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Miyamoto on Wiimakes, Dead-End Design 81

Posted by Zonk
from the four-years-of-wii-puns-to-look-forward-to-folks dept.
GameDaily is reporting on an interview that Nintendo Dream scored with legendary designer Shigeru Miyamoto. Mr. Miyamoto spoke about the future of design and Wii gaming during the interview, touching on several interesting topics. Older Gamecube titles, for example, may be remade for the Wii at some point in the future to take advantage of the console's unique control scheme. There are no announcements of which titles might see this treatment, but he seemed confident that if it does happen the pricepoint would be rather low. In some more high-level comments, Mr. Miyamoto stated that game designers have come to a dead-end as regards gaming today. Not sparing his own company, the designer thinks that future titles will have to come at gaming from a very different perspective if they are to succeed.
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Miyamoto on Wiimakes, Dead-End Design

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  • by NsOmNiA91130 (942812) on Thursday August 24, 2006 @10:37AM (#15969599)
    They should be able to use the original disc, and have the game be locally patched to handle the Wii's control scheme. I wouldn't mind paying $5 for some Metroid Prime goodness.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by anjin-san 3 (983912)
      I think the idea is intended to appeal to the people who never owned a Gamecube and missed out on some good games.
      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by Manmademan (952354)
        I think the idea is intended to appeal to the people who never owned a Gamecube and missed out on some good games.
        That's what backwards compatibility is for. Hitting up the used racks at EB makes a lot more sense to that crowd than shoehorning the wii's control system into games not initially designed for it. I thought Nintendo was supposed to be about innovation? Make NEW games around the interface, rather than rehashing the old stuff.
        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by clu76 (620823)
          Nintendo is also about profit, and they don't make a dime from used game sales. Re-releasing titles with added wii functionality is their way of competing with the used games market. I don't see this as a rehashing, considering they are also pushing a lot of NEW games for the system.
        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by rabbot (740825)

          Hitting up the used racks at EB makes a lot more sense to that crowd than shoehorning the wii's control system into games not initially designed for it

          I think that crowd will pick up the cheap Wii remakes if the new controls positively add to the experience...and we have no reason to think they will just go around remaking any old cube game. I'm sure they will only pick ones that will be better for it. Especially if it is comparably priced to the used games.

          Nothing stopping them from adding wifi su

        • by grapeape (137008)
          As long as they are making new games for the Wii I dont see releasing Wii enhanced versions of old ones as a bad thing. I can recall several games I have played with older controllers where I thought about how much better they would have been with the new one. N64 titles come to mind, I hated the n64 controller but loved some of the games. Pre dual shock ps1 games also are a good example.

          If the new zelda game is alot of fun on the Wii, I can totally see people saying "gee I wish Ocarina of Time could use
    • Those tiny discs might get lost in that full-sized slot.
      • by Valthan (977851)
        except for the fact that the Wii is already backwards compatible with GC games (on their original discs.
        • by conigs (866121)
          I think the point was to add the new control scheme of the Wii to the older GC games. This would take a little tweaking to the code, hence re-releasing the games.
          As it stands, I don't think the GC games can take advantage motion sensitivity of the Wii controller. And simply putting a layer between the controller and the game to translate controller movement into what the game expects would yeild less than desirable results.
    • by trdrstv (986999)
      It would be nice, but doubtful.

      It depends on how they do it. I wouldn't mind them offering GC games with more feautures (such as Wiimote controls) and Widescreen support (or even multiple games bundled), for a reasonable price. From a development stand point it wouldn't be difficult.

      I would re-buy Metroid Prime 1 & 2 for that for say $20. Even better if it was on 1 disk.

  • if the full game was for sale, and not just a patch. Then I could get GC games that I don't already have on the cheap.
    • by Ryan Amos (16972)
      You already can.. Check eBay, I have found every GC game I've ever wanted in good shape for under $10.
      • True, but I'd personally rather have a brand new game without the typical eBay risk for under $10. Not to mention these would have added "features".
  • by UbuntuDupe (970646) on Thursday August 24, 2006 @10:46AM (#15969678) Journal
    You have planned to launch a system with a fundamentally different interface from what people are used to. How to optimally exploit this for fun games is not obvious, because it's very out-of-the-box. The more minds you can have working on this, the better. This is even more important than on rival consoles because of the immensely-greater possibilities. If you really want to discover the most innovative uses of the Wiimote, you're going to need to let hobbyists buy the (fortunately affordable) SDK. Even if their version is bad, if they hit on a good use no one though of, that can become an instant console-seller. Why keep your restrictive policies about the size of developers you'll sell to?
    • by RyoShin (610051) <tukaro AT gmail DOT com> on Thursday August 24, 2006 @11:14AM (#15969913) Homepage Journal
      What they really should do is what Microsoft did- release a "dumbed down" SDK for cheap cheap cheap. Then little garage setups can tinker and release small games, and eventually get enough "cred" to get a real SDK.
    • Hi, thanks for your message. Unfortunately, Slashdot isn't my personal messaging system, so I didn't read one word of whatever you said. Regardless, I hope you enjoy Twilight Princess!

      Love,

      Shigeru "Important People Don't Read Slashdot" Miyamoto
  • by Anonymous Coward
    The Wii controller just isn't 'innovative'

    There, I said it. Nintendo is really on dangerous ground in the console market if they really intend to make the Wii controller the centerpiece of their entire console strategy. Almost every Wii game shown so far shows that all gaming input comes down to a set of continuous(joystick,mouse,pointer(Wiimote)) and discrete(button,(Wii gestures)) input.

    The Wii controller talk about 'actually swinging your controller like a sword' or 'use the controller like a fishing rod
    • by Volante3192 (953645) on Thursday August 24, 2006 @11:13AM (#15969907)
      The Wii controller just isn't 'innovative'

      I'm curious to what dictionary you got your definition of 'innovative' out of...

      (innovative = characterized by, tending to, or introducing innovations, yeay for recursive definitions)
      http://www.m-w.com/dictionary/innovations [m-w.com]
      Main Entry: innovation
      Pronunciation: "i-n&-'vA-sh&n
      Function: noun
      1 : the introduction of something new
      2 : a new idea, method, or device : NOVELTY

      Seems to me this controller fits that definition to a T. What I don't find innovative is simply increasing resolution or texture depth or triangles per second. It's not *new* it's just an improvement, like going from a 20" TV to a 32" TV.

      It might not be an innovation that works, or appeals to the entire crowd, but you can't have a success without some failures. (Virtual Boy...ugg) Personally, I'm excited by it. I don't need a new console to play games with a control pad; I've got emulators and a Gravis. I don't need spiffy shiny console games, I can get a new system with an X1950 for that.

      However, this is a bonifide innovation, and it might actually be fun.
      • I'm not a huge skeptic of the Wiimote, but to be fair, it isn't innovative. It's a rehash of all those horrible motion-activated peripherals made in the 80's and 90's. They just made it the main feature of the system instead of an add-on. Nothing really new or novel about it, except maybe that it works better or is more precise (sort of like adding more polygons or buttons). Innovation isn't all its cracked up to be anyway- usually the first iteration of something innovative sucks, even though it may be
    • by EdwinBoyd (810701) on Thursday August 24, 2006 @11:21AM (#15969973)
      If you look at the strategy employed on the DS (another non-innovative system by your reckoning) you will see that while there are many games that take advantage of the touch screen/microphone there are also many successful games that don't make use of it al all.
      Nintendo will encourage developers to make use of the unique capabilities of the Wii but they will not force feed it to the public. If Nintendo feels that a game is better experienced with a standard gamepad they'll run with it.
    • by Anonymous Coward
      There, I said it. Never before has there been a consumer interface device with the following properties:

      1 - Full 3D spatial location tracking
      2 - Accelerometer
      3 - Gyroscope

      It is the combination of all these things that make the controller TRULY innovative, not just innovative in the sense that it is going against the current grain of "more buttonz everywherez". Imagine the effects this controller can have on a game - Splinter Cell's lockpicking mini-game is no longer a matter of jiggling joysticks. You ac
    • by MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) on Thursday August 24, 2006 @11:30AM (#15970050)
      "The Wii controller just isn't 'innovative'"

      I really cannot say I agree with that. I've recently been playing San Andreas. Though I enjoy the game, the controller is a big hinderance. Not only is aiming the gun a pain in the butt, but it isn't hard to hit the wrong button at an inopportune time. A number of times I've gone to hit the targetting button and changed weapons instead. After I build up some muscle memory on it, it won't matter as much, but it's still frustrating. If the Wii were to get a port of this (blah, I don't expect that, but man I'd love it) I'd be able to point the remote at the target and hit the trigger button to fire. If I want to go jack a car, I'd thrust the nunchuck controller ahead in a punching motion instead of hitting the action button. If those were the only upgrades to the game with the remote, I'd not only have a much better time controlling it, I'd also have a more intuitive interface.

      This is the sort of scheme Nintendo is pushing ahead with. In light of what Sony and Microsoft have for their 'next-gen' systems, I'd say 'thin-ice' is the last thing I'd use to describe Nintendo's controller. I went to a 360 kiosk and tried to play a demo of a WWII game. Trying to aim the gun was clumsy at best, and who knows what the other buttons did. I wouldn't mind, but 'running around and shooting stuff' is what most of these games are based on.

      Respectfully, I disagree with your post. Partly because I've found FPS gaming (even games like Metroid Prime) frustrating with traditional controls and partly because I'm really enjoying my DS. I'm welcoming the Wii with open arms.
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Bohnanza (523456)
        I wouldn't mind, but 'running around and shooting stuff' is what most of these games are based on.

        Which is one of the reasons designers are at a "dead end". With a few notable exceptions, video/PC games are based on Sports or Combat of some type. Even "Adventure" or the badly-mischaracterised computer "Role Playing" games usually involve lots of fighting. Designers can't seem to think of anything else.

        • by Jerf (17166) on Thursday August 24, 2006 @12:24PM (#15970621) Journal
          Designers can't seem to think of anything else.

          I don't think it's that they can't think of anything else, it's that they can't implement anything else.

          Take Nethack. Now, make a magnificent modern AAA 3D game out of it that sacrifices absolutely nothing. Every spell effect, every creature, every action, everything. It is probably theoretically possible, but it would be a monstrous undertaking. Nethack casually does very advanced things because the graphics, perhaps ironically, support those advanced things as well as they do anything else.

          Angband is simpler in many ways, but it also does some things with terrain and detection spells that a modern 3D graphics engine could hardly dream of.

          Graphics have shot well ahead of our ability to actually represent things with them. Combat's all that's left, and honestly, it tends to suck; if my sword was actually going straight through that orc, shouldn't it be in two pieces now? But it's easily fakable. Most other things aren't. So we're left with games consisting of the things that are sorta, kinda fakable in 3D.

          Who knows how many wonderful features have been cut because there was no way to render them in breathtaking 3D? We end up with only the games we can represent in 3D, which is a horrific subset of the games we could do in 2D. There's still room for 2D games because we aren't as advanced in 3D as we think we are.

          The Wii at least attacks one problem, that of the fundamentally binary input of buttons and a directional pad being your only interface into a complicated world. (I am aware that the directional pads are technically analog, but they aren't really very good at it.) But it doesn't do anything to attack the graphics problem.
      • So how is remembering that "getting into the car == punch" any easier than "press B"? The muscle memory is still there. I agree with you on the gun. The FPS will be very interesting to play (though turning around STILL won't be as good as a mouse!), and games will actually be made for it since its the standard input device. What I'm afraid of on the Wii is a bunch of games where designers "Wii-ify" a game by taking a button press and making it a stupid gesture. No thanks, I'd rather hit the button. If
        • "So how is remembering that "getting into the car == punch" any easier than "press B"?"

          Just reach reach out like you jiggle a door handle.
    • by ianscot (591483)

      The Wii controller talk about 'actually swinging your controller like a sword' or 'use the controller like a fishing rod' reminds me of the race back in the late 80s rpg/adventure games where developers kept adding more and more real world actions to their games. Feeding, equipping items, moving/manipulating objects in the world. In the end it became tedious.

      I have not one idea how you think those two things are comparable. If it were somehow the case that games would, by definition, use the Wiimote to m

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by thebdj (768618)
        (Frankly, too, I've been around a while and I don't remember the supposed phase you're describing in rgps and adventure games.)

        I believe he is recalling that phase where he stopped playing simplified hack-and-slash RPGs and started playing real ones that actually made you worry about items that had been part of PnP RPGs since their creation. Honestly, this is another one of those trolls who wants his pretty graphics and could care less about real gameplay. There is something I really dislike about how
        • Actually, there were 3 fishing games, but you're absolutely right. It's a specialty controller. Sega was actually really big on those for their arcade ports (maraccas,twin sticks,dance pads,etc). The problem is that most people aren't willing to shell out $50 for a new game and another $75 for a controller (just for that game). The Wii nun-chucks are a compramise, we'll have to wait and see how they play out.

          Innovation is big here. The only thing I have seen that was close to this was the fishing contro

    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by rob1980 (941751)
      How is it not innovative? Tell me you've never twisted your controller around while you were trying to make a sharp turn on a race track. Tell me you've never instinctively raised your controller up while trying to get your character to block an attack in a fighting game. Everybody does this, it's instictive. Nintendo looked at all this and said... ok, we're going to drag you further into the game and make your instincts actually count for something.

      That's a hell of a lot more innovative than Sony cou
    • I dont see the relation between adding tedious in-game actions and a new method of control for a game. The two ideas are rather different. The Wiimote doesnt just add useless actions, its like giving players a third hand in regards to control input to the game.

      Hand 1: joystick.
      Hand 2: buttons such as A or B
      "Hand" 3: Movement of the controller

      The movement input from the controller thankfully being far more robust than just tilt sensing.... I think involving such fancy things as acceleration and possib
    • by eboot (697478)
      Oooo look mom I found a troll!!
    • by kehren77 (814078)

      The Wii controller just isn't 'innovative'

      I'm afraid I have to agree with this. First of all, Nintendo themselves have done this before. It was called the Power Glove [wikipedia.org] last time.

      Obviously the Wiimote is quite a step up in technology, but not enough to call it "innovative'.

      • by kehren77 (814078)
        Okay before anyone rips my head off for this, I realize that Nintendo didn't actually make the Power Glove. I meant simply that it was an NES compatible device.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by justchris (802302)
      I think you misunderstand the concept of innovation. Innovation is not just a matter of doing something no one has ever done before, but a matter of doing it differently than it has been done before. Certainly there have been attempts at motion sensing control, pointing devices and separate hand controls before (which has always struck me as the next step in control, it's silly to always keep both hands in the same position). The Wiimote+nunchuk is innovative not just because of what it does, but because
  • I would love to see a Wind Waker Wii-make with all the features Miyamoto had originally planned for it. I know that in atleast one article I read years ago he said there was supposed to be atleast two more dungeons and the hunt for the Triforce wasn't supposed to be an annoying romp across the ocean.

    Eternal Darkness would also be a really cool game for a Wiimake.
  • by Mongoose (8480) on Thursday August 24, 2006 @12:24PM (#15970620) Homepage
    It seems a lot of people on internet fourms don't consider the possibly of the DS keeping the Wii market share low. There is a big difference with casual mobile and casual on the console. Also the recent Xbox Live arcade has more to do with the lack of titles than the appeal of the actual games. What happens if you can get the same title for DS as Wii? Which do you think people would buy? This is one of the ideas leading analysts to think of Wii as a '3rd place' in next gen. Once it gets down to the SNES and 'arcade' titles people will want to play those on DS more than Wii.
    • by cowscows (103644)
      While it might come up once in a while, I don't think this is going to be as big of a problem as you're making it out to be. How many games will be available on both? Probably not that many. While backwards combatibility is nice, I don't think it's a major force for driving console sales. People are more interested in the new games. Then there's the fact that although the DS has two screens, those two screens still only add up to to maybe 20 square inches of display, which can't hold much detail or complexi
  • People complain that games have sequels and are becoming derivative more and more, and I don't see anyone bitching about the fact that Nintendo wants to release remakes (albeit at lower prices) of Gamecube games with different controls. There goes your innovation. Why isn't anyone picking up on this? Oh right... this is Nintendo, they can't do anything wrong now because of the Wiimote. Besides, why would I want to buy the same game with different control mechanics when I've already played it through before
    • by digitrev (989335)
      This is like updating a version of an old program. All they'll be doing is adding in a few features here and there, not building a game from scratch. The actual work will involve pulling up old code, and changing a few functions / subprograms that control certain events. They'd probably be able to rehash about 5-6 old games in the time it would take to write a control scheme for a new game. And let's be realistic, the games that are likely to be re-written are the Mario, Zelda, Metroid, and some of the spor
      • by JFMulder (59706)
        The why people are complaining about games like Halo 3, Call Of Duty 12 or Final Fantasy 3000? If people are willing to pay (and sales show people are willing to pay), then why all the fuss over sequels?

        Seriously, I'd rather have Nintendo create a totally new Mario Baseball (or Tennis) with Wii quality graphics and updates to the gameplay (aside from the remote), then a souped up version that it's only different with the original is Wiimote.
  • But if you look at all the games that have been "successful" lately, they are basically sequels or taking a genre and doing it better. HL2, CivIV, WoW (not a sequel, but is the best MMORPG to date -- well, most popular in any case), etc etc. To be a success, a game needs to be enjoyable and pay attention to detail. This is true if it is a Wii game or a 360 game. To take games in a new direction has a lot of risk. Even great games get overlooked if all the variables don't fall in to place. I honestly d
  • I disagree with Miyamoto's statement that developers have come to a dead-end. Gaming is far from having it a dead-end.

    Gaming may be a bit stagnant, but that's the fault of excessive budgets, marketing departments and the gamers themselves who seem to thrive on more of the same.

    It definitely isn't because of technological limitations and an unconventional controller isn't going to change everything. The Wii controller allows for some new variations on gameplay but ultimately it's just another control device.

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