The Binding of Isaac Rebirth

13AM Games on Runbow's GamePad usage, Nintendo's help with indie cameos

A portion of a Nintendo Life interview with 13AM Games...

NL: You've previously outlined uses of the Wii U GamePad, for example in Colourmaster; what's your favourite use of the controller in the game, and can you talk us through some fresh features?

13: The GamePad only features prominently in ColourMaster, but I think a mechanic that really makes use of the whole GamePad is the Grey Man, a little runner that you place on the battlefield and can control for a short period of time.
In ColourMaster, players can drag attacks down onto the screen. Some of these Power-Ups require precision: Paint Blobs erase coloured platforms they're placed on and Bombs detonate where they are dropped. Some of these Power-Ups are global, and don't require accuracy with the GamePad, like Lightning or Controller Scramble. The Grey Man requires accuracy AND the ability to switch between the touch screen and the face buttons instantly. He doesn't last long but he can really embarrass the Run Team. To place a Bomb and a well-timed Grey Man to knock players back into the explosion radius is a move so difficult and so satisfying… it's the type of play style that makes the Grey Man one of the deepest things to master in Runbow.

We also offer constant off-TV play, which really helps with a local party game of this size. The player with the GamePad has their own screen and can sit wherever they want while everyone else crowds around the TV.

NL: There are a host of familiar cameos such as Shovel Knight and CommanderVideo, how did this come together?

13: We owe some of that gratitude to Nintendo. We came up with a wishlist of developers that we love and admire, and Nintendo helped facilitate conversations with about 90% of the list. From the get go we wanted Runbow, our first game, to be a celebration of games we love and the spirit of community that local multiplayer games inspire. We're pretty lucky to be here in Toronto where the indie scene is so supportive of one another. It was the kind of atmosphere and attitude we wanted to bring back to the industry when we got started, so we just started asking people if they wanted to join the run. The really humbling thing is when that 90% of the list started responding and saying they'd like to work with us. We feel incredibly lucky.

Full interview here

Dragon Quest XI - Jump interview with Horii translated

Please tell us your role in Dragon Quest XI, Mr. Horii.

Horii: “I took on a supervisor-like role starting with Dragon Quest X, but I’m back on the scene in full force for Dragon Quest XI. I’m really shepherding it from start to finish, beginning with scenario creation. I want to also be involved in the final optimizations of the battles, etc.”

What’s the theme of this game’s story?

“This time it’s also the 30th anniversary of Dragon Quest, and we have the subtitle “In Search of Departed Time.” We’re putting a heavy emphasis on that 30th anniversary. The story itself has the theme of “time.” So, we’re hoping that people who have followed the series all along will have that sense of nostalgia, and that new players will have a sense of fun and excitement. The same may be said of the supported platforms. It’s already been announced, but Dragon Quest XI will be released on two: PlayStation 4 and 3DS. Furthermore, on 3DS, we you can enjoy both 2D and 3D. You can choose to play in either old pixel-style 2D graphics or fleshed-out 3D. Of course, you can switch [between modes] in the middle of the game, as well. Including the leading edge PlayStation 4, with 2D, quasi-3D [Editor’s Note: he’s talking about the chibi 3D from the 3DS version], and full 3D, we’re giving you various types of Dragon Quest so you can follow its historical evolution.”

You guys also revealed the logo…

“The logo gives off the impression that we’re turning back to Dragon Quest I, but the dragon in the background is actually facing in the opposite direction from the Dragon Quest I logo. It’s been a long time since we had the number behind the title, as well. [Editor’s Note: The last Dragon Quest title to have the number behind the logo was Dragon Quest III.] In many ways, it is a sign that we’re returning to our origins, while still evolving. It takes the idea of Dragon Quest I, but we’re beginning anew with Dragon Quest XI.”

What’s the reason you’ve chosen to make Dragon Quest XI for these two platforms?

“Well, we knew wanted as many people as possible to be able to play it. We’d like people to be able to really settle in and play on a console, but at the same time it was great to have so many people playing Dragon Quest IX when it came out on a handheld, so we were really torn over which system to put it on. In the end, we just said, ‘Well, why don’t we just make it for both platforms?!’ and kicked off the project. We thought about what style would be best for each platform, and the results are what we have now. It’s pretty interesting that you can play the latest game in 2D pixel form, right? Of course, you can fully enjoy the story of Dragon Quest XI even in this mode.”

When do you think the game will be released?

“We’re working hard with the goal to release it before the Dragon Quest 30th anniversary year ends, so please look forward to it.”

What other things are in store for the 30th anniversary?

“Actually, we’ve been planning a lot of events. Most of it still has to be kept secret, but I want to stir up even more excitement than the 25th anniversary. We’re thinking about various projects, and a lot of games are coming out, so please look forward to the future of Dragon Quest.”

Horii on the PlayStation 4 Version

“The beautiful images, the sense of space… it’s all just amazing. For example, you can clearly see people and monsters who are still way off in the distance. The idea is to give players the sense that the world is there, and in motion.”

Horii on the 3DS Version

“At the start of the adventure, there will be 2D classic events on the bottom screen, and 3D events that unfold on the top screen. Taking full advantage of Nintendo 3DS’s capabilities, we’re pursuing a sense of fun that is unique to Nintendo 3DS.”

Horii on the Protagonist

“His background and everything has already been decided, but…the full details are still secret (laughs). But…he’s a cool hero, you know. You have Toriyama-sensei’s design, so use your imagination.”

Analysts say weaker yen helped Nintendo, expect big things from mobile

Makoto Kikuchi, chief executive officer of Myojo Asset Management Co.

“The impact from the yen was even more than expected, helping the company beat market consensus. They need to move quickly to decide on new leadership that can set a clear direction for the company going forward.”

Eiji Maeda, an analyst at SMBC Nikko Securities Inc.

“Everyone seems to be pricing in a smartphone success story for Nintendo."

Atul Goyal, an analyst at Jefferies Group LLC

“The turnaround will happen after Nintendo has launched its first smartphone game. From here onwards, it is well positioned to regain previous highs in profits and the stock price, if it executes half as well as it’s capable of.”

13AM games on why they chose Wii U for Runbow, planning Q3 release

A portion or a TorontoGameDevs interview with 13AM Games...

TorontoGameDevs: Why did you decide to work on Wii U for your first game?

13: The decision to work with Nintendo came from two factors. The first was that we wanted to get Runbow onto the platform we thought would really showcase its strengths as a chaotic local multiplayer game. As a bonus, the GamePad allowed us to create an asymmetrical mode, changing the dynamic of the game itself. The second factor was the the support Nintendo has given us right from the get-go. We would not be where we are today with the exposure we have if it wasn’t for them and their teams.

TorontoGameDevs: Do you have a firm release date for Runbow yet? Price?

13: I can only say that we are aiming for a Q3 release and that the price will not be anything unexpected or out of the ordinary. Once a few things solidify here on our end we will be able to give these details so stay tuned.

Full interview here (thanks Cloud2049!)

Pachter comments on amiibo success, thinks Nintendo should continue making hardware

WARNING - THIS IS A MICHAEL PACHTER FEATURE. If his comments enrage you, please avoid hitting the jump. If you are okay with his comments, please click through to view a video interview.

Click here to read the rest of the story...

Knapnok defends pricing of Affordable Space Adventures

A portion of a Nintendo Enthusiast interview with Knapnok...

Nintendo Enthusiast: I think that, personally, I would consider KnapNok Games to be one of the more “premium” indie developers on the Wii U. But, you have also taken a more “premium” approach to your game pricing, specifically in Affordable Space Adventures on the Wii U. That game is on the pricier side of the eShop, selling for $20. Do you feel like this higher price has had any negative affect on sales of the game? Or, do you feel that you hit an optimal price-point with the game?

Knapnok: “Of course the topic of the game’s pricing cannot be approached without the usual mention of “oh, but the game is not Affordable, ha ha”. Affordable stands for the in-game universe’s Uexplore travel company, which rents out cheap, affordable spaceships. Now that we’ve got that out of the way…

Yes, it’s true that Affordable Space Adventures is on the higher-priced end of the indie games spectrum. But users have to consider that this is a game that has taken well over a year of development to produce, and it’s sold exclusively on Wii U. We’re a small, relatively unknown studio for Nintendo fans, so we’re never going to sell the same number of copies as a title like Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker, Mario vs Donkey Kong: Tipping Stars or Pushmo. But, arguably, all of these have the same amount of work put into them as Affordable Space Adventures. So why should our game have a lower price point simply because it’s an indie game? In any case, I think the game’s positive critical reception has helped a lot and sales of the game have been positive so far, so it’s obvious that in the end people cared more about the quality of the title rather than the price.”

The Swindle gives you 100 in-game days to grab as much loot as you can

The Swindle limits you to 100 lives before it's game over. Those lives tie to in-game days, so you have 100 days to pull off heists and grab as much loot as possible. After those 100 days, the government installs security measures that make your heists impossible. Below you can learn why this idea was used and where it came from.

“The idea was always that you leave the level whenever you like. It’s a burglary job, right? There’s no running from right to left and then you’re done.” What this means is that you decide when you’ve amassed enough of a take to make this a good use of one of those hundred days. But if there was no limit, you could just grab the easiest cash over the course of thousands of plays, slowly working your way up in a low-risk manner.

The 100 days limit came in as another resource, separate from money, and as soon as it went in it made the game so much more exciting because it made the money mechanic much more interesting to play with.” Marshall continues. “You know that you need £30,000 to get this upgrade you need, but you’re not sure you can get it, you’ve only got a few days left. Once it was brought in, it focused the design a lot, and made the game feel a lot more pressurized, which I think it needed, as it’s about burglary.” - Dan Marshall, dev

King's Quest: A Knight to Remember could see Wii U release

A portion of a Dtoid interview with Matt Korba, President of The Odd Gentlemen

D: Was there any consideration in terms of developing for Wii U?

MK: If the game does well it can definitely end up there as well as some other platforms. But, we are still a relatively small team and 5 platforms at launch almost killed us!

Full interview here

Suda51 shares thoughts on the future of No More Heroes, has some ideas

A portion of an AnimeNewsNetwork interview with Suda51...

ANN: You stopped that tradition after No More Heroes, though, because you haven't killed off Travis yet.

S: Well, I definitely want to see Travis again. Not just in the sequel, either. His life is really interesting, so I want to talk about his story again. I want him to grow up as I grow older. I'm not sure when it will be, but I want to talk about his life. So Travis is very important to me. I think he's the most loved of my characters.

ANN: So what might happen to Travis in No More Heroes 3? Will he continue to grow or fall back into his old ways?

S: My image is that he'd be living in a place where not many people would reach him, and it would be a peaceful life. And the story starts from there…

Full interview here