Untitled Document

DICE Summit,
Miyamoto and Aonuma (IGN)

Transcript from Miyamoto Shrine.

Q: As a man who seen as a creative person, who do you find balance in your life with the stresses and pressures of the roles you've taken on at Nintendo?

Shigeru Miyamoto: That's a very large topic. Once I turned 40 I actually took up swimming and now I'm swimming at least one or two kilometers every week. Also about that time I quit smoking. Of course, weekdays I work very late hours generally, so I'm certain on the weekends to spend all of my time with my wife and family.

You do need a lot of space and freedom in order to come up with some ideas. But I've been more the type of person who comes up with ideas when I'm working, so it's not as much of a challenge for me. Really, I try to find that balance and space by expanding out into new areas. Recently my family has gotten a dog and we've spent a lot of time with it, which has brought me some pleasure and a little bit of balance.

Q: A lot of GCN games we've seen so far are sequels. Will there be new franchises?

Shigeru Miyamoto: Yeah, I do intend to show something at E3.

Q: Everyone loves Wind Waker. But a lot of us would have preferred the darker style of the Space World 2000 Zelda. Are there any plans to make a Zelda game with that style?

Shigeru Miyamoto/Eiji Aonuma: I think that once people actually play Wind Waker and get into the game they will immediately understand why we chose the graphical style that we did to go with it. Even if people are fans of the more graphical looking Zelda games, I think that if they will just give this game a chance, pick it up and play it, they will immediately be engulfed in the Zelda world, really understand, and kind of accept the game for what it is.

As for whether or not we'll actually go and create a more realistic looking Zelda game, it's really a question of what kind of game the next one will be. Obviously the graphical style or methods of expressions that we choose will be highly dependent on what type of game it is. We haven't come up with the idea for the game yet, but once we do, we'll have to take a look at what the best method of expression will be for that game and so we'll go through that process. There is definitely the possibility that we will create a more realistic Zelda game.

One of the most important things with the Zelda franchise is that players must really feel that Link is almost themselves in the game. In that sense, there really has to be very natural and fluid interaction between the player and the character. When you don't have that, you certainly lose some of the nature that makes Zelda what it is.

If you were to go with the more realistic looking Link, you'd have to have so much movement to the face for him to be able to essentially impact the emotions of the player and make it feel like the player is emoting through Link. That would require so much time and energy to create those graphics to allow the face to do that.

Also, particularly when you have realistic graphics and you have a character moving through and around objects in an unnatural way, it just stands out all the more. It's even more unnatural than having these toon-shaded style graphics with natural and realistic movement. That's why we've spent so much time and energy with the director and the designer to really go through and focus on making the gameplay fun and making Link really emotive in the game to really draw the player into the world.

Q: If you didn't have to worry about game sales at all and could just make any game you wanted, what would that game be?

Shigeru Miyamoto: For me, it would be a game that really anyone could play, just pick up and get involved in. Like the kind of game that I could just set out on the street and people could just walk by, pick it up and have fun with it.

Q: Can you elaborate?

Shigeru Miyamoto: Recently one example would be Stage Debut or Talent Studio, which we showed at E3 last year. It's a really simple system and really fun. You can take someone's picture using a Game Boy Advance camera and put it onto models in a GameCube game and make them do things. It's a really fun idea and we've had three or four people working on it for quite a while, but we just can't seem to find a way to turn it into a product. But the nice thing about that is that even with three or four people working on a project like that for two years, that's still cheaper than one month of Zelda's development cost [laughs].

Q: You recently made some statements in Europe about the Metal Gear franchise. Can you clarify the rumors about a GameCube Metal Gear Solid title and a possible connection to the Game Boy Advance?

Shigeru Miyamoto: It is true that we are working with Mr. Kojima to try and bring the Metal Gear series to the GameCube, but at this point we really haven't talked at all about any connectivity features. I think what happened was that at the same time I mentioned that I also mentioned that we were in conversation with Electronic Arts about how to bring more connectivity to their games and add some new gameplay style that way, and I think that somebody took the two and kind of combined them together to create what has turned out to be a little misunderstanding.

I think I also mentioned the fact that Mr. Kojima is working on a new Game Boy Advance game, too, so the three of those statements together got all mixed up and some wires got crossed.

Q: What can we expect of Metal Gear on GameCube?

Shigeru Miyamoto: It is in progress, but please talk to Konami about that [laughs].

Q: Will you show GameCube online games or LAN network games at E3 this year?

Shigeru Miyamoto: I can't really say a whole lot about E3 right now, but Nintendo is still at a point where we don't currently see online games as a business model being successful so I don't think you can expect to see any serious look at online games [for GameCube] at E3.

I do think that the communication aspect of networking and linking games together, including LAN games, is definitely very interesting, and we're going to look at ways to show that off at E3. Particularly linking the Game Boy Advance and the GameCube and linking four GBAs together.

Q: What about linking GameCubes together?

Shigeru Miyamoto: Unfortunately I can't say anything today [laughs].

Q: How content are you with the connectivity features you've been able to show off on Game Boy Advance up until this point?

Shigeru Miyamoto: No, I think we're still in the middle of the big challenge with trying to show off some capabilities of that and we're still looking for some more definitive examples to show off.

One of the preconditions for connectivity is that everyone has to have all these cables and people who have a GameCube also have to have a GBA, and that may not always be the case. We've really been focusing on taking the idea of connectivity and presenting it so that people who do have both can find, oh, I do get more value out of this and that it's more fun and interesting. We're looking more at trying to build on that and establish the basic groundwork for us to go forward. This year we're going to see 70% to 80% of all first-party releases are going to have some form of connectivity with them. In Japan we've also released Nintendo Puzzle Collection for GameCube and that has a cable packed in with it so we think that we're going to a level of proliferation with the cables and GBA connectivity that we'll be able to show you better examples.

This year we'll be showing off more concrete examples of that with Final Fantasy: Crystal Chronicles and perhaps, and this is not necessarily certain, with Pokemon Ruby and Sapphire versions of Stadium for GameCube. Something like that.

Q: Will you show a higher level of integration between GBA and GCN as you did with Kirby's Tilt and Tumble awhile ago?

Shigeru Miyamoto: Actually, unfortunately work on the Tilt and Tumble, or Roll-A-Rama project, has kind of slowed at this point because of the demands of many of our other projects that we've been working on. But yeah, that's an example of a game that does require that special user base and a cartridge with tilt sensor technology. And we've come up with a lot of other ideas as well.

Q: You said about a year ago that you, Mr. Iwata and the president of HAL went out to dinner to celebrate the success of Super Smash Bros. Melee in Japan, and that some very interesting things were said. Can you tell us what's going with Hal now? Is it the developer of Kirby's Air Ride? And is it working on another Smash Bros. game? Finally, is there any possibility that EAD might license Sega or Namco characters in another Smash Bros. game?

Shigeru Miyamoto: Is that what you're asking? [Laughs] Unfortunately I can't discuss in detail anything that HAL Labs is working on at the moment. What I can say is that they haven't increased in size recently and in conjunction with that they have increased the number of projects they are working on.

As far as having Namco's characters appear in another Smash Bros., we have discussed anything like that at this point. I personally always like to joke about putting Sonic in Smash Bros. [laughs].

Q: And who was the developer of Kirby's Air Ride then?

Shigeru Miyamoto: Yeah, that is HAL that's working on that.

Q: Who is the developer of Wario World?

Shigeru Miyamoto: I don't know if I can say this. Tell you what, Wario World is being developed by Nintendo in conjunction with a second party that we've worked with in the past.

Q: You took your hobby of gardening and based Pikmin on it. Will you implement your new dog into a GameCube game?


Shigeru Miyamoto: Yeah, I think maybe we'll put a dog in Pikmin that will come running out and just gobble up the Pikmin.

I don't specifically take my hobbies and try to find a way to tie them to a game or anything, but one thing that I think is very interesting about dogs and raising dogs is that I think it's really funny the way people think toward dogs and the way dogs think toward people. Dogs obviously don't understand words really and yet people talk to them as if they do, and I fight myself doing this as well and I sound like a complete fool saying complete sentences to my dog which it doesn't understand whatsoever. So I think that for me right now having and interacting with a dog is a game.

Q: What new things has your new dog brought to your life and your thinking?

Shigeru Miyamoto: I definitely think that something like that has the high possibility of popping up in a game somewhere. Probably if we do it, though, it won't be a dog in the game.

Q: The Zelda bonus disc has been a real success for you. Do you think you might ever do that for another game, like F-Zero or Star Fox?

Shigeru Miyamoto: The Zelda presale was actually kind of a unique case in the sense that we have gone through the trouble of developing Master Quest/Ura Zelda in Japan and we ultimately never released it primarily because the contents of the game never changed enough to provide enough value in the product. But the people who worked on it really wanted to get the game out there and we did too, so we actually looked at many possible ways to do that including tying up with magazines and distributing. But ultimately we never really found a way of providing that to the consumer.

This time around, with the release of Wind Waker, the fact that we'd gone from a cartridge-based media on the N64 to a disc-based media caused a drop so significantly that we found we could take this N64 game, put it on a GameCube disc, run it in high-resolution, and follow it up with the Master Quest at a relatively low cost.

We just haven't thought about doing that with anything else at this point.

Q: You know, we've never been able to play Star Fox 2?

Shigeru Miyamoto: Star Fox Adventures was very different from any of the other Star Fox games that we've made and when we were working on that we thought it would have been kind of nice if we had done something similar to Star Fox 64 for that game.

I will definitely give your Star Fox 2 idea some thought though.

Q: Now that Nintendo and Rare have parted ways, where does that leave the Donkey Kong franchise?

Shigeru Miyamoto: I don't know if I can say this, but we are working on a Donkey Kong game. Really, it's our policy with the separation from Rare to not allow that to open any holes in Nintendo's library or lineup. It's not as if we got into some big fight with Rare or anything, we just had some different opinions about business models and where we were headed. We had a strong relationship with Rare and got along very well with them so when we did finally part with them we were able to clean up all the rights and issues surrounding the franchises and characters very easily.

Q: Will we see the new Donkey Kong game at E3?

Shigeru Miyamoto: Unfortunately I cannot answer that.

Q: You just toured Europe. What kind of responses are you getting for Wind Waker from people who have actually played the game?

Shigeru Miyamoto: The response we've been getting is kind of drastically different because very few people in Europe have actually played the game yet. So in Europe, it's a lot like some of the feedback we had gotten when we first showed pictures of the game where people are just overwhelmingly concerned about the graphic style and haven't had a chance to see how it works with the gameplay. Whereas in the US where most everybody has actually gotten to see the game and played it, they finally understood why we chose the graphic style and are much more positive.

In Japan, after people had played Wind Waker, we had a lot of feedback that the collection of Triforce pieces in the game was kind of difficult or tedious so we actually made some changes to that part of the spec for the US version and that'll be reflected in the first build of that which will be coming out next month. It's just little changes, but hopefully that'll improve some of the feedback that we get.

Q: Your European appearance at the Virgin Megastore turned out great. Will you do similar signings in the US or Japan?

Shigeru Miyamoto: I was very surprised by the turnout for the public appearance and autograph session at the [London] Virgin Megastore. Actually, Britney Spears had done one just before I did and 1,000 people came to mine, which was more than she attracted. That was very flattering.

I'd be too embarrassed to do it in Japan though.