A recently discovered journal found at Nintendo’s headquarters is home to a variety of never-before-seen “Iwata Asks” transcripts. As a journalist, I feel that it is my duty to inform the public about these revelations and explore the mind of Iwata in order to gain a deep insight into the workings of Nintendo. These undisclosed transcripts range from recent years all the way back to the 90s, Iwata laughing in every single one of them.
Today’s entry has Iwata talking to Aonuma and his development team all about the latest Zelda game, Hyrule Warriors.
“Hyrule Meets High Heels”
Iwata: Good evening, ladies and gentlemen. Welcome to our latest interview with the team behind Hyrule Warriors. If you could, please introduce yourselves.
Hiashi Koinuma: Hello, I am Hiashi Koinuma, producer of Hyrule Warriors.
Yosuke Hayashi: Hello, I am Yosuke Hayashi, also producer of Hyrule Warriors.
Eiji Aonuma: Hello, I am Eiji Aonuma, supervisor of Hyrule Warriors.
Iwata: Only supervisor?
Aonuma: Yes, I didn\’t want to be here in the first place, but you won\’t allow me to work on anything else, so I took on the least important job of the development.
Iwata: [Laughs] That’s right, don\’t forget, you\’re here forever. Koinuma, Hayashi, for the benefit of the readers, could you please give a brief explanation of what exactly Hyrule Warriors is.
Hayashi: Hyrule Warriors is the result of combining Nintendo’s Legend of Zelda series to Koei Tecmo’s Dynasty Warriors series. The outcome is essentially a \”hack-an-slash\” game with The Legend of Zelda attributes.
Koinuma: The best thing about Hyrule Warriors is that, for the first time, no longer is the player merely restricted to using Link as the protagonist. As a result of butchering the Legend of Zelda timeline, we\’ve allowed players to control characters like Zelda, Sheik, Ruto, Ganondorf, Zant, and Ghirahim.
Hayashi: These characters each have different moves and attacks, so they\’re really unique. I hope players have a good time finding out their favourite character to use.
Aonuma: [Under breath] I hope players realise you\’ve ruined the Zelda series…
Iwata: Did you say something, Aonuma?
Aonuma: No! Just like Link, I stay silent in all this. My only two wishes to the team was that there would be no downloadable content or retailer exclusive content. It’s my firm belief that players should have the full experience without having to go out of their way as to get the best experi—
Hayashi: We\’ve just announced retailer-exclusive content. To receive Twilight Princess costumes, pre-order at Amazon; for Ocarina of Time, go GameStop; and for Skyward Sword, go Best Buy. These costumes make no difference to the game, but they look pretty.
Koinuma: We\’ve had lots of positive response to this DLC incentive and pre-orders have increased tenfold.
Iwata: Brilliant. Great job, guys. Our fans have always requested we step into the 21st century, so that’s exactly what we\’re doing. Let’s hope it pleases them.
Koinuma: And Link is now appearing in Mario Kart, so there’s that.
Aonuma: [Breaks down]
Iwata: Tell me, this game has many female playable characters. Was it hard to create and develop so many female characters. Was it a challenge?
Aonuma: …Hard? Why would it be more difficult to create a female character than a male character?
Iwata: I\’ve read reports that developing female characters would take up a huge chunk of your time and even stretch the budget.
Aonuma: [Laughs] In that case, we must have had a budget of $100 million for this game! We have Princess Zelda, Impa, Princess Ruto, Midna, Agitha, Fi, and our new character, Lana. Of course, Link is playable, as well as Ganondorf, Zant, and Ghirahim.
Iwata: Be careful — if you spend anymore of our money you will bankrupt us. [Laughs] Koinuma, Hayashi, tell me. Coming from the Koei Tecmo team, famed for various franchises, but especially Dead or Alive, was there any desire to make the female characters in this game…well, you know.
Hayashi: I\’m not quite sure what you\’re referring to.
Iwata: Please, gentlemen, give it a little more thought and you\’ll realise what I\’m talking about.
Hayashi: Ooooohh, I think he means…
Koinuma: Ahh, yes. Some people question why we include this in some of our games.
Hayashi: Well, some people think it’s tasteful, others don\’t. Anyway, to answer your question, Iwata-san — yes, we really did want to make the characters play volleyball. Our Dead or Alive volleyball game was generally well received, so it’s always a consideration. However, we weren\’t entirely sure where volleyballs fit in the Zelda canon, so we left it out.
Koinuma: One game we did take influence from was Minecraft. We\’ve even put in a special Minecraft sword for Link to use against his foes.
Iwata: Minecraft? I\’ve never heard of it.
Koinuma: It’s very popular with children. You should consider looking into it.
Iwata: Likely one of those \”trends,\” like online gaming and account systems. Now, one last question, why Dynasty Warriors?
Aonuma: It just felt right. Initially, Hayashi wanted Dynasty Warriors to be closer to a Zelda game instead of a Zelda game like Dynasty Warriors.
Iwata: What changed his mind?
Hayashi: Well, Miyamoto came in and flipped the table. He completely reversed our creative decision. I\’m not sure if I\’m completly happy with that move, but it seems to have worked out.
[Faint rumbling in the distance.]
Hayashi: Oh no. Iwata-san, please, help me. Hide me, he’s coming.
[Sound of tables being upended gets louder.]
Koinuma: It’s Miyamoto-san. He heard you and he’s coming. Please, don\’t let him get to us.
Miyamoto: Game over. [Upending tea tables intensifies.]
[End of transcript.]