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Retro Studios Not Assisting Mario Kart 8 Development

by Neal Ronaghan - April 3, 2014, 12:07 am PDT
Total comments: 10

Not much of a surprise, but just so you know.

Retro Studios is not helping with Mario Kart 8, according to a Nintendo representative. The representative did add the caveat "not to [his] knowledge" but also expressed doubt that there was even a chance that Retro Studios helped out.

The developers of Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze previously helped with the creation of the retro tracks in Mario Kart 7 on the 3DS as well as the Donkey Kong Country Returns-themed stage DK Jungle. Retro Studios reportedly finished Tropical Freeze at the end of last year. They did not follow that up with helping bring Mario Kart 8 to the finish line.

One of the classic tracks redone for Mario Kart 8 is DK Jungle, though it's likely that Retro Studios had little to no involvement with the updates to the track.

Mario Kart 8 comes out on May 30 in North America.

Talkback

ShayminApril 03, 2014

Darn. I was thinking this could be one of the best game Retro's worked on along with the DKCRs.

Ian SaneApril 03, 2014

So we're actually at the point where we need to reassure fans that Nintendo isn't wasting Retro Studios on code-for-hire work that any idiot with some basic game development experience could do?  I'm glad they're not working on this but I no longer have any confidence that they are working on something that will truly excite me.  Going back to Metroid would probably be the best case scenario.  Actually since that would let Metroid bounce back from Other M I actually would like that quite a bit.

AdrockApril 03, 2014

Quote from: Ian

So we're actually at the point where we need to reassure fans that Nintendo isn't wasting Retro Studios on code-for-hire work that any idiot with some basic game development experience could do?

It sounds like someone asked a Nintendo rep and this was the answer. Nintendo didn't issue an official press release or anything so this is hardly an act of reassurance and more like a basic answer to a very simple question. And I don't really see what your issue with that was anyway. It isn't like the entirety of Retro Studios dropped everything they were doing to help a few tracks with Mario Kart 7. You really should consider doing some reading before immediately reaching for the bottom shelf with your negativity. Here's a direct quote from Michael Kelbaugh from E3 last year:

Quote:

"We’re pretty much on one major project at a time. We do a game every two years or three years. In the first year of that, we have some extra bandwidth, so sometimes… We helped out with Mario Kart 7. We helped Monster Games do the 3DS version. Sometimes we’ll have a little bit of extra bandwidth to help out other entities at Nintendo. We really feel strongly about helping out Nintendo as a whole, so if we have time, we’ll do that. Do we have the bandwidth to do two major projects at once? I don’t think so. A big project and a little project at the same time, we can do that."

No offense, but I'll take the President of Retro Studio's word before listening to your negative conjecture.

Additionally, Aliens: Colonial Marines is what happens when you get "any idiot with some basic game development experience" to do code-for-hire work. Don't want that to happen? Get some competent people to make a game correctly. Mario Kart 7 was an especially important release for Nintendo in 2011 considering how the year started.

ThomasOApril 04, 2014

This has been known for quite some time now.


http://gonintendo.com/?mode=viewstory&id=206647

broodwarsApril 04, 2014

Quote from: Adrock

And I don't really see what your issue with that was anyway. It isn't like the entirety of Retro Studios dropped everything they were doing to help a few tracks with Mario Kart 7.

Well, my concern when Retro "helps out" other projects is that they're wasting resources they clearly need on their own projects. I wonder if Retro could have turned out the very by-the-numbers 2D platformer DKC: Banana Slamma in less than 4 years if they weren't meanwhile wasting resources on Mario Kart tracks and a 3DS port of DKCR. Hell, maybe those extra people could have been working on a new Retro Studios game that actually excited people.  Just sayin', a studio that only manages to churn out 1 unexceptional 2D platformer every 4 years doesn't really have any business donating resources to other projects. They clearly can barely churn out their own.

AdrockApril 04, 2014

It is beyond absurd for you to claim that Retro Studios is "wasting resources they clearly need on their own projects" when the president of the company says the exact opposite. Are you privy to the company's inner workings? Do you somehow know more about them than their own president? I'm having an extremely difficult time taking your claims seriously in light of staggering evidence to the contrary.

I don't believe the extra bandwidth Kelbaugh spoke of could have contributed to getting Tropical freeze out faster. If a construction company employs painters, they can't paint until the walls are built. In Retro Studio's case, my understanding of the Kelbaugh quote is some of those people don't have anything to do until the game is far enough in development to give them something to do. In the meantime, they can pitch in and help different game's development.

And it is equally absurd for you to state that those extra people could be working on a game "that actually excited people." What does that even mean? Making blanket statements about how people feel about Retro Studios' games, particularly when the general consensus suggests otherwise, strikes me as especially ridiculous.

pokepal148April 04, 2014

Quote from: Adrock

And it is equally absurd for you to state that those extra people could be working on a game "that actually excited people." What does that even mean?

I think it's fairly obvious what that means. Not another 2d platfotmer.

nickmitchApril 04, 2014

I think the idea that Retro Studios "had bandwidth" is a bit unsettling.  At the surface, they have employees that could be working on something exciting, interesting, or strongly desired.  There's an opportunity cost there.  Maybe DKC:TF couldn't have come out any faster with those extra people, I don't really know.  But the idea that those people weren't working on another Retro Studios project is always going to upset people.

marvel_moviefan_2012April 04, 2014

I am pretty sure the president of my company doesn't know shit about what goes on in our day to day operations. The director of the studio maybe but depending on how big they are and how their corporate structure is the president might not know shit about his employees teams, why would he that isn't his job. I don't know what mythical game Retro could be working on that would get me excited, Donkey Kong Country Tropical Freeze looks amazing and is one of three games I would get if I had a Wii U, not enough to sell me on the system but a first day purchase once I get one.


AdrockApril 04, 2014

Quote from: pokepal148

I think it's fairly obvious what that means. Not another 2d platfotmer.

You're killing me, Smalls. Read the sentence after what you quoted. Broodwars doesn't speak for everyone, but his phrasing comes off as such. Considering how popular Donkey Kong Country Returns was, it's odd and probably flat-out wrong to assume people wouldn't be excited for a sequel. I don't see how anyone could rightly make that claim. Additionaly, "not another 2D platformer" is still incredibly vague and just barely more specific than "something people are excited about." It's lose-lose when it comes to Retro Studios. Whatever they make, you can bet that someone is going to call it a waste of their talent.

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