Masahiro Sakurai’s latest project — a YouTube channel where he releases videos every couple of days exploring various aspects of making games — has been going well, with him releasing vids on everything from Risk vs. Reward in game design to lag to frame rates. One topic he’s begun to cover is his own career and the games he’s directed, beginning with Kirby’s Dream Land on the Game Boy — and now he’s delving into his second title, Kirby’s Adventure for the NES.
Sakurai has a host of anecdotes and observations to share — from “the company” (presumably HAL Laboratory) going bankrupt after Kirby’s Dream Land and demanding Sakurai make an NES port, to Sakurai kinda wanting to make a game on the new SNES as opposed to the established NES (since, in his view, the SNES would have more newcomers and the NES playerbase was already established, which would run counter to Kirby’s ethos as a newcomer game), to him needing to strike a balance in appeal that led to the now iconic creation of copy abilities. Sakurai comments on everything from minute details like the changing width of Kirby and a slowed floating to broader strokes like one-button minigames. For such a short video it’s packed with insight from front to end.
Check out Sakurai’s channel for more videos on his development ideas and philosophy.
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