Nintendo Traumatized by 3D

Fascinating insight into the Nintendo were having with 3D past and present. The following discussion took place during the recent Iwata Asks session. You can read the full transcript here.

3DS designer Kenichi Sugino, was involved in the creation of Virtual Boy, the failure of which apparently “traumatized,” him. Hideki Konno worked on the 3D versions of Luigi’s Mansion and Mario Kart for the system, which were never released because the firm “just couldn’t get past the problem of how to sell it,” said Konno.

“Because of those hard experiences, when I told people at Nintendo how fun 3D games are, I couldn’t get them to immediately believe in the potential,” he added. “I’d propose something, and they’d be like, ‘Huh? Are we still doing that?’ I decided to at least experiment.

“First we made it possible to represent Mario and Luigi in 3D. Then I talked to the development staff of Mario Kart Wii and asked if they could make it in 3D, and it went relatively well. A few weeks later, we could display Mario Kart Wii in 3D on the newest 3D panel. When I saw it, the 3D looked more natural than I had expected. I thought it was good and had some people at the company look at it.”

“I, too, had been through some really tough times with 3D,” said Sugino. “I think I was traumatized by it. “So the moment I heard the 3D idea, I instinctively reacted against it. I even said, ‘No, let’s not do that.’

“But when I saw the demo, I thought, ‘Wow! Amazing!’ And when other staff members asked me what I thought, I told them that if even someone like me, who had been traumatized, thought it was amazing, then everyone else would definitely think it was amazing, too. It was surprising to see 3D images with my bare eyes.”

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