The director of Super Mario Odyessy, Kenta Motokura, gave us more information about the world that Mario will journey through, as well as what characters will fight alongside him. The start of the interview focuses a lot on how Mario’s cap was made to be thrown from Mario’s head. Apparently, this feature was something that was decided from the start of the planning for a Mario title on the Switch. The focus of being able to throw Mario’s cap makes sense, as his classic hat has been an iconic feature of the series.
“As far as the hat action goes it was included in one of the prototypes the staff had come up with. It was part of the game right from the beginning. We have several different themes that arose from those prototypes, and one of those was focusing on the Joy-Con [motion controls].” – Kenta Motokura
The cap was included as a character for the first time in the Mario series. Including the cap as a character makes it so that Mario doesn’t have to journey through a foreign land alone. It is not yet clear whether or not other characters will fight alongside Mario in this quest.
“Mario has always been a hat-wearing character, but because of the new action involved in this hat, we decided to make it into a character. Part of it was we wanted to have someone Mario would go on this adventure with, and there are more details about this that we’ll be revealing at a later date.” – Kenta Motokura
The environment that Mario will encounter is fairly interactive, but the developers did not make it crystal clear what all the player can interact with in different settings. The uncertainty of what can be done within a setting adds a bit of complexity to Super Mario Odyessy.
“Because throwing the cap is a new action, we want players to feel empowered or encouraged to go ahead and try this action wherever they feel it might work. There are certain topographical hints near areas where you’re going to be looking, and you might say ‘That looks like some place my hat might reach or might attach to.’ So there are some hidden elements like that, that players will start to get used to’.”
“The game’s structure isn’t designed so that you have side quests, it’s more that as you’re traveling around the different kingdoms or areas, you’ll find something that attracts your attention and there may be some sort of a quest around that, but it’s all about going and finding and collecting the Power Moons. You need a certain number of Moons to unlock a new kingdom, so some of these what we might consider side quests, are solving some issue within a kingdom, but the real goal of that is to provide you with enough Power Moons to move on with the main storyline.” – Kenta Motokura
The future setting is not indicative of where Odyessy is set within the overall Mario timeline. An old character returns, who is not Princess Peach, which seems to drive Mario on his journey throughout multiple kingdoms.
“In our game design we’re focused on the gameplay elements themselves and how the game plays out. We looked for art styles or level design that works well with that gameplay. There is no actual setting in a specific time period. But another bit of information is that Pauline makes an appearance, and we think that this is tied in with her character, so there’s some back and forth exploration going on in that area as well.” – Kenta Motokura
Super Mario Odyessy is set to release this holiday season, and it seems like it will be an interesting entry for the Mario series as well as the Nintendo Switch. Stay tuned with Nintendo Prime for the latest E3 news.
Source: Nintendo Everything