Earlier this month ahead of the release of Mother 2 on the Nintendo Wii U virtual console, Satoru Iwata sat down with the game's director and writer Shigesato Itoi.
Mother 2, known to the west as Earthbound, has a huge following amongst Nintendo and RPG fans, and will once again take on Japan with a re-release on the WiiU as part of the 30th Famicom/NES birthday celebrations.
Itoi sat down with the Nintendo president to discuss the Mother series, which has now been fan-translated.
The pair describe, with the help of Nagata-san, how the Iwata and Itoi first met, with the Nintendo president (who was then president of HAL Laboratories) drafted in to help development and fix a number of things with Mother 2 during its creation in the 90s.
Iwata halted the project during its initial development phase, advising Itoi that "If we used what you have now and fix it, it will take 2 years. If we can start fresh, it'll take half a year."
With Iwata on-board, the team were able to get everything working within half a year, with the entire development spanning around five years.
It's not as if those 4 years were a total waste. All the work and lessons learned from failed attempts everyone put in over 4 years made it into the game. Satoru Iwata
Why did the pair pick Mother 2 as the entry in the series to bring to the Virtual Console? It's due to that the general feeling that "the system in Mother 2 is easier to get into than Mother" and that it might be the preferred entry amongst fans "that many people have played and remember enjoying".
Preferences aside, another reason to bring back to the game was to incorporate Miiverse into the mix, where fans could share their thoughts and communicate with Itoi.
The interview then sways to certain mechanics that "expand the gaming population", with elements incorporated into the Wii design. For example the dad character in Mother 2 calls the player every two hours, saying "don't you think it would be a good idea if you took a break?"
For more, be sure to read the three-part interview in full:
- Mother 2 Re-Release Iwata Asks Translated - Part 1
- Mother 2 Re-Release Iwata Asks Translated - Part 2
- Mother 2 Re-Release Iwata Asks Translated - Part 3
Are you an Earthbound / Mother 2 fan? Would you want a re-release in your region on the Wii U Virtual Console?