Kirby and the Forgotten Land's UI was designed in English from the get-go, a series first
Another first for the team!
Kirby and the Forgotten Land is the first time we’re seeing Kirby in a fully-3D adventure, but that’s not the only first for this game. In an official Nintendo interview with HAL, we learn that the user interface for this game was handled in a way that was never done before.
Director Shinya Kumazaki and Director Tatsuya Kamiyama opened up about the design challenges of Kirby and the Forgotten Land’s UI. For the very first time, the team designed the user interface in English first. Kamiyama explains why in the snippet below.
Here’s another first for this series – when we designed the user interfaces (7) for buttons and menus, we used English. Using Japanese for the user interface would be more intuitive for us, but designing those spaces for Japanese characters left other languages with text that was squished and hard to read. So we decided to design those sections in English rather than Japanese, which resulted in much longer text than we’re used to seeing.
Following that, Kamuzaki shared how this led to a separate challenge during the development process.
That said, when I wrote the text, implemented it, and checked it in the game, it was…all in English. So it was very difficult for me. (Laughs) We believe it’s important to make sure the text in those areas doesn’t slow the game down for anyone, so we tried to keep players from all over the world in mind. We put a lot of effort into that section of the game.