Miyamoto Talks Zelda Once More

Posted By at 12:00 AM on Saturday January 1, 2011


The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time news, direct from the production area! The Zelda team chosen by Shigeru Miyamoto created Zelda 64 with surprising stubbornness! One part of that stubbornness was to do a stubborn interview. We’ll pass on a small part of that interview from the top of Hobonichi’s nearby tree.

(1-21) Miyamoto Talks Zelda Once More

Well, how was it? What did the other staff members say? Did you get the sense that even when I told them they didn’t have to go quite that far, it was the staff that were picky?

We actually ought to be totally finished the game, but the world is enormous, so we’re not quite done with the basics.

(This interview was conducted during the final stages of development.)

Before, when you hit a stone with your sword, it would result in a “thud” sound. I ran back to where the staff were and said “It has to be a clang! Why haven’t you done that?” It’s a process where all the individual components are made by hand, you see, so no matter what there are always some little details that we forget to put in. It’s tough to double-check all of them, it takes time. But we’re almost there.

Since I’ve been making games for years, there isn’t really anywhere in particular in this game that I’ve got an emotional investment. I don’t have any particular memories to share, but I’d like you to see the whole thing anyways. I really want you to notice the parts that we realized during production couldn’t be compared to any other games. To that extent, I dare say it might be similar to Mario 64. You don’t have to play to the end, but I think it’s a game that will allow you to get your money’s worth with a base playtime of 20~30 hours.

Up to the middle of the development period there weren’t a lot of sub-events. All we did during the latter half of development was work on sub-events and ocarina material.

It’s mostly design work. The designers have certain “pipe dreams”, and put Link in a realistic landscape. Then I put in game elements and sound details, trying not to interfere with the world.

The final battle, you say? I don’t know too much about it. The designers put their own ideas into creating it, all I said was “Just make it so there’s a terrible enemy.” That’s where my work ends. The people working on it now can make the cool things, I just work on the “emotional” part, the basic stuff. My job was deciding which direction I’d allow the Zelda series to go in.

It’s often said that something or another is “Zelda-esque”, but when you ask “What exactly is that?” you’ll always find opposition. There are numerous staff members who’ve been playing Zelda for a long time, so when there are two options to choose from they know which better conveys the image we’ve chosen for Zelda.

We couldn’t do it. We had one general manager for this enormous project, and he couldn’t possibly write down and summarize everything. Even on the creative side, the designers would do excellent work fleshing out each part, and I’d just arrange it all. My hands were full making mini-games that wouldn’t fail to the creative team.

There were a lot of people doing this Zelda who were working together for the first time. These people waited till the last minute, thinking I’d be instructing them on every little thing and ended up not getting any instructions at all. *laughing* That’s how big this game was. If only we had another year. *laughing* But it’s very usable, this system. It would be a waste if you didn’t do a little more with it.

After Zelda

As for my work, I’m thinking that this time I’d like to do something that isn’t part of a series. Cut the members of the current team in half, have a team that was inherited from Zelda, etc. and work on a new project with the remaining people. That’s generally how each Mario and Zelda game is made.

It’s rare that a series is made with a “pure” team, unchanged from before. Usually half of the staff is replaced every time. We always have just the new people doing the main work on each part. Then, at the end when they’re putting on the finishing touches, the original members suddenly drop in and start monkeying around. *laughing* Half the staff working on this game were new to the Zelda series as well. But that’s how big it was.

There are probably quite a few people out there now who bought an N64 to play Zelda. Thank you very much! They’re not very well-known on the N64, but I still have a ton of well-made games I’d really like to recommend to everyone.

Right now, my top recommendation has got to be 1080º Snowboarding. It’s a snowboarding game that came out in February, 1998. We made a mistake by not releasing it till after the Nagano Winter Olympics had finished, so it didn’t sell very well. But it’s such a playable game that it’s quite a waste. That’s why I’m recommending a 1 year old game. I want to introduce it by saying that it’s not old at all.

The title is 1080º, pronounced “ten eighty” or “thousand eighty”. It’s named after the triple spin jump in snowboarding. You get to experience a skill normally limited to experts on realistic snow, thanks to the N64’s snow quality!

The boards you can use in-game are all ’99 models from the American company LAMAR, and now you can fully enjoy the seasons. It’s my top recommendation for N64 games this winter, so to those who haven’t played it yet, be sure it check it out. And please let your friends play, too. I’ll be really happy if you can enjoy the games we spent a finite amount of time creating for many years to come. Another N64 game, Wave Race, also sold very well this summer in America.

If people start talking about 1080º every year when winter comes around, it will be rewarding for the staff and fun for everyone.

Right now is the height of snowboarding season, so maybe 1101 should pick up 1080º after the Zelda series is done. The passionate voices of the development staff on that title aren’t eclipsed by Zelda, so please give them a read!

This has been the final installment of the Ocarina of Time interviews, “(1-21) Miyamoto Talks Zelda Once More”. Lastly, we give you some snapshots from the staff party to celebrate the Zelda launch. Click here to see!

Next up on 1101’s Hobonichi, we’ll introduce the snowboarding game, 1080º. Please look forward to the start of a new series! (Translator’s Note: I have no plan to do these…)



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4 Responses

  1. ‘We actually ought to be totally finished the game’ – with the game?

  2. GlitterBerri says:

    Same meaning, no? Is that ambiguous? It reads fine to me.

  3. Shadic says:

    Not really. It’s grammatically incorrect. Just a minor gripe. 😛 Thanks for the interview translation though.

  4. Gornel says:

    “You get to experience a skill normally limited to experts on realistic snow, thanks to the N64′s snow quality!”

    The good old days where new physics could even draw your attention from ocarina of time, ha!

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