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Enric Alvarez

MercurySteam worked very closely with Nintendo on last year’s Metroid: Samus Returns. That wasn’t the first time the studio collaborated with a Japanese company, as Konami was present when the team was creating the Castlevania: Lords of Shadow games.

In a new interview, MercurySteam’s Enric Álvarez was asked about the differences in working with Japanese and western publishers. Álvarez specifically brought up Nintendo and stated that they value quality, polish, and player satisfaction above all else.

Metroid: Samus Returns developer MercurySteam launched the asymmetric online adventure game Raiders of the Broken Planet last year. Today, the studio announced that the title is receiving a reboot and will become “Spacelords”. MercurySteam does have interest in bringing the revamped game for Switch, but it’s unclear if it will happen.

Director Enric Álvarez has said that Spacelords “would especially fit into the Switch’s catalog.” But as a relatively small team that is self-financed, MercurySteam “didn’t have the capacity to include it.”

Nintendo surprised everyone at E3 in June by announcing not one, but two Metroid games. One of those titles, Metroid: Samus Returns, is just a few days away from launch.

Rather than making the game internally, Nintendo partnered with an external developer on the project. MercurySteam, best known for working on the Castlevania: Lords of Shadow titles, handled the bulk of development. Nintendo was still very much involved, however, and series producer Yoshio Sakamoto played a key role in Samus Return’s creation.

MercurySteam head Enric Alvarez chatted with GamesIndustry about what it’s like working with Nintendo, stating:

MercurySteam is partnering with Nintendo for the first time on Metroid: Samus Returns. Enric Alvarez, the head of MercurySteam, only had good things to say about the relationship, telling GameReactor that it’s “been an amazing experience and an incredible honor.”

Here are some select quotes from the interview.

“It has been an amazing experience and an incredible honor. We learned a lot from the best, Nintendo. These days, we often pinch ourselves just in case we are in a dream.”

“We have been working with the best. I think this explains pretty much everything about how things went during the development. We were very impressed about the devotion, the care and the quality Nintendo treats the product, and we learned a lot from that.”

“Long time fans are going to be extremely pleased. The game is the result of both, on one hand is a Nintendo game, a Metroid game, and on the other hand, I think people will see the MercurySteam influence.”

You can hear Alvarez speaking about Metroid: Samus Returns and MercurySteam working with Nintendo towards the end of the video below.


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