Nintendo is Hiring a Level Designer for the Legend of Zelda Series

Have you ever wanted to create dungeons for the Legend of Zelda series? Model an overworld of the sort found in titles like Breath of the Wild?

Come up with interesting puzzle box setups based on Mark Brown’s Boss Keys videos?

Oh of course you have. Everyone’s looked at the Zelda series at some point and wanted to work on it. Heck, it’s a dream role for thousands of people in the series, with composer Grant Kirkhope being only one example.
And now, it could be a possibility for you as well. Why? Because Nintendo’s just put up a job posting for a level designer for the Legend of Zelda franchise. Here’s the listing page if you haven’t seen it already:

As you can tell (via a quick Google translation), they’re asking for someone to create game events, dungeons and overworld areas, with enemy placements specifically mentioned as part of the job description. They also mention that said person should be a fluent Japanese speaker (due to the need to collaborate with others), have experience producing games in some manner and will be trialled for 3 months before potentially getting promoted to a permanent member of staff. In other words, it’s exactly what you’d expect from a role like this.

So, check it out, and give it a shot if you have the skills required. After all, Corey Bunnell did back in 2014 or so, and that got him a job working on Zelda Breath of the Wild.

If you take advantage of the right opportunities, the sky’s the limit here!

Source:

The Legend of Zelda Level Designer Listing (Official Nintendo Jobs Site)

Pikachu Once Had a Second Evolution Called Gorochu?

As you likely know, Pikachu only has one evolution in the Pokemon series. Oh sure, it has a pre-evolution in the form of Pichu and an Alolan variant for its evolution, but the evolutionary line stops at Raichu, regardless of what some clueless scientist on Cinnabar Island might say in the original games.

Raichu went and evolved

However, did you know it didn’t used to be that way?

Yeah, you heard us right. At one point in Pokémon’s development, Pikachu was actually the first stage of a three-part evolutionary line, with Raichu having an evolution of its own.

This is confirmed by a recent interview in Yomiuri where Pokemon series artist Atsuko Nishida mentions a scrapped second evolution for the iconic electric mouse. This second evolution would have it become an unknown Pokemon called Gorochu, described as a fiercer looking creature with fangs and a pair of horns. Here’s the quote about it straight from the original article:

In the game Pikachu only evolves to Raichu, but I hear that at first there was three stages. Why did it end up being only two stages? (Or one evolution)

Nishida: Yes. It was “Pika(chu),” “Rai(chu),” and “Goro(chu).” The Pokémon known as Gorochu bared fangs and even had a pair of horns.

It’s certainly an interesting thing to think about, isn’t it?

After all, the horns and fangs suggest a more menacing final form than Raichu turned out to be, with elements of a demonic motif potentially being present there.

Fake Pikachu Evo

Above: Though maybe it could have looked more like this hoax from back in 2013…

And that’s not all. Oh no, remember that as a rule, elemental stone evolutions tend not to evolve again afterwards in the main Pokemon series. There may be the odd exception in future, but in general, the elemental stone tends to activate a Pokémon’s last evolutionary form.

However, Raichu was only the second form in this shortened line. This raises the question of whether it was originally going to evolve some other way, or whether the rule of elemental stone evolutions not evolving afterwards wasn’t decided then.

Which in turn leads to questions about the anime or Pokemon Yellow could have worked as well. Okay, they weren’t really things anyone was thinking about at this point, but… picture it for a second. If Pikachu didn’t require a Thunder Stone, that would completely change the mechanics for both of these adaptations, and likely mean they’d go in totally different directions from what we actually got.

So, in that sense, cutting Gorochu may have been instrumental to the direction of almost every part of the Pokemon franchise. For want of a nail indeed!

However, as interesting as that thought experiment aspect may be, it’s not the only intriguing thing brought to light in the interview.

Oh no, quite a few other details about Pikachu’s design and character development were mentioned there too. For instance, Pikachu wasn’t actually a mouse in the game’s early development either.

Nope, back then it was actually meant to be a squirrel. In fact, the red cheeks Pikachu is partially known for are a holdover from this, with the idea of it having cheek pouches for electricity coming from how squirrels store food in their cheeks:

Nishida: Since it was an electric-type, I thought it would be nice to have it store electricity in its cheek pouches. At the time I was really into squirrels, and since squirrels store food in their cheeks I thought about giving it cheek pouches. Also, squirrel tails are cute so I gave it a tail as well. However, I did want to give it some kind of “lightning” part to it, so I gave it the lightning-shaped tail.

And that’s still not all. Nope, before it was even meant to be a squirrel, Pikachu was actually envisioned as a daifuku. As in, it was originally based on a certain type of Japanese cake with ears, with the name ‘Pikachu’ being part of why it was eventually turned into a mouse.

Add to this how its original concept was created as a way to add ‘cute’ Pokemon to a series that didn’t yet feature them or how its rarity in game was driven in part by its creators wanting to keep it to themselves, and it becomes clear that every element of the electric mouse’s creation stemmed from pure serendipity. Kind of like many other Nintendo characters and their origins when you think about it…

So yeah, go and read the full translation from Silicon Era if you want to know more. There’s quite a lot of interesting stuff there, and you’ll get quite the glimpse of Pokémon’s development process while you’re at it.

As for now? Well, give us your thoughts on the scrapped Pikachu evolution or its design in the comments below! Would you have wanted to see Raichu evolve into a more powerful Pokemon, or Pikachu with a squirrel inspired design?

Source:

Pikachu Originally Had A Second Evolution Called ‘Gorochu’ With Large Fangs And Two Horns (Silicon Era)

Has Nintendo Just Hinted at a New Video Game System?

Earlier today, the British Academy of Film and Television Arts held the Bafta Games Awards. These awards turned out pretty well for Nintendo, with the company’s products being nominated for nearly every category and winning quite a few of them with titles like Super Mario Odyssey and the Legend of Zelda Breath of the Wild.

However, what really got people’s attention was not the ceremony. Oh no, it was the follow up interview the BBC held afterwards.

That’s because in that video, Nintendo’s Shinya Takahashi made reference to a new system that Nintendo was supposedly working on. Here’s his original comment from the interview, as translated by a nearby interpreter:

Nintendo constantly works on hardware, so we have been doing research and development. You may see the new system sometime in the future.

As you can tell, it’s certainly an interesting hint towards an unannounced system. But is it really a big deal?

Well, to be honest it’s hard to know.

Because you see, Nintendo is always working on new hardware. Seriously, that’s how the company operates. Whenever one system comes out, they start work on its successor shortly after. Same with their games, with each Mario and Zelda title usually starting developing not long after the previous one wraps up.

Yet that doesn’t mean said new games and systems are coming ‘soon’. It just means they’re in development right now.

And nothing in the video contradicts that. Indeed, Mr Takahashi doesn’t say the system is coming in the ‘near future’, nor does it say it’s coming ‘soon’. Heck, he doesn’t even give a timeframe from when it might be announced.

Just that you ‘may see the new system sometime in the future’.

And well, given that Nintendo’s always working on new things (and that they’ll inevitably be releasing new games and systems in the future), that quote really just reaffirms what we already know.

So don’t panic about it, okay? Relax, and remember that Nintendo is always working on new products, even many years before they’re due to be released.

Thank you.

Source:

Nintendo Celebrates Bafta Hat Trick (BBC News)

Waluigi Has Been Modded into Mario Kart 7

When it came out in 2011, Mario Kart 7 had most of what the fans wanted in a Mario Kart game. It had some great new tracks, like Shy Guy Bazaar, Melody Motorway and Rosalina’s Ice World. It had the best set of returning tracks in the series, including such gems as Waluigi Pinball, Airship Fortress and Maple Treeway. And well, it was the one game that introduced tons of great new characters too. Like Shy Guy, Lakitu and Wiggler.

However, it also had one small issue. Namely… Waluigi wasn’t it. It managed to have Queen Bee from Super Mario Galaxy sure, but Waluigi? Nah, guess Nintendo and Retro never thought of putting him in the game.

But thanks to the fans, that’s all now gone and changed. Yup, as seen below, Waluigi has been modded into Mario Kart 7 as a playable character:

When it came out in 2011, Mario Kart 7 had most of what the fans wanted in a Mario Kart game. It had some great new tracks, like Shy Guy Bazaar, Melody Motorway and Rosalina’s Ice World. It had the best set of returning tracks in the series, including such gems as Waluigi Pinball, Airship Fortress and Maple Treeway. And well, it was the one game that introduced tons of great new characters too. Like Shy Guy, Lakitu and Wiggler.

However, it also had one small issue. Namely… Waluigi wasn’t it. It managed to have Queen Bee from Super Mario Galaxy sure, but Waluigi? Nah, guess Nintendo and Retro never thought of putting him in the game.

But thanks to the fans, that’s all now gone and changed. Yup, as seen below, Waluigi has been modded into Mario Kart 7 as a playable character:

When it came out in 2011, Mario Kart 7 had most of what the fans wanted in a Mario Kart game. It had some great new tracks, like Shy Guy Bazaar, Melody Motorway and Rosalina’s Ice World. It had the best set of returning tracks in the series, including such gems as Waluigi Pinball, Airship Fortress and Maple Treeway. And well, it was the one game that introduced tons of great new characters too. Like Shy Guy, Lakitu and Wiggler.

However, it also had one small issue. Namely… Waluigi wasn’t it. It managed to have Queen Bee from Super Mario Galaxy sure, but Waluigi? Nah, guess Nintendo and Retro never thought of putting him in the game.

But thanks to the fans, that’s all now gone and changed. Yup, as seen below, Waluigi has been modded into Mario Kart 7 as a playable character:

What’s more, it’s a really well-done mod too. All the animations work well, all the icons have been changed, his voice clips are identical to the ones in other Mario spinoffs… Indeed, if I didn’t know this was a mod, I’d actually think it was an official bit of DLC. Seriously, it really does look that professional.

So, if you’re a fan of Waluigi (or just want to see Mario Kart 7’s roster fixed up), check it out. It’s a nice fan made character mod that replaces Honey Queen with Waluigi and basically does exactly what fans have wanted the game to do from the very beginning.

Thanks for making it PabloMK7!

What’s more, it’s a really well-done mod too. All the animations work well, all the icons have been changed, his voice clips are identical to the ones in other Mario spinoffs… Indeed, if I didn’t know this was a mod, I’d actually think it was an official bit of DLC. Seriously, it really does look that professional.

So, if you’re a fan of Waluigi (or just want to see Mario Kart 7’s roster fixed up), check it out. It’s a nice fan made character mod that replaces Honey Queen with Waluigi and basically does exactly what fans have wanted the game to do from the very beginning.

Thanks for making it PabloMK7

What’s more, it’s a really well-done mod too. All the animations work well, all the icons have been changed, his voice clips are identical to the ones in other Mario spinoffs… Indeed, if I didn’t know this was a mod, I’d actually think it was an official bit of DLC. Seriously, it really does look that professional.

So, if you’re a fan of Waluigi (or just want to see Mario Kart 7’s roster fixed up), check it out. It’s a nice fan made character mod that replaces Honey Queen with Waluigi and basically does exactly what fans have wanted the game to do from the very beginning.

Thanks for making it PabloMK7!

Do Nintendo Trademarks Hint at a Wario Land Revival?

Prior to the recent Nintendo Direct, rumours flew around about a new Wario Land title on 3DS. Named various things depending on the source (and implied to be released) sometime in 2017 or 2018, the game unfortunately never showed up in the Nintendo Direct, with WarioWare Gold being Wario’s only representation at the event.

But while this is a tad disappointing for some, it seems Wario Land may indeed be on the verge of a comeback.

Why? Because as Japanese Nintendo reports, Nintendo has recently registered a trademark for the name of the series.

And while this alone wouldn’t be enough to confirm the title (since Nintendo trademarks many things that never used), there’s more to this registration than meets the eye. That’s because the trademark is in a batch of several others. These are:

  • Dillon’s Dead-Heat Breakers
  • Luigi’s Mansion
  • Mario & Luigi
  • Metroid
  • Metroid Prime
  • Octo
  • Smash Bros

And WarioWare. As you can tell, all of them refer to games announced at the recent Nintendo Direct. Like say, Luigi’s Mansion on 3DS:

Or Mario & Luigi Bowser’s Inside Story + Bowser Journey’s Journey:

Well all except Wario Land that is. However, given the others are confirmed releases, it only makes sense Wario Land one would be too. After all, this isn’t the only recent Wario Land trademark.

Nope, they registered another one ten months before this one. That’s a clear sign something’s going on here. After all, why register multiple trademarks for a brand they have no plans for?

It wouldn’t make sense. So evidence wise, it very much seems Wario Land is seeing a comeback.

So, rejoice Wario fans! Not only are we getting a brand new WarioWare game in the form of WarioWare Gold, but it seems a new Wario Land game could be joining it as well.

Let’s hope these titles are signs of a bright future for our favourite Italian antihero!

Source:

Daily News Update (Second Wario Land Trademark