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Forums > Submission Feedback > [News] Sakurai defends Kid Icarus: Uprising controls

This thread is in response to an article about Kid Icarus: Uprising on the 3DS. You are encouraged to view the article in a new window before reading this thread.

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Author: zippdementia
Posted: May 04, 2012 (11:24 AM)
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Regardless, this is still the game they released an entire other component for in order to make it easier to play.


Note to gamers: when someone shoots you in the face, they aren't "gay." They are "psychopathic."


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Author: Roto13 (Mod)
Posted: May 04, 2012 (11:29 AM)
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Which I stopped using long before I started beating levels on 9.0.

Stand is handy for Netflix, though.


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Author: TryHard
Posted: May 04, 2012 (01:13 PM)
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I firmly believe that the customer is always right, so you can imagine how it disappoints me to see an alleged professional like Sakurai telling people that they're just doing it wrong.


"It is better to take what does not belong to you than to let it lie around neglected." - Mark Twain


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Author: honestgamer (Mod)
Posted: May 04, 2012 (01:27 PM)
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The customer isn't always right. Anyone who has dealt with any number of customers knows this. The trick is to not make the customer feel like an idiot when you point out the 50 million ways that he's wrong.

In this case, Sakurai makes some great points about the issues with offering multiple control schemes (which isn't so much an excuse as it is a clarification on why that potential feature was appropriately excluded), and his advice on how you're meant to play the game shouldn't be needed because most semi-intelligent gamers will figure it out for themselves.

It's like with Wii, the way most people think you're supposed to wave your arms like a maniac when you play motion control games. That was only ever necessary for Wii Sports and games of that particular breed... yet you have people who were chucking Wii Remotes through television sets and ignoring common sense. Wii games are a lot more fun to play if you relax a bit, kick back and use gentle motions to control things. Then they control like a dream, as intended.

The whole "the customer is always right" phrase is a waste of five words, because the people who seem to know it and take it to heart also tend to be people who have no clue how life actually works. I've worked in retail and had customers come in and try to haggle with me on the price of something, throwing out--seriously, not as a joke--that "the customer is always right."

I wish that the customer were always right. It would make life easier for a lot of unfortunate retail workers (and other professionals). However, the reality is that the customer is often inexperienced and embarrassed to admit it.


"Too often we enjoy the comfort of opinion without the discomfort of thought." - John F. Kennedy on reality

"What if everything you see is more than what you see--the person next to you is a warrior and the space that appears empty is a secret door to another world? What if something appears that shouldn't? You either dismiss it, or you accept that there is much more to the world than you think. Perhaps it really is a doorway, and if you choose to go inside, you'll find many unexpected things." - Shigeru Miyamoto


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Author: zippdementia
Posted: May 04, 2012 (05:28 PM)
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I like waving the wii stick around like a maniac. To me, it was more immersive that way. But I took full responsibility when I whacked my girlfriend unconscious accidentally. I didn't blame Nintendo.


Note to gamers: when someone shoots you in the face, they aren't "gay." They are "psychopathic."


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Author: yamishuryou
Posted: May 05, 2012 (12:21 AM)
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You knocked your girlfriend unconscious? That must have been awkward.

I got KI a week ago for $15 after trade-in of a couple of crap games (thank you occasional BB trade-in-anything credits!) but haven't opened it yet, only just finished the really really really long Tales of the Abyss


At 9:55:00 PM MST on April 5th, 2005, Venter finally defeated Phantom!


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Author: goatx3
Posted: May 05, 2012 (12:59 AM)
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I've worked in retail and had customers come in and try to haggle with me on the price of something, throwing out--seriously, not as a joke--that "the customer is always right."

oh MAAAAN that makes me angry. some people. i need to punch something now.

edit: ps. jason, you got an extra pax pass hanging around for me? i'll take you out for dinner in seattle town. :D


Smokey was a conscientious objector.

< src="http://gamercard.xbox.com/Xaul%20Zans%20Heart.card" scrolling="no" frameBorder="0" height="140" width="204">Xaul%20Zans%20Heart.</>


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Author: zippdementia
Posted: May 05, 2012 (01:15 AM)
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You knocked your girlfriend unconscious? That must have been awkward.

Eh. It wasn't that different from how she was normally.


Note to gamers: when someone shoots you in the face, they aren't "gay." They are "psychopathic."


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Author: Roto13 (Mod)
Posted: May 05, 2012 (06:32 AM)
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'Cause she's inflatable? :P


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Author: zigfried (Mod)
Posted: May 05, 2012 (09:03 AM)
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Players have solved Sakurai's mistake by placing homemade pads over the face buttons.

And yeah, the lack of Circle Pad Pro support (as a second analog) was a mistake -- just as it was a mistake when Data East set the B button as "jump" and A button as "attack" in Werewolf: The Last Warrior on NES. The ability to implement a familiar control scheme already existed, and he dismissed it.

Since Sakurai gave advice to gamers, here's some advice for developers: If people are still messing up due to the controls (or even worse, feeling pain) after playing your game for three hours, then you screwed up. Go back and fix it before you put the game to market.

Exceptions:
1) games that are about mastering crazy-ass controls (Steel Battalion)
2) controls that mimic physical activities (dance games, many Wii games)

//Zig


Unlimited Zig Works!


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Author: zippdementia
Posted: May 05, 2012 (11:34 AM)
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'Cause she's inflatable? :P

Yep. But I filled her with whip cream to make our nights extra special.


Note to gamers: when someone shoots you in the face, they aren't "gay." They are "psychopathic."


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Author: honestgamer (Mod)
Posted: May 05, 2012 (01:14 PM)
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Goat, I'm not going to PAX this year (nor have I attended during any previous years), but maybe I'll go there next year. It's hard to tell. All I really know is that this year is out.

More on topic: I haven't actually played the new Kid Icarus, so I don't know how much of a misfire the lack of a dual-analog control scheme is for the overall game, but I do know that since the vast majority of players didn't own the circle pad pro at the time of the game's development and even at the time of its release, requiring that control scheme or making it optional in the competitive deathmatch mode would have been a fairly substantial blunder.


"Too often we enjoy the comfort of opinion without the discomfort of thought." - John F. Kennedy on reality

"What if everything you see is more than what you see--the person next to you is a warrior and the space that appears empty is a secret door to another world? What if something appears that shouldn't? You either dismiss it, or you accept that there is much more to the world than you think. Perhaps it really is a doorway, and if you choose to go inside, you'll find many unexpected things." - Shigeru Miyamoto


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Author: zigfried (Mod)
Posted: May 05, 2012 (02:08 PM)
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I'm not suggesting the circle pad pro be required, but it absolutely should have been an option for the deathmatch mode.

Sakurai's rationale is essentially the same as a fighting game developer saying: "Leftward-facing Z-motions are too easy to perform with a joystick. So, even though our game uses lots of Z-motions, we're going to force everyone to play with the D-pad when having local or online matches."

Kid Icarus is exactly the kind of game that the circle pad pro was designed for, which is exactly why people have faked it by taping rubber pads and whatnot over the face buttons. It was a big blunder, but at least Sakurai gave us the alternative "face button" option so that we could fix his blunder for him.

//Zig


Unlimited Zig Works!


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Author: honestgamer (Mod)
Posted: May 05, 2012 (02:45 PM)
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Sakurai's rationale is essentially the same as a fighting game developer saying: "Leftward-facing Z-motions are too easy to perform with a joystick. So, even though our game uses lots of Z-motions, we're going to force everyone to play with the D-pad when having local or online matches."

It's really not the same thing at all, Zig. The ideal for a deathmatch scenario is that everyone be limited by hardware that is the same for everyone. This is precisely what most people want and deserve (except for a few cheaters out there who will always buy hardware add-ons, given the choice, precisely for the advantage that they gain in deathmatch in some games).

Given the newness of the attachment, its availability wasn't a relevant option from a design perspective, unless Nintendo specifically wanted to use the game as a way to shift more hardware (which would have drawn a whole different sort of ire).

If you look at a fighting game on Xbox 360 or PlayStation 3, players always have the option of both the d-pad and the analog stick--by virtue of the default hardware--so refusing to use one of the two in that case would be willfully stupid. Saying "We want everyone to be on an even footing here" is completely different (and entirely appropriate).

Could Nintendo have possibly found a better control scheme that would work better for all 3DS units? That's quite possible. I really don't know, but I'll be happy to reexamine my points if someone sends me a copy of the game. ;-)

Basically, my current stance is that I find it absurd to knock the developer for making what seems to have been the right call given the situation... though it's all academic for me, since I probably wouldn't spend much time with deathmatch, anyway. I have other games to be playing!


"Too often we enjoy the comfort of opinion without the discomfort of thought." - John F. Kennedy on reality

"What if everything you see is more than what you see--the person next to you is a warrior and the space that appears empty is a secret door to another world? What if something appears that shouldn't? You either dismiss it, or you accept that there is much more to the world than you think. Perhaps it really is a doorway, and if you choose to go inside, you'll find many unexpected things." - Shigeru Miyamoto


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Author: zigfried (Mod)
Posted: May 05, 2012 (03:12 PM)
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My comparison was between D-pad and joystick, not between D-pad and analog.

Joysticks are an optional hardware add-on, just as the Circle Pad Pro is an optional add-on. Fighting games are exactly the kind of game that benefits from a joystick, and Kid Icarus is exactly the kind of game that benefits from a circle pad pro.

Other developers already knew about the circle pad pro and incorporated it into their games, so I find it hard to believe that Sakurai -- a first-party developer assigned to a major project -- was unaware of or incapable of accommodating the attachment.

Putting everyone on "equal footing" by imposing an annoying control scheme is stupid. I don't actually think Sakurai is stupid -- that's why I think he's lying (most likely because he is a Japanese professional and is protecting someone above him who made the dumb decision).

//Zig


Unlimited Zig Works!


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Author: honestgamer (Mod)
Posted: May 05, 2012 (03:30 PM)
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It's still not the same thing, though. Yes, Nintendo would have known that its own peripheral was in development, even though that peripheral would have begun development long after Kid Icarus development began (remember that Kid Icarus was originally supposed to launch alongside the system, before the Circle Pad was even announced).

However, there's a difference here. The third-party joystick controllers that you reference for fighting games aren't something that a game can actually even disable. They just plug in and they have the same buttons as a normal controller, but those buttons are placed differently and the analog joystick is shaped differently. Failing to exclude such hardware is not the same thing as specifically accommodating a circle-pad device that adds on from the side. Sakurai would have had to design the game to enable it--as part of a conscious design decision--and he explained quite clearly just why he chose not to do that.

The real issue here isn't the game, which was designed precisely as it should have been based on the hardware available. The real issue is the 3DS hardware itself, which should have included a second circle pad by default. I still wouldn't be surprised to see Nintendo rectify that issue, possibly at this year's E3 with an updated 3DS design. Unless that happens, though, including circle pad support for Kid Icarus is nowhere near the slam dunk win that some people suggest it would have been.

Let's not forget, by the way, that most players and critics alike find Kid Icarus to be a wonderful game and the control scheme is merely an annoyance that they're quite willing to tolerate. Since the bulk of the game was designed before the Circle Pad was even a possibility, it's also quite possible that the game balance would have been adversely affected by Circle Pad support and Sakurai wanted to maintain a consistent approach across various modes. There are a lot of things we might speculate about. My real point here is that his statements are both entirely reasonable and credible.


"Too often we enjoy the comfort of opinion without the discomfort of thought." - John F. Kennedy on reality

"What if everything you see is more than what you see--the person next to you is a warrior and the space that appears empty is a secret door to another world? What if something appears that shouldn't? You either dismiss it, or you accept that there is much more to the world than you think. Perhaps it really is a doorway, and if you choose to go inside, you'll find many unexpected things." - Shigeru Miyamoto


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Author: zigfried (Mod)
Posted: May 05, 2012 (07:19 PM)
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There's no such thing as a perfect parallel, although I still think it's a pretty good one. My point was about the rationale ("leveling the playing field"), not about the technical details involved in excluding controllers.

But on the details, I think you're underestimating modern technology. I can't say that every controller is uniquely identified, but I can say that some of them are. If a developer really wanted to exclude particular controllers, there are a variety of methods -- developers could outright exclude Fighting Stick support, or they could try to be "funny" about it. Imagine the internet rage if supers could only be performed by wiggling the second analog stick!

Another note, just to be clear: Kid Icarus does not exclude support for the circle pad pro. You can use it to control walking (intended for left-handed people). What Sakurai excluded was support for the dual analog control scheme.

//Zig


Unlimited Zig Works!


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Author: Roto13 (Mod)
Posted: May 06, 2012 (07:36 AM)
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If you're using a circle pad pro with this game, the uncomfortableness goes away anyway with the added size making the "need" for dual-stick mode moot.


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