Interview:GameTrailers October 28th 2011
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Geoff Keighley: Let's talk the state of Nintendo. We haven't heard much from you guys since E3 - I think this is your first appearance since E3. You guys have been working away. Has it been a tough year for Nintendo though? I mean Wii sales are down, the 3DS launch I don't think went as well as you'd hoped it to go. How are you feeling about the year overall?
Reggie Fils-Aime: It's interesting. So I've been in this business now coming up on... closing my eigth year, and I have to tell you, every year is tough. The years that we were selling out of Wiis everywhere were tough years. A year like this year has a different set of challenges. Now it really is all about on one part of our platform the Nintendo 3DS it's managing the upswing as we drive the business forward. On another part of our business it's managing the successful end of life for the Wii.
Geoff: You guys obviously have had a number of successful years with the Wii and people now look at the sales figures and say 'Hey, it's in third place right now.' How does that make you feel? Do you say look at the tale of the tape for all the years?
Reggie: Absolutely! I love actually reading the stories that talk about what position we're in, and there's a forgetfulness of the 35 million units that we've already sold well in advance here in the U.S. and globally of our competetors. So the fact is, we are in a different stage in our life cycle.
Geoff: Is the Wii coming to an end?
Reggie: The Wii will be coming to an end. The question is when and how far after we've launched Wii U will it come to an end, is something we'll let the consumer decide.
Geoff: The 3DS really has some big titles coming out this holiday season - two Mario games. Tell us about those.
Reggie: Sure. So first is going to be Super Mario 3D Land. This game was made for the Nitnendo 3DS. It really takes advantage of the 3D capabilities. And if one Mario game isn't enough, then we've got Mario Kart 7. And Mario Kart 7, not only the ability of customize your karts, not only all of the new tracks, all of the new ways to play in terms of going underwater or gliding in the air, but there are some other things that we'll be unveiling as well in terms of ways that'll make this game different and fully take advantage of the capabilities of the system.
Geoff: Now Reggie, when you come on GTTV, it's just not for this witty repartee. You also have something special for us tonight, a brand new trailer for Skyward Sword.
Reggie: Always asking me to bring the goods, so a brand new trailer, and what's great is it shows how Skyward Sword links to the other Zelda games.
Geoff: Oh, I didn't know that! Alright, well let's check it out - another exclusive here at GTTV.
(This "Origins Trailer" can be viewed here.)
Geoff: I'm here with Eric from the treehouse. So Reggie just unveiled this brand new Skyward Sword trailer. For those of us that aren't fully up to speed on all the Zelda lore, what did we see there?
Erik Peterson: This trailer is really about the connection between Skyward Sword and Twilight Princess and really Ocarina of Time.
Geoff: It's a prequel to a lot of the Zelda games.
Erik: You could say that. It definitely leads up to the events in Ocarina of Time. It's one of those games where if you've played Ocarina of Time, you absolutely have to play Skyward Sword because there's that continuation - that story link.
Geoff: Now Skyward Sword, the idea of this game is that there's sort of two kind of kingdoms is it, that are linked by this sword, right, up in the clouds above and down below?
Erik: In the beginning of the game, you're going to start off in Skyloft, which is this idyllic kind of beautiful island that's just hanging up there in the clouds. And Link is in a school, and he wakes up and there's a contest that he's a part of that's part of his knight training. In the beginning of the game you're really trying to just figure things out and that's actually one of my favorite intros to any Zelda game. It feels really good, there's not a lot of hand-holding, you get right to the action. Eventually there are some events that happen that Zelda is taken away from you. And you have to really put on your uniform and get out there and dive down below the clouds where nobody has ever gone before.
Geoff: Interesting. You guys have talked a lot about the beginning of the game, but you've kept a lot hidden, I think, about how this game's going to evolve, right?
Erik: Yeah, I mean it's one of those game series that we tend to keep close to our vest, we don't want to ruin too much for people. But we're staring to show off some stuff - in this trailer specifically we're showing a few hints of what people might see, showing a desert and this massive Triforce crest that's looming over the desert. There's also a shot of this mysterious temple that's hidden away in the woods. I think one of the really cool things that this game does is it ties some of that dungeon gameplay into the overworld itself. It feels really great because it isn't just a challenge once you get into the dungeon - 'oh hey, where's the dungeon, I'm just gonna go right into it' - You have to earn the right even to get into the dungeon in the first place.
Amanda Mackay: One of the most memorable aspects of the Legend of Zelda series is the music, and tonight I'm at the Pantages Theater in Hollywood, California, to celebrate over 25 years of that iconic music. Right now I'm joined by composer Koji Kondo and game director Eiji Aonuma from the Legend of Zelda series. Now, tonight's show features a 70-piece orchestra and full choir. Tell me how excited you are for tonight's concert.
Koji Kondo: I'm very excited. I'm very honored to have the music performed by such a talented conductor and such talented musicians.
Amanda: Okay, can you give us a rundown of what songs the fans are going to hear this evening?
Kondo: We've programmed the concert tonight so that people will be able to enjoy a wide variety of music, starting with the main theme from the original Legend of Zelda game and including even songs from the next release, The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword. So it's a broad selection from every game in-between.
Amanda: Now a lot of the music within the Zelda series carries over within different games. Does that mean that they're within the same timeline?
Eiji Aonuma: Yes, all of the games are within one timeline for the entire series, but that timeline is a secret that I cannot reveal.
Amanda: Okay, any plans next for maybe a Super Mario Brothers concert?
Kondo: Yes, I'm so excited I started answering in English. I would like to at some point be able to do a Super Mario Brothers concert as well.
Amanda: Well thank you very much for taking the time to talk to us.
Geoff: Hey we're back on GTTV with more new exclusive footage from The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword. I'm still here with Erik at Nintendo with the Master Sword behind us here. So you guys have shown some footage, but in addition to the trailer tonight we're showing brand new action in Skyward Sword. Tell us a bit about how we're going to play this game. What are the mechanics of playing this game?
Erik: Alright, so you're going to be running around using the Wii Remote Plus, Nunchuk - running around, traditional kind of Zelda gameplay, adventuring around, but combat is completely evolved in this game. It's completely different in the sense that you have control over your sword and your shield. So if you want to attack an enemy, you have to think about the angle you're coming in with your sword. Some of the items are going to use Wii Motion Plus as well - all of them do really. So if you want to throw a bomb at an enemy, you have to think about how you're going to hit them. Do you want to throw an overhand bomb, do you want to roll the bomb brom below?
In addition to that, you're also going to be controlling your Loftwing, which is your bird. At any time, you can go to one of these statues that are layered throughout the ground and jump right back up to the sky, fly around a little bit, find an island I want to do, fly up really high, jump off your bird and just skydive right down to where you want to go.
Geoff: People may look at this and say 'oh, it looks like it's just a simple motion game' but it sounds like the biggest Zelda that Mr. Miyamoto's ever made.
Erik: This is a game where you gotta put some hours in this game. This is a game where, I think some people have said 'Is this a game I have to play standing up? Do I have to be up the whole time?' Let me tell you - I haven't played through the whole thing - no, not at all. You can be back, and you can still be actively engaged, but you can be in your chair and playing. But you have to get pretty good with that sword.