The game has gone through several PC versions since 2005, but the "huge break" for the small development team was becoming an officially licensed WiiWare developer.
Developers like 2D Boy, creators of World of Goo, have demonstrated that small independent studios can accomplish amazing things on WiiWare. The latest independent team trying their hand at WiWare development is Semnat Studios, who on Monday announced their 2D shooter: Eduardo the Samurai Toaster.
In early 2005, Daniel Coleman and Robert Demaria formed Colorado based Semnat Studios. Coleman explained in an interview with Gamasutra that the idea for their game originated when Demaria, "jokingly suggested that [they] work on a platformer where you play as a toaster that fights magical fairies." After working on multiple iterations of Eduardo the Samurai Toaster for the PC, they decided to contact Nintendo and Sony about publishing the game on their digital services. While they never reached Sony, Nintendo of America quickly got back to them. Coleman told IGN that it was a "huge break" when Semnat Studios became an officially licensed WiiWare developer. Coleman also said that Eduardo the Samurai Toaster has only four people on its development team.
During a conversation with WiiWare World, Coleman compared Eduardo the Samurai Toaster to classic shooters like Metal Slug and Gunstar Heroes. Up to four players will find themselves battling as anthropomorphic toasters that must complete thirteen levels filled with evil fruits, veggies, and pastries. Coleman explained that the team is trying to include the best elements of the action shooter genre while taking out "everything we thought wasn't necessary." For example, there will not be a score system. One aspect of Gunstar Heroes that the team is including is the ability to grab and throw objects. "You can throw any enemy, teammate, or projectile in the game," said Coleman. Also, just like in classic arcade titles such as TMNT: Turtles in Times, additional players will be able to join a game already in progress. The game is designed to be played with the Wii Remote held NES style or with a Classic Controller.
One of the game's most interesting features is the unique visual style. Coleman created the art for the game using a variety of tools such as charcoal and acrylic paint. When asked what inspired the innovative and experimental artistic style featured in the game, Coleman said, "I'm a huge fan of foreign cinema and especially 50's and 60's Japanese movies, so I wanted to create areas in the game that would look like they came out of an old samurai flick." Other influences on the visuals include Chinese ink paintings and games like Shadow of the Colossus and Okami.
Currently, Eduardo the Samurai Toaster is only scheduled for a North American release because Semnat Studios simply can't afford to release it elsewhere. Coleman hopes that the game will be available on WiiWare before April and for a low price, but Nintendo has the final say on both matters.
Colorado, USA - January 5th, 2009 – Indie developer Semnat Studios is excited to finally announce the upcoming Wii™ release of Eduardo the Samurai Toaster, an incredibly fast and frenetic sidescrolling, run'n'gun 2D shooter. The game will be released exclusively for WiiWare™ this winter, developed and published by Semnat Studios.
With visuals drawn and scanned in from several different art mediums such as pen & ink, acrylic paint and charcoal, Eduardo sports an untraditional aesthetic design for a videogame. Jump, shoot, whip, drive, fly and throw your way through hordes of Peking Opera pastries, spear toting carrots, robotic mangos, and more. Play with friends as you learn to cooperate effectively, or be annoying by throwing each other around the screen and attacking one another.
- Drop in co-op play for up to four players.
- Ride scooters equipped with laser-blasters and fly around in rocket packs in single player or co-op.
- Use 5 different pastry pickups to upgrade your firepower.
- Battle enemies through 13 unique levels.
- Several different difficulty options to choose from, allowing players to pick their desired level of challenge.
Eduardo the Samurai Toaster has been Rated E for everyone by the ESRB.