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Next Level Games sticking with Nintendo, no reason to look elsewhere

This comes from a Gamasutra interview with NLG co-founder Jason Carr...


Have you thought about working with anybody else?

Jason Carr: We have worked with a lot of other companies before, and we're super happy with our relationship with Nintendo. There's no reason to look anywhere else. They keep giving us better and better IP to work with, and as long as we do our job and make good games for them there's no reason for us to venture out.

Because we're still a small shop. We're under 70 people. We like that size. For us, we're like, why would you want to go and talk with these other guys? What's it doing for your business? The guys in the company are just really, really proud of the company and proud of the games they work on.



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27 total comments (View all)
User avatar
09 Jan 2014 11:49

@jasonmaivia
@motherbra1n
I would like to see another Strikers, too, but I have a feeling that Next Level is on to bigger things. They did a fantastic job with Luigi's Mansion 2, so I see Nintendo having them work on another one of those (maybe for Wii U.) If not, I think they'll be getting the the keys to another big series in need of a new installment.
User avatar
09 Jan 2014 11:50

I like their track record. Glad Nintendo trusts their work and they trust nintendo .

Hopefully they are working on another Nintendo franchise
User avatar
09 Jan 2014 12:02

Surprised Nintendo hasn't just bought them up already and made them first party. :P (seriously though, it would be neat to see Nintendo gain another Western studio, as of right now Retro's and NST are their only non-Japanese dev studios I can think of [of course they had Rare as second party at one time, but we all know that Rare is long gone in more ways than one]; and NERD in Paris, France doesn't count because they don't make games, they make middleware).

Next Level's track record with Nintendo properties has been top notch (it's when they get asked by other third parties to make games like Transformers: Cybertron Adventures when they show "we'd rather be working on something else..."), I look forward to seeing what they make next, whether it be 3DS or Wii U related.
User avatar
09 Jan 2014 12:26

Strikers games were fun for sure, although flawed and the multiball stuff in the last one was just unnecessary and kinda breaking the otherwise good game for me. It just wasn't very balanced at all. I also never really liked the art style on Strikers games (to me it was just a quite random mishmash of Super Mario, football and sci-fi, never understood the sci-fi part there). With that said I'd welcome another installment, but I'd rather have a Mario hockey game from these guys (with NHL Hitz-esque controls and gameplay), although that's not likely to happen with the popularity of the sport being much lower than football in most countries.

I also suspect that after LM2 Next Level Games is onto even bigger and better things, and if that's the case that's great. They've certainly proven their chops on Nintendo systems at this point and anything they come up with intriques me.
User avatar
09 Jan 2014 12:32

Looking forward to their next Nintendo game. Hopefully, Nintendo will be like "surprise us" and NLG creates a new I.P., but even if that doesn't happen (and I know it won't [refering to the surprise us part]), I like their work with Nintendo (still need to play Luigi's Mansion: Dark Moon, though)
User avatar
09 Jan 2014 13:00

They're the ones who also made Punch-Out for the Wii right? If so that was an awesome game and I know I want yet another punch out for Wii U but I feel like it's too soon to ask for another one so I hope whatever else they make is just as awesome as that or Luigi's Mansion.
No Avatar
09 Jan 2014 13:16

Well if I were Nintendo I would trust them too. They've delivered every time. Luigi's Mansion DM was amazing! It feels like a first party game. I'm just glad there's talent outside of NCL's EAD studios that can pull off that unique Nintendo charm. Then again, the game directors and producers travel from Japan to oversee development... so... never mind :P.
User avatar
09 Jan 2014 13:30

Great news to hear for sure! They're like Nintendo's new RARE. Enough flirting Nintendo, just make the relationship official and buy them up already and make sweet sweet games together from here on out.
No Avatar
09 Jan 2014 13:33

i wasn't a fan of strikers, it felt too much like hockey, well that and the disappointment of online gaming as in everyone play exactly the same way. But with very clear instructions, directions they made punch out and the great luigi's mansion . So i hope they'll continue working exactly like that, and as they say nintendo keeps giving them bigger and bigger ip so... what's next !
User avatar
09 Jan 2014 13:53

im glad they arent being ungrateful and hungry bout the next " haardcore bloodz publisher¨ while they are aware they are making games for the most recognizable company ,the quality of nintendo products is legendary. The make great games that capture the essence of nintendo, is a trait you cant just drop on any developer.
User avatar
09 Jan 2014 14:15

Loved Mario Strikers Charged, loved Punch-Out Wii and think that was the best game in the series.

Yet to play Luigi's Mansion: Dark Moon, but I have high expectations for it. Very interested to see what Next Level's been up to lately.
User avatar
09 Jan 2014 15:59

Eternal Rain wrote:Surprised Nintendo hasn't just bought them up already and made them first party. :P


Only if Next Level 'wants' to be bought by Nintendo by 'their' consent, should this relationship go along strongly enough between the two of them, but Nintendo is more in line with being efficient with their financials than to be like EA and buy them outright.

But it seems that Next Level is becoming more like Shin'en. ^_^
User avatar
09 Jan 2014 16:22

Buying? Have you read what he said guys? They don't need to buy them!

Also, Iwata said, some years ago that buying companies is a BAD idea. When they buy small companies, the talents working there that liked the freedom of being at least a bit "indie" always end up quitting the company after the sale, thus destroying the value of the team.

:/
User avatar
09 Jan 2014 16:48

Next Level: We're smart enough to not break away from Nintendo. You saw what happened to Factor 5, Rare and Silicon Knights.
User avatar
09 Jan 2014 17:36

" the Wii U is not the strongest start but we trust that they'll come up with something to get it going"

WHY can't anyone else trust Nintendo like that?
User avatar
09 Jan 2014 18:00

Loved Luigi's Mansion: Dark Moon and still play it actually. Scarescraper still pretty fun and hilarious with all the deaths/loses at higher difficulties. Completely satisfied with it as a sequel to the first Luigi's Mansion. Felt like a Nintendo/RARE-quality game imo. Well like everyone else I'm looking forward to Next Level Games' future and seeing what awesome game they come up with Next. :P

Would love for them to work on Donkey Kong Country or a 3D DK someday since I'm sure after playing Dark Moon they'd stay almost faithful to the orginals in gameplay and atmosphere unlike a certain wannabe RARE... (yes I said it Retro fanboys, bite me)
User avatar
09 Jan 2014 18:22

I remember picking up Strikers on Gamecube and being pleasantly surprised on how fun it actually was. Next Level Games have certainty proved themselves and I hope to see more of them.
User avatar
09 Jan 2014 20:49

enigmaxtreme wrote:" the Wii U is not the strongest start but we trust that they'll come up with something to get it going"

WHY can't anyone else trust Nintendo like that?


That's how I view Nintendo. Sales might look bleak, but Nintendo has the talent to make something creative enough that slaps consumers across the face and they have a hit. It might happen this year, next or the year after, who knows, but it will happen.
User avatar
09 Jan 2014 23:21

element187 wrote:
enigmaxtreme wrote:" the Wii U is not the strongest start but we trust that they'll come up with something to get it going"

WHY can't anyone else trust Nintendo like that?


That's how I view Nintendo. Sales might look bleak, but Nintendo has the talent to make something creative enough that slaps consumers across the face and they have a hit. It might happen this year, next or the year after, who knows, but it will happen.


Yeah, and Nintendo 'never' backs down on a challenge when it comes to finding new and creative ways to turn things around and surprising people when backed into a corner. ^_^
User avatar
10 Jan 2014 00:02

Mirr0rR3flection wrote:Loved Luigi's Mansion: Dark Moon and still play it actually. Scarescraper still pretty fun and hilarious with all the deaths/loses at higher difficulties. Completely satisfied with it as a sequel to the first Luigi's Mansion. Felt like a Nintendo/RARE-quality game imo. Well like everyone else I'm looking forward to Next Level Games' future and seeing what awesome game they come up with Next. :P

Would love for them to work on Donkey Kong Country or a 3D DK someday since I'm sure after playing Dark Moon they'd stay almost faithful to the orginals in gameplay and atmosphere unlike a certain wannabe RARE... (yes I said it Retro fanboys, bite me)



It sounds like you want NLG to be the wannabe Rare.

Retro is their own beast.
User avatar
10 Jan 2014 00:45

I am so happy a Canadian studio has been trusted to make games using Nintendo's IP!
User avatar
10 Jan 2014 03:24

bptboy wrote:Retro is their own beast.

But people are always calling them the new RARE...
User avatar
10 Jan 2014 04:58

Mirr0rR3flection wrote:
bptboy wrote:Retro is their own beast.

But people are always calling them the new RARE...


...wasn't this label already sticked to Retro Studios before?

(by the way Mirr0rR3flection, I accidentally pressed the Report button instead of the Reply one. I'm sorry, I didn't mean to do that, I just wanted to reply <.<)
User avatar
10 Jan 2014 05:25

Lokamp wrote:
Mirr0rR3flection wrote:But people are always calling them the new RARE...


...wasn't this label already sticked to Retro Studios before?

I was talking about Retro Studios when I said "them". :P

Lokamp wrote:(by the way Mirr0rR3flection, I accidentally pressed the Report button instead of the Reply one. I'm sorry, I didn't mean to do that, I just wanted to reply <.<)

Lol its ok, don't worry about it.
User avatar
10 Jan 2014 11:44

Get over Rare already, it's been 12 years for gods sake.
I think by now Retro has proven several times already that they are an AAA studio who can deliver time and time again with perfect track record, and they deserve to be acknowledged on their own instead of compared to a company who made some cool games in the nineties.

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