IGN - Tantalus details how they came to work on Twilight Princess HD, excited about NX

Coming from an IGN interview with Tantalus CEO, Tom Crago...

“Nintendo approached us. We had worked with them before on Top Gear Rally on GBA, and had remained in close contact in the intervening period. I guess they were impressed by the work we’d done on Mass Effect 3, which was a launch title on Wii U. It’s not every day someone from Nintendo asks you if you’d be interested in making a Zelda game, so definitely it was happy moment. By that stage Tantalus had shipped around thirty games on Nintendo platforms, and so certainly it felt like a natural fit. A huge thrill, but a natural fit.

We worked with Nintendo very closely. A dedicated team in Kyoto worked with us throughout the duration of the project, and senior members of our team made several trips to Japan."

Nintendo and Tantalus have no doubt built a stronger relationship over the years, culminating in Twilight Princess HD. Can we expect to see Tantalus bringing some content to NX? Mr. Crago played coy when asked, but did say that he's "very excited" about the platform.

Mario-themed Hot Wheels lineup - promo video

This lineup of cars is heading to stores now. Remember, this lineup is Walmart-exclusive for the time being, so that narrows down where you should look for it!

Early footage of the cancelled StarFox 2 for SNES

Thanks to Trojanhorse711 for the heads up!

Man creates SNES cart-to-USB reader for actual cart play via emulator

When it comes to legality, emulators are always a touchy subject. That's especially true with Nintendo, but I wonder how they'd feel about this. The device above actually lets you connect an SNES cart to your computer via USB, and then you can play the cart via emulator. It's not about dumping/saving games to your PC and putting them up for distribution. It's just a different way to play your SNES games without an actual SNES console. A pretty interesting idea, I think!

Producer on Nintendo's CD-i games on working with Nintendo, reception, sales success & more

Coming from a Game Informer interview with Stephen Radosh, executive producer on Hotel Mario...

On Nintendo approval

“They could have kept saying no, and then it would have never hit the market. I was expecting nothing but combative, and I got the exact opposite. I still had to get approval from Nintendo on everything, because these were their trademark characters. And anyone who owns trademark characters will tell you, you don’t want Link having sex with Zelda on the ramparts of the castle.”

On Miyamoto seeing the games

“I’m pretty sure he would have – everything was still under their control ultimately. The meetings were short, amicable, fun, lots of laughs.”

On the three Zelda games

“We went through a little bit of issues with the look of characters for Link and Zelda. Because animation at that time was really expensive here, we opted for this hand-drawn look for those games. We would up with Russian animators. We’d send them vague storyboards and gameplay, and then [Russia] would say, ‘What do you think of this for a visual concept?’ We would go back and forth, and one or two of the original concepts were negated by Nintendo.”

On the cancelled second Mario game

“It never even got to the point of real playability, because when they decided to pull the [CD-i], they also killed all development. We had a couple of direct ports of other games from other systems where it was just a matter of translating the code, and they were going to keep those going so there were at least a couple of products in the pipeline for the last year of its existence. But, it was at that point where I sat at my desk for about a month and it was like, ‘No, I can’t do this.'

I brought a little bit of my television to game design at Philips in that, if you’re hired as a writer, you’re handed a [knowledge] bible. This is this character, this is where she was born, this is what she likes, this is what she doesn’t like, this is what she does for amusement – that kind of thing. We created a lot of that for the Link and Zeldas, and even a little bit for Mario. By giving all the dos and don’ts – some of which were supplied by Nintendo, by the way – we never hit a dead end. We never asked a character to do something that a character couldn’t do or shouldn’t do, so the game would progress very smoothly. We had really nice development curves on those games.”

On reviews of the games and sales

“The internet was around, there were bulletin boards – we got really positive responses. The games sold really well, especially Hotel Mario. Hotel Mario sold for years after the company went out of business. I’m assuming [Nintendo Japan] saw it. They continued to be non-problematic, which to me was the indication that they really did like them. Because if they didn’t like them, they had every opportunity to throw up as many roadblocks along the way as they wanted to.”