Nintendo being staunch proponents of resurrecting and revitalising their impressive roster of mascots, it's perhaps unsurprising that they field many calls for new IP, particularly when the chips are down.
But Nintendo's Shigeru Miyamoto has argued that new IPs and new characters don't necessarily make for new games, placiing greater importance on gameplay innovation.
"Certainly within Nintendo," Miyamoto told GameInformer, "we have people internally who are saying, 'Well, we have our old characters from our old games, and that's old IP, and we should think about creating new IP.' But the question that we always ask is: 'Does a new character really make it a new game?' And to me, the answer to that is, 'No.' What makes it a new game is new gameplay and new interactions. So when we're creating a game, we're always looking at it from, 'What is the gameplay, and how are making that gameplay new?' And then, 'Who is the character that is best suited to that gameplay?'
"By taking this approach, for us, we feel like even when we're creating new installments in existing series, we're creating new experiences, because the gameplay that's in there is something that's entirely new. And in some cases, we may even end up creating new characters. Pikmin was an example of how we ended up creating new IP, because we created this new style of gameplay, and it really needed a new character in order to have that gameplay work, and that was the approach we took. We created the gameplay mechanic first, and then created the characters afterwards.
"What we always stress, when we're working with our development teams is, 'Focus first on creating fun and new gameplay, and then we'll figure out what the character is or what the IP is that's going to go with it.' In the future, we may see that that will bring us some new characters and new IP, but what's important to me is that, even with the existing IP that we're releasing games for, they're all new gameplay experiences."
Yeah, about that. We'll let you read through our hands-on preview for Super Mario 3D World and see for yourselves if Nintendo are in danger of shaking things up too much.