Super Smash Bros. is on its way next year for 3DS and Wii U, and director Masahiro Sakurai has revealed how the team behind the games hit a wall early on, feeling that the series might have run its course in an evolutionary creative sense.
Enter the 3DS. In a new interview, Sakurai details how Sora utilised Nintendo's handheld as a force for change when it came to reviving the smack-'em'up.
“While the development of Kid Icarus: Uprising was nearing completion, Satoru Iwata came to me proposing the development of the new Smash Bros game, and asked me if it should be on 3DS or Wii U.
“We arrived at a point where the series could not evolve, and we wondered if the handheld console was the solution. In the past, we have increased the number of characters and arenas, but this was not enough.”
Sakurai recalled that Nintendo and Sora could have made the game a 3DS exclusive, but the handheld console's technical limitations led the team to look further afield towards the Wii U.
“At that time, we could have chosen to develop a 3DS version only,” he said, “but we realised the presence of several limitations.
“I am referring to the fact of playing a game like Super Smash Bros on a small screen. Thus, even if it is not easy to develop two versions simultaneously, we chose to adapt the game experience to the specifications of each platform.”
There's been a bit of grumbling at the fact that not have cross-play between the two versions seems like a missed opportunity, but Sakurai explained that this is down to the unique content featured in both versions.
“Even though the characters will be the same in the version Wii U and Nintendo 3DS, the arena will be completely different,” he said. “In the 3DS version, they are based on games released on portable consoles, while Wii U, arenas are based on articles on home console games.” [P-Nintendo via ONM]