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If you know your Indie gaming history then you know the Shantae series had a rocky start. The very first game released on Gameboy Color at the very end of it’s lifecycle condemning it to obscurity and it’s sequel on the Gameboy Advance was cancelled when it was nearing completion. Despite the odds, Shantae fought on to not only become WayForward’s mascot but a beloved indie series with several titles under her belt and with that success even her earlier titles are getting the chance to shine again.

Thanks to Wayforward’s partnership with Limited Run Games the original Gameboy Color game was reprinted and the cancelled Gameboy Advance sequel is also getting a shot at redemption under the name Shantae Advance: Risky Revolution. While this is all great news for the series a recent Interview with WorthPlaying revealed that these re-releases were even more successful than previously thought.

Below is a snippet of an Interview between WorthPlaying, Shantae’s creator Erin Bozon, Shantae series’ director Matt Bozon, and Limited Run Games’ VP of Marketing Alena Alambeigi.

WorthPlaying: Speaking of the older hardware, obviously we’ve got newer hardware like the Analogue Pocket, but there’s been a resurgence in retro gaming. What’s it like for you guys to see this resurgence, this interest, in your 20-year-old game? People are coming to Limited Run, making pre-orders, saying, “We want to buy this cartridge”, sight unseen?

Erin: You know, ever since the first one, that only did so poorly and only released 10,000 copies, and then hearing people wanting to buy it, complaining about how expensive the first game was, and then having Limited Run come along and say, “Hey, we’ll do a reprint of that first game so more people could play it,” that’s always your dream when you’re making a game. You want the most people to get to play it. We’re just so thankful and happy that more people are able to go back and play the older games, and we love that people are still into them. I mean, for us, it’s like a dream come true.

Matt: I think you said it best. I’m not sure I have anything more I could add to that.

Alena Alambeigi: I wanted to add too, like you said, the first Shantae game came out, and it reviewed very well, but it didn’t sell very much. I think partially, maybe, because it was the end of the life cycle of the handheld, right?

Erin: The time wasn’t great for us.

Alena: Between then and now, the series blew up, and when we sold the original print of Shantae …

WorthPlaying: The Limited Run re-release of the original Game Boy Color Shantae …

Alena: Yeah, it sold more through us than it did back in the day.

WorthPlaying: Wow!

[WorthPlaying]

It seems that the re-release of Shantae GBC outsold the 10,000 copies of the original release though it’s not stated by how much. Given the fact that the game released on digital platforms as well as the reprinted cartridges this was not impossible but still surprising. If anything, this news is a testament to how much the series has grown, that it’s obscure first release can break 10,000 copies in the modern day.

WorthPlaying then goes on to ask if WayForward would be interested in making more original Gameboy Advance titles in the future and Matt Bozon says that it’s certainly something he is interested in.

It’s crossed my mind before. I’ll just tell you when we opened everything back up and started playing with the tools and things, it really did bring back like, “Oh, this is actually really fun to do.” It’s so nice when you have a tiny team of just a few people, and you know that you’re working directly on the things that the audience is going to experience. It doesn’t have as many layers of abstraction and other people, but then on the other side, you don’t have as much collaboration. You get a lot of nice collaboration with larger teams, and we don’t have huge teams, I’m talking like a dozen people. If you have several animators, you’re going to get great ideas. Programmers working on different bosses are going to feel differently. It’s pretty nice. You get a lot of benefit from a lot of team members bringing ideas. But boy, it’s fun to make a game. I mean, you guys know if you’ve made any. Anyone out there who does a homebrew project or something kind of like a game jam-type experience, it’s very fun to just work with a small group. So yeah, I miss it. I don’t know. I can see doing it again someday.

[Matt Bozon via WorthPlaying]

Matt then ends the interview by reminding all that the physical release of Shantae Advance: Risky Revolution is available for pre-order until April 7th and that anyone interested should pre-order now as there are no plans to reprint the game.

There were some other interesting tidbits that we didn’t mention so we’ll link to WorthPlaying’s full interview down below if you want to check it out for yourself.

About jmaldonado

jmaldonado

A recently graduated creative writer hoping to work his way into the greater gaming sphere.

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Comments (3)

d_says_hi

3M ago

I managed to snag one of the first releases. Took some looking but I found one. Was GoNintendo around back then, I may have to blame RMC for that one :D


kingbroly

3M ago

I'm pretty sure the original sold like 10 copies, so...

It's pretty darn rare for a GBC game.


I still have my original copy. I preordered it back in the day specifically because of IGN. Craig Harris was in charge of the handheld section of the site back then, and he was (rightfully) hyping up Shantae like crazy before its release.