the hardware input, but they want to put their AAA games on the system. That is the type of attitude and business sense some other gaming companies should have who are reluctant towards creating games for Switch. None of this, ” we’ll wait and see”. Someone needs to take that risky first step, and I’m glad Capcom is one of them. Now, bring on Monster Hunter 5, and RE, and Viewtiful Joe, and Okami, and DMC 5, and Killer 7, and etc..

    • jimmy

      I’m picturing the hayday when Capcom released Viewtiful Joe, RE4, P.N.03, and Killer 7, man those were the days, damn i still need to find PN03, but can you imagine if they port MvsC? Nintendo systems are made for two player

      • Addy

        Ah yes, the Capcom 5, an attempt for GameCube to get some exclusives, but was a big disaster. P.N.03 was crap and forgotten, Dead Phoenix was cancelled, Viewtiful Joe was great but sold poorly until being ported to the PlayStation 2 with added material alienating the GameCube owners, Resident Evil 4 was announced for the PlayStation 2 before the GameCube version was released, I think I remember hearing a Capcom developer jokingly said that he would commit seppuku if RE4 was no longer a GC exclusive, and Killer7 was released on both GC and PS2 simultaneously. It all worked out in the end.

        No not really.

        • jimmy

          What, you didn’t like RE4, the GC version is still superior

          • Addy

            I didn’t play the game, what I said was the PS2 version has more content like the Separate Ways side story and additional costumes like a suit of armor for whats-her-name-who-gets-captured-one-too-many-times. Later ports such as the Wii and PC and maybe the remastered versions, if there is such a thing I don’t know, are based off of the PS2 version.

      • I would love to see the games I posted and your as well, PN03 great game, but the ending was kinda stupid…I don’t know.

  • jimmy

    Capcom making games again?

  • NintendoPSXTheSecond

    Nintendo VS Capcom please?

    • Yessss. Pleaseeee! With a friggin story mood and plenty of crossover interaction too!

      Even better, if they manage to keep Bayo for it so we can finally get that Dante and Bayo crossover.

      • NintendoPSXTheSecond

        Bayonetta would be hard since Sega owns her IP and then it wouldn’t be a Nintendo VS Capcom anymore.

        • That’s true. ;u;
          Eventually, Sega will get smart and let Nintendo buy them though.
          (Hey, I can have my dreams since other fans have their delusions.)

          • NintendoPSXTheSecond

            Well to do that, Nintendo would have to buy Sammy Holdings too lol
            Frankly, anyone can still buy Capcom since Capcom has less share in it’s own company and anyone who purchases more than half of Capcom shares has exclusivity to them (If the buyer so chooses). Then again, no one wants to take on another companies debts lol

          • Oh, I forgot that part, lol. Maybe they can jus go for some stake in Sega/Sammy. . . x’);

            True that. And I don’t know if there’s enough MonHun to fix that, lol.

  • Addy

    All they will release are going to be Street Fighter II Re-re-re-re-rehash, a couple of Monster Hunter games and that’s it. While other consoles get Street Fighter V re-rehashes (without an arcade mode I’m betting), Resident Evil 7, and online only Monster Hunter (only in Japan). I wouldn’t be surprised if that happened.

  • Okami 3

  • Carlos

    I would totally buy a Resident Evil compilation game with the originals. I would even take the newer ones, even though they aren’t a shiny good.

  • Annie

    Monster Hunter please! I’m tired of playing it on tiny screens

  • DeltaPeng

    Very interesting review / interview! Thanks for the share. Capcom makes a lot of great games, so I am definitely hoping their relationship with Nintendo is and remains strong for the Switch!

  • I worry about Capcom, except for the MonHun and PW/Naruhodo teams. . . but maybe this will be an improved gen for them. I’m hoping the Switch support is good.

    And I know we all have our titles we want, but I’m actually hoping for some original titles. Of what they did last gen, my favorite games from them were Z&W, and Tatsunoko vs Capcom (semi-original, lol). MonHun Tri was great, but I want them to experiment with a fresh venture again.

    Especially if it means a new, quality title that really utilizes the Joycons the way Z&W did the Wiimotes. ♥