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Mario devs on F.L.U.D.D. in Super Mario Sunshine, importance of “function” in character design, more

Posted on November 8, 2020 by (@NE_Brian) in General Nintendo, Mobile, News, Switch

The Washington Post recently spoke with four key developers behind the Mario franchise. Shigeru Miyamoto, Takashi Tezuka, Yoshiaki Koizumi, and Kenta Motokura spoke about the different entries and series in general.

Here’s a roundup for some of their comments:

On why Super Mario Odyssey didn’t have paintings like Super Mario 64…

“Those games are designed to meet the needs of levels that are built for sequential jumps and getting across narrow platforms. And for ‘Super Mario Odyssey,’ we didn’t want to use a system that sends players on a trip by coming and going through a painting because the central theme of that game is the journey and the fun adventures you have along the way. We decided what elements to put into a game by figuring out new kinds of play and what would best support them.” – Motokura

On F.L.U.D.D. in Super Mario Sunshine…

“The F.L.U.D.D. in ‘Sunshine’ came from the difficulty of handling 3-D space when we developed ‘Super Mario 64.’ In order to make it easier to get onto a platform, we created the hover feature where the characters slowly falls as if in low gravity. Also because it was difficult to stomp on the enemy in ‘Super Mario 64,’ we created ways to defeat them using water.” – Tezuka

On Super Mario Run…

“We started by thinking we should incorporate cool-looking parkour action to give players that feeling that comes with skilled control. But then again, if we couldn’t get the kinds of experiences we wanted in an action game from our prototypes, we might have stopped developing ‘Super Mario Run.’ In other words, we do not run haphazardly toward an idea. We first find something that might work, and then we work hard on it. That is why we don’t mind when the work is hard.” – Tezuka

On the importance of “function” in character design…

“When I was working on it, Mr. Miyamoto taught me the importance of ‘function’ in character design. In that game (Super Mario Odyssey), you play as a number of characters, and we wanted to make the function of all those different controllable characters clear, such as which ones can jump, and which ones can fly through the air. And advances in graphics allow us to show so much more now. Even things that look like flashy decoration at first will have an important function. I consider relevant design to be one of the distinguishing characters of a ‘Super Mario’ game.'” – Motokura

On revisiting Super Mario 64…

“I can hardly believe it’s been over 20 years since we made ‘Super Mario 64.’ Whenever we finish a game… it always inspires us to want to do more, and that feeling is what leads us into creating the next game. I feel that will continue to be true in the future as well, and not just for ‘Super Mario’ titles. I think generally every Nintendo game has the ability to inspire future Nintendo games. My job is to see it through.” – Koizumi

You can find the full article on The Washington Post here.

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