Super Mario 3D Land: Developer Credits Hardware Changes for the Freshness of Franchise
Koichi Hayashida, the director of Super Mario 3D Land said that hardware-driven changes keeps the Mario series fresh. What’s more interesting is he claims that this hardware-driven innovation’s impact enables the franchise to progress even without its creator, the iconic Shigeru Miyamoto.
In a Game Developer’s Conference 2012 interview, Hayashida credits new hardware for pushing the development team behind the Mario brand to discover new gameplay of familiar combinations in the world of Mario. The gameplay is made special by the new hardware’s features. The mix of new hardware and familiar game elements gives Mario games’ players “a sense of freshness,” said Hayashida. As for the role of the series’ creator, Miyamoto, Hayashida noted that while much of the Mario series’ elements were contributed by Miyamoto, the game is more than just one individual. Hayashida said that these foundational ideas were built upon and incorporated by subsequent developers. Each generation of developers pass the ideas to each other in an ever evolving process.
Given this view, it looks inconceivable that the Mario series will run out of steam in the future as long as the developer teams continue to creatively build on and improvise on the classic elements pioneered by Mr. Miyamoto. Paired with powerful hardware, there appear to be enough gameplay elements in the series to span many more years into the future.