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Miyamoto originally pitched Mario for Splatoon

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Maybe that scared the team into coming up with something more creative

Splatoon's squishy squids that characterize the game came long after the graffiti-tagging gameplay concept. "We had found that the ink-battle play mechanic was fun, and the team was working very hard to brush up on that aspect at that time, but we were losing the freshness of the game the more the team worked on it," Miyamoto told TIME, reminding me of many major releases polished and ground down to safe, soft nubs. 

"The thing which concerned us most was the main character. It looked as if it could be found in any game and lacked uniqueness. So, I told the game’s producer and the director to even consider using Mario if we could not find the right character. I also explained to them why I was providing such a suggestion."

I'm not sure doing a plug-and-play with Mario would've added uniqueness, but I guess it would be more emblematic and recognizable than whatever beige bland characters they were originally coming up with. Thankfully for everyone, "A few weeks later, they gingerly approached me with the squid-like character, and we decided on that direction right on the spot. The director and others who nervously brought the squid character to me must have been surprised with my positive reaction, but at the time, I didn’t accept it for lack of better options. I actually thought, ‘This must be it!’ It’s fun to nurture something so unique, and I’m glad that they were able to experience bringing it to fruition."

The TIME interview is full of warm, fuzzy, almost too clean quotes like that, including Miyamoto's thoughts on how the novel is a more imaginative medium. But most importantly is this comment -- emphasis mine -- I think: "Whichever media we are talking about, inspiring the audience’s imagination beyond what they have actually read or seen, and having them embrace that, is a fundamental essence of entertainment."

7 Fascinating Insights from Nintendo’s Gaming Genius Shigeru Miyamoto [TIME]

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Steven Hansen
Steven HansenContributor   gamer profile

Steven watches anime & sports, buys meat out of trucks, dates a Muppet, and is only good at cooking. He stands before you bereft of solace and well on the road to perdition. ('^ω^) more + disclosures


 




 


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