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ARMS devs on the bright colors, working with new hardware, art inspiration, more

Posted on July 16, 2017 by (@NE_Brian) in News, Switch

The latest ARMS developer interview comes from Nintendo itself. At E3, Nintendo Australia chatted with producer Kosuke Yabuki and art director Masaaki Ishikawa. Between the two, they commented on why the game features bright colors, what it was like working with Switch during its early days, the inspiration for the art, and more.

We’ve picked out the noteworthy responses from the interview below. If you’d like to read the full interview, you can do so here.

On the biggest inspiration when making ARMS…

Yabuki-san (via translator): So for me, the whole idea of ARMS started with basically a combination of two elements: wanting to have arms that stretch, and a behind-the-back camera.

On the most difficult part of developing ARMS…

Yabuki-san (via translator): I mean it’s hard to say what was the biggest challenge, because I think in a way all of it was challenging? Although I would say when Mr Ishikawa came up with the kind of revolutionary idea for having the characters have those stretchy arm designs, that was great but also at the same time it meant “ok, well we have to make all new characters now, and we have to make this entire new world.” So at the same time that was the start of – in some ways – the difficulties for us as well.

On choosing the bright colors…

Ishikawa-san (via translator):So there are kinda two big reasons I would say. One was that we wanted each character to have their own key colour; their own colour that represented them within the game. And the other is that while we definitely consider this a serious, proper fighting game, we also want it to be very fun. So to create that kind of fun atmosphere, we wanted to use a lot of popping colours.

On the most exciting part of working with the Joy-Con and Switch in developing ARMS…

Yabuki-san (via translator): I mean for me, as the developer, it’s always very exciting when you get a prototype of new hardware. When you get things in their early stage they’re obviously in quite different shape then what they’re eventually going to be. Picking it up and playing it and thinking “ok actually, if this was just shaped a little bit differently it might be better” and then having those discussions with the hardware makers was something that was very fun for me.

On the inspiration for the art direction in ARMS…

Ishikawa-san (via translator): We wanted to make sure this was all going to be new design and new art. So rather than there being one big influence, it was a lot of different elements taken from a lot of different places. Something we were very conscious of was wanting to take things that were familiar, be it in fashion or I guess kind of everyday objects, and then we obviously have the different motifs of the stretchy arms – like there’s the spring, or the noodles, or the chains for Ninjara.

Mixing those elements together; for example for Min Min, making her knit cap being an upturned ramen bowl; or Ninjara making his top knot be a ninja star or shuriken. So that kind of combination of things that are familiar with these fantasy elements was a big inspiration.

Final messages to the fans…

Ishikawa-san (via translator): Obviously this is a game that we’ve had to create lots of new characters for and I’m hoping that people get to know those characters very well. I’m hoping that people start out and they try all the different characters and they slowly find their favourite, and really come to love and enjoy that character, and hand-in-hand with that really come to love and enjoy the ARMS world as a whole. So I hope everyone loves it!

Yabuki-san (via translator): And in terms of getting good at the game as well, if you use all of the characters, then when you’re fighting against that character you’ll know what their weaknesses area and what their strengths are….so in addition to what Ishikawa-san is saying, if you want to get good at the game you should try out all of the characters.

I would say that since ARMS is a completely new game – the gameplay is completely new, the art is completely new, the sound is completely new – it’s a game that not a lot of people know yet, and not a lot of people are going to know for a while…so I definitely want to keep the momentum up and hope that in the future ARMS can be really well-known to a lot of different people with a lot of people playing it…but that is also something that’s going to be a bit further in the future.

Taking what is now a very small thing – the ARMS community – and making it a big thing, that’s going to require effort from everyone. It’s going to require effort from the fans as well, so I hope people really get into it and spread the gospel of ARMS. I think if a fire gets lit under ARMS in New Zealand and Australia that’ll be really great!

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